Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.


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A New Year Begins

It’s 4:30 a.m. and Katie the dog wants to go out. Just like every morning, her timing is meticulously accurate. I shake the sleep from my eyes as she shakes the tags on her collar and together we stumble to the front door where she prances impatiently as I don shoes and coat and gloves.

And then we step out into the blackness that is early morning.

Deep silence surrounds us. No cars out on the freeway, no stirring in the neighborhood. Only the far away wail of a train intrudes on the thick blanket of quiet. I whisper to her, unwilling to pierce the silence myself, to find a good spot as we wander the yard.

Almost directly overhead is the big dipper, sitting upside down, spilling good wishes down upon us. Orion’s belt has long since gone to bed. “Hi Dad,” I whisper. “Here’s to a New Year. Another one starting without you and mom.”

And then I pause, a bit of happiness floating from me up to him. “Well, not really without you…I feel you right here. See you tomorrow morning…say hi to Mom”

Katie and I head silently back to the house. At the front porch she stands on her back legs asking to be picked up. I do, picking up her awkwardly lopsided bobble-headed cone encased self and give her a tight hug and a kiss.

“Happy New Year baby-girl, Happy New Year.”

Happy New Year mama!

Happy New Year mama!


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12 years ago today.

Dad's favorite place to be was on a boat.

Dad’s favorite place to be — on a boat.

I wasn’t going to write about this. That today is another anniversary of the semitruck crash that took our remaining parent.

Big brother

Big brother

But today I seem to be blocked and unable to write about anything else.

One of my favorite of his childhood pictures.

One of my favorites of his childhood pictures.

And so I will mark the day so that I can move forward. Not move on, because that implies that I leave him behind, but forward.

Young man growing up to be a dad.

Young man growing up to be a dad.

Today I am moving forward with him, and mom, always with me.

Merry Christmas you two.

Merry Christmas you two.


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Beating back the cold

I don’t always get sick after I fly, but if I do get sick it’s almost always after I fly. So I shouldn’t have been surprised when my throat began to get sore and I started to cough on Sunday afternoon, six days after landing back in Detroit.

It’s a bad week for me to be sick. Katie isn’t happy about it either. As I cough she barks. As I gasp for breath, tears running down my face, she barks harder.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Emphasis on blue

The community band Christmas concert is tonight, we had our dress rehearsal last night. This Friday Katie and I have her first Rally trial after an absence of four years. We had our last doggie school prior to the trial this morning.

Sunday night, and most of Monday I considered cancelling all these events. No one wants someone sitting near them hacking her lungs out. Plus my head hurts and my eyes hurt, and my ribs hurt.

But I’m the librarian at the band, and I needed to organize music, so I went to rehearsal figuring I’d leave early. And a funny thing happened as I began to play. The tickle in my throat receded. The coughing subsided. The music poured over me like a salve, the music beating the cold back into the recesses of my memory. For a couple hours last night I felt pretty close to good.

That’s what music can do.

White holiday lights

White holiday lights

Today I’m drinking a ton of water, sucking down cough drops like candy, heating tea, taking cough medicine, and napping. Katie and I fit an abbreviated doggie school into our morning, but mostly I’m saving my strength for tonight’s concert.

Holiday tree

Holiday tree

I’m not foolish, I’ll have cough drops in my pocket and a bottle of water by my chair, but I’m thinking I’ll get through tonight just fine.

And our Rally trial in a couple of days? Well, Katie says she’s ready, and if I can get my head straight we might get a leg toward her title. If not, she’ll probably forgive me.

After all, her mama is beating back a cold.

Dripping lights

Dripping lights


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Happy Thanksgiving!

Katie here. I’d like to take this opportunity while my mama is away to thank all of you for reading my blog. Well, it’s actually her blog, but I know for sure that your favorite posts are mine!

She and I have loved meeting so many of you in person, and we hope to meet even more of you someday soon! In the meantime I hope you have a wonderful day and a fantastic weekend with family and friends.

Thank you everybody!!

Thank you everybody!!

Mama will be home soon. I’m pretty sure she won’t be mad that I hijacked her blog cause I did it just to say thank you to all our readers!

Happy Thanksgiving everybody!

Happy Thanksgiving everybody!


And how can she ever be mad at me? I’m just so darn cute!

Anyway…Mama and I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!

Hope she brings me some turkey!

Hope she brings me some turkey!


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Happy Halloween!

Stay safe everyone!

Stay safe everyone!

Katie here again. I know. I’m hogging mama’s blog. But I wanted to make sure all you dog and cat (and other pets) lovers out there take extra care today as little hobgoblins come to your house. All those doorbells ringing and kids screaming on front porches tend to make us nervous. Sometimes we run out the door into the scary night.

So make sure we’re somewhere safe in the house tonight, OK?

For me, I’ll be hanging out with my mama in a back bedroom watching really loud TV. Yep…that’s my favorite thing to do anyway, sleep upside down on the bed next to my mama.

We hope you all have a wonderful and safe night! And don’t let us doggies eat that candy either! We’ll take cheese please. Or better yet, some special chicken cooked just for us!

Talk later – love, Katie-girl
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