Wednesday, December 30, 2015

{52 Snapshots of Life} Week 52: Peace

The past week has not been a great one for me. While I've been battling some health stuff all year, it's really been coming to head lately. This has made the holidays somewhat hard to enjoy. It has also made it difficult to get out for runs with Henri, which is often times the best part of my day

Yesterday, I had some tests which came back clear. I also had a day where I felt 90 percent. Today, while I felt 70 percent, I decided that was good enough for a run, so out we went, into the cold, for a run. 

Henri was pretty excited. He kept looking up at me, long enough to trip himself up because he wasn't watching where he was going. It's always good to get out for a run after time off, but having some good news gave me a little extra motivation. Sometimes it just feels good to run. A few fluttering snowflakes added an extra element of enjoyment. It was happiness all around.

Bonus kisses after the run. Here's to hoping that more good news follows more doctors appointments or at least better feeling days so I can be where I want to be and do what I want to do.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

{52 Snapshots of Life} Week 51: Friend

I had two options for this week's photo; a picture of us running with our friends or just Henri and I. Well, it's cold and we don't get to run with our friends very often, so, I guess it's just me an Henri, as it should be.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

{52 Snapshots of Life} Week 50: Neighbor

I'm going to cheat on this one a little in that I'm going to use multiple pictures and I didn't take any of them.

This time of year is about giving back. Henri's stops to see Santa each give back to some dogs in need in the community - our neighbors. I call it Santa Tour 2015.

Our first stop was to see Santa and his elf in support of Hospice Hearts. An organization providing care and foster homes of pets with terminally ill owners or at owner's passing. They were able to raise $300 to help care for these pets in transition. 

Henri's recent run in with our actual neighbor-dog has made him, understandably, even more apprehensive around dogs, but also strangers. I guess that includes Santa, so I am making more appearances in these pictures than originally intended.

Our second stop on Santa Tour 2015 was to benefit MARS Pet Rescue and Snap Cat, two more area rescues. Over 70 pups were photographed, including one that that was adopted from MARS Pet Rescue. Some of the proceeds also went to Crisis Nursery Pregnancy Center, so babies and puppies benefited from these pictures.

Next stop, our annual pictures to benefit the local Humane Society. Funny thing, squeaky toys get the attention of Santa and the owners, too, but this picture was cuter.

Lastly, pictures to benefit our friends at PetNet, another local foster organization. Henri also donated some of his toys he no longer plays with to give to some of the dogs in foster care while they wait for their forever home. Maybe he will eventually be able to share his home, too. Henri thinks that idea is hilarious!

We made good use of our ugly outfits from this years run since I worked so hard on them. Henri made sure that you could see my skirt and the back of his sweater. Santa wasn't sure what to think.

And just because I love my latest creation, Henri and I in our matching scarf and bandanna.

Christmas is around the corner! Hopefully, all of our dog friends in the area will get to enjoy the holiday a little more because Henri posed for some pictures with a scary guy with a beard!

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Feels So Good

After much rain, the cooler weather has come in (for now - it's supposed to warm up again next week. What!?) and we are loving it! The wind can be a little chilling, but other than that, this is our sweet spot. Anywhere in the thirty degree range is perfect! I can totally do the twenties, too. 

Don't get me wrong. I don't want the cold to stick around forever. I like the cold for running, that is it. The rest of the time you will find me sitting on top of a heater. I'm sure we are not going to see the end of Winter until May now, knowing Central Illinois. I'm just going to appreciate it while I can. It's a little harder to get psyched up for a run, sure, but it feels so good!

Yeah, I've become THAT person.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Sick Day(s)

Tuesday morning started out pretty much the same way most Tuesday mornings start out. I got up, fed Henri, let him outside and proceeded to get ready for work. Henri comes in from outside and realizes he is tracking in what I first thought was mud, later discovered in was poop, but that detail is not really that important to the story. Either substance that was tracked in, Henri came and set next to me, seemingly very nervous. I think that he's upset that he tracked something in or thinks I'm upset with him rather, which I am not. I hardly care at all, not even cleaning it up right away as I am getting ready to for. I look at him a moment later and he is salivating profusely, as if I am dangling a slice of pizza in front of him. This stirs me into action. I start talking to him, asking what is wrong, telling him it's okay that he dragged mud in, grab a paper towel to wipe off his mouth, then clean up the mud...oh yes, it's poop. He doesn't salivate any more, but he still sticks very close to me. I don't know what's wrong with him. I can't see anything. He isn't telling me anything. He's just not himself! 

I'm watching him as I continue to get ready to work, trying to decipher what he might be trying to tell me, but failing. The vet doesn't open for another hour and a half. I'm not taking him to the emergency vet. He's just being weird, even for a weird dog. I'm trying to decide what to do. He knows it's time for me to leave and he gets a treat when I leave. He's a dog of routine and he can get impatient. Now I don't know if he's being weird or if he's just waiting for me to leave. I wake my husband and one, I just woke him up. He isn't thinking clearly, but he does mention that Henri might have swallowed part of a squeaker after I went to bed (This is why I have rules about playing with certain toys unsupervised!) Okay, but he ate fine, he's just being weird. Maybe he is just waiting for me to leave, so I went to work, giving him his much anticipated treat and trying not to choke on my tears as I say 'good-bye'. (Yes, I made sure to say, "I love you." That's probably what killed me.)

I start getting texts shortly after getting to work. He is still acting weird. He is staying close by, but still, that's all he's doing. So, I call the vet and, of course, there isn't much they can do without seeing him and even then, are they going to be able to help? Who knows, but now I'm going home and getting him, taking him to the vet and staying with him for the morning until my husband can get some work to work on from home. The vet checks him out, says to watch for vomiting and gives us some anti-nausea medicine.

Despite the beautiful mid-fifties weather, no run, obviously.

By Tuesday evening, Henri is much more himself. He eats fine, he isn't throwing up and he wants to play with his toys. Possible crisis averted.

Strange noises in the middle of the night are coming from Henri's bed, but he must have been dreaming. As soon as we say his name, the noises stop.

Wednesday morning, Henri seems to be better. the daily routine starts and Henri is whining at me, like I cannot move fast enough to get to feeding him. This isn't exactly abnormal, but it makes much more sense when I walk downstairs to find that he has thrown up overnight (He's hungry!) and there, in two humongous pieces, is the squeaker. The whole squeaker (minus the little part that always pops out, which I find is actually the only part that was found after Henri may have eaten some squeaker)! Well, at least it's out. Feed me, Seymour! - says Henri.

Another beautiful day, and Henri had been so spy the night before, I'm planning on a run. I get home and start to change, telling Henri we're going for a run. This is the whole point of this story. I tell him, "We're going on a run! Do you want to go on a run? Do you feel okay? If you don't, that's okay. You just have to tell me and we will not go on a run." Henri gets up on the bed, lies down and looks sad. Okay. I asked. He said no. Why couldn't he have told me what was wrong the day before this easily? I'm just amazed at how well he communicates (and how well I listen. Come on, I get some of the credit)! 

He must have felt better today. He was up for a run. We were able to go out for a run, in the 60 degree weather in the middle of December. What!? 

Monday, December 7, 2015

{52 Snapshots of Life} Week 49: Bokeh

One (and probably the only) perk of running in the dark is the Christmas lights. It gets darker earlier and given that half of our runs in a week occur around or after 5pm, we are caught in the darkness. The Christmas lights bring...well, Christmas cheer! And they light the streets pretty well, too. That comes in handy!

Speaking of Christmas lights, I put up our Christmas Tree this weekend. I don't know why I love these cotton-headed lights so much. They just raise my blood pressure every time I try to put them on the tree. It usually starts out fine, the teases, and half-way through, BAM! A light bulb burns out and blows the fuse of every strand of lights connected to it. Every single time I get going, and that's if the strand lights up at all. I marked some boxes with blue post-it's but I don't remember what that meant so I guess that didn't help.

So, I planned my task of putting up the tree around going on a run, which I was sure I was going to need either during or after putting on the lights. I should have just worn my running clothes. I would have been ready to go. I planned on taking some pictures of us running by some of the houses while I destressed, but then a happy accident happened. Henri, waiting ever so patiently for the inevitable run, lay in the middle of the lights. He was so adorable! I decided to use a picture of that instead of stressing myself out by trying to get a picture of us in the dark and just use the run for what it was meant for. Getting away from my Christmas Tree! Oh, cursed OCD! The tree does look fantastic when I'm done, if I do say so myself. I suppose I will keep these lights as long as I can buy new fuses