I've owned my Ferret Nation cage for 2 years now. I've owned 12 rats total (4 have passed on.) And though a few have stuck their head out of the bars occasionally, I never had one escape... until last night!

You see; on each end of the cage doors there is a bar spacing that is wider than the rest of the cage. (Which equals up to 8 spots on the doors the bar spacing is wider.) You can fit two fingers comfortably in those spots, while the rest of the bars you can barely get 1 and a half fingers through. Some of my other ratties have been able to stick their heads out of those spots. Poppy recently has been sticking her head and body out almost up to her hips! And last night she discovered if she wiggled just the right way she could get her entire body out! I caught her climbing up the outside of the cage and I almost had a heart attack!

I had to temporarily use cardboard and duct tape last night on the spots she was able to stick her head out of. I went and posted on the Rat Chatter Forums where I am a moderator and we were able to find a solution to the problem!

I ordered 36in x 10ft of Hardware Cloth, Nylon Zip Ties, and Cutting Pliers from Lowe's. All together about ($35). I ordered everything last night and chose store pick up. I just had to print out my receipt and take it to Lowe's this afternoon to get my items.

This was definitely not a one person project! My brother helped me with this. The hardware cloth likes to roll itself back up and you need someone to hold it down while you cut with the cutting pliers. I didn't really measure at all. I just took the cage door (Ferret Nation cage doors come off completely.) held it to the wire and then marked with a permanent marker the spot I was going to cut. Once I cut out my first piece, I used that as a guide for the 3 other doors.

Then while one person holds the wire flat against the cage door, another zip ties the wire to the door. I actually ran out of zip ties... I should have gotten another pack, thank goodness my Dad had some extras! All in all it took about an hour and a half to complete the 4 doors. And now my little escapee can't escape anymore!

The cage doors completed:

Brattie Ratties!

Some Organization!

My bookshelves from Walmart arrived this week and tonight with the help of one of my brothers we got them put together. The boys cage fits perfectly on the smaller bookshelf. I didn't put anything on the shelves yet, so no pictures of that. I did get my books organized on the 5 tier bookshelf though. Surprised I could fit my enormous library on it! I do still have a lot of books on the back of my bed too, so this isn't all of them!

Here are some pictures of the 5 tier bookshelf:

And I finally got my Philippine rattie collection out of my suitcase!

Yes... I still have two suitcases I need to unpack. I've just been taking stuff out as I need it since I came home the end of January! I will finish unpacking and put away the suitcases when I tackle my closet organization! I still want to pick up 2 under the bed plastic containers and some smaller shoebox size ones to help with organizing my closet. I also want to get a new night table. So... slowly I am getting my room organized. Some of the bigger projects will be ripping out the crappy built in desk that is falling apart (a must to fit a bigger bed in the room!), painting my room, getting a new bed, new curtains, etc, later this year!

Rattie Love!

Some pictures of the girls & boys!

Ginger with a yogurt treat:

There are 6 ratties in this box! (Ginger, Saffy, Pepper, Poppy, Holly & Ivy! Ginger's butt is wayyy in the back!)

Basil & Sage:



3 Months

Today F.B. & I have been married 3 months! ♥♥♥

I wanted to share my favorite wedding video. After we were married when we arrived back to F.B.'s house. His family showered us with rice and rose petals!

I have more wedding videos on Facebook. But you have to add me as a friend to view them.

And if you've been reading my blog long enough. "Tunay Na Mahal" means "True Love" in Tagalog. ♥♥♥

Walmart you rock!

I have a little bedroom....and A LOT of clutter. Stuff, Books, Clothing. I can't fit everything into my room. My bookshelf is overflowing. When I open my closet things fall out at me. I'm just tired of the clutter. Even more so because if our immigration goes faster F.B. might be here by the holidays and I need to start getting my room in order so my husband has some space too! We want to get an apartment at least a year after F.B. moves here if not sooner- but for the meantime we'll be staying with my parents. I still need to get us a new bed and a TV and DVD player later this year. (I don't own a TV). But for now I wanted to clear up my clutter and organize. And especially make room for my book collection. I have a very large library.

I struck gold on tonight! (Gold, lol! It's St. Patrick's Day!) Here is what I got:

Wildon Home Sherwood Five Tier Bookcase in Black $75.00

More than enough space for all my books!

Mainstays 3-Shelf Bookcase, Black $15.00

I'm going to put my boys cage on top of this and then books & odds and ends on the shelves.

Sterilite 35-Gallon Latch Tote, Set of 4 $12.74 for 4 containers.

I ordered 8 of these! Enough to organize my closet with.

Including taxes and shipping my total was $126.29. Wow! Walmart Rocks! When my items arrive and I finally get my room organized I'll have to take some pictures!

EDIT: Just a note- Those 35 gallon plastic storage containers I got on yesterday jumped to $50.00 for FOUR! I paid $12 something for FOUR yesterday and bought 8 of them! Which means I saved $76!!! Wonder if it was a misprint and they had to sell them to me at the $12 price! :-o

Blog Anniversary!

Today besides St. Patricks Day...

It is my 2nd Blogging Anniversary!

I can't believe it's been 2 years already! So many things have happened since I started this blog. Now F.B. & I are married and finally working on our immigration process! I look forward to writing the rest of our story!


Asian Aisle Feature

Last August I won the 1st Asian Aisle blog giveaway! I wasn't expecting such a big prize package! Because I wanted to thank Cindy for the great prizes, I picked out a few treats for her while I was in the Philippines. Today she featured one of the products. Head over to Asian Aisle to check it out!

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Philippine Snack Foods

My first blog post with my new laptop!

When I was in the Philippines for 2 months my husband and I got our favorite snack foods and I also got to try a few new ones. I wanted to share the snack foods we tried! I think you can see a theme with most of these snacks- most are seafood or fish flavored, which is something the hubby & I enjoy. I love trying foods from other countries! And the Philippines has a lot of different snacks foods!

1. Choc-o-star

Choc-o-star is a lot like Choc-nut. They are both chocolate peanut butter powder flavored candy. The little bars crumble easily into powder. I can't remember, but you usually get 20 in a pack. I like Choc-o-star better because it's got a better chocolate flavor to it.

2. Tempura Chips

I like these best of all of Regent's snacks. Tempura chips are supposed to taste like shrimp tempura. While they don't taste exactly like shrimp tempura. they have a nice spicy shrimp taste to the chips.

3. Sashimi Chips

Sashimi chips are also made by Regent Foods. My husband likes these better than the tempura chips. They are a little bit spicer though. They are supposed to taste tuna sashimi. I find they have a strong garlic aftrer taste to them.

4. Fried Pusit (Squid)

I can't seem to find the Chivalry Brand company online. I didn't think I would like Fried Pusit. (Pusit is Squid in Tagalog). But it actually reminded me of beef jerky. It has a very sweet and spicy flavor to it. (chili powder is one of the ingredients.) I actually brought home a couple bags of this!

5. Jack & Jill Salmon Sushi Potato Chips

My sister in law works for URC the company that makes these potato chips. These were really good. They have a tangy salmon sushi flavor with little seaweed flakes all over the chips. (Looked like chives).

6. Kalamares Pacific Squid Rings

These didn't taste too much like calamares to me. They actually reminded me of Herr's Onion Rings in the USA. They had a nice spicy seasoning on them.
7. Pacific Fishballs

I took one bite of these and handed the bag to my husband. These were not good at all. I can't explain the flavor. They had a very tangy sour taste to them. My husband finished them.

You can buy Filipino snacks & foods online from the following places:

Pilipino Mart

Phil-Am Food

Similar Blog Posts:

Phil-Am Foods

Foreign Food Cravings

Taste Testing (Asian Aisle)

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I've been wanting a new laptop for awhile. I got my Dell Inspiron E1505 almost 4 years ago. I'm outgrowing the hard drive and my games (Sims 3, etc) don't run as well as I wished they did. I've been looking at Dell's laptops lately and whenever I customize a laptop with the specs I want it's been coming out to $1,500 at least. So I've been waiting for a good sale before I got one, because I only wanted to pay between $500-800. When I got my E1505 4 years ago I paid, $1,200 and I really didn't want to pay that much again.

Friday I had an email from Dell. They were having a sale just for the Dell credit account holders. So I went to see what they had. I customized a laptop and even upgraded a few of the specs and the total still only came out to $789! Wow! When I purchased it, I even got free shipping. Also if you pay for your purchase within 6 months you won't have to pay interest on it.

I got a Dell Inspiron 1545


-Intel Core 2 Duo 2.20 GHz Processor
-256MB ATI Mobility Radeon HD4330 video card
-500GB Hard Drive
-15.6 inch wide screen display
-Integrated 1.3M Pixel Webcam
-8X DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Drive
-Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium
-9-cell Primary Battery

I customized it online and upgraded some of the features. I was really wanting a 512MB video card, but all they were offering was the 256MB which isn't bad, that's what I have in my current laptop and with the faster processor speed and extra RAM my games and photo programs should run smoothly. I really like the Intel Core Duo processors. I also have that in this laptop right now. It's a high end processor and runs smoothly and lets you operate multiple programs without slowing down your machine. Dell has a comparison chart online for it's processors and I thought it was funny Core Duo 2 is rated: Genius. Haha!

F & I were talking about laptops when I was in the Philippines. I said he could have my old one if I got a new one. He calls my current laptop a powerhouse, lol. He likes a lot of old games, so he said he would like having my older laptop. So it will become his when he comes to the USA. I'm excited to get the new one, though right now it says the estimated ship date is March 29th! So long to wait! The only thing I won't like is transferring all my photos, music, etc to the new laptop when it arrives!


More L’Occitane Products!

My obsession with L’Occitane's Verbena scent continues. I ordered a few more products I wanted to share.

1. Soap with Verbena leaves

This is smaller than the soap on a rope I ordered before, but I think I like this one better. The verbena scent is stronger and I love the little exfoliating dried verbena leaves throughout the soap.

2. Verbena Cooling Deodorant Stick

I was getting tired of my Secret Vava Vanilla so I decided to try L’Occitane's verbena deodorant. It smells sooooo good! I really love it! Not sure why it's called "cooling" though, it doesn't feel any different from a regular deodorant. (Note: it doesn't last very long at all for odor protection. Not worth the $$$)

3. Citrus Verbena Revitalizing Mist

I thought this would smell just as good as all their other verbena products, but I have to say I DID NOT like this scent AT ALL! It's got a strange heavy musky scent to it which smells more like a man's cologne. I see they are out of stock of 8 fl oz. $18 size which is the one I got. I contacted L’Occitane and I'm sending this back for a refund! I don't recommend this if you like their other verbena products!

4. Verbena Cooling Hand Cream Gel

This is really nice. It's got that great citrus, lemon lime verbena scent. And it's a light gel cream instead of a lotion. It absorbs super quick and does give a cooling effect right when you apply.

5. Shea Butter Body Lotion

I got a travel size of this as a free sample with my last order. This isn't verbena scented. It's got a light almost Johnson's baby lotion or powder scent to me, at least that's what it reminds me of. And it definitely moisturizes! I wouldn't mind ordering this again.

6. Almond Soap

I love love love this soap! It's got a very strong overpowering perfume scent, but I just love it! It also has crushed almond shells to help exfoliate your skin. The bar is rather small though, I wish it came in a larger size. 

You can read about the other L’Occitane products I like here!

(Nope, not getting paid to recommend these products! I just wanted to share them, because I love them!)

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Ginger and the Gentleman.

My Ginger rat has not been doing so well. She developed a mammary tumor in January under her right front arm. She had also been sneezing a lot and went to the vet 2 weeks ago. She had an upper respiratory infection. The doctor gave her some cipro to take. I've noticed recently she was starting to get 3 more mammary tumors on her lower belly near her back feet. They are tiny right now, but you can feel lumps. On top of everything Sunday afternoon Ginger's neck started to swell. As of right now it's very puffy, and if you feel she has hard lumps. I had to take her to the vet today around 1pm. Ginger has Lymphoma Cancer... and it's just a matter of time before she passes away.

The vet prescribed her Prednisolone for inflammation and swelling to make her more comfortable. He also gave me more cipro since Prednisolone can weaken your immune system. Ginger is 14 months old.

This is the downfall of owning pet rats. Rats are so susceptible to tumors, cancer, abscesses, respiratory infections, etc. They only live 3 years at the most. Sometimes 5 years in rare cases. But when you're a rat owner, you take the good with the bad. They have so much personality, are so smart and have so much love and affection to give, that it makes up for the short time they are with us... any rat owner will tell you that. It's also the reason most rat owners have more than 1 rat. They definitely get into your heart even though they aren't with us for so long.

Moving along... I discovered we have an issue with mites... how did this happen? Well I had the babies in QT for awhile but I never noticed any scratching... needless to say, I'm almost positive they were the ones that brought the mites home- just because my blue hooded "girl" that was still at the pet store was being treated for mites... that's okay though, because I ordered Ivermectin in preparation for treating the pet store "girl". I gave all the girls a dose last night and once a week, I will have to scrub their cages and wash all their bedding in hot water & diluted bleach before giving them another dose. This will make sure the mites won't return, since the Ivermectin doesn't kill the eggs. Hopefully in 3 weeks or so we won't see anymore mites!

Now after the vet this afternoon, I went down to Pet's Plus to check on my "girl".

I can say, I still have A LOT to learn about rats. My blue hooded "girl", well I saw her picked her up, from the top view of the tail- yes looks female, even from the bottom- looks female... oh wait...look closer... male! Oops... my mistake, lol. How about my "girl" is actually a boy!!! lol! Well his bits & pieces (testicles) don't seem very large from the pictures I've seen of mature male rats, lol! (See here!)

I asked about the other rat that was still there, if it was female or male. So we checked... and another male! They were both in aquarium tanks with care fresh, living separately. Soooo since my rattie had already been marked sold and I bought him... lol! I decided to get the other male too, so he would have company. They gave me a discount of $14.99 for the 2nd one. Soooo... I now have 2 gentleman. lol!

And thank god I still have a 2 story spare cage for my gentlemen! I may get them neutered in near future. But for now the gentleman have their own private cage, separate from the girls and everyone will be getting ivermectin once a week to get rid of the mites. And of course separate play times for the girls & boys!

I've never had male rats, so this will be a new experience. Male rats are supposedly calmer than females. (Females are hyper!) and they supposedly like to cuddle more than female rats. They are very LARGE. Which when I looked at them a few weeks ago they were huge then- (which maybe should have rang a clue they weren't female, but I have a lot to learn I see, lol!) I'm not sure how old they are, I would say somewhere around 4-6 months? Maybe a little older? They are also very skittish. They weren't handled so much at the pet store. But they will definitely have a better life with me. :)

Anyway, here are my 2 blue hooded Gentlemen! Basil & Sage!

So concludes... my bad case of GGMR! (Gotta Get More Rats)

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