Sunday, May 22, 2011

My Dog, Honeysuckle Jody

It's not a great picture, but here I am with my cockerspaniel, Jody. He was a registered dog and to fancy up his name a little I registered him as Honeysuckle Jody. The picture is old and I've definitely got a windblown look, but Jody's curly ears are lying down nicely. This was taken twenty-five or so years ago. I was needing some - or at least I hoped I might need some - publicity type photos after my first books were published. Can't say that I ever did.

That was way before Facebook and the internet gave anybody a chance to share pictures with anybody. But I'm glad I took this one and a couple more with Jody. He was a good dog. And he was the dog that I wrote about in the story that is part of the book, The Dog Next Door edited by Callie Smith Grant. Its release date is June 1, but it looks like it's already available for shipping on Amazon. 

I like dog stories, so I'm sure I'm going to enjoy reading the other writers' stories in the book. My story is titled "A Gift of Love," and it's about when my husband gave me Jody for my birthday. He sometimes has a hard time getting me gifts that I really like. I mean the man gave me a bright pink snuggie a couple of years ago and a floor polisher one year. I have to admit that sometimes I'm not the best gift receiver, but at the time I got the floor polisher I was still young and halfway believed in Santa Claus. :-) Besides that, I lived in an old farm house with linoleum that had black spots from wear. So it's hard to be enthusiastic about a floor polisher that obviously was not cheap. Like money would have bought me a really pretty sweater, I'm sure. So for years after the floor polisher disaster, he tried to get me something I would REALLY love for my birthday or Christmas. And he did with this dog, Jody. The best gift ever. If you get the book and read my story you'll know - as they say - the rest of the story.

Jody was my dog from the beginning. He loved all the family, but he was my dog. He was about as big as my hand when we got him and while I cooked or worked at the kitchen counter, he would sleep on my foot. The only trick he ever learned was jumping up to catch popcorn in his mouth. He loved popcorn. And he liked terrapins. When we took walks, he would sniff out terrapins - that's the only animal he could catch - and carry them all the way back to the house. He was always at the door to enthusiastically greet me every time I came home. And he hated the UPS man. What is it about UPS trucks that dogs don't like? He would get cockleburrs caught in the long hair on his ears but was patient as I worked them out. And like all dogs, he got old much too quickly. Jody's been gone a long time. I've fallen in love with a half dozen dogs since him, but Jody was special. A bundle of pure love who looked at me as if I was the most wonderful person in the world. He still sometimes runs through my mind when I go for a walk, especially when I come across a terrapin.

Thanks for reading. I'll tell you about the Clear Creek Writer's workshop on Wednesday, but Sundays this month have been devoted to dogs. Next Sunday come read a very special interview with Suzanne Woods Fisher as she tells us about raising guide dogs and also about her Amish books. I know you'll enjoy learning more about her, her books, and her dogs. Plus if you leave a comment, you'll have the chance to win one of her books. You're welcome to share my blog posts with any friends you think might enjoy my letters from down here on the farm. 

"Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." Roger Caras

8 comments:

  1. Hi Ann,

    Loved reading about your dog, Jody and the special bond you two had.

    Dogs sure have a way of changing our lives.

    Have a blessed day.
    Cathy

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  2. Its so sad when you think about all the pets you've loved and lost. The only consolation is to start all over again and enjoy each one during their time with us.

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  3. I love having a dog, Cathy, and you're right about them making a difference in our lives. Every nursing home should have a dog on staff. Or at least a very friendly cat.

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  5. Anonymous - that's the way I feel. I miss my dogs that have gone on, but I look forward to the next one that will fill my life with cheer and fun. They're all so different.

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  6. What a great idea Ann...an on staff dog or cat. Sure would make a difference and bring lots of smiles.

    Blessings to you,
    Cathy

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  7. Hi Ann,

    I've admired you since our first meeting but now I KNOW why I liked you so much...You love dogs as much as I do! Dogs have always been a part of my life. As a child, I had two special friends who were of the "dog persuasion" and before my husband and I were ever blessed with our daughter, we had several dogs to receive our love and enjoy the benefits of being our babies. As I write this, I am "Dogless"; my beloved Buddy died 8 years ago and his mother, our beloved Bridget, died a few weeks before my Dad so I grieved for both of them. People who aren't animal lovers would think it strange that I mention the deaths of a dog and my father in the same breath. The depths and qualities of my grief were certainly different but I did feel both losses very deeply.
    As we begin our Memorial Day weekend, or "Decoration Day" as I always knew it, I will go to the cemetery to place flowers on my Dad's grave and REMEMBER and CELEBRATE the wonderful man and father he was. Now, because of your blog, I will also remember Bridget, Buddy and all of the other dogs I have known and loved!
    Hope you have a wonderful and blessed weekend, Ann.

    Connie

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  8. Hi, Connie. Dog lovers have a way of recognizing fellow dog lovers. And losing a dog (or any pet) is a sad time for most of us. As you say, not like losing a family member, but you still have to grieve those good dog friends. Hope you will have a new dog friend soon. Or maybe you'll just be able to enjoy other family members' or neighbors' dogs. That can be fun too.

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Thanks for joining the conversation. I like hearing what you have to say. Thanks for dropping by.