Follow Up Friday: Just Add Love

Taylor was the eighth dog of 2018. You may remember his arrival. At three years of age, this Golden Retriever weighed just 40.8 pounds. He was emaciated and scared, but he instantly clung to our people.

Within minutes a tiny grin appeared. That was his true heart shining through.

There was nothing medically wrong with Taylor. Why he was so thin is still a mystery to us. We know he was kept in a kennel during the day – which we understand was long. But the surrendering reason was that he had killed a chicken. Perhaps he was hungry.

The line on the surrender form says: What would be the ideal home for this dog? The answer: “Someone that will love him.” Maybe that was a clue to his past – or perhaps, just a genuine wish for his future. Either way, it was fulfilled in the form of one of our volunteers. Taylor had seen enough of a kennel, and it wouldn’t be the best place for an obviously nervous dog that desperately needed to gain weight. So he went home with Jessica as a foster. As if.

A month later, he has gained ten pounds and is well on his way to full health. All he needed was love.

Most importantly, that tiny hint of a grin has turned into a full-blown smile.


Taylor is now Roo – named for the adorable, bouncy, baby kangaroo featured in Winnie the Pooh.

He’s goofy and playful like a puppy instead of a three-year-old.


From the moment Jessica and Taylor met, he was destined to be a foster failure. Taylor has indeed found “someone that will love him” – forever.

“As soon as I saw you, I knew an adventure was going to happen.” – A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

Winter Approaches

Geese_DSC_9346

All signs point to winter. In the span of one week, the garden has transformed from a fall garden to a winter one. This, of course, means that I am way behind. Dogs come first, and more than a few have had their turn recently. Hurray for…

Marley,

Marley Going Home_DSC_9463

River,

River Going Home_DSC_9597

Keiko,

Keiko Going Home_DSC_9543

and Dart.

Dart Going Home_IMG_0944

While it looks like the garden is beginning to slumber, there is still a lot going on under the surface. Until a freeze, newly transplanted perennials and trees, and an army of spring bulbs are all growing roots, while earthworms and tiny microbes are still hard at work.

“Every gardener knows that under the cloak of winter lies a miracle … a seed waiting to sprout, a bulb opening to the light, a bud straining to unfurl.” ~ Barbara Winkler

All of this will come to a halt when we get our first real freeze. Before then, we need to complete the raising and mulching of the beds to keep them from floating away during our much hoped for El Nino, and to keep the soil temperature even.

Despite removing mountains of leaves, we still have heaps of them.

Leaves_DSC_9439

I rigged an open air container and assigned begged off the chopping duties. The leaf bits will over-winter in the container, creating a leaf mold to use as soil conditioner in our packed clay by spring.

I never mourn the passing of a season. Gardeners always look ahead. Besides, the colors of an approaching winter are beautiful in their own right:

Browns,

Redbud-Pods_DSC_9429
Sedum_DSC_9400

faded pinks,

Rose_DSC_9409

yellows and reds,

Rose_bees_DSC_9410
Rose_DSC_9427

And of course – the snowy whites…

Narcissus_DSC_9415
Rose_DSC_9496

the best color of all.

Bing_DSC_9370