Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Mia Day 4

For those of you following the tale of Mia the wonder dog, she spent her snow day relaxing with her teenager.  They slept all day long.  When I got home, Mia ran outside & played in the snow like a puppy!  Don even commented that this is the Mia we know & love!  I know she's supposed to be calm, but it was so good to see her back to her normal, happy go lucky self.

Bringing Sexy Back...haha!

One of the joys of being me is that I am always stressed out.  I don't enjoy being stressed out but I seem to have no control over it.  At my dentist appointment last week I went in complaining that I had a cavity.  Turns out, I've been clenching my teeth so tight that I have made them ultra sensitive & have actually moved them.  The last time I moved my teeth I was in the emergency room with a morphine drip & a massive kidney infection.  I knew I was a little stressed, but jeez...  Enter my new stress reliever:

I had one of these after the last time...but that was oh, 9 years ago.  Time for a new one.  It's quite attractive.  I was hoping it would come in green...even purple...because if you've got to wear one of these, it should be fun!  And it's not like you wear them out or anything.  Although if it were green, I might be tempted...

Monday, February 27, 2012

She's good as new!

Well almost.  Mia did have major surgery Friday.  And while I didn't count them, she appears to have around 40 staples in her tummy.  But she's moving around.  Perking up when someone dares to walk by our house.  She spent the day with Grandma, which was the best ever!

Will the crystals come back?  We don't really know.  We hope not!  She's on special food, Royal Canin S/O (same as Murray, Rachel).  She's just now starting to eat & we have to introduce the new food a little at a time.  Last thing we need is her to have stomach upset along with everything else!

Her eye is healing beautifully, too!  I hope that we've given her a better quality of life.  I can't imagine it was much fun having a boulder in her bladder. 

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Mia's Surgery

Mia ended up having the bladder stone removed.  My friend Rachel gave me some very valuable advice (she's a vet tech in another state) & some serious things to consider.  And after talking to Mia's vet, the three of us decided that it was the best course of action for her.  We felt good about leaving her there & assured that she would be good as new in no time.  The vet even said the surgery was similar to a spaying & that she'd recover quickly.  Yeah, I was ok until I saw her:

She looks like she got beat up by thugs.  Since she was going under anesthesia we had a cyst on her eyelid removed, thus the black eye.  She is shaved all crazy all over her body.  Not just for the IV.  She kinda looks like she had a run in with a rogue hair clipper.  But the worst part is the size of the stone they took out of her.  (Yes, I asked to have it.  Shocked?)

It's hard to see by the photo how big it is, but I'd say it's the size of 1/2 a chicken nugget.  Poor baby!  Her bladder could not have been much bigger than the stone that she had. 

Mia came home last night to recover with us.  Poor thing moaned all night.  She's obviously uncomfortable but she's doing well.  She has lots of meds to take & is not ready to eat yet.  Her diet will be changing to one that is prescription only from the vet that will control the ph level of her urine, in theory preventing new stones from forming.  Even if they do, this was the last surgery for Mia.  Both Don & I were so distraught over how she looked...moaned.  I know that it was the right thing for us to do, but watching her recover is not.  We want whatever is left of her life to be comfortable & pain free.  This is just a bump in the road. 

Kendall is very upset with us for having the surgery done.  Ever since her cat, Frisco, died last year, she has been distancing herself from Mia.  I think because she thinks it will be easier for her when Mia moves on to greener pastures.  I think it'll be worse.  I think she'll feel guilty she was so hateful towards her & will regret that.  All we can do is live in the moment & not let our past hurts color how we interact now.  Our little dog is sweet, loving, needy & adored.  I hope Kendall can let go of Frisco & allow herself to care again.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Mia Update

(Mia is the Westie that Kendall is holding)

I took Mia to the vet today because she was trying to pee & nothing was coming out but a little bit of bloody pee.  Today was day 14 of being on antibiotics for a urinary tract infection.  No way should she have an infection.  Plus, she was hyper.  Exuberant.  Better than she's been in, oh, 6 months.  How could she be sick?  So I took her in.  My vet is out of town & another vet at the same practice saw her.  I was given an estimate for around $280 for them to check on her uti & do some xrays.  Let's not mention that I just shelled out $190 for her damn uti to begin with.  (and that estimate?  Bullshit.  $401.  Yeah.)

I went to the vet at lunch to pick her up & talk to the vet.  Turns out that Mia has a stone (like a kidney stone) in her bladder.  It's pretty huge.  About 1/2".  The only way to remove it is with surgery.  Surgery that is between $1000-1500.  Surgery that can only be done by my vet.  Who is out of town.  So she has an appointment for a consultation with my vet when he's back in on Friday.  We'll be discussing just leaving it surgery.  They want to do another set of xrays with contrast that will run around $300 & I'm not so sure about that either.  Mia has likely had this stone in her bladder for some time.  It appears that it is causing her uti's, which lead to her crashing & almost dying a couple times a year.  Since the last time she crashed (for our anniversary in September) we have gotten proactive & watching her behavior pretty closely.  That's how I saw the blood.  When she gets dehydrated, she gets a uti so now we force feed her water with a turkey baster when she starts getting sickly looking.  And it's worked. 

Now if I can only convince the vet to let me have antibiotics when I know she has a bladder infection life will be good.  I don't want the blood work, the xrays, the $400 bill.  I hope on Friday he will see reason.  She is 12 years old, with a pretty rotten disease (Addison's Disease) & she's costing us a fortune.  So much in fact, I just applied for a part time job, in addition to my full time job. 

I'll let you know what happens Friday.  For now, I'm going to go drink my glass of wine & crawl into bed & pretend today didn't suck so bad.

Monday, February 20, 2012

I've got dreams.

And they are BIG dreams.  They involve being financially free.  Having the store debt paid off.  Living in a smaller house.  Traveling the country in a convertible or Countryman Mini Cooper with a T@B trailer & my husband.  Having my daughter's college paid for.  Not unreasonable dreams.

Dreams that this damn dog keeps putting a kink into.  Mia actually thinks she feel fine today.  As a matter of fact, she's perkier than she's been in months.  So why then is she peeing blood?  The vet wants xrays & more blood work in the morning.  Maybe I need to start donating plasma.  Shit.

Friday, February 17, 2012


I have a confession.  I've been cheating on you. With another blog.  My fizzy friend, Kim, & I have started another blog called Two Martini Lunch.  It's less about martinis than the title would suggest.  We're finding our voice, but the intent is to be a blog about being moms to teenagers & all the craziness that entails.  Because I am no longer self employed I don't post as much as Kim.  But that'll change when I find my voice.  You'll see.  I'm sure you're shocked to hear that I have lots to say!  But beware...this new blog is not quite as censored as this one (yes, this is censored!  I tend to curse like a sailor...not lady like, I know...& I try to keep you from seeing that I might be a little off balance).  It is easy to tell who posted:  right by the date at the top of the post it says KIRSTEN or KIM.  Although you'll want to read them all because we are hilarious at times!  So, if you'd like to check us out here's the info:

twitter:        1martinilunch (Kim)
                   2martinilunch (Kirsten)
facebook:   Two Martini Lunch

I love this blog & it won't go away; heck no!  This is where my dad & my uncle come to read about our crazy family!  Plus, it's a more private venue to post photos of my nephews, nieces & various other family members. 

Bisbee Part 4

Bisbee is filled with stairs.  Stairs that go straight up.  Stairs that go nowhere.  Stairs that look manageable but really kick your ass when you try to climb them!

There are so many stairs that Bisbee has turned it into an opportunity to raise money & have a fun race at the same time.  The Bisbee 1000 is held in October & is a race...up stairs!  Click on that link for more info.  They also do an Ice Man race, where you & a 10lb block of ice (held with old fashioned ice tongs) run up a flight of stairs just like this.  The fastest time to date?  19 seconds!  I'm in fairly good shape & it was tough to just walk up those stairs!

The view from the top of the stairs is breath taking! 

Just a few random shots from around Bisbee:

After Bisbee we headed towards Tucson to visit with my Uncle Bob.  We had lunch at the lovely Hotel Congress & while I managed these two photos, there are none with people in them:

This was the floor in the cafe.  I can tell you that if I made that floor, all the pennies would be heads up.  Yes, I am a freak like that!  (and when I find a penny on the street that isn't heads up, I flip it over for the next person to find.)

After lunch we stopped in Marana & saw my college friend, Jill.  I hadn't seen Jill since Kendall was a baby!  We had a lot of fun together in college...probably a bit too much fun.  It was great to see her & meet her lovely family.  By the way, I had no idea Marana was so beautiful!

Sadly, that was the end of our quick Bisbee road trip.  But just the other day Don asked me when we could go on another one.  I cannot wait, honey! 

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Bisbee Part 3

One touristy thing we did (at the recommendation of my friend Heather) was the Queen Mine Tour.  It was pretty awesome!  We got to wear these fancy clothes & ride a little train 1500 feet into the mine. 

They had a pretty fantastic display inside the visitors center of old mine equipment & precious stones & minerals.

Our tour guide was a man who was a miner in Bisbee for over 30 years.  He worked in a different mine from the Queen Mine.  One that was well over 100 degrees inside all the time.  The Queen Mine has an average temperature of 47 degrees.  Burr....

Getting the talk before we head into the mine.

Not the original mine entrance.  The mountain has been mined so much that the outer part is just a shell covering a bunch of holes.  The original entrance was further up the mountain & was filled in when it became dangerous.

Miner porta potties.

I don't remember much about the bike other than it was a supervisors mode of transportation.

A little disconcerting...

At the end of the tour, the guide showed us a photo of himself as a miner in the 1970's.  He said you could never bring your family to work & he wanted to show them what he did all day.  He was very proud of that photo!  A few things I learned:
  • Miners drilled holes that were as wide as a sick of dynamite & 8 foot deep all day long.  At the end of their shift they put dynamite in the holes & set them off.
  • Silica dust is what causes miners lungs to harden, so all of the equipment in the early 1900's was equipped with a water to keep the dust down.
  • The equipment was powered by compressed air...not gasoline engines.  The fumes would have killed them.
  • Before they had miners lights, they used candles to light the way.  It was not uncommon for a candle to catch the wall beams on fire & shut the mine down for weeks.  Each tunnel has fire doors for just that occurrence.
  • Mining is hard work.  And no matter how I feel about my job on any given day, I am thankful that I do what I do & that I am not a miner.
Stay tuned for part 4!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Bisbee Part 2

Our trailer had a fun little guest book to sign.  It was great to see what other people wrote...the pictures they drew.  Someone even drew a little Mini Cooper pulling a trailer!  I added our note on a Fuji Instax Mini photo that I took outside the trailer door.  I taped it on with Smash Book tape, which for the record I adore!

We knew we wouldn't be in Bisbee very long & really wanted to see what it was like.  So we hopped on a trolly tour given by an old cowboy...ok, it was an old dude dressed up as a cowboy. 

The trolly ride was around 45 minutes & was just enough to get an overview of the town of Bisbee & some of it's history.  He took us by the brothels (what's left of them), the churches (there's a huge catholic church there!), the convent, which he kept calling a convalesce & he told us things like Bisbee burnt down more than a dozen times.  Flat to the ground.  And that in the 1970's the hippies took over & it's never been the same.  Here's a perfect example of the hippie influence:
Occupy Bisbee is alive & well!

I love the funky vibe of all the art!

There were tents scattered across Bisbee...even a tepee!  It is truly a bohemian chic little town now!

Stay tuned for part 3!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Bisbee Part I

Don asked for a mini road trip for his birthday this year.  So I surprised him with a quick trip to Bisbee, Arizona in our Mini Cooper.  A few months back I had read about a place called The Shady Dell, which is a trailer park that has 40's & 50's airstream type trailers.  They also have a yacht you can stay in.  It's a clever little place!

So we headed out on Saturday morning (1/28/12, to be precise) at 6:30 am.  Bisbee is quite a ways away & we wanted to get there in time to see the town.  And I wanted to make sure to get a trip into IKEA before hand.  We stopped at our favorite coffee place in Phoenix, Dutch Bros & had yummy caramel annihilator lattes.  We hadn't eaten breakfast yet & decided to eat at Joe's Farm Grill in Gilbert, because in theory, it was close to IKEA.  Yeah, it wasn't, but that was ok...we're on an adventure! 

This place was featured on Diners, Drive Inns & Dives & I suspect they're a little too proud of that.  The food was decent.  I'm not eating meat yet, so the pickings were pretty slim.  Don got a burger with an egg on it.  He enjoyed it.  Maybe when it's growing season it's better.  In the same parking lot is The Coffee Shop.  We probably should have eaten here because the food on everyone's plates looked so good.

The place was packed & had tons of amazing looking pastries & cupcakes.  We ended up getting a pomegranate hot tea (Celestial Seasonings, so nothing unique) & a lemon cupcake & lemon whoopie pie.  The whoopie pie was the first real taste of sugar I'd had in almost a month and it was heavenly!  The cupcake was yummy, too!  Apparently they are a past winner on Cupcake Wars & are featured on the show again, although they say the date is to be determined.  I just visited their website & they have my cupcake photo on there!  Woohoo!  How cool is that?!

After filling up with food & goodies we headed into IKEA where I made a beeline for the picture frames.  I wanted new frames for our winter photos & had been waiting for this trip.  Ironically, those frames are still in the back of my car...

Then off towards Bisbee we went.  I read a little bit & looked around a lot.  South of Tuscon just looks desolate.  It's very dry.  No saguaros.  Barren.  We stopped in Benson to get gas, potty & get some snacks.  It's not really a town I need to stay in.  But we will go back to see Kartchner Caverns.

Onward to Bisbee!  When we arrived the first place we stopped was The Shady Dell to check out our trailer.

It was a touch breezy...

We stayed in the El Rey trailer, which was a sweet little trailer with original era decor.

Unfortunately, Dots Diner wasn't open.  Maybe because it's January?  

Don's standing right in front of the teeny tiny potty & the full size bed that fills the back of the trailer.  Most of the trailers don't have potty's & I picked this one because I did not want to stumble across the gravel to pee at 2 am.  Sorry.  Not gonna happen.

You can't use the stove, but they put cookies in the cookie jar, which was a nice touch.

The radio played old time music & was really cool to listen to!

Our Mini in front of the trailer.  Behind that little fence is an enormous graveyard.  Would have been cool to check it out, but time was short & we had things to see.

I loved this little pineapple light:

The Shady Dell was a step back into time.  It was so charming!  I would stay there again, but maybe in April or May when it's warmer & the park is more active.  We loved the experience!

Later this week I'll tell you about Bisbee itself.  It is an amazing little hippie town that I adored!  I would definitely go back for a visit!  And the best coffee I've had in a long time came from The Bisbee Coffee Company (the Miners Blend).

Thursday, February 2, 2012


I am obsessed with this cookbook!  Don made the cover recipe the other day & it was so good!  (Don & Kendall thought it was bland, but hey with enough salt & salsa it was awesome!)  Might not have been the best lunch choice before yoga...just sayin'.  So if you're in need of a great cookbook (vegetarian) this one is definitely worth a look!  (it's the chick)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

My View Today

Yoga is quickly becoming an yoga "basics" tomorrow... I looked forward to the class tonight all day! When I got to class & saw this amazing view I knew I had to capture if for my first photo in the challenge. It's been altered with the Snapseed app, making it pretty cool!

February Photo Challenge

One of the blogs I read had a link to this cool photography challenge & I thought it would be fun to participate!  As my dad pointed out the other day, I've been slacking off on my blog for a few days.  This challenge is just what I need!  And really, I wasn't slacking off, dad!  Don & I went on a quick road trip to Bisbee this weekend...I have photos & stories to share with you, just not tonight.  So check back soon.  You never know what you may find...haha!