Dogs in Need at Sweet Paws Rescue – Cuteness Overload!

dogs in need from Sweet Paws Rescue
Credit: Emily O’Brien Photography

If you know me, you know I love dogs. I adopted Oscar when he was seven years old. I truly believe that rescuing, fostering and adopting dogs is a gift. Not only for the dog, but for the adopter as well.

When my friend, and photographer extraordinaire, Emily O’Brien reached out to her team of senior portrait representatives, of which my Julia is a part, to help on a volunteer mission at Sweet Paws Rescue, Julia jumped at the chance. She has always wanted to help dogs in need but, as life goes, we’d never gotten around to setting something up.

Dogs in Need

Emily brought the call to Julia’s attention and off she went to spend a day she describes as “so awesome and a really positive experience.”

Julia and several other high school seniors arrived at Sweet Paws Rescue to assist Emily and her husband Nick. Together they photographed a sweet slew of puppies who had arrived in from Mississippi, Alabama or Massachusetts.

dogs in need at Sweet Paws Rescue
I just can’t! They are adorable!!!! Credit: Emily O”Brien Photography

While the experience for Julia was a great one, the extreme need at Sweet Paws Rescue for foster providers and volunteers is even greater. If you have ever considered helping dogs in need, check out the links below to learn how you can get involved.

Learn more about Sweet Paws Rescue HERE!

Volunteer

Sign up to volunteer HERE!

Foster 2 Adopt

Apply to adopt or foster to adopt HERE!

Meet & Greet this Sunday

Want to learn more? Join the folks of Sweet Paws Rescue for a Pups, Plants & Putts Meet & Greet at Nunan Florist Greenhouse & Mini-Golf on Sunday July 22 from 10-12:30. More detail HERE!

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Have You Heard Of Up Lit? – Book Signing 7/24!

 

I bought this little bit of inspiring art for Julia.

SAVE THE DATE:

Book signing at Helen Thomas in Andover on TUESDAY, JULY 24th from 6-9.

Details to follow…


I am happy to say that Musing Mediterranean falls into a relatively new category of books called Up Lit. Short for uplifting literature, this new trend focuses on positivity, humor, kindness and compassion. Thank God! I don’t think I could bear one more violent, depressing, tragic or hyper-sexualized story. The inundation of these types of books is exactly what prompted me to write something entirely different. I just needed a break from all of the darkness.

In fact, I surround myself with little tchotchkes, like the one pictured, just to remind myself that the world is not a bad place. You’ll also find engraved trays and whimsical magnets that read Live Love Laugh scattered about my house. I have wall hangings that boast the values of friendship. I even have water bottles with sayings to inspire. She Believed She Could So She Did is one of my favorites.

If my home décor is any indication, good things are happening right here on Mother Earth even if tuning into your daily news makes you think otherwise.

It’s nice to know I am not alone in my quest for positivity. Up Lit is gaining in popularity and maybe, just maybe, the reading population is getting back in touch with their softer side. Let’s hope this extends to the entire human population as well.

Here are a couple of great articles on Up Lit.

Happy Reading!

Why We’re Looking for “Up Lit” – Dudley Court Press

The Rise of “Up Lit” – Hazel Gaynor

 

Now available at Amazon! Purchase my debut travel book, Musing Mediterranean, today.

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Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng – Book Club

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste NG

Book club met recently to talk about Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. We liked it, but thought the ending was a bit weak.

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

Synopsis (an excerpt from Goodreads)

In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is meticulously planned – from the layout of the winding roads, to the colours of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules.

Enter Mia Warren – an enigmatic artist and single mother – who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than just tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the alluring mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past, and a disregard for the rules that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community.

Review

Ng’s writing is deft and developed. It was intriguing to learn that the story is set in a real place with real rules and restrictions. Ng painted a clear picture of what a structured community, such as Shaker Heights, would be like.

We appreciated the insight into the teen relationships and friendships of the Richardson children and Pearl Warren. Their experiences were familiar and relatable.

Above and beyond anything else Ng’s character development was exceptional. It was easy to visualize and  connect with the characters through her strong and well thought out descriptions. I knew Ng had done an incredible job when, after reading the book, I could name every character.

Although, for me, the book was slow to start, I was really into it in the end.

The Ending

Little Fires Everywhere left a lot of unanswered questions, however there is good opportunity for a sequel. I’d love to know what becomes of the characters after Shaker Heights.

Next Up

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

 

NOW AVAILABLE ON AMAZON-order my debut travel book Musing Mediterranean today!

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Caring for an Older Dog-5 Years with Oscar

I haven’t posted about my sweet boy lately and last Thursday marked our five-year anniversary with Oscar. He is now twelve years old. If you don’t already know, we rescued Oscar when he was seven, which is already considered a senior dog.

We knew the risks of adopting and caring for an older dog, but despite some problems we have no regrets.

While Oscar did develop diabetes, not long after we got him, all has been going pretty well. His diabetes is under control and he continues to be the little light in our lives.

But caring for an older dog has its undeniable struggles. Oscar has always been stubborn. I would expect nothing less from a Schnauzer, but with every passing day his demands become more and more exhausting. It’s become his way or the highway – that’s it.

Beans

Sure we spoil him, but he’s a good old dog. We all find it hard to be tough on him when all he really wants is a few extra beans. Yes, I said beans. Oscar’s favorite treats are frozen green beans. We’ve reached a point where he is looking for them 24-7. It began when we didn’t have a fenced in area and I wanted to reward him for not wondering off. Somehow this has developed into a treat for any form of movement either on his part or mine – all day long! I could deny him or scold him for his constant pestering, but they’re just green beans, so nine times out of ten he gets one.

Aches and Pains

Other notable changes that make caring for an older dog challenging are Oscar’s obvious aches and pains. He has no interest in walking and his hind legs appear a bit wobbly. Don’t get me wrong, he will run full speed to a meal, but otherwise he’s in slow motion. I think his lack of exercise makes him irritable, but for every walk I attempt to take him on he reverses direction to head for home.

Tinkle Time

His bathroom needs have, not surprisingly, changed too. He needs to go out much more frequently. If he barks to go out, someone better move quickly because now when he has to go, it’s almost always urgent. We learned that the hard way.

Hurry Up and Wait

Forgetfulness and slowness come with caring for an older dog too. Often when I let him out he seems to forget what he’s doing out there. It’s up to me to be patient and ensure that he does what he set out to do. This is not always accomplished the first time out and if ever I’m in a rush, his pace is bound to be excruciatingly slow.

Senses

I have concluded that some of Oscar’s reluctance to be outside stems from vision and hearing loss. He’s not totally deaf or blind, but it’s clear that these functions are compromised. I often think he feels vulnerable outdoors, thus his mad rush to get back in. And, of course, more beans.

Nighty Night

The funniest thing I’ve encountered with Oscar as he ages is his desire to go to bed early. I get it, I like to go to bed early too, but he’s looking for me to accompany him at 7pm. He won’t settle down in his little bed until he sees me lying down in mine. And he wants his bed upstairs. Not a chair or a couch or a cozy piece of rug, just his bed where he can sleep uninterrupted until morning. It’s sweet really, but a bit ridiculous in the throes of summer.

Thankfully, Oscar’s issues with aging are minor and he continues to bring us so much joy despite the extra work involved in caring for an older dog.

“Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” Mark Twain.

When it comes to Oscar, I definitely don’t mind 😀

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A New Look for 3 Olives & a Twist and BethDaigle.com

watercolor Santorini greece featuring Musing Mediterranean

Hi everyone-

After a couple of quiet weeks, I’m happy to share a new look for my blog, 3OlivesandaTwist.com, and my author page, BethDaigle.com.

Essentially, the two have come together. Whether you enter 3OlivesandaTwist.com, BethDaigle.com or you have either site bookmarked, you should come to the same place.

If you run into any problems, please let me know.

At The Top

(click Home, top left, to see the full site)

I hope you enjoy the main photo, featured in today’s post, as well as the site itself. This pretty watercolor of Santorini, Greece (courtesy of Pixabay.com) seemed the perfect backdrop for ongoing book updates. Pixabay is an awesome site for free images, by the way. This image will remain front and center for the next several months as I launch Musing Mediterranean. Then, eventually, it will become a sliding series of blog photos from my most recent posts.

Scroll Down

Just below the main image and the About Me, Book and Work pages, you’ll find yourself back at 3 Olives & a Twist.

I hope you like the new site. I would love to hear your thoughts. If you have any issues, please let me know.

A New Look for Email Notifications too

For those of you signed up for email notifications, that has been updated too. Finally, a much prettier way of telling you a new post is waiting to be read. Hopefully you got the email today. If you haven’t already subscribed, scroll to the top of the sidebar to the right (or if you’re on your phone, scroll down) and sign up now!

Thank You

Please let me know what you think of the new look and much gratitude goes out to my web designer, Andrew, from Interthrive and to Lisa DiAntonio of Green Park Studios for helping me with imagery and aesthetics.

I look forward to getting back to my regularly scheduled Tuesday posts.

Next week, my latest book club review on Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng.

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