Life, lately | French By Design

Life, lately

Oh hey, I know, it’s been longer than usual. Life has been so hectic these past few days that I haven’t been able to keep up with the blog updates. The girls were on school Spring break one week after the other, which means I had one teen to entertain at home for the past 2 weeks – but, hey, twist my arm, because I am aware that these are precious moments as our family is preparing for Inès’s takeoff in a few months now.

On top of that, Miss Daisy has been giving us the scare of our life. All of a sudden, I noticed that she was drooling more than usual on one side of her face. Then, I realized her lower lip was droopy; her eye was being funny as well. Everyone thought I was crazy, but I could tell something was off; after all, I spend literally my days with her; I knew, I just knew. So I booked a last-minute appointment to a new vet nearby — because, of course, we decided to not renew our car lease, thinking that Zipcar and public transportations was a great idea. It is, until you have a health emergency but this is a whole other topic…

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Daisy and I get to the vet appointment, she gets examined by a vet who coldly confirms facial paralysis. My head is spinning, my heart is beating faster. I feel the panic taking over me. The words resonate. Paralysis. Tongue. Eat. Life expectations. Tumor. Eye not closing. Tears are coming down my entire face as the vet continues to come in and out of the room confirming rare cases of this or that but my brain does not register anything she says. She tells me to book an appointment to a neuro vet specialist in the city, which I do immediately. The earliest slot available for this specialist is more than 2 weeks away.

I’m numb. Deep down, there is this little part of me that can’t help but wonder, as any dog companion has, if, maybe, this is the first sign of the… end; that little hint that things are gonna start to go downhill. I refuse it. I feel numb.

We quickly contacted Daisy’s regular vet by our old neighborhood and explained the situation. She was amazing, asked to get Daisy over there the following day and ordered a battery of blood tests for Daisy, trying to rule out all possible causes : hypothyroid disease, blood cell count, and anything you can possibly think of. Nothing. All results came back perfect.

As we were crossing out all these possibilities, the ugly spectrum of the “C” word and “tumor” possibility was slowly crawling in. Daisy is 8 1/2 and the idea of a brain tumor was, for me, a death sentence. So we moved on to brain MRi imagery, and spinal fluid analysis.
Last Friday was a emotional rollercoaster. We took Daisy for her 11 AM appointment, and waited an agonizing 6 hours there, waiting to get her back. She had to go under full anesthesia for the MRi and we got her back very groggy. But the fabulous news is that the brain was clear, and the spinal fluids tests came back all perfect.

So our Miss Daisy is, as of today, diagnosed with idiopathic facial paralysis, also known in humans as Bell’s Palsy.

Pardon me for being a little cheesy, but lately, I’ve been enjoying more and more these little unexpected moments with my loved ones, Daisy included ; chatting in the patio with my girls under the string lights after dinner, or walking Daisy around my neighborhood and not checking my emails or Instagram feed.

At home lately, with #ElsieGreen

Pictured : Miss Daisy, resting on our bed; a Spring scenery at home with Elsie Green. More on that very soon!


I’ve also been working on all sorts of new content these past 2 weeks, from decor inspiration to recipes or some cool and easy DIY projects, so now that things have resumed to a normal, I should be able to finish shooting these and schedule them for the coming weeks. Thanks for your patience while all of this – well, life – was happening. I’ve missed being here. See you again very soon, Xo, Si-


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9 thoughts on “Life, lately

  1. Oh my heart is broken for you – I hope she is not in pain and can live out a longer life 💔 My sausage dog recently had a lump removed and we found out that it is cancer so naturally I was in bits. Pets love us so unconditionally and calmly, humans could learn a lot from them! Sending love from London.

    1. Oh, Nicole, I’m so sorry for your dog’s health condition. Sending healing vibes your way. Xo.

  2. I just joined your list a few days ago (via My Scandinavian Home’s recent mention of you) and received the first email today about Miss Daisy. Oh no! I am a Professor at Rutgers University (near New York City) whose research specialty is human bacterial infectious diseases (I’ve enclosed my website). I also an expert on Lyme disease caused by tick bites as I teach first year medical students this topic in detail because the Northeast US has a very high incidence of this disease. I was struck by the mention of Miss Daisy’s facial paralysis (Bell’s Palsy), which is a major symptom of early disseminated Lyme disease in humans, followed by Lyme arthritis in joints (typically knee) later in the disease. Dogs also get Lyme disease from tick bites in the US and their symptoms often parallel that in humans, lameness is esp. common later in the disease. Please consider Lyme disease for Miss Daisy, it may not be on the radar in Europe as much as it is in the US. If it is Lyme disease, treatment with antibiotics (typically doxycycline in humans) should resolve this system. It’s not a sure thing, but I would try. Please contact me if you need more details. I also found a vet journal article that reports facial paralysis of a dog in Belgium infected with the bacteria that causes Lyme disease (, so there is some precedent in the literature for dogs. Serological testing is not reliable early in the disease, so it may be worth antibiotic treatment to see if she gets better. Hope this helps…take care!

    1. Hello Nancy!
      Oh my, thank you SO much for this info; Daisy has an upcoming follow up appointment so I’ll be sure to mention or show her vet your note. Many many thanks, Nancy! Si-

  3. Je suis si triste d’entendre les nouvelles concernant Daisy!!! Nous avons aussi un chien… et je sympathise grandement avec l’attente et l’inquiétude. J’espère que les commentaires de Nancy seront une bonne piste concernant la guérison de Miss Daisy)) Vivant au Québec, il est fortement recommandé de donner un traitement préventif au chien annuellement de avril à novembre ( en raison de l’hiver qui a les bienfaits d’éliminer ce genre de risque). Sur un autre sujet, j’ai bien hâte de découvrir le nouveau contenu que tu prépares!! Bravo pour ce tout nouveau design!!! Je tenais à te mentionner que j’ai parfois de la difficulté à consulter ta page web depuis sa nouvelle configuration?

    Bonne journée!

    1. Merci Clara! Nous aussi, on traite contre les tiques, mais toute l’année ici, et les tests Lyme sont négatifs. C’est un mystère. Merci aussi de me faire savoir que tu as des difficultés à accéder au blog, je remonte cette information à l’équipe web. A très vite Clara! Si-

  4. There’s no need to apologize for “being cheesy.” Family, including Daisy, is always a priority! They come first, because they matter most. But, having said that, I missed you and your beautiful imagery. I love your photos (that’s what gotten hold of me since I discovered your blog). ;) Take care of Miss Daisy and your family. Love, Velvet

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