Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Somehow Copper got old!

Somewhere along the lines, Copper got old. Not sure how it happened, but it really snuck up on me. I guess always concentrating on the really old dog (Rufus), I forgot she was getting old too. So color me freaked out yesterday morning, when we woke up to B running around the room and Copper crying.

It's a horrible sound to hear a dog cry in pain and while I was freaked out, I remained calm. I know she can tell when we're freaked out, so I tried to calm her down. It was obvious she was scared. It took a minute to calm her down, but I did. I thought at the time and the vet confirmed that she's suffering arthritis in her hips. She had a flare up about 4 years ago, but hadn't shown any signs since then.

I took the morning off work and spent it with her at the vet's office. While there, he performed her geriatric exam, which he likes to do on all older dogs to asses their health. I consented and turns out that Copper is in great health. Her heart, lungs and joints all look great according to x-rays. What he did find though was some evidence of the inflammation in her hips and possible signs of degenerative disks in her spine. So that's not good, but we did catch it early.

Several hundred dollars later, we are now armed with a plan of nutrition and supplements to ward of surgery ($$$$) and provide a better quality of life for her. I am relieved, but it's been a rough dog year for us!

Monday, September 22, 2008

I pose a question...

So my lack of blogging has been brought to my attention. What have I been so busy with you ask? Well, I'm currently trying to figure out what to do with old pillows.

For some reason, when I decide it's time for a new pillow, I take the old one and put it in a closet. Apparently, I suffered through a great shortage of pillows at some time, because otherwise, why would I hold onto all these old pillows?

So now, I have a closet full of old pillows that you'd need 3 of them in one pillow case to make a decent sized pillow. I'm not sure what I could use them for other than building a fort. They are just taking up space. I hate to landfill them, but why would I insult someone by trying to donate this old pillow?

Any ideas, Internet?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Sit. Shake. Snooze.

I think we've turned a corner with B. He's such a sweet dog and has so many of Rufus's traits, it's kind of uncanny (except the drool, thank goodness!). We've been working with him little bits at a time and not pushed him so that he freaks and we lose patience.

This summer he's spent a lot more time inside - partly to give him a break from the weather and partly to acclimate him to the house. The ultimate goal being him being able to sleep inside, if he is so inclined. He sits on command very well. And T also taught him to shake, which he will try and do even if you don't want to.

He's a 72 lb cuddle dog! He's real gentle and good natured, even when we try to mess with him. Given all of his good qualities, he's never been real comfortable in the bedroom, much less overnight with the door closed. Last weekend, after a trip to the vet left him recovering from sedation (he's fine, just doesn't like the vet), we decided to try him in the bedroom overnight.

He made it till 3:00 a.m. and promptly let T know that he needed to go outside. We were impressed. He was relatively quiet and learned to lay down and sleep without any destruction - that's always a good thing. On Saturday, we tried again and he made it till 3:30 a.m. He was barking in his sleep, which woke us up. Which in turn woke him up as we were trying to figure out what was going on, and out he went.

Last night, we tried again. And I'm not sure what made us try on a weeknight, other than he was being a good guy all evening. We turned out the lights and he roamed a little. He tried to either play with Copper or get in Rufus's bed (we're not sure which), and she promptly snapped at him. And he finally laid down in his bed and went to sleep.

I never heard him during the night. When my alarm went off, he came over and licked me on the face. I hit snooze without talking to him and he got back in his bed. So I'm not sure how it happened, but he learned snooze faster than anything else.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Total Ham!

I just got this picture of Navarre from the beach in August. You can't tell me she's not the cutest baby ever!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Gustav's Guide to Hurricane Survival

This was an email sent to me by Addie. She's been working non-stop since Gustav hit (she works for a power company) and I know she needs a laugh to keep from going insane. I'm not in Baton Rouge but I have felt like I have been (minus the sweating from no AC). So I hope everyone else can appreciate these little bits of humor.

Lessons Learned During and After the Storm
  1. The hurricane grouch quotient can be calculated by adding the number of children and pets in a home without power, multiplied by the number of days quoted on the Entergy telephone recording, divided by the number of fans or portable air conditioners powered by your home generator, however if you were last in line at Home Depot and have no generator then multiply by the daily high for that day reported by either Pat Shingleton or Jay Grymes), then add the number of trips to the washateria and the days left until school opens. Discount by the percentage of time spent at neighbors who have power. Recalculate as often as necessary!

  2. No matter how many times you flick the switch, lights don't work without electricity.

  3. Vienna sausages only appear on the food pyramid during hurricane season.

  4. Gas mileage is recalculated based on miles per fume.

  5. Lovebugs do not disappear in 80mph wind gusts.

  6. Disasters can cancel one LSU football game but there will be even bigger casualties if we cancel two.

  7. Despite protests, kids can re-live their parents' youth when there were only 3 tv channels!

  8. Cats are even more irritating without power.

  9. Baton Rouge without traffic lights resembles Mexico City, Rome, Los Angeles and New York City all rolled into a single snarl.

  10. A 7 lb bag of ice will chill 6-12 oz beers to a drinkable temperature in 11 minutes, and still keep a 14 lb. turkey frozen for 8 more hours.

  11. There are/were a lot of really big trees around here!

  12. Just because you're 18 doesn't mean you can stay out as late as you want. Mayor Holden meant business when he said curfew.

  13. People will get into a line that has already formed without having any idea what the line is for.

  14. Calories consumed during a hurricane or power outage do not count.

  15. Telemarketers function no matter what the weather is doing. New Delhi does not check the weather report in Baton Rouge.

  16. Most popular text message after September 1: do u hve pwr

  17. Twenty-seven of your neighbors are fed from a different transformer than you, and they are quick to point that out!

  18. Crickets and cicadas can increase their volume to overcome the sound of 14 generators.

  19. Dirty clothes in an unsupervised hamper multiply at an exponential rate.

  20. Coffee, spaghetti and frozen pizzas can be made on a grill.

  21. He who has the biggest generator wins.

  22. Tree service companies are under-appreciated, except after hurricanes.

  23. Our Lady of the Lake never closes. Really.

  24. Water will fill the Acadian Thruway underpass, even sometimes when it is not raining.

  25. There are a lot more stars in the sky than most people thought.

  26. If you owned a store that sold only ice, chain saws, gas and generators, you would be rich

  27. With only a small amount of guilt South Louisiana can collectively pray a second hurricane to landfall in another state or country.

And so to our friends and families, some who are still without power and others who have endured great personal loss, you are in our prayers. Hang in there, we are making progress.

Thank you to all our first responders, healthcare professionals, service technicians, teachers, police officers, small business owners, and more who join with the thousands of individuals sharing their time and talent to help restore our community to wholeness.

The most important lesson of all learned from Gustav in the last week is that the human spirit has an amazing resilience that even a hurricane cannot bend. Through God's love and amazing grace we can endure all things.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

I can just picture the expression on his face

T: The Ol' Ball Coach is pissed now.

me: Did he throw the visor?

T: Not yet, but he's adjusting the shit out of it.

me: haha

There will be no Saturday Night this week

The LSU game for this week against Troy has been postponed until November 15th. Tiger Stadium suffered a good deal of damage from Hurricane Gustav, although none of it appears to be structural. Awnings were ripped off of club level seats on the west side of the stadium. Windows were blown out and large divots were made to the field. The aren't sure about the scoreboard and lighting systems because there is no electricity to test them. The north scoreboard suffered some surface damage.

Logistically, it makes sense. I get it. But I've talked to a lot of people about this. I remember how I wanted football after Katrina. I can assure you, if Tiger Stadium was the only place in Baton Rouge with power, the 92,000 people who tried to fill it would be completely ok with that - as long as football is being played.

So it's hot... it's muggy... there's a huge mess to clean can't get gas anywhere... oh and there's no football this weekend....

There is no rest for the weary after a hurricane.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

There are other places in Louisiana besides New Orleans

Hurricane Gustav by the numbers (taken from the front page of The Advocate - Baton Rouge's newspaper)

■ 91 mph — speed of highest sustained winds measured in Baton Rouge
■ 105 mph — highest wind speed measured, in Southwest Pass
■ 4 to 6 inches — general rainfall in south Louisiana
■ 14 inches — rainfall in Grand Isle
■ 300,000 — residents without power Monday night in East Baton Rouge Parish
■ 972,000 — minimum number of Entergy, DEMCO and Cleco customers in south Louisiana without power Monday night
■ 63,590 — number of people in shelters
■ 324 — number of shelters
■ 5 — number of other states where evacuees were taken
■ 85 — percentage of south Louisiana gas stations with no more in-ground fuel
■ 3 — supply, in days, of gasoline at state’s refineries
■ 400 — number of sheriff’s deputies and police officers slated to enforce overnight curfew in East Baton Rouge Parish.
■ 12,000 — number of National Guardsmen stationed in the Gulf Coast region for hurricane response

After talking with my parents, there are lots of trees down, but everyone is safe. And that's really the most important thing. This is the worst storm damage in Baton Rouge since Betsy in 1965. The eye of Gustav passed right over Baton Rouge. Since national media outlets are only covering New Orleans, I had to go to the hometown paper to find out what's going on in the rest of the state.