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【東方】豚乙女的聽覺盛宴

作者:湛澄│2020-05-09 19:15:55│贊助:6│人氣:71
 
我對東方各種 vocal 曲的興趣都不太大,
因為常常會碰到很吵耳的版本,
聽 instrumental 比較省心。
 
豚乙女是唯一的例外,
コンプ(Comp)編曲、ランコ(Ranko)填詞,
再由ランコ(Ranko)主唱,
雖然也是有 rock 跟 pop 風格的刺耳作品,
可是,一聽安靜風格,
就覺得他們簡直是夢幻組合--
 
 
一個徘徊在生死之間的罪人,
向那個在她心頭烙印下背影的、
當她全身焚燒起來時想要死在他懷裡的人
所唱的泣血之歌:
 Touhou - Utakata

 
--不斷重複的歌詞(出生,出生,出生;
           死去,死去,死去;
          何時,一直,永遠,現在)
  還有副歌不斷重複的旋律,
  都帶著宿命感的枷鎖,
  讓人跟著她絕望、窒息。
 
 
 
忌日,
亡靈邊回想著生前曾經怎樣慶生過、
邊孤零零唱出來的獨白:
Touhou - Birthday
 
--ランコ(Ranko)這首的唱腔
  顯得純情天真如少女,
  愁緒也不像上面的 Utakata 那樣悠遠,  
  大概是一朵還沒有嚐過愛情滋味就夭折的溫室之花?
 
 
 
而擁有《命運之輪》這麼沉重名字的一首,
反倒是三首當中旋律跟節奏都最輕快的:
 Touhou - 運命の輪
 
--這種 karaoke 型式的大字歌詞超讚!
  幾乎不用看英文翻譯了。
   
ランコ(Ranko)的音域真廣,
聲帶彈性也大,跳來跳去沒問題。
超愛她的歌聲~ <3
 
 
 
沒想到ランコ(Ranko)一換唱腔,
幾乎聽不出這是她的歌聲呢,
溫和又溫暖的一首:
Touhou - mou nani mo hoka ni iranai hazu sa
 
--聽不出來是東方作品的曲風,
  平淡是福。
 
 
5a
 
只要是她唱的,
就連 Rock 風也不那麼討厭了,
而且這首只有副歌比較激動,其餘居然不太吵:
 Touhou - 真っ黒な雪
 
--這種頹廢 Rock 風,搭配仍舊帶有東方味道的旋律,
  讓人一聽難忘,負責編曲的コンプ(Comp)應記一功。
 
5b
純鋼琴無人聲版也不錯,
因為旋律真的好聽:
 真っ黒な雪 (piano)
 
 
 
據說是她姊的歌聲 [←我不太相信]。
總之,這首意外地深得我心,
黑暗童話、圓舞曲,偏偏又遇上輕爵士風,
前奏更是像古典音樂;
搭配這張憑窗遠眺的迷離美圖,
神秘感滿溢,
豚乙女真是個潛力不絕的驚喜包:
東方 - M居部屋
 
--還滿乾淨的歌聲;
  回音就像憐歌唱的那首音色嚴重扭曲的 Nitori 那樣,
  算是歌曲本身的特色吧?
 
她本人的這種溫和唱腔也是少見:
東方 - アネモネ
 
--這首的韻律節奏也滿吸引人的。
 
 
8a
 
除了コンプ(Comp)之外,
パプリカ (Paprika) 編的鋼琴曲也是別具一格:
Touhou - 台湾山深仙人旅
 
--前奏長到很古怪,
  但,當堅持到1分23秒,
  《古代元神》的主旋律一響起,
  居然很好聽,值得一等。
 
8b
推了古代元神,順道推一首不是豚乙女
而是Marasy的、爵士風編曲不輸 tangion 的 Desire Drive:
 
 
--冰涼清冽的音符,好酷!
 
 
 
就算是 Rock Vocal 也能唱出凜冽感的歌姬,
這首是在暗夜航路之後自己跑出來的相關影片,
節奏居然完全無違和,還是同樣的輕快而帥氣,
而且多了幾分未來宇宙的科幻感,世界觀更加宏闊:
 
 
--根本找不到理由不喜歡它啊,
  完美的曲詞編唱!
  很帶勁,做作業用BGM不錯~
 
10
 
同樣的節奏,又可以繞回 Utakata:
 
 
--除了前奏之外都很好聽 XD
 
 
11
再來一首只有 Ranko 唱我才不會反感的風格,
有點吵,可是又很帥:
東方 - 何も無い森
 
--她的可塑性實在沒話說。
 
 
12
Comp 真頑皮,
這種帶有爵士影子的曲風還滿有趣的:
 愛憎輪舞曲
 
--留言也有人稱讚 Ranko 的歌聲。
 
 
13a
 
超光明開朗的一首,好像什麼惡作劇:
 東方 - みんなの
 
13b
 
鋼琴版很像咖啡室的背景音樂,
百貨公司?電梯音樂?
東方 - みんなの piano extended
 
--可以聽半小時沒問題,
  因為旋律真的舒心愉快~
  還隱約帶點熱帶風情,
  我對 Paprika 編曲的喜愛程度已經追上 Comp 編曲了!XD
 
 
14
 
圓舞曲似的三拍子,卻很輕快:
 豚乙女 - 水流河
 
--副歌突然變調,好像滿難唱的樣子?
  妙在就算變調了也沒有詭異的感覺,
  整首就是光明而讓人安心,又輕快,真難得。
 
 
15
 
天啊,這首稱得上 sublime,
最能讓 Ranko 發揮出她沉靜乾淨歌聲之美:
東方 - The Shady Love Letter
 
--喔,是 Paprika 編的曲呢~!
  是罕有能讓我乖乖聽完整首不pass的。
 
 
 
 

 
Quite a few people have asked for our story on how we got each dog. Here ya go.

 
Katelyn's story: So this is the not-so-short, actually very long, sorry not sorry, version of how we came to be a pack. But it's something that's very near and dear to my heart, so I want to give it the time and attention I feel it deserves. Please read it in its entirety, but it is not for the faint of heart. Jeffrey will have to give you guys his version of events and fill you in on Kilo and Kain's history. To start with, we have to go back in time a bit to paint a better picture.
 
 quite a few people = 不少人; 還滿多人
 sorry not sorry = 抱歉,我沒歉意
 near and dear to my heart = 在我心深處很珍惜的
 read it in its entirety = 完整地讀完這一篇
 not for the faint of heart = 困難重重的;膽小勿試,非誠勿擾
 To paint a better picture, let's go back to (a certain date). = 為了重現故事的全貌,我們先從(某日期)開始說起。
  
Back in December 2012, I got arrested on three felonies for aggravated possession of drugs, receiving stolen property, fraud and a few misdemeanor drug charges. By the time, I was a full-blown drug addict and had been for quite some time, 6 years to be precise. And by that I mean the worst of the worst. I was an IV heroin user. This means my life consisted of nothing more than snorting pills and sticking a needle full of dope in my arm as many times as I could. Every single day.
 
 felony = [n.] 刑事重罪
 aggravated = [adj.] (法律上)嚴重的
 misdemeanor = [n.] (法律上罪行較輕微的)行為不檢
 full-blown = [adj.] 末期的,晚期的;病入膏肓的
 IV heroin user = [n.] intravenous heroin user = 使用靜脈注射海洛因的吸毒者
 snort pills= [vi., formal] to breathe drug in through the nose = 用鼻子吸食毒品
  do a bump = do a line = [vi., informal] = 用手按住一個鼻孔, 另一個鼻孔吸粉的動作
 dope = [n.] 大麻(marijuana),泛指各種毒品
  crack = crack cocaine = [n.] 強效純古柯鹼
  crackwhore = [n.] 賺錢吸毒的妓女
 
I would like to say I hate to be graphic, but brutal honesty about what my life looked like is in my nature; it's just part of who I am. Back then, I lied, cheated and stole from anyone that let me get close enough. I would only stick around long enough to destroy your lives and then retreat back to my own self-inflicted isolation. I sold my body for dope. I sold other people's body for dope. My body was sold by other people for dope, and if I was lucky, I would get a cut of it. If not, off to the next lick so that I could get my next hit.
 
 self-inflicted isolation = 自我孤立
 get a cut of it = 分一杯羹
 hit a lick = 搶劫一個毒販
  (Urban Dictionary: a lick = a drug dealer who is easily robbed)
 
Between the time I graduated from college in 2009 and the time I got arrested, I couldn't tell you much of what happened. It was like Groundhog Day - the same thing every day: Wake up and find the ways and means to get one more. I know that during this time I moved to California in an attempt to physically separate myself from the dope. I went to treatment twice. I tried to be abstinent. I try to control my use. I tried to only drink. I just couldn't stop. And at some point, I lost all hope and surrendered to the fact that I would be a dope fiend for the rest of my life.
 
 Groundhog Day = [n.] 土撥鼠日;同樣的事情重複發生,循環不絕
 ways and means = [n.] 各種渠道方式
 abstinent = [adj.] 節制的;徹底戒(毒),禁(慾)
 fiend = [n.] 魔鬼;爛透了的人渣
  ↑注意,讀音跟 friend 一點也不像,是 /fiːnd/
 
So, back to December 2012 - I had a wonderfully codependent boyfriend, Brandon, that was not an addict, but might as well have been. He sold dope and lived the life, he just didn't use dope. So he bailed me out of jail and watched me like a hawk so that I couldn't use. I ended up taking a plea deal and was granted Intervention in Lieu of Conviction. I pled guilty to all my charges, but if I did everything as I was supposed to and completed probation successfully, they would drop my charges and I would not be convicted. The flip side to that was if I messed up once, they would immediatly enter my guilty plea and I would go to prison to serve my time on the shelf - three years.
 
 codependent = [adj.] 互相依存的
 bail sb out of jail = [v.] 從獄中保釋某人出來
 a plea deal = a plea bargain = [n.] 認罪協議
 Intervention in Lieu of Conviction (ILC)
 = [n.] a program in which an offender charged with a low-level non-violent felony offense due to drug usage has the opportunity to obtain a dismissal of the charge(s) after completing court-ordered treatment
 = (自我流翻譯→)以介入替代定罪計劃;
  容許吸毒者在接受法庭指定的治療之後可獲撤銷其所犯下的非暴力案件的控罪
 
I still used every chance I got, from the moment I got out of jail, but after a while he thought I was being good and as a way of manipulating or controlling me, he bought me a puppy. It was my reward. The sweetest little Great Dane puppy came bounding into my arms. And he became my lifeline. By this time, there was so much damage in the relationship, that Brandon hated who I was and was gone all the time, so I was alone with this dog just about 24 hours a day. I would get high and sit with him in complete misery, but he never left me. No matter what kind of low-down, scum-of-the-earth dope fiend I was, he loved me.
 
 bound = bounce = [vi.] 蹦跳著跑動
 lifeline = [n.] something, especially a way of getting help, that you depend on to lead your life in a satisfactory way = 命脈;救生索
 get high = [vi.] 吸毒後神智亢奮
   burnt = [adj.] 程度更嚴重,指吸毒後亢奮到會說蠢話或是做反常的蠢事
 low-down = [adj.] 卑鄙下流的
 scum-of-the-earth = [adj.] 最爛最賤的;出自聖經哥林多前書第4章第13節「世界上的污穢,萬物中的渣滓」
 
Eventually, I couldn't pass a drug test and got caught. But rather than face the truth right there, I made them send it to the lab for more testing. Knowing I was facing certain prison time, I said fuck it and kept using. The following week, I woke up on a Monday morning completely miserable. I was angry, not just that I was awake but that I was alive. I was angry I didn't OD the night before. I was angry that I had to try to find the ways and means yet again to get high. I was devastated. Death seemed so much more inviting than trying to exist another day. I was hopeless and desperate. I called my sister and she convinced me to turn myself in to my probation officer. Normally I would fight tooth and nail, a suggestion like that. Turn myself in??? But, I was out of options, I couldn't live, with or without drugs, and nothing I could think of sounded like a better idea, so I did it. She came and helped me pack up all my stuff and I remember that I walked out of that house and I didn't tell Brandon I was turning myself in. I just wanted to cut all ties. I couldn't even say bye to the dog. I was so sad to be leaving him but my sister convinced me that I needed to get better in order to ever be able to take care of that sweet boy. Knowing I was about to be shipped off to prison, I walked into my jail cell that night feeling relief, peace and comfort all because I knew in that moment that there was a way out. I couldn't get high the next day when I woke up. I didn't have to get high when I woke up the next day.
 
 OD = drug overdose = [n.] 死於吸毒過量
 fight tooth and nail = [vi.] 誓死奮戰
 turn oneself in = [vi.] 自首
 cut all ties = [vi.] 絕交;徹底切斷(跟毒品有關的)連繫
 a way out = [n.] 出路
 

 
Fast forward a month and a half: My judge decided not to send me to prison and he sent me to inpatient rehab instead. I don't call that luck. It's more of divine intervention. My Higher Power put me where I needed to be to build a life, not take a life away. And while I was in treatment, I got a call that Zero had died, this angel of a goofy Great Dane. The story I was told is that he was on a chain in someone's backyard and got so excited he jumped and somehow got stuck in the porch stairs and broke his neck. My heart was truly broken. I was inconsolable. I only had him for about 6 months, but he loved me when no one else did. I felt 100% responsible because I left him. And I left him with someone that wasn't able to take care of him. Right then and there I made a decision. I would never get another animal that I could not guarantee that no harm would ever be done to it as a result of my choices. Thank God I was in treatment when this happened, because had I been fresh out of treatment, I would have gotten high over that death.
 
I graduated from treatment, followed suggestions by going to NA meetings, getting a sponsor, actually calling her, working steps and being of service to others. It was like magic, my life just started getting better. Somehow I was given an opportunity to work as an Accountant (even with my felonies still on my record), and I had a steady income for the first time in my life. But something was missing, I was lonely. And that led me back to that crazy controlling ex - the pain and misery I knew I would experience with him was comfortable. Doing something different is the hard part. Low and behold, he comes home with a surprise one day. The cutest little black puppy with a white patch on it's chest. I looked at it and said, "What is that?" He went on to explain he found this Great Dane puppy on Craigslist and when he went to pick him up, he ended up being a girl and the people were very sketchy and the puppy was not in good shape so he had to bring her home anyway, but he was convinced she was a Great Dane. I laughed and laughed as there was no way this dog was a Great Dane. I named her Sally. After about a month, I thought she needed a friend because I didn't want her to ever feel as lonely as I had. One day Brandon sends me a picture and said he put a deposit down on this pup from a breeder. I couldn't wait to hold it in my arms and the wait was awful - knowing he would be mine but not until he weaned from his Mom. The second I saw him, another little black puppy with a white patch on his chest and little white toesies, I knew he was absolute perfection and that he would be Jack.
 
Sally was mortified at first, like how could I do this to her? Why did another puppy have to come in to her life? She didn't want to share Momma with anyone. But, over time that changed - and as Jack started growing faster and bigger than her, she was kind of forced to accept reality. I came to my senses about two months after we got Jack and left Brandon for good. But, I'm no dummy - I made sure to register them to me so that he had no claim on them. I had about a year and a half clean, had never really been on my own before, was now responsible for my own apartment, car payment, bills and most importantly two puppies all by myself. I had faith though that everything would be okay. And it was. I got by. I was making friends and actually starting to live - but they were always my number 1 priority. I went home at lunch every day to let them out, and after work but before going to NA meetings, I would go home and feed and walk them, and usually immediately after meetings I wanted to go home to snuggle them. They taught me about responsibility; responsibility for another life.
 
September 17, 2015 I celebrated 2 years clean. Before the meeting, I met with some friends for coffee and heard about this new boy in town that had just moved to Cincinnati from Seattle. I tried to call dibs on the first chance at him but was bummed to hear he had already been set up on a double date. After the meeting, a bunch of us went out for dinner to celebrate and he tagged along, we still hadn't even talked yet. Standing outside a bunch of us started getting hustled by this 10 year old kid selling candy bars and he told the new kid that he needed to be a man and buy his girl some candy. And so I officially met Jeffrey. We started cracking jokes like we had known each other for years. We very shortly found out we both loved dogs. And that's all it took. I invited him to come with me to a meeting the following night where my sponsor would present me with a medallion for my clean time. He ended up coming to dinner beforehand with my family and sponsor and it was like I wasn't even there. My parents fell in love with him. Not long after that I remember telling my Mom that I would marry him, or if I couldn't have him, then a man like him.
 
We were friends. We hung out and went to some meeting and dinner every once in a while, but that was all. I remember when I went to his apartment and met Kilo - what a sweet soul she is. But, he never tried to sleep with me so I thought that's all it would ever be. All I knew was that guys that were interested in me always tried to sleep with me asap and Jeffrey did not do this, only to later find out that he did not do this because he actually did like me. What a concept. So, I decided I needed to spread my wings and wanted to move away. I detached and pushed Jeffrey away because I knew I was leaving and I knew it would hurt so I instead chose not to feel anything. It gave me this false sense of being in control of my emotions when in reality I just didn't know how to deal with them. So I moved to Florida in January. And we didn't talk. Just me and the pups in a city we didn't know, surrounded by people we didn't know, which in turn gave me all the time in the world to get to know the one person that matters: me. Because of bad past relationships, I had become jaded and thought that there was not much left for me. I didn't think I'd ever get married or have kids. Through a lot of trial and error, experiences both good and bad, and some serious step work, I learned who I was, what was important to me and what kind of life I wanted. I fostered white a few dogs while there because it was just what I felt like I should do. Living in Florida was hard and I do not think I could have done it with out Jack and Sally. They made me not feel so alone. I found self acceptance and in that came complete freedom.
 
My sister was getting married in June and by about May my mom casually brought up that she thinks I should ask Jeffrey to be my date to the wedding. I thought what the hell, he will be a fun date. So I asked him and we started talking a little more and by the time I came home for the wedding, I knew I valued him as a human and wanted him in my life, no matter how that looked. I got home a few days before the wedding and we hung out every moment we could. The wedding was picture perfect, down to the moment when we were in the photo booth and he kissed me for the first time. I remember being shocked like oh, he actually does like me. When I went back to Florida, we decided to not see other people even though we weren't exactly sure what was going on with us. But, we talked every day. We texted during the day, FaceTimed for hours after work, and just got to know each other better. And before you know it, the 10 year High School Reunion that I was convinced I would never go to, sounded like a good excuse to visit home. Of course, Jeffrey came with me. I had already been thinking that I wanted to move home so I had a few job interviews while I was there. I received two offers making much more than I was at the time.
 
Sometimes God gives you what you desire just to show you that it's not what you really want. I moved to Florida thinking home is where you make it, only to find out that I truly wanted to make a home in Cincinnati near my family. And with Jeffrey. So that's what I did. I moved home, stayed with a friend, bought a house and started to try make it a home. By this time, Jeffrey had rescued Kain (I'll let him tell his story) and Kain would spend lots of time with us at my house staying the night, but Jeffrey never could because Kilo absolutely hated females and couldn't come over so he had to go home to her. I tried introducing them but it didn't go well. Kilo went after Sally a few times and was just very aggressive and not happy to be around her. I almost gave up and was prepared to walk away from the relationship because we could never integrate the pups and live together. Then, it's as if God heard me and I was fired from my job. I found a job within two weeks, but once I accepted the new position, I was home all day every day for a whole week. I wanted to give it one last shot with Kilo and brought her to my house to stay. It was rocky at first, but all she needed was a little time and consistency. The longer and more she was exposed to Sally, the easier it became. By the end of the week, they seemed like they could be buds after all. Which leads us to where we are today. Once Jeffrey saw that they could get along and maybe, just MAYBE, become a pack one day...he relented and moved in with me. That was about 3 and a half months ago. We've had a few scuffles but no serious injuries and they are without a doubt, a very tight pack. As much as Kilo would love to be an only child again, she's out of luck and I'm convinced that somewhere in that deep heart of hers, she has love for her siblings.
 
All because I made a promise the day Zero died - I make amends to him by giving Jack, Sally and now Kilo and Kain lives better than they ever could have had with anyone else. And as a result, I have more than I could ever wish for, a life greater than I ever could have imagined; the love of four of the sweetest puppies and the man of my dreams all under one roof. ♂
 
My first piece of Unsolicited Advice: Don't do drugs.
 

 
Jeffery's story in his own words: Drum roll please... with much deliberation and encouragement from other members to tell the story of how Jeffrey Kilo and kain came about, here goes. This will not be as correctly punctuated nor as beautifully written as Katelyn's.
 
Our story begins in the same depths of addiction as my better half ( only add 9 more years of pain and abuse to my body and spirit ). After being with the same girl for almost 9 years, I used and abusive every part of her before deciding one day to walk away when she had no more to give. Jumping straight into another relationship that was equally as "beautiful" with another woman who had 3 children. A relationship filled with abuse and drug use by both parties. During my entire time abusing society, women, and drugs I never really cared about anyone or anything more than myself; until the day I laid eyes on this little white pitbull that could barely open her eyes. She was taken early from her mother and left with her family in a dope house. I asked how much for the little white girl, and was asked "what do you got?" "Bro, I got a quarter of weed and an iPod." And just like that, me, a low-down POS junkie was now the owner of the soon-to-be-named Kilo. From that moment, she began teaching me what it was like to care for something besides myself. While I still remained in active addiction, Kilo suffered no consequence of my actions. Jeffrey had no food, Kilo had the best food daddy could steal. Jeffrey's power and water got shut off, Kilo had stolen spring water and as many covers as she needed to stay warm.
 
All the while remaining in this ugly ugly lifestyle, until I was caught up by the Seattle PD and charged with 14 felonies. 7 counts of possession and 7 counts of trafficking. Daddy was now looking at 3-15 years in prison, only having been locked up on a few occasions for very short periods of time. Fortunately Washington state affords addicts the opportunity to take DOSA ( drug offenders sentencing act. ) you plea guilty, go to treatment for 90 days, go to IOP for 6 months and then are on probation for two more years. This was the first time in nearly 15 years that I didn't have drugs (oxy, heroin, meth) in my system. Something began to happen. I got clear headed, began going to NA meetings, began really seeing the world around me, and loving myself. Upon my release and upon an unsuccessful reuniting with my ex, I decided to make a commitment to the recovery of my body and soul as well as my recovery from drug addiction. Years of exploiting, abusing, using and manipulating women wasn't sitting well with me and I decided that I was going to remain single for a period of time. I wasn't quite sure how long that would last but I signed up for it. During this time Kilo, who had stayed with my ex while I was in treatment, became my rock. She was more excited to see me when I came home than anyone had ever been. She was a warm body to snuggle up to at night when I felt lonely and wanted the company of a woman. She was a listening non-judgmental ear when I needed to cry and was to ashamed to do it in front of people. She single-handedly got me through some of my roughest times being clean. A true gift from my higher power for this leg of my journey.
 
Fast forward 2 1/2 years: Still single, still clean. I decided to move from Seattle to Cincinnati, Ohio. I had a few relatives here and wanted to spread my wings and get out of the town I had used and abused for so long. I was discouraged by the breed-specific discrimination here. I called about 30 apartments before moving here and could find no one that would allow kilo to live there as well. I decided to move anyways and leave Kilo with a friend until I could find housing. I stay with my aunt for two months, with doors being shut in my face day after day because of her breed. Finally 3 days before the limit that my aunt had put on what the length of my stay could be I found the most perfect little shit hole, slum lord ran apartment that had not a care in the world what kind of dog I had. I immediately signed a lease ( before looking at the apartment ) and bought a one way ticket to Seattle. Flew home. Rented an economy car. Picked Kilo up. And for the second time in 2 months drove from Seattle to Cincinnati, this time with my princess on board.
 
After about a year in our apartment, Kilo and I started to discuss getting a puppy. She hated the idea and I decided that I was not going to be financially able to afford what a new puppy would need to start a life with us, so we stopped our discussions. About two weeks later, I arrived home from work and the SPCA was at my apartment walking around. When I got out of my truck, I asked him what was going on and he asked me if I knew whose dog was in the back parking lot. I said no but decided to walk around back to see if I recognized the dog. In the middle of our blacktop, sun beating down on him in his cage, was this emaciated, beautiful, shit coved, blue-eyed sweetheart. No food. No water. 95 degrees outside. I immediately recognized that he was my neighbor's. The SPCA finally got the guy to come outside, where he continued to tell us "oh shit, I forgot he was out here ( for four hours I come to find out ). Man I got court, I can't take him inside until I can clean all the shit off of him." He had clearly spent days in the crate. It was coved in shit, even on the top of the crate. Words were exchanged, the neighbor tried to sell him to me... but he finally agreed to let me take the dog, and the SPCA officer, after inspecting my house and seeing how well taken care of Kilo was, agreed that I could keep him. Two weeks after deciding no puppy!!!!!! LMAO.
 
Very quickly, I decide that Kilo and Kain has a very appropriate nice ring to it. Kain was about 15 lbs. I could touch my fingers together around his spine, he was chalk full of worms and not potty trained. He was, however, sweet, loving, and full of energy ( something that kilo needed). And so began our journey. The rest of the story Katelyn has told you. My take-away from all of this is not that I left Seattle to spread my wings and be free, but instead to find my patch of earth to put down roots and to finally feel like I was home. Oh and because Kain needed me. Maybe, just maybe, it was because I needed Katelyn in my life.
 
EDIT: 9/23/17 WE GOT MARRIED!
 

 
EDIT 1/8/18 To add Lotto's story: on Friday, one of our friends got a Great Dane named moose, pic in comments, and he was so cute we just had to go see him the next morning. Boy, was that a bad idea. We got puppy fever with a quickness. Our friends told us that Moose still had four siblings left so we went to go see them. We pull up to this old 3 story home called Animal House. It was a pet supply store so we weren't sure what we were going to find - a puppy mill?
 
We walk in, go directly to the kennel with four 9 week old baby Danes snuggling together sleeping. The owner came over to us and we asked about the dogs for sale - where do they come from, what's their story? All of the dogs she has are rescues or the product of accidental litters that she helps the owners find homes for the puppies, under the condition that they fix the mom and dad. The dogs do not come from breeders, though I have no problem with responsible breeders as I bought Jack from a breeder. These particular Danes came from an accidental litter. They didn't pick their circumstances any more than the animals that wind up in a shelter. At the end of the day, they all need homes.
 
There were two black and white and two all black. One all black female woke up and immediately started playing with toys. She was tiny and had so much personality and I was drawn to her. Surprise, surprise, Jeffrey liked the one that didn't even wake up and acknowledge us, also the biggest boy. We took both to the little play room. The boy just chilled while his sister crawled all over him. Jeffrey and I were smitten - each with a different dog. But, when we got married, I said no more dogs until we have a furless pupper so Jeffrey asked very seriously if I was sure this was what I wanted to do. Is this smart? We are being impulsive. Do we want to spend the money? Do we want a puppy at that? They're a lot of time and energy and the whole reason I agreed to wait on kids is because he is away at work so much, I'm not raising kids on my own. He wants kids very badly but wants to wait because he wants to "enjoy his wife before they come along."
 
We look up and all the sudden Jeffrey's cousin and her two kids walk in the room! They just happened to stop by. We talked with them for a minute then he took the girls pupper back to her siblings and took the kids to see the other animals. It was just me and this little boy sitting on the floor. My heart melted and he crawled into my lap to snuggle. Jeffrey came back about 10 minutes later, asked me what's the verdict and I told him that I wanted him but it's ultimately up to him because he was the one thinking logically and was on the fence about it. Four dogs stresses him out sometimes. Five dogs is a LOT.
 
He looked at me and said, "My Mom always told me to marry a woman I could stand to humor. If you want him, I want you to have him. What are we gonna name him?" I think that's the most genuine thing he's ever said to me. He scooped him up and said, "Come on, D-O-G, you don't know just how lucky you are." The icing on the cake was that recently my parents brought us dog food because the store we buy it from is in their town, about 40 minutes away. They accidentally brought us large breed puppy food. We decided it was God giving us the go ahead. We paid for him, got all of his shot records, and took him home to meet the pack.
 
We talked about how everyone going to react to us adding to the pack and I said, "Well, it's fine, we clearly lost our minds a long time ago, so this'll be no real surprise. And f anyone that has anything else to say about it." He said, "it was meant to be, I knew when we came in, this little boy was the one. You with your two black dogs, me with my two white dogs. He is black with a lot of white which makes him perfect for our first dog together." Talk about a man that God put on this Earth specifically for me.
 
"What about Lucky? That's a good name for him. He doesn't know how lucky he is to join our family." I said, "Nah, that's too much of a dog name, what about Lotto? Like he won the lottery?" And there you have it. Lotto. Welcome to the pack.
 
 

 
 
EDIT 9/15/19: My husband wanted another puppy so we got Yahtzee.
 
Edit 12/9/19: This post is not something I planned to ever have to make. Please read in its entirety but it is not for the faint of heart.
 
About a week and a half ago, Yahtzee started getting sick. She was limping on random legs so I thought it was growing pains but Jeffrey was convinced it was more. She was super lethargic and not at all the life loving, play and fun having, puppy she’s always been. Last Monday night she stopped eating so we took her to the vet Tuesday. Dr was treating for GI stuff but we had him do blood work anyway. He's normally a passive, wait it out kind of guy, but he was pretty concerned about how bad she was that night. On Wednesday, her blood work came back good except for her platelets were extremely low - hers we're 22,000 and anything under 170,000 is very low. We didn't know why it was like that but went back in and she was doing better. He checked her for other signs of ITP (low platelet count) which is basically an autoimmune disease where your body attacks its own immune system. He said we would do more blood work to see if it was better on Monday (today) but that if she got worse, to come in or take her to ER vet if they weren't open. He specifically mentioned if she got a bloody nose to take her straight to ER.
 
She seemed better-ish but still very lethargic and just not herself. She didn't get a bloody nose, but Saturday we noticed her eye had some blood in the white part. Yesterday morning it spread to the colored part of her eye. Then very quickly both eyes. We took her to the ER and after running some tests, they admitted her because her spleen was enlarged (her body's attempt to overcompensate for lack of platelets). They called around 6 PM last night and blood work came back really bad. Her platelets dropped to zero. She became anemic and her red/white count was severly low. Low is 37% for red and she was at 22. If she got to 18 she would need a transfusion. Because of how bad it was, the vet said it seems more like bone marrow disease of sorts.
 
This morning, I called at 6:30 to check on her and she had just gotten a blood transfusion because her levels dropped so low. We were waiting for the Internal Medicine specialist to take over her case so keeping her comfortable until then. At 11, I spoke with the doctor. Her spleen was abnormally large, as well as her lymph nodes. She woke up blind in both eyes. They did a needle aspirate of her lymph nodes and after reviewing, diagnosed her with Stage 5 Lymphoma. Her bone marrow was full of cancer instead of the life giving cells it needed. Even with treatment, she was only looking at a few weeks to live due to how aggressively her body was being attacked.
 
She deteriorated so rapidly that she hardly looked like herself and she wasn’t going to get any better. Because of this, we made a decision to help her cross the Rainbow Bridge with dignity. While she couldn’t see us, she knew we were there. We got to spend about an hour with her and she laid in our laps as she took her last breath. As devastating and unexpected as this has been, Yahtzee’s life had purpose and she will leave behind a legacy. She came to us at a time in our lives when we were really struggling with the loss of two pregnancies. She gave us something else to focus on and put our energy into instead of trying so hard to get pregnant again. Low and behold, she did just that immediately. She will forever be the sweet little girl that helped breathe life into our family. ❤
  
EDIT: 4/24/2020
 
After two losses, my water breaking at 36 weeks, an unexpected C-section due to baby being breach, and 5 days in the hospital, we finally brought our rainbow home last night. Ellianna Grace, born 4/19/2020 at 6 lbs 3 oz and 19 inches, met her protectors and was officially welcomed into the pack.
 
 
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