Sunday, August 27, 2006

Reality Check

Ok. first week of classes went well...
1. I got a 100 on my first quiz (taken on the 1st day of class)
2. I still want to be a vet tech
3. I've got lorazepam for any panic attacks that may occur
(already had one on wednesday...not too bad, though)
also...don't worry, mariah's no junkie...i take 1/2 mg pill...nothing compared to some folks..just helps me calm down so i can focus, function ( to people instead of looking like a hunkered down surly hermit crab/turtle staring/glaring into creepy and mean)
4. I've been talking to folks and interjecting in conversations...not worrying so much about how i'm percieved (ie..typically mariah overthinking the situation and ending up not participating at all)

1. none, really.
i did have a bit of a panic attack on wednesday when we recieved our "CVTEA Essential Task List" ... the Committe on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities. A thin green bound volume containing everything that i should be proficient in at the time of graduation. each item must be witnessed, signed and dated by either a licensed veterinarian or veterinary technician. yeah. and its 52 pages long with tasks such as "dehorning cattle & goats, gastric intubation, restraining rats and expressing canine anal sacs" interesting stuff to say the least.

on Friday at my first Anatomy & Physiology class i had a mini-attack when presented with materials for the entire semester all at once. Three bound volumes. one thin & blue, a lecture outline. One green and about 110 pgs, part 1 of the prof. slide presentation (the text of her powerpoint slides) and last a thick white volume of lecture illustrations to accompany the powerpoint slides.
very convenient and helpful material, yes. makes it much easier to take notes, review material and pay attention in class. but...
to recieve it all at once on the first day of class...
just a little shocking. (not to mention that she immediatley launched into lecture and sped through 88 slides in 3 hours) we do get a ten-min. break every hour, though.
all of the prof. are good about that.

My schedule has turned out interesting.
I've got the same prof. for 2 classes (intro to animal science & intro to vet tech)
which meet 2x a week on Mon & Wed for about 75 min...back to back.
then Tues. I've got the same prof for lab (for the same 2 classes) that's 3 hour labs, back to back.
So, i only see one prof all day MTW.
ThF i have anatomy (3hr lab TH/ 3hr lecture F)

actually, i really am liking it.
its intimidating and a hard program, yes.
its not so much the difficulty of the material as it is the sheer mass we're expected to ingest in such a short time period. intense, to say the least.
and i still want to be here!

ok, enough to study my a test on Tues.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

The Day has Finally come.

well, tomorrow begins my journey. i had a mini panic attack earlier tonight. the old "what the heck was i thinking" thing. But it didn't last long. I know I can do this. I'm just nervous. I think its finally hit me how long its been since i've been in a classroom.
I'm excited too.
i know you're all wishing me the best.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Pictures! Finally.

Chainsaw Kitty in her favorite spot under the stairs..nice and shady

Me & Frisco out on the Deck (before the caterpillar poo attacks)

The view from the hill...this is part of th 1/2 mile or so "driveway"..the corn is much much taller of that to come

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

My Latest Adventure

The adventures just keep comin' here in Weyers Cave.
Today was a fine real problems anywhere. I came home from work and spoke with Libby for a few minutes. Then went upstairs to greet Frisco and feed him his dinner.
I knew that after he ate we had to go to Harrisonburg to PetSmart and get him a new bag of dry food so after he ate I put him in the car and we were off!
Now, I am notorious for forgetting things at home when leaving...this time was no different.
I'd forgotten the $5 gift card for PetSmart I'd gotten as a rebate the last time I bought Friscos food. So, I left the car running and ran in to get it. Still, no problems.
We were driving down the VERY bumpy gravel road that is the "driveway" and just as we began the drive up the little hill i could've sworn that a 4-wheeler was suddenly behind me. That tell-tale engine sound that identifies it. So, I slowed down..unsure of where the sound was coming from and feeling a bit nervous about it. The sun was setting and was in my eyes and reflecting gold light from the tops of the corn that surrounds the road. The last thing i wanted was to hit some poor kid riding up the hill on the other side.
I stopped...and the sound whined a bit.
After a minute of listening, I realized that it was my car that was making that awful noise.
I figured something had happened with the muffler. I was on an incline and so there was no really safe way to check things out so I backed slowly down the incline a neighbors driveway and turned around to head back to the house. I didn't want to shut the car off, for fear of getting stuck...(that's another adventure i had on saturday...i'll explain later (electrical problems))
So, i slowly made my way back to the house and upon reaching even ground stopped and looked under the car...
the muffler pipe separated near the front end...i think its due to the rough road..and me probably driving too fast down it.
so, i found even ground and jacked up the rear end. i crawled under the car and bungeed the muffler in place and slid the pipe back into place.
now, tomorrow morning i get to hand out at the local garage and pray that all i need is a good clamp and not a new muffler pipe.
wish me luck.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Attack of the Catalpa Caterpillar

It's raining caterpillar poop.



Iit started about a week & a half ago...i thought it was the tree seeding itself or something like that. these little black dots all over the deck. dry and segmented, it was hard to tell exactly what they were. I asked libby (my landlord) what they were and she said she thought it was some seeding from the oak tree..but i knew it was coming from the tree directly above the deck..which was definitely no oak. and the black stuff seemed to get heavier times it sounded like it was raining. (my living room has a tin roof)
A few days later i came home from work to find libby's friend owen up on the deck. he was looking straight up at the tree. i looked up too. there were caterpillars everywhere! all over the leaves and you could see them eating the leaves, big chunks at a time. you could even hear it.
well, it didn't take me long to guess what the black stuff falling from the sky was...i asked owen and he said "yup", it's caterpillar poop. he was there trying to harvest some caterpillars for fish bait. (apparently they're really great fish bait)
Day by day the poop fell faster and more heavily. i would sweep the deck and not even a 1/2 hour later it would be covered again.
Now, its at its worst. i've not even bothered sweeping the past few days...and i don't go out the door to the deck much. after finding pieces of caterpillar poo in my hair, i'd had enough.
i cooked my dinner on the little outdoor grill i've got and had to use an umbrella to brings food in and out and held it over the grill when it was open to make sure no poo got in my food.
if you look at the tree now, it's about 1/2 defoliated. i wish they would hurry up and finish the tree...its finally starting to get cooler and i can't sit outside...i don't dare uncover the outdoor would get covered in poop. (think of miniature rabbit layers on the furniture covers)

Now the caterpillars have begun to committ suicide.
it started a couple of days ago. instead of the falling rain sound, i'd heard these sporadic thumps on the roof and deck. now, instead of just poop i've now got rotting caterpillar corpses to deal with...and they don't just fall, they splatter. trying to keep frisco from walking through the guts has proven difficult. ((you don't even want the description of the poo and its smell when is DOES falls in friscos outside water bowl and makes it look like urine))

So, that's whats been occupying my attention as of late.

check out the picture...they've got these weird sucker things for feet and are neat to look at. apparently, the second generation of these this summer will turn into butterfly's (or moths)

Love to all - Mariah

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Beware the Cat People I've discovered this really cool comic called "Pooch Cafe".
It's just great. They started this bit on "cat people" last week and its just been so great that
I have to share it. You can find it at

Watch This!