Happy Trails ~ and ~ Happy Tails

Here are some pictures from the weekend excursion to the park trails. There were two goals in mind. One, to find Prophet’s Rock, mentioned in a previous post, and two, to go back and pick up trash.

Please don’t think that those two bags of trash were not a lot of hard work. You will be mistaken if you do. The effort it takes to go off trail, cross a creek, climb a hill, grab the trash and make it back to the trail is a physical workout. The kind of workout that not only requires strength, but also balance, flexibility, coordination and surefootedness, and a dollop of determination too.

When said coordination and surefootedness don’t show up for the job though, a tree will surely take advantage as you are ambling your way back down the hill to the trail and rip a piece of your pants right off your butt. It’s an amusing sound…the tree attempting to rip the pants right off you. Followed by my unmistakable giggles when I realize what’s happening. Yep, I laugh at myself a lot. I mean, what else can you do?

Oh well. Ripped pants are a small price to pay for being outdoors, getting exercise, learning some history, and helping Mother Earth stay pretty.

I’m adding some other pictures, courtesy of Unsplash, of dogs enjoying some great outdoor trails too.

Enjoy and God bless!

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Love Is…

Photo by Sneaky Elbow on Unsplash

…working together in the garden on a nice day.

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Thursday’s Dog

I’m going to experiment and (attempt to) try some new posts, called Thursday’s Dog. It copies off of the theme for “Thursday’s Child”, which comes from an old nursery rhyme.

The original meaning within the nursery rhyme for “Thursday’s child has far to go” is that the children of Thursday will have a long and successful life. More modern interpretations have taken it to mean that there are setbacks and obstacles for Thursday’s child to overcome in life.

Either way, I’m starting “Thursday’s Dog” posts to celebrate dogs and all the wonderful things they do to love and help mankind and make our lives better.

For this first “Thursday’s Dog” post, please enjoy the story of Patron and his important work in Ukraine.

https://www.npr.org/2022/05/09/1097585032/patron-dog-ukraine-zelenskyy-medal

Enjoy and God bless!

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May 11, 2013

Excerpt from I Kissed A Dog And I Liked It.

For the first time in about ten years, we’ve got the screens put back into the storm doors, and we have been opening doors and windows in the house. But I’d rather have the house closed up and still have my dog.

There are no washcloths and hand towels scattered in different places on the floor, with treats buried in them that we have to walk around and pretend we don’t see. But I’d rather have them there and still have my dog.

The top shelf of the refrigerator isn’t overtaken with her special water pitcher and her food. And the side door isn’t full of her allergen medicines that had to be refrigerated. But I’d rather have the fridge stock full of her stuff and still have my dog.

There is no big toy basket tilted sideways on the floor with toys, toys, toys tumbled all around it. I don’t have to move them in order to vacuum and then put them all back. I don’t have to wash them because of her dust allergies. And most have been given away, with a select few still remaining in the house. They are put away safe and sound so nothing will happen to them. But I’d rather have my dog here and see her playfully choose one, gather it in her mouth, and come running to me for some playtime.

The stock-up trips to the Walmarts and Targets don’t involve buying up deals on paper towels to gather her potty business and throw away. There’s no special trip to Petsmart to get stocked up again on Greenies or try to find another toy that she doesn’t already have.  But I’d rather do that and still have my dog.

There’s no being awakened in the middle of the night for a potty run, to go sleep on the floor for some unknown reason, or to give a nighttime massage. But I’d rather be awakened by my sweet, lovable, gentle, pretty, smart, funny, talented, furry bundle of fluffy love, my little Molly Jean.

Life somehow has gone on without you, Molly. It doesn’t seem right, but it has. Are you running and playing in heaven? I want you to be doing exactly that.  Are you laughing and having all kinds of fun? Are you sharing in hugs and kisses with everyone who meets you? That’s what I want for you, Molly.

Molly and Mr. Bear

So in retrospect, I change my mind. I don’t want you here. I don’t want you to be in a closed-up house 24-7 because of all of your allergies. I don’t want you to be limited on when you can be outside and go for a walk. I don’t want you to be owned by someone who can’t always play when you want to play or who can’t always be with you because of work, family, or other things. I want you to be in heaven, running, laughing, playing, and loving every single second of it, surrounded by people who love you and have time to be with you, doing whatever you want. I want you to be whole, hearty, healthy, and happy. More than anything else, Molly Jean, I want for you to be a happy little girl.

I love you, Molly. And when it’s my turn to go to heaven, I know that I will see you there, and then heaven will be ours to enjoy endlessly. Until then, just have fun and save a special Greenie dance for me.

Love,

Lori

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One-Word Wednesday: Release

Photo by Saad Chaudhry on Unsplash
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May 10, 2013

Excerpt from I Kissed A Dog And I Liked It

Happy birthday, Molly!

Last night, I tried to sit down and write some more about Molly. How much I love her, how much she is missed, how sorry I am that we aren’t together anymore, how sorry I am that I didn’t find a way to spend time comforting her at the end of her life. I keep beating myself up about that. It wasn’t any good to let thoughts and feelings flow from my heart down to my fingertips and then on through the keyboard and watch as those thoughts and feelings appeared on the computer screen in front of me. The main thing that kept coming to me was, “Life sucks without my dog in it.” That’s no good to write, especially in recognition of her birthday. But sometimes, life sucks without my dog in it.

I still pull blueberries out of muffins and pretend that there is a precious Molly here to lick them off of my finger. Blueberry muffins just don’t taste the same when you don’t have a furry friend to share them with.  I still sing Molly’s little girl song on my commute to work every morning. I still stop and acknowledge her on my way in and out the back door of the house every day. I still pretend she sits next to me on the couch, sleeps down by my legs in bed, or lies on her pillow next to the desk while I’m typing away on the computer. Whenever I see pretty pink colors in the sky overhead, I think of her in heaven. All prayers are ended with something to the effect of: “and tell Molly that I love her and I miss her and I’m glad she’s in heaven with you, dear Lord. Give her kisses from both me and Jim and make sure that she gets a Greenie after supper. And enjoy her dance!”

Molly and Mr. Bear

And now, today is her birthday. I knew that this day would come. I also knew that the day would find me sitting here just like last night, trying to find words of wisdom at how far we’ve come in the last six months, words to show what progress has been made in coping with life post-Molly. And there is progress. Jim and I don’t sit at the dinner table in awkward solitude, looking at each other with nothing to say, afraid to mention that things aren’t right without hearing Molly bark for second helpings or barking and popping wheelies to alert us to the fact that she’s ready for a Greenie and a Greenie dance. At least we don’t do that every night.

We do pray together at night now. This is something new for us. Before, nighttime prayers were something we each did on our own. Now, it’s a husband-and-wife activity at our house. And of course, the prayers always include something special about Molly.

Yet in spite of my “life sucks” attitude that sometimes overtakes me—yes, I do in fact know that life is truly a beautiful and wonderful thing—I am a blessed person. I have a wonderful husband, a nice home, a good job, a family that I love dearly. And the bills are paid. Jim and I both have good health (a few aches and pains but good health); the kids and grandkids are healthy, and Jim and I are blessed indeed to have been Molly’s human parents. There are new spring flowers outside; the tulips by her grave have been beautiful and colorful. The yellow daisies behind her lantern are starting to come up. Later this summer, they will be nice, tall, and full. All these things comfort me.

Did God know when he made her that she and I would find each other? Did he know, even before the time that he made me, that he would later make her too and send her to me? Was a part of the creation of my soul and my heart reserved back to be placed with hers?

Those thoughts comfort me too. But they also shame me. It makes me realize all the more that I should have taken more care to be with her during those last two days of her life. At the time, I was consumed with worry for her and sadness for myself and sought my own solace and comfort at home. Now, I’m consumed with guilt, and there is no solace for me anywhere.

The emptiness, the sadness, the change of no longer having a furry little bundle of fluffy love that loves me unconditionally—that is as hard to deal with on May 10, 2013, as it was on November 18, 2012.  Maybe it stings more today because it’s her birthday. And maybe it also stings a bit more today because Mother’s Day will be here Sunday, and I miss my mom too. I think silly things like if I were still a child and sick and in the hospital, would my mom have left me in the ICU, or would she have stayed no matter what? And in spite of my sickness and my resulting need to just sleep, would I have known if she was still there? It’s not the same thing, I know. But I still feel like I was a very bad doggy-mommy to Molly that Saturday when I left her in the ICU.

So now May 10, 2013, has found me shedding more than just a few tears already this morning. The lump in my throat won’t go away. It stays in place, constricting and choking out any ability to speak clearly. I hope that I won’t have much talking to do at work today.

Oh, I so much wanted my reflections for today’s writing to be full of happy memories and praises for God and his love for Jim, Molly, and me. Why can’t I write about that right now? I don’t know. Maybe I’ll leave this sit for a while again like I did last night and come back to it later.

Dear God, please forgive me for being selfish and possessive with my guilty feelings. I know that you are good. I know that you blessed me with many things, including Molly. And I know that Molly is now in your care, your perfect, loving, supreme care. Help me to find peace. And give Molly extra special birthday kisses from me and Jim.

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Tautology Tuesday ~ Well, Duh! Kissing is Great!

Kissing Is Good

Posted on September 13, 2020 by lorijcollins, I Kissed a Dog and I Liked It

For a while I’ve been hash tagging on my Facebook posts that I’ve kissed something, whatever the post is about, and that I liked it.  I’m doing so to line up with the title of my book and my blog, I Kissed a Dog and I liked It.  So for example, if the post were to be about a duck, the hashtag would be #ikissedaduckandilikedit, or if it were to be about a camel, #ikissedacamelandilikedit, and so on.

To date, I’ve kissed three whales, two honeybees, three ups drivers, two turtles, two police dogs, a dog named Judy, a hero, a hen, a bat, an elephant shrew, a service dog, a black lab, a shelter dog, a piano playing dog, a dog named moonpie, a monster, a sloth, wildlife at large, an octopus, a penguin, a fish, and multiples of multiples of other dogs.  I was hoping this list would play out to the ending of something like, and a partridge in a pear tree, but that didn’t happen.  Oh well.

The important point today is the kissing itself.  Even with a pandemic going on, I will use this blog to promote the act of kissing.  A quick google search found a whole lot of reasons why we should kiss and kiss often.  Images of Rhett and Scarlet just flashed through my mind when I typed that last sentence.  If you’re too young to know what I mean, just ignore it for now and read on.

Kissing can boost your immune system (which is important during a pandemic), it can reduce stress and anxiety, which also reduces blood pressure and alleviates headaches, and it helps prevent cavities.  Which makes me wonder if dentists kiss more than the average person?  It also releases happy hormones into the body and increases self-esteem.  Ultimately, kissing provides a way for couples to bond (the whole oxytocin thing) and form lasting relationships.  Anyway, I see no downfall here.  Kissing is good. 

Should we go around kissing strangers?  Well no, I certainly don’t recommend it.  But shouldn’t we kiss more often?  Not only do I say yes, I say there is no compelling reason NOT to kiss.  Think of it in terms of this Chinese Proverb, “Kissing is like drinking salted water.  You drink, and your thirst increases.” 

When I still had Molly with me, she got kissed and kissed often.  There I go all Rhett and Scarlett again.  Sorry, back to the point.  Kisses are important.  They share thoughts and feelings and intentions that may be too hard to express in words.  They comfort and console, unite and bind, share and delight, strengthen and lift up, all by whispering secret feelings as told to the mouth instead of to the ear. 

Molly knew she was loved, and I trust it was more than just because I kissed her every chance I could.  Once kissing her was so routine (along with getting Molly kisses in return on a regular basis), there was no denying our bond, and our bond was pretty instant as it was.  Would it have been as strong without all the kissing?  It just doesn’t seem possible to have had her in my life and NOT kissed her.  I can’t imagine it existing that way…kiss-less. 

So yes, Molly was a drink of salted water for me.  My thirst increased for her and now I find that my heart overflows for care and concern of all animals.  You know, bees, turtles, whales, sloths, dogs, and all of wildlife.  UPS Drivers got in there too somehow, but I’m sure it had something to do with animals.  My husband Jim is my soulmate for sure, so he gets plenty of kisses too. I sure do like it when he kisses me.

What (or who) is your salted water?  Where do your kisses go?  Are you bonding with your soulmate?  Do you need an immune boost?  If you don’t want to take my advice, you can take Rhett’s.  Go get a dog, name her Scarlett, and start kissing her.   

Photo Credit:Author, Beverly & Pack, Author URL https://www.flickr.com/people/walkadog/   Title, “Kissy Face White Puppy Dog Love, Kahuna Luna covered in Lipstick Kisses for Valentine’s Day & 1st Birthday”

#dogsarecool #dogsarepeopletoo #dogsinsnow #dogsmakeourliveswhole #dogsrule #fallisfun #forgivenessisagift #friendsarethebest #happythanksgiving #Ikissedadogandilikedit #imissmolly #loveis… #mothernaturerocks #onedaylateagain #Onewordwednesday #perspectiveiskey #readingisfun #sharingiscaring #sharingsaturday #takeyourdogforawalk #tautologytuesday #theamazinghumanbody #ukraine #volunteeringiscaring #watchyourstep #whatif amazingdogfacts animal abuse animal shelters Animal Welfare Author Book Dog dogs feelings grief I Kissed a Dog and I Liked it Lori J. Collins memories Molly movies people puppies Thankful Yorkshire Terrier

Stay safe, and God bless.

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Another Walk with Mother Nature, But without Molly or My Mama, And I Learned Something New

What a great day it was yesterday (today has been awesome too) to be outdoors and enjoy Mother Nature.  I love being in the fresh air and breathing in a gulp of sunshine, then letting out a nice, deep sigh with the Earth to welcome the new season. 

So, yes indeed, Mother Nature was celebrating Mother’s Day too.  She was popping out new leaves like they were a new hat, dressing herself in a cloak of sunshine and blue skies, bejeweling herself with necklaces and rings of spring flowers, and bedecking herself with a carpet of grasses and sedges like they were a new pair of shoes.  She finished it off by spraying herself with the perfume of the day, Eau De Spring, and she made for quite the gal.

How do I know all this?  I saw her with my own two eyes!

Yesterday, my town offered a flower and history walking tour at the city park.  I took them up on it, and learned a few historical things that either I knew at one time as a kid and had forgotten or never knew at all.  Like how Attica’s Ravine Park does indeed have a Prophet’s Rock, from which Tenskwatawa, also known as Prophet, the Shawnee Chief and brother to Tecumseh, spoke to Indian gatherers in the park area (only it wasn’t a city park at the time, of course). 

Our Prophet’s Rock isn’t famous like the one north of Lafayette near Battleground, where the Prophet actually enchanted the gatherers with a protective spell and encouraged them to take up arms and fight the American soldiers (against the strict instructions of Tecumseh who was away at the time) in what is now known as the Battle of Tippecanoe.  If you check your history, you will find that the enchantment did not work and many Shawnee unfortunately lost their lives that day.

Our Prophet’s Rock still served a purpose for when Prophet was traveling in the area and imparted his words of wisdom to the Shawnee and other Indians in the area, like the Potawatomi and the Kickapoo.  So, when I head back to that part of the park, I’ll do a little crossing of the creek and foraging of the area around the rock and take a good picture to share.  The sad thing I also learned is that our Prophet’s Rock is being neglected and becoming covered up with a lot of overgrowth and therefore dissolving into the air and ground bit by bit. 

And of course while I was on the tour I did see more trash that I have to go back and get out of the creek.  Maybe one evening this week if I get home from work in time.

Back to my walking tour.  The only thing that could have made it better was to have my Mama and Molly with me.  To say I miss them just doesn’t seem to be enough to convey how much, well, how much I miss them. 

What a simple word, ‘miss’, a word that means so much but somehow not enough.  Oh well, I know how much I miss them and I feel pretty certain they know it too. 

This post may seem a bit of a jumble and out of focus, but bear with me. 

  • Walk.  It’s good for you.  Your dog (and your mama) will love it too.
  • Appreciate.  You (and your dog and your mama) are blessed with life on a beautiful Earth.
  • Learn.  There’s always something interesting or beneficial to learn about your own little part of the world. 
  • Do.  Find a purpose, even if it’s something as simple as picking up trash and putting it where it belongs.  Or taking your dog for a walk.  Or doing something nice for your mama. 

Happy belated Mother’s Day to everyone.  Enjoy and God bless.

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Love Is…

Photo by Julie Marsh on Unsplash

…waiting at the doctor with your best buddy so he doesn’t have to go alone.

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One Word Wednesday: Drowse

Photo by Daniel Lincoln on Unsplash
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