"The Art of Raising a Puppy" by The Monks of New Skete

Tuesday, March 19, 2019
I am loving The Art of Raising a Puppy by the New Skete Monks from Cambridge, New York.  The writing is impeccable, and the writers are so present with the text, disseminating important information on how to raise a puppy.  They two other popular books called Let Dogs Be Dogs: Understanding Canine Nature and Mastering the Art of Living with Your Dog and How To Be Your Dog's Best Friend.  I highly recommend any of these books if you are thinking about purchasing a dog!  Lives devoted to spirituality above all else, you can imagine that their monasteries are the perfect setting for dog training.  They see the relationship between humans and dogs as a spiritual one, which is why the age-old expression says "a dog is a man's best friend".

 Adam and I are taking very seriously our decision to purchase a whippet, and are spending much time reading and gathering knowledge so that we from the day we bring our puppy home, we are on a road to success.  We see this decision to buy a whippet as a lifestyle change, one in which we want to make.  We want to lead more active lives, and are looking forward to the companionship a dog has the capacity to bring.  In The Art of Raising a Puppy, the Monks of New Skete write, " . . . a living, autonomous yet highly social pack-oriented creature who has an amazing capacity for companionship and love.  Capacity is precisely that--a natural potential" (5).   I see that our whippet will have capacity, too, and I will value that.  I am also seeing the capacity within myself, to learn to be around dogs again without anxiety and fear.  This will be a journey, for all of us. 

March Book Club: "The Woman from Cabin 10" by Ruth Ware

Monday, March 18, 2019
It was my turn to host, and I must say, I was a little embarrassed by my book selection, as I would only rate this book 1/10 stars!  For what it's worth, here is my Goodreads review of it--would love if you follow me there!  Click on the Goodreads hyperlink above to be directed to my profile page. 

I disliked this book from beginning to end. I was forced to finish it, however, as it was embarrassingly enough my selection for book club this year, and I am hosting a discussion this evening.  More than likely, our discussion will center around everything we didn't like about it.  Overused descriptors (i.e. whippet thin), body shaming, annoying and highly unlikable main character from beginning to end, unbelievable intensity in reactions of main character, irritating ending, plot holes, and pretty much poor writing all around. Literally felt like it was written with hopes of a movie adaptation, which she will actually get.  Not sure how books like this make it to UK's Sunday Times and NY Times bestseller lists, but won't be the first time a bad book makes those lists.  There was nothing remotely enjoyable about this book, and it really bothers me that bad writing like this rises to the top somehow.

Our Baby Whippet Has Arrived!

Friday, March 08, 2019
In the wee hours of the morning, a little of baby whippets was born, all red and fawn brindle in color with six boys and one girl. 

We aren't sure which one we will end up with, but I will be sure to keep you up to date in the coming weeks as we receive new pictures.  We are very excited!

Adam in the Kitchen: Lasagna

Wednesday, March 06, 2019
Wednesdays are our busiest weekday due to the girls both having after-school lessons on different ends of town.  It's a great night to either eat out or cook something easy.  Adam cooked up a double batch of lasagna tonight, so we'll have one to pop in the oven in the future.  It was very good! 

Visiting My Grandma Gilliam

Monday, March 04, 2019
My 94-year old Grandma doesn’t know us anymore, but she held our hands and showed us around the place. Started stacking dishes in the dining hall after dinner. She used to own a deli, and old habits stick around. She still has the same laugh. Still gets around pretty good, even after living with Alzheimer's Disease for more than twenty years.

My Dad visited her weekly until he got too sick. Alzheimer’s spared her from the pain of losing a son and a daughter within a year (my Aunt Myrna and my Dad). So thankful for the staff that love and care for her every day. I know how hard that job is. Thank you for taking such good care of my Grandma.

An Inspired Life

Saturday, March 02, 2019
A friend popped by my unit for a visit, dropping off a pretty box of pop-open cards, each with a different inspirational message, which made my day.  The first reads “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thank you for the sweet gesture and visit today, Meredith!  x o, Karli

In My Garden You Will Find: Tall Oregon Grape

Friday, March 01, 2019
Was it just yesterday our backyard was covered in a blanket of snow?  In a matter of a day, it feels like Spring again, and it looks like my baby Tall Oregon Grape that I planted just last year is going to bloom for the first time.  This Oregon native is an early spring bloomer, producing bright, long-lasting, orb-shaped yellow flowers that are beautiful and stunning--in fact, it is our Oregon state flower!  These flowers give way to little dark berries that are sweet when cooked, and can be made into jams.  The birds love the berries, too, so you will attract native birds to your backyard by providing both a food source and dense habitat for them. 

Oregon grape is also an evergreen, so it will beautify your garden year round.  It is an excellent choice for establishing a backyard habitat here in the Willamette Valley!  Check out this blog post by Eileen Stark of Real Gardens Grow Natives for more information on other best selections for early flowering natives, most of which we have incorporated into our baby garden, which is going into its first Spring this year! 
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