Thursday, November 25, 2010

Surgery for Suzanna...

So, I'll start at the beginning...
When I was carrying Suzanna, I had what they call a single artery umbilical cord.  The umbilical cord is supposed to have two arteries and one vein and mine had only one artery and one vein.  With that said, all the doctors I saw said that it was a common issue in pregnancy and basically not to worry.  Well, I am the queen of "googling," so of course I read everything I could get my hands on.  In the reading I found out that about 1 in 100 pregnant women have it and there are possibilities of defects to the child.  

Because my pregnancy was and had gone so well since the beginning, I decided to take the doctors advice and not worry about. "It's as common as being left handed," one of the doctors told me.

So John and I didn't worry about it; however, I still had to have a monthly ultrasound to check baby Suz and her development.  All ultrasounds had been great up until week 38. 

At week 38 by belly was measuring 3cm off, so my doctor decided to do an ultrasound to check on things.  In the ultrasound she noticed that one of Suzanna's kidneys was slightly dilated.  She told John and I that this was a fairly common problem with babies and just to make sure her pediatrician checked the kidney in question.  

Well, October 27 rolls around and I have the easiest labor, and this perfect little angel to show for it.  At her first doctors visit we talked to her doctor about the kidney and he seemed to think that as long as she as urinating well then the problem would probably fix itself.  

Suz and I had to go back to the doctor two more times for weight checks and on our third visit we had a different doctor.  That doctor seemed to think that we might as well have an ultrasound done on the kidney just to make sure things were working as they should.  So Suz and I went off to have an ultrasound.

During the ultrasound the nurse couldn't see the left kidney because of gas but definitely saw dilation on the right kidney.  We went back to the pediatrician after the ultrasound and she referred us to a urology specialist because of the dilation in the kidney.

At the urology specialist they too had problems viewing the left kidney but were certain that there were issues with the right kidney.  They referred us to the Presbyterian hospital in Huntersville to have a VCUG, which checks to see if urine is "refluxing" from the bladder back up into the kidney; and a CAT Scan to see if there is even a left kidney present.

Once we got to the hospital I went back with Suzanna and was with her through both of the procedures.  When preforming a VCUG they have to insert a catheter.  Suz didn't appreciate that very much but only cried for few minutes.  She was able to calm down after that as they watched the dye moving in her bladder and took x-rays.  Next, we did the CAT scan.  For the CAT scan she had to have an IV.  My little trooper whimpered just a little bit when they inserted the IV, and then went back to sleep as if nothing had happened at all; and then continued to sleep through the CAT scan.

After we finished with the test at the hospital, we went back to the urology specialist to get the results...  Suzanna does not have a left kidney, which is mostly likely a result of the single artery umbilical cord.  And her right kidney is dilated, as well as the ureter tube that carries the urine from the kidney to the bladder.  

The dilation in the kidney and ureter tube is present because the ureter tube is not entering the bladder at the correct spot.  Suz's ureter tube is connected at the bottom of the bladder instead of the top.  (Dilation in the kidney is not an uncommon problem in infants.  Most of the doctors we talked to said that most of the time the problem just fixes itself, but because of the amount of dilation that Suzanna has, we can't afford to wait and see.... particularly since she only had one kidney.)

So here's our plan of action:

Tomorrow (Friday, November 26, 2010) we will be going to the Presbyterian Hospital in downtown Charlotte, and at 7:30 AM Suzanna will have surgery.  Dr. Gazak will make in incision somewhere between where her leg joins up with the rest of her body.  He will go in and disconnect the ureter tube and sew it to the top of her skin, where he made the initial incision.  She will actually urinate out of this tiny slit, and the urine will drain into her diaper.  

Doing this will allow the dilation in the kidney and ureter tube to go down.  Once the dilation has gone down (approximately 3 to 6 months), we will go back to Presbyterian and Dr. Gazak will then connect the ureter tube to the correct spot on the bladder.  


That's where we are right now.  John and I are doing ok.  We are glad that the problem was caught early and that once the surgery is preformed she will be as good as new.  However, no one wants their 4 week old child to have to have surgery of any kind!  Please say a prayer for her, and for John and I.  

I will update facebook once her surgery is finished and she is out of recovery to let everyone know how she is doing.  

John and I appreciate all the prayers and concern that we have received so far; and could not be more grateful on this Thanksgiving Day for such wonderful family and friends.

Much love, Carly

Thursday, October 7, 2010

So here we are....

Just wanted to catch everyone up on the latest baby news....  I am down to seeing the doctor now every week, and have approached the ever looming "full term" mark.  I found all this pretty exciting because it means we're in the final countdown to meeting Miss Suzanna. 

I have so enjoyed seeing my family and friends (Laura with Kynleigh, Sara with Ada, Amy with Charlotte, Stacy with Lleyton, Kelli with Darrah, and Brandy with Zoie) get to know their little ones as they become new mothers and form such beautiful bonds with their babies.  I can only hope I will be as good at it as they have been.  I think every first time mother thinks about how she will be with her first little one, and I have to say that the thought of it makes me weepy! 

On the more technical side of things, my doctors appointments have all gone really well.  My weight gain is in check, my blood pressure is great, I haven't dilated as of last Friday, Oct.1, and Suzanna is head down and ready for delivery.  I have been seeing all the doctors at Shelby Women's Care and all of them seem to be very pleased with my progress and don't see any issues surfacing between now and the time that I have the baby.  

As far as how I'm feeling... up until about a week ago, I felt wonderful.  No aches or pains.  I could just go and go and go.  But as of Saturday (Oct. 2) that all changed.  I had to work a little bit Saturday but after I got home, I started to feel the nesting symptoms coming on strong.  And boy, did I do some cleaning at the house.  John and I rotated the mattress,  and shifted our bed to make room for the bassinet,  I took down the curtains and sent them to the dry cleaners, I vacuumed everything that I could think to vacuum, I cleaned the bathrooms (floor to ceiling... literally), I swept, I organized under all the cabinets, and the list goes on and on.  Man, it felt good to get all that done... but let me tell you, I paid for the next day.  

Clearly, that day changed it all.  I had to work Sunday and felt pretty good going into it.  However, after I was finished and on my way home from Steele Creek in Charlotte, my back was aching, my feet were throbbing, and my calves were hard as rocks.  

Since then, it's been more of the same.  My back seems to feel terrible by about 5:00 every day, even if I haven't been on my feet alot.  I'm definitely visiting the bathroom more often.  But the little one still hasn't "dropped" as they say, she's just gotten a little bigger.  And my biggest pain... trying to roll out of the bed during the night to make it to the bathroom!  

The one thing that I can say that has been a tremendous help has been John.  He has really shown his love and concern for me like none other.  Granted he doesn't jump up to wash the dishes every night, but who the heck does?  He calls me frequently to check on me.  He has rubbed my aching back, even though he would much rather be on the receiving end of it... and usually is.  He's done almost anything and everything I have asked him to from carrying stuff, to stomping off his boots before he comes into the house, to going with me on trips to get the baby stuff that we need, to just making sure that I am comfortable.  That truly means the world to me!

So, with that said, I can honestly say that I thought I would never be one of those women who said, "I'm so ready to have this baby... I'm miserable."  And although I am not miserable, I am getting pretty uncomfortable.  And I do want to have this baby.... but only because I can't wait to meet her.  The anticipation seems unbearable at times, but I know the longer she stays in there the more healthy she is becoming.  So, you are up to speed now and any developments I have after this point I will be sure to share.
Aside:  I have had a few people ask me if the dogs can tell that things are about to be different at the house, and my answer is yes and no.  No, because my faithful Marabelle doesn't have the slightest clue.  She still carries on with her normal routines of needing to be babied and making sure that she and I are in the same room if at all possible... unless she's too tired to follow me around.  

And Yes, because Tex aka Mr. Nosy, has every inclination that something is going on.  He follows me anytime I go back into the nursery to do anything and just watches me.  He throughly sniffs everything, especially if it is new.  I have a basket of Suzanna's toys and anytime a new toy is added to the basket he spends the rest of the night trying to make it his new play toy.  He will go and very sneaky like, bring it into the room where John and I happen to be.  He holds it very delicately in his mouth and looks at us as if to say, "is this toy for me?"  I have to fuss at him and tell him to drop it, which he does, and often retreats back to the basket to try another toy.  

So, my guess is that Marabelle will be just fine with little Suzanna. And Tex will be different all together.  I don't for one minute think he will be aggressive with her.  I think once he see's John holding her, he will understand that he needs to protect her because she is a part of John.  And John means everything to Tex.  As I've said before, John is the pack leader at our house.  hahaha!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Great Chicken Massacre by Sara Sain

Red Comet

So it has been requested that I recount the tale of the "first ladies" (a.k.a. my chickens) and the great chicken massacre that came to haunt my humble farmstead.  It's a tragic story, but I can't help find small bits of humor in it, so if you laugh, I won't get angry.  I always wanted chickens.  Only for eggs, mind you.  I had dreams of gathering eggs at the henhouse every time I baked a cake or fixed breakfast.  So, my wonderful dad built me a portable A-frame chicken coop to house approximately 4-5 chickens.  I began my flock with a hen and a rooster.  (Just so you know, a rooster is not required for a hen to lay an egg...that's a common misconception).  Their names were Roy and Rebekah.  They were both black Austrolorps with a shiny black sheen that sparkled green in the sunshine.  I loved hearing Roy crow in the mornings, and I'm not being sarcastic.  It made me feel like I had my farm at last!  I would feed them each morning and replenish their water.  They were sociable and I could pick them up, but they weren't happy when I did that and it took a while to catch one!  I'd watch them scratch away at the ground and eat bugs.  It was fun throwing lettuce leaves and old food to them and watching them eat with such intensity.  Their favorite food was pea salad (a combination of peas, lettuce, bacon, cheese, and mayonnaise to hold it all together.  I highly recommend it for both chicken and people food).  Rebekah finally started laying an egg a day for me, and my dreams were coming true! 
A few months later, we added another hen to our flock.  Her name was Mary Todd.  She was golden brown with white flecks.  She was more skittish than the others, but she took to the flock.  Roy hated her.  It was about that time when he became the quintessential "ol' mean rooster".  He'd pluck the feathers from Rebekah and Mary Todd's backs till they bled.  Poor things.  I'd fuss at him and try to show him who was boss, but it didn't stop.  Finally, we sent Roy packing.  He was banished to my uncle's house, and then was sent to his son-in-law's house, and who knows where from there.  I missed Roy's crowing, but I was glad to see Mary Todd and Rebekah's feathers growing back.

Right before getting rid of Roy, we moved into our new house.  Once he was gone, Mary Todd and Rebekah had free range of the new grounds.  I left their coop door open, and they came and went at will.  I'd see them on the front porch steps in the morning, and they'd flutter down to the flower beds and go to work eating bugs and fertilizing my flowers.  They clucked and strutted and were just wonderful.  Then, one day, Mary Todd was gone.  Rebekah was wondering the yard by herself.  We looked everywhere, but no luck.  My uncle called later that day to tell us Mary Todd was at his house.  Evidently, our neighbor's dog had gotten off his chain and stole her away in the night, killed her, and took her up to my uncle's and laid her beside the grill!!  Rather ironic.  My uncle returned Mary Todd's broken little body to us in a shoebox, and we buried her beneath a tree.

We knew Rebekah couldn't be alone.  She was obviously distraught, making little crying chicken noises.  So a few days later, another of my uncles brought four more hens to our house.  These were dominics, black and white speckled and so beautiful!  They were hard to tell apart, but Jordan named the fattest one Mozart, then there was Natasha, and the other two were just known as "the twins".  Rebekah showed them all the great bug spots in the yard and they trailed after her.  Mozart went missing several weeks later, and we decided a hawk probably got her.  We were on the alert because we had recently seen a coyote in the lower field (and he still roams the field every now and then).  It wasn't but a few days later that I went to feed the chickens in the morning, and a horrible sight met me.  Chicken feathers and poor, dead bodies littered the inside of the coop.  One chicken was missing.  I barely looked.  I ran back to the house to get my husband, who, likewise, couldn't believe what he was seeing.  Every chicken was massacred, including poor Rebekah, the matriarch!  I was so sad.  We found the last chicken by the woods, almost entirely ripped apart and eaten.  The ones in the coop, however, were simply killed.  Something had come in and killed them for sport.  We're thinking a wild dog.  Jordan dug a big hole, and we had a mass burial.  He then put a big rock on top of the grave.  A few days later, Jordan was out at the mass grave dumping the slop and noticed that something had come and eaten/taken away all the chickens that were buried.  All we had left was a big hole with a rock sitting in it. 

That all happened about a year ago.  We wanted more chickens, but with Ada being born, we never got to it.  But -- good news! -- we are now the proud owners of three new Red Comet chickens (named Eleanor, Josephine, and Martha) who are laying eggs nearly every day! Needless to say, we now keep them locked up in the coop, and I do believe they are happy as can be!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

"They're laughing at you!"

     Monday night John and I were laying in bed at our usual early hour of retiring... somewhere about 8:30 or so.  Infact i'm pretty sure that John was already asleep at this point, and I had just rolled my butt into the bed, being careful to position my two sleep partners (pillow one- goes between my legs and moshie pig- snuggly holds my belly as I hold onto it!) into place.  So, you get the picture.
Just to fill you in John, myself and the dogs have a strict bed routine every night, it goes something like this:

John takes all the "decorative" pillows off the bed and replaces them with the extra pillows that I now need to sleep comfortably every night.  Next, he puts the Tex blanket on the bed, which is an old NC State oversized blanket that we put on the bed so that the dogs don't get our nice comforter dirty.  John then gets into bed.  Tex is usually the next warm body to join him.  Marabelle waits on me to get out of the shower and then she joins the group on the bed.  So, you can imagine John in the bed, Tex right next to him as if they are married and have been sharing a bed together for sometime now.  Marabelle almost always occupies a lower corner of the bed and is usually asleep as soon has her chin hits the bed.  By this point, I'm making my last minute runs in and out of the bedroom to get a cup of water, fill up the humidifier, get my cellphones to charge, get my retainer, and the list goes on and on. 

Once i finally have everything I need to lay down and sleep soundly, the first thing I do is get Marabelle off the bed.  And EVERY night.... it never fails, as soon as I go to her to pick her up, she rolls onto her back, legs spread- eagle as if to say, "Alright mama, I'm ready for you to put me to bed."  Since I have been pregnant I have had to modify how I get her onto her pillow bed, that sits floor next to the side of the bed that I sleep on.  I grab all four of her legs and swing her onto her bed, so as not to strain my stomach.  (I guess to someone that's never seen me do it, it would be pretty funny.)  Anyhow, Tex is next.  I say, "Tex get up."  And he doesn't move, maybe an occasional head raise as if to say, "Are you serious?"  Then, John says, "Tex get up."  And what do you know, he pops up and heads for his spot, halfway in, halfway out of our closet and plops down.  I then take the Tex blanket and fold it up and place it under Tex's head, where it stays until the next night's routine.  THEN, I climb into bed!
     So, we've made it to this point in our routine Monday night.  I'm laying there watching TV and John is sound asleep.  I started drifting off myself and turned off the TV to go to sleep.  I'm guessing the TV had been off maybe 15 minutes and I was just about ready to fall into oblivion when I hear Marabelle launch a playful attack on Tex!  And they are going at it full speed.  
     Now occasionally we have these nights with Marabelle when she hasn't properly made up her mind that it is time to go to bed.  It usually results in her running in and out of the room throughout the night, doing God knows what through the house.  We used to try to calm her down, but now we just let her go and try to sleep through it.  Eventually she gives up because no one will play with her, and she jumps on the bed and goes to sleep.
     I knew we were really in for a night of trouble since Marabelle had gotten Tex into the game.  I let them wrestle and play for a few minutes hoping that Tex would give up and just lay down; but that wasn't the case.  This was a full on play session.  Marabelle was jumping off and on the bed and Tex was chasing her from one corner of the bed to the other.
     I decided that enough was enough and as soon as Marabelle made her next leap onto the bed, I raised up and starting fussing at her.  I told her calm down and get her butt on her pillow.  She was looking at me with those big dark eyes, and it looked like I had really made an impression on her, until she jumped back down on the floor and made another lunge at Tex.  Well I was ticked!
     To my surprise, John rolls over giggling and says, "They're laughing at you.  They aren't paying you any attention.... They're laughing at you!"  Well, my blood started to boil and I was about to bless these dogs out once and for all when John says, "Get on your beds and lay down,"  in a very authoritative voice.  And what do you know.... they quite instantly!  Tex walked over to his "closet" bed and plopped down, and Marabelle walked over to her bed, pretty as you please, did a turn-about and plopped herself down too!
     Me and John laid there in the bed just laughing.  All the while John was teasing me that they don't take me seriously, and it takes a real man to bring peace into the house, etc.  
     Anyhow, I found myself laughing about it on the way home from work the next day and decided to share.  I hope you found laughter in it as I did. 

Friday, June 11, 2010

My *NEW* Co-Blogger

Hello out there in blogger world. I hope all is well with everyone.
Today I would like to introduce my new co-blogger (drum roll please), Sara Sain. Sara is my cousin, as she will explain in her first post. We thought it would be a great idea to blog together to show two different perspectives on raising families, gardens, farm life, and just life in general as it relates to country living.
We promise not to quarrel on our differing ideas, but merely introduce them to you as we see and discover their relevance. It may turn out to be some great conversation starters!

So, without further adieu.... here is Sara's first post, "Me vs. the Colorado Potato Beetle, or Let Me Introduce Myself." (Hope you enjoy. I know I sure did!)

PS. I will be following up to Sara post with my garden post, as soon as I make it out there to take a few pictures to go along with the story. Also, I changed the settings so that anyone can leave a comment, not just those with accounts. So please leaves us lots of comments.

Me vs. The Colorado Potato Beetle, or Let Me Introduce Myself

Before I begin my gardening adventures, let me tell you who I am and why I think I have the right to post on Carly’s blog.  My name is Sara, and I’m Carly’s cousin.  We have always done things together, from taking dance lessons to going to school to, now, raising our babies.  We decided it would be fun to blog together as well, seeing as how Carly lives on a modern dairy farm, and I want to be a farmer.  We also wanted to share about our lives on our farms (hers, real; mine, semi-imaginary) and about being mamas living in the country.  I’ve beat Carly there; I have a 7 month old daughter, Ada, who I will probably mention quite often.  Now, I just can’t wait for Suzanna to come so Carly and I can share the parenting adventure as well!

Now, about my “farm”…let’s call it a “farmstead” instead.  I’m a history freak, wanting to do things the old-fashioned way and live parts of my life like I’m in the 1800s (much to the chagrin of my technology-savvy, super-in-the-21st-century, graphic designer of a husband, God love ‘em).  I just feel that there’s a lot to be said about the way things were back then.  Though rougher, there was more of a community spirit and a simpler way of life that I’d love to get back to.  I love my clothesline, my garden, my animals, quality time with my family, and the fact that I’ve mastered the art of baking bread from scratch.  Things back then were also more environmentally friendly, and I am a self-proclaimed semi-hippie when it comes to matters of Mother Earth.  I take my own bags to the grocery store, cloth diaper my baby, and am a recycling fiend!  I like things to be practical, efficient, and, above all, natural.

I want to start my own farm, with sheep and goats.  Right now, it’s just all produce, but it’s coming along.  It will be fun to see the difference in how Carly and John’s operation runs as opposed to mine, and how our ideas differ on this blog.  I try not to get off on my earthy tangents around John; he’s polite, but I’m sure he’s wanting to roll his eyes and give Carly an earful when they’re alone.  But they love me, and I love them, and we’re all in the same family.  I guess what I’m trying to say is, this should be fun, because the readers of this blog will get two different perspectives on life, gardening, farming, and living in the country, and neither is better than the other.  That’s partly the point.

So my first adventure.  I went out to check my potatoes, which numerous sources say is one of the easiest crops to grow.  Yeah, right.  I’ve tried them before, and they always get eaten up by bugs (much like my poor eggplant), and then, when my sweet potatoes miraculously made it last year, my little sweet potatoes were just that.  Little.  About the size of your thumb.  Drats.  So, being the optimist that I am, I planted both regular and sweet potatoes this year.  I went out to check on them, as mentioned, and, alas!, bug holes everywhere!  I inspected the plants, and sure enough, little red bugs covered the leaves.  I flicked one off. 

A few days later, I looked up these red bugs, and discovered they were the larvae of the Colorado Potato Beetle, a vicious looking fat bug with black and yellow stripes.  I hated them.  The website I found gave explicit instructions as how to get rid of them.  It said to find a bucket and a stick and knock the bugs into the bucket with the stick and DESTROY THEM!  Yes, it actually said that.  Well, obviously it was all out war.  So, here I go with my five-gallon bucket and a gardening hand tool that I have no idea what its actual purpose is, to the garden to kill some bugs.  My trusty dog, Sadie, is right beside me.  We get to the potato plants, and I bend down to inspect.  Yep, black and yellow bugs.  Everywhere.  Sadie gets excited, and flips around quickly, only to run down an entire potato plant.  It springs back up from the ground, but all the bugs have been flung off.  Okay for the time being, but my instructions are to catch and destroy!  Needless to say, I yell a little and Sadie goes off to dig up buried bread somewhere, happy as can be.  So, I take my stick and try to knock some of the bugs off the second plant.  Just so you know, a five-gallon bucket is way too big.  I tramped back to the house for a little bucket not much bigger than a quart jar.  A little water in the bottom and it’s a nice bug trap.  So I’m out beating bugs off my plants, and squealing with delight as they drop one by one.  Jordan, my husband, comes out to check on me.  I guess my giddiness is contagious because he’s interested too.  Once I’ve beaten the bugs off all the plants, I pour them in my five-gallon bucket with water in the bottom, and set another bucket on top.  I’m afraid to set them on fire, so drowning is the only way I know to destroy them.  The instructions said to beat the bugs off two times a day; well, I’m a working mom.  I wish I had time to beat my potato plants, but it only happened that one time.  I’m happy to report, however, that all the leaves have grown back and my potato plants look incredibly happy and healthy!  I envision a good crop.  I’ll let you know.  Sara – 1, Garden bugs – 0.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Snake- Out

For those of you who do not know or couldn't tell by the title of the blog, my husband (John) is a dairy farmer. He often loves to tell me stories about his "high school antics." These "antics" are not you're typical high school antics about parties; although John surely took part in a few of those. They are not about vandalizing property; although I do know of one incident that he was involved in dealing with vandalism. And they are not about skipping school. I can honestly say that I don't think he ever skipped school, or at least I haven't heard a story about it yet! Most of his high school stories revolve around "coon huntin'."

"Coon huntin'" is never referred to as "raccoon hunting." So, for the sake of keeping it as true to life as possible, I will refer to it as "coon huntin'."

Just last night we were on our way home from eating mexican, (Taco & Tequila of course), and we were discussing how we felt like some parents signed their kids up to play sports too young, and more or less forced them to play, because of the parents love for the game. John started talking about how he played baseball one year and didn't like it. Therefore, his mama (Babs) never made him go to his games unless he wanted to go. (If any of you know Babs, you know that she would never force a child to do anything they didn't want to or that might result in an unhappy child. She just wants everyone to be happy!) John said that once he got into playing basketball he really loved it. So he played basketball through high school and played for fun all through college as well. But alas, his real love was coon huntin'.

If you are not familiar with coon huntin', the objective is to have your dogs track the scent of a raccoon and pretty much chase it up a tree. Once the dog has the raccoon up a tree, it will bark/ howl until you catch up and find them. Then you reward the dog for treeing the raccoon. There is obviously alot more that goes into treeing a raccoon than that, but that's just kind of the bare bones of it.

John will not hesitate to tell you that throughout high school his one true love wasn't a girl, or basketball.... it was coon huntin'. He skipped his junior prom to go coon huntin'. And when all his friends were at the football game on Friday night, John was coon huntin'! Anyhow, you get the point... John loved to coon hunt.

Once, I went coon huntin' with John and Putnam. John obviously thought that I couldn't trek through the woods like he and Putnam. So, when the dogs got a good distance off from us, he made me go back and sit on the tailgate of the truck while he and Putnam went to find the dogs. Needless to say I didn't develop a love for coon huntin' sitting on the tailgate of the blue-bird!

Anyway, the snake-out! I have planted two raised beds for my garden this year. Being pregnant I can't do the some of the things it takes to "keep a garden" such as spraying round-up (one of my all time favorite things to do!), spreading seven dust, etc. Therefore, I have to rely on John or an alternate source to do these things for me.

Well, a few Sunday's ago I came home from Mamaw's after lunch. I noticed that Marabelle was running loose in the yard. This is very abnormal if John or myself aren't outside to watch her because she has a tendency to cross the road and visit the neighbors. I thought this was rather strange, and then Tex came running from behind the house which tipped me off that John must be in the back yard doing something. I got out of the car and went to the back yard and sure enough there was John watering my garden with a beer in hand. Out of the kindness of his heart he thought it might be too hot for me to be out there, and was afraid I would get overheated.

We got to talking about what all had gone on that day. In the course of us talking he had watered the garden and moved on to spraying round-up around the fence line. While he was spraying he told me that Putnam was coming over to get some round-up. Well, Putnam shows up and they start talking while John is spraying. I'm was just kind of watching the dogs play around the yard and putting my two cents worth into their conversation. All of a sudden, I hear John say, "Gah, look at that black snake!"

Just another interesting fact about John... he is a snake charmer. Or at least that's what I think. That fool will pick up a snake in a heartbeat! Some of you may remember the Snake Charmer photos I posted on facebook about a year ago or so. I had two black snakes mating on the front porch and had to call John to come and get them because I couldn't open my door for them being in the way.

John was going on about how big the black snake was, and I guess in the course of things he thought it would be a great idea to watch the dogs "fight" it! He lays down the round-up and leads both Tex and Marabelle around the fence that separates our yard from the corn field, where the snake was slithering. While John was taking the dogs to the other side of the fence, I ran inside and grabbed my camera. By the time I got back outside, they were already going at it.

Just imagine John & Putnam looking over the fence at the dogs, and me taking pictures of it. To put the icing on the cake and really "redneck-it-up," John was hollering the occasional "whooping" coon dog call that always gets our dogs excited.

So there we were... John having a beer and doing his coon dog calls, Putnam watching the spectacle unfold, and me snapping pictures like the paparazzi. Pretty redneck if you ask me, but funny all the same.

Marabelle ended up getting struck three times early on in the fight by mr. black snake, which is why you don't see many action shots of her. She decided to let Tex do the lunging because he is obviously quicker at retreating than she. I think what was most fun for me was seeing how excited John got about watching all of this unfold, and thinking that this must be how excited he would get when he would see Sugar (his beloved coon dog) tree a coon.

I hope you enjoy the pictures!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Baby, We're Having a Baby

Ok, so this being my first post I promise this blog will not be all about the baby. But, seeing as how it is a part of our (Mine & John's) life... I will make the occasional update about the progress of the pregnancy.

John and I went last Monday, May 15, to the doctor to find out the sex of the baby. John told me that everyone he had been talking to said they thought we were having a girl. I, on the other hand, heard from everyone that they thought I was having a boy. I think only because I kept hearing, "boy, boy, boy..." I was pretty sure I was having a girl.