Over the weekend, I started to work on organizing boxes and bags of photos. They've been in storage in my basement for a while, having been collected from my mom's house and then later on, my aunt's.
It really is fun to sort through old pictures. The images trigger so many memories. My daughter laughed when she discovered that I could "name that pet" from every photo over the years. Missy, Boots, Peggy, Rags, Freckles, Blackie, Spottie, Chloe, Kishka, Schatzi, Ebony. They were all so special.
Looking at those sweet furry faces made the warmest feelings flood through me. The connection to each one of them seemed so vivid I could almost feel soft fur under my fingers...a gentle nudge against my arm...the wag of a familiar tail. No, I couldn't forget their names no matter how long ago they left this earth for the Rainbow Bridge.
I found a photo that marked the beginning of my canine love affair. I'm cradling my very first puppy. She was a black cocker spaniel, sweet as could be and I couldn't have been happier. It's hard to realize that this delicious moment occurred well over 50 years ago. Oh, and by the way...her name was Missy.
Could loving animals be a part of our genetic makeup, like blonde hair or blue eyes? If my family is any indication, I'd say we definitely have a critter-loving gene. Here's my grandmother, circa 1925, holding a chubby beagle pup.
From childhood, through adolescence, young adulthood, middle age, and beyond, I didn't really need the pictures to remind me that dogs have always been a big part of my life. And like any other family member or good friend, my dogs have helped to make each moment so much sweeter.