More Summer

17 08 2011


Davis Lake is one of my favorite places to camp with Jason and the dog.  We didn’t make it out there last summer, so I was happy to get there this year.

Gotta love summer when you’re camping at a lake.



36 Weeks / 1 Year

17 08 2011

Jason and I have been married for one year now.  Considering that I’ve pretty much been pregnant for that entire year, that we still don’t have a baby, and I have another four weeks left of being pregnant, I think that it’s pretty damn impressive that we’re still on speaking terms.  Most of the time.




25 07 2011

This is what summer is all about:

Still Going Strong

20 06 2011


Other than a bout with some kind of stomach virus, Charlie is doing well and loving life.  In between naps, that is…






Pole Pedal Paddle 2011 (and a little announcement)

21 05 2011

For most people, preparing for a multi-sport relay race would include some physical training.  For us, it’s more about arranging kegs, buying food, setting up wall tents, collecting fuel for the bonfire, heating up the barbeque, turning our driveway into a twenty-car parking lot, and generally preparing for the pre and post party.
This year, race day began cool and wet.
But racers donned their gear and prepared to face the challenges of the day.  Jason didn’t feel that my tshirt and jeans lived up to PPP expectations; I felt that my giant belly made up for lack of day-glo.  I have to admit, though, the teams were lookin’ good.
It wasn’t quite as wet out of the river as in it, but it seemed like it might get close as we waited to start the canoe leg of the race.  Eventually, the rain stopped long enough to snap a few pics.  This was the Cinnamon Bear’s first PPP!  Cheers!
After downhill skiing, cross country skiing, biking, running, and kayaking, teams sent their sprinters across the finish line.
And to my (immense) surprise, Team Stench Goose Flight took third in our age group.  Baby’s first PPP is a win!  This was Jazmine’s first race as well – she snowboarded and sprinted – and Colin biked in spite of the stomach flu.  Dustin and Shawn must have run and cross country skied like champs, because we were already in the lead when my mom and I began the paddling section of the race.
Whether you win or lose, a fish taco is in order after a long night and a long day… with a long night left to go…  Despite the rain, we followed PPP tradition and headed out for margaritas and wraps for a snack before hitting the bbq back home.
And to top off the afternoon…
Chuck helped us with a little announcement we’ve been waiting for.  He ripped open an envelope from the radiology clinic…

Life Without Regret

18 05 2011

It took me a couple of days to decide to write about this.  Because I have more questions than answers now, and more fear than facts.  But since this blog is, in name, dedicated to my dog, I feel like there is a big, silent elephant sitting in my blog’s living room right now.  So I’m writing about another adventure Charlie and I are having together, one that is still very much uncharted, and one I really wasn’t planning on starting right now.

Charlie exploring the BLM land last week

If I were to make a list of regrets, it would be a long one.  Mostly filled with petty retractions, it would also include a few biggies.  Oh, it would look a lot like anyone’s, I think: too much debt, too little travel, things said that should have been left unsaid, things left unsaid that should have been spoken, a kindness to someone else not done here, a kindness done to me left unthanked there, unintentional but careless stabs at people’s feelings, the time I simply wasn’t paying attention and drove into the back of someone’s car, impatience at kids…  A million details that, given the chance, I might change.

On Monday, Jason and I sat on a cushioned bench in an exam room at the vet’s office.  Charlie, having climbed behind us, clawed at the door, sat on my lap, and shed an entire season’s worth of hair, finally lay calm but alert on the linoleum beneath the exam table.

The vet said a lot of things that we already knew.  At 13, a seizure could be due to an infection, despite no fever and no other symptoms.  It could be very-late-onset epilepsy.  It could be thyroid, again with no other symptoms.  Could be.  Could be.

But probably not.

It was the probably not that was in my mind the moment I had heard Charlie drop to the floor Sunday evening.  He recovered quickly from a seizure that last less than a minute, but I wasn’t surprised at what the vet was now intimating.

Charlie, it turns out, is old.  And that means his probablys aren’t very good.  His probablys are cancer or aneurysm.  It is by no means a certainty, though since Monday, lab results have further lowered the odds of infection or other relatively benign causes for the seizure.  And even if it is what it probably is, there is no way to know how long Charlie might continue to live a fairly healthy life.  No reason, now, to begin grieving.  His time might be measured in months or even years – really, the same prognosis of any 13-year-old dog.

It does make me think about regret, though.  Because if I have done one thing right in my life, it’s the way I have treated my dog.  Because if there is one creature in the world that I have loved unconditionally, and always put before myself, and tried to bring happiness to again and again simply to see his look of pure joy, it is that damn dog.  No regrets.  Not for money spent on daycare and hours spent at the dog park and money spent on food and leashes and treats and days at the beach and runs at river and “No I can’t go out right now, I have to go walk my dog” and camping trips and quiet evenings on the couch that is completely covered in dog hair and dog hair in my cupboards and the organic egg yolks I give him each morning cholesterol be damned…  No regrets.

In the hour and a half that we spent at the vet, in the time it took to confirm that my life is shifting in some new direction, the weather changed.  The rain, sleet, and hail, the grayish purple sky, the chilly wind had disappeared.  The late afternoon sun shone on the wet pavement and spring-scented steam rose up all around the city, as the light reflected blindingly off every rain-soaked surface.  The sky was perfectly blue, ringed in clouds, but above us, just a perfect May blue.  The air warmed surprisingly fast, and the wind was now a breeze.

I put Charlie’s leash on him and we headed out for our daily walk.  Ready or not, our next big adventure is here.  And we’re on it together.

Dear Baby…

18 05 2011

…I was walking the dog yesterday, when suddenly you moved in such a way as to entirely squash my bladder.  It was instant: one moment, I was enjoying the cool sunset breeze and the next, I was completely overcome by an overriding, all-encompassing need to pee.

I was twenty minutes from home.

Luckily, nobody drove by while I was squatting in the roadside ditch, so there’s nothing to forgive.  But even if someone had happened upon me in that moment of shameful public urination, I would have forgiven you anyway.

Because just in case you didn’t know this already?

I really, really love you.

Even while peeing in front of someone’s house.

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