Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Where Did Summer Go??

Summers are supposed to be time to relax, take a breather, maybe go on a vacation, and take a break from the normal routine. Not this summer. It was a busy one with my dad's illness and my son's schedule now that he's been diagnosed with a reading disability. He went to day camp all summer where he got one on one help from a reading specialist. It got hectic getting him back and forth- something my friends with "regular schooled" kids know all about, but which my family is not used to at all. There were a lot of days when I dropped him off and went straight over to see my dad in the hospital.

By the end of summer things turned out alright... mostly. My dad will have some permanent disability due to complications from his surgery but he should be able to live on his own again, and considering how close he came to dying, I think it's the best outcome we could hope for. He's in a rehabilitation center now where he's receiving the therapy he needs, both physical and occupational. I won't be able to visit him every day during the school year, but then I don't feel he's in a state where I need to.

My son is working through his reading program and making progress. We'll continue with the reading specialist during the year, probably a few times per week, but we'll see.

Then there's the dog. We got to bring her home on July 2nd and she is the highlight of the summer for us. What a sweetheart! We want to be good, responsible pet owners so we managed to schedule time with The Wonder Trainer even when I was going to the hospital almost daily. We also wound up volunteering at the rescue center. The Eldest decided she wanted to work at the kennel, which is only open on weekends, which means I get to drive her there. (She STILL does not have her license.) I stayed and volunteered too a couple of times. I also dropped her off then went on to see my dad a couple of times; just depends.

I've fallen in love with some of the dogs there but we can't bring them home. The Dog does not approve of our choices and since she's the queen bee at our house, her decision goes. (Oooh- blog name for the dog- Queen Bee!!) Just as well. Anyway, the dogs I am particularly fond of are a lot of fun. The first one is a mess. He has an under-bite that gives him a fang coming up from his bottom jaw. His nose is stumpy (for a greyhound) and crooked. He's scrawny but muscle-y and his coat is a mess. He's still a puppy and can't walk on a leash so I've taken him on as my personal challenge. I've walked him three times so far and it's been an experience to remember each time. He doesn't walk so much as LUNGE when he gets on a leash. Silly boy; he'll never get adopted that way. He's a little excitable but calms down when he's off the leash. He's still young at just barely 2 years old, but he has wormed his silly little messed up face into my heart.

The second dog is one my daughter noticed first. This one is a girl and she LIVES for affection. She's a barker; she won't shut up when people are in the kennel. My daughter and I were hanging out without a specific job to do last weekend when we decided to see if we could get her to quiet down. We stood by her cage and turned our backs on her when she was barking, but turned around and gave her treats and attention when she was quiet. She got it almost instantly! It was amazing to realize how trainable that dog is; much more so than the Queen Bee. I've been in touch with the Never Say Never Greyhounds blogger about her to see if she thinks this dog would be good for agility and if she knows anyone who might want to adopt her. The NSN blogger said she would need to be evaluated, and she knows of someone but that person lives too far away and is looking closer to her home. I haven't given up! I can't do anything about placing large numbers of dogs, but I can certainly help out with one or two. (So if you know of anyone who would want to provide a loving home for one incredible, trainable greyhound let me know. Or for a butt ugly, scrappy little guy that is too much fun.)

And now summer is over. The Eldest is officially a college student now and starts classes, that I have to drive her to, tomorrow. Regular school starts on Monday and since we try to follow the public school schedule, that means it starts for us, too. Our homeschooling group will get going, Girl Scouts will start meeting again, and the roller coaster has started up once again.

I love my life, but I sure could use some more sleep time!!!

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