A little story about Chloe... Chloe was our dog. I bought her on an impulse near the end of June on the day after Wesley's birthday in 2010.
It started innocently enough - I wanted to go to Target so I could see how much the Buzz Lightyear my mom bought Wesley cost, so maybe I could buy another one to keep on hand for Hyrum who's birthday would be in August and who was insanely jealous of little brother Wes. So, I don't remember why I decided to take all the kids with me, but I did. As we were pulling into the parking lot, there was a little cage full of black puppies. Let's do this for fun first, let's go see the puppies! Yay!
They were super cute. I started feeling a little unfocused here on what my purpose was... I'm supposed to be buying groceries, right? Hmm, well maybe we could skip food this week, we have enough at home. Hey, maybe we should use the grocery money to buy a puppy! That sounds like a good idea! Yes, I was feeling vulnerable - the look on Abi's face let me know I'd just compromised myself - the kids are all here and so they'll know I looked at puppies and had an opportunity to buy one!! I'm going to have to deal with a screaming toddler and pouting older kids for the rest of the summer if I don't. Man, but look, these puppies are just so cute! And Abi is so cute with the dogs! It'll be okay to buy one right? Not a big deal, right? Just another member of the family and another mouth to feed? Well, ookaaay!
So I said we'd buy one, and we did. Ethan said "This is the best day of my life!!! I've always been dreaming of the day I'd have a pet!! ..and today's the day!!!"
I left Joe, Mel, and Ethan with the puppies to choose which one they wanted. There were 4 females. I left Joe in charge of Wes and Abi who also wanted to stay with the dogs, and I ran in to Target with Hyrum and Lily and bought two bags of the dog food the guy recommended and got cash out of the ATM to pay for the pup. Hyrum was mad and started to hyperventilate - he did not want a dog. Another one of the reasons that I thought this impulse buy was a good idea was cause Corey and I had been discussing for a while that Hyrum needed a puppy to get over this phobia he has of anything that's small, cute, fluffy, and/or walks on 4 legs. Hamsters, puppies, kittens, they all freak him out BIG time. He did okay with a neighbor's guinnea pig. We had been talking about going to Costa Rica for a few weeks, but I remembered one phrase Corey threw out there once during one of those conversations... "I'd be willing to stay home from Costa Rica to get Hyrum a puppy..." We didn't know if we were going to Costa Rica yet, and if we don't end up going, that means: a puppy! So let's do it.
I came back from Target, handed over the dough, and we headed home to share the surprise and unexpected news with Corey. The kids were calling out rights to who got to tell Dad. Hyrum just screamed and cried the whole drive home "I don't want a dog!!! I don't want a dog!!!" I, being the biggest kid with executive decision rights, said "I get to tell Dad."
We got home, the kids ran into the backyard to wait for me to bring the puppy out, I went into Corey's office with the puppy in my arms. He saw the dog. And then I said "I bought a dog." He didn't reply. And that was it! The kids were in love, it was the beginning of summer, a dog was a perfect idea to keep them playing outside, no?
Well, Corey must have thought - if we have a dog might as well start taking advantage of it - let's get rid of this kid's fears. Hyrum objects, but Corey makes him go into the backyard with the little puppy.
Hyrum, trying to keep his feet away from the unpredictable creature - who could attack at any moment!!!
Less than 8 hours later - we had succeeded in our mission and purpose: Hyrum held the puppy.
We were very proud. He decided we were right, she was just a baby dog. She's so little, Lily's not afraid, Hyrum shouldn't be afraid either. The guy we bought her from said she was a boxer lab mix, but she mostly looks like a lab. Labrador = BIG dog. But she'd quietly turn into a big dog without him hardly noticing, so even better to conquer his fears.
So we named her Chloe - Mel chose that name and everyone liked it. It was fun to have a puppy - we took her to a 4th of July parade which was fun. Some friends teased "You didn't feel like you're life was busy enough with 7 kids, huh? Had to get a puppy too! Show off!" Yeah, since Lily just turned a year old, I needed a baby around the house :)
Fast Forward two months to August - We've decided to go to Costa Rica for 3 months for fun. What to do with the Chloe? Corey wanted to take her with us, I didn't, it was too expensive. I post on facebook that we are giving away a cute dog to a free home. The Nelsons came to our rescue. They are major dog people, put us to shame. Ilene has worked at a veterinary office, they have a boxer, Ruby, who would like some dog company. They offer to keep her for us whle we're gone. And train her!! Can we say win-win? It was perfect. We had a few doggy play dates, and the week before we fly out Chloe started sleeping at their home. They even made her her very own blog.
Then, in Costa Rica, we decided to come to Chile instead of going back to the US. So now Chloe's spent more time with them that she did with us. Plus she needs Ruby. My kids still talk about Chloe whenever we see a black dog, cause Chloe was our puppy, our first dog, and she'll always have a special place in our hearts. But the Nelsons are just amazing and like I said, they put us to shame in the dog care area. So the adoption is official. We haven't told all our kids yet, Hyrum especially, since he's attached - he and Chloe have got something special. But the kids might kinda guess it, right? I'm mean we're still going to be gone for atleast 3 more months. We told the Nelson's we just require exclusive dog renting rights - if we need a dog to play catch at the park or anything, we're allowed to go get Chloe, who is now named Nikita (There's a little girl named Chloe who lives near them, and it makes things confusing for both girl and dog at times)
We did a skype call with Chloe two weeks ago, it was fun. The kids were excited to see her on the computer.
Can you see her little black head and eyes in there? The kids we're ooo-ing and "She's so cute" -ing the whole time. They miss her. We all do. She's a great dog.
Huddled around the monitor with our cyber pet. It's nice to know she's in good hands. Love you Chloers!