First things first then... last night I went to the second School Concert (they just don't have room for all parents in one evening so they do it twice!). J played a guitar solo again - same as on Tuesday - and did quite well. I still think he'd have given a much better performance, if it was a piece he specially likes, but there we are. This time my camera behaved well and I was able to record his performance.
I just tried to upload the little video to my blog, but it won't load, so I will have to do without. The concert was better organised last night, so shorter than Tuesday but, you know, I preferred Tuesday, with its little technical hitches and glitches... it was more fun! The atmosphere was warmer and less formal on Tuesday too... strange what a bit of disorganisation does for you.
Then, this morning was Sherlock's appointment at the vet, for his next blood test and stuff, to see how he responded to the treatment for his kidney problems. The good news is that there is some improvement in the kidney results, but he had his blood pressure checked (with the most tiny arm-cuff you ever saw!) and that is running way too high, so he now has tablets for that. The vet says his other blood tests (electrolytes, liver function etc) are fine, so the problem is really just his kidneys. He will need tablets for ever now and may benefit from a monthly injection too. She gave him the injection today (anabolic steroid and vit. B12, to help his muscles and prevent him losing weight). We will see how it goes.
More of the (very expensive!) special Renal food. I am now researching cat diet issues, to see what I can do to help him. I'm not certain that "special food" is the answer. However, unless I can find someone that supplies a comprehensive "Raw" diet for cats (by comprehensive, I mean properly produced raw feed with the correct supplements to make it as near as possible to a natural diet), he will have to remain on the Renal diet. I didn't mention the Raw food idea to the vet - I'm not sure even if it is possible to do it yet and I didn't want to muddle the issues today. He stays on the special Renal food for now, until /unless I am certain there is a better alternative.
Sherlock really is a little hero! He put up with having his leg shaved (a bit) for the blood pressure, the cuff inflating and having his leg held and listened to; then he had a blood test taken - from his kneck vein - and didn't complain; then a repeat of his annual booster jab; then his nails clipped; then being prodded all over to check his condition and having his mouth examined. All that and not a complaint, growl, scratch - nothing. He was really good. There were 3 of us with him - the nurse, the vet and I, but even so, he behaved brilliantly. I was proud of him!
Here he is, doing his Hero look for the camera.
So we came home from the vet, after an hour in the vet's office! I had to almost dump Sherlock and run off to J's school again, for the end-of-term assembly. That finished around 12:30 and I finally got home about 12:45 and snatched a sandwich. Then there were letters to write and post. Had to send the cat insurance claim by recorded delivery, so I had to go into the post office. Luckily there was no queue when I arrived, so that was nice and quick.
Back home about 2:15. Made a coffee and thought I'd do some work. No chance - the phone didn't stop ringing for the rest of the time until J got in from school. Several calls from my mum, who has a sore mouth and thinks it's another abcess in her tooth. Emergency dental appointment organised, after-school care for J organised (in case I'm late back), emergency appointment re-scheduled by dentist (earlier, thank goodness!)... so that's my time all booked up for tomorrow as well. There just isn't any peace right now (though I suppose I'm managing a break at the moment, so must be grateful!)
What else? Oh yes, things I have been making this week (in between all the chaos!)
Yesterday afternoon, I made these. Well, actually - to avoid any deceptions here - I took the ready-to-bake dough out of the freezer on Tuesday, cut it into discs and baked it yesterday. They are Teacher Thank You gifts.
But they look good, don't they?
I spent the rest of the afternoon constructing little origami lidded boxes to put them in.
Then this morning I managed to find time to line the boxes with baking paper and fill them with cookies.
Then I folded the paper over them and added a little ingredients note, so the teachers know what they're getting!
Then, I put each lid on the box and tied a ribbon round. They look quite good here in their paper carrier, don't they?
I hope the various teachers will be happy with these. The boxes each hold 10 mini-cookies, which are very tasty and wonderfully crunchy. I do have a recipe to make my own dough - even instructions on making the patterns - but I just don't have time right now, so ready-to-bake will have to do.
Also, at the weekend, I made some lovely paper tree ornaments that I found on Tresa Edmunds' blog, via the Advent calendar at the top of my blog. I didn't get enough light to photograph them til today...
These are the traditional old-fashioned paper baubles, that I have made lots of times, in various ways. These were shown in the background of Tresa's photo, so I thought I'd have another go at them.
Previously I have made them with 12 or 16 pieces, but these are so simple, because they are made with just 8 circles.
I punched the circles from cardstock, then scored an equilateral triangle in the centre of each circle (the only tricky part is working out the side-length for the triangle pattern - it has to touch the sides of the circle and be equal sides too).
Then I bent each of the flaps up. The ball is assembled by sticking the flaps of 4 circles together, to form a "top", then making the "bottom" in the same way. You need to take care to line everything up, or you get a wobbly bauble!!
Once everything is stuck, you fix the two parts together. There are various ways to attach a hanger. You can stitch it on afterwards, or glue it to the outside of one of the top triangles. Or, if you think ahead, you can tie a knot in your hanging ribbon, then stick it between the circles as you assemble the top section.
Look pretty, don't they?
The instructions for these are given in Tresa's blog post (see link above or in my Tutorials list on the right).
Tresa made hers by sticking two strips of paper back-to-back. I was lucky enough to have some double-sided cardstock sheets ("White Out" range by We R Memory Keepers), so they were even easier for me! I made the hanging loops and wrap-round part at the bottom from some Anita's Merry Christmas ribbon.
Tip - make sure you push all layers down to the bottom of the "point" before you staple it, or it comes apart!
They were so simple and quick, but they look so pretty.
I also made some paper-strip baubles, in 2 sizes, but the light has gone and I forgot to photograph them, so you will just have to imagine...
So, this is a marathon post! It's my tea-time now and J. is asking for something to eat, so I'm off. Back to the whirlwind... but I had a break and feel better for it.
Thanks for reading!