Category Archives: The Dogs

My definition of a Family

It’s no secret that my dogs are a very important part of my life.  Even if I could have children I feel that my relationship with animals would still be a special one.  I understand that not all people are animal lovers and there are those who flat-out don’t like dogs in general, just like there are people who don’t like the color green or straight-legged jeans.  Call me crazy, but if I do happen to like straight-legged jeans, the last thing you’d find me doing is making a thoughtless comment about someone because they prefer khakis.  Sounds crazy, someone being insensitive about another person’s clothing.  I mean, who cares what people wear, right?

Many years ago I was having a conversation with my best friend at the time.  I can’t remember the exact details of the conversation anymore but will never forget a comment she made when the subject of dog owners came up.  She made a flippant remark about how ridiculous it sounded when pet owners discussed their pets as though they were their kids.  ‘I mean, it’s an animal,’ she sighed.  ‘They’re not ‘family.’  Thank goodness you know that your dogs are just dogs.’ 

My friend had a family pet growing up; she had children of her own and yes, she knew that I could not have children.  Do I feel that her comment was malicious?  No.  I do, however, think it was incredibly insensitive.

Does this mean I’m called a crazy dog fanatic behind my back? When I ask someone about their kids do I immediately become offended when I don’t get asked about my dogs in return? Of course not.    But like a parent would for her child, if one of my dogs became sick or needed an operation you can bet that I would spend every spare dime I had in order to give him/her a fighting chance for survival.

Sometimes when I don’t express my opinion to another person whom I feel has spoken insensitively or out of line it’s not because I don’t know how to stand up for myself, rather it’s because I’ve been so stunned by what’s been said that it feels like I’ve just experienced an emotional sucker-punch to the gut.  By the time I’ve collected my thoughts and figured out a proper response the moment is over and I’m left feeling awkward about revisiting the subject.

 

I rarely have time to indulge in television shows, therefore I’m pretty selective – and you can forget about those reality shows.   Well, except for one…..

In late 2011 or early 2012 it wasn’t uncommon for me to spend a solid 5-6 days out of every month on heavy narcotics and curled up in bed, suffering from years of endometriosis that was growing worse.  It was during one of those spells that I perused Netflix and came across the first season of a reality show called Sister Wives.  The series follows a polygamist family as they tried to navigate through life while practicing their faith despite social prejudices.

I became hooked on this show from the beginning and finished the first season within two or three days.  When season 2 was added I quickly devoured that as well.   The series went on hiatus and I eventually forgot about the lives of these strangers as I dealt with my own ups and downs which included an abdominal hysterectomy in the summer of 2012.

To my surprise early last week I noticed that more episodes of Sister Wives had been added to my queue on Netflix.  Yesterday while on the treadmill I picked up where I left off last year: the fourth and youngest wife announced to one of the other wives that she was pregnant, which for those counting, would be the 17th child added to the family.  I watched as the 40 minute episode unfolded with the news being shared among the remaining family members while excitement grew and plans were made.   I watched as the wives described what it meant to be a family – that children made a family possible; children were the backbone of any marriage.

As the credits rolled I turned off the tv, powered down the treadmill and went back to my studio to paint.  Within minutes I felt like I was going to cry.  It didn’t take long to realize what was happening – the last time I saw the show was before my surgery, before my fate was permanently sealed.

I believe that the definition of a family is at the sole discretion of each and every one of us.   I am perfectly comfortable stating that my family consists of my husband, myself and our two dogs.  If we didn’t have dogs we would still be a family, even though we don’t have children.  I am happy with the life that I have, truly; but there are times when I ache to be a part of something larger and still, sometimes, it saddens me.

I have endured more backhanded remarks about members of my family than I can count for things that I simply consider being a responsible pet owner.  Leaving a party early because my dogs haven’t been let outside all evening have been followed with a remark.   When our dog was very ill and we used our vacation money to treat her instead, we were given an alternative opinion of ‘allowing nature to take its course’ instead.

Back to that conversation with my friend.  When I think about it even years later, the thing that troubles me most about it wasn’t so much what she said, but the fact that I didn’t speak up for myself.  I didn’t let her know that I disagreed with her opinion or that her words hurt my feelings.  Instead, I uncomfortably and halfheartedly nodded my head in agreement and sat in silence as she continued talking. I didn’t speak up for me and my family.

Isn’t it a wonderful thing that we are all different, that the word family can mean anything we want it to? No one should have to feel inferior just because they don’t fit society’s description of what a family should consist of.  Before my surgery I had a unique description of family, yes – but especially since my surgery I have felt free to further redefine my use of the word family.  I don’t limit it to who lives in my house or whom I call Sister, Brother, or Mom.  To me, family can be defined as friends in LA or Box Elder, my blog family; even my oldest friendships from high school. Anywhere I feel love is where I feel family.

Family is whatever YOU define it to be.  Don’t let anyone ever tell you any different.

 

 

 

Dog Days of Summer

I am feeling more like myself today.  It was a bad week overall, and that’s just going to happen from time to time. But the weekend is here, and Monday is Labor Day.  Which means we’re into the Dog Days of Summer.  The dogs think that means something totally different here at our house:

 

 

 

 

Emmie

 

This was what I awoke to this morning, taking the place of my husband.  Craig went to work early this morning and when I came to, Emmie was in bed with her backside practically smooshed in my face.  When she heard me stir she turned her head all the way back and gave me this look – and yes, she’s resting her head quite comfortably on Craig’s pillow, thankyouverymuch.   That face gets me everytime.  Damn her cuteness!!

Old Man Bru hasn’t been digging our walks this week.  It’s been hot and humid and just plain miserable.  We cut our walk short the other day because it just wasn’t worth the effort.  Even though I had the AC on full-blast, he decided that he was too far away and practically strained his neck trying to get to the air from the backseat:

Brulee

The best part of Dog Days?  This is the time of year when my hydrangeas come into full bloom.  I don’t know how I got so lucky but these bushes and I have an agreement.  I leave them completely alone, and in return they provide me with football-sized blooms.  This year they stand well over seven feet high:

hydrangeas

Finally, this week was productive; I started and completed a painting.  I’ve been experimenting with color and different subjects for the last couple of weeks just because I think overall it makes me a better painter.  This week’s finished piece:

 

Infinite Love

Tomorrow I take some new things to Lilly’s Soap Kitchen.  Sara the owner, has graciously agreed to meet me half way which will be nice.  Plus, she’s bringing me some of the shop’s new bath bombs which I love.  The rest of the weekend will be working on unfinished projects around the house (if the weather cooperates, that is.)  Oh, and the peanut butter issue?  No longer a problem.  I will make this declaration, though:  never, EVER will I have that jar anywhere near my house again.  It’s something I am choosing to stay away from from now on.

Anyone else have big plans for the weekend?

My goldens keep me laughing. Gratitude Video

On this Memorial Day it is raining outside.  Windy and rainy.  I woke up to our outdoor umbrella sitting on its side in the front yard.  At first I had to comprehend what exactly it was that I was looking at.  Then I realized the wind must have pulled it straight out of the hole in the center of the table and lifted it up Mary Poppins-style straight over our house until it gently rested itself right at our front door.   I had no idea it was that windy last night. 

I’m posting my Gratitude Pic of the Week today.  Actually, it’s a small video featuring one of our goldens, Brulee.  He and Emmie have been keeping us busy and entertained for the last month that Craig’s been awaiting surgery.  Never a dull moment around here, that’s for sure.  Sometimes I feel like these dogs are going to drive me to drink, but then they do something amusing and all is forgiven.

So for that, and for their ability to put up with me as well, I am grateful for my dogs. 

No worries about this thing going viral.  It’s just for you.  No music, no intro, and only 28 seconds long – just enough time to show Brulee being his usual weirdo self. 

Brulee’s strange facial tic.

 

Have a great day, everyone Smile

Thankful for a former rescue dog.

As part of my weekly series of Thankfulness/Gratitude photos, this week I’m thankful for my golden retriever, Emmie.   Tomorrow will be the second anniversary of the day we brought her home.  She has been transformed into the most loving, gentle, funny dog – she’s come a long way since the day she was rescued at a puppy mill in Missouri back in 2011.  If you want to read about her story, head off to this post here and prepare to be inspired. 

emmieanniversary

I don’t feel the need to post before/after pictures of her.  She is no longer the puppy-making machine she used to be.  The painful memories of the life she once lived are little more than blips on her radar these days.  As with all rescue dogs, she’s just as grateful to have us as we are to have her. 

Happy Anniversary to our sweet golden girl.

…and have a great weekend, everyone. 

xo,

Ellen

What a Week

It’s been quite the busy week around here.  The time change, fortunately, doesn’t affect me in the least when we Spring Forward.  I actually get up earlier and accomplish so much more during the day.  During the Fall Back though….ugh.  Let’s just say, I don’t handle it well. 

I cannot wait for Spring.  I’ve been walking on the treadmill and avoiding the park because I can’t tolerate the cold these days no matter how many layers I wear.  My dogs are feeling downright punished because we haven’t been walking outside.  Instead, they watch me on the treadmill.  I try not to make too much eye contact with them as I do this because I already feel like their glaring eyes are burning a hole through to the back of my head.

Whenever I’m finished I go upstairs and lay down on the floor to stretch my back and hamstrings, which always makes my back feel better; and this is generally what I have staring back at me:

He is not one to be ignored, but c’mon – How could I?!

 

Even though my back is still giving me the ole’ middle finger (ie., not improving much) I am busy concentrating on other things.  Good things, such as:

1.  Preparing for the gallery this weekend.

It’s time to make my bi-monthly journey down to Indianapolis to drop off artwork to the gallery.  Craig has graciously offered to take a day off work so he can drive me down there since I cannot drive that far without needing to get out of the car every few minutes to stretch.   I guess this makes him my Manager now, huh? 

All week I’ve been busy matting and framing work.  I dislike that job really, but enjoy the look of my pieces as they’re all polished up and ready to make their debut into the world.  Here are my yoga series of prints all matted and ready to go: 

 

2.  I’ve been asked to guest post at Runs For CookiesKatie, who is a lot like me in many ways (she’s maintaining a loss of over 100 pounds and has a sweet tooth equal to mine) asked if I would write about life as a maintainer for her blog.  I’ve been slowly making progress on that post and hope to have it done and ready for her soon (it’s coming, Katie – I swear!)

3.  I met someone. 

No, Craig and I are not having marital problems so you can breathe easy (or, if you’re new here and into reading about drama, try and contain your disappointment) lol    What I mean to say is that I have made a new friend who is such a kind person and so easy to talk to – and she’s a fellow artist!  We met because we both have work on display at the gallery.  We started messaging each other and as it turns out, she lives less than 10 minutes from me Smile  She’s a mosaic artist and does incredible work.  Here is one of her pieces that I received as an incredibly thoughtful birthday present last month:

 

 Photo1

Okay, truth:  I bought it for myself.  I am the thoughtful one!

I had to take the photo at an angle because of the glare from the ceiling lights, but you can still see how amazingly talented she is. Her name is Melissa you can see more of her work at her Etsy store right here.

Another reason why I’m mentioning Melissa is that because of her…..

4.  I signed up for my first art fair this week. 

This was a HUGE step for me.  I haven’t done an art fair in almost 15 years and I didn’t really enjoy the atmosphere the last time, but this is a different venue and will be for one day only.  Plus, I’m selling paintings this time around, not painted furniture which will make set-up and break-down much easier.  The art fair isn’t until August so I still have plenty of time to prepare. 

Perhaps the most exciting thing that is happening this week (this weekend to be exact) is….

5.  I am going to meet one of my favorite bloggers! 

I have missed several opportunities to meet some of the amazing people I’ve met online due to back issues and poor timing, but the planets must be aligned correctly because during my visit to Indianapolis, guess who will be arriving at the same time all the way from Texas for a conference?  None other than Roxie from Gravel and Rust!  Roxie is also maintaining a 100+ pound loss and we’ve been reading each other’s blog since the inception of mine almost 2 1/2 years ago.  I’m terribly excited!

That about wraps it up.  I’ll be back next week with answers to all of your burning questions, like:

‘Just how long did it take to make that three hour trip to Indy?  How many times did Ellen’s back force her out of the car, and did anyone see her doing yoga stretches alongside the road?’

‘…and what about the gallery?  Did Ellen sell anything this month?’

‘Will Ellen be able to stay away from the Cheesecake Factory while in Indianapolis?’

‘What will happen when Ellen meets Roxie?  Will Roxie find out that Fat Girl Wearing Thin has secretly been written by some weird guy named Allen all of these years?’ 

Tune in next week for these answers and more – and have a great weekend Smile

xo,

Ellen

Giveaway Galore

The first two months of the year is always somewhat bittersweet for me.  Tax forms start coming in and my goodness, the bills!!  Car insurance is due; life insurance premium is due.  Car plates are due.  I remember the first time I knew I was a grownup: it was the year I had to use my birthday money to pay for gasoline and credit card bills instead of frivolous things like music and clothes.

I do still get a few perks around my birthday, though.  February 1st always brings good mail.  Today my inbox was flooded with gift certificates to Office Maxx ($10 off $50!) and a coupon for a free cupcake at my favorite café (YUM!!) as well as double bonus points from Ulta for anything I purchase during the month of February!

Okay, I’ll admit – the cupcake is really the only thing I’ve gotten without strings attached.  Still, it’s a nice way to wake up in the morning, especially since my birthday is still over two weeks away.

Since I’m no longer running, I’m back to walking on the treadmill and putting in 3 miles at a time.  Today I’m going to try and squeeze in another mile for an even 4 but seriously, that may be the caffeine from my tea talking right now. 

I find that if I do it first thing in the morning then the rest of my day is freed up to paint and write.  For the past few days I’ve had little else to do, anyway.  Our weather went from 60 degrees and rainy one day to nearly single digits within 24 hours.  Today, I’m looking at 8 inches of snow on the ground and it is exactly ONE degree outside.  The dogs are not happy.  They want their walk and don’t care what temperature it is outside.  Every time I move, they block the doorway and look at me like this:

dogs

These dogs are impossible to reason with, I tell you!  lol

 

Because of the weather, you’d think I would have loads of inspiration for winter themed paintings, right?  Nope.  I can’t get get summer out of my head and it’s been coming through in my work: 

 

041

This painting was inspired from many nights under a campfire a few years back when Craig and I used to camp during the summers.  At least I’m getting back into a rhythm of painting.  I can’t sit or stand for long periods due to my back, so I do short bursts of fast and furious painting – which, surprisingly works quite well for me.  Go figure! 

Speaking of painting…….

This morning I wrote the name of every participant for our January Hate-Loss Challenge, folded the papers and put them in a bowl like so:

drawing

…and had my husband draw a name from the bowl before he headed off to work.  The winner of the inspirational print is:

draw2

Congratulations, Brenda!   Check your inbox for an email from me – I need your address so I can send your print to you Smile

 

This giveaway just happens to coincide with another giveaway I’m doing on Facebook right now.  I just reached my 100th Facebook Fan and am holding a drawing for THREE prints and a greeting card featuring my art.  Just click on the photo below and you’ll be taken to my Fan page where you can enter if you’d like.   Note** You must have a Facebook account to participate. 

The contest will close tomorrow (Saturday) at noon, EST. A winner will be announced tomorrow night.

giveaway

Have a great weekend, everyone! 

~Ellen

Getting my Groove Back

A few days before my surgery I went to the front desk at my yoga studio and requested that my monthly subscription be suspended until July 14th.  ‘Oh, for sure I’ll be ready to come back by then!’ I said with confidence. But when the 14th came, not only was I still unable to do a forward bend but this low groaning was coming from somewhere – from me, as it turns out.  I sounded like an old tug boat about to go out on its last run in the water.   Not a good sign; so I called to let them know that I’d need a few more weeks before I was ready to get back into classes. ‘Unfortunately, my recovery is going more slowly that I thought,’ I said regretfully.  I really enjoy being in class and having instruction.  It allows me to completely let go of everything that I’m carrying with me and just be in the moment.   It was a hard decision to make but I knew it was the right one. 

Since then I’ve been trying to do my own yoga practice here at home.  But whenever I get out my mat, the two other yogis in the house always want to practice at the exact same time I do. 

The first one a bit of a showoff:

 

 

The second one likes to get all up in my face when I’m on the floor.  He reminds me of the close talker on Seinfeld:

 

I have tried being polite and gently let them know that I prefer to practice in my own space thankyouverymuch, and then ease the door closed behind me.  But the Prince and Princess of the Palace get all upset that they’ve been locked out of their kingdom and proceed to whine and bark behind the door.   Sigh.  So much for trying to practice in peace. 

But I am here to tell you that all is not lost!  You wouldn’t believe my grin yesterday morning as I sat down with my favorite cup of tea (Chocolate Delight.  Mmm) and opened my email. Waiting in my inbox was an email from Karen at Before and After, letting me know that I’d won a month’s subscription to Gaiam TV for a whole month!   YAY!!    I made a bee line over to Gaiam’s website and lo and behold, they have a whole slew of yoga videos that I can:

a) do on my own but WITH instruction,

b) in my slower than molasses time and

c) in the privacy of my own home until I’m stable enough to go back to the Gentle Yoga class in a few weeks. I’m already working on a plan to bribe the dogs with rawhide chewies at one end of the house while I take full advantage of my free month on the other.   Thank you, Karen.  And, thanks to Gaiam TV for allowing me the opportunity to get my groove back :)  Here’s to hoping that I may have a bit of summer to enjoy before its over!

 

Have a great Tuesday, everyone.  I’ll have some news to share in my next post; my task is to get it written by Thursday.  Fingers crossed.

XO,

 

Ellen

Blog Block

I’ve got nothin’. It seems as though not one interesting post can be squeezed through this space between my ears today.

I have notes tacked to my journal in case I ever found myself in this mental void but, who knew I’d actually draw a complete blank for over three days?

 

Things to blog about when you have nothing to blog about:

Idea Number One: Review old posts and elaborate on an idea further.

Not to sound whiny, but it takes a long time to review old posts.

Idea Number Two: Pick a quiet place to sit and think. Choose a place with few distractions.

I went into my tiny office and sat. It was quiet. Too quiet for this household.  Where were the dogs, anyway? As it turned out they had their own things going on. Important things! Take Brulee for example:

Idea Number Three: Take a break and run a hot bath. Sink way down in the bubbles while the mind fills with ideas.

Nope. Only two ideas came to me while in there: shave my legs; and maybe not take any more photos of my feet.

Idea Number Four: Carry your camera and take photos of everything you did during the day, showing what you’ve been up to.

I decided to spare you pics of me standing in line at my local pharmacy and waiting for lunchmeat at the deli counter.  I did take a couple of photos from my iPhone while at the park.  Want to see those?

How about that one on the left?  I surprised even myself with how well that one turned out!

 

I did make an incredible meal in the kitchen this week.  Lately I’ve been trying out new crock pot recipes so that my husband will be able to throw meals together in a breeze while I’m on surgery vacation (surgication? How about vacurgery? Eww…that last one was really awful!  I need a good catch phrase so I can stop using the words ‘post surgery’.  Any ideas?) 

Anyway, is there anything easier than creating a meal in a crock pot?  I think not!

My recipe came from Waisting Time (thank you, Karen).  It is her famous Mexican Chicken Crock Pot Casserole.  I’ve slightly modified her recipe according to taste but if you click here you’ll sail off to her site where you’ll find the original recipe along with others just begging to be tried.  Here is what mine looked like –  I know you need no reminders that this is not a foodie blog:

 

 

 

Mexican Chicken Crock Pot Casserole (modified) courtesy of Waisting Time:

5 chicken breasts
2 (15 1/2 ounce) cans black beans, drained 
1/2 package frozen corn
6 ounces sliced black olives, drained
1 onion, chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
1 (15 ounce) jar salsa, mild
1 (8 ounce) package of fat-free cream cheese
1-2 tablespoon taco seasoning

1.  Add all ingredients to crock pot EXCEPT cream cheese.
2.  Cook on high for 4-5 hours.
3.  Add the cream cheese to top of cooking chicken mixture for last 30 minute of cooking.  Stir in before serving.

My husband has instructed me to assure you that even though this particular picture isn’t terribly appealing, he ate from this meal for three days – a new record for him.  Translation:  seriously yummy.  We used this mixture as filling for tortillas.  So easy to make. 

 

Well, that’s about all I can muster up for today.  Hey, at least you got a great recipe out of this post; that’s something, right? 

Tell me, what do you do to get your creative juices flowing when you’ve got Blog Block? 

Asparagus Served Cold. Dog Reads Blog. What Kind of Monday is This?

Good Monday, everyone – and thank you all for sending such kindness and love over the Internet this past Friday regarding my post on Emmie.  My husband, who read it last night looked up from his computer and said, ‘You really have some wonderful people out there reading your blog’.   I just smiled and nodded in complete agreement, very aware of how lucky I am.

In addition to your comments on Friday I also received something special that I wanted to share with you. Cindy, a very kind reader and fellow golden owner sent me this photo of her dog Bonnie, who also happened to be reading my blog on Friday – I am totally flattered, by the way:

 

photo

Isn’t this the sweetest photo?  Bonnie also has her favorite TV shows and loves to sneak peaks from her owner’s IPad as well.  Many thanks to Cindy for allowing me share Bonnie’s photo with you. 

 

Speaking of Friday, for Emmie’s little celebration I bought her something I’d never seen before.  It’s called Lickety Stiks and looks like a bottle of roll-on deodorant, but it’s a chicken flavored treat.  You just unscrew the cap and the dog licks the treat right off the roller ball.  I thought she was going to sprain her tongue she licked so fast and I wish I’d taken video to show you but she was in the zone and I couldn’t bear to set the thing down to get the camera. 

 

My weekend in part was spent reading and writing a review for a book that I received from NaturallySavvy.com  Five minutes after I started reading, my first thoughts were:  I can’t believe how uneducated I am on the ingredients stuffed into packaged foods.  How embarrassed I am because of what little knowledge I have about trans-fats, high fructose corn syrup and preservatives and what they can do to one’s body.  I could write on and on about this but let’s just say that I have learned a lot over the past couple of days.  I’m feeling more confident in the way I’ll grocery shop in the future.  In other words, the light bulb has been turned on.  I’m just finishing up my review and hope to post it on Wednesday. 

 

Before I lose any more street cred, let’s quickly move on to a food that I do know a bit about:  asparagus.  April is the prime month for fresh asparagus, so if you haven’t picked up a bunch now is a good time.  I never really enjoyed asparagus until I went to my mother’s house a couple of years ago and saw how she served it: cold.  I’ve been preparing it that way ever since.  No recipe necessary, either.  Just heat in a bit of water on the stove until barely tender, rinse under water until asparagus is cold, then serve drizzled in balsamic vinegar.  I didn’t think I’d like cold asparagus but it sure tastes good on a hot summer day. 

This photo is a prime example of why I could never run a foodie blog.  It looks as though these beautiful vegetables are laying out all over the counter; I promise they’re in a glass dish.  If only I’d thought to place them perfectly on some vintage dinnerware.  Sigh.  Oh well, you get the idea. 

 

Hope you all had a good weekend.  Looking forward to seeing you back here on Wednesday. 

XO,

~Ellen

One Year Anniversary of a Former Rescue Dog

If we weight loss/maintenance/healthy living bloggers aren’t writing about exercise or proper eating habits, we can be found writing about our desire to create a happier, healthier lifestyle for ourselves. If you were to ask the average person what would make them happy, I think you’d pretty much get the same answer: having a fulfilling and satisfying life.   There are plenty of obstacles that can get in the way, but once the opportunity is there, once that door opens -  all kinds of wonderful things can happen. 

Today, I have a success story to share with you.  Tonight at our house, we’re having a private little celebration and our guest of honor is Emmie. One year ago today, she came to live with us.  Emmie has quite the shy personality and she’s not one to brag, but I think that she’d secretly love having today’s post dedicated to her accomplishments over the past 12 months, and who better to share them with than you, our blog family.   

 

Day One:

Emmie was born sometime in 2007, but she began living her life at age four.  That’s how long she lived at a puppy mill facility in Missouri.  Her job: to have as many puppies as often as possible.  Because she lived in a cage, her back legs and hip muscles had degenerated and atrophied.  By the time she came to us she could not walk far, nor do any jumping or running.   

 

After Three Weeks: 

She loved every minute of our daily walks, and we saw improvement in her stamina within a few short weeks. When she came home though, she zonked out for hours, many times before we’d even have the chance to remove her leash.  It was also within this time that she had her first encounters with birds, squirrels, fresh air, leaves beneath her feet and car rides with the window rolled down. 

 

After Six+  Months:

I may have been Emmie’s trainer, but Brulee was her official teacher.  She learned how to do what dogs do, all by watching him.  He was extremely patient with her and taught her how to run and dared her to keep up with him.  He showed her the important things in a dog’s life, like sticks, treats, swimming, and getting scratched on the tummy. 

 

Emmie Today:

It’s been a challenging year for Emmie but for my husband and I, watching her evolve into a healthy, happy dog has been one of the most rewarding experiences we’ve ever shared.  She is finally beginning to feel like this is truly her home and that she will live out the rest of her life here, with us. 

 

Some Words of Wisdom, according to Emmie: 

 

1.  Take time to appreciate the small things, for they are someone else’s biggest joy.  I particularly love watching the birds in the yard every morning.

2.  Be grateful for every day that you are able to exercise your body; notice the way it feels like pure freedom.  If searching for a new exercise, I recommend Squirrel Chasing as an easy yet effective workout routine. 

3.  See every day as a new and exciting adventure, because it is!  I pass by the same rock every day at the park and it smells different every single time!

4.  Strangers are just friends that you haven’t met yet.  Just remember, it is not okay to sniff their crotches for identification purposes (at least that’s what I’m told)  Sad smile

 

Happy Anniversary, Emmie.  And to everyone reading – have a great weekend.  Appreciate the small things. 

 

XO,

~Ellen