Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Here, kitty, kitty, kitty

My family -- we are all such suckers for animals. We already have two dogs, a guinea pig [the other one died just last week :( ], and a tank full of fish. Along the course of the summer, we have temporarily had a snake and five frogs. Morgan went on a walk yesterday, and what does she bring home???? A baby kitten abandoned in the woods!! YIKES!!! NO MORE CRITTERS!!!

I will say that "Kitty" (or "Kyo", as the kids are calling him) is strikingly handsome -- in fact, I think he's probably one of the prettiest cats I've ever seen. However, I cannot handle another pet, I'm afraid of what the dogs might do with him, AND my cat allergies seem to be getting worse as I get older. And part of me wishes that was not the case -- this little guy truly is a cutie-pie, and I sorta, kinda, maybe wish that we could keep him!! But we won't!! Anybody want to give this fellow a nice home?? (BTW, my best guess is that he's between 6 - 8 weeks old, so still a little squirt!!)

Friday, September 11, 2009

What do you remember from the day the towers fell?

What do YOU remember? When I think of 9-11, the first thing I think of is -- deep, eerie silence........ Let me explain.....

September 11, 2001 started like any normal day at our home. My husband was downstairs working in his home office; my kids were up, getting ready to start our schoolwork -- just a typical day in a homeschooling household. My mother called from Florida just before 9 AM to say, "Have you been watching the news? The World Trade Center was just hit by a plane!" My father used to work in the WTC; he knew people there; I had visited him in his office there; this felt very personal. I ran downstairs to turn on the TV and sat watching in disbelief at the scene I found -- and then I remember the horror I felt as I saw another plane crash into the second tower. And the silence of having no words to express what I was thinking and feeling....

I remember my kids crowded onto the sofa around me and trying to make sense of what was happening. My husband was a manager for AT&T at the time, and an emergency conference call was immediately set up with managers on the East Coast, so he went back to his office. I went to his office from time to time to give him an update of what was happening on the TV. I remember screaming, "The tower collapsed!", and as he relayed the info to the others on the conference call, the immediate stunned silence -- the first of many moments of silence that day.

I remember continuing to watch the news; the station I was watching put up a smaller frame in the corner of the screen, showing another area with flames and smoke coming up. One of the broadcasters said, "Is that Central Park?" and I remember thinking, "No, that's somewhere here in Washington -- I've seen that before." And learning later that it was the Pentagon -- again, silence. What could be said?

And then the news of the plane crash in Shanksville, PA -- I stared at the TV, aghast. What was happening?

Sometime in the mid-afternoon, I left the basement and went outside onto my deck. I needed to get away from those awful images, clear my head, process what was happening. Where I live, halfway between Washington, DC and Baltimore, MD is a very busy metropolitan area. A major railroad track runs behind our neighborhood; our house is in the flight path to BWI Airport; several major highways are close to our house. But that day, when I stepped outside, all that was heard was -- silence. The railroad had been shut down; the airplanes were grounded; almost no cars on the road; just -- silence. An eerie quiet that I will never forget.

Those are MY memories of 9-11 -- what are yours?

9-11 -- may we never forget.


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Pray for Baby Oliver

My job, while usually fun, exciting and rewarding (though often exhausting!) does have its share of nail-biting moments, moments of despair (such as the loss of baby Logan this past summer), and times of worry. Right now is one of those "times of worry".

We had a client give birth on Monday night -- a very straightforward birth for the most part, especially for a first-time mother. Mother and baby left the birth center and went home about 5 hours later. Therefore, I was quite surprised when the midwife called me the next afternoon to tell me that the baby was in the NICU. He was EXTREMELY jaundiced, especially for being less than 18 hours old. Most pediatricians don't start to really worry about the bilirubin count until it's hitting 16 - 18; Oliver's was 26. That's terribly high by any standard.

Oliver was immediately sent to the hospital, and last night underwent a complete transfusion of all his blood. It turns out he and the mother had a blood incompatibility issue which set all this off; hopefully with the very quick treatment he received, he will have no long-term damage from this. But what a way to start off life with a new baby....... Please be praying for parents P & M and their new baby Oliver.


Sunday, September 6, 2009

Flood at River Valley Ranch


I learned this week that one of my favorite places in Maryland (as well as one of my kids' favorite places!) sustained a great deal of damage during a flash flood last week. I'm attaching the link to River Valley Ranch's site with news reports/videos of the damage. If you feel led, please donate to their rebuilding effort. This is a place that is WELL worth supporting, and is deserving of community support.


Friday, September 4, 2009

Inside Macy's

When Morgan and I went to NYC the other day, we were absolutely fascinated with Macy's. It is SEVEN FLOORS of merchandise, beautiful old architecture, and a great combination of old and new decor. Here were things that really caught our attention:

*Beautiful light fixtures and decorative colums, plus the details on the ceiling -- I wish my pictures showed all that better, but I was using my cell phone to take these!!

*A close-up of those gorgeous light fixtures!

*Old WOODEN escalators -- so cool --

*Plus the metal plates at the top and bottom of the escalators!