Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Princess Ariel

Ok, I know you will think I have gone crazy with the pets, but I am not planning on getting anymore pets for a while. Yes, someday I would like some goats. Our property is covered with barbed wire fencing, yet nothing is closed in where you can keep an animal contained...very strange. Anyway, fencing is expensive and time consuming, and so is the upkeep of animals that need fences and I don't want any pet that is small enough for the cats to attack and eat. I don't mind gerbils, rats, etc, but I think for now I will stick with the normal pets.
I was going to post a picture of our new puppy, but it appears that our camera has died. Never was that great of a camera in the first place, sucks down batteries faster than I can buy them, but it did take pictures and I could post them on the internet, and now I can't. Maybe I can put camera on the Christmas list. At least I have a picture of the scrawny thing on the memory card that I could print out at Walmart.
Back to the dog, I have been wanting one for a while. While the girls were at a play date last week, my Mom and I went to the animal sheltor/ zoo in our county.
Funny story... The first summer here, a retired teacher from church told us about a zoo in our county that she used to go on field trips. So, I followed the signs into the country to this family owned zoo. It was closed.. and closed to the public, but on the same property was the animal shelter for the county. That is the day we got Duchess. Someone was dropping her off, let us see her, and we took her home instead. All you could see from the road was a few emus. Big deal.
Later, Aaron and I were driving in that area with the girls, and we see someone working there in a cage, so we drive up to ask the guy if they give tours of the zoo anymore. When we got closer we realized the guy didn't have his original arms, but has mechanical arms. Have you seen Dumb and Dumber? Well, he looks like Jeff Daniels in that movie. Wild, crazy, thinning hair. That isn't the funny part. I would never make fun because someone doesn't have arms. Anyway, Aaron asked about tours and he says "No, we couldn't afford to keep up the liability insurance to let people come to the zoo" Maybe it wasn't so funny, but we both laughed later, wondering if his lack of arms had anything to do with no more liability insurance.
So, back to the story, Mom and I went looking at dogs without kids (my kids, not dogs that have never had children-although I do prefer females that haven't had puppies, I feel like the ones that have had puppies should invest in a good bra or thick shirt) , so I could actually think straight.
I said "how long do you keep your dogs here, will these same dogs be here next week?" He says "do you want reality or fantasy land?" I wanted reality and he said 7 days, but the puppies I was looking at would be around for a while. Well, I went back 2 days later and all but one was gone. And it was a pitt bull mix. So, we got this cute yellow lab/hound dog mix instead. He said she was probably 4-5 months old. The vet guessed 8-10 weeks, so she is going to be a little bigger than we expected. She was very shy, shaking, tail tucked under her legs, wouldn't look us in the eye. Aaron was trying to look her in the eye and she kept turning her head pretending he wasn't there. She was very emaciated and didn't eat at first. I thought I had gotten a dying dog. We put her in a cage in the living room and she has gradually perked up since we got her Saturday. We have wormed her and she had a little bit of fever, so the vet gave her some antibiotics, and she is eating good. I am almost afraid to say it, lest I break the wonderful spell, but the dog has barked twice. She is so good. Thank you Dog Whisperer. Within 24 hours, she walked well on a lease for all of us but Hannah. And even then, she is better than some dogs. Hannah is a little erratic with the walking, and Princess tends to want to lead her. She is learning though. Not one accident in the house or her cage yet. I take her out every few hours during the day in case she needs to go. Put her in the cage at night and don't hear a peep out of her until she sees us come in the room in the mornings. Then she gets excited, but still doesn't bark. She has played with the kittens. They don't play with her, and hiss a little, but I think Princess thinks they are little puppies. She doesn't seem to dislike them, only curious about them and she does pounce a little on our tiniest kitten. But the kitten just ignores her and keeps on with whatever she was doing.
One funny story, the dog was in the cage a few days ago, with the door open. I was sitting there and all of a sudden the dog starts growling low at something. I didn't think it was me, so Aaron and I looked all around the cage trying to find a cat perhaps that the dog sensed that we couldn't see. Couldn't find anything. I look back in the cage and on the other side of the dog was the oblivious tiny black kitten, in there sitting next to the dog, lucky to be alive. I got onto the dog and pulled the kitten out and she I have only heard her growl at her one more time.
Oh, back to the zoo. While picking out a puppy, we got to see 3 wolves, fox, racoon, 2 full grown male lions, and a black bear. I didn't even notice the lions about 10 feet away behind 2 fences at first. Just looking at puppies and notice a movement to the side and there stood a full grown lion.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Aaron impresses me again!

Problem: There is a very large Chestnut Oak right in front of our house that is dead/dying and dropping limbs on our roof whenever the big winds blow through our property.

Here is Aaron standing on a wobbly chair with a 20+ inch chainsaw, trying to avoid hitting barb wire fencing that may have grown into the tree. Seems like half the trees here have some kind of fencing in them. It would tear up a chainsaw blade.

How do you cut down a tree that would put a huge hole in your house without putting a huge hole in your house? Aaron knows. (Thankfully) If I tried to do it, I would no doubt have it fall right where it would do the most damage. Just like when I try to avoid pot holes, I always hit them.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Free cats -fulfilling my childhood dream

My parents hated pets. So, growing up, they conceded a few times and got me a dog, only to get rid of it a month or two later. Whenever we would go to stores and people would be giving out free kittens or puppies, I would always want one and wish that my parents would let me get one, but that never happened. If I was lucky, I got to pet them before we left the store, and that was seldom. So, yesterday, when we went to the grocery and there was a man there giving out free kittens, I couldn't resist. Now that we have the space for animals, and kittens are so easy, I let the girls pick out one. Now we are back up to 3 cats, since Duchess apparently is not coming home. Madelyn has carried the thing around all day (when it is her turn) and wrapped it in blankets, "burped it on her shoulder", and anything else you might do for a human baby.

Here is the update from Joint Counsil about Vietnam adoptions

October 13, 2008
Joint Council is pleased to report that within the past 10 days significant progress has been achieved in resolving the issues surrounding I-600A renewals. While we can not announce a specific time frame, we remain confident that a positive resolution is within reach

Please pray that an agreement is reached before we have to change countries again. Our deadline with our agency is Dec. 1. I think that if they are close to an agreement around that time, our agency will let us continue. As of last week, 3 couples have dropped off the girls' list, either changing countries or quitting, and we are now number 8. So, if things are settled, then we will be closer to the top of the list. Yippee!

I also put in a picture of Natalie in her uniform. The public schools are in fall break right now, so they didn't schedule any soccer games this week. This week off will be nice.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Painting in the Rain!

Aaron mentioned last night that he really needed to paint the well-house before Wednesday because it was supposed to storm and he wanted the well-house sealed with the paint before the rain came. He was thinking he would come home from work Tuesday and paint like a madman between supper and soccer. Being the wonderful wife I am, I put it on my to do list for today and decided that not only would have have the paint ready for him, I would have it painted.
Hannah woke me up about 7:15 this morning, and I noticed a strong breeze coming in the open windows and cloudy skies. So, I took a shower real quick, got the kids dressed and ready and drove the 10 miles to Walmart with very wet hair and sleepy, hungry kids. We took a quick trip of the store, got the paint, paintbrushes, water, milk, donuts and colas. It was barely sprinkling on the way.

As soon as we got home, we changed into old clothes in record time and went up to the well-house. I was excited because it was a painting project where I could hand the kids a brush and let them go at it. I had the 4in wide brush and got one side almost painted. Natalie was busy on her side painting pictures and writing her name. Hannah was also painting pictures, and Madelyn was doing well and keeping on task. They kept saying "come look at my side" I kept saying "there will be time for me to look at your side later, see those clouds?" We got about 1/3 of it painted before the sprinkling started. Thankfully, I put stuff up and was in the house with the girls before the down pour came

Aaron was impressed that we got any of it painted. We were painting by 9am.

After painting, we came in and started school. Madelyn I fear is coming down with something. I am thinking sinus infection or cold. She has complained of a mild headache off and on today and yesterday. She fell asleep on the couch this morning before I had a chance to get our schoolbooks prepared. She was running a fever by lunchtime. Much to her disappointment, she had to miss Brownies. I called her soccer coach to let him know she wouldn't be there either. I am hoping her game got cancelled because of rain and she didn't miss anything.
We dropped Natalie off at Brownies at 3pm, went and got the oil changed, stopped by the post office and got stamps. (our post office got rid of their stamp machine, so if you want stamps, you have to go during open hours<>
We came home and ate supper with Aaron. The night seemed to drag by since there was nowhere for us to go tonight. Between soccer, work and church, we have had something almost every night for over a month. It was nice.
Our cat Duchess who is huge with babies has been nowhere to be found for 3 days now. I figured her giving birth in a little over a week. I don't know what has happened to her. I can't imagine she would have gone off to have babies, but not come back to eat or anything. I fear the worst, and when the girls realize she may be gone forever, it will be hard on them, especially Madelyn who had a special attachment to her and was really looking forward to the kittens.
I have heard people talk about their cats disappearing for days or weeks, then coming back. Is that common? I don't have a lot of experience with cats.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


Hanah to Me "What will happen if all of your blood comes out and you die?"

Me "Well, you would go to Heaven."

Hannah "Does God have it?" (talking about the blood.)