Category Archives: TwoBigCats

Catching up re CherryBerry life celebration

By the calendar it was a month today that we lost Cherry.  As you know, losing such a close creature family member is brutal … so we’re doing our best – and managing to a certain extent – to adjust to her absence.  Over the course of the past week I’ve spent several full+ days locating, rinsing through and selecting the photos and videos I want to include in a Life Celebration for her. And as much as I’ve LOVED seeing all the photos and videos (and remembering / savoring the moments when I took them) it’s been a far more emotionally draining than I was expecting … so the full celebration post / page will have to wait until I am able to complete it properly.

In the meantime, I’m readying a couple of videos that I’m sure you’ll love:

This first one is of Joanne giving Cherry a CatWash — Joanne’s name for a rough and tumble  body massage that Cherry absolutely loved receiving … in fact, she would approach Joanne at least once each day — often several times a day — asking for her CatWash.

Cherry CatWash video

This second video is very near and dear to me: It’s of Cherry asking me to tuck her in or take a nap with her.  Cherry usually went through this each day after lunch, a routine that started not long after she and Cal came to live here, when I was having a series of surgeries and using daily naps as recovery time; she also did this every.single.night. as a means of directing me to bed at 9PM.

Cherry: Please tuck me in to bed

We have soooo many wonderful things to show and tell you about Cherry, but life being what it is, it’ll take me a bit longer to make them available.

Cherry Carroll, one of the sweetest cat I’ve ever known 🙂


Cat’n’Mouse (Minnie or Mickey?)

Remember the kittens we rescued from under our front porch a few weeks back?  Last week I visited with them and their foster-mom, Jeanee… naturally, I took a few pics.

I’ll try to make time to post the rest of them, but in the meantime, check out the Minnie (since “Patches” is female) birthmark on her right side:

Happy Birthday Springfield Al!

A quick note to say “Happy Birthday, Albert!” to our very good friend, Springfield Al.

Looking at the calendar, I can see it’s been about 25 years since we first met Al as a neighbor at our former residence. And though he / we waved to one another from across the street, we didn’t really get to know one another until ’91 or ’92, when we started bicycling a fair amount and a year or two later, learning to rollerblade.

Through some set of discussions & negotiations, Al and I each got a set of blades and took to the sidewalks to enjoy what was then the latest physical fitness craze. Turns out that sidewalks are uneven, cracked and have lots of tree-crap that has fallen on them so, basically what we’re talking about is as close to death-trap as a 40+ beginning blader wants to get.

Ah, I know, we’ll each carry a house broom in front of us for balance… like a hockey stick. Yeah, that’s the ticket… and that kinda worked, but not really. Oh, how about going to a local school basketball court where there’s smooth asphalt and wide open spaces? Yep, that did it. Before long, we were rolling and scootching all around the courts and, heck, we even got rid of the broom (after we’d swept the pebbles off the courts, that is.) From there we, ahem, (pardon the pun) graduated to racing around the school corridors on the shoe-slicked concrete – woo hoo!

Until that one corner that was snot-slick, that is. Ok, maybe we’ll avoid that corner in the future.

And from there we moved to the Los Gatos Creek Trail / Parcourse and cruised in to Los Gatos… a 16 mile lap. Seems we did that 2 or 3 times a week, then adding bicycling for variety and, voila… we were having lots of fun.

And we’ve had hundreds… no, thousands, of hours of fun since then. And like only long-time friends can do, we’ve helped each other get through our share of sadness as we’ve lost members of our families, friends, jobs and relationships. Life, huh?

These days we make it point to get our daily bike ride in as part of our morning-coffee ritual. Rain or shine, hot or freezing (as it is this morning), Springfield Al and I are out and about… Al calls it the “Amble through Campbell”.

So, Happy Birthday, Albert(!), I’m about to amble down for your birthday breakfast at Stacks 🙂

hal, joanne, The TwoBigCats, penny & pepper-do-you-want-her

So this is how I roll these days…

My Old Guy Ride.

I’ve recently refurbished my 1992 Bridgestone RBT… an apparently legendary Touring Bicycle I bought new in ’92. Before beginning the project, the bike had ~20k miles on it and appeared to be on its last legs. Turns out that was not the case.

And while the frame and major drivetrain components are original (bar-end shifters, front and rear derailleurs, brake levers) my RBT now has 2 coats of powdercoating, moustache bars w/leather wrap, Phil Wood bottom bracket, Chris King headset, Brooks B67 saddle and Nitto Chromoly rear rack. The Honjo hammered fenders, air horn and iHome sound system will likely be installed over Thanksgiving.

This thing rides like “butta” and is great for tooling around town or taking a ride down the Coast – next summer’s “personal event” goal. (Summer ’09 marks the 15 year anniversary of Scott / my tandem ride down the coast.)

I’ll put up some pics when the project is completed and everything’s cleaned up.

Dee and me…

This first pic is of me making pies a few years ago while wearing my favorite t-shirt (In case you’re someone I don’t actually know – and there seem to be more of you around these days, thanks – I’m a t-shirt / shorts / barefoot kinda guy through-and-through.)

The shirt says, “Ask me about my Grand Kitty”.

What I liked most about the shirt was that it told people that (1) I loved our TwoBigCats and (2) I didn’t care if it labeled me as a “little strange”… I’m not sure being a little strange in others eyes is necessarily a bad thing. (I retired the shirt a couple of years ago when it was worn out… don’t worry, I’ve saved it in my “lifetime trunk” 🙂

The second pic is the only photo I know of of Delilah and I.

Apparently I was reading the paper in “the chair” and opted to check for light leaks. Sensing an opportunity to catch a nap on a warm – and expansive – lap, Dee hopped up and caught the “light leak express” with me… waking only to see what Joanne was doing as she approached to take the photo.

If you haven’t watched the video of Pan asking to go outdoors with me, you should… she’s quite a cat, our Queen.

Let’s go outside…

Yesterday was a beautiful day and given the circumstances, it was pretty clear to me that I needed to get outside to get some fresh air over my gills, so I pushed myself away from the desk and said outloud, “Who wants to go outside with me?”

In a flash, Pan leapt out of her basket (in my office) and sprinted to the French Doors in the sunroom. I picked up my Flip video, turned it on and voila!

Notice how Pan “talks” to me and verbally responds to my question about going outside… Dee was the same, but most often about food 🙂

To every season…

Well, it’s Fall again, isn’t it?

In our house that means (Joanne) putting up the Fall and holiday decorations and our taking note of the changes occurring around the property.

Here are a few of our glass pumpkins / decorations that we’ve acquired from Treg and Candace over at Silkwood Glass ( )

And here are a few photos of one of the Plum trees out back as it goes through its Season changes. (Hint: when you click on the Plum pics, they enlarge and show wonderful detail in the leaves):

I’ll post a few more pics later in the day… the Fig, Cherry, and Roses are beginning to show their colors 😉 (My apologies for not editing the photos, I’m really not up for it right now.)

We are incredibly sad

It is with profound sadness that we tell you that Delilah has passed away today.

After recovering from amputation surgery for cancer on her right front leg, last weekend Delilah suddenly became ill. Diagnosed with pancreatitis, she received fluids, pain meds and antibiotics from the vet each day for the past 7 days. Yesterday’s blood tests indicated that her symptoms were getting worse and her ability to recover in a timely – if ever – manner, were unknown and / or unlikely. Given the pain this condition caused her to endure, with great sadness, we decided to end her suffering.

Anybody who knows us or has been to our house has known Delilah Carroll and the important role she filled in our family and “pack”. We will miss Delilah, but we feel blessed to have had her in our lives for the past 11 years and 1 day since she came home with us.

God Speed, Little One. We love you.

Pomegranates all squeezed and put to bed now…

Sounds a bit like a bodice-ripper, doesn’t it? 😉

Incline Mike was down for a few days, so he stopped by this morning and pressed the remaining pomegranates for us, as Springfield Al and I did last week with the first batches.

Today’s press yielded 2 gallons of juice, so I’m thinkin’ there’s another 5 cases of Pomegranate Jelly that needs to be made before holidays.

As you might imagine, while we were working, Mike and I got to yakkin’ and it occurred to me he hadn’t taken any of TwoBigCats Fruit Liqueurs home with him in an awful long time, so I tightened him up with Pomegranate, Cherry, Limoncello, Tangerine-cello (don’t know if there’s actually such a liqueur outside of our house) and, dare I say it? (Dare, dare…) The holy grail of our private works – Pear Liqueur. (I was unsure of the Coconut / Vanilla bean and the Vanilla / Blackberry, so I’ll test those before releasing… yeah, that’s the ticket, I’ll test them for everyone’s safety before releasing them. Unlike a few of the previous releases, these are all made from 80 – versus 100 – proof I’ve used in the past… better sipping and not so much like rocketfuel.

Party on, Wayne.