Wednesday, May 29, 2013


Today was a very long day.  I was so looking forward to coming home and taking a walk with the furry one. We only had a couple tablespoons left of her favorite wet dog food (Wellness Chicken Stew.) Petco is the only place that sells it around here so off we went to the mall.  Petco is where Liesl gets her nails trimmed.  Despite the fact that the same nice young lady, who is a terrier mom herself, and who always cuts them is super nice to Liesl, she thinks this a traumatic experience. It takes ten minutes, and the nice young lady always keeps Liesl out of the kennel and with her until I pay my bill and pick her up.  So anytime, I drive anywhere near Petco, Liesl assumes the worst and starts trembling.  She is not down with going inside Petco to pick up her food, treats, a new toy, etc.  So she sat out in the car shaking while I went in to get her food.

After I got stocked up, I decided that we would take her walk around the mall.  Liesl was super excited about this development.  She LOVES the mall.  There are lots of people around, lots of good smells, etc.  She loves to stop in each doorway to the stores to see what is going on inside.  She especially loves the way the store with the leather shoes smells.  :)  So we walked around the whole mall.  She was super duper happy.  

So I got to walk around the mall, too.  Other than to go to Petco, I have not really been to the mall in years.  Liesl and I walked it about a month ago.  It was sort of fun to look in all of the windows.  

It was really nice to come home.  I was so happy to put my jammies on and sit on the sofa.  I got to play with Liesl for a while.  She was a little tired from her adventure, too.  But she perked up to play hide and seek.  She loves when I go hide around the house.  I put her in stay in the living room, then hide behind doors or large furniture.  She thinks this is the best game ever.  Sometimes she will hide, too, which is hilarious, because she thinks that if she can not see me, then I can not see her.  So she will hide behind things smaller than her.  Once when we went for a walk, she hid behind a pole that the speed limit sign goes on.  Her little face fit behind the pole, so she could not see me.  However, there were still four legs on either side of the pole showing.  Plus she was on a leash.  But she stood there perfectly still, until she came out with a huge grin that suggested that she thought she was hilarious.

Life with a schnauzer is never dull.  They have huge personalities, are always up for fun, and have great senses of humor.  As you can imagine, Liesl is so much fun.  I am glad I get to share her with you.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day

First and foremost today, we have in our hearts and minds, those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our country.  Our prayers are lifted up for those who have given up so much and for those who loved and lost them.  

It has been a lovely, quiet day today.  Gosh, darn it, I woke up at 6:30 and could not get back to sleep.  So I got up, had my coffee, and was at the beach with Liesl a little before 8 am.  This is the happiest place in Liesl's world, because it is a leash free dog beach.  She got to play with other dogs, play in the water, and run along the sand.  Liesl thinks that she is Labrador when she is at the beach and likes to chase the other labs into the surf.  She went in kinda far today (her tummy was in the water.)  She was thinking that she was pretty hot stuff after that and was trotting along with her ears back, like she is a total tough girl.  She thinks she is gangsta.  LOL

So we came home and she was all about a nap.  We got all of the sand off and she went off to sleep.  I got out my stitching and stitched while watching daytime television.  I worked on my very old WIP, MLI's Lady of the Thread.  I love Marilyn Leavitt-Imblum's designs.  She had such a great eye for color and her designs are so romantic.  I have stitched three of her angels.  Best of all, she was just lovely as a person.  About 10 years ago, I wrote her an email telling her how much I loved her work, and she sent me the loveliest note.  

So I am happy to stitch this for my office/craft room.  I think she will look perfect in there.  

It has been a wonderful three days off and I am sort of sorry to see it come to an end.  I have enjoyed the peaceful time, the walks with Liesl, the time with my best friend, stitching, reading and the opportunity to just be quiet and rest.  It has been really precious time.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

A Really Good Day

It was supposed to be another cold, dreary day, but surprisingly when we woke up the sun was poking out.  We decided to get up slowly so I finished the book I was reading while I drank my coffee.  Liesl decided that she needed to nap herself awake.  It was nice to have the time to just relax.  

I was really happy because in the afternoon I got to stitch.  It seems like it has been way too long.  This is the last week of my online business class and a big group project was due today.  I have been going back and forth with my work partner with revisions, etc. all week and thankfully the project will be submitted tonight.  So I got to stitch and enjoy my time today.  

It was so beautiful today that Liesl and I finally got up to go to the park.  It was just a beautiful day.  We got to one of our favorite benches and just sat and relaxed.  I love having time like this where I am not watching the clock.  Beyond the lake pictured here, is a main street and then the Monterey Bay which feeds into the Pacific Ocean.  So we get to sit and smell the salt air, watch the water fowl swim, and the people paddle by.

Liesl is actually sitting up here.  Usually she likes to lay down and watch the lake.  She is doing what I call her happy ears.  They are all relaxed.  (No, I did not have them docked, she came to me like that.)  You can see those big Andy Rooney eyebrows over the top of her head.  LOL  Her beard is blowing in the breeze, too.  She loves this park and is like a little kid when it is time to leave.  By the time we got home from the park the clouds starting looking dark and ominous over Monterey Bay.  We are expecting rain tomorrow.   Liesl and I walk rain or shine, but most of the day will be spent inside relaxing.

So tonight I am watching a little television and stitching.  I have a new book to start so that may be on my fun list for the evening, too.  I am stitching on Lady of the Thread.  I am hoping to post photos this week.  

So tonight I am grateful for sunny, relaxing days and long walks in the park.  I am grateful for the cozy shelter from the rain.  I am grateful for the puppy kisses I got today.  I am grateful for stitching and reading time.  I am really grateful that I have one more day to enjoy it all.

Saturday, May 25, 2013


Whoohoo!  I am up late tonight.  Made it all the way to 10:30.  LOL  Unbelievably, I woke up at 5:30 am  and could not get back to sleep.  Liesl had gotten up to go potty and instead of ringing her bell to go out like usual, she put her little puppy arms up on the bed and stared me down until I got up.  I am still anxious and looking for anything she does that is different.  I immediately stressed out wondering why she was leaning on the bed instead of ringing the bell, which is out of the ordinary.  So I could not go back to sleep afterwards.  My best friend who is a nurse practioner, said that Liesl might just be picking up my anxiety, and might have been checking on me.  She said that my worry will diminish somewhat with time, and she reminded me that Liesl has a really good momma, who is committed to keeping her healthy and taking really good care to make sure that she has a long, healthy life.  

We did have a nice morning.  It is super cold here.  So we stayed home and I puttered around the house.  I cleaned and finally got some pictures hung that I bought three months ago.  They look so awesome.  Better than I had planned.  Then, inspired,  I even organized my linen closet.  I am happy.  You know that feeling when you wake up and you realize that you can not live one more day without getting your hair cut?  The day had come.  Luckily, my hairdresser fit me into the schedule and worked her magic.  Afterwards, I got to have coffee with my best friend.  It is amazing how time with your best girlfriends can revitalize you.

Liesl and I went to her favorite park in the afternoon.  We walked by that cemetery today.  We have not gone that way in a while.  Again, Liesl stopped and hunkered down in front of the cemetery and would not walk.  I had to carry her and she was shaking.  Freaky.  She likes walking across the bridges, and along the grass, but always stops at the same spot across from the cemetery.  After we passed, she put her tail back up, and she did her happy walk the rest of the way.  We stopped at her favorite park bench so she could watch the water.  By the afternoon, there was just a bit of sun for her to bask in.  She nestled into my arms.  She was so comfy that she did not want to get up so we sat there for a really long time.  She just laid there in my arms and watched the paddle boats.  I asked her several times if she wanted to go, but she just laid there concentrating on the boats.  So we must have sat there for at least an half an hour.  It was really sweet and I enjoyed that time.  It was so tranquil.

So tonight I am so grateful for so much.  I am grateful, of course, for little Liesl and her sweet self.  I am grateful for my very wise best friend.  I am grateful for my clean house, for cold, cozy days inside.  It has been a good, full day and I am so thankful.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Ready For The Weekend

So far we are off to a great start to the weekend.  I came home, changed into comfy sweats and gathered up a certain zwerg schnauzer for a walk in the park.  She gets very excited now when I drive over to the little lake.  Tonight she just wanted to sniff and take her time.  I really wanted to slow down my own pace so I just followed where she wanted to sniff.  Liesl has a thing for park benches, too.  It is one of the few places she will sit on my lap (probably to keep warm.)  She picked one for us to sit on.

Whenever we sit on a bench, Liesl really nestles into me, and almost goes to sleep.  This evening was cold and windy, but there was just enough sun and it was directly on her back.  So we sat and relaxed without worrying about time.  We watched a family feeding the ducks and geese (which is really bad for them.)  Liesl was mesmerized but was so absolutely calm.  This is why she loves park benches (she does it at the beach, too.)  She just likes to sit, particularly near the water, and watch the goings on.  I have to wonder what goes on in that cute head.  When it just got to chilly to sit any longer, we headed for home.

I had a beautiful bonus show up in the home I bought.  I bought my home in October and did not find out until last May that during the summer, the earth's alignment is such that I can watch the beautiful sun set into the Pacific Ocean from my kitchen window.  Tonight I walked by just as it was sinking behind the waves.  It was so beautiful and breathtaking.  It is such a blessing.

I had totally planned on a DIY, work on the house weekend.  However, Liesl and I have had a pretty emotional week.  So I think we will relax and putter a bit.  I think we need a little time to smell the roses.  She is already doing her small soft doggie snores.  I am not far behind her.  It is cold and I am tucked into all of my blankets and my eyelids are heavy.  

I am feeling really grateful for so much as I head into this weekend.  For one, I have a job, particularly where I get paid for a holiday off.  I am grateful that Liesl's diagnosis was mostly good news.  I am grateful for walks in the park, sunsets, and being cozy.  I am grateful for working in an environment where my work is appreciated.  I am grateful for books, for cross stitching, and all of the fun things in my life.  I feel truly blessed.

Thursday, May 23, 2013


I slept crazy hard last night.  I think it was the first decent night of sleep I had in weeks.  It was such an emotional day.  I am wondering how long it will take for me to stop being so hyper vigilant with Liesl and just enjoy being with her sweet self.  The doctor had said yesterday to keep an eye on her for some symptoms, which may or may not ever present themselves. Tonight she was a little excited about something, and I immediately started watching her closely, thinking, "Has she ever sounded like that before?"  If she barks, I am afraid she is overexerting herself.  I am still a bit of a wreck.  Hopefully, over time, I will be able to calm down for a bit.

I had another bit of an scary moment yesterday.  After I got Liesl all settled, I had to go into work in the afternoon.  The little highway that I have to take to work has two lanes going each way and a shoulder in each direction.  Yesterday, as I got on the highway, I was in the left lane, when all of the sudden a car made a u-turn from the shoulder going in my direction, crossed over the right lane and right in front of me and my lane to make his u-turn to go in the opposite direction.  I slammed on my brakes and was within less than 5 feet of broadsiding him.  He turned to look at the oncoming traffic.  He was a young guy and was laughing.  I looked in my rear view mirror at the traffic that was behind me.  Had I broadsided him, I undoubtedly would have been pancaked by the cars behind.  He could have killed me and several others, or seriously injured us, and here he was laughing.  It struck me as pure evil.  My hands shook all the way to work.  I am still upset.  After spending a morning scared out of my mind, having this happen just sort of overdid it for me.  

So I am especially grateful today.  Life has changed in the blink of an eye for those in Oklahoma this week.  
We have all had something sudden happen that drastically changes everything for us quickly.  We feel for the suffering that they are going through.  At the same time, it is a reminder to be grateful for every single thing that we have right now. I am grateful for all of the love in my life.  I am grateful that I made it to and from work safely today.  I am grateful that my home stands, keeping Liesl safe, and welcoming me back at the end of the day.  I am grateful for a little bright eyed, sassy, sweet and funny little dog, who gives me kisses and attitude most days.

I am so looking forward to the three day weekend.  I had planned on it being a D-I-Y, work on the house weekend, but I think it will end up being a restful weekend full of good books, walks with Liesl, some craft projects lots of puppy snuggles.    It is supposed to be cold here and may even rain on Monday, so it is kind of a good weekend to be cozy.  I think Liesl and I both need some rest.  

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

A Quick Liesl Update

Thank you very much for all of your prayers, good thoughts and kindness.  God answered our prayers and I am offering up many prayers of thanksgiving.  I just got back from the cardiologist's office and the news is mostly good.  Liesl has a mitral valve leak, however, the doctor says that it is a mild one, and that we seem to have caught it at the very beginning.   Thanks be to God.  She said that while it is a degenerative condition, that right now we will just monitor it and there is no need to be on medication at this point.  She said that if and when we do have to have medication that the medications are much better than they were and they continue to make advances and make them even better.  Liesl does have a slightly enlarged part of her heart, but the doctor said that we will just keep an eye on it.  She wants Liesl on fish oil and to continue her weight loss.  She said that she can continue her usual exercise and routine and just to be her happy, schnauzer self.  She said that it may be years, before we could possibly see any symptoms.  

Liesl's blood pressure was a little high, but the doctor said that it was not considered very high for a little dog, scared, in the dog hospital, surrounded by strangers poking at her.  She said it could have just been Liesl being stressed.  So next month, we will go to her regular vet to have it checked again and to have some x-rays done.  Then she will go back to the cardiologist in six to eight months to have another EKG just to see if there are any changes.  

The doctor was so nice and said that I can call her anytime.  She also said that Liesl is so sweet and so accommodating and just went with the flow of everything that had to get done.  Prior to the testing the doctor said that she would just keep Liesl in a room with her.  I told her that I was so grateful because Liesl is terrified of being kenneled.  The people who had her before kept her locked up in a kennel and I think she is scared that she will not be let back out.  It is one of the reasons I groom her at home, so that she will not be put in a crate.  The doctor said that she completely understood and would see to it that Liesl would not be placed in a kennel at all.

So I am really grateful for the news today.  Now I have a context to work within.  I am also grateful that she does not need medication right now.  I hugged her a little tighter today and treasure her even more, if that was possible.  I am so thankful to God for His blessings and mercy.  I am so thankful to all of you who have offered up prayers on Liesl's behalf.  Thank you from both of us.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013


For a few weeks now I have been contemplating making Liesl a little quilt of her own.  Liesl knows comfort and adopted mine.  Before the weather gets cold again, I have been thinking about a nice quilt with bones made out of squares and triangles.  There are lots of options on Google.

My coworker is a quilter, and I was telling her today about how Liesl has this appointment tomorrow with the cardiologist and how scared I am.  She suggested that I go over to the fabric store and get some polar fleece to make a blanket for Liesl.  She suggested that I could buttonhole stitch the edge. She said that it might be a good idea of something for me to do while I wait for Liesl to go through her tests.  She said it might make me feel better doing something extra nice for Liesl.  

It was such a great idea.  I went over on my lunch hour.  None of the polar fleece was Liesl's style, however.  LOL.  A lot of it was loud, and not very girlie.  I walked around and that was when I spotted the vintage style fabric above.  A couple of years ago, I saw this fabric and fell in love.  I did not buy it at the time.  I have been looking for it for the past two years whenever I go into another one of this particular company's stores.  I have been kicking myself for two years now.  If you look closely some of the little dogs even look like schnauzers.  Bonus.  I bought two yards of it and think I will use it as backing fabric for Liesl's quilt.

So as I mentioned, tomorrow is her tests.  I am so scared but trying to remember to walk in faith.  Liesl and I went for her walk in the park after work today.  It was very cold and windy.  I had never seen waves in the little lake before.  We were both cold and Liesl's beard was blowing every which way.  We decided to run or trot.  She was happy running.  Schnauzers are pure poetry when they run.  It is a beautiful thing.  As for me, poetry is not what comes to mind.  Maybe limericks, but poetry, not so much.  

Liesl was thinking that she might have to go deal with some ducks while we were there.  I had to pick her up and carry her, because in reality, they were big ol' mean Canadian geese and five of the seven were babies.    Yikes. It had disaster written all over it.  Not that I would have let her hassle a duck either.  But she can dream.  Messing with geese, would quickly become a nightmare.  

So I am going to try really hard to sleep tonight.  I have a feeling I will be up and praying for my sweet girl.  She is dreaming dreams of chasing squirrels.  Her little puppy feet are running in place while she sleeps.  She makes me smile.

If you could spare a prayer for Liesl tomorrow, I would so appreciate it.  You are probably already doing so, but big prayers going up tonight for the people of Oklahoma.  My heart just breaks for them.  I can not imagine what they have been through.  

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Love Thy Neighbor

I am blessed to live in one of those neighborhoods where the neighbors all look out for each other.  The kindness that is shown along this street can be quite humbling.  One neighbor makes sure that an elderly or sick neighbor has a ride to the doctor.  My next door neighbor literally took care of the elderly man who owned my house every day until he passed.  We call and check on a neighbor if we have not seen them for a while.  We pray for each other, ask each other if the other needs anything, and share plants that would look pretty in each others' yards.  One neighbor even brought me a collard green plant because she said that it would keep me healthy.  This is a very special street.

Friday night I was doing a load of laundry when I heard water splashing.  I went into the garage to see that my laundry sink was overflowing.  Yikes!  The water had backed up into the sink and was draining very slowly.  I was beyond exhausted by that point, so I decided to go get Liquid Plumber on Saturday.  I gave it a good long time to do its thing and used up the whole bottle by last evening.  No luck.

A few months ago, I had a clog in my sewer line that my neighbor, a plumber, took care of.  I called him after church at home today to see what he would he suggest.  (Plus his feelings would have been hurt if he would have seen one of those emergency plumber trucks in front of my house.)  He is one of the nicest people you can meet.  He said, "I will be at your house in 20 minutes."  Just a few minutes later he was walking up the street with his tools.  It turns out that my line from my kitchen to the garage was clogged (it leads to the sewer line).  It was yucky.  He said that it has probably been building since before I moved in.  An half an hour later he was walking back down the street to his house after clearing the line and after refusing payment.  He said that the neighbors here take care of each other.  (I will still take a gift certificate or something over this week as a thank you.)  

I shared a few weeks ago that I made a commitment to Liesl that no matter how tired I am after work, we still go for a walk every day.  We have been walking about a mile after work.  Between the extra walk a day (she gets one in the morning, too) and my changing out her treats and making sure she gets no human food, she has now lost two pounds, in about two weeks.  I was surprised when I weighed her yesterday.  I have made sure that there is no salt in her treats and they are all lean, veggie based.  I did not reduce her food at all.  She has about three more pounds to go until she is at the weight where the doctor wants her.

I was not prepared for how much I was going to love our after work walks.  It helps to melt away the stress of the day.  Schnauzers are such happy dogs, in general.  Liesl is especially happy on the walks and there is something about a happy dog that just lifts your mood.  She bops along smelling the smells, seeing the sights, meeting the people.  It has been a joy so far.  I take her to different places for her walks to keep it interesting.  So far she loves the duck pond and the mall.  

Liesl's cardiology appointment is this Wednesday.  She will be having an EKG and ultrasound.  I would so appreciate it if you could include her in your prayers.

We have had a wonderful weekend.  It was full of naps, good walks, beautiful sunsets, and snuggles.  I go into my week feeling happy.  Wishing you happiness, too!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

A Good Day At The Cozy Cottage

Today was such a good day.  On weekdays we are usually up between 5 and 5:20 am, so sleeping in until 7:30 on Saturdays is a blessing.  A certain furry one does not believe in sleeping beyond that time and infers that breakfast should probably be served soon thereafter.  This is usually my time to have a leisurely couple of cups of coffee in my jammies, while watching design shows and catching up on a week's worth of email.  I love this part of a Saturday morning.  It is quiet and peaceful and feels very decadent. 

As I mentioned yesterday, the cozy cottage was starting to look as messy as a dorm room.  It felt so good to clean.  My kitchen needed a good deep cleaning, and rugs needed a deep vacuuming.  I got the laundry done and scrubbed the bathroom.  I would love to clean the closets but I think it is a better reserved for the upcoming three day weekend.  Unless, of course, something else more fun comes up.  :)

After my morning of housecleaning, I decided that a nap was in order.  Every time I suggest to Liesl that we take a nap, she always looks at me with a smile that says, "Splendid idea!"  I took my book with me and got under my blankets and was asleep in minutes.  I am a big believer in naps.  I have since been since my children were little.  I felt pretty rested after my nap and announced to Liesl it was time to go to the park where the lake is.  

We took a longer walk than usual.  At this particular park there is a bridge which leads to a road where there is a large playground on one side of the road and a beautiful, well tended cemetery on the other side.  We always walk on the side with the playground.  What is weird is that Liesl will not walk past that cemetery even though we are across the road.  The other day when we went there, she just put on the brakes and would not go forward.  Mini schnauzers have a low center of gravity and when they hunker down and decide they are not moving, there is nothing you can do to move them without picking them up.  They are also one of the most stubborn dogs you will ever meet.  The other day I just assumed she was tired and picked her  up and carried her past it.  In general, Liesl does not liked to be picked up ('cause she is a big dog.)  Today she stopped in the same place and I had to carry her again.  I wonder what she senses.

Whenever we take a long walk we will usually find a bench to stop and relax for a bit..  When Liesl sees a bench she will usually stop. She loves to sit and watch bodies of water and the activity around them.  She goes into a Zen like state and will lay down on my lap and nestle into my arm.  Today we were just relaxing, watching the boats and the ducks.  A couple of the ducks started swimming towards us, got out of the water and started walking towards us withing about six feet of us.  I could not believe it.  I think they are probably used to people feeding them from that bench.  I was seeing disaster coming and tried to shoo them.  In the meantime, I could feel Liesl starting to get excited like, "oh, boy, this is gonna be the best day EVER!"  I could see there were some geese heading over to join the party.  I decided to vacate quickly.  I put Liesl down, pointing her away from the ducks and held her leash tightly.  She made a couple of tough girl noises, thinking that she was thugalicious.  The ducks looked like, "whatever."  I made haste away from that spot and found a better bench with less drama associated with it.  (And there was no fowl play.  LOL)

So now it is all peaceful.  It feels good to relax in my clean house. Liesl has put herself to bed.  I am getting ready to get my stitching out and watch some British comedies on Netflix.  Tomorrow my DS and DD are taking me out to dinner.  I am thrilled that I will get to spend some time with them.  So tonight I will say my prayers of gratitude for such a joyful day.  It is amazing how a clean house can bring on a clear mind.  I have had extra sleep and exercise.  It is hard to believe that it all got packed into one day.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Frosty Friday!

Oh my goodness, it is freezing here.  Okay, not freezing, but pretty darn cold.  It was even cold enough for Liesl to decide in the middle of the night that she needed snuggles.  It has made for a cozy evening, but I have had to put on the heat and everything.  

I was happy to come home tonight.  It was already pretty cold, so I put on my warmest sweatshirt and my sneakers so that we could head to a local lake for a walk.  Liesl was pretty excited.  We got to take a nice, brisk walk.  Liesl, in true miniature schnauzer, fashion was going to try to bite off more than she could chew.  She spotted two geese on the path and quickened her pace.  Lucky for her she was on a leash.  The geese here are large and they are mean.  I am scared of them.  Last week, one hissed at us as we walked by.  Luckily, there were many other things holding her interest.  

Once we got home, I cozied into the sofa.  I got out my stitching and got some done on my Lady of the Thread.  It felt really good to have and evening of stitching and watching design shows on TV.  I am looking forward to sleeping in and cuddling my furgirl this weekend.  In addition to taking Liesl for some good walks, I need to putter around the house.  The cozy cottage is looking quite untidy.  

I heard somewhere tonight that more copies of The Great Gatsby were sold last week than were sold in F. Scott Fitzgerald's lifetime.  As someone who loves classic literature, I am thrilled that folks are reading this book.  It is my hope that it will open the door to other people falling in love with classic books.  It is interesting because I think the door gets opened when high school students have to read these books.  However, when I read A Tale of Two Cities and Great Expectations a couple of years ago, I realized that I needed some life experience in order to "get" these books.  I felt tortured by them in high school.  I had to have life's scars and bruises to understand on a deeper level.

So I am grateful to those who bring classic literature to the forefront of popular culture.  While I will also think of Robert Redford as Gatsby, I am so glad that more generations will be exposed to this treasure, hopefully as a book. Hopefully, this will lead to reading The Grapes of Wrath, To Kill A Mockingbird, or A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.  So many great books, so many great authors, so little time...

Thursday, May 9, 2013


It has been a scary week around here.  Last weekend, Liesl had her annual check up and the vet detected a heart murmur.  She asked if Liesl had any symptoms like lethargy or coughing.  My brain started to try to remember any slight cough or abnormality, but there was nothing.  She is a perky, happy, energetic little dog diva. As the doctor was talking with me, I had to sit down and could barely breath.  I was terrified.  I think everyone here can probably tell how much I love this little dog.

I got home and just sobbed for the next two days.  I was so scared.  Several people, including some very nice stitchers have shared their success stories, advice and prayers.  I have several friends who have told me that this is fairly common and that their dogs have lived very healthy, very long lives with it. 

So Miss Liesl has an appointment with the cardiologist this month for an ultrasound and an EKG.  If you could include her in your prayers I would be so grateful.  

Liesl does need to lose a bit of weight.  The doctor says that this should help since the heart has to work harder with extra weight.  So I have made a commitment to Liesl that no matter how tired I am after work, we go for a walk every single day.  (This is in addition to her morning walk.) Sometimes it is a walk along the Pacific or around the neighborhood.  Tonight we walked at the outdoor mall.  Liesl likes to be out with the peeps.  I have really been enjoying our walks and find that it helps to reduce my work stress, too.  

The doctor has also advised no sodium in her diet.  So tonight I went to Petco and bought her the best organic treats I could find, with no salt.  People food is out due to high sodium content.  When I give her a cookie, she gets half instead of a whole one.  So far since Saturday, she has lost half of a pound.  She is a very healthy, happy little dog and is such a blessing to me.  

While we were at Petco tonight, Liesl picked out a new ball and a new toy with lots of squeakies in it.  She has about 30 toys, but alas, nothing to play with.  :)  She has been chasing the new toys, tossing them into the air, pouncing on them and bringing them to me to throw again.  Liesl lives in a state of bliss, and it is so much fun to play with her.  In addition to her toys, Liesl loves hide and seek.  She knows all of my hiding places but still likes to act surprised.  She also loves when I hide her toys around the house for her to find.

So as I walk in gratitude tonight, I am extremely grateful for extra walks with my sweet girl, for getting to play with her and her toys, for puppy kisses when I get home, and all the happiness that she brings into my life.  She makes me laugh, she back talks under her breath (it is a schnauzer thing) and she thinks that she is hilarious.  I just love her so much.