Thursday, July 31, 2008

Broke Scooter

Well I was getting ready to post I now have 1600 miles on the scooter now and have save 1/3 of the cost of the scooter in gas so by the time the snow blows I'll have two thirds of the thing paid off.

That was before I was coasting to a stop the other day and some unhealthy clattering/clunking was going on down by the engine. The engine died and wouldn't start. Luckily I was right at the corner near my office so I had to run it accross the street and then walk it to my office.

Also lucky there's a back room where I can work on it.

I've contacted the place I purchased it from and they said it's still under warranty but labor isn't included in the warranty. I was on my own to get work done to it. Now if it was a Honda or other namebrand scooter, no problem. But since it's a Chinese import, local mechanics are hard to come by. I've posted to some discussion boards ( and figured out how to tear the rear drive and motor assembly off the scooter so now I just have to find a local mechanic that knows how to tear apart an engine. General guesses are broken piston and/or rings so that's beyond my comfort level of tear apart and putting back together.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

IVF/Pregnancy Update

To recap: the fetus had stopped growing at the 8 week mark and we were waiting for me to naturally miscarry. That didn't seem like it was going to happen, so my doctor decided I needed a D&C. I'm lucky that they do this procedure in their Grand Rapids office, so it was much less trauma than if I had to be admitted to the hospital.

I had the D&C on Friday and it all went well. I had the same kind of anesthesia as I did for the egg retrieval, so my recovery wasn't too bad. No nausea or anything like that. I also had to have a Rogam shot as Tim is RH + and I'm RH -. I don't remember much about the procedure (thank God!) but we had requested an ultrasound before hand, just to be certain that the fetus hadn't changed any.

So, we have a couple of weeks for recovery and then we'll talk with Dr. Young to understand the procedure for a frozen embryo transfer. We have 10 lovely frozen embryos to take us through the next steps. I'm actually looking forward to spending the rest of the summer having some fun and enjoying focusing on things not related to getting pregnant or staying pregnant. Time for Tim and me to relax, reconnect and have an adventure or two. It'll be fall before we know it!

One Dog Family -- for now

Sadly, Jack (AKA Trapper) went back to live with his foster family. His destructiveness just got to be too much for us. He was definitely unhappy here, and showed it by acting out. In his foster family, there are 11 dogs and he is much happier, not showing any of the behaviors that he did here. If you watch the Dog Whisper, you know the power of the pack! I think, also, that some people have a much higher tolerance for doggy misbehavior and may even encourage some things. When the foster family came to pick him up, he at first barked at them and was very suspicious. When he finally recognized them he ran and jumped up on his foster mom and peed on the floor in excitement. She didn't seem to notice and encouraged him to jump up on her. (These were all things we had tried to curb, although not the worst of his misbehavior).

We've talked to the SPCA folks and they are fine with the situation . . . they want us to have the right dog for the family. They'll help us pick out a dog that might fit our situation better, and we'll take them home for a trial run. Basically we'll foster for a week or two and if the dog fits in, then we'll adopt. We still think it will be better in the long run with 2 dogs and hopefully easier on the dogs when we have kids.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Were we crazy?

This week with the new dog -- now officially named Jack -- has been rough. Tim's nickname for him "Lil' Shitter" says it all. I had to go to Target and spend $180 on a carpet cleaner and pet mess cleaning solution to get the lower level cleaned up. Since then, however, things have started to improve. No more accidents and he's starting to feel more comfortable.

Our timing was terrible . . . why we thought it would be a good idea to adopt a new dog when Tim would be gone Tue. - Sat. for a work is is not very clear. I guess we wanted the adventure and weren't willing to wait 2 more weeks until Tim would be here on a Saturday again. We were definitely on a high and very excited about getting a second dog.

Jack is definitely a sweet dog, a bit shy, but full of energy and a good playmate for Henry. I had forgotten, though, how much we worked with Henry in the beginning. H is so mellow and friendly now that even though he is a big dog and can look intimidating people love him. All the training and bonding and the CGC work was really worth it. We'll do the same with Jack and I'm sure that a few months from now, we'll have a harmonious household again! (After we buy more speaker wire to replace the chewed bits and Jack proof the house so there is nothing he can get a hold of and chew to pieces.) I'm looking forward to when he feels like he's at home and will chew on toys and bones, not stuff he can get and destroy.

The dogs play off of each other, of course, and are more barky and rambunctious than H is alone. I think that will lessen as Jack is here longer and Henry is less protective of his space and the newcomer. There is a new puppy at our side neighbor (we share a fence) and 2 dogs behind us, so there is a lot going on when they are out in the yard. Rick next door warned us that with 2 dogs, it will feel like the poop in the yard multiplies by 10X and he is so right! We'll have to be vigilant so that the yard isn't a minefield.

I'm finding myself amused by how different the two dogs are in personality and temperament. I (silly me) didn't expect them to be so different. Jack will be fun as he is very light on his feet and can jump like a rabbit. I think he'll be very good at agility type work. I'm thinking of buying a hula hoop, because I bet we can train him to leap through it. He is gentle and follows me around the house. Where H is a leaner, and shows his loooove by leaning on you, I think Jack could be a snuggler, but right now he's too shy.

Nephew Jeremy is here for the next week or so because he has Air Nat'l Guard duty, so he's been a big help in getting Jack on a schedule and acclimated. H loves him and gets very excited when he's here. Jack is warming up to him and Jer is gentle with him. I couldn't have done this without him!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

New Doggy!

News: Some good, some sad

I'll start with the sad news. The visit to the doctor didn't go very well. The embryo is not growing the way it should, so we've stopped the injections and medications. Dr. Young thinks that I should naturally miscarry in the next two weeks. Tim and I are sad and disappointed, and have the attitude that if the pregnancy isn't healthy, then maybe it is for the best. It will be several months before this is resolved and we can try again with our frozen embryos. I'm worried about what the next few weeks will bring -- if I don't miscarry, we'll have to do a D&C -- a much more invasive procedure. Thank you to everyone who's been praying for us, we'll continue to need your prayers as we go through the next several months.

Now, the good news. We have a new family member! For about 6 weeks, we've been discussing getting a second dog. The idea is to get one that Henry likes and that will play with him and become a companion. Henry is so bonded to us that he doesn't know how to play by himself. When we do have a baby, we'll have less time for the dog(s). It'll be good for them to have each other. Plus we need time to do training with a new dog and get him acclimated to the family.

We haven't decided on his name yet -- Tim is leaning toward Lance (short for Lancelot) and I'd like Jack. (I have the idea that Tim will get to prevail on this one. . . but we'll wait and see.) We adopted him from the SPCA (the same place we got Henry). He's a mix again -- about 50 lbs, black and white with a curly tail. Smaller than H, but they were playing together very well in the back yard today. So far, the cats have all gone to ground. I think they are mad at us. Oh well, they'll have to get used to the new doggy.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

What's wrong with this picture?

Henry was helping Tim mow the grass and ended up with green feet. He must be a Michigan State fan.

Fourth of July Family Fun!

The extended Kirk and Quick families spent the 4th of July holiday at the beach in Saugatuck, MI. We had a blast! We biked -- here we are on the beach waiting for the sun set. We took the chain ferry across the river (hand cranked boat that uses a chain stretched across the river to move from one side to the other) and biked up and over the hilly road to the beach. Beach sunsets are so relaxing. We walked, everywhere, through the town and around. We kayaked on the Kalamazoo river and across lakes that are connected to the channel that goes out to Lake Michigan. We didn't brave the whole channel to go to the lake -- thank goodness -- later we took a paddle wheel boat ride and realized it was a long way out to the lake.
Saugatuck has been called the Key West of Michigan. It's a really hip and cool town that is filled with art galleries, gorgeous B&Bs, it has easy access to the beach and so many amazing boats. There is a yacht club there, so the best time is to walk the board walk from one end of River Street to another just to look at all the cool boats. Tim was just drooling, and dreaming of what we could have one day.
We stayed at a motel right on River Street that is also a Boatel. The boats pull up on the river side of the motel and dock for the night. For their fee they get a mooring, access to facilities and contential breakfast. The boaters and families sure looked like they were having fun. We enjoyed the gardens and tables and chairs that were river side. Much time was spent just watching boats go by. The town was very crowded on the 4th (everyone coming in for great fireworks) and the 5th (for a artisian craft fair), so it was nice to have a quiet spot to hang out.
While there we celebrated Teri's (Tim's sister) and Steffanie's (niece) birthdays. No cake, but presents and plenty of ice cream for all. Teri and her husband Mike also celebrated their 23rd anniversary on the 6th.
We came back very relaxed and refreshed. Exactly what you want from a few vacation days. Now Tim has a big week studying for the business/technology teacher certification exam and staying on top of his summer session 2 class.