Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Lake of the Ozarks State Park, Osage Beach, Missouri, December 2009

We had to camp one more time in a Missouri State Park to get our fourth consecutive Missouri Camper Award. So for the second year in a row, after Christmas festivities, we hitched up the T@b and headed out for the weekend.
Welcome to the Lake

The Captain Larry Don, a boat almost as old as the lake.

We were the only ones in the park.

Sputnik was an island of warmth in the frozen Ozarks.

Bagnell Dam

One of the original turbines from the dam.

We had a good lunch at Peckers

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Babler State Park; Wildwood, Missouri, November 2009

We spent the weekend at Babler State Park, just a half hour from home, but completely removed from day to day life. Above is the statue dedicated to Dr. Babler, for whom the park is named.

Our site, # 37, was nestled into the woods, with stairs leading down to the table and firepit area.

Saturday morning breakfast. Our 1st time making egg mcmuffin sandwiches. Thumbs up!
Check out the nice, wooded area behind our site.

Shamus, playing peek-a-boo behind the tree. He loved his big backyard.

An old building, probably built by the CCC's, along our hiking path.

The nice thing about hiking with a 10 pound cat...when he's all tuckered out, you can just pick him up & carry him.

All good things must come to an end. Sunday morning goodbye.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Washington State Park, Desoto, Missouri ,October 2009

My parents used to take us camping at Washington State Park when we were kids. We had alot of great times. We thought we would have our fall campout at the same park that gave us all those good memories.

It was a beautiful fall weekend.

The morning was a little cold, but the fire kept us warm.

Maddi takes Shamus for a walk.

Elaine served up another great breakfast.

The lodge was built by the C.C.C.

Indian petroglyphs

Grants chili fixins.
Another great pot of chili.

Mom and Dad warm up around the fire.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

St. Francios State Park: Bonne Terre, Missouri. September 2009

Campsite 24. The park was full this weekend.

We brought along the canoe. The Big River runs past the park.
The Big River also flows behind our house about 80 miles downstream.

The water was clear and the fish were plentiful.
However I broke my rod a week earlier so they were all safe for the week.

It started to rain on our float but it was fun.
You can't go floating without getting a little wet.

It rained late into the evening.

" Mommy, make it stop! Even a Wonder cat does not like rain."

When the rain stopped it was time to play.

He may not look like he's up very high, but that was about a 5 foot leap for Shamus.
Notice the dangling leash below the log.

Click play to watch Shamus playing in the sand.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Shamus Update

For fans of Shamus the Wonder Cat, I thought it was time for an update. Two weeks ago Tuesday, Shamus had a cardiac ultrasound (I know-a cardiac ultrasound for a cat?!!) and the news was very good. While the ultrasound did show the parallel lines consistent with an adult heartworm, it also showed that his heart was healthy & didn't have any changes in the thickness of the heart walls or chambers. Whoo hoo!

Yes, Shamus has a long way to go still-he gets to be on Prednisone for another two months. Also, it takes a year or two for the heartworms to die and when they do, they can shed particles that can trigger another experience like the last one. Worse still, they can "migrate" in his system & cause a blockage :( However, all that being said, when this first began on Friday, August 7th, we didn't think he would make it through the night. Fight on, Wonder Cat, fight on!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Prayers for Shamus

Many of you know Shamus the Wonder Cat. He travels with us on our T@B camping adventures and has visited most of the Missouri State Parks. He has been to several T@B rallys, and has just concluded a two week trip around Lake Superior into Canada where he has made many new friends. People love to meet and pet the cat who walks on a leash. He is the unofficial mascot for Cedar Hill Lutheran Church and loves to play with the children.
Shamus doing what he does best.

Friday night, Shamus the Wonder cat didn't seem to be doing so wonderful. We found him sleeping next to the litter box (never a cat's first choice for sleeping accommodations), lethargic and wheezing a little when breathing. Not a lot, we weren't even sure at first if he was doing really bad or if we were reading more into than there was. While we were trying to decide if his behavior merited a trip to the after hours, emergency vet, Shamus helped us decide by vomiting blood. After a 24 hour kitty ICU stay, x-rays, blood work and a heartworm test, we learned tonight that Shamus has heartworms.

With IV fluids, antibiotics and medicine to get the fluids off of his lungs, Shamus got to come home Saturday night. When the heartworm test came back Sunday afternoon, we've added Prednisone and heartworm preventative to the tools to combat these nasty little parasites. Unlike dogs, cats cannot survive the treatment that would kill the worms & rid them of the heartworms. The prednisone can help with the inflamation and the heartworm preventative will make sure no new worms infest him, but we have to wait & see if he can fight this off until the heartworms die & get out of his system.

Shamus, and his people, would appreciate your prayers, especially during the next weeks. We would love to continue to share our travels with Sputnik and Shamus the Wonder Cat.

I can't end this post without thanking God for all of the good in the midst of a bad situation - awesome caring staff and vetrinarian, Dr. Swanson, who treated Shamus & us like one of their own, the caring staff at our regular vet's office, my dental credit card which is also accepted at the vet's office, and the fact that female heartworms were present so that the heartworm test could detect them and we could begin treatment.

Shamus sporting a smiley face bandage over his catheter site

There's no place like home

They couldn't get the IV in his right leg so they had to shave his left leg too. I'm not sure Shamus appreciates having a "poodle cut"

Every kitty loves a nice basket :)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Washington County, Missouri; September 2009

Mike and Gina invited us to camp on a 4000 acre ranch.
Our campsite was on the Mineral Fork River.
Mike took us on a tour of the ranch. It has lakes, bluffs, rivers, and creeks.

It is criss-crossed with many dirt roads made by the mining company.

The Mineral Fork runs through the ranch.
Our campsite is in the trees below the bluff.
A herd of buffalo.
Katelyn and a lizard.

A full moon on a foggy night.

The rock at the swimming hole.

Annie takes a dip.

Some of our native wild flowers.

Shamus, Katelyn, Miss Elaine, Nick and Matt.