Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Anyone else feel this? If you were wondering where specifically I lived, it must be exactly at the epicenter! Lotsa shaking going on and I felt and aftershake.

Oh, in 2001 we were at the epicenter of another quake where stuff fell off the walls and some potted plants broke, but hardly anyone noticed it except the people in my immediate neighborhood and Beverly Hills to the north. I remember it because it freaked me out, but then September 11 happened and it seemed insignificant.

Any time there's an earthquake in this part of the world I always freak out a little bit because I'm not sure if it's a huge quake and we're feeling the tail end, or just a little one we're in the middle of. When I said I like being in the center of all the action, this isn't what I meant!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

in limbo

So many changes are going on around here!

First of all, i was supposed to have my trial on Monday, finally, for the civil case for the car accident i was in, back in 2005. Someone hit me in a rear-end accident and I messed up my neck and then their insurance wouldn't pay even though she was at fault, so I had to sue. What ended up happening is that the court had scheduled a bunch of trials at the same time as ours, and evidently they do this since a high percentage of cases settle. One trial was still going on, though, and using the courtroom at the same time. Then they were supposed to have us go tomorrow instead but that didn't happen. Then next week the court is closed, the week after, the other side has a trial, and it ended up being rescheduled for 7/21. So, I'm supposed to "relax" and all that crap, and not think about it much, but yet not forget all of the things I'm supposed to remember! And it was over 3 years ago, soI had to do a lot of refreshing my memory by reading my medical records & bills. And we had to do a lot of arranging for Ryan to take time off from his new job to be with Lauren, and my mom to come up to watch her, etc. Not to mention, of course our own time is valuable but we have witnesses who need to be rescheduled who twice cleared their calendars needlessly for this case and now must do it again.
So, that's going on and is still not settled or finished yet. Lots of tension and worrying and anxiety. I still hadn't picked what I was going to wear yet, even, to testify. Jenna came over and helped me with some outfits which were suit type stuff but then I was advised that they were too dressy and I needed to be "oh, look like yourself, if you were getting a little dressed up and, say, going out with friends, but nothing too flashy or low cut or bright colors". Everything feels like a homework assignment!

The other big thing is that Lauren finally FINALLY got in to daycare and will start on Monday, July 7. She will be going 3 mornings a week to start. We've been to visit the school a few times now and she gets very excited about it and has a great time. Yesterday morning we went, and while I was filling out paperwork in the office, she played outside in the playyard and told me "I played! With kids! And a nice lady read me a Clifford book. But there wasn't any pizza." The previous time we'd visited, they were serving pizza for lunch. After that she called it "the pizza school". Sadly for her, it's not pizza every day.

Lauren and I have been sick, and actually I was worried about it because I lost my voice over the weekend and was wondering how I would be able to speak in court audibly. We're both feeling much better, no more fever, but still getting coughing fits and tiring more easily. Well, I tire more easily. Lauren cranks more easily.

Ryan started his new job in Santa Monica last week (can it only have been last week?! feels like forever ago!) and is loving the 6 mile commute each way instead of the 17 mile one, but missing his old office routine a bit.

We of course, all still miss Jake. His ashes came via Fedex, which I find funny because he used to always bark and snarl at the FedEx man. He would have hated to be carried by that guy! I couldn't figure out what to do with his ashes so I put the box in the kitchen, right where his kennel used to be, and I felt better to have him where he belonged. Then I moved it, it looked silly there so now it's on top of the bookshelf.

I'm doing much better about my grief. Crying so much the first few days after he died helped me process it. Of course, I'm still sad and will always miss him but it's not a sharp gut-wrenching, tear-jerking kind of missing him, it's more of a nostalgic, wistful missing him. We have sad little moments, like when his friend Cooks (a collie) came bounding up the steps to look for Jake to play, while Lauren & I were in the front yard where Jake usually accompanied us. I had to explain to his owner what happened. And we still think we see Jake out of the corner of our eye, or go to stand up and feel afraid we'll step on him (he used to curl up right by my feet).

We've also noticed that the kitchen floor is a lot dirtier without our busboy dog to catch table scraps! And we have more birds now, and bolder squirrels who come right up to the patio glass and bury peanuts in my plants. I donated a giant 40 pound bag of dog food we bought last month, to the rescue group where we got him, and I dispersed treats to his neighborhood dog friends. Cooks the dog got a bunch of chicken strips and Pongo got vitamins and chew bones.

Anyway, we are hanging in here, now you're caught up!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

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RIP Jakey Quakey the best dog ever

I'm so sorry to tell you this but Jake died tonight. We had him put to sleep at City of Angels. This morning he refused to go for his walk, so Ryan's mom (who is visiting) was going to walk him later, then he wet the bed. Then he refused to drink his water, and was trembly and in the evening he had shallow breaths and was more tired and clingy than usual. Ryan and I took him to the vet and his gums were white, so they gave him a blood transfusion and oxygen and told us they thought he was bleeding internally. They thought that probably the cancer had spread to his liver or one of his internal organs, and he was bleeding there. They said if we had not brought him in, he probably would have died at home tonight gasping for breath. So we made the decision to put him sleep. He got an extra spring in his step from the blood transfusion, then he was let into the room with us and licked us and we petted him and said thank you to him and goodbye. They had brought in a blanket and he rested on the blanket and in my arms and was very peaceful.

We are still in shock over it, we were hopeful about the special diet and cancer drugs and thought we'd have more time with him. I wish I had one more trip to the dog park with him and one more cuddle sleeping next to him. The worst part about going through this is that he is always licking my tears when I'm sad and now he's not here to do it.

The above is from an email I wrote a few minutes ago to the founder of the rescue group we got Jake from. For those that do not know me or are reading this by mistake, Jake was my English pointer mix, furry firstborn child. We adopted him in 2004, when he was 7 years old. He became my baby, my little shadow, guardian angel, licker of tears, defender of squirrels and labrador retrievers, cleaner-upper of table scraps.

When we had Lauren, we worried about whether he would be good with kids. He wasn't just good with her, he was absolutely angelic. He suffered getting bitten by her, his fur pulled, his tail yanked, his ears pinched, his eyes poked, etc. In fact, when he got his first cancer tumor, we were hoping Lauren had somehow gouged him in the nose when we weren't looking. It must be said, Lauren also kissed, petted and doled out many treats and crumbs from many messy meals. He used to lick her and make her giggle and he's always be near her. Once when she was a baby and I took a shower while she napped, she woke up and cried. Jake came to the bathrooom and scratched at the shower door-which he'd never done before-so that I'd know she needed me.

It's late at night as I type this. I'm sobbing and it's made worse by the memory of another time a few years ago when I had another tragic loss and Jake used to stay awake by my side, following me even into the bathroom, nudging his hose under my chin, licking my tears as if to say "chin up, you can get through this". And I know I will get through this loss of him, too. But how I wish he were here to help me through it.

Rest in peace my little doggy love, my angel, my jakey quakey little shakey bakey. Mommy loves you.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Sweet! a 26 month Lauren update

Lauren's been very sweet this past month. She loves giving out compliments and saying nice things about people. "You a nice guy, Papa"and "pretty Mama", etc. She's learned to say"sorry" when she hurts people, and makes a sympathetic pout face with big eyes when she says it, at the same time sticking out her hand with her thumb in front in a "who, slow down" kind of gesture.

She's not just talking a lot more but remembering lots of details even I'd forgotten. She had a 2 year old playdate one day and I was telling my mom about it but I'd forgotten the name of the little boy she decided she was going to marry. Lauren said "Zachary" and then told me "remember? Thomas was there? And Anna? And we played?". This was 3 weeks ago and she only met those kids once!

We decided it was time she saw a full length movie, so we rented "The Sound of Music" and I sat and watched it with her. She calls it "the kids dancing movie" and she wanted to watch it over and over again. When we had to return it to Hollywood Video and explained that it was back at the store, she looked at me like I was dense and said "Well go back there and get it again!"

She's taken quite a renewed interest in Paco the fish and she insists everyone go and "talk to Paco. You tell Paco something." We all get bored of this game pretty fast. This week Paco's got a friend visiting-our neighbor Sandra asked us to watch her beta fish, Simon. He's in a separate bowl on the same bookshelf as Paco.

Jake's had a lot of health problems this month (more in another post) and Lauren refuses to entertain the thought that he's sick. "He's fine. The doctor fix him." And Lauren herself is sick right now, with croup/cold. She was thrilled to go to the doctor, who she describes as "nice lady. She helps me get better like Jake's doctor helps him."

And on Saturday, the big first-Lauren had her first haircut. She has been going around saying "the doctor cuts your hair off!" (now that I think about it, she might get that idea because Jake's fur is shaved for the IV after his surgeries) and we explained, that it is not a doctor but a hairdresser. She didn't want to go, but I told her it was a special place for ladies to go and that piqued her interest. She loves being a lady and a "girly-girl" and being around other grown-up ladies. We do "ladies having tea" at Akasha or Casino Bakery or other places nearby aboutonce a week and it's her favorite treat.

Anyway, back to the haircut, she got about 1 inch trimmed,and we saved the curls for her scrapbook (or what would be one if I were into that sort of thing)