Saturday, August 30, 2008

Reverence in Vermont

I've been on vacation this week so I took my great niece and nephew letterboxing again on Monday. We've been wanting to find the box planted by the Reverence sculpture by Jim Sardonis, or "whale tails" as everyone around here calls them, off interstate I-89 in South Burlington.

Any of you that know me are aware of my love for whales. I even have two whale tattoos! They are amazing creatures and we should feel honored to share our planet with them.

The sculpture is amazing! I only wish it was in my own backyard so I could enjoy it daily.

Morgan and Noah loved the tails!

It was a beautiful day, the sky was blue and littered with clouds.

For more information on Reverence, see, or go to wikipedia and put in "Reverence" sculpture as a search.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Welcome little ones

On Saturday, I drove to Penacook NH and adopted two rats. They were listed as males on Petfinder, but they turned out to be females. At least they were the same sex! They are very bonded and are so adorable together.

Eating spaghetti

They were named Spam and Hash, if you can believe it. They are now Lulu and Poppy. And they are quite the characters.

This is Lulu

And this is Poppy

New digs for the gals

I haven't had a rat since middle school, so you might as well say I'm completely new to the rat world. I'm taking it slow with them so they can learn to trust me.

Please help me in welcoming my two sweet girls.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Poor little whale!

I broke my left ankle in December. Well, let me elaborate on that. I slipped while walking on ice down our steep driveway. My right foot slid forward, but my left was on solid ground and did not follow along. As my body went forward, my ankle disclocated, the end of my tibia broke off and the end punctured through the tissues on the inside of my ankle. It was the fibula fracture that was the worst. It broke at an angle. The only good thing was that when the puncture happened, my foot and ankle went completely numb for weeks!

I sat on the frozen, icy driveway for 45 minutes between waiting for the ambulance and then having them evaluate me and try to stablilize my ankle enough so my foot wasn't flopping side to side. I remember riding in the ambulance and not being able to stop shivering. Even as I warmed up my body kept trembling. I found out that I had a touch of shock. Once they got an IV in me at the ER and they gave me a little sedative, the trembling stopped. The doctors knoced me out, put everything back into place, then splinted me and sent me home. On our way out of the hospital, a woman came up to me that was in the next bed with her husband and told me how "cool" it was when they were working on me. She said I was talking right along and then all of a sudden I just stopped talking and she could hear all the bones snapping as they put everything back into place. I'm glad I added a little excitement to their visit!

Nine days later I had surgery to stablize the fibula. The tibia would heal on its own. There is a plate with six screws up along the bone, as well as one long screw to hold the bones together since I also tore all of the ligaments from the bone. Six weeks more of non-weight bearing, and then, finally, I was able to start walking on it. It came along pretty well until two months ago when I started having quite a bit of pain out of the blue, so back to the surgeon I went. Turns out I may have to have the hardware removed now, but first I'm going to try resting it a bit more and see if that helps.

If you look closely, you can see that the long screw has broken in the middle of my tibia. That's actually a good thing since it gives me more movement. The problem seems to be the lower one or two screws. They are the painful ones. It feels like someone has kicked me in the ankle bone most of the time.

Now, this brings me to the ugly scar bit. Dr. K had to cut directly through my Right Whale tattoo! If it looks like more surgery is imminent, I will have to live with it for now, but if surgery is not in my future, I will have to go and have my poor whale fixed up, if possible. Does anyone out there know if scar tissue is tattooable?

Sorry for the blurriness. I was trying to hold the camera at an angle and take the picture myself.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Funny Old Photos, Part 4, The Melissa Years

In respecting Melissa's wishes, I've decided to only post a few pictures of her on my blog. She enjoyed the old ones of all of us as kids, but that's it. She'd rather I didn't put any more of her. I think she's afraid I would put embarrassing ones up; but I would never do that. I'm just going to share with you one of my favorite childhood pictures of her that was taken at the Granby Zoo in Canada.
Still, photos or no, I'd like to tell you a little about her.

Melissa is the "baby" of the family. She's two years younger than me, and we have always been very close. I remember my mom having to separate us when we were kids because we would giggle and giggle for hours and drive her crazy. I also remember my sister taking care of us and putting us in different rooms to take naps but we'd still hang off the bed so we could see each other and continue giggling.

Melissa and I used to play "house" all the time. We had dolls and would make a house out of blankets on the front porch. At one time, we had a wooden shed that was taken apart but left in large pieces, so we would make a house out of it by the fence and use the small plastic pool as our "well".

I should also tell you that she also had a mean streak in her! She even tripped me while I was running across the road trying to avoid being hit by a car, and I flew a few feet and landed on my hands in the gravel at the side of the road. The little stinker!

As adults we grew even closer. I was there when her daughter, Dani, was born. We lived side by side in a duplex for years and years, and now, we own a home together to share the care of our elderly and ill mother.

Melissa has survived breast cancer and all of the battles that it brings along with it. The surgery, chemo, and radiation. She is one of the strongest people I know and I love her more than words can say.

Melissa with husband, Bob, and daughter, Danielle

Friday, August 1, 2008

Funny Old Photos, Part 3, The Cherry Years

Cherry, or Cheryl, pronounced with a "Ch" as in church, not a "Sh" as in sheet, is four years and 2 months older than I am. I think, um, yeah, pretty sure. She is the one that always went her own way and did her own thing, and got into trouble. Not bad trouble. Let's just say she marched to the beat of her own drummer.

When Cherry was young, she spent a lot of time in the Shriner's Hospital in Canada so they could try to fix her hips. Back then, they had no clue and she ended up worse than when she started. She's since had both replaced and is now overdue to have the first one done again.

In a cast from her waist to her toes.

Cherry has four grown kids and six grandkids. Judy is her oldest (see above in the photo of the four of us girls with Judy) and is the mother to Zachary, Morgan, Noah, and Kai. Next is Matthew, who has a little boy, Cody. Then is Autumn who's mom to Zander. And Cherry's youngest is Brian.

I think she's holding our cat, Midnight in this one

A school photo

At a hospital picnic where my mom worked. Look at that funky outfit!

Holding one of her grandkids right after they were born. I can't tell which one though!

This was taken just a few years ago on a letterboxing excursion. It's one of the last photos of my darling Daisy Mae who passed away just 2 or 3 weeks later. She sure looks happy in this photo though.

Cherry is my traveling companion. Any time I have to go any place out of town, I just call her and she never hesitates to say yes. She's been with me to a Canine-L gathering in CT that took us over 5 hours to drive each way in 100 degree weather. She's been to NH with me twice to pick up puppies that I adopted. We've driven up to Montreal to see the Body Worlds exhibit, which is fantastic if you ever have a chance to go. We also met up with a Canine-L friend and had a wonderful visit. We also spent a weekend at an animal communication seminar last year. In September, we are signed up for a scrapbooking retreat at the Mountain Meadows Lodge in Killington It's going to be so much fun! She's always up for an adventure as long as it doesn't involve a lot of walking, and we always have a great time together.

Lastly will be my youngest sister, Melissa, who is not thrilled about being on my blog, so I promised her I wouldn't put much on about her. I don't want to leave her out though, so stay tuned....