Lookin' Good

The diet food and morning walks are working wonders for Canon....

Too bad it's not doing the same for me.....


The Missing Daughter

While going through all my photos from the last 6 months or so, I noticed a lack of Savvy pics.

So it got me to thinking. If someone, many years from now, who does not know our family, looks through all my photos, they may begin to wonder what happened to her.

Where did she go?

The answer is simple ~ she's a Varsity Cheerleader.

Which means she is almost never home.

She has practice every day after school except Friday. Fridays are game day, plus she has tumbling on Mondays {after practice} and Dance on Tuesday {before practice}.

And now they are gearing up for the State Competitions in January, so practices are increased. Especially for those on Pom.

Which is Cheer.

But with more dance moves.

And of course pom poms!

In a way it's a good thing because she is too busy to get into a whole lot of trouble. But man, all this carting around I have to do, back and forth, back and forth, can really suck.

I am in no way one of those Moms who is sooooo excited and happy to cart their kid to every activity under the sun and then some.

If I could, I'd have a driver for her.

And for myself!!

On one of the rare nights Savvy was home {Thursday night} and not working her butt off, {Literally. Because Cheer will do that to ya!} I was playing with my camera & she let me take some pictures.

They didn't come out so great, because when Savvy decides to sit and let me take pictures, I don't waste time fiddling with settings. If I take too long, she might change her mind, cop an attitude {Noooo. Not Savvy!!} and my photo op is gone.

The lighting was horrible ~ everything had a yellow cast to it.

So my fix ~ make the picture a black and white!

Enjoy these rare photos of Savvy. Because you never know when I'll get another chance shoot her....



The kids were watching Eight Simple Rules the other day, and in this episode, Paul was telling his girls how it hurts his feelings and makes him feel like the bad guy when they say they hate him. They explained to him that when they yell out they hate him, it really means they love him.

I can so relate.

It reminded me of the first time Savvy said she hated me. {The first of many!} She was about 3 or 4 at the time and I'm sure it was because she had misbehaved and was getting punished. She ran down the hall & yelled as loud as she could I HATE YOU!!!!

For some reason this really bothered Sean & he insisted she apologize to me and never, ever say that again.

I explained to him that in that moment, at that time, she did hate me. And that's okay. Because, believe you me, I knew exactly how she felt.

I can only remember a few times I was really mad at Mom for punishing me {or worse, making me clean my room!!} and at that moment, I hated her. Sometimes I hated her with the fire of a thousand burning suns.


But I quickly got over it. And so did Savvy. I knew she would forget all about it by the next day {or when she wanted something} and life would go on.

In the 12 or so years since that first I HATE YOU!, there have been plenty more. Always followed by, Thank you. I love you, too. {Said by me. Which irritates her.}

Then, when your 16 year old willingly sits next to you on the couch and watches 30 minutes of TV with her head on your shoulder, it is so worth all those I HATE YOUs!!


Accidental Irony

This morning I rummaged through our Halloween stuff for things to photograph with Danny. One of the items was a rubber skeleton. Unfortunately, he had been stored for the past 3 years in an odd position so his head was bent way back.

He looked decapitated.

I didn't really want a headless skeleton for what I was planning {maybe for another shot, though!} so I set him on the corner of the kitchen counter by a wooden bowl that's used as a "catch-all".

I looked around for something that was small enough to fit under his chin, but also had enough weight to set his head back into position.

This was the first thing I grabbed out of the bowl that fit the bill....


Oops! My Bad

Lately I've been noticing that the LCD screen on my camera has been full of finger prints.

And if there is one thing that bugs the hell out of me, it's finger prints on my computer and/or LCD screen.

I secretly blamed R, since she's been borrowing it a lot lately, and I'm careful to not get fingerprints on it.

I just picked up the camera to download some pictures today and realized something.

When I pick up the camera from my desk to remove the memory card, I unthinkably {okay, stupidly} pick it up spearing the LCD screen with my greasy fingerprints.


{I secretly apologized to R (since I secretly blamed her). Although I'm pretty sure not ALL those fingerprints are mine!}


Our Other Water Baby

So far, every morning this week, at 6 AM, Canon & I are up and out for our walk.

He really loves it.

And why not?

He gets to walk around the neighborhood smelling new smells and peeing on just about everything!

A dog's dream!

And if he gets really lucky, he might even see a cat or two to bark at and attempt to chase.

And every morning, without fail, once we get back and in the house, he gets all excited once again.

He heads for the back door, taps the door handle with his nose, and waits to go outside.

Why? You may ask.

He was just out.

Walking, smelling, barking, peeing.

What's so exciting about the back yard.

The one he sees all day.


Well, he's a lab.

And this is what's so exciting about the backyard....

I'm not sure way he really! really! really! wants to swim after our walks. I thought maybe it's because it can be soothing on aching joints.

Or maybe it's just because the pool is there. And he can.

He enjoys it all throughout the day, that's for sure.

Like the other day, when we were all playing in the back yard, he enjoyed about 45 minutes of fetching the disc from the pool.

I'd say he's pretty happy right about now.....


Canon Ball Run

As many of our family members know, we have a dog, Canon.

We like to call him our rescue dog.

And I like to call Sean The Dog Rescuer.

Like The Dog Trainer, Victoria Stilwell.

Or The Dog Whisperer, Cesar Milan.

Canon used to live with a family who really didn't want him. The guy played disc golf with Sean & had 2 boys who really, really, really wanted a puppy. So, to shut them up, he went to a breeder and bought a yellow lab with Champion AKC registered parents.

But the adorable roly poly puppy grew into a big rambunctious puppy. He wasn't allowed in the house. He was fenced in a small concrete area and crated at night. He jumped on the window all the time to get the family's attention, so they put a shock collar on him, and never played with him, walked him, or paid him any attention.

When Sean brought him home, he was a little over a year old. And so much like an over active 1 year old boy!

We had a love/hate relationship. I had to get used to dealing with a toddler who had no discipline or training. It was a rough first year. I had to remind myself whenever he did things, like eat bacon out of the frying pan while it was cooking, that he doesn't know any better because no one ever taught him.

Being a smart breed of dog, he learned quickly.

Thank goodness.

For my own sanity!

He loves me & the girls. And absolutely worships Sean.

For seven years he never had to stay outside. Unless he wanted to. He got people food 'treats' after most meals, and played disc golf with Sean a couple times a week.

He got to sleep on the kids' bed.


He had his own bean bags to lounge on in the living room.

Okay. They really weren't for him. They were for the girls. But we never discouraged him from using them.



Heck. We pretty much let him have whatever he wanted to rest his head on.


He was pretty spoiled. Sure, there are some dogs who are spoiled way more than ours, but then that tends to lean towards the ridiculous.

He got manicures...


The girls made sure he was dressed properly for each Holiday from head to toe. Literally.


But then things changed.

We had to move in a very short amount of time from our rental house to an apartment that did not allow dogs his size.

So Sean asked a friend to board him for us. The plan was for a year, then we would move back into a house.

But as life sometimes goes, that year turned into three before we got another house.

Although I'm very grateful to Sean's friend for keeping Canon for much longer than planned, I am also very angry and upset.

At first we were thinking of leaving Canon where he was. After all, it had been 3 years, he had another dog for company, and a large yard to play in. Besides, no one wanted to clean up after a dog & I did not want a smelly yard and dog poo by the pool.

But again, not everything goes as planned, and Sean brought Canon home last Friday.

The last time the girls and I saw him was 2 years ago. The last picture above was taken when Sean brought him to the apartment Easter weekend for a "sleepover".

The dog he brought home on Friday, was not the dog we saw 2 years ago.

This is that dog...

To truly get an idea of why I'm a bit upset/angry/frustrated with Sean's friend, you would have to see Canon.

And have smelled him those first 2 days.

Gads, he smelled horrible. The whole house stank so bad I had to make a run to Wal-Mart and buy air fresheners for every room of the house just to purge the smell.

After 2 baths and 4 dips in the pool, he finally smells like a normal dog.

But his weight is what really gets me.

I know he is our dog & a friend was doing us a favor, but how he could let Canon get to where he is now, is what I consider animal abuse.

He is so overweight, it is difficult for him to get up, and after he does he's breathing is so labored, he sounds like he has severe asthma.

I can not understand how Sean's friend could not only see how heavy Canon was, but hear how his breathing is. Not to mention he can barely run.

Something he did a lot of when we had him.

Apparently he was fed canned dog food (something we never give our dogs) and loads of restaurant scraps with little to no exercise.

I think that's why Sean took him back. But he won't say. He refuses to talk about it.

So now Canon is on a restricted diet (diet dog food only, no treats for awhile) and I've been taking him for a walk every morning (good for both of us!). Hopefully that will get him back into shape.

I realize he is 10 years old, but I'm pretty sure if he had been with us continuously, he may be a bit thicker in the middle, but no were near what he is now.

Even his coat has lost it's shine and luster, he has what look and feel to be fatty tumors on his left side, and I think he may have some joint pain in his back legs. It's hard to say if it's something like arthritis, that would've occurred anyway with age, or something brought on by the excessive weight.

I'm hoping with the attention he so craves and deserves, a proper diet and exercise, he will get close to looking like the dog we used to have.

Only time will tell.


She is Why Her Mother Has Gray Hair

Me: Do you know who this band is?

Savvy: No. Who?

Me: Hole. Do you know who the lead singer of Hole is?

Savvy: No. Who?

Me: Courtney Love. Do you know who Courtney Love was married to?

Savvy: No. Who?

Me: Kurt Cobain. Do you know what band Kurt Cobain was lead singer of?

Savvy: YES! Nirvana.

ME: Right.

Savvy: So this is Nirvana?

Me: No. This is Courtney Love's band, Hole.

Savvy: I'm confused.


If Only It Were ATrue

Savvy: Piper, you want to go out front? Well, too bad. You can't.

Piper! Stop following me!! Just because I won't let you out in the front, it doesn't mean I will let you out back.

Be quiet!!

Hey, Mom.

Me: Yes?

Savvy: Is this how we sound when we keep bugging you for something? Piper just keeps whining & whining.

Me: Yes. That is exactly how you sound. Annoying isn't it?

Savvy: Yes. So from now on, when I ask you something & you say no, I'm not going to keep asking.

Me: Promise?


Yeah, Sure, The Water's Just Fine. Come On In....

As we suspected when we decided to rent this house, D has been loving the pool. Since Sean had it cleaned enough to swim in last week, she has been in it every day.

Twice, sometimes three, times a day!

She is going to be very sad the end of this week until about April or May. It's going to be way too cold to swim.

But it wouldn't surprise me if she attempts to try it.

Yesterday, despite the pool temp being about 76 degrees, she was in it about 3 times throughout the day.

Definitely not warm enough for me to dive in!

D: Mom, come in. It's not really that bad. You know if you would just move around in the pool, your body will get used to it & it won't be so cold. You always jump in, say it's cold, & get out.

Me: Because it is cold!

D: Mom! Don't you remember how it was in Massachusetts in the winter? When you went out, you had to move around to stay warm. It's just like that.

Me: D. I avoided going out in the winter at all costs. Just like I avoid the cold pool in October.

And November.

And December.

And January.....


Moments That Soon Will Pass

This afternoon after work (Yes, this week I've been going into the office. YEAH!) & getting the younger 2 from school, D & I were lying on my bed talking about our day.

Hers was much more exciting than mine.

As we were lying there, the light from my bedroom window was hitting her face in such a way that it really brought out her freckles and eyes.

**We interrupt our regularly scheduled program for this bizarre sighting**

I had to pop out real quick to take S to practice & saw a man walking down the street.

On stilts!

I've never seen anyone outside the circus walking on stilts.

Very bizarre.

**We now return you to your regularly scheduled program**

So, I had to get a picture. It is so rare that I get good shots of her.

She is so much like her Grandmother when it comes to getting her picture taken!!

But today, she was all into it.

And I think I got an excellent shot of her.

It's amazing how just an eye can say a lot...