Wednesday, February 15, 2012


We had to do a very hard thing today and put Napoleon to sleep.  It was very sad, yet peaceful and for that we are grateful.  We are also beyond grateful for the 5+ years we had with him.  It's a little lonely and strange without him here tonight and it just feels like something is missing.  I could go on and on about how special he was to us and how much we loved him.  All of that is quite apparent and obvious, and so, instead of doing all that, I'm going to post some pictures instead.  Probably a lot.  I think I went a little overboard, but that's ok.  I realized tonight that it's quite obvious when we had kids, based on the drastic change in the subject matter of the pictures when scrolling through old albums.  Every album pre-girls consisted of the dogs and then every album post-girls has just a few pictures of the dogs sprinkled in.  But, they (dogs) love us just the same.

Our Sweet Napoleon

 We found out yesterday that our beloved Napoleon has cancer in his back, front leg, abdomen, and spleen.  I've been a wreck since and I'm sitting here writing this with tears flowing.  He's had an off and on limp for the past few weeks and every time we though it was time to take him in to the vet, it seemed to go away.  We just dismissed it as a "boo-boo" he got from playing with Otto.  About a month ago, we took him in for some much needed dental work/surgery that required a full blood work up, all of which came back normal.  Last week, after peeing in the house a few times (which he's never done), I took him to the vet and they discovered he had a urinary track infection.  This past Saturday, he started struggling to stand up on his back legs and literally laid in the same spot all day.  We knew something was wrong and took him into the vet yesterday morning.  After x-raying his front leg and back, the vet told me there were some abnormalities in the scans and a radiologist confirmed it was cancer.  There's nothing we can do, except wait for the "right time", which is a weird and sad thing.  We spent the entire day yesterday just been loving on him as much as possible and giving him things to eat we never did before like turkey burgers and peanut butter sandwiches.

In trying to explain this to Ella, we brought up my parent's dog, Kudzu, who they had put to sleep several months ago.  I asked Ella if she remembered where Kudzu was and she said "with Jesus".  I told her I thought Napoleon was going to be with Jesus soon and she asked, "Mommy, will Jesus have toys for Napoleon?"  I laughed.  What a sweet girl she is.

We rescued Napoleon in September 2006 on the way to Jackson.  We walked in to the house to pick him up and I'll never forget when I first saw him.  He was on a leash, jumping on his hind legs, and barking like crazy.  David looked at me and asked me if I wanted to get him and I gave him a nervous "ok".  We fell in love with him immediately and all of his little quirks.  Like how his tongue was too big for his mouth or how his booty never touched the ground when he sat down or how he loved to chase and spin around when he saw the beam of a flashlight or any sort of light reflected onto anything.  He loved to lean into you and he totally mastered the boxer wiggle and he loved to go on runs, which eventually turned into leisurely walks.  For a while, it was just me and Napoleon because we didn't have kids yet and David was always traveling with work.  We were buds.  He loved riding in the car and he would go everywhere with us.  And, he didn't seem to mind when too much when we got Otto on a whim and when his status in the house was "downgraded" just a bit when the girls came along.  He loved us just the same.  David and I like to joke that the girls aged him because he went from a young, spry dog to an older, calmer dog once they came into the world.  Throughout it all, he's been our sweet and loyal dog and our biggest protector.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

This Time Last Year

This time last year, my friends, life was good.  Ok, life is good all the time, but it was just a little sweeter last year around this time.  Why?  The Packers were SuperBowl Champions.  This year not so much and we found ourselves mildly cheering for the Giants on Sunday night over at our friends, the Knowles.  "If you can't beat em, join em"--isn't that how the saying goes? The Giants beat the Falcons, of which I am a fan because they are the home team, and they beat the Packers, of which I am a fan because my husband is a fan.  Well, I guess I've always been somewhat of a Packer fan since Brett Favre is from Mississippi.  But, my Packer "fanhood" has increased 10X since marrying David, a true Packer fan.  Also, it's really cute to hear Ella talking about a Lambeau Leap.  Anyway, watching the Superbowl when "your team" is in it is a completely different experience than watching it when "your team" isn't in it.  Not that we didn't have a fun time with the Knowles, but we just weren't as invested in the game like we were last year.  There's always next year right?  So, we are going to hit the rewind button here and enjoy some pictures from our SuperBowl party last year when life was really really really good.  Go Pack Go!

Friday, February 3, 2012

All Legs and No Brain

Is it just me or is 18 months an impossibly hard stage for a baby?  Or maybe not so much for the baby, but maybe more for the parents of an 18 month old?  Finley cries at the drop of a hat over anything and everything.  And I'm not just talking about a little crying fit, I'm talking about a throw yourself on the floor screaming, kicking, and wailing fit.  She's a master at it.  I put her down the other morning to get her milk out of the fridge and she starts wailing for 10 minutes straight.  I gave her a yogurt the other morning for a snack and she starts screaming incessantly.  It's crazy and funny all at the same time.

Someone described this stage to David as "all legs and no brain" and it could not be closer to the truth.  She's non-stop and into everything, which I know is normal for an 18 month old.  She's the nomad of the house and roams all over getting into stuff that I didn't even know she could get into.  Again, all normal and typical behavior of an 18 month old.  Who knew that that my credit cards in my closed wallet, in my purse, on the couch, could be so much fun?  I had her in for her 18 month check up today and I asked the doctor about the tantrums and fits.  He said the best thing I can do is ignore the fits and really praise her when she does the right thing.   He said that to her a 15 minute tantrum only seems like seconds while it seems like 14 hours to me.  It's a battle of wills.  I had to laugh to myself the other day when I had a conference with her teacher.  She told me that Finley is the most easy going and laid back baby.  I almost fell out of my seat and reminded her that we are talking about Finley.  At least she's good for her teachers.

The good thing is that we love her to pieces.  And she's pretty darn cute, or at least we think so.  And I don't want it to seem like she never has her cute and precious moments, which she clearly does.  I guess all the fussiness and tantrums make me really appreciate the sweet times even more.  Like when she shows you her pudgy Buddha belly or when she's figured something out new like where to put her baby doll's bottle.  Or when she blows strangers kisses in parking lots or in the grocery store.  Or when she learns a new word or when she points to right dog when we say "where's Otto or where's Napoleon"?  Or when we ask her to smile and she opens her mouth and squints her eyes.  Or when we ask her where her her nose is and she points to her ears.  Or when spins around or when she dances and stomps her feet.  Or the other night when I had both girls to myself because David was out of town.  We were upstairs getting ready for bath and I had taken off Finley's diaper and let her run around naked for a bit.  Little did I know that she had pooped in her diaper and before I could grab her and put her on the changing table, she walked over to the wall, put her booty up against it and sat down.  Thus, leaving a poop smear on the wall and on the hardwood (luckily) floor.  So, I pick her up, clean her off, and then put her back down for a second while I tried to clean up the mess.  As soon as I set her down, she walks right over to the poopy floor, looks at me in the eye, laughs and then steps in the poop and laughs again.  She's such a stinker but she blesses our lives in so many ways.

Parents out there, do you agree with this stage being the hardest or is it just me?