The first Christmas

Hi friends,

The first Christmas –

If you’ve lost a furry buddy, I’m so sorry. The first everything without them is difficult. Constant reminders of them no longer there.

For some of you who have only started to begin this difficult process, I’m so sorry for your loss. It’s never easy. My heart aches for you.

During the Holidays, it can be emotionally draining. As you pull out the stockings, the holiday décor. Everything is clouded with memories. I get that – I lived that.

For me, December 19th is also a day I struggle with. It’s an anniversary of something I wish never happened. December 19th, 2013 will mark a year since we lost our best friend Newton to Kidney Failure.

December 19th, followed so closely by the Christmas holidays could potentially be the worst week of my year. It has potential for me to crawl into my jammies with a glass or two bottle of wine and not surface again until the New Year. However, ask yourself as I have – is this the way you want to live?

Throughout the year, I can usually get past these moments by thinking about all the amazing memories and things Newton taught me. Knowing I’d do it all over again, if given a choise also helps.

Choosing the higher road is easier said than done – I realize this, it takes constant and strong control of your thoughts and emotions. 

During the Christmas holidays, I’m taking the time to raise a glass with my Mr. and think about all the amazing memories with Newton. Although only with us for a short time, he left enough memories to last us our lifetime.  I’m choosing a different path – I’m choosing to honor these memories with happiness.

In addition this year, I’m taking a friends advice. I’m honoring Newton’s memory over Christmas by sponsoring a rescue dog. I’m taking the money I would have normally bought him Christmas presents with and giving to one in need.

I’m working with a local rescue organization. They post a list of their adoptable dogs, and a wishlist for them. This could include everything from dog beds, to special feeding needs, treats and toys to annual veterinary bills. It really helps put things in perspective. Needs vs Wants.

This year, I chose to donate in Newton’s honor.

Meet Enzo!

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He’s with a wonderful Foster family currently, who I get to go and meet this beautiful little Puggle this weekend when I take over his new dog bed. Enzo also had an ear infection at the time of his rescue, so I helped cover the costs of his ear treatment. He lived with two older people who had to move into an assisted living home and sadly couldn’t bring Enzo with them. They didn’t have any family that could take him. So he is at a wonderful rescue organization in Halifax, NS right now. I have no doubt that he will find his forever family very soon. Until then, eat, sleep and be happy with your wonderful Foster family Enzo (including two other pug mixes!).

I know tons of rescues around have this type of program. If you can’t donate to a dedicated dog, donating financially or with your time can be especially rewarding – for all involved.

Some other advice this Holiday season – stay busy. When you’re not busy –  Choose to life the life your furry buddy taught you to live.  

On the worse days – Choose to try and be the person your dog thought you were. I think it’s a pretty darn good tribute all in itself.

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Hang in there,

Dailyspro

Tis’ the season

Hello Friends,

 

We celebrated Christmas this weekend at my house, as my Mr. was home and it’s the last weekend he’s home until after Christmas. 

 

Friends came far and wide dressed with their ugly Christmas sweaters, we did a yankee swap. Tons of fun – and wine.

 

The lead up to Christmas for me, is just as exciting as the day of. Getting the house ready, decorating – respecting family traditions. Love it all.

 

It got me thinking though – we are very fortunate, others are not. My friend and I decided to make some doggie biscuits last week and take them over to one of my favorite non-profit dog rescue groups, where I am in the process of becoming a volunteer. Cool Dog Rescue is an all breed dog rescue who saves dogs from the kill shelters in Quebec. They work with local truckers, Pilots and Paws Canada and their large network of amazing volunteers to transport dogs from mostly Quebec and Ontario to Nova Scotia (sometimes travelling up to 2300 km one way!).

 

When we had Newton, I used to go to my favorite doggie recipe blog when we were in the mood to make some yummy treats – 3mbakery (find out more about them here). I wanted to try some gluten free recipes as some of our doggie friends there have wheat allergies. Low and behold of course they had some of course (Look through their recipe index to find lots!)

 

We decided on the Dog Health Sticks, as they had pumpkin in them, a natural digestive aid. Plus, they sounded delish!

 

We put small amounts of the mixture in small muffin tins, but I’d like to go back and try out one of these cool pans they had in the shape of dog bones. I have the dog shaped cookie cutters, but I found this mixture was a little bit too runny to use with the cutters (perhaps my error?). The recipe was easy enough and the ingredients simple to get.

Ta-da!
Ta-da!

I brought them in to one of the organizers’ houses last week, and we did a test with her dog – Sparky. A Pom who is one picky eater, we weren’t sure how it was going to go. He ate it, wagged his tail and asked for more! SUCCESS!

Sparky!
Sparky!

All in all, a great recipe to try again!

On a side note I know Amazon & eBay have some great dog friendly cookie cutters and pans!

Big thanks to 3mbakery for posting their yummy recipes!

Today, I’ll also leave you with another little treat from this week: Stewart and Frank the tank also got into the holiday spirit this weekend – with perhaps a little assistance from moi. As you can see, one of them likes it more than the other…

Stewart has accepted his fate as a well dressed cat...
Stewart has accepted his fate as a well dressed cat…

 

 

Frank the Tank has not....
Frank the Tank has not….

 

 Cheers,

Dailyspro

Autumn changes

Good morning friends,

It’s Autumn in Nova Scotia. It’s my secret favorite season. Summer is wonderful, we have the beach, lots of sun etc. Not to sound cliché, but there’s something about crisp falling leaves, pumpkin scents galore and comfy sweaters. We are house shopping, and I must admit I’m a sucker for a wood fireplace. In my head I see warm cozy evenings, hot chocolate and a dog wrapped around my feet. Ok, so it’s totally cliché – please don’t judge 

Best daydream ever.

I have fond memories of Autumns with Newton. He loved when we piled the leaves high under the backyard Maple trees, morphing into the “Hulk” before our eyes and charging through our neat piles. He could do this for hours. So many laughs.

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We found our new house, we have an accepted offer. It has giant tree in the backyard full of leaves, a fireplace in the living room and yes – a farm down the road that sells pumpkins. Amazeballs.

 

While I’m excited to enter the next phase, it saddens me to think of how much Newt would have loved this place. A huge hayfield full of long grass, a great backyard with much needed shade for his black fur coat he wore year round.

 

This is a wonderful place to make new memories with new two and four footed friends, without forgetting the old.

Cheers,

Dailyspro

Puppy cupcakes for all!

Too bad you’re not all closer, or I’d share!

One year Tomorrow.

Oct. 12, 2013 will mark my one year anniversary of my blog – Dailyspro.Image

My first entry was posted October 12th, 2012 – titled “Hello World”. It’s slightly embarrasing amazing to read back and see how far this blog has come. Not just in reference to writing style – but also in life.

Where does the time go?

One year ago, I had no idea what was about to happen. How my writing would go from whimsical writing about “Cross-fit” (pfff – that was short-lived) and new adventures – to a form of therapy for me after we lost Newton.

I had no idea how many of you would speak up, message me, email me and lift my spirits by sharing your own stories and positivity.

 

I had no idea how much I needed an outlet like this.

 

I had no idea that I would dive head-first into a new community, that accepted me with open arms.  

 

 

I had no idea I would have an online family.

 

One of you lovely people shared with me, some great advice. It’s advice that I found very helpful, so I hope you don’t mind me sharing.

“If you’re a writer – write. If you’re a painter – paint. If you’re a dancer – dance. Don’t ever stop doing what you love. It doesn’t have to be great – not even good. If it helps you during any point in your life express yourself?           Get it out!”

 

So, in the spirit of Canadian Thanksgiving this weekend.

dogs thanksgiving

I really tried to find a way to clearly communicate how much I have appreciated all the support- however what it really comes down to is:

I truly want to thank you – all of you – for being so freakin’ (p)awesome.

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Cheers,

Dailyspro

PS – In the spirit of Canadian Thanksgiving, jump on board and celebrate! What are you thankful for?

Moves and Memories

Good morning friends,

I’m sorry for the DELAY! Ask all my loved ones, I’m notoriously late for everything in life. I think I even disclose this on my bio, ironically written after my first few posts went up 😉

So much has happened in the last two months that I almost am overwhelmed with where to start. We finished our basement renovations, Went on our trip to Italy, My sister got married, We sold our house, I started a new job in a new Province and now am currently house-hunting. I’m feeling a bit like this guy….
sleepy

I can’t talk about them all today (even though we all know I’m long-winded enough to do so), so I’m going to focus on one in particular that I’m still coming to terms with….

We did it.

We left the house that we raised Newton in.

I had a tremendously difficult time with this. It’s just a house, but great life moments made it our home. Memories of Newton topped my “Why I’m thankful we lived here” list I made, during my last weekend in there. Leaving, irrevocably made me confront some painful memories. The house has not changed, but we’ve had to. Each corner, nook and tiny cranny holds for me – special moments suspended in time.

Memories remind us of what we’ve lost.

Memories remind us of what we had.

These two opposing forces led me on a rollercoaster of emotions last week.

It made me deal with something I haven’t been prepared to do – start to let go. I tricked myself into believing it was something I had been doing all along. I hadn’t.

The time a person needs to take, cannot ever be measured in chronological time. Losing a loved one on any level is a deeply personal thing. You start to move on, you’ll start to make new memories. It takes time.

A friend told me she dreamt of Newton waiting for us at our next home. I know where he’ll always be – A monumental part of our past – with us wherever we go.

Yes we left the house that we raised Newton in, but we did not leave the memories. 

Inside my thoughts. Forever imprinted.The moment I saw his face before he ran two blocks through wet pavement costing me a few hundred dollars in breakfast sandwiches and coffee for the construction crew, the hundreds of hugs given and recieved, the reminders of our fur-kids playing tag. Too many to list and count.

Memories remind us of what we’ve lost.

Memories remind us of what we can have again.

Great memories give us hope, inspiration and love. They guide us.

I walked around the house and said my goodbyes on my last day. As I reflect now, I realize (as difficult as it is to admit), what I was really saying:

“Thank you Newton – for all the truly great memories. I wouldn’t have changed a single thing”.

Thanks for reading,

Dailyspro

Changes

Hello friends,

Well big news in our household. Since we lost our wonderful pal Newton, it’s helped put things into perspective.

Such as, I’ve tied myself to a job that has an 8 hour round trip drive from the people I love most in the world. Why is this?

Another life lesson taken from my pal – surround yourself by those you love most in the world.

So I took the bull by the balls horns and applied for an internal position a 30 min drive away from all friends/family. The last month has been quite the process, applying, going through 3 rounds of interviews, plus a presentation. Oh, and don’t forget we’re still renovating from the FLOOD. Whoa

So I’ve decided to put a 45 day to-do list together for my life (I love lists!):

– Finish renovations

(Here’s how it’s looking so far! Bonus if you can see Stewart’s photobomb)

New den in the basement
New den in the basement

– Sell house

– Buy new house

– Move

– Train for new job

– Go on Honeymoon

– Get ready for maid of honor duties in sister’s wedding

Is this worth it? Hell YES! I’m getting pumped for the move, but am getting a little anxious with my “to-do” list.

Just wanted to give you a heads up that I may be a little distant from my blog for a bit. Love ya’ll, but as you can see I have my hands full. Can’t wait to share all the changes once we get settled! Here’s to hoping there will be puppy news to share on the next feed.

Cheers to fresh starts,

Dailyspro

A little lax

Good morning friends,

Let me start by apologizing that I’ve been a little lot lax in my writing over the past two – three weeks. I hit a speed bump in my healing process.

It hit me like a ton of bricks one day. I was walking home from work (something I hadn’t done in some time), and realized that the last time I walked this path was with Newton.

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I couldn’t help myself, I found the nearest bench and had a “moment”. As much as I wish, it was not the kind where your makeup stays immaculate and your polish still shines. It was the kind of moment that makes you want to curl up in your favorite jammies and hide from the world with the curtains drawn – yep it  was an ugly cry.

I felt like I had lost my best friend all over again. Experiencing all these “firsts” without him is heartbreaking. All these moments can be heartwrenching. Almost like constant reminders telling you what you no longer have.

I’m writing you this because some of you are going through what I am as well.  After taking some time to think about it, it’s unfortunately part of the process of moving through the guilt, never forgetting – but functioning and enjoying the life we are fortunate to have. I realize I’ve made an effort to stay positive and upbeat – offer solutions to your own healing processes. Sometimes, however, you just need to take a moment, feel the pain and then try and patch yourself back together and carry on. Remind yourself only of the wonderful times spent together.

There is a feeling of guilt that I believe is natural – moving on without your companion. This is where my “Newton principles” kick in and remind me of what life is all about – Love, peace and joy. Stop and be thankful for what we have, enjoy the little things in life.

I’ve surrendered to the process of moving forward, understanding that there will be moments like this – lots in fact. It feels at times like it is a step backward, but grief does not have a time limit. My words of advice –  it’s ok to get lost in the moment, just don’t lose yourself in the process.

Give all your pets an extra snuggle from me today!

Dailyspro

Newton, making yet another new friend
Newton, making yet another new friend

Spring chickens

Hi friends,

Ok so maybe not  chickens – but how about puppies?? I took my sister in law with me yesterday to walk some wonderful dogs at the SPCA. I was reminded that Spring also means an influx of puppies to the shelter. Once we were finished walking our big guys, we treated ourselves with a walk through the puppy room and saw these little angels.

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Meet Freckles, he’s Ellie’s brother (Previous post)

As most of you know, Puppies need to be socialized. It’s so important for them to experience a variety of people early on. I’ve even heard a raw statistic that a puppy between 3 and 6 months should meet 100 people, and have a positive experience with every single one. This will help them be less fearful or nervous later on in life. A balanced dog, can be a wonderful thing. So why not start with them when they are at the SPCA.

“As the weeks go by, exposure to a variety of experiences is crucial to his becoming a well-rounded adult. Studies have shown that a puppy’s experiences in the first three months of life strongly influence what kind of companion he will grow to be and how he will react to the world. ” – AKC

Early socialization is a vital piece of a puppies’ life. I took full advantage yesterday. We played and took these little angels for a walk, hoping to encounter many people along the way. Of course, then we treated ourselves to some snuggles and play time in the front yard.

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Puppy play
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Puppy on your head….
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Puppy love
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Gotcha!

These little guys are Shepherd/Border Collie mixes. Huge paws and beautiful brown eyes. My heart melts everytime I see them. Need I remind you that “Puppy Therapy” is the very best kind there is?

Cheers,

Dailyspro

New friend paired with an old

So upon one of my wonderful trips to the local SPCA this week to snuggle and walk some great critters, I came across this….

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 Be still my heart!

If that wasn’t bad enough, she waved to me to say “Hi!”

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Meet Ellie. She’s a two month old Border Collie mix that was brought in with her four brothers when they didn’t sell on Kijiji (sidenote: I feel the need to attack a punching bag when I hear stories like this – NEUTER your pets people).

Nonetheless, How can you turn down some bonus snuggle time with this little gem!

I can’t.

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Her cute little face and eyes got to my soul. My mission (as always), find Ellie a wonderful forever home. I took her and her brother (now adopted) out of their kennel for some fun play time. Introducing them to new places, people, sounds and smells is a GREAT thing.

I took the cutest pictures I could of her and posted to my facebook wall (as I do with most of these wonderful critters). I don’t want to jinx myself here, but low and behold my facebook peeps were as hooked as I was. One of my childhood friends has submitted paperwork, and is pending approval – we should hear back tomorrow.

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This friend has a sweet 2 yr old Duck Tolling Retriever mix, who would make a wonderful big sister. Socialized and affectionate with other dogs, this dog would make a great role model for Ellie. I’ve encouraged my friend and her family to come and meet her face to face, and she is this weekend.

I thought I’d share my (hopefully) uplifting news – Thank you Social Media for working for the better good!

Have a great day and cross your fingers that it all works out!

Dailyspro