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Showing posts from October, 2012

Our New Normal

The stress of our dear Phoebe's passing seems to have taken a toll on my immune system.  I am down with a cold.  Or, not exactly "down", it's more of a cold medicine haze I seem to be in.  Of all times to be sick!   The family needs to stick together and pulling the covers up over my head and lying with a box of Kleenex and chicken noodle soup isn't an option right now.

This is the first year that we didn't get our pumpkin's at the farm.  Just the other night we realized that Halloween was going to be here any moment and we haven't done any carving, and - something I can't believe - we had not bought any Halloween candy!  Our minds and hearts were definitely elsewhere.  Yesterday the girls and I went to a little farmer's market stand just down the street and picked up a couple of pumpkins.  (They came from the same farm we would have gone to anyway, we just saved ourselves some muddy boots.  Trying to stay positive here.)

Last week, every time…

You've Been Warned

Now, which song will be stuck in your head? ;->

The Right Words

(Found on the board of my Pinterest pal, Sarah Lowry)

And So It Goes

Our appointment this morning for Phoebe was kept.  Not easily, I assure you.

The desire to have her with us was selfish.  She wasn't able to eat and we could see she was in pain.

I feel horrible because I was her care-taker, her guardian.  Rob and I were her parents and we couldn't stop this sickness from hurting our precious, little Phoebe.

She was a great cat.  Almost made it 17 years.  Now we hold and pet Maddy while she tries to figure out where her sister's gone.

Phoebe is close by, in a special spot under my daughter Katie's favorite tree.  Rob created the space and Katie, Lily, Rob and I gathered to honor this silly cat.  It was tough.  I'm glad it was raining, it felt right.

Buddha Belly, Phoe-bert, Naked Phoebe. The nicknames that only make sense to us. 

The tears have got to stop.  She was so sweet.  We'll miss her.

(*"I'm Too Tender Hearted")

I'm Too Tender Hearted

Being a cat hospice care provider is tough on my heart. 

Every 8 hours I give her a dose of pain medicine.  The tumor is in her mouth so she isn't eating.  Normally she eats dry food but since that's difficult for her we have wet food.  That doesn't appeal to her either.  She does go after treats, but you can see that it's painful and she gives up after two bites.   I've put lots of cat nip on the floor and scratch pad and when she gets the energy she rolls about. 

There are times when I look at her and think everything's going to be all right.  My thought process goes from 'She's starting to eat something!  She's feeling better!  All she needs is time.  It's going to be fine.'  Then I take off the wishing goggles and see that she is struggling, she's not really able to eat and realize that this is really happening.

While growing up I had hamsters and parakeets.  But Maddy and Phoebe were the first pets that came to me when I called them…

A Sister Stands Vigil

Telling the girls about Phoebe's condition wasn't easy.  Rob did a great job.  With Phoebe in his arms he let the girls know that she's very sick and that she doesn't have much time left.  But, we are giving her medicine so she isn't in pain and we get to spoil her with whatever treats she can eat and lots of love. 

It was a very long, tear-filled night.  I'm so proud of my girls for getting up and ready for school on time this morning!  I thought they were going to be so wiped out but they pressed on with their puffy eyes.  While I was making the school lunches Katie took my iPhone from its charger and went around the corner.  When she came back she showed me this picture -

Sister Maddy is by Phoebe's side.  She's been with her most of the day.

And get this, the book that Maddy is laying on is "The Purpose Driven Life".  It seems very fitting.

Starting Down A Sad Path

We've known for a few weeks that something was up with one of our cats.  Phoebe just hasn't been herself and things are just off.  Last night, when I was offering treats to see if she would eat, she went after them like she was interested but it looked like a struggle.  Very soon her mouth started bleeding.

This morning after dropping off the girls at school, Rob and I took our soon-to-be 17 year old cat Phoebe to the vet.  For the last week I thought that she had tussled with a squirrel that might be hanging around our attic (it's getting taken care of today).  She's been smelling funky and had some odd, sticky stuff on her feet and belly.  I actually went on-line to see if there was a WedMD for pets.  (There is.)  After last night we knew she had to see a real doctor.  Well, the vet has discovered that she has a large tumor in her mouth.  This is very bad.

Rob leaves for a business trip early tomorrow morning.  The girls know that Phoebe isn't the same ol' Ph…

What's That Thing Called?

While my 11 year old, Lily, was at the computer this was her question to me -

Lily:  "Mom, what happened to that machine where the paper comes up?"

Mom:  'What?'

L:  "That machine with the paper that comes out the back?"

M:  'A printer?'

L:  "I don't think that's what it's called.  It was something that had keys like this (pointing at computer keyboard) and the paper would go up and down."

M:  'That would be a typewriter.'

*sigh*  That just makes me sad.

I miss White Out. 

Do you remember correction tape?  You would have to line up the incorrect letter and the letter key then you'd put the correction tape in between them and press the letter key to erase what you did?  All that work to erase one wrong letter.  *sniff*  I do actually miss it.  (Are you even old enough to know what I'm talking about? ;-> )

Stop Staring At Me

It's very difficult to concentrate on writing when Maddy keeps staring at me. 

That tongue makes me laugh!

Starting the 11 Year Old Attitude

OK.  I think I've got it through my head now, my 11 year old Lily does NOT want me to pick out clothes for her with out her.

A couple of years ago Lily was giving input into her fashion likes and dislikes and I was glad.  My 14 y/o Katie could care less as long as it was comfortable, which I completely understand (I draw the line at the pajama bottom wearing however.  What is up with that?!?  Thank goodness her school has a dress code!) But I missed the experience of hanging out with her and shopping.  I couldn't bribe Katie to go clothes shopping with me.  Lily, on the other hand, is a tad different.  She will go clothes shopping with the understanding that there will be a form of chocolate at some point as compensation.  No problem.

So, about this latest realization.  Lily, for the last year, has been gradually nixing a few items that I would bring home for her, I thought they were adorable - or cool, whatever descriptive word she likes but, she would politely decline. "…

Bye Bam Bam

Bam Bam has been such a good sport this week. He's been Bruce Springsteen, a Portland "hipster" and Honey Bam Bam Boo Boo.  He deserves a break from modeling before his mom picks him up later today.  
Until next time Bam Bam!

I'm Really Off Lately

Oh boy.  I have been feeling so "off" lately.  I know the changing of the season here in the Pacific Northwest is playing a big part in my sinuses - which are killing me!  It must be the leaves falling.  Leaves contribute to mildew and allergens, right?  I've tried some sinus medicine recently and that did not work out well.  I'll keep working with Xylitol and Ocean sprays and see what happens.

And my body temperature is wacky.  Last night I was burning up. 

I'm tired.  I can't remember words, easy words. I'm hungry.  I'm not hungry.  Am I getting ready to hibernate?  Or, is it because I'm in my mid-40's? 

My mood is stable, so I've got that going for me ;-> 

I'll blame it all on the changing of the season and my nasty sinus pain for now.

(Do you have any miracle cures?  Icks-nay on the Neti Pot-ay)

Here Comes Honey "Bam Bam" Boo Boo

No more unmonitored television watching for this little guy!  It seems he's discovered the TLC channel and a silly program called "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo".  This show is not my style however, Bam Bam is a guest and he seems intrigued. I'll let him watch it just one more time before it's off limits.  He's going all out for this final viewing!

Hipster Bam Bam

I guess my houseguest, Bam Bam, has been in Portland long enough to catch the Portlandia vibe.  Today he wanted to sit with a cup of organic, free trade coffee, read the Willy Week (Willamette Week for those not in the area) and wear his faux glasses. 

Hipster Bam Bam - It's all about appearances:

Channeling His Inner Bruce Springsteen

So, I have this little dog, Bam Bam, as a house guest this week and I'm thinking, 'What can I do to amuse myself with this cute, little one? I know!  I'll come up with some Halloween costumes for him!'

Today:  Bruce "Bam Bam" Springsteen

Any other ideas?

( Bam Bam seems to have found other looks to try out here and here)

My New Writing Partner

I have a new little buddy for a week.  Introducing Bam Bam, my dog-in-law.

While my Sister-in-law flies to San Diego to find a new home, I'll hang out with this little guy until she returns next week.  Does he miss her?

I believe so.  How's our Benny boy handling it?

As long as there's a patch of sun, Benny handles things in stride.

This should be an interesting week.

Sleep Pink Party!

Not only is the color pink a favorite of the ladies in my family for it's joyful, pleasant shade, it is a symbol of breast cancer awareness and our family is not immune to the devastation of this disease.   The statical reality hit home 2 years ago when my aunt Linda was diagnosed.  Her strength is immeasurable and today she is a strong breast cancer survivor!  We celebrate, any chance we get, the love of life and our love of being together. 

In the spirit of October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month I've put together a little Sleep Pink Party to support Estroven as they bring awareness to finding a cure for breast cancer, breast cancer research and prevention.  Facts regarding this mega suck-tastic disease:  Every three minutes, a women is diagnosed with breast cancer with menopause-age women at significantly greater risk. That's me. 1 in 8 U.S. women will develop breast cancer in her lifetime. Breast Cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer death in women. (Lun…

Weekend of Fun!

Such a busy weekend in Portland, OR!  The weather is absolutely gorgeous - sunny and 75 degrees - and there were so many things to do!   You can only be in so many places at one time so here's a bit of the fun:

Greek Festival Time!

First stop, the annual Greek Festival at the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral in NE Portland.  This is the 61st annual and it's a fantastic party!  (There is no true Greek blood in our veins but we have a blast being Greek for a day!)  The dessert, Bougasta, is my favorite.  Gyro's, Souvlaki,  Loukoumades.  So delicious.

And who can argue with the Church when this is their rule?

After a full day of fun on Saturday, we looked forward to a quieter (car traffic wise) morning on Sunday with The Portland Marathon running on our street.  We don't run, or walk, but we cheer on the participants for the 26.2 mile marathon.

Our neighbors at the end of our block have a great gathering every year.  Brunch for the spectators (Mimosa? Yes please!) a…

Forget Politics - I Need A Cupcake!

Where to Start When Planning an RV Vacation

Proud Mom Moment!

With all of the stress that I was getting from Katie over the summer regarding her attending a high school that we had chosen for her, (Post: Constantly Asking, Am I Doing The Right Thing?) this year is starting out on an amazing positive note! 

Her classmates were attending the local public high school but Rob and I felt that wasn't a good fit for her.  All summer we were hearing complaints and feeling her dread.  Change isn't easy and I was beginning to think I made a mistake in pushing toward this high school.  She seemed miserable with the thought of being some place where you had to wear a uniform and she had no friends for support.  I researched this school and heard great things about it, including the amazing support from teachers and fellow students!  Oh man, I just wanted the year to begin so we could see what would happen, enough with the dread of not knowing!

Well, her second day in she actually confessed to looking forward to going back.  (*ahem* excuse me, what-d…

My Afternoon As Bozo The Clown

I will never, I repeat never, color my hair myself again!

The day before we are to go away for the weekend to our favorite Napa Valley, I decided to cover the gray.  And for some reason I thought I'd choose a new, fun, shade of red.  I've done this process oh-so-many times for oh-so-many years so I'm thinking 'All right.  I'll get this hair thing taken care of then finish packing.'  I have a lot to do and everything timed - when I pick up my girls from school, help with homework, make an early dinner, go to a school event, get some sleep then wake and go to the airport to met Rob who has been down in California on business.  The thing is this hair color turned out not to be 'cover the gray/ new, fun shade of red'.  My hair turned into Bozo the Clown wanna be.  What the?!?

With panic in my voice I called my sweet friend Trent (a professional Hair Stylist) and he took pity on his ditzy 'oh I can do this myself' friend and told me to meet him at hi…