Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

My baby boy still has enough life about him that he wanted his stocking---did we give in? You bet ya! And if he's still here in the morning, Santa will fill it again for him! :) Yummy holly berries Peek-a-boo, I do see you, Mr. Mockingbird! From Ships Landing, we wish you all of the joys and blessings of this beautiful Holiday Season!

Saturday, December 20, 2008


m The Bluebirds found the holly stuck in a watering can and gave me such joy by indulging in this Holiday treat. I continue to be fascinated by the birds. As part of my Christmas gift to ME, I've ordered me several holly bushes. They won't be here until the first part of January, but I'm so excited about them! My days pass in a blur...and some of them seem to go in slow-motion, and yet I wonder at bedtime "where did this day go". Randy and I both have been sick for the last two weeks. We both seem to be feeling better today. The tree is up and alight. The Christmas tree is my one most favorite things at Christmas, and it always takes me a while to get over missing the lights after it comes down. This Christmas will be another one of those truly bittersweet Christmas'. I just came home from the vet a while ago. As I had suspected for some time, Badger is almost totally blind. His decline has been a seemingly long journey---and then again, it seems to have been thrust upon us all of a sudden. As I sit and type this, he's asleep on my lap. His need is so great that he has to be ON me now. The vet said we should be saying our goodbyes; that he would probably greet Santa one more time; but at best we probably only have about two more weeks with him. So I'll give myself these two weeks to sit and hold him close, soak up his smells and feel, try to absorb the essence of him, preparing for his next adventure----across the Rainbow Bridge.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

It's Snowing!

These are of our light dusting of snow on December 1; right now, it's SNOWING so thick I can't see across the lake!!! Just gorgeous!!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

May your Thanksgiving be full of the joys of hearth and home, family and friends, and many, many small everyday blessings. The 'boys' are still hanging in there with us. They have good days and some not-so-good days, but we are truly grateful for each of those precious minutes when they are snuggled in close and are at ease.

Friday, November 14, 2008

The Holidays are Upon Us...

What's happening at Ships Landing :-)
We had a beautiful Fall here in NE TN
A topper I made for my friend Flannie's birthday
or so people keep trying to insist. I've only mentally made it to-- hmmm --maybe September? Maybe? This year is almost a memory, and the only thing I really remember about it, with any clarity, is a brother-in-law and a sister leaving the bonds of this world, and coping with Dewey and Badger's illnesses. So, tell me, how CAN it already be November 14? :/ We got some much needed rain yesterday, and there's a chance for more today and tonight. Maybe I can get a few more tiny shrubs in the ground today. It was soooo foggy last night and this morning. Just beautiful, as long as one doesn't have to drive in it. :) Temps are supposed to go from high 60s today to mid-50s tomorrow, steadily creeping downward, with lows in the upper 20s tomorrow night. The fire in the stove talks to me almost daily now, offering warmth and comfort, encouraging me to close my eyes and dream--- I watched a male Bluebird checking out the winterizing of one of the nesting boxes. I'll share that picture soon. I'm sure he wanted to make sure that 'she' had stuffed all of the cracks, and made the 'feather' bed thick enough to snuggle warmly in in the coming cold weather. I've had a bazillion goldfinches at the feeders, along with a few house finches. And my sweet Sparrows sing to me every time I open the door. The wrens are quite busy right now, darting here and there. I keep a daily watch for that brilliant Cardinal that continues to refuse me his company at my doorstep, but I faithfully encourage him to come from the cover of the treeline and enjoy some wholesome dining with the others. :) I promise him that he will be quite safe, if only he would come... I must get up from here, and get some chores started. Tons of laundry are waiting for me, and the dust bunnies are scurrying around in the other rooms, making way too much 'noise', so I better go try and calm them down a bit. :D

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Day by Day

Here's a fabric pumpkin that I made recently. Just had to ... know what I mean? LOL I've been working feverishly on a Fall quilty runner for one of my friends. Her birthday is Monday. Yes, I know TOMORROW is Monday...and YES, tomorrow is the deadline. We're meeting for breakfast. I was really really hoping the quilt fairies would come in last night and finish whipping this up for me, but it didn't happen. :/ It would have been finished by now BUT I'm a glutton for punishment. I just had to put some 'fodder shocks' on it and needleturning these little jewels is quite tedious and slow for me. :/ So I'll be on the couch with wienies snuggled next to me feverishly trying to finish this up. Badger is still struggling, some days better than other days, but he is still with us. :) The vet is still inclined to think that it's the nerves and muscles in his neck that is the main problem, adding that that's not necessarily a better diagnosis, especially in light of Badger's previous back problems. She called yesterday to tell me that Dewey has E.Coli AGAIN and this time she's going to treat both of them with antibiotics. Man, these little critters just can't catch a break right now. You guys are great...your comments and encouragement mean so much to me! :) I hope all of you are enjoying these beautiful Fall days.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Update on Badger

I finally got the urine results back on Badger, and the good news is that the E.Coli infection has cleared up. For that, I'm truly thankful. However, he continues to 'decline'. Unfortunately, I'm really starting to believe that the vet who suggested that it might be a brain tumor is right. The 'seizures' have steadily increased not only in frequency but also in intensity, and some of them now involve his whole body. He has them throughout the entire day now. He also has steadily worsened in his balance, especially in the hind legs. And he's really sensitive to the sunlight in his eyes now. The vet has switched him from prednizone to a generic version of Neurotin but I can't see any change at all in him, better OR worse. He just continues to 'decline'. I'm slowly giving way to acceptance that he will probably not recover from whatever it is. Do I really need to tell you how many tears have been shed in the last few weeks? I finally had a long 'talk' with him the other day about the 'Rainbow Bridge', and told him that when he's ready he can go, that I'll be okay as long as I know that he's 'free to chase bugs and deer and run run run with his little ears flying in the breeze without pain'. I'm not giving up on him, but as I said, I'm slowly gaining some acceptance. He will always be the love and light of my life, that one most precious little face with the silky soft fur, with more zest and courage for life than anyone or animal that I know, that one bonded heartbeat, unlike anything I've ever had with all of the pets that I've had throughout my 52 years, that will always be there.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Happy October 1st!

Can anyone tell me what this little fella is?
Sweet little Bluebird
Look at this beauty---and was she/he loud!
Going, going gone
Look how the foliage is turning
Wow, can you believe that the Summer has passed so quickly? I blinked and went from Spring almost straight into Fall! And what a gorgeous first day of October it is here!! The sun is shining, but the wind is howling around the windows, and it is only 62 deg. (at 1:27 p.m.)! We have gotten in four loads of firewood, stacked and drying, and not a moment too soon. :) I have a big pot of veggie beef soup simmering on the stove for dinner tonight, and the 'boys' are lying here at my feet. In spite of the emotional turmoil of the last couple of weeks over Badger, at this very moment, I'm reveling in a sense of peace and well-being that I've been sorely lacking for quite a while now. I'll take it as I can get it. :) Badger is still not doing very well. For the last several days, he has been so lethargic that he's almost like a dog that I don't know. He had a return visit to the vet this morning. She's sending a urine culture out to another lab to see if the E. Coli infection is clearing up. She also mentioned that his spleen felt a bit large. I have no idea what that means, and for the moment, I didn't ask. I should have the results of the urine test sometime tomorrow, and then we'll see where we go from there. The vet did say that the antibiotic and the prednisone can make them extremely lethargic. Let's just hope that that is what's causing it. I've been so caught up in my Precious Pup's ill health that I haven't even gotten my Fall decorations out yet. I better get on the stick or it will be time for the Santas, and I can just forget about pumpkins and spooks and goblins. :)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Another Glorious Early Fall Day

The first Phoebe that I've seen at a feeder :)
Mr. Tom Turkey
Beautiful Bluebird
These little cuties were adorable playing in the birdbath
Goldenrod in front of my Carolina Cypress tree
The last few days have just been breathtaking---the temps are perfect, there's a breeze in the air, the sunlight has that lemony look to it, the birds are having a ball, and all of nature keeps tempting me outside---to dig in the 'cement', snap oodles of pictures of the birds and blooms, to sit on the porch with a Country Sampler magazine dreaming and woolgathering---fishing in the evenings with a sweatshirt on *s*--- Badger seems to be feeling a bit less lethargic. I can only hope that the antibiotic is taking care of the E-Coli infection, and that the prednisone is helping his back. He goes back to the vet tomorrow. I have a dr's appt. this afternoon just for a check up, and my glasses are ready for me to pick up. Oh, I do hope that I made a good choice in size and how they fit. There will be no changing my mind for a long time, if not, because they were so expensive. I'm really anxious to get them -- fingers are crossed that I will be able to see 'near and far' LOL with only ONE pair rather than the requisite TWO pairs that I drag around with me right now. :0

Friday, September 19, 2008

Update on Badger

Red Collar is Dewey Blue Collar is Badger
Our vet called this afternoon to let me know that she had the results of the urine tests back. Badger also has E.Coli bacteria in his kidneys. She also said that another cause of the instability in his back and head could possibly be mini-strokes. I asked her if she would just shoot us all and be done with it. My poor little fella really has a fight on his hands. This is the same infection that we almost lost Dewey to in March. I'm giving him so many meds now that I hold my breath each time expecting him to start vomiting them up. So, here at Ships Landing, it truly is 'one day at a time'.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Emotional Roller Coaster

Badger went to see his regular vet this a.m. She totally DISAGREES with the vet that we saw on Tuesday. She had the blood results back and everything was good with that. She said she saw no signs of anything in the blood work results NOR in physically examining him that would indicate a tumor. HER diagnosis is that the muscles and nerves in his neck and upper back are causing all of the strange symptoms he's displaying. She feels that the 'twitch' with the head and the 'nobody's at home' stares are directly due to muscle spasms and pain. Now, the back issues I can understand, having had so much experience with his lower back. He's had so many discs deteriorate in his lower back that I've been wondering for a long time now when (not if :/) he would develop issues with the discs in his upper back. He's to take the Prednisone twice a day, along with a pain med, be crated the majority of the day, and be on a leash anytime he is outside (which is a lot right now due to the prednisone making them so thirsty that they gulp gallons of water). She wants to see him back next Thursday. Soooo, meanwhile, we wait and see, and this little girl is on a really scary emotional roller coaster ride--- A bit of other news is that I definitely need eyeglasses, for reading AND every-day tasks such as driving, so I will have my brand new for-real grown-up glasses WITH RED FRAMES (the frames are skinny little ones--wanted the wide red ones but they just didn't work *g*) next week. AND they will be progressive, transitional lenses (no line where the bifocal is and they transition into sunglasses outside) AND they will be non-glare so driving at night should be a much more pleasant experience. I am excited because the lack of clarity no matter what I'm doing has become a huge PITA problem.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

My Heart is Shattering, Piece by Piece

Dewey on the left/Badger on the right
Berries on the Dogwood tree are beautiful
I decided I couldn't wait until tomorrow to talk to the vet, so I called them yesterday a.m. to see if I could bring him in for someone to have a look at him. I just felt like he was much worse with the "shaking". I saw a vet that I hadn't met before yesterday, and I really liked her. There are three female vets in the clinic that I take the boys to. I haven't met the other one yet, either. She spent a lot of time with me and Badger, long enough that he actually did end up doing this weird little 'twitch'. It is not good. It's worse than 'not good'. She thinks the little twitches are probably Petit Mal Seizures, which is what Badger's regular vet had told me on the phone the day before. That in and of itself wouldn't be so bad EXCEPT that they have just started happening recently. If he'd had them all of his life, like Dewey, well, that would be different. It seems that when they develop them at Badger's age, which is almost 12, they're usually indicative of something else. There's a good possibility that my precious pup has a brain tumor. How absolutely surreal that looks. How can that have anything to do with my all-boy, vivacious, happy little Sugar Pup??? My heart feels like it is literally being ripped out of my chest. This is not 'just a dog' to me....this pup is 'the child of my heart'. I have very swollen eyes to greet the optometrist this morning. Ahhh shit, I can't write any more of this now. More later.