Vaughnie's first pony tail! Or is it a pig tail? What's the difference?
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Vance and I have always picked flowers, er..actually weeds, together.
In Wisconsin there was a ton of little white, purple, and yellow wild things growing by the playground in our subdivision. We'd pick them, bring them home and put them in tiny vases on the counter. Some of them were always for Daddy when he got home from work.
We'd do the same in the neighbors backyard. I'd make flower chain necklaces for Vance and the little girl who lived next door. It was a great way to pass time.
The ice cream place that we frequent has tons of white flowers growing in the grass. While Vance always picks them here, it was last week that he wanted to give them to someone else.
He wanted to give a flower to the teenaged girl working. He asked if he could go, I said yes, and we patiently waited for her to be done taking another family's order. She was very surprised, smiled, and thanked Vance for the flower. I was melting on the inside by watching what my shy little boy had just done.
He's a thoughtful little guy.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
I very well could become a McAlister's sweet tea junkie. The only thing standing between this could-be addiction is the lack of a drive-thru on their part.
I just rolled the trash can to the curb and it's already too hot outside.
Vance has a bike parade at school today, so he's super excited about that.
This picture is from last week. I bought this little splash pool for Vaughn and hooked up Vance's sprinkler. Both water toys held their attention for a good 7 minutes. Today I'll buy a bigger blow up pool and maybe they'll play for 14 minutes. Yes, we do belong to a pool but I'm a little nervous taking them by myself. It's constant chaos even when Justin is with us. Need to build up to that one.
We've got some pretty amazing mulch fungi going on. All types of colors out there. Am leaving here to Google what to do about it.
Happy Taco Tuesday.
Monday, June 22, 2009
A couple of weeks ago my laptop started acting goofy. It was running unusually warm and loud, so I contacted Apple Support. Online, I filled out the few questions and checked the box that I wanted someone to call me as soon as possible.
My phone rang less than 30 seconds later with a real person to answer my questions. I was on the phone a few minutes, trying different things that the Genius could think of. He suggested that I take it to the Genius bar to have everything looked at. He offered to make the appointment for me, but I passed because I didn't know my schedule right then.
Later that night I went online to make my appointment. I was able to choose the day and time that I wanted.
On my appointment day I walked in to the Genius Bar at my chosen time, only waited a couple of minutes, and a Genius checked out my laptop. He was happy, helpful, and answered questions that I had. He seemed excited to be doing his job.
I love it.
By the way, this is a reminder to update your iPhones. If you have Mobile Me, activate your Find my iPhone. It's pretty cool.
Stay cool today.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
I'm loving the hydrangea bush that we inherited with the house. I clipped the bigger blooms today so we could enjoy them inside. Blue hydrangeas are one of my favorites and were included in our wedding flowers. Vance kept asking to be in the pictures, so here he is. He's in mid-sentence because he never stops talking. Ever.
I'm starting to feel silly that I'm still so sad about Daisy.
We were out of town for last weekend. My mind got a little break from missing Daisy because it was normal that she wasn't with us. When we got back home on Sunday it hit me hard that she's gone. I feel as if I'm starting over with my grief. It's silly. I know she's gone. I know she was hurting. I know she's in a better place now. I know there's nothing I can do to bring her back. End of story. Move on.
But I miss her. And that's just it. I miss my dog.
People have been telling me stories about their dogs who have passed on and I don't want to be like them. I don't want to move on. I don't want another dog. I want her back. Her presence is so vivid in my mind and in the house that it's almost haunting. My mind is driving me crazy because I look for her in her usual spots, looking out the front windows and beside Vance's bed, thinking I'm going to see her again. My mind still reminds me that Daisy needs to be let out. I know I said last week that I felt like I got a sign from Daisy, but it's not enough now. I need something else.
In a week or so we'll get a phone call from Daisy's doctor, telling us that her ashes need to be picked up. I have no idea how to explain this to Vance. I was fine telling him about Daisy dying. "The doctor can't make Daisy feel better. Because we love her so much we don't want her to be in pain, so we're going to do the only thing we can to help her feel better. We're going to help Daisy die." Anyone have any tips on explaining cremation to a 4 year old?
Monday, June 15, 2009
photo taken from allrecipes.com
Ok. The photo doesn't make these sandwiches look good. I made these sandwiches last week. I first saw them here. (She's fabulous, lives near Hollywood, and plans on taking these sandwiches to the Hollywood Bowl, picnic style. I assembled the sandwiches while Vaughn was yanking on my pants and crying. Justin and I took turns holding cranky Vaughnie while the other inhaled their sandwich. Same diff, right?) She changed the recipe a bit, but the original recipe is from allrecipes.com. I followed Morgan's recipe, not the original recipe, but after making them I'd try using the sourdough bread instead of french bread. Totally confused yet? Hang with me.
Here's what you need:
1/4 cup mayo
3 cloves garlic, minced (I didn't measure, but think I used less than 3 cloves)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 sliced red bell pepper (Could have used more peppers)
1 small zucchini, sliced
1 red onion, sliced (I didn't use onion, but will next time)
1 small yellow squash, sliced
Salt and Pepper
1 french baguette, or sourdough, maybe even ciabatta bread
1 pkg. feta, can be plain or flavored
chopped basil, if you want
Here's what you do:
Pre-heat oven to 375
Mix mayo, garlic, and lemon juice and set aside in fridge.
Combine sliced veggies, toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and transfer to cookie sheet.
Bake for 15-25 minutes until tender.
Turn on broiler. Broil on high for 3-5 minutes. Remove from oven.
Slice bread, spread mayo mixture on both sides of bread, and top with feta. Here's where you can add basil.
Broil for 2-4 minutes.
Top one side with veggies and top with other side of bread.
Click on Morgan's site for step by step pictures.
Here's what I think:
I was nervous after seeing the veggies come out of the oven. They looked mushy. I had serious doubts about this sandwich, but everything came together. The french bread that I used was too crunchy and hard to bite through. Next time I'll try the sourdough or ciabatta bread. We really enjoyed them, cranky child and all.
It's 7:18 and I already have one game of Candyland under my belt. Vance keeps asking me what I'd like to do with him next.
Hmmm...lots of different answers to that question.
"I'd like to install a lock on the outside of your bedroom door so you can't get out of bed at 6:10 AM", would be my first answer.
Don't think he's going to be thrilled that once Vaughn, who seems to be sleeping in this morning, wakes up and eats that we'll be off to the grocery store.
Friday, June 12, 2009
I've spent the past week looking for signs. Signs that Daisy was sending down from above, letting us know that she's ok. Sounds silly, I know. No rainbows, no dog-shaped clouds, no orbs of light in pictures. I convinced myself yesterday morning that I needed to stop looking. A sign would come on its own. And I know Daisy is okay. I don't need a sign to let me know that.
Vance had a great day at school. Italy was the theme this week and he was excited to tell me how they made a pretend gondola by turning a table upside down and how they laid under tables and painted on paper taped to the underside of it while laying on their backs. We've since had many talks about Michelangelo.
After school, Vance had his first real playdate. He made friends with a little boy at his old school and his mom and I exchanged info on the last day of school. I was a little worried. I've only chatted with the boy's mom during pick-up and drop-off. She seemed nice, but do I just drop Vance off at a total strangers house? Needless to say, Vance was super excited about going to a friends house. As soon as we walked in he took off to check out his friends dino books. After seeing the house and chatting some more I felt comfortable about leaving. Turns out that they live close to us, which is nice. Before leaving I walked into the kitchen to ask Vance if he was okay with me leaving and he said, "Look, they've got a puppy!" I asked Vance's friend what their puppy's name was. He said, "Daisy".
There it was. My sign.
After dinner I asked Justin to check the air in the tires of my car. Vance went too to help. While they were outside a little boy was walking a dog and the dog stopped in our driveway and peed. Justin thought that was another sign. Typical Daisy. Sending a dog to pee on our driveway. She was always funny like that.
It still hurts that she's gone but we're starting to heal.
Have a good weekend. Do something fun.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
So, Vance is starting to pose and ask for his picture to be taken. Totally not in character of him, but hopefully he's coming out of his "no photo" phase. Here's one of the shots. I think we need Miss Jay to work with him.
I had originally had the camera out to try to get a picture of Vaughn's curls. She's got curls! They're so cute! I want curls, so I'm standing here with hot rollers in my hair. I'm horrible with any type of hair doing, it's sad really. I'm totally remedial. This is my second try with the rollers. Hopefully these come out better than last night.
Tuesday, June 09, 2009
So, let's see where did I leave off before all the Daisy drama?
Right! Vance is going to a new school. Started last week. He's liking it a lot. He only goes 2 days a week and this school has shorter hours than his last school, but it's such a better program. He's doing so much more throughout the day and has already learned so much. And I don't have to make his lunch anymore! They make lunches on site and his "food report" from each day has been fantastic. He's eating food that he won't eat at home. Score!
This week they're focusing on Italy, so one of the fun things they have planned to do is to play Bocce ball. Sounds like fun.
We're going to a wedding this weekend and I must go dress shopping today. With Vaughnie in tow, should be interesting. Will have to bring plenty of snacks. She's a horrible shopper. I'm feeling quite fugly these days. Haven't had a haircut or color in such a long time. Have a huge zit on my chin and am quite sure the bags under my eyes are big enough to pack in for our weekend wedding get a way.
Monday, June 08, 2009
(Again, this is one of those posts that is just for me. Don't feel like you have to read it. It's helping me heal.)
I am heartbroken.
I am so heartbroken that I physically ache. There's an emptiness inside of me and I can't shake it. It feels as if I've been punched in the stomach. I miss her so much. I know everything will get better with time.
I told Vance on Friday morning. He took it harder than I thought he would. He cried and asked lots of questions. After talking through everything we decided to draw pictures of Daisy in heaven, with her brand new wings, hanging out with her other doggie friends that would be waiting for her. He spent the rest of the day patting my back, giving me hugs, and handing me kleenex, telling me things like, "Daisy will be in our heart", "Daisy will feel better there", things like that.
We ended up taking her an hour early on Friday. Vaughnie wouldn't nap and it seemed that we were just standing around wasting time until it was time to go. We all spent lots of time with her that day and gave her lots of treats.
We all went in to the doctors office with her. After the paperwork and saying last goodbyes, Justin took the kids back out to the car. I stayed with Daisy. It was peaceful, but went too fast. I thought I'd have more time with her after they injected her. I stayed with her for a few minutes afterwards before saying my last goodbye. It was so hard walking out, leaving her there alone.
I know it was just her body, not her spirit, laying there. I'm guessing it was around 3:30 when Daisy earned her wings.
So, the thought that had initially made me sick to my stomach had become a reality. I walked in to the doctors with my dog and came out with only her collar.
I didn't realize that it would be this hard. I miss her so much. My mind has become my worse enemy. I've heard her so many times since she's been gone. Seen her too. The way our grill cover blows in the breeze has made me think she's at the door waiting to be let in. I keep telling myself that if I think through the events of her last day one more time that I'll feel better. When I do so, I just relive the pain. Being alone is awful, as it leads to me having nothing else to think about but her. The rain is killing me. She was terrified of storms and was always right by us, shaking and panting. Everything reminds me of her. Mealtimes are hard too. She was always right there by Vaughn's chair waiting for bites. She knew that when we were done with yogurt cups they were hers to lick. She knew on Saturday nights she'd get a Frosty Paw. After putting the kids to bed she would stand and look at us, like, "Come on! It's time!"
The house is so quiet and empty. Every room makes me think of her and I haven't had the heart to vacuum yet. I don't want her paw prints in the carpet to go away. Especially in front of her windows. It feels better to be out of the house but leaving and coming back home is hard. She'd always be there to see us off and watch us out the front window while driving away. I'd always wave to her. She'd always be there when we got back home and I'd always have to remind Vance to not let her out once he opened the door. My mind reminds me throughout the day to, "Better let Daisy out" and to "check to see if she has food and water", stuff like that. I expect to see her when I look in the backyard. I expect to see her looking out the front windows. I expect to see her sleeping next to Vance's bed. I miss her. Our morning and bedtime rituals have been different and what it comes down to is that I'm not good with change. It appears that my mind thinks that if I cry enough and wish that things were different that it will do just that. Fix everything. Make everything better.
I'm a mess. I know that it was Daisy's time to go. She was hurting. I know she's in a better place. I know that she loved us and know that she knew how much we loved her. We rescued her from an awful life and am grateful that we had 7.5 years with her. She was such a good dog. So funny, pretty, and such a unique personality. She had a great heart. We've been remembering the fun times that we've had with her and that helps me heal. It's a defense mechanism of mine to shut myself off from everyone else, to not talk about things when upset. But talking helps. Crying helps. I'm learning how to express more. Justin has been incredible during this time. He's got double duty of working through his own emotions and keeping me glued together. I'm thankful that I have him and my family that have helped me through this. I'm also thankful for everyone's comments and thoughts. It means so much that you've taken time to think about us.
I feel so much better getting that out.
When I'm ready I'll post the doggie stuff that we have. Maybe someone could use it. Heartworm pills, Flea stuff, food. I just bought her a bag last week....
Friday, June 05, 2009
It seems somewhat comforting that the morning hasn't gone smoothly. Nothing seems to ever go as planned. That's the only thing I can count on: chaos.
Vaughn had woken up and was talking to herself. Vance, of course, was already up and watching a TV show. I was done uploading pictures to post, had chicken baking in the oven, done with one cup of coffee. Perfect.
Then I heard a beep. Daisy comes running downstairs, shaking. It's a beep from one of the smoke alarms upstairs. I go upstairs to wait and listen and detect that it's the one on the cathedral ceiling in the loft. Daisy has already pooped in the house at this point because she's so scared. I clean that up, Vaughn is crying in her crib at this point, and I'm trying to remember about the chicken in the oven.
Extension ladder! Have to back the car out of the garage first. Vance hears this and gets upset because he thinks I'm leaving without him. Calm him down and wrestle the big-ass extension ladder. Maneuver it through the house with only a couple of dings on the wall, get it upstairs, move the couch to make room for it and decide that it's too big for the job. Take chicken out of oven.
Vaughn is screaming now because this is all happening outside of her room and she can see me. I send in Vance to try to calm her down. I go get the normal ladder to see if that can work. Get back upstairs to hear that Vance has turned on Vaughn's radio to static and is sitting calmly in her rocking chair playing his Leapster. Turn radio to music, happened to be Carly Simon, threw some toys in Vaughn's crib, and grabbed the dust buster because the ladder was covered in mulch that needed to be vacuumed off the white carpet.
I could touch the top of the smoke alarm with my finger tips when standing on the highest step. I curse my genes for not making me taller. One more inch and I'd have it. I run to put tennis shoes on, it helps a little. I finally get the thing unscrewed and get the new battery in.
Good Lord, I'm spent.
Today is going to suck. I haven't told Vance yet. We're taking her in at 4:15 today, so I get to think about it all day. By looking at Daisy last night you can really tell that she's struggling. Her back legs are so weak. It's hard for her to stand. I tried brushing her, but her legs just tire out. It's hard to see her like that. She's such a fighter. She'll start by standing, then squatting, then will reposition herself in a new standing position instead of just sitting or laying down. She still loves to look out the front windows. She's there right now, barking at the cars and people walking past. She's always loved to sit and look outside.
I'm upset that her first owner abused her. Kept her locked in a cage. Daisy's teeth have always been a mess because she chewed on her cage. Since she was never let out of her cage she's scared of everything. Even the outside. The wind scares her. Her tail hitting the wall scares her. She's come quite a long way since we've had her. She likes to be outside, but never calm enough to lay in the grass or anything like that. She never learned how to play and that's sad too. Fetch was out of the question. She'd chase a ball, but never brought it back. She'd play tug of war a little too.
Daisy has been such a good dog. She's been our constant in a somewhat crazy life. We're all going to miss her so much. I'm unsure of what I believe about the afterlife. I don't know where she's going and am upset that I can no longer be there to protect her. Daisy's always scared and I don't want her to be scared and alone. I know she's only a dog, but to us, she's part of our family.
This post is way too long. But it's for me. I want to say so much more but don't have the time. Of course, Vance is bored and Vaughn has pooped.
Thursday, June 04, 2009
It's with a heavy heart that I write this post. We've agreed that Daisy is having more bad days than good days and therefore, it's time to put her to rest.
She's currently on three different pain medicines for arthritis (2 oral and 1 through injections) and while they've helped for the past couple of months, she's still struggling. One of the oral medications slowly deteriorates her liver and we're starting to see some signs of that.
I'm not ready for her to be gone. I'm not ready for the kids to be without a dog. I'm not ready to try and explain this to Vance.
I'm still trying to find peace with this decision.
I wrote the above yesterday. I'm feeling much more at peace today. I know this is the right decision for Daisy. I made the appointment for Friday afternoon. Please send us good thoughts.
Tuesday, June 02, 2009
I forgot to mention the new show that we're watching. It started last Sunday, so you've only missed one episode in case it sounds good. (You can watch it online and they're probably re-airing it.) It's called Expedition Africa and it's on the History Channel. Here's the link. It airs on Sundays 9:00 pm. Follow the link to read about it. We think it's pretty interesting and enjoyed the first episode.
Here's Vance throwin' a peace sign at cha before leaving for school. Drop off went as well as expected. Many tears.
While we were finishing up paperwork and getting our fingerprints into the system (will make drop off and pick up feel more like a secret James Bond assignment - our fingerprints identify us and open the door to the school. cool! and hello sanitizer!) a fellow Mom reassured us that Vance was not crying anymore. I'm anxious to pick him up and see how his day went.
Vance had his 4 year old check up at the doctors yesterday. Funny, only besides getting his flu shot, his last time at the doctor was for his 3 year old check up. He's a healthy guy!
Vaughn had blood work done for routine 1 year old tests and she didn't even cry. They took a whole vial from her. I thought we'd see tears for sure!
Today is the first day of a new school for Vance. This is where he'll be going to pre-school in the fall, so we're hoping he'll like it. Their summer school theme is Passport Around the World and today is Hooray for the USA! It sounds cute, each week is a different country and they have special guests and activities each day. (Vance is only going on Tuesdays and Thursdays though.) Vance doesn't usually handle new environments well, so Daddy will be accompanying us for the first drop-off today. Fingers crossed that everything will go well!