Monday, November 29, 2010


We had a wonderful thanksgiving holiday and I hope you enjoyed yours as well. CORINA took her first trip with us to Matt's parents in Florida. She did great both in the car and at their house. You can see by the picture how well the girls are getting along. They are having a nice nap after thanksgiving dinner. Grayson kept saying to CORINA....'You are not in heaven, you are at Nana's and GrandBob's in Florida' was so cute. Grayson also got CORINA to do a command that I have never asked her to do....'speak'....and yup, out came a little bark! CORINA would do anything for either of the kids and she gives them so much love.

Also, CORINA got two new kitty brothers: Charlie and Boots! They were a little unexpected suprise to our family mix, but as Grayson puts, we are equal: Four boys and Four girls in the house ( I guess he counts the fish as a girl). Needless to say, I was a little worried about CORINA and the cats. The cats were abandoned in a park by our house and my husband brought them home one morning after he saw them two mornings in a row while working out. They are simply, the nicest cats I have ever had....mostly outside cats for now, but they come in at night, have their dinner and sleep on the porch. A couple of gentle warnings to CORINA, but now they go nose to nose and seem to all get along.

Another unexpected surprise was me breaking my foot. CORINA is definitely working for me!! (and Sammie of course).....But, she can help me get things, pull my little scooter (instead of crutches) she is coming back into the office with me, helps pull my clothes off over my cast....she is awesome. Always trying to please and do things we ask.

CORINA is starting to do some therapy with Samantha. She has done OT and will do OT and PT tomorrow. The therapists love her and we are taking baby steps for success with all of it. CORINA also helps Sammie with her bedtime routine, reads books with her and stays with her for a couple of hours at night when she first goes to sleep.....then, as I should have suspected, CORINA makes a mad dash to my bed, where she hops right in!! So much for the dog bed!!!

We just love her and are all so thankful for this amazing gift to our family and the endless hours of dedication given to CORINA to make her so exceptional.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A-Ha Moment

So, they call this time CORINA and I are spending together the 'umbilical'. As I explained it to people before CORINA came, it is the time when we have to transfer the bond from the trainer to me, which in turn, I will transfer it to Samantha, when the time is right.

Well. I was wrong.

I think the 'umbilical' time, is when I get so ATTACHED to this wonderful dog. It was evident this morning, when she and I were taking our loose leash walk through the forest and down the path, came a 110lbs white Shepard mix running as fast as she could towards us. Without thinking, I backed CORINA into a corner and protected her by standing in front of her/blocking the dog coming. That dog would have to get through me first.

Of course, everything was fine...and it was just a crazy, happy, relatively untrained dog who wanted to say hello. I saw her owner shortly afterwards (and of course, she commented on how well trained CORINA if I could take an ounce of credit....which I can't). and she apologized for having her dog off leash and out of control.

But, it was at that moment, that I realized nothing would get to this life-line dog for our daughter. Guess the umbilical is working!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Week 2

Well, we are on our 7th day with CORINA and she is doing great! She and I had some good quiet time over the weekend, only to come back and have all the kids and candy from Halloween in our neighborhood. CORINA doesn't 'spook' at much, so Halloween was no problem. Things she doesn't like too much right now are the school bus and large metal grates in the ground. But, it seems like she is curious about them more than anything and we let her take her time with them.

Sammie and CORINA are becoming quick friends. I was very happy to see Sammie eagerly go over to CORINA and start petting her and hugging her. We have been introducing them in small doses to ensure we start off on the right foot with the two of them. Grayson thinks he is 'junior' dog whisperer and Kyria has trained him well on how to handle CORINA. He knows more commands than I do I think....

I should back up to last week....we had a wonderful Thursday with Terry Henry, Sgt Tully and Kris Ulven. We had the opportunity to attend a Kiwanis Meeting in Atlanta. I thought there might be 10 was more like 200!! Kiwanis does a lot for kids, so I hope Sammie's story can find a place in their organization to help other kids like her. It was sad to say good bye to Terry and Sgt Tully. Sgt Tully and Deja are awesome...he is doing a great job and Grayson and Samantha both took such a liking to him. I know he misses his kids, but I was happy to share mine for a little bit. I think he might be one of the very few people I have met who have a Purple Heart...very impressive.

Once CORINA and I got back with the family, we took some nice walks through the woods and enjoyed our gorgeous Atlanta fall days....then, Monday morning, it is back to work for CORINA and me! She put her fancy jacket on and just knows it is time to be on her best behavior, which she is.....everyone in the office just accepts her and expects her now. I think it will be harder now when she doesn't come....

Have a great week everyone! Keep supporting paws4people. They can't do all these great things without your generous support. It doesn't have to be money (though that is nice!), but your time, energy, PR about the great things this organization does really makes a difference in lives.