Summer Memories, Feeling Overwhelmed, and Allowing For Breaks

Kids Water Safety Tips
Summertime Family Story Night
Happy Father's Day!
Coloring Outside the Lines // Family Boho Shoes

I was emptying the camera roll on my phone the other day (please tell me I’m not the only one who gets that “storage full” pop-up daily and is constantly having to delete photos because they take and save an excessive amount of them), and got lost in photos from last summer. I know, I know, I just posted about spring flowers last week and here I am again, unable to embrace the present. My kids have taught me how to appreciate a good snow day, they really have, and I will say that my distain for winter has lessened over the years, but I’m not going to pretend I’m not looking forward to warmer weather and longer days somethin’ fierce. Plus looking at these photos makes me happy. So I thought I’d share them here, because maybe they’ll make you happy too.

We were supposed to leave this morning for a last minute trip to northern California to visit a dear friend of mine who has been having a challenging time. I felt so lucky that we were able to make this happen during a small break in Robbie’s intense tour schedule with the band so we could all four go. But I let myself get so stressed about finding a way to get out there, and then got even more overwhelmed once we got the flights, trying to squeeze in work for Bubby and Bean in the few days last week that Robbie was home and able to care for the kids, followed by close to break down status when Emmett got another severe ear infection after Robbie left again that involved things like projectile vomiting antibiotics. And then, after taking Emmett for a follow up just to make sure he was better, the doctor informed us that his ear infection has gotten worse and he absolutely could not fly. So we had to cancel the trip (second trip canceled due to a sick child in three months) yesterday. I genuinely felt like I was going to explode with stress and sadness. So much had built up and I was already so overwhelmed, and that just pushed me over the edge.

Then, I suddenly had this moment where I remembered the hell my friend is going through battling a terminal illness, and the hell the parents of the kids in Parkland, Florida are going through after last week’s shooting – and how ridiculous it was that I was putting so much pressure on myself over stuff that doesn’t even matter. I rebooked the trip for early April. I went to bed early. And I gave myself permission to take a little time off work, to focus on my family and myself. This isn’t easy for me to do mentally (I am not wired to take breaks) or logistically (we have a new mortgage and rely on both incomes, and I can’t justify taking time off work when I’m not out of town), but I need to do it.

The reason I’m sharing this here is that I know most of you probably go through these periods too, when life’s small struggles build up until you feel overpowered. And maybe you’re not in a situation like I am where you’d already planned to leave for a trip and took time off work and therefore have the luxury of taking a few days for your family or self care. But if you are, do it. And if you’re not, find a way to allow yourself a break in a different way. A therapist friend of mine recently said something to me along the lines of, “I understand you feel guilty when you’re not working or taking care of others. And if it’s too difficult for you to justify the fact that you deserve it just for you, that’s okay. But know that the only way to be your best as a parent and a partner and a business owner is to give yourself a break. You can’t take care of everyone else if you’re not well.” This may seem like common sense, but I needed the reminder.

So Bubby and Bean will be silent for a few days. And I hope that inspires you to do something for yourself as well. I’ll be back on the 28th (the 28th of February! That means March is almost here! Woohoo!), hopefully feeling a little less buried. I would also love to hear what you do to take breaks and take care of yourself – self care is something I crush sometimes and absolutely suck at other times. Right now I fee like I could definitely use a refresher course.

Thank you for listening, and for allowing these occasional personal ramblings in between the design and lifestyle posts. You guys are the best.


Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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thank you for stepping up for these dogs and givin…

thank you for stepping up for these dogs and giving them a chance. regardless of bad breeding or whatever, you are giving them a chance and once again standing up for the underdog

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What You Should Know About the Recent Pet Food Recalls

Dave Carter, Director of Sourcing and Ingredient Stewardship for Halo, Purely for Pets

If you watch the news, you are likely concerned by the recent reports regarding the withdrawal of certain pet food products from store shelves because of food safety concerns.

First, please be aware that no Halo products are involved in any of these recalls. Additionally, I want to take this opportunity to let you know of the steps that we, at Halo, take to provide you with peace of mind regarding the quality of the meat, poultry and other ingredients that we put into each of our products that you feed your companion animal

We start with only real, whole meat and poultry. That means that we are sourcing only whole muscle meat and highly nutritious livers that were processed and prepared to be human food. Unlike most kibble pet foods, we never use any “meat meals” (like chicken meal, lamb meal, fish meal, etc.), which are rendered ingredients that are not human edible. These whole, real proteins are the foundation of our promise that Whole Meat Makes a Whole Lot of Difference™.

This difference in sourcing, using and labeling specific ingredients is very important. Many pet food ingredient labels also contain ingredients such as “animal fat,” or “meat byproducts”…terms that you will never see on a Halo product label. “Animal Fat,” is a vague term, which means that the fat could come from any variety of animals, including those that were considered inedible as human food. By contrast, you’ll see that our ingredient panel will list a specifically sourced ingredient such as “chicken fat” because that’s exactly what it is…fat from chickens…that were originally prepared and handled in facilities designed to deliver human food.

And, “meat byproduct”? That’s another vague term that represents ingredients sourced from unnamed species. Look again at a Halo ingredient panel. You will never see the word “byproduct” on any Halo ingredient list.

I hope this information is helpful to you. We want you to know that we take our responsibility to provide your loved ones with the most nutritious, digestible, high-quality ingredients on the market today.

Dave Carter
Director of Sourcing and Ingredient Stewardship

About Dave CarterDave Carter - executive director of the National Bison Association
Dave Carter studied journalism at University of Northern Colorado but found his true calling working with farmers and ranchers at the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union for 25 years. He’s now the executive director of the National Bison Association. Dave served as Chair of the USDA National Organic Standards Board during the implementation of the national organic regulations. Follow Dave at @bisondave.

Halo Pets

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Hi Jim, I am reading your book, The Found Dogs. I …

Hi Jim,
I am reading your book, The Found Dogs. I love the book. As I was reading about each dog, I saw that several have crossed the Rainbow Bridge, it's sad, but it is happy that they were loved and got the chance to know real love. But I was wondering just how many of them are still living today besides Uba. I was so thrilled when Dogs Deserve Better got the Vick property and turned it into a Haven for chained and abused dogs. I personally know the TN representative of DDb and was happy when a TN dog was the first to move in at the headquarters. It's now a happy loving place for dogs. Barbara

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Ivy’s picked up a new activity


She’s figured out that swimming is awesome.

Natural History

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Los Angeles Dodgers to Host Pups at the Park

The calendar may show that we are still in the midst of the freezing season, but the thought that the boys of summer will soon step up to the plate both literally and figuratively to help dogs and…

[[ This is a summary only. Click the title for the full post, photos, videos, giveaways, and more! ]]


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Dog Fancy Magazine Features Kevin Behan, Neil Sattin and Natural Dog Training

I always look forward to opening up the mailbox. Sure, email is great – but there’s something magical and mysterious about having physical, tangible items delivered to you from somewhere beyond. The other day was no exception, as I happened to receive the latest issue of Dog Fancy magazine (November 2011). And in the “Natural Dog” section is a feature on Natural Dog Training, including interviews with me and Kevin Behan, along with a couple people who have had some very positive experiences with NDT. (Cliff Abrams and Sang Koh).

The article is entitled “Push Away Stress” – and I think it does a great job of zeroing in on one of the central principles in how we interact with our dogs – that the key to establishing a rock-solid connection with your dog is to recognize that life for your dog, especially in a human world, creates stress. Your mission (should you choose to accept it) is to give your dog ways to relax that tap into their innate mechanisms for releasing stress. By doing so, you are teaching your dog that no matter how the world makes them feel, you are uniquely capable of helping them get through it.

Neil Sattin Heeling With His Dog Nola

This might all sound a little mumbo-jumbo-y, but I’ve seen it now time and time again, how tapping into your dog’s primal circuitry changes things for the better. My DVD set (and this website, and Kevin’s books, and Lee Charles Kelley’s articles, and…) gives plenty of examples of how once you’re plugged in with your dog you can turn that relationship into enthusiastic “obedience.”

Note that the reason that I put the word “obedience” in quotes is because the concept becomes almost moot. Your dog doesn’t “obey” you – because there’s no need. What happens is that you learn how to communicate with your dog in a language that they understand. So your dog listens, and responds.

Not because they are suddenly blindly obeying you, or because you’ve become the “authority” in their lives – but because they care what you have to say. It makes sense to them. Even more, it FEELS good to act in harmony with your desires. Because now you both want the same thing.

Neil Sattin and His Dog Nola Sit-Stay

If reading the Dog Fancy article is your introduction to Natural Dog Training, welcome! I’m sure you’re intrigued to know what “pushing” is all about – as the technique was essentially the focus of the article, without any detailed instruction on how to actually do it! As you might expect, I do explain thoroughly how to do it on my DVDs – but I also provide written instruction here on my website on How to Push with Your Dog (and the follow-up – Why to Push with Your Dog).

Thank you to Dog Fancy magazine (and writer Susan Chaney) for an open-minded article about what we do. And thanks, once again, to all of you. It’s your attention, questions, and feedback (yes, keep sending emails with your stories of your success!) that help remind me why I’m doing this in the first place.

Dog Fancy Magazine Features Kevin Behan, Neil Sattin and Natural Dog Training is a post from: Natural Dog Blog – Training and More

Want your dog to come when called, no matter what?

Want to strengthen then connection between you and your dog?

Check out Neil Sattin's Instructional Videos - step-by-step instruction that makes it easy and fun!

Natural Dog Blog – Training and More

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That was nothing short of excellent. Thank you.

That was nothing short of excellent. Thank you.

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23-dog patrol guards China’s Forbidden City

The Poodle (and Dog) Blog

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Valentine’s Day Bonus Meme

From Peppermint Pig Animal Rescue near Cincinnati. Until next time, Good day, and good dog! Dog Blog

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