"Sometimes when you sacrifice something precious, you're not really losing it. You're just passing it along to someone else." Mitch Albom

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Baby Shower

     Churry did not have too much training this past week because I was busy planning a baby shower for my cousin's first baby, which I hosted at my house.  She did get to enjoy having me home all day Thursday while I cleaned house and got things ready.  And of course, she was able to practice her greeting skills, which she has been slacking on lately!  She is getting into a very bad habit of jumping on me when I come home and is once again insisting on holding hands with everyone while they pet her.  Which is cute to me, but not good behavior for a service dog!  She is so big and gets so excited right now that we need to practice a lot more so she doesn't scare little children.  Luckily, I have plenty of wonderful little children in my life to practice with!  Including my other cousin's precious little girl!  Here are a few pics from the weekend.

Super excited about the little girl!

Giving her some kisses...

Now settled down and minding her manners!

"I'm sure she wants to hold my hand!"

And the beautiful Mommy to be!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Autism Awareness Carnival

Churry, Tayler and I had the opportunity to attend the Autism Awareness Carnival this afternoon.  Tayler was volunteering and Churry was having a fun outing.  It was a super experience for her.  There was a moderate amount of people there for a typical outing for her so it made it nice because she was able to practice her greetings and had plenty of opportunity to take in the sights without feeling rushed.  She also had many unique exposures and ran into another KSDS friend, Alex and Hope.

Churry is checking out the flashing lights on the fire engine.

Enjoying her first train ride.  Seeing how nervous she was on her first ride I decided to take her for two more rides.  I'm happy to say she must have enjoyed herself because on the next two rides she jumped right in and calmly sat on the floor.

Saying hi to a KSDS friend.

Checking out the one of the 4 loud inflatables.

Watching the other inflatables and standing calmly right in front of the very loud speakers with music blaring.

Very brave standing in front of the loud train engine

Practicing some "jump on" and "Sit/Stay" while nobody else was in line

Even higher!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

A Monumental Day in Churry's Life!

     Churry had a very monumental day today!  We took our oldest daughter to her first college visit and Churry  went along.  Of course, we went to K-State!  Churry was very good.  It was Open House so there were lots of people, sights, and sounds including a little train that just loved honking its loud horn every time it was near us.  After climbing many sets of stairs inside the buildings, walking forever, ignoring people, visiting the KSDS booth, seeing her brother Perdido, and meeting Willie the Wildcat she was exhausted and ready for a nap at the restaurant afterwards.  She was pretty naughty at the restaurant though because before she layed down under my feet she nabbed a chip off the floor.  :(  That is something we are needing to work on!  She's a foodie!  I was proud of all the compliments she received on campus, though, and glad about all of the people that knew about KSDS already!
It's hard to believe we will bring Tayler here in just 2 short years!  And hard to believe Churry won't be here for that moment!

Churry loves her brother, Perdido, and we always seem to run into them!

Churry sat very nicely for Willie and was only a bit startled when she looked up to see who was petting her.

This is a picture of a proud dog!  Her first picture with Willie is an important moment in a kid's life!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Silly girl!

"If she can't see me, I won't have to go to bed right? "

"I'm pretty sure I'm hidden now! It's scary out there!"

I guess we will see how truly brave Churry is with storms tonight!  This will be the first major one she has seen!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Churry's Hobby

      Churry has a hobby, or possibly obsession, with chewing on sticks.  She will go out and lay in our yard for hours chewing on a stick.  And if it's pouring rain...that's the best time for stick chewing!  Lucky for me, it has not started raining yet here.  It was a beautiful evening so Churry was able to enjoy it outside.  Now, the past week, she has started to run out of sticks from the woodpile.  She likes to get a new one each trip outside.  I open the door to let her out, she immediately makes a stop at the wood pile to collect a new stick, and then goes about her business.  That might be running with the stick, trying to get a drink out of the bucket with the stick, or lying in one of her favorite spots.  These are either underneath the slide or by the neighbor's shed.  When I was watching her tonight I noticed that since she was low on small sticks she had grabbed quite a large stick.  It was more like a small log.  Also in the wood pile is scraps of lumber from one of Pat's projects.  She took her small log out to her spot and then returned to get a board!  I wish I could have grabbed my camera in time because it was quite a sight watching her haul her "finds" to her spot.  She got in a lot of stick chewing tonight and even a trip with Pat, Jacob, Kinsey and myself to Dairy Queen.

Yes, she carried all of the logs and boards across our whole yard to her pile!

I think she has a future as a wood carver!  

I like how she has her collection all nicely lined up the same distance from the shed!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A visit to an agility course

     The last couple of nights Churry and I have had the opportunity to go work on an agility course.  It was a great experience for both of us.  The course had a variety of obstacles including poles to jump over, a hoop to jump through, a flower jump, an A frame to walk up and down, a catwalk, a hula hoop maze, a tunnel, a box to sit/stay in, and a teeter totter.  Being that Churry is not yet a year old and the larger jumps could potentially be hard on her joints, she went on the course for medium/small dogs, which means the jumps are a little lower.  However, I think her jumps out of my Expedition are much higher and she lands on asphalt coming out of there...:(  Maybe I should be lifting her out of the vehicle as well as in?  Anyway, she really seemed to enjoy the agility course.  By tonight she had actually jumping over the obstacles figured out rather than just stepping over them.  And she had no problem getting acclamated to the tunnel...in fact, she loved it.  She liked to go about half way through it and then lie down!  I don't think that's really the point, but hey, she wasn't scared!  She also really enjoyed walking up and down the A-frame.  She did not, however, want anything to do with the teeter totter or the catwalk.  So I just focused on the other obstacles and practicing those.

     The great thing about this experience for her was the chance to be around different dogs.  It was a place where I know the other dogs all have current vaccinations and will be kept on leashes so I felt it was safe and non-threatening for her.  She is and always has been fascinated by little dogs.  She likes to fool me by sitting very calm and pretty so I give her a lot of slack in her leash...then she lunges to get close to them.  She doesn't bark, growl, or anything like that...she would just really like to play with one!  I wish I knew a little dog that I trusted enough to let her play with, but I don't know any nice little dogs that wouldn't try to bite her nose off.  She did very well tonight with her manners around them though.  No lunging!

     I'm still looking forward to next week when she can have full access to our house.  Just when we are getting things figured out, she will be able to have full access again.  She's finally learned to go straight down the stairs and go in and out the back door when we come in and out.  I think we will probably leave her crate down there because it is so much cooler for her down there and she gets hot very quickly.

     Looking forward to a fun weekend with her without home renovations!

Monday, April 9, 2012


     Life for Churry can be best described as chaos the last two weeks!  Not that she's got to do tons of crazy outings...oh, no!  The chaos isn't that fun!  The chaos I'm describing is remodeling!  That means, no fun outings for Churry other than to Home Depot, BB&B, Dick's Sporting Goods for me a new pair of shoes, and Target. Not what I would exactly describe as super fun training outings for her.  We had hardwood floors put in our living room and kitchen, tile in the laundry room, and painted several areas, which is pretty much the whole main floor of our house with the exception of the bedrooms.  This means she had her kennel moved to the basement and she has to socialize with us cramped up in our bedroom, which has been overtaken by all of the furniture.  She also can't walk on the floors for a few days so Pat has been carrying her from the door to our room.  She thinks this is all very strange and, like me, would really like her house back!
      With no time for outings, I've been trying to do some training here at home.  Besides the exposure to the loud equipment such as the sander, nailgun, and other items, we have really been working on getting into the vehicle on her own and "jumping on".  She is very iffy about both of these.  She will get into the vehicle if I put her meal in there....if not, you can forget it!  She will put her front feet up on the seat, see if her meal is there, if it's not  she will turn around and look at us and wait for her boost.  She is a very stubborn puppy when she decides she's not going to do something, and apparently, jumping into the vehicle is something she's decided she's not doing!  So the persistence will continue...hers and mine I'm sure!  She also will not jump onto any surface above about 2 feet, unless she has a chair there to break up the jump.  She's not scared once she's up there and will do whatever I ask once up there.  She will also "go up" on anything I ask, which is her command to put her front paws on a surface.  If anyone has any suggestions, I'd love to hear them!
      Hopefully, by my next post, we will have a functioning home again!