Friday, August 11, 2023

His Strength Christian Counseling

My wife, Kathleen, after many years working at agencies as an outpatient mental health therapist, has opened up her own practice: His Strength Christian Counseling.

I am very proud and excited for her. A new adventure in helping others.

Friday, August 4, 2023

We Said Good Bye to Maddy Last Night

Maddy relaxing with her pillow & towel

Last night we had to say good-bye to Maddy, our 16-year-old loyal dog.

She came to us from the local animal shelter. Prior to her brief stay at the shelter, she'd experienced an abusive start to her life. Love from our family, especially our daughters, and support from her new pack members at the time, Rainbow and Duchess, helped Maddy to overcome her skittishness. Penny, with her goofy insistence, pushed that to where Maddy even slept in contact, back to back with her buddy.

Like all of our pets, Maddy earned many nicknames. Maddy's "Gangland puppy name" was Mad Dog 20-20, and just sometimes Mad Dog (for short). Also, Hackles Up Backup, as she was always there, in the yard or at the door, backing up her buddies (at first Rainbow, and then later in her life, Penny). Whether it was a cat, neighborhood dog wandering by the yard, or anything else, she be right there with them, barking, and her hackles up, like her partners'. But what she liked most was to be called a Good Girl.

A young Maddy with her pals
 Rainbow and Duchess

Maddy learned to be a top watch dog from Rainbow, and carried on the tradition after Rainbow's passing. Even in Maddy's older years, when her hearing and sight weren't as keen, anyone coming near the front or back porch knew there was a dog inside, watching and warding her family.

Maddy was a loving dog, sometimes reserved. She even got along with our cats, and they tolerated her. Except for her buddy Marshall, a local stray who we'd taken in as a garage cat, who befriended Maddy days after Rainbow's passing, when she really needed a furry friend.

Maddy loved to have her ears rubbed and loved to zoom around the yard, in circles and in figure-eights, especially running circles around Penny. Maddy was known to high step and prance around on occasion. A fond memory from her youth was once, running around the side yard, she decided to leap over the fence, then became distressed and stood next to it, waiting, and was hopping happy to be let back into the yard. She never leapt out of the yard again, although well within her ability.

Maddy, indeed, was a good girl, and she will be missed.

Maddy loved her sweater

Penny and Maddy hoping for a treat
Maddy loved sniffing the trails
 of cats and squirrels
 that passed through her yard.

Maddy and her pal, Penny