Jackson and Bella

In November, 2011, I joined a group of volunteers answering a call for help from Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue and Sanctuary serving Northern California. The volunteer organization rescues and heals displaced, abandoned, and homeless Golden Retrievers and Golden/Labrador mixes, no matter their age or health. The Memorial Garden had been equally abandoned. What should serve as a tribute to rescued Goldens had fallen into disrepair. The hope is that pride of ownership will kick in with a small army of volunteer gardeners, leading to the restoration of the garden as a place of peace and remembrance, as well as an opportunity for fundraising.

As a recipient of two beloved rescues from Homeward Bound – Bella and Jackson – this is my opportunity to support the work of those who go to extraordinary lengths to save and place hundreds of dogs each year.

Through this story of a rescued garden, I hope to inspire others to share the love of rescued pups.


  1. Audrey, this blog is a lovely, loving tribute. It is also a nice complement to Laure’s e-mail updates. Your passion and compassion clearly underlie each blog. You are a Homeward Bound “scribe” making a difference through your beautiful photos and writing.

    • Ogee

      Sue, it was great spending time with you and Brock in the garden today! I can’t wait to see the finished result. The gardens – and the dogs – are great inspiration. I thoroughly enjoy sharing the results of our collective efforts with others. See you in the garden!

    • Ogee

      “Romancing” – a wonderful blog. And now I have found yours! Beautiful.
      My office mate has a service dog – half golden, half standard poodle. Sweet, and smart as a whip. The best of both πŸ™‚ Thanks for visiting!

    • Lynn, I’m so honored and touched. Your nomination helps to shine another light on the dedication of our Homeward Bound rescuers and the garden dedicated to our Golden Retriever friends. I’ve read your post, and understand that I must pay the honor forward – which I will happily get to work on. Thank you! – Ogee

    • You’re so sweet, thanks for the nod πŸ™‚ P.S…My Watercolorist’s Essential Notebook has arrived. It’s like starting all over again…the right way! Thanks again for the tip!

      • You’re welcome! To this day I still go back to this book and revisit sections when I’m stumped on painting certain subjects. Best wishes ~ Mary

  2. Love your blog! It’s awesome how 4 passions – gardening, photography, blogging and love for all things golden mesh so beautifully in one place. I come here plenty- to see what’s new, for the pictures, doggy appearances and the lovely quotes you manage to find πŸ™‚ Thank you for so many pleasant reads. ~50n681rd

    • Thank you, Miss Harper Lee! I’m so glad you found us. You are as cute now as when you were a little puppy. We’ll happily follow your adventures as well!

  3. Kim

    I’m a golden lover and a golden owner, so I couldn’t be a whole lot happier to follow your story. I live in San Jose, and I’ve been hoping to find a way to make a road trip with my little guy, Mac, for an event, and if you need “Taxi” drivers in San Jose, I’d love to throw my hat in the ring. I’ll look up contact info to email your team.

  4. Pingback: And the Liebster Goes to . . . « thek9harperlee

    • Miss Harper Lee, on behalf of all the Goldens and gardeners…thank you! Awards are not as big a deal as all the canines and humans that come to visit and share with us. And phew! That was a lot of work for you! Your paws must be smarting!!! P.S…I believe the rule is that if you can find shorter rules – you get to go with them! You’re the best…even if you do eat putrid things sometimes. πŸ™‚

    • Thank you! So glad you could visit…and I’m very sorry for your loss. I’ll happily follow along with you (fellow crazy dog lady!) Can’t wait to read more!

    • You are too sweet, Mary. The garden, goldens and I are very grateful – but mostly grateful for entire blogging community and the opportunity to bring visibility to importance of rescue. Looks like I have some new blogs on your list to visit. Thank you!

  5. Wonderful, I love this idea. I have a gorgeous Golden myself, rescued him from a breeder in Milano.
    I look forward to read more from you in the future, I’m your new follower! πŸ™‚
    Have a great week and keep up the good work.
    Greetings from the Rhine Valley

  6. We have a Golden Mix (with Australian Shepherd) named Gracie. She was a rescue and we adore her. She was an instrumental part of our foster/now adopted son’s healing from trauma and abuse and they are now constant companions. I am so glad to have found your lovely site and look forward to reading more!

    • Hi Danielle,
      So glad you found us! Thanks for your love of Gracie, your fostered/adopted sons – and for your service as well as your husband’s to our country (supportive military spouses/families make our troops’ work possible.)
      It’s amazing how dogs and children can be healed together. I’ll happily read along with you as well!

  7. tms

    Although I am not a “dog person”, I must say you are writing a great blog here: interesting, relevant, and aesthetically pleasing despite of the somewhat bleak reality it describes. Keep up the good work!

    • Thank you. You don’t have to be a “dog person” to appreciate humane treatment. Please share the tips with others so we can all do better.
      P.S…your photographs are stunning.

  8. Nessy San

    Your blog is one of the wonderful animal blogs I found on WordPress! I too also love dogs and we’re taking care of 2 stray dogs at home. We recently found a lab pup. And she’s simply lovely! Your work and thoughts are inspiring. I will be getting some tips through my readings here. Take care and good luck ! πŸ˜€

  9. Pingback: The Missy Award | dailyspro

    • I am so surprised and delighted to be counted in such good company! Thank you…for the nod…for loving Newton so deeply and still putting your heart out there to help more.

      What a wonderful way to start my day. πŸ™‚

    • I’m sorry to take so long to respond today, but I wanted to surprise you with the posted photos. My friend Rob was kind enough to get them for us. You have waited so patiently to see these touching messages. Hugs to you, Grady…and Brandy!

  10. Congratulations on making such an important difference in the lives of your beautiful rescues and ultimately their adoptive families. It’s a beautiful thing. I came by way of my dear friend Alys of ‘Gardening Nirvana’ who I also met blogging. Kindred spirits, she knew that I would love it here. My husband and I finally made the move from the country to the city after saying goodbye to our dog Buddy. As we’re currently renting while hunting for a new home, I’ll look forward to getting my doggy fix here with you.

    • I’m so glad that Alys introduced us. I searched your blog and found Buddy. What a beautiful boy…and I’m sure, still much missed. I’ll be happy to provide your doggy fix until circumstances allow another. πŸ™‚

  11. Awesome. Touching,Inspiring.
    We just found you and will follow. Junior is a rescued golden,who now gives back as an Ambassadog for golden rescue here in Texas as well as a Therapy Dog and Reading dog.
    Your blog touched our hearts.

    Jill and
    A Therapy Dog with Opinions

  12. Donna Fano

    Could I get the photographer’s name to the photos posted on your site “Mourning Doves Hatched”. I like to get permission to use their photographs.

    • Thank you, Mike and Kali! We have many friends in common. I am honored to be included and can’t wait to check out the ones that are new to me!

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