Friday, March 31, 2017

Poor Bandit

Our youngest grand dog is a cockapoo named Bandit.  Bandit came from the same breeder as his cousin Piper, but he only weighs 14 pounds.  Piper is almost twice as big.  Bandit is a lively little thing, but is also sweet as can be. 

Yesterday wasn't a good day for Bandit.  Our grandson brought a dish of semisweet chocolate chips into their computer room.  He was snacking on them.  When he left, he forgot the chips.  Yes, you guessed it.  Bandit climbed up on the chair and ate the remaining chocolate chips.  Chocolate is toxic to dogs and the darker the chocolate, the worse it is.  It was only a half hour or so before they discovered it.  My daughter knew she had to make him throw up.  She talked to a neighbor who had recently had a similar experience.  She told her to give him hydrogen peroxide and how much to use Within a short period of time, Bandit threw up a lot of chocolate.  He seemed ok, but then threw up again.  We all thought that would be the end of it.  It was not.  By 10 PM, the dog was starting to tremble and wasn't doing well.  Since it was so late, they had to call an animal hospital about an hour away because all the local veterinary clinics were closed.  The veterinarian told her to bring him right in.  When they got there, his heart rate was at 170, and they admitted him to the hospital.  He had a rough night.  They gave him sedatives, fluids and monitored his heart rate.  They also gave him charcoal.  By the middle of this morning he was doing better, but they wanted to keep him for a few more hours.  Now he is home.  He has to be on a special diet of chicken and rice and has to have probiotics.  We checked on him this afternoon, and he seemed pretty much himself although he was a little tired. 

We are all so relieved that tonight he is almost normal, but last night was a long night of worrying.  The vet said if they hadn't made him throw up, it may have been a very different story.

This is cousin Piper.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Making Kindling With A Kindling Cracker

Today was finally a lovely day.  We have had day after day of cloudy weather, but we saw the sun today.  The temperatures were pretty mild depending on who you asked.  We saw people in shorts and short sleeved shirts, and we saw people in parkas with their hoods up.  The people in the heavy jackets probably returned from a winter in the south and weren't prepared for a temperature under 70 degrees.  Soon it will be warm enough to have our first fire in the fire pit.  In preparation for our camp fire season, my husband made some kindling to start the fires.  For Christmas this year he got an awesome gift called a Kindling Cracker.  No it isn't something to eat, it's a way to easily turn a firewood log into pieces of kindling.  This device was invented by a school aged student from New Zealand.  He made it for a science fair project, and someone decided to market it.  It is a solid piece of cast iron with no moving parts so it's safe and easy to use.

You just place a piece of firewood inside the safety ring and strike it with a blunt instrument, such as a hammer, mallet or even another piece of wood. This forces the wood down onto the splitting wedge.

This Kindling Cracker eliminates the need to swing a sharp axe which can be dangerous and hard to do.  The axe requires good aim and some strength.  The cracker doesn't require as much force.

Hit the log with a mallet.

It splits the log in half.  If you want smaller pieces just split it again.

We now have a pile of kindling.  Hopefully we can have a camp fire soon.  The weather report looks like a wintery mix in a couple of days.  Maybe we will have to have a fire in the fireplace until this nice weather is here to stay.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

A High School Play Called Arsenic and Old Lace

Spring is always a busy time for schools.  Most of them have a lot of concerts and activities that showcase what they have learned throughout the year.  Since we live near all of our grandchildren, we have attended many of their activities.  We have missed a few because we either didn't know about them or they overlapped with each other.  We try to make it even, which isn't always easy.  This weekend our oldest grandchild Melissa was involved with her Spring high school play.  The Fall play is always a musical and in the Spring they do a drama.  This following blog includes the Mary Poppins play they did last Fall.  Our grandson is the opposite, the Fall is a drama (included in the blog above) and Spring is the musical  This year Melissa's play was a dramatic comedy called Arsenic and Old Lace.  The cast was pretty small with only three female characters, so our granddaughter played two men.  One she was cast to play and the other she filled in for someone who quit the play.  She was also the student director.  It's too bad they didn't choose a play where more kids could participate, but it was still good.

The first character she played was Mr. Gibbs.  For those familiar with the story, the two main characters are sisters who have rooms for rent.  They save lonely old men by giving them Elderberry wine laced with poison.  Mr. Gibbs inquired about a room only to be chased out before he drank the wine.  She did a German accent with this character.  It was so funny.

The second character was Lieutenant Roony.  He is Columbo type police lieutenant who comes in to investigate.  She did an awesome Brooklyn accent for this one.

I think it was kind of fun for her to play these parts.  She really got into it.  She even had to learn how to hold a cigarette.  I am grateful that she didn't know how.   

The day after the play we were at the library.  We noticed they had a DVD of the old Arsenic and Old Lace movie from the 1940's.  It starred Cary Grant and Peter Lorre.  It was equally chaotic, but I think I enjoyed the high school production more.  They did better accents, that's for sure.

In order to see how Melissa really looks, here is a picture of her from a recent solo ensemble performance she did.  She sang a song from the Secret Garden.  

We are really proud of her and hope she continues to be involved throughout the rest of her high school years. She is just a sophomore so she has more performances ahead of her.