Thursday, January 29, 2015

There's Always the Weekend

Our corner of Virginia only got the very narrow edge of the colossal snowstorm that moved up the east coast at the start of the week.
More snow is predicted for Sunday, so we'll see if anything comes of this forecast.
Today is my day off, and I'm finding that while I have a lot of good intentions, not much is getting done. There's always the weekend to try and be a bit more productive.
The dogs however, always find something to do, so I'm glad someone is doing something.
Whatever you've done this week, I hope its been a good one for you! 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Buddy and a Road Trip

A day off work took me to Lancaster Pennsylvania.
~Crossing the Susquehanna River~ 
My friend Sidney recently lost her Golden Retriever and has been feeling down.  So, since she's unable to come and visit me because of work, I went to see her.  With me on this trip was Buddy.
I thought that she would enjoy meeting him, and I thought that he needed the chance to be "the star" for awhile. I was right, it was a good visit, not just for them, but for me too.
~An Amish Farm~
It was a whirlwind trip that of course included lunch.  
~Cheddar Bacon Scone and Tomato Bisque Soup~ 
And a few other stops like this one at a Mennonite bakery. The cupcakes (below) may not have been the Georgetown Cupcakes I enjoyed a couple of weeks ago, but they were pretty good and were less than half the price!
With a winter storm on the way, our visit came to an end much to soon. Buddy and I were back on the road for the two hour drive home just as it was getting dark. Thankfully there was only bad weather for the last half-hour and we arrived home safely.  Today we're awaiting another snowstorm to that is predicted to bring "accumulation."  We'll see.  
Finally I'll add that Buddy is doing pretty well these days. He is a happy, energetic and playful boy! I thought that we had resolved Buddy's allergies, that are mostly food related. A couple of weeks ago, I took the next two photos that showed how his skin has healed, and how he is now sporting a new, shiny, soft and healthy coat.
But for some reason, he had a bit of a set back.  He began chewing and pulling out some of what had just grown in.
So, just for now, he's again wearing a "cone of shame."  He doesn't mind at all, and he isn't letting it keep him from having fun and playing games with Todd!    
Even if Todd always wins!  

Thursday, January 22, 2015

The Perfect Visitor

With my van unexpectedly in the shop the past few days making it work with one car and a mid-day snow storm on Wednesday only added to the hectic pace of the week. Unfortunately some people don't slow down despite the snowy roads and accidents happen, like the one below that wasn't far from home.
~During our snowstorm yesterday~
Beau returned to the dermatologist for a check of his ears this week. There has been some progress in getting rid of the chronic ear infections, but not enough. He'll do another 4 week round of the strong antibiotics and medication which hopefully will be enough.
~Beau waiting for the Dermatologist~
In between his appointment Beau spent time in our office.  The last time I brought him into work, he had to be taken back out to my van because of periodic "woofs?" that were heard through the office.  This time, he must have known that the car was not nearly as comfy as my van and Beau was the perfect visitor and charmed everyone!
~Resting in between appointments~
 Thanks for visiting my blog today, I hope you've had a good week!

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Onward Gus Goes

Doctor E., the holistic vet came on Thursday to see Gus. The disease (degenerative myelopathy) is progressing faster than I'd hoped it would. Gus can (still) get to his feet, even though one back foot knuckles under.
~Gus on Thursday~
He doesn't realize where he's placing his feet, so this makes finding his balance a little tricky. Another increasing problem is that once Gus gets onto his feet and gets going, he's not able to control how fast he's moving and can't stop himself. This is why twice this week he has unfortunately tumbled head first down the two outside steps. Thankfully Gus has not hurt himself, but we're no longer allowing him to be around the stairs by himself.
Dr. E and I discuss at each of her visits Gus's quality of life. We both agree that it's still good for him, even though there are physical changes and he can't get up and move around as easily as he once did. So as Gus stumbles ahead, falls down, gets up, barks at me because I'm not getting his dinner to him fast enough and tries to chase the lovely Ms. Yellow, he is still happy. And onward we go, spoiling him, and giving him everything he wants.
Except the cat of course!  

Thursday, January 15, 2015

A Cupcake Kinda Week

Its been a cold and busy week that started with a bit of freezing rain, that made some of our back roads impossible to drive on.
It also began with our computers crashing at my office. My co-workers and I were initially reluctant to go (mostly) paperless in our office about 3 years ago.  But now we're pretty dependent on the computers to tell us everything from what treatment the patients need to when they should come back. By Wednesday the server was repaired, and we were no longer left looking clueless when someone asked what time their appointment was.

All of this was made a little bit better by the Doctor bringing us a box of Georgetown Cupcakes. Georgetown Cupcake is a very well known cupcakery based in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D.C.  With lip-smacking variations like chocolate salted caramel, key lime and strawberry that are topped off by the bakery’s dense yet buoyant "signature swirl" of icing, how could you not feel better?
While the edible cupcakes helped at work, another kind of "cupcakes" helped when I got home after the long day.
Cupcake Todd
Cupcake Josh
Cupcake Charlie, who will be seeing the groomer very soon.  
Cupcake Sheba....
You get the idea.
~Cupcake Gus~ 

So true.......

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Where the Action Is

The cold snap continues in our corner of Virginia with temperatures staying well below freezing again today.
None of the dogs mind staying inside and catching up on their naps.
Well, none of the dogs except Todd. No matter what the weather, the temperatures, and if it means wearing a coat that I think he needs, he wants to be outside.
Because he knows that's where the action is. 
Hope you're staying warm, and enjoying your weekend!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Back in Sync With Snow!

~Gus and Charlie~
Thank-you to all of you who have shared the loss of Cricket with us. Your words were not just words, they came from your hearts and were truly an expression of your feelings, and a reminder of the compassion, kindness and friendship of the blogging community.  I also received a call last evening from Cricket's vet. Dr. C's expertise as a vet really helped me to put everything into perspective--Her kind, supportive words as a friend also made a difference. (Thank-you Cyndie!)  Cricket may have been small in size, but she was big in spirit, and is missed.  
With Cricket's passing the week seemed to be out of sync. This morning began with snow falling. Usually I'm excited about the prospect of snow. But today I just wasn't. It was started snowing heavily as I began my commute to work.  After more than an hour on snowy, slick roads, in nearly standstill traffic I was not even half-way to my office. I was grateful when I got a call from the office manager telling me that the doctor had decided to close the office for the day.
I felt my mood starting to lift as I thought about a day at home. 
But first, I had to make a stop at the grocery store. Food is a great comforter (at least for me) and of course a snow day means snow-day food. I could go on and on about snow-day and comfort foods like tomato soup and grilled cheese, macaroni and cheese, and hot tea or hot cocoa that we all know are perfect for cold days.  Today for whatever reason, I took a different route and it was a frozen pizza.
Before that could be enjoyed, I knew that the dogs needed to enjoy their snow-day too.  
~Josh and Sheba, a favorite game!~
The cold air was another remedy that helped to lift my spirits as did watching the dogs enjoy the snow. Of course my lunch and nap helped too.  As the day comes to an end, I think we're all feeling better and back in sync.  
~Buddy wearing the cone of shame again, but enjoying the snow~
I hope your week is off to a good start!

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Good-Bye to Our Little Cricket

~Cricket in May 2014~
Friends, my heart is so incredibly heavy with sadness as I type this that I’m not even certain that all the words will makes sense, but I need to try. Today I am devastated to share with you that last evening we lost one of our precious gems, Cricket.  It all happened so suddenly. We didn’t know that when we woke up yesterday that we would have only the day with her before she left us for the Rainbow Bridge.
Saturday began early, with nothing out of the ordinary. Even though Cricket didn't eat her breakfast, I wasn't concerned because she would occasionally miss a meal.  Fast forward through the days events with her that had her settling in for the evening.  She'd gone out an hour before, had a drink of water, again refused her dinner, and settled down next to me at my desk.  Without warning she began having a seizure. Experience has taught me to check the clock to know how much time is passing. When 5 minutes had passed and she was still having a seizure, I knew we had to take her for help. The minutes in the car seemed to be in slow motion.  While I was feeling somewhat panicked, those moments were overshadowed by peace as I felt strongly that everything was going to be "okay."  Everything was as it should be. When we arrived at the vets office, and Carl handed Cricket to me, I knew Cricket was nearly gone. The vets tried to revive her, but there was no pulse, no heartbeat. Our little Cricket was gone.
As I reflect on Cricket's nearly 17 years of life, my mind goes back to New Year's Day.  We were all outside together.  I marveled at how well Cricket was doing, and energetic she was and how she was enjoying the day. She seemed happy.
~Cricket & Gus in August~
I remember how pretty she was standing in the sunlight, and how she couldn't keep her eyes opened because it was shining so brightly on her. It was a good day not just for Cricket but for all of us.
~Cricket, New Year's Day 2015~
Looking at it now, it so perfectly says everything about Cricket's good long life.  In her nearly 17 years of life she was the beloved and adored companion of Flossie who passed away in May. For nearly 8 months, she was our adored and treasured family member. Thinking about Flossie and Cricket being reunited brings comfort.
However it has left me brokenhearted by this unexpected loss of our dearest little companion.  The shock and the pain, and yes the guilt, feels so immense at times that it could easily fill a space much larger than this. Instead of dwelling on that, I want to instead finish by sharing with you a few of the enumerable things that I loved and will so dearly miss about our sweet little Cricket.

  • Her big hound-dog bark.  
  • The way she ran after the dogs and nipped at their hocks when they ran past. 
  • How peaceful she looked when she slept on the big golden sized beds. 
  • The hopeful and innocent look in her eyes when she would wait for a treat.
  • The way she made us laugh when she would run away from Carl when he'd try to get her to come inside or feed her.   
  • The wag of her tail. 
  • The rub of her face against my leg when she wanted attention.  
  • The way she loved us unconditionally.  
  • How she gave us something to smile about every day and has left us with a heart full of memories that will carry us through this time as we mourn her loss. 

Cricket was unique in so many ways. I know that many of you have lost beloved pets, and it helps to know that in this moment of our sorrow, many of you know what we are feeling right now.  A good friend told me today that no matter how much losing them hurts, a life lived without them is a life half lived.

God-speed my little noisy Cricket.  You lived life on your terms and you left on your terms as well.  At the Rainbow Bridge, I know you have been met by Flossie who loved you first.  I'm so grateful to have gotten to know you, love you and share our lives with you.  You may have been small in size, but you have taken a big piece of my heart. You will be missed, remembered fondly and not ever forgotten.  
~New Year's Day~

Thank-you Terri for trusting me and the rescue to take care of Cricket.  Your friendship and support over these past few months has meant so much as have your kind words as we both mourn the loss this most special dog.