I've been so busy over the last three months that I have completely forgotten about updating our blog! I really need to try harder to keep this updated as so much has happened lately and will be happening over the next 6 months or so that I want to keep everyone posted on how we are doing.
We visited our Utah relatives back in late February since I needed to have a check-up with Dr. Schmidt at the same time. We also took this opportunity to fly with Mac for the first time. We decided to book a nonstop flight at night in hopes that this would be a better time for him to fly. He did magnificent going through airport security and even stood still while I had to be scanned by the TSA person. We had about an hour before our flight which gave me some time to see how he would do in the terminal. He did fairly well. There was a baby that was close by with her mom and other family members that kept wanting to come over to pet Mac and he handled her crying and all rather well. We boarded first and got settled. Mac fit perfectly in the bulkhead area just in front of our feet. He dropped off to sleep even while everyone was loading and wasn't bothered by them at all. I guess I must have dozed off as well because the next thing I remember was waking up and it was nearly halfway through the flight. Mac had panicked a bit during take-off and Daniel was trying to console him and keep him calm. His poor little puppy heart rate was through the roof! He finally calmed down a bit and decided that he would take treats which was good because it helped keep him occupied for the remainder of the flight. The return flight went better as we got some medicine for him to take beforehand, although he was still quite anxious during the flight. I am really hoping that the next time we fly he will be more used to the turbelence.
We enjoyed seeing everyone for the two weeks that we were there. The best part of the trip was having Mac with me. For the first time, we really had a chance to bond to one another. The hotel we stayed at was in the Sugar House district. Everything there is within walking distance of the hotel. Mac and I took walks to the park or to Petco nearly every morning. It was so nice to not have to worry about work or anything else. Dan usually accompanied us, but I did actually like the times I got to go by myself and just be with my puppy! We also had the opportunity to take some training sessions with Gateway for Canine Partnerships while we were there. We even made the news! That's a whole other story though that is too long to post here. The trainer we worked with is wonderful. While we were there they tested Mac on his Canine Good Citizenship test and he passed with flying colors! Lord only knows how because an hour later in the car he definitely was not acting like the same dog! Some days I do think he is bi-polar, LOL!
We went to the Gateway several times with Mac and I even went one time with my brothers for a shopping spree courtesy of Mike and Howard. I felt very lucky to have such wonderful brothers that waited on me hand and foot while in Coldwater Creek, which by the way is my new favorite store.
I didn't want our trip to end. It was so nice being there for almost two weeks and not really having anything that we absolutely had to do. The only thing we had to take care of was having a spinal tap done at the hospital. I can honestly say that I will never again have this done in my life! It was very painful and really didn't offer any insight to Dr. Schmidt as to why my legs still feel weak and why I can't seem to regain much more strength back than what I have. That being said, I'm glad we got to spend so much time with family and friends and just relax. I think I finally have Dan talked into moving to Utah because we both like the Sugar House area so much and it is really close to the hospital.
We got back and I immediately started work on paperwork needed to get Mac to be able to come with me to work. He has now been an official working dog for a month and a half. He picked up so many new skills while in Utah that I wanted to keep up his training as much as possible. He is with me nearly every day now. Everyone loves him at work and has the hardest time resisting their urge to pet him. He now has 100% profiecency in operating the push buttons for opening doors. That task really only took about a week for him to start learning consistently and as of todday he can and does do it for the most part without treats. He comes to work with me 3 days a week, Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays and by Thursdays he is pretty worn out and it can be a bit harder to get him to do things. I'm so impressed though at what all he has learned. He now retrieves pretty much anything I ask him to pick up and get. He recently learned "keys" and knows to pick those up when I drop them. Today I taught him to help me take the sheets off the bed. This task will prove to be most useful among all the household tasks that I am teaching him. I now affectionately call him my "Saturday helper" because if he is really hungry then he'll do anything I ask just so he gets food. It is very cute to watch to see what he will pick up next and hand to me. He handed me a bottle of Frebeze last Saturday. He earned a big reward for that given how heavy it is. I am also teaching him how to carry things, especially the important items such as my Dr. Pepper bottle that I purchase on my breaks from the cafe and also his water dish. He now has carried that twice all the way to the fountain. Everyone loves watching him at work too.
Dan and I just had our fence built. Well, as of the date of this posting it isn't quite done even though I was assured by the contractor that it would be done by today. I'm hopeful that it will be done by tomorrow. We are trying to do as many household projects as we can to get the house ready to sell when we are ready to move. We still are unsure as to exactly when we are moving, but it will be within the next 6 months to a year is my hope.
Pixel is doing fine as well. She just had her first medical procedure done. She needed to have her teeth cleaned. She is still recovering a bit from the anesthia and where they had to shave her arm to put in the I.V. she looks a bit funny right now.
We are hoping to get out as much as possible this summer and hopefully have some visitors this summer. Anyone who wants to come to visit is more than welcome especially since this may be our last summer here!