Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Final Score-Cats :2 vs Birds:0

We used to have 4 Cocktails in our living room. (Yes, this isn't going to be pretty).

They - Elvis, Ozzy, Moe, and Cosmo lived happily (I would guess) in a very large green cage in the corner of my dining room. They had every thing a captive bird could want. Elvis was the first, Katy bought him over 7 years ago from a breeder. She got Ozzy from a friend of her brothers about 6 years ago. Not long after that, I bought Cosmo for Bari for Christmas. We weren't married yet, so it was a weird kind of gift. That was about 5 years ago. Then, my boss gave us Moe about 4 years ago. Moe was the bosses' sons pet. Moe was the least liked of the bunch. (or flock as it may be).

Fast forward to Mother's Day this year. Bari and I choose 2 beautiful male European Burmese kittens (6 months- so they weren't too little) for our new family pets... All is well. For a while. Then we spy Jay sitting on top of the bird cage. Now, I have to explain that the cage is fairly large. It stands almost as tall as I am, and is at least 3 feet wide on each side. We bought it at a bird show, so it is a standard type cage for this breed. Ok- so there is Jay, on top. At night we'll put a blanket over the cage to keep the birds quiet in the mornings. A couple of times, I heard strange noises, only to find Jay UNDER the blanket that was COVERING the cage. We went full-scale trying to discourage the cats from being near the cage. Then one day last week, I heard the vacuum going at 7 in the morning. Uh-oh, this can't be good. Bari was cleaning up the feather fest from the living room and hallway. The cats got a hold of Moe. Jonesy looked pretty guilty, but I think he just got Jay's left overs. So, we work even harder at keeping the cats at bay.

Tragedy strikes Monday morning - 4:30am. There is pounding at our door. It is Madeline screaming "Cosmo! Cosmo!" Yep, Sure enough, Cosmo is outside our door, looking like dinner. (Or maybe a really early breakfast). He was still alive (in his own little birdy voice calling for help), when Madeline found him. Did you know that not all Vet's offices take birds? Well, none of the 24 hour pet hospitals take birds. So, off we go to Wyoming at 8 the next morning, with our little chewed bird in a Little Debbie box. So sad. They kept him over night, and even considered an amputation of the wing (there was muscle damage). But what got him in the end was the bacterial infection from the cat bites. - Side note, oddly enough, Bari brought home KFC that night (which rarely happens) and instead of the regular dinners, brought home WINGS-(he has never brought home wings before). Maybe Jonesy had an accomplice.

OK- back to the story, after $200 of treatment (our absolute limit), he was pronounced incurable. Even if they took the wing, the infection was too bad. Now, another decision. If we have him cremated, it would cost $80 !!!!!! Oh, no thank you, I'll just pick him up and bury him myself. So, I did just that, (went and picked him up) and they sent him home in a little box. Well, Sam and Madeline wanted to see him. The last time I saw him he looked a little plucked. But, I opened the box and there he was, all dead and all, but with a little (no kidding) PURPLE cast on his wing! In an odd way, I think that purple cast helped the kids know that they did everything they could for him.

We have yet to hear from the fish. Maybe I'd better start counting.

ps, the rest of the birds have now been moved to the spare downstairs room. I just hope someone remembers to feed them. Katy better hurry up and take them.....soon.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Weddings -day's past and day's to come

What can I say about my week? Work is pretty slow right now. I think there may be 5-8 orders on the Production Log (it is usually around25-30). Needless to say, about 3 of the orders are 'hold for Louann' requests. I like doing the more complicated pieces but I think it frustrates my boss when there is so little to do, and the other framers aren't aloud to work on them. One of the orders has 3 newspapers to frame. They are articles or advertisements and the paper heading with date. These are for my old friend Dr Mark Mandell-Brown. He's a plastic surgeon in town. He is one of my regulars who always requests me. That's ok with the other girls because they say that helping him makes them think he is sizing them up for surgery. I have something to cut apart and put back together for another customer, and I don't remember the 3rd thing I have to do tomorrow. I need to work more, but it is really nice to be home, too. I don't think - infact, I am sure I couldn't find another job that is as flexible as this one.
I need to start getting things together for the trip to Gatlinburg with Madeline. It should be fun. We should have quite a lot of free time, if we are scheduled to dance 3 days, and they only have 4 routines. That's where not working very many hours really bites - it will take some serious budgeting to get us through 4 days, meals and some entertainment. The condo where we are staying has a kitchenette, and Madeline is in favor of making some dinners in our room. We are taking off Thursday and will be back on Monday. The dance studio director and her husband were married 10 years ago in Gatlinburg, during National competition- so they are renewing their vows on Thursday night. All the girls (and any family members) are invited to go. It should be fun.
Sammy is going to his Dad's again this week, leaving Wednesday night and returning next Tuesday night. He is going to Cedar Point, so it should be a fun trip (I hope).
Bari and I had two weddings this past weekend. One was on the 4th at a Lutheran Church in Anderson, with the reception at Dree's Pavilion. If you haven't been to Davou Park, it is just off I75 in Kentucky, just after the bridge on the right, up a BIG hill. It has a pretty view, but the evening was foggy, and you could only see the bottom half of the fireworks. It was pretty neat to see all the individual fireworks along the hill sides, though. But, I would hate to have spent the BIG bucks to have this view, and then have it be cloudy. Oh well. Anyway, it was the most difficult wedding we have done. It was a challenge because all the timing was off, and people were not where they were supposed to be. For example, the brides brother was supposed to stay at the parents house for portraits, but he went to the church to be with the other groomsmen. (Who were not dressed when we arrived for their portrait session). It was hard to keep up with which portraits we were missing, and then try to pick them up later. Usually, we meet with the groom, groomsmen and grooms family at a specific location. Next, we travel to the bride, photograph her, her 'maids, and her family. That way, after the wedding all we have to do is portraits with the bride and groom together with families, and wedding party. Lastly, we'll do some romantic shots of the couple together. If we miss the individual families from the early sessions, it just makes the portrait time in between the wedding and reception even longer. No one likes to be late to the reception. The second wedding was also in Anderson-Withamsville area, with the reception at the same hall where Katy had hers. It went like clockwork, a perfect wedding photography day. Thank heavens for that because we were still a little hung over from the wedding the night before. It's hard to explain why the day after a wedding is so hard. The only way I can think of explaining is that the day of the wedding we are running on adrenalin for hours and hours, and the next day you just crash. While I'm gone next weekend, Bari has 2 more weddings, but he is shooting for someone else so it isn't quite as intense. Oh, the second wedding had the cutest Grooms cake, it was huge- about 20 inches long and 8-10" in diameter, it was a serious looking Coney with cheese. Bari took 2 photos, one from the front, and one from the end. The end view looked just like a hot dog with chili beans and cheese. It was so fun.

Well, to make this post even longer, I'm going to write a few of the things that I'm grateful for. This is probably pretty repetitive from other lists, but we talked about Gratitude today in my primary class, and I need to write just how grateful I am.

I'm grateful for my kind and loving husband. He would do almost anything just to make me happy. He loves me and loves taking care of me. I can't even express what this means to me.

I'm grateful for my children. I love them all and am grateful to be their mother. I was looking through some old pictures tonight, and fell in love with my little 2 and 3 year olds all over again. Thank heavens we only take pictures of the good moments and fun times. I'm grateful that Sam and Madeline are having a normal childhood, and are loved and cared for.

I'm grateful that we have a house to live in, that all my children have their own beds, and even have their own rooms. We have hot and cold running water that is clean. We are protected from the elements. That there is peace in my home.

I'm grateful that I have the gospel of Jesus Christ in my life. I know what a lost and wandering soul I would be with this knowledge. I am ever grateful that I know that Heavenly Father knows me personally, and that he helps me, guides me, supports me and forgives me without comparing me to anyone else.

Well, it's late and I have a couple of big days ahead (and I haven't gotten to bed before 1 am the past 2 nights)- so I'll just say that I'm grateful for the bloggin' sisters (and Ray)- this wasn't a deep and insightful blog, but it does help to just write sometimes.