Monday, July 21, 2008


May I present to you....Axel, the new 4 legged love of my life (not to exclude Riley). The drummer and I have been looking at adopting a new dog for a while now and we finally found him! I was chatting with a fellow co-worker the other day and it came up that she was a foster mom for our city's Humane Society. Well, I hadn't been on (stalking) their website yet so she showed me the link and I immediately spotted him. I emailed the drummer his pics and info (as I frequently do with other dogs...It's almost an illness) and told him that I thought that this was the one! He fell in love as quickly as I did and the next thing you know I'm filling out the online application. Now there was a little mix up with his name and picture at first...(they accidentally put his picture with his brother's name...Ace) But everything was quickly sorted out and we got our little (huge) puppy boy.
So, now that we've gotten him home and we're sharing our good news with family and friends the question of, "what kind of dog is he?" keeps popping up. Well? We don't really know? With Riley it was easy...A Golden Retriever (I got her from a breeder, she's got papers). But since Axel was abandoned on the side of a country road along with his siblings we don't know what breed his parents were. And his adoption paperwork only makes things more confusing...according to those and the website he's a Lab/Saint Bernard/Hound/Shepard mix? So being the proactive (annoyingly curious) mommy that I am, I searched the web for this:

It's a Pet DNA test that you do at home! You just swab the inside of their cheek with the test swab in the kit, put it in the envelope provided and send it off to the lab (no pun intended)(even though I think it's really cute to think there's a Labrador in a lab coat and goggles testing swabs...awwwe). In a few weeks they send you back the results with a cute certificate that tells you exactly who your dog's ancestors are! Pretty cool I think. I can't wait to find out just exactly what breed Axel is. Not only will it make my response to "what kind of dog is it?" a lot more simple, it will also provide us with valuable information about our pet like physical and behavioral traits that are specific to certain breeds. What I can tell for now is that he's going to be a Super Sized Big Boy (his paws are already bigger than my 75 lbs. Golden's). So I'll definitely let you all know what breed(s) Axel is when his test results come in, but in the meantime do you know your pet's breed? Do you know your own Pedigree? Can you guess what my puppy's chemical makeup consists of? Can't wait to see if anyone is right!

Just a Blonde's Take

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


As the 4th of July approaches us this week, I can't help but find myself somewhat sad. The sight of American flags hanging from every possible place and talk of fireworks only makes me miss my baby brother more. You see my brother is a part of the Marine Corps and is in Iraq as we type. I worry/think about him everyday and this week I find my thoughts wandering to him even more. I come from a very Patriotic family. My dad always tried to instill in us the importance of country and to uphold the ideals of our founding fathers. The constitution was almost regarded as highly as the Bible in our house. He had it posted along with the amendments on our refrigerator (the place where all things important are papers, reminders, pizza coupons). So naturally my brother wanted to defend and serve his country by joining the Marines. Now I have to say, with the exception of my father, everyone was pretty shocked and upset that my little bro decided to join the Marine Corps during the middle of a war. Not that we didn't support him in his decision or weren't proud as hell, but just worried of what that might mean in the future. A moment I will Never forget is seeing my brother for the first time after he completed boot camp. The drill Sargents had us all (family) confined to a small roped off square. All our boys came jogging out of the barracks chanting their steps. They paused in front of us staring straight ahead as we all yelled and screamed. I remember seeing my brother out of the crowd and the look on his face. It was like a dream. I could barely voice cracked...I was so excited and so over joyed that I was starting to cry as I yelled. I couldn't get it all out fast enough. The graduation was a 2 day affair, and that first glimpse of our loved ones only ended up being a tease. They had to go back to their barracks and get ready. The next day they graduated and I've never seen more relief on more faces in my whole life. I have a dear childhood friend who is also in the Marine Corps and was stationed in a nearby area. He came to my brother's graduation and presented him with a Marine coin that was given to him for good luck by another Marine before he left to fight in the war (my bro is supposed to pass it on to someone else before their first tour when he gets back). It was such a thoughtful and meaningful gift. And I felt so touched and honored that he thought enough of my brother to give it to him. I'll never forget that weekend. I got to see the ocean for the first time and it was with my brother who was starting a new chapter in his life.

The Family at my bro's graduation in San Diego

Sister, Me, Brother, Dad, and Step Mom

At the Ocean

I can't bring myself to watch the news anymore (not that I was an avid watcher before) I'm constantly afraid of what I might hear or see. I know myself well enough to know that I would drive myself crazy with worry. However despite all the worry and sadness I feel. I can't help but have a huge sense of pride. Pride in my brother, my country, and our military and their families. I now know how hard it is to see your loved ones get on a plane and not be sure if that's the last time that you'll ever see them. To know that where they are going is directly in harms way and that they are doing it all for their country. And I can't help but feel ashamed that I'm not strong or courageous enough to do it myself. This will be the first 4th of July that I'll celebrate since my brother has been gone and I know it will be hard to watch the fireworks without being a little sad and missing him. So with the rockets red glare and the bombs bursting in air I'll be rooting for all our troops. HOOORRAAAHHHH! SEMPER FI

Happy 4th Everyone!

Just a Blonde's Take

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