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I was on the phone with my brother over the weekend, and as I was speaking with him, I discovered a hair in my guitar case. I know, gross, right? But it wasn’t just any hair – it was Decaf’s hair. Decaf is the name of our childhood dog. As we reminisced about her, I thought I should do a tribute to her. So here it is :)

We brought Decaf home from the pound when I was three years old. She is in the earliest of my memories. We named her Decaf because she was so mellow we figured she must drink decaf coffee instead of regular :) Decaf was a wonderful dog and lived to be 18 years old! The vet always marveled at her. She was no doubt a trooper. There were many times throughout her life that we thought we were going to lose her, but she pulled through, time and time again.

When I was in high school, my parents let me get a dog of my own (since my brothers staked claim to Decaf as their dog). When we first introduced Blossom to Decaf, she was a little unsure of this new pup. Decaf didn’t take no jive from nobody, especially not from other dogs! As pint sized as she was, she was always the top dog, and Blossom learned that pretty quickly. As Decaf began to lose more of her hearing and her eye sight, she became quite dependent on Blossom (though if she could talk, she would never have admitted that). In fact, Blossom gave Decaf a renewed energy, and we believe Blossom helped to prolong Decaf’s life many more happy years.

Decaf passed away the day I Randy and I got engaged. Talk about an emotional day. As my mom said, it was like the ending of an era. One chapter closed and another began. Decaf was with me, literally, through my entire childhood, until the very day that I began my journey as woman and wife to be.

So, in ode to our wonderful and faithful friend Decaf, I thought I’d post some pictures. My parents have nearly all of our old photos of Decaf, but here are a few I gathered up. It’s still hard looking at these, but Decaf lived an incredibly long and happy life. What more can you ask for?

Decaf as a young pup (circa 1988?). She put up with the torture of the kids quite well :)

Decaf as a young pup (circa 1988?). She put up with the torture of the kids quite well :)

Decaf, me and my mom. Don't let Decaf fool you in this picture: as soon as the lights went off, she was curled up next to my pillow!

Decaf, me and my mom. Don't let Decaf fool you in this picture. As soon as the lights went off, she was curled up next to my pillow!

When I was nine, my family moved from Texas to California. The five of us and Decaf all crammed into our beat up Chevy (which broke down as we crossed the California border line).

When I was nine, my family moved from Texas to California. The five of us and Decaf all crammed into our beat up Chevy (which broke down as we crossed the California border line).

And yes that little junior high boy is me. Yikes....

And yes that little junior high boy is me. Yikes....

The day we brought Blossom home!

The day we brought Blossom home!

When Decaf was 16, we took her and Blossom to the beach. It was Decaf's very first time. Such a trooper :)

When Decaf was 16, we took her and Blossom to the beach. It was Decaf's very first time and she really enjoyed herself :)

The last picture I took of Decaf, about a week before we had to put her down. Though we all knew the end was near, it was still quite a shock to come home with news of my engagement and not have her there. I didn't get to say goodbye, but perhaps it was a little easier that way.

This is the last picture I took of Decaf, nearly a week before we had to put her down. Though we all knew the end was near, it was still quite a shock to come home with news of my engagement and not have her there. I didn't get to say goodbye, but perhaps it was a little easier that way.

Even though I’m a little teary-eyed writing this post, it wasn’t meant to be sad! I swear! I wanted to celebrate the life of a very loyal friend of mine. It’s strange to think several years have passed since she’s been gone. At least we have Blossom to keep Decaf’s memory alive :)

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