Writing is like being able to put life into a snow globe. It takes the things that are too big and scary and reduces them into a form that I can put away when I want and look at from a distance. It also takes all that’s good in life and captures it into something I can take out when I want and look at close up and keep forever. It makes the bad things into something I can hold…and the good things into something I can hold onto. Both help so much that I need that little souvenir of life.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Stuff Around My House: Pet Memorial

I had no idea what to write about today since I was going to make sure everything had a love theme until Valentine’s Day. And then, as usual, I was inspired by reading your blog posts.

First, Linda O’Connell  posted about the various dogs she’s loved in life. It reminded me about my Pet Memorial. I got the idea from my mother, who used to have a shelf in her bedroom with little figurines representing all of the dogs she had loved. In many cases, the figurines had been painted to look just like the pets themselves. She even affixed some masking tape to their undersides where she’d lovingly written their names and the dates they’d lived. I think one of the paradoxes of today’s society is that it is getting both more necessary and more difficult to cherish and preserve our pets’ memories. So I thought I’d share the idea.

The tough thing is when you’re a fan of mixed breeds like I am. Our lab mix is represented by an oversized Jack Russell that’s painted black, and our female vizsla mix is captured by an obvious male with the docked tail of a weimaraner. Still, when I look at these little statues, I smile.

You may notice there is even a turtle on the upper shelf. That was a gift from my sister, who understands the value of both the pet turtles and the shelf. How I wish someone made little hamsters! (Yes, I know.  I am a terrible nerd.)

Also wanted to welcome my newest follower, Judie of Rogue Artists. Judie, I've become a follower, but I have ceased to show up in people's Followers area and no one seems to be able to tell me why.  In yet another paradox, her blog, with its desert Southwestern header, somehow reminds me of a watering hole, an oasis of art. Be sure to scroll down to look at the paintings. I loved one of her comments so much that I am quoting her. Judie, I hope that’s okay with you! Also hope my little brackets are okay.  I took out just a couple of words in this instance because I thought this lovely statement applies to our beloved pets as well.

I have been sitting here trying to think about [those] whom I remember warmly, and I think that the one thing they all have in common is "selflessness." They never do the right thing to make themselves look better—they do it for…love…. ~Judie of the blog, Rogue Artists


  1. Tammy, What a fitting tribute. I love this idea. Can't find Judie's blog, but love the quote.

  2. I tried to check out Judie's blog, too, but no luck. However, I love your pet memorial. It's true---it's hard to find little figurines that resemble the lovable mutts in our lives.

  3. Great post, Tammy. I love the quote, but I haven't tried to find Judie's blog yet. Since I've only had 2 dogs in my life, both living to be around 14 years old, I don't have a dog memorial shelf, but I have them in my heart! Rocky and Tiger-Girl!

  4. http://rogueartistsspeak.blogspot.com/
    Hey Everyone, here is Judie's blog address, and it really is a beautiful blog!

  5. P.S. I also got to Judie's blog by clicking on her name in your post, Tam, so I don't know what the problem is/was.

  6. Tammy, in November we lost our Precious girl to Cushing's disease. She was a 14 year old Yorkie who had actually belonged to our neighbor in Memphis. She decided that she really wanted to live with us rather than our sweet neighbor because Marilyn worked all day and Precious was left alone. When Marilyn had back surgery, we volunteered to care for Precious until she healed. Precious was not at all anxious to go back home, and I told Marilyn that if the neighbors ever found out that her dog sleeps with us at night, we would both become the laughing stock. She decided that Precious really should be OUR dog. Everyone was quite satisfied with the outcome, and Precious comtinued to sleep between us for as long as she lived. Losing her was devastating to both of us. It was the first time in our married life that I had ever seen my husband cry. I miss my Precious girl every day, and frequently call our new little girl, Lizzy, by her name. Last night, Lizzy jumped up and draped herself around my neck. Rod and I almost lost it, because Precious always did that when we took her on trips. Our pets play such an important part in our lives, that I cannot imagine not having one to love.

    Hey, thanks for the plug! Your photo came up exactly as expected in my followers!!

  7. The pet memorial is a wonderful idea! Our pets are our furry kids and mean so much to us. Even on the worst of days I walk into my house to be greeted by our two Lab mixes (one yellow, one black) and their joy is so palpable that my mood brightens immediately. Our pets are such a gift in our lives...I love the idea of memorializing them in the way you have done.

  8. Here is addendum to my comment: Many years ago, we were visiting in Atlanta and we had our dog-children, Precious and Watson, with us. We were at my mother's house for a couple of hours and I was scolding the dogs about their rude behavior. My mother happened to overhear and she said, " You talk to those dogs just like they were people!"

    "What dogs?" I asked.

  9. Thanks for telling me about the link. I think I fixed it.

    Judie, I'm so sorry to hear about losing your beloved Precious girl! I agree whole-heartedly--animal or not, they are our peeps!

    And Lisa, I think you just explained why pets lower blood pressure!

  10. The figurines are a terrific idea. But whether you have the physical memorabilia or not, our beloved pets will always be with us.



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