It’s been a busy few weeks. It’s hard to believe we have less than 40 days now until Penny leaves us. There were times we never thought this time would come, and now here we are in many ways dreading the fact that she has to leave at all! It will be an interesting summer, though, and we have a lot planned, so I think we’ll have some fun.
The big news this past few weeks has been that we had to have our beloved little bunny, TomTom, put to sleep. He started acting a little punky and out of it and then just started smelling really bad, and finally had a hard time moving at all. I took him to the vet last week and she said that he was having kidney issues and they could try to nurse him through it, but there were no guarantees and it would be kinder just to let him go. For all the kidding around we’ve done in recent years about waiting for him to die so we could install bookshelves in his spot downstairs, it was incredibly sad and painful to bid him farewell. This picture was taken when he was about 4 months old, and he lived to be 6, so he had a good, long life. I know living in his pen in the basement wasn’t his favorite place to be, but we did the best we could by him, and I think as long as we gave him carrots and whatnot, he was happy.
I am busy now with two major goals, the first of which is finishing off everything I need to do in order to start school this summer. This includes completing a checklist of things they have on the school website for the summer course I’m taking, as well as the nuts and bolts, like applying for a loan, making travel arrangements, getting the text book, getting tested for immunity to measles, and making arrangements for where I’m going to stay. I’ve got an email address set up now for my school stuff, so I can say I’m official, and now that the bill is in, I guess I’m really going. The worst part of it has been dealing with my doctor’s office, trying to figure out about how I can get tested for a measles immunity. Despite my repeated phone calls, they haven’t called back, so finally I called the clinic in Central Park here in Fredericksburg and they can do the test and have the papers ready in 2 days. I should have gone there 3 weeks ago!
The other major thing is working on getting Leah potty trained. She has indicated a readiness and willingness for the task, as for the past couple of months, she’s gotten very upset when her diaper is wet or dirty, and tries to get it off. If she can’t, she screams and cries pitifully. We’ve been at it almost 2 weeks now, and she’s definitely getting the hang of it. She likes earning little rewards and she loves wearing underpants instead of a diaper. So I think we’re making good progress.
Last weekend, Paul Burrell, Princess Diana’s butler, came into Fredericksburg to help raise funds for the new children’s museum they are hoping to build here. Of course I jumped at the chance to go meet him and brought Penny along as her opportunity to meet a celebrity. We had a great time—he got right on the floor with Leah, and Penny was so happy that I talked her into going back and getting herself a book signed and asking him about the royal wedding.
Penny has developed an interest in the British Royal family thanks to my tutelage, so it was kind of special to share in that after we watched the Royal Wedding together and I taught her some tea sandwiches and scones to make English tea, which we did for both the Royal Wedding and for Mother’s Day.
Today we rolled down to Westmoreland Berry Patch to pick berries and play with goats. She LOVED it this year, as opposed to last year when she really wanted nothing to do with it. She sat in the mud happily mashing and eating berries and then we fed the goats and had lunch. They give you a handful of corn or a handful of goat feed for a quarter, and she was determined that the goat was not getting more than one niblet at a time, and even then he’d have to pry it from her fingers, but the goat was quite patient and happily ate whatever she was willing to give without biting.
I have been penpalling a lot lately, and have new penpals from England, Australia, New Zealand, Portugal, and Switzerland. It’s a lot of fun and very interesting, and helping me travel vicariously, since I’m not likely to go too many places between now and who knows when! One of my Australian penpals friended me on Facebook and it is hilarious to see her snow pictures while I’m gearing up to roast off a few pounds here with summer kicking off.
Otherwise, we’ve been sticking close to home. Gas prices being what they are, I’ve canceled our summer travel plans and am now making plans for things we can do locally. This past week I only used one tank of gas, which for me is astounding, since I was going through 2 a week. We are enjoying Toddlin’ Time and MOPS, and at the MOPS event on Sunday, they were talking to me about putting Leah in pre-school this fall, which I am still thinking about. I’ve been leaning away from doing it, but at the same time, it would give me a couple of days a week to get schoolwork done, as well as allowing her the chance to socialize and learn some things… So we’ll see. I would like to take her to the Richmond Zoo and Ginter Gardens this summer, and we’ll go up to DC to Mike’s new office and to meet his co-workers. My old office is having a party next week and I’m going to go to that. My book clubs are still going strong, and I’m enjoying them both. Zipping around a lot with Penny now that she’s gotten more involved in school and friends. She really enjoyed the prom last weekend, and this weekend is having Korean food with friends, volunteering at a local 5K, and wants to go see Pirates of the Caribbean. Monday night, Mike will be out visiting some friends from RI who are coming to town, so we girls are going to have a little girls’ night, and I know she also wants to go to Charlottesville again, as well as go berry picking. Last night was her last choir concert, tonight she has to go to an improv show for her school. So it’s a busy time for all of us!
This summer, I’m going to go enjoy my first concert at Celebrate Virginia Live, when Barenaked Ladies roll into town. I’m also hoping to get to see Hello Dolly over at Riverside. I’m really excited to go to Tucson, and also to swim, spend time with friends, and start planning my dad’s 60th in September.
That’s all for now! The fun never ends! :-D