Saturday, February 21, 2015

Dog Dreams

Golden Retriever profile

The dog curled on his pad tonight looks warm and content, but he's not a puppy any more. At nine years old, he's showing his age. Nine may not be all that old, but Barley has had some hard knocks, and some mornings he'd rather stay on his pad than go for our morning walk.

Golden Retriever running in the snow

One thing can be counted on to transform this dog in an instant, and that's snow. We've had snow on the ground all week, and Barley can't wait to get outside. Out the door, he takes a nose dive into the white powder, rolls on to his back and rocks back and forth, feat flailing in the air in joyous abandon. He gets up, shaking himself and admiring the canine snow angel he left behind. Then he's off, racing over the ground in broad circles, his boots sending up showers of snow.

The whole process doesn't last long, but for a few minutes, flying through the snow, he's a puppy, the date on his birth certificate temporarily forgotten.

Just now, on his pad, Barley's legs move jerkily to the rhythm of his dream, and the snow flies again in his heart.

A note about his boots: on snow days, Barley used to have to stop frequently to bite away the ice that formed between the pads of his feet. The boots have solved that problem. It took him a time or two to get adjusted to them, but now he loves to see them come out of the closet.  We got them here.

Linking with Saturday's Critters.

Saturday, February 7, 2015


Monday was Groundhog's Day, and the weather here was balmy and beautiful.  The woodchuck could certainly have seen his shadow, had he been up, but unlike those people in Punxsutawney, we chose to let him sleep.

There are plenty of other creatures around here who are awake already.  The Flicker, wearing a heart on her back, cast a shadow, but she was more interested in the dogwood berries she was mining from the grass.  Yum!

The day was sunny enough; the red squirrel would have noticed her shadow if she'd been looking in the right direction, but looking for nuts and watching her back were far more important.

It's a silly tradition, after all, one we've heard since grade school, that if a groundhog sees its shadow that day, there will be six more weeks of winter.  But it speaks to our longing for spring, and the warmth and light that come with it.  I have a bit of a conflict this year, because the only snow we've seen so far sprinkled over the ground like powdered sugar on a Weight Watcher's cake.  And I love snow.

Snowdrops are blooming, and those small white blossoms are always a welcome sight, reminding us that no matter how long it takes for spring to get here, it will surely arrive.  They call to mind the promise God made long ago:

As long as the earth endures,
seedtime and harvest, 
cold and heat,
summer and winter,
day and night
will never cease.

Genesis 8:22

Linking with Wild Bird Wednesday

and Saturday's Critters

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Winter's Pallette

Sunset on Bull Shoals Lake in Theodosia, Missouri

When winter arrives

Colors escape to the sky

And leave the earth bare

They who dwell in the ends of the earth stand in awe of Your signs;

You make the dawn and the sunset shout for joy.

Psalm 65:8

Linking with Skywatch Friday