Friday, August 31, 2012

Dough and Dough!

Today is my father in law's birthday.  
Since we knew we weren't going to be able to see him today, 
we took a drive out last evening to spend some time at their house.  

What do you get a guy who has everything he needs?  
Well, nothing.  

But each year I always try to bake him something.  
My mother in law isn't much of a baker, not to say that she can't bake,
she just doesn't do much of it.  So I always try to make something special.  
I told Cory to call and ask his mom what his dad might like, 
since he has had a sensitive stomach after having had his cancer surgery last year 
(he was released from the hospital one year ago today!!).  

Turns out... cinnamon rolls are his current snack.
Though they are store bought - not homemade.
I knew my sister had a great recipe, so I headed over to her blog in search of it!

I have never made cinnamon rolls in my life.  
(Unless you count Pilsbury!)
Honestly, we have tried to eat healthier - using only whole wheat and
natural sugars (honey, syrup, etc.)... but I do make some exceptions.

You have GOT to try this recipe!!
(Unless, of course, you are trying to be healthy!)

One "tip" I have to mention, that isn't in the recipe...
When you cut the rolls with a string or yarn... put it UNDER
the roll and quickly bring it up, crossing it to cut the dough smoothly.
I probably called my sister 5 times in the course of making these... and
she gave me that wonderful tip.  It worked perfectly!

And.... don't you think they look DELISH!?

According to my father in law... they are GREAT!

And of course, I couldn't leave Eloise out!

 I whipped her up a quick batch of play dough from this site.

 This was her first encounter with play dough...

She wasn't quite sure what to do with it.  

I had to tell her more than once not to eat it!

But over all... she had a blast!


Friday, August 24, 2012

"Lazy" Dog

Snapped a picture of Eloise and the neighbor's dog, Lady.  
Or as Eloise would say, "Lazy."

That girl loves animals, especially dogs and cats!!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Little Baby Makes an Appearance!

Today was our "main" ultrasound for Baby #2!  Typically, unless there is some kind of issue, my doctor only orders 2 ultrasounds per pregnancy.  So, the last one we had a little wee bean... and this one... we have the back/side of the head, ear, chin... with a shoulder, arm and a fist (up by the chin).  
Can you see it? 

I was a little disappointed that they only gave us 3 pics, two of which look basically like this one.  And the other is a side profile of the foot.  But, it's better than not having anything!  And while we were watching on the screen, little baby kept opening it's mouth like it was yawning.  Wonder if it's napping now since I haven't felt much movement since then?  I could sure use a nap!

And.. sorry.. we didn't find out the gender!  So you'll have to guess along with us!  Although, the girl said she wasn't going to show us around the leg area much since we didn't want to know.  So, perhaps that meant that there was something there to see??  (Boy??)  Guess we'll find out!  Although she had me measured at 20 weeks, 4 days.  Which is a few days off from what the doctor told me at my last appointment.  So who the heck knows when my due date is now!

Here is Eloise rocking her first pair of "real" sneakers.  They are just $10 shoes from Wally's... but hey, with the way kids grow and play - I'm sure she'll get a decent amount of wear out of them before they kick the bucket!

My mom and nephew came over to surprise us on Tuesday.  It was a nice surprise, as I was bumming pretty bad about Weezer that day.  Xavier brought Eloise an Elmo balloon, which was a hit.  And Eloise had fun playing and being the center of attention, of course!


Monday, August 20, 2012

A Little Good to Replace the Sad

I know, I know... another post about Weezer?  I didn't post this much at the passing of my grandma back in June.  But, in my defense, we had years of grieving as we watched Alzheimer's wreak havoc in the mind and body of my grandma.  It was a blessing to see her go.  I truly didn't expect to lose my Weezy cat in such a blink of an eye.  Therefore, the pain is still raw.  It is a week today that she's been gone.  I am not crying as much... but I still tear up a good bit.  I have a charm that was once on my old charm bracelet.  A little picture of Weezer.  I put it on an old chain and have been wearing it a lot.  Eloise loves it, so I think I may hop on etsy and find her a "Weezy Necklace" of her own.  I often take mine off to let her wear it.  

Some good news, I believe we have found a kitten to adopt.  We have a "local" classified website that lists all sorts of things.  One of those being pets.  I found someone who has some 3 week old black and white kittens.  We've been emailing back and forth... and I may go to visit them on Friday.  It's not 100% for sure, but things look good.  They won't be ready for another month or so, which I think will be good as far as me getting over some of the grief of losing Weezer.  We are going to get another female... so we're trying to think of a nice name.  It's really hard trying to come up with something!  First, with a baby... and now with a kitten!  I know the right name(s) will come to mind eventually.

I would be lying if I said that I was truly excited about getting another cat.  I mean, in all honesty, I just want Weez back.  But I believe it's what I need.  That little bit of companionship can do wonders for the heart.  And this broken heart needs some stitching back up.

Friday, August 17, 2012

20 Weeks

Yesterday I turned 20 Weeks.  Hard to believe I'm already half way through this pregnancy, but it's kind of a relief too.  I want to be one of those people who just glows and enjoys pregnancy... but I'm not.  I feel frumpy and definitely not "glowing".  But in spite of that... it is truly a blessing to have a little one growing inside of me and I am certainly grateful!

It has only been 4 days since Weezer has been gone... and I am missing her terribly.  Perhaps it sounds crazy... but I got a picture of her blown up to 8x10 so that I could frame it and hang it on the wall beside a picture of Boo.  I admit, I look at it and tear up a lot... but I don't want her to just be a fuzzy memory in the back of my mind.  She was truly special to me and I want to keep her memory clear as time goes by.  I think a picture in constant view will help.

Eloise often finds the phone or grabs one of her play phones and says, "Hi Weezy"... then jibber jabbers, occasionally referring to "Weez Puke".  It makes me happy that she still thinks of her as her kitty.  She also said to me this morning, "Weezy Bye Bye."  That made me sad - but most things do at the moment!

Yesterday I had the framed pic of Weez leaning up against the wall so I could show Cory when he came home from work.  I was preparing dinner when all of a sudden, Eloise shouts, "Weezy!  Weezy!" and goes running into the living room.  I went over and peeked around the corner and saw her "petting" the picture and giving it kisses.  Again, I started to tear up.  And maybe some people think that it's weird.  But hey, she is only 18 months old... she's known Weez her whole life... and to see a big picture of her gave her great joy.  It meant a lot to me.

 Here are a couple of pics from this morning.  
Eloise in her PJ's with a bucket on her head (crazy kid).


A number of people recommend getting another cat soon, before the baby comes... to give us time to get used to it, and it to us.  We are still weighing our options.  Part of me wants to... but part of me feels like I'd be betraying Weez... so we shall see.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Goodbye My Friend, Goodbye

It's nap time at our house and though usually I am trying to take advantage of the down time by reading or taking a snooze myself... today something is terribly amiss.  I no longer have the company of my very best snuggle buddy.  My companion of 12 years.  My ever faithful cat, Weezer.  I have mentioned a couple of times my frustration in the past 6 months with her being "sick".  As well as a hefty vet bill for essentially no answers to her problems... but it has all finally come to an end.  And though I am happy that she is no longer sick... in turn, I am heart sick for the loss.  I know some people think that it's "just a cat"... but she wasn't "just a cat" to me.  She was family.  

Back in 2000, I was going through a (rather ridiculous) break up with a boyfriend.  You know how it is when you're 17 and relationships can be so dramatic.  I roll my eyes just thinking about it!  But, in the midst of that apparent heartache was a tiny little black cat.  She was the only kitten left up at my parents barn.  Her mama had gotten killed on the road and it was just her and her daddy cat - who was around sporadically.  Now, let me just say that I don't qualify myself as a cat person.  And the "barn cats" at my parents barn weren't actually their cats.  They just kind of showed up - and well - multiplied!  But in the midst of my sorrow, my parents let me bring that little kitty into our home.


She was so tiny... and yes, this picture looks like it should be from Halloween... but it's the only one I have of her as a kitten.  She was meowing at me.  By no means was she a beautiful cat.  She obviously was of mixed breed - but she lived in my room until she was big enough to go up and down the steps.  She had run of the house (since the dogs weren't allowed on the furniture).  And when I went off to college, she was not happy with me!  Thankfully I only went for one semester... but on the weekends when I would come home, she would give me a definite cold shoulder!  

When I bought the little house next door to my parents, she came with me.  It was just me and Weez and Boo... though, like at my parents house, Boo wasn't allowed on the furniture, so Weezer was my main squeeze (relationship with Cory aside!).  She kept me warm in the winter... and tried to keep me warm in the summer, despite the heat!  She once found a way to jump up to the top shelf of one of my closets and I was in a panic trying to find her.  I could not have imagined where she could have gone and I'd checked EVERYWHERE in the house!  It was a last resort to look in that closet.  Who woulda thunk it?  But there she was.  She made herself comfortable wherever... even on top of my sewing machine!

When Cory and I were engaged, we moved Weezer to our new house a little bit before the wedding.  Someone was always around, at least for a little bit, most days with painting, moving, etc.  The night before the wedding, it was just me and Weez in the house.  I sure had the jitters!  But she was there for me... to comfort me.  I don't think she was too thrilled with being left alone while we were in Scotland for a week on our honeymoon... but she survived and soon got into a good routine.

When Eloise was growing away in my belly, Weezer was the ultimate snuggle buddy!  She could sense that I was pregnant, I have no doubt about it.  She obviously may not have understood it... but she stuck to me like glue.  I especially remember being sick about a month before Eloise was born.  I had a horrible cold!  I was literally stuck on the couch and did NOTHING for days.  I could hardly breathe some days... then other days I was coughing.  It was miserable.  But Weezy was always there for me when Cory was at work.

Cory and I were concerned that she would be upset at the arrival of baby Eloise into our home.  We almost anticipated her retaliation... assuming she would start marking her territory and such.  Though she had never done it before, we just prepared ourselves to have to deal with it.  Oddly enough though, when we brought El home, Weezer came right out to investigate.  She was NOT that kind of cat.  She was a hider.  She didn't like disruptions in her home.  She tolerated the dog... but guests were not welcome.  Somehow Eloise managed to slip by Weezer's radar and we never had an issue.  Weez would lay beside me while I nursed... and often she would jump up in my lap and curl up with us when Eloise napped in my arms.  


I miss those moments.  Holding not only Weezer... but also Eloise. 
 She isn't much of a snuggler these days.

About 6 months ago, we were trying to help Weez.  She had awfully dry skin.  So, assuming it was due to her food... we upgraded her to a "better" brand.  It all went down hill from there.  Not long after switching, she started throwing up.  We tried to go back to the old food.  No luck.  We tried another brand.  Still no luck.  She started throwing up hairballs.  (Sorry, not to be gross... but it's part of the story!)  We got hairball medicine.  Hairball food.  Wet Food.  Dry Food.  A special brush.  Nothing seemed to help.  We took her to the vet, as I mentioned before, only to find out she had a heart murmur, but that would have nothing to do with her food and hairball issues.  Maybe I should've taken her back to the vet.  Maybe they could have done something.  She was so thin!  And you wouldn't believe the wise cracks she'd get about being fat only a year or so ago.  She was a pretty hearty eater.  But she seemed to rapidly decline.  We kept our furniture covered because you never knew if she was going to throw up.  Luckily, she seemed to learn that throwing up on the steps was ideal.  They weren't covered in carpet or fabric and were easy to clean.  I won't lie.  It was exhausting and frustrating.  Poor Cory was the one who cleaned most of it up, since I was pregnant.  We considered putting her outside... but in my heart I didn't really want to.  She never wanted to be outside... ever.  I knew she would be scared.  Finally, a couple of weeks ago, she seemed to really start eating some soft food we gave her.  She would eat it up and maybe it was just my imagination, but she seemed on the upswing.  My mom commented that she looked awfully thin... but in my mind I thought "No!  She is eating and not puking much... she's getting better!"

 Unfortunately, that all came to an end... when she stopped eating last week.  She would lick the juices out of the bowl and maybe take a bite or two.... but that was it.  She started throwing up bile (again, gross... I know).  We tried everything... getting her to eat real chicken and meats, pureeing her food, baby food, Cory used a medicine syringe to shoot food and broth in her mouth... even maple syrup - which is said to jump start them a little from the natural sugars.  Nothing worked.  She started acting very lethargic.  She went to the bathroom once on Sunday.  She stopped listening to me.  Every night, like clockwork, she would follow me up to the bathroom to get ready for bed.  I'd brush my teeth, etc... and she'd weave in and out of my legs.  I'd feed her and she would eat until I left the bathroom.  Then in the middle of the night, I'd wake up (you know pregnant ladies and their bathroom breaks!) and she'd meet me at the top of the steps and follow me in and eat while I did what I had to do.  Then she'd go back downstairs to sleep while I went back to bed (she couldn't be in our room because Cory has a bit of an allergy to cat hair--and if it got on his blankets or pillows, he'd be up all night sneezing).  In the morning I would go to take a shower and leave the bathroom door open a crack.  Weezer would come in and eat and hang out with me... then follow me downstairs to start the day.  She truly was my faithful companion.  And when, on Sunday night, she didn't follow me upstairs to get ready for bed, I knew something was wrong.  I already knew she wasn't really eating... but when I went downstairs to coax her to come up, she wouldn't look at me.  She wouldn't turn her head when I said her name or tapped my fingers for her to come.  I was devastated.  I grabbed my pillow and laid down on the couch, hoping that she would (as always) come snuggle with me.  She never missed an opportunity when it was just me and her.  But she didn't come.  Everyone else was in bed... and she didn't come to me.  I eventually dozed off... only to be awakened by her throwing up.  I jumped up to take care of the mess and then resigned myself to just go to bed.  Though it was terribly hard.  Part of me knew it would be her last night - but I couldn't force her to be with me.

 The next morning, I got up and showered... and waited for her to come in.  She never did.  She did come up and sit on the landing by the door... but then she threw up and cowered against the wall.  Again, she wouldn't respond to me talking to her.  The rest of the day, she was miserable.  My mother in law came to get Boo, in an effort to allow Weezer the freedom to come out from under the couch (as Boo always wanted to play with her and she obviously was in no situation for that).  But she wouldn't come.  I got her out, but she cried.  And she cried off and on all day while laying in odd places she'd never laid before.  Eloise tried to pet her and "talk" to her... but I tried to give her space.  I knew she didn't feel well.  She threw up a number of times... but each time it was only bile.  No food.  She wouldn't lay with me at nap time... but she did lay NEAR me.  Which was better than nothing.  She was just soooo lethargic... she was not herself.  And maybe we should've taken her to the vet.  But around 4PM... She got up and went to a corner of the living room behind a table and went to the bathroom.  She NEVER EVER has gone outside of the litter box.  I was shocked.  There was nothing to do but put her outside and hurry to clean it up.  I was in tears the whole time.  Ok, I was in tears most of the day... but if she couldn't even go up to her litter box, she couldn't be in the house.  Not with Eloise (and a baby on the way).  She's never lived outside from the time I rescued her from the barn... she would never have made it.  Maybe I should've taken her up to her litter box.  But I didn't even think about it.  Maybe I should've done things differently... I don't know anymore.  I could second guess myself forever.  Cory came home and made some calls and finally found a vet who would put her down that evening.  We rushed Eloise through dinner and took her to the neighbors.  Then we loaded Weezer up and drove to the vets.  We cried most of the way.  Yes, Cory cried too.  She was a part of his life for 6.5 years.  He was very sad about the situation and did everything he could think of to help her right up until the very end. 

Now, I've never put an animal to sleep.  But my parents have... and I was under the impression that I could go in and hold her and talk to her, calm her until the medicine "took" her from me.  But this place let us stand there... and another woman took her out of the box and held her while the vet did his thing... and when they were done... I asked how long it would take until she was "gone"... and they said it was already done!!  It only took 5 seconds and she was gone.  I was so upset... it wasn't what I expected.  I wanted to hold her and comfort her... but instead, I was looking into blank eyes.  She was gone.  It was too late.  I wish I would've known.  I wish I would've taken the time to really say goodbye.  But I didn't... and I know that I can't keep looking back on it.  But it'll be awhile before the memory starts to fade.  My mom met us at the vet's and took Weez home to be buried by the barn ("where she came from").  And we came home to an empty house.

My tears have yet to dry.  I thought I caught a glimpse of her black fur this morning as I was opening the door of my bedroom.  I thought I saw her out of the corner of my eye, coming down the stairs.  My heart literally leaped... but then sank with the realization that it couldn't have been her.  And now, here I am at nap time... missing my girl.  Wishing I would've done more for her... but trying to find comfort in knowing that she was loved... and she loved us back.


These last pictures are from the day Weezer died.  
Eloise loved her till the end as well.

She is truly, truly missed...
And as Eloise says, "Weezy all gone."

She may be physically gone... but she'll always be in our hearts.

Friday, August 10, 2012

19 Weeks

I am hungry.  And we have nothing to snack on in our house.  I suppose that is probably a good thing as I'm in my second trimester and I am pretty much hungry all of the time.  I feel as though I'm wasting away... yet my stomach seems to grow in spite of it all!  But... good news!  I have some homemade wheat crackers crisping in the oven.  So hopefully by the time Eloise awakens from her nap, we will have a little something to munch on!  I even resisted shaking some salt on them to at least make them a *little* healthier!  Ha!  But, I do believe I'll probably make some honey mustard to dip them in.  It's just soooo good!

Anyway... I am 19 weeks!  I had an appointment yesterday and all is well.  My sister, her kids and our mom came over to spend time with Eloise while I was at my appointment.  You can read/see about it HERE.  It was nice to get together on our turf, though I wasn't around for too much of it.  They seemed to enjoy themselves and I KNOW that Eloise was in all of her glory!

So far I have gained 7 lbs.  I feel small... though any time I look in the mirror or take a picture, I feel like I look too big for 19 weeks.  Little Baby #2 seems to have pushed all of my guts up and I have quite a square belly, though it's still easy to hide depending on my chosen wardrobe.  My ultrasound is on August 23rd.  I have to admit, it is tempting to want to find out if we are having a boy or girl!  BUT, we aren't going to find out!  So you'll all just have to take a good guess.  My guess is GIRL because I feel like I'm carrying similar to how I carried Eloise!  We shall see... ooohh... around Christmas or New Years!  Seems like it's so far away - but I know that time will fly!  I can't believe the summer is almost over already!

(Eloise loves her tricycle and her "Rat-Tooey" Book... aka: Disney's Ratatouille)

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Stephen Speaks

Nothing new here... enjoying some rainy days and some nice, sunny days!  I had a song on my mind from YEARS ago... and found it on YouTube.  The video leaves a lot to be desired... but the song is sweet.  I always dreamed of my some-day husband playing the piano and singing this song to me at our wedding... hee hee!  Of course, that didn't happen (neither Cory or I can play the piano OR SING... at all!) - it was just a young fantasy... but I like the song just the same!  I wanted to share!