When Roary Got Sick and Almost Died


Sunday, December 29, 2013

Last spring I mentioned in one of my badly written random posts that our golden retriever got sick, had to have emergency surgery, and almost died. A few concerned and lovely readers asked if I would ever share the full story. So here goes.....
It was the day of Cooper's first birthday party and we were in a mad scramble to get everything ready. It was the end of April and we had some freakish good weather. The door to our back deck was open for the most of the morning. Roary, who's favourite pastime is to be under your feet and in-the-way-at-all-times was oddly lying down in our side entry landing. It was a little strange that he even stayed there once guests had arrived. We didn't think much of it until we brought out the food.
If you've ever had the pleasure of meeting our dopey Golden, you would know that he is the BIGGEST foodie in the entire world. He loves and begs for food so much that he has developed a special breathing technique that seriously sounds like Darth Vader when food is near. The fact that Roary wasn't begging for food during the birthday party was making us a little bit worried. However, he is always getting into the garbage and eating strange things from the sidewalk so we just assumed that he had eaten something that didn't agree with him.
Fast forward a few hours. The party was a success, we were officially exhausted, and had decided to sit down on the deck for a breather. That's when we noticed that Roary was acting even more strange. He was pacing the outskirts of the yard and then would stop, lie down, and gag. This behaviour continued for a good hour. Eventually it started to get worse and he started trying to crawl underneath the deck. At that point we both knew that something was really, really wrong. I typed some of his symptoms into Google to try and figure out what it might be. One recommendation was to check his gums to see if they were pink or white. Alex checked and they were white - not good at all.
Since it was a Sunday evening at 9 pm, we had to contact an on-call emergency vet. After describing Roary's symptoms we were told that we should bring him in as soon as possible. Unfortunately the only animal hospital that was open was an over 30 minute drive away. We called Cooper's grandma to come and stay with him while we packed up our sick pup.
After an examination and blood work it was recommended that Roary have an x-ray of his stomach. By that time it was after midnight. Once the x-ray was finished she brought us into a dark room to show us the x-ray and share the horrible news. Roary had a life-threatening condition called Gastric Dilation and Volvulus. Basically his stomach was swollen, twisted, and cutting off circulation to his vital organs. She shared that the condition is almost always fatal if left untreated for too long and would require emergency surgery. She also shared that most pet owners choose not to put their dogs through the surgery - as the survival rate is not great and the cost of the surgery is very, very high.
She gave us three choices: put  Roary to sleep right away to end his suffering, drive to Toronto (4+ hours away) to have emergency surgery performed by a dog surgeon, or have the emergency surgery done right then and there by her (the on-call vet who had never performed the surgery before). 
We absolutely were not ready to say goodbye to our little stinker. We made the difficult decision to put trust the on-call vet and try surgery, knowing that at any time during the surgery and up until seven days afterward, his body could shut down from all of the trauma.
The veterinarian was absolutely amazing. She worked on Roary until the wee hours of the morning and called us at 3:45 a.m. to let us know that he had made it through. He made it through!!!!! 
After the surgery, however, he wasn't recovering well in the hospital. It was recommended that we take him home to a familiar place to see if he would eat or drink which was critical for his recovery.
Shortly after getting home, Alex had to take a drive for special dog food. Our poor Roary was laying on his side in the back breakfast room with his eyelids drooping inches from his eyes and his tongue hanging out onto the floor. I thought at that moment that he was going to leave us. Cooper and I laid down on the floor next to him for almost an hour - petting him gently and telling him that he was a good boy. By the time Alex got home it seemed like he had taken a turn for the better. And now, almost eight months later, he is officially back to his old self - moping around most of the time and getting into mischief the rest.

We love you so much Roary! Thanks for beating the odds so that we get to be your doggy parents for a little bit longer. You're the best.

Simple Christmas Gift Wrapping


Friday, December 27, 2013

I had these grand plans for how I wanted to wrap all of our Christmas gifts this year. My plans involved lots of brown Kraft paper (I'm addicted), handmade gift tags, white ink, snowflake stamps, letter stamps, painted wooden snowflakes, white pompoms, and bells.
Then I went to Michael's and almost dropped dead when I saw the price-tag of all the supplies I would need. Seriously peoples, it was $18 for a snowflake stamp and almost $20 for a white ink pad! Since I didn't have any coupons with me I went home empty handed and decided to make do with what I had at home. Wah wah waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah.
I did end up buying two small rolls of brown, polka dot Kraft paper at Target as well as a few packages of coloured Kraft-paper-like wrapping paper at Homesense. I tried to wrap each gift a little bit differently. I took pictures of a few of them.


Maybe if I save up my allowance I can get the snowflake stamps next year. ;)

Merry Christmas, Friends


Thursday, December 26, 2013

Oh yeah. Christmas is awesome.
Happy holidays to all of my cute blog friends. You are nice. And I hope you got lots of presents. ;) 

Clockwise from Top Left:
Coopaloops is in all kinds of love with his gift from Santa. It's the Hape All Season House - Unfurnished. We almost ordered it from Amazon but ended up finding it at Homesense a few weeks before Christmas - and I had a friends and family coupon for 30% off! (Currently there is a family of bubble guppies living in the house, LOL.)
I made a giant mess of our dining room table with craft supplies. I haven't even cleaned it up yet. It's a good thing we took a break from hosting Christmas dinner this year. It would have been a little awkward for people to eat on top of craft punches. Oh how I love craft punches. 
Coops helped me with all of my wrapping and decorating this year. He and I inspected the Christmas lights to find out why some were burnt out. It turns out that after about a half hour of fiddling around (and getting super frustrated) I realized that they were our old outdoor lights and not our new indoor lights. Oh. That would explain why they were covered in mud.
I found the cutest Christmas pajamas at The Superstore this year. Cooper passed out at Grandma and Grandpa's house after a few too many late nights and oh so much Christmas excitement.
We had our tree up and decorated a week before the big day. I'm telling you it was a Christmas miracle! We switched things up and got a Fraser Fir instead of a Scotch Pine. It's really pretty. I was mad at myself for letting the water go dry the other day (and subsequently killing the tree) but as we were watching a Christmas movie later that night we heard mysterious slurping noises. Busted! It turns out it was Lexie drinking all of the water from the tree stand. Silly dog.
I'm really happy with how my Christmas wrapping turned out this year. I left the tags blank in hopes that I would get around to stamping the names with my cute stamper-thingie. Didn't happen though. I ended up scribbling the names on (okay it was perfect teacher printing) with a pen on Christmas Eve. Oh well, at least it was my favourite Sharpie Pen. ;)
P.S. How was your Christmas?
P.P.S. What did Santa bring your toddler? Inquiring minds want to know..... ;)

Caramel Apple Dip & Our Tree is Up (Sort Of)


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

This is the easiest recipe ever. It's great for those times when you sign up to bring something to a party, leave it to the last minute, and then don't have time to cook or bake anything. All you need is a few simple ingredients and you're good to go.
P.S. I tried this dip at a party a few years ago and kept meaning to make it ever since. I don't know why I waited so long since it's a) heavenly and b) healthy (apples are a fruit you know).
- One large tub of cream cheese (500 g)
- 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
- Prepared caramel sauce
- Skor bits
- 6-8 Granny Smith apples
- 1 tbsp. lemon juice
1. Bring cream cheese to room temperature. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese with brown sugar until smooth and creamy. Spread onto cute plate or tray.
2. Melt caramel sauce according to package directions and pour over the cream cheese.
3. Sprinkle Skor bits over top of the caramel.
4. Cut up apples into uniform wedges and arrange b-e-a-u-t-i-f-u-l-l-y on your cute plate.
5. Brush some lemon juice on the apples slices to keep them from turning brown.
In other news, we have our Christmas tree and it's (sort of) up!!! It looks great from one spot in the living room. However from all other angles it looks waaaaaay crooked. (Even with ten shims under two out of three stand legs.) The poor hubs has to empty the water out of the tree stand, lug the tree back outside, re-cut the stump, and try again. What a nice treat for him when he gets home from work today. Tee hee! Aren't real Christmas trees the best!?!?!?!

A Round-Up of Pretty, White Ornaments


Friday, December 13, 2013

Even though our Christmas tree isn't up yet (it's on the to-do list)(maybe we'll go tonight)(if we don't freeze to death)(it's -30 here tonight)(yikes) I can still picture how I'd like to decorate it this year. Simple and rustic with a little bit of white.
Here is a collection of white ornaments that I'm crushing on right now. I won't be getting any of these this year - but it's still fun to add them to my online shipping cart, hee hee.

Ceramic House Ornaments - Crate and Barrel
White Art Glass Ball Ornaments - Crate and Barrel
Bone China Ornaments - Crate and Barrel
Polar Bear Ornaments - Crate and Barrel
Which one is your favourite? Mine is the vintage metal cottage - obviously! ;)

Simple DIY Wooden Snowflake Garland


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Right now I'm sipping an afternoon coffee while my little monkey is snoozing away in his crib. And I'm doing a little happy dance because I finished a little Christmas craft! And it's cute! And I put it up before December 24th!
A few years ago I made a really simple bell garland. I still love it but alas it is buried in one of those giant blue Rubbermaid totes in the basement. Oh, the basement. 
So, I was inspired to make another one. My requirements were:
- it had to be natural looking
- it had to be inexpensive
- it had to be simple
- it had to be white, green, or brown
I started out with three packages of wooden snowflakes from Lowes. They came in packages of six for 3.99. Score! (Anything less than $5 is practically free in my opinion.)(Just kidding honey!)


While I knew that spray-painting the snowflakes would probably be the easiest, I opted to try using leftover wall paint and a paintbrush. Not the brightest idea I've ever had. It took about three hours to paint one snowflake and the paint was way too sloppy and gloppy to get into all of the little nooks and crannies.  

So, I unwillingly busted out the spray-paint. It reminded me of how much I hate that stuff. Even using a mask I got the worst headache ever and am pretty sure that I killed about half of my brain cells. The only good part about spray-painting was that it took like, two minutes to paint them all and only ten minutes to dry per side.

I really wanted the snowflakes to lay flat against my giant entryway mirror so I opted to string the twine through the centre of each snowflake rather than just hang them from the tiny pre-drilled holes at the top of each one. It worked like a charm. 

I only used six snowflakes for this little garland so I have quite a few left. I think I might use the extras to make little snowflake napkin rings. If I don't get around to that I can always just hang them on the tree! Note to self: go and get Christmas tree.
P.S. Cooper is up from his nap and says hi.
Sharing Here:
Whatever Goes Wednesday @ Someday Crafts
From Dreams to Reality @ The DIY Dreamer
Work It Wednesday @ The Happie Housie
Power of Paint Party @ Domestically Speaking
Tutorials and Tips Link Party @ Home Stories A to Z
Inspiration Gallery Link Party @ Design, Dining, and Diapers

The Cutest Metal Bucket You Ever Did See


Saturday, December 7, 2013

My Aunt has the cutest galvanized bucket on wheels.  She found it at an antique store in Muskoka - where everything is really pretty and really expensive. She bought it for her cottage - to hold water in the sauna. It is one cute tub and I've never been able to hide my insane jealousy. I pretty much whine and cry about how I wish it were mine every time I see it. Yes, I know, I often behave like a very small child.
Anywhoooo, you wanna know what my crazy awesome Aunt did?!? She found a similar bucket on Ebay and bought it for me as a present a few months ago when we almost bought a cottage.

{Oh wait, I didn't tell you the story about how we almost bought our very own cottage?!? Oh, but I will!}

I. Love. It. I haven't decided exactly what I'm going to do with it yet - I'm thinking a planter for one of my indoor trees. (There will be no photo-shoots of that anytime soon. By accident I forgot to water my new Magnolia tree.)(Then I practically drowned it.)(It's looking pretty pitiful.)(Oopsie.)

Back to the cute bucket. It has subtle numbers etched all along the front (although they are hard to see in the photo). And wheels. Cute, cute, cute wheels.

P.S. Cooper loves pushing it around the house and throwing things inside. I found his little firefighter guy in there this morning. :)

I Bought Two Really Expensive Shelves By Accident


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

This wasn't one of those times when I got home and told Alex that 20 items "accidentally" ended up in my cart during a trip to Homesense.

This online purchase was really and truly an accident.

I think I mentioned awhile back that I've been doing some family photo sessions as a hobby and earning a little bit of extra spending money. I've pretty much earned the title of the world's most indecisive person because I still haven't been able to choose or decide on a single thing to splurge on for the house.  
Instead, I like to pretend shop online for expensive things. For the last little while I've been eyeing these shelves from Pottery Barn:

I thought the shelves might look good on the last empty section of wall in our dining room.
Yesterday I got an email in my inbox that said FREE SHIPPING ON EVERYTHING from Pottery Barn. Being from Canada I was a little bit wary and decided to investigate to see if the free shipping would apply to me as well.
I added the shelves to my cart (for fun). I entered my info. I entered the discount code. Then...... I hit the 'next' button. I guess I've been doing too much shopping at other online stores (like Gap Kids and Amazon) because I was certain that there would be a final page to review my order before committing.
Nope. When I hit 'next' I got quite the surprise. It said thank you for my order and my purchase would be shipped in 7-10 business days.
Well, At least I can't be indecisive about dining room shelves anymore.

P.S. It's a good thing that I selected the right size.

P.P.S. No free shipping.

P.P.P.S. I could've DIYed some shelves but I'm pretty much lazy now.

P.P.P.P.S. It was really fun explaining what I did to my husband.

P.P.P.P.P.S. Don't look at the price of those shelves. Ouch.
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