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This Is What I Hope

exploring the new woodlands

One day in early November, when winter teased with its first snowfall, my human and I spent the afternoon exploring new woodlands.

I remember the warmth of the sun, even as I stepped on patched of snow.  I remember sniffing the ground where the deer had passed through the night before and listening to the geese fly over, leaving before winter took hold.

I remember wondering if my verticle was high enough to reach to the top of the fallen log.

I remember just going for it and leaped. I landed high off the ground, bark beneath my paws.

But mostly, I remember the excitement of exploring.  everything was clearer, sharper because it was new. I stopped and took a moment to really see the new forest.  For how many times had I looked but not really seen past the immediate, the superficial; to the possibilities that lie beyond.

And this is what I hope for you in 2020.

Adventure.

New experiences.

New, deeper perspective.

The courage to take risks.

A life lived.

From our house to yours, happy holidays.

Jack

 

Imagine If Kindness Was The New Cool

Kindness is a shoulder to lean on

Kindness can be as simple as providing a shoulder to rest a weary head.

I bring this up because, in case it slipped your notice, today is World Kindness Day.

Did you know showing kindness was an important predictor of your happiness?

Now imagine if kindness was the new cool.  Just think how happy the world would be.

And what if today was the most celebrated day of the year?

Happy World Kindness Day!

Be well, do good deeds and keep in touch,

Jack

Want to remember this short story?  Use the link here to post to your favorite Pinterest board.

Photo courtesy of The Doggie Den

 

When Busy Minutes and Seconds Are The Only Measures Of Worth

dog starring out car window

The vehicle came to a slow stop at the intersection. Pedestrians crossed the road, hurrying to arrive at the destination, giving off the distinct vibe that they had to fill every second of the day to feel productive; that there must be a physically tangible result for the time spent on any endeavor.   Busy minutes and seconds were allocated as a measure of worth. As a result,  time given to quiet contemplation and reflection seemed to garner little value.

Through the window,  I watched the humans scurrying about.  I thought about life, about my life in particular;  walking in the park, chasing birds and squirrels, frequently hearing ‘atta boy’ and ‘good doggy,’  playing with my fur friends, taking long naps, getting cuddles, and hugs.

I thought about the simplicity of my life and I wondered if it was this simplicity that brought contentment.

And then I wondered about those busy human lives.

Peace,

Jack

Want to remember this short story?  Use the link here to post to your favorite Pinterest board.

A Settling Into The Bones

white puppy on white down comforter

I arranged the white down comforter until it was just right.  And then I snuggled in, ready to put the day to bed.

The house had relaxed into its nighttime ritual, settling into its bones.   Its creaks and groans somehow louder in the dark.

This was my favorite time.  After the blanket of darkness descended and the business of life slowed.

This was my time to think. Somehow evening invited reflection and end of the day inventory. And the truths that were buried by the day’s distractions emerged into the stillness.

Do you ever feel the need to assign meaning to the day so that it does not slip unnoticed into just another week and then month and then year? So that when you look back it is not a blur of sameness?

Goodnight,

Jack

Want to remember this short story?  Use the link here to post to your favorite Pinterest board.

When Your Body Won’t Listen To Your Mind

dog want to play with toy but is too tired

I put my head down and started to drift off to sleep.

I really wanted to play with my yellow bug-eyed toy; the one that was right behind me, but I couldn’t muster a sufficient amount of energy to even turn around, let alone raise the full length and weight of my body from the comfortable pose into which I had snuggled.

I sighed, took a deep breath and relaxed fully into dreamland.

Maybe later.

Maybe later I would get up and chase my yellow bug-eyed toy around the room.

Maybe.

Today was turning out to be one of those days.

One of those days when my body wouldn’t listen to my mind.

It was almost a mind vs body battle.

I wonder why that happens. And who started the fight?

Until next time,

Jack

Want to remember this short story?  Post When Your Body Won’t Listen to Your Mind to your favorite Pinterest board.

What if Humans Were a Bit More Like the Dogs They Love

If only humans were more like the dogs they love

From my experience, I have found humans to be like no other.

Humans are amazing. They invented mathematics and language. They discovered electricity. They have conquered diseases, flight, and technology. They’ve created beautiful works of art through paintings, music, photos, film, architecture, and books.

Humans have traveled outside the earth’s atmosphere, for goodness sake. That, in and of itself, is incredible.

And humans discovered how to split the atom; the very core of existence.

Despite all these advancements, I have noticed that sometimes humans struggle with humanity. Some humans are directly cruel to others, callous and hateful. And some standby and allow the inhumanity. And this makes me sad. I wish cruelty didn’t have to be ‘written into the human script’ as Johnny Rich writes.

What would it be like, I wondered if humans were a bit more like the dogs they love? To love unconditionally and with no judgment. 

And then I wondered if humans themselves know, despite all that humans are, they are not all they could be. Imagine if they were to truly understand the depths the humans’ experience could obtain if humans embraced an existence without inhumanity.

Be well, do good deeds and keep in touch.

Love,

Jack

Photo courtesy of The Doggie Den

 

Today I Watch The Trees Shrug Off Their Coats

white dog staring out window watching leaves fall

All around me leaves fall.

As I watch, I imagine the trees shrugging off the coats they had so diligently grown in the spring and worn all summer.

I knew the woods surrounding my home would soon be filled with the skeletal version of their once bountiful selves.  With all the leaves on the ground, the upcoming winter wind would easily sweep through the empty branches.  And the snow would fall to the base of the trees.  All winter their bare branches would reach up to the grey skies, on outright plea for spring.

The cold winds would come soon enough. And I would deal with winter when winter came.

For now, I allow the swirl of the falling leaves to lull me into a pleasant afternoon fantasy.

Today I will enjoy today.

Tally ho,

Jack

Want to remember this short story?  Use the link here to post to your favorite Pinterest board.

 

A Perfect Fit ~ A Perfect Ride

I snuggled my but against the seat, my paws out in front of me.  I was surprised.  I didn’t expect this much comfort when I hopped into the vehicle. I must admit, this was the most comfortable backseat ride set-up  I had come across in a long time.

Sometimes I wondered if these pull-down armrests in backs seats of cars were secretly designed for small animals.

I  imagined the engineers, pet lovers, smirking as they choose measurements that were a perfect fit for their pets.  Plus, the cup holders made a perfect spot to stash treats. The perfect spot.

Have you ever pretended that certain aspects of life were that way because of you? I liked to think the engineers designed these details with a small white little dog like me in mind.

In reality, that may not be the case, but the thought made my day.

And the perfect fit made a perfect ride.

Ciao,

Jack

The Calm And Comfort of Home

I mulled over the concept of home as I stood near the tree line that separated my yard from the neighbor.  I knew every inch of grass and every tree trunk. I loved it all.

I have lived a lot of places in my five years; everywhere from South Carolina to Oregon with a few stops in the Dakotas along the way. Oh, the excitement of discovering the new sights, sounds, and smells. From the aroma of seafood grilling in Charleston to the scent of breweries in scattered though out Eugene.  I loved it all.

However, what I have found was that while I reveled in the excitement and adventure of new experiences, where everything was intoxicating and new, filled with limitless possibilities, I also liked the calm and comfort of home. The enjoyment of one didn’t have to preclude the enjoyment of the other.  Nevertheless, home was a settling in. A familiar, though sometimes unexciting, pace of life.

Home was like the backyard. You’ve already peed on all the trees, but you were still excited to do it again the next time you went outside.

I’d always thought the best way to live was to enjoy places and spaces when you were away and when you returned open your arms wide and embrace the comfort of familiarity; for there was a longing of a home in all of us. A longing to belong.

Carpe Diem,

Jack

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