Thursday, May 12, 2011


It has been brought to my attention that I have not posted enough pictures of my handsome pups on my blog recently so this post is dedicated solely to my Maddie and Harley.

Our sweet loving Maddie has been a part of our family for almost as long as we have even been a family! We were married in Aug. of 2008 and we rescued a 2.5 month old Maddie from the pound on Jan. 2 of 2009. These are the very first pictures we ever took of her, the day we picked her up from the pound!

She was so adorable and so pitiful looking that Ken just COULDN'T say no, even though we were not allowed to have dogs in our apartment! It was love at first sight, and we were moving in less than a month, so like I said he COULD NOT leave her!

Maddie was a great dog from the very beginning (with lots of good training from Ken) she never chewed up ANYTHING, she LOVED to snuggle, and did quite well on a leash. Potty training was a little rough, especially with all the moving we did! My mother-in-law used to call her Miss Piddles because she would be running around the front room having a great time and would just piddle as she went, leaving a trail of tiny spots behind her because she would be to excited to even stop and squat! What a nightmare! Kens mom did enjoy putting a little sweater on her though, Ken was not as thrilled...

She is also a BIG FAT WHINER! Good grief does she let you know just how she feels! The husky in her definitely shows because she doesn't bark so much as just whine, LOUDLY! But she is very obedient (mostly to Ken haha), loves being out in the sun, and does so well with children. We love her so much and our lives just wouldn't be the same without her! Here is Maddie lounging in the sun, but she is such a princess that she wouldn't lay in the dirt, and instead opted for the pool!

~Did I mention its impossible to keep her clean!? :)

Our not-so-little-anymore Babydog is such a joy! We had been wanting to get a second dog for quite a while as a companion for Maddie, and we had adopted a German Shepard/wolf-Alaskan Malamute mix while we lived in vernal (Ben) and loved it, but when we moved to Boise we just couldn't find a place that would allow LARGE dogs, let alone 2 fairly LARGE dogs, so we had to give him away. (Don't worry we went to the extent of holding interviews for a good home for him!)

(BEN) We miss him and wish we could see what he is like today!

Anyway a couple months later (Aug. 2009) we moved back to Pocatello and ended up finding a place that had NO PROBLEM with dogs, of any size or breed! So we started the search for a second dog again. We looked around for months, wanting to find that same "love at first sight" connection with a pup or even a breed to search for. After countless trips to animal shelters (we really wanted to rescue another puppy) we just weren't finding what we were looking for. Then one day in the grocery store we saw an ad for American Bulldog puppies for sale. The flyer said 300$ each so we didn't really think twice about it, but the puppies were certainly adorable. A few weeks later a new flyer appeared and the puppies had been priced to 200$! We went home and started researching the breed, since we didn't know much about them, and Ken instantly fell in love! We figured that since the price was continuing to drop we might be able to negotiate if we had a connection with one of their pups! So we called and set up a time to see the puppies. The owners said they were all purebred but not papered (hence the lofty price) and they were all DIRECT DESCENDANTS of CHANCE from Homeward Bound! Here is a pic of her dad... HUGE!

Anyway, there were about 8-10 puppies left and Ken was loving one and I was loving another (the soon to be Harley!). We couldn't really decide what to do. We knew we wanted one, but couldn't agree on WHICH one. It was my logic that ALL animals love Ken and only FEW love me, that got Ken to go with my pup! Ken wasn't thrilled because he didn't have the same connection as with Maddie, but he loved the breed enough to be ok with it! So in Oct. of 2009 we brought home Harley!! Here is Harley as an 8 week old!

She was so adorable, and she always liked to sleep in the strangest places! Harley did fairly well with Potty Training, thanks mostly to Maddie teaching her!

Harley was an incredibly sweet puppy! And everyone thought she and Maddie were related! When she was little they did look similar, but she didn't stay little for long! And as was typical of us, We ended up moving only 3 months after. Ken left for Texas in Dec. of 2009 and I stayed to finish up the semester and get things ready to move. I moved down in Feb. of 2010 and this is the Harley I found...

Just as big as Maddie and continuing to grow like a weed! She went through a rough phase of not being able to tell just how HUGE a puppy she was, but has since grown into a really great dog!! She was never a snugly puppy, but after she turned about a year she started to like to sit on Kens lap all the time, just like Maddie! So we now have a 60-70lb and a 85-95lb lap dog! GOOD GRIEF! Harley also rarely barks, or makes any noise for that matter. Which we love since Maddie is always so vocal! But when she does bark she sure does sound ferocious!

All in all I LOVE my dogs, so so much. I know I sometimes put off that I could do without them, or they don't quite mean the world to me, but they honestly DO! I can't imagine my life without them, I would be so lonely!

Maddie and Harley, we sure do love you!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Mothers Day

I know its the day AFTER Mothers Day but I want to dedicate this post to the beautiful Mothers and Women in my life who have been there for me, taught me, laughed and cried with me, greatly influenced who I am now, and continue to help me to become the woman I am meant to be.

1. My Momma.

My Momma has been to every sporting event, music recital, and other church/school event that I can remember. For those of you who know anything about my family you know that pretty much makes my Momma SUPERWOMAN. Between juggling 7 kids, a job, a calling, and countless other endeavors, she is ALWAYS there for me. You know how they say, You don't miss it till its gone... Lets multiply that by about 100,000,000 and then you might just begin to understand how much I miss my mom. Moving away as a newlywed was probably the toughest thing I have ever done, not having my mom close to help me through this weird transition phase in my life has been hard! But we talk on the phone pretty regularly and skype now and then, so that helps! My Momma is a caring, loving, kind, and patient woman. She is a perfect example of someone who knows the value of HARD WORK, but still has the most gentle touch. I LOVE YOU MOMMA!

2. My Mother-in-law.

Susan Checketts is an amazing woman! Even though we haven't had a ton of time to be together I have learned so much from her. I swear this woman LIVES to serve others. It is incredible to me how selfless and willing to serve she is. Whether it be a fellow church member, a neighbor, or anyone in the community she is always ready and willing to help, in any situation. But the most amazing part of her love for service is that it all starts within the walls of her own home. She tirelessly works to serve her family, to teach them the gospel, and share her own personal testimony. She works hard to make sure all her children are taken care of and know that they are loved! She is beautiful and strong, and I'm so thankful to have such an incredible Mother-in-law!

3. My Grandma.

My Grandma is truly an incredible woman. When I think of the word nurturer, I simultaneously think of my grandma. She is so loving and so wise! She is also an excellent teacher. I can't even count the times I have called and sought her help with my cooking or sewing endeavors, and she teaches me everything I need to know, right over the phone! We had the opportunity to live with my grandma and grandpa for a while when I was in junior high and it was such a learning experience for me! My poor grandma hated to see my fight with my little sisters, I remember it bringing her to tears once, and I swore I would NEVER let that happen again, and it didn't! She made me realize how important my family relationships are and how we should really love one another, because when its all said and done our families are the ones who are always there, our closest friends, our biggest supporters. I have an amazing relationship with my siblings and I truly believe it was my grandma who helped me forge that bond.

Last but certainly not least... My Older Sisters. Valerie, Becky & Cassie.

Not only are these three women GORGEOUS, but they are incredible mothers, sisters, aunts, wives, and most of all FRIENDS! They are my best friends, my confidants, they keep me sane and NEVER judge me, no matter what. I can go to them with any issue, any problem, and I know they will NOT laugh, they will NOT criticize (unless of course I need it) and they will do ANYTHING they can to help me, always keeping my best interests in mind. They have laughed with me until we have cried, and cried with me until we have laughed, they have held my hand and given me advice through hard times and celebrated with me during the good times. They are my SISTERS and I love them with everything I am. I couldn't be me without them.

I am so grateful to have these INCREDIBLE women in my life, to call them FAMILY and FRIENDS. As I reflect and think about the ways they have touched my life I count myself so very lucky to just know them, let alone be related to them. I wish with all my heart I could be nearer to them, to be able to see their faces everyday. Hopefully someday I will have that luxury, but that is the beauty of having such amazing people in my life, no matter where I go, no matter how miles stretch between us, we are always connected.

Happy Mothers Day.