Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Tag you're injured

The school health aide called to say that the blond twin wanted to know if I could bring her some pain killers. It turned out the blond twin hurt her neck, but the school health aide didn't have much information about how it happened.

I drove up to give her some ibuprofen. We have long known that the school cannot give any medications without a doctor's prescription. Even over-the-counter medicines required a doctor's note or else the school was not able to  dispense anything. 

Today I arrived to find her crying, with a ice pack on her neck. The health aide told me the blond twin hurt herself in gym class. Through her tears, the blond twin told me that she was playing tag in gym class when she felt pain in her neck. Right after that she wasn't able to turn her head.

She came home, took some medicine and panicked for a while. She worried that she would never be able to move her neck again. She asked if she needed surgery. She wondered if she would be able to go horseback riding again. The blond twin rambled all these things through her tears.

The ibuprofen kicked in just in time for her to sleep for a while. I massaged her neck, with plenty of direction of course. The blond twin certainly wasn't going to let me massage her neck without making sure I was doing it properly. She was injured, but she was still trying to be in control.

By the time I went to get the brunette twin from school the blond twin had been sleeping for more than an hour. The blond twin was so happy to see her twin that she seemed to have forgotten about her sore neck. It didn't take long before she moved the wrong way and the pain came back.

We kept her full of ibuprofen until she went to bed. She slept with her dog at her feet and her favorite critter in her arms. As I watched her sleep, I kept thinking, "She hurt herself playing tag?"

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Stomach aches and tears

The brunette twin and I were walking home with Holly on Monday just laughing and chatting. We were about a block from home when we stopped. I grabbed my phone and dialed 911. We saw Kiki running loose. We knew we were in trouble.

Kiki belonged to a family who thought the proper way to handle a dog was to leave it outside all day and night on a short tie-up. Rain, snow, storms, bitter cold? Kiki was always outside. At least she was outside when she wasn't running away.

We had a history with Kiki. She bit Oreo, but she didn't draw blood so the police simply wrote a ticket. They didn't complete the required bite report because Oreo wasn't bleeding. I knew we were in trouble when Kiki started charging towards us.

Kiki jumped on Holly and started biting her. The brunette twin kicked Kiki while I yelled at the 911 operator. She was asking questions, but it was so loud. Kiki was attaching the brunette twin and Holly. I screamed at Kiki and kicked at the dog.

Poor Holly had no idea what was going on. She had never fought with another dog. She viewed all dogs as friendly. She thought all dogs just wanted to play. It wasn't until Kiki started biting her head that Holly decided enough was enough. At that moment, a neighbor started calling Kiki. He managed to get Kiki in the backyard as the police arrived.

I'd say the story had a happy ending because Holly had small injuries, but nothing serious. The brunette twin and I took Holly to the vet. The brunette twin and I were able to talk and cry a bit before we picked up the blond twin from her after-school activity.

The blond twin missed the attack. She was at an after-school program blissfully unaware that her twin and dog were being attacked. From the moment she heard about it, the blond twin started crying. She was shaking when she heard the brunette twin tell the story. The blond twin hugged her dog, cried and kept saying she was sorry. We told her that there wasn't anything she could have done to prevent it. She seemed to understand.   

For the past two nights, the blond twin hasn't slept. She wakes up with stomach aches, headaches and cramps. She spent her mornings complaining about how she felt sick. Tuesday was Veteran's Day so the girls were off school. Wednesday morning she cried at the dining room table because she felt so badly. We let her stay home from school.

Holly was her usual self for the most part. Her ear started bleeding Wednesday night. The blond twin wasn't as lucky. She hasn't been able to forgive herself for not taking care of her dog. The brunette twin also talked about how she should have protected Holly.

All I keep thinking about is how angry I am at the family who was supposed to be caring for Kiki. They weren't able to do their job and now we're left with the after effects.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Stay focused

We told the girls they had to clean their stuff before Christmas decorations went up. We have been really busy, so we haven't been very good about keeping up with our "one in, one out" rule. After a couple of hours going through drawers, cleaning closest and rearranging shelves, the girls called us to their room.

When we walked in we found a garbage bag ready to go out, a pile to be donated and lots of clean surfaces. We were admiring their work when I saw an untouched bin on the floor. I looked at it and hesitated.

The brunette twin saw me look at the bin. She said, "Mom, let's focus on the good stuff, ok?" At that moment she put her hand on my chin and turned my head back towards her amazingly clean dresser top. She proceeded to waive her hand over the dresser top as if to remind me about what a great job she did cleaning it.

When I tried to turn my head, she guided me back to her dresser. She said, "Mom, stay focused. The good stuff remember?"

Sunday, November 9, 2014

One two three five

The girls had their Fall Student Horse Show yesterday. Unlike the first horse show we attended, we were ready this time.

Two weeks ago we went to Goodwill to find some Western-style shirts. We stopped at JoAnn's Fabrics to by some glittery embellishments. I sewed the embellishments to the collars and cuffs. As we learned last time, Rhinestone Cowboy was more than a song. For these horse shows, even in-house, student shows, it was an expectation.

The girls went to bed early so they had plenty of sleep. They woke up early because they were so excited. We called about 8:45 a.m. to find out which group was showing. We were running tight on the schedule and wanted to make sure we had plenty of time. When the brunette twin hung up the phone, we decided I could make breakfast. If we had been running late, breakfast would have been cereal and milk.

By the time the girls got ready and out of the house, we were a little later than we planned. We weren't worried because we called to confirm the schedule. When we arrived at the check-in table, we discovered we almost missed their group. Their instructor originally told us they were going to compete in the beginner class. Even though they moved up to advanced beginner, she didn't think they had been in advanced beginner long enough to compete in that class.

When we arrived at the check-in table, we found out that the girls had been moved up to advanced beginner. When they were creating classes, they realized the beginners were really, really beginners. The girls were far better than those kids so it wasn't really fair to put them all in the same group. Luckily we arrived at the moment we did. We pinned the girls' numbers on their glittery shirts and they ran in back to get on their horses. Their class was up just after we arrived

They competed with smiles spreading from ear to ear. When the judges handed out ribbons for the first class, we waited for the girls to react. We pinned their numbers on so quickly that we didn't even pay attention. When the announcer called out numbers, we didn't know if those numbers belonged to our girls or not.

In the end the blond twin walked away with first place and fifth place ribbons. The brunette twin clutched second place and third place ribbons. They were thrilled that they rode so well against more experienced riders. We were happy that they were so excited.

They immediately started making plans for the next horse show -- shirts, hair styles, etc. Mommy & Daddy immediately made a mental note to get their earlier the next time. It was good that the girls didn't have time to get nervous about being moved up a class, but we don't want to cut it that close again.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

From cute to cannibalism

When the girls were little I started saying, “I'm going to eat you for lunch.” They’d laugh when I said, “What do you taste like?” If they were playing along, they’d say something I liked. If they didn’t want to play, they’d say, “Hot dogs.” I’d immediately let them off my lap. They’d laugh and run away to play.

The other night I said to the blond twin, “I’m hungry. I think I’m going to eat you for dinner. What do you taste like?” She looked at me, rolled her eyes and said, “That’s cannibalism. You can’t eat me for dinner.”

Just like that the game came to an end. It’s cute when your daughter says she tastes like a strawberry and you tickle her. It’s not cute when your daughter declares you’re a cannibal.

Friday, October 31, 2014

On second thought

I was putting up some Halloween decorations last night when I had a startling realization. As I stood at the end of our driveway staring at the white plastic ghosts and spider webs, it occurred to me that putting up caution tape on the trees probably wasn't the best idea.

We've put up caution tape for the past few years. When we had our patio put in, the contractor left a big roll of caution tape. We've used it every Halloween since then.

This year, though, I didn't take into account recent events. It was probably not a very good idea to put up caution tape in a neighborhood still recovering from the recent plane crash. No one came out with any comments, but I'm sure at least one of the neighbors is wonder what I was thinking -- and rightfully so.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Like daughter, like dog

Yesterday I came home from the store to a quiet house. Usually when I come back into the house, Holly waits by the door to greet me. It's as if she was left alone for hours, even if I just go to check the mail. Yesterday she wasn't anywhere on the first floor.

I saw some stuff that had been on my desk scattered on the family room floor. I knew why Holly wasn't greeting me.

I made soup for lunch. When I brought it to my desk, I put the bowl on a cork hot pad. I put the dishes in the dishwasher before heading to the store, but left the hot pad. I didn't have a reason for leaving it there. I just didn't move it before leaving. The last thing I did before I left was turn off the TV. This requires two remotes in our house. I was standing by my desk. I put the remotes on the hot pad and left.

Since Holly didn't offer a detailed explanation. my best guess was that she was sniffing around the hot pad, managed to pull it off the desk, dropped the remotes on the hardwood floor and ran upstairs after the noise from the remotes hitting the hardwood frightened her.

In fact, she stayed upstairs for about two hours. She didn't come down until I called her to go get the girls from school. Even then she came down slowly, with her ears back -- as if she was waiting to get into trouble.

When the girls were younger, the blond twin put herself on time out one day. We never did figure out why. She simply announced that she was bad and she was putting herself on time out. As we walked to school yesterday I thought about how funny that was, and how funny it was that Holly did the same thing when she misbehaved.