Wednesday, November 19, 2008

How incomplete life would be with our Maddie!

Maddie is our spoiled and much loved 5-year old pug. You might have seen her pictures posted on my blog from time to time. :) She means so much to Christian and me. By the end of the post, I hope that you'll see how much.
We got Maddie in February 2005 when she was not quite 1 years old. Christian's mom is a veterinary nurse at an animal hospital. One of her patients had a young pug and he felt that he couldn't give her the best of care anymore. He was a truck driver and was gone 2 or 3 days in a row a week. He asked if she knew anyone that might want her. My mother-in-law couldn't say no. She brought her home and asked if we wanted her (at the time, she had 4 pugs and didn't want 5). We immediately said yes and now we wonder how life would be without her.
When we got home, we noticed two things. Her previous owner had taken her to obedience school and that she was house-trained. For example, as we were playing with her that first day, we say in jest, "sit" or "down" and we were surprised as she would immediately obey. Then later that day, we looked up from sitting on the couch and she was sitting by the wall by the front door. She was telling us she needed to go outside. We were so grateful that we didn't have to teach her those things.
All through Christian's schooling and the long nights that he waited tables, she kept me company. Every where I went, she'd follow. She was either cuddled up in my lap snoring or begging from me as I ate my dinner. When Christian would call to tell me that he was on his way home, I would look at her and say, "Maddie, Daddy is on his way home." She would yip and whine until he came home. Once he came home, she would say hello to him and then wait patiently while he took his shoes of, and then proceed to lick them clean. He worked at Carrabbas at the time and who knows the good tastin' stuff he'd step in!
In the first few years, that we had Maddie, we rarely let her sleep in bed with us. Now that has completely flipped. Ever since we moved from Kansas to Washington, she has always been in bed with us. Whether it is at the end of the bed, or under the covers, or even snuggled up to one of us. Maybe, it's because she started sleeping later (or at least until our alarm clocks go off in the morning). In the last month, she started doing something repeatedly that is so cute. At night, she'll be curled by the side of us or on the edge of the bed. Then about 4-4:30 in the morning, she walk up between us to the top of the bed and and paw our shoulders to be let in under the covers. Sometimes she also paws us while begging for some of our dinner or when she just wants to come into our laps to cuddle.
Maddie is so much a part of our family; we think of her as our little girl. I know it's related to the fact that we've struggled for so many years to have children and she's become that child to us. I have felt that even more strongly after my miscarriage in July that she has managed to fill that void and also comfort us with hope that one day, she will have a human brother or sister that will love her as much as we do.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Rain, Rain Go Away

Well, we've reached the time of year here in Seattle where it rains and rains and rains. Soon, the wind will come and knock over trees and the electricity. You'd think that we'd be used to it, now that we've lived here for over a year. However, it is nice and different to have just a wet and windy winter rather than a numb, and bitter cold accompanied with snow that I got used to when we lived in Kansas City and Idaho.
Maddie is less than pleased. She absolutely hates the rain. Last week, it was raining something awful, and Maddie dutifully sat by the door (her way of telling us that she needs to go outside). We put her leash on and walked outside. As we walked down the 3 flights of stairs to the grass, she locked up her feet and wouldn't budge an inch. I'm not sure if she doesn't like rain or doesn't like getting her feet wet. Then again, it was absolutely pouring that day. Soon, we picked her up and plopped her on the grass, waited until she went and went back inside.
As a solution, Christian and I decided that we should get a rain coat and maybe that would help a bit. Since it is always raining here in Washington, we thought it would be a good idea. Over the weekend, we found a orange raincoat at Target (only $2.50!) and today I got to try it for the first time. When I got home from work, it was raining so I grabbed her little coat and proceeded to put it on her so we could go outside. About 10 minutes later, with her coat on, we headed outside. For the first 2-3 minutes, her feet locked up and she wouldn't budge but soon, I think she realized how bad she had to go. Finally, she was walking beside me at a normal pace. However, if this rain keeps up, we'll have to buy her little boots to go with the rain coat. :)