Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Catch Up

  Life has done a lot of catching up with me lately and my poor blog has fallen by the wayside. I apologize to my few readers out there and especially to my sister who complained that she checks it every day in hopes of finding a new post, but nothing! So here you go!
  We were chugging right along from January into February past Valentine's Day where I made some fabulous triple chocolate cupcakes as dessert for our easy dinner when I realized something wasn't right with my mom. She had her right kidney and lymph nodes removed and was staged with stage 4 (then 3A) renal cell carcinoma last year on April 13. She was started on an oral chemotherapy drug called Sutent that is still pretty experimental and was to be on 8-9 cycles. Well, she made it through her fifth cycle before all the side effects basically brought her down so far that we had to check her into the hospital's ICU on February 23. After several days, we finally got her sodium levels back up to normal and we were able to break out of the hospital and get back home where Mom was happily attacked by both our corgis. (I still wish I had had my camera with me because it was hilarious to see Tucker and Wrigley both trying to sit in her lap at the same time; they were so overjoyed to see her!)

  I stayed at home for a week and then went back home the next weekend just to check back up on her, so I spent several hours in the car over the end of February to the first few weekends in March. Mom is doing much much better now and won't be doing any more chemo for now and will just be getting checked routinely by her oncologist. Whew! She even managed to drive to Birmingham with Tucker for a dog show by herself and did great! (Yes, Mom, I was internally freaking out that you were doing that!!) And just Sunday night, she and my dad got back from a relaxing trip to Hilton Head with some of their friends.
Mom and Wrigley right before I left after she came home
  After all of that, I drove down to the beach to meet some of my nursing school girls for a wonderful weekend of relaxation! I was even able to spend a day and a half with my aunt and cousin whom I haven't seen in ages and I really enjoyed that short visit. My girls and I had a great time eating, sitting on the beach and at the pool, and shopping at the outlets, though it was entirely too short of a visit! I don't think I even took any pictures with them that weekend! Bad blogger!!

Wriggles loves the beach

  When I was at home, I was able to cook some bread and bisquick muffins with one of my neighbors who then gave me some starter for sourdough bread! Eek! I was extremely nervous the first time I made the rolls, but I'm learning more about my oven and each time, I am tweaking the recipe and my bread is turning out better and better! Sunday is now my bread baking day each week and I have to say, it rocks!! The smell of freshly baked bread is one of the best smells in this world! Other than my bread, I haven't done too much experimenting with new recipes for dinner, but will be starting back up soon. I keep finding new recipes through Pinterest that I want to try, so I will be sure to blog about them when I do.
First batch of rolls
Second batch of bread
  Patrick and I went to "look" at a corgi this girl was having to give away on April 1 with Wrigley to see if perhaps they would get along and we ended up with Penny, a 5 month old Pembroke/Cardigan corgi mix. She is all puppy and weighs 13.3 pounds (Wrigley weighed 12 when we got him in December 2009) as of last week. She is a little crazy and is a biter, but we are slowly learning to get along and Wrigley is tolerating her. It's very amusing to watch them play and when I put her up for "quiet time" for all three of us, Wrigley just stares at her through the gate like he wants her to annoy him. I've still got to get her into some obedience classes, but she is a smart little girl. It was a whirlwind of a day when we got here and once we got home, Pat and I looked at each other and said, "We thought we were just looking at a dog today? Not GETTING a dog!!" Ha! She is adorable though and it's the first time I've ever had a dog with a tail which is quite strange. She has a been a good addition to the household though and since she is a wild child, Wrigley is getting more walks each day, though I'm not sure how fat man feels about that! :)
Penny in all her glory, aka, crazy

Chewing on their antlers
Wrigley needed his mama and apparently so did the little one!
  Speaking of walks, I am supposedly signing up for 2 5k runs in May to help prepare me for the Peachtree in July. I haven't run since last year's Peachtree, so that shall be interesting!! Guess I should really get on that soon! Suzanne, any pointers?? I didn't really think that we would win the lottery this year since we got in last year, but it turns out that someone in our group has good luck! I'm striving to run the whole thing this time and kill my loser time of last year, but we shall see. I would like to be a runner, but I just don't like it that much. I've been going to a Zumba class when I am off work and I actually enjoy that because I am not focused on doing a cardio activity. If anyone knows how to make running fun, let me know!!
Tired pups, each has one side of the couch
  Besides all that fun, we just spent the weekend with one of Patrick's sisters, Jennifer, who came in town for a conference. We walked to dinner Friday night and had a great time with Jen, Stephen, and Erin. Saturday we just lazed around the house until we met Kathryn, Dave, and Danielle for half price sushi. Heck yes! We dropped her off at her hotel after dinner then walked to a bar for a drink on the patio since it was such a gorgeous weekend until we ran (literally) home in the rain. Yup, thank goodness it wasn't a complete torrential downpour or we would have been hailing a cab with my white jeans!! Oh, and speaking of Kathryn--she found her wedding dress!!! I missed the first time she put on the dress since I was working on the Friday she went (or I guess it was actually the second time because she had gone to the salon back in January by herself, I think?), but she was sweet enough to schedule another appointment for Saturday after we went to two other salons where nothing else even compared to THE dress!! YAY! I cannot wait for the wedding next April!
Both are fascinated by my computer
  So that is a little bit of what I have been doing since my last post and I hope this satisfies my sister enough for a bit until some more posts can formulate in my head!! (I also blame a lot on instagram because I take a ton of pictures on there and post there instead of blogger--for shame!)


  1. Welcome back to the blogging world Emily! As far as the running goes I'd just try to get your mileage back up before the races get here. I run by myself and love it but if that's not your style I'd find a running buddy. Talking seems to make time fly!

  2. I'm satisfied enough to give you a free pass for a while :)

    Margaret Anne