Vegas the Therapeutic Visitor

A couple of weeks ago, I posted (here) that Vegas passed her assessment to be a therapeutic visitor. Last Thursday, she had her first actual visit! 

CARE NC, Inc. takes dogs from the SPCA to visit local assisted living centers and since the SPCA dogs could get adopted at any time they like to have community dogs as their back up. (Anybody in the Raleigh area who wants to see if their dog can be a part of it should contact them, they need more community dogs!)

We took Vegas to visit at The Heritage in North Raleigh. She did great!! It was so sweet to see all the residents so excited about the dogs. We met a couple of the volunteers for the group and they brought a sweet chocolate lab from the SPCA with them. We went up to specific rooms that ask for visitors, knocked on the door and most of them were in their with treats in hand waiting for us! One lady was so sweet, she loves seeing the dogs so much. She had bags and bags of treats and literally pulled out handfuls at a time to feed them. It made her so happy to have Vegas eating right out of her hand. 
Where to?!

 After visiting in those rooms we headed back downstairs to the lobby and socialized with residents and their families hanging out in the library and common areas. Many of them know the exact time the group is supposed to show up on Thursdays and waits for them :) 
Hanging out in the lobby
We all had a great time bringing smiles to their faces. Tyson had been at his grandma's house while we took Vegas to visit. We went back to pick him up and he had to sniff her like crazy to see where she had been. She laid out on the couch and was basically in a food coma... she seriously had a pot-belly full of treats! 

On the way home Tyson wanted to be sure his sis could never leave him again:

Maybe one day they can go visit together!

Summer Break!!

Woohoo it's officially summer break and it has been nice and relaxing.

I've been able to sleep in and snuggle my pups:

Enjoy the back porch:

Get some sun at the pool:

I didn't finish a book all school year and in 4 days I've already read an entire book!

Fun at the pool:

One morning Trey didn't have to be in to work until lunch time so we got to hang out and make breakfast :) 

Hopefully I'll be trying lots of new recipes and completing some DIY projects this summer!

DIY: Diaper Cake

A friend at work is having a baby in July so we had a baby shower for her at the end of the school year. My best friend, Christy, needed to make a diaper cake for a co-worker also so we got the supplies and created it together. Many of the supplies that you need come in packages greater than 1 so it was essentially cheaper to split it between the two of us.

We purchased:
Target brand 3 month diapers (best brand for cute boy designed diapers and we went with 3 month because a lot of people tend to gift newborn sizes and you only need those for a little while)
Rubber bands... LOTS
4 toothpicks
Ribbon (6+ yards)
Large baby powder
Baby bottle
Stuffed animal topper
Pacis (to decorate)
Socks (to decorate)

Our process:
Start by rolling the diapers... you will need around 75-80 total. This whole thing is approximate as each one is a little bit different. I rolled against the current "bend" in the diapers.

Wrap a rubber band around the middle of the rolled diaper.

After you get enough rolled, you will need about 45 for the bottom layer, use a large rubberband and begin stacking them around the baby powder. Fill the rubberband to be nice and snug, and get the shape pretty circular. Make sure that on the outer layer of diapers the "end" of the diapers is on the inside, so that it looks nice & smooth.

Begin the next layer with the top part of the baby power. This layer is about 25 diapers. Again wrap a large rubber band around all of them. I start with a few, put the rubber band around it and continue to add more in there to fill it out.

For the top layer, put the bottle on top of the baby powder, and put 6-8 diapers around the bottle, again wrapped with a rubber band. In order to make these stay well, we used the toothpicks connecting the middle of the layers.

The cake itself is done, time to decorate. Take the ribbon, put it around the middle of the base layer, and pull enough to have room to tie a bow in the back.

Do this on each layer. Doing a bow allows you to pull the ribbon nice and snug to help hold the diapers together and also looks pretty.

Top the cake with the small stuffed animal. We sat him on top of the diapers on the top layer, "hugging" the bottle. He is secured with a rubber band around his back, under his arms and around the bottle.

Add the pacis and socks as decoration, wherever you feel like squeezing them in. You could do more or less decoration.

Semi-Wordless Wednesday: Rainy Day

Snuggling in the cabinet:

We got over 6" of rain one afternoon:

Vegas enjoying the rain from the porch:

Tyson enjoys sitting on his sister:

And standing over her:

He was upset that his daddy had his head in my lap, instead of him:

Finally, dad moved and she's all mine!

Trying to get the balls from Trey when he juggled:

A Nice Little Sunday

This past Sunday we were in town and Trey didn't have to work! (Somewhat unusual)

We got to sleep in a little (Tyson kept checking on us like wake up mom!!) and then took them to the SPCA to meet with representatives from CARE NC for a "therapeutic visitor" assessment for Vegas. CARE NC is a group that takes shelter dogs to local nursing homes for therapeutic visits with the residents. They are not technically therapy dogs since they haven't been through the training. Since these shelter dogs often get adopted out, they need other dogs as backups so that's what we are going to do with Vegas. I figured she would be GREAT at it.... just look how excited she was to see Nana last year when she got home from the hospital:

She passed her assessment with flying colors :) We also took Tyson with us. I figured he is still a bit too young and rowdy to take on the job but they actually said he would be pretty good. He was a little weirded out by the walker and crutches (they test them around "weird" things and actions since they will likely have to be around those in the nursing homes) but if he gets used to those and we want him to be a therapeutic visitor he can too! 

After the assessment we went to Bottle Revolution to enjoy the Festina Peche they had on tap... it is one of my favorite beers and really makes it feel like summer! We got a pizza at the Buffalo Brothers next door and hung out on the patio since it was so nice outside. 

We came home to watch the NCSU baseball game that lasted forever.

During the rain delay we had a quick dinner date to The Pit with a gift card that my sweet student teacher gave me at the end of her time with me this year. It was so good.

We didn't miss much of the game and got back to still watch the last 2 hours of the Wolfpack winning the super regional and moving on to the College World Series!!

Beach for Kristen's Wedding

Yesterday I posted about Kristen's wedding but didn't want to bombard that post with all of my beach/dog pictures. Like I said before, the weekend was perfect. The weather was great and we had a ton of fun. 

Trey and I headed down Thursday night after work and got up Friday morning to take the dogs on the beach and let them run before it got too crowded. 

Saturday we all went to the beach before having to prep for the wedding. Seriously, best day-of-the-wedding ever! We took the dogs but couldn't take them off the leash since there were so many people out. Tyson enjoyed swimming even with his leash on. 

Mom and Trey's mom went shelling while dad sat in the shade. 

 We played bocce and had a great time.

Sunday we relaxed and enjoyed the nice weather out on the porch before heading home, but didn't spend too much time in the sun since some of us didn't apply our sunscreen that well on Saturday ;)