“It is spring again. The earth is like a child that knows poems by heart.” ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

It is hard to be a weekend-only gardener of the Homeward Bound Memorial Garden. So much changes during the week at this time of year; I have to take time just to soak it up each Saturday morning when I return. It is amazing to see last year’s perennials push their way skyward once again as the garden reshapes itself after the long winter.

The Snapdragon, Iceland Poppies and tiny Viola flowers worried Ina – a horticulturist with a penchant for California natives. She thought they might be too grandmotherly…but I think they have won her over, begrudgingly.


The roses are beginning to bloom.


You wonder what weighs them down? The tiny frogs have already taking up residence!



The California Poppies have opened; their gold offers striking contrast to the Lavender backdrop.


Maria’s Herb Garden is already lush and new additions will quickly fill in any holes.


Ina has prepared all of her beds for the dry days ahead, tucking them in with a blanket of shreds.


Even the Killdeer are back…leaving their nest eggs smack in the middle of the dog park!


Maria is off on another adventure, which means that I was left unsupervised on Saturday. That always spells trouble – and planting! When we began the garden, each person had their own bed to do with as they pleased. The good news was that the work was divided up; the downside was that the garden felt a little disjointed. Now that our core group is a little smaller, we can “color outside the lines” a little. I planted two beds, bridging the Daylily bed to the Rose bed – and the Perennial bed to a tree circle garden, echoing the most drought tolerant plantings in each.


Ina thinks I’m nuts (again), but allows me to play as long as I steer clear of her beds!

With the “dorms” (aka “kennel”) full – the dog walkers arrived in force this weekend, allowing me to work without too much guilt. There were dogs everywhere…


and some happy “going homes” including the dog I wrote about last week; our other Daisy who had been returned for being a still rambunctious two-year old. This time, we found the perfect home where her youthful exuberance will be exhausted by an outdoor-loving and very active mom.


The world is right again.

Healing hearts


“The human heart has a way of making itself large again even after it’s been broken into a million pieces.” ― Robert James Waller, The Bridges of Madison County

There is no right or wrong way to heal from loss.
Some people need time and retreat. Others find comfort among others.
Sometimes, the best thing for heartache is to open your heart to another.

Human loss and canine loss may not be the same thing, but canines have a way of healing a human heart. And when the canine is also in need of healing – the bond is more special still.

Fancy came to Homeward Bound from another rescue because the cancer inside her was malignant and they knew we could and would help at Homeward Bound. It was removed, but it will return. When? We don’t know. And to Chuck, it doesn’t matter.


Some flowers are perennial –


they come back season after season.


Others, have but one season –


and some – just one day.


Their beauty fills us equally – maybe even more so when we know our time with them is short.


A flower no more knows how long it has to bloom that we do. Ignorance is bliss. But humans who purposefully open their hearts to animals knowing their seasons are short have a special place on this earth and beyond.


“To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.” ~ Thomas Campbell

Chuck says that Fancy will be treated like a queen. A queen doing an angel’s work here on earth.