Waiting for the Jolly Old Elf

Photo by Angela Kirk

It’s Christmas Eve and the house is so still

as I glance out the snow kissed window sill.

It’s that special night, I wait for all year,

for my friend in the red suit to appear.

Doc is sleeping and snug in her bed

when I hear the faint sound of sleigh bells overhead.

In a matter of seconds I look up to see

Santa Clause staring at me.

He pats me gently on top of my head,

then looks at me very seriously and says,

“Grover what are you doing up all alone?

Does Doc know you’re downstairs all on your own?”

” Yes Santa, Doc knows I’m not asleep,

she said I could wait up to see you if I didn’t make a peep.

As Santa begins to place the presents under the tree,

he looks over and motions to me.

” Grover, come and tell me what you’ve been doing all year,

are you still helping people and bringing them cheer?”

” Oh yes Santa, I try to do my very best each day,

to help people’s hurt and pain go away.

But sometimes I wonder if I’m doing enough,

the people I help, their lives are so tough.”

Then Santa paused and quietly said,

” Grover the love that you give is unconditionally true

and that healing power comes from deep inside of you.

Never doubt your ability to heal

the pain and suffering that your patients feel .

A gentle lick on the hand or your head in their lap,

can bring them the happiness and comfort they lack.”

And as Santa placed the last present under our tree,

once again he looked up at me.

” How would you like to take a ride in my sleigh?

We’ll leave a note for Doc so she knows you’re away.”

And before I could finish nodding my head,

I was in Santa’s sleigh flying overhead.

We went down chimney’s and dropped off toys,

to all the good little girls and boys.

Soon I was tired so Santa took me home to bed,

after he tucked me in next to Doc he stood there and said;

“It’s time for me and the reindeer to take flight,

as there are many more children to see tonight.

But I promise you I will be back next year

to visit and check on you Grover my dear.”

Then he was gone as fast as he came,

up on the roof calling the reindeer by name.

But Santa exclaimed as he drove out of sight,

“Merry Christmas Grover and Doc and to you a good night!”






















 “Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love.”

— Hamilton Wright Mabie

“It’s a Wonderful Life!”

Every Christmas Doc and I look forward to watching “It’s A Wonder Life” on TV. It just doesn’t feel like Christmas until we watch it. This Christmas the movie is 72 years old and now more than ever, both Doc and I respond to the hopeful message that the movie represents. If you haven’t ever seen the movie, I highly recommend that you watch it this Christmas.

George Bailey, the main character is really a lot like all of us. He is going through some terrible problems and is feeling hopeless. We all have those times in life when things feel overwhelming and we just can’t see how it will get any better.  Doc says the worst thing any of us can do at a time like that is to isolate and not let others know what we are feeling. There is power is telling our story and feeling listened to. We also find out that we are not alone in our trials and tribulations. Often we find that those around us have been through the same things and survived. This can give us hope to move forward.

Watching this movie I am reminded how valuable each of us are when I hear Clarence the Angel tell George Baily; ” Strange isn’t is? Each man’s life touches so many others lives. When he isn’t around he leaves an awful hole, doesn’t he.” Doc has told me the impact certain people have had in her life, especially those that believed in her when she was doubting herself. It’s important to remember that a kind word or lending support to someone feeling down can go a long way.

So this holiday, Doc and I wish you joy and a reminder that our greatest gift in life is each other.

Photo by Angela Kirk ” The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.”

— Mark Twain

Never Assume That You Know the Truth

Photo by Angela Kirk

If you are like me, then you sometimes ask yourself why it’s so hard for everyone to get along with each other. We are often irritated by the most innocuous events but being a therapy dog I know it goes deeper than that. For example, let me tell you a story that I heard the other night that will show you just what I mean.

Last weekend, Doc and I were invited to a lovely party in a lovely home. It was a rather large soiree and although Doc knew the family for many years, we were not acquainted with most of the guests. No problem. Doc and I are comfortable meeting and talking to almost anyone. After speaking to the family and mingling with many of the guests by engaging in what humans call “small talk”, Doc and I decided to head out to the enclosed back porch for a while.

The patio was set up with tables and Doc and I decided to take a seat near the small band that was playing . It wasn’t long before a woman came over and introduced herself, erroneously thinking that we were by ourselves.  We tried to tell her that we came out to listen to the music but she insisted on sitting down so we wouldn’t be alone. Without missing a beat she began telling us about all the neighbors that had come and gone in the two decades she had lived on the street. Much to our surprise this included how many divorces per household, plastic surgeries that the “second and third spouses had” and a host of other assorted tales.

If that didn’t get our attention she then related a tale that was almost too wild to believe. Apparently there are rules that one must follow when living in the neighborhood and one of the new neighbors had broken one. They had committed the unforgivable sin of placing inflatable Snoopy Christmas decorations on the front lawn and then let them deflate and lay flat most of the time. “How tacky can you get?’ she remarked.  I immediately thought to myself ” What kind of sick neighborhood is anti-Snoopy?”

She related that this went on through out the entire holiday season and just when she was about to go over and discuss this with them something happened. One morning she let her dog out and heard him bark and howl in a way that made her run out to see what was going on. As she looked across the street there was a six point buck gouging Snoopy with his impressive rack until it was knocked down flat. “All this time it had been the buck she said, it just goes to show you that you never really know.” “Well imagine that!”  Doc remarked. Done with her story the woman flagged down someone she knew and bid us adieu.

” What do you suppose that was all about? ” I asked Doc.  “Well, she replied slowly, that was a perfect example of how it is easy to fall into the trap of assuming that we know about others, sadly humans often think the worst about a situation.”

I thought about what Doc said and was thankful to be a dog. Humans make their lives so complicated sometimes.



Photo by Angela Kirk ” Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates: Is it true? Is it necessary? Is it kind?”

— Socrates