Wednesday, June 3, 2009

We're Back. . . Whew

Well, we are back home now and had a very fun, and tiring trip. The night before we left my brother and grandma decided they wanted to come too so we took the big family van or (BFV) which was okay because it was roomier, but took more gas to get there and therefore more money. *Sigh* It's all good though. :D But, I think we all had a great time. There are about a mazillion pictures in this post so bear with me. . .

On the way, I drove for 9 hours straight and then gave up the wheel so my brother could drive, I got a whole bench to myself so I let Fuller up and we cuddles for a few hours. (I know. . . bad puppy raiser)
We got to my aunts house ahead of schedule and they had a birthday party going on, so we jumped right in and helped, my brother filled water balloons while the women folk cooked hamburgers. It was fun. Unfortunately Fuller had to spend time in the kennel after 13 hours in the car and he wasn't pleased. I left the top down for him, but he kept jumping up, I figured, oh well. He didn't try to get out just wanted to see what we were all doing.
The next day was GRADUATION!!! It was amazing!! We got there about 15 minutes early and Sherman and his mom were running a little late, so we took a seat for a bit. The trainer that trained Sherman came over and chatted with me for a bit. She ADORED Sherman and just kept telling me how wonderful he was. I was so happy to hear how much everyone loved him. Sherman's trainer had this puppy with her and asked if we could hold him for a bit while she did some running around. Of course I said yes, so this guy is a Golden named Gary and he was so sweet. The most unique thing about him is that he had no tail, just a little nubbin. It was adorable and gave him so much character. (I wish I had gotten a picture.
When Sherman and his mom arrived his trainer came over and told us where to meet them and took Gary back. I walked down the isle and I saw him, and then he saw me, and then he went berserk. It was so fun to see him again. He looks so mature, and grown up.
Me, Sherman and his mom. After we chatted for a bit they had us go outside to take a bunch of pictures.

Me and Sherman.
Sherman's mom absolutely loves him and he loves her too. It was so nice to have that kind of closure. Sherman is doing what he loves. We chatted for a long time before the graduation started. During that time Sherman alerted a bunch of times. It was amazing to actually witness what he does. She told me that he usually alerts about an hour before her blood levels go high or low and he is persistent and won't let her do anything until she tests her blood. The first time he alerted (he alerts by grabbing this pouch hanging on his collar called a bringsel and he holds it in his mouth and puts his head on her lap and then she has to check her blood and then he gets a little piece of cheese for a successful alert) anyway, the first time he alerted her blood was in the hundreds so she was fine, then about fifteen minutes later he alerted again and she was still in the hundreds, then fifteen minutes later he alerted and she tested and was in the high three hundreds so she had to adjust her insulin. It was amazing. She told me that he has come out of a deep sleep several times to alert her. All the stories were just amazing. I am so proud of Sherman!! I also gave her Sherman's baby book and she loves it. Turns out she is a huge scrapbooker. I also brought a gough-nut and nyla-knot for Sherman and he loved them. His mom said she is going to have to get him another to take to work. :D She also told me that she knew Sherman was Mr. September for the 2009 GDB calendar so she bought like six of them and gave them out to friends and family. :D I am also excited to see Sherman as Mr. September.

When the graduation started they had the raisers take the dog and sit on one side of the stage while the graduates were on the other. This is Mark and his dog Armstrong. He is the founder of D4D and he spoke to us for a bit.
Here I am bringing Sherman on stage to be presented.
Sherman's mom and me.
Sherman's mom gives her speech.
After graduation we said our goodbyes, and exchanged contact info. Good job Sherman and keep it up, you are doing amazing things!! He looks so serious and professional.
Before the graduation, while I was talking to Sherman's mom this lady came over who had fostered Sherman during his training period. She told me that she adored Sherman and was telling us how much she loved having him. She had another dog in training with her and when she told me his name was Melrose I got so excited and asked if I could get a few pictures. So, we went outside so I could snap a few. I know Melrose's raiser has commented on my blog before so I hope she reads this post so she can see these pictures. He is also the brother of blogger buddy Myra. His foster mom says he has more energy than Sherman but he is doing really well and she loves him. She says his training is going great and the trainers have enjoyed having him. She also told me that Melrose's sisters Margene and Martha are also in the D4D program and doing well.
He got a little tired of pictures and started rolling around in the grass. It was nice to meet him, he is a sweet pup.
I also saw blogger dog Franklin there. I tried to get some pictures but it was after the graduation and everything was kinda chaotic, but everyone at D4D loves him and hopes that he does great.

While we were running out we stopped and got a picture by the graduation balloons. They had an arch made out of these balloons, it was so cute.
They also gave each of the puppy raisers a plaque. It was really nice and it is now proudly displayed on the GDB wall in my room.
The next day I took Fullerton to church, we only went for the first hour, but this little kid in front of us played with Fullerton the whole time. I didn't take my camera to church so these are from my phone. This little kid was crawling all over Fuller and petting him. It was cute.
He also got all his little cars and stacked them all over Fullerton's head. Fuller didn't budge a muscle the whole time we were there. Good boy Fuller!
After church we headed back to my aunts house and me, my brother and two sisters got ready for the beach!!! Fuller wasn't so sure of the water at first (and it was FREEZING!!) so he stayed in the shallows and only got wet up to almost his belly.
Fuller spend his 9 month day on the beach. He had a good time romping and is now 50.5 pounds. Woot. . . he passed the 50 pound mark. :D
It was too cold to get wet so we just layed on the beach. I really liked this picture of Fuller and my little sister.
Fuller in the sand
We dug for sand fleas and found a TON of them. They creep me out so I kept my distance.
I kept Fullerton's jacket off for most the time but we were on a No Dogs Allowed beach so when the beach police started coming over to us I grabbed his jacket and thought it would be better to keep it on. After they saw the coat they just turned the other direction. :D I love this picture, maybe a calendar 2011 submission?? Maybe if he wasn't sitting so goofy. ha ha
The next day (Monday) we went to San Francisco. Last time I drove in San Fran with my sisters we had a horrible experience (lets just say, one way streets are not my friend) so I did not want to drive down there again. So we opted for BART. Here is Fuller waiting for our train. He was great at the station, he didn't bat an eye when they trains would come whizzing by us at full speed, he was so calm and collected.
Here is Fuller on the BART train.
We got off BART at Union Square so then we took the Trolley down to the Wharf. This is Fullerton in the trolley
We ran over to the seals first (well, actually we went to peir 39 and got some Trish's Mini Donuts, which are AMAZING!!!)
Fuller watching the seals.
In some random gift shop.
Getting our picture drawn. This guy was really nice and did Fuller too, it looks really nice.
Here is the picture, I like it a lot.
Then we went to Ghirardelli Square and got the Earthquake Sundae and it was amazing.
Me and Fuller by the Ghirardelli sign.
And by the fountain.
Then in the trolly on the way home. San Francisco was so fun. We met a bunch of . . . interesting people, and ate way too much food. There was a bunch of people who kept taking picures of Fuller while we were walking around the city, I swear about 12 different people snapped a pic. There was also one lady who took about a dozen pictures while I was relieveing, so someone has some nasty pictures of my dog going #1 and #2, I thought that was so strange. I kept telling Fuller to hurry so she would stop, it was just awkward. He was great in the city!! :D
Then it was time to go home. Fuller on the drive home.
Yesterday while we were driving our little niece was born. I didn't get to see her until today and she is adorable. Her name is Hazel Gayle and she was 8 lb 2 oz and 19 inches long. Here is the happy little family.
Cannon adores her and kept running over to give her kisses. That was a nice thing to come home to. :D
Well, it was an exhausting trip and I have not slept since yesterday and Fuller needs a bath and I have spent the last three hours doing this post, so toodle-oo. Happy Summer everyone!


Martha G said...

After spending time with some graduating dogs this month, I have to say I'm so impressed with Fullerton. I'm betting he has a great future.

Loved the graduation pictures of Sherman and congratulations to the family of newborn Hazel (Love that name).

Hannah and Journey said...

Sounds like Shermens graduation went well. I had only heard that Myra's brother Melrose was at D4D I didn't know about the other 2 siblings of Myra's being there. Well looks like you and Fuller had fun.

Elizabeth and Peyton said...

That sounds like such an awesome trip! Congratulations on raising a D4D graduate. I'm amazed by what those dogs can do. It looks like a great time (except for the lady taking pictures...that would really creep me out too).

Barrett's mom said...

Great post, I love all the pictures:) Wow, Sherman's graduation must have been really neat. It sounds like he is REALLY well-trained! It's amazing what dogs can sense in people. I didn't know that there were dogs that sensed blood levels, I had mostly heard about the seizure alert dogs. Anyway, you must be very proud!

Brittany said...

Wow, it sounds like you guys had a wonderful time! Sherman looks great, and so grown up. I love the picture on the beach with your sister.

Tell your sister congrats on her little girl! I can't wait for that to be me!

Cabana's Puppy Raiser said...

What an action packed trip! The graduation must have been amazing--how wonderful to see Sherman in action. How do they teach the dogs to alert like that? I'd love to read a post about that. It also blows my mind that Fullerton just laid there while the kid was parking his Hot Wheels all over his head and face! Glad you had such a great trip.

Stefanie and Bracken said...

THANK YOU for the pics of Melrose!!! It is SUCH a treasure to "see" your dog after all this time.
Congratulations on Sherman's graduation- it is so affirming to see a dog/raiser make it thru the new career training. Way to go!

Erin,Bubs,Tex and Ben said...

Wow,wow,and wow!!! So glad that sherman still gets to work!!! Sounds like that was an amazing trip!!!

Taelor and Pilaf said...

Sounds like an amazng trip!
Thanks so much for your nice comment about Franklin. =] I'm glad you got to see him!
You met GARY!!! I love that pup! We met him when he was 8 weeks when Cheryl cam to our club to give a presentation about D4D. His sister, Maletta, is actually in our puppy club. I just love his little tail. I kind of find it funny that he was CC'd for it though.
Isn't Peir 39 amazing?! I have a picture just like that one you have of Fullrton watching the seals. =D
Fuller sounds like an amazing boy!!!

P.S. Sorry about the long comment...

Emily and the Labradors said...

What a great trip! congratulations once again to Sherman... what a good boy! That certificate made me all teary too for some reason :) And Fullerton... What a good boy too!

Addie, Ggoody, and Llarson said...

To answer your questiona about the double L's. The program uses the "L" just to show it was the "L" litter, but it is not pronounced. Basically Llarson's name would be said like Larson. Also it looks like Fullerton had a great time. Congrats on Sherman graduating, I am amazed at his job. It is so cool!

Addie, Ggoody, and Llarson said...

Sorry I forgot to add something about the double letter thing. My friends asked me the same thing and one of my friends always jokes around about the dogs names calling Ggoody "G-G-G-Ggoody" going with the Chia Pet song from the commercial!

Carrie and Waffle said...

wow 1st off you and your sister look a lot alike! congrats on the new baby. They are always welcome.

Sherman looks sooo grown up, you gotta wonder when that happens. Congrats on Sherms graduation, glad that he has found his career.

glad that you and fuller had a great trip. Have fun with camp. If you and other GDB/bloomfield dogs hit disneyland, let me know, I'll steal foxfire or Nisha and meet you all.

Natalie said...

Wow what a packed weekend! It sounds like you had an amazing time - congrats on Sherman's graduation, it was so good to see pictures of him. He and his new mom look very happy together :)

OSU 98 said...

Congratulations Sherman! The sundae from Ghiradelli Sq looks AWESOME! My grew up in CA, and my parents actually lived in a suburb of SF for mom worked downtown. I always stopped for some chocolate when I was heart is truly in SF!!!

Madison and Butler said...

That was a long update! Sounds like you had a fun time! Sherman looks great and it seems he will have a great future ahead of him helping his partner!!!