An Update on Watson: Fashion Victim

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Watson's Uggs

I’ve been waiting for Watson’s test results to come back before I posted another update but that seems to be taking forever and a day so I just wanted to let you all know that Watson is doing amazingly well. Right now he’s in his usual energetic and heated morning battle with Dexter. Every day since we brought him home he’s only become stronger. He’s eating and drinking like a champ and completely spoiled with extra tuna and freshly roasted chicken meals. It seems to be one of the few ways I can “trick” him into taking his antibiotics that doesn’t involve torturing him unnecessarily.

I really don’t know what to think. Essentially we were sent home from the hospital thinking that he was going to literally die any second. Most cats diagnosed with FIP only live an average of 9 days. We can’t seem to find anything in the literature about your cat coming home and completely recovering and then passing away, but I guess time and test results will tell. In the meantime we’re thoroughly enjoying having our kitten back to his old energetic and adorable self.

On Friday Chris and I are taking Watson to his normal vet, whom we just love, and we’ll get his stitches out and talk to her about any test results we receive this week. Frankly you wouldn’t even know anything has happened to Watson with the exception of his shaved neck and legs. Amusingly enough both of his front legs were shaved half-way up the leg to accommodate his IV. It makes him look like he’s wearing Uggs. Poor Watson…now he’s a fashion victim too. Please keep those kitty prayers coming! xoxo, Erin

An Update on Watson

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Little Watson

Update Thursday, September 24 at 7:43 AM

As I briefly mentioned last night our vet now thinks that Watson quite probably has FIP (Feline Infectious Peritonitis). They are running a new test to confirm this. If this is the case Watson will only have a few weeks or possibly months to live. This possibility was mentioned to us on Sunday when we met with the vet but had not been addressed again at any other time during our weekly visits or updates. So last night when we came to pick him up I was completely blindsided. It seems that Watson’s cultures did not grow any bacteria so through process of elimination this is the most likely diagnosis.

I’m still holding out a little hope that this isn’t the case, but unfortunately he seems to fit the profile for this horrifying disease. Obviously Chris and I are extremely upset. I can’t even begin to describe the array of vivid nightmares I had last evening. Watson is definitely not himself. Dexter wants nothing more then to play with Watson but when he gets close to him Watson cries so we’ve had to keep Dexter in the spare bedroom. We also had the equally unpleasant experience of having to give Watson his oral antibiotics this morning, on the off chance that this is still treatable. Needless to say it didn’t go well.

So for now we wait and see and try to keep Watson eating and drinking and as happy as possible. I could really use a miracle now though so if you believe in prayer please say a little one for my kitten.

Update: Wednesday, September 23 at 3:09 PM

Chris just spoke with Watson’s doctor and while he still has a low grade fever that continues to fluctuate they are convinced that his affliction over the past few days is simply a virus. They have taken him off the IV and he’s now taking oral antibiotics. The best news is that we’ll be able to bring him home tonight! We’ll be picking Watson up at the animal hospital around 7:00 PM.

Last night during visiting hours he was super active and practically jumped over Chris’s shoulders to get to me at one point. Before we left he was calmly dozing in his cage but as soon as we walked away he started meowing … well really yowling pitifully. So I’m extremely relieved that we’ll be able to have him home with us in a few short hours.

He’ll probably still have a fever for up to two weeks but as long as he continues eating, drinking, and taking his medicine he should be just fine. This has been quite an emotional roller coaster and I wanted to thank you all again for wishing Watson well and sending your hopes for his speedy recovery. I’m sure he’ll be back in “picture perfect” form in no time at all and at the very least Dexter can go back to grooming Watson instead of trying to groom Chris and I in the middle of the night.

Update: Tuesday, September 22 at 11:56 AM

I wasn’t able to speak directly with Watson’s doctor this morning but I did have an assistant read her notes to me over the phone. According to the veterinarian Watson is looking well today. He’s eating soft food and his temperature is down to 102.5. This is still high so they will continue to perform supportive care today. Chris and I will be visiting him this evening from 6:00-7:00 PM and hopefully we’ll learn a little more at that time. It’s so reassuring to hear that his fever is beginning to drop, and I’m finally starting to feel cautiously optimistic instead of scared to death.

Update: Monday, September 21 at 10:55 PM

When the surgeon attempted to biopsy Watson’s Lymph node this evening she decided it would be in his best interest if they simply removed it as the tissue was very deteriorated. We were able to see our kitten during visiting hours. His fever is still hovering around 105 degrees but he ate today and drank water. He was absolutely ecstatic to see us and tried his best to jump around and rub us with his head. I was worried that he would pull his stitches out. He has quite the Frankenstein monster look going on with his neck wound right now so I guess Watson wont have any trouble picking out his Halloween costume this year.

It will still be at least two days before the culture is back on the lymph node test and in the meantime the doctor is concentrating on continuing to give Watson antibiotics and keeping him hydrated. Either way it was definitely a personal relief for both of us to see Watson eat and drink today. Hopefully now that he’s had a little food his tiny body can fight off this nasty bug.

Thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your kind comments, texts, and emails. Chris and I both appreciate your warm wishes for Watson’s speedy recovery very much! I’ll update you more via this post as we learn new details. xoxo, Erin


On Saturday morning Chris woke me up with the ominous sounding choice of, “Do you want to hear the good news or the bad news first?” The good news was that he was making pancakes for breakfast and the bad news was that Watson had taken one look at his plate of cat food, left the kitchen, and climbed back into his kitten bed. Obviously something was very wrong. As the day progressed he became more and more lethargic and continued to refuse all offers of food and water. We tried everything from tuna, to fresh chicken, to sardines all without any results. To make matters worse he had an enormously inflamed lymph node on his neck that felt approximately the size of a gumball. Our primary Vet was completely booked and unable to see us so Chris and I decided we’d see how Watson felt on Sunday and take it from there.

When we arrived home from dinner with friends that night Watson was still completely out of it. We attempted to give him water which only made him hysterical and earned me a scratch on the face. At that point we decided he needed to be seen by a doctor immediately. So we coaxed Watson into the cat carrier and whisked him off to Angell Animal Medical Center, which is unfortunately practically in Jamaica Plain.  We’ve since realized that there are several closer hospitals but at the time this was the only one that came to mind.

When Watson was finally examined he had an extremely high fever of 106.5 degrees. Needless to say they admitted him. Chris and I left him with his favorite snowman towels from his kitten bed. All the way home I just felt horrible. By taking the “wait and see” attitude he had obviously suffered all day long and I wish I had just taken him in as soon as started refusing nourishment.

Little Watson

On Sunday we went to see him during visiting hours in the morning. They still didn’t have any idea what was wrong with him and Watson would again have to spend the night. The pathologist and radiologist, who were needed to read and confirm his tests, wouldn’t be in until Monday. All they could really tell us was that it was either a viral or bacterial infection. It could also be another disease that is quite fatal but I refuse to think about that right now.

We stayed with Watson for an hour. It was so incredibly heartbreaking to see him hooked to his little IV with his front paw all taped up. I tried not to cry but when Chris took Dean Bearchester from his pocket Watson started rubbing his head all over him and I pretty much lost it.

This morning the vet at Angell called. The tests were inconclusive so they are now going to do a biopsy of Watson’s inflamed lymph node. He’ll be placed under anesthesia and then they’ll attempt to grow some of the cells in a culture. It’s all very confusing. They’re also going to retest him for feline leukemia. He tested negative back in April but apparently the tests can sometimes be wrong in young kittens.  His fever keeps fluctuating but even with the antibiotics it’s still rather high and hovering between 103.5 and 105 degrees.  Apparently though he’s been purring for various people so I have one small ray of hope.

Little Watson

Essentially we don’t know anything concrete yet. I’m hoping that we’ll be able to visit him this evening. I’m holding onto the probably ridiculous notion that he just has some sort of infection and that it will work itself out with a different type of antibiotic and he’ll be home cuddling with me soon, but in reality that is probably not the case. In the meantime please do yourself a favor and get pet insurance for your animals. It’s only around $20 a month per pet. Watson’s vet bill is already approximately $3000 right now and it appears that we aren’t even remotely done yet. Obviously we seriously dropped the ball in that respect and I’d hate for you to face the same thing.

I’ll keep you posted should any developments arise. Please keep the little guy in your thoughts. He’s such a precious kitten.

The New England Mobile Book Fair

The New England Mobile Book Fair
On Labor Day I happened upon a curious tweet from Marie of Boston Bibliophile pertaining to her excitement over the fact that the New England Mobile Book Fair would be open normal hours. Any time I see the word “book” a little happy leap happens in my heart, but I honestly had no idea what she was referring to. Was this some sort of gigantic version of a roving Scholastic-style tent sale? A quick google search later and I discovered that the New England Mobile Book Fair was not in fact a band of gypsies selling best sellers, but actually a bricks and mortar store in Newton Highlands that sold cheap books.

The New England Mobile Book Fair
I simply couldn’t pass up the chance to paw through a huge warehouse of novels so I sent a text to my friend Anna, rounded up CK and off we went on a little literary adventure.

The New England Mobile Book Fair

Now the New England Mobile Book Fair does sell new titles of books but what truly excited me was their overwhelming selection of extremely low priced remainder copies. I spent almost the entire time in the Young Adult section and came away with several books that I have always meant to buy or pick up at the library but never quite managed to. The best part though was that the books ranged in price from only $1.98 for paperbacks to $4.99 for hardcover titles. It may be a bit dusty and the aisles are close together but I can’t imagine any of these thing will deter you once you begin filling your shopping bag.

The New England Mobile Book Fair

Here’s the list of treasures that I picked up:
Sorceress by Celia Rees
From the Publisher:
A Native American teen experiences a life-altering encounter after reading about Mary Newbury the 17th-century protagonist of Witch Child who may be connected with one of her own relatives.
Finishing Becca by Ann Rinaldi
From the Publisher:
Becca Syng, 14, becomes Peggy Shippen’s maid and enters another world. For over a year, she assists Peggy in her revelry, culminating in her mistress’s marriage to General Benedict Arnold. Like the Arnolds, Becca is faced with decisions about loyalty: to her country, to her family and, above all, to herself.
A Break With Charity by Ann Rinaldi
From the Publisher:
Boredom and frustration in a small Puritan town provide fertile ground for a band of teenage girls to incite and nurture deadly mischief. Susannah English, caught between the desire to be a part of the group and her revulsion toward their wickedness, finds herself an unwilling party to what would become the Salem witch trials.
The House on Hound Hill by Maggie Prince
From the Publisher:
After her parents’ divorce, Emily, her brother and mother move to a ramshackle but historic row house on Hound Hill. Emily’s peculiar visions begin when an oddly dressed, strangely formal boy named Seth comes to Emily’s door, searching for his cat, and gives his address as her own. As Emily hears clanging bells at night, smells bitter tallow candles, meets crowds of beggars and confronts a supposedly extinct black rat in her chimney, she finally realizes that she can perceive the events of another time and even visit 1665.
The River Between Us by Richard Peck
From the Publisher:
The year is 1861. Civil war is imminent and Tilly Pruitt’s brother, Noah, is eager to go and fight on the side of the North. With her father long gone, Tilly, her sister, and their mother struggle to make ends meet and hold the dwindling Pruitt family together. Then one night a mysterious girl arrives on a steamboat bound for St. Louis. Delphine is unlike anyone the small river town has even seen. Mrs. Pruitt agrees to take Delphine and her dark, silent traveling companion in as boarders. No one in town knows what to make of the two strangers, and so the rumors fly. Is Delphine’s companion a slave? Could they be spies for the South? Are the Pruitts traitors? A masterful tale of mystery and war, and a breathtaking portrait of the lifelong impact one person can have on another.

The New England Mobile Book Fair

My Life in Books

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Using only books you have read this year (2009), cleverly answer these questions. Try not to repeat a book title.


Describe Yourself: Confessions of a Shopaholic
How do you feel: Fatally Flaky
Describe where you currently live: Behind the Attic Wall
If you could go anywhere, where would you go: One Fifth Avenue


Your favorite form of transport: The Rapture
Your best friend is: Catherine, Called Birdy
You and your friends are: The Book Thief
What’s the weather like: Wintergirls


Favorite time of day: That Old Cape Magic
If your life was a: Shelf Discovery
What is life to you: Tender Morsels
Your fear: The Hunger Games


What is the best advice you have to give: Lock and Key
Thought for the Day: Too Many Cooks
How I would like to die: I Loved, I Lost, I Made Spaghetti
My soul’s present condition: Before Green Gables

(Meme via Boston Bibliophile).

Top 5 YA Titles I Just Can’t Wait To Read

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splendorSplendor: A Luxe Novel by Anna Godbersen
From the publisher: It’s a new year, and Manhattan’s favorite socialites are stirring up brand-new drama: Elizabeth uncovers a dangerous secret from her past; Diana has an opportunity to follow her heart—and claim her future, Lina discovers money can buy happiness…for a time, and Penelope finds that life without Henry brings unexpected pleasures. In this dramatic conclusion to the bestselling Luxe series, old ties are broken, fresh bonds are formed, and every decision comes at a cost.
My thoughts: I may seriously cry. I can’t believe this is the final book in the series. Why can’t it go on forever? Who could seriously get sick of catty girls clad in silk and taffeta ball gowns having battles of whit while wielding calling cards?

viola_in_reelViola in Reel Life by Adriana Trigiani
From the publisher: Shipped off to boarding school in South Bend, Indiana, city girl and aspiring filmmaker Viola Chesterton feels out of place with her three new roommates. Missing her life back home, Viola is tempted to hide behind her video camera all year. But first impressions are often wrong, and soon Viola realizes she’s in for the most incredible year of her life—if only she can put the camera down and let the world in.
My thoughts: I always wished I could have gone to boarding school. Now I like to read about it vicariously. I also wish I could be creative enough to edit videos in lovely and unique ways but so far I just stumble around in iMovie adding titles and silly captions to the shaky iPhone shot adventures of my kittens.

dream_girlDream Life by Lauren Mechling
From the publisher: Claire Voyante’s first semester at Henry Hudson High School was eventful, to say the least. As she heads into her second semester, things are calming down a bit. But Claire has a few secrets that are getting harder to keep. Her biggest secret of all? The onyx and ivory cameo necklace her grandmother gave her for her 15th birthday. Ever since she started wearing it, her dreams have been coming to her in black and white and turning out to be oddly prophetic. Becca’s been hanging out with her old prep school friends and never seems to have time for Claire anymore. And soon, Claire discovers why—there’s a secret group of society girls with a mysterious identity. And, turns out, a mysterious enemy who’s out to get them. The second she sniffs out trouble, Claire jumps on the case. But is it someone close to Claire who’s in danger again—or could it be Claire herself whose life is at stake?
My thoughts: The first book in this series was one of my favorite finds last year. It’s just exquisite and I simply adore the heroine. If I could go back and relive my teen years I think I would want to do so as this percocious young sleuth.

derby_girlWhip It aka Derby Girl by Shauna Cross
From the publisher: Meet Bliss Cavendar, a blue haired, indie-rock loving misfit stuck in the tiny town of Bodeen, Texas. Her pageant-addicted mother expects her to compete for the coveted Miss Blue Bonnet crown, but Bliss would rather feast on roaches than be subjected to such rhinestone tyranny. Bliss’ escape? Take up Roller Derby. When she discovers a league in nearby Austin, Bliss embarks on an epic journey full of hilarious tattooed girls, delicious boys in bands, and a few not-so-awesome realities even the most bad-assed derby chick has to learn.
My thoughts: All I have to say is Roller Derby: Yes, Please! Plus, everyone knows you should read the book before seeing the movie.

ex-masEx-Mas by Kate Brian
From the publisher: Seventeen-year-old Lila Beckwith has just about everything you can wish for, except her annoying younger brother Cooper. When Lila’s parents announce they’ll be going out of town, Cooper snitches about her plan to throw a party. In retaliation, Lila hands Cooper the newspaper declaring that global warming is melting the North Pole. Cooper firmly believes in Santa Claus, and this is a crushing blow. After her parents leave, putting the neighbors on high watch, Lila goes to pick up Cooper at his best friend Becky’s house. Becky’s brother happens to be Beau, Lila’s ex-boyfriend. When Lila arrives she and Beau discover Becky and Cooper are missing; they find Google maps, the article, and other clues. Their siblings are on an adventure to save Santa. Even though they can’t stand the sight of each other, Lila and Beau know what they have to do: work together to get Becky and Cooper home safely, by Christmas.
My thoughts: I have a soft spot for anything having to do with Christmas since I am the self-appointed “Christmas Queen.” This book sounds like it would make a lovely ABC Family 25 Days of Christmas holiday movie adaptation, don’t you think?