“Poppies and Poodles…….and Memories”

Two years ago, a little poodle named Shadow came into my home on Mother’s Day.   She was to be the heart healer…..I had lost several of my little ones to monsters in the months before…….this elderly,  nearly blind, abandoned poodle needed a mom…and I needed a furry child to hold in my arms again.  I renamed her Poppy, in remembrance of all my babies, now in Spirit.

The first year, she blossomed like a poppy…….prancing about my Irish wolfhound, always at her side.   Then, her bloom faded.  Canine dementia shadowed my Poppy, she could not see,  could no longer hear, and did not understand where she was anymore.   She circled endlessly, she bumped into everything, she got stuck behind furniture, behind appliances and lived only to survive.

Then, early this year, another neurological issue cast a darkness in her bleak existence.   Her hind legs started to fail; I would find her fallen over, head first, in her water bowl.   It was a constant vigil to see where she was, where she had stumbled, or where she had gotten stuck.   Then, an April morning, her legs gave out.   She could no longer feel them.   The vet said it was time……..we all knew it was coming…….My heart had hoped she would live to see another Mother’s Day with me.  But……time doesn’t wait for when the time is right………it never is.   Whether cancer, dementia……there is never a right time to say goodbye.

I know, I have said goodbye to so many of them.   Thirty some years ago, my husband gave me a Mother’s Day gift of another tiny silver poodle, Skippy.   He owned my heart until his gave out one day in my yard.

My heart longs for another little furry child.   But one realizes time’s passage matters as one grows older……..and caring for a little one is a lifelong commitment, not a piece of trash to be thrown away.   Bringing in an old one again means bringing in heartbreak……a little sooner on the time scale.

So today, I think of poppies and memories……….and aches and longings of the heart.



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“This Pet House” Living with the Pack

10506898_10202057168341499_2521694472086133683_o(1)Wouldn’t it be refreshing to see some ordinary rooms in magazines……

It’s great to see a vase full of dahlias positioned on a gleaming dining room table, set with polished silver and dainty china.   But how about our real lives……

Take yesterday, for instance, I walked into my room to find my exercise bike pedal chewed, a nice clump missing…….Culprit, my collie, Landon.

There are holes in the fringed throws that cover my furniture…there will always be a dust ball of fur floating around the floor…even five minutes after vacuuming.

You know how some walls have growth marks for childrens’ height……my woodwork has chew marks for growing teeth.

Kitchens in magazines……sigh.    How could a family of five live there, with not a dish in the drain or a crumb on the counter……Show a kitchen on a rainy day……when dog paws leave a canvas of mud across the floor…….or show a kitchen dog dish with a trail of water puddles from a dripping mouth that leaves a trail through to the next room.

I imagine these people must run around like maniacs preparing for photo shoots, but wouldn’t it be nice to just see a home, not a show place.

If you own a dog, a cat, or a bird……….let me tell you, birds are the messiest……seeds are flung out of cages, feather dust floats like a fine mist……And if you share your home with all three…….it is pointless to aim for that showplace…….but easy to aim for that home…….

For my home wouldn’t be home without them…….fur, feathers, seeds, chew marks, holes, and most of all…….Mother’s Day full nests for pet moms.

Happy Mother’s Day to all moms………those who nurture two footed mess makers and those who nurture furry and feathered babies.

It is nice to walk through a show place or dream of one in a magazine, but the place I put my feet up and rest is my home………and it just wouldn’t be my home without them……………..



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Five years ago, I met the most wonderful friend……he has since made his journey to the Bridge…….but his energy will always linger in my heart……..

  Remembering Oscar, we walked this path on a rainy day five years ago in Ireland………me and oscar

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“The One For Me”

I was asked to be a guest columnist for a dear friend’s blog…….here is my article.

She Was The One Who Was Meant For Me

(Note: We welcome guest columnist Shirl Knobloch, a writer and an institutive medium who works with animals. She longed for an Irish Wolfhound for years. Her hopes were dashed once, but then the soul companion that her heart called came into her life. She talks here of life with Aura Lee…)


I am a friend of Bob’s and fellow wolfhound guardian. I don’t use the word owner, though all of us with wolfhounds know we are owned by them, lock, stock, and barrel. These beings are not our dogs; they are our soul companions. If one believes in recurring lifetimes, then one must believe we travel in certain soul groups or circles.  There is a longing inside us to connect with these soul companions.

I have always longed for a wolfhound. 

For years, I kept a photo of one taped to my refrigerator.  When I was younger, there were excuses….the house was too small, the children were too little, wolfhound lives were too short. Then, with the passage of time, one realizes that life is indeed short and unfulfilled longings weigh on the heart.  So my heart went in pursuit of one of these beings.

I live on the side of the pond where wolfhounds are not as prevalent and easy to obtain.  I spent a year waiting on a promised baby, a wheaton colored male, only to have my heart broken when told there wouldn’t be one for me. Then, the soul companion came. The one meant, the one waiting those recurring lifetimes to find me again. She was a brindle girl, exactly like the one staring at me from my refrigerator door, every single day.  She was the one my heart called, not the wheaton boy. She was the one who came to answer my heart. 

There were many nay sayers. I was warned about their size, about their aggressiveness, about their prey drive.  I had a home filled with tiny Pomeranians.  My vet warned, “You do know they don’t live long.”  Friends warned my other dogs would not be safe. Nothing deterred me.  I brought this tiny girl home, sitting on my lap and in no time, she grew like ivy entwined about my heart. 

Never have I worried so much about a dog. Never has the needs of a dog taken such precedence over my own wants and schedule. What to feed, when to feed, when to let them run, when to let them rest, you will search every article and blog and medical post on the internet. I have bloat procedures and acupressure points posted on my fridge now.  

Never has a dog shown such human emotions. Never has a dog needed, not wanted, to be with her family.  Never have eyes not just looked at me, but looked into me. These dogs cannot be parted from loved ones. They belong by your side; if not allowed to be, the sadness and stress can result in physical ailments. Never has one sulked with such hurt at being reprimanded for stealing a sandwich off the counter. And steal food they will. You will have to baby proof your home, or wolfhound proof it.  

I have been extremely lucky. I have seen the damage some cause.  If you bring one home, you may have to lose a sofa, not just some sofa pillows.  My little ones are all gone now but my Aura Lea never showed one minute of aggression toward any of them. She is gentle with my grandchildren and tolerates times when their not so gentle hands may push her away.  She likes to get up in your face, her favorite time usually when her beard is dripping with drool or water. Your lap will seldom be dry, your sofa will never be empty; but your heart will always be full. 

Even at the cost of a sofa, there is no price one can put at possessing the love of these of these gentle, giant beings. There is a bond only another wolfhound guardian understands; if you are meant to know it again in this lifetime, you will. Lifetimes separate our hearts, but new lifetimes bring us together once again; that is the strength of the human wolfhound bond.


Wolfhound Eyes

          From “Strength of a Lion, Soul of a Lamb”

                      — Shirl Knobloch

Eyes to hunt a wolf

Take down a human heart

In seconds

A heart is lost

Given without fight

To eyes that wield

More power

Than a sword

Eyes that see

What others miss

Through years of knowing

Seen in seconds

The colors of one’s soul

Eyes that feel

What has been hidden


Absorbed in


Eyes that link

Two other eyes

Not for a lifetime

But for eternity

Time has no meaning

All that was

Sees again

Exists again

Through Wolfhound



Shirl works as an author and artist, sharing her home with a pack of beings, from two teeny mice to one not so tiny Irish Wolfhound.  She has written many collections of fairy tales as well as memoirs of her work with animals as a Intuitive Medium. You can read her blog, The Roses and Thorns of Life, here.

You can read Shirl’s book of wolfhound fairy tales and poetry, “Strength of a Lion, Soul of a Lamb,” here.

Shirl’s latest book, “Not All Witches Are Cruel, Not All Princesses Are Kind,” can be found here.

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“First of May……..from Pagans to Petticoats”

Tomorrow was probably a day schoolgirls of a century past, came to dread.
First of May….Petticoat Day. A day when prankish boys would try to lift the skirts and catch an innocent glimpse of a petticoat.
Petticoat, ask around today’s youth…..how many do you think would know what a petticoat is, or was……
May 1st has been a day of celebrations since Pagan times…..with Beltane Feasts to rejoice in the coming of summer.
May was summer in Pagan times….. June’s solstice was midsummer’s mark.
May Poles and ribbons gave way to Christian adaptations of Mary’s month; when the Lord’s mother is crowned with flowers and the Rosary, Mary’s prayer, is recited.
Communion is given to young children celebrating this milestone Sacrament, when little girls dress up in lace, and white, and crinoline petticoats……
Sometimes, the old ways have a way of meshing with the new……
The Pagan and the Christian…….
The Petticoats and the Communion dresses………….

Please visit my newest title on Amazon, thanks.   https://www.amazon.com/Witches-Cruel-Fairy-Princesses-Kind/dp/0692063919/ref=sr_1_2?s=instant-video&ie=UTF8&qid=1525136526&sr=8-2&keywords=not+all+witches+are+cruel+not+all+fairy+princesses+are+kindthumbnail_Cover Template FULL NOT ALL WITCHES ARE CRUEL copy



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“Tonight’s Full Pink Moon”

No, it won’t be pink, its name is derived from the pink wildflowers that sprout from the earth during this time….phlox.

It has been a rough spring……….filled with snow and cold temperatures.   A Mercury Retrograde, just ended, has impacted many of us, me especially.   April is  not an easy month for me, for its days are marked with anniversaries of loved ones crossed.   The Retrograde’s coinciding brought back so many ghosts from my past……in daylight memories and nighttime dreams.

Perhaps the Pink Moon will finally put these ghosts to rest as May’s warmth and sunshine finally sees the harshness of this winter depart.

We say good bye to April with the added energy of a full moon of closures.   Latch the closet door on any lingering ghosts that may have haunted the first few months of this year……there will be time again for them to surface as spring and summer fade to longer nights………..



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“Why Friday the 13th Brings Fear”

The history of our fears is fascinating.
Friday, the 13th is most fascinating, for it combines the terrors of two evils into one terrifying day for some.
The fear of the number 13……it has a name, but spelling it would take up a few lines of this blog, so I shall pass on that attempt.
Add the fear of Friday, so many cultures fear this day of the week; combine the two, and you have a reason for some not to want to get out of bed today.  The number thirteen literally could mean bread of life for bakers in 13th Century England.

Bakers could be penalized, fined, or even lose one of their kneading hands if they were found to sell “short”……
So bakers, worried that one loaf might burn, might be unsellable in the dozen….would bake an extra loaf…..the 13th…..the baker’s dozen.
This insured that the weight of the wheat in the loaves would not come up short….so thirteen was their assurance of a prosperous, happy life.
Twelve was always revered as a Blessed number, the 12 Apostles, the 12 Tribes of Israel, the 12 signs of the Zodiac, the 12 Gods on Mt. Olympus…..you get my drift.
But add a number to that, and it throws the energy of Blessing into imbalance, unrest, fear……
Friday was thought to be an ominous day ever since the time of the Canterbury Tales. Don’t undertake a journey on Friday….
Investors think upon it with dread………Black Friday.
A day for Crucifixion.
Friday, itself, is named for Frigga, a Norse Goddess. She was banished to a mountain, and held meetings to plot malevolence with a coven of eleven witches and the devil……you guessed right…….Thirteen.
Guess what day of the week these meetings took place…….
For centuries, people in this culture regarded Friday as the Witch Sabbath.
How about you……
Does a number and name of a day send chills up your spine…..just keep your eyes out for ladders today….walk around them……… :-)

What better day to preview my upcoming book about Witches and Fairy Tales then today…………….Coming soon to Amazonwitch fairy tale cover full

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