Wednesday, December 20, 2017

getting ready ~ and a general update

Where to even begin? This time of year is crazy for most everyone. Between all the Christmas prep, get-togethers with friends and family, and all the regular errands and household stuff, it's enough to make anyone stressed out.

 Our weather has been mild lately, so I did take some time out to walk in the State Park this weekend. I usually just walk around the neighborhood, which becomes a little boring and stale. The State Park was peaceful with beautiful views and the crisp air felt so good. I paused to take some deep, cleansing breaths and went home feeling more relaxed but yet energized.

 And last night, Brian and I bundled up and took a night walk around our neighborhood. I don't walk alone in the dark, so walking at night was a different - and very refreshing - experience. We stopped to look in amazement at all the stars in the sky and to admire neighbor's Christmas lights. This one house in our neighborhood puts lights on the gigantic pine tree in their front yard. You can estimate the size of the tree by the house in the background. It's spectacular to see in person. I think walking outdoors will come to a halt next week when our highs are forecasted to be in the teens. 😒

I think I'm finally ready for Christmas. I'm working tonight on the last of my baking. Are you familiar with Nanaimo bars? It's a three-layer Canadian dessert, named after the city of Nanaimo, British Columbia. I don't know what prompted me to think of them this year - I haven't had them in many years - but I got the urge to make them. I ordered the Bird's custard powder from amazon. Click here for the recipe if you're interested.

My darling girl, Clementine isn't doing too well. She'd been seeing a veterinary dermatologist for skin issues and through blood and urine tests, this vet suspected possible kidney issues. We were then referred to an internal medicine vet, who did more blood and urine tests plus an ultrasound. Clementine does indeed have the beginnings of kidney disease. She only has approximately a couple more years to live. She is only 8-9 years old and cats can easily live until they're 20+, so we are absolutely heartbroken to know that her life will be cut short. 

My "baby" turned 27 yesterday. How did this happen in the blink of an eye? This is a recent photo of him with Zippo - our 18-1/2 year old fur baby. You might recall from other recent posts that Zippo has glaucoma, cataracts, and thyroid disease. He's doing really well under the care of an eye vet (so many specialists, even for animals!) and his regular vet. But we know our time is limited with him, too because of his age and illnesses. He's also mostly deaf and a bit senile, but for his age, it comes with the territory. It does bring me peace of mind to know that he's had a good, long life full of lots of love. Tim found him outside on our property when he was only a few months old.

This weekend will be busy...a get-together with friends at a wine bar on Friday night; lunch with the in-laws on Saturday; Christmas Eve festivities with extended family on Sunday and then finally ~ a quiet Christmas at home with just the three of us and the cats.

Wishing all of you much love, good health and blessings this holiday season!


  1. oh- I am so sorry about both your kitties. It is hard to lose them no matter how long they have lived...they are like family and it is just sad that both of your babies will not have long left on earth...but..they will cross the Rainbow Bridge and be healthy and whole again when the time comes.

    Happy Birthday to you son and good for you for all the nice walks you took. xo Diana

  2. So sorry to hear about Clementine. Zippo certainly is one lucky and loved kitty. Jingles is 13-1/2 and has taken to snoring the past couple of years but otherwise is fine. Happy birthday to Tim. My boys were supposed to arrive this afternoon but are stuck in Chicago because of mechanical problems that caused delays and then they missed their connection. And neither airline wants to accept responsibility. Needless to say, I've not slept much and am feeling very :( Merry Christmas to you and yours!

  3. Sending so much love to the kitties and you.
    Merry Christmas, my dear friend.

  4. Oh it's so hard when our fur babies get ill. I know that my Mom's cat Sam is hanging on but he doesn't have long for sure at 17+. He is the sweetest boy and has had a great life but it doesn't make it easier. Hugs to you and your family. Wishing you a lovely Christmas!

  5. I remember reading about Zippo way back in the early days of CHL- he has had a wonderful life.
    Happy birthday to Tim, my birthday twin.

  6. Awww poor sweet Clementine, that's so sad. Our furbabies are just as much part of our family as our children, aren't they? Merry Christmas to you, Melanie!

  7. It is so hard to have one of our young animal-people become ill. I feel for you. Clementine is sooooo beautiful. Merry Christmas to you and Brian and I hope the new year brings you the best. ~Ginene

  8. Merry Christmas, Melanie! I'm so glad I found your blog this year. I always love coming over to your Comfy House. Happy New Year, my friend!

  9. How wonderful to have a state park nearby to visit when you want a change of scenery. And that decorated tree is phenomenal! Our neighbors throw a string of lights (literally- I've seen them doing it) at their big tree and call it done. hmmm. So sorry about your cat. They really are a big part of family life and I'm sure it was hard getting the news this time of year.

    I wish you and your family a Merry Christmas, Melanie!
    xo, Vickie

  10. Merry Christmas Melanie and happy birthday. It goes by way too fast...

  11. Melanie, the care that you give your cats is so loving. I am sure that all the cats in your neighborhood wish they lived at your house:) It's always a joy to see animals that are well cared for. We are going out Saturday with my in-laws to see the new 3-D Star Wars movie . . . they are all science fiction fans . . . I've been in this family for 42 years and it still hasn't rubbed off on me, LOL. The other side of that is, I love these people and feel blessed to be a part of their family . . . I will have a great time just being with them, Star Wars or not. Afterwards we are going for pie and coffee, now that is something I can get into:)
    Wishing you a Very Merry Christmas!
    Your blogging sister,
    Connie :)

  12. It's so hard to say goodbye to our fur babies, no matter how old they are. It seems that kidney disease is very common in cats. I know it's what caused my cats demise at 17 many years ago, but Clementine is still so young :(. I'm so sorry.

    I hope you have a lovely holiday and joyous New Year.


  13. So sorry to hear about your cats. It is so hard when they are ill. Happy Birthday to your son, and Merry Christmas to your wonderful family.

  14. Melanie, thanks for sharing all your news - yes, it's a busy time of year.
    Enjoyed 'walking' with you through your neighborhood - I plan to do that tonight - then tomorrow after our Christmas Eve celebration we will drive through to view all the luminarias set out along the streets.

    Sorry about sweet kitty Clementine - we just never know how long we will have them - and they are so loving.
    Enjoy your Christmas though and blessings for the coming year.
    Hugs - Mary

  15. I'm sorry to read about Clementine, but I'm sure you'll make her life as perfect as you can for the time she has to live. Wishing you a serene year to come.

  16. Oh i hope that it all works out for Clementine...

    As to our babies getting older yes! "Where did the time go"

    I am behind in blogging / visiting but I hope that you had a Merry Christmas :)

  17. I'm so sorry about Clementine. I hope she beats the odds and has several more years with you.

    That tree is pretty spectacular. How in the world do they get the lights all the way to the top? We have a huge, perfectly shaped cedar that I always think would look glorious decorated for Christmas. Aside from the height issue, it's also quite some distance from the nearest electricity source so I sincerely doubt it will ever be decorated.

    I hope you had a lovely Christmas!

  18. Melanie, have you ever heard of Dr. Harvey's food for kidney disease? I hear such good things about it for cats and dogs so you might want to google their website. I'm so sorry about Clementine, I hope she will surprise the vet and with care live much longer than expected.She is so pretty, beautiful markings.


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