Our Trip to America

From April 20 till May 7 2006 Virginia USA


Aleta & Craig

Thank you so much for your hospitality and your Friendschip.
We had a great time and we miss you already!

Thank you for everything!

Geraldine, Erik and Ivy


Thank you so much for the translation of our story to the USA!


Tuesday April 18

Hi Everyone

We are still home, our bags are packed and Ivy is current at the vet. for the trip to USA. Tomorrow we finish with the packing, run a few errands, tell the kids the rules while we are gone. Not too many sodas…if the cat is missing…it will not be easy having us gone this long. But they are in great hands and grandma is coming to our house which makes it easier on them. They can call us at any time (except in the middle of the night) and they can always email. Dusty is with my parents so he's enjoying a vacation of his own. So everything is good to go. Off to the USA. I'm a bit nervous as I've never flown and with Ivy coming along…. I wrote a long note and put it on Ivy's crate and wrote where she is going and not to open the crate under any circumstances unless they have my permission. The crate is pretty well closed so that no one get in and pet her. I will be so glad when I have her back in my arms in the USA .


Wednesday April 19

Finished the last errands today. The kids and grandma want to eat good too while we are gone. Everything is ready and we can go. But we still have to wait one day. Looking forward to tomorrow .


Thursday April 20

Up early. As I write this we are flying high over the Atlantic Ocean. I really don't even want to think about that. Got to the airport at 11 and it was wonderful to see everyone's reactions to Ivy. Checked the bags and with pain in my heart dropped Ivy off at noon. I could have waited but wanted her to to have some peace and quiet before we left and since she couldn't go through customs with us, left her peacefully in a quiet corner waiting to board the plane. We couldn't check in until 2, and so the waiting began. There were 2 german shepherd puppies in a 2 crates that were way too small. Thank goodness they were later placed in larger crates, they went on an earlier flight to USA. There is too much paperwork that you need to fly. At 4pm we took off. We were supposed to leave ½ hour earlier, but had problems with the engine, thank goodness that was cleared up otherwise I would not be writing this right now. Lol . Immediately I asked the flight attendant if Ivy was on board. She said that she was, but I really wasn't going to believe that until I had her in my arms again. The take-off was fast and I didn't have any problems with it. Flying reminds of sitting in a bus. Had a good meal and the rest of the flight went without a hitch. We need to fill out a ton of paperwork before we get off the plane in America. I will let you know the details later, now I'm going to sleep. After 8 hours we landed in Detroit. We found out that we had to get all our luggage and Ivy. 15 minutes later our luggage was there. 45 minutes later, still no Ivy. I was beginning to get very worried, but Erik calmed me down. I did go to get help because we still needed to clear customs and catch our flight to Richmond. Still couldn't find her, I was in panic mode. After 15 more minutes we found her, she had been put in the wrong spot. Was I happy to see her. Then through customs. Lots of paperwork, scanning of the suitcases. Ivy passed through easy because the people really liked her. Then to check in for the flight to Richmond. Ivy had to leave the crate and the crate was checked for drugs and explosives!!! Ivy got a little nervous herself. I was panic stricken myself but tried not to let it show because then you have more problems. Passed Ivy back to airline personel and told the man to put her in the right spot this time. We then had ½ hour to go from one end of the airport to the other, seems we were at the wrong end. Then I saw a very small airplane, but the flight went well and I knew Ivy was on board. We we were exhausted when we arrived in Richmond at 11:45pm. Aleta and her daughter met us at the airport with a wonderful welcome sign. It was wonderful to finally meet her after 3 years and we feel like we've known each other forever. Aleta is a very gracious person. We finally went to bed at 1:30am US time which was 7am Holland time. It was a very tiring trip, 18 hours on the road. We were up for 24 hrs, Thank goodness Ivy handled the trip really well. I think I was the one with the most stress. Finally… in America!


Friday April 21

We were up at 7am. My body clock says 1pm. Today I finally got to see all of my favorite dogs. Wonderful, such beautiful, loving, fun loving dogs. Already made a trip to Wal-Mart. What big stores. Aleta does not like to cook, so we will probably eat out a lot. I can't believe all the stuff you can buy here. So much food you can microwave, ready to eat meals. Aleta wanted to buy everything for us to eat, very nice of her, but a ham and cheese sandwhich is fine for us. We have laughed ourselves silly. Tonight we will get the dogs ready to show for the National, but 1 st out to eat. Aleta and all the people we are meeting are so very nice, we really feel welcome. We went to a seafood restaurant and we discussed our different lives. Then home and off to comb out the dogs. I was exhausted. All the new things we saw, so wonderful!


Saturday April 22

Again up at 7am. Ate and talked and then washed and clipped the dogs. I just heard that I show Ivy on Thursday. I haven't received any paperwork from the show, probably was sent home to Holland. We bathed and blew dry 5 dogs. You're not going to believe this, but Ivy blew her coat. It was expected, wish she would have waited one week. I washed her with 3 different shampoos (for white, gray, black) and dried her with a hair blower. You should have seen it, it looked like it was snowing. I was covered in dog hair. I told Aleta, that she would be finding Ivy fur for the next 10 years. I feel like I did something awful  - I had to cut her whiskers. It is very normal here. Will be the only time I do that! Time to eat. I'm surprised by the availability of food, its around every corner. Chips with the sandwich. The stores are so huge here and what an assortment of everything… not normal for us. Lots of walking. But it doesn't matter, we have a car. What choices, unbelievable. Tomorrow we powder the dogs and in the afternoon we are heading to Virginia Beach to our hotel for the National. I am so excited. Aleta gave her car to us so we can drive arround!

The jetlag gets better every day. In Holland its now 5:19am for us its 11:19pm. I'm going to let Ivy out one last time and go to bed. Oh yes, Craig took Erik to Hooters. That is a bar with women that have nice hooters. They had a blast.


Sunday April 23

Today we dried the dogs some more and powedered them. We are now putting together our stuff for the National. We have a lot of stuff. 6 dogs are going plus Ivy. So that means 7 Vari kennels and 14 crates. 7 for the hotel and 7 for the grooming spot. You rent grooming space. They have electricity and everything. We left around 2pm and dropped the hotel stuff off – quite a lot of stuff, no wonder they have big cars here. Then we went and ate Mexican. Very good food and we laughed ourselves silly over the comparisons from here to Holland. Afterwards we set up the grooming area. We were done at midnight. Off to the hotel for some much needed sleep.


Monday April 24

Today was the 1 st show day. We got up early to go to the show. Today we had to show 2 dogs so went to get them ready. 2 sable bitches Megan and Kissy. Kissy was going to be handled by a professional, but they didn't have time for Kissy. They had taken on too many dogs. It costs $200 to have a dog handled and to get groomed for the show. Aleta had 2 dogs in the same class so I offered to show the other dog. We had to ask the owner who said yes, so I showed next to Aleta in the ring. Fantastic! A real honor!


I then went shopping at the National. Had a lot of stuff to buy. The Americans use a lot of product on their dogs and I needed a lot of things. I didn't buy everything, I didn't think I needed everything they use here. Then back to the hotel. The hotel is not great, but you can sleep there.


Tuesday April 25

We slept in a bit. There are no shows today so we have a free day to look around the area. At 10am we went to the ocean. The weather was great and I even got a little sunburned. We were glad to find nice things for the kids and bought nice them some nice gifts. Around 2pm , Aleta was called by her friend because we were having problems with the hotel.  She had 10 dogs in the room and the hotel wanted more money and that was not the original plan. The police were also called. We missed all of this. We found a new hotel, packed all of our stuff and moved to the new hotel. We were glad to find a hotel. In the evening at the National was visiting hours where you go to each grooming area to see everyone'd dog. We saw many beautiful dogs, including an all white sheltie. Pictures to follow. We talked to a lot of breeders, McDega, Grandgabels, Bach Shelties and other large breeders. Too many to count. It was super! Some people had already heard of me, that was great. Especially since we come from such a small country. Made many contacts Aleta helped me a lot. Saw many beautiful male dogs.  There was also a lot of interest in Ivy. They love her coloring. But she still needs time to grow up. At 11:30 we went to our new hotel. Aleta's husband found it earlier that day. So now I again have internet. It took over an hour to unload and unpack. Then we went to eat. Went to a hamburger stand at 12:30am. In bed at 2. Long long day. Oh and we nearly lost one of Aleta's dogs, but we found him  quickly. These dogs are pretty much only trained for show. Very different here.


Wednesday April 26

These are the breeders/kennels we met:

Whisperwind Kennels
Wintercreek shelties
Blue Heaven
Apple Acres

Shadow Hill
Jade Mist
Kell Kismet
Clan Duncan
Sea Haven
Twin cedars

Today again early to the show. W had to get 2 dogs show ready. I was going to show Kissy again, but she was sick with diahrea. I was disappointed, but the health of the dog goes 1 st . Later in the day she was feeling much better. Aleta showed really late – 8pm. Awful.  I of course bought more supplies for my grooming box. Love that shopping. Erik got me a beautiful silver sheltie brooch for my birthday. Erik is wonderful, he comes to the show every day. He helps carry all our stuff. This is great, he can come with me when we get home! At 10pm we finally ate. Funny, everything is open all day and all night. Wonderful to see. 1:30am to bed. Another day gone .


Thursday April 27

Today is our show day. Up at 6:30am. So only 5 hours sleep. We just arrived in time to show Noah, a gorgeous bi-blue. He did wonderful and got 3 rd . Aleta and I were thrilled.

Then we got Ivy ready to show and I changed clothes. Ivy is doing ok with all the product on her, wonder if she likes it. At 11am we had our turn.




SHETLAND SHEEPDOGS. 12 to 18 Months, Any Other Allowed Color Bitches.

3rd 429 SHADOW HILL'S PICKIN WILD FLOWERS . DN 10993701. 04-25-05By Ch Shadow Hill's Double Eagle - Shadow Hill Satin Pillow. Owner: Jane Hammett & Don E Bright., Jackson Springs, NC 27281. Breeder: Jane Hammett & Don Bright.

A 430 TWO J'S SILVER SECRET . DN 10972601. 03-18-05By Ch Tarran's BA Barracus - Two J's Silver Charm. Owner: Jackie & Jerry Parisek., Elgin, IL 601238627. Breeder: Jackie & Jerry Parisek.

4th 431 GRANDGABLES TOUCHED BI CARMYLIE . DN 10917103. 03-27-05By Ch Apple Acres Expedition - Carmylie Bi Mystique. Owner: Nancy Majtyka & Guy Jeavons & Mark McMillan., Brighton, Mi 48116. Breeder: Jean Simmonds & Guy Jeavons & Mark McMillan.

A 432 SHILOHS RAINBOWS N' LOLLIPOPS . DN 10484101. 03-07-05By Ch Mejimo Tri Surfin The Net - Ch Shilohs Over The Rainbow. Owner: Vicki Hutchison., Bolivar, MO 656138185. Breeder: Vicki Hutchison.

433 WHITEGATES ICING ON THE CAKE . DN 12859701. 02-07-05By Imperial Aberdale Bold Image - Whitegates Icy Hot. Owner: Jo Ann & Terry Pavey., Caledon, ON, CN L7E 3E8. Breeder: Jo Ann & Terry Pavey.

434 AURORA PUSSYCAT DOLL . DN 10400804. 04-10-05By Ch Ambrozia Midnite In Memphis - Hannalore Forlorn. Owner: Cindi & Dave Hassrick., Ivyland, PA 18974. Breeder: Cindi & Dave Hassrick.

2nd 435 DURY VOE BETTY BOOP . DN 10072902. 01-22-05By Ch Aynsworth Silver Moonlight - Dury Voe Rhonda Rhonda. Owner: Debbie Ross & Judy Kelsey., Crystal River, FL 34428. Breeder: Judy Kelsey.

A 436 BRONWYN PANDEMONIUM . DN 09959901. 02-28-05By Ch Apple Acres Expedition - Ch Bronwyn Bachelorette. Owner: Kim Mitchell & Geoff Browne & Peggy Browne., Dacula, GA 30019. Breeder: Owners.

A 437 LAURIEN COVER GIRL . DN 09727501. 01-28-05By Ch Hillstone The Wedding Planner - Laurien Dancing In The Moonlight. Owner: Laurie A O'Brien., Gig Harbor, WA 98335. Breeder: Laurie A O'Brien. (Jan Williams, Agent)

438 JESSTAR HAVANA . DN 09750303. 12-04-04By Ch Integra Indelible Ink Of Merridon - Ch Bach Can't Fight The Moonlight. Owner: Erin Matern & Jessica Starbuck., Monmouth, IL 61462. Breeder: Jessica Starbuck.

1st 439 MIQELON SUMMER STORM . RG038890CAN. 04-19-05By Miqelon Walkin After Midnite - Miqelon Poetica. Owner: Jenna & Rhonda Cruthers., Grandora Sask, CN S0K 1V0. Breeder: Jenna & Rhonda Cruthers. A

440 STERLING LOST IN THE MIST . DN 11365401. 03-17-05By Ch Sterling Mosaic Nightcap - Sterling All That Glitters II. Owner: Peggy Stephens., Phoenix, AZ 85053. Breeder: Owner.

A 441 SKYEHAVEN LABYRINTH . DN 12901201. 03-31-05By Skyehaven Endeavor - Skyehaven Caught By Design. Owner: Liz Boyd-Oliver & Saye Clement & Sherrie Sparling & Ca., Morganton, NC 28655. Breeder: Sherrie D & Cam Sparling.

A 442 MIQELON PISH POSH . RG 038897. 04-20-05By Miqelon Walking After Midnight - Miqelon Poetica. Owner: Adrienne Scott & Hollie Scott., Maysville, MO 64469. Breeder: Rhonda & Jenna Cruthers.

443 KYRIE FINALLY BI MINE . DN 09452405. 01-09-05By Ch Kyrie Chasing History - Kyrie Foolish Games. Owner: Geraldine Jansen., Watervliet 27, Ne 99999. Breeder: Tracy Grathwohl & Beverly Klassen.

444 JESSTAR MERRIDON PARIS IN SPRING . DN 09750302. 12-04-04By Ch Integra Indelible Ink Of Merridon - Ch Bach Can't Fight The Moonlight. Owner: Donald & Merrily Duncan., Indiana, PA 15701. Breeder: Jessica Starbuck. (Nick Joines, Agent).

A 445 SHANDON BELL TIFFANY II . DN 10199204. 01-26-05By Shandon Bell Midnite Rapture - Shandon Bell Cherokee Tears. Owner: Janet Freeman., Clear Lake, MN 55319. Breeder: Janet Freeman.

With these dog we where in the ring!

Results ASSA 2006 Virginia beach

Then you go with all the big names into the ring, me a gal from Holland with her 1 st show dog. It was wonderful, never to be forgotten. Ivy showed to the hilt, but she was missing her coat. She started losing it before we left. She didn't place but we had a great 15 minutes! Everything is taped and I will get that later. We did look at other dogs, but then packed up and went to the hotel for a midday nap. We were so tired. When we woke we went back and got the dogs and went out to eat. Then we looked at the pictures and back to bed. 


Friday April 28

Today we relaxed, we are done with showing. At noon we went back and talked to a few more people. We saw a beautiful dog to breed to Ivy, who knows……… Then we left and went sightseeing.

The people here are friendly and outgoing. At 3 we went back to the show. Saw the white sheltie in the ring. Guess you can do that there.

5 pm back at the hotel and then out to eat. Afterwards talked to a few more breeders, wonderful to listen to them and I learn so much. Tomorrow the National is over and 9 days have passed. Time flies when you are having fun .

The dogs standing next to the white dog are his sons. The white sheltie is a combination of 2 merles with white factor. He has a gray spot above his tail, but the rest of him is white . 


Saturday April 29

Today was the last day of the National. We packed our stuff and left the hotel. Today are the last shows and Best of Breed. We left the show early because we were so tired. We will find out later who won. We got to Aleta's house at 5pm. Went to bed early because we show again tomorrow and we need to get up early.


Full of dogs. I think I was the only person that showed her own dog and got the dog ready. Aleta is with a popular handling learning more of the trade. They ask $75 just to walk in the ring with a dog. If you win, it will cost you another $50. This is big business. To get a dog ready costs $50 and boarding is $10/day. This is what the top handlers ask. They take in only good dogs, they don't want to ruin their reputation. Interesting to watch and learn. I have learned a lot from Aleta and she is wonderful. Ivy won her class today – SUPER.





It was a great day. There are a lot of wonderful people. Lots of money in this sport. We got home at 5 and I took a nap. We were so tired. Later we will go eat and then back to bed. Tomorrow we will sleep in and then washed all the dogs to get all the product out of their hair .

My wonderful girl

There was lots of wind today but she looked awesome . 



Monday May 1

Today we rested and packed up and stored all the show stuff . What a job. We again went shopping as I needed more stuff. My suitcases will be full to overflowing when we return. Other than that we just hung out.


Tuesday May 2

The dogs got a bath today. We also went to Yorktown and did some more sightseeing. Tomorrow we got to NY. It is so beautiful here with all the trees . 






Wednesday May 3

America in one day. We are going to NY. We are flying. Got up at 5am and in the plane by 6:30am.When we arrived at the airport we again had to put all our stuff in a basket to be scanned. Even the shoes we had to take off. I find this awful, but we must do it as there is a good reason. The flight was wonderful. I sat by the window and saw everything. When you fly above the clouds, you have wonderful sun.


The NY skyline, beautiful. We saw the Statue of Liberty, boy was that small. I had hope it would be as tall as a skyscraper so I was disappointed. We took a bus tour for $7, something you need to do with all these big distances.

We went with the bus and the subway to the Empire State Building. The view was spectacular. We shall never forget. We also ran into a lot of dutch people.



After that we went to Ground Zero. Unbelievable, so many people died even small children. Even the buildings surrounding that have been damaged and they are still working on repairs.


Then we went to Wall Street and saw the Statue of Liberty in the distance. The time was to short as we would have loved to gone there. We only had one day.

Then we went to Time Square in a real taxi. I even got to sit up front. There are approx 12,000 taxis in NY. The taxi driver was very nice.


Then we actually had a hot dog at a hot dog stand. It tasted good. They have these type of stands everywhere. Then we walked, we wanted to see everything. We walked on Broadway and saw all the famous theatres. Lots of people waiting in line to get inside to see a show. The streets are busy and people really don't take the time to walk slowly and be nice. Different mentality than Virginia. In VA. the people are nice, in NY they are not. Time is money.  Rush rush rush.   A parking spot costs $15/hr. So taking the subway is much cheaper. We also saw the library. It seems as large as the train station in NY where everything comes together. Trains and subways. Wonderful experience. We ate in an Irish Restaurant, wonderful. Then we took the subway to Central Park and thensplurged and took a wonderful ride in a horse drawn carriage. It was a wonderful day and we had a blast!


Then we had to head back to the airport. It was an hours drive, thank goodness we made it on time. Then a repeat of taking off the shoes and being scanned to get on the airplane. That is awful, but it must be done. At 6 we were airborne and by 8 we were back at Aleta's. We were exhausted, but had a wonderful day!


Thursday May 4

We had lots to do today. We had to get a health certificate for Ivy. I thought it would be the same as in Holland, but not so. She was checked all over, thank goodness she is healthy. But then we had to give blood for a DNA test. Mountains of paperwork. We needed a stamp on the health certificate and had to have it signed, another $54 above the $74 for the vet. I hope all is well. We also had to send the blood somewhere for another $50. To send things in America costs a lot of money. Then Erik and I went to the mall. A mall is a large center with lots of different stores under one roof. After 2 hours we called it good.  Aleta cooked a wonderful meal and then we went to the kennel to do some trimming. That was not easy. They all have different heads and ears and there is no pattern when it comes to cutting. It was a long evening, we were done at midnight.


Friday May 5

We got up at 7 and went to Williamsburg. They have an old town there from when America was settled. It was wonderful.

All those things from the year 1700/1800's. Most everything was authentic. The people wore the clothes of that time and if you had a special card you could go inside all of the homes. We just walked thru the city which took us 5 hours.


I really want to come and see this again with the kids.


We had a wonderful lunch. That evening we went to an air show and saw fireworks. It was great.





Tomorrow we go home. We are happy to go home and see the kids, but it will be sad to say goodbye to Aleta who took us into her home and treated us a royalty. Aleta, thank you so much for all you did for us, for taking care of us, we shall miss you a lot. BUT we are for sure coming back!


Saturday May 6

Today is my birthday. We are also going home. Everything is packed and we are ready for our trip home. At 9am we have to go to Fed Ex to pick up Ivy's papers. The most expensive letter I have ever sent. Think I will frame it. Lol. Back at Aleta's we had something to eat and a cup of coffee. Then I had to say goodbye to all the wonderful dogs at Aleta's. I have worked with them daily since I arrived so it is sad to say goodbye. I'm happy that Ivy got a last run with Noah , hopefully she will be a little tired before her trip.




Of course, I started to get nervous again. All the stuff you have to go tru to get onto an airplane here is ridiculous and I hate it. You never know what they will ask and what they will find. But we are going to Amsterdam .

Around 11:30am we left for the airport and we took off at 4pm. I'm glad we left early. We were told that our luggage was going straight to Amsterdam . I was happy to hear that as we only had 1 hour to change planes in Detroit . We waited with Ivy and checked her in at 3pm. We took her for a long walk so that she could do her thing before the long trip home. She was again poked and prodded and her crate examined. Then the most difficult part of our trip, to say goodbye to Aleta. We both cried. Aleta said – you live too far away! Hope you come back real soon! Maybe Aleta will come to Crufts next year. I sure hope so. Then Aleta left and we went to our gate. Again more scanners, shoes off. We went with a small plane to Detroit . 40 people. It was a nice trip and we said our goodbyes to Virginia . 2 hrs later we arrived in Detroit and without having to go thru security again, we boarded our plane for the long flight home. Immediately I asked if Ivy was on board and 15 minutes later I got the paperwork saying that she was on board and all was well. At 7pm we took off and we said goodbye to the USA . It is a double edge sword. We had a great trip to the USA and will miss Aleta, but we also have 2 wonderful kids at home that need their parents very much. We had contact with them daily via the computer and webcam. And we called regularly. That helped both us and the kids. At 11pm we finally ate. I even had a wine to celebrate my birthday and to hopefully help me sleep on the plane. I did sleep 4 hours. Much more than the trip to the USA . I feel like I'm in a timeless zone. You have no idea of time when you are in the air. & nbsp; BUT we had an awesome time in the USA .


Sunday May 7

We are still in the air and today is Erik's 40 th birthday. It's pretty strange to be in the clouds and celebrating your birthday. I have a present for him but its in the overhead compartment. We are in a row of 4 seats and have people on both sides of us. The man next to me is sleeping, so will have to wait until later. We can choose from many movies. You have your own tv screen and there are many choices, you can even play games. So enough to keep one happy and entertained. They come by with drinks regularly and at 7am we got a breakfast of sorts with a warm bread. The food was very good on the plane, I was surprised. We flew with KLM and then their partner NW Airlines. They are absolutely wonderful with animals. When Ivy was a pup and flew to Holland she also flew with NW Airlines and everything worked very well. We were pretty much on time and arrived at 8:45am. Then on to customs (I gave Erik his birthday present here). A hamster that sings Happy Birthday. He has on a jacket and a hat that says “40 years”. Everyone is laughing. Then we found the luggage. Then the hunt for Ivy began. No one knew where she was. I asked them to call someone, they actually did that. Ivy was on her way. I ran to get her. No one even checked to see if it was really MY dog. Thank goodness we could take our luggage and Ivy and go straight through to where everyone was waiting for us. (We found out later that USA customs went through our bags, but they must have missed the bag with the chalk in it. Good thing!) My parents had brought the kids and they were jumping in excitement to see us again after 2-1/2 wks. It was wonderful to see them and hold them again. On the way home we stopped at a restaurant and let Ivy out on the grass for a while.. Ivy looked great and on both trips had no accidents. Her crate was clean and dry. Incredible journey for a dog and we are so proud that she did so well. Once home, we went to a nephew's house to celebrate another birthday. My brother was there as well, we are twins as is my nephew. We had 5 birthdays in 2 days. So we had a huge party and we talked to all of our families. We are home…………



© Geraldine Jansen