The Grand Debut

Phew.  What a crazy week and a half I have had.  I never thought I would let this blog get so dusty, but things have just gotten nutso in my world, and they are only getting crazier.  Turn in is in just over a month (gulp) and I’m having a hard time preparing my mind and my heart for it.  Some days I am so enthusiastic and excited to see what Helaine does, and other days I’m just broken.  I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again…this is a constant roller coaster from the day we find out who our little puppy is, to the day they are either placed or released.  And, silly me, even though I know how much this part hurts…I jumped on it for the fourth time on June the 27th.

I woke up with excitement and nerves in my heart and stomach.  I had this day marked on the calendar for a whole month, and I was preparing mentally to start over again.  I just really had no idea how quickly it would creep up on us!  I skipped breakfast because I was far too nervous to even think of eating anything.  I hurried through a shower and did my best to get dressed and apply makeup with shaky hands.  I couldn’t believe I was doing this again.  The pre-pick up nerves were setting in worse than I’ve ever had them before, and I was seriously contemplating why I was doing this all over again.  Of course, I knew why I was doing it all over again, but I was suffering through a moment of intense doubt.  It seems that every pick-up is different.

I walked calmly down the stairs of my amazing friend’s house.  She and her family is raising Kolby, Helaine’s ultimate best friend and they had offered up their spare room to me so I didn’t have to worry about driving to Seattle in the crazy rush hour traffic.  I am so thankful they opened their home to me.  It helped having them to hash out all my emotions with.  It was very very bittersweet, because I was having one of my “holy-cow-turn-in-is-only-seven-weeks-away” days.  Both my sweet friend and her son J were there to help me with this transition.

We arrived at Alaska Air Cargo with Starbucks in hand and a leash in the other, ready to meet Inez.  We arrived about 15 minutes prior to her scheduled arrival and then I got the news.  Her flight was running behind by approximately an hour.  Oh no.  I was already SO nervous and waiting was excruciating.  I started talking about stories of the leash I had brought along with me and what it meant to me.  Thankfully my friends and our chapter’s welcoming committee understood where my mind was and just smiled and laughed along with my hysterics.

The time finally came where we saw a tiny little crate and it was instantly decided that it housed my newest little puppy love.  However, everything was silent.  There was no whining or barking.  She was just patiently waiting on someone to come on over and see her.

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Our wonderful welcoming committee are truly dedicated.  They come ready to help with the arrival.  They brought nippers to cut the zip-ties on the outside of the kennel, and once we take our pups out the whisk they kennel away and begin cleaning out and sanitizing it.  They are so valuable to our chapter!  They are the first chapter members who get to meet these puppies and they provide such an amazing support.  The above picture shows Caryn snipping off the zip-ties while I’m just outside the shot, impatiently waiting.

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She was wiggly in the kennel, but not enthusiastic to leave it.  We were equipped with some kibble and I had to gently coax her, and make it her decision to come to me.  I didn’t want her very first memory of me to be yanking her from the kennel…so we took our time.  Eventually she trusted me enough to come to the front of the kennel so I could pluck her up.  It was love at first snuggle.

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She was so sleepy.  All she wanted to do was snuggle close while she was in anyone’s arms.  Thankfully there were several sets that were wide open and ready to accept puppy love!

I let her down outside to give her a chance to hurry, but it wasn’t something she was interested in doing.  She was more excited to check out everything she could possibly find.  I had the intentions on giving her the nickname “Scout” once she knew her real name, after my favorite character from my favorite book.  (*Bonus points for my readers if you know which book it’s from!)  I quickly learned that the nickname is so fitting.  She was adventurous and brave and ready to scout out everything she came to.  Her personality came out instantly.

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She rode in my lap on the way home and took a small snooze.  The rain started coming down pretty heavily and it woke her.  She was excited to look out the window and see the rain drops and the windshield wipers.  I really wish I knew what she was thinking as she saw a whole world of new things!  She was so precious.

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When we got home, we gave her a chance to hurry and then she settled in the crate for a real nap.  I couldn’t believe my eyes when she went into the crate and fell asleep right away.  The stark differences between her and Helaine are already showing.  Her nap allowed us to have lunch and decompress from the exhaustion and excitement of the morning.

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We had to wake her up from her nap after about two hours of sleeping.  We mainly just wanted some puppy snuggles, but I also wanted to get her outside to hurry since she hadn’t gone at all in the time between pick up and wake up time.

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Inez didn’t rush out of the crate this time either.  She slowly decided to wake up, but she kept snuggling back down in her warm blankets.  Finally I gave my friend’s daughter H the go ahead to snatch her up.  She was the only one at that time who hadn’t had a chance to get some love in.  She was in love instantly, and I think the feeling is mutual.

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I also gave Helaine a chance to meet Inez while she was still groggy and not so active.  I had her come and lay in front of the kennel and they met nose to nose.  Helaine wasn’t all that bothered by her at that time.

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We had big plans for a puppy photo shoot while I was down in the area.  Because Inez is spending the next couple of months with my puppy starting family, I won’t have many chances to get photos of the two of them together so we took advantage of this great opportunity!  We got their capes on and adventured into the back yard.  Let me tell you, wrangling one puppy for a photo shoot is incredibly difficult!  I have a new found respect for those wranglers who help for full litter shoots!

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Inez was a little model right out of the gate.  She was so curious about the camera that she often times got so close to the lens she ruined what could have been an adorable shot.

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It came time to finally get my girls together for their close-ups and Helaine wasn’t pleased.  She quickly decided that this puppy was too much work and too hard to keep up with.  I imagine they will be friends before August, but I’ve decided that I am really thankful I don’t have the two of them together.  I know Helaine would eventually adjust, but she really wasn’t pleased to have her little sister here.

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H was able to capture a couple of hundred different shots and I have them all saved.  I will cherish them and the memories of this day forever! I am so thankful that my dear friends-turned-family were there to welcome Ms. Inez, and I will always look back on this special time with them and smile.  This is a beginning of a new chapter, and I am so glad that I will still have the opportunity to share this adventure with them by my side. Welcome Inez!  We are so happy to have you here!

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