Thursday, October 13, 2016

It's Hard When You Realize Life Isn't Fair

Recently I wrote about making lemon Meringue Pie out of life’s lemons.  Well, I’ve got another old saying for you.  The past is the past, the future isn’t guaranteed so live for today because it is a gift.  That is why they call it “the present.”

During this truly magnificent season, that is exactly what we have been doing.  Filling our days with activities, both inside and out has been a real gift.  Ringo is mastering the art of fetch with his ball.  He has watched me enough now to know… you have to bring the ball back to Daddy!  What a fun game!  We have celebrated birthdays, anniversaries, fun time with friends and a couple of play dates with Jennifer.

Mommy and Daddy took a nice relaxing trip up “North” (I don’t know where that is), to ride the 100 year old carousel, saw a great concert, celebrated Hmong New Year as VIP guests,  taken many walks, and done some household projects including landscaping.  I think it looks great, too!  We have made some wonderful memories we will always cherish.

This all leads to the title of this blog.  Life isn’t fair.  I learned this a few years ago.  I saw my brother, Rudy, living with kidney disease and then going to Heaven when he was way too young.  Around that same time, Mommy had some tough surgeries for something called cancer.  I heard that she has had other big surgeries called transplants before I was born.  It sounds like a lot and well, not fair.  When is enough, enough?

Little brother, Ringo, joined our family in July, 2014.  Since then, he has seen Mommy break her foot, be hospitalized for an obstruction, learned that her pancreas transplant no longer works and get Shingles.  He also witnessed Daddy rupturing his bicep and having surgery.  That seems like a lot and is a bit overwhelming for a little guy.  Recently, Mommy got some more tough news.  She needs surgery on October 25th and … it’s hard to say, kidney function took a hit.  Ringo doesn’t understand why.  Frankly, I don’t know what to tell him.  Life isn’t fair and sometimes you just have to play the cards you are dealt.  (No more clich├ęs, I promise!)

Even though we have had some tough news, we will keep enjoying this fabulous season and make incredible memories.  We will thoroughly enjoy the time we have and pray things remain stable.  We will love, laugh, dance and play.  We won’t waste a moment because each day is a gift.

I will try to keep you posted, but Ringo and I will be Mommy’s nurse pups – for a while.  Mommy also helps me write.  Until next time….

Boomer the Mellow Yellow Lab

Thursday, September 15, 2016

When Life Gives you Lemons, Make Lemon Meringue Pie!

I'm sure you have heard the old saying, "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade."  Well, our family has been given its share of lemons.  In fact, I think we have our own lemon tree!  We have tried to make lemonade every time.  Sometimes it's sweet, but once in a while it can be a bit sour!  For the most part, we are a positive family, finding positivity in everything can be be rather challenging!

Earlier this summer, I wrote about how Mommy had been hospitalized.  She lost a bunch of weight and all of her strength.  Before this set back, Mommy and Daddy used to walk along a great walking trail that went around the perimeter of our neighborhood...  When Mommy lost her strength, they couldn't even make it to the end of our block which was only two houses away.

Following the nice walking trail was no longer an option.  Walking has always been an important part of our plan to stay healthy.  So, what did Mommy and Daddy decide to do with our lemons?  The decided to take walks in front of our house, and gradually work their way down the block.  They stayed on our street, in case Mommy got tired.  As the summer went on, she got stronger.  Not only did she gain strength, but Mommy and Daddy started meeting all the neighbors!  It started out as waves, increased to saying, "Hello" and then...  people started coming down their driveways and introduced themselves!  Now we know just about everyone on our street!  We have a very nice, diverse group of neighbors!

Our family had lived on this street for several years and only knew the families on either side of us and the people across the street!

This outcome was more than just a glass of sweet lemonade - it was a big piece of lemon meringue pie!  Moral of the story, when life gives you lemons, make something out of them... and be creative!

Other news from our little world... we have a new page on our website.  It talks about Mommy's experience with Donate Life and the importance of organ donation.  Here is a link, so you can check it out.  Our books have gone to Canada twice and a few other cities in the U.S..  We are always grateful for our supporters.

Ringo and I have thoroughly enjoyed playing outside.  We hope for a nice long autumn season, but know snow is inevitable!

We  are currently booking programs for the Fall and Winter - we already have one planned in January.  That seems so far away, but it will be here before you know it!  Time goes by very quickly, so we can't waste it. Once it's gone, you can't get it back, so make memories now!

Boomer the Mellow Yellow Lab

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Boomer's Birthday and Our Young Friend, Logan

I celebrated my seventh birthday earlier this month.  It was a great day with lots of singing, dancing, a new Frisbee and a birthday treat!

My new Frisbee has a hole in the center.  I let my little bro, "Ringo" play with it because he loves it. He sticks his nose in the center and runs around.  The problem is... the Frisbee covers his eyes!  It's very funny and it doesn't seem to bother him at all.

Mommy talked to a group of nurses for their new hire orientation/training about the importance of organ donation.  The coordinator thought she did a good job.  She kept it short and sweet because they were running late, but it was still very impactful.  Since it has been a slow month for Rudy's Little World, we have had time to enjoy the weather.

Mommy and Daddy took a nice boat ride on the St. Croix River.  It was a beautiful sunny day!

We also worked on a landscaping project in the front yard.  We have been putting it off until everyone was healthy and strong because it is hard work!  I think Mommy and Daddy did a wonderful job - with a little help from a nice young boy named Logan.  He came over and asked if they needed some help.  His help saved them at least a half day of time!  He ran back and forth for Daddy and lifted rocks and took care of garbage.  He was GREAT!  We can't thank him enough for his kind offer to help.

Boomer, the Mellow Yellow Lab

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Fireworks, Birthdays, Vacations.... Oh my!

Weather, storms, sun, hot, humid...  Such is the month of July.

As with many people and puppies, we celebrated the Fourth of July.  Mommy and Daddy went to see the fireworks - Daddy loves them!  Ringo and I stayed home in a quiet, cool house.  We prefer it that way!
The next day was Daddy's birthday.  We love to celebrate that event as much as we can, so we had Birthday Fun Week!  We sang "Happy Birthday" many times and gave him many kisses.  Daddy and Mommy went out to eat a few times and had great fun with loved ones.
So far this month, we have had a few nasty storms!  Lots of rain and wind... and then the heat and humidity!

Mommy and Daddy took a nice little vacation "up North" this year.  They hadn't done that before, so it was a new experience for them!  While they were gone, Ringo and I went to Jennifer's house.  We have such a good time there.  We play and take walks a lot.  I discovered something new and tasty to eat... Kleenex!  I heard it's not good for me, so I can't eat it any more.
Mommy and Daddy had a wonderful time during their getaway.  They walked a lot, ate some delicious food, danced a little and spent one whole day on a boat!  The weather was almost perfect, just a bit of drizzle once and a storm one morning.  The day on the boat was nice and sunny!

While on vacation, Mommy and Daddy celebrated the seventh anniversary of their kidney transplant! In case you didn't know, Daddy gave Mommy one of his kidneys.
We have had to limit our play time outside this week.  It has been too hot and humid to be outside for very long.  It's kind of a bummer because I love to play Frisbee, but it is very dangerous for dogs to be out in this extreme heat.  Dogs don't sweat, so we can get sick very easily.  Make sure your furry friends have a cool place to hang and lots of water to drink!

Rudy's Little World has had a few sales and Mommy will be speaking to a group of nurses in two weeks.

We hope you are enjoying your summer as much as we are!  In Minnesota, summers are short... much like this final paragraph!

Boomer the Mellow Yellow Lab

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Precious Momentos

I can't believe we are nearing the end of June already!  Time is flying by.  The weather has been typical for the beginning of summer - a little rain followed by a little heat.  Ringo and I have enjoyed our nice green big backyard.  Life is good for us puppies.

Mommy and Daddy celebrated another anniversary.  They are both recovering nicely.  Daddy's arm is getting stronger and healing with his PT (physical therapy). Mommy is regaining some strength after her hospital stays by taking many walks with Daddy and finally getting some of her appetite back.

We celebrated Father's Day by giving Daddy a T-shirt and two of our favorite biscuits!  He is such a great Pup-Daddy, he said we were so good he let us eat the biscuits!  What a guy!

We received some very thoughtful thank you notes from the third graders we visited last month. Those kids are very creative and talented.

Mommy and Daddy were so impressed with the students.
They were attentive and responsive.  When they asked about Rudy, Mommy explained his passing (that's what we say in schools, etc. - at home we say he went to heaven), they showed empathy and shared their stories about losing a loved one.

One young boy asked for Mommy's autograph. So cute!  Another student asked us to come back every year until she was in 17th grade.  She figured we would be dead after that.  It was very sweet.

Mommy and Daddy still talk about the visit and the school has already asked them to return next year!

We hope you can see some of the adorable details in the students' notes!

I hope you are having a great June!

Boomer the Mellow Yellow Lab

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Can We Skip May Next Year?

Even though May has some wonderful qualities like warmer weather and our favorite fragrance of lilacs, it has not been kind to us the last two years.  As you may tell by the lack of activity in our blog, it was quite a month!

You may recall, Daddy had surgery on April 29 to repair his ruptured bicep.  Mommy took good care of him for a few days, but started feeling really sick.  She ended up having to go to the hospital on May 8 and stayed there for 8 whole days.  The doctors figured out she had a nasty virus called Shingles.  Since she is a transplant recipient, it didn't present itself in the normal way.  Mommy felt awful - nauseated, fatigued and in a lot of pain from the bumps all over her body.  She was not able to eat or drink anything, so she was very dehydrated.

Ringo and I tried very hard to take care of Daddy while Mommy was in the hospital.  She ended up having to go back in for a little tune-up because of the horrible medicine that hurt her stomach.

We also had some great fun with 5 health classes at Como Park High School - and delightful 3rd graders at Tanglen Elementary.  Mommy talked about the importance of organ donation to the health classes and she talked about Rudy's Little World and our lives with the elementary kids.  It was great fun, but very exhausting.  I think Mommy pushed herself a bit too hard, but that is Mommy - that is what she does.  She will never miss an opportunity to touch the lives of others.

Daddy's arm is healing, the surgeon did a great job.  It will be a few months before he can play Frisbee with his right hand, and even longer before he can ride his motorcycle.  It will be hard to stay patient with his progress.

Now you know why I would like to skip May next year.  I realize we can't skip the time, but maybe we can call it something else.  Perhaps April part two or the month formally known as May?

I included extra pictures this time, since we haven't written for a while.  Enjoy!

Boomer the Mellow Yellow Lab

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

What a Week!

Have you ever noticed when someone asks you, "What's new?" or "What have you been up to lately?" it's hard to answer the question?  You know you've been busy.  Days are filled with activity and weeks start running together.  Once you sit back and think about it, things start to become clearer and you remember all the stuff you've done!

Well, we've had one of those stretches!  Mommy officially graduated from PT.  She will continue on her own and hopefully keep progressing with the nightly walks she takes with Daddy.  It's probably a good thing her PT is over because we found out Daddy's surgery will be on Friday, April 29.  It will fix his ruptured bicep, so he won't be able to use his right arm for a while.  That will be tough because he is right handed.  Ringo and I are going to have a sleep over at our friend, Jennifer's house for the first few days after the surgery.  The doctor said Daddy will have some discomfort, so he will have some "happy" pills to help.  Mommy will also take care of him.  When Ringo and I come home, we will help, too.

Last Friday, Mommy and Daddy went to a concert.  They saw Pat Benatar, Mommy's favorite female singer.  They had a great time.

The next morning, Mommy and Daddy went to a Donate Life Ambassador recognition brunch.  They met a very nice man who was an outstanding keynote speaker and kidney transplant recipient just like Mommy.  His name was Bruce King.  It was a beautiful day, so we spent some time outside when they got home.

We celebrated Rudy's Birthday on Sunday, April 24.  He would have been 12 years old.  We think of him often and really miss him, especially Mommy.  He was such a cool little guy with tons of energy (even more than little bro, Ringo!).  Without Rudy, there would be no Rudy's Little World (or Blog-spot)!

Along with all of the activities I just told you about, we have been doing stuff around the house to prepare for Daddy's surgery.  He has been working on a massive project for school.  We have also filled a few book orders and prepared for an event in May.  So, I guess we have been busy!  Now that I remember all of this, do you think anyone will ask me, "What's new?"

Boomer the Mellow Yellow Lab