Thursday, September 30, 2010

Book Review: Don't Let The Pigeon Drive The Bus

Once a week Heidi goes to the library (Biblioteca) at school and brings home a book.  It is fun to see what she picks out.

When she was at the Montessori school, she would come home on Tuesday nights with a book for homework.  We would all gather around and she would read to us.  This was something we looked forward to as a family so I am very happy that her trips to the library will help us continue this family reading time.

Last night she brought home a book called Don't Let The Pigeon Drive The Bus by Mo Willems.

The story starts out with the Bus Driver asking the reader to watch his bus so he can step away but before he goes he say, And Please don't let the pigeon drive the bus.

As soon as he leaves, the pigeon shows up and starts pleading his case on why you, the reader, should allow him to drive the bus.  Everything from nicely asking to pleading to a temper tantrum.

We were laughing through the entire book!

The illustrations were so simple and complemented the story perfectly.  I highly recommend you pick up this book, even if you do not have a child in the house.

I searched Amazon for the link and found that Mo Willems has written a few other Pigeon stories that I intend to search the library for next time we are there!  Then I found his website that has activities!  I am totally smitten!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

What's For Dinner?

I don't know... Maybe you can help me!

With all the craziness in our house lately, I have not had the chance to find new recipes to try out.  We have either been sticking to our staples, using boxes to supplement, or eating out.

I did have one I was all excited to post this week but it was just awful so I couldn't do it.  I want to give you ideas you can use and know someone liked, not stuff my dogs ended up eating.

Send me some ideas!  Google is not posting comments on my blog right now so while we try to get that worked out go ahead and leave your ideas on the Facebook link or send me an email.

Speaking of craziness, the control-freak/fixer in me some how, accidentally, volunteered for a large, year long job for the PTO. 

But I was very proud when I came home from the Girl Scouts Roundup and realized that I was NOT the troop leader.  That's some progress!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Daisy's Oncology Appointment

We learned last week that Daisy Mae has Stage 2 Osteosarcoma. 

Monday afternoon, Daisy had an appointment with the oncologist at the University.

He thinks she looks good, and so do we!  She is able to get up with little effort and she is able to walk and stand longer every day.

The first thing they did when we arrived is weigh her.  Most of her adult life she was steady at 120 pounds.  When she was weighed six weeks ago, she was 105.  Yesterday, she was 85 pounds.  I was shocked! 

Anyway, we talked about our next steps which boil down to doing nothing or chemo.

When this whole thing started, I was dead set on not going through chemo but now I am considering it.

There is a 90% chance there is still cancer in her body even though we have not seen it on any x-rays. 

If we do nothing, she has been given four to six months before the cancer spreads to her lungs.  At that point, there is no way to treat her, just keep her comfortable.

If we move forward with chemo, it is six treatments, one every 21 days.  She would spend treatment days at the hospital and come home that night.  Her lifespan would extend to one to three years.

I have some research to do and a decision to make and a dog to love.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Yummy, Easy Chicken Thighs

The other night I had some chicken thighs thawed but I didn't know what to do with them.  I was feeling a bit adventurous so I took out the chicken and a pot here's what happened.

I put about three tablespoons in a hot cast pot.

Then in went the chicken, skin side down for about 3 minutes.

When the edges started to get white, I flipped the chicken and added some chopped garlic, salt, and pepper.

That looked good but maybe a can of tomatoes and a bay leaf would add some more flavor.  Oh, and about 1 1/2 tablespoons of Italian seasoning.

This is where I put the lid on and turned it to simmer for about 20 minutes.  I had a dog to check on.

She was sound asleep so I went back to dinner.

Also looking good.  I tasted it and YUM!  The lid went back to simmer until the chicken was cooked all the through.

I served it with Chicken and Broccoli Rice-A-Roni and a big spinach salad.

Maybe next time I will throw in some baby bella mushrooms.  Otherwise, this was fantastic and very flavorful!

1 package chicken thighs
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons Italian Seasoning
1 can diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf

Heat pan and pour in olive oil.  When oil is hot add the chicken, skin side down for about 3 minutes.

Flip the chicken and add chopped garlic, salt and pepper, and Italian Season to top of chicken.  Then add 1 can of diced tomatoes and 1 bay leaf.  Remember to remove the bay leaf before serving.

Reduce to simmer for about 20 minutes or longer if the chicken juices do not run clear.

This could also be served over a plate of pasta.  ENJOY!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Eddie And The Two Eyed Pig

There once was a cat name Eddie. He was a super crabby butt cat. He lived with a family of two people and one older female cat in a small apartment.

Then one day, without his consent, the people moved him and his older female companion to a new, much larger house.

He hardly had time to adjust to this new house when the people brought home this creature who was set on chasing him around.

Something had to be done. He must stop this creature the people called "Pig."

He knew exactly what to do.  If the Pig could not see, the Pig could not chase him.  So, he went for the eye.

But the female person was home.  And she freaked out.  And she called the male person in a panic.  And she rushed the Pig out of the house.

When the Pig returned he was punished for chasing this crabby butt Eddie around.  His punishment was a torn retina and two weeks of eye drops.

Eddie had failed.  The Pig recovered his eye sight fully. He was not the one eyed bulldog he had hoped to make him.

And to make matters worse, ten years later, the Pig still chases the Eddie every chance he can get.  And the people still do not consult him on any major life changes.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

All Stitched Up

Daisy is doing amazingly well.  The Doctor decided to remove her bandage on Monday to help with the swelling in her feet.

We arrived at the University of Minnesota, Small Animal Hospital on Monday afternoon for the bandage removal.  Daisy refused to go into the building but the doctor was so kind enough to meet her on the lawn.

When the Doctor came out of the building and saw Daisy standing there, she exclaimed "Wow!  She is doing great!  Look at her!"

That comment made my heart melt.  I am very proud of my family and I love to hear other people agree with me.

The bandage came off without event and the stitches look very good.  Even I can look at them and I was happy that Heidi isn't bothered by the sight of the stitches either.

As soon as the bandage came off, Daisy's eyes lit up and you could just see a huge part of her spirit come back.  Two men were approaching the sidewalk, when Daisy saw them she went in to guard dog mode, alert, ears up.  I love it!!

And now I will share with you. 

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Long Lost Nap

I was searching the desktop for some old pictures and I came across this. It really seems like a life time ago.

Heidi was probably about ten months old.  We are in our Minneapolis house but the living room has been painted so that means we already have it on the market to sell.

We used to nap like this every weekend.  I miss this.

Monday, September 20, 2010

It's Like National Geographic Around Here!

On Saturday, in the span of three hours, I witnessed the following.

1.  Out the front window.  Pete laying in the grass stalking a squirrel.  Pete was so still the squirrel didn't even know he was there.  Eventually Pete moved and the squirrel became wise to his stalker.

2.  Out the kitchen window.  Pete throwing something in the air, batting it away, running to pick it up, and starting the game again.  It was a small yellow and black bird.

3.  While sitting in the yard, brushing Daisy.  Something black comes flying across the top of the fence, into the stairwell to the cellar.  Pete comes dashing through the gate, down the stairs.  Black thing flies away.  Pete blots up the stairs frantically looking around.

A flier for Petco and Iams cat food informed me that wild cats hunt up to ten times a day.  They hunt small prey and snack all day and night. 

I guess Pete really wants to be a wild cat.

Or, maybe not.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

An Itch and a Kankle

This blog has sorta of turned into the Daisy Mae Channel but this blog is about what's going on in our lives and she is pretty much it right now!

I am pleased with how well she is doing and she has finally figured out how to get me to hand feed her so I think we are both pretty happy right now.

This morning, I unhooked her harness and started scratching her where it had been.  Her back foot started kicked so I kept rubbing.  30 minutes and a pound of fur later she was satisfied. 

Or my breakfast ready.  I don't remember which is true.  Hey, I am doing a very good job not being selfish though all of this but a girls got to eat!

In any case, I stopped petting her.

About a hour later I noticed her super Kankle and put in a call to the vet. Her surgeon happens to be working the emergency shift today and I am now waiting on a call back.

I think it is the fluid in her body moving and settling into her foot and maybe I made it worse by removing her harness.  I think Daisy would agree the scratch under the harness is worth the kankle.

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Target Children's Book Festival

Last Sunday a flier from Target was in my news paper.  Not the sales flier but a one page sheet of odd size.  We have learned any time we get a flier like this it is in our best interest to check out the event.  Target really goes all out anytime they sponsor a community event.

This one said "Get Bookin' for Free Fun."  Sounds right up our alley - books and Free!!

I scanned Children's Stage Lineup only to find the first act was Heidi's favorite band, The Okee Dokee Brothers. That's it. Sold.  We will be there.

Saturday came around and we headed out to Hyland Lake Park Reserve in Bloomington.  We knew it would be a big event when we noticed shuttles from the parking ramps on the edge of the Park.  We pulled into the ramp and hopped a shuttle.

Even though there was still parking at the lot when the bus dropped us off, I am glad we took the shuttle.  We were not sure exactly where we were going and there were a lot of cars around.  At the end of the day it would have been a zoo trying to get out of there!

The Festival was held in the open space just behind the Chutes and Ladders park.  I didn't realize how huge that park is!  It is right on the lake and it seemed to go on forever.

We arrived just as the band was being introduced so we grabbed a seat as quickly as we could.

Heidi knew The Okee Dokee Brothers from when she saw them at the Minneapolis Public Library this spring.  They also had been on the Kare11 morning show a few months back and of course we have YouTubed them!

The one with the banjo is Justin and the other is Joe.  They sing bluegrass style music for kids.  My favorites were Bluegrass For Breakfast and the Roller coaster song.

Shawn and Heidi loved the Household Chores song and happily danced along.

Next up was Mallory Lewis and Lamb Chop.  I never was a Sherry Lewis fan, I just am not into ventriloquism.

 She made me a bit uncomfortable and she was very awkward.  She talked a lot about how we should love her because we loved her mom and she is doing this for her mom but it felt fake.  They way talked to the sound guys really felt like she could rip someones head off very quickly.

She brought Hush Puppy up on stage for the first time since Sherry had passed.  This was the first performance Hush Puppy has made in over 12 years so that was kind of cool.  But then she invited all the kids on stage to sing a song and when it was over she grab a girl and said to the crowd "whoever this one belongs to, I need a curly redhead to take over for me when I am gone so I would like to hook her up with my 12 year old son."  I was supposed to be funny but the girl was about 6 years old and looked mortified.  I was in shock and didn't get a picture.  After that I was glad her time was up.

The next act was Bob Doyle but Bob couldn't make it so he mean twin brother came in his place.  He had a crazy mustache and read a book called "The Fun of Math."  Heidi was really excited, she LOVES math!

But he tricked us!  It really was Bob, he was just wearing a fake mustache!!  Bob writes and draws Wow Wow Wubbzy books and the show for Nick Jr.  He read from his new book Hugo and the Really, Really, Really Long String and then he drew a picture of Wow Wow Wubbzy.

He also had the kids shout out four or five random animals and drew them as one animal.  So a bunny plus an alligator plus a bear would be a bunny-alligator-bear.  It was pretty cool.

Next up was Peter Brown, author of Children Make Terrible Pets.  This book was about a bear who found a child and brought it home to be his pet.  Very cute book!  And he did a great job reading it.  After his story he drew a picture of the child in the book.  They really make it look so easy!

An absolute highlight of the day was Choo-Choo Soul from Playhouse Disney.  Genevieve was a riot and related to the children as well as the adults cracking jokes about being paid to wear polyester.

And DC!  That boy can dance.  During the Freeze Dance Song, Genevieve had DC standing on his head for a long time.  He was the best Beat boxer I have ever heard and he could break dance like its going out of style! 

When they were done, I wanted to be Genevieve's best friend.  I wanted her to hang out in my living room and make me laugh while DC danced for us.

They sure got the kids moving.  Heidi was showing off her favorite dance and Gevenieve complemented her on it Twice!  Totally made my day.  I mean her day.  It made her day.

Marianne Richmond, author and illustrator of If I Could Keep You Little followed Choo-Choo Soul. 

Her illustration demo was to paint a picture of someone in the crowd and then let them take it home.  It was pretty cool.  The kids were yelling out things to add to the background and one kid really wanted it to be raining.  After he said "add some rain!!" for the seventh time, she said "It's! Not! Raining!"  Cracked me up!

I did not hear her story because I ran off to see what else was going on in the park.  A little scouting before we all headed out.  They had crafts and bounce houses and food!  That will have to be another post all together!

After we had some lunch and played a bit we headed back to the stage to see what was up. 

Caitlin Sanchez, voice of Dora the Explorer was just starting her reading.  After, Heidi said, "it was like Dora was really reading to me!"

I just wish someone would have told her to show the pictures to the kids in the front.  She never turned the book around.  Oh, well. She is 14.

Can you believe it?!  She is 14 and has been doing the voice of Dora since 2007.

If you think watching Dora on TV is shrill, try being in front of an amphitheatre.  UGH!

Melodee Strong followed Dora.  She was a nice complement.  Much quieter and much less shrill.  She attended the Minneapolis Art College and the book she read was one she painted the pictures for when she was a student.  The words are from a song so after she read, they played the song.

The book is called You Are Strong and the song is called Colorful World.  It was a great lesson story.

I was so sure this guy was going to sell me something.  I thought, "oh, man.  That's why this was all free.  Here's the guy with the pitch..."

But I was wrong.  He a lot like an infomercial sales man but he really was Derek Anderson, illustrator of Hot Rod Hamster.  He read the book and then talked about how cool it is to be an illustrator and the pictures he hides in his books, like how one of the contestants in the race is really his dog.

He drew some pictures for the kids and made random comments about how bright the surface was.  Most of the acts were so funny.  They really knew how to keep the parents engaged.

The last act we saw before going back to the festival booths was a band called Ralph's World.  They were great!  They totally rocked out a bunch of original kids songs and their version of the ABC's which included a bunch of parents up on stage acting out letters.

All of the kids had a blast!  We went out there to see The Okee Dokee Brothers and maybe stay for a few other acts and ended up leaving after the last act.  In addition to the acts we saw, there were seven others we missed.  It was not possible to see all the acts and go to the booths as there wasn't a break on the stage.

We can't wait until next year to do it again!  And now that we know what it is, we will plan better and bring friends.

Lesson learned: Any time it's put on by Target, plan to spend the entire day there.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Extreme Makeover: Three Leg Dog Edition

Daisy's chest x-rays came back clear on Tuesday so they proceeded with the surgery.  The surgery went very well and the surgeon was pleased with the results.

The bone was sent over to the lab for tests and we will have results within seven days.  We are waiting to hear if she has Osteosarcoma or Fibrosarcoma.  Osteo means there may need to be more treatment or pain management.  Fibro means she may be given a clean bill of health.

By Tuesday night she was standing up on her own and trying to move around her recovery kennel.  Wednesday morning she was wanting to come home.

We missed her so much.  This was the first night she ever spent away from home, without us.  All night, I kept thinking she was outside or had gone to bed.  Then I would remember she wasn't home.

When the vet called yesterday morning and said we could pick her up when we were ready, I knew I wanted her to come home.  I was excited and nervous.

I wrapped up everything I needed to and headed out of the office to complete the short list of tasks required for Daisy to come into the house.

These floors needed to be covered.

A three leg dog needs to have traction.  Hardwood and linoleum is not a dogs best friend.

Not to much one can do in a kitchen but this is much better.

This hallway looks like a fall waiting to happen!

There!  That should do.  And I kind of like these rugs even if Eddie is a bit unsure.

Sure is a lot of hardwood in the living room...

These were in our basement guest room and appear to be just the right size!

We were told that tripawd dogs who are missing a front limb have a hard time leaning forward to eat so these bowls won't do.

Pig can keep his bowl on the floor.  Daisy now has a raised bowl for food and water and a rug to stand on.  The bonus to this is that Pig can no longer steal Daisy's food!

I got all of that done in about 15 minutes, just as Shawn and Heidi got home.  We still needed two more rugs for the dining room and some dinner before we could get Daisy so we jumped in the car and headed to Menard's.

Menard's has the best rug prices. 

We arrived at the University just before 7 pm, in time to see the surgeon before she left for the evening.

After receiving discharge instructions from the surgeon, they wheeled her up on a very large wagon.

They told us she was very sweet and how much they love her.  They also mentioned she had not wagged her tail the entire time she was with them. 

When she saw us, she stood up and started wagging.  We were just as happy to see her.

They wheeled her wagon all the way to the van, it was pouring rain by this time so we all moved a quickly as possible to get her under the tailgate.

She was loaded in the back where I sat with her for the ride home.  She just laid there with her head on the floor until we rounded onto our block when she stood up and moved to the door.

Our driveway was covered in standing water and the rain was really falling.  This presented a challenge as she doesn't like to walk in puddles but she was a trooper and let Shawn guide her into the house.

She went out one time before bed but for the rest of the evening she laid on a pillow and blanket in the living room.

And this morning she was able to climb up on the couch.  She later go herself down too.

She is able to stand up on her own which she only does when she wants to, not to be confused with when I want her to.

She is able to walked short distances without assistance.  Her three legs are working harder to support her weight so after walking she needs to lay down.  As she builds strength in her legs she will be able to walk further.

She wears a harness with a handle to allow us to assist her as needed. 

This morning she sat at her bowl and drank a ton of water.  She takes any kind of treat I put in front of her but shows no interest in her kibble.

I would say that overall she is doing fantastic.  I am very pleased with how quickly she is learning how to move around and how brave she is.  The muscle strength and balance will come with time.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

How Many Nuggets Is Too Many Anyway?

Tuesday night we had to run a few errands to get ready for Daisy to come home. 

We needed rugs to cover the wood floors so she will not slip all over.

We needed a raised dog dish so she does not have to worry about bending down to eat.

And we needed a quick dinner.

Shawn had mentioned, no less then three times, that McDonalds had 50 piece chicken nuggets on the menu right now.

When we left Petco, Heidi said, "I could have some nuggets."

Half way to McDonald's I realize I am driving so I am going to have to order these nuggets.  I say, "I am slightly mortified to order a 50 piece chicken nugget."

Shawn tells me to suck it up, it will be fine.

We get to the drive-thru and the voice says, "Welcome to McDonald's.  May I take our order?"

Me:  Hang on a minute.

Voice: Okay, whenever you are ready.

Me to Shawn: How do I order this thing?

Shawn: Look, you can get it as a value meal, with fries and drinks.

Me: Do we really want that?  What would I get to drink?

Shawn: Um...

Me: Okay, lets do that, I will just get a Dr. Pepper.

Shawn:  Ok, go ahead and order.

Me:  There is no number, what do I say?

Shawn: 50 piece meal. Just do it.  (under his breath) fatty.

I start to laugh so hard I cannot breath.  I am really not sure how I kept my foot on the break.

Shawn: You need to order.

Me, still laughing, still not breathing, pointing to Shawn, trying to get him to order.

Shawn, leaning over to order:  HAHAHA 

Me, still laughing, still not breathing, desperately trying not to pee my pants.

McDonald's Order Taker Yelling from the drive-thru window: Take your time!!

Shawn, after composing himself:  Ok.  Ok.  We will have the 50 piece nugget meal with a Dr. Pepper and a Mellow Yellow and one kids Sprite.

We pull around to the window and the Order Taker lady explains that she saw us cracking up the entire time so I explained how my lovely husband forced me to order 50 chicken nuggets, 2 large fries, and 3 sodas and then called me a fatty.

But seriously, this is all the food we got for $15 so it was a good deal and lightened the mood of the evening a bit.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Three or Four, We Love Her No Matter What

I talked to the surgeon yesterday and I trust that she is going to do a wonderful job.  Exactly what that job will be is up in the air right now.

She took the time to listen to my concerns and know that we had made the decision based on what is right for Daisy.  We understand that if she does have a leg removed, the road to recovery could be long.

We all wish we really knew what type of cancer we are dealing with.  The Osteosarcoma will eventually take her life. The Fibrosarcoma will be cured with the removal of the limb.

In the end, we all agreed that more tests would be helpful in knowing we are doing the right thing.  The Surgeon has ordered a repeat of the chest x-rays which were done just over three weeks ago.

If the x-rays are not clear the surgery will be called off.  The theory is if the cancer has spread in three weeks then we know, for sure, it is Osteosarcoma and we know it has progressed to much to be treatable.  We would bring her home tonight and proceed with pain management.

If the x-rays are clear we will still not be certain which cancer we are dealing with. However, if it is Osterocarcoma we would have the choice to treat with Chemo.  I am not sure if I would put her through Chemo but I certainly want to be more educated before I make that call.

If the x-rays are clear and it ends up being fibrosarcoma then she will be a healthy, three legged dog. (This is what we all need to hope happens.)

Once the limb is removed, they will redo the test from the bone biopsy, which originally came back inconclusive, to determine which cancer we have.  The results will be to us in about seven days.

The University of Minnesota Small Animal Hospital has been nothing but wonderful through this journey.  They have really taken the time to talk to me and hear my concerns.  When I asked what will happen to her arm, they were honest and told me it would be part of a mass cremation.  But if I wanted it cremated alone, so I could put her all together when her time comes, they would accommodate that.

They are also going to give me a clay imprint of her paw to keep.  That's really nice and I really appreciate the gesture.

That's all saying the surgery is a go today.

We dropped her off this morning and, like always, she wanted to turn around and go right home.  It certainly helps to know she is in great care.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Another Daisy Mae Update

Last Friday I wrote about Daisy's biopsy.  When I wrote that we knew what the results were but I was not strong enough to write about it.  A full week later, I am able to talk about this without falling apart.  I am normally a fairly impulsive person but with this we have taken a lot of time do to our research.  We have gone back and forth so many times but I think I am finally where I need to be.

Thursday night, last week, we got the call from the University we were waiting for.  The test results.

They were able to rule out a fungal infection but since the vet at Camden Pet Hospital told us this was very unlikely, we pretty much already knew we were not dealing with an infection.

The problem is, after running the tests three times and exhausting the entire sample, they are still not sure if we are dealing with Osteosarcoma or Fibrosarcoma.

The difference in these two cancers are very extreme. 

Fibrosarcoma is local and will not spread throughout her body. Spreading only happens in very rare cases.  To treat Fibrosarcoma, they remove the infected bone and there is a full recovery.  If we knew for certain this is what we were dealing with, the next steps would be obvious.

Osteosarcoma is different.  This type of cancer spreads quickly to other parts of the body.  The treatment is to remove the bone and then follow up with Chemotherapy and/or Radiation.  They told us that a dog with Osteosarcoma would live on average three months without Chemo and nine months to a year with the Chemo.

We spent countless hours debating the pros and cons of removing the bone.  Since this is her front left arm, they will remove the entire arm including the shoulder blade.

Will she be able to learn to walk with three legs at her age?  Will she be depressed and confused when she wakes up with a missing arm?  How will she adjust to this major change in her life?

We also needed to decide if we wanted to put her through this major surgery if we later found out that she would need to have Chemotherapy.  Is that how she should spend the rest of her life?

We turned to the Internet and looked for case studies of other dogs similar in size and age who have been through this same thing.  I found a website called and learned a lot of what I was worrying about was very common and they answered a lot of my questions.

First, she will learn to walk again.  She will be able to walk hours after her surgery, will be pretty mobile in 3 to 4 days after surgery, and within a few weeks she will be back to normal.  Even at 9 years old!

Second, she will not be depressed.  She will be thankful that she is no longer in pain.  She will not miss her hurting arm.  Who misses pain? 

Dogs do not get depressed.  People do and we project our feelings onto the dog.  She was happy before all this started and she will be happy after!

She will need to wear a harness with a handle on the back just in case she falls and we need to help her up.  I need to stress, the handle is functional attire so I can do that.  It is not a tu-tu or a sweater, I cannot handle that! 

After spending the long weekend researching,  soul-searching, and Internet-searching, we knew what to do.

She will be having her surgery on Tuesday and will be home with us on Wednesday night.  Someone will be with her full time until Monday morning to aid in her recovery.  By Monday she should be able to be home alone for periods of time.

This post does not in any way express the raw emotion we have felt over this decision.  That is intentional.  If I revisited my feelings right now I would fall apart and for the next few weeks, months, we need to be strong.  For Daisy.

Because in the end, that's what this is all about.  Making Daisy better so we can have her with us for as long as possible.

I will post again after her surgery.  Eventually I will post pictures but I am not sure when I will be ready to take any.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Heidi's First Day of School

I wasn't sad or nervous for her until I had to leave the building.  Then I got this overpowering feeling that I didn't want to get in the car and go home.  But I had walked her all the way to her room, left her sitting in her chair, nothing was going to go wrong.  So, I fired up the van and drove away.

As I am typing this, I am waiting for her to arrive home to tell me all about her day.  I am sure she had a blast.

When we got to her classroom she had to put her bag away and I had to hand in a ton of paper work.  When I was removing the paperwork from her folder she said "your dreams for me are going to come true."

Talk about a proud moment!  We were asked to write down our dreams and wishes for Heidi this year.  We wrote "we hope Heidi makes many new friends and learns a lot of new things.  We hope she really enjoys kindergarten."

Knowing she went into class certain she would make these wishes and hopes come true shows me how much she has grown up over the last year.

It is beyond amazing to watch a child grow up.  Heidi had never really owned tie shoes before. She had one pair of Adidas shoes from Uncle for her first birthday but otherwise she has always preferred slip-ons.  Well, she has always preferred to be barefooted.

We got her a pair of tie shoes for kindergarten.  She put them on and tied them.  Who taught her that? She mentioned she had practiced that at Montessori school but I had no idea.  I remember being told I would not be allowed to go on to 1st grade if I didn't learn to tie my shoes.  This child is ahead of me in many ways.

Heidi picked out her own first day of school outfit.  She found these pants at Kohl's and just had to have them. Auntie found the shirt with the sparkles.  Heidi was certain she was the best dressed kid in her class today. I am sure she was right.

This is where I left her.  In her chair, in her classroom.  She is so proud and excited.

We wish you all the best, child.  You are going to do great in kindergarten.  You are going to go places in life.  Just don't let the boy gym teacher freak you out to much!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Daisy Mae Update

Daisy Mae returned from the hospital on Monday night after her procedure. We were expecting she would stay overnight and come home on Tuesday but she was up pacing in her kennel within an hour of her surgery.

The surgery was a bone biopsy to get a sample. The sample would be used to determine if this was fungal or cancer, and if cancer, what kind.

She came home all hopped up on goofy pills. I could not get her to stay in the back seat for the ride. This was very stressful for me because I was told she must stay calm as her risk for breaking her bone was much higher now.

Every time she jumped from the back to the front I lost a year off my life.

The vet and the assistant lifted her into my truck but I had no idea how to get her out when I got home. Justin and Dawn met me at the house and Justin lifted her out.

I got her settled into the living room and tried to calm her down. Shawn arrived home with Heidi about an hour later.

I am pretty sure Daisy was seeing Purple Elephants dancing around the living room all night.

I set up a bed of blankets in the kitchen for her. At bed time I decided I would sleep with her just to make sure she was okay.

She was not happy with me for putting her through that so she slept as far away from me as possible. Or maybe she was so hopped up she didn’t realize I was even there.

Over the next few days she stayed locked in “doggie jail” when we were not home. By day three she was back to herself.

All of the animals loved doggie jail and took turns lying on the bed in the kitchen. I think it was a dream come true. They finally got to sleep where the food was and no one was kicking them out!

Daisy got better and better as the days went on. Now, remember, we have not treated anything. When I say she was better, I just mean she was recovering from her test which included a haircut, an incision, a hole in the bone, and stitches.

We left town the Friday after her surgery for a wedding in Green Bay. We were so lucky to have Kris and Taylor stay with her. Since they lived with us for awhile they really know Daisy. We knew she was in the hands of two people who really love her.

When we returned on Sunday, she was happy and looked really good.

We had the stitches removed after 10 days, which was this past Wednesday.

We are using the University of Minnesota for her treatment currently. They are really great and the best in the area for helping her.

Shawn and I have always talked about how insane it would be to bring Pig and Daisy to the State Fair. Daisy would go into shock or give herself a stroke sniffing all the smells that come with the fair. It’s a running joke. We also imagine how our dogs would act at an Old Country Buffet or in a Cub Foods.

Well, the U Clinic is one block away from the State Fair grounds. And on Wednesday when I brought her in to have her stitches removed the fair was open.

We were about 1 mile away from the fair when the sniffing started. She had her head out the window. She was sniffing so hard there was snot flying out of her nose!

Then she started to pace around the back of the truck.

When I realized she was smelling the fair, I about died of laughter. Sure enough! She was about to give herself a stroke!

But when we got into the clinic she had other things on her mind. She was barking at another dog. Mind you, this dog does not bark unless there is something going on. Then I overheard the owner say the dog was having issues with his incision from a surgery he had last Monday. Could it be this dog was in a kennel near Daisy when she had her surgery and she recognized his smell? Maybe!

She spent the rest of the time trying to leave the waiting room. I didn’t have her in her walking collar (huge mistake!), just in her leather collar, so I was in a panic that she would slip right out. If you know me, I am sure you can imagine why no one wanted to sit by the crazy lady with the crazy, shaved dog in the lobby!

When the vet tech came to get us, Daisy bolted for the door. So the tech decided to remove the stitches outside. They were out in under 30 seconds and we were headed back home.

Daisy is now out of doggie jail when we are not home. She is still on her pain killers twice a day. I tried not giving them to her yesterday morning and by the evening she was limping. I should have consulted the vet first! Today I was told we can back off on the anti-inflammatory to an as needed basis so we will start that tonight.

We got the test results back last night too but I am still processing all of that. I will do a post on that very soon. I am just not in the right state of mind right now.