Our Family Grew by One (and It’s Not a Baby)

Abby Schmidt Shepherd/Lab Mix

There’s a new member of the Schmidt family!

…and it’s not a baby.

Well, not really.

Her name is Abby.
She’s 3 months old.
She’s Shepherd/Lab/mix.

She’s absolutely adorable.
Absolutely sweet. Gentle. Playful.

She pooped last night.
And this morning.
She walked on a leash (mostly) without pulling.
She peed after I prayed to Jesus Lord help me to help her pee outside (since she’s a gal, she’s not interested in marking her territory unless she actually has to pee, I guess!)

Wait… those last few points are the things I’m over here freaking out about, but not you… right? 😉 #prouddogmom

Abby Schmidt Shepherd/Lab Mix

We are so in love already. We have been since we laid eyes on her on Monday.

Remember Tuesday’s post on how to not let fear stop you or make your decisions? Well, that’s the story of how we got Abby…

And bless it… again. Here’s another example of how deeply grateful I am that we made a decision rooted in love and faith and NOT fear.

Had we let fear steer the ship we would not have her right now and would be filled to the brim with regret.

Here’s the story…

Over the weekend we watched our friends dog, Bruno. WHAT A LOVE HE IS. When I went to take him home on Monday I felt such a loss. We (Marco and I) both missed him.

Bruno was so full of love; it was better than therapy having him around (ha!).

We cuddled him, walked him, fed him, and wanted to take him everywhere. When we left the house, we missed him.

I wanted a love like that and felt it was time, should we found the right pup – not the one we would pick, but the one who would pick us. That was our Abby girl.

After Marco got off work on Monday we went to the Nevada Humane Society in Reno. We had seen Abby on the website (along with her 5 brothers and sisters) and wanted to go see her.

We played with her and immediately fell in love. She was SO gentle and sweet. She was not playful there – we learned this trait about her once we got her home (she is SO fun and playful at home!).

They were SO good with her. I absolutely love the Nevada Humane Society.

Anyway… as we played with her, I wanted to take her home and Marco wanted to pump the breaks. I knew he was right. We needed to think about this. It was a big decision.

Well, we thought and thought and thought. We went back and forth. There were several times where we decided “NO” only to, moments later, instantly feel a loss knowing we wouldn’t have her.

Marco and I have wanted a dog together since we started dating back in 2012. In fact, when we were friends we talked about renting a place together and having a pup.

Everywhere we’d lived up until now didn’t allow dogs. Now, our apartment allows dogs and soon enough… and she’ll have a whole backyard to run around in (since one of the reasons we moved to Reno was to buy a house!). For now, she has happy creek (our shared favorite place to walk and play – you guys… she loves it possibly more than I do!).

She’s wonderful. Yesterday, I had coaching sessions and she just slept at my feet. Quiet, calm, soo precious.

She’s playful when you play with her, and she’s completely restful when you leave her alone.

She’s already teaching us unconditional love and has brought us closer in less than 24 hours (are some of you thinking: “Yeah, just wait until all her puppy tendencies REALLY start to show!”? Ha!).

Okay, so to the final decision making process…

It was TOUGH. There are a lot of new things happening over here…

We moved to Reno
Marco got a new job
New apartment
…and some more newness (I’m not pregnant) that we’ll share later on this year!

It’s a lot. For me, I love it. I thrive in change/variety/shifts. Well, most of them anyway! But Marco, he’s more of a one change at a time kinda guy. In some ways we’re similar with change, in some ways we’re different.

One way we are different is this: When I feel something is right I chase that thing down and maneuver my way straight to it. I find every possible reason why it WILL work and don’t stop. This is one part of me that I will say “is my personality.” I’ve been like this since I kid. When I see a way to make a good thing work (I’m not taking about irresponsible things or not thought through decisions – very different) you can pretty much assume that my one-track mind will not stop until I get there. And though it probably drives Marco insane at times (“probably” – ha!) I also remember that that’s one reason he married me in the first place – my ambitiousness.

I help Marco’s logical brain lean into love and he helps my mushy-gushy brain think about things that are equally important. We’re a good team, he and I. We’re a constant balancing act.

That said, it wasn’t easy. This was a HARD decision for us to make. Harder than I expected. I thought “We both want a pup. It’ll be easy!” Little did I think… to Marco, who also loves and adores her… we were bringing another life into ours. A little animal who needs love, care, attention, focus, money (and who also just took a sip of my coffee as I write this – OMG I LOVE HER).

He felt all the love the first time we saw her and his brain (understandably) went straight to logistics – the “how’s,” the financials, ways we’d protect her (insurance, etc).

What it finally came down to was this: Marco knew that if I brought her home, he’d fall in love with her. He just needed me to do it. He needed me to make the final say. Which I was ultimately okay with (though I needed to know he was equally on board with raising her).

So I did… amongst all of my fears (I was surprised how many I had!) I made the choice to go pick her up. This was with the help of many prayers from my girlfriends, phone convos asking for support, and my friend Nichole literally saying “She is meant for you. I can feel it. I’m meeting you there at 11:00 AM to pick her up”…and our family grew by one.

We couldn’t love her any more than we do. Marco is cuddling her and calling her “sweetheart” as I type (Lord help me). Logistics feel subtle now. And the love feels HUGE. I already cannot (even for a second) imagine not having her with us. She’s like a little slice of heaven. Filling our home with peace and joy.

And eventually, I’m sure… poo and pee. But we’re working on that from day one to make it minimal 😉 So far so good!

I wanted to share this post to…

  1. Invite you in on this special journey with us (I like to keep this blog raw, safe, and personal)
  2. To let you know how truly afraid I felt in making the final call… but to share how GRATEFUL I am that I did it anyway

To let you know… as I always say… if there’s something you want but you are afraid, envision it being good. Imagine it turning out well. Imagine if none of your fears came true (it’s amazing how many fearful scenarios we can create in our minds when we’re unsure) and you were able to enjoy the fruit of this thing that you want to make happen.

Would it be worth it? Would you look back two weeks from now, two years from now, five years from now… and be so thankful you said YES?

That was the final straw for me. We BOTH already missed her so much from Monday to Thursday, when we finally picked her up (it was a literal miracle that the Humane Society still had her on Thursday!)… I think we both knew that two weeks from now if we said NO, we’d be regretful. And if we brought her home, we had faith in God and ourselves that everything we were worried about would get figured out.

Things I am excited to do with Abby…

  1. Take her on 1,000,000 walks
  2. Take her camping
  3. Take her to Hub Coffee Roasters and sit outside on the patio area with the other pups
  4. Introduce her to friends pups right away so she can be friendly with other dogs
  5. Continue training her (we are crate training straight away – she’s doing so good!)
  6. Be a family with her and Marco – Marco already deemed “family nap time” later today (since we woke up at 3:45… not because of Abby but because I was excited to play! Haha!)
  7. Introduce her to her MANY aunties and uncles and her grand-dog-parents 😉
  8. Have a buddy around the house when I’m working from home. It already feels more full in our home

Abby Schmidt Shepherd/Lab Mix

Thank you so much for letting me share this sweet day with you! We’re so excited to welcome our sweet little green eyed Abby girl into our family and cannot wait to continue sharing her with you (something I cannot and will not be able to contain). Instagram, prepare!

Love, Paige
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