gratitude-a-thon day 2083: Loss, Gain

The other day when I was walking my new puppy, Daisy, we ran into a dog that looked like Riley, the 14-year-old we lost in April. To be specific, we didn’t lose him because he ran away, or we lost track of him on a walk, we lost him to old age and the big bag of ugly tricks it travels with. We lost him in our bedroom, in my arms, with some tenderloin in his mouth.

Anyway, this dog. I practically accosted its owner. Fortunately, she was very nice and understood my shock at the likeness between her dog and Riley. (AND OF COURSE, I HAD TO PULL UP A FEW PICTURES ON MY PHONE AS EVIDENCE.) As it turned out, he was from the same breeder in Minneapolis (!), which really surprised us both, because who even gets a dog in Minneapolis? And he was 10, so maybe he had the same parents as Riley had. The thing was that his eyes were exactly the same as Riley’s and well, I couldn’t hold back from crying because in that moment, as much as I love Daisy, and I am madly in love with Daisy, I just wanted Riley back.

Loss is is tough as leather. It lasts as long as Gone with the Wind and conjures up the kind of feelings that seem like they could actually kill you dead. I have lost my mom and my dad and several cousins and aunts and uncles, and Riley is on the same level as those losses in terms of the sadness factor. You might think that’s silly, or overblown, but then you probably never had a dog.

Daisy is now potty trained! I told my kids I was more proud of this than when I potty trained them, and that’s actually not an exaggeration. My kids were much harder, but Daisy seemed not to understand at all, going out for an hour or two, then coming in and doing her biz on the rugs! Then one day, after careful incentivizing and continual monitoring, it clicked and she hasn’t had even one accident in almost a month. PARADE!

She has an adorable personality, loves every person and dog she meets, is extremely affectionate and learns stuff quickly. She always has pep in her step and never met a stick she didn’t love. She is providing us all the love, antics and laughs we missed. She resembles Riley in no way, and that makes me happy, because there can never be another…..

Grateful that I had Riley. He was my very best friend. We had an unspoken understanding and a love 1,987,088 miles deep. I’ve only had Daisy since July 18, but already, I would kill for her (BUT NOT WITH A GUN, BECAUSE I DON’T BELIEVE IN THOSE). I have been very lucky in the department of dogs. And I am grateful every day for that.

You can’t go home again. It’s one of those overused cliches that’s spot on, (apologies Thomas Wolfe for saying the name of your book is a cliche–how gauche) but you wish weren’t. And while it is the sad reality, the truth is that you can visit and you can do a full-on big screen memory dump of all the places you’ve been lucky enough to call home. You can. You’re allowed. But warning: you’re going to get the feels.

Peter and I spent 30 years going to Martha’s Vineyard, from the very beginning of our relationship.We went with family. We went with friends. We rented all sorts of houses on all sorts of lanes and roads and streets, until finally we fell madly in love with the tiny town of Menemsha just before we had our kids. Our two and three-week stints were something we looked forward to in the dead cold of winter. As soon as school ended, we’d pack up and head for the magic of Martha.

We stopped our yearly ritual when the kids went to college. Too many internships and jobs and conflicting schedules. It seemed a family place, and so without our kids, we no longer boarded the ferry for destination happiness.

But we have missed it. All of us. And last week, as a surprise that was postponed due to a health issue, Peter and I headed back to Menemsha, to a B&B we’ve long loved, and stayed at on and off for three decades–The Captain Flanders House. It was comforting to see that everything in this rustic inn was pretty much the same as it ever was, including horses roaming the property, the breakfast room and its sweet flower arrangements, the idyllic views of the pond. The property is the scene of so many memories for both of us, including the site of one of the hardest times I’ve ever laughed, when a take out dessert and a clam sauce pasta dish had a roll in the hay on the way from The Feast, (now The Chilmark Tavern) to the CFH.( I’d tell you the story, but it just doesn’t translate, but take that in–HARDEST.I’VE. EVER. LAUGHED.)

When you love a location, you remember every turn in the road, the intimate details of its geography. As we drove down North Road, every overhanging tree and stone wall provided me the comfort that only an old friend can. I may not have stayed in touch, but here they were, still rock solid. Before I knew it, the fields of farmland and familiarity got me crying. I guess it was because I felt grateful that this place was part of my history, my family’s history, a little chunk of my DNA. It was something we’d experienced together, the love of this island, all those summery, barefoot, sandy feelings of freedom.

As we drove around, I was flush with images of my kids when they were in the backseat, pint sized, wedged precariously amidst blankets and grocery bags and games and suitcases, like the cutest little sardines in a can. I saw shadowy figures of them everywhere we went, Three and Six year old Jake and Ally on the rocks near The Galley, waiting for their ice cream cones (no doubt fighting with one another). The two of them on the hunt for crabs on the inlet at Menemsha Beach,sunburned and competitive. Ally crying the whole summer she was eight months old. Jake peeing off the porch when he was three. The two of their bodies morphing from babies into adults amidst the waves at Lucy Vincent. Their endless thirst for lemonade at the Flea Market, not to mention baseball cards. I can still conjure their moans of culinary delight at the Farmer’s Market when they sunk their teeth into the Cold Rolls and their later dissection of how The Egg Roll Lady made them and if we could make them and next time if we could get 20 of them instead of just 10. Mission Brass Ring at the Carousel lasted well past the age it should have. The sunsets on Menemsha Beach were legend, the way that sky would paint in red and orange and yellow and pink will always stay with me, and the memories of eating fried scallops and perfect french fries from The Bite, while the kids ran wild and played in the epic light. Rocking in the rocking chairs eating breakfast sandwiches, or pizza at The Chilmark Store, wondering what celebrity we might glimpse, tick checks before bed, dance parties, that 4rth of July parade where Ally was almost run over by a car because she was collecting candy a float threw to the kids. EILEEN’S PIES & OTHERWISE, Fireworks. Breakfast in Aquinnah, Scrabble (and fights) and laughs and outdoor showers. And at the end of the day, sleeping so peacefully, the whole world felt right in the morning.

From 0 to 18 in four seconds flat. Grateful.

gratitude-a-thon day 2081: taste like chicken

Hey, have you heard about this whole TikTok Nyquil Chicken Challenge thing? For the love of sweet baby Jesus, can you even? I mean, honestly, even when my nose is running like the falls at Niagra and my throat feels like a cat is walking up and down it with her claws and I feel like someone is setting off fireworks in my head, I hate the taste of Nyquil, so you can bet that I am not going to chef up a meal with it. Besides, what do people say when they eat it, “Taste like chicken?”

Wondering what’s next–Botox Bacon, Tylenol Toast, Advil Apple Pie (it is fall, after all)?

There are so many absolutely cock-a-doodle-do crazy things on social platforms, that it truly is hard to grasp. But all you have to do is click on Instagram and Facebook, which, by the way, “are for old people like your grandmother’s grandmother now” to see what the world is gabbing about. if you really want to know what’s hot and trending though, you have to go to TikTok, or Twitter. They’re the platforms that are currently delivering.

I have been on Facebook for a long time. And I stay in touch with a bunch of people that way. I have also been on Instagram for a good amount of time, as well. And there are some different people I stay in touch with there. I would say that both of these platforms have already lived their best lives. There are, however, still plenty of people who post and respond regularly there and many businesses continue to use both to grow and connect with their clients successfully.

Twitter is the place I go for news. I have my feed all set up to read those I think are smart and in the know and know the dirt, especially politically. Also, Twitter has some pretty astute and funny people who can get me from zero to laughing in just 280 characters. if something big happens where I live, I troll Twitter to see if I can find out the scoop. (“Why are there four helicopters over my house?) Also, if there’s something newsworthy that’s just breaking anywhere in the world, I always hit Twitter because someone was on the scene and is usually quick to post. And, a little trick I learned a few years ago is that if you really want to get a company’s attention concerning an issue, throw them a negative Tweet and click on your phone’s stopwatch and see how long it takes for them to respond. I’ve gotten some real satisfaction this way, when I couldn’t reach a company any other way. As for TikTok, I can fall down the big internet hole over there because there’s such a wide range of stuff to learn. Oh, a lot of it is a big trash heap ready for the town dump, but loads of people create content that’s useful and educational and can help you live a better life, or even just teach you how to put contour on your face.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t just mention that I’m not mentioning the fact that social media has destroyed lives, attention spans and spread more political lies than the Trump family. But this post is about chicken and not about Zuckerberg and his questionable morals, or the general decline of the planet….

Anyway, so just don’t eat the chicken with the Nyquil. Ok? It’s really bad for you and super dangerous. Here’s what the NYT has to say about the whole absurd thing. No major gratitude announcement today, just a little public service announcement poking fun at the loco world we live in. (Sometimes just laughing at it all, is gratitude enough.) Have a chicken-free Thursday.

gratitude-a-thon day 2080: the good, the bad & the ugly: the emmy’s

I had a late hair appointment last night when a critical text came from my sister. “FASHION ALERT: THE EMMY’S ARE ON TONIGHT.” How did I miss this? If having a new puppy, obsessing over a work project, and following the trials and tribulations of our former president with hope and glee means I don’t even know there’s a major red carpet happening, then let’s face it, I need a reboot. STAT.



As star of The Flight Attendant, I expected more from a fashion A-lister than this major air disaster. This bad mark from from a girl who would marry a piece of tulle, if I weren’t already married. “This is your Captain speaking, get some highlights in your hair and rethink your fashion choices before the next flight.”


Forget Killing Eve, this schmatta was killing me. Did she steal this from Prince’s closet, or what?


I really like this dress, except for the triangular piece of fabric that’s missing. We know you have a cute belly button. We know you have a flat tum tum. What we don’t know is why a double nominee would wear something even Ruth would’ve turned her nose up at.


The color is like the walls of a bad dental office. The top fits, but the grazing tulle, a fabric I’d truly like to wear daily, just doesn’t make her larger than the average bear’s boobies look supported. There are toooooooooooo maaaaaannnnnnnnnnnnnnny ruffffffffffffffffffffffffffles. It’s kinda like a souped up peignoir set Laura might wear on the Dick Van Dyke show on a night when she really wanted to get some.


The top of this dress looks like a priest married a Christmas Tree Skirt. Wendy might have gotten away with it on Ozark, but Laura, we’re just not having it.


I don’t love the dress, but it wouldn’t be on the “worst” list if it weren’t for the hair. This is the girl whose mom puts those pink curlers all over her head the night before the school picture. This is the old lady around the corner who’s had this do since 1924. This is the worst hair since the Bride of Frankenstein.



in the category of “go big or go home,” this very elaborate red number was volumes of tulle, (which by now you know my deeply intense adoration of), was a major hit in my book. The color was stunning, the layers and layers of heavenly ruffles were fun and exciting. This is a girl who made a very big entrance, and I for one was so there for it.


The only thing that could fit Lily better is her skin. This is a gorgeous silhouette and a fabulous sparkly color that matched her hair like they were dyed together. This is a head-to-toe SLAM DUNK 10.


I think Reese knows her bod and what works and what doesn’t. This worked like Merrick Garland is working to put Trump away. Ba-bam, that blue is everything. Great shoe. And i love the volume on this stick straight hair.


This one, she is up there on the style stairway that leads to heaven. It’s so often that a strapless goes wrong, with either too much boob hanging out, or an emphasis on how little is there. This classic black is all loveliness. I do not like the hair, but everything else was so good, I couldn’t take off points.


This subtle pink bling fabric perked up Amanda’s natural pale skin in a beautiful way. I love that delicate piece of tulle (I KNOW, I am talking tulle again, and you’re wondering if I’ll ever stop) at the top. The whole thing screams Merriam Webster’s definition of “pretty.”

Ok, what was your fave? Who did you hate? Spill, please.

gratitude-a-thon day 2079: what i know about marriage

We got married on Labor Day. We joked it would remind us that marriage is work!

That was 35 years ago today.

And although we thought it was funny all those years ago, we were perfectly right. Marriage is work. A lot of work.

Here are the top 10 things I’ve learned while I’ve been on this rollercoaster ride:

  1. Love is the foundation. We fell in love at first sight. Yup, it really happens. We were both smitten immediately. I told a friend the next day, “I just met the guy I’m gonna marry.” The beginning was a long-distance Boston/New York romance. We walked every square inch of both cities. Everything felt like when The Wizard of Oz goes from black and white to color. As time wore on, the magical newness love became genuine caring love. As we, early on, faced things like my mom’s illness and death, and infertility, it was the basic, deep-down love we had for one another that sustained us. It will change and go in and out and up and down, but it must remain. Love is not all you need in a marriage, but a marriage won’t last without it.
  2. Respect yourself and each other. Sing it Aretha. A marriage without respect is going to crash and burn faster than you can say “Do you know a good divorce attorney.” This is the part where you both have to make sure you’re independently doing and being what gives your lives meaning and giving one another the encouragement of like, a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader. I don’t mean you have to want to do or feel what the other does, you just have to believe in them enough to be cool with whatever it is. ALSO, you have to both respect the third party–the marriage. Treat it as its own entity. There’s you and there’s your partner and there’s your marriage and all three need their due.
  3. Trust me. If you don’t feel safe in a marriage, trouble is coming for you. If you think your partner isn’t doing what’s best for both you and your relationship, things aren’t going to last long. If either of you is in a constant state of curiosity about the other’s commitment, it’s dooms day.
  4. Honestly. Lies aren’t welcome here. Be truthful with your partner. Whether it’s something you don’t like that they’re doing, or someone you see that you fall in love with, don’t go sneaking around behind their back. If you had enough respect and love to marry your spouse in front of all the people who mean the most to you in the world, then have that same respect and love to be honest with your partner. The end.
  5. I do and I will. Commitment means that barring a major natural disaster that renders you helpless or dead, you will be there for one another and the marriage. No questions asked, no considering otherwise, no kidding. This is not for the faint of heart. We’ve faced some tough stuff during our more than three decades. And every marriage will. But this is where you show one another what you’re made of and that you and your marriage are as important to one another as you are to yourselves.
  6. Laugh. Life is amazing and horrible and fun and mean and miraculous and cruel and incredible. And so is marriage. If you’re not laughing at yourselves and your marriage, you’d better get packing and look for a new place to live on another planet.
  7. Make time for one another and have some fun for crying out loud. Having a good time together is always important, but especially after you have kids, who can easily demand every second from you. Get a babysitter and have a once a week date night when they’re little. It feels impossible, but even if it’s a couple hours, on a walk, for lunch or dinner, at a coffee shop, do it. DEMAND IT. We need fun to fuel us. Make time to enjoy each other independently. It matters. A lot.
  8. Make new friend, but keep the old. Have couple friends and independent friends and pay attention to each. Friends are good for marriage because their good for people. Sometimes a friend can see what you can’t and help you through a rough patch. Couple friends can make you stronger. (NOTE: Couple friends can get divorced and this will cause your marriage suffering. It’s really hard……)
  9. Do stuff together and apart. It’s great to have shared interests, or to create some. Doing things together can give you a sense of, well, togetherness. Whether you’re both movie maniacs, music buffs, or golfers, go and do as a couple. But also, make sure to do what your spouse doesn’t, as well. Staying independent is good for staying together.
  10. Fuck. Whether you have sex twice a day, or once a month, maintaining a physical relationship is vital. It bonds you and makes you feel connected in a way nothing else does.

I’m no expert, but I know a little something having kept this ship afloat for this long! And now I say to Peter, thank you for putting up with me. Thank you for all the times you’ve been positive when I’ve been realistic. Thank you for standing by me like a glue stick. Thank you for always loving me and our children and our dogs. Thank you for believing in me, at times, more than I believed in myself. Thank you for always being there. Thank you for making me laugh. I love you. Here’s to the next 35.

gratitude-a-thon day 2077: the simple to the sublime

Gratitude doesn’t have to be big, or loud, like a parade, or the cymbals crashing together at the end of a marching band number. It can be small and muted, like a library. or the quiet car on Amtrak (which I can never understand how anybody can manage, like quiet talking–REALLY?!). It can be imperceptible to others, even. It can be itty bitty, like the perimeter of an ant.

The theory behind gratitude is simple. It’s just making yourself aware of the good in your life. It not only helps to keep you in the present, it also helps to keep you clean. That is, not allowing yourself to let privilege take over, to become a slave to our “I want, must have, need to get” culture, to live in a way that celebrates what you do have and disregards what you don’t have.

In hyper focusing on what we want vs. what we have, we lose what’s right in front of our faces. You live in a “future” life instead of a “right now” life. That’s not to say that being ambitious or wanting to excel, or become more is bad. It’s good, but only if along the way to your ultimate goals, you make sure you’re not blinded from all the positives you experience on the daily. Because it’s that awareness that keeps us in the day, that means we’re living the game in real time, that ensures we’re understanding our fortunes are many if we’re looking for them.

Gratitude is a mindset. It’s easy to feel, but only if you keep it front and center, only if you remind yourself that it’s as healthy as a serving of spinach, only if you make it like brushing your teeth. It’s ours for the taking. And it’s as limitless as air. Stop for the minute after reading this and ask yourself, “What am I grateful for today?” Share if you want, or just keep it inside to fuel you for the day.

gratitude-a-thon day: adderall

In the category of, so, this is interesting, it’s never too late, funny how something bad can turn into something good. I took Adderall today. For the first time. Even though I have had ADD since I was finger painting in round-as-an-exercise-ball, Mrs. Stecker’s Kindergarten class at Center School. Today was the first time I ever took medicine that addressed attention issues. And the only reason I took it wasn’t to address my attention issues. It was to address the preposterous exhaustion which the Covid I had two and half months ago, left behind.

So, while I was very, very lucky to receive Monoclonal Antibodies for my extreme case of Covid, I was pretty fucking sick and sorry, that’s the nicest way to say it that I can think of, and besides you know me, I would marry the word “fuck,” but I’m already married. I literally wondered how I would get to the bathroom, a few feet from my bed for the first three days of my pandemic pandemonium. After my M..A infusion, which I actually had to lay down for, on account of I didn’t have the energy to sit up, I felt better, like I could actually get to the bathroom! Hot damn! But I was still tired. Really tired. And so I stayed almost entirely in bed for the next 12 days. I only left my bed to go to my daughter’s college graduation (delayed two years because of Covid), or I’d have played Sleeping Beauty for another week, or so.

After the graduation, I dove back into work and working out, but I found I was still pretty tired, draaaaaaaaaaaagging myself around the world. And then I began to socialize and return to normal, old life (although it’s hard to even know what normal old life even is after the two bizarro years of Covid quarantine, right)?). but I was still tired, like go to bed early, take a nap, and want to take another nap and still feel I’d been to seven frat parties and had run thirteen marathons on top of four triathlons. I was tired when I woke up after sleeping 9 hours, tired when I did pilates, tired while I was doing work (although I noticed my brain was doing just fine, none of that long Covid brain fog). Name a thing I did and I can tell you I was tired doing it. In fact, last week, I found myself so freaking tired, I started to cry and realize that the fatigue I found myself in was just not in any way normal. So, I finally contacted my doctor and she tested me for Lyme, the results of which I’m waiting for, but her assessment was that she thinks it’s likely just the remnants of Covid. She does think it will go away and she doesn’t think it’s long Covid, but she does think it’s the trash the damn virus left in its wake. So, she said to help me feel better, i.e. more awake, that she thought I should try a low dose of Adderall.



I hadn’t even considered taking something that would wake me up, I was just trying to find more hours in the day to sleep, which of course, wasn’t even working. But considering the fact that I have ADD and the fact that this epic exhaustion is, well, exhausting, I agreed to give it a try.

In case you are wondering at this point why I never addressed my ADD, this is for you. Fair question. There was no ADD when I was a kid. There was “TALKS TOO MUCH,” and “DOESNT WORK TO HER POTENTiAL,” but no ADD. And so to make a long story short, I learned to understand the way my brain worked and figured out how to make it work for me. It wasn’t always easy, and I would have learned more when I was a kid had there been the knowledge about ADD that there is today, but I never felt the need to seek medical intervention when suddenly ADD and meds appeared on the scene like an explosion later in my life. By then I’d lived with it a long time and even when both of my kids were diagnosed when they were young and took Adderall, I was never tempted to give it a try. I knew how to focus. Maybe not just like everybody else, but I had my tools and tricks and tips and it didn’t feel like an issue for me. Also, while some people think ADD is a horrible malady, and until you figure it out, it can be a challenge, I do not because it comes with lots and lots of cool characteristics that I really value, like mega creativity and empathy and curiosity. Also, many of the people I’ve met and known who have it are extremely smart and are super interesting thinkers.

But today, the 20th of August, 2022, I took Adderall. And I not only needed no nap today, I got a whole bunch of stuff done. And I was AWAKE while I was doing it. Sweet baby Jesus. What have I been missing all these years? I am hoping my doctor is right and this is just a side effect that’s sticking around like one of those nasty flies who buzz around your room at night sometimes in the dead of summer because you’ve left the windows open and there’s a damn hole in one of your screens, but in treating it, I may have just found a new and more effective way of doing my day! Can you teach an old dog new tricks? I’m not sure, but you can give an old dog a new drug and watch her do tricks she never dreamed of. Gratitude, once again goes to the miracle of modern medicine. I’d probably be president if I’d had this stuff when I was little.

gratitude-a-thon day 2075: pupdate

A little update on the new girl in town. We picked her up at the airport two weeks ago tomorrow and she walked into our lives like she picked US from a breeder, instead of the other way around.

There was no awkwardness or “where’s my mom and siblings” whining. She immediately burrowed into each of us. She is as playful and rowdy as a pack of two year old’s pre-nap. Her energy is like fireworks on the Fourth. Her infectious and dazzling personality is an addiction–you don’t want to be away from it for too long.

I didn’t know if I could do this–get another dog after I lost Riley. I wasn’t sure I could fully love another animal to the depths I loved him. I wasn’t sure there might not be guilt. I wasn’t sure I had the unlimited energy one needs to raise a tiny puppy. I was only sure of one thing–I really missed having a dog.

I needn’t have worried about any of it. Daisy is a little gift I somehow became the recipient of. Who knows how the stars lined up, how the God’s committee meeting went, how the luck of the draw zeroed in on me. But I got another dog and in 13 days time, I am overwhelmingly in love.

In the last two weeks there have been several times where I have felt so much rightness, so much, and i kind of hate this word, because it just sounds like the Hallmark channel ” joy.” I thought I might break out into song. Maybe I was a canine in another life. I don’t know, but I guess I feel the best when there is a dog I can love in my everyday world.

So, that’s my new dog story. Little Daisy is doing just great and as for me, I am on gratitude overload.

gratitude-a-thon day 2074: dog days of summer

The dog days of summer are coming early around here. In fact, they begin Monday, even though it’s not August yet. Drum roll, please. We’re getting a puppy!

She’s pretty cute, isn’t she? And um, don’t worry, she won’t be wearing a bow!

We said goodbye to our 14 year old Cavachon, best friend, constant companion, and jokester Riley a few months ago, ok to be exact, on April 8. At about 12. While he was on my lap. With tenderloin in his mouth. The trauma of watching him deteriorate from severe dementia, arthritis, and a heart problem was as deeply painful as having Trump in office.

The last six months of his life were like watching water drain from the tub. My husband and I were at odds about how and when his life should end. Which just made everything worse. I cried a lot. And I couldn’t imagine what life would be without this dog. But I did know i loved him so much, I had to let him go, because he was suffering and that felt wholly unacceptable.

The aftermath was grief I can only compare to when my mom died. I was engulfed in a sadness so deep, I could barely climb out of it. I felt entirely broken.

While Riley was getting less and less present, I decided I would never want to go through the pain of losing another dog and was at the end of my fur-ball-loving life. The long goodbye was brutal. The constant worry and heavy sadness I carried around with me like a stack of luggage–the deep anger I felt toward whoever made the decision a dog’s life should end well before their owners, wore me out.

But with the world’s problems mounting up like a Jenga game, I had to reconsider. With the combination of our seriously insane political system, a country divided, climate change upon us, Russia, once again a threat, the horrors of the war in Ukraine, the constant Covid craziness, gun violence, and then the final blow of a terrifying Supreme Court overturning abortion, I knew that I needed to find unadulterated joy wherever I could.

A dog?

Yup. I began slowly poking around to find one. Stopping people on the street to ask about theirs. I still cried at the mention or thought of Riley, but knowing that I could feel the intensity of happy from having that boy as my family and bestie made me realize that I was going to embrace the goodness of another dog, the bond, the tenderness, the all out love.

A note here, yes, I did consider a rescue. And I know many rescue dogs that are amazing, but I had a close personal experience with a very good friend that was horrible and lasted for a considerable amount of time, ending in her having to ultimately give this dog away, because of his aggression, and that made me just too scared to take this route. So, go ahead and judge me as you will……it wasn’t the right thing for me at this moment.

And so, a Cavapoo girl will be joining our fam on Monday. Her current name is Ally, which just so happens to be the name of my daughter! We thought it might be a sign. Of course, we’ll change it. And that debate is on right now!

I’m sure I will cry when we get her and thoughts of Riley will go through me. But I hope he would want me to pass on the love I had for him to another dog. I hope he is running in fields of steak. I hope that he knew how much he was loved, how he changed me for the better and how I will never forget even one day of him. This dog will not be a replacement. She will just be a continuation. Gratitude, big, big gratitude for dogs. To me, they are quite simply one of life’s most perfect parts.