In August, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, I got puppies. Tiny little squirmy (and bald I might add), hairless Chinese Crested puppies.
I truly wish I was actively blogging during their tiny, puppy months, but, if you so desire, you can follow their early (and current) adventures on Instagram @CleoandPunkChineseCresteds.
When I got them, Punk weighed under 3 pounds and Cleo was under 2 pounds. Today they are fully-grown and as sassy and ornery as you might expect two spoiled-during-the-pandemic puppies.
Here are a few tips I’ve garnered along the way when dealing with pandemic (or any new) pups.
Remember, they are PUPPIES. When we picked the pups up in Oklahoma City (we live in central Kansas) we had the ultimate goal of litter box training them. (Yes, it’s a thing and we’ve had success with our previous dogs). We bought the dog litter and everything. Laughable. We still haven’t used it. They eat EVERYTHING still.
Buy a small, plastic pool. Thankfully, these were still in season. And they were a lifesaver when we got them home. They ate, drank, played and, of course peed and pooped in the pool. Get you one! But, be warned, they will grow. Ours hopped out in a week, but it did give us the necessary time to secure alternatives.
Get them into the vet ASAP. Our puppies, being so young, had not had any vaccines, but they still were in need of a check-up. They both have eye issues and Cleo came with an eye ulcer. The conditions are well under control now, with daily medications, but if we had waited, Cleo probably would have gone blind in her right eye. Get them into the vet I’d suggest within the first week!
Set early boundaries. Don’t want them on the couch? Set that boundary early. Room off limits? Let them know early. Puppies need boundaries. Mine pretty much had none…my bad. But they are learning quite nicely.
Do things with them early. Due to the pandemic, this one went by the wayside for us. BUT, in normal circumstances, make sure you take them in the car for rides (if that’s what you’re planning on doing), take them to the pet store to pick out treats, etc.
Bottom line, enjoy your new babies. They won’t be babies for long. Below is a photo of mine when they were tiny!
Well, once again, it’s been a red hot minute since I’ve posted. And I’m sorry!
The last several years of my life have been one of transition and living in the moment. In 2019, I re-vamped my blog, set some goals, tried to fit within someone else’s view of how this blog should be and, quite frankly, I then walked away. I was trying to be someone I’m not.
I’m a wanderer at heart. I always will be. For this blog it means that, over the years, I’ve wandered from topic to topic and from focus to focus. I tried to change it and I lost my passion in it.
In life, wandering means I love to wander from place to place with a few constants in my life — my job, my friends and my home.
Do I have goals for this blog coming up? Maybeeee. Am I going to reveal them right now? Nope.
For now, please enjoy a photo of my 10-month-old Chinese Crested pups, Sir Punk Nugget and Cleopatra (short for Cleo).
Anyone who has followed me through the years knows I like to wander. It’s what I do. It’s the core of my existence. So, what does this have to do with this blog + site? EVERYTHING!
I was going to delete this site and focus solely on photography (I even built a new site). However, after gaining some clarity while on vacation this past week I realized I have something good going right here. On this site and photography, travel, and writing endeavors can all be accomplished right here on The Wandering Pigeon.
To anyone who still follows this, thank you. And stay tuned for a facelift and slight re-branding.
At the end of a farmer’s property, a gravel road narrows and gives way to a low-water bridge I have named “The Gratitude Bridge.” Each morning I drive on the gravel road part of the way to work just so I can cross this bridge.
Several months ago I bought a Jeep Wrangler, which allowed me to travel the gravel road each day. (That’s how I got started driving across this bridge.) Each morning I’d stop on the bridge when it still had water under it to look for wildlife. Some mornings I’d see heron, other mornings it was a snake or a feral cat and if I was really lucky a deer or raccoon was still out. This became my momentary pause before having to jump into my day. Somewhere along the way, I decided to stop and also thank the universe for another day on this beautiful Earth. Each day I’d look for the wildlife, roll my windows down, and give thanks.
Slowly, as we’re in the middle of a drought, the wildlife disappeared, even the feral cats are elsewhere and the herons are long gone. But I still stop there each day, look to my left and right and leave my gratitude at the bridge for safe-keeping until the next day. Recently I began calling it The Gratitude Bridge. It might not look like much, but to me it’s where I leave my daily love note to the universe for giving me another day.
Gratitude is so vital in this world we live in from taking time to thank the universe for another day to thanking everyone around you for their role in this beautiful world.
This week I was on a business trip in Orlando, Florida, and each night before I went to bed I set aside time to write a note to the housekeeper of the hotel and included a cash tip. Each morning I’d put it on the pillow with one of my gratitude cards.
Two days in a row I ended up in my room when the housekeeper was there turning the room. The first housekeeper said over and over to me “God Bless You” and the second also thanked us. Gratitude meets gratitude.
So, why tip housekeepers? First, many are barely making minimum wage. Second, your nice clean room doesn’t happen by itself. Below I’ll offer a few tips on tips for housekeepers.
Leave the tip on a pillow with a note so they’re sure the money is for them.
Amounts vary, but I left $5/day per person.
Leave a tip EACH day, not at the end of the trip. When we were there we had a different housekeeper each day.
Peace and gratitude, friends. Thank someone today!
This weekend I’m covering commencement for Emporia State University. It’s such a monumental milestone for each graduate, their families, and friends. As the room erupts in cheers and screams as the graduates file on and off the stage, it’s hard not to feel the immense joy that surrounds the graduates. As I work on my second masters degree, I am reminded just how far each and every one of the students have to travel on their educational journey. It’s hard work and a lot of sacrifices and that work should be celebrated!
If you know a graduate, take the time to congratulate them today — they put in a lot of work to earn that degree. Also, take the time to congratulate those around them — parents, significant others, and children. They made a lot of sacrifices too through supporting their loved one or through sacrificing time with their loved one so they could study.
And, if you don’t know any graduates, celebrate one another today. Thank someone around you or simply thank the universe for this beautiful life.
Gasp!! I haven’t posted since DECEMBER! Ouch! My poodle to the left says that’s not good!
A quick update: it’s been a busy semester! In addition to my full-time job, I had Advanced Poetry and Advanced Fiction this semester — stellar courses from incredible professors. I’m so grateful for the massive amount of learning that took place and for the work I was able to produce during my time in their courses.
On a sad note, we said goodbye to our sweet PJ in January. He was nearly 13 years old and within a week of receiving a kidney failure diagnosis it was time to say goodbye. Losing a pet is so difficult. My other two pets, Chewie and Mayiah, also have health issues. It’s incredibly difficult to say goodbye. I’m so grateful I was able to be their pet mom.
In other news, I’ve spent a lot of this last year prioritizing my life and focusing on what’s really important (and grad school takes up most of my free time). I’ve eliminated a lot from my crazy life, and that’s included toxic people too.
I hope to start blogging more regularly. Though I doubt that many people actually read this. To those who do read this, I wish you happiness, joy, and gratitude.
You know the feeling you get when you KNOW you’re in the right place with the right people? And in the right time? That warm, fuzzy feeling that creeps up and feels your chest with warmth? Yes, that one!
It dawned on me recently when I was chatting with a co-worker and I felt myself filling with joy — I’m in the right place at the right moment with the right people. I’ve had many moments like that lately where I just KNOW that all is where it should be and I’m on the right path in life and it feels pretty damn good. It’s an important feeling for me as I’ve worked hard to get to this place in life. I’ve worked hard to find the right place to work and surround myself with the right people. When you are soul-searching for what’s right for you, sometimes you have to make some tough choices about your career and people in your life. I’m glad I’ve made those tough (and sometimes painful) choices. Because I’m right where I want to be and right where I should be at this point in my life.
As we head into the holiday season, I wish all of you peace, joy and that warm fuzzy feeling.
Four years ago tomorrow, a fire took my father, Charlie Adams from us. Four years ago, my heart was broken in ways I could never imagine possible. There’s been a lot of living since then — a lot of ups and downs. I wish he was here so I could tell him all about them. Today I wanted to stop and honor him, to reflect on him and his massive impact on my life.
In honor of him — I’d like to share the eulogy that I wrote and read during his funeral. Thank you for reading.
I had the privilege of calling this man we are honoring today, Dad.
He was the dad he didn’t have to be to us. I rarely refer to him as my stepdad — because he never once put the word “step” in front of my brother and I’s name. We were always introduced as his children. Never once did I ever feel like a stepchild.
Dad was a simple man — he loved and he loved deeply. He loved my mom with every fiber of his being. She was his world. He loved his dog, Twister — who we lost in the fire as well. We also lost their cat, Jersey in the fire. They are all somewhere — together.
Looking back I have so may wonderful memories of Dad. He helped me work on my Pontiac Sunbird — he wanted to make sure the speedometer was correct. So he drove beside me in his car on Kellogg and he help up one finger for 40 mph and two for 60. There we drove — on a FREEWAY in tandem. That’s the kind of man he was.
Then there was the time I scored two tickets to the monster truck show. We spent the evening cheering on our favorite monster trucks. He loved hanging out with us kids — no matter what it was were were doing. Again, that’s just the kind of man he was.
Looking back at family pictures, dad was frequently in them. My college graduations. Holidays. Birthdays. Life won’t ever be the same without him.
Dad knew no stranger. He would spend hours talking to people and telling stories of his life. He truly loved everyone and could bring a smile to anyone’s face. He was funny. Witty. Dedicated. And loyal. A truly amazing person.
I will miss his humor. I will miss HIM — the world lost a kind, amazing person. His life had a profound effect on mine — and on many others I’m certain.
May he rest in peace and run with his beloved dogs Twister and Flower. I’m certain he’s looking down while idly chatting someone’s ear off — telling them stories of his past and his family.
He wouldn’t want us to be sad. Or mourn him. But how can we not?
He will be missed deeply and dearly.