Sunday, May 2, 2010

Saying Goodbyes

Amelia isn't quite old enough to really understand good-byes yet. Sure she knows to wave and say bye-bye when we leave and she loves to blow kisses, but to actually comprehend good-bye for an extended period is still beyond her. So it is too bad that she has two long-term good-byes this week.

The first is to her friends at Gymboree. We were quite sad when they announced in April that as of May 1 they would be closing. Nuno and Filipa started Gymboree here in Aveiro when Amelia was only 3 months old, and we have been going weekly ever since, so they have been a wonderful presence in her life. While they think that it will likely open again in a few months under new management, we had to say good-bye to Gymbo on Friday not knowing, and Filipa and Nuno are heading back to Lisbon, so it was a sad day.

And tomorrow we are off to Porto to send Scout, aka "New Doggy" off to the US to live with Dan's brother and his family. So a happy ending, but we will miss her quite a bit, as she has been a lot of fun to have around, though we definitely have learned that three dogs is one too many for our family, especially in addition to a cat, a toddler, and a baby on the way.
For those of you that don't know about Scout, we took her in as a temporary guest at the begining of March. I had noticed her for a couple of weeks visiting the school across the street from our house looking for handouts. When I saw her over there one weekend day I felt the need to provide her with a good meal, and of course that is how it always starts.

She was sickeningly skinny, but a real sweetheart, very easy going, friendly, gentle with Amelia, and now very grateful to have a constant source of nourishment and attention. I took her to the vet to check for a microchip and to pick up flea and de-worming medication. Then we found out she was pregnant. Due to her malnourishment, the vet did not think it was wise to allow her to have the puppies, so we decided to have her spayed and let her stay with us while she recovered and we tried to find her a new home. At first she stayed outside, and was very nervous when we tried to coax her to come into the house. Then she started to come in and lie down in a corner where she would collect soft things (Amelia's stuffed animals mostly) and take them to sleep with her. The vet thought they were her surrogate puppies. Now she is one of the family. Going on walks with us, relaxing on the couch, getting Tazzy and Biju (and even Blaze sometimes) running around to play for their daily excercise.

We decided she would be the perfect addition to our family, if only we needed another addition to our family! Since we did not, we found the next best thing, and we are very happy she is going to live with our extended family where we can visit her again in the future. We originally didn't give her a name, since that could only mean she was staying with us, so she was dubbed "New Doggy" for the first few weeks, and got Amelia also referring to "New Tazzy" and "New Da-Da." Once we found New Doggy a family of her own, our niece Isabel named her Scout, and now she is off to live with them in Vermont and enjoy all of the pleasures the Green Mountain state has to offer our four-legged friends.

For some more photos, click here!

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