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Takin' the Blog for a Walk

Join Waukesha resident Brien Lee and his blog, Sir Fido, as they explore the city and report on the interesting things they find.

Email Brien at

good advice

I've received a lot of advice within the last year or so. Among the best, right up there with "don't quit your day job," was a little piece of wisdom from Dr. Jean McDonald. The good doctor from Cream City Kitty Clinic told me "one for each cat, plus one." Quite simply she meant if you have one cat, you should have two cat boxes. Two cats, three boxes, etc. Good advice for us because, lately, no matter what we did; switch litters, clean out daily, get the cat checked, one of our cats would have an "accident" outside the box several times a week. I'd inevitably discover the puddle in the morning when I was running late for work. The smell and the mess made me rethink even wanting to have cats at all.

Doctor McDonald told me that cats are very sensitive to smell and even a "multicat" litter isn't the best - the stronger scent turns off the cat. We didn't get two more boxes for our two cats, but we did add one more box and the problem immediately stopped. One simple word of advice has saved us so many headaches!

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looking for Easter

8) my favorite things, let us pray, Retzer, St. William

If you're looking for Easter around the neighborhood, chances are you're not going to find decorated Easter trees or lights around the eaves. We've been lucky, so far, in avoiding the overcommercialization of a more important church holiday than Christmas. This is one celebration still looked forward to and anticipated, not dreaded.

At St. William's last evening two men, Joe and Dan, were baptized in the beautiful new baptismal pool. The warm water wasn't deep enough for full immersion, but they at least got wet.     .

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blooming bra bushes

Walking the blog this morning while the coffee brewed. Very quiet on Easter Sunday at 7:00. No Easter decorations to speak of, though one neighbor was clearly celebrating a birthday this weekend.


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almost heaven

8) my favorite things, counting cranes, full of hot air, helping, Retzer

There's three things I look forward to at 5:00 in the morning, but it's rare I'm given the choice of all three at once.

Like most people, I look forward to being asleep at 5:00 a.m., but of course it's the first thing to go when better things call.

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up the crick without a boat

2) raindrops on roses, 8) my favorite things, Retzer

The literature for Waukesha County Park System's 39th Earth Week initial event was pretty specific: Participants must provide their own canoe. Problem was, I still didn't have a seaworthy craft. The last time I was in one was the day I totalled it last year.

When I tried to rent a canoe I was told the season didn't start until May. I signed up for the trip anyway and hoped for the best. One of the Retzer naturalists thought I might share her two person kayak, but I had to let her know. With the calls made and messages left surely she knew I needed her help, but with no direct contact to confirm it I drove 18 miles to Monches not knowing if she got the message. She didn't. Brought only a one-person kayak.

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can't fight City Hall?


If you've received your 2009 Notice of Assessment and plan on fighting it... good luck. How many people have the time and resources to get an appraisal, do a market analysis, get repair estimates, compare recent sales of similar properties?

I suppose if it was easy to get the assessment lowered, everyone would do it. The first hoop I had to jump through to learn more about our assessment; the webpage listed on the reassessment, does not exist. It just reinforces what I've been thinking. Property value goes up in a recession? Doesn't happen.

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a softie for StoryCorps

I was in tears after my little drive to work today. Seventy miles a day on the freeway is a stress I wish I didn't have to endure, but that isn't why I was in tears. I was listening to a segment of StoryCorps on public radio that had all the right elements to be a tearjerker. A father was telling his son about the barber who saved his life by catching him from a five story fall when he was three. Listening to it again after work brought more tears to my eyes. It passes the two hankie test.

A Toddler, An Open Window And An Amazing Catch

DMV 1.2.3.

In December I wrote about my nice visit to the DMV on West Ave. Quick and friendly. Went back again this week. Same deal. Apparently I'm not the only one. Ted Perry of Fox6 News spoke about his pleasant visit in Thursday's, (4/23) Ted's Take.


Best of Ted's Take - WITI

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stealing our thunder

Should've heeded the thunder... Takin' the Blog for a Walk became Takin' the Blog for a Run today. All we wanted was to do a little worm hunting, but even the worms weren't venturing out. Made it a block and a half before realizing we weren't going to make it all the way to Summit View to fish for worms.  

Fish weren't the only ones getting wet this weekend. Drove all the way to Mukwonago in pouring rain for Nick's first track meet. Cancelled. I feel bad for him. Not because of the meet, but because he broke his favored PSP. He dropped a discus on it after he brought three home to wash them. Probably didn't realize how slippery they were once the layers of dirt are removed.

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half price rummage

St. William

I'd like to point out the St. William Spring Rummage Sale this week. As usual, the items fill the gym and spill out into the entryway. It's a good place to find things you didn't know you needed at prices you wouldn't think you'd see.

For best selection stop Thursday 4/30 between 8:00 and 6:00. Stop Friday and Saturday for best price: Friday, 8:00 to 6:00, everything is half price. Saturday is $4.00 a bag day, 8:00 to 3:00.

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tornado season

Today marks the 25th anniversary of the only tornado I ever saw in person. Centered around Genesee and Delafield, I could see it from my Town of Pewaukee home while out in the garden.

The tornado killed one and injured nine. The woman killed, Loretta Stubbe, was the mother of my nephew's Godfather. She lived in a trailer home on Hwy. 18 at Brandybrook Road with her husband. Their home was destroyed. I saw the tornado from my home on Hwy. 18 . . . six miles away.

the light is not an idiot


I will no longer be refering to my check engine light as an "idiot light." After two weeks of worry, the light went out on it's own. I'm more dependent than ever on my 11 year old Toyota and can't afford to replace it. Thirty-five miles to work and no bus line. Hard to get car repaired when you have to have it at work all day.

I don't know for sure the reason the light went out, but my son checked it with his diagnostic tool and thought one injector was fouled. I had thought it might have been another oxygen sensor issue. So I poured injector cleaner in the tank and hoped for the best. The light's been out for two days now.

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