Veteran's Day Parade

After our the soccer game today, we attended the Veteran's Day Parade in AB. It's a small-town so it's a really small (2 mile) parade. But somehow, everybody gets excited about it no matter how dinky it is! It's probably the only thing that the community gets together for.

(Dave smiles at the camera while an antique red car drives by behind him)
These biker-happy people were VERY excited about seeing Dave. Someone yelled out (over the loud hum of cycles) "Paw for Patriot's?"  "Yes 'sir" I answered and we exchanged a thumbs up
(Dave watches as the bikers ride by.. he wasn't fazed a bit by the loud hum!)
So in return, a lady took a picture of Dave and I from her bike... can you see her?
(Dave stands close to me while a biker takes a picture with her iPhone)
(Dave watches as a small float rides by)
 The pirate floats are always rambunctious, wild and very noisy. At one point, their float was playing the song "Who let the dogs out". We can always count on the pirates to throw plenty of beads. After someone threw some beads and yelled "for the dog" I slid them over Dave's head and the ladies went nuts. They thought it was the cutest thing. And then the bead collecting started.
Here is a video my dad took of Dave getting some beads... Dave got more than I did!

(Dave watching a red pirate float go by... while wearing a few beads of course!)

(A pirate getting ready to slip some MORE beads over Dave's head :)

(Dave and I standing and showing off my few and Dave's  many beads)

There is always a cannon float for a restaurant called "Beanies". Unfortunately, they only fire the cannon 2-3 times for the parade (just to show you how short it is :) so over the music, and people cheering, you don't really hear it until it's right in front of you. Of course, Beanie the cannon stopped right in front of us and lo and behold, fired. Twice. And Dave? Didn't move a muscle. Whoop whoop!
Dave then proceeded to crash when we got home... talk about exposure overload! Crowds, cheering, yelling, clapping, loud music, smokey smells (from the cannon), motorcyles, marching band, children, beads and candy being tossed around, police sirens, army tanks and trucks... it was a good day.


Seafood Festival

(Dave and I sitting beside our booth)
This past weekend was the Ruskin Seafood Festival. (you can also call it the Tomato Festival and the Manatee Arts Festival... all three are exactly the same :)

Our Puppy Group always has a booth at these festivals to educate the public about Guide Dogs. Specifically Southeastern Guide Dogs.

(Dave sits nicely while I hold his leash and a really nice, very curious man pets Dave. The guy had some great questions about the school and the guide dog process. You don't raise 5 guide dogs and not learn a thing or two :o)
(Dave lays down nicely while watching people wander by. He did great at not getting too excited about people... but he really liked the greyhounds at the greyhound rescue booth :)

As well as seafood, there are animals, health and wellness screenings, homemade goods, art, jewelry, and contests.... like this one...
(Dave sitting in front of a hot pink smart car. The smart car fits only two people -or a person and a dog- and is the perfect size for a semi truck tire to squash it. I would freak out about driving it on the highway!)
Raffle to win a pink smart car, a golf cart, or $25,0000. I'm not so much a pink girl, but hey it's a car right?
Can you just see Dave and I riding around in it? Nope. Me neither. But hey, it's a car. And I haven't won it yet. The car or the cash.

Here is Dave with the ponies. Poor Ponies. I'm sure they would much rather be frolicking in a large grassy field somewhere, but they were hear to entertain kids. And Dave. Although he wasn't so much entertained as you can see in the picture.
(Dave sitting in front of the ponies waiting to be ridden by small children... Dave is looking over his shoulder at me with a very bored expression on his face)
Here is Dave with a pig. The pig is almost the same size as Dave which tickled me pink :)

(Dave and the pig, which is in a gated area, are standing almost side-by-side. Dave like the smell of the pig)

And there is no such thing as a seafood festival without some pirates!

(Dave with 6 pirates -wenches- they told me they took a picture the day before with a chocolate lab... these handsome boys sure have a way with the ladies :)

Dave's Halloween

Our family doesn't celebrate Halloween.   -What no candy?!?-
We used to. My mom loved dressing us three kids up in coodinating costumes. Like one year, when it was just Collin and I, we were "Mary had a little lamb" -Collin was the lamb- but my lamb kept running away leaving a trail of cotton balls that fell from his outfit (my mom glued every one of those cotton balls on his outfit by hand) so I then became "Little Bo-Peep lost her sheep".
One year (once Kaitlyn was in the picture :), the three of use were "The three blind mice". If our scanner worked I would post that picture. It was probably my favorite.
Another I can remember just because the face mask was so very irritating cute, I was "Cat in the Hat" and Collin and Kaitlyn were "thing one and thing two".
Waaaay back when I was an only child, I was a bird. But we won't go there.

Anyway. One year, my then 3 year old sister, freaked out about a house that was decked out with flashing lights, bloody walls, zombies, ghosts, you name it. She even refused to go near the house. We had to cross the street and go clear around it. So the next year when mom asked if we wanted to go, we all said no. That was when the special treats, candle light and movie night developed.
This year we got some candy at the store and played Uno in almost complete darkness. Who needs all that candy anyway right? :)

But something that is still fun to do is carve pumpkins :) I don't know why I didn't think of this with my previous guide dog puppies, but this year, Dave had his own pumpkin.

(Dave in front of the pumpkin patch)

(Dave's pumpkin in between Dave's legs. The pumpkin is spray painted Southeastern Guide Dog coat blue and the school's symbol scraped into it revealing the pumpkin's orange color. The school's symbol is the profile of a guide dog's head with the blind person's hand holding the dog's harness.)

(Close-up of Dave's pumpkin)

We did go to Walmart and show Dave the gross rubber masks, let him sniff the fake hair, and even showed him a couple full out costumes. Did he care? Nope.