Sunday, March 4, 2012

Mustache Nails

I have a thing for Mustache's. The sillier the better. I have been having a bad past few days so I painted some cute little Mustache's on my nails.

So amusing! Now every time I look at my hands I will smile! Great way to start the day!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Poor little Hawk!

I haven't posted in a month & a half & I really hate that I have to make this update after being away for so long.

If we are friends are Facebook you have seen bits & pieces of this. I haven't really posted about exactly what happened. I have been asked a ton of questions about it & I figure this is probably the easiest place to answer them all at one time. For those of you who are not my friend on Facebook or don't know much about my dogs I will start with a little back story.

We adopted Hawk in the summer of 2005. He was my birthday present. I wanted a dog so badly. Actually, I wanted a cat but since Kyle was allergic he said he'd get me a little dog for my birthday. We drove 3 hours, one way, to adopt Hawk. I searched for months to find the right one. I am not one to buy a puppy or from a breeder. I always say "Dogs who are adopted love their owners more because they took them in when no one wanted them." I think the case has been pretty true with Hawk.

It didn't start out that way however. Hawk was terrified of us. For 3 days he really didn't come near us. I'll admit it, I cried. I thought for sure this dog hated us & would never come around me. We soon realized that Hawk must have had a rough past but slowly warmed up to us. I became his person. He loved me & I loved him. He was & still is a pretty scared dog. We know that in some point before we adopted him he was treated pretty badly. We were determined to do the exact opposite of that.

In 2006 we adopted Fox. I don't want this post to be all about him (which it could easily turn into) so I will just give a super quick story on him. We adopted him from the Min Pin rescue. I found his story on Craigslist & decided that he need to be our dog. He had a whole in his heart & wasn't going to live very long. He was living pretty much in a kennel because he needed someone home with him all day. We didn't care what it took & soon he came our dog.

The two quickly became best friends & did everything together. Hawk was finally learning how to be a dog. We always joked that Hawk didn't realize he was a dog because he didn't interact well with dogs in the past & had no idea how to play.

Unfortunately Fox died in March of 2007. Hawk was devastated. The picture above is the last family picture we took. He looks so young & healthy but his heart was sick & couldn't make it any long.

Fast forward to the May of 2010. We were living with my inlaws while we gutted & basically rebuilt our house from the studs up. Not fun. They have a dog, his name is Bondo.

He is a goofy Lab who we all love. I also love this picture of him. So so cute!

Anyways, back to May of 2011. We were at the inlaws house & for some reason Bondo got really mad at Hawk (very very uncommon) and he bit him. All we hear is this high pitched scream come from Hawk. We ran into the dinning room to see Hawk with his leg just...hanging there. Kyle snatched him up & drove to the vet as fast as he could while I stayed home with the kids. A few hours later Hawk came home with a cast on his leg.

The vet said without a very expensive surgery he will probably never walk normal again. He'd never jump up like he does when he gets excited. They said eventually he'd get really bad arthritis in his leg & could quite possibly need it amputated. The surgery was too expensive. We said we do the cast for the 4-6 weeks like they said & we'd go from there. Only after a few weeks was Hawk trying to jump with his cast on. After the 6 weeks was up he was 100% back to normal. Running, jumping & playing like nothing happened.

A few months later it was very close to the time when we could move into our house. We had talked about getting a bigger dog when we did. We had been looking for a few months & finally found one that we thought would work. We drove to the local humane society to check him out.

Kooper. He was sweet, house trained & already knew tricks! He also lived with other dogs too! We put him on hold & the next day he came home with us!

Kooper & Hawk didn't get along very well at first. Hawk didn't really like many dogs so I didn't expect them to be BFF's right off the bat. Kooper was also still a puppy (they guessed around a year old) so all he wanted to do was play & Hawk didn't want anything to do with that.

Over the past 18 months they slowly became friends. We used to bring Hawk places & leave Kooper home. It came to the point where Kooper would get so stressed without Hawk there he'd chew things. If we left Hawk there he was so much better. Kooper came with issues just like Hawk. He has terrible separation anxiety & even though he is very well trained, I don't think his old owners were very nice to him either. Pretty sad.
The last few months the dogs have become pretty close. Hawk started to act more like a dog. He started to play with Kooper, eat raw hides, got along better with other dogs & was even nice to people he didn't know! My little dog was becoming a REAL DOG! It was awesome to see the change.

On Friday the 6th I left in the early afternoon to shoot my first wedding of 2012. I kissed my husband & kids goodbye & left for the day. It was really nice out (almost 50 degrees which is unheard of in Minnesota in January) so I told Kyle he should take the kids to the Zoo. He left a little after me & away they went.

Randomly throughout the day I check my phone when I have down time. I got a call (with no Voicemail) and I goggled the number since I didn't know it. It was a pet hospital. Not the one we go to but one not to far away from where we live. I thought it must have been a miss dial & thought nothing of it. A few hours later Kyle text me & asked me to call him as soon as I could. I said I couldn't call but asked whats up. We played the back & fourth game a bit. I freaked & thought something bad happened & begged him to tell me. He said nothing is wrong but to call him when I left the wedding.

A few hours later as we were packing our camera gear up & Troy went to get the car I called Kyle. The phone call was pretty much a blur. A combination of the loud music & bad news I don't really remember. All I remember Kyle saying "Hawk is in surgery." I didn't believe it. He said Kooper bit him & that he was at his parents house. He said he isn't sure how Hawk is but he'll know more when the vet calls.

I dropped Troy off & called Kyle. The drive home was terrible. I was wearing contacts & couldn't stop crying. I had no idea if my dog was going to die. I couldn't really understand the situation.

When I got home Kyle explained to me what happened. He came home from the Zoo & let the dogs out. He noticed Hawk was walking slow but that was about it. He came inside & noticed that Hawk had pooped in the kitchen & then the kids noticed blood. Kyle saw that Karie's door was open in her room, which we never leave open, and there was blood on her bedskirt. Kyle sent the kids into Kegan's room to play & he ran outside. He saw Hawk was bleeding from his head & had deep bite marks.

He called our normal vet but it was already closed & he got the number for the vet they recommend for after hours. Kyle took the kids to my aunts & Hawk to the vet. He was unsure about what was going to happen next. They came out & said he needed surgery. A very expensive surgery. Something that we just couldn't afford. He asked if there was something else that they could do to save him that wasn't going to cost that much. There was & they did it. Hawk had emergency surgery. Kooper bit him in the back of the head. Small dogs have a soft spot back there & Kooper hit it. They said he has some fractures in head & more than likely in the sinus too but they will heal over time.

Just before midnight we left to pick him up. We were there no longer than 15 minutes but I felt like we were in the waiting room for hours. The instant I saw him I broken down in tears, even more than I already was. He wasn't walking yet, his face was all wrapped up & he just wasn't himself. He was given an antibiotic and pain meds which totally mess him up for a few hours after he takes it.

I didn't sleep that night. Every sound he made woke me up. Every movement woke me up. Bad night to not get any sleep since I had a wedding that next morning. Kyle took the day off to stay with the dog. They said they weren't sure if he had brain damage & we'd know in the next 24-48 hours. They gave us a list of things to watch for.

The entire day I worried about him. I told Kyle to lie to me if something bad happened. I didn't want to find out during the wedding. Thankfully nothing bad did happen & I came home to my dog, who was even more swollen that\n when I left that morning.

There was still another issue at hand, Kooper. We have no idea WHY he bit Hawk. This has never happened before. Did they fight over a toy? A chew? Food? They have free run of the house while we are gone & as long as we spray bitter apple on a few things we never have an issues. It's been this way for months. Something happened. We'll never know why.

Kyle brought Kooper over to his parents house while Hawk was at the hospital. He thought for sure I'd kill Koop for hurting Hawk. Yes, I was so angry at him but not enough to kill him. Overall, Kooper is a great dog. He is amazing with kids, loves everyone he meets and most importantly HE IS A MEMBER OF OUR FAMILY! He is a Coopet.

I didn't want to lose him. I love him. I wasn't sure what to do. I soon realized that this was most likely an isolated incident. I believe in my heart of hearts that Kooper didn't mean to hurt Hawk. Something made them mad & they fought. Kyle said that Kooper looked & acted like he knew something was wrong & he knew he was in trouble. I don't doubt that for a second. He is a very smart dog.

So, as of right now Kooper is spending a few weeks at Nannie & Grandpa's (the inlaws) house. Hawk needs to be away from all dogs while he heals. As of right now we do plan on bringing Kooper back home. It will be a process of getting Hawk to trust Kooper again. Kooper will be getting an all metal kennel that he can break out of since the plastic ones don't hold him. When we are not home Kooper will have to be kenneled.

I took these pictures this morning.

We take him tomorrow to the vet to be checked out. They will take the bandage off & see if he needs a new one put back on. He is in good spirits. He barked for the first time today & he also ate two small meals. He also tried to jump out of excitement when I got home from my photoshoot. It didn't work very well but he tried. A for effort. I'd say we are in the clear for any brain damage & despite his head gear he is still the same little dog. He still crawls completely under the covers when he sleeps, he still snores & still doesn't leave me side...even when I need to pee.

I love him. Thank you so much for all the prayers, phone calls, texts & emails. I really appreciate it.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Elf on the Shelf - A Christmas Tradition

More than a month later I am FINALLY blogging again. October has been notoriously my busiest month with photoshoots & weddings. Fall color & nice weather has kept my bum working from sun up to sunset every weekend & several days during the week. I can't lie, I am glad that is has significantly slowed down. While I can't figure out what to do on weekends yet, I really like being home with my kiddos & actually being able to see my family. That is really nice.

So, back to what this blog post is really about. The Elf on the Shelf. You may or may not know what this is. It is pretty awesome so if you don't, get on it. We started ours a few days early but we also have our Christmas tree up & almost all our Christmas decor. lol

The Elf on the Shelf is a fantastic kids book that comes with an adorable little Elf. According to the book he is YOUR Elf. You get to name him. We named ours Drew. Each night Drew flies back to the North Pole to tell Santa how the kids were each day. Then he comes home early each morning & hides. Apparently Elves really like to play hide & seek. Perfect for Kegan & Karie who are always up for a game. The game is supposed to start after Thanksgiving, but since we got Drew yesterday it was almost impossible to wait! Plus, like I said, we are already well into the Christmas Spirit so why not.

This is something I have wanted to do with the kids for a few years now. I love having traditions. I am such a sucker for Holidays/Birthday's so this is just perfect for us. Unfortunately a few years ago the kids were too small to really understand what the Elf on the Shelf was. But this year being 5 and almost 4 I thought it was a perfect year to start this tradition!

Last night was our first night with Drew. We sat in Kegan's bed & read the story with Drew sitting on Kegan's shelf listening to us tell his story. The kids loved the book. They asked 7,000 questions & couldn't wait for the morning to find him!

Since we have dogs and we have one, Kooper, who likes to chew things I told the kids that Drew likes to hide up high. The last night we'd want is for the kids to wake up & find Drew's head on the floor & his chewed body spread all over the living room! Yikes!

This morning the kids woke up & had to look for him! I hid him pretty easy (in the Christmas tree) so it took Kegan less than a minute to spot him. He is still currently sitting up there. Why you ask? Well, Kegan said that Drew likes to be up there because he can see everything going on in the living room & kitchen and that it is his job to tell Santa what we do so he can see it better there. lol Smart kiddo!

Of course what would a blog post be without some pictures! So without further adieu, I'd love to share some pictures of the newest member of our family, Drew!

Pretty easy hiding spot huh! lol I have lots of ideas on where to hide him & I am sure the internet can help me with some as well. They will only get more creative & more fun as the days past. I hope to document each night as well!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Pinehaven Farm Field Trip

The day after the Run Hop Ride Fundraiser was the Field Trip to Pinehaven Farm. They needed parents to volunteer so I did. Kegan wanted me to go. If he didn't, I wouldn't have gone. I don't want to be one of THOSE parents!

Each parent had their kid & one other kid to keep track of. I had Kegan & Saywer but also had Kegan's friend Stevie tag along with us too.

Stevie, Saywer & Kegan. Look how cute they are!!!

Our group went to feed the animals first. There were lots of animals there & the kids loved it. They got all the food that they wanted to keep them which is so nice.

This makes me want a goat, however I don't want to clean up all their poop. lol

After feeding the animals they went & got their pumpkins. Parents got them too which was great. I was going to buy one for Karie but this worked great! After that we went to the playground. The kids LOVED this & honestly would have spend the entire trip there.

There were slides EVERYWHERE! This slide was the first one that most of the kids went on until they found the barn with like 6 different slides in it. They pretty much lived in that thing!

Of course I had to crawl in here to get some pictures. lol

They also had these trikes on steroids for the kids to ride around on.

They were hardcore!

The place was awesome & we for sure have to go back. Even if it was just for the park. I know Karie would really enjoy it!

Run Hop Ride

Kegan's Pre K school is in desperate need of a new playground. Currently they have a wooden play set that is about 20 years old. They are raising money to buy a new one. A metal one that will last a lot longer. Those things are cheap so they had something fun for the kids to do to raise money. In the past they sold things. AKA the parents had to sell stuff because the kids are far too little to do that. So this was perfect. They have a race. They wanted each kid to raise $100. That way they'd be half way to their goal.

Kegan raised $125. I bet if he would have asked more people he could have raised more. But $125 is more than the goal so I am proud of him.

I worked at the race. They needed parents to help out & direct the kids where to go. I helped out at the tunnel. I cheered for kids to run to me & then cheer for them as they crawled through the tunnel. If you know me. you know I probably rocked this. haha I am such a cheery happy dork so just picture me with Pom Poms cheering really loud for these little 4 & 5 year old kids. lol It was fun.

Kyle was off the day of the race so when it was Kegan time to run he came out with Karie to take a video of it. I forgot to mention too that each kid ran alone. I thought that was awesome so that every kid won!

First the kids rode on a scooter or a bike.

They walked on a balance beam (which I didn't get a picture of) and then they ran to me! RUN RUN RUN!

The then tunnel. It was pretty little but the kids are little. You wouldn't catch me in that thing! lol

Stepping stones & then the Finish line! I love it! So cute!

At the end of the race we had all the kiddos pose under the Finish line for some pictures.

How cute is his class? They all go a little "Winner" ribbon. Kegan wore is ALL day long! He never wanted to take a nap and we had to save it to put it in his school projects box. So fun!!!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Kegan, my little man!

Since Kegan started school I have been really lacking in posts. Last week was an emotional one that I will get into another time. So that is why I didn't post at all last week. This week is is only Monday so lets hope it stays on this pace! lol

If you don't know me very well, you will still probably know my love of my camera. If you have known me for a while you know that I take pictures just about every day. I have been doing that since before my kids were born. It's just something I do. So, Kegan has been in school for 7 days as of today.

I took his picture the first day of school, then the second & then the third. I then decided I would try & do pictures daily. In the same area if would be better. Of course when it's 20 below in the winter that isn't going to happen. lol But, the weather has been nice enough to do all his pictures outside. So here are last weeks...and today's pictures!

All the kids at school got their new bags. Kegan was really excited to get a blue one. If you didn't know already, that is his favorite color. If it's blue, he needs to have it. It doesn't matter what it is, if it's blue, it's his. lol

This was day 5. This was a hard day for him. He didn't want to go to school. Not sure why but thankfully was easy every day after this. He is also rocking his Halloween tattoos. He was really excited to show them off at school!

Day 6 & sporting all blue! lol This is one of his favorite shirts. One because it's blue, duh, and the other because it's like his dads. Kyle wears a lot of button up shirts & Keegs likes to be like his dad.

Then there is today, day 7. Such a handsome little dude. He was excited to go to school today. He also go new school shoes too! That is always fun!

I am glad he is getting the hang of going to school. He has many many more years of it ahead of him. lol He has a lot of cool stuff coming up soon too! He has a field trip & he also has a fun raiser that is a track & field event! I can't wait to see how that goes! The boy LOVES to run! I am volunteering at that event. I haven't decided if I am going to go to the field trip or not, I have to decide that soon! I liked it so much when my mom came to my field trips.

I wonder how many days I can get away with taking his pictures until he starts to complain.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Pre K here we come!

Monday Kegan started Pre K at Noah's Ark in Circle Pines. While he is old enough to start Kindergarten (his birthday is in August) we feel that holding him back a year was best. They say boys born around the Kindergarten cut off benefit from an extra year! Funny enough a lot of my friends with boys born around the same time are also holding off until next year. So, Kegan started Pre K this week. I still can't believe that my boy is old enough to be in school. It boggles me mind!

I was nervous. Kegan was nervous. I play cool. I didn't want him to know just how nervous I was. I was excited, don't get me wrong, but this was the first time Kegan was going to be away from me with anyone other than very close family. I was nervous for him. Before class I dropped Karie off with my aunt Patty. I had no idea how it was going to go & I didn't want Karie there if I had to spend the first 20 minutes of class there with him.

He was excited to use his new backpack. His school hadn't gotten in their new bags for the kids so Batman was able to make an appearance. Of course wearing his new favorite shirt, Superman. Pretty much anything blue will do these days. It was very warm that day, 90 degrees so shorts it was. His first homework assinment was to fill out this train. The only way it could have been more prefect for my train loving boy is if the train was blue! lol It asked for his birthday, what his favorite food was & what he likes to do. He said his favorite food was Pizz and that he likes to play in his tree house & with his legos. Aww!

The drop off was emotional. He cried a lot. At first he was okay. We signed him in & checked out his room. He even went to the big table & played at bit.

When he realized that I wasn't staying he started to cry. I hugged him & I started to cry. I didn't let him see it because I didn't want him to think that I was scared. I wasn't, I was just really sad that he was sad. :( His teacher was really nice & kind of took over. She talked to him & was trying to distract him from being sad. I gave him a hug & a kiss & said I would be back in a few hours. I didn't want to prolong the sad. I knew from my years of helping my aunts teach Sunday School that the longer the parents stay, the harder it is. So I left making sure he knew I'd be back. I walked in the hall & cried. He cried. I collected myself a few minutes later. I peeked around the corner & there he was fine & dandy playing.

A few hours later, like I told him, I picked him up. He came running to me yelling "MOMMY!" He was so excited. We went to his basket & looked at all the things he got & made. It was pretty neat to see my boy have projects to bring home. He even said he wanted to go back the next day.

Tuesday was good. While the morning was quite crazy & I thought we were going to be late, we weren't. They are redoing the streets in our neighborhood so we have to park at the end of the block. Kegan was having troubles with his shoes so I was worried. But we weren't!

Kegan had the sharing bag which means he had to bring something to show off in class. I was really curious about what he'd bring. He has a million toys & everything is his favorite. lol He picked his car. I asked him why the car & he said "Because my dad made it for me." Awwww See Kyle works for Lowes & sometimes the Boy Scouts come in to make these race cars. They asked Kyle to run one of these sessions because he knows the most about tools. So before the kids came in Kyle made a test car knowing that he would be giving it to Kegan. He has loved it since. He is really excited to paint it with Kyle sometime soon.

School went okay. He tripped at the playground & fell & only cried a little bit. He was okay. He was a lot more tight lipped around what he did in class. However he did spend a majority of the afternoon singing a song he learned. It was cute.

Wednesday was a rough day. He woke up on the wrong side of the bed & was crabby. We all have those days.

You can tell by his uber fake smile that he wasn't happy. He was happy however to hug Karie for some reason. Probably because he didn't want to leave & knew that it would make me want to take a picture & delay going to school.

The drop off was tough & there were tears. :( It was sad. When I picked him he was happy & ready to see me. That lasted all about 3 seconds when he turned back into Crabasourus Rex. He said he cried a lot at school. I am not 100% sure because he wouldn't tell me. I emailed his teacher to ask her what happened to make him so upset. It isn't really like him to be this way but then again, it could be just one of those days.

I am not going to paint a picture of my family as perfect. We are far from it. lol Kegan is having a less than perfect day & that is okay.

He is off school now until Monday. Hopefully Monday goes better than today. I know that he will eventually get into a routine & it will be okay. Right now things are just super new for him & it is kind of scary.