Friday, July 29, 2011

hot under the (dog) collar

In my previous post, I was giddy about the joys of summer. But summer's not joyful if you're an animal with an irresponsible or naive pet parent. We've all seen it .... animals left in hot cars! This is CRUELTY, a tragedy that can be avoided.... I'm not sure why people feel that it's OK to leave their animals (usually dogs) in a scorching, baking car while they run into a store, or whatever? But the windows are cracked open? Doesn't help! Think the dog can just pant to keep cool? Not true!

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) recently published an article (below) outlining what you can do if you see an animal unattended in a car. For the sake of the voiceless animal, PLEASE do something! Please speak up, take the time, have the courage, to help that living creature avoid suffering ... or a painful death. Remember, WE ARE THEIR VOICE !! On behalf of animals, thank you.....

You Can Help Pets in Hot Cars

Rayne Nolte was in the parking lot of a Mankato, Minnesota, mall last week when she spotted Roxie, a Yorkie mix, trapped in a car. The temperature was 88 degrees with a heat index of 103, and the car's owner was gone.

You may have found yourself in Rayne’s situation before. Many pet parents believe that cracking a window is enough to keep their dogs cool in the car while they make a quick pit stop—but they couldn’t be more wrong. "Automobile temperatures can very quickly rise to dangerous levels; the average temperature increase in a parked car is 40 degrees, and the majority of this increase occurs in the first 15 to 30 minutes," says Dr. Louise Murray, Vice President of ASPCA Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital. When it’s 80 degrees outside, your car will be a staggering 114 degrees after 30 minutes!

Worse still, dogs can’t cool themselves down as easily as people, and once they overheat, they can suffer extensive organ damage or die. Luckily, Rayne made all the right moves. Follow her lead by taking these simple steps.

Step 1: Try to Locate the Pet Parent
Roxie’s people were nowhere in sight, so Rayne called mall security, who tried to find Roxie’s family through the loudspeaker. (You can ask most stores to do this.)

Step 2: Educate
Rayne couldn’t find Roxie’s pet parents, but if you do, explain the dangers of leaving a pet in a hot car. Make sure the pet gets out of the car as soon as possible.

Step 3: Call 911
Fourteen states have enacted specific laws that protect dogs in hot cars, as have many municipalities—but even in places lacking such a law, leaving an animal in a hot car may constitute cruelty.

Rayne and the mall security officers dialed 911. When the police pulled Roxie from the steamy vehicle, she was very ill but soon on the road to recovery.

Step 4: Pat Yourself on the Back
Pets are counting on people like you to save their lives. Rayne rescued Roxie just in time, and she made a full recovery! And according to the Mankato Free Press, the pet-sitter who left Roxie in the car was charged with a petty misdemeanor.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

summer in Florida ... life is good

After Buddy's (wonderful!) appointment at the clinic (see my previous post), I had lab work to do ... so I didn't have time for our traditional celebratory visit to Sonic. Instead, I stopped at a McD's drive-thru to grab one of these yummies:

Have you tried their smoothies? They're pretty awesome (better than I've had at some smoothie shops!), especially at only $2.50 for a small. The mango-pineapple flavor actually rivals the smoothies I enjoyed in Hawaii, yes they're that good! One of summer's simple pleasures....

I hope that you're enjoying summer. The sometimes oppressive heat aside, I love summer here in Florida! ... the water's nice & warm for swimming (I'm a whimp when it comes to water that's colder than 80 degrees F!), the days are longer, the sun's even brighter, the scent of fresh-cut grass wafts in the air, daily late afternoon thunderstorms are "like clockwork", and it means getting some new sandals (found these sparkly beauties at Target on clearance, and they're 100% non-leather (you know my policy!) ... what a find!):

Sal and I have been spending a lot of time outdoors, savoring summer. Last week, we went for a nighttime nature walk led by a naturalist at Green Cay Nature Center. They hold them only once a month, and they book-up immediately, so I was lucky to finally get us in! Before the stroll through the wetlands, she gave a mini-lecture on the ecosystem there, and introduced us to the cutest little owl named Oliver. We got to meet him up close (this photo was not zoomed, yes I was that close to him!):

(Owls blink very often, so I was glad to get a shot with his eyes open ... apparently he caters to the paparazzi, LOL). He's only about 4 or 5 inches tall, and was rescued and rehabilitated after being hit by a car (he needed a wing amputated, poor thing). Now, he calls the GC Nature Center home. So precious!

We enjoyed a lovely nature walk along the wetlands boardwalk and saw birds roosting for the night, and used flashlights to capture the "eye shine" of various other creatures....their eyes shine in the dark! Alligators have a red eye shine; I kept scanning the water surface with my flashlight and spotted a couple gators lurking in the pitch black night. Eerie, but very cool !!

And of course, what's summer without trips to the BEACH ?! It's one of my favorite places to enjoy some of my favorite things ... sun, sand, surf, swimming & Sal. {wink} Our beach has a sign that's updated daily by the lifeguards... they post the ocean temp, swimming conditions, etc. And last weekend, they added a note, "life is good" (lower right). Made me smile! :-)

Hope you're enjoying summer and that "life is good"! :-)


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

a great day for Buddy !!

Yesterday, Buddy had an important visit to the cancer clinic. Sal and I were nervous; I had a stomach ache from worry. It was time for his oncologist to evaluate if he could indeed stop chemotherapy treatment, and also to take X-rays of his lungs and lymph nodes to verify that they're cancer-free.

And the answers were all GREAT news !! Buddy is DONE with chemo, his lung X-rays were CLEAR, and his bloodwork and other tests came back with GOOD results!

We are SO thankful, and relieved for Buddy. He's happy and seems to feel very good, playful and mischievous ... despite having arthritis and cataracts.

We love our Buddy, and he is a survivor, a MIRACLE !! Yay Buddy!

He goes to the clinic every 2 months, but never forgets exactly where they keep their GIANT treat bowl, and he's transfixed by it ... so cute! ;-)

Gee, I wish my doctor would have treats waiting for me when I go for an appointment, LOL !! How about a tray of cupcakes at the reception desk? Or a candy jar in the exam room? mmm......


Saturday, July 23, 2011

the Class of 1986

Hey there & happy weekend!

Hope you're staying cool ... whew, baby it's HOT outside! I've been cooling off in one of my favorite places on earth ... my pool !! I love summer! :-)

So we got back from Greece and I was swamped with catching-up on everything.... a month's worth of mail, work at the lab, B&A's vet appts, etc etc ... PLUS ...I had to get ready for my 25th high school reunion! I hadn't decided to attend until during our trip, which meant that when I got home I had only ONE WEEK to buy a new dress (and of course dangly bling-y sparkly earrings to go with it!), get my hair done, and all that. Yikes, no pressure right?!? Ladies - you understand! But, with the help of my Mom (thanks!), I found the perfect "little black dress" and gorgeous earrings. My dress was styled with layers of black lace, very sophisticated ... with the perfect smattering of shiny beads and sequins, for sparkle. And I added some whimsical sparkle with glitter toes...of course!

I loved wearing my new dress and felt so pretty all evening! Sal was my "date" ... and looked so handsome, dapper. How wonderful to walk in with him on my arm! I had a really fun time, meeting up with old friends, reminiscing, seeing my old school colors of orange & green....and hearing my maiden name again, it had been a while!

me & Kay:

Amy, me, Jill & Jody:

me & Eric:

Amy, Eric, me & Valerie:

me & Jeff (who was working in the jewelry store where we bought my engagement ring ... back in 1989):

some of us gals dancing the night away:

Our group photo... unfortunately, this isn't quite everyone who attended...I later realized that not everyone joined in the group photo for some reason??? (that's me third from the right, front row):

The attendance was a kinda low, not sure why? perhaps because of the economy? It was no doubt an expense...the tickets, new attire, travel...but worth it, especially since I didn't attend my 20th. The event was held at a pretty hotel and was spread over 2 evenings; the first was a meet-and-greet with casual dress and snacks. The second evening was formal, with a sit-down dinner, cocktail attire, and dancing (all 80's music... oh, the memories!).

And speaking of music....Lionel Richie was a huge star while I was in high school, and I still love his songs. His duet Endless Love is extra special, it was the song that Sal and I danced to at our wedding. Because the DJ was playing some Lionel already, he snuck in Endless Love and said that it was by "special request" from guess who? Yep, Sal ... MY endless love. We had the dance floor all to ourselves for it. {romantic} and it elicited a huge awwww from the people around us.....

Overall, a lovely & memorable evening ... already looking forward to my 30th HS reunion!

Enjoy the weekend,


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

it's Leah's special day!

Happy 11th birthday today to our niece, Leah !! She lives in Gulfport, Florida.

We wish you a day full of FUN & SMILES, Leah! :-)


Aunt Susan, Uncle Sal, Buddy & Aruba

Saturday, July 16, 2011

terrific news for B & A !!

Whew, my head has been spinning since we got back home ... lots to catch-up on at home and in the lab... still trying to catch my breath!

But I wanted to stop and share what a WONDERFUL week Buddy & Aruba had !! On Thursday, Buddy took his FINAL dose of chemo! YAY for Buddy! We all hugged and celebrated. He's doing so well, and we're SO thankful. Later this month, his oncologist will take lung X-rays to continue monitoring him ... always such a scary time, but we're hopeful.

And this week we took Aruba for some follow-up with a veterinary internal medicine specialist. She has a nodule in her spleen, poor thing, and we're monitoring it ... however, the specialist did another ultrasound and is not concerned because it doesn't appear to be enlarging appreciably, does not appear diseased, and Aruba has no symptoms. She's as playful and energetic as ever, sweet angel !! And the antioxidants that she's taking for her liver seem to really be helping. Again, we're SO thankful !!

Here's Aruba peeking out the back car window on the way to the vet: For their safety, we don't ride around with the windows down ... but we were stopped at a light and I could tell that she wanted to peek outside, so I lowered the window and then caught a cute view of her from my car's side mirror.

I'll be back soon with pics and details of my 25th high school reunion (it was FUN ... and another reason that I've been busy!) ... oh, and Greece too, promise! I haven't forgotten! Thank you everyone for asking to see the pics and for being so excited. Love my blog readers! :-)

Enjoy the weekend,

Monday, July 4, 2011

happy birthday America!

We're at the beach ... gorgeous night here in Delray Beach ... the barge is getting ready for fireworks! Love this tradition !!

Happy 4th,

Sent from my iPhone