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Friday, February 23, 2018

And Her Name Is....

   ICYMI, we got ourselves a little yellow Labrador retriever on Monday. She is a doll and admittedly we are falling in love even though the sudden halt to our life of leisure and independence took some getting used to. We had not intended to get a pup quite this soon but Doug saw the ad for these puppies on craigslist and there were so many things that were right about this situation for us. So we drove out to the breeder’s house and I knew within 10 seconds that we had ourselves a dog.The puppies loved shoelaces and all of them were busy working on mine at one point!
  There were 7 pups in the litter, one of the female yellows was spoken for so that left our little nugget along with two males. One of the males was rowdy and reminded us a bit of Tanner. Charming as he was, we kind of thought that a bit smaller and perhaps less intense this time around might suit us better! People say that dogs choose their owners and well, I kind of feel that way about her. She was so sweet, wanting to be picked up and loved, and she was tiny, a very petite little girl. 
So that was that. We said yes, we paid for her and off we went with her in tow, which was a huge surprise to me that we were bringing home a dog on Monday, February 19, 2018. 
   We still had all of Tanner’s stuff so the only thing we really needed was to stop and buy food, dog poop bags and a few chew toys. Crazy that we were back in dog ownership and even crazier that we were back into puppyhood. You do forget how demanding these first weeks are but slowly but surely we are figuring out the drill. It’s much easier working with her from a house with patio doors that lead directly outside than from the apartment we had in Stockholm and of course, the mild climate is an advantage as well although it has been unseasonably cold out here with a lot of wind. We look forward to hanging out on the patio with her although she already seems quite at home on the chaise loungers!
 So really likes chasing a tennis ball and jumping around the backyard. She likes her monkey toy the best. And of course, she is interested in chewing shoes, my red toe nails (note to self, next pedicure, get a more subtle color 🤣) and anything with strings. She seems to be responding to no but it’s early. We do have to watch her like a hawk as she’s fast and determined. She eats like a champion and she is smaller than Tanner ever was and also much more mellow. She wants to play hard but then she’ll crash out on your lap for hours. She loves being close and we’re happy to be her cuddle buddies right now.  We are trying to be strict, not letting her jump, not letting her sleep over night with us, saying no, but it’s hard to not want her on our laps all the time. 
So of course, the great debate was her name. Because she was unexpected in terms of the timing, we hadn’t really thought about it. I have always wanted a dog named Zoey but Doug nixed that over and over again. Very disappointing for me but what can I say? We tried out Annie. It didn’t stick. Other candidates included Harper and Sandy but again, neither of them felt right for them long haul. We moved away from Nordic names since our connection to Sweden is in the rear view mirror. And we tried to think of something related to our travels or food but calling a dog baguette while cute, didn’t really seem all that practical! We wanted a strong female but naming a dog after Jo March in Little Women when your name is Jodi seemed a bit over the top. Female names have always been harder for me so I just wasn’t feeling drawn to anything.
   Then Doug came up with Madeline/Maddie, inspired by the children’s books set in Paris and that seemed quite viable. We also enjoyed, in Paris, the amazing company of an 8 year old Madeline last spring so that was a good connection too. But I wasn’t sure. So I did a little more digging and came up with Sydney as it suits the global nature of our lifestyle and is a beach city. I could’ve gone with Cali based on our new home or something related to the desert but again, nothing really stuck for both of us. So we tried out Maddie and Sydney. I put the question out on Facebook and while there was lots of support for both names, Maddie was a bit of a front runner. I began to get concerned about saying sit Syd and Sydney didn’t quite have the strength we wanted. Then I was watching the US women’s cross-country sprint team comprised of Jessie Diggins and Kikkan Randall, beat out the Swedes and Norwegians for the first gold medal ever in cross country skiing and suddenly Jessie was appealing! But again, the alpha male in the household didn’t like it at all. So after all of the back and forthing and wondering and garnering opinions from everyone we know, Maddie was making a strong case for herself. Then, the US women’s hockey team won the gold medal in large part because of the stealthy play of goalie MADDIE Rooney and well, that was an excellent connection as well. 
So meet Ms. Madeline, Labrador extraordinaire, curious, strong, adventurous. It suits her and we love it. Nicknames will surely include mad dog and Madagascar and we couldn’t love her more. 
And with all of our beautiful photos of Paris, we just might have to recreate our own series of books with this Madeline’s adventures in Paris.