Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Dogs ate my Blog Posts

To make up for time off, I'm rolling three posts into one. 


5 lb Lucy and 95 lb Sasha

Instead of writing, I spent my morning researching bloating in Bernese Mountain dogs. I've never had a large dog before and I'm afraid I'm going to accidentally kill her.

Sasha seems more like a dolphin than a dog. It's something about the eyes. And her size. Lucy, although tiny, seems more resilient.

Lucy is fearless and independent. Sasha is fearful and needy. I am a hopeless enabler.

I'm headed to New Orleans next month but I can't fly with a 95 lb dog. Boris, has agreed to babysit Sasha but stress can cause bloating and I can only imagine how stressed out she'll be staying with a kind but unusually tall man who wears baseball caps and grinds his coffee beans (just a few of the things that freak Sasha out). 

Yesterday I spent 3 hours researching pet friendly hotels from Connecticut to New Orleans should I decide to make the 3 day road trip.



Superbowl, Grammys, Oscars...this is how I mark the passing of a dull, dank winter. 

This year, thanks to Boris, we were invited to Alicia's Oscar Costume Party. You either LOVE costuming or you don't. I, being a crafty little monkey, love the creative process that snaps hold of me the minute someone mentions a costume theme. My husband, on the other hand, is NOT a fan. During our 15 years together, the closest he's come to wearing a costume is his version of Drunk Guy. Drunk Guy wears husbands favorite sports coat, sunglasses, a baseball cap, and holds a drink in one hand and a cigar in the other.

But this year was different.

Prior to the Oscars, 3 nominated films were available on HBO on demand prior to the big event and husband was inspired by what he saw.

And the 2013 nominated films available on HBO prior to Oscar night were: 

Argo - "Argo Fuck yourself!" 
Beast of the Southern Wild - I had the hardest time remembering the title 
Flight - Denzel Washington nominated for Best Actor

Thinking Denzel looked extra cool in his pilot suit, my husband elected to go as Whip Whitaker, the lead character in Flight. He then went online, all by himself, and ordered a pilots costume.

I elected to go as a six-year-old black child named Hushpuppy from Beast of the Southern Wild.

And Boris, who is also NOT a fan of costumes, picked Tom Hanks character in Castaway.

Did you know they sell the volleyball already painted with the red hand/face print on it?

Not that it was required or that anybody cared, but for weeks I practice my lines...

"Who's the man?" Daddy
"I'M DA MAN!!!" Hushpuppy

"My name is Hushpuppy and I live with my Daddy in the Bathtub"
"My name is Hushpuppy and I'm the King of the Bathtub!"

This was also a great excuse to get a spray tan. I needed color so I didn't look half dead wearing white in winter but not so dark that I was deemed inappropriate.

The concept of a spray tan was new to me. The only reference I had was an episode of Friends, when Ross gets a full frontal spray tan. So for moral support, I brought Miss Pegged along with me.

I expected to be alone in a booth, instead I was led to a closet sized area, created by curtains, and given a hair net, sticky sole-only slippers, and a paper thong. That's when I realized this was a personalized spray tan.  There I stood with my legs wide and arms out - showcasing my double mastectomy scars, bat wings, bulging belly and dimpled bottom. The technician, and owner, was friendly and professional but I still felt extremely vulnerable.

With my clothing back on, and in awe of my slow building tan, I left feeling confident and fearless. I was two feet out the door when I asked Miss Pegged if she wanted to go skydiving in the spring and to my surprise she said yes.

Hushpuppy Me
with my swimmies on and totting a bucket of cajan spiced shrimp

It was a fun night and since I was a child, I went braless. I love that wig and I've been wearing the rain boots around town. I wish I had the never to wear the wig around town.


Happy Anniversary To Me 

One Year Cancer Free

This week marked one year since my double mastectomy. It is a decision I have never regretted. That's not to say, in hindsight, I would have done things differently but I learned a great deal along the way. I didn't mind losing my breasts. It was a small price to pay for my health. 

I owe so many of you a great deal of thanks for sticking by me. Especially my husband, who was my main caregiver during the year.

If you read my CATSTIR posts from the beginning, you know it was a difficult start for us. But once he was able to accept that I was sick, and I was able to ask for help, we moved beyond our vulnerabilities. 


Mark took charge of my recovery. Here he is getting the supplies ready to care for my four drains. 

We were both overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and support we received. I was especially moved by the cards and gifts sent by people I have never met. I strung many of the cards above my bed. They will stay put until my last surgery is complete (number 7 is scheduled for mid April).

These cards, along with so many other thoughtful gifts are proudly displayed around our home. I am convinced that all of them have major healing powers.

The blanket on my bed was handmade by a member of "The Secret Tea Party Society," which I am a proud member of. This is not a political statement. We gather around a table and sip tea, while indulging in fabulous food and spirited conversation. 

Monkey's were a major theme. Here are a just a few.

The barrel of monkeys, a gift from Juli and her son at Surviving Boys, are individually painted and named according to their unique personality. The handmade Green Monkey cards are from Sarah and Ben at Nice Old Spice.

So many of you went out of your way to comfort me...

Miss Pegged
Miss Claudia
My family; Miss Mary, Jackson and Lindsay
My Chosen Family; Pinky, Jesse, Julie, Jelly, Buttah, Da Bunniez, Monkey Gurl

My breast cancer sisters who showed me what it means to be strong.

Faithful bloggers, readers and followers - never underestimate the power of kind words.

Throughout the year, no matter how difficult the day was, 
I woke each morning knowing I was loved. 
And for this, I am grateful. 

Love and Gratitude, 



  1. CELEBRATE!!! You are 1 year old!

    ALOHA from Honolulu
    Comfort Spiral
    ~ > < } } ( ° > <3
    > < } } ( ° >

    1. ~~~~ it is a wonderful thing! ~~~~~~~ Thank you Cloudia!

  2. Crazy year, fabulous glad you are you.



    1. Monkeyz in NOLA alert.... we're almost there!!!

  3. It is truly a beauty during the early Fall when
    the leaves are changing. Being able to use the new facilities as soon
    as possible is crucial for any business. He frequented the nearby Audubon Society sanctuary in Sharon, where he took great interest in all the

    Also visit my web-site - storage sheds for sale

    1. I don't know what to do with all the BULLSHIT SPAM. I don't want to put up a filter so I just keep deleting. This SPAM was sort of lyrical in an illogical sort of way. Not that I'd be stupid enough to click on the link. Do you suppose anyone does? doesn't it seem like a waste of time?

      I'm going to go back to my shed now, and look at the birds....

    2. Hahaha. Yeah. If anyone wanted to make my life complete, they would round up people who write spam, and lock them in a room for me to visit.

  4. One year!!! You are a super monkey and I can hear calm happiness in your words. Are monkeys ever calm? I don't know, but that's how you sound. Cheers!

    1. Thank you Denise! I am calm compared to where I was last year... especially after being diagnosed. It's a great ass kick though... you start to realize just how fleeting life is and what you need to do to feel as though you've made the best of it.

  5. OMG I have so much to say! Hello? You totally rock the rain boots, and I could have totally borrowed them today in our 50 mph wind/rain/sleet/snow.

    Your girls will be fine with Boris... I understand he's quite the ladies man. :)

    MY MONKEYS!!!! You still have them! I still remember how much fun we had making them. I am still signed up for the 3-day and regardless of the politics, I am thrilled to be able to do this small part if it means that we can one day end breast cancer forever. ((HUGS)) to you, you are an inspiration! Enjoy New Orleans...

    1. of course I still have the monkeyz and the envelopes each of them came in. I will NEVER forget the look on my husbands face as he saw them, all painted and spiffy with their personalities written on the envelope. I think, honestly, he thought you were crazy until I started playing with them and then he realized I was the crazy one. I guess he's known that all along. Now he knows, I'm not the only one!

      And so you know... YOU are my inspiration to start walking/running again. I've taken a year off and my body is not happy. I did an overnight/20 mile walk for suicide prevention once. It was on my birthday and my daughter was with me. What an amazing event! I will be cheering you on! xoxoxo

  6. Congrats on your one year anniversary! Wishing you many, many more. And hey, both your Oscar party costumes ROCKED!

    1. thank you Debra! I love those boots and that wig is soooo much fun!

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  9. Well, ok, that post was worth the wait! Happy Anniversary, Green Monkey/Honey Badger/Rhino/Hushpuppy! So happy you've made it through with your health, wit and humor. Keep costuming... and keep writing about it!

    1. you're too kind :) the post was ....well, it was a post. I have been over thinking everything lately. tweaking stops the words from flowing.

  10. Fukken dogs!!!

    Happy One year anniversary!!!

    Yeah, next month IS Jazz Fest Month!!!!


    1. does this mean you're going Shoes??? don't tease me!!! I prefer Quarter Fest to Jazz Fest but thats the monkey in me :) It would be great to meet you, just so I know for sure you're real :)

    2. I'm most definitely for real... (surreal)...

      Let me know when you are going to be there... and let's see if we can make it happen. :o)


  11. I am not a vet but I did have one of my friends tell me that his Yorkie overate and ate very fast which caused bloating which can be fatal. It's just a thought of something to inquire with ur vet. My pup is such a slow picky eater I have not had to worry about this with him. But I do think they said "Raise the dog food bowl up to a higher level so their head is not hanging down and do not leave food out. Give them a certain amount of time to eat it and in small portions." It just a thought of something to ask about.

    U look really well. It's hard to believe a year has come and gone.

    Have fun in New Orleans. I'll make it down there one day. It's not too terribly far at all truthfully.

    1. the bloating issue really scares me. I've read that timid dogs are more susceptible and she is extremely timid! I've also read both about the bowl - up is good, up is bad, down is good, down is bad.

      I know slow is important. I also read not to let them drink water immediately before or after a meal. Also, no exercise after or before a meal. and garlic is iffy, as is brewers yeast, and citric acid.... crazy. I am doing the small portions. I am worrying wayyyy too much.

      that year was long for me, but I know for others it was not. Sasha is like a reward and she brings me so much joy (as does miss lucy).

      Thanks for your suggestions and for reading!

  12. U r worried cuz u love her and she can't say "Mommie I don't feel good. Mommie my stomach hurts." I understand.

    Sasha and u will be in my prayers. I hope that y'all find out what is wrong. It may just take her awhile to get used to her new home. But boy did she get blessed when she came to ur home.

    The pic of Lucy and Sasha is ADORABLE.

    If y'all were in Memphis, I would fix u a Latte and the pups each a puppicino aka whip cream in a cup.

    I am joyful to see that u are doing so well.

  13. You made me misty-eyed again...
    I think you're worrying too much about your dog. I grew up with many, many dogs that never saw a vet. None of them died from bloating, or anything that wasn't obvious.
    I wondered why you had a spray tan, and 'fro. I assumed there was some movie out about Disco ;-) I'm glad it's more meaningful than that! Mark looks good in uniform. He should rock that look more often.
    Congratulations on being healthy! Keep on shining! <3
    Oh, and check out my sheds for sale.

    1. :))))))) yes, worrying way too much about the dog. it's what us monkeyz do!

      and YES I want to check our your shed because I like shiny things xoxo

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  15. Minkey...
    Congratulations on your healthy bod,heart,and spirit! <3
    I know you will continue to heal and grow.
    Btw, I love the 'fro! You look good in the tan I thought, and Slice definitely wears that uniform well.

    Wish we could meet you in NOLA. Depends on the dates.
    You have been so supportive of us this year too. <3<3<3xoxxoxxo
    Can't wait to see you. Love, DB and BB

    1. thank you DB and BB! health is first, cash is second, safety is third.

  16. So you look like my Ma? Sorry they're gone, but happy you're here and well.
    Say, did you know dogs flew spaceships? I've seen pictures. Russian dogs, at that!

    1. BONEMAN!!!!! where have you been! Those Russian dogs are so clever, or submissive.... perhaps submissively clever...or deviant?

  17. Congratulations on your anniversary!!!

    1. thank you .... it was a powerful year! glad its behind me :) this year should be all about rainbows, and unicorns and buttercups and sunshine!


Thank you for encouraging my JOY of writing. By reading and commenting you are feeding my soul, stroking my heart, and in the end...making me a better writer.

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