Food for Me and Thee

Pray for Paris, for Beirut, for Baghdad, for countries absorbing the refugees from the Middle East. Pray for us all as we seek to rid the world of this evil….

Sometimes, I realize just how blessed I am. Last week, I ran out of food. I “eat” through a stomach tube and normally get a shipment of food every month. I was two months ahead, so we put it on hold to use up what I had….and then, because I was accustomed to the comfort and routine of my shipments being on time, I forgot it wasn’t….till I saw I only had two cans of food left (TwoCalHN, if anyone is interested). A computer glitch ditched a number of us who had “holds” on….and thus, we ran out. A local pharmacy could have a case in the next day…but didn’t. So, I used an off the counter substitute…and felt hungry. Now, some days, I only eat twice a day. This is not a pleasant way to eat….and some days, I can barely face it. Yet, when the convenience was removed, I was HUNGRY.  Interesting psychological reaction….am eating just fine now, thank you.

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My reaction to my food is not unlike the reaction to my delivered dog food. I buy the best food on the market for my dogs every two weeks. In the meantime, I cut it with a lesser grade food (though still a good food: believe me, there is no Ol’ Roy nor Beneful for my dogs). I ran out…hmm, seems to be a theme these past couple weeks. So, I bought two well-regarded foods (but not as good as my standard, IMHO) to use while we waited. The dogs did fine…except for Annie, who developed a bout of GI distress. I don’t think it was from the food. I don’t know from what it was. She spent a night on IVs at the vet’s, home with a soft food and meds, and is doing 100% better. Plus, our normal food was delivered. I always feel so much better, knowing I have their best food here….and need to remember to buy a support bag so we don’t run out…

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Our favorite dog food – we change types regularly plus add different food to give a change-up for better nutrition. I also add raw and soft food to help medicine go down as well as give a delicious punch to dry kibble.

The Dogs’ Week

I’ve spent more time at the vet these past 4 days almost than at home. Love my vet and techs, but enough is enough. Today, my Annie Beagle, the “Energiz-Her,” is there for the day after a night of vomiting phlegm, and then blood. Saturday, I spent the morning with Remi, my pocket Beagle, after he sustained a shoulder wound most likely in the melee when neighbor dogs were visiting. Yesterday, I “only” needed better medicine for Ellie Mae, my Bloodhound, whose arthritis is really becoming a problem..oh, and more heart meds for Archie the Tyrant.

Annie is my only true
Annie is my only true “free” dog. Her finder/rescuer said and has followed through that she would pay for vetting throughout her life if I adopted her. She is a splendid, opinionated, affectionate Beagle.
Remi (short for Remington) or Bug, as I call him, is doing well with his stitched wound.
Remi (short for Remington) or Bug, as I call him, is doing well with his stitched wound.
Ellie Mae Bloodhound likes to supervise and keep the smaller, younger dogs in line. She thinks Remi is her
Ellie Mae Bloodhound likes to supervise and keep the smaller, younger dogs in line. She thinks Remi is her “boy toy.”
Archie is a senior Rat Terrier who almost died but was saved by his ACO and vet. He is all BOSS and sometimes, can be quite the hand-full for an 11# dog.
Archie is a senior Rat Terrier who almost died but was saved by his ACO and vet. He is all BOSS and sometimes, can be quite the hand-full for an 11# dog.

By the grace of God, we’ve had very good weather these 4 days I’ve been off work. Tomorrow, we get wind, rain, and possibly tornadoes, right when I go back for a long stint of 12 hr night shifts. Trying to get a lot done in this last day of calm, sunny weather.

P.S. Just heard from my vet. Annie is not doing well. Hopefully, bloody gastritis which can be handled, but she is much more sick than I thought this morning. By the time I arrived to see her, Annie was wagging her tail,  I stroked her neck which she loves, and she licked my nose, her “signature.” She’ll stay overnight, at least, with her IV.

Over 2,000 year…

Over 2,000 years ago, our Lord left his heavenly throne to join us at the table of our humanity. He became our friend and kept us company. He was God in our midst.

~ Nancy Jo Sullivan blogs at NancyJoSullivan.com

Taking time out from the hustle and bustle of Advent…to enjoy the purpose of this season, and one another.

Struggle

I am a lazy person. Getting up for church should be a joyous occasion, yet I struggle. I always have a good time once I’m there, but it’s the effort. I’m not saying it’s “the Devil” or anything like that. I just wonder why. After all these years, after all this faith, why do I struggle going to corporate worship in my later years?

That’s all. It bothers me.

 

Juggling Dogs

I looked up the definition of sequestration. I’ve been separating dogs for a week and wanted to be sure my context was correct. I was wrong – it’s all about debt or withholding of funds, etc. It sounded so good.

Part One – Intact Male named Crimson:

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Crimson, now also known as the Red Baron, is a very nice, male dog with Beagle, Lab, and various other breeds in his background. He came to us with a hunting collar on, in good flesh, and won’t leave. Oh, he leaves, but over the porch and then quickly back. He is in the final week of heart worm treatment. He is intact, He can make puppies, which,  until last week, was not a problem….

Part Two – Peanut, Intact Female in heat:

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Peanut is a senior Weim/Lab mix. She is the short hair dog with golden Weimaraner fur of the previous poem. Peanut is heart worm negative; however, she has multiple mammary tumors from being frequently bred. I don’t want puppies…..

Part Three – Lucy, Intact Female Beagle in heat:

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Lucy is very heart worm positive with a massive, pendulous mammary tumor. She came with Ricky Beagle, and I had Ethel, a Beagle puppy who since is adopted. Ricky was also heavily heat worm positive. He was neutered; he did not tolerate the surgery, the anesthesia, or the heart worm med given; he declined and went to Heaven in my arms. I elected to not spay Lucy even though she could be pregnant. She was not – and she, too, is again in a heat along with Peanut…..

Part Four – Sophie Tucker, Spayed Female Beagle:

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Sophie arrived two weeks ago. She is charming…she is an escape artist. Her first few days here were fine since, when I was home, she stayed home. Then she followed? found her way? up and over the chain link fence, and down the highway. She is now kept up when I’m not home in a crate or, preferably, the Front Room.

Jugglers have nothing, NOTHING, over a Beagle Sanctuary with intact dogs, two of whom are in heat, one of whom could effectively make puppies, and one who doesn’t quite get the concept of “home.” The girls are in a hallway most of the day; Crimson is outside or in a crate; Sophie is in the Front Room or on a leash with me.

I’m trying to attend to all 20 dogs and juggle those who need separation (see, “sequestration” sounds so much better and is in the news) without losing one.

I’ll let you know in another week if I’m successful. Crimson already hooked up with Peanut once. I’m praying hard for no pregnancy…and furiously juggling.

Other Worlds, Other Peoples

Nichols as Lieutenant Uhura.
Nichols as Lieutenant Uhura. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In her most recent program, “On Exoplanets and Love,” of On Being, Krista Tippett makes, to me, a startling observation – that, should we find life on other planets, the find would negate our view and reverence for God.

I may need to edit my assertion, but I heard something similar and was astounded.

I grew up a Sci Fi fan (not SyFy!) and a devotee of the original Star Trek series, of which there was a program that, indeed, on an M class planet, evidence of Son worship was noted, but not the Sun, as clarified by Lt. Uhura, but the Son of God. Of course, God would offer salvation to any and all who are in need, or, perhaps, we are the only sinners. How can finding or even the possibility of sentient life on other planets or galaxies threaten our belief in God?

I plan to listen to this program again tonight. Sometimes, I offend people by insisting God is asexual/without gender. A good friend asserted to me “God is a man.” He is also a woman depicted by the creation of Eve and the evidence of the feminine Wisdom in the wisdom literature and the Holy Spirit.

God tells us “my thoughts are not your thoughts nor my ways your ways.” We have NO CLUE of the true majesty of God. I believe – and certainly others, who may look and be very different from us, surely also believe. Jesus had “other sheep.” To me, they were those on other planets. God bringing salvation not only to our world but to the whole of Creation fills me with awe and humility.

Inspired by WP

What was the one experience that completely changed your life? What happened? How did it change your life?

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I didn’t go to college out of high school. Despite a double scholarship offer (German and English) plus state paid (disability) tuition, I was/am so introverted I couldn’t imagine how I would pay for room and board away from home. Instead, I went to a business school, majored in medical assistant, and took a job as a surgery technician (now operating room tech). My new boss was so impressed by my resume, she asked if there was anyone else in my class interested in moving out with me and three others came along.

After working  in Gordon, NE for a year, I found a position in my new home town still as a surgery tech, a job I loved. After a few years, when I was very unofficially the “head” tech, an anesthetist told me I should do more. Looking back, I wish I would have said, “Yes, but am not yet sure what…” and kept working while I explored.

I went to nursing school and again short-changed myself because of my perceived need for hands on education, went to a diploma school and not a baccalaureate program.

I’ve been employed ever since – worked up to a nurse manager, helped design and furnish a new unit, moved back to staff nurse after cancer (again) and am retiring in about 5-7 years. I’m beginning a float position, which means I’ll move throughout the hospital where I’m needed on night shifts, 8 hrs instead of 12 hrs, and full-time at top of the scale.

In retrospect, despite wishing things different, I realize God was in charge, putting me in a field for which, in high school, I had no desire and showing me how to share my gifts in a difficult and stressful environment.

Priest’s Prayer

A Prayer for God’s Will
Loving God, we pray that your will for us and for Christ Church be done. Rid our minds of personal goals and expectations, doubts and fears so that we may be vessels for your will and your expectations. We pray that your will for Christ
Church is made manifest to us, and give us the courage to carry out your will whatever it is. We ask this through your
Son, Jesus Christ, who always lived out your will in his life. Amen.

We have an interim priest not just biding his time but pushing us as a congregation to think, and to PRAY. I share this prayer he asks us to pray. Thanks, Fr. Al. Image

Engage – 6: Multiplied

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This is an older draft, which I originally counted as 3 Engage encounters but am choosing to share as 1, wanting to spread out my Engages as much as possible.

Engage with life, people, dogs…what an active couple weeks I have to report:

  1. Several weeks ago, I went to breakfast early from work. I needed to take a dog to Safe Harbor so she could go to our Prison dog training program, Boothealers. A colleague came in early so I’d have plenty of time. Because I didn’t know how the day would go, I first headed to Panera to eat. I set myself up, saw a gentleman in “my” spot by the fire on this very cool morning; we nodded and I started eating. He soon left with all his stuff, so I moved over to his table. He, James, came back with his coffee and put it on “our” table. I apologized, saying I thought he had left. No, he said, I need to talk with you. Hmm….Turns out James is a cancer survivor, too, now living with the chronic condition of survivorship. He spent 9 months using a PEG (stomach tube) to eat as I do. What a blessing. We talked and shared “war” stories. He is in town temporarily for his job, also works night shifts, and was on his way to bed when he saw me eating. He had to talk to me about his experience, his dire prognosis, and his triumph through and during a grueling time of radiation and chemotherapy. His family kept him going: he determined to walk his at that time 9 y/o daughter down the aisle at her wedding and to grow old with his wife. YESH. (update: the dog I took to prison is adopted!)
  2. The following night, I attended, at the invitation of my friend Alice, an Easter pageant. It was well done in the dark, with the events leading to the Crucifixion and Resurrection highlighted, including Jesus at 12 y/o talking with the elders of the Synagogue in Jerusalem. Costumes, an elaborate and multifunction stage set, as well as an SRO crowd added to the drama, the truth, and the deep felt sacrifice of this season.
  3. The next week, I traded shifts to help out a nurse at work, which turned out to help me out as well, giving me the most important days of Holy Week off. I attended Maundy Thursday, after which a friend told me I was probably the only person to have my feet washed after being in cowboy boots; Good Friday, always a wrenching service when the reality, as much as we can comprehend, comes forth of the pain, reluctance, obedience, and love of Christ to suffer and die for us.
  4. Holy Saturday – no church but wow, busy in the morning/afternoon:
  • With two volunteers, took 3 Silverwalk dogs on the Cape Canine Cruisers Saturday morning dog walk. The volunteers took two new dogs with other dogs/owners and a trainer who is available to help. I deliberately stayed behind with my dog, Justus. I didn’t want the new shyer Beagles walking with the volunteers to see me; they needed the socialization, stimulation of new people, lots of new smells/sights/sounds. They found me at the end. (Update: volunteers have since taken 2 dogs on consecutive Saturdays to the walk, which is growing. I done in by a bad cold and laryngitis).
  • Zoomed home to meet with potential adopters for Denali, a senior Border Collie. We met at a local park where they and their dog and I and Denali walked, talked, got to know each other and let the dogs feel each other out. Both are senior dogs not looking for a lot of activity. They since have indicated they want to adopt Denali – YESH, again.
  • THEN, with two different volunteers, took 3 dogs to an Easter egg hunt. Again, two Beagles (one, Bailey, had been on the walk in the morning, too; I wanted to tire her out because she climbs my chain link fence; very neatly and very quietly), her “sister”, Pearl, and the aged but very adoptable black and tan Coonhound, Walter. The women who had rescued Pearl and Bailey from the Poplar Bluff pound along with 25 other dogs, were volunteering and really wanted to see their girls. Walter worked the room, so to speak. He met everyone he could. Small children loved “that big dog!” He garnered many kisses.

5. and finally but crucially, I made it to Sunday late service Easter morning. I would have been on time had not a rabbit chose that morning to get into our yard; of course, it did not survive and I had to gather and dispose of the remains as I headed out the door.