Saturday, May 31, 2008

Backyard Heaven

The dogs have been in heaven now that warm weather is slowly creeping in and they are able to spend more time out in the backyard. We love our backyard. It has just enough shade and just enough sun at any time of the day.

Raeka rolling in the grass

Sherman prefers to stand at the gate at the top of the driveway and watch over the neighborhood for any potential danger. I say he's surveying his kingdom ;) He will often start growling and barking as people walk by and cause Raeka to join in.

Sherman sitting by the gate

Sherman and Raeka watching over the neighborhood

Raeka prefers to be out in the yard with me. She will lay down near me whether I'm gardening or reading, and chew on a stick or just enjoy the sunshine. She's definitely a little island girl. She loves the heat. She also adores chasing a tennis ball, but is frightened of frisbees. Well, she played with a little ring we had for awhile, but that has since turned up missing and she won't even try to pick up a regular one.

Raeka and the ring, which is flipped up around her neck

Now and then, Sherman and Raeka will even have a game a chase!

The corner of the yard you see in the following photo is where I chose to start a memorial garden. I've taken a few pictures but most of the plants have a ways to go before their flowers bloom, so I'll post them at a later date.

Enjoy the summer, everyone. I know that we will.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


This is the time of year that I remember all the losses that our family suffered a few years ago. It all started in October of 2004. I lost my heart dog, Daisy Mae. She'd been suffering horrible nose bleeds from a nasty fungal infection that could not be cured without terribly invasive treatment that I refused to put her through at her age. Treatment that didn't even have a very promising success rate. Daisy was my reason for getting up in the morning. My heart, my soul...

My darling Daisy Mae

Then a short five months later, on Easter, March 27, 2005, my grandmother, Helene, passed away at the age of 97. She was one of the strongest women I know and she left a huge gap in all of our lives.

Gram with me when I was two

Two months later to the day, my father passed away on May 27th. He was diagnosed with esophogeal cancer only a month before that. We lost him quickly and it sent our family reeling. He was an ex Marine and fondly talked of his days in the service. He had a horrible childhood, losing his mother at a very young age and living with an abusive father, but he never spoke of that life. It's only now that I'm hearing stories about that part of his life from my mother's brother, David, who was a good friend of my father's when they were young.

My dad when he was in his early 20's

On July 22nd, my youngest cousin, Dan, died quite unexpectedly. He'd been HIV positive for many years but it was his terrible rheumatoid arthritis and the medication used to treat it that ultimately took him from us. The medication destroyed his t cells to the point where the doctor's didn't know how he could even stand. He went to take a nap that afternoon and never woke up. I so miss his laughter...

Dan, just 40 years old when he died

October 27th of that same year, I then lost my darling little Olivia Rose. She was an adorable rescue dog from Puerto Rico. I'd only had her in my life for nine months when I lost her to what we are certain was a brain tumor. She was only 14 months old.

Livia, just a month before she died

So many losses in such a short period. It stays with you for a long, long time. My heart is slowly recovering, but it will never heal completely. My comfort comes from knowing deep in my heart that I will see them all again...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Who is PenDaisy and what in the world does she need a blog for?

I'm starting this blog in hopes of having an outlet for the stress that seems to be taking over my life right now. But, I'm getting ahead of myself. First a little about me. I live in Colchester, Vermont. I work in the office of a physical therapy clinic. I also love to go and observe and assist in surgery at my vet's office whenever I have a chance. My hobbies include woodburning and scrapbooking.

Two and a half years ago, my sister, her husband and daughter, and I decided to buy a house together in order to take care of my ailing mom. My mother's health had starting failing shortly after my father passed away (which coincidentally was three years ago today), and we decided that she really couldn't be alone all the time, especially after she fell a few times.

I more or less live in the basement level with my two darling dogs, Sherman and Raeka, and purrfect kitties, Phoebe and Flower. Sherman is a 7-year-old Pekingese. He is a rescue dog with only one eye and a boatload of personality. He is a clown and he makes me laugh every day. Raeka is also a rescue dog. She is 2-years-old and is from Puerto Rico. She is a hound mix and is very shy and clingy. She absolutely adores Sherman. In fact, Sherman is her idol. She lives for him. Phoebe is a 6-year-old tuxedo kitty from Maine. She is the sweetest thing. She has been with me for five years now and has recently decided that sitting on my lap is a good thing after all. Flower is an ancient cat that my vet was looking to place in a home for loving hospice care when she was left there. She was a stray and has had a rough life from the looks of her raggedy ears, split tongue, toothless mouth and scarred up face, but she is the most loving cat you could ever wish to meet. I took her thinking I would just love this little bag of bones (under 5 lbs) until she died, but now, almost two years later, she is 12 pounds and healthy as a horse.
Sherman and Raeka

Flower and Phoebe

My sister Melissa that also lives here, has a Siberian Husky, Gabby, a beagle, Maggie, and seven cats, Guido, Lindsey, Howie, Lucky, Storm, Tigger, and Gracie. We have a house full of furry love :)

My mom, Nancy, has just been diagnosed with a terminal illness. Pulmonary Hypertension This on top of congestive heart failure and a paralyzed diaphragm on one side with limited lung function on that side. Her prognosis is a year. Melissa and I have decided to try to take care of her at home for as long as possible, and hopefully until the end. We take turns bringing the baby monitor to bed with us to keep an ear open for mom if she needs us in the night. She has quickly gotten to the point where we are having to do almost everything for her. Needless to say, we're not getting much rest these days.

My mom at age 18

I'll wrap this up for now and gather my thoughts for tomorrow. Stay tuned!