Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The first hours

Haddie rode in the kennel on the way home, yelping only once as we began to move, perhaps thinking she was going to take off again with a jet engine. She settled quickly and fell asleep - per our kiddos looking behind the backseat repeatedly.
We had Cora in her kennel in our bedroom upstairs when we left the house this morning. It was the perfect place for her when we arrived home, as both dogs were out of sight and out of mind of one another. She did not make a peep - even though we forgot to close the bedroom door, and our house is not that large, nor sound proof.

Haddie explored, and took frequent breaks outside. She was showing off her knowledge of sit and hurry with ease. It was a welcomed surprise. We stuck to those two commands throughout the day, adding her name recognition which is not consistent just yet.
She met a hand-full of neighborhood kids that were eagerly awaiting her to wake up from her first nap. They rang the doorbell only a few times (wink), but that did not seem to bother Haddie, who was upstairs in our Bonus Room. She did go through spurts of whimpering, but we left her alone and she would settle herself down after stretches of on again, off again noise making.
While Haddie was in her kennel with the door shut to the Bonus Room, Cora was out exploring. Eventually the two will meet, but not today. She sniffed the entire house, and would keep running back upstairs to check the door where the puppy noise was coming from. But she never barked, and she didn't scratch the door like she usually does when a door is closed. It could be a sign that she could care less, or that she was freaked out by the noise from the other side of the door, and really wasn't ready to find out!
Cora did, however, get a plush rabbit toy from us and a cute blue monkey that squeaks from my parents. Cora decided the blue monkey was the perfect toy to run through the house with squeaking over and over and over. I guess she is letting that "thing" behind the Bonus Room Door know that She is the four legged in charge around here.
Haddie and I spent a lot of time exploring our backyard. She seemed to gravitate towards the outdoors. She eventually settled into the grass and just looked at me. And then her eyes got droopy. And then she closed them all the way. It was time for another kennel nap. This time, she did not make a peep when I closed the door and left. Yay!

Highlight: I vacuumed our piano room after some rearranging this afternoon; to accommodate a bed and tie-down for Haddie while I teach lessons. The highlight was that the ...
Vacuum + Haddie = Success!

Oh, I promise not to give the play-by-play of every day! 

Welcome, Haddie!!

The cuteness arrived this morning at Alaska Airlines Cargo building. We were greeted by Caryn and Dan, a very nice and supportive welcoming team. They are volunteer Puppy Raisers with CCI and are working with their third dog (if I remember correctly).

They had great tips and tricks for us, and gave us a sweet welcome bag of dog food, a toy, a cuddly-soft pink blanket, and the all important poopy-scooper-bags. Not only that, but Caryn was so kind to jump right in and clean out Haddie's kennel while we bonded and took Haddie for a potty break.  It was so nice to have an experienced couple welcoming us and helping us pickup Haddie!! It made for an extra festive moment.

Where do I begin ... pictures ... and stories will come later ....
Upon arriving home we found a surprise Welcome Home Haddie sign, toys on the kitchen table for Haddie and Cora, (people) Puppy Chow and homemade frosted Puppy Cookies, and silver balloons .... from my awesome parents. It was a true surprise and so appreciated! My mom included a mirror on the sign and Haddie went right to it with her nose touching her reflection. It was so cute, but too quick for a picture.
Sigh - the butterflies are gone and we have our friend home. Now we can start our friendship and positive working team. Ya!

Monday, August 29, 2011

The Wait

We are less than 48 hours away until we are responsible for a very cute furry friend. The kids and I have been gathering supplies here and there over the summer, but today we completed the suggested must have's from CCI.
Our adorable beagle inspected every purchase and didn't seem to mind about a new brand of dog food smell, but had an opinion about the large dog bed. It is still positioned on the kitchen table. I'm not real sure where to put it, and I would rather she not be in it. The less she claims of CCI's items as hers, perhaps the better.

I know the bed will swallow up the tiny pup, but I also know that they grow fast. It was a deal at the store and it matches the colors in our house (most important, right?), so I had to purchase when we saw it. Now, just where to put it.
We are planning to use the wisdom of the nice woman that did our interview at our house in June. She suggested the more times we claim out loud and in our head that this puppy is not ours, the easier it will be to turn in upon completion of Puppy Raising. It still will be difficult and emotional, but it takes away some of the sting.

So, we have purchased all leashes and collars in the CCI blue color with this advice in mind. Consistently reminding us that this is CCI's dog and has the potential of being a Super Star one day upon graduation. Our beagle's accessory colors have always been black - matching her markings.

We are constantly talking about the CCI Puppy, not Our Puppy. We are already calling her Friend, versus Our Girl. We are setting our mind on the fact that we are Volunteering, we are not owning or keeping.

I wanted to write some of these thoughts down before the cuteness arrives - in order for me to come back and remind myself if necessary.

The Wait has been fun - but I want the Journey to begin ... we are ready.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Our CCI Call

Our last vacation of the summer started today. A road trip over the mountains to a warmer climate with proven sunshine, lake water, beaches, outdoor pools, and every hour spent relaxing. No plans. Our perfect way to wind down our summer before the kids resume to school the day after Labor Day. 

We had just rounded our first hour mark on the drive when my cell phone rang. A call from Canine Companions for Independence. Eeek - this could be something fun!

Our caller was wondering if we would be interested in raising a female that could be shipped out next week. She had a puppy ready, but didn't give any additional information. Our family had originally stated female on our paperwork, but then added male to our home interview. I casually asked about the prospects of a male pup, and she was kind enough to say that she would check, and give us a call back later today. 

While we waited - our car was flooded with opinions and excitement. While we were driving through one of the Canyons on our trek, my cell service was unavailable. Eventually my phone beeped in with a voice mail, she had called while my cell was out of service. She had left a message that there would be a yellow male available two weeks later on September 14th. 

We chatted through more Canyons, unavailable to get cell service, but allowing us more time to list our Pros and Cons of male versus female. In the end we determined that, like people, every dog is indeed different and we should just back off on the control of this one. Afterall, this is not our dog, we are Raisers for a short amount of time in the big scheme of a dog's life.

I finally called her back once we reached our destination:
View from our deck and return call
I did not even ask additional questions about the male, I just said we had a family meeting and we would like to raise the female that she had originally offered. 

Done. Yaaay!

Her name is Haddie, she was born on June 24th, to parents Waverly and Hickman. She is a full yellow lab. Paperwork is being sent for shipment on August 31st, so we have a lot of fun and hard work ahead of us as soon as we park our car in the garage at the end of this vacation. We are all smiles.

Oh, and the CCI rep stated three times over our two phone conversations that, "She's really cute!" But I suspect that all CCI Puppies are really cute!