Christmas Time

Sunday, November 11, 2007

a good dog...

ross and i bought two little daschunds before we got married almost 10 years ago. first came jake our black miniature and then came max. you can see in the picture that max is an unusual color. he was called something along the lines of a double dapple piebald miniature dacshund. let me just make a note here that there was nothing miniature about max. max's eyes were the order to get this color dog i think there was a lot of inbreeding done because one eye was blue and one was brown. the eyelashes above the blue eye were all white and the eyelashes above the brown eye were brown.

yesterday max seemed lazier than normal. by the end of the day we couldn't get him to go outside. he had vomited early in the day and at dinner time i mentioned to ross that something looked strange about max's face. by 10pm last night we determined he was probably on his last day or so because he wouldn't even eat the treat we brought to him. he wouldn't drink any water either. we were about to leave him be on his pillow and go to bed so i sat on the floor next to him just to love on him a bit. when he tried to lift is head we noticed that there was some blood coming out of his mouth.

at that point we called our friend to come sit with the kids while we took him to the 24hr. vet. hospital. i wrapped him in a towel and we loaded into the car. i am so thankful i got to hold him for such a long time. he always loved being in our laps with a blanket.

after the dr. took a look at him she felt that he probably had kidney disease, liver disease, cancer or a combination of two or more of these. we made the sad decision to have max put to sleep. i love my dogs but i am also very aware that they are dogs. i never thought i would be so sad about his death. the tech shaved his little leg and got his catheter in and then i held him while the dr. administered the anesthesia. about half way through the medicine he looked up at me as if to say, "goodbye". i am thankful i could be with him in those last moments.

this morning we told henry and daphne. i was really dreading telling henry being that he didn't handle the death of his goldfish very well. today, he was so sad. he was sitting in ross' lap and he just looked at us and said, "but max was my friend." he has seemed to take it in a little better as the day goes on and daphne gets it as much as a 3 yr. old can.
jake wonders around looking for max...he hasn't whined about it yet. once when max spent a few days at the vet jake cried all the time.

thanks for letting me say goodbye to our good dog...

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

well the doctor did not have many results back like he had hoped but feels fairly confident that it was probably not valley fever being that the antibiotics seem to be helping whatever infection was/is/has been in ross' lungs.

one of ross' x-rays did show a 1.4cm by 1.4cm nodule which could be scar tissue from any previous infection. the doctor gave ross orders to have another x-ray done in about 4 weeks to hopefully see that the nodule has either shrunk or gone away altogether. if it is the same size or bigger then he will probably have to do a ct scan to check it out. all in all the doctor is not concerned and feels confident that the nodule will be gone.

there you have it...another crazy ailment in the newman household!

the sick ward...

okay so florence nightengale was an amazing woman. she cared for the sick in an amazing way. this week she would have been a fantastic help around here.
anna has a very yucky nose and has had this since probably last friday. she seems miserable and yet happy at the same time. i know that after several days of kleenex usage my nose becomes a raw mess. anna's nose is at that point. i think she would prefer it if i didn't come close to her face with anything!
daphne has a cough that sounds like a smoker of 40 years.
i think henry has sympathy ailments.

ross is our very sick one though. we should get some test results back in about an hour. he has not been feeling well for more than a week. when i say not feeling well i mean...severe headache, difficulty breathing, fever, chills and exhaustion. monday he went to the dr. and the dr. was concerned it could be west nile virus or valley fever. the doc sent him to the hospital for xrays of his lungs shortly after giving him a breathing treatment.

valley fever is a fungal infection you can get out in this part of the u.s. if you are around construction or areas where dirt gets stirred up a lot. there is a lot of construction happening on the property where ross works. you breathe it in and voila you have valley fever. evidently most people who get it never notice but some (ross) get it and it can knock the wind out of you for a while. the doctor cultured his blood and will give ross the results soon. ross has been taking a major antibiotic and has been doing breathing treatments as ordered (and with some forcing by his wonderful wife who loves him dearly).

God, i know that You are in the business of healing. i am asking that you would restore all the members of my family to full health. thank you in advance for the restoration You will provide.
i love you, Lord.

Friday, November 2, 2007

trick or treat...

halloween was lots of fun with the kids again this year. they loved getting all dressed up and the excitement of knocking on doors in hopes of candy.

many months ago when i asked henry what he wanted to be for halloween he quickly expressed his great desire to be Aslan from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. i was caught off guard because i assumed he would want to be Peter. i guess if we look at c.s. lewis' underlying story then Aslan would be the one we should all want to be.

a lion...a magnificent lion...there is no costume that is great enough to be Aslan on the market. i realized i was going to have to make this costume. well it was tough but nearly as tough as it would have been had ross' mom not been there to coach me through every step. i am so grateful. it took us an entire sunday afternoon. in fact, linda left around 8:30pm and i carried on for another hour or so sewing the mane on. what an undertaking but what a result!!another great thing about this costume is that it served dual purposes. wednesday was reformation day at school and each kindergartner dressed as a character from the bible. they then walked door to door at the school pretending to nail martin luther's ninety five theses to them and singing, onward christian soldiers. henry went as the Lion of the tribe of judah, other characters chosen were daniel, luke the physician, leah and eve ("when she wore clothes").

after picking henry up from school we headed to grandma carol's house so that she could see the kids in costume. they were all pretty cute! catherine met us there with zach. a couple from our church had dressed their little guy up like a lobster last year and so i suggested catherine borrow it. well she did and zach looked adorable. of course daphne was cinderella and little anna went as an adorable duck.

we all went home and tried to no avail...and then several friends came over for the evening festivities. after eating pizza all the kiddos got dressed and ready to go. jennifer put daphne and ellie's hair up in a bun which was quite the undertaking with daph's baby fine short hair but she got it and it looked fantastic. drew was a football player, jake a firefighter, the girls cinderella, henry Aslan, zach a lobster and anna a duck.

i wonder what they each will be next year???