On another awesome autumn adventure with Kylie we drove all over New England. We went to upstate New York, and all the way up to Bar Harbor in Maine, it was really beautiful. And along the way we stopped at Dog Mountain, Vermont.


It’s home of artist Stephen Huneck’s gallery, and a dog chapel where we got Kylie’s photo with this big dog sculpture. Everybody loves this snapshot

Of course Kylie always wore a costume on Halloween. She wasn’t really happy about it but she was usually willing to humor us or at least tolerate for at least a few pictures or sometimes for part of a party with minimal bribery.

The worst ever for Kylie.. the lobster. Have you ever seen a dog looking really pi$&ed off?!


..she was not amused.

The best ever, for everyone.. The Queen of Cool!


She left this get-up on for two parties without protest, it was weird. We decided that she must have decided this what what she was always meant to wear.. after all, she really is The Queen of Cool!



And don’t worry, Kylie may have thought we were playing tricks on her, but there were always treats too!

In Colorado our first  few inches of snow of the season usually comes around Halloween or shortly thereafter. It’s a day we always looked forward to, especially for Kylie.. Kylie loved the snow! The first snow usually looked something like this:

This year apparently the mild, rainy summer we had is going to lead into a long snowy winter because we’re already enduring our first significant snow storm today. (by significant we mean at least a foot of snow)

The season’s first snow was actually last week. Without Kylie it was the saddest snow ever..  🙁

The first fall we after we moved to the mainland was a colorful experience for all of us, and that October was the first time Kylie carved a pumpkin!

We took her to a nice farmer’s market in the garden state and we got some big pumpkins for carving and let Kylie pick out a little one for herself.  Then we gave it to her to do whatever she wanted. She would push it around, gnaw on the stem,  then bite it! She would spend a few minutes or a few hours over a few days or weeks chewing chunks out of the pumpkin and spitting them out. It made a big mess but it was fun for her, and she never ate it so obviously she was carving it!

So from the age of two she got her own little pumpkin to carve every year about this time.

It was a very important part of Halloween until just a few years ago when she apparently just outgrew the whole thing and showed no interest in her pumpkin. You know how teenagers are! But we kind of missed having her make a big orange mess all over the house.. now we really miss it.

Dear Kylie,

I can’t believe it’s been eight months since I’ve seen your pretty face, with your big, beautiful, bulgy eyes that glaze over when we would share a popcicle, and your big wet nose, and oh those ears. I miss you soooo much. I miss you intensely, overwhelmingly, I miss you every day. I miss you in the morning when I would hear your paws thundering down the hall and then you would pounce on me to demand breakfast. I miss you every night, when I would scoop you off the couch and carry you to bed. I miss you all day, when I drive around running errands and wish you were barking your head off in your booster seat at people in the other cars, making them laugh. You always made people laugh. I miss you in the evening when you would drive me crazy going outside and back in, and out and in, in and out, until you got a cookie or until I went out in the backyard with you to chase our shadows on the back fence. I miss your smile, your sense of humor, your attitude, your presence, even your stinky feet.

Kylie you were the best thing in our lives, you still are. You were my kid, my friend, my everything, and I don’t understand why the stupid sun still comes up everyday. I shouldn’t complain I suppose, because you love the sun. You love snow too, it was like somebody had given you a new toy everytime you went outside and found the ground covered. I loved playing in the snow with you. I don’t know what I’ll do when it snows without you.

I’m sorry that sometimes I was a mean mom who scolded you, or grounded you from your window seat, or took away your allowance when you disobeyed. But I always knew, even more so now, that you were such a good girl. Thank you for being so good.

Thank you for being so crazy! You made our lives exciting! We loved seeing the world through your eyes, you kept us young.

I know I didn’t often tell you how awesome you are – your aunt was always telling you, and as your mom I had to becareful you didn’t become too much of a show off! But I hope you know that I think you are the most awesome dog/person/soul/creature/everything on the planet and I adore you!

I hope you always knew how much you were loved and still are, and I hope you never really wanted for anything. We couldn’t afford to give you everything we wish we could have, but lets face it you got pretty spoiled! And yes, of course you deserved it. I know you wanted to go more places, and I wish there had been more time, more opportunities, though it never would have been enough.

People tell us that we will be with you again and I hope so much that they are right. There is nothing in the world that we want more. By the way, if you know something about that and could let us know, we would really appreciate it!

People also tell us that you wouldn’t want us to be sad all the time. We know that’s true but we also know you wouldn’t want us to do fun stuff without you, so really we don’t do the things anymore that you most liked to do. And whatever we do, we always think of you and in that way you are always still with us and always will be.

I hope you understand why Isabella lives here now. I know you wouldn’t want her here, but she really needed someone to take care of her, and I really needed someone to take care of. And you should know that she never messes with your stuff, and I think she’s taking good care of your backyard, trying to keep those cats and evil squirrels out. I know you know that I could never replace you and would never try, the house was just too lonely without you.

Kylie, I’m sorry we had to let you go, we never wanted to, ever. We always just wanted what was best for you. That’s why we tried so hard and sometimes made you do things you didn’t enjoy, like go swimming or have accupuncture. I hope you know that it was only because we loved you so much and wanted you to stay healthy and strong. So we would have done anything, if there was anything that anybody could do, but there was just no time, there was no choice. We couldn’t let you suffer just to keep you with us.

Please know, my beautiful, wonderful girl, that being your mom was the happiest part of my life and the greatest thing I’ve ever done. I will always love you, and I will always miss you.

your mom


In case you were wondering where Kylie encountered such a tall tortoise, we were at the very famous Colorado Gator Farm. Actually its not so much famous, as practically unheard of.

We were there because our friend and former neighbor,  Kelly, was visiting us from Jersey. (Kelly used to call Kylie her “little meatloaf”) She had requested that instead of the normal touristy stuff during her visit to Colorado, we do ABnormal touristy stuff – you know, roadside oddities and the like. Well that’s right up our alley so went to among other odd things along the roadside, The Colorado Gator Farm. It was quite a drive and quite a surprise when we got there to see a sign on the door that said “Dogs Allowed.” (And this was one of the few places we weren’t going to complain about not being able to take her.)

Kylie very much enjoyed the Gator Farm & Reptile Park..

Yes that’s a real (real big) alligator just on the other side of the fence, and Yes, she’s barking at him!!

We called her gator bait for the rest of the week!


I think Kylie thought this was the funniest looking dog she had ever seen! She just kept following and sniffing, and even lunged at him a couple times.

..or maybe she was just trying to help him. “Dude, you’ve got lettuce on your head.”

Just noticed that the picture featured on today was of Carhenge.


Guess who’s been there?!..


It was one of our spontaneous road trips. And while we had a good time, we wouldn’t necessarily recommend driving several hundreds of miles out of your way to see it! (And since it’s in Nebraska, it is pretty much out of the way no matter where you’re going.) Surprisingly it’s really not as exciting as you might think.

Luckily for Kylie, it was all about the journey – always!

One of our favorite things to do in the summer as a family was to go to the drive in movie. We would throw a futon mattress and a bunch of pillows and blankets in the back of the crv pack up a bunch of snacks and head out nearly every weekend.


Kylie loved it, though she was more interested in the stray cats that roamed the drive in, than whatever movie was on the screen, so for her it was alwaysscreen2 an action adventure! She would growl, in that low, threatening, jack russell terrorist growl when the cats (or sometimes kids) would come near. And if they kept coming she’d break into a bark and then get shushed, but it was so funny! Then she would remain vigil as long as she could until she got too sleepy.  Sometimes we’d explore during intermission (sometimes even during the film), and you can imagine how intriguing the smells were.

She also especially enjoyed the “movie snacks” because we also packed treats for her! And of course she also got to share the popcorn, or nachos, or whatever we got when we would visit the snack bar.

It didn’t matter to us what movies were playing  either, in fact we watched some pretty crappy movies. It was just the most fun form of affordable family entertainment, where we could all just be together.  It was about the experience! And like everything else we did together, it was always fun for us just to watch Kylie experience things.

And it often was quite an adventure, between cats, and bats (yes, bats), swarms of moths, smokers, and noisy teenagers, cold, hot, rain or shine – well not shine that really wouldn’t work – we always had fun, because we were together.

We miss you Kylie, and miss taking you to the drive in.


I think in this case.. a picture is worth a thousand words!