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Monday, March 31, 2008

Happy Birthday Abbey!

It's Abbey's 3rd birthday.....we already got to enjoy some great treats from the dog bakery...yum yum! (Tara and Geoff didn't like the mess, but they were D-Licious!)

Here is Abbey one of the first days they brought her home (before I was even born)--see how she didnt have all her spots yet? :)

Happy Birthday Abbey!

Love~~ Bode

Friday, March 28, 2008

Unconditional love...

Work, work, work...I love work!! Don't you wish we all felt that way about what we do? Today I worked with a sibling pair during individual sessions. One was for termination and the other grief. I just love all these kids that I work with and they seem to feel the same. Do you have anyone that loves you unconditionally? It is so wonderful to be able to offer love to these kids in order to help them through whatever they are working through!

Unconditional love means you can not take away the love we feel towards you. It does not matter what has happened to you or what feelings you are struggling to get through, we still love you and want you to be happy. I love doing whatever it takes to let our clients know that I love them without conditions. I will do tricks, lay on their laps, act silly, cuddle, play ball, squeak my toys, go ice-bobbing, etc. to just get a smile and let the client know that I love them and care about them.

If we all could show more unconditional love for others, this world would seem so much happier! I have lots of love to share and hope you do too! (PS this is Bode)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Tag...You're It!

Hi...Abbey here! I had some fun sessions today. One was a termination session, which means our last session with the client because they made all their goals and are doing much better. This client asked Tara to have me there as part of the session and it was great!

We were playing basketball and talking about all the progress the client made and then he started running around the play room. Tara encouraged me to do so as well and when I would get to him, I would roll on my back and beg for my belly to be rubbed! He didn't buy it and kept saying "Tag, You're It". This was a different kind of tag than Bode and I play, so I tried to play along. I kept losing because I wanted to get tagged by getting my belly rubbed...that is one of the best things in the world for me! It was fun and I got tired fast, but when the client noticed I was tired, he took care of me by giving me my water and a cookie. He was great and I cuddled with him while he and Tara played a game.

Termination sessions are hard on all of us--the client is nervous to end sessions because of the safety of the play room and losing the relationship with us (Tara, Bode, and I), but they are also great because of the progress a client has made when they reach termination time. Bode and I get sad because we can't play with those client's anymore--but it is also great to see how far some of them have come with expressing themselves through words, play, and with me (or Bode)!

In ending the blog today, I would like to say "Tag, You're It" as we would love to hear about your canine adventures or just anything you feel like sharing! Happy Easter!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Anger Management

Whoa did I have a day! (It's Bode.) After my anger situation last week for being blamed for something I didn't do, I have been very aware of people being angry and experienced it today at work. Tara said we were going to help one of our clients with anger management, but I was not sure what that meant. Guess what? That means things make him mad and he doesn't know how to address them or work with the feelings! Good thing I know how to help!

Well first let me tell you that I was not really scared, I just knew how to help this kid--I think Tara thought I was really scared though! He played with a bop bag and I jumped on the couch for Tara to comfort me and then he would call me back. I would go back and then it would happen again. Finally I pretended I was Abbey's size and climbed on the back of the couch where it touches the wall---this was a balancing act, but he figured out I was scared. I did not move for awhile and he discussed how others see him like I did. I was not ready for his ideas for anger management and tried to help Tara teach him better options such as deep breaths, like with bubbles...I love bubbles! Ideas such as hitting your pillow or screaming into it were talked about too. There are lots of favorite is to walk or run! Hopefully everyone, including our neighbor and clients will learn how to control their anger so that we can all get along better!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

I got blamed for something I didn't do...

Hi it's Bode. Tara and I are still trying to figure out what happened yesterday. I was so excited because Abbey and Geoff were asleep so Tara and I decided to take a walk...just the two of us! We started out and things were great. I was walking nicely and the weather was perfect!

We got about five minutes into our walk and this neighbor pulled up in a big white SUV and blocked us from continuing our walk. Tara took her music off and talked to the lady, but the lady began to yell and pointed at me. At first I was excited because I thought she wanted to be my friend, but then she kept yelling and I could tell Tara was not happy. This lady would not let us leave and Tara said she did not want to argue with her. I didn't really understand what was going on until we got home and Tara told Geoff that the lady was blaming me for "pooping" in her yard. My feelings were hurt so bad because I didn't do it. Apparently she said I do it every week, but that isn't possible because I am usually at work or playing in the backyard with Abbey. Tara and Geoff didn't know what to do because they knew that we were being falsely accused.

Have you ever had anyone falsely accuse you and not be able to speak human language to defend yourself? It is hard and seemed hard for Tara to do as well. We are always so careful on our walks not to go in people's yards, especially to do that. I wish there was a better way to prove I didn't do it because I do not like someone being upset with me, but the part that has me the most concerned is there was a little boy in the back of the car that watched his mother do this to Tara and I...I think we will find a new path to walk to be sure this lady couldn't even say we touched her yard. Let's hope this little boy does not have to witness his mother like this too often or hopefully he has a dog to help him through his rough times!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Quality Time!

Tag, you're it! Quality time with family is so important, as well as quality time with individual family members. Today we spent some quality time in the yard playing tag and running figure 8's through the palm trees. Although we tore up some of the grass from running, everyone is fine as we were doing it in fun (and not digging)!
We recommend everyone take time from the TV, computer, phones, and whatever else causes you to feel to busy to let yourself be free and PLAY with a family member. If you desire, quality time can also be had by snuggling together watching movie or TV, we just recommend being active as it also relieves stress. Another great option is to have frequent family dinners and family fun nights. Cooking dinner together as a family or simply ordering in can be fun. We have families in the counseling practice tell us they have candlelight picnics in the yard for dinner or have "no utensil nights" to encourage giggles and creativity.
The important part about quality time and family time are to do activities that those participating love to do and be creative! Family Fun nights can be at home playing board games or out playing miniature golf or throwing the ball for you dog to fetch (or even taking your dog to the dog park)...the key is no cell phones ringing or text messages arriving and focusing on each other---Laugh and smile a little too! We hope this encourages you to find some quality time with your loved ones and don't forget those canine loved ones!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

A mini-person?

Hi, It's Abbey! I did lots of work this week because Tara and Geoff wanted Bode to rest after the incidents this weekend. He is going better for those of you that have asked, but he barks a lot at dogs out the front window and has been having loud dreams where he starts running and whining.

Anyhow, I am writing to let you know of a new experience I had. I was working with a pre-teen and talking about lots of "teen" stuff when all of a sudden this noise came from the other side of the door. I froze and then it stopped, so I started to chew on my chewie...then I heard it again and a laugh followed. Tara and our client didn't move. What was that? This happened and I tried to peak under the door but couldn't so I sniffed like crazy and have no idea what that smell was.

After our session we went into the waiting room and there was something there that resembled a person, but it was staring me in the eyes. I am not kidding you, this little person was just looking me at my level. All the regular sized people were looking at us and laughing and then the noise came again. The mini-person had a smile...Tara said something about "baby" and me not knowing what a baby is. Apparently that is the human word for this mini-person that does not say words but just makes noises. The smell of this mini-person was interesting too, but both she and I were scared of each other and just stared at each other and I sniffed the air. It was fun, but I am not sure how close I can get to a "baby" because it did not want to come near me and Tara let me decide to stay back...and I did. Maybe next time I will smell more and trust to get closer to explore this "baby"/mini-person.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

I just want to be your friend...

I love meeting new people, but the past two days have not been so great as there are people who do not understand that their dogs do not like other dogs and should not be around people. You see, Tara took me at meeting with other play therapists and I got to relax and people watch at a local outside eatery while the educated therapists met with each other. Then this lady (who had lots of make-up on and poofy hair) came by and was letting her little dog, that is the same size as my toys. run crazy on one of those leashes that let you go far and then not so far (Tara says retractable). I was not paying attention and did not see this dog come up to me until I felt a pain in my leg. I jumped and barked and the lady would not move her dog. I wanted it to go away and did not want to be around any other dogs except my sister, but we had left her at home.--Sorry Abbey! I finally calmed down and Tara checked my leg to be sure I wasn't hurt too bad. I felt better after we were home and napped for the rest of the day.

Today I got to go help CARES at the Celebrate Cape Block Party and couldn't wait to play with all the kids. There were so many great people and I had so much fun representing CARES and inviting people to the walk next week...until this man with a black dog came toward me. That other dog did not like me and I didn't do anything to him! His owner kept coming closer and I was getting scared so I barked...maybe I was still scared from yesterday, but this dog did not seem friendly at all. I know I was not listening to Tara, but she doesn't understand that I was protecting her! After that I decided I only wanted to visit with people, especially children and encouraged other dogs to not come to our booth! I think right now Abbey and I need to work harder with the kids as we don't seem to have the same goals in life as other dogs! Thanks to all you new people I met tonight and for those that donated to CARES! Let's save as many lives as we can!