Goodbye Jules…

Yesterday evening, we said goodbye to our beloved gerbil, Jules, our longest-lived gerbil to date, 3 years and 2 plus months.

goodbyeJules20181114.pngShe was our little fighter to the end. She had a tumor growing in her belly, just like her sister Claudia (we said goodbye in June to Claudia). BUT she was still running around and trying to get on with life as normal. However, we knew it was time, she could no longer climb up to get water or even into her sand bath.

We took her to our lovely vet, who tried her best to give us maybe a few more months but in the end, we decided it was better to let her go while she was not suffering too much. The vet had said that she was already in distress from the huge size of her stomach and the ultrasound showed both water and tumor inside so…

Goodbye, dearest Jules! You gave us lots of fun and laughter. We hope you are having fun with your sisters in gerbil heaven now.

You can read about when we first brought them all home here.


Meet Lexi! Our Standard Schnauzer Puppy…

Those of you are friends with me on Facebook already know that about a week and a half ago, we brought home a cute, black Standard Schnauzer (Mittelschnauzer in German) puppy named Lexi.

We had been waiting since the beginning of the year; waiting for the mating to take place, waiting for the scans confirming there are puppies, waiting for the birth and then meeting her and then waiting for her to be old enough to leave her Mama.

So how has it been? It has been wonderful, stressful, funny, worrying and all the emotions in between. Just like being a first-time parent. We are first-time “parents” to a puppy.

Now i have had dogs before but they were already adult dogs when i adopted them. Raising a puppy is very different and although i had read 1.5 books (still reading the second one) on this topic, nothing quite prepared me for the reality of it.

i had an idea of how i thought things would go in the first week. Of course, i expected it to be hard but i never expected to be at my wits’ end, wondering how i can get her to stop peeing in the house!

Well, it turns out that i was giving her too much correction for her other behaviours and made her nervous around me. But i thought i was protecting her from harmful things she should not put in her mouth or destroying our soft furnishings.

It’s a good thing the breeder we got her from is a friend from church so i didn’t have to go asking for advice in German. i got a tiny talking to about my expectations of a puppy vs an adult dog. i have to say that after i adjusted my expectations and relaxed a bit on her trying to eat every piece of leaf and bit of dirt/rock, it has been better. The fact that i can write this post is proof that we are adjusting better to each other.

Tobias really wanted Lexi to take to him, so she sleeps in his room. There was stress on both sides about liking each other at first but after going to puppy school and getting some knowledge, Tobias is now quite good with her and is more confident with her. He helps out with feeding, walking and playing with her.

Unfortunately, the husband has been unable to take part as much as he would like to because he’s constantly away for work but Lexi really likes him as a rough and tumble playmate when he is around.

So while we expect some ups and downs (hopefully more ups), we will keep calm and carry on with puppy 😉

Here are some cute pictures of Lexi for you to enjoy. You can follow Lexi on Instagram (lexischnauzer).


In Singapore…

We were in Singapore for our annual visit for about 4 weeks plus, during the summer holidays; it’s the longest we have been there at a stretch since Tobias was a newborn.

It was hot and humid, as always. But it was absolutely fab to see family and friends and, of course, to eat all the yummy foods we missed.

We went a little earlier this year; a dear friend was getting married. So happy for her! It was a lovely wedding ceremony and dinner, with cute, heartwarming little touches throughout. Well done, you two!! The attention to detail was impressive! Because this friend also knew my family, she invited them too and that gave us a rare opportunity to take a very nice family portrait.

singapore20180824aThen we settled into the routine of rushing with the crowds of people on public transport on our way to meet various family and friends for laughter and food. We also got in our exercise in the forms of leisure swimming and some squash games.


singapore20180824ci am so proud that my brother did Hair for Hope, to raise funds for Children’s Cancer Foundation. He shaved his head, together with members of the 501st Legion (made up of people who enjoy dressing up as Star Wars characters and doing volunteer/charity events).

There was a sad side to our visit this year. Just before we arrived, we heard that a friend had passed away from a second stroke. Our thoughts are with his dear wife and children and family. We also visited another friend in the hospital, whom we had lost contact with for a long time; she was in the final stages of cancer. We were able to say our goodbyes before she passed away, a few days before we flew out of Singapore. Rest In Peace.

singapore20180824dLast but not least, my boy talked his grandparents into keeping hamsters for him again. This time we got 2… Meet Finn and Poe! Can you guess who they are named after?

Oh, my boy also bought his very own gaming laptop, which he saved for 2 years for! He was a very happy boy that day we bought it.

It was a slightly tiring but good trip.