Sophie at 3 months is a challenge. We are involved in a love hate relationship. She doesn’t listen to me very well unless she wants to. We go for multiple walks a day. I try my best to keep her head up and away from the ground, but most of my time is spent pulling rocks or sticks out of her mouth. She gets annoyed and starts pulling aggressively on her leash. If my husband is with us, he will say “off”, and she drops the leash. If it it just Sophie and me, she will growl at me and she tries to bite me. I will tell her no but she keeps at me. The other day, a man was walking past us on the street and I asked him if he had a deep voice. Could he please tell Sophie “off”? He wasn’t open to disciplining a cute puppy.
The Monks of New Sketes, the authors of The Art of Raising a Puppy, advise the owner not to yell or get angry at their puppy. I am really trying. Who is in charge here, Me or Sophie? My red Patagonia OutdoorFit jacket is now Sophie’s walking jacket. She loves nipping at my sleeves. I keep them taped up so the down feathers don’t fall out. Patience is a virtue.
I know Sophie will be an amazing dog and companion. I am committed to her training. She does bring joy and happiness wherever she goes. We have met many people walking in the neighborhood who probably would not have stopped to say hello. Sometimes I stop them because Sophie knows everyone loves her and she needs to say hello.
We have a new puppy, and I am back into mothering mode big time. I decided to let some things go for awhile. I stopped 2 Grandmas and A Microphone and writing blog posts. I have not been posting much on social media unless it included a golden retriever puppy named Sophie. If you don’t care about cute puppies then it is probably best to sign off now.
This is the story of the arrival of Sophie. As many of you know, I have a special needs son named Thomas. He has always been around Goldens. We have had 4 Goldens and a wonderful dog named Kelly. Kelly was half golden and half Chesapeake Bay retriever. When Tom looks at dog books he is interested in Golden retrievers. 2 and 1/2 years ago, our last Golden, George died suddenly of cancer at the age of 7. It was very sad for all of us. Thomas talked everyday about how sad he was about George. My family and I had thought of getting another dog, but my husband wasn’t ready to move on from George. For me, there was something freeing about not having a dog. The house was clean. We could leave and not have to worry about George. Then the pandemic hit, and Tom is home all of the time zooming his programs. I thought this is the perfect time to get a dog. I told Tom that George is his dog angel and he needs to start praying to George to bring us Sophie. Thomas wanted a girl dog. He likes girls. There is a young lady down the street named Sophie. She got a golden a few years ago for Christmas and named him Tom. Tom the golden has the same birthday as Thomas. We thought Sophie would be the perfect name. Sophia means wise. It is good to have a smart dog. Tom started to pray to George, the dog angel and I started to look for a good breeder.
I found Jane Pappler from Redlion Kennels. I gave her a call and left a voice mail. I also emailed her to tell her about Tom and that we were looking for the perfect puppy. Jane called me back. Normally, I would not have answered the phone. I usually don’t answer a strange number. This time, I did. “Mary, this is Jane from Redlion kennels. Would you like to talk about Golden Retrievers ? ” She asked us if we could wait a year. She was receiving 30 calls a day since the pandemic hit. I said I could but I really wanted a puppy sooner. Well, guess what? She bumped us up on the list. George the dog angel was helping us find Sophie.
We picked up Sophie January 12th, at 7 weeks old. Our world has changed. I am so glad that I am not a single parent. My husband is in on the puppy parenting. She sleeps pretty well through the night and she is house broken. I don’t trust her yet but she cries at the door to go out. I started reading The Art of Raising A Puppy by The Monks on New Skete. I love their philosophy and it has been very helpful. The Monks are very grounding. It is so important to have a well trained dog and we are working on it. Sophie is sitting. She is a smart dog. I hope you get to meet her soon. She thinks everyone loves her.
It is the New Year! Do you do take the time to do an annual review? Do you set intentions for the upcoming year? How do you define success? Three great questions that I’m resistant to answer. Recently, I joined Andreea Fegan’s Little Bites of Joy community group. Sunday, Andreea led us through a vision workshop. We talked about how we define our successes and how we want to feel on a daily basis. It went much deeper than how much money you make, or how many followers you have on Instagram.
During the workshop, Andreea told us to write down how you want to feel during the day. How do you make other’s feel?
Here is my list.
I want to go through my day with Ease and Grace (I stole that from one of the woman on the call.)
Don’t you feel good when you are around happy, enthusiastic, grounded people? I did have peaceful, but I changed it to grounded. It feels more authentic. I love authentic people! I feel like I am pretty authentic already. I don’t know how to be any other way.
I define my success with numbers. If you run a business, it is important to know your numbers. I always check my monthly revenue, but then I tally how many people are in my OutdoorFit program, and how many people watch a video or read a blog post. I’m disappointed if I don’t reach a certain number of views. Some of my feelings of self worth appear to be tied into how many views I get. Andreea suggested going beyond the numbers and consider what kind of an impact are you making. You never know who reads your posts or watches your videos. Maybe when I encourage others to drink more water or do a round of mountain climbers I am having an impact. Are my viewers having a life changing moment? I hope so.
In my OutdoorFit membership group, we started A 28 Day Feel Fabulous Program. It is all about making small changes to feel better. Click here if one of your intentions is to feel fabulous in the New Year! I hope to see you soon.
Thanksgiving week, I was able to have a cup of coffee and take a walk with my niece Julia. We don’t get to see each other very often, and I am so grateful for our time together. She has inspired me to take some simple steps to feel better. I do take good care of myself, but the pandemic and having Thomas home has created extra stress. I was taking small steps to make things worse instead of better. I know it doesn’t sound like much. I like to make grain free cookies and instead of adding a squirt of liquid stevia to sweeten the cookies I have been adding coconut sugar instead. I was drinking a few more ounces of wine at night. You get the picture. It all adds up and I can feel it in my body.
Julia looks and feels amazing. She is an incredibly athletic, and is great to be around because of her positive energetic attitude. Of course, I wanted to know about Julia’s diet. I always love talking to people about what they eat. Julia eats a very clean diet. She buys raw milk and raw butter. She knows what the chickens eat that produce the eggs she buys. Somedays, she will cook a grass fed grass finished rib eye for lunch. She eats a lot of fermented vegetables, and loves kimchi. On my way home, I stopped and bought kimchi at the local health food store. I have been eating a chunk before each meal. It is so good for your gut and helps to eliminate sugar cravings.
Here is our latest 2 Grandmas and A Microphone video. We talked about kimchi, Julia enjoying a cold open water swim in a bikini and so much more.
Vicky Perry and I just completed the 9th episode of 2 Grandmas and A Microphone. What started out as a conversation on a bench by the marina grew into what we are now calling a project. I looked up the definition of a project. It is “an individual or collaborative enterprise that is carefully planned to achieve a particular aim.” I love a good project!
Vicky and I are 2 Grandmothers having open and honest conversations. . Honesty, integrity and doing my best at being authentic have always been my priorities. Our talks the past 9 weeks have reaffirmed the importance of these qualities for me. I need to add kindness to list as well. I feel life works so much better that way.
I also know I expect honesty from people. I am hoping the leaders of this country will step up and lead with integrity. It is a real problem to me when individuals don’t act that way. As I mentioned in the videos, dishonesty and distrust literally makes me feel sick to my stomach. I am learning to manage all of the stress and agitation through meditation, breathing exercises and taking great care of myself. I eat well, and of course, I exercise. Have you heard of OutdoorFit?
Be Strong – Be Healthy – Be Powerful
I hope our videos are inspiring to you. Here is Episode 9 of 2 Grandmas and A Microphone. Vicky and I are learning the technical aspect of creating these videos. We will get better. We ordered microphones for episode 10!
Vicky uses washing her dishes as a spiritual practice. What a great idea… You feel better and your dishes are clean!
I would love to hear from you. What is important to you? How are you taking care of yourself?