photo p1_zpsc8a7232f.png  photo j2_zpsc3f43514.png  photo p2_zpse73671a0.png  photo j2_zpsc3f43514.png  photo p3_zps456abd62.png  photo j2_zpsc3f43514.png  photo p5_zps95486d0f.png  photo j2_zpsc3f43514.png  photo p4_zps481d5f13.png

Monday, November 29, 2021

Thanksgiving break and a photo op with a tree that we left on the mountain!

Happy Advent! I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving.  I know we did!

Our Thanksgiving weekend started on Tuesday. I picked Peter up after his last class. He was extremely  thankful and happy to be headed home for a very long weekend.

Sarah had swim practice on Tuesday night and then went out with some friends and spent the night so while I had Peter home and safe and sound under my roof, Sarah was gone!  Oh well.

Sarah had morning swim practice on Wednesday and when she got home, I took the kids to lunch. They picked Chipotle which was fine with me because I love a good burrito bowl. We also ran a few errands and I even at one point exclaimed, "It's just like the good old days!" because I was driving and they were passengers just like it always used to be.  I can't remember the last time it was just me driving both of them somewhere.  It was really nice.  (Jeez, how pathetic am I?) :)

I made a carrot cake, cranberry sauce, and a sweet potato casserole when we got done with our errands and before I knew it, it was Thanksgiving morning!

We headed to Mom's house around 12:00 and Jennifer and her family joined us and we feasted.  And I took zero pictures but Sarah sent me this cute one of her, Chey, Colton, and Peter:

I really wish they had taken a picture with Caity and Cody too because then we could compare it to this picture from Thanksgiving 2014:

Look at those baby faces!  Excuse me while I go she a few tears...

All right, I'm back.

We attempted to do our annual Thanksgiving evening Starbucks run but I guess everyone is giving their workers time off so none of the Starbucks around us were open.  But Sonic was open so the kids got shakes. 

We headed to the  mountains on Friday to get our Christmas tree.  We passed the crowded large tree farm and headed to the small, no-frills farm we've gone to for the past several years.  Sadly though, they haven't done a good job of replanting trees so the only trees left there are really tall.  We have 9 foot ceilings and need something under that to work in our house.  All the trees were taller than 9 feet so we made the executive decision to just take a picture in front of the trees and then headed to lunch.

Pretend, please, that this is our tree:

After lunch, we headed home and went to the closest already cut tree place and grabbed a reasonable sized tree from there.  Not as exciting as picking and cutting our own, but sometimes you have to pivot.  We'll find another no-frills pick and cut place in the mountains for next year.

Here are some pictures of us decorating the tree:


On Friday night, NC State played Carolina and you know we had to watch. Peter tried to get tickets but wasn't lucky in the student lottery so we watched from home.  And that turned out to be the best thing because he didn't want to have to drive back to Raleigh for the game, then drive back home for the rest of the weekend.  Although, he totally would have if he had gotten tickets. Anyway, it was a very tense and exciting game and thankfully NC State came out on top!  Whew!

On Saturday night we headed to Mass and then came home for dinner.  I made Philly cheese-steak sandwiches which are always a hit.  After dinner, Peter went to hang out with a bunch of friends and spent the night with them and Sarah went to hang out with one of her friends too.  

On Sunday, we had lunch at mom's, finished up Peter's laundry, and then headed back to Raleigh around 4:00.  We took a slightly longer route in hopes of avoiding all the post holiday traffic and thankfully, we did!  

And just like that, our long Thanksgiving weekend was over.  It was really nice having Peter home.  Today is his last day of class. Then they get two free days to study and then exams start.  He should be home early next week and will be home for A MONTH!  How exciting for me!

I will end with a  funny Peter story.  When he left for college I got him only one set of sheets for his dorm bed knowing he wasn't going to wash them very often (if ever). And I made sure to get them in a brown gray color to hide all the filth he would ultimately be sleeping in.

On the way back to Raleigh he started quizzing me about washing his sheets.  I recommended extra detergent and high heat because I knew they had to be pretty gross if he was going to wash them.  His main reason for not washing them was dreading making the bed back up and I don't blame him.  Making a bunk bed is a hassle. Well, I guess it was worth it because this morning he texted me that he really enjoyed sleeping in his clean sheets last night! So maybe he will wash them more frequently than once a semester! :)

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

It was his birthday and I got the present!

Peter is a rushing a fraternity so he has only been able to come home twice this semester and that was for Labor Day weekend and fall break. But, thankfully he was able to come home this past weekend because it was his NINETEENTH BIRTHDAY!!!

We were all so excited that he was able to come home and spend a few days with us.  He was excited to see us but  he really just needed to come home and relax.  College is stressful - especially when you aren't used to being on your own, have a roommate you don't like, are rushing a fraternity, and trying to keep up with class. 

I left early on Friday morning and picked him up.  We got home in time for a late lunch and he hung out.  Sarah had swim practice and when she got back from that and got ready, we all headed to dinner at Longhorn Steakhouse.  Longhorn is one of Peter's favorite restaurants and that's where he wanted to eat to celebrate his birthday. Later that evening, he and Sarah went for McFlurries and a long drive. They used to do this a lot the last couple of years and it was sweet that they did it this past weekend. 

Saturday was his actual birthday and he slept in. He got up and watched a little college football, helped my brother with a chore at his church and mostly just relaxed.  (And enjoyed the fact that someone else was doing his laundry!)

Saturday evening we all went to Mass and afterwards Dan and Peter headed to the NC State game.  They just so happened to be playing Wake Forest in Winston so of course, he wanted to go! Sarah and I had dinner at Taco Mama and came home and watched the game on TV.  NC State lost but it was a really good game.  

Peter's fraternity is doing No Shave November to raise funds for prostate cancer so that's why he's sporting a little beard. 

Before the game, Dan and Peter grabbed some burgers at Kermits and sent me this picture:

Can you spot the ghost cat?

Sarah and I had a tasty dinner at Taco Mama and I forced her to pose for this picture:

And, what's a post without a picture of Buddy?

We had Sunday lunch at mom's house where we had birthday cake and presents and then we headed back to Raleigh around 4:00. 

It was a fast weekend but it was so good to see my boy.  And he will be home soon for Thanksgiving and then we get him for a whole month at Christmas and I can't wait!

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Introducing Buddy

We have a new addition to the family and his name is Buddy! And just like every cat that we have ever owned (with the exception of Mikey whom I purchased circa 1996) we did not seek out this cat.  He found us, well,  in a round about way.

My brother, Brad drives a truck for a pallet shop.  And several of the men that work there, including my brother, have a soft spot for all the feral cats that hang out around the yard of the shop where they build/repair the pallets. These guys have been feeding these cats for years. And quite a few of them have gone home with the guys as pets.  In fact, my brother's cat is one that he rescued from work.

Many times there will be a sick kitten in the liter that the mom abandons and the kitten will die.  Other times, the kitten will be attacked by another animal and will die.  My brother and the other guys are used to finding deceased kittens and it's sad for them - these big burly guys are teddy bears on the inside.

Anyway, in September , my brother noticed a little black kitten that looked horrible. He felt bad for it and decided to get it and take it to the vet.  The kitten had an eye infection and herpes around it's mouth and according to the vet was roughly 7 or 8 weeks old,  The meds to clear these up needed to be administered twice a day and my brother didn't feel like he could take care of it with his work schedule so he asked me to look after it.

I agreed and we  brought it to our back porch where Dan and I started taking care of the poor little guy.  The first night he did not move out of the cat carrier. He ate some kitten food the next morning and we began to give him his meds twice a day as instructed.  

Around the 3rd or 4th day we noticed the cat had diarrhea and his rear end didn't look right.  I'm not going to go into the details but this cat was a mess! Back to the vet for another medication he went and Dan and I started giving this kitten a bath because it was filthy (and by filthy I mean constantly covered in poop. Sorry to be so gross.) At one point, we were giving him baths twice a day.  He hated them but he needed them.  

He was very sweet tempered and mild mannered but we were worried those first few weeks that he wasn't going to get better.  But thankfully the diarrhea finally stopped and his rear end healed up and back to the vet he went to be tested for feline leukemia and to get a rabies shot.  

Our other cat was not too pleased with the addition of the new cat but she is adjusting well.  This kitten is scared of her and leaves her alone.  But he is getting braver and more curious by the day and we are all smitten with this little cat.  Here are a few pictures of him:

This is the first picture I took of him when my brother brought him to us on September 30th. He was a mess!

And here he is now that he is fully recovered:

Such a cutie!

We struggled with what to name him. Dan wanted him to have a human name (something along the lines of Doug)  and Sarah wanted him to have a cat name (she suggested Booty since he had so many problems with his butt but I thought that was gross). I think Buddy is a good compromise.  It's both a human name and a cat type nickname so it works.