Thursday, November 18, 2010

The search for the perfect dog, Blank weekly assignment sheets, other ramblings and changes

We had been using the Ur the Mom planners for a spell. I love the planners, but having to write out everything on my end for the girls to check off was becoming tedious. I also noticed that my younger daughter was skipping things written in the planner, losing track of what was to be done what day, etc.
So for now I threw something else together which I think will suit what we need.

Blank Weekly Assignment Sheet

The ones I did for each of my girls are customized. I typed in what is done each day. Left a space for things like Explode the code for my younger daughter so I can jot down which pages I'd like her to do that day. And then printed about 20 or so of them. I wrote in any pages that need to be done today in anything that has page type assignments that is. And I put it all in a 3 ring binder. In that binder I put a folder that has her math pace and her copywork.

I recently started having the girls working through Ace math in addition to the flash cards. My older daughter was having trouble retaining some of her flash card facts so I added the ACE in (since I have it and it's self directed), She also is doing a page of the 2 Plus 2 is Not 5 book daily. I had thought to move her on to Saxon but she's just not ready for 54. I like that the paces are colorful and not overwhelming as far as amounts of work. My younger daughter is also doing the paces for math and her flash cards. She just really likes the set up of the Paces.

We had birthday week this week. Summer turned 7 and Skylar 9.
Yesterday we went to the city for the day and spent the day with family, having Skylar's choice of lunch and a red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting.

It's been crazy busy around here the past month or so. We've been on the search for the perfect puppy. Those who know me know I live to research LOL. So after much time, we narrowed it down to a Pomeranian (which we had had in the past and adored!), a Havanese, a Coton De Tulear or an Imperial Shih tzu.
As I was researching I kept my eye on Craigs list to see if a puppy mix of any of the breeds above, but you know it's hit or miss there.  As I kept searching, I came across some really odd folks as well. Some folks didn't want to answer a thing about the pets they were re-homing. I have found out that in the city folks are stealing dogs from yards and then selling them there. I surely didn't want to be a party to taking someone else's missing pet. I was talking with one person who would not tell me where she got the puppy she was re-homing and something just seemed off about the whole thing. She also never gave her first name. That puppy was a shih tzu pom mix.
A local pom breeder in the city didn't have the colors we were looking for (black) and was anti crate training.  I met with another local breeder who was raising her pomeranian dogs outdoors on her farm, (which I didn't know until I arrived at her home). They really are not outside dogs. They were about 5 months and really seemed like they were not getting very basic interactions that they should from the breeder. I would not have taken one of her dogs if she gave it to me for free, that's how out of control her puppies were. It would have been an uphill battle to fix a puppy from that litter. The havanese breeder wanted a fee in the range of $1800 to $3000 for her puppies. No way Bry was going to be on board with fees like that so my research ended there with that breed. On a fluke while searching for breeders in my state I happened upon a breeder of imperial shih tzus. I emailed her and she invited me by. I went to her home (first thing I noticed... no doggy smell at all). And she had several dogs in her home. (We really wanted an odorless dog). I played with some older puppies. They were like little stuffed animals. So calm, friendly, and very secure in themselves. I went to the puppy playpen where the rest of the available puppies were. (I had inquired after a black female - she had two at the time). So she let me play with the puppies, hold them, see the parents, we weighed them, I asked questions and she answered. I spent a good hour there. You could tell she really loves the dogs she breeds.
I told her I'd let her know by the next day if we were interested.
I went home and began to go over our options. The other puppy from Craigs list was less money, and so cute. But the folks would not let us meet her first (which was a red flag). And with the breeder puppy I was not only getting a health screened quality dog but a lifeline to the breeder when/if I needed her guidance. So even though the cost was more. We opted to go with the breeder puppy.
Also the puppy will not come with any behaviors we have to un-teach her. She will be a blank slate so we can train her our way. She will be tops 5 to 8 lbs. And the breeder is going to teach us the puppy clip so we can keep her coat easy to care for. (Bry's going to be doing the puppy haircuts LOL). And she has agreed on not doing any more puppy vaccines since I prefer a specific delayed and more minimal vaccine schedule.

The breeder had some really neat things that I'd never seen before. One was a puppy playpen:
And this Iris:
I have a puppy playpen arriving today (instead of just having her in a crate all the time).
The kids and I have her food bowls, toys, clothes (target had clothes on sale for $2.50 an outfit), bed, and food all set to go. We have named the puppy Alice. (From Twilight and from Resident Evil) I named her not the kids LOL.

We also adopted a fantastic orange kitten (3 months old) from the local shelter on Election day. He is such a great little guy. Doesn't even flinch in our somewhat noisy house. Sleeps with one of the kids at night, (he goes from bed to bed). We have named him Biggie. (We had a friend who had a cat named Biggie Smalls after the rapper and always thought that was a riot). But you can tell he has a big heart so the name fits. And we already had our cat who is going to be 4, Bones. He's taken to the kitten well.

So that's about what's been going on in our neck of the woods.
Happy Homeschooling!

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