July 2022 in Review

Does anyone else feel like it’s still May? I don’t know if I’m stuck in that traditional caught-in-time, always-behind feeling of adulthood, or if this is worse than usual because I’ve literally avoided being outside as much as possible for months now. Well anyway, July was about as normal as July could be. There were wild moments and some bad news and new stuff and a lot of decision-making for our futures.

Reading and Watching
July continued and finished my Murdoch Mysteries rewatch. Books weren’t really a high priority, but I have a feeling they’ll become more so over the next few months. Unfortunately, I had my first (and hopefully only) one-star book of the year (You’re Invited). At least the other two were excellent!

I revamped my goals for the second half of the 2022, and actually Jason and I were already able to get the house list made up and prioritized. There are way too many items on the list – even after I made a second, pared-down version – but hopefully we can get it all done over the next few years. The sooner, the better!

Well, like I said, there’s a whole lot of new projects on the list. And we did get a few things crossed off: duct system cleaned out, a/c leak repaired, defunct flowerbed edging removed around the live oak, front path replaced, and some plumbago beds planted along the back fence. Mostly, though, it’s been too hot to do much of the outside work. Other than the plumbagos, we haven’t wanted to do any actual planting, just to have the plants boil alive in this weather!

(So it begins: edging around the live oak removed)

The Ferals
It was an insane month in Cats. First, there was the whole issue with our foster cat Sunflower and the upper respiratory infection she brought into the house in late June. She spread it to our other cats through Angus, who was interested in sniffing her under the door to the foster room. While our older cats only got mild symptoms, the three one-year-old siblings got extremely sick, coughing and sneezing and feverish. (And in Gherkin’s case, drooling and gunky-eyed, too.) The vet said it was just a virus, though, and we let it takes its course. They’re still coughing periodically, but are mostly better. I do wonder if their extreme reaction is because it’s their first exposure (like babies with the common cold) or if it has to do with them being exposed to feline leukemia as babies. They fought off the virus and are FelV-negative (unlike their sister Reaper, who went off to a special program for FelV cats last summer), but the exposure can cause a weakened immune system.

In any case, they’re better now, and Sunflower went off to the shelter for spay on the 10th, and was adopted on the 22nd. Yay! Adult cats often take a lot longer to be adopted, so I’m glad she went so quickly. She was so sweet and absolutely would love to be an independent family-kitty! And of course, there was the whole bit with the Wild Feral Family that I wrote about, and the mom-and-daughter fosters who came after, and who are still here with us for a few more weeks. And lastly, after almost six weeks of treatment for ringworm, Penny and Tillie finally got put up for adoption! It took less than two days for little Penny to get adopted, and while Tillie is still waiting, I’m happy to say our neighbor went to visit her, and she’s looking gorgeous (pic)! Hopefully someone adopts this sweet baby soon!

It continues to be way too hot to leave the house, and so July involved way too little movement on my part. Towards the end of the month, I’d had enough, and splurged on a new treadmill. Treadmills aren’t my favorite (are they anyone’s favorite??) but I can use one while I watch TV or listen to podcasts and audiobooks. It will help get some movement back in my day, since it’s unlikely that the temps will relent anytime before mid-October at earliest! Not to mention, I plan to be much busier with house repairs, or at least with taking over most of the house work so that Jason has more time to devote to house repairs. Hopefully this will provide a convenient, if annoying, way to get some walking in!

Quarantine Diaries
I got my second covid booster this month, finally. Because it was my first Moderna, I was worried about side effects, but they weren’t too bad. I had some really heavy fatigue, some brain fog, and a couple days where I felt generally ill and wanted nothing more than to eat tomato soup, drink gaterade, and sleep. Unfortunately, in some bad news, my mom’s side of the family (who all had Omicron back in Dec/Jan) are falling ill with covid a second time, starting with my uncle. He passed it to my elderly, frail, extremely-vulnerable grandmother, but thankfully once again, she was in the hospital – for an unrelated issue – when it was diagnosed and so was able to receive the right medications to treat it. (As opposed to the conspiracy-theory treatments, like worm-juice!) Sadly, my mom has fallen victim to even worse conspiracy theories than in January, so she believes, for example, that the government deliberately chose the treatment with the highest death rate, and that they’re paying hospitals for every covid death they can provide. I mean, wtf y’all?? My grandmother is starting to improve, though, and will hopefully leave the hospital today or at least soon. She sadly isn’t very well, generally, and I doubt she’ll be around much longer. (Pic from my grandparents’ 65th anniversary in 2018.)

Favorite Photos
It was another of those barely-used-my-camera months, so I don’t have a lot for favorites. Actually, all of these came from the last third of the month. Sheesh.

Left: Lilo (mom) and Stitch (daughter). Right, top to bottom: light-painting; urban sunset; struggling to grow

Highlights of July
A lot of this month was a hazy of monotony, but there were definitely good points:

  • nerdy board game night at Jennine’s house
  • in a letter home from boot camp, Ambrose told us that he keeps getting yelled at for smiling, and that’s the most Ambrose thing I’ve never heard; I love it!
  • helping Morrigan and his fiancé Katy (via phone calls and texts) nurse their sick kitten back to health from the brink of death
  • a new cat tree for our babies to enjoy –>
  • seeing possum mamas with babies on their backs on the overnight camera
  • also baby raccoons frolicking on camera!
  • spending time with my half-sister for the first time since Christmas
  • talking with Ambrose over the phone (first time talking with him since June 13!)
  • hanging out in my friend’s parents’ pool with her and them, sipping piña coladas and generally enjoying what summer is supposed to feel like (on a rare day it only hit 99 degrees!)
  • trying my hand at light-painting for the first time
  • finally taking my Instagram private
  • everything related to Matt Gaetz and Olivia Juliana, ha! #RapeyMcForehead
  • getting to see Tillie as she looks now (as the photo of her on the shelter website is from when she first arrived at the shelter in mid-June)

Coming up in August
If all goes well and he has town liberty, we’ll get to see Ambrose in a couple days! Thankfully, we’ll be able to watch his graduation through a livestream the day afterwards, too. Then, at the end of the month, Laurence will be off on his new adventure, to Canada (New Brunswick) for college. So by the end of August, my two younger children will both be off to their new lives, and Jason and I will officially become empty-nesters. It’s going to be extremely weird, given that we had our first child 10 months after our wedding and only about half of that were we living together without other roommates in a shared apartment. A very new experience for all of us.


About Amanda

Agender empty-nester filling my time with cats, books, fitness, and photography. She/they.
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