Sunday, July 25, 2010

Corinne is 2!!!

I'm way behind on this post, but we are officially done with the "1's" in this house. Corinne turned 2 on July 14th. She's a super-spunky, fun-loving chickadee with a major attitude. She plays rough and won't put up with anything. She can also flip a switch and be the sweetest little cuddle bug ever. Nolan likes to call her "Sweetle Bug". I agree. She has the best cheeks (and I'm talking about both sets). She likes to run around in the buff, which is the only way she will use the potty. If you put a pair of panties on her, she's going to stand there and pee in them the second the elastic hits her waist. So, I guess you would say she's partially potty-trained. Works for me because I'm happy not to have one more little one needing to use every public restroom quite yet. I don't think I would EVER get any shopping done!
We had Rin's party at the pool again this year. I couldn't think of what to put on her cake so I asked Landry what she thought. And, with a look of complete common sense on her face, she said "How about a pool?" Hmmmm.... why didn't I think of that? So I goggled some cakes and you are seeing the result. Nolan gave me direction on where to put each bear. He requested that I put him on the diving board. I did. Then he scrunched his nose up and said, "Where's my Daddy to catch me?" As you may have noticed, the little bear out at the end of the diving board is Brian. :) (Although I told him he was the bear in the black Speedo.)
Corinne is our first child to actually enjoy opening presents at the ripe old age of two. Her favorites were, well.... EVERYTHING! She got two baby dolls, two animals who move and make sounds, a backpack, and some clothes. From us she got a sleeping bag, water toys, and Nemo fruit chewies (she adores them). Landry and Nolan have enjoyed her loot as much as she has. In fact, they are pretty sure that everything she received is to be shared among them equally. Ah, the joy of siblings.
In short, I would just have to say again how very thankful I am that God gave us Corinne. She was one of the biggest surprises of my life and I can't imagine what life would be like without her. She's precious in every way and I praise God for her daily. We love you little girl!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Mackey and Me

You may not know this, but I grew up with the world's greatest dog. His name was Rexanne McKenzie. The "anne" part of Rexanne was supposed to be dropped once he started lifting his leg to pee. But, you know how names go. It was just too catchy so it never really did completely go away. Rex lived to be almost 16. He was more human than K-9. He would get a disgusted looked on his face when you shooed him off of the couch. He monopolized the space in front of the fireplace on cold winter nights. If you were going to sit on the floor, then he was going to sit on your lap. Rex was free, which means he cost a LOT of money in the long run. He even had a metal plate on his hip that made us pamper him even more in the winter when he would get the shivers from being outside for only a few minutes. He was tough and very territorial. A pit-pull mix, he had every reason to not turn out to be a great dog for kids. On the contrary, he was my best friend from day one. I can't tell you how much I loved/love this dog. I still dream about him, and he died many years ago. When I went off to college, he stayed with my parents. Throughout college, I became dead-set on getting a dog. But, since apartments require lots of extra money when you have pets, and I had very little money, it was obvious that a dog would have to wait. Brian would give me stuffed animal dogs for each holiday. When I graduated from college, his gift to me was Puppy Chow. It wouldn't be long before I brought home my own puppy...
A friend of mine from college had great news! His family had an extra lab pup. He was a chocolate-yellow lab mix. We loaded up in my friend's truck with nothing other than a cardboard box and headed to Statesboro to pick up my new guy. I knew his name would be Max, but couldn't foresee that he would more frequently be called MacMac or Mackey. For some reason, I was quite convinced he would be brown. I think I had read that chocolate was dominant over yellow, or maybe I just made that up. Either way, I had pictured a fat little chocolate fur ball riding home in my lap that night. Guess what? He wasn't chocolate. He was almost WHITE! Even better, he was white with gorgeous, chocolate-lab, greenish eyes. He was the prettiest dog I have ever seen. And he was mine!
Max grew up fast and got into EVERYTHING. He was your typical puppy, but with some serious belly issues. Thank goodness he was so irresistibly cute, or he wouldn't have lived very long. He was all dog. He enjoyed being outside, he ate dog food, he rolled in cow manure, he could sniff-out a lake from miles away, you name it. He was more K-9 than human. He hated being in trouble. He loved belly-rubs and peanut butter.
Age was hard on Max. When he was about 7, he developed severe skin and food allergies. Unfortunately, we didn't know that was what it was until he was almost 11. It was heart-breaking to see him go from wanting to be pet, to being able to only pet his face without him going crazy. Brian and I watched Marley and Me and barely kept it together. The movie paralleled our lives in an incredible way, especially the fact that the couple in the movie was dealing with an aging yellow lab who was dearly loved by the family. On May 7th, I came home and had a message on my machine. Apparently, someone let our dogs out. Max was suffering from laryngeal paralysis, which made it hard for him to breathe, especially in the heat. While he was out running around, he laid down in our neighbor's yard and died. Our neighbor called and left a message with the news. Obviously, it was a terrible way for me and the kids to hear about it. Thankfully, we had some caring neighbors that brought Max back to us, wrapped up in a blanket. We got to love on him and say our goodbyes. At that moment, I was so thankful that my kids will one day say, "You may not know this, but I grew up with the world's greatest dog."