He waits beside his favorite ball, the yellow one and the tennis one….

He waits beside his ball, the yellow one and the tennis one is within his sightline, too… will they move on their own? is he seeing a shadow? Did he wonder, if in a sleeping moment they called his name, “Murphy, come on, let’s play!”? And why not? Magically, the yellow ball – leader of all toys – squeaks when he squeezes it, bounces it – PLAYS WITH HIM! So clearly, it is calling  him. It is ready to play whenever he wishes to play, and thus, in a way, it is the smartest of his toys, the most reliable. It is to him what he is to me; always there, never questioning, some times lost. There are, of course, so many things that make my best friend, Murphy, better than any toy, obviously. He is the latest in a long line of lovers and dreamers with four legs and fur who have, quite frankly, saved my human life countless times.

Who knew that dog saliva can mend a broken heart?

Jennifer Neal, nakedjen, 07-22-08

A dog owns nothing, yet is seldom dissatisfied.

Irish Proverb

“A person can learn a lot from a dog, even a loopy one like ours. Marley taught me about living each day with unbridled exuberance and joy, about seizing the moment and following your heart. He taught me to appreciate the simple things – a walk in the woods, a fresh snowfall, a nap in a shaft of winter sunlight. And as he grew old and achy, he taught me about optimism in the face of adversity. Mostly, he taught me about friendship and selflessness and, above all else, unwavering loyalty.”

John Grogan, Marley and Me, 2005

And when the snow blanketed the yard, and some shed tears over what they couldn’t do because of jammed up highways and unexpected road blocks, what did Murphy do? He mocked the cats who could not go outside and laughed at the squirrels who he caught off guard and he romped and he played and he treated the piling snowflakes with wonder! He taught us, he taught me, that stopping and seeing and laughing and playing is the  reason for  the season – any season. What we have in front of us, literally, what we feel beneath our feet, literally, is the love that is living.

We must hug and hold and appreciate and find joy in today, for as any dog will tell you – is THE PLACE TO BE!


Merry Christmas!

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