I think . . . you are a really good dog.

Val. cognito ergo sum. valentino

Dogs, how I love thee.

There is something about the way that my dog looks at me that reassures me that all is well with the world.  That things are going to work out.  That she always has my back. That she will be there after all of the dust has settled.  That my worries aren’t always going to manifest in the crazy ways that my imagination presents.

That life is meant to be lived in the moment.  That there is fun to be had and adventures to be discovered.  That spontaneity rules and patience serves.   That the moment is here to be experienced, not anticipated.   That it feels good to bust a move when I am just so darned excited.

Dogs.  Devotion.  Loyalty.  Trust.  And the best sense of humor on planet Earth.  We love them and they love us without hesitation.  You can’t get a friend more loving and loyal than your dog.  They lift us up when we most need it and then never let us down after that.  It’s like a constant sense of elevation that lifts the spirit and blossoms the soul.

Cogito ergo sum: I think; therefore I am  . . . a dog lover.

 

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Things that make me happy: my new friend, Rico

 

Meet Rico.  I was working away at my office in town when who came in to make my acquaintance?  Rico!  Rico poked his head in to say, “Hello!  Life is good!  I see you!”  There is something about this face that says so much.  All you have to do is look in Rico’s eyes and you feel seen and heard.  Dogs.  They are beauties on earth.

“Dogs are angels sent from heaven

in order to help us to be better people.” – Robert Genn

“Angels are often disguised as dogs.”

“My earth angel came to me as a loving pet.”

“Please, let me be the person my dog thinks I am.”

10 Things I LOVE About Dogs:

  1. Dogs don’t judge.
  2. Dogs are always there to comfort and reassure.
  3. Dogs have a great sense of humor and they like to make us laugh.
  4. Dogs know more about my life than we do.
  5. Dogs have a keen sense of intuition that is reliably trust-able.
  6. Dogs know how to be in the present moment.
  7. Dogs are patient.
  8. Dogs are kind and empathetic.
  9. Dogs are beautiful — on the inside and on the outside.
  10. Dogs are warm and cozy and they smell good after it has rained.

Calling all dog lovers!

What do you love about dogs?  Please, share one (or more!) thing that you love about your dog or about dogs in general in the comments section.  Share your happiness about dogs with us, please!

 

Riding Shotgun

What is one dream scenario that you have lost sight of?

quote. mission statement dog work

theunseenwordsproject.com

Yesterday I was crossing the street, waiting for a break in traffic.  A small, beat-up truck passed me — the very kind of truck I used to drive — and I saw a man driving with his dog riding shotgun.  Remembering my one most-amazing-and-wondrous dog who rode shotgun with me in my old truck, I felt a pang of sweet memory pass through my very core.

This particular dog went everywhere with me, so it was a common sight to see the two of us toodling around the county with the windows rolled down while singing along to some tune on a cassette tape.  The dog actually had a better singing voice than I did, but she was no critic.  Happy were we who got to go everywhere together.

When I saw this man and his happy pup in that truck, a dart of awareness passed through me.  It was one of those movie-montage moments where I could view time on film.  I could see me and my furry friend driving here and there in the succession of broken-down trucks that I had the misfortune of owning.

Yesterday as I watched the truck go jouncing down the road, I realized that one of my essential criteria for living a happy life had somehow slipped through the cracks of my ever-shifting paradigms.  At one time in my life, I would not even consider a job opportunity unless my dog could accompany me throughout the work day.  I turned down jobs in Alaska, California, Canada . . ..  If I couldn’t bring my faithful sidekick, I knew that the job wasn’t the right one for me.  As chosen priorities lead to reality, I ended up opting to live in a wall tent on 572,000 acres in a wilderness area.  It was a great situation where my boss did not care in the least if my dog tagged along.

The situation had all the potentiality of being lonely, but I never thought of it that way.  I was living in the midst of all of this incredible grandeur and my dog was right there by my side.  She was my true-blue, thick-and-thin companion in the middle of all that vast quiet.  She would run ahead of me on the trail and defy any bear, cougar, coyote, or free-range horse to come anywhere near us.  My time within all of that beauty there was such a rare opportunity, I appreciated every single day that passed.

All of this was bound to change.  And it did. During my years there, this ace #1 dog-of-a-lifetime passed on to Dog Heaven and other canine companions joined me.  Ultimately, a new job opportunity came up and I couldn’t pass it up.  The only problem?  I couldn’t bring my new dog to work with me.  The schedule was pretty good and the two of us were still able to get out and roam the trails on our 3-day weekends . . . but there was a shift.  And it was bigger than me not being able to bring my dog to work.  It was me compromising on what was important to me.

Looking back, I can see that “Bringing My Dog to Work” served as a bullet point on my Higher Self’s mission statement.

The years have passed.  That job led to another dog-restricted job.  Then I returned to school, and we all know how major universities feel about dogs sitting outside classrooms waiting for their human.  Not a good idea.  The mornings were full of classroom time and the afternoons were taken up by various half-ass jobs that supported me through school.

Outdoor-dog time grew to be more limited for me and free-range hikes turned into long evening strolls through the neighborhood.  Life had changed, as had I.  It didn’t occur to me at the time that I was focused on Ahead instead of looking at Right Now.

quote. Val. IMG_0103

theunseenwordsproject.com

All of these compromises.  With me feeling so buried by my decisions concerning education and future employment, the changes were all taking on priority status without me realizing that I was granting permission, one way or another, to something that was counter-intuitive to my internal mission statement.  I don’t rightly know how it all happened.  I don’t know when a yes became a no and a no became a yes.  Life changed when I consciously reversed the two and said it was all for a Better Future.

That’s the problem with giving in and giving up . . . you don’t realize that it has all happened until it feels like it’s too late to do anything about it anymore.  But that’s just it . . . it’s not too late.  Not at all.  All sorts of good decisions are before me.  All I have to do is choose.

Life is a lively event.  So many baby steps lead to where we are today.  Today, I want to honor my preferences.  Back up a little bit and review my Mission Statement.  Do a little editing maybe and re-commit to what is still important.  Invite my dream to ride shotgun with me again, roll down the windows, and belt out a tune.

How about you?

  • What’s riding shotgun on your Mission Statement? On your personal manifesto?
  • What’s one dream scenario that you have lost sight of?
  • Is it still alive inside you?
  • Are you ready to take some baby steps to renew it in your life?

We sometimes feel so bogged down by the progression of changes that have taken place in life that it can feel like it is impossible to reinstate one of our long-ago dreams.

Today might be the day that you sit down and ask what is important to you.

  • Commit it all to paper.
  • Keep the items approachable by using simple language. Dreams, written in your own language, will mean more to you than if they are crafted using lofty words and expressions.
  • Put your manifesto where you can see it easily and daily. Maybe it is your bathroom mirror or it is the wall by your desk or on a kitchen cupboard.  The important thing is that you make it visible.
  • Read your manifesto aloud. It might feel weird the first few times you do this, but it is as important that you hear the words as it is seeing the words.
  • When making decisions, think about what is important to you. Let your Higher Self guide you.
  • Dreams are meant to be followed.  Follow them.  They know the way.

 

 

 

 

Author bio: Kennedy Farr’s passion for writing caught light at the age of four when she first learned how to spell her name at a yellow kitchen table on a sheet of lined tablet paper.  Kennedy is a daily writer and blogger, a lifelong learner, and a true believer that something wonderful is happening right now in this very moment.  Kennedy lives high on the mountainside of an emerald-green island in the Pacific Northwest.

Website: https://theunseenwordsproject.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/theunseenwords

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/The-Unseen-Words-Project-1095815913825818/ 

 

A New World Is Born . . . a World of Surprises

Life is full of surprises.  All sorts of surprises happen every single day. I went down to the laundry room this morning and was surprised to see cat kibble spread all over the floor.  The cat was inventive throughout the night and discovered for the very first time in her 14 years of life that repeated clawing at a tough plastic-fiber cat food bag will spell e-u-r-e-k-a!  Needless to say, when she began her morning yowling for “More food!  More food!” it was her turn to be surprised that she wasn’t being fed on demand — her rotundness being particularly pronounced after her Midnight Kibble Party.

Then it occurred to me that the cat must have been incredibly surprised to discover that my sense of feline-nutritional guilt had kicked into gear when ordering her cat food this last time: I had just switched to a different brand to be delivered — a much healthier option over the cheap, grocery-store brand that I traditionally buy.  And then it was my turn to be surprised to discover that she actually liked the more healthful version over the super-cheap version.

All of these surprises.  Anais Nin wrote: “Each friend represents a world in us, a world not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.”

And as Tony Robbins says, “Good surprises we like . . . but bad surprises we call problems.  Good point.  Surprises, like friends, represent “a world in us, a world not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.” I believe that how I embrace or deny surprises in my life defines my life in some small measure.  Am I open to an unexpected moment?  Or am I hunkered down, waiting for the storm to pass until the sky is predominately blue?

If I were to view surprises as friends that add depth and meaning and flavor to my days, then I would welcome them with open arms.  All surprises . . . the good and the bad.

There was one final surprise regarding the Magic Cat-Food-Bag-Turned-Feeder.  I had been surprised and a bit alarmed to see how much food had been consumed by my dear old cat while I was unaware that there had been a breach in security . . . only to discover that my 8-pound dog had been partying with the 17-pound cat — inhaling kibble with the best of felines.

Important EncountersThe moral to the story?  Do not leave temptation in the presence of an ever-hungry cat and a fairly-smart dog.  The other moral?  Be open to surprises.  What I perceive to be a less-than-stellar surprise (aka “problem”) could morph into an amazing journey that leads to “a new world [being] born.”  One never knows when one might be daydreaming or waiting in traffic or lending a hand to someone or doodling in a journal or taking that risk or enrolling in classes or standing in line . . . and encounter a world of incredibly wonderful surprises.  toaster oven

 

One New Thing: allowing the cat to stalk me

My One New Thing today: I allowed the cat to go on a walk with us — my dog and me.

121

No, this is not my cat. It is my dog, Valentino.

Normally, I contain the cat to the house when I take the dog for a walk on the trails behind my house.  The thing about this cat is she was raised with a pack of dogs.  In the time she has been living with me, she has had 6 different canine roommates.  She has been observing dog-clan behavior her entire kitten life.  As a result she loves going on walks with whichever dog companion is living with me at the time.

Being on the trails while she is hunting us from behind is disturbing.  I never know when an unleashed dog is going to come bounding up the trail and she will go skittering into the woods.  How would she find her way home?  Is she smart enough to turn back around and march home?  Has she channeled enough of my old rough collie’s Zen in order to pull a Lassie-Come-Home moment?

But today Jane really wanted to join us (Valentino and me) — as evidenced by her running to the door when I picked up the leash.  I thought, What the heck?  We can stay in the neighborhood and she can play tiger-in-the-tall-cool-grass this morning as Val sniffs at every post, tree, blade of grass.

116

This is my cat, Jane Eyre.

Well, it is a beautiful day in the neighborhood today, and many neighbors were out tending to their yard work.  As Val and I walked and Jane stalked,  every neighbor commented on how we had a cat lurking behind us.  They all asked, “Is that cat yours?” I guess I never thought of this as being an odd cat behavior, but apparently it isn’t entirely common either.  The things you learn when you take time to reflect on your daily bubble.

As a result of this One New Thing (taking the risk to allow Jane some stalking freedom), I talked to three of my neighbors to whom I rarely ever speak.  It was a nice bonding moment over Jane’s Peculiar Cat Trick.  By being open to changing my routine with my pooch, Jane got to do her wild cat thing and I re-connected with some neighbors.

So, all’s good in the hood!  We all came home and — it being a weekend — we all  had a leisurely breakfast.  As I continue to add One New Thing to the mix, I continue to be surprised at the simple yet sweet consequences.  Who would have thought?