Happy Birthday Bella!

My good, old, sweet Bella turned 9 today. I can’t believe how much has changed in the 9 years for the two of us. She was only 6 weeks old when I met her at a home shelter near Woodinville called Lil Waif. The woman sheltering the litter called me first because she knew that I was thinking about getting another dog. I had recently lost a 6 month old puppy from one of her previous litters to an over aggressive monster trunk in downtown Kirkland (very tragic event that led to Bella). I met all 5 pups at one time and they were a strange looking mix of adorableness.

Bella’s mom was a Labrador Retriever and her Dad was a German Shepard/ Rottweiler mix. I chose Bella because she was to me the cutest, female, and strangely enough she was the only one that didn’t whine when I put her down, she just sat quietly looking at me like she knew she would eventually be coming home with me. It was a weird instant connection. Two weeks later just before Thanksgiving of 2004 I brought her home; my first true responsibility. At one point I would probably have phrased that as I brought home my first “baby” but now that seems strange to say. Bella was however the first living being that depended on only me. Because of this she has changed me in many ways, forced me to grow up and has given me a different perspective on unconditional love. It never fails to amaze me how excited she is to see me each and every time I come home.

Bella truly is a great dog. Not one without her annoying quirks but still a great, loyal, loving and most of the time mellow girl. She has moved from Kirkland to Woodinville to Queen Anne then Ballard next Pacific Beach, San Diego to La Mesa, CA and now Bellevue, WA! In 9 years that’s a lot of adjusting and each time she has proved to be an adaptable family member. She has lived with over 10 different roommates and was affectionately welcomed into the Pellegrini family by Michael when we moved in together in 2008. Although we still refer to her as Bella Rudd (it has a ring to it) she is definitely a Pellegrini. Her favorite thing to do at home is sleep, she loves chasing Ava around the front yard these days and can not resist the urge to swim if within 75 feet of almost any body of water no mater how big or small. Her nicknames include, Bellers, Belle, Bells, Bella Rudd, B, Old Maid and the Fun Hater. She has proved to be a great dog with kids and does not even flinch when Ava pokes and pulls at her. We all love Bella.

Happy Birthday, Bella! You’re a good girl.

The rest of the family is doing ok. Everyone has been a little under the weather the past few days. Thankfully Elise appears to be the only one with no symptoms of illness. She is doing wonderful and attended her first wedding with Michael and I this past weekend on Whidbey Island. She was an amazing wedding guest and didn’t do anything but enjoy herself all afternoon and well into the night.

Ava is continuing to get better every day but is still not her vibrant, unstoppable self these past few days. She has been enjoying a lot more down time than normal which I have to admit is kind of nice. She isn’t usually one to lay down and watch a movie with you but we have been doing a bit of that and enjoying it. She had a great weekend with Grandma while we were out of town and the 3 of us dropped her off at the airport yesterday. It was, of course, another awesome trip. So much so, that I think we are all a bit exhausted from it. Combine that and this little bug and we are all on a little bit of forced downtime.

We have a few dinner parties planned for the week. One with Dana, Brad, Kallan and Anna tomorrow night at their house here in Bellevue. Another planned for Saturday at our house with a few friends. Michael is off school for the week and it’s my last week off before I start back up part time on 10/1. We’ll make the most of it with a good mix of fun, family and down time.

Bella on her 9th birthday
Bella on her 9th birthday

Melissa and Jamie's wedding on Whidbey Island
Melissa and Jamie’s wedding on Whidbey Island

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