Waddling down the road ahead


As you know, we have an old hound dog. He is a main topic here at Team Skelley.

Baxter was a rescue dog, so we are not sure exactly how old he is but the vet thinks around 11.5. He has been slowing down lately and last week we stopped taking him with us when walking the kids to school. He was tiring out about halfway through the trip and walking very slowly.

Friday night, M. let him out before he and the kids left for the ball field. When he called him to come back in, Baxter would not get up. M. thought that he was being stubborn and nudged him to come in and Baxter started to shake. It was very scary and my husband thought that it was the end. Finally he was able to get him inside and texted me at church to let me know that he was worried.

I did not know what I was coming home to. He was alive, but very lethargic and shaky. The next day, we debated about taking him to the pet ER but he was up, eating and feeling better. And then on Easter Sunday, he was just about back to his normal self so I waited and took him to our vet on Monday. The news is not good, but it is not bad either.

Baxter has Olddogitis. He was diagnosed with heart disease and arthritis. His heart is very enlarged on one side and the cough that we thought was allergies is actually fluid in his lungs. He has hip dysplasia also. She sent us home with three medicines but also cautioned us that he has less than a year left with us.

We were not surprised because a basset hound's average life expectancy is 11-12 years. We were afraid that he had cancer and we would have to put him to sleep Monday. Arthritis and heart disease are both normal occurrences for old dogs. At this point, we are just trying to give him a good quality of life for these last few months.

Even though we were not surprised, what did surprise me is that M. and I were an absolute mess Friday night. Even though we knew that Baxter was reaching the end of his journey, we were not ready for it to end. I could not go to sleep and M. woke up at 4:30 to check on him. We have lost a basset before - early in our marriage, our first basset hound Jake died from a brain aneurism when I was pregnant with Big Kid. He had been given a  good prognosis from the vet and was only two years old, so it was a huge, sudden shock to find him in the backyard. It was awful.

With Baxter, we have time to say goodbye and to pamper him a little bit. He is rarely on the furniture, mainly because he can't get up there himself with his short, little legs, and he was too fat for me to pick up. He has lost weight and I realized yesterday that I can easily pick him up now. That is a side effect of heart disease.

He has also decided to stop eating his dry food, which is probably more stubborn houndness than anything, but I have started mixing his dry food with soft food to keep him eating. We talked about when it would be time to put him to sleep and the vet said that as long as he is eating and wagging his tail and participating with the family, the hopefully the medicine will work and give him a good quality of life for now. Last night he went on a very short walk and was happy.

I don't know how I feel. I have been sticking pretty close to him, staying home and making sure that he takes his medicine. He has given us so much happiness in these last ten years that I feel like it is my turn to make sure that he is as happy and comfortable as possible. He is my dog. I love him.

bloglovin photo: bloglovin _img5.gif social media buttons photo: Instagram instagram_zpse82b26dc.png social media buttons photo: Pinterest pinterest_zps7a908433.png social media buttons photo: Twitter twitter_zps67b86c90.png social media buttons photo: E-mail email_zps4d2c5953.png social media buttons photo: Facebook facebook_zpsfaad6aad.png

Easter Top Ten


I have a lot of Easter pictures this year - my poor Facebook friends. I have whittled them down to the top ten so your eyes won't glaze over about halfway through this post.

I give you:

Our Easter Weekend 2014

Brought to you by my iPhone, our camera, my work camera, my mother's iPhone, Instagram and Miss Carolyn at church.

It started out with some egg dyeing with the kids' buddy, B:

We are really square when it comes to dyeing eggs - no stickers, no glitter, no patterns, just a box of Paas and a dash of vinegar. Not that I don't like fancy eggs - I love fancy eggs - but this is the way that we did it when I was a kid. Our children are growing up very differently than The Engineer and I and I like to keep some things simple and traditional. 

But I do have a little bit of glitter in our table centerpieces (I just can't help myself):

via teamskelley on Instagram

Our church egg hunt  - okay I cheated, I made collages. But they count as one!:

If there is a tree close by, he's going to climb it. #nineyearoldboys

Easter Sunday:

Big Kid grumped and groaned all morning about wearing his bow tie (I found it in the men's section at H&M). I thought that he looked handsome. I found Little Kid's dress on sale at Nordstrom and it is still available! Great quality and comfortable, which is important because she will not wear anything fussy and stiff. I was in love with all of the soft ruffles. Her gold laser cut flats are Old Navy and they did not rub blisters, which I was a little worried about.

This year I told the Engineer that all I wanted for Easter was some Peeps (you know I love me some Peeps). Not only did he deliver, but he made a Peep Scavenger Hunt and hid them all over Casa de Skelley. He made us work for them!

My teeth are going to rot out.

On to our Easter church services!

Our music ministry director, Katherine + Big Kid and his buddy R., looking sharp + The Engineer and Miss Pat, looking like a soap opera star:
We always have our Easter service in our gym to accommodate the larger crowd. We also ate breakfast at church, which was very nice after rushing around like mad to get everyone dressed in their Easter finery and out the door.

Easter afternoon at Gramma and Grandpa Dale's:

Everyone else looks great, I look like a dude. Such is life.

When I was a kid, my mom owned a gift shop. She started off in our garage when I was just a bit older than Little Kid and grew the business until she had her own corner shop downtown. I grew up in that gift shop. Even though it has been closed for several years, she has not lost her knack:

After our visit, we headed back home to check on our ailing Fat Dog - more on our old hound tomorrow. All in all, the weather was gorgeous, everyone was healthy (most importantly my new nephew - as you can see, I will be an aunt later this year) and the day finished up with me in a Peep coma. Good times.

I hope that you and yours had a wonderful weekend!

bloglovin photo: bloglovin _img5.gif social media buttons photo: Instagram instagram_zpse82b26dc.png social media buttons photo: Pinterest pinterest_zps7a908433.png social media buttons photo: Twitter twitter_zps67b86c90.png social media buttons photo: E-mail email_zps4d2c5953.png social media buttons photo: Facebook facebook_zpsfaad6aad.png

Happy Easter


I will have a full post on all of our Easter festivities later this week, but today I wanted to share with you this selection from our Good Friday service.

This is absolutely my favorite Easter song to sing and it is so emotional that sometimes I can't even get through it. I am one of two second sopranos - you can see my big melon head poking up above our director Katherine - and this is such a powerful song that usually either Sandy (my dear friend and the other SS) or I can't make it through.

We go a little off the rails at the end (this song is like a workout) and I think it is due to the emotion that "Surely This Was the Son of God," brings out in us. I still think that it was one of our best performances yet. The Chancel Choir has been and remains one of the biggest blessings in my life. I am not perfect and I struggle in my faith. I don't understand much of anything life sometimes, but I am never closer to God than when I am in the choir loft lifting up to Him.

Happy Easter!

Thank you to John Bean for this recording. I appreciate it, John!

site design by designer blogs