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Archive for the ‘life’ Category

Meet Beans…

All tongue, all nose, all heart.

 Like hundreds of wonderful dogs, Beans started life in Tennessee but will soon call New England home.  Beans was abandoned here in Jackson.  It could have happened intentionally, or perhaps Beans escaped the tether that was so tight it left wounds on his neck.  Either way, Beans’ luck changed when he wandered into the Carlson family’s yard during a birthday celebration.  Rachel Carlson is a dog trainer here in Jackson, and her family owns Wagging Tail Resort, a state-of-the-art boarding facility and “day spa” for dogs, who generously assists our rescue annually with fundraising efforts, as well as educating folks on responsible pet ownership.  Rachel settled on the name “Beans” because it somehow seemed to fit this 9 month-old goofy bundle of love.  As Rachel puts it, “he was just full of beans!”

Beans patiently awaits a treat at his first vet visit.
Rachel contacted us to see if we had room for Beans…
 
The first thing you learn when you become involved in rescue in West Tennessee is that when you refuse to discriminate based on age, breed, or color, you are always going to be full. 
 
There is never going to be enough room for another dog.  There is never going to be enough money to vet another dog.
 
The second thing you learn is to never say “never”.  Where there is a will, there is always a way.  “We just can’t.”  becomes “We’ll figure something out.” 
 

"Am I handsome, or what!"

 You see the picture.  The face.  You remember why you do this.  As I’ve heard it put many times, “you don’t choose rescue…rescue chooses you.”

 
Rachel agrees to keep Beans for a couple of days while we figure out what to do…which turns into a few weeks, because Beans has stolen Rachel’s heart.  After a check-up and a little mending from Dr. Lisa at Parkway Animal Hospital, we posted Beans for adoption with Rescue Angels, one of our favorite rescue agencies in the northeast.  Although we do adopt dogs and cats to local homes, many of our dogs travel for adoption into more progressive states where overpopulation, abandonment, and neglect are not as common.  After several inquiries about Beans, he has been adopted by a wonderful couple who can’t wait to make him a part of their family.
 
Beans is on his way to his new home today, traveling on Peterson’s Transport, one of the many great transport companies whose business is taking this precious cargo to a happy destination, and we can’t wait for our first update from his new family!
 
It’s a good day 🙂
 
 
 

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This Too Shall Pass

My grandmother, Jewel, had the best sayings.  Some were borrowed: timeless phrases repeated for thousands of years, passed from generation to generation as the great, yet simple, lessons of life; and some were her own “Jewels” of wisdom.  I have these  indexed in my memories for easy access when I need direction.  They are stored among the many great pieces of advice given to me by family and friends in my 42 years here.

“This too shall pass” has been credited to King Solomon, as well as to a midieval Persian Sufi poet.  In both legends, a great king is humbled by these words, after asking for a ring with an inscription that can both make happy men sad, and make sad men happy. 

 The point is, all conditions, like all material things, are temporary. 

Four little words; but they have brought me comfort, and I know others who have made it through because of these words as well.  Why is it the simplest words tend to be the most profound?

For anyone who needs reminding this week, as I did: “This too shall pass.”

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What a week!

Think I should run away as fast as I can?

Hit the open road?

Maybe I’ll stay in town, but wear a clever disguise…

…and hope there are enough hugs…

…and laughter…

…and planking

…and bar-b-que

…and libations…

…to make it all better.

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Most of you who read this blog are used to happy, perky content, where even the occasional sadness is spun with meaning, the painful is given hope.  That’s one of the reasons I created this blog, to stay positive amidst the negativeWarning:  This is not one of those posts.  Warning II:  This is raw, but this is ME – and some of you might not think as highly of me after reading this.

This morning, as I was getting dressed for my “day job”, I was planning a happy post in my head (which I’ll create another time) called “The Faces of Rescue.”  I was going to work hard on it tonight and include some photos from Saturday’s work day at two of the sanctuaries, as well as some other pictures I had of our dogs, cats, and the people who care for them.  It had been an exhausting and emotional weekend for a variety of reasons; but it had also been a productive weekend, sprinkled with a few good moments and some happy personal news to be shared later.  So after a semi-decent sleep, I woke to a fresh Monday morning and vowed to leave any negativity of the weekend in the past. 

Oh, what a few hours of Monday can do to a girl.

I took a first step and realized I’d pulled the daylights out of a couple of muscles – that’s ok, I’m thankful to have my arms and legs, blessed to walk.  En route to work, the insignia blew off the hood of my car, hitting my windshield before disappearing  –  no biggie – I’m lucky to drive a nice car, and at least the hood didn’t blow off.    The first voicemail of the day is “I hate to bother you, but I found this abandoned puppy, can you take it?” – I’ll deal with it, it’s what I do in my “spare time”; at least it’s a puppy and not a 7 year-old heartworm-positive, starving, aggressive pit bull, which is the usual call.   “Don’t forget, you owe $1,260 Tuesday…” – I don’t get paid til Thursday, but I’ll figure it out, at least I do get paid Thursday.  Work started out in an uproar – that’s ok, I’m blessed to have a job, and I’ve had much worse mornings than this.  I took a break to check my personal email, and received a barrage of criticism and problems with my rescue – that’s alright, I’ve been ripped to shreds and laden with guilt before, and have survived thus far.

Then, I somehow received this, on my work email, where I have such items blocked:

In case you can’t read the smaller print, it says, “Our lab HoneyBear has chewed through our air conditioning line for the second time and my husband has lost patience with her and is taking her to the Memphis Animal Shelter on June 27 unless she can find another home before then.” It goes on to describe what sounds like a fantastic 1 year-old lab, then says, “I would be so grateful if someone would come get HoneyBear so she doesn’t have to go to the shelter.”

She would be “so grateful”…indeed.  Memphis Animal “Shelter” is a high-kill rabies control facility.  It’s the pound.  In the Grand Ole South, dogs are killed in all the pounds when they fill to capacity, in most cases every few days.  Those of you outside West Tennessee may not be aware of this, but I guarantee you this family knows it.  In case anyone panics like I did, this notice was originally sent June 21, and HoneyBear has since been adopted into a loving home.  Why this came to me with “June 27” clearly at the top, and I didn’t receive a follow-up about the adoption, is beyond me.  Maybe it’s the gods’ way of telling me to give it up and stop being so damnedchipper today. Well, it worked.

So let me share a part of my real self and tell you how I feel about this family (whose name and email address I cropped off the notice after much deliberation).  This family, who is sitting somewhere smug today, thinking what a great thing they did by their horrible dog – why, after all, they went to all the trouble of calling a dog rescue to help find their dog a new home, sent pictures, and gave the rescue 6 whole days to help before killing the dog! 

The woman in the picture, happily holding her trusting dog who has no idea he’s about to be sent to death?  I’d like to take her naturally curly hair with the lovely white flower, and smash her face into the pavement.  I’d like to bring the husband to my house, ignore him until he’s so bored he chews my air conditioner wires in half, then take him to our local pound for a 3-day stay followed by what they lovingly call euthanasia.  I’d like to take their poor son and teach him what it means to have compassion, responsibility, and heart, which are hopefully lessons he’ll somehow learn on his own, because he won’t be getting them from these idiots.  Will I act on any of this? Sadly, no, I’d go to jail. 

Want to unsubscribe to Putting on the Dog?  Feel free.  Because from time to time, honesty ain’t pretty.

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There is something to accountability…I have realized that for me to make changes for the better, accountability is a crucial ingredient.  Walt and I have found ourselves living in the most chaotic of environments lately – my fault, nobody else’s.  Clutter and disorganization has taken it’s toll on my finances, my quality of life, my ability to do my job and to manage the dog rescue properly – it’s basically stolen my sanity…and I want it back! 

One drawer, closet, space a day until I find everything that is lost, enjoy everything that I love, get rid of everything that is weighing me down, and create a home that is the haven I’ve always wanted.

I promised I’d share, so for anyone who enjoys “before and afters” – welcome to my drawers 🙂

This weekend, between some serious dog rescue work and a few other obligations, I’m tackling the linen closet and at least one of my mountains of paperwork.  Wish me luck!

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Goals for the weekend were to sleep late, make homemade lemonade, and swim.  Done, done, and done.

Sounds like a pretty soft weekend, huh?  Well, there were a lot of other things that had to be done that were not so pleasant – some are still undone.  But I’ve realized recently that if I don’t start forcing some happy into my life, I’m going to lose all sight of what it used to mean to be happy…and I do have a lot to be happy about!

So I slept late, under freshly washed sheets and blankets, and remembered how much i love my bed…

…which has these cool pillows our niece made…

…and is SO much greater when my bed buddies are snoozing late with me.  Here are Atticus Finch, Chaps, and Shelby – wondering why I don’t put the camera down and go to bed!

There was no time for swimming, but Walt and I made time Sunday afternoon – that’s the thing about these promises to the universe (aka the handful of people who read this blog).  Besides, it was steamy hot outside, and the water looked so inviting.

The lemonade almost didn’t happen, either, but I’m so glad it did.  I even used fresh mint from the garden, which usually grows there year to year untouched.

“Pick the day. Enjoy it – to the hilt. The day as it comes. People as they come… The past, I think, has helped me appreciate the present, and I don’t want to spoil any of it by fretting about the future.”
— Audrey Hepburn

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Random Happies!!!!

I just received a really happy Monday surprise.  I’m so excited!  I’m like a little kid that just won a medal.

How cool, fun, validating, you name it, to hear my email “ding” and get this message:

“I just wanted to let you know that you are a Genuine Blogger. Celebrate your blog, as it is comes across to the reader as heartfelt and genuine. There are no rules with this honor. Accept it and relish in the thought that your blog is “award worthy” without having any strings attached. It is an award that I hope allows recipients to know that their work is appreciated, valued, and noteworthy by a fellow blogger and it does not have the pressure of “rules and requirements” to follow. Receive and value it for the gift and honor in which it is intended. If you choose to give this award to a deserving fellow blogger, please do so with no “rules.” Award it to someone for his or her genuineness in blogging. Free and clear. Here is the post that explains the reasoning behind this award:  https://justramblinpier.wordpress.com/2011/05/20/genuine-recognition/ .”

This great honor is courtesy of my friend at Just Ramblin’, who has the most awesome blog about her dogs, and whose pictures and stories make me laugh every day.

Thank you!  Today, I got to not only laugh about Miss Stella, but grin ear-to-ear that someone I don’t even “know” appreciates the commentary on my crazy life!

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