Friday, September 22, 2006

The trouble with Butters

You all know Butters the hamster from his big race a few weeks ago. Well, Butters is having some tests done on a little lump he has, so he had another big adventure to the vet's office. He was an instant hit at the office, everyone loves him of course, and now he's getting to know his medicine dropper. Aside from the reality that I'm now doling out medicines to two human parents and two pets, I'm still upright, and work goes on. Since I know what great souls you all have, please consider doing something for your local animal shelter rather than sending Butters anything. From his edible house to a bucket full of treats and two parents who love him, our little guy is blessed. Bring some toys or snacks to a nearby shelter in Butters' name if you do wish to show your support.

Tired from the day of vet visits, Joe and I went to a baseball game last night. It was a gorgeous evening, and we joined his mother and brother for third-row seats to a game where they had competitions in each inning. A fan's name was chosen to win $10,000 if the Patriots accomplished something in particular that inning. But of course it had to be something obscenely and probably statistically impossible -- "Gigi Blue, you win $10,000 if the guy on the team with the highest IQ hits a bird in mid-flight with a pop-up that's caught by the outfielder with a birthmark on his thigh while the third basemen loses a contact lens!" The whole thing is a riot, and my Joe gave me the full baseball game experience with a hot dog and root beer, fries, then hot chocolate and funnel cake. Baseball fans, get yourselves to minor league games -- they're terrific fun.

And hey, some stuff about weddings! I went with my mother today to Dressed to the Nines in Morristown, NJ, the store where my sister found her wedding gown, so that Mom could find a Mother of the Groom dress for December. Our salesperson needed one less shot of Red Bull, but Mom found a beautiful dress in gunmetal gray/blue with the perfect cut at the waist and vertical gemstone accents, fluttery sleeves and a flattering bolero jacket. I almost fell over when she stepped out of the dressing room. She looked amazing. I'm doing it less often, but I still flash back to her in the ICU on a respirator, in a hospital gown with one sock on and one sock off. I know, I know...stop thinking about it. But the contrast was really something. Today, there was my Mom in a gown any MoG would love to wear. As she was changing, I ventured around the bridal salon and checked out not the gowns but the tiaras and headpieces, and then I snuck around the corner to see the seamstresses hand-sewing a hem on a gorgeous strapless gown. That's the scene I love, the behind the glitz work and expertise, the concentration, the intense smell of coffee and their confidence that they can drink coffee anywhere near these $5K gowns. I love the inside look.

Today's exciting assignment -- for New Jersey Bride, I'm doing pieces on the newest shapes and colors in diamonds, and I'm doing a feature on a few upscale bridal showers that took place recently. And for Southern Bride, a piece on using family heirlooms in your wedding. So my Friday night will consist of writing, a fire in the fireplace, a roast beef sandwich on onion bread with Vidalias and horseradish dressing, and a brownie. While in my pajamas. If I get these done, I continue with the chapter on 'Problems With Kids' in TBDG, getting into the 'how do you ensure that adorable little Abby doesn't turn into a screaming banshee as she's walking down the aisle?'

Ooh, I forgot the best part of my week. I pretty much was running on fumes the other day, with lots of exhaustion, worries and a good chunk of anger going on, and my Joe called to ask if he could just stop by to give me a hug. He showed up with lots and lots of daisies, my favorites. I didn't want that hug to end. It's like he can embrace the frustration right out of me. He's such a sweetheart, and such a comfort as I handle some pretty rough stuff in cancer world. A hug, some flowers, a baseball game, and working with me on the best Fantasty Football Team EVER -- he's my joy. Oh, we won last week and we're projected to win this week too. This is a lot of fun.

Okay, I have to get some work done, and line up appearances at bridal showcases this fall, and I've been invited to my colleague Lisa Light's book party in the city next week ( for those of you getting away from it all). And I'm out of cyan ink for my printer. So my big Friday night starts now. ;)

Big hugs to the Angels of my week: Butters' vet, and the owners of in LBI. I'm seriously thinking about buying the inn, cooking for guests, and using the top floor suite as my writing studio. A block and a half to the ocean. Can you imagine?