As usual, I have a “dog story” to tell you. And as usual, it is far more than that, having become, for me, a “life story.” I am on a plane travelling to the Dalmatian Club of American National Specialty Show in Ohio, writing by hand on a yellow pad of paper, with a solitary…

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Everything in life that is worth anything at all requires the belief that, if you persevere, you will eventually get wherever you are headed. The Taoist philosopher Lao Tzu once said: “The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step.” While I am neither a Taoist, nor a “religious” woman (“spiritual” would be…

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To find excellent care for those we love when we have to leave them can be a big challenge that is hard on the psyche. Whether it is locating just the right pediatrician for your children, or deciding on the best hospice for your elderly parents, or choosing a nurse for your spouse when illness…

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Early spring is here in Northern California. In my last newsletter two weeks ago, the daffodils were nodding their cheery yellow faces at the wind, but now they have gone past and are only little wrinkled heads on the top of long green stalks. However, my neighbor’s magnolia trees hold out boughs on which perch…

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In September of 2014, Bespotted appeared in the bookstores. My close friends, and both new and old readers, congratulated me on a job well done. To my surprise, Amazon recommended the book as a “Hot New Release,” my publisher took it back for a second printing, dog lovers bought it, and I received a lot…

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At this time of year most of us are buying and wrapping multiple gifts. We are focused on all the happiness that the season can bring, and not much on its complications. We plan how to decorate our homes and our trees and what will accompany the roast beef for Christmas dinner. We don’t often…

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While for some people December is a season of joy, filled with the happiness of giving and receiving, it can be a tough time of year for others. Amidst the happy revelers ringing their bells and singing their carols, and among those who live for and love the holidays, there are those who walk alone…

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Why would we hug ourselves? Is this an absurd idea? Maybe what I mean is something akin to, “have you received your hug today?” And if so, have you given someone else a hug today–all of which is just another way of saying, “have you taken care of yourself today?” One of the things researchers, animal…

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