Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Puppy Update

This whole experience with Vic has been quite traumatizing, I pray that our children never have major surgery, it is stressful. Thursday he had his surgery and was pretty droggy most of the day. Friday he was feeling better, Sat morning he went in the get the tube out. He was doing great, everything looked fine, no worries.

Well once that tube came out it was like he was a free dog, he wanted to run and jump and play and go for a walk...only problem was that he still had an 8 inch insistion on his chest. Saturday evening one of his stitches popped, now there was a small whole in his chest. By Sunday morning he had ripped 2 stitches out, now there was a sizable whole in his chest...we were really getting worried, we were debating if we wanted to take him to the emergency clinic or if it could wait until morning... but he still seemed to be feeling fine.

Luckily our Vet lives one street down from us, so Kris got his cell phone from the neighbors and called him. He was sweet enough to come by and check on Vic on his day off. He gave us some antibiotics and told us not to worry unless another stitch in that area popped. Well guess what - by Monday morning another one had ripped, there was now about a 3 inch whole in Vics chest - this was no good. Luckily, Kris had Monday off (thank goodness) - so Monday morning he took him back to the Vet, the Vet said that without putting him back under they couldn't restitch it. There was no way we were paying for more anaesthesia, so Kris decided it was time for a second opinion.

We have another Vet Clinic right down the street that Vic has been too before. They said that they could numb the area and restitch him right away - so we went with that plan. They also wrapped gauze around his chest and suggested that we put a t-shirt on him to keep him from scratching the area. He doesn't seem to like it as much, but it is keeping him calmer and from ripping any stitches.
Kris now has to change his bandages every 3 days (it's a good think Kris used to work in an ER, cause I'm not sure I could handle doing it). We've also been giving him benadryl to keep him nice and calm. Hopefully by Saturday he will be healed up enough to take the stitches out and he can go back to being a playful puppy.

True Christmas Spirit

My cousin e-mailed this story to me and it touched me so much it actually brought tears to my eyes (which is hard to do in an e-mail). I hope you are touched by it in the same way I was...

It's just a small white envelope stuck among the branches of our Christmas tree. No name, no identification, no inscription. It has peeked through the branches of our tree for the past 10 years or so. It all began because my husband Mike hated Christmas -- oh, not the true meaning of Christmas, but the commercial aspects of it -- the overspending, the frantic running around at the last minute to get a tie for Uncle Harry and the dusting powder for Grandma -- the gifts given in desperation because you couldn't think of anything else.

Knowing he felt this way, I decided one year to bypass the usual shirts, sweaters, ties, and so forth. I reached for something special just for Mike. The inspiration came in an unusual way. Our son Kevin, who was 12 that year, was wrestling at the junior level at the school he attended.

Shortly before Christmas, there was a non-league match against a team sponsored by an inner-city church. These youngsters, dressed in sneakers so ragged that shoestrings seemed to be the only thing holding them together, presented a sharp contrast to our boys in their spiffy blue and gold uniforms and sparkling new wrestling shoes. As the match began, I was alarmed to see that the other team was wrestling without headgear, a kind of light helmet designed to protect a wrestler's ears. It was a luxury the ragtag team obviously could not afford.

Well, we ended up walloping them. We took every weight class. And as each of their boys got up from the mat, he swaggered around in his tatters with false bravado,
a kind of street pride that couldn't acknowledge defeat. Mike, seated beside me, shook his head sadly, 'I wish just one of them could have won,' he said. 'They have a lot of potential, but losing like this could take the heart right out of them.' Mike loved kids -- all kids -- and he knew them, having coached little league football, baseball, and lacrosse.

That's when the idea for his present came. That afternoon, I went to a local sporting goods store and bought an assortment of wrestling headgear and shoes and sent them anonymously to the inner-city church. On Christmas Eve, I placed the envelope on the tree, the note inside telling Mike what I had done and that this was his gift from me. His smile was the brightest thing about Christmas that year and in succeeding years. For each Christmas, I followed the tradition --one year sending a group of mentally handicapped youngsters to a hockey game, another year a check to a pair of elderly brothers whose home had burned to the ground the week before Christmas, and on and on. The envelope became the highlight of our Christmas. It was always the last thing opened on Christmas morning, and our children, ignoring their new toys, would stand with wide-eyed anticipation as their dad lifted the envelope from the tree to reveal its contents.

As the children grew, the toys gave way to more practical presents, but the envelope never lost its allure. The story doesn't end there. You see, we lost Mike last year due to cancer. When Christmas rolled around, I was still so wrapped in grief that I barely got the tree up. But Christmas Eve found me placing an envelope on the tree, and in the morning it was joined by three more. Each of our children, unbeknownst to the others, had placed an envelope on the tree for their dad. The tradition has grown and someday will expand even further with our grandchildren standing around the tree with wide-eyed anticipation watching as their fathers take down the envelope.
Mike's spirit, like the Christmas spirit, will always be with us.

May we all remember Christ, who is the reason for the season, and the true Christmas spirit this year and always.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Poor Puppy

Kris and I had noticed a few weeks back a weird bump on Vic's chest...we thought it was just a cut that had gotten infected, but after about 3 weeks we noticed it was getting worse...so we decided to take him in to the vet. It was very sad news, Vic had a tumor and would have to have surgery. We knew after the surgery he wouldn't be able to run for about a week, but we had no idea what all the surgery entailed. Vic had his surgery yesterday. They had to shave most of his chest area and made an incision about 6 inches wide (yikes). They removed the tumor and stitched him back up. He now has tubes in his chest and is bloody and has to wear a cone around his head.

Poor Vic, he looks so miserable. Usually he stays outside, but for now we decided the he could come inside and stay in the bathroom (we don't want him getting blood all over the house, plus we're not sure how he and Trinity will interact seeing each other face to face). I went and bought him a fluffy new pet bed last night at Target so he's enjoying his time inside with a nice, new bed, but you can still tell he's in a lot of pain. I feel so bad for him. Luckily Kris has all next week off to take care of him.

Here you can see a little of the incision. I didn't want to be too graphic cause I knew Renee would read this and be grossed out.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


It's very sad...I finally have free time to blog (since I have about 3 weeks of stuff to post) and I can't find that cord that connects my camera to my lap top...tear. It's just not the same without pictures.

Okay so I'll take Camille's quiz since she tagged me today :)

8 shows I watch: Wow this is kind of hard cause we don't have cable. I would say Dancing with the Stars, Everybody Loves Raymond, Priviledged...and lots of random stuff on PBC. When we did have cable I loved Top Chef - such a great show!

8 favorite restaurants: Houston's (Houston), Rum Jungle (Las Vegas), Grand Lux (Houston), this little Italian restaurant in Florence that I don't know the name of, El Gallo (Houston), Comet Cone (Greentown, Indiana), Cap City (Columbus, Ohio), Chili's (I love Chili's, you can't go wrong there)

8 things that happened today: My migraine finally went away!! My dog, Vic, had surgery, the weather changed from 30 degrees to 75 degrees, I talked to my sister-in-law who's coming to visit for New Year's, I worked my butt off, I got to leave at 5:45 (which is the earliest I've left in the last 3 weeks), I gave my hubby a hug and kiss when I got home, I went to Target for some Christmas Shopping,

8 things I look forward to: Christmas, seeing Matt and Merv, going to Europe next summer, busy season being over (even though it hasn't officially started yet), snuggling with Pumpkin tonight, 10 days of vacation from work, Vic being all healed up, giving Kris his awesome Christmas presents

8 things I wish for: a happy marriage, less stress at work, my migraine to stay gone, God's peace in my life, fun vacations in 2009, financial security, healthy kids (someday), and to be more like Christ daily...oh and can I add one more, Ohio State to beat Texas in the Fiesta Bowl.

8 people I tag:
Amy (Littlepage and Martin)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Holiday Eating Tips

1. Avoid carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Christmas spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they're serving rum balls.

2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. Like fine single-malt scotch, it's rare. In fact, it's even rarer than single-malt scotch. You can't find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It's not as if you're going to turn into an eggnog-aholic or something. It's a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It's later than you think. It's Christmas!

3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That's the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.

4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they're made with skim milk or whole milk. If it's skim, pass. Why bother? It's like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.

5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat other people's food for free. Lots of it. Hello?

6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year's. You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you'll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.

7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa, position yourself near them and don't budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They're like a beautiful pair of shoes. If you leave them behind, you're never going to see them again.
8. Same for pies. Apple. Pumpkin. Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or, if you don't like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert? Labor Day?

9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it's loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean, have some standards.

10. One final tip: If you don't feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven't been paying attention. Reread tips; start over, but hurry, January is just around the corner.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Christmas Cards

Ahhh...so on top of the migraine that I've had for the last 2 days, my Christmas cards are giving me a headache - lol. I made the scrapblog and thought it would be cute as our Christmas card this year. So I went to Shutterfly and printed it as a 4x6 photo. I was extra careful to ensure that the image fit fully in the preview (which it did). So then I ordered my cards, all 250 of them.

Then about 10 days later they finally arrive. Well, when I pulled them out to look at them the bottom and right side was chopped off. The thumbnail that came with the photos was correct, but all 250 were wrong. So this morning I decided to call Shutterfly.

I waited for 40 minutes to speak to a representative and when I finally got a hold of someone she barely spoke English. I explained my situation and what had happened and her suggestion was to send them back and they would look at it and if they decided it was their fault they would send some new ones. Right, cause I have time for all that 19 days before Christmas...so I asked to speak to a manager.

After waiting another 10 minutes to speak to a manager, the phone hung up...okay I'll have to call them back later. In the mean time, I decided that I would go ahead and mail the cards even though they're not as good as I was hoping for. So now I needed envelopes (since basically I had just ordered pictures).

Then I remembered that I have 250 envelopes from our wedding that had the wrong return addresses on them - perfect! So this year everyone's getting less than desirable Christmas cards in really fancy envelopes with the return address scratched out...CLASSIC!!!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree

I heart Christmas, it's such a fun time of year. Last weekend Kris and I started putting up the Christmas decorations, which I like to refer to as "winter wonderland". It was so much fun to get everything out of the closet and set it all up! There's still quite a bit of stuff to do in order to get ready for our Christmas Party on the 13th, but I'm sure it will all get done in time!

Happy Decorating!