Saturday, February 24, 2007

A Very Hard Week

This has been a very hard week, dealing with Phoebe's passing. I had no desire to get on the treadmill at all this week but I did stick to my diet until Thursday. Hopefully, I will get back on track there Monday. Not doing it tomorrow because golf is on practically all day so I'll be watching that. I've also been hugging one of my stuffed animals at night when sleeping. At least the dogs don't sleep with me. That would be just totally unbearable if I had to deal with not having her there anymore.

Today I did a lot of cleaning. I vacuumed the dining room and living room and then cleaned the carpet. After that, I sprinkled borax into the carpet as a preventative anti-flea measure. I cleaned out a closet so I could have more room and moved some junk out of the living room. I need to do dishes but haven't made it to that yet. My hands have been dry and cracked this week and I don't really know why. It's been warmer than usual so they shouldn't have gotten any worse. I still put lotion on them every night when I go to bed.

Last night I did my laundry and took apart the carpet cleaning machine to pick out all the carpet pieces. The machine is kind of old and one of the gaskets is broken but it still works so I'm not buying a new one yet.

I've been brushing Fritz lately. For a while I didn't and he's got a ton of hair. The winter coat.

As for the future, I have written a want ad to put in the local buy/sell/trade papers and on the local buy/sell/trade radio program. I've decided that I want a local chihuahua puppy so my ad specifies preferably my home county. I think it's a good idea to stay local. Vets from some county far, far away from me may be used to seeing certain ailments in all the dogs they treat, but vets in my county may not see those ailments and might end up mis-diagnosing the puppy. So, if I stick with a local puppy, I think the vets will be better able to treat her more effectively. I am on a call list with a lady in the county. She had an ad in the paper for a female puppy for sale but by the time mom called, it had already been sold. But the lady said she had another dog who was three weeks along so mom gave the woman my number and hers so she can call us when the dog has her puppies. The bad part is that if I have to go with her, it will probably be June before I get a puppy. So, I'm still looking but I'm really hoping that at least I can get a puppy from her. Dad told mom I should get two puppies instead of one. So, I agreed even though the puppy pad training will be a circus I'm sure. Mom told dad that I had decided to get two and he acted surprised. She said "You're the one who gave her the idea." LOL. Anyway, now Dad says that if I'm going to get two, I should get a male and a female and then I can have puppies of my own. But I don't think Fritz will get along with a male and I don't want to try to housebreak a male puppy. So, I told Mom and Dad that I'll get the two female puppies and they can have the male puppy. I'll bring my girls to their house for the 'romance'.

I do think with the new puppies I'm going to be one of those mothers you see on 20/20 who take their kids to the doctor every day and believe that the kids are sick even when they aren't. I think I might take the puppies to the vet every three months just to have every test run to make sure nothing's wrong with them. And every time they sneeze, or cough, or spit up, they are going to the vet. Even if I have to get my parents to take them while I'm at work.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

In Memoriam

Today is a very sad day for me. My beloved Phoebe passed away early this morning.

She had very stinky runny poo Friday and the day before and Saturday she threw up all the food she ate, threw up all the water she drank, and this is the bad part, expelled a ton of very stinky blood instead of poo. I called the vet's emergency number and took her in last night. He gave her two shots, put an iv in her (but I think all of it ran back out when he pulled the needle out) and he gave me pills and liquid for her to take. The vet didn't give me a diagnosis, but Polly says it sounded like Parvo, even though Phoebe had been vaccinated. Phoebe's symptoms were consistent with Parvo, according to the websites I've visited. He did say she had a small fever. And there looked to be some kind of pus or infection gathering around her butt before she expelled another big puddle of blood at the vet's office. He asked about people food and I don't give her any. He asked about plants, and I try to keep all the plants picked up and out of the way. I can't help it if a leaf gets tracked in from outside. Fritz is always bringing in twigs stuck in his hair. She eats worse than that when we go for walks, which we haven't done in months because of the cold weather. And then he asked about my other dogs and neither of them are sick. I did give her part of a Chicken Jerky treat Friday night, but she had eaten those before and had not had any problems. It did have the potential for sharp edges that might have nicked her intestine like chicken bones would, but as she was sick with the runny poo before I gave her the treat, I don't think it was a major contributor. If you'll recall, I've posted here other times that Phoebe had been sick with runny poo and vomiting. I believe that this was some recurring virus or bacteria that just finally wouldn't go away.

I got up at 3am this morning and checked on her and she wasn't moving, her breathing was very shallow and she was very cold. I covered her with a small blanket and talked to her and petted her for a while. With all the blood loss, her passing wasn't unexpected, but that doesn't make it any less painful for me and my parents. I called mom and dad this morning and told them and I think mom had to put her oxygen on. I knew it would hard for her because she was really attached to Phoebe. She said Phoebe was full of life, the way she would run through the house and go to the bedroom to wake up her grandpa and that Phoebe was really smart in that she would come and tell us when she had used her puppy pads. I think Phoebe's passing is probably hardest on Mom because she didn't see how sick Phoebe was like Dad and I did. The last time Mom saw Phoebe was last week when she went for her weekly visit.

I am planning to bury Phoebe with her favorite squeaky toy and her stuffed cat and her jingle bell collar. She slept with a bunny and I plan to keep it and some other things of hers in a keepsake box. I'm printing out the Christmas pictures now to put in the photo album.

I do plan to get another dog. I don't know when. It will be tough for me and my parents for a while, and when I do get another puppy, I would hope that Mom and Dad would dogsit for me again like they did when I first got Phoebe.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Still Cold and More Snow Expected

Another yucky storm comes in Monday and lasts through part of Wednesday. It's supposed to be part rain, part sleet, part ice and part snow. I hope we get all rain, but the forecast is calling for inches and inches of snow. Granted, we aren't getting anywhere near what upstate New York is getting, but the difference is, we aren't supposed to. Those folks in New York are more used to snow than we are around here. One of these days, I'm moving to a warmer place. Maybe someday I'll take the house money I have saved and go to Grad School, then try to get a better job that will take me to warmer town. But, I don't know if I have that kind of initiative now.

I ate the turkey sloppy joes and made some more today for this week's dinners. It was pretty good. I think the store brand sloppy joe sauce is different from Manwich. I used Manwich today and it didn't sting my eyes with massive use of peppers.

I also worked out for about an hour yesterday and today, burning over 400 calories each day. And today I skipped the two snacks that I usually eat between breakfast and lunch and lunch and dinner. I was at mom and dad's and missed the mid-morning snack, and then I took a nap in the afternoon and missed the afternoon snack. The Digging For the Truth dvds are working out pretty well for treadmill viewing.

Speaking of mom and dad, I took Phoebe there for her weekly trip. After a while she just started crying and whining and nothing made her happy. I guess she either missed sleeping with Steffi in the chair or she missed her squeaky toy. Dad said I was starving him by telling him to eat 2000 calories a day. Gee, I'd like to starve on 2000 calories a day. I told him he wasn't starving and he said he wasn't allowed to eat what he wanted. Well, neither am I. I found some example menus on the internet and emailed them to Mom so they can get some ideas about what he can eat. I think he's eating corn flakes with water and pop tarts. It's probably the grumpy old man sydrome. He can't do what he wants and eat all the bad foods, so he's deliberately eating the weird not-so-good foods. Maybe he should do the weightwatchers points system since that's supposed to let you eat what you want, just not a lot of it.

The local Krogers grocery store has a clearance aisle in which they are trying to get rid of stuff that isn't selling - preparing for when the new Walmart Supercenter opens. Yesterday, I found some lavender bath stuff from the Healing Garden on clearance for something like $6.00 off. So, I'm going to try that tonight and see what happens. Lavender is supposed to be good for relieving stress I think.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Snow Sucks

We got about 4 inches of snow here last night. It took me about 2 and a half hours to shovel the driveway today and that was with help. Dad came up and helped me.

I got the Digging For the Truth DVDs that I ordered from amazon. That was fast. It was about three days. I picked the free supersaver shipping.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Cold, cold, cold

It's supposed to get really cold these next few nights and days. I hope the cats will be ok out there. I would let them in, but they won't stay. They will stay for a while and then want outside again. Plus, if Fritz knows the cats are in the family room, he will bark and scratch at the door. I also hope my water doesn't freeze.

Today, I washed the couch cover. I also took my two Sunday naps. I made ground turkey breast sloppy joes. I don't know if it will taste good since I still have meatloaf to eat. But at some point this week, I will start on the sloppy joes.

I got out my checkbook and bank statements to balance my check book. I hadn't done that for about three months. I had much of it all written down, but getting the running balance I always leave for when it becomes a big enough job for me to do. I did notice that my ISP didn't take December's payment until sometime in January. Usually they take the money at some point in the month in which it's due. But they didn't take any money in December.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Still Hating Snow

We had snow Thursday night and Friday. I had Friday off so that wasn's that big of a problem. I took the broom and swept the snow off the driveway, except for the places where tires had packed the snow into ice. This morning, I woke up to more snow on the driveway. At least it wasn't that much and we had good sunshine to melt a lot of it. I still took the broom out and swept what I could. Finally, around 2pm I was able to take Phoebe up to my parents' house for her weekly trip. Plus, I wanted mom to cut my hair and I had some of their mail to deliver. Well, now we are in for really cold temperatures. They are talking about zero and below zero with wind chill. The worry now is that my water pipes will freeze.

I brought the cats in for a little while this morning. But they didn't want to stay in. This evening Lapcat came in for a little while and Phoebe ran circles around her. I don't know if Phoebe was playing or trying to figure out how to fight. Lapcat had just a brief moment of possible chasing and then did what any cat would - laid down and rolled around on her back. Mom said Lapcat thought Phoebe was the biggest mouse she'd ever seen. LOL.

Tomorrow I will hopefully make the ground turkey breast sloppy joes. Well, the sauce anyway. I plan to freeze the sauce in 8 ounce gladware/ziploc bowls. That will help me to control portion sizes.

There's not much at all on tv tonight. I've got the dish on the Tennis Channel watching a match in Chile. The players are cute, but the Spanish guy is getting beat by the hometown favorite.

Dad said today that I was making him eat 2200 calories a day. I'm not making him eat anything. But I'm glad he's eating. I told mom about my meatloaf in the muffin pan experience. She said she would be worried about the grease bubbling out into the oven. So, I pointed out that with ground turkey breast, there is no grease - and no shrinkage of the food in the pan like you get in regular beef meatloaf. Mom's even watching the calories she's eating. She's trying to stay around 1400-1500 a day. That's probably the right amount for her. It would be nice if I could get them away from the hot dogs, sausage and hamburger, but we have a whole freezer full of hamburger and pork so I don't think that's going to happen.

I watched Nashville Star again today. I must have missed all of Whitney's good performances because from what I heard today, I don't know how she's been on the show for as long as she has. The men seem stronger contenders than the women this year. I also watched American Idol Rewind which featured the first season. I could clearly see that the judging has gotten increasingly tougher each season. I don't think some of the top 20 or 30 would have made it that far if they were auditioning for season 4 or5 or 6. And it seemed to me that the judges were just as mean on that rewind show as they have been this season. I don't think that's changed any despite what the media wants to say.

Friday, February 02, 2007

I Hate Snow!!!

Well, I went to the bank and walmart around 12:30pm today. It was still snowing and even though some had melted, it had been snowing so hard that the driveway was getting covered up again. By the time I got back at around 2pm, the driveway had about an inch and a half of snow on it. Some places had melted out, but there was still plenty of snow to cause me to slide around. And it didn't help that me and the mail man had both driven over the snow and packed it down into ice. So, I unloaded my groceries, got on my snow boots, hat, jacket and gloves, and shoveled the driveway. I was out nearly two hours doing that so I figure I must have burned the 300 calories a day I want to spend on my diet/exercise program.

In the next few days it's supposed to get down to zero degrees without wind chill factored in. I hope it doesn't snow on top of that. If I have to park my car at the main road and walk, I don't want to walk in zero degree weather. I bought some cat litter and cat pan liners in case I decide to bring the cats inside during the really cold nights. They can usually find warm places around the farm to crawl into to stay warm at night. We have old hay mangers, and boxes with blankets all over the place and all kinds of nooks and crannies for the cats to sleep in.

I got the Celtic Woman A New Journey dvd and cd that I pre-ordered. I haven't played them yet, but it doesn't look like there's much on tonight on tv, so maybe I'll check them out.

Thursday, February 01, 2007


I baked the soda cake tonight and tried a piece of it. It was warm, chocolatey and gooey. I used a sheetcake pan and only baked it at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. If it's cut into 12 pieces, then there are about 180 calories in one serving, but since I used a sheetcake pan, I cut it into 24 pieces, halving the calories. I put the whole thing into the freezer to make it easier to get out of the pan and into ziploc bags.

It turns out I might actually be able to go out tomorrow. I would really like to get to the bank and get some money. I'll just have to wait and see what the weather does tonight and tomorrow. This morning, there was about 3/4 of an inch of snow on my steep driveway. I inched down the driveway in the car this morning and then drove a very slow 50 mph on the interstate to get to work. All the snow had melted away by afternoon. But don't let that fool you, it was still about 35 degrees out. Way too cold for me.