Friday, 16 February 2007

Zachary got his new Prep Buddy today...

and he is very happy. I think the little boy is called James D. I am pretty sure that is what Zachary said.

It is a great system they have at school. Zachary is in Grade 6 (last year of Primary School) and his little buddy has just started Prep. The preppies know they can go to their buddy for help - especially in the playground!

Makes the big kids feel important and the little ones - special.

Samuel got home today from his 3 day school camp. It was quiet here without him. He SMS'ed me a few times a day telling me what was going on. They did Kayaking the first day along with some initiative games/projects. They also did surfing, rope work and more. He loved it and was tired when he got home. Off to snoozeland early for him tonight!

Bronte is so loving her class this year...she is in Grade 3 and it is her first year where she has 'real' homework and she loves it!! (so far!)

Every day I have been crying...

for Kiah, for Ava, for myself.

Words can not explain how I feel at the moment. So many things are happening in my life and it seems everything is out of my control.

I wonder when it will get better?

Sunday, 11 February 2007

Some more on Kiah....

I want to put down here all that I felt/typed when she first became ill to when she died.

Here are posts from me and then replies from others from a small community I belong to and feel at home with ....
Kiah - my gorgeous dog - who will be 14 on February the 10th - is just not herself today...and I know it is not good.

Stan has just arrived home from the UK - as soon as I saw him I burst into tears. I have been googleing and I am scared as anything.

She can barely walk, has really pale gums and is really lethargic - just looks at me all of the time and tries to follow me...I want to take her to the vet but I don't if you know what I mean?



So sorry, it does not sound good. Maybe it will turn out to be something which the vet can treat, but her symptoms are not good.

I have had three Golden Retrievers put down and it broke my heart to do them all. The last dog I asked the vet to come out to the car so she went to sleep in a familiar environment.

I really hope it does not come down to this for you. They really are like family.

:'( :'(


((hugs)) Hope it works out to be treatable.Try to get her to the vet asap.

Thinking of you


So sorry to read this k8 :( :'(

Go on just take her, she is feeling awful as well.

I so hope it is treatable.

so sorry too K8. Hopefully the vet will shed some light. I hope it is positive. Thinking of you and your beloved Kiah.

Oh K8 :'(
Thinking of you, I know you'll do what's best for you and Kiah
G xxx

K8 I am so sorry to hear this :'( :'(
Fingers crossed here that Kiah will be ok.
{{HUGS}} to you too :(

Got back from the vet about an hour ago....the prognosis is not as immediately dim as I thought. Her heart and lungs are fine (phew) but all of the Lymph nodes in her neck are very swollen. This is not good BUT no other nodes on her body are enlarged (this is good). He is hoping that it is some sort of infection so she has been put on antibiotics - if they go down - good - if they don't - no good and I am thinking that he thinks that they won't go down...I am thinking that anyway.

She is walking around a bit more - is a bit more like herself but still obviously not. I know that the day will come that she won;t be here and many of you may not understand how I can feel so bloody bad about this.

She is my dog - not Stan's or the kids - she's mine and has loved me unconditionally from day one. She's put up with so much crap over the last 14 (nearly) years - from us getting THREE kids - each changed her life more and more - to being there when all the sad times happened - ie when first my mum died and then my dad. To loving me no matter what. This stuff is waffle I know but I love her so much - she is my last tie really to the alive times with my mum and my dad.

I did want to thank you all for your lovely thoughts and even just reading them has made me feel a tiny bit better. Thank you.


Oh k8 I hope she continues to improve.

I would never assume to understand the link you have with her and your parents as that is such a personal thing.

But I can to a certain extent understand the closeness you have with your dog.
I had my beautiful cat put down 2 years ago this month He was 18.
I got him on our honeymoon and he was part of my marriage.
We never had a TV for the first years and instead of spending all our time in the bedroom LOL we played with him every evening. He went through numerous house changes and was even lost for 4 days and I found him after searching and calling till I was hoarse, I found him at the other end of the suburb near an old house of ours.....he & I had walked miles ::) and he was very dehydrated and skinny :(

He survived (and with dignity) the birth of two children after living childless for 13 years!!!
He was my friend and would always sit with me when I hung the clothes out or washed the dishes :'( :'(
Im sure you get the idea :'(

I couldnt even have another cat, until now....

I now feel like I am missing that little furry person as part of the family.

k8 I hope your gorgeous doggy is starting to feel better - snding her get well vibes :)

Awwww Kate, just reading what you are going through brings tears to my eyes. It is all a little too close as we lost our lovely Will only last year and it is still so fresh.

Dogs are more than just animals. They are loving companions. I hope she gets better with the meds. ((((big hugs, luvvy!)))

K8 I hope she's improving now, I'm glad it wasn't as dire as you first thought.

(((hugs))) for you and Kiah.


Thinking of you k8.

Sending lots of positive vibes your way.


Oh K8, I'm so sorry that Kiah is struggling. :( Your post was so poignant and I truly hope that you get to hang on to her and that special connection that she represents for a little longer. :-* to you and Kiah.

Oh K8, I so completely understand :'(
Hugs & licks to you both :-*

Oh K8 - feeling so sad for you :(
Enjoy some time with her, I hope she keeps feeling OK.

Definitely in our thoughts *hugs* :-*

Thinking of you K8.

K8..Thinking of you.Hope you are doing okay ((hugs))

Just noticed your siggi. :'(

BIG HUGS, K8 :-*

Oh Kate, I too just saw your siggy.

I am so sorry for the loss of your beautiful pet and friend :'(.

Take care.

J xx

Oh K8, I just saw you siggy too.

I am so sorry for the loss of you beloved Kiah. :'(


Saturday, 10 February 2007

Well thank goodness today is nearly over....

ups and downs, highs and lows, smiles and tears, anger and laughter. You name it I have felt it/done it today.

Back from dinner. Had a lovely time and it was just what we all needed after the events of the last week.

Please let next week be easier....

Good Night everyone and goodbye Ava and Kiah.

All of us are going out for Dinner tonight...

it has been a long day full of emotion.

As I said before, it is Stan and my Wedding Anniversary as well as Kiah's birthday.

Instead of just Stan and I going out together (as we don't really feel that joyous at the moment), we are taking out the Kids and our very very good friend Joyce - who is missing Kiah as much as we are. She has been in tears all week. She came over yesterday crying because she just got a film developed from her camera and there were photos of Kiah throughout.

I will have to explain the relationship between Joyce, Kiah and us in detail at a later point.

Also, my friend Sue (who is also my boss!) and her husband Bob and their kids Will, Tom and Issie are coming as well. Hopefully we will all have a laugh or six!

Balloons for Princess Ava

We went to the park over the road from our home and released balloons for Ava. Three pink heart balloons and 2 normal pink balloons. One for each member of our family.

Thank you Ava for being such a divine Princess. All our love to your family.

Kate, Stan, Samuel, Zachary and Bronte

Our Anniversary is today...

and I am all teary.

Woke up this morning and Stan gave me a gorgeous card. I love it. Had some beautiful words ...

For My Darling Wife

Nothing can ever change
what we have
always been
and always will be
to each other

There's a special place
within my heart
that's meant for you alone,
A special place
within my heart
reserved for times
we've known....

There's a special place
for dreams we share,
a place for wishes too -
And the warmest wish
within my heart
is happiness for you!

With all my love
On Ou
Anniversary and Always

With love and all of the the above

Now, you have to know Stan to know that he is not the most demonstrative person so this card is just perfect. Thank you Stan - I love you too.

But this is not the reason I am teary - well I don't think it is. It is the day of the funeral for Ava and yes - I am wearing pink.

It is Kiah's birthday - she would have been 14.

I really had this overwhelming feeling before that I NEEDED to touch her fur - to kiss her forehead - to look at her and know that she was ok.

But I can't. Too much going on around here at the moment...

And to top it all off - I now have a headache - Samuel is practising the Saxophone - it is, how can I say it? Torturous??? LOL

Ava's Poem by Theresa Carter

Wanted to post this fantastic poem that we, as MSF'ers put into a QLD paper for Ava and her is very poignant to me. It also means so much as my good friend Theresa (whom I like to call T) wrote it on the community's behalf. T knows things. Big hug to T!

In a box in your Mum's study
is an ocean of tears
from a group of mums who love you
and are holding her so near'
They hadn't all got to meet you
but love you just so much
from seeing your curls and smiles
through your mummy's magic touch

Your smile could light a whole room
your eyes could do no wrong
your spirit was so empowering
your love of life so strong
we know you now play with angels
and dance among the stars
we know that you will send
mummy your love down from afar
be free from pain sweet ava
let the angels take your hand
show you where you can still see
your family as they try to understand
sleep peacefully sweet baby
in soft white clouds above
always knowing just how much you meant
to us whose lives that you have touched

In the morning, Ava will be laid to rest. You know it isn't right that a parent outlives their child.

Love to all.

Friday, 9 February 2007

Went and picked up Bronte from

the mermaid party at 8pm. My goodness I love that house - it is divine! Gorgeous Port Phillip Bay vista - fab sea breezes. Wonderful family.

Then I had to pick up Samuel from his friends Issie's house. Issie has just started High School as well and is going to Star of the Sea in Gardenvale. A girls school. She is enjoying it very much. I think they miss each other though.

Issie's mum Sue (who happens to be my friend AND my boss) said they didn't stop giggling and laughing. They just have a pure naive joy - it is lovely to watch.

So, I arrived there at about 8.20pm with Bronte to pick him up and I arrived home here at 11pm! My goodness that woman can chat - well I guess I can too! LOL I do love a noice chat and there was no rush to get home so we had a really nice time. I need a nice time at the moment.

The sadness of the last week or so has really got to me - so much so now that I just come home and never want to do anything extra.

Bronte is off to a party after school

gosh these kids have a fun life - I would like to be going to a party!

One of her best friends, Nico, is having a Mermaid party and the kids are all so excited. I am too - it means that she doesn't come home until 8pm! Yay

Tomorrow, the 10th of February is a very eventful day....

  1. Mine and Stan's 17th Wedding anniversary (no idea where all of that time went!)
  2. The divine Kiah's birthday - she would have been 14
  3. The Gorgeous Ava's funeral. We will be releasing balloons and wearing pink in her honour.

Tenor Sax and Samuel...

Samuel is so excited...yesterday he was allocated his musical instrument...a tenor Saxophone!

Do you realise how big they are? Oh it is so funny. It is nearly as big as him! I must get a photo of him with it.

Also didn't realise just how LOUD they are. Jeepers - we have a small house and my neighbour (one house down) came over and said 'What's that noise?'

So, he has been instructed to do his practice as soon as he gets home from school - the rest of us aren't home then - that way we don't have to suffer too much - only the neighbours do!

And while all that is going on.....

the kids were returning to school for the new year...

Samuel, my 12 year old was starting high school! Where did all the time go?? I can't believe that he is now a big high school boy.

He is going to a great High School - not Private or Catholic like all of the other kids in his Grade 6 class. It is a State High. Something that I never thought we would do but it seems to be the best choice for him.

He is a bright boy. Very bright. He sat an exam to this school as it has a Select Entry Accelerated Learning program - (SEAL for short). In essence, it is a group of 25 like-minded kids who go through their 6 years of schooling together. They can complete their high schooling in a year less if they so wish or they can do VCE subjects over THREE years (which I think most choose this route). Everything they do is accelerated.

Anyway - he started his new high school on Wednesday the 31st of January. He looked so nice in his new uniform and the bag is BIG.

As it is only 2 kms away from our home, he now rides most days there and back and I think he is really enjoying his independence. Wednesday the 7th, the ABC network were actually filming for a new TV show that is called Summer Heights High. He volunteered to be an extra and loved it. Lots of fun and interest there - have to look out for the show which will go to air in September 2007.

Zachary and Bronte started back at their school in Sandringham. All happy to see their friends again.

Zachary is now in Grade 6 and looks very smart with his special Grade 6 polo top that has all the students names on it.

Bronte is in Grade 3 - and has moved into 'middle school'. She was so happy to see all of her friends and some of the teachers!

And while I was in the middle of losing my best friend....

another tragedy was unfolding...

Oh my goodness, I just could not comprehend it all.

The most divine little girl you could ever think of Princess Ava Rosemeyer aged 3, passed away on Monday the 5th of February, leaving behind her mother, Sheye, her father, Crayton and her siblings Luca, Mason and Ivy.

Let me tell you now, I have NEVER met Sheye or her family. However, I belong to a fantastic online community called 'Mothers, Shoppers, Friends' or MSF for short.

It is a closed community of about 100 members. We post about our families, we love kids fashion and have grown to know a lot about eachother over the past year or so.

What I know about Sheye and her family (who live up in QLD) is that they are so full of love for eachother. Sheye is a fabulous photographer and I always look at her photos in awe.

On Saturday the 3rd of February, Ava was going between her home and her Grandads home (he lived next door). She went to the family car - a black sedan and hopped in. It was a 30 odd degree day and the car was parked in the sun. About 30mins later, Ava was nowhere to be found - Grand dad thought she was at her home - Sheye thought she was over there. When it was realised that she was neither place...they looked and found her in the car in cardiac arrest. Oh my GOD! How could this be happening to her and to this family? Many prayers - from people ALL OVER THE WORLD started. Candles were lit - we were all crying and praying and I was scared. Plus all of the stuff was happening with Kiah - I was a mess.

Ava passed away on Monday the 5th of February. I was numb - I am numb.

People from our online community have rallied around - some who are friends with Sheye are flying in from all over the country - many others have contributed to helping the Rosemeyer family however we can.

Click here for my friend Carrie's blog which documents these events much more clearly. Carrie is Sheye's very very good friend from our community and while they had never met in real life they were constantly on the phone to each other - so Carrie has flown to be by her friend's side from Western Australia....Bless you Carrie!

The gorgeous Ava's funeral is on this Saturday in QLD at 10am QLD time - 11am Melbourne time. Most of us can not be there but we will be wearing pink (Ava's favourite colour) in honour of Ava, some are releasing pink balloons, others are planting white Gardenia's.

Please keep this family in your thoughts - love to you Sheye!

Thursday, 8 February 2007

Can you tell I am catching up...

on what we did over the holidays??

After the lovely sojourn at Phillip Island, we came home. Three days later it all started to go awry....

We got up early Sunday morning, Samuel, Zachary and I as Stan (their dad) was coming home from the UK. Yay! Bronte was away with her best friend Anna for 3 days at Skene's Creek on the Great Ocean Road and wasn't returning until late that night.

I let Kiah out for her morning toileting and started getting ready for the day....

Ok - here are excerpts from posts I made over at Dogz Online - they are very poignant to me to read back...

29th January 2007 10.54am

Hello everyone, I am new here but have been searching the internet for clues and answers to my gorgeous dog's health problems and I found you all.

My dog is called Kiah (key-ah) and is 14 next month. She is not a purebred but is a cross between a GSD and Kelpie (we think!)

I love her so much and yesterday felt like it was the worst day of my life...

She was fine in the morning - went outside after she woke up for her toileting and drinking. I looked out of the kitchen window and she was lying on her side on the driveway. Five or so minutes later, I looked out again and she was standing up but with her head pointing down. Looked strange so I watched for a minute or two - she seemed to be swaying slightly but otherwise didn't move?

I went out to her and she tried to walk to me but found it difficult. Very tentative steps and only 3 or 4. Well, I was immediately worried and upset. She looked like she wanted to lie down so I got her blankets from inside and helped her.

Then I decided to carry her inside where it was less windy and she just lay like a rag doll. Occasionally trying to lift her head up but lying back down.

After an hour or so of this (my husband returned from a trip to the UK at that very moment) and she tried to run to him but couldn't - slow steps, head down.

We sat with her - I was crying, my husband was very worried. After about 30mins she started to rally around..walked a bit more and able to drink and eat a piece of cheese.

I took her to the vet then - deciding if it was bad news I would just bring her home to be with us. I think it is bad news. She has enlarged lymph nodes around her neck but nowhere else. Her heart and lungs sounded fine (I thought it was heart problems) and her weight has been stable for the last 5 years.

So, the vet has put her on antibiotics for the nodes (clavulox) and I need to take her back in 3 days. He mentioned that it could be cancer (I think he is pretty sure it is? but he didn't say) and he also gave her an anti inflammatory injection - he believes she has arthritis - when I took her for a check up 6 months ago - it was only very mild - and he thinks this is why she is not moving well. I am unsure about this actually. She has been moving fine until then? He said that because she is feeling unwell (lymph nodes) that the pain from the arthritis would be exacerbated - in other words an unwell dog feels pain more.

Any thoughts on this please? Any hope for a silly crying woman who has shared the last almost 14 years with her best friend?

And some of the replies I received were amazing....I just couldn't believe how people over there came to try and alleviate my confusion.

29th January 4.56pm

Thank you all so much for your kind words, advice and really is so much appreciated.

She seems perkier this afternoon.

It seems, that today her neck is actually swollen on the left side - it wasn't fluid - makes me think more and more that it could have been some kind of bite? I am grasping at straws here but maybe, just maybe....

It is so obvious now, this swelling - almost mane-like...yet she seems better in herself and even came for a short stroll with me over to the park. She slept quite a bit today and now is just a tad more energetic.

I am hopeful and not as despairing as I was early! It might be false hope but it is hope nontheless!

Thank you all once again for your support of me (the old sook) and Kiah (the gorgeous one!)

Oh and Poodlefan - I don't think the thought of a bite of any kind entered into the Vet's mind...this was not mentioned at all - yet (while I may be grasping at straws) it seems that it may very well be a possibility. I will wait and see and go back on Wednesday - hopefully this is what it could be.

Then I wrote this next one... 29th January 10.21pm

I have just logged on here again.

This afternoon and night she has been so much better. She has been barking again, almost chased a ball and really getting back to normal.

I took some photos of the swelling that wasn't there yesterday - took them early this evening. It almost looks like a goiter and feels really fluidy - mainly on the right side of the neck - I think you can see it clearly in these photos.

Yesterday, there is no way I could have taken the photos - she seemed like she was at deaths door - hard to imagine now?

Today, she has heaps more movement and life - could it be the anti-inflamatory or even the antibiotics? I don't understand really why this fluid like sac is there now - it is large but not worrying her at all...

I will, however, take her to a different vet tomorrow morning first thing and see what they say...

Thank you all so much for your replies and words of wisdom - it has been a light in a very dark tunnel.

Kate and Kiah

31st January Posted at 2.10pm

Thank you...

Yes, I have some news. Not so good it seems. I am typing this through teary eyes so please excuse any typos...

Yesterday and today she was not as well as she was on Monday - just very subdued and not really eating - I tried the Chicken Soup - a variant at least...I tried rice and gravy (she normally loves that) and she has nibbled on some cheese and the like.

I took her to the same vet today - appt was at 2pm. He says that the lymph nodes are much larger than on Sunday. He also said this is not good. He believes with 99.5% certainty that this is lympho sarcoma (sp?) and he took bloods today and she is booked in for a biopsy tomorrow.

I am so devastated - had talked myself into the fact that it was some kind of insect bite. But no.

When he shaved her neck to take blood, it revealed a large area of bruising. I was shocked at that. He said that this tells him that she has a very low white blood count (another indication of serious goings on).

So, I have her home with me now - she is sleeping. I have yet to tell my husband - he will be so upset as well.

Thank you all for your support.


1st February 2007 10.49pm

Thanks for the links and the loving thoughts everyone - it is lovely to read that people care.

An update on Kiah....

Her blood results came back and just revealed really that she is anaemic. They did not provide any other clues as to what is going on and so this morning she went in for a biopsy. I could not stop crying when I took her in - I was embarrassed really. The surgeon was lovely and understanding but jeez - I just could not pull myself together. Had to tell him to keep talking even though I was bawling.

He said he would take a sample of her lymph node and also put her on a drip to rehydrate her. He told me to ring the surgery at 2pm to check up on when I could take her home. Well - he rang me at 11am - I was sure she had died - I felt horrible and I was in Coles doing the shopping and couldn't think straight. He said that while under anaesthetic she had some difficulty breathing so decided to x-ray her chest before going on with the op. The x-rays showed that her trachea has a noticeable kink in it (apparently it is meant to be straight) and there is some shadowing indicating what could be a mass BUT it wasn't conclusive enough to stop him from doing the biopsy. He said if there was a definite mass there he would not have continued.

Anyway - she came through the operation fine (for a 13 year old!) and was happy to see me. Her jowls are so swollen and now the inside of her mouth has blood bruising. She looks so sad and almost like a bassett hound with their big droopy mouths. We have to await the results of the biopsy. They should come back tomorrow afternoon or Saturday. The prognosis is not good but the surgeon did say that he had not had a dog present with these particular symptoms in the past. Normally all of the lymph nodes would be involved and in Kiah it is just the ones in her neck. He has also not seen such bruising before?

Please keep her in your thoughts everyone. She deserves it. She is the kindest, most devoted dog you would ever meet.


2nd February 2007 3.59pm

Hi again,

Just got the official diagnosis - the results of her biopsy have just been rung through to me.

It is, as feared, Lymphoma Sarcoma. Medium Grade apparently. The vet really gave the four options available...

1. Chemotherapy

2. Euthanasia

3. Prednisolone (I know that isn't spelt right!!)

4. No treatment

He suggested that Chemo was not the right option for her due to her age. My husband and I had already discussed this option and had come to the same conclusion.

He also said that Euthanasia could be an option but I said if suitable, we wanted to go with the cortisone.

He said if we went with the no treatment option - that she would more than likely not be with us in 3 weeks time. With cortisone we could have her for 6 weeks to 6 months. Sounds good to me. You see I am already getting used to the idea that she is sick. When I first started this thread - right up to last night - I was in shock - now I feel more realistic and grateful for any quality time we can spend with her.

She can't start the cortisone just yet as she has had the biopsy and he said it is best to wait - as the cortisone can delay healing. So, if she stays as well as she is today (wanted to come in the car with me to pick up the kids from school and has eaten a little) then we will wait to start the treatment on the 14th when her stitches come out. However, if she goes downhill again - will start them sooner.

Again...I really want to thank you all for your wonderful thoughts and wishes - it really has helped me over the last few days. Who could have known that a site for purebreds would support myself and my gorgeous GSD/Kelpie (so they told us all of those years ago at the RSPCA) - I want to thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

I hope you don't mind if I hang around for a while - might be needing you all for a shoulder to cry on....

Thanks again

Kate and Kiah

4th February 2007 10.51pm

It is with a heavy heart that I type this...

Tonight, at around 8.45pm, I found Kiah asleep on the driveway. Never to be woken again.

Seems that she went to sleep peacefully and how I would have wanted to her to but oh it is so not fair. I wanted to be with her. She still looks peaceful. We have wrapped her in her blankets and will bury her next to our cat that we had for 18 years and Kiah loved.

Please have her in your thoughts. My children are distressed as am I and my husband.

Again, thank you all so much for your kindness.

I can't believe she is no longer here.

What will I do?


So, where was I? Oh at Cowes

Oh it was just lovely. Gorgeous spot on the island at Ventnor. Just near the beach. Beautiful weather and great company.

Went to the beach every day, went out for dinner and just had a nice time. The two bigger boys, Samuel and Matthew, liked staying at home while the other three, Zachary, Benjamin and Bronte loved riding the bikes, billiecart and things around the court.

Kiah the dog went for walks by herself once or twice - chased a few rabbits and relaxed.

I am joining the blog revolution....

The last week or so has been very tumultous in my life. I thought 2007 was going to be a fabulous year for myself and my family...I know it is not all about me (all of the time) but still - it should be sometimes shouldn't it?

It started off well enough. We spent Christmas and New Year - in fact around 3 weeks up at the Sunshine Coast in QLD. Love it there. Stayed with the Mother In Law and we all had a lovely time.

Kids loved it, husband loved it. What else can you want?

On the drive back down to Melbourne, we stopped at my brother's place in Sydney. The kids got to meet their newest cousin - Evie and her big brother Jacob. They are both so cute. Jacob is as
smart as can be and chats away like a 5 year old (almost) and he is only 2 1/2!

Jacob - he is soooo cute!

Evie - well she is just delightful, easily pacified and smiles 99.9% of the time. My brother and his wife are truly blessed.
The gorgeous Evie!!

So, we spent 2 days there and travelled on home. Always love getting home after a long holiday. Kiah the dog and Jasper the cat were thrilled to see us - well Kiah was...Jasper took a little while to get used to us again!

A few days at home and then Stan was off to the UK for work for a week and the kids, Kiah and I went down to Phillip Island to a friends holiday house for three days. We shared it with our good friends Simone, Stephen and their boys Matthew and Benjamin.