These Amazing Photos Of A Little Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa Will Blow You Away

This is so amazing, and a respite from my kitchen reno. Enjoy the beauty.

Kindness Blog

An incredible photo collection of a little girl named Tippi photographed growing up alongside wild animals in Africa.

Prior to Tippi being born, her French parents relocated their family to Namibia, Africa. This is where the little girl was able to make friends with some of the world’s most feared and admired animals like lions, tigers and cheetahs. She also hung out with elephants and zebras.

Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_04

Instead of having their daughter grow up around peer pressure and drama, her parents’ chose a completely different route. The best part is that they captured the photos and chose to share their daughter’s childhood with the world. How selfless! Check them out below.

Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05Girl Growing Up Alongside Wild Animals In Africa_05

About the Author:

Anthony Selden is a New York-based writer and a graduate of Johnson & Wales University with a passion for exploring the cooler things in life. Always eager to inform, Anthony is the lifestyle editor at Elite…

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The Reluctant Renovators, Design Element 4

So, hubby says, wrap it up here, it’s getting kind of boring, (at least he’s reading my blog to have an opinion) well we lived it, you know, he’s already starting a list of new projects, so he’s a little bit over the kitchen.  Thing is, many people are asking for me to continue with this on the blog, to get as much information as possible, and some are doing this themselves.  So, onward I go…

We were doing the cabinets and the countertops, but, there was another area of the kitchen that we both openly loathed, and replacing it would have been too costly.  The ugly but functional island.

Old kitchen
Old kitchen

With its thick, removable cutting board, two drawers, ample shelves, and stainless steel top, we loved the functionality of it.  Many a Christmas prime rib has been carved on this cutting board.  But, it just was plain ugly in blond wood.  We never liked the color, but the size was perfect, narrow and long for our kitchen.  Plus, the little doodads hanging off the sides were rarely really used or needed.  Enter Relux a shop that opened near us.  They use CeCe Caldwells paint to “age” new and older pieces, and I had found my answer.  So, I worked on the island as an added bonus.

CeCe Caldwell’s paint  is made from clay, and is completely environmentally friendly, down to its recyclable packaging.  You could eat this stuff if you had to, and with working on our kitchen 4 weeks straight, there were times that it was the only edible thing in our kitchen (not that we’d partake.)

The first step was using the “deglosser” in the Rustoleum Cabinet Transformation Kit  (I was going to stretch out that dollar and use what I could on this project to save even more money), I scrubbed at the finish of the island.  Then, I painted the same “castle” bond coat as the cabinets, and let that dry over night, this would be the color that would show through when I “aged” it with Traverse City Cherry CeCe Caldwells paint.

CeCe Caldwell Traverse City Cherry
CeCe Caldwell Traverse City Cherry
Ugly.
Ugly.
Lord have Mercy it's PINK
Lord have Mercy it’s PINK

After painting it, and using baby wipes to scrub away some of the cherry to reveal the gray, it looked pink, this project was being haunted by pink, my least favorite color ever!  So, using the glaze from the cabinet restoration kit, I darkened it  and then applied the restoration kit’s finishing coat, we had a “brand new” island that cost us around $34, and a few days worth of elbow grease.  It was the perfect complement to our new kitchen.

Love, love, love
kitchen before decorative hardware etc

And that’s the end of the kitchen reno…  Waiting for hubby to start watching those cooking shows…

Reluctant Renovators, Design Element #3

The cabinets: Using Rustoleum Cabinet Restoration (the larger size) for $149 at Lowes. rustoleumtransformations.com We started on Friday, we had a four-day weekend to complete this project.  We did not complete it until we stayed up all night on the following Thursday — well, Rick stayed up all night, while I snoozed in my chair periodically waiting for him to call on me to help him — and we installed the new over-the-range microwave at 7:30 am just in time for hubby to start his work day.  We were in it to win it.

We removed the doors and deglossed all the wood, front and back, of each cabinet door and set them on 2x4s with drywall screws driven through them, so that we could work on the doors without marring the finish. We set out a long banquet table in our living room, and other card tables in the kitchen so that we’d have the space to lay out all the doors and do each step on them all at one time.

Doors numbered, deglossed, and up on nails, ready for bond coat
Doors numbered, deglossed, and up on nails, ready for bond coat

After deglossing, and a drying time of 1-2 hours, came the  first “Castle” gray bond coat. With 2-4 hours drying time between coats before we could flip them and start the next two coats on the other side.  I did the first side, while Rick worked on the frames of the cabinets.

Castle
Castle
2 coats bond coat
2 coats bond coat
This view is of door propped up on the 2x4 and drywall screws
This view is of door propped up on the 2×4 and drywall screws

When we had painted the doors and cabinet frames, I realized that I didn’t want to add the decorative glaze, as this gives the appearance of aging, and our home is a 1970s tri-level, so, I wanted a clean, modern look.  This took one stage of the process out of the equation, and left us with sleek, beautiful cabinets.

This entire process from removing doors to bond paint took us through to Monday evening with drying periods.  So, we worked on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings after work to put on the top coat. Here’s something we read on another person’s blog.  The top coat can get goopy, like glue, but will stay white after it dries, so be careful if you are doing this to clean up any goopy areas.  Even with as much sweat and caution we used, and this was the most intense part of the whole process, we still had a couple of places it gooped. It’s tricky.

But, when we went from this:

old cabinets
old cabinets

To this, in just 4 weeks:

IMG_9897

 

And this:

IMG_9895

 

And this:

IMG_9898

And this:

IMG_9896

And this clever way to display and use pretty hand towels under the sink as seen on apartmenttherapy.com

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With a total price of this, including drop cloths, plastic, gloves, numerous brushes, hardware and the restoration of the island, everything we bought for this project:

IMG_9909

We were thrilled to death!  Our mission was accomplished, and under budget with change to spare. We’d gone from Reluctant Renovators to Renovator Renegades in 4 short weeks.  We have other missions in the works now.  Hubby is watching DIY shows, just give the man some guidance from the Property Brothers, and he’s a handy man.  Hmm, I wonder what would happen if he began watching the cooking channels?

 

The Reluctant Renovators, Design Element #2 The Counters.

 

Old counter
Old counter
Weekend Two, Design Element #2: The Counters. The Rustoleum Counter Restoration kit is $249 at Lowes http:/rustoleumtransformations.com, and we bought ours in Onyx.  I like white for counters, and if money were no object, I would have bought white Corian counters.  I like how I can see everything on white, and know my kitchen is sparkling clean.  However, there is no white Countertop Restoration Kit, and I didn’t like the lighter shades for our kitchen colors.  So, it was Onyx.
Rustoleum Counter Restoration Kit
Rustoleum Counter Restoration Kit and stuff we had to have on hand to complete the transformation
This job was not difficult to do, if you have the time and a helper, it gets done, but it is scary as heck. We are meticulous, and it comes in handy with projects like this.  We watched the video at least 10 times, and that’s no exaggeration (I’m not sure if we watched it the last few times to put off the inevitable, or what, seriously.)
We followed every step starting by cutting plastic and covering everything we didn’t want to end up black.  Then we sanded down the counter to make it rough so that the epoxy would adhere to it.  Our white counters had a bit of a wavy pattern, so we really had to dig in with the sanding.
Then we watched the video again.  Time to apply the thick black epoxy type paint.  When we thought we had it right in our heads how to proceed, we watched it one more time to make sure we had it exactly right.  Again, we are ROOKIES, and we were about to change our perfectly workable counters forever.  A screw up would definitely break the budget.
We sweated our way through the application of the thick black epoxy paint, making it perfectly even on the counter with me doing the back splash of the counter, and Rick immediately following me rolling the paint thickly on the flat surface of the counters, we worked quickly and silently.  And went over it meticulously to ensure full coverage.
Then without hesitations, we had to use a weed feeder like device to spray a heavy coat of paper-thin chips directly onto the counter, covering every surface, including the floor, our stove, our shoes, inside the sink — a thick layer laid over every surface, lest we miss even one spot.   I won’t say that there was no jostling and some choice words spoken through this process, the space is small and we had to stick side by side.  Then came a night of rest (what was left of it). And we woke to this:
Before sanding...
Before sanding…
After several sanding sessions, almost there.
After several sanding sessions, almost there.
It looked like a stone countertop (AMAZING), and we began to sand the surface.  And we sanded some more.  We patched some areas that amazingly needed touching up, which surprised us, as we went over the entire surface with the work light before heading to bed.  So, we had to wait for four hours before we could sand some more.  What was supposed to be done in two days, ended up with me finishing the sanding while Rick worked on Monday, and then Monday night we sweated through applying the high gloss sealer  (after watching the video a few more times) in the same manner as applying the epoxy, Lord save us. This had to cure for a week, so we were cutting it close with starting on the cabinets on Friday. Overall, we were really surprised by the beauty of the countertops and the back splash. The design in my head was coming together in our kitchen.  Pretty cool.
Finished counter
Finished counter
The worse part of the entire project was having to watch the DVD so much that we began hating the people on the DVD as they smiled through it, seriously, with hardly any mess at all, and then celebrated by cutting veggies and fruit on a cutting board on their new countertops.  We didn’t once see them sweat, they didn’t have black epoxy on their forearms or on their faces or on their sweats, in fact they weren’t even wearing sweats.  OBNOXIOUS.
Design Element #2 Complete, next up Design Element #3, which meant us standing for hours in the aisles of Lowes again deciding which color to paint our cabinets.  We were all in for Castle (a gray color), but then hubby started thinking about Cabernet, a deep red.  We opted for Castle in the end… Phew.
To be continued…
PS, forgive me that there are no breaks between paragraphs.  Am trying to figure that out now.  🙂

 

 

 

From The Reluctant Renovators to The Renovator Renegades

 

Old Kitchen
Old Kitchen
Old kitchen
Old kitchen

Circumstance really is the mother of DIY Renovations (DIY RENOS).  We are the LAST people to EVER even consider a DIY project of any magnitude, but our circumstances are as follows: wanting to retire someday, still paying college debt, the crummy economy, and a VERY outdated and downright worn-out, sad kitchen that we’d lived with for over 20 years.  Something had to give.

Enter the aforementioned Apartment Therapy January Cure apartmenttherapy.com.  It seemed the more I organized our home, the more the problems of it were magnified.  To be honest, every inner door needs replacing, all the knobs are outdated, ugly and can be opened by a cat or dog.  But, worse of all was our kitchen.  We simply thought in order to redo our kitchen we’d need a 20 thousand dollar budget. Plus,we’d just replaced all our windows, and two years ago installed hardwood flooring, and we all know it’s not the product, it’s the installation that costs so much.  Twenty grand was not in the cards or bank account.

Rick was totally reluctant about considering anything DIY, “Leave me out of your psychosis”  is his favorite saying.  But, suddenly, the things that really needed to be updated began to niggle at him, too.

We had one door that had begun to peel at the bottom, like, 10 years ago.  Rick decided to tackle the door.  After HOURS, I kid you not, spent together in the aisles of Lowes he got all the “stuff” and was able with some complications, and directions from my newly found expertise from watching The Property Brothers, to get the door hung, and it was darn successful.

Ahhh, let’s conquer the DIY world!  Let’s redo our kitchen!  Boooyah!

I had seen information over the past couple years, and testimonials and tutorials about Rustoleum Restoration products rustoleumrestorations.com.  So, we decided to do the cabinets, and Rick’s mantra was, “We are not doing the counter tops, we are not doing the counter tops, we are not doing the counter tops.”

“Fine,” I said, “but I need to tackle that horrendous brick back splash.”

Here was the deal, we had budgeted one thousand dollars for the project and three weekends with one of them being a four day weekend to complete the cabinets.  Doable.

Weekend one: The back splash.  I’ve always hated this brick back splash, so I painted it brown so that it would blend in with the cabinets, completely unsuccessful.  Then, one day I had a friend over and she said, “Don’t ever change the brick, it’s awesome.”  Hmmm…

I decided instead of trying to make it go away, we’d make it a design element in our kitchen.  I was thinking pearlescent.  We found pearl paint with pearlized glaze at Sherwin Williams sherwinwilliams.com.  Went home and applied two coats of the primer and let them dry, it was pink, hmm, my least favorite color.  Rick says maybe the glaze will soften that?  Glaze the entire back splash, now it’s shiny pearlescent pink.  I hated it.

Pink!  No good.
Pink! No good.

Back to Sherwin Williams, bought a silver metallic glaze to put over the pink pearlized glaze, and Voila, design element #1 achieved, and it’s amazing.

Design Element #1 complete and beautiful.
Design Element #1 complete and beautiful.

We savored that accomplishment for a few days, and then decided we’d tackle the countertops on week two (so much for Rick’s mantra).

To be continued…

 

Brinkley, my friend, till we meet again.

There is no comparison or way to measure the life of a beloved pet to that of a human being.  I lived that at the bedside of the terminally ill, I watched as gurneys rushed by to ICU with a young person, or someone’s mom or dad or friend on it who will suddenly, shockingly, come to the end of his or her life here on Earth.  I held  those who sobbed and sorrowed in my arms. I have been held in the arms of another as I mourned a loved one.  There is simply no comparison, and I want to say that upfront.  I want you all to know that, from the deepest part of my heart, if you have lost someone you love — a child, or a mother, sibling, spouse, or father or friend, I ache for you.

But today, it will be about our dog Brinkley, my friend and constant companion.  Brinkley was a goldendoodle and came onto the scene just when labradoodles were becoming popular.  When I was walking The Punk (short for Punkin) people would stop us in their cars and ask what kind of dog he was.  He was as tall as my hip bone with long legs, and a huge wavy haired head with soft brown eyes.  Majestic, sweet, and muppet-like, and not so different looking from his long-legged, curly-haired human companion.  Though, I dare say, he was much cuter than me.

Brinkley was what we called the “orphan” puppy.  Rick wanted a female puppy when we had decided to get a goldendoodle and wasn’t budging on that.  I found a breeder in Iowa and she had a litter coming in December, so we decided we’d have a puppy about Valentine’s Day.  Then a photo came on a cold December Sunday of this blond puppy whose family at the last minute couldn’t bring home.  This photo flashed on the computer screen and I gasped, “OH, MY, GOSH! An ORPHAN PUPPY!  Oh, Rick, this poor, sweet baby!”

“Is it a girl or a boy?”  Rick asked from the couch behind me, looking at the photo on the screen.

“A boy.”

“Well, I want a girl, and do NOT use the word orphan, he’s not an orphan, he’ll find a family.”

“Rick, he’s already 8 weeks old, people are weird about getting puppies that are older, like they are cast offs, or orphans.”

“Bonnie, quit saying the word orphans. We are getting a girl, we’ll wait.”

So, I headed off to the shop to do payroll to be ready for a busy week ahead.  I could not get that puppy out of my mind as I worked the numbers and listed them neatly on the payroll sheets.  Poor little baby boy orphan puppy.

When I got home, daughter Bethani called from the family room, “Hey mom!  We’re going to get the orphan puppy and Dad’s naming him Brinkley.”

Sucker.

We drove through one of the snowiest December days for hours to pick up our precious Brinkley (named after the golden retriever in You’ve Got Mail, our favorite movie — yes, we are suckers for a love story, too) on December 17th, 2005.  Brinkley had big paws that thwacked on the floor like duck feet as I baked Christmas cookies.  I can’t remember a single thing he did wrong.  It’s like he came and perfectly fit in.  We think it was the best Christmas ever, the Christmas of 2005, and it just may be for all infamy.

Brinkley loved people.  Grammy was already in the nursing home so the first place we went was to see her, this little puppy with the big paws.  People ooed and awwed over this sweet boy.  He was called “Spot”, “Rufus”, “Sport” , “Sparky”, “Lady”, “Buddy”, “Spunky” all kinds of names as many residents recalled their own dogs from their pasts, and Brinkley truly was all of them at once as he went from person to person.  From the beginning he would lay his head on their laps and crooked arthritic hands gently petted him from head to tail, murmuring to him, loving him.

Sometimes, when we’d come, a family member would ask us if we would visit their mom or dad.  And Brinkley would go into the darkened rooms and lay his giant head gently on wrinkled hands.  So many of the dying would wake up and smile as they caressed him, it was incredibly precious, people’s love for dogs.

He had no formal training, we just simply were hanging out with Grammy and her friends, and that was our normal routine.  One time, they moved the life-sized Jesus from the dining room to the corner of the small lobby area while we were in Grammy’s room visiting.  As we began our stroll with the other residents to take Grammy to supper, Brinkley caught sight of that Jesus and started barking up a storm, growling and carrying on.  One lady, said, “Brinkley, it’s JEEESUS, don’t be afraid.” And we all laughed including those wheeling themselves down the hall in their wheel chairs, family members, other residents, and staff.   We all laughed at Brinkley barking at Jesus.  It still cracks me up as I write this.

Brinkley was my walking buddy, we trained for a half marathon, he helped me train for my hike in the Grand Canyon, waiting patiently as I sprinted (carefully) up the bleachers in the park with heavy packs on my back.  Brinkley walked through winter storms, summer rains and heat, and beautiful autumn mornings along the river.  He was always good for a walk no matter what the weather.

Last year we had a rather mild winter until February and March, and I noticed that Brinkley began limping on his right leg after a few miles.  So, I began massaging his paws and legs.  He was 7 and had been pretty active, so the vet and I thought he could be having some arthritic issues.  I’d sit on the floor and gently massage Brinkley’s front legs and paws.  Little did I know that this was caused from a huge tumor that had invaded his abdomen and caused pain when he walked more than a mile or two.  I just thought it was something a little physical therapy, glucosamine chondroitin, and love could cure.

This day last year, I worked and we went to Maundy Thursday church, and Brinkley greeted us with Lily Belle (our mini goldendoodle) like normal when we returned.  He sat for a long time with his head on my lap, and I petted him, scratching his back by his tail. I loved my Punker and he loved me, and it was our ritual to just be together every minute, Brinkley and me.

After Brinkley’s massage, Rick went out to do a skunk check, (yes, he’s obsessed especially since both dogs had gotten skunked in January) and Brinkley leapt over my legs on the ottoman like a deer leaping over a fence to join on the skunk hunt.  I said, “He looks just like a deer.”  And Rick agreed.

The next morning Brinkley was in a funk.  We thought maybe he’d eaten something outside.  I headed off to work, it was Good Friday and a busy day for the chocolate shop, and throughout the day, Rick would give me updates.  I ran home for lunch and became deeply concerned, Brinkley just looked very sick to me.  By the time I got home, it was clear that he was very uncomfortable, his gums were pale, and I thought maybe he was having some kind of internal bleeding.  Still Rick resisted (maybe he knew something deep down) and said we should wait until the next day to call the vet.  But, instead we packed him up and took him to the vet our daughter worked for who graciously stayed open till we arrived.  By the time we got there Brinkley was clearly in crisis.  They couldn’t get a temp on him, or a blood pressure.  He was cold and obviously in shock as they warmed blankets in the dryer and tucked them around him with a hot water bottle.

A million scenarios like poison or something equally disturbing went through my mind, but the last thing was that his belly was consumed with a huge tumor with all the characteristics of cancer, and it was pressing against his enlarged heart and lungs.  By this time, he went further into shock when they removed the oxygen from his face, and we knew with heart crushing agony that we were suddenly saying goodbye.

We laid on the floor with Brinkley, and we all spoke to him.  His eyes never left mine as I told him how much I loved him, Rick and Bethani talked to him, soothing him, we cuddled him close lying on the floor, his tail gently wagging, surrounding him physically and emotionally with all the love we had. Then his breathing softened and slowly came to a halt.  Our precious Brinkley gone.

Even now I weep thinking of that moment, I wish I could say that I am over that sweet boy, but I’m not, and neither is Rick or Bethani or Ricky.  Simply gone too soon, and again, I wonder about heaven and God’s plan for our loyal pets.

My father wrote this note to us after Brinkley passed away:  What love we know on earth, we will also know in heaven.  Those we have loved and who have loved us, reside in heaven.  You see, love simply cannot die.  It lives on forever.

I plan to see Brinkley and Max, and Marty and Karlee and Paxton and Angel and Mandy and Coco again.  I plan to see them and scratch their butts, and kiss their noses, and take long walks in heaven with them.  I plan on them greeting us all in heaven with tails wagging.

You see, I believe with all my heart that dogs do go to heaven, my friends, for what would heaven be if not?

You have to eat oatmeal or you’ll dry up. Anybody knows that.–Kay Thompson, Eloise

You have to eat oatmeal or you'll dry up. Anybody knows that.--Kay Thompson

Every morning for breakfast, practically — unless we are working on the house and are out and about, we might stop for something at the local diner that seriously holds maybe 30 diners — we have oatmeal.  Our favorite is Good Food Made Simple, here’s the problem, for months we got it from Costco, then they stopped carrying it, went for a while without it, mourning our hot steel cut good-for your-heart-and-belly breakfast, and then several months ago we found it at Target, BOGO for 5 bucks.  YAY!

Yesterday, I ate the last of my flavor, which is the maple, oh my, so nummy.  Off to Target I go after work, and what do I find?  An empty shelf  in the freezer where my favorite should be.  Sigh.

My first thought is they will now stop carrying this outstanding breakfast option, because that’s what happens when you fall in love with a product.  I used to love a Victoria Secret lotion for years, then one day, I went in and “Oops, we no longer make that scent, sorry.”  There is a profound, NOW WHAT? that goes through my mind, and I bet some of my readers think the same, when something is just taken away, and no one warned you about it.

We make a lovely oatmeal that is an excellent stand by, and almost as simple after I make a Sunday batch, but it’s NOT Good Food Made Simple.  I walked away empty-handed, a little down trodden, till I found the new Gain’s pods for the washer, and got a little excited about something new, something different.  See, I can appreciate something new and something different.

When my scent was taken away forever by Victoria Secret, I began to blend my own scents with oils and perfumes, so that I am never beholden again to someone else’s formula, and everyday, I will combine different earthy scents with a more feminine perfume for a scent all my own.

And should our favorite oatmeal go away (and I don’t think it will, I think they were just out of it), I’ll go back to making our own, or hubby will, and maybe it will be even better than Good Food Made Simple is.

Change is good, it is, I say emphatically, as I go to eat the last of hubby’s oatmeal.

“Home, where my love lies waiting silently for me…” Simon and Garfunkel, 1965

Homeward Bound

I had a little rescue tea-cup poodle named Angel that I got from a family who was going to either euthanize her or give her away.  I was just 18, had moved to my first little $65/month apartment with my twinsie, and I had always wanted a dog.  Cue Angel.  She was ten, but spunky, and she followed me all through the little town where I lived.  We’d walk down to the post office, I carried her through Harry’s Super Value picking up a few groceries, she was my constant companion. Wherever I went, Angel went, she traveled on a pillow in between the seats in my 1974 orange Vega.  We’d pick up and just go, Angel and me.

In November 1979, right before Thanksgiving, a door had been left ajar by accident in the old Victorian house my friend and I had moved into.  When I came home from the hospital, Angel was gone.  I put out want ads, I checked out every single “lead”, but Angel was gone, and before long winter would come, and I held no hope that a tiny 5 pound dog would survive it.

I was heartbroken. I sorrowed so deeply not knowing what had happened to that little doggie.  I wondered if she’d gotten picked up and was living with someone.  I wondered if she had been hit by a car, and was left to die in the tall dead grasses along the highway.  It pained my heart not knowing.  All through that cold, snowy winter I mourned my sweet Angel.

In May, my big sister called the hospital and said, “You need to bring home some dog food.”

“It’s much too early for me to replace my Angel Dangel.”

“Well, we think it IS Angel, but we’re not 100% sure.”

I truly don’t remember how I got home that afternoon, an orange blur flying down the highway.

When I entered my sister’s house, I stood silently at the door.  All of a sudden a little white head popped up from between her and her husband on the couch and  like a flash she was in my arms screeching like a human being, it was a sound I’d not heard since — a dog finding its love after 6 months away, or maybe it was my voice I heard.  To this day, I have no idea.

We don’t know where she spent the winter of 1980.  A couple of people thought they had spotted her off the highway a couple of miles down the road, but when they stopped to call her, she scampered into the tall grasses and got away, until she found herself at the porch of my first apartment behind my sister’s house five months later.

Angel, became an angel in heaven when I was pregnant with my first child, but we had many good years between.  She loved the man who would become my husband, and he loved her so much, that when we went on our honeymoon, he couldn’t leave her behind, so he tucked her in his pocket and surprised me as we got on the road.  We placed a pillow between the seats, and Angel sat, her eye’s squinting with happiness, she had her people and we were embarking on a whole new adventure together.

Her story is one that even we can’t believe all these years later, how that little, tiny dog found her way home to the love that waited silently for her.

 

 

NOT one of THOSE days

NOT on of THOSE days

I woke up grumpy. I don’t know, my tummy feels icky, I’m cold, and I  just feel crummy. I don’t feel like looking on Facebook and seeing all those inspiring little pictures or sayings that people like me put on their walls.  Today, I’m thinking people like me are just plain obnoxious.

I didn’t sleep well, hubby was away for the night, and the skunk smell last night was as if every skunk in the Midwest was in our back yard mating and “passing a little gas” as they did it.  Kid you not.

If you have dogs that have ever been “skunked” you will understand the unnerving feeling of  the image (conjured up or not) of a huge population of mating skunks, passing gas, and making MORE of those stinkers to populate our yard and possibly spray our dogs. Quite frankly, it stinks.  Pun intended, I guess.

It didn’t help when the dogs wanted to go outside at 4:30 and I opened the door to find snow, doggone it, and had to go traipsing around the yard in my slippers with a flashlight checking all around the bushes to see if one or two of the mating, stinky skunks were snoozing there and could be startled by a doggie who simply just wants to pee and pooh in their own yard, thank you, and not have to worry about getting skunked.  Seriously, skunks, go find your own bush to sleep beneath.

Well, I’d love to wallow here in my own juicy grumpiness, but I have work to do, chocolate to sell, insurance issues to settle, and I will walk in as I always do every morning and greet everyone with an honest to God smile, and right now I even think THAT is obnoxious this morning, too.  But, really, half the battle of a grumpy morning is greeting others with a smile and receiving one back before the problems of the day are set before me in earnest.

Besides, the problems I face will eventually be resolved with some thoughtfulness on my part, and help from my brother-in-law The Chocolate Man, and it will end up just fine.

That’s the beauty about waking up grumpy, I don’t have to STAY that way.  I know waking up at all for some of us is a true blessing, so before I go to work, I really need to find something cute to put on my wall to put a smile on people’s faces, or make the grumpy even grumpier.  Why not?