Sunday, August 17, 2014


How much can you remember from when you a small child (like under the age of four)? Husband remembers a LOT of stuff from when he was tiny and it always amazes me. I don't know if I remember that much, but I suppose if I sat and pondered it, I might remember something. 

I do have one memory that sticks with me. I can't even be sure of how old I was, but since it has to do with my great grandmother and she died several months before my sixth birthday, I know I was younger than that. If I had to guess, I would say that I was three or four. Anyway, I remember going over to my great grandmother's apartment with my grandpa one day. I believe he was there to fix her air conditioner. While he worked, she made me scrambled eggs and gave me orange juice (with pulp! the nerve!). I remember sitting on the floor in front of her television, but I don't remember what I was watching. I do recall that she let me hold her precious stuffed Kermit the Frog while I was there, though.

Even though that memory isn't really that significant, it is one that I treasure. I've always been close with my grandpa and I think it's nice that I got to go with him to visit his mother. 

Speaking of my grandpa, he just celebrated his 79th birthday yesterday! Huzzah! He told me he wasn't having birthdays anymore, but I called him to say happy birthday anyway. He and my grandma were having dinner at Olive Garden. Cute times.

Happy Sunday!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Little Booper

I have wanted to write about this for a bit, but I wasn't able to do it until now (and I still might cry while I write it, but what can you do).

As you know, Booper was constantly plagued by asthma and sneezing. Toward the beginning of this year, he stopped responding to the steroids and antibiotics that the vet was giving him every couple of months. This meant that we switched over to an oral antihistamine only. On June 3rd, I came home from work and noticed a bump between his eyes. I emailed a picture to the doctor the following morning and he said he would be over on Thursday. He also said that it looked pretty serious and I should prepare myself for potential bad news. 

Bad news.

Dr. Ruble wasn't here very long that Thursday before he told us that the mystery bump was probably cancer. I had cried on the phone when the doctor had told me it was probably something serious. I cried again when he told us that it was probably cancer. He gave Booper the steroids and antibiotics he had been getting in the past, took a sample to examine under the microscope to be sure and we talked about what might happen. He estimated that Booper had anywhere from one month to three (at most) and told us that we would have to make the difficult decision to put him to sleep.

The tumor grew quickly. Very, very quickly. I took pictures nearly every day and the progression is ridiculous to watch. It began to push against his eyes, making them water all of the time, and he started having bloody noses just about every day. He also started to look more tired than usual. We could tell that he wasn't himself, despite little bursts of energy when he'd play with us or his brother cats. Finally, at the beginning of July, we had to call the vet to have him come over for a final visit. I made the call while I was at work but I made sure to have Husband be on the line as well because I wasn't convinced I could talk to the receptionist without sobbing. I'm glad I did. 

Dr. Ruble came over on July 3rd. As soon as he walked in, he told us that it was definitely the right thing to be doing. He said that the tumor was likely giving Booper headaches and that it was starting to deform his bones. I won't go in to details about the procedure, but I will tell you that it was very peaceful. Husband held him and we sat on the couch all together. When he was gone, we brought Bandit and Kit Kat downstairs to see him so they would know what had happened (the vet said that they likely knew already because of the change in scents in the house, though). We eventually said our goodbyes. We got his remains back about a week later. It made me feel so much better to have him back with us, even if it was in a completely different way. 

I am so grateful for the care that Dr. Ruble gave to Booper throughout his entire life. It was such a good thing to find his practice when we were considering switching vets several years ago. It was so much nicer to have him come over to our home to see the cats rather than take them out to an office. It was also really amazing that we could all be home together on Booper's last day and that he could feel safe and calm.

We did our best to make sure Booper felt loved and pampered during the last month of his life. We gave him all of the best food and treats, we had friends stop over to visit him, we even took him outside a couple times (you know, so that he would be able to get the best smells). He spent a great deal of time sitting near the open window in the kitchen, sniffing the air and sleeping in the sunlight. On his last day, we gave him a feast of delicious lunchmeats as well as a scallop (didn't care for it), cool whip (looooved it, as usual), and dog ice cream (not interested). We cuddled him, let him sit by the window and just spent time near him.

Booper turned nine shortly after we discovered the tumor. I am so grateful that I was able to have him in my life for the nearly six years that I did. He was so wonderful.

Pictures above and below were both taken during our outings to the yard and porch.

After we found out about the tumor, I began crying pretty much constantly. After he had been gone for two weeks, I was finally able to get through a work day without bursting in to tears. I know that we did the right thing and that he was suffering, but I don't think I'll ever stop missing him.

Bandit and Kit Kat seem to be doing okay as a twosome rather than a threesome. I think they were both missing him right after he was gone, but they seem to be keeping it together now as well. Funnily enough, they have changed some of their habits. Bandit has been meowing more frequently, Kit Kat has been more lovey dovey. It's interesting to note the changes and realize that, unbeknownst to us, Booper may have been the alpha cat (do cats have alphas? I don't know). We are all adjusting to life without him, but it will never be the same.

Rest in Peace, my little Booper doo. You were just the best.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Monthly Book Roundup: May, June & July

Are you ready for yet another book recap? I know that you are. It's okay to admit it. Here we go (and I think a few of these may have been repeats, because sometimes you just need to re-read things, you know?):

May 2014

Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella
In My Hands by Irene Gut Opdyke
Thunderstruck by Erik Larson
Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen
The Collector by Nora Roberts
Rita Hayworth & Shawshank Redemption from Different Seasons by Stephen King (book club selection)

June 2014

Vanished by Wil S. Hylton
Dark Witch by Nora Roberts
Ember Island by Kimberley Freeman
Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen
Mariana by Susanna Kearsley
The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen
Crazy in Love by Lani Diane Rich

July 2014

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery (book club selection)
Priscilla by Nicholas Shakespeare
Suddenly Royal by Nichole Chase
Lawful Escort by Tina Folsom
Goodnight June by Sarah Jio

If I had to tell you which was these I would recommend first, I would say Rita Hayworth & Shawshank Redemption and... hmm... probably Goodnight June. They were both pretty great. Not that the other books were not, of course. I enjoyed all of the books I read.

What have you read lately? Anything good? Anything amazing?