I remember that fact, not because I have such a keen mind for weather history, but because on that extraordinary day, our dog Willow gave birth to 10 puppies! How could I ever forget THAT?? :)
In honor of the half-birthday of those dear little puppies, I want to take a moment to provide an update on where they are now. Actually, what I really wanted to do in honor of this momentous occasion was drive around to all the homes where the puppies are and give them each a nice bone to chew on--and give cupcakes to the people living in those houses. :) But since that wasn't exactly practical, I settled for sending some messages to the puppies' owners, inquiring about any updates or recent pictures they might have and might want to share. Quite a bit cheaper and less time-consuming than bones and cupcakes and gas for the van to drive to all those places. ;-)
So here, in the order that we gave them away, is a little info about each puppy.
1. Oliver/Finn - 3rd born, named by Tobin - We gave him to Jane, a friend that I met because she has a son in the Shenandoah Valley Children's Choir with Josiah. She was interested in getting two puppies, but came on Sunday, March 13, to get one to start with; and she chose Oliver. No big surprise that he was the first one taken. His looks were so distinctive that he was a mighty popular fellow! :) She and her family renamed him Finn, and we had the GREAT joy of visiting them in May.
2. Koda - 6th born, named by me - We gave him to Jen, a friend whom we first met when she coached David's soccer team when he was five or six. She and I kept in touch through Facebook; and when she started homeschooling her children, we connected more often. Quite soon after the puppies were born, she contacted me and expressed her interest in getting a puppy (they already had a female dog named Fiona). She and her husband and their two kids came on Sunday, March 13, to get Koda; they decided to keep his name, which made me happy, of course, because I chose it. ;-) Jen sends me pictures and updates about Koda fairly often which is great fun for me. :) We also got to visit Koda once since he left us! :)
3. Redemptress/Chara - 5th born, named by Josiah - A day after she got Oliver, Jane came back to get Redemptress; and I was thrilled to think that two of the puppies would get to stay together. I think maybe it's been a little like having twins - double trouble? - but hopefully double the joy (the meaning of the name "Chara"). :) And the pictures Jane sends me of Finn and Chara cuddling together (and with their people) are beyond adorable. :)
4. Sheva/Thor - 7th born, named by Jeff - Ellie is the daughter of a couple who went to church with my family when I was growing up, so I have known of her for a long time, but since she's younger than me, I didn't really know her before. I was so glad when her mom contacted me and asked to come visit the puppies one week after they were born. Ellie and her husband came, too (and several times after that as well); and when the puppies were ready, Ellie came again on Tuesday, March 15, to get Sheva whom they renamed Thor. :)
5. Sofia/Sophie - 8th born, named by all of us, I guess (we thought she must surely be the last puppy Willow would have, so we were talking about the word for "end" in Hebrew which is "sof"...that became Sofia...and then Willow went on to have two more puppies to our great surprise so Sofia wasn't the end at all!) - Our friend Sarai told me that she had a friend, Daniel, who was thinking about getting a puppy; and I added his name to the list I made of prospective new owners. When his turn actually came, I wasn't at all sure if he would still be interested or if he might have found a puppy somewhere else that he got instead of waiting for one of ours; but sure enough, he was still looking for a puppy. I didn't know him at all so, truth be told, I was a little nervous about whether he would be "good enough" for our puppies! ;-) But I was reassured by a few things: first, when he showed up on Thursday, March 17, he had his dad with him and seemed genuinely interested in his dad's opinion about the dogs (any young man who is humble enough to seek his dad's wisdom quickly rises in my opinion of him!). Second, I later found out that a lady I know also knew him because of her son wrestling with him, and she had good things to say about him. And third, my friend to whom we gave Mystery happened to see Daniel out walking with Sofia not long after he got her, and she stopped and had a nice chat with him. So all of that put my heart at ease. :) Daniel decided to make a slight change to her name, and she became Sophie. :)
In these pictures, Sophie was hanging out with Scout, Sarai's dog.
6. Mystery/Remi - 4th born, named by David - I had known for quite a while that Kristy, a friend of mine from about 24 or so years ago, was interested in a puppy; and she really loved the classic brown puppy look of Mystery (and her look-alike Koda). David was REALLY hoping that Kristy would get Mystery, and we were ecstatic when Kristy brought her family to visit on Thursday evening, March 17, and ended up choosing to take Mystery home with them! :) After much family discussion in their household (and even lots of suggestions from Kristy's Facebook friends), they decided to give their new puppy the name Remi.
7. Bolt/Chip - 2nd born, named by Shav - Maretta and I were friends in high school and had reconnected through Facebook, and she had watched the puppies grow up through the pictures and videos I posted. Bolt was a crowd favorite (especially because of his funny habit of falling asleep in the dishes I used to give the puppies their food) :), and Maretta and her family (she's a mom of three great boys) were the lucky ones that got him, coming on Friday, March 18, to pick him up...and he was lucky to get them! :) They named him Chip.
9 & 10. Princess/Coraline - 1st born, named by Moriah - and Judea/Paige - 10th born, named by Jeff - During the two months that we had the puppies, quite a few people had contacted me about possibly getting one; and I kept a very organized list and went down it, letting people choose as their name came up. But eventually, we got to the end of my list; and at that point, one of Jeff's customers, Jerry, let us know about a friend of his, Dixie, who was looking for a puppy. She and some of her family came to our house on Monday, March 28; and when she arrived, she ended up taking Princess for herself and Judea for her younger brother. Princess got the new name Coraline, and Judea because Paige! And just like that, the puppies were gone.
Gone, but not forgotten. Never, ever, ever, ever forgotten.
Happy half-birthday, dear little puppies who aren't so little anymore!!! :)