It was a busy week last week! Last week Friday we planned to leave town for Lubbock to visit my mom for the weekend. To be random, we kept Elliot at home with us for the day. I really enjoyed my lil' dude's company! He was a charm and a helper, and he was so happy to have the attention of both parents without a competing big brother.

After a good breakfast, our first order of business was a vet appointment for Samson. He was out all day Thursday which wouldn't be a big deal for a normal, even somewhat healthy cat. But this was the tipping point for Samson. He was again emaciated, dehydrated, and lethargic. I was worried we would need to put him to sleep if he didn't perk up by Friday. Alas, he was not showing signs of improving. His kidneys just weren't keeping up and previous attempts to save him with medication and liquid injections weren't having a impact. We said our teary good-byes and left him at the vet to be put to sleep.

Life had to go on for us. We packed up and cleaned up, ran errands and filled up the car. When school was out, we got Josh then hit the road. An hour later in traffic, we left the DFW metroplex on 380 towards Lubbock.

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My mom is well. She's now in a rented home across from another cop. Her dog Lance is about the size of a pony. He was thrilled to have the boys around even though he's an old dog who can't fetch as much as he used to. We took the boys to a few local favorites: Maxey Park, Science Spectrum, Joyland.

Joyland is an amusement park in the north-eastern side of town. It isn't Six Flags, but it's fun enough for bored tweens and young kids. Joshua rode his first adult size roller coaster- and LOVED it! Elliot rode the huge swinging rocket and freaked out the first time but then decided to ride again and was totally cool with it the second time. Joshua's other favorite ride was the spider. Elliot loved his toddler sized roller coaster and the merry-go-round. And both were equally disappointed in the train ride. We came home to filthy boys who talked non-stop about the rides. The next evening was spent with Raymond and a couple of his friends. That was an interesting night too.

Both boys had minor medical issue on the trip: Elliot had hives, Joshua got diarrhea. Bt these setbacks didn't ruin the trip. This week both boys have requested, loudly, to go see Grandma Cindy again. I've explained that we need a fast airplane and more long weekends. I'm glad we all had a great time.

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Yesterday we buried Samson's ashes in the yard behind the kids' playset. I found a sleeping lion statuette as a marker. Joshua participated in the memorial by placing the box in the ground and adding one of his cat toys on top of the box. While the dirt was being filled in, he finally cried. He hugged me and talked about how he'll miss Samson. It was closure we needed as well as practice about memorials for when loved ones die. Merlin is healthy but entering his elderly cat stage. He's now about 16 years old or so. When his time comes, he has a spot right next to his best friend Samson. Hopefully that won't be for a few more years to come.



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