Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy Birthday Riley!

In 1997 we acquired a golden retriever puppy for Krieg. We were friends of the breeders and were able to visit the litter while still living in a whelping box. Krieg wanted the name to start with an 'R'. To this day I'm not sure why but he did have a red ribbon on his neck so maybe that's where it originated.

Names were bounced around. 'Romeo' was popular but I couldn't see us standing at the door calling the dog - Romeo, Romeo where for art thou... Riley joined us in February. His AKC name is Manhattan's Golden Sonrise. Manhattan is the breeder name. Golden - duh. And Sonrise - well Krieg has always been my sonrise - an early riser and a morning person (ugh). We call him Riley, Riles, Riley Roy or Red Riley Roy Rover.

Riley has retrieved a bizillion tennis balls. He's chased after Krieg (and Matt) and a soccer ball. He's followed football passes and sat on the sidelines watching lacrosse. He's run on the beach at the Washington Coast and slept in the tents. He's lived in four different homes with us. Riley made the move cross country with us, enduring endless stops for family fun. We've walked hundreds of miles together and shared a few knowing looks. He's never liked conflict. Much like his Master. When voices were raised or horse play began, Riley would disappear to his crate or a quiet place on the stairs. But he's always been ready to greet us when we come home. Always "talking" and a exuberant wagging tail for a homecoming.

Riley turned 14 years old today. We've have no contact with the breeder family and I know one other of the little passed already. Riley has given us a couple of scares leaving us aware of his mortality. He's given us fourteen years of loyal companionship and unconditional love. It's our turn now to make him as comfortable as possible and let him know we love him too.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

My Christmas Wish - a day together

Matthew & Britnee

Tate's first run

'Nuf Said...

Our newlyweds Erin & Chris

The Hubster

Engaged Krieg and Karissa

Matthew, Taten and Britnee - such a cute lil'family.

Karissa, Matt, Tate, Krieg and Britnee

Hope your Christmas weekend was family-filled!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

No Cheeseheads

After Christmas we drove Erin and Chris home to Moscow and stayed overnight. We had breakfast with Erin and we headed south for home. Much to our surprise Mike was pulled over on the Lewiston grade. Apparently neither one us accurately knew the speed limit. Trooper Schwenke acquired the registration and Mike's driver license and left us saying he would check Mike's record.

Upon his return the trooper asked Mike if we were Packer fans... (you think?), showed us his Detroit Lions logo wallet and proceeded to tell us that Cheeseheads were now illegal in Idaho!

A trooper with a sense of humor! Thank you.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Happy Birthday Great-Great

Corinne Lillian Murwin Apfel

This is my Grandma. After I was born, my Mom returned to work and I spent week days with Grandma for three years. The bond didn't end there. Gram's house was where we had holiday feasts. It was where we gathered with aunts, uncles and so many cousins. It was where we had sleepovers upstairs in old iron beds and soft quilts. We dressed up in old clothes kept in a trunk on the back porch. We ate cookies and drank strawberry sodas at the kitchen table. We climbed the crabapple tree and picked raspberries from the garden with Grandpa and sat on the front porch in the rocking chairs where he counted cars. Grandma shared stories of her childhood... gypsies, circus bears and panhandlers. If only I'd thought far enough ahead to write some down as my memory fails me now.

When our daughter was born there was no doubt her name would have a part of Gram's. Despite living away from my hometown, I made sure we had plenty of letters to mail with pictures. Our visits always included time spent with Gram. When we moved back, Great-great, as she was loving called by our children, would 'watch' the kids while I shopped for Gram's groceries when we could no longer take her out. They'd listen to her stories while I cleaned her small apartment. I truly felt like our children came to know Great-great and love her like I always will.

Today would have been Gram's 109th birthday. Happy Birthday Great-great. We love you.