Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.


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WordPress Photo Challenge: Wish

Tonight as I sit out on the deck of the lake house, watching the moon rise, I wish everyone had such a warm, beautiful and safe place to relax.

I wish upon a moon.

I know that many of my friends ‘up north’ are facing their third night of no electricity following a major wind event. I know the temperatures are heading down toward 0 degrees Fahrenheit (-17.77 C) tonight.

I wish that spring could come early for them. That I could somehow share the warmth and color and contentment surrounding me here.

I wish they could all just come down here and soak up the sun. Or sit with me under the moon listening to the waves gently lap against the shore

I wish, not upon a star, but upon the bright moon, that the warmth from here in the South could find it’s way up to the dark and frozen North.


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Reilly and me

Katie here. HEY! After years and years of a long distance relationship I finally got to meet Reilly the Cowspot Dog in person! Nose to nose! Well, more like nose to behind at first, but now we’re on a nose to nose basis. He is so tall, dark and handsome! I just love him to pieces. I think he likes me too.

Me and Reilly - taken by Reilly's mom.

Me and Reilly – taken by Reilly’s mom.

Mama and I got down to Florida on Thursday evening, and we all spent some time getting to know each other. There’s Reilly the big boy, and his little brother and best man Denny. And of course his mom and dad.

My Reilly and his brother Denny.

My Reilly and his brother Denny.

I like everyone here, though I have to admit I did show Reilly my teeth a tiny bit right at first. But now all three of us doggies can run and chase the ball in the living room. Reilly usually wins, cause he’s the biggest. And to be truthful, I generally just jump up on the sofa when they’re playing, as is due my stature as a princess. That way I can watch the action without getting stepped on.

I also have sucked up…um…bonded.. with Riley’s mom and dad. In fact my mama and Reilly’s mom went away for most of the day today and I hung out with Reilly’s dad. It was fun. I got to sit on the sofa with him and chill out. All us pups slept a lot today which is a good thing. Cause the moms are making us go on lots of mini adventures while I’m here.

Our first adventure was a walk on the beach!

Our first adventure was a walk on the beach!

I’ve been to the beach! On the Atlantic Ocean! Oh my dog, that’s one big lake!

But mama!  Reilly and I want to explore those sandy hills over there!

But mama! Reilly and I want to explore those sandy hills over there!

And I’ve visited a couple of Reilly’s parks Everything is so green!

It looks like summer around here mama!

It looks like summer around here mama!

I’m not used to that in February; usually I have snow to play in…but it’s pretty wonderful here right now. No snow, but not so hot as to make a sheltie-girl miserable. No bugs to speak of either. Mama saw some great campgrounds that we would have loved to explore. Maybe someday we’ll be back with our tent!

It's like a jungle here!

It’s like a jungle here!

I had a lot of fun. When mama asked me last week if I wanted to go on an adventure I never dreamed it would be like this!

Going for a walk with my guys.

Going for a walk with my guys.

I’m not sure what we’re going to do tomorrow, but I heard someone say something about a sunrise. Maybe I better hit the sack early tonight so I can be sure to get mama up extra early.

I know she’d appreciate that.

My man Reilly.  Isn't he beautiful?

My man Reilly. Isn’t he beautiful?


27 Comments

Throwing plans out the window

We're in the mountains now.

We’re in the mountains now.

Katie here. Again. Apparently I have to do everything. Mama says she’s been too stressed to tell the story, and besides, I’m the princess, so it’s all about me. Right? Well not always, but anyway I’ll give you the short version of our latest adventure.

So this was day 2 of our great adventure. I’m in the car a lot, but today mama stopped at a couple parks to let me stretch my legs. Did you know that Kentucky has zero rest stops on I-75? ZERO! Who let that happen? How’s a princess supposed to..um…pee…and other stuff if there aren’t any rest stops?

That's a really big river mama!

That’s a really big river mama!

Anyway, because we couldn’t stop like we normally do, mama took me on a side trip to visit Cumberland Falls! It was way back in the woods, 15 miles of narrow winding road before we got there. But when we did it was all worth it!

You're buying me something at the gift store.  Right mama?

You’re buying me something at the gift store. Right mama?

We didn’t get to see the big falls really well because the lower observation decks were closed. But we got a little peak at them.

This looks very very cold.

This looks very very cold.

Mostly we walked along the rocky shore and enjoyed the blue green water and the bright blue sky.

This is a really big rock mama!

This is a really big rock mama!

What a perfect day! It was still cold, and mama was glad she was still wearing her winter coat and gloves, but I thought it was wonderful!

Awesome colors!

Awesome colors!

Of course stopping there put us behind schedule but mama wasn’t worried, who needs a schedule anyway? We were about 2 hours away from our hotel when something happened. Our car quit!

Well not exactly quit….but the power seemed to go right out of it and we were in the mountains of Tennessee! Mama pulled over and called Onstar who sent out a tow truck. The tow truck driver said I couldn’t ride in his truck so mama seat belted me in and I got to ride in the car on top of the tow truck!

Mama was worried I’d be scared, but I’m a big girl and did just fine. OK, I was awfully glad to see her when we arrived at the dealership and she got me out of the car. And I didn’t like the diesel engine on the tow truck at all!

But in the end the tow truck driver was really nice, and took us to a hotel that my daddy had found for us that takes dogs…and now mama and I are all snuggled up in a king size bed with a big TV and some books and we’re going to wait out the rest of the weekend right here.

Notice the lack of cars....cause we don't have one!

Notice the lack of cars….cause we don’t have one!

We’ll be just fine.

We even got to see a little of the sunset behind the hotel when I made mama take me out for the 5th time to check out the pee-mail. I didn’t want her to miss it.

Sunset on evening #1.

Sunset on evening #1.

I’m good like that.

Talk to you later…

Your adventure reporter Katie-girl.

Our room has a holly tree outside our front door!

Our room has a holly tree outside our front door!


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Let the adventuring begin!

Katie here. Surprise! You didn’t think you’d hear from me again so soon did you! Well mama says she’s tired and if I want to tell you about our adventures I’m just going to have to write it myself. Plus she says we haven’t even really gotten to the real adventure yet so I should just go lie down.

Right. Like a princess is going to take a nap in the middle of an adventure.

So anyway, this morning mama didn’t argue with me when I got her up at 4:30. She said she had packing to do. Packing? I started getting nervous. Usually when they get the suitcases out I end up at doggie camp. It’s not like she pulled my tent up from the basement or anything. Oh no. These were suitcases!

But it turns out that I got to go! At least I think so. I was kind of worried at the beginning, figuring she was going to drop me off at camp and take off on me. But so far so good. Tonight mama says we’re in Kentucky.

Checking out tomorrow's route mama!

Checking out tomorrow’s route mama!

I don’t know what a “Tucky” is….but it comes with two beds and I get to decide which one I’m sleeping on. I thought I’d sleep on the one over there, but then this one over here looked good, and now I can’t decide. I guess I’ll sleep on both of them.

I don’t know where we’re going next, but if it’s as good as “Tucky,” then I’m in.

See you tomorrow…

Your tour gal Katie.

I think we both need a nap!

I think we both need a nap!


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Imagine

Imagine you’ve lived on your own for over 100 years. Sure the only reason you could is because people helped along the way, but you had your own space. You had your own things around you, things that reminded you of places and people you’ve loved.

And then imagine the day comes that you can’t live alone anymore and you find yourself in a cramped and overheated space with strange sounds and sights, strangers in and out of your small space, other people determining when you sleep and when you are awake, what you eat, when you shower.

You are depressed.

Your things are gone, your space is gone, your pet is gone, your friends are far away. Only your family and your memories remain.

Your family tries to make it better but there is no better here. They remind you to get out of bed and move your feet and legs but you don’t want to. They try to entertain you when they visit but the visits are never frequent enough even when they occur every day. And they can’t change the reality.

You are tired.

You can’t see very much, can’t hear anything when your hearing aid is away being repaired. Your roommates change but are similarly confused and wandering.

You are scared.

There are noises in the hall that you can’t identify. You can’t tell when people are headed into your room or when they are just passing by.

You are dependent on strangers.

You used to be independent. You like to tell people that you always did things for yourself. You tell people you don’t like to be a burden. That you like to make your own decisions.

But you are allowed so few decisions now.

You recognize that your time is short. And you’re not sure if that isn’t a good thing. Because you can’t imagine your life moving forward like this forever.

You never imagined life ending this way. Or that the gift of living to be 101 could be so hard.

Just never imagined.


16 Comments

Finding color in all the right places

Katie here. So it’s mid-November, the leaves are pretty much gone from the trees and it’s getting cold. I like the cold unless it’s rain. I don’t appreciate my mama making me walk through cold rain to do my business, but I like snow. I don’t know why mama doesn’t. She’s silly, my mama.

Hey mama!  Wait up!

Hey mama! Wait up!

Anyway.

We don’t have snow here yet, but I’m having fun anyway. This weekend my mama took me to meet my friend Deuce and his mom Karen and we got to walk in beautiful Bloomer Park!

My friend Deuce and me.

My friend Deuce and me.

Even though most of the leaves were gone, we still found a ton of color. The down side is that the moms made us pose next to every single leaf. I swear. Every. Single. Leaf.

Are there treats involved in this?

Are there treats involved in this?

OK. Maybe not every leaf. But a whole lot of them! We got bored!

BORING mama!!

BORING mama!!

But mostly we had fun! And guess what? We walked two whole miles! That’s a record for me lately.

Do you see me?  Isn't this beautiful?

Do you see me? Isn’t this beautiful?

I’m sort of a one mile kind of princess, you know?

Did you get my good side mama?

Did you get my good side mama?

I did get sort of tired at the end and my mama worried she was going to have to carry me but I was strong and powered through it.

Never ever underestimate a princess.

Talk later guys!

Talk later guys!


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Walktober

Time to go for a walk!

Time to go for a walk!


It was a beautiful Monday morning when I drove to my favorite park, intent on capturing my “Walktober.” Every year I do Robin’s walk, and every year I think I want to do it out at Kensington Metro Park. But this was the first year I actually got out there.

Let's start out here, shall we?

Let’s start out here, shall we?

Have a seat. It was so beautiful that I couldn’t stop capturing images. And then how could I choose only a few? So this is going to get kind of long. You can skim if you want, or take your time and meander along with me.

Whatcha doing lady?

Whatcha doing lady?

That’s the benefit of heading out on a Walktober….there’s no real definition and you get to do whatever suites you best.

So here we go.

Back in the woods the trees were still mostly green, but there was a bit of red if you looked.

Standing out in all that green.

Standing out in all that green.

On the entire walk the sun and I were racing each other; big puffy clouds kept obstructing the light. I’d see an image and get all set up and then the sun would go under a cloud.

So I’d wait.

A touch of sunlight made things glow.

A touch of sunlight made things glow.

Inevitably the sun would peak out again, though sometimes only for a moment. I had to act fast.

Golden light.

Golden light.

Along the way there was a lot of detail to notice too. Like this fungus on the ends of a tree that had fallen…

Orange woodland ruffles.

Orange woodland ruffles.

…and the first of the bittersweet berries beginning to ripen.

Berries glow.

Berries glow.

This is the park where the little birds like to be fed. And even though there are signs not to feed the wildlife it’s hard to resist when they fly down and hover in front of your face hopefully.

What did you bring me lady?

What did you bring me lady?

This time I got really lucky. I’ve had chickadees, titmice and woodpeckers land on my hand before, but never a nuthatch. They’ve always hovered around, wanting to get something, but a little too scared. Not today!

I decided to trust you!

I decided to trust you!

At one point I dropped the rest of the seed in my hand onto the path and walked away. The little birds flew in to finish it off. Out of the corner of my eye I saw this guy swoop up to a branch overhead.

Looks like dinner down there!

Looks like dinner down there!

“Oh no you don’t,” I said. I marched myself right back there and waited until the little birds finished off the seed. Disappointed, Mr. Hawk flew off to find lunch somewhere else. Darned if I was going to present my birds to him for a meal!

A little way further up the path I came upon a clearing.

Inviting place to sit and think.

Inviting place to sit and think.

This land was donated to the park by the estate of George and Virginia Danz in 1997. It was the site of their summer cabin. It’s just beautiful and I sent them up a silent thank you.

It was such a beautiful day for a walk. As I came to intersections on the path I always took the one that sent me further away from the parking lot. I didn’t want to stop!

Pretty no matter which way I went!

Pretty no matter which way I went!

The path wandered in and out of the woods, along wetlands, and groves of ceder. The sun poked it’s way into the deep reaches of the woods. The birds sang. I didn’t see anyone else out there until I got back almost to the parking lot.

Enticing me to go further.

Enticing me to go further.

It just kept getting better and better.

Red pops.

Red pops.

I’m sure there’s a story about this old farm implement that was sitting way out there. All of this land used to be farm so maybe this was from the original owners. Or maybe it was put there to tell a story. Guess we’ll have to come up with one on our own.

Lost in the woods.

Lost in the woods.

There was something fun no matter where I looked.

You looking at me?

You looking at me?

Eventually I had to stop, so I headed back toward the car. Of course there was one last photo…and then another…

More color across the way.

More color across the way.

…and when I finally got back to the parking lot these two guys were waiting for me. Silly birds, they’re supposed to be heading south by now.

Is it time to leave already?

Is it time to leave already?

But I’m glad I got to see them up close and wish them safe travels.

I had such a wonderful time on this year’s Walktober. Thank you Robin for organizing this every year! You make me get out and take a walk!

Peachy.

Peachy.

And for all of you readers out there, there’s still time for you to go on your own Walktober. Take a walk. Urban. Country. Somewhere in between. Take a few pictures (you don’t have to go overboard like I did!!!) and link to Robin’s blog, or just comment in her blog, and she’ll organize it all at the end. The timeframe is from October 15 through the 23rd, with blog posts due by October 25. But she’ll stretch the timing for you if you need a few more days.

I’d love to see what you see in your worlds as you walk! Share with us!

Golden.

Golden.