Even A Car Crash Can’t Slow Us Down!

Staying Busier Than A Bee!!

We have had quite the rollercoaster ride the last couple of weeks! Thankfully, Erin and I not only survived a trip to Atlanta to attend the Georgia vs. Notre Dame football game….

…but we also survived a pretty scary car crash which we suffered on our way to a foster parent support group meeting.

Obviously we missed out on the support group, however, they are monthly, so we should be able to attend the next session. The rumor is that these support groups are more beneficial to foster parents then the “training” courses that DCS has us take.  Speaking of the training classes….we attended two 4 hour long training classes last week to knock out half of our required continuing education (CE) and licensing requirements. Please, hold your applause, because if you knew us well, you’d know that we are both huge procrastinators! For example, it wasn’t too long ago that Erin had to scramble around Christmas time to complete her CE for work. And that was for her to keep her pharmacist license!

We didn’t just spend our time dealing with the repercussions of a car crash (which in itself can be a full time job) and participating in child foster parent training. Erin made her first work related trip to New York City! She did her best to blend in by walking extremely fast with everyone else and eating food she can hardly pronounce. And finally, Erin’s cousins and our friends from Butler came up to South Bend on separate weekends to go to Notre Dame football games with us and the appropriate shenanigans ensued.

Cousins Group

Butler Friends Group










But lets go back 2 months ago to catch you up on what matters most in our lives: our foster child and foster grey.

“Can I Buy Delli, So She Doesn’t Have To Leave?”

First takeaway from two weeks of fostering both Delli and “A”: don’t count your chickens before they hatch. For every well behaved walk, there’s an accident in the living room.  For each playful jaunt or affectionate lean, there’s countless attempts at licking and irritating an open wound. Similarly, with every good school report would come an emotional breakdown. Or, for every night she didn’t make a peep, there would be a day where she refused to eat breakfast or lunch.  They’re both fosters and both of them had had some ups and downs.  On Delli’s last day with us, it was extremely apparent based on “A”‘s mood and her offer to “buy Delli first, but I only have a dollar”, that she’s sad that Delli was leaving.

“I’ll Never Leave Your Side! Unless….”

Everyone in the Jesswein home had grown accustomed to Delli’s pre-surgery personality. She loved to eat! And although “A”, Six, and Callie didn’t particularly appreciate it, she loved to lean….hard! She had a tendency to bolt for open doors and cracks in our fence, requiring a keen lookout when we would let her outside. She would get playful bursts of energy… Delli can’t be ignored!

But last weekend, the whole house had to adjust to post-surgery Delli, whether Delli wanted to adjust or not! You see, the problem was that Delli was supposed to be “taking it easy.” She wasn’t supposed to do stairs, run around the yard, go for long leashed-walks, or lick her wound…..all things that she normally loves to do! So although she was much more gentle with “A”, she quite frankly didn’t appreciate me carrying her up and down the stairs.  And after following one of us everywhere for 2 weeks, Delli would start to sneak off to lick her still very raw wound. This resulted in her despising us when we would make her wear the “poop muzzle,” which is a muzzle with a muzzle guard, after she wouldn’t stop licking her surgical wound.

It is awful tempting to take the muzzle off when you see that pitiful look!

Unlike most other fosters, thankfully, Delli was more embarrassed by having to wear the poop muzzle then anything else. Most others try for hours to remove it themselves! But happily all it really took was a stern shout for her to stop and she usually did!

Embarrassed after getting caught licking something she shouldn’t have

Ready To Help With Homework Or A Meet And Greet

Delli was always the first to be petted, the first to be fed, and the first to help. She would regularly position herself on the wood dining room floor to help “A” with her homework.

She called it helping…..we call it napping.

Taking a break at Metazoa after meeting so many new people!


Thirty-seven doesn’t sound that old until you try to remember specifics from when you were about seven or eight years old and in second grade. Go ahead and try it! We dare you! I can remember my teacher’s name, a few other kid’s names, and the time a kid bit my thigh because I cut him in line for the slide (I had it coming). Erin remembers living, although it was briefly, in Rochester IN. The point is, we don’t remember much from that period of our lives. Although brief, we hope “A” does…..even if it is just a flash memory of swimming in the pool with “Chaddy Chad Cheese” (her nickname, not ours) and us. Or walking to Graeters past her bed time because she got all A’s and one B on her report card.



Short And Sweet, Just Like “A”

Just as abruptly as we received the phone call from DCS to foster “A”, we received an unexpected phone call that she was being placed with an Aunt. To prove how unexpected it was, we were in South Bend and Erin’s mom had just picked her up from after school care. Erin’s mom was going to watch “A” that weekend while we were in the Bend. When fostering a child (or a pup for that matter), you’re rarely given a start and end date.  But there was a little bit of heart-ache in not being able to say good bye to “A” in person.  And it was even more disappointing that we had to explain the situation to her over the phone.

Erin’s mom was nice enough to gather up “A”‘s clothes and a few other things before dropping her off at DCS. We try to remind ourselves of the positives. She was reunified with a family member. And while she was with us, she didn’t miss any school, didn’t end up in the ER, and she was able to ride the Redline like she so desperately wanted! We had started the week of September 9th, a Monday, proclaiming our galley kitchen was too small to fit three greyhounds, one child, and two adults during dinner time. And we ended the week down a foster child and a foster grey and wondering where all this space in our home had been hiding!



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