Salem Dixie Elizabeth

I can finally talk about it.

This dog I loved so much.

Loved with all my heart.

Every single piece of it.

My dear, sweet companion who loved to eat. Who always knew exactly what time dinner was served. Even when daylight savings time tried to trip her up.

Who moved with me from house to house, roommate to roommate, and never complained.

Not one single time.

Her tireless devotion astounded me.

Her soulful eyes moved me.

And time and time again, no matter what happened over the years, she rooted me in goodness.

They just don’t live long enough. No matter how badly I wished she did.

So I said good-bye…

And I know I waited too long…

It’s so very hard to let them go.

Fly high with the Angels, my precious girl, Salem.
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Be free to roam.
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Be free of pain.
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Be free of old hips that don’t move like they are supposed to.
Look at Daddy. photo 12374862_10153136217931436_6122432252183816787_o.jpg
Be free of tired legs and itchy spots you can’t reach anymore.
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Run, run, run…over the rainbow bridge.
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Back to your youth and fun puppy days.
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Heavenly Father, Creator of all things, thank you for having entrusted us with a loyal pet. Thank you for letting her teach us unselfish love. Thank you for the memories that we can recall to brighten our days for the rest of our lives. Finally, in gratitude, we return our pet to you. Amen.

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She Will Be Loved

End of June, we welcome a black and white kitty into our home. Our home of four dogs ranging in size from big to little – rowdy to shy. We have no clue how she will do with the dogs, kids, or even the grand baby. In fact, I am not sure if I will be raising a cat or a cat who thinks she is a dog.

The only thing I know for sure…she will be loved.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography
And she will be photographed.

Evidence clear in this post.

This is the baby kitty mama. A little mama gifted a cute kitty for her eighth birthday present.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

This is her new housemate, the ever-curious Anna dog.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

She gives her the welcoming lick and sniff initiation.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

A sweet greeting of the canine-kind.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

Mya is not impressed.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

Cuddled up tight in her new world.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

She purrs peacefully in the arms of her favorite eight-year-old.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

And she is most definitely loved.

Maybe too much…

12 Years a Companion

Twelve years is a long time. Many things can happen; three moves,a divorce,a re-marriage, two bonus girls, and a grandchild. So much life in those 12 years. So much joy, pain, and celebrations.

Every year, I think, this could be it.

Her last one.

The one in which I say good-bye to my old friend. The one in which I am ready. Am I ready? I think so. I don’t want to see her hurt and in pain. Each year her hips get a little more stiff. Her breathing a little more labored. And her naps a little more deep and long.

I tell myself when she is not interested in eating anymore, then I will know it is time.

But that hasn’t happened.

I am not sure it will happen. This girl lives by her stomach.

And so we celebrate #12! We give her pats and frosted dog cookies. We sing happy birthday.

We celebrate our most faithful companion.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

And watch for signs…that those old bones won’t go another day.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

Of course, your friends are here. To keep your spirits high.

And your newest friend, in which, there are many mixed feelings about.

Probably because, she steals the show. And she is quite a pest (Mya the Terrible).

At least it is not your tail she declared World War III on (yet).

Old Dog

Why do you stay so near?
Go lie in the sun and drowse.
You needn’t follow my every step,
And jump up when I appear.
Your joints are stiff;
You’ve earned a rest;
Lived your life well;
Passed every test.
And now you’re very dear.

Old dog.
Why do you stay so near?
You lie close to my side
Each time I pause,
Head in my lap, alert to hear
Every nuance of my voice. You long ago made your choice
And never once looked to the rear.

Old dog.
Why do you stay so near?
What is it that you hear?
A far-off call, coming closer,
That I, too, know is there?
With each day our time together
Draws nearer to its end.
Please stay a while, old friend

by David the Dogman

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Happy Birthday, Salem Dixie! Twelve years is a lot of duty, a lot of love, and a lot of heart.

Cheers to my best in show, my sweet companion, and my first doggy love.

Eightness is Greatness

The youngest step-girl is eight years old today. EIGHT. I don’t want to believe it, but since I watched her turn three, then four, then five, then six, and FINALLY, a staggering seven. Well, that leaves us with eight. Eight is GREAT. Unless you are the adult that thinks your kid shouldn’t be eight, shouldn’t be ten, and shouldn’t be twenty! Sheesh! Not only that but her birthday is my husband’s half-birthday. He is HALF-WAY to 40! I know I shouldn’t stumble over that one, but my young husband is half-way to forty! I’m the older one…he is entering my decade???

This year for Bri’s birthday we settled on two GIANT gifts. What she decided on? Moon sand (because she really didn’t think she would get a kitty). And what she asked for? To visit Candy World at the mall (because she really didn’t think she would get a trampoline in her backyard).

But she did get what she REALLY wanted. I think?!?!

Regardless, our house got a new furry family member and pretty good-size play thing in the middle of our grass.

But first…

Meet Mya Madeline Violet – a six-week old black and white sweetheart.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography
She is almost as cute as the birthday girl.

We left the house that morning where Bridget was on lock-down in her room while construction happened in the backyard (trampoline).

As we were driving, she recognized the street of the place wherethekittieslive. I tried to tell her all the kitties were given away. But when we pulled up, I couldn’t lie, and admitted we might see if just one was left.

Of course, all three were there and had just turned six weeks old. I had my heart set on a grey tabby and was willing to make sure that one went home with us. However, as fate would have it, tabby would have nothing to do with us. She hissed and arched her little fuzzy back. I figured if she was this freaked out about Bridget, what would happen with FOUR dogs?

So, tabby stayed there and Mya not-scared-of-anything went home with us.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

We had to stop at Petsmart since kitty had no potty, no food, and no bed at our place. We hooked da kitty up!

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

Then we headed home. As soon as Bridget walked in the front door, she could see the back yard.

Seeing the enormous trampoline for the first time shocked her senseless (luckily she held onto the kitty). By her reaction you would think we had built a circus back there. She freaked and then ran outside to show her Dad and sister her birthday kitty.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

I made her give up the kitty (for a second) so she could have the inaugural jump on her birthday trampoline (pretty cool present as we split the cost with the girl’s mom).

And what can I say about this kitty? She is so sweet and brave. I must say we picked the best of the bunch. This little gal does not mind little hands holding her, nor carting her all around the house.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

She does not mind dogs sniffing at her nether parts and following behind her to poke their nose into her hidey holes (Anna).

Nothing seems to phase her. She purrs when she is picked up. She eats and uses her litter box. She turns her nose up at the dogs. Sometimes, she tries to chase their tails (photos coming!). She likes to sit on our shoulders and watch TV.

She is the most chill cat. She reminds me so much of my B&W cat Gidjet (gone too soon). And by that I mean, she is perfect for a full house of dogs and kids.

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

We went on to celebrate with cake and ice cream. Bridget wanted a fancy cake. This was the fanciest one we could find (and the baker recommended it). Her eyes got so big and she couldn’t believe Dad listened to her and found the fanciest (lol).

© 2014 Angelia's Photography

This cake was super delicious.
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And maybe a little too fancy for the kids. Heh.
© 2014 Angelia's Photography
Eight years of age. Eight years of watching her grow taller and thinner, wiser and more fun. She can finally match her sister wit for wit. And this girl won’t back down.

I think she had a pretty special birthday.
© 2014 Angelia's Photography

Happy Birthday, Bridget!! You do eightness with greatness.