Sunday, December 22, 2019

Dear Kids,
         Sharon’s family arrived in Centerville right on schedule yesterday, in time for the ice skating, even.  Their drive was flawless!  Of course lots of us were praying for them, but their good planning played a part, too.  And we really enjoyed the wonderful party at Nora’s.  I was sorry to drag Dad away early, but I was really tired.  We sure had fun talking to everybody, though.
         Of course you’ve all heard the sorry news of Tina’s departure to Kitty Heaven yesterday.  Her decline started about three months ago when she seemed to be gagging a lot, and her breathing seemed raspy.  After two visits to Arcadia clinic, we realized she probably had something incurable, and maybe we’d just let nature take its course.  So we waited, day after day, week after week, while she got thinner and thinner, until she was just a bag of bones, and she struggled more and more to breathe.  Finally, yesterday morning, she gave me a look that said she’d finally had enough.  I understood.  We called Arcadia clinic, and took her in.   Dr. Pickett looked her over carefully, and said she had enlarged lymph nodes and fluid in her chest.  It could be some kind of lymphoma, or another cancer, or some other disease, of which he named several.  None of them could be treated.  We told him we had prepared ourselves for the worst, and we were willing to say goodbye to her.  But Dr. Pickett didn’t want to say goodbye!  He stroked her head for a while, and then he got papers ready for Dad to sign. We had our choice of a private cremation, where we got her ashes back in an urn with her name on it, or she could have a group cremation with other pets in an apple orchard in Spanish Fork.  Of course we chose the apple orchard for her.  Her spirit would be gone, anyway. 
         The actual process of sending her off was very sweet, and Dad was glad he stayed in the room to watch.  She got a shot to relax her, and then, a few minutes later, the final shot.  I thought I could feel her spirit leave.  It was weird that we got her on a summer solstice, June 21 of 2016, (Sharon’s birthday, too,) and she left us on a winter solstice.  You could hardly plan that!
         Scout and Sonia are behaving like cats just before Christmas.  Santa sure wouldn’t visit them if he had a chance!  They’ve been racing and fighting and trying to destroy the Christmas tree, until I sprayed it with febreze (blood orange and spritz aroma) which Sonia hates. Since then Sonia has been rocketing back and forth through the living room and kitchen.  (She told me her favorite Christmas song is “Rocket Around the Christmas Tree.”)
         Christmas is upon us!  Dad and I will be driving around visiting some of you on Christmas Day, if I feel up to it, (still recovering from that one chemo infusion), and on Friday we’ll have our sledding party in Pocatello.  Lunch will be at noon, and we’ll be having a potato bar, so besides bringing your leftover Christmas goodies, you might also bring one potato topping.  We’ll go sledding right after lunch.  There’s talk of a trip to Lava, either early that morning, or later in the day, so if you’re interested, check with Vanessa.
         So much fun!  So much family!  I love you all!  Mom