Sunday, May 31, 2009

Life Is Full of Adjustments

I knew when we decided to get a dog (okay truth when I decided I wanted a dog and Robert consented) our life would be different. Then before this sweet puppy could join us POW Robert is terminated from his job.

Yep, life is full of adjustments.

We are adjusting to having a wee one to look after, worry about, fret over and play with. She seems to consume a lot of time and energy even when she is sleeping, which she does a lot of except at night when we want her to be sleeping.

After the first night of literally getting very little sleep because we put her in the kennel/carrier/crate/room/den/home/bed that we got her right there in our room. She whined, cried, whimpered, and begged to get out all night. The next night Robert insisted she sleep with us. Wonderful idea. No whining, crying, whimpering or begging. Only problem, Robert slept because puppy was up against me all night. Pushing and sighing. Then I had the best idea ever -- put her in the guest bathroom. Small, nothing she can hurt (except maybe the back of the door), tile floors -- yes, a perfect solution.

The first night in the bathroom she cried and whined quite a bit, but being across the house from us and behind two closed doors the whining and crying didn't seem so loud nor did it last as long. The next night we decided we still want her to think of the kennel as her place to sleep so we put it in there and I sat with her until I thought she was asleep. Oops she wasn't, then I decided to leave the door open so she could come and go as she wants. That seems to have worked. She only seems to be crying now when she needs to go out.

We have had to make several adjustments as to what we are doing, and I'm sure we have several more that we will have to make before Heidi reaches adult dog. And even though I have a book to help with things, there is no teacher like experience.

Starting tomorrow we make another adjustment in our life. Robert doesn't get up and go to work. It will seem strange. We have decided to look on the next few weeks as a vacation. Time for him to relax and refresh. He should hear something about the job at a local bank before the end of June. If that doesn't work out then we'll adjust our hopes and expectations and decide what path we will follow.

Thing is we'll just keep adjusting because life is full of adjustments.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

New Addition Is Now With Us

I picked Heidi up yesterday afternoon from the breeder, my friend Anita. My what chaos that puppy was used to. Five adults and eight puppies climbing over each other and playing. Anita seemed perfectly at ease as the we walked in and was greeted by all this. She opened the sliding glass door into the back yard and said,"Big dogs out, little dogs stay." The were was confussion as the big dogs went out and the puppies were trying to decide what to do. Some went out (I guess they thought they were big) and some stayed in. After a few more seconds they were all sorted.

Anita scooped up Heidi and handed her to me as she scooped up a couple of other pups sweet talking to them while all the time giving me instrustions about my little miss. And telling me how this dog and that dog acted.

I then signed a couple of papers for her. Wrote a check, wrapped Heidi in her snuggle blanket -- a gift from Anita to all her pups as they leave and headed out the door.

Heidi was secured in her carrier which we call her den and away I came. I was serenaded by a whining, crying puppy nearly all the way home -- a 30 minute drive.

It was a rough start for us --- We both had a long night and I'm a little concerned because she isn't eating or drinking like I think she should and right now she is just curled up sleeping but shivering. Is that normal puppy? Should I be concerned? Oh, so much to learn and that darn book doesn't answer these questions. I think we'll be fine, but this is much like bringing a baby home from the hospital. No matter how prepared you think you are ----- YOU AREN'T.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Wordless Wednesday -- I Celebrated a Big Birthday

My birthday was May 22 so I began the celebration on the 21st with my sister. Lunch then shopping.
Then on Friday there wasn't much celebrating going on. The big plans were for Saturday. Lunch, pedicures and more shopping with my girls.

Finally the big surprise. Supper with ALL the family. Here are three of my favorite members Preston, the oldest grandchild, Holliday and Abigail. Twenty-five people helped me feast on Mexican food, margaritas and ....

of course birthday cake. Mine was a triple chocolate beauty! Thankfully they forgot the candles.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A is for Apple or Abigail

Heads or Tails the Tuesday meme (it is still Tuesday isn't it?) has the theme of *A* today, and because it is heads the writer can post anything about *A* that catches their fancy. *A* may be for apple, but the apple of my eye is my granddaughter Abigail. Also known as Abby, Abs or Miss A.

This little girl captured my heart a six and a half years ago.

Meet Abigail Marie just a few moments after she was born. She was the first child I had actually watch be born. (My girls were each born when mom's was half out of it and presented to the mother in a state of near clean.) I found the whole process of birth and her fascinating.

This is Abby one year later on her first birthday. By then we were pals. She knew I was hers. She was happiest when I was sitting in the floor with her and she had my undivided attention. Yes, I indulged her every whim whenever I got the chance and today I indulge as many as possible.
This is Miss A as you might find her today. Riding bikes and being all of six. Ready to graduate from kindergarten. She is in the top of her class, an eager learner and a ready reader. She still likes for me to play with her and we spend time with books, at the park where she wants to swing higher and higher, or doing girly things like her giving me a make over or doing our nails. Tom boy and princess rolled into one.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A Mother's Brave Acts

This week the coin landed on "Tails" and the topic is brave. The assignment tell about a time when you felt brave or showed bravery. (This is TAILS so it needs to be a true/real post from your own life.)

Bravery is being able to stay calm in the face of adversity. To make rational decisions when those around you are falling apart. Bravery is what firemen exemplify and what soldiers are. I am neither a fireman nor a soldier but I am a mother and I have had to be brave on numerous occasions.

The day I heard my daughter's blood chilling scream as the door slammed on her finger. When I saw the arch of blood arch across the ceiling where she had yanked it out of the door slicing the tip of her right index finger off on the metal weather strip. Calm kicked in. I grabbed her, insisted she stop screaming, then wrapped her finger in a clean wash cloth and ushered her out to the car while giving directions to her two younger siblings to go stay with the neighbor until I got back, and to tell Debbie to call Robert.

Those evening when lighting would flash and thunder sounds right on top of it and you can feel the electricity in the air. When I want to scream and cry because I hate thunderstorms like that, but instead I gather three little girls up and hold them then laugh when they start to cry and sing silly songs and talk about how pretty the candle light is. And secretly cringe with each rumble and crash.

When a big icky spider crawls across the ceiling or down the wall and stops to survey the room and one person in a room of 20 spots it and begins to point and then the room burst into squeals of fright or laughter, but chaos has gained reign. Even though it is a small, but really ugly spider I face it down. I take a shoe and smash it when I would have rather it just crawled away.

When everyone in the house is sick. Every trash can has been a receptacle for vomit. When every toilet is splattered with diarrhea and the only one to do any cleaning is Mom. Mom is calm. Trash cans are cleaned, toilets are cleaned, beds changed. Brows are smoothed, medicine is dispensed. Quiet is restored, health is regained.

I'm not a fireman nor a soldier. I'm just a mom, but I can be brave when facing the challenges of all those little things in my role as such.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Life Sucks Sometimes!

For the past eight years I've had a very contented life. I got up each morning to go to work or not depending on the time of year. That has always been my joy in teaching --- that summer vacation. It has always been my time of rejuvenation -- but that is a whole different subject and not what I going to focus on and make myself write today.

Life has been good to me. I have had no complaints that are serious. Yes, we have had minor things happen -- Robert's hair all fell out, but has grown back. We burnt the well house down, but we built a new one. We sold a house, but moved into a better one. We have worried over our children and grandchildren, but they are solid strong young people whom we see surviving. We have been able to help others in times of need. We have offered up prayers for the health and well being of others.

See our life was rocking along very pleasantly, no major problems, no major worries, almost boring or mundane. Then Thursday happened! Robert came home for lunch as was becoming our custom and I cheerfully asked, "How are you?" fulling expecting the answer "Fine." which I usually got, but instead I got, "Unemployed."

Shock, disbelief, then reality hit full on. We knew that with the merger of the company he worked for and another there would be people let go, there were would be offices closed and people moved. We knew it, we had even played the game where others were given that notice --- selecting those we thought would be gone first --- we just never figured ourselves into that picture.

Now we are playing another game -- the What the Hell Are We Going to Do Now -- game.
We played this game fifteen years ago, have weathered three mergers and four name changes and aged since last played. I don't think any of the rules have changed though. The rules: send out resumes, think carefully before spending money, pray a little differently, and try to keep a cheerful outlook.

Oh, and keep in mind all the cliches
Life isn't fair
Hard work isn't always rewarded
When God closes one door, He will open another
When life hands you lemons, make lemonade

Got any other? I am fresh out at the moment.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

And That's the Way the Ball Bounces

My thought went to basketball when I read the challenge. We are in the midst of the NBA playoffs, with the Houston Rockets holding their own against a more touted Lakers team. My heart is with the Rockets, but I have doubts as to their ability to match step with the Lakers for much longer -- but who would have thought the 50 to 1 Mine That Bird would have pulled off that upset at the Kentucky Derby.

Then my thought travel back to my own days as a basketball player. I played three years. Two years in junior high and one in high school. They were fun years, trying years, years that left an impression on me.

I learned about team work, about being a part of something that mattered and I learned that hard work isn't always fairly rewarded.

Here's the story and yes, I'll still sound a little bitter as I tell it.

My freshmen year we had an awesome team. Those junior and senior girls were just awesome. We all took to the court and worked out each day. The junior varsity and varsity worked together side by side. Coach would pull his jv aside each practice for a few minutes after warm-up drills and go over plays that the varsity opponents would be running. We would then work out against the varsity trying to give them the competition that would prepare them for the next game.

These were hard workouts for a bunch of girls who were also playing jv games of their own two times a week. But this was the sport, this is what you did, this is how you got better ---- That and the fact that we didn't know any different.

The varsity won, and won, and won. They won district and were going on. The school was excited, the town was excited. Our girls had made it to Regional Tournament for the first time in many years.

I can remember how proud I was to be a part of that team. Even though I had never suited up for a varsity game I felt like I was a big part in their getting where they were. I had sweated with them everyday. I had stood my ground and been laid out more than once -- I had learned to rotate the ball almost the same way Springlake did, I had learned to shoot a little jump shot almost like the girl from Kress I had done everything Coach had asked of me to the best of my ability. Granted it wasn't exactly like those other teams but I had worked hard!

Then the news came -- Only the varsity would be going to the tournament to be held in Lubbock, only the varsity would be getting any accolades for all the hard work THEY had put in. Never mind the rest of us who had worked hard, never mind the fact that we had a part in it. I couldn't believe it -- all year long Coach had gone on and on about how we were all part of the team, how each of us played a vital roll in winning. Then this. To be snubbed, to be left out because we weren't members of the varsity.

I didn't get to go to Lubbock and watch any of the games. My parents didn't travel and follow the team like many parents did. I really don't remember if they won the first game of regionals or not. I do know they didn't advance --- and deep down a little part of me was silently happy about that. (You know, if I can't be a part of it I don't want you to win thing going on in the mind of a 14 year old.)

That was the end of my basketball career. I still love to watch the game. But when I hear names of big time players who get all the credit for a win (be they at the high school, college, or pro level) I can't help but think --- okay the rest of you guy just sit down and let them do it all by themselves. If you can't get some of the glory then just let them do it without you! You are a team, it is a team sport and it takes everyone working hard to win! So there.

And here's the to group of girls who didn't get to go to the tournament. We were an awesome bunch. (In case you're wondering I'm second from the left on the back row.)

Monday, May 11, 2009

Six, Yes, Half a Dozen

I have six grandchildren.Yes, I really do have half a dozen grandchildren. You have only seen pictures of two of them because in all honesty we don't see the older grandchildren as often nor do their parents send send regular up dates through pictures. This past week, however, I received via FaceBook pictures of two of the older kids. (And hopefully will get even more.)

The first is of Preston, the oldest grandchild, and his date for the Junior/Senior Prom. Preston is a great kid who is shall we say all boy raised in too adult of a world. He is his Grandpa's pride and joy and would be defended to the hilt by said grandfather. Spoiled, yes, but worth spoiling.

The second is Holliday, the first granddaughter. She is the sweetest, most patient, spoiled girl on the planet. It is easy to spoil her because of her easy disposition and loving, polite manner. I hope she never loses those traits.

I had a wonderful weekend. Got these picture plus had an impromptu date with Hubby on Saturday which was just a movie and dinner, but it was fun. Star Trek was fun, pure entertainment. All through the show we kept whispering to each other -- "Oh, that is this one or that one from the TV days." Then Sunday we had "our gang" over for grilled burgers after church. It was fun to visit without the roar of a restaurant in the background.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Haiku Friday --- A Mark on Life

It's time once again
To write of life in haiku
In three line segments

A topic is found
Then the syllables counted
The perfect words scribed.

What feelings were felt?
Happy, sad, excited, mad?
What was in the gut?

What lesson is learned?
What insight of life to share?
All answered in haiku.

Choices before us
Stretch as endless as the sea
What course shall we steer?

The impact not known
Until you turn and look back
And see your life's wake.

I know I've used these two pictures before but everytime we go on a cruise I stand and look out at the ocean and can't help but marvel at it's vastness, the seeming endlessness of the horizon which never seems to get closer. Then I stroll to the rear of the ship and watch the wake and again marvel at how our little ship on that vast ocean has left a mark that can be seen for several miles. It is just like life, isn't it. We have choices that stretch before us and as we steer through life we impact those around us, we leave a little wake,a mark. It might be swallowed up again, but we left our mark, we made a difference. We were there.

Hidy Ho, Neighbor or Just Heidi

Meet Heidi a full blood miniture dachshund. She is my soon to be new puppy. The runt of the litter and the only one with the pie-bald marking (white) and the ticking (small black spots on the white). I picked her because I thought she was the cutest, and even very early seemed to have more personality than her larger syblings. I have met her twice and she is a sweety.

I'll be getting her the end of May. Yes, she will be one spoiled puppy.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The Joys of a Pedicure

I'm joining back in with the folks over at Heads or Tails. Since this is my first time back in several months I was fortunate to find Edge as the *side* selected with the toss of the coin. With Edge the writer can go back and select any theme they might have missed or one the just want to revisit. Perfect for me. I scrolled through the list of things I had missed and happened upon this from January 20, 2009

Feet *OR* Feat

Now in January my feet are usually tucked inside closed toed shoes or boots to be protected from the cooler weather. I would say cold weather, but since I'm here on the coast I'll opt for the word cooler because so many of you experience temperatures much below what I experience. A story posted about feet in January would have had to have included something about different styles of boots to keep your feet toasty and probably the different kinds of socks available to not only keep your feet warm, but to whisk away the moisture that can build up and then cause more problems for feet.

But here it is spring. The time when the toes are coming out of hiding, the time when shoes are less about service and more about style. Where less is more. But before those feet can be shown in public they really should be spruced up just a bit. That is why I went today and had that all important pedicure.

Ahhh, that wonderful time when your feet are soaked, scrubbed, massaged and pampered by an expert. Yes, there is a certain amount of tickle involved for those of us with sensitive feet. An involuntary jerking away when certain parts of the foot are rubbed, but it only caused the technician to smile and me more determined to have power over my feet.

The end results are always worth it. Smooth heels, calluses all diminished and pretty, perky color of the nails. Yes, the pedicure --- the feet's best friend.