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meet neva

Hey, everyone! I’d like you to meet our new pup, Neva (NEE-vah). We brought all twelve pounds of her home on Saturday and have been sleep-deprived ever since.


finally home



This will be a short post because I began to develop a cold/flu thing of sorts on our long drive to get the pup. Also, puppy training is a lot of work for both humans and puppies! We named Neva after Mount Neva, a mountain in our local Indian Peaks Wilderness (Kaweah was named for Mount Kaweah in the Sierra Nevada of California). Neva also means snow. In the short 48 hours we’ve had her home, she has learned a lot of things! She is now sitting when she wants something (her way of saying “please”), going into her crate on her own, learning to be quiet in her crate, lying down, walking on the leash (she’s getting better about not biting the leash), going up and down stairs, and being ridiculously cute. I have to give major kudos to Jeremy who took over the majority of the training and cared for me when I got sick. He has been incredibly patient, gentle, and kind with Neva.

settling into her crate

leash work with jeremy in the yard

puppies need a lot of chew toys

her crate is her happy place

we love it when she sleeps



Over the weekend, Neva jump-started her social life when my aunt and uncle (visiting Colorado from out of town) came up for dinner and puppy time. The next day, Neva met my friends Erin, Erica (Erin’s sister), and Banjo. She takes to people right away, but she wasn’t so sure about Banjo for the first few minutes – I mean, he’s a big fluffy white dog! The great thing about Banjo is that he is super sweet with Neva (and in general). He would corner like a race car when she clumsily chased him (the back half always seems to have a different agenda from the front half), or nimbly jump over her so he wouldn’t step on her. But when she wanted him to chase her, he slowed way down and was careful not to scare or hurt the puppy. After Neva and Banjo got acquainted, we all went for a short (a really short) local hike to introduce the pup to the life of a Colorado mountain dog.

not so sure about this big white dog

warming up to banjo

super fun puppy playtime!

puppy’s first hike

when puppies are tired, they just flop down wherever they are – like between erin’s boots



It’s a big transition period for Neva and for us, but she is quite attached to both Jeremy and me. As I said above, it is hard work. Even with all of our experience with Kaweah and preparation for this pup, it can be challenging. However, Neva has made such progress already with positive reinforcement training and we are so in love with her – it is worth it. I look forward to watching her discover all of the joys of being a dog in this beautiful world we call home. Welcome to your life, puppy girl.

59 nibbles at “meet neva”

  1. Chris says:

    So so happy for you and Jeremy. Hope Neva brings you years and years of joy

  2. Linda says:

    lol…..it’s like having a baby, then not having another one for 8 or 10 years (ask me how I know). You forget all the little things that you learned the first time. She is a little (for now) doll. I’m so glad we get to watch her grow and be loved by you two. We already know you are terrific furbaby parents, and she’s a lucky girl that you picked her.

    xo Linda

  3. Chefhelen says:

    She’s such a cutie!

  4. Jane M says:

    Such a sweet and solemn face. I want to reach over and cuddle her in my lap. Banjo will be such a wonderful big brother to Neva and I am smiling at that thought. Hope you feel better soon.

  5. Naomi says:

    Neva is adorable. We’re on our 4th dog and the puppy stage is definitely sleep deprivation time but soo worth it. It goes by fast and then you’ll miss this short phase when they’re so little. I love all your pictures. She’s definitely smart and pure joy!

  6. Barbara says:

    Welcome to our world, Neva!
    Bless Jeremy, for being so very nice!
    Bless you, Jen, for sharing your world with us… and be well soon.

  7. Sherry Ann says:

    HAPPY NEW PUPPY NEVA! SHE IS BEAUTIFUL! LABS ARE VERY SMART AND WILL HAVE YOU TRAINED IN NO TIME! THERE IS ALWAYS AN ADJENTMENT PERIOD AT THE BEGINNING! IT WILL BE OVER VERY QUICKLY BECAUSE SHE IS SOOOOOOOO SMART! THEN ON TO THE GOOD PART! LIFE!!

  8. Trish G. says:

    What a little sweetheart! Jen, thank you so much for sharing your wonderful photos with us. How did you know that I needed a dose of puppy cuteness to kickstart my day?

  9. laning says:

    what a lovely post and she is a such a cutie:)

  10. Louise says:

    What a gorgeous and very lucky puppy girl

  11. Joyce says:

    I am in Puppy Heaven with you. And I know how hard the work is, but just to hear your joy tells it all. Can’t wait for each up and coming chapters. The pictures are so precious. Thanks for taking us along with you on this wonderful new, hard but rewarding adventure! Appreciate it more than I can say! :-)

  12. Irmi from Munich says:

    Oh, is she cute …………!!!
    Congrats to your new puppy!
    Enjoy every moment with her – life can be so short…

  13. steph @ stephsapartmentkitchen says:

    This post made me so happy to read! I’m so glad Neva brings you and Jeremy so much excitement and joy. What a cutie!

    Hope you feel better soon.

  14. Janet says:

    So happy for you all! Loving a dog can hurt so bad but we keep coming back for more. She’s adorable…..my Salty has the same lobster (Loby) toy LOL!

  15. Kristin says:

    Congratulations! She is so preciously adorable that it make me want to squeal in a very high pitched manner that I’m sure she would hate. Beautiful girl. Thank you for sharing!

  16. Eva @ Eva Bakes says:

    Welcome, Neva! She is adorable, and I can’t wait to see and hear about her adventures with you and Jeremy!

  17. Chani says:

    Congratulations!!! What a beautiful girl, so excited for you!! Would love to get a puppy within the next year or so, so will pay very close attention to what you and Jeremy are doing for some pointers!

  18. Heather says:

    She is beautiful! Enjoy the new pup!

  19. Kristen says:

    Welcome Neva! Congratulations on the new addition. She is very lucky to have the both of you to introduce her the world.

  20. sybil says:

    Congratulation! Looking forward to reading and looking at pictures of Neva’s training progress. It’ll be “getting a new pup” journal for us all. Thank you for sharing!!

  21. jill says:

    Sure hope you feel better! You need to be 120% for a puppy! Thank goodness for Jeremy.

    This is one lucky puppy girl. I look forward to years and years of posts about her shenanigans. xo, j

  22. mittens says:

    Oh my, that is so cute. Congratulations, I’m so excited for you guys – you must be thrilled!! So happy to be seeing pup photos on this blog once more!

  23. Charlie says:

    Beautiful puppy!

    I’m sure Kaewah would approve of your choice. :~D

    Charlie

  24. Cindi says:

    Yes, she is ridiculously cute. And wow – she’s made amazing progress in just a few days! (Could Jeremy come train my 7 year old “puppy?”) What a wonderful journey it will be with Neva… Feel better, Jen!! You do need a lot of energy to keep up with your girl! xo

  25. kellypea says:

    Neva is such a cutie! I had to smile over the sleep deprivation — memories! Hope you are feeling well soon and am looking forward to the adventures of Neva.

  26. Melissa says:

    I’m still just overjoyed for all of you. This is wonderful.

  27. Erin says:

    She is so precious, I might die from the cuteness – congrats to all three of you! Neva hit the dog owner jackpot, for sure. Looking forward to hearing about your many adventures.

  28. Chris says:

    I regularly visit this site for the recipes. However, I don’t think I’m alone when I say that I hope you post nothing but Neva updates for the next few weeks (months). She is wonderful! The recipes can wait!

  29. Melissa says:

    Adorable!! =)

  30. Jasmine says:

    Puppies make me ridiculously happy! Love the name and meaning. Congratulations for finding each other!

  31. Ann says:

    Thank you for sharing the puppy pictures! Neva is so cute! Hope you feel better soon

  32. Diana says:

    Love it! Thanks for the pictures.

  33. Sheryl says:

    Welcome home Neva! We had never had a puppy and when we got our two years ago, we were amazed that one little puppy could whip our butts! Looking forward to watching her grow!

  34. Stacey says:

    I’m so happy that another puppy will get to be spoiled by you and Jeremy! She’s one of the luckiest puppies ever, and will receive endless amounts of love from you two and everyone who loves your blog! Congratulations on your new puppy!

  35. Abbe @ This is How I Cook says:

    So happy for you! We brought a new pup home about a month ago and it takes lot of time. Our dog didn’t come crate trained. Any thoughts on the subject? This one screams if you put him inside! Makes me feel like I’m torturing him!

  36. Rosi says:

    Congratulations to you and Jeremy; a puppy has a wonderful way of healing. Neva has hit the jackpot!

  37. Stephanie says:

    She’s beautiful. And her name is lovely. Congratulations!

  38. Fiona says:

    Yay! She’s beautiful. Congratulations.

  39. Rose says:

    Congratulations! Neva is adorable–love that she just plops down wherever she is when she gets tired. Maybe I should try that. . .

  40. Elaine Cobb says:

    Congratulations on your beautiful new addition. Neva is beautiful. Puppies are a lot of work and you have to pay close attention to them every waking hour but they sure are worth it. Enjoy her puppyhood. It goes so fast.

  41. Steve says:

    So excited for Neva to have found such a wonderful home! She looks like she’s settling in great. Can’t wait to see all the adventures you three have. Congrats!

  42. Barb says:

    Oh, she is gorgeous! I think it is safe to say that we are all completely smitten with her.
    Thank you so much for sharing Neva with us – just too precious.
    And she already has her very own fan club – all of your readers!

    Congratulations to all of you!!!

  43. Trolleira says:

    Oh my, she is so beautifull – and soooo little! Banjo seems so big besides her.
    I hope she gives you a lot happiness – she already got the best home she could wish for and a great name!

    Looking forward to reading a lot of her adventures here…

  44. Janna says:

    She is so precious! Congratulations on the newest addition to your and Jeremy’s family!

  45. Diana says:

    What a cutie pie!!

  46. farmerpam says:

    AAWWWHHH! What a cutie patootie! Ridiculously cute is right! Let the adventures begin, and keep those pictures coming!

  47. Sophie says:

    I’M DYING. She is perfect! Congratulation, Jen and Jeremy! You two are wonderful doggy parents. What a happy life this pup is in for :) Hurray!! I’m so happy! I love every single photo more than the last!

  48. jillian says:

    what an adorable addition to the family! congratulations :)

  49. Judy says:

    I am living vicariously here until we are ready again for our own baby Lab! She is beautiful – I am so happy for you and her. Puppies live life so happily!! Congratulations!

  50. Kat says:

    OMG she’s so cute!! I can’t stand it. What a pretty name, too. I can’t wait to meet her. ;) XOXOXOXO

  51. LizzieBee says:

    PUPPY!!!!! Hello Neva! Neva is gorgeous! And she looks so peaceful when she’s sleeping, and a bundle of energy when she’s on the trail! I’m so happy for you and Jeremy AND Neva!

  52. Pey-Lih says:

    Love the name! Puppy Neva…. you guys have a new boss in the household now. :-) I look forward to reading about your new adventures with this furry kiddo.

  53. Melanie Evans says:

    I’m so happy happy happy for you!!! She’s a beautiful little pup. I wish you and her the VERY BEST. You’re gonna have so much fun with her (as you already know). So happy for you all!!

  54. diane and todd says:

    oh gosh she is so FREAKING CUTE!! Wah! So much joy in every photo. Looks like she’s having a blast and adjusting well. That face. Those paws. That little body. Everything about her is perfect!! So happy for you guys. Love love love love…

  55. Kim says:

    Just found your blog after finding your turkey burger recipe on Pinterest. We too just brought a black lab home one week ago (he’s now 9 weeks old) and we are absolutely exhausted!! Your Neva is beautiful! Hope she picks up on the crate training and house-breaking process super quickly for you!

  56. angelitacarmelita says:

    I am literally drowning in the puppy cuteness of it all! I am so very excited for you and for Jeremy, and can’t wait to take this new journey with you guys. I love her name too! Thank you for being so kind enough to share your personal stories with us, your fans, friends and readers. I’m completely in love with your new girl….

  57. jenyu says:

    Thanks to all of your for your encouraging and supportive comments. We really appreciate all of the love you’re sending Neva’s way! xxoo

    Abbe – Neva was not crate trained either. I suggest reading Dr. Sophia Yin’s website – she has some good crate training advice there. Also, the crate should never be used as punishment, but treated as a happy and safe place. We spend a lot of time around the crate with the door open so Neva can run in and out as she likes. We’ve taught her to run into the crate and sit and lie down when we say “crate” and then give her a treat or a toy or lots of praise. Make sure it’s small enough for her to sleep in comfortably, but not so large that she doesn’t mind peeing in it (they don’t like to soil their sleeping quarters). When she whines in the crate, we do not give her any attention until she settles down and becomes quiet and calm. She figured this out in minutes. Then we reward her with treats or open the door and let her out to play or go potty. It’s taken some time (and errors) to realize when she’s desperate to get out to potty versus just experiencing FOMO. This is an ongoing training process, but we had great results with Kaweah, so we feel it’s good to crate train Neva. Good luck!

  58. Saskia says:

    Neva is so beautiful! I’m curious what breed she is. She looks like a lab but slightly more slender.. Is she a lab mix?

  59. jenyu says:

    Saskia – She is 100% lab, she’s just not a fatso like most labs :) She gets A LOT of exercise and we don’t feed her junk!

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