It's that time of year again folks! We are raising money for Canine Companions for Independence by participating in the Dog Fest again this year. Our goal is to raise $1500 by October 1st.
You guys know how much Hallow means to our family. She has been such a blessing to all of us. We wouldn't have her sweet face if it wasn't for the donations given by generous folks like you. Please consider donating. You can click the photo above or the link below.
The Lonestar Chapter of CCI had their graduation last Friday. Even though we have had Hallow since February, we were invited back to participate in the graduation ceremony. Hallow's puppy raiser, Joan, flew all the way from California to be here for the graduation. We were so excited to meet the woman who raised Hallow for the first 18 months of her life.
Graduation day started with a brunch.
We got to meet Joan in person for the first time. It was so fun to sit with her and go through Hallow's puppy book together. Hallow was Joan's 4th puppy to raise for CCI. She is raising puppy #5 now! There were people at the brunch that have raised as many as 18 puppies for CCI! Puppy raisers impress me so much. They give 18 months of their lives to a dog that they will eventually hand over to someone else. That is a beautiful act of love and generosity.
Joan was so kind to bring gifts for Hallow and the boys. Benjamin loved the Coast Guard coin she gave us.
The graduation ceremony was sweet and emotional. They showed videos of all the graduates with their dogs. Each puppy raiser meets the graduate on stage as they hand over the dog to the deserving recipient. It is very moving and caused a number of tears. They had boxes of tissues on every row.
The whole crew with Joan. We were so thrilled to have her here. It was such a blessing to meet her and Hallow was so excited to see her. It was quite the reunion.
Earlier in the week we had to head up to the CCI training center for interviews.
We did an interview for a local news story as well. I swear, I am becoming pro at interviews.
As far as I know, the story hasn't run yet, but I'll post the link once it does.
It was a great day and we were so blessed to meet Joan and to be there to witness other kids and adults receive their CCI dog. I can't say enough about Canine Companions for Independence and all they do. They are truly a great organization with some really great dogs. We love Hallow and can't imagine life without her.
We took advantage of an activity-free weekend by heading to MeMe's house. It has been a while since we have been down to see her and we were anxious for her to meet Hallow....oh and see her great-grand kids as well.
One of the first things we saw in MeMe's back yard was a Heron.
All smiles at MeMe's house.
Our sweet Hallow enjoyed the big back yard. She made herself right at home.
I realized this weekend that I officially take more photos of the dog than I do the kids. Oh well, we have plenty of pictures of the boys right?
Benjamin had fun walking along the bank and collecting shells.
Pretty sure Caleb is thinking about pushing Benjamin in.
MeMe has the best backyard every.
Most of Sunday morning was spent at the kitchen table, coloring.
Enjoying some early morning time outside.
Pretty girl with a pretty collar.
The FreeWheel was such a help over the weekend. We love this thing and highly recommend it. If you missed my full review of the FreeWheel (plus a coupon for $100 off) click here.
Being a mom isn't easy but it is good. I'm stressed, but blessed and my heart is full.
We get to do the coolest things ya'll. I'm always humbled by all of the fun things we get to do, things that we would never even know about if it weren't for Spina Bifida. We were invited to represent Canine Companions for Independence at TexasFest, a local gala put on by The Irving Healthcare Foundation. The foundation raises money for CCI and other organizations.
The boys watching an armadillo race....only in Texas ya'll.
Caleb was brave enough to touch the dillo.
Since it was a CCI fundraiser, we had our girl Hallow with us. She got quite a bit of attention.
There was a magician that the boys loved. He did several slight of hand tricks that had them mesmerized and somehow he got one of my rings into a sealed envelope. Mind blown on that one.
Isn't she pretty in her collar and flower? I finally have a girl to buy pretty things for.
Last week we made the long (so very long) drive to Louisville, Kentucky for the National Wheelchair Basketball Association tournament.
Hallow is ready to go. Having a dog makes packing for a long trip a challenge. We had to use our roof storage rack so Hallow would have enough room in the back.
The long drive was hard for Hallow even though we stopped often. I think that much time in the car stressed her out quite a bit. At one point she climbed into Caleb's lap.
Lunch at the Cracker Barrel in Arkansas. Hallow is the queen of the "sad face" look. Pitiful.
We split the drive over two days and stayed in Tennessee for one night to rest up. The hotel pool was a great reward for the boys after spending the day in the car.
Finally made it to Kentucky. I think I have more pictures of Hallow than anything else.
Surprisingly I have few pictures of actual basketball. The team played 4 games....they lost 4 games.
Hallow resting during the games. How cute is she in that collar? I finally have a girl to dress up!
The team all crammed into a booth together. They may have lost all of their games, but they still had a good time together.
These long trips are tough on this guy. He is very much a homebody and he hates being away from his Legos. I promised him that I would buy him a new Lego kit while we were in Kentucky. As soon as Caleb's first game was over I took him to Target to pick out a kit. Best purchase ever. He was perfectly content.
He even found a fellow Lego-lover to hang out with. These 2 spent a lot of time together during the tournament.
Dirty hands and a dirty face, all part of wheelchair basketball.
Hanging out with this fellow SB mom was the highlight of the trip for me (and for Caleb I think too). This is Annie and her daughter Anna. I've "known" Annie online for a few years and we met briefly at Nationals in 2014 but we were able to really hang out this time. Caleb and Anna were fast friends and have already video chatted several times since we've been home.
Being a pretty service dog is exhausting. We had a constant stream of people coming up to us to meet her and love on her.