Transcendent Moments

The weather turned very warm again this weekend…brushing 100-degrees and testing our commitment!


Maria and Ina were both out…my garden partners returned after their treks far and wide. Defying the temperatures and the bunny literally staring her in the face, Maria has planted rows and rows of tiny sunflower plants. I suspect that they are just tonight’s dinner – but you have to admire her persistence. It is a battle of wills now. Some will remember that we disposed of the bunnies’ favorite den – the monster blackberry bramble – a season ago. Now they have taken up residence right in the middle of Maria’s sunflowers. Bunny revenge!


The heat brings the dogs to the garden – seeking shade and some cool grass to roll in. This is Jenna who arrived last night – literally pulled from a shelter by one of our awesome volunteers in her final hour. Her joy (and ours) is obvious.


Gypsy is another new arrival and a certified fence jumper. We’ll have to work on that wanderlust and find her a home that she’ll never want to leave.


Canelo is a young boy – only about one year of age – who lost his leg and has really struggled with recovery. Most tripods bounce back quickly, but not this boy. So our volunteers crawled through the 120-degree attic to find and rehab this cart for him. It immediately changed his perspective; we have hope that it changes his future as well.


Hunter is the last of the Reservoir Dogs still with us. Such a sweet boy. He and his tennis ball are inseparable –


but he did discover that he would trade a ball for a birdie…if only he could catch one!


The garden was warm and buzzing with hundreds of honey bees, gratefully soaking up all that was offered.


“Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world.” ~
John Milton

Lifting Power

Hummingbirds are considered a symbol tirelessness, perseverance and joy.


The fact that one took up residence in our outdoor alcove was probably a good sign for this week which required the first two qualities in spades and ultimately led to the third.


When one of our previously adopted Reservoir Dogs got loose from his home, our team sprang into action and our community came together. With temperatures unseasonably warm and hovering around 100, there was no time to spare. The call went out through social media for help and our Homeward Bound volunteers answered in force. Social media is an amazing tool in the rescue toolbox, but when your pet first goes missing, there is just no substitute for old-fashioned boots on the ground. Volunteers searched from early light until very late at night, driving, walking and crawling through bushes in parks, cemeteries and alleys. And so it was – at 5:30 on a Saturday morning – that our beloved Michael (now Cooper) was spotted hiding in an alley by one of our volunteers. An hour of so later, he was safely home.


Tirelessness…perseverance…and joy.


There was joy for two other Reservoir Dogs this week – Joshua and Grandpa Buddy went home as well.


Only Hunter remains. It is just a matter of time and right fit for this special boy.


Back in the garden, we have a crisis of a different proportion to attend to: Spotted Cucumber Beetles have invaded.


With the surrounding rice fields flooded and the heat dispensing with the rest of the field weeds, they have come to the garden to dine and multiply.


I read that Tangle Trap in upside down paper cups with use of Oil of Cloves as lure can help reduce the population without insecticides (which would be harmful to our bees, butterflies and ladybugs). If you have any experience with this – please weigh in to rescue our beautiful garden before it is not!








To all of the volunteers who follow this blog and helped in the search…thank you. I’m so proud to be a part of this team.

“It is a fact that in the right formation, the lifting power of many wings can achieve twice the distance of any bird flying alone.” ~ Author Unknown


On a Wing and a Prayer


Small miracles surround us. Hummingbirds…


Baby Mourning Doves…


Honey bees…


and Love in a Mist (aptly named).


This collection of miracles flew in just a week ago on a wing (traveling from Taiwan – where it’s not so good to be a dog) and a prayer (of rescue and a forever home).


One – Mary – has already found her way there.


Abigail – another of the ten Reservoir Dogs rescued from a hoarding situation – has recovered from her ear surgery and also found her way home this weekend.


In a world that sometimes feels filled with bad news, these small miracles help to balance our corner of the universe.

Two seasons ago, all Maria had to do was plop a sunflower seed in the ground and it sprouted a stalk rising over our heads.


Last year was disappointing, and this year’s seeds and sprouts have either been swept away or served up to snails as appetizers (balancing out the snails’ universe, I guess). She is still putting her faith in another round of seedlings started at home; but she put her money on a few sunflowers from the nursery.


Sometimes, prayer just needs a little help.

“Grow flowers of gratitude in the soil of prayer.” ~ Terri Guillemets


Happy week, all.


“The butterfly is a flying flower,
The flower a tethered butterfly.” ~ Ponce Denis Écouchard Lebrun


Butterflies appear like flying petals flitting through the air. So beautiful – we forget the transformation required to achieve that beauty. From cocoon to caterpillar – their beginnings are far more humble.


“There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it’s going to be a butterfly.” ~ Richard Buckminster Fuller

We chuckle when people meet their perfect pup at Homeward Bound and think the dog was always so. Sometimes that is the case. But more often than not, a transformation is required – to deal with medical concerns –

Taiwan 6_DSC_2195

or socialization needs, and sometimes, behavioral challenges in order for them to be their perfect selves.



This class is nearly ready for graduation. Test day is rapidly approaching and, from the looks of things, they should do just fine!


Gardens also require – as they say – equal measure of inspiration and perspiration. But we are reveling in our third season and the transformation that continues to unfold.

The Rose Garden.


The Cottage Garden.


The Fragrant Garden.


The Perennial Garden.


The Hummingbird Garden.


The Entry Arbor.


“Beautiful and graceful, varied and enchanting, small but approachable, butterflies lead you to the sunny side of life. And everyone deserves a little sunshine.” ~ Jeffrey Glassberg