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Wednesday, December 19, 2018

A Country Christmas at Ravenwood

Good morning dear friends.

I've been wanting to share with you again, but between Thanksgiving and Christmas, we have a birthday every week.  Add the Christmas decorating, celebrating and baking into the mix, and I've just been too busy, until now.

Last time I posted, it was to tell you some sad news about  our beloved doggie, Jack.  My husband and I felt his loss so much, that we decided to adopt another rescue doggie.  He came with the name 'Snoopy', all the way from Tennessee.  He was rescued from a puppy mill, and we are so glad to have found him.  So, without further delay, I introduce you to SNOOPY!

We've tried to come up with another name, but so far, Snoopy has stuck with the grandkids and me.  He's a wonderful dog and we love him very much!  He has filled the huge void in our lives.

I have entitled my post, a Country Christmas, so I guess I should continue on that theme with some photos from around our home.  It literally takes me a week to decorate our 2,800 square foot home, but it is a labor of love that I enjoy so much.

Our Carriage Room

Our family Christmas tree, full of ornaments collected through the year.  The quilt I made this year.

Another Christmas quilt - I made it years ago.

Penny rug from my sweet friend, Lecia

Wool applique pillow I did last year

The Kitchen

I love this little vintage wooden truck with elf.  I got it at an antique store.

Santa wool wall hanging I completed this year.

Goofy little Santa I designed last year.

The Dining Room

My Hoosier cabinet always displays my Manger Scene

Ceramic Christmas goose I made years ago, inside a vintage grape box from a local winery

This mantel was found on the ground in our old barn.  I knew it had to find it's way back into our home.  So I sanded, embellished and repainted it, and it resides, once again, in it's proper place in the dining room.

Love this old baby carriage filled with Santas and bears.

Some of my Santa collection is inside my china cabinet.

My Blog tree resides in the corner of the dining room.  It is full of ornaments from past swaps and gifts with my blogging friends.  I love decorating it and recalling the days when blogging was much more popular.  Facebook just isn't the same....

The Last Supper vintage picture we found in an antique shop, complete with the beautiful wooden frame, for only $20!

"...Not a creature was stirring...not even a mouse".  Cute ornie my sister bought me while we were visiting her in Vermont a couple years ago.

The Parlor

Stockings I made for the hubby and I.

The Master bedroom

A wee bit of outside
(more to come, all lit up)

Kismet had to get into the picture.
Until next time my friends....

Have a wonderful Holiday Season.
Merry Christmas

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Our best friend....

As October draws to a close, we have been forced to deal with yet another loss to our family.  Although this loss isn't of the human kind, the loss has effected both my husband and I much harder than we could have imagined.

It started as an average Sunday morning...with a little added ciaos. With three of our grandchildren spending the night, we were busy with breakfast, creating a robot costume for Peter, and choosing pumpkins to carve later in the day.  Peter had gone outside to pick a pumpkin, and his brother Joey was standing near the door.  When Petie approached with  his chosen pumpkin, Joey kindly opened the door a bit to help him in....but, as happened so many time before, our dog, Jack, bolted out the door.  Oh, how he loved to run!  We knew that....he had bolted before, run around and eventually come back.  We were busy doing things in the kitchen with the kids, and let him stay outside.  He never was very good at coming when he was called anyway, but usually just sat around the front yard enjoying his freedom.  I was standing at the kitchen table facing the windows when I saw a truck suddenly stop and two young men jump out....then I saw our Jack, laying on the front yard, not moving.  He had been hit.   I gasped and cried, Oh my God...and my husband and I ran outside, telling the kids to please stay inside.

The rest is a blur....Chris carried our Jack inside, and Allie and I sat by him on the dining room floor.  He was injured badly on his legs, but was conscious.  He struggled to get up a few times, but I made him lay down.  We called Cornell Vet Emergency clinic, and just as our oldest son came to watch the kids, we rushed Jack down to the clinic.  We kept telling ourselves he will be okay...he will make it...but the doctor gave us the devastating news that Jack's injuries were too severe, and he only had a 50/50 chance of using his legs again, but that he also had brain trauma.  We could see he was suffering very much, so we made the only kind decision we could....we let him go.  We stayed with him until the end....and haven't stopped crying since.

I've always tried to keep priorities straight...animals are just animals....but the huge void that Jack's death has put in our lives is almost more than we can bear.  No longer is Jack waiting in the kitchen for my husband for his morning walk.  He's no longer there for his milk when I get up.  I didn't realize how much my daily routine involved Jack....our morning visits to take care of the chickens, our walks to the mailbox, how he was always in the way of my chair at my computer desk.  The way he peeked around the corner into the kitchen when I was fixing dinner, our walks back to the coop in the evening to close them up...and most of all, how he waited at the small window in the carriage room, waiting for daddy to come home, and getting so excited when he pulled in the drive after work.  Oh, the way he used to bug Chris for his nightly walk.  He was always a happy dog, rolling around on the floor, and wagging that big tail of his, while our kitten batted at him.
Jack was so good with the cats, who loved to nuzzle him...he was so good with the grandkids, who could crawl all over him, and he didn't mind.
The hurt is so raw right now....his absence is more than we can stand.  His bowl still sits there with the few crumbs he left in it.  His beloved dog house, sits empty, with the chain coiled up inside. His leash hangs on the wall..unused. 

We tried to take good care of him...but with his loss comes the thoughts of what we could have and should have done differently.  We always knew he loved to run, and hated it when he darted across the road. We should have fenced in part of the yard for him to use all his energy.  We should have given him a safe place to run and play.  He was good most of the time being free, but we knew his tendencies...why were we so blind, denying that this wouldn't happen.  We spent money and time making sure our chickens were safe....why were we so blind to the necessity to do so for Jack, who was so much more to us than the chickens.
Why were we intolerant of him at times, when he was so energetic....if he could have safely used his energy, maybe he wouldn't have wanted to bolt out the door.  Why didn't we take him for longer walks...because we were too busy?  Because we were too tired?  At 10 years old, he still had so much energy and joy in him...why didn't we appreciate it more.
Oh, don't get me wrong, we loved this dog....he was well cared for and we tried to keep him safe...we just could have done better....the regrets we feel now, are, in a way, lessons to be learned.

Don't take things for granted, as you NEVER know when they will be taken from you.

Take joy in all the little things in life... a quick walk to the mailbox, a little treat, your loved ones walking in the door, or even the joy of waking in the morning to another day. 

Do your best to take care of the things you love...nurture, protect and guide. 

We get so caught up in the daily duties and demands of life, that we rarely take the time to truly appreciate this life that Our Lord has blessed us with.  These lessons are so very important, and we are so devastated that it took the loss of our best friend, Jack, to make us see more clearly.

Hugs your loved ones today, furry or human.
Give them your attention and kindness.
So that when you do have to part, the hurt may not be full of 'should haves' but full of  "I'm glad I dids."..

Rest in Peace Jack Jack
Oh how we miss you.

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