We were away for the last week. Every year we volunteer at a Salvation Army Music Camp. We teach Bible, Vocal/Instrumental or Theory - whatever they need wherever we are needed. The faculty that we serve with at the camp is superb. This year felt truly exceptional and our special guests, John and Jane Lam were exceptional (Jane is pictured here with my daughter, Morgan).
It is always an outrageously fun and exhausting week. Three of our kids are now campers and they love it. This year Morgan entered the Vocal Competition for her age group. Well! The girl walked away with it! I wish you could hear her sing - she really has a gift and works very hard to improve and master this gift. And she won top honours at the camp - highest overall average in all the graded areas. All these lovely things happened last Saturday.
Then, the final program finished and we had to gather my kids together and tell them some awful news. Our dog Willow went missing while we were away.
She is such a sweet, little thing! She weighs all of 10 pounds and most of that weight is hair! We are always stopped when we walk her because she is so pretty. I cannot even begin to tell you how hard it was to tell my kids that Willow was missing. I had known since the day after she went missing, because I called home to see how my dad was feeling and he told me about her. I cried for me, for Willow and for my dad - he felt awful about it! I almost left camp to go help with the search, but we decided that wouldn't be the best course of action. We prayed - our first and best line of offence. I found I was avoiding my kids at camp because I was afraid I would spill it or they would figure it out - I just don't hide things well.
Fast forward to 2 days ago. After putting up posters and multiple-several hour search sessions we got a call that Willow had been spotted. Oh WOW!!!!! It had been 7 days since she went missing and we were just starting to talk about the reality that coyotes may have got her. We skipped supper, leashed up our other dog and went to where she had been spotted to search. Still no sign of Willow. One kidlet needed a potty break so we walked to my dad's and then back to the dog park. After several hours, hungry kids won out and we took them to McD's. We were feeling discouraged, but more hopeful that we felt that morning discussing coyotes!
Yesterday morning at 6:25 my doorbell went berzerk. I thought my husband left something AND his keys and I would need to drive him to work. I came down and there was my dad! The only reason he would be there is because he found Willow! He said she showed up at his house at 4am. Poor guy! Poor girl! Happy day!!!! He was going to call a couple of times but decided to just bring her up instead. She was missing for 8 days. Looking back, God used us to give her a scent trail home. Pippin (our male dog) marked all over the place and then I took a kidlet staight to my dad's. Her odds of survival after being missing that long were not great because there are coyotes everywhere and 2 cougars were close by as well (within 5 km/2.5mi).
She is due to be in heat in the next few weeks. We are watching her recovery, amazed at what has already happened. Much of her beautiful coat is gone - her tail is particularly thin now. However, she has already gained back much of the weight she lost, she is already becoming calm again, her paws are healing (a couple of the pads are worn right down). We may just have a house full of puppies for Christmas after all. If there are any signs of her not recovering from this ordeal, we won't have puppies, but I'll be taking her in to our vet once she goes into heat to have her checked, dewormed, and make sure it is safe for her to have puppies.
I really could do with a lot less drama!!!