The last ten days, since I wrote my first Ramblings post (which I finally had a chance to publish today), have been very full with puppy fun and care, holiday activities, visiting family, and frozen baseboard heating pipes. The puppy fun and care, holiday activities, and visiting family were all anticipated and greatly enjoyed. The frozen pipes not so much… Thankfully, with Stephen’s hard work and the strategic use of space heaters, hair dryer, and paint peeler, a stuck zone valve was replaced and the pipes eventually thawed (after two and a half chilly days).
By now Ramble has been here without his brother for eight days, and he is doing wonderfully. What a delightful puppy! I am happier with him and more in love with him every day. He is snuggly, playful, and very social. Whenever he meets new people, he approaches them with happily wagging tail and ears sweetly back, and tries to lick their chins. I’m not into being licked by dogs, but it’s hard to resist such sweet puppy kisses.
I’ve been thinking about New Year’s and what my goals are for 2018 and how Ramble (and Petra, Milo, and Acadia) might fit into them. Stephen and I have both been focusing on and practicing centering prayer in various ways in the past few months, and that’s something I want to continue in 2018. I’d like to grow in having a quiet spirit that underlies who I am and all I do, and I’d also like to be able to share the peace that gives me through practicing hospitality. Many people probably wouldn’t find getting a new puppy conducive to growing in quietness and in being centered, but I think having Ramble will help me with that, as my other pets do.
After almost losing Petra this past fall and feeling like I hadn’t been as connected with her as I would have liked, I realized that I had been fairly scattered for a while, both emotionally and in my use of my time, and I was determined to change that. My animals are obviously a very important part of my life, and if I let them, they help me slow down and live more fully in the moment, more richly in the present. And when I do that, I am much more aware of God’s presence with me and am also much more responsive to the people in my life.
So some of my goals and hopes for 2018 are that I would stay more rooted in the present as I train my puppy and enjoy my older dogs and sit with my cat on my lap. And I hope and pray that being more rooted in the present will help me be more sensitive to the ways God is working and to his fingerprints in the world around me, filling me with awe and with a desire to join him in whatever opportunities he brings my way.
Stay tuned for more Ramblings about life with Ramble…