I am a bad blogger... it's been ages since I've written on here! So, here goes with an update. It's the condensed version, but a lot has been going on, so get ready!
We found a fenced dog park in Mesa... Sedona liked doggie park a LOT! We went last Sunday (not yesterday) morning for the first time- the other dogs liked her too... the minute we got inside the fence and let her off her leash, she was surrounded by at least 8 dogs, all doing their sniffing thing. There were a couple great danes- they were sniffing, and also slobbering! (We had no idea dogs could slobber so much!) By the time we got Sedona out from under the doggie pile, she was soaked with slobber! (okay, maybe not soaked, but it was icky!) The dog park is only about 3 acres, but there's room to run, which she hasn't really ever had. Our yard in Crystal Lake wasn't really big enough for her to run full out- which she did- a lot! She chased other dogs' tennis balls, and other dogs, and checked out the other owners, but she always came back to us, which is a good thing. They also had a doggie drinking fountain which she finally figured out how to use- she was so tired at one point that she plopped down right next to it to drink laying down! (there's a pic of that, but Tom has the camera at work, I think). Amazingly enough, she still wanted to play when we got home- we were kind of thinking (hoping) that she would sleep for the rest of the day- no such luck!
We also found a Doggie Day Care facility in Gilbert- it's a Pete and Mac's franchise, which Jackie will probably recognize, since they have three facilities in the KC area. She went to Day Care Saturday (2 days ago), for all-day day care. They sell dog stuff in the lobby, so they have some props inside- right inside the door, there's a pretty big stuffed Rottweiler, which Sedona actually barked at when we walked in (LOL!). It was kinda hard to leave her there for the day (I'll admit, I did call once and check up on her), but we know it's good experience for her to get more socialization. She hung out all day in the small-dog area, got a treat in the afternoon, and even got a report card grading her visit. According to her report card, she didn't meet a "doggie buddy" while she was there, though- apparently she was a bit timid, and hung around all day with the "Pet Guardian" (the guy who kept an eye on the dogs and cleaned up all the doggie messes). Hopefully she'll socialize more next time!
We're holding off on more all-out dog park exercise for a bit, since her paws aren't quite used to it yet- the vet checked her out before we took her to the day care, and found a few cuts and raw spots on her pads, which will toughen up eventually.
Now, to switch gears totally:
We found out last Monday that our apartment complex has been sold, and the new management is turning it condo. It's nice for an apartment, I guess, but needless to say, we do NOT want to buy this place. So, the house hunt has begun- again! We were stunned when we read the letter; we had no idea of the pending sale, and were really hoping to stay here at least a couple years, to wait out the housing market and also to save up some more down payment. But, now our plan is a BIT accelerated, because we really don't want to make another temporary move to a different apartment complex if we can help it.
So, this last weekend, we started house hunting. We have an agent (our agent is the sister of the agent who sold our house in Illinois- it's a small world, right?), and have been trying to figure out what we can afford, and where we want to live. Right now, the plan seems to be SOUTH... the east valley is just TOO built up, and TOO expensive for what we want- which is 4 BR for all our stuff, a formal space for the piano, a family room/kitchen for the entertainment area, and a fenced backyard for the dog. Where we're looking is a smallish (for the moment, anyway) town named Maricopa, which is about 15 miles south of Phoenix a few miles west of I-10. This will give both Tom and me good access to the interstate to head north- his office is in Chandler, which is just SE of Phoenix, and I work near the airport, which is also off I-10. Maricopa is BOOMING right now- the town was incorporated in 2003: the population is about 30,000 right now, but the long range plan through the year 2025 is for it to top out at about 350,000. (Lots of people are moving to the Phoenix area, if you haven't guessed that!) It is situated between the Gila River Indian Reservation and a smaller one called the Ak-Chin reservation, so there is only so much space for the town to grow. More to come as we progress with whichever decision we make!!!
Tom is in town for the moment- he took last week off (comp time) to recover and catch up on some badly needed rest. The plan (right now, anyway) is for him to be in town until the 12th, when he will probably head back to Baltimore for at least a week.
And, last but not least, the first hummingbird nest is empty, and there is another nest in the pine tree right outside our front door- the nest is pretty much right over our head when we stand on our front patio! (It's a good thing sugar isn't all that expensive, because we're filling the feeder up quite often!)
Love to everyone in Illinois, Wisconsin, Missouri, and Minneapolis, and Happy Belated Birthday to Jeff!!!