Monday, December 31, 2007

What we (the dogs and I) did in 2007

Sorry...there are NO PICTURES in this post, I will post pictures later this week.

  • Started school...again! (almost for the last time!)
  • Ontario was born to Philly and Antoine
  • Carlisle got career changed


  • Sonny's 2nd b-day (still in the kennels at that point)
  • O'Connor's 1st b-day
  • Got O'Connor's recall notice for April
  • picked up Sonny's brother, Sprite, from the airport and housed him for 1 1/2 weeks until his raisers could get here to pick him up!


  • Found out that I was getting MGSD "O"
  • Sonny went to class
  • I went skiing with my 2nd grade class every tuesday
  • picked up Mr. "O"...Ontario!


  • Visited friends and family in Oregon
  • Presented Sonny to his partner as a working guide dog
  • Returned O'Connor to the Boring, OR campus for his formal training
  • Flew with O'Connor
  • Passed my classes for the semester


  • Visited with a dear friend in Phoenix, AZ (first time I ever went to Phoenix)
  • Got hired as the Arts and Crafts Activity Leader at Camp Bloomfield
  • Attended a military funeral for my cousin (not so fun, but very neat and sad)
  • Dog/house-sat for the entire month
  • Said "goodbye" to my 2nd grade class at the end of the school year
  • Prepared Ontario for Camp


  • moved home with my parents for 2 weeks (just about killed me! ;))
  • Drove to Malibu with some friends to go to camp
  • visited Anya, Melissa, David and Greta
  • Swam in the ocean for the 1st time!
  • Met a lot of wonderful new people at camp


  • Visited Alisa in CA
  • Visited Tricia in Durango
  • O'Connor made it to phase 4 and passed all breeder exams and became an official breeder
  • O'Connor was bred to Trina
  • I went to Disneyland and Universal Studios
  • Ontario loved camp :)


  • Went to CA Fun Day with Ontario and some other people
  • Flew home for 2 days to see my neices
  • Went to San Francisco with somebody who had never been there before and walked 7 miles through the city to get to the Golden Gate Bridge
  • Got home from camp
  • Started my last semester of my Bachelors Degree Career


  • Found a house to live in that had a fenced in yard for Ontario
  • Ontario got neutered
  • Started my student teaching
  • O'Connor was retired from breeding and put back in training
  • O'Connor and Trina had 5 yellow puppies-Frisco, Fulbright, Fantine, Fontina, and Fritzie
  • Ontario was a very good boy at his evaluations!


  • student teaching for me...all day everyday monday-friday
  • went to a conference and ontario was very good


  • My second mom died
  • Presented on Guide Dogs at a conference-once again, Ontario was great
  • Picked up Frisco
  • Ate way too much food at Thanksgiving with my family


  • Finished Student teaching
  • Finished College
  • pulled off the GDB holiday party that I had been planning with my CFR
  • Saw my 6 neices and 2 nephews (I had never seen my nephews before)
  • Ate way too much food over the holidays

So yeah...that was my year in a nutshell! The good and bad...but it was a year right? LOL

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Boys will be boys...

We got quite a bit of snow yesterday at my house, so today I was trying to take pictures of the "hooligans" in the snow...The one of Ontario isn't bad...but the one of Frisco was the best I could do! Sheesh...if only the boys knew how important it is to have proper pictures...! :)

P.S... Snow is awsome! Both boys and mom LOVE the snow!It's supposed to snow again in a few days! Hopefully next time I can get better pictures.

Thursday, November 29, 2007



Does baby Frisco look like...

Daddy O'Connor OR Mommy Trina

Frisky Frisco maybe Frisco isn't very "frisky" afterall! ;)

AWWWW...Frisco is sleepy!

The eyes are open...


BOOGER!!! Brogan was my 5th puppy. I got him as a transfer when he was 10 months old, the day Garvey had to go back to GDB for medical evals. Brogan's parents were Wallace and Pride. Brogan was a PILL for the first 2 weeks I had him. Brogan and I had a hard time in the beginning...but one day 2 weeks after I got him, we fell in love. I adored him, and he thought I was the greatest thing ever! Brogan was one of those dogs who I would have loved to have been able to keep. Unfortunately, Brogan was career changed for medical reasons about 3 weeks after returning to campus. He now lives with a friend of mine, and is STILL affectionately known as "booger". Brogan loved children and despite his size (75 pounds) he was extremely gentle with them. He was beautiful as well!
Brogan taught me:
  • Once again, dogs can change
  • It's ok to be goofy and still be serious at the same time
  • The wonderful game of keep-away CAN be fixed
  • No matter how big you are, cuddling is always good!
  • You must be gentle with small children


Puppy #4 was Garvey. I picked Garvey up from GDB Fun Day in CA on July 24, 2004. He was a sweet sweet puppy! His parents were Jessel and Brenda. Garvey was career changed for health issues in Nov. as you can see, I didn't have him real long :(
Garvey taught me:
  • All you need is Love

  • Things really aren't what they seem to be

  • It's no fun to be sick all the time

  • A wonderful personality, combined with a sick puppy, just can't make a guide dog

Friday, November 23, 2007

A little story about Lindsey

The day after Thanksgiving 2004, I was sitting home with my parents at their house. My first Thanksgiving, where I didn't actually live with them ;) I had gotten Brogan (you'll see a post about him soon!) Lets just say Brogan was "excitable" in this instance...
Well, Brogan wanted to play with Riley inside the house (which is a no-no at my house)...Lindsey thought she was smart and Brogan was wearing a dragline...Lindsey stepped on the dragline with her bare foot, just as Brogan lunged for Riley. Next thing she knew...she was on her butt on the ground and her foot hurt really bad! Lindsey half-laughing, half-trying not to cry, yelled to her mom "I just broke my foot" (being a drama queen, but not really knowing what a broken bone feels like, or really thinking the foot was broken)... Lindsey's mom (bless her heart), said "let's go to Wal-Mart and walk it off"...Lindsey says "ok...sounds good to me". Lindsey and mom get home from Wal-Mart and Lindsey can barely take off her shoe. Lindsey's foot is swelling up and is all sorts of "pretty colors".
Lindsey works at a vet clinic...Lindsey has the vets and other techs look at her foot...5 days later, Lindsey goes to the human dr. and gets an x-ray...Brogan has aided in breaking Lindsey's foot in 2 places and her toe! How fitting for Lindsey, that her first broken bone would be an "early Christmas present" from Brogan! :)
That is the story, of why Lindsey's foot always aches when the weather turns really cold ;)
*and the moral of the story, would be: DON'T STEP ON A DRAGLINE WITH BARE FEET!


I'm sorry for two things:

A. I did not do a little write up on all my previous dogs...I'll get to that when I go back to school and have an internet connection that works and downloads pictures ;) (plus, I got tired...)

B. My blog has gotten very boring! :) I'll try to spice things up a bit and find more exciting things to write about...

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Happy Thanksgiving everybody! Here are some things I am thankful for (this list is definately not prioritized) :
  1. Family (Mom, Dad, Eric, Ryan, Annalisa and Josh)
  2. In-laws and nieces and nephews (Lisa, Jessica, Joel, Erin, Ashley, Marissa, Maddie, Gracie, Rachael, Leah, Alec and Grant)
  3. Freedom
  4. Education
  5. Puppies (Ontario and Frisco)
  6. Dogs (Magician, Anya, Spence, Garvey, Brogan, Sonny, O'Connor and Carlisle)
  7. Pet dog (Riley)
  8. Way cute house in SLC
  9. car (doesn't have a name, but it's a fantastic Honda Accord!)
  10. Church
  11. Religion
  12. Military
  13. Grandparents
  14. Aunts and Uncles
  15. Beautiful Mountains
  16. Snow
  17. Work
  18. Electricity
  19. Toilets
  20. Food
  21. Ice Cream
  22. Water
  23. Movies
  24. Plays
  25. Dancing With The Stars
  26. Desperate Housewives
  27. Brothers and Sisters (the tv show)
  28. The Sun
  29. Cool weather
  30. the Beach
  31. Vegetables
  32. Books to read
  33. kids
  34. hope
  35. guardian angels
  36. my religion
  37. Tulips
  38. days off work
  39. nice people on the freeway who let me in when my blinker is on
  40. funny people I meet who make me laugh

Happy Thanksgiving Everybody! Eat too much and enjoy! :)


Spence was the first transfer pup I raised. He was born Feb. 26, 2003 and I got him at the beginning of Sept. His parents were Wallace and Lanai. Spence came from a very successful litter! I think 6/8 pups in his litter became guides. Anyway, I got Spence at the Utah State Fair. He was HUGE when I got him and continued to grow. Spence became known as "Moose" at our house because he was so huge!

Spence as a baby in his first puppy club
Spence grew into a beautiful big boy! He was more challenging than Magician and Anya, but I was up for the challenge with Spence. He was a lot of FUN! The hardest thing about Spence was that nobody else in my club could handle him, so that was hard as I could never get a break from him.

Spence at about 7 months?

Spence taught me:


*it's okay to have FUN!

*dogs can change

*things aren't always as they appear

*it doesn't matter what other people think

Spence was thriving in my house and doing amazingly well! He was happy and very well behaved after a few months of work with him. Around Christmas time, Spence was attacked by another dog while we were on a walk :( This shattered Spence's confidence around other dogs and at the end of Feb. 2004 he went back to GDB for an evaluation and they decided that he was just too scared of loose dogs to be a guide. Spence was placed by GDB in a loving home with a couple in CA. He is a therapy dog now and is extremely happy and loved by his people!


Anya was the 2nd puppy I raised. She was an amazing little girl and exactly what we wished for when we got Magician. We wanted a female black lab when we started raising pups, but got Magician because he was ready to go and we didn't want to wait! I got Anya on April 22, 2002 off the puppy truck. She was born Jan. 30, 2002 to the Famous Julianne and her dad was Les. She had 4 black brothers and 1 yellow brother-NO SISTERS (poor girl!). Anyway, her brothers were Alex (cc), Alamo (guide), Alto (guide), Amador (cc) and Armstrong (cc-but the spokesdog for Dogs for Diabetics).

The things Anya taught me were:

* you can be "almost perfect", but not "absolutely perfect"

*black is beautiful!

* act so that people call you "princess"

*each dog has it's own personality

*she was born to be a guide-some dogs just have it!

*dogs don't all chase balls-in fact, some dogs care less about balls!

Anya was an amazing dog! I knew from day 1 that she was going to be a guide dog, but she was one of the dogs that I would have kept in a heartbeat! Anya never actually made it to phase 10, she got put into class from phase 8. She graduated with her partner in November of 2003. She is still working in CA and has the most perfect person as her handler! Anya and her partner are two peas in a pod and it shows!


This whole puppy raising thing started after a year and a half of attending puppy raising meetings. I was very persistant with raising and I was not going to give up until I had a puppy! So on Nov. 30, 2000 I got my little yellow bundle of puppy fur...and his name was Magician! Magician was born Sept. 28, 2000. His mom is Henrietta and his dad is Rashad...both of them have passed on. His littermates were all yellow, they were: Maynard (retired guide), Mazie (retired guide), Marlin (retired guide), Melita (guide), Mercedes (career change), and Madonna (career change).

Magician with Lindsey and Santa a week after picking him up!

Magician was a wonderful "first puppy". He was not perfect by any means, especially at first. Magician taught me many lessons which were:
* Yellow dog fur all over the house is not the end of the world.
* If your puppy respects you, the love will come with that.
*You can be the laziest creature alive, but still feel the need to get in trouble once in a while!
* Dogs need a pack leader, if you are not willing to be the leader, the dog will step up.
* Old habits die hard
*Guide dogs are dogs...not robots, they don't have to be perfect

Magician on Graduation day in OR

Magician graduated on July 27, 2002. His trainer absolutely loved him, and told me at Sonny's graduation, that she still has pictures of him on her fridge at home. She took Magician home with her a lot while she was training him and she just loved him. In class he was nicknamed "superslug", because he was pretty slow and just took his time! He is still working in CA with his perfect partner! He is doing great and has been through a lot with his partner, but they are the perfect team and hopefully still have many years of working ahead of them!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

His name is...

Frisco with my Niece
Yesterday I picked up Mr. Frisco :) He is one of O'Connor's babies and he is pretty adorable!

Ontario likes him and is trying to be a good big brother (but sometimes that's hard when the baby does things he's not supposed to be doing...)

Sunday, November 11, 2007

My Puppy Raising Mom

In August 2005, I was raising Sonny a MBL. He was about 6 months old and we had decided to go to both the CA and OR Guide Dog Fun Days that year. We spent several days in CA with Stacey, and then we flew to OR where Sonny was puppysat by some raisers up there and where I knew I would get to meet Sonny's brother, Sprite.

The night before Fun Day I was staying at my sister's house in OR. Well, during the night I started barfing my guts out...and it wasn't over in the morning when it was time for me to go to Fun Day. However, being the guide dog freak that I am, I bought me some pepto and off to Fun Day I went.

When it was time, I went to the designated meeting spot to meet Sonny's brother Sprite and his raisers. At that spot on the grass in OR, I met Bob and Tricia Blair. This started a fabulous friendship between Tricia and I.

Tricia became my "guide dog mom" and we talked on the phone almost daily for quite some time. When I was going through so-called rough times in my young adult life, Tricia was the person who would hear me cry over the phone...she was also the person who would send me care packages in the mail, and when I really needed her? Tricia was at my door, giving up her weekend to come visit me! She became my second mom.

Tricia was diagnosed with Brain cancer about 7 months ago...and about a week ago, Tricia was freed from her sick body and is now an angel for many! I know that Tricia is happy wherever she is now, and is no longer in pain. She was a wonderful woman who meant the world to many people including me.

So from Lindsey and the "nasty GSD Ontario" (as Tricia would say)...I love you Tricia!

Monday, October 22, 2007

I was just noticing how my puppy still cocks his head the exact same way...look at this puppy picture and compare it to the picture I took yesterday in the leaves!


Things that make fall wonderful...and NOT so wonderful:

* I get to wear my winter clothes (sweaters and such)

* I could make myself a sweater out of Ontario's shedding fur!

* Leaves are pretty!

*Leaves are not so fun to rake.

*Jumping in leaves is fun!

*It kind of sucks when you miss doggie poo (because you can't see it under the leaves) and you step in it!

*The sound of leaves crunching is neat and rewarding!

*You're too cold in the morning and you dress warm for the day...only to strip down because you get too hot in the afternoon.

*Perfect weather for hikes!

AND the best thing about Fall...


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

O'Connor Puppies

Here are some pictures of O'Connor's first-and only litter! Aren't they cute??? He had 5 yellow puppies!!!!

Saturday, September 01, 2007

The moment you've all been waiting for...

OK, so this computer or Blogger or something is being stupid today, otherwise I would have more pictures of camp posted...anyway, here are some pictures that were taken this summer :)
On the way home from Fun Day, the car was really full, and Ontario felt he needed to take a nap on my lap-the floor just wouldn't do any longer for he snuggled right in on my lap as well as Cinderella's lap! He's not normally very snuggly, so it was very cute!

When we went to Fun Day, we parked at the mall across the street from GDB, and while we were walking to GDB, I heard the lady behind me say "Carlisle" and low and was Carlisle who I raised! I got to say hi to him several times throughout the day and he is wonderful! I can't wait until he graduates from D4D. She had only great things to say about him...and the picture above is one we took on Fun Day!

So here is a picture of O'Connor. His breeder keepers were amazing and let me spend lots of time with him that day! He is definately the best dog ever! Unfortunately, the breeding department has decided to retire him from breeding and he will be going back to Oregon for training to become a guide dog! He will be amazing and I can't wait to see him progress through guide dog training. He has one litter that is due Sept. 21st...I'll be sure to keep you updated on them!

And here is Ontario being pet and loved on at Camp Bloomfield! He is becoming quite a handsome guy and is getting so big! He is a great boy and I love him. He's 7 months old now.

Camp and Life

So...I know, I know! It's been way too long since I updated this thing and I promised pictures and didn't post any...but today's the day you've all been waiting for! :) Camp was AWSOME! If anybody ever gets a chance to go, and likes that kind of thing, I would highly recommend it! Come on...Summer in Malibu??? DOES IT GET ANY BETTER???

Anyway, so there were 7 different sessions of camp. We started and ended the summer with Family camp...which meant that about 20 different families who had a blind or visually impaired member (parent or child) would come to camp for 5-6 days. (there were 2 sessions of family camp) I think Family camps were my favorite. Each family camp had a talent show, beach day, parent night out, overnighter at the teepees, and campfire. Family camps were quite relaxed and all about having a great time doing whatever you wanted. Arts and Crafts for family camp entailed tie-dye (just about anything you wanted to tie-dye...shirts, socks, undershirts, shorts, towels) we also made lanyards, friendship bracelets, the ever popular bead bracelets, painting with shaving cream, and the favorite...painted rocks! :) Who knew painting rocks could be so much fun! I met some wonderful families who I hope come back next year! :)

The first camp after Family camp was Elementary Camp. This meant it was mostly kids ages 5-10, although there were several CIT's (Counselors in training) who are between 14-18. During Elementary Camp we went to Universal Studios, Some of them went to a pro-golf workshop thing, Beach day, and had the Summer festival-which is where a bunch of people came to camp for the day to learn about camp and blindness and there were tons of activities and stuff (Summer Festival was exhausting!). Elementary camp was a lot of fun. Arts and Crafts entailed painting rocks, making collages out of nature (leaves, sticks, grass, flowers etc.), and making lanyards and friendship bracelets.

Then we had Junior Camp, which consisted of campers age 11-13ish, but once again their were CIT"s so it was more like 11-18. Outings included Hurricaine Harbor (a water park), and Beach Day. Many of the campers who were at Elementary Camp also attended Junior Camp. In Arts and Crafts we made chia pet things, and lanyards and friendship bracelets (lanyards and friendship bracelets were very popular all summer!)

The camp after Junior, was Alumni. This meant adults! WAHOO!!! Anyway, this was also a very fun session, although quite short. Many of the people at alumni camp had been to Camp Bloomfield for years and years and years. They were a fun group to be around, and even had "the Camp Bloomfield Choir" :) We went to Santa Monica Promenade with this camp, but other than that, we stayed at good old Camp Bloomfield! :) Arts and Crafts consisted of Lanyards, friendship bracelets and bead bracelets.

Then we had Multi-disabled Camp, which was also a very short session. It was basically 2 days. This time, in Arts and Crafts we painted with shaving cream/glue mixture, and made bead bracelets and necklaces and I think we painted rocks too :)

Teen camp was next...and I think this was my most favorite of the whole summer! We went Deep Sea Fishing, beach day, an LA Sparks game (WNBA), and to a place called Golf 'n Stuff (a miniture golf place). I was definately exhausted by the end of this session, but it was completely worth it! In Arts and Crafts we made lanyards and friendship bracelets.

So that's basically what camp was like! A typical days schedule went something like:
7am: wake up
7:45: line up
8am: breakfast
9:15: Period 1
10:30 Period 2
11:45: line up
12pm: lunch
1pm: rest hour
2:15: Period 3
3:30: snack
4pm: Period 4
5:10: lineup
5:30: Dinner
6:15-7:30: Twilight
7:30: evening program (campfire, talent show, etc.)
9pm: get ready for bed
9:30: camper lights out
11:30: staff lights out.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


So...I know that I haven't updated in a while, but you will all have to wait until tomorrow for a proper update. Things are going great though! I'm on break right now, and will write a good update with pictures tomorrow! :)

Sunday, July 01, 2007

My Place at Camp Bloomfield

I haven't taken any pictures of Camp yet...(I know, I'm horrible about taking pictures!), but I'll take some pictures this break of what the camp looks like. However, tonight I did take a picture...a picture of my camp bed and all my stuff...and Ontario's area too...

Doesn't it look comfy and cozy??? NOT!!! It's not too bad really...and I'll have to move to a different bunk on Wed...but this is where I have been since the day I got here and they pretty much all look just like this! :)


Ontario decided to be "Snoopy" and sit on Riley's doghouse!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Yay for Breaks...

So I met the nurse the other day and she is very nice. She is actually a nurse practitioner, which is what I've seen as a doctor for sinus infections and small things, so that's really comforting. We talked about how to help kids out when they get hurt or sick or stuff for sure :)

Yesterday I didn't feel good. I had a headache and sore throat all day. The headache went away, but I still have the sore throat. I haven't been taking my allergy medicine, so I'm wondering if that's my problem? I'll talk to the nurse about it on tuesday when she comes back.

Yesterday we also got to do the activities. I didn't because I lead an activity...but I did get to do some archery :) I hit the target everytime! Wahoo! :) I cleaned out the arts and crafts shed and threw a LOT of junk was so nice. So now I have my list of things I need and things I already have and a clean shed so I can actually find things :) YAY!!! It was kind of hot yesterday...but nothing like Utah, so no problems there :)

Ontario is being very good. Everybody still loves him and he seems pretty happy here!

Hopefully tomorrow i'll catch some time where I can put some pictures up!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Malibu Beach

So yesterday I didn't have to do a whole lot :) Emily from GDB showed up just as we were finishing breakfast, so we talked about our puppies here at camp and how to incorporate them into our routines and activities. Then when she left, the counselors all had to go talk about different characteristics of campers and scenarios that can happen while at camp. Since I'm an "Activity Leader" I did not have to go to this meeting. The plan was for all the activity leaders to go to the beach and set up for our overnighter. Well, once the van was loaded only 8 of the activity leaders fit in the van and there is 13 of I stayed behind. Those of us left behind just talked and had free time for about 2 hours...until the counselors were finished with their meeting and then we left for the beach.

I don't know the name of the beach, but it was in Malibu and it was okay. However, it was very rocky leading to the water, so I didn't get in or anything. It was extremely windy when we got there yesterday afternoon, but that stopped after a while and things were just fine. We had some really really good guacomole (I don't exactly know how to spell that) and I thought I was in heaven...Dad would have LOVED it! We also had hamburgers and Carne Asada for dinner and it was the best food I've had in a LONG time! :) Then once it got dark, we had a campfire which was fun.

I slept under the stars with some of the other staff. We had laid out our sleeping bags earlier before it got dark, and I immediately noticed that it was all wet when I went to get in. I guess it's just very moist here ('s by the ocean) but I'm just not used to that! I slept good though and this morning when I woke up and looked out in the ocean there were a bunch of Dolphins swimming pretty close to the that was very neat! :)

The nurse is supposed to be coming around 9:30, so I guess I should go brush my hair and look half-decent :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

I'm here at Camp and everything is great so far. Ontario is doing very good. He is 1 of 2 puppies here...definately the cuter of the two ;) (not that I'm biased or anything)! He has been better than I ever expected him to be and i couldn't be more proud of him so far.

The food isn't the greatest, but it's not bad...hopefully I'll loose those 6 pounds I found out about when I got my camp physical :D

Yesterday we woke up at the crack of dawn to go to the Junior Blind of America (JBA). The campus there was beautiful and the weather is MUCH better than the 104 that we left in Utah. Anyway, so we were at JBA and did favorite! LOL Then we came back to camp and played a few name games. We had to get a partner who we didn't know and learn about them and stuff. My partner's Camp name is Jazzy (I don't even know her real name) and she is from Illinois. She is here to be the horse wrangler!

Today the wake up call was 7am, but I didn't roll out of bed (literally) until about 7:15...I hurried and fed Ontario and pulled on clothes and took him out...where we got in line at which point we got back into the same partners that we had last night. Jazzy was blindfolded this morning and I was her sighted guide. We ate breakfast (she was still blindfolded). I was blindfolded for Lunch today and Jazzy was my sighted guide...she didn't run me into anything, so I guess she's pretty good ;)

Anyway, so that's it so far! I'll write and put up pictures some day when I have more time.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Teenagers and Bras...

Tonight I was with my Sister-in-law and we went to the Art City Days Carnival. I spent more money than I should have, on a VERY VERY cute red purse :) Wahoo! while we were walking around we noticed all these teenage girls whose bra straps were showing. It was very annoying, I don't really care to see bra straps at all...or any part of a bra for that matter...tank tops are fine, but wear a built in bra, or one of those bras with clear straps or do something!!! My poor eyes don't want to see any more bra straps...

Friday, June 08, 2007

Because I'm bored...

So it's 1:12am and I'm sitting at the computer...bored! I know, I know, I should be in bed...but why???? I don't have anything pressing that I have to do in the morning so I can sleep in, and I'm not especially tired right now either. Tonight I was talking to my mom--Sorry Lacey!!! And I was thinking about things...I want to make a difference in the world...sounds very cliche, but it's true. I was talking to Alisa about this today...and that my friends, is why I have gone to school for 4 years and am planning on a few more years of school and then I want to work at GDB...because I want to make a difference. Not a difference in the lives of dogs...but in the lives of people! I am going to change the world and make a difference 1 blind person at a time! :)

Many people have said throughout my 8 years of puppy raising..."I could never do that...I could never give the dog up...I get too attached"...I usually say that you learn to do it more gracefully each time, and while it never gets easy it is always worth it in the end when you get to see how much of a difference the dog makes in the life of somebody else. But if I'm not in a good mood I'm thinking in my head "sheesh, do you think I'm a heartless don't have a CLUE what it feels like to be so attached and then let it go!"

So anyway...back to my story...I'm going to make a difference in somebody's life 1 person at a time :) I was thinking about why I love raising puppies so much and why I want to work at guide dogs so bad... I guess I want everybody to know that I raise puppies for several different reasons...
  • The change that these dogs make in people's lives is too incredible...that's why I'm addicted to raising...
  • When you see that little puppy who you poured your heart and soul into and it means 10x more to that blind person than it means to's worth it!
  • When you think of those nights you cried and the heartache that you had when your puppy left feel sorry for yourself...but it's worth it!
  • When you take your puppy out early in it's life and it has a "potty accident" in a public's embarrassing...but it's worth it!
  • When strangers come up to you and tell you that their brother's friend's grandpa's cousin had a guide dog and it made such a difference in his's kind of awkward...but it's worth it!
  • When your puppy goes to school with you and the other teachers and staff as well as the students get attached...and you are the bad one who "lets the puppy go"'s sad for everybody...but it's worth it!
  • When that blind person at graduation talks about the first time they picked up the harness and said "forward" and they never walked so fast or free in their life...that's when it all comes together and there is no other experience like it!

So that my friends...that is why I raise puppies!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

O'Connor News

O'Connor was chosen by the breeding department at GDB and will be going on a road trip to San Rafael, CA next week to undergo further medical evaluations to hopefully become a breeder! His heart checked out fine and that's usually the hardest test to if all goes well, O'Connor will get to have puppies! Of course I will get the opportunity to raise one of his puppies and, well that would be very neat! So keep your fingers crossed that he passes his tests!

Monday, June 04, 2007

puppy manufacting????

Ontario was made "really good!"

Ontario and Dilbert the working guide the park!

SOOOO...last week was the last week of school. We took our 2nd graders to the Park to play for a few hours, and several kids were petting Ontario, which was fine...then after examining Ontario from head to toe she looked at me and in all seriousness said "WOW, they made him VERY good!" apparantly, GSD pups are made VERY good at the puppy factory???

April 7th, 2007-Sonny's Graduation!

Lindsey, Sonny and Ontario after graduation...outside after graduation.

Lindsey and O'Connor and Mark and Sonny outside after graduation.

Graduation Hug after our speeches.

The HAND OFF!!!!

Meeting Mark and seeing Sonny for the first time again! Getting a GOOD look at my handsome GUIDING boy!!!!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

update coming soon...

Sorry I haven't really posted anything new lately...I promise I am going to post LOTS of things tomorrow...Monday, June 4th! So check back soon!!!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Proper Introduction

I haven't properly introduced here is a proper introduction for him...

Ontario was born in San Rafael, California to Philly and Antoine. He was born on January 19th 2007. His parents are both black and tan GSD's and he followed suit and is a black and tan GSD. He has one sister...Oceana. It was very obvious when I picked Ontario up from the puppy truck, that he was a push over and let his sister eat all the food! She is much much much fuzzier and has much longer fur than Ontario. She also outweighed him at that time.

Ontario is a good little puppy when he wants to be...sometimes I feel like Jenny with Truman...looking all over the house for the puppy who fits along the lines of "that day he loved me" :)

Many have asked how raising a GSD is different than raising a lab. The only HUGE differences I see are that Ontario doesn't inhale his food (sometimes he doesn't even eat everything that I give him) and he NEVER licks the bowl clean :) I also notice him being much more sensitive and aware of things going on around him than my labs have been. He is NOT what I expected at all though...much better than I thought he would be! Thank goodness! :)

Sunday, April 29, 2007


Are you ready for some pictures??? Ontario is doing very well...he is now 14 weeks old and 26 pounds. He has moved from the small to the medium puppy coat last week! I don't think he's going to be a little boy. There are also a few pictures of O'Connor for your viewing pleasure :) He has not been dropped from GDB, but I haven't heard anything else on him...he should show up on the phase report this week.

This first picture is of O'Connor with one of my students. He was very good for her and she loved him, so on his last day at work we had to take a picture of him with her walking him!

This next picture is O'Connor and Ontario chewing on bones. They were very good together! Ontario and I miss O'Connor

HERE'S ONTARIO!!! These next two pictures were taken last night at my parents house. His face has lightened up quite a bit since that first week that I had him.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

O'Connor is a College Boy

O'Connor and I went to Oregon for Sonny's graduation, as well as to turn O'Connor in for his college days! O'Connor got to fly in an airplane and he was fabulous and gained many fans while in the air. He quickly made friends with my Oregon relatives, many of whom don't like dogs at all...but EVERYBODY loves O'Connor! We went to Downtown Portland and he got to do the river walk on both sides of the river, and we went shopping in several different malls, we went to many restaurants as well. On Monday (two days before I left him on campus) we went to the Tulip Festival in Woodburn, Oregon, and took some great pictures of O'Connor in the Tulips! He was such a great sport and I got some great pictures...We went to the Japanese Garden, but it was raining hard while we were there, not so good for pictures. I returned O'Connor to the Oregon campus in the evening of Wednesday, April 11th. Fingers are crossed that he will be a WONDERFUL guide dog! He's definately the best puppy I have raised so far and has the best personality. Everybody who meets him falls in love with him!

Sonny is a Guide Dog!!!!

Sonny graduated on April 7th from the OR campus of GDB. He went to a wonderful man who lives in Seattle and completely adores him! :) Graduation day was awsome! Sonny was very excited to see me and jumped all over me! (naughty dog...but can you blame him? I was his mommy for 16 months!) Anyway, Sonny looked wonderful and he was still very excitable, however, he was very nice in harness and when his handler got serious and it was time for work, Sonny worked excellent and was VERY proud of his work too! :) My friend took lots of pictures, so I have to get the pictures from her, and then I will post them on here :) But just for is a picture of the boy when he was about 12 months old :)

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Oh, Oh, Ontario

So, here are O'Connor and Ontario. Ontario was born Jan. 19, 2007. He is very cute and so far a great little guy! Below is a picture of him the day I got him. Notice how in only 2 days the ear is standing up straighter??? Doesn't he look like he's listening?