Friday, July 10, 2009


I was so caught up in my own bad news that I failed to acknowledge your loss. I've always wished I had a sister and envy you yours. You're having a rough early winter and I hope things sweeten and let up toward the end of your chilly days. Your mind will insist that you absorb your loss and that takes both time and emotional energy. We're all thinking of you.


Summer and KC

Doris - the dress is gorgeous. I don't have the patience or skill for that kind of sewing. Used to do lots of garment sewing for myself years ago and when DD was little I loved making her jumpers, PJs, etc. but now she would certainly not welcome anything "homemade." Speaking of DD, she has had quite a summer so far. Band trip to FL for six days, three days home and then two weeks in Denmark, Germany, London...she went home with our exchange student from Denmark and we picked her up from the airport last night. DH and I had a hard time saying goodbye two weeks ago when they left so I asked Laura when we picked her up last night if it was hard to say good bye. Her response: "Nope. I'll see her again." She does plan to come here next year for DD's grad and we hope to go to Denmark the following year for hers. Plus having computers really does make the world a small place. Anne has a webcam so we talked to the girls several times over the last few weeks. I think the purchase of a webcam is in our very near future...maybe I should get myself one for my birthday in August.

After years of driving on ice or thru snow storms, my family has decided to move our Christmas gathering to an earlier date - the first week-end of August. We are meeting in Kansas City MO in a few weeks - any "must see" quilt shops in or by KC? I don't know if we will have time to check any out but it is always good to be prepared. Joleen in MN

ummm . . . that was a long post . . .

. . . and here is a picture of the Sophster....

for Jane, Marion, and gone to the dogs.....

JANE IN NC – Reading your post about Shadow brought back memories of our Alex’s final days, six months ago. Our experience was so similar, except he went fast over three or four days with no prior warning. With no diagnosis after an office exam, the vet sent him home “in hospice” telling us to give Alex whatever he wanted, but he didn’t want any food or water. The dog was 16 y/o and it was time. Putting him down was truly the saddest experience of my life, to date. Aw, gee, I’m crying again from the memory….. and the A/C repair guy is here so I have to buck up.
I’m sending you cyberhugs. I feel your pain.

MARION IN NZ – I’m so sorry about the loss of your sister. You are fortunate that you could go visit and see her before she died. (((Hugs)))

CANINE UPDATE - On a brighter note, our Sophie is now seven months old and fancies herself to be a watchdog. (Alex, the Shih Tzu, was definitely NOT.) I’m not accustomed to a dog barking at odd noises and such, but it is a good thing with all the break-ins and crime in our city. I truly appreciated her barking at a "strange noise" a couple weeks ago, when water was dripping from the ceiling into the guest room upstairs!!! The A/C condensation drain had backed up and company was arriving the next night to use that room. I would not have been alerted in time, if Sophie had not barked at the noise . . . .which of course I did not notice. Oh, long story short, we had to replace the entire HVAC upstairs. It was twenty-three/four y/o,,, It was time, anyway, and a waste of money to replace the coils on a unit that old. $$$$ I call it our own economic stimulus plan for the local economy. But I digress . . .

Sophie had her final obedience training session on Wednesday. She loooooves her dog trainer, cries for joy when she arrives, and barked "come back!" when she would leave. When we attend the group sessions, I praise Sophie and then she runs to the teacher for praise. LOL Dogs!!! Let’s just say Sophie would receive a (ahem) certificate of completion instead of a Graduation diploma. ;-) Must be the Spaniel-brain. She doesn’t see the need of most of these commands and is not from the willing-to-please camp. Ha!

So we have a cute, goofy little watchdog-wannabe who sheds hair everywhere (Shih Tzus don’t shed) and obeys when she feels like it, who is obsessed with peoples toes. She is precious and funny and will grow up one day into a hopefully more obedient dog. As I type this, she’s sitting across the room, looking at me, thinking, “As IF!!!” ;-) We also hope she becomes housetrained one day. Soon. Very soon. Two UTIs, back to back, have seriously set us back. OMG, I had forgotten over sixteen years just how much work puppies are!

Sophie had a terrible itchy skin outbreak a couple weeks ago, literally pulling out the fur over her rump. Our vet had to put her on Temaril-P, and it has helped a lot. I’ve switched her from grain-free kibble, back over to a 50/50 kibble/raw diet to hopefully remove/lower any potential allergens like potato, or whatever. Apparently, most dogs on raw diets do not have skin troubles. Sophie LOVES her raw food! (She came to us on a raw diet) . She’s definitely in touch with her wild dog primal roots-LOL She jumps up off the floor (viz: Snoopy dance), cries with joy, and licks her plate cleaner than the dishwasher can get it. Gosh, with a reaction like that, it’s worth the bother to feed her raw. (VBgrin) She'll be healthier, too.

I finished the drapes for DS and DDIL's bedroom, and am now making a roman shade for their guest bathroom. Last week, I made a clone of a bridesmaid dress for a friend's 10-month old granddaughter. My friend was going to make it, but the silk chiffon, cotton lace overlaid bodice, etc., freaked her out. If anybuddy is interested, copy & paste:
In return, my friend is knitting me some golf club head covers from eyelash yarn that are just too cute!
I don't know if I'll get any sewing done for myself this summer, but that's okay.

Welp, that's all the news that is fit to tell. I really need to check in more often, but this is the busiest summer I have had, in ages.

Hugs to everyone!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

This & That

Marion, an awareness of what has been happening in your life allows me to say, openly here, that you've been through much in the past months. Flying to England from NZ, having those few weeks with your sister Brenda, helping out in her home and keeping the kitchen and tummies filled while she coped with her last days, it's a letdown for you now, I'm sure. I feel that the mind does not accept death as a death immediately although we know intellectually, emotionally, I think it takes awhile to catch up with the intellect. And I do know that having grandchildren to visit can be expensive.

Missy Sarah, at seven, was curious to look at herself in the mirror and climbed upon the porcelain pedestal sink in the main floor powder room and with a great bang, removed it from its base and the wall. Needless to say, Grandpa Jock huffed and puffed, she was horrified and grandma was only interested in getting the water turned off at the wall. There is now a lovely new vanity installed in its place, which friend, Walter, installed for us saving us a plumbing bill and today, I purchased a very small round mirror which will be placed on the wall at Sarah's height when she returns for a family gathering here this Sunday.

Jane, I'm saddened to hear about Shadow and I wonder that you might consider getting another dog living where you do. It would be awfully lonely without a dog in your house in the mountains when you've had them for so many years.



Here in the mountains it's grannie, nana or mamaw. I'd never heard the last of those before coming here. The first syllable is like man. Then of course there is papaw. That first a is likewise like man. I have it on good authority that in both German and Japanese it's Oma. Go figure.

Anyway, count your blessings. My grands are so busy that they don't get down here. They go to their friends' cottages on one of the many beautiful lakes in NY, work at jobs, and like Greg, go to a national all star high school track meet in Greensboro NC. He ran in a 4x1 mile event. I had no idea until it was all over. I probably would have driven over there to cheer him on had I known. Oh well... We will all be together in August at wedding of their spinster aunt. We are staying in the same motel and will have four days so I'm looking forward to that. Next June the boys will graduate from high school and wild horses couldn't keep me away from that milestone.

My precious Shadow is failing and there is nothing to be done about it. She is spared the knowledge of her impending demise and still thinks she's a puppy when she pesters me to hit the tennis ball for her to chase down. She is losing weight as she eats only every three days or so. Vital systems are failing in tandem; liver, kidneys, heart and the arthritis is in her spine as well as shoulders. Vet and I agree to the hospice approach of keeping her happy and comfortable. I've tried every dog food on the market, dry and soft, but nothing appeals to her more than a meal or two worth. She ate with apparent pleasure last evening and this morning not at all. Unfortunately the medication meant to control nausea and irritation of GI tract is a powder to be added to food. So much for that. I'm also giving her half doses of low dose Zantac which vet says works well with dogs with gut problems. That's a pill and she's still willing to lick the peanut butter off a finger tip disguising the tiny half pill. I'm already thinking that I'd be a darned fool to get another dog when she's gone but am also thinking about whether to get an older local rescue or contact Shadow's breeder who I know retires his brood bitches after they've had whatever number of litters he considers healthy and finds good homes where the owner normally has to agree to make a house pet of them, hunt them, and spay them. I'm not about to take up hunting but if he has an older dog available I'd take it in a heartbeat because I now his dogs and their wonderful temperament.

Well, before I get any more teary I'll spare you all any more dreary stream of consciousness.

I just looked out the window and the bright sunshine has suddenly disappeared. I must have a deleterious effect on the weather as well when I'm dreary.


Tuesday, July 7, 2009

From one tired Grandmother to another....

Rosey, I've got DGD 13, and DGSs 12 and 10 staying, so I know what you mean...!! It's mid-winter here and very cold. The power bill and the grocery bill are going to make this a very expensive two weeks..... Lovely to see them though . The boys still challenge my understanding. Romping around outside, rolling around on the wet cold lawn, making huts in the trees in the rain and risking life and limb on their scate boards (on our tennis court !?!) The DGD is at an interesting age .... seems to spend a lot of time texting her friends and ignoring all others around her ! She needs money for a school trip so is "helping " me in the kitchen (when she remembers to...) It's all fun (?!?)

I hardly remembered how to post, it's been such a long time. Today we went onto Broadband and changed our email address, so I was doubtful that it would still accept my signing in. Seems that it has. DH is very excited about having Broadband at last. He is keen to get onto Skype so that we can keep up with our grandchildren.. We are on "wireless "(wotever that means ! ) We are too far away from the cables to go on line..

I had the great sadness of losing my sister in March of this year. I was fortunate enough to be able to travel over to UK to be with her . She was given the diagnosis and prognosis in one day. Cancer of the kidney, lungs and brain , with three to nine months to live. She only lived for two months. Life is precious. Make the most of each day.

Better go. Some things never change...... DH is looking for his dinner ...

Happy days.
Marion H.

Sunday, July 5, 2009 Doni would say....

I can't stand looking at my own post about the fine things Canada has done/does do for the United States, not written by a Canadian...but good propaganda, at am posting to say that looking after a seven year old and a twelve year old is interesting and somewhat tiring for a grandmother. The girls brought a stuffed rabbit, the same rabbit someone on the chat board kindly made for my granddaughter when the home in which they lived had a fire. It is still lovingly cared for and now shared with her seven year old sister who was not fully baked in her mother's tummy when the fire occured. Both very bright children, the seven year old relies on the twelve year old to decipher and answer her questions which, as I pointed out, with her intelligence, she might try figuring out herself. So we got that straightened out. Last night, the two girls went to visit another retired Air Canada pilot who has a large property not far from here with a runway on it. He builds his own aeroplanes. The girls sat in the cockpits and played with the instruments and as a final topping to their evening, our friend took the girls for a ride on his motorcycle on the airstrip. They could talk of nothing else on their way home. Their parents were invited to pick them up today. Grandma was tired. Five days is long enough.