No words, just pictures and her theme song, because once she was rescued, she was free and feeling good!
Wow! What a year we have had!
Looking back, there were so many fun times and new milestones.
In January, Maisie and I started down the path to become a certified therapy team. Even though we had to put our training on hold a couple of times, she got her Canine Good Citizen title in June which was the first major step for us to accomplish before going on to therapy certification.Also in January, I had my first conversation with Winn’s breeder and made the decision that we would open our home to a very special puppy. Since my preference was for a brown girl, we had to wait until she was born to know for sure if there would be a puppy for us.
Pink girl was the first one born on March 6th and I waited with fingers crossed for several days before I was assured that there would be a brown girl for me. Eight weeks later, on the day that I went with my husband and daughter to meet the litter I learned that pink girl would be mine and that was certainly one of the best days of the year!On May 13th, the day before Mother’s Day, we made our second trip to Wisconsin and brought Winn home. It was a lovely day, a little emotional as she left her first home in order to join our family, but I hugged and snuggled her as we made our way back to Illinois. We stopped for lunch and then pulled over for another potty break, found a nursery with gorgeous hanging baskets and we purchased some for our front porch. All summer, as I sat on the porch and admired those baskets I would remember that happy day and how much fun it was bringing her home.
In June, we celebrated Annie’s 11th birthday! It was also the one year anniversary of this blog. I started the blog to tell Annie’s Story. At that time I wanted to give it year and then reevaluate since I wasn’t sure what else I might include, how it would evolve, or even if I could continue to find things about which to write. While I’m still finding my “blogging voice”, I have discovered that I really enjoy the process and that there is always something that inspires a story. We met with a professional photographer to document the time that we became a three dog family. I wanted to do it while Winn was still small, she was already growing so fast! We got the most beautiful pictures out of that photo shoot and the perfect image for our main pageThere was a flurry of activity over the summer. We took Winn for her first road trip to Colorado. This was where she developed her skill of getting into anything possible and she discovered her love of paint.
Winn graduated from puppy class and quickly advanced through multiple levels of training. Annie and I had a very special day when she got her new rabies certificate listing me as her owner. We no longer had any reminder of her previous, difficult life. That blog post was shared and viewed many times on Facebook and is my favorite one of the year.In the fall, I volunteered at several events for our local Newfoundland Club and learned so much about water and draft work as well as the test requirements to achieve those working titles.
All three were good sports when I dressed them up for Halloween. With a nod to my New England roots, they were a fisherman with a fresh catch. I wish I had a lobster trap or marker but they looked pretty cute.Time quickly passed with Thanksgiving and Christmas activities with friends and family. It’s hard to believe that the year is coming to a close but I am very excited about all that we might do in the upcoming months.
I’m not one for resolutions, but I do have several goals set:
- For Maisie and I to complete our therapy team training and begin to do some volunteer work.
- For Winn and I to participate in obedience and working dog events and for her to get her Water Dog title this summer.
- For Annie and I to march in the Rescue Parade at Newfoundland National this spring.
- For me to become a better blogger and attend the Blogpaws conference to learn from other pet bloggers, meet some of the friends that we have made online, and get ideas on how to improve and develop our page.
Whew, that was lot so I guess all that is left to say is that we wish everyone a Happy New Year!
We hope you all had a very Merry Christmas or a Happy Chanukah and are looking forward to the New Year!
We’ve been a little quiet here on the blog. It’s been nice to take a break, enjoy family and friends, hibernate from the below zero windchill and be completely lazy!
We received so many beautiful cards from friends (this year there were more dogs on our Christmas card tree than people) and we loved looking at all of them. We were in a couple of Christmas card exchanges which certainly added to the joy and we look forward to following the antics of many new friends this year.This year, our Christmas card photo shoot was a little easier despite adding an enthusiastic, very large puppy to the mix. I had my trusty assistant who helped with keeping their attention, positioning and hats. Annie is doing a much better job at staying, or she is just more able to tune out my crazy ideas, and Maisie and Winn were terrific!
We managed to get a pretty good shot with all three of them and this is the one we chose for our card.I couldn’t resist these close-ups of each of them.
Next week, we will start to think about getting back to our normal routines which include training, swim lessons, pampering Annie, and sneaking Maisie away for one on one time. Winn and I have several big events planned in January and I can’t wait to tell you all about it. (I don’t want to jinx anything so details will be coming).
Most importantly, we are really looking forward to bringing in the New Year. This year had a lot of ups and downs and I am hoping for a much more even keel 2018!
Having a puppy reminds me of the years when my kids were little and we counted their age progression in months. 3 mos., 8 mos., 17 mos., etc.
Winn turned 9 mos. this week and as fun as is to watch her grow and change, I am also reminded that Annie continues to age as well. She has a few more grey hairs on her muzzle and is having a slow recovery from recent oral surgery. Aside from those two reminders, she still acts like the Annie that I know.
Every morning she runs to the back door with an urgency and expression that says, “outta my way, I gotta pee!” and I smile as I watch her quickly go down the stairs and run around the yard looking for the perfect spot to relieve herself.
She sleeps a lot and I love watching her snuggle up in her bed as she snores away the afternoon. When she is waking up, she will rub her face and head all over her bed, groan, snort, and roll around.
Her stomach is her time clock. She gets restless and lets me know with an elbow nudge, a bark or a stare when she thinks I should be in kitchen preparing her meal. Currently, she’s on multiple, small meals which suits her just fine. I think she takes great pleasure in getting fed more times than other two! (Of course they get a little smackerel while she’s occupied with her bowl.)
Since it is recommended that senior dogs get twice yearly health checks, I think it’s only fair that they should have twice yearly birthday celebrations. Yesterday Annie turned 11 1/2!
I decided not to put on birthday hats, instead I tied a big red ribbon on each of them. I froze some vanilla yogurt in my cupcake mold and brought them out after dinner. They were a big hit! It was such an easy treat to create, and they loved it. They knew something good was coming their way when the camera came out and after they each had one, they chased me into the kitchen for seconds.
We love you Annie, you make every day a wonderful day. We will plan a HUGE celebration for your 12th birthday in June!