“You Are My Sunshine”

Today Dakota and I are  excited because we were  presented with  a fun and happy award from our friends over at Four-Legged Furballs. It’s the Sunshine Blogger Award, “which is meant to shed light on those fellow bloggers whose positivity and creativity you admire.” Thank you so much for nominating Dakota and I for the Sunshine Blogger Award! We have received this award before, but it was quite some time ago. We figured since there are new readers of our blog, it would be great to participate again, plus I am super grateful to have received this award! Thank you Four-Legged Furballs for including us!!

sunshin-blogger-award

There are some rules to follow with this award, and these rules are:

1. Thank the person who nominated you and add a link to their blog. (See above. But also, thank you again to the adorable Four-Legged Furballs family and their sweet Mama!)
2. Answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you.
3. Nominate 11 other bloggers, adding their links and asking them 11 new questions.
4. Notify the bloggers you have nominated.

Our friends over at Four-Legged Furballs came up with some great questions.

1. How many animals have you had in your lifetime thus far?

Eek. I haven’t had NEARLY the number of pets that others have had. Let’s see, when I was born, we had a Boxer named “Brandy” who lived with us til I was 7. She was the sweetest dog, but died quite young. She passed at age 7. From what my family had told me, she would “guard” my crib and get my parents if I was crying. I also had two turtles, some goldfish, a hamster, my first cat was my Angel Bobo, we shared our lives for 18 years. Then Cody, who I adopted 2 weeks after Bobo passed, then Dakota, my first dog as an adult, came that October.

dakota-gorgeous-side-view-for-wordless-wednesday-feb-25

2. Do you have a favorite blog topic, blog hop, or blogging day?

My favorite Blogging day is Wednesday when people participate in Wordless Wednesday. My favorite posts that day are the ones that ONLY use words in the title of the post. To me, those TRULY “wordless” posts beautifully convey the true meaning of the quote, “a picture is worth a thousand words.”
3. What is your favorite book?

This one is pretty much impossible to answer. I have read soooooo many books that I have adored. Many are classics, many are cat and/or dog related. It is impossible to just choose one.
4. If you had to change your first name, what new name would you choose?

That is a great question! I have never thought of that before. I actually like my first name and am happy that my parents spelled it in such a unique way. Being a child of the 50s, at that time “Caren” with a “C” was virtually unheard of. I think it helped make me the creative person that I am. I like to think that I march to my own drummer, I have never been a “follower”, and I don’t always do what is the expected thing to do or the “norm.”  I often wonder if I am that way because of my name.
5. Are you an early bird or a night owl? 

Both. I often stay up til 1 or 2 and get up at 6 am. It isn’t healthy to do that, but I do. I find that I am my most alert in the morning. One thing I am NOT is an afternoon person. I am usually pretty dead at 3pm, then I perk back up from 5pm on.
6. What is your favorite holiday?

Thanksgiving. I love the time of year, I love what it represents and OF COURSE I LOVE THE FOOD!!!! All of my favorite foods are present on Thanksgiving!
7. What is your dream job?

Another tough one. I used to have a dream of being an Olympic Swimmer (I was a lifeguard all through college, and was on a swim team when I was young.) At one time I wanted to teach Early Childhood Education, specifically kindergarten. Now, believe it or not, probably doing what I am now doing, blogging and working part-time in the world of Pets. Pet people, as we all know, are special people. I LOVE that I am able to work from home. I worked for approximately 26 years outside of the home, where EVERY morning I had to get up at 5:15am, I had intense deadlines to meet as well as steep sales quotas, working from home is something I never thought I would ever be blessed to do. If I am lucky enough to still be able to make ends meet at home, it is something I would do as long as I possibly can. One day, I would love to discipline myself to write a humorous children’s book involving cats and dogs. That would be fabulous.
8. How many siblings do you have?

one older sister and one younger brother, I suffer from “middle child syndrome.”
9. What is your favorite candy?

Almond Joy!!!
10. What is your absolute least favorite food?

LIVER!!!! Have to add another Bleu Cheese.
11. What do you call it: pop or soda? (Or something else altogether?)

Pop…of course (hehehe)

Next up is nominating 11 other bloggers.

To quote the Four-Legged Furballs Mom: “All of the blogs we read in this blogging community give us inspiration. We know so many bloggers deserving of this award, as all of you are so positive and creative in your own ways. That’s what makes this community so great!”  For that reason, and others, we always break the “rules” of these hops. I don’t want to list other bloggers because inevitably I would unintentionally leave someone out who is deserving and I don’t want to accidentally hurt anyone’s feelings. If I follow your blog, it is a pretty safe assumption that I enjoy your blog. So, if any of you are inclined to complete the challenge using the same questions above, (because I am lazy), feel free!

We are HONORED to be included on the “THE TOP 20 PET BLOGGERS OF 2016” List

Ok, now that I have picked myself up from the floor, I can say that while I am STUNNED, I am DEEPLY, DEEPLY HONORED to have been selected by:

CLICK TO SEE ALL OF THE BLOGS LISTED

CLICK TO SEE ALL OF THE BLOGS LISTED

(and Dakota is too),  to be in the company of the blogs that are on this list. They are a sampling of a large number of blogs that I hold in high esteem, ( there are MANY, MANY OTHERS that are not on this list but SHOULD BE).

Here is a sampling of the blogs that have made this list, (I am listing those that I know and already follow. I linked to their Facebook pages, but if you click here, you can visit the original blog post announcing the selections and click on each blog from there.)

Fidose of Reality

The Conscious Cat

MyGBGVLife

Golden Woofs

Tenacious Little Terrier

Carma Poodale

It’s Dog or Nothing

Rubicon Days

GoPetFriendly.com

SlimDoggy

My Dog Likes

Wag ‘N Woof Pets

AND US!!!

DAKOTA’S DEN

Dakotas Den

 

Here is what they wrote about us and we couldn’t be more HONORED AND PROUD!!!!!

“This enjoyable blog covers just about anything dog-related. From reviews of products and books to pet awareness days, Dakota and Caren will blog about it. There are giveaways and competitions too, so keep checking back for updates! Plus, you’ll find adorable videos of Dakota’s antics. Why not sit back, relax and visit Dakota’s Den with your dog?”

 

Dakota and I are full of gratitude to whomever selected us to be a part of this list. THANK YOU!!!!!!

The #WordPress Family Award

Yes, Dakota and I are actually blogging about an award that we recently received, and you are correct that we don’t normally blog about awards any longer. While we  have always been  deeply appreciative that anyone would take the time to think that Dakota’s blog is “award-worthy”, many of the awards were just coming around repetitively and it was becoming cumbersome to post about them. Then, Dakota’s blog received the:

wordpress-family-award1

and not only were we deeply touched when we  read what this award was actually FOR,  but this award is so unique, not to mention we hadn’t received this one yet, that we  felt compelled to blog about it.

Dakota and I received this award not just once

but TWICE!!

We were shocked!

The first blog we received it from was:

COMING HOME RESCUE

coming home rescue

Click on the photo to visit the Coming Home Rescue Blog

and to be completely candid, neither Dakota nor I had heard of this blog until we received this lovely award.

FROM COMING HOME RESCUE

Coming Home Rescue is an all volunteer, non-profit organization focused on helping homeless animals in shelters throughout New Jersey. 

 
It is estimated that approximately 38,000 animals were euthanized in the state of New Jersey last year alone.  Coming Home Rescue is dedicated to reducing that number by rescuing and rehoming as many dogs from these shelters as possible. 
 
We have saved over 500 dogs since starting in 2009.
After reading their “About” page, Dakota and I signed up to follow their blog. Anyone who has read Dakota’s blog for any length of time knows that while Dakota was purchased from a responsible breeder, animal rescue is a cause that we hold close to our hearts, and we feature blog posts that focus on  animal rescue many,  many  times throughout the year.
It touched us greatly that someone who we  didn’t even know read Dakota’s  blog,  felt moved  in some way by what we do, and were moved enough to present us with this award!  Dakota and I are deeply humbled and moved.
The second blog we received this special award from:
I "stole" this photo from her Facebook page. Hope she doesn't mind. To visit Peace Love & Whiskers on Facebook just click this photo!

I “stole” this photo from her Facebook page. Hope she doesn’t mind. To visit Peace Love & Whiskers on Facebook just click this photo!

This is a delightful blog that features some of the best animal and pet blogger interviews on the web! We are honored that we are going to be featured there (we think on Monday?)  If you haven’t visited this gem please click their name above and head on over!
What is the WordPress Family Award?
“This is an award to celebrate those other WordPress bloggers who inspire, help and encourage us – just like a family does.”
Dakota and I feel that to be viewed like “family” makes everything that we do worthwhile and this is truly one of the most wonderful awards that we have received thus far.
What are the requirements of this award?

1. Display the award logo on your blog  DONE!

2. Link back to the person who nominated you.  DONE!!

3. Nominate 10 others you see as having an impact on your WordPress experience and family

4. Let your 10 Family members know you have awarded them

5. That is it. Just please pick 10 people who have taken you as  a friend, and spread the love

Ok this part we  just can’t do. Many of the bloggers we  would like to give this award to have already received it, and as we always say, if we follow you, we consider you to be our “friend and our family” and we think the world of ALL OF YOU.

Thank you for touching our lives the way each and every one of you do.

Thanks for welcoming US into your world!

If you are reading this and are a WordPress blogger,

grab this award for yourself because, 

we love and think the world of ALL OF YOU!

Barks and licks and love, 

Dakota and “Mom”

I am HONORED!

There are a lot of contests out there that many of us enter that offer prizes such as money, pet supplies and blog “notoriety”, just to name a few. I recently entered a contest that for me, was probably the most emotionally rewarding of any contest that I have entered thus far.

 

My friend Ann Paws who is the author  of one of my favorite new blogs:

 

Click here to visit!

had a contest where we had to submit a photo of what our PETS are thankful for.

 

For me, this was a no-brainer. My “boyz” are MOST thankful for EACH OTHER. This photo was my entry:

 

 

 

Cody and Dakota have a most unique relationship. I couldn’t be more blessed, nor could THEY!

 

They are playmates, partners in crime and conspiracy, companions when my husband and I aren’t home,  they visibly worry when one of them is gone from our home even if it is just for an hour or two.  At night, by choice, they  sleep in close proximity of each other. My vet often tells me how he marvels at the intensity of their bond. Don’t tell them that cats and dogs aren’t supposed to get along. They exhibit care and concern for each other that many of us could learn from. All of this, and my method of “introducing” them  completely defied “conventional” blogging and textbook guidelines. I listened to my heart, which rarely steers me wrong.

 

There were 3 winners of this contest and my photo of Dakota and Cody was the GRAND PRIZE WINNER! I am honored and elated that my photo won the contest! What thrilled me the most was that the “judge” of this contest was Anns’  8 year old daughter, Lily:

 

Photo courtesy of:

http://mypawsitivelypets.blogspot.com/2012/11/thanksgiving-photo-contest-winner.html

 

 

What was special to me,  was this was TRULY a “fair and unbiased” judge who not only didn’t know any of the entrants, she just loves animals! There was no “hidden agenda” here! You know what they say, “out of the mouths of babes.” Lily said that my photo was  “adorable.”


You can’t fool a child. Children are often our harshest critics. They respond on an emotional level,  a child can sense dishonesty and those with less than stellar intentions a mile away. Ironically, our pets also have this ability. Want to know if a person is GENUINE? Introduce them to your children or your pets.

 

Being the winner of the “GRAND PRIZE” for this contest didn’t bring money, or pet toys or supplies or even a shiny statuette. The prize is THIS lovely badge that I am displaying with enormous pride:

 

 

 

this is PRIZE ENOUGH for me! I don’t have mad photography skills,  or the latest camera loaded with bells and whistles. What I DO have are a dog and a cat whose affection for each other lit up that photo and made my message clear.

 

My “prize” was my work touching the heart of a child. To me, that is the GREATEST gift of all, and in the spirit of Thanksgiving….I THANK YOU LILY from the bottom of my heart.

 

 

 

 

Thankful Thursday: Wonderful Team Member Readership Award

See the title of this post?

Confused? So was I!

I was awarded the:

by not one, but TWO of my favorite blogging buddies!

This award is a real honor because it is given to blogs that are found  to be enjoyable reading!

The first one to give me this award is a most BEAUTIFUL doggy named Misaki:

If you don’t know Misaki (and I bet that you DO!) Here is some info about her directly from her blog!

“I live in Essex (UK) with my human mummy and daddy. And I’m also a girl, incase you weren’t sure.

I enjoy eating (especially bonios), having my belly rubbed, chasing pigeons and playing with my humans. They both need the exercise.”

The second bloggers to give me this award are the beautiful Lexie and Mica from:

Tylers at 99’s Blog

I love viewing photos of their many hikes and viewing the lovely photos of nature that they feature. Here is some information about this great blog!

” Hi we are Lexie & Mica, two Newfoundlands that enjoy taking long walks through the woods. We have a beautiful creek in the woods and we enjoy swimming every chance we get. We live in Ohio, USA and want to share our walks with you.
Newfoundlands are Working Dogs. We are cart dogs, but more importantly we are water rescue dogs. This means we are people dogs and bond very strongly with our people and each other. We rarely allow our people out of our sight for long and some of us have been referred to as Velcro dogs because we never leave your side.
Newfs are very large strong dogs and therefore MUST be trained early. Once trained we are very obedient and gentle and make fantastic and fun pets :)

Of course this award comes with rules, and one of the rules for acceptance of this award  states that I must complete this phrase:

“A great reader is…”

In my humble Sheltie opinion, to me, “A great reader is someone with a love of the written word. Who finds themselves lost in the mind and heart of the writer. Who respects the power of words and the emotions that they evoke. It is someone who is curious, who has a good imagination and who believes that we not only learn from each other every day, but more importantly we should NEVER stop learning!”

Pretty deep thought for a Sheltie, eh? I have told you before we didn’t rate 6th on the intelligence scale for nothin’!

There is another rule that comes with this award and as  always, being an obedience school drop-out, I am  going to break it because it requires you to pass this on to FOURTEEN OTHER BLOGGERS! OMD!!

I  know that MANY of you have already received this AND as I always say, IF I FOLLOW YOU, I FIND YOU TO BE ENJOYABLE READING…so PLEASE grab this if you have not received it with love from ME to YOU!

Barks and licks and most appreciative love,

Dakota

“Devious?” Never! “Clever?” Of course! “Genius?” ABSOLUTELY!

Happy Friday all! Yep, I’m late! Almost wasn’t even going to be able to blog today with all that is going on at my house, but duty or is it DOODY? calls!

Today I am going to tell you about an award I was given by my buddy Toby over at

Click on the photo to visit Toby’s blog!

This award was a new one to me! Check it out!

The requirements that one must complete upon accepting this award, is to name and link to the doggy who gave it to you…DONE! 

You know what? I am not sure what the other requirements are, but to prove that I am worthy of this award, I am going to elaborate on a couple of things that Toby mentioned in his post that we seem to have in common. Once you read these you will know that I was a deserving recipient.

TOBY EATS DOG POOP. YES, you read that correctly. If you think you missed it, let me say this again, TOBY EATS DOG POOP. Ya know what? So do I! Does that make me “devious?” Nooo…it makes me a genius and proves that I am quite  clever! Why? All dog poop is, is the same food that I just ate right before I  pooped!! It’s just in a more palatable form! It’s packed with nutrients and comes with the added bonus of dirt, cat fur, dust bunnies and whatever else I  may have ingested while going about my  daily “business.”  With everyone being so concerned about the environment, consider it a form of recycling and get over it, ok?

TOBY DOESN’T DO WELL WITH COMMANDS.  Neither do I. Let me put it to you this way, do YOU like to be told what to do? What if you feel like running and someone tells you to SIT? What if you want to rest and someone tells you to COME?  What if you found a hundred-zillion dollars and someone told you to LEAVE IT!! You wouldn’t listen, would you? Well, my 2-legged friends I am  no different than you! I have the ability to think, and in some cases I can exercise sound REASONING skills as well! I will be the one to decide WHAT I will do and WHEN I will do it! Being a Shetland Sheepdog I am the 6th most intelligent dog of the top 20 breeds. Don’t believe me? See for yourself!

1 – border collie
2 – poodle
3 – German shepherd
4 – golden retriever
5 – doberman pinscher
6 – shetland sheepdog
7 – Labrador retriever
8 – papillon
9 – rottweiler
10 – Australian cattle dog
11 – Pembroke welsh corgi
12 – miniature schnauzer
13 – English springer spaniel
14 – Belgian terrine
15 – schipperke / Belgian sheepdog
16 – collie / keeshound
17 – German short haired pointer
18 – flat coated retriever / English cocker spaniel / standard schnauzer
19 – Brittany spaniel
20 – cocker spaniel

Source(s):

The Intelligence of Dogs by Stanley Coren

 

See? I don’t need YOU to make decisions for me. You want TRICKS….buy a SEAL!

I could go on and on with further examples of why I am worthy of this award but one thing that makes me even more clever and even more of a genius is that I know when to STOP. Well, unless I am on a barking binge but I digress…

Now I am supposed to award this to 7 other bloggers!  Ok…here we go, if you have already received this just pretend I never told you about the award, it will be our little secret.

It’s EASY!!!! click on the photo to visit his blog

 

Click on the photo to visit their blog!

 

Click on their photo to visit their blog!

 

 

That’s it. Yeah, I KNOW that that’s not SEVEN. Did you NOT read my post above? I DON’T DO WELL WITH COMMANDS and I am the SIXTH MOST INTELLIGENT. I told you, I MAKE the decisions.  I don’t care what some arbitrary award tells me to do, “it’s MY way or the HIGHWAY!!” Now, if you will excuse me, I think I will go and:

EAT SOME POOP!!

Barks and licks and love,

Dakota