Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas 2008

Wee had a pretty good Christmas, all things considered. We both got the things we’ve wanted for awhile… my husband chose to have his gifts early (his laptop and GPS) but even though I knew what my gifts were, I had him wrap them and put them under the tree before I ever got the chance to play with them. So I had presents to open of Christmas morning. My husband bought me a Kitchen Aid Mixer… FINALLY! He also bought me a Cricut Expressions... which so far I’ve been having fun with. I can’t wait to decorate all sorts of things. I haven’t tried out the mixer yet, but my mom has one so I’m familiar with it.

Bad news for Christmas was that Aaron had to work Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. I spent the day here at the house by myself, which I guess was alright because I needed to recover from the work week.

This was also my first Christmas without my grandparents. I haven’t physically spent a Christmas with them in years but this is my first Christmas without getting a card decorated by grandma (she was very artistic). My grandparents both passed away in September of this year.

Some more bad news came when my mom called to tell me that my uncle and cousins were in a pretty bad car wreck over in Smithfield (up near Raleigh). My uncle and his daughter were in one car and another cousin and her 2-year-old daughter were in the car following them when a drunk driver pulled out in front of the car my uncle was driving and then my cousin who was following my uncles car couldn’t stop fast enough and slammed into the drivers side of my uncles car (he was driving). So to my understanding, there were a few broken bones, a few cracked ribs, a dinged up knee, and thank goodness the ONLY injury my 2-year-old cousin suffered was that she bit her tongue really bad during the collision. Oh… and there were a lot of shaken nerves, not only by those in the wreck but by both my aunts and also my cousins families, my mom and myself.

Then a few days later, I found out that another aunt (the wife of my mom’s brother) lost her 23-year-old nephew in a car accident near Goldsboro… his tire shred or something while he was driving the truck and he lost control of it. His younger brother was in the truck but survived. So, my aunt spent her Christmas grieving for someone that was taken from this world way too soon. Needless to say that even in the season of Christmas, my family has had its share of heartache. (Sorry if all the “aunts” and “uncles” and “cousins” I’ve been repeating throughout have made this post confusing but for the sake of their privacy I’m trying to refrain from using any names)
I learned my final bit of bad news (which is hardly bad at all compared to the things I’ve already shared) is that one of the other girls who works in the cash office at Lowe’s is quitting at the end of January. It gets even worse when I find out that they are not even training anyone to replace her. This is bad because it may mean that I have to work every weekend instead of just every other. And in that case, I will be quitting my job. So, they can either work with me by having the woman who works in the cash office every weekday and has every weekend off sacrifice her weekends and share the burden or… I quit. Period. I mean it this time... seriously.

I’m hoping that 2009 will be a much better year for all of us.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Misty's Trip to the Animal Hospital

CAUTION: Very long entry about a kitty's traumatic couple of days. Might be very boring for those who don't like animals.
Even though Misty is part of our family, I hardly ever blog about her. It’s also pretty unfortunate that these events had to happen in order for her to get her spotlight on our blog. But here goes…

Last night when my husband got home (11:30 at night), he came in the door and started collecting the trash to take out to the road for collection. In this process, he left the kitchen door open a crack and also the garage door. He was inside the house for maybe 5-10 minutes helping me. I guess he forgot he had left the kitchen door open a crack. Anyway, when I got done cleaning the litter box, I was walking through the living room with the bag and Misty comes running from the kitchen, turns and looks at me, hisses, and runs into our bedroom. Very, very unusual behavior for her, honestly. She’ll bite and paw and someone, but she very seldom ever hisses unless something is wrong. So, with this knowledge, I called out to my husband to come here... I think something’s wrong. So he runs into the kitchen and finds our kitchen door open and the sensor light in our garage on. Instantly he reacts and assumes that someone is in our house and that’s why Misty was hissing and upset. So he grabs his gun and we do a thorough check of our house… looking in every closet, etc. Nobody is here. So we finish taking out the garbage and then settle down in the living room to discuss everything. Then we notice Misty had a bit fur sticking up on her back. So I go to pet her to straighten it out and she hisses at me again. Now we know that something is wrong with HER. This is when we realize that she went outside and she was the one who activated the sensor light. So then Misty turns her head to lick down the spot of fur sticking up and it falls off. My husband and I are both thinking “What the…”. Now she’s got this little bald spot on her back… but why? My first theory was that she went under the hot car and her back touched the engine thing and burned her. But there’s no scabbing or anything like that on her back. It’s just bare skin. So, we give her hugs and kisses to calm her down and we all head to bed.

This morning, Misty did not come into the bedroom to greet us. She typically jumps on the bed, crawls onto my husband's chest, and sits there very silently until he opens his eyes… then she starts “singing” to him and begging to be rubbed. This happens every single morning. So then my husband goes and looks for her and finds her sound asleep in her kitty bed in the computer room. I suppose that’s typical cat behavior… just not Misty’s typical behavior... but whatever. Maybe she was still exhausted from the traumatic events the night before. We decide to continue on with our plans for the day, and headed out to Raleigh. When we came back around 5 or so this evening, I noticed she was walking kinda funny... and slow. She even looked a bit lethargic. So my husband goes to pick her up and she screams (very, very high pitched screeching meow) and hisses at him. Her back was fine… we could pet her back (where the fur came off) and she was totally fine. But now when we'd touch her underside (ribs and tummy) she’d scream. So, we figure we’ll just leave her alone for a little bit and head out to the ward Christmas party at church.

We got back from that around 8:30 tonight and she was still not herself. My husband finally just grabs her and flips her over (with her screaming in pain) so that we could examine her tummy. There wasn’t anything too obvious except that she kept her right front leg clutched closely to her. She also refused to be turned onto either side. So this is starting to freak me out a bit because I think something is seriously wrong (and she can’t tell me!) So I look online for a vet place that is open and find the pet emergency clinic. I call them to inquire if I should bring her in or not and they tell me the fee is $100. So I got off the phone, we discussed it, and decided that for my peace of mind, we needed to take her in. She’s a very low maintenance kitty that has never given us any undue financial burdens (even her getting spayed as a kitten was free since we got her from the humane society). So the $100 for a member of our family was worth it. We took her in and they examined her… the vet working there tonight was very nice and gentle with her. She took her temperature (Misty did not like that AT ALL!) and it was slightly high. However, she said that the fever could be caused by stress. So then the vet feels/looks around on Misty’s underside and doesn’t see any abscesses or feel anything broken in her arms. She gives us the option of running full diagnostics on Misty (X-ray to check for broken ribs and blood work to check for infection) or for some anti-inflammatory medicine to take home. Even if Misty had a broken rib, there’s nothing that could be done about it… just like humans. You just need to continue living your life and let it heal. So we opted for the medicine. The vet gave us 3 days worth and said that we can come back any time before 7 a.m. Monday and we won’t get charged again. The total visit cost us $110 (kitty medicine is really cheap!) We gave Misty her first dosage tonight and we’ll see how she does.

To many this entry may seen really silly but for those of you who have pets (and like them), when your pet is in excruciating pain, it is so frustrating trying to figure out what’s wrong… and then you spend $100 at a kitty emergency room because it breaks your heart so see a fluffy little member of the family like that.

By the way, we still have no idea what happened in that garage and why she lost a patch of fur on her back. I think that is something Misty will be taking with her to her grave.
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