December 13, 2010

The tree - decorated

Hudson helped to put on the ornaments.

We had a great dinner at Grandma and Grandpa's house on Saturday.

December 5, 2010

Christmas Tree 2010 Continued

Getting the tree in and up was quite the ordeal.  It was fun to watch!  The men had to take the tree around the front and through the double door.  Mike had to make alterations to the tree stand by screwing it down to a 4 x 4 piece of wood to make a platform.

December 4, 2010

Christmas Tree 2010

We got our Christmas tree today!   We went to the tree lot and I asked, 'Excuse me sir, where's the tallest tree you have?'  They said, 'Over there ma'me, it's 14 feet.'  Mike said, '.............errrrrrrr'.  I said, 'Perfect! We'll take it!'

I am so excited to have a 14 foot tree + star on the top in my living room!   More pictures to come as we (ok, Mike....) gets it put up!

And it snowed in Raleigh today - one time of usually only 2-3 times each winter.  Could it get much more Norman Rockwell? 

And then there was this cutie when we got home.

So very rarely -  in fact, almost never - does life deal you a near perfect day. But today was as close to perfect as I think we could get.   I have a big pot of chili on the stove, brownies in the oven, and Mike's parents on the way over for dinner and tree decorating.  Life is good. :-)

December 1, 2010

Pool Construction...Part 1

Nothing too exciting on the pool construction yet...but it's moving forward nonetheless.

The design is complete (thanks to MB) but the pool dude is coming on the weekend to review the final plans.

Over the last two weeks we've had trees taken down - probably about 15 - and this week we had the septic tank moved.  Here are some pics of that. Needless to say, Hudson was VERY excited to see this thing roll into his yard on Monday morning.

Old tank gone. New tank moved and installed.

November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving Weekend

We have a lot to be thankful these days.  Besides two beautiful, healthy boys, we've been through a roller coaster ride of emotions over the last three weeks with Maximilian the Weimaraner.

Last year Max had surgery to remove several mast cell tumors (cancer).  This year he had more lumps so we took him in to the vet.  Here is the order of events:

  1. Maximilian goes in for a check up of new lumps that have developed since his mast cell tumor removal (last August).
  2. There are a number of new tumors and given his history, the vet recommends just taking them all of as a preventative measure.
  3. Surgery goes off smoothly. No one notices any swelling in his abdomen or any type of enlargement.
  4. He comes home, feels good for 2 days, on Day 3 goes downhill fast. Won't eat, is very lethargic. Mike stays home from work to supervise him.
  5. Day 4 - goes back to vet and she feels swelling. Does x-ray, sees 'something'.
  6. Our vet doesn't have an ultrasound machine but the 'traveling' U/S happens to come in at that minute to see another patient.
  7. Max gets u/s and they see a large tumor on the spleen that has ruptured that is bleeding out into his abdomen.
  8. Vet consult with Specialty Hospital indicates that these bleeding tumors on the spleen are almost always hemangiosarcaomas. Once these tumors rupture dogs typically live 3 months because the cancer is then bloodborne and spreads very quickly.
  9. Must make decision on what to do. Am told he 90% has cancer and won't live much longer, but without immediate intervention to remove the spleen he will die within a day or so.  Primary vet is recommending euthanasia. We decide to go ahead with the spleen removal, eat the cost (I won't say exactly, but many thousands) and hope for the best.
  10. NB takes Max to the Specialty Hospital at 7pm, must sign paperwork where I get all the 'bad stuff might happen during surgery' talk. Am prepped that Max has terminal cancer and to prepare for that.  NB cries ugly tears at the vet, makes fool of herself but does not care.  Leaves Max at 9pm, not expecting to see him again (refer to the 'bad stuff might happen' speech).
  11. Max makes it through surgery.  Spleen is removed, 2 large tumors are removed (one baseball-sized, one soccer ball-sized!!), plus one 'suspect' lymph node. I am again given the 'this dog likely has cancer' speech and talk of chemo treatment options.
  12. Pathology comes back from the lump removal surgery. No mast cell tumors.
  13. Pathology comes back from spleen removal. Tumors were benign.
  14. Surgeon is very skeptical of the pathology and calls the pathologist. She assures surgeon that she tested many areas of the sample and she found 'many healthy, normal cells - no cancer'. She feels no need to re-test other areas.  Older brother (blood cancer doctor for people) reviews the pathology and says it looks 'very thorough'.
  15. Surgeon calls to tell us: 'I don't know you got so lucky, but this is very rare and the best possible outcome'. At this point he is not recommending any courses of chemo because there was no cancer.  NB to follow up with the oncologist to confirm this recommendation.
  16. Nicole and Mike do happy dance. Call everyone they know!!!  Jubilation! Celebration!!  

We are so thankful that he is healthy!

And some pictures of our newest menace:

The first menace:

And the original menaces. Still hanging around.

November 4, 2010

Video From Last Night

And this is why we allow Hudson to stay up late versus forcing him to his bed.  The later it gets....the more humorous he is. This was taken around 9:30 last night.

This is one of about half a dozen videos I took of Hudson goofing around, playing in the garage, taking blankets outside to 'camp'.  Clearly Mike is a better sport than I.

(Disclaimer: I shot it in HD and don't know how to make it fit this frame. Sorry for the overlap....)

November 2, 2010

Funny Halloween Video

I love how all the kiddies are posing for pictures in this video.

Then another child claims to be Buzz Lightyear (he's actually dressed as a baseball player) and Hudson indignantly corrects him, 'No! I'm Buzz Lightyear!'.  Hudson then looks at me (behind the camera) like, 'Right Mom? I am Buzz Lightyear......right?'. 

Vickie (my best friend who lives in NYC) was telling me that in the city the kids trick or treat in the shops.  She was shopping on Halloween evening and one little boy was in the store dressed as Buzz.  Then a second boy comes in, also dressed as Buzz. She said it was priceless watching them process this like, 'How can there be more than one Buzz?'.  * blink*  *blink * blink *

Anyway, here's the video from school:

November 1, 2010

At the Toronto Zoo

Check out this picture of Hudson and his cousin Catherine (2 years old)  disrespecting the bears at the Metro Toronto Zoo. Classic!

October 29, 2010

Lincoln's 9 Month Stats

This little sweet'ems....


22lbs:  75th percentile
30 inches tall:  95th percentile

Look out Hudson, your little bro is coming after you.

October 19, 2010

Fall has arrived...finally

Fall has finally arrived in NC.   It was a long, long hot summer.    Here's what we've been up to:

We've been traveling a bunch (Halifax, Emerald Isle family beach trip, Toronto).

I've been working a lot (no one needs to see a picture of that).

And running a lot (running the Outer Banks half marathon in 3 weeks). This was last weekend. Yup, 13.1 miles. Already got this one in the bag.

We've been hanging out with great friends:

Lincoln met his great grandmother (my wonderful Nana) when we went to visit in September.

Sadly, I lost my sweet grandfather (leading to the quick trip to Halifax):

Lincoln is growing and remains a wonderful, happy baby. He's almost 9 months and crawling everywhere.    Hudson is still a rockstar.