Category Archives: Rommie

Happy Easter!


Happy Easter everyone!

I know Easter celebrations will be smaller and more intimate this year.

This verse was Rommie’s favorite as she lived it out every day. The moment she woke up she grabbed her tennis ball and was ready to go outside and play. This was taken when I caught her rolling around as she loved to do.

I love the NLT version because it contains the word WILL and not “shall” or “let us” as in other versions.

So get out there and roll around as you sing Jesus Christ is risen today, Alleluia! with all 4 paws in the air!

For this IS the day the Lord has made and…

He IS risen, indeed!

The Easter Bunny hopped on over to OgleOhio after leaving his eggs here.

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to inspire widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s currently using those skills as a virtual logistics contact center representative for a Fortune 100 company. She’s also managed call center teams, co-facilitated a grief support group, and helped small businesses with various writing assignments. Michele is a bookworm, and a lover of history, music, chocolate, red roses, and golden retrievers. She is also the amateur photographer behind the blog

Happy Halloween

Halloween was Rommie’s favorite holiday as a lot of little people came to see her – and some big kids too. She loved to pass our kisses and roll over for belly rubs. Every time that doorbell rang she knew what it meant.

Rommie the Court Jester

She even had her own 2-drawer dresser in which I kept her clothes. Whenever I reached in and pulled out her jester collar she came running when she heard the jingle, jangle of the bells.

It’s less painful now to pass out candy since her passing 4 years ago but I still miss those Halloween nights with my golden girl.

Stay safe and enjoy your Halloween.

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while managing call center teams, co-facilitating a grief support group, and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, and a lover of history, chocolate, red roses, and golden retrievers. She is also the amateur photographer behind the blog

“ll Meet You At The Door.” – My Last Farewell To Rommie

Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak

Whispers the oe’r fraught heart and bids it break. 

William Shakespeare

Rommie enjoying a late summer day.

Rommie enjoying a late summer day.

The Beginning Of The End

Rommie got sick (Think Linda Blair from The Exorcist) on 7/30 late at night. Her head did not spin but volume of liquid that came out of her mouth was unbelieveable.

By The Light Of The Silvery Moon

The dining room carpet took 3 direct hits around midnight. It was going to be hard to clean so I decided to rip it up but first it appeared a trip to the emergency vet was necessary. I let Rommie out and she took off across the deck and jumped into the yard and ran around like the Tazmanian Devil. I thought she was looking for a place to get sick, but she was looking for a place to lie down. She found it in the light of the full moon, smiling and filled with joy – as usual.

I thought

“Alright, she is done throwing up so we do not need to go to the emergency vet.”

The Last Farewell

While I ripped up the carpet, Rommie started barking at the woods behind the house. I tried to quiet her as the neighbors sleep with the windows open. She would not be quiet, so I let her be. In hindsight, she knew that was her last night on earth and she was saying her last farewell to the birds, deer, squirrels, groundhogs, and other critters residing in the woods. Rommie knew her ship lied “rigged and ready in the harbor” and later that day she would sail to heaven.

No Bedtime Treats

I let Rommie in and she acted her normal rambunctious self. She even danced around for a treat. I told her

“No. You have been puking so I am not going to give you a treat.”

Then we went to bed. She refused to come to the bedroom, so I went to the living room and slept on the couch till the 5am alarm rang.

Rommie was lightly snoozing on the living room rug. I decided to set a 6am alarm on my phone. After that alarm, I got ready for work and left my manager a voicemail stating Rommie was very sick but once I get her to the vet and they start an I.V. to rehydrate her, I would be in for 1/2 day.

About 30 minutes later Rommie got up and walked to her water dish for a drink, but her hips would not support her. She made it back the rug and laid down.

I knew something major was wrong.

I texted Joe’s brother that Rommie had a 10 a.m. appointment and it might be her last. He was driving his wife to her job and they both realized it was not me possibly losing Rommie but it would be losing Joe again.

When my friend A. arrived around 9:30, one of my neighbors came over and the 3 of us got Rommie in my car by using the couch cover as a sling, then A. followed me to the vet and stayed for a little while.

“Prognosis Is Grim”

The ladies at the vet’s office stretchered Rommie in and I explained to the assistant what happened during the night. The doctor opened the door, entered the room and was stunned when he saw Rommie lying there on the table. He knew she was usually a bundle of energy. He picked her up and with the help of the vet tech, tried to get Rommie to stand, but again her hips gave out. He put her front paws down on the floor but she immediately curled them under. It was at that point he felt she had a neurological issue as well as an intestinal issue. He said “Prognosis is grim.”

I then made phone calls to Mom and Joe’s brother to talk through the situation and my options.

The Decision

After talking to them, I made the decision. When I told Joe’s brother Rommie was moving in with Joe, Rommie started throwing up again. Joe’s brother said she was confirming I made the right decision.

My Last Farewell

I told her she was going to live with Daddy and I would see her in about 30 years. I told her I loved her, would miss her and was thankful we had so many years together. I kept petting her and she started throwing up again. Then after about 20 minutes together she had another “Linda Blair” episode. I opened the door and talked to one of the other vets and she got towels and opened the window as the stench was awful.

“Are You Ready?”

The vet taking care of Rommie came in and asked if I was ready and I said “Yes.” He administered an I.V.  mixture that relaxed her and then stopped her heart. I even watched him do it. All the while petting Rommie and telling her I would meet her at the door someday. (Meeting her at the door is a phrase I used when Rommie needed to come in through the back garage door. She would stand at the deck steps and I would tell her “I’ll meet you at the door.” She would then run to the back door.)

It was only a few moments before she peacefully moved to heaven. She was surrounded by people she knew and loved in a familiar environment.


After her passing, I stayed about 20 minutes still petting her. At one point I asked her

“How long do I stay with you?”

It was then a warm breeze blew across my neck. It reminded me it was a sunny day and I needed to go play. So I said one final “See you later.” and opened the door telling one of the vet’s assistants I was ready to leave. She assured me she would take good care of Rommie, but I already knew that.

Shock And Awe

Shock waves rippled through the vet’s office that Friday, as Rommie was in a month before for her checkup and was her normal rambunctious self. She even refused to eat a treat because “Ladies don’t eat in public.” (unless it is a grilled hotdog at the G.R.I.N. picnic).

No Regrets, Not Even A Few.

I was there for her in her greatest hour of need as she was for me when Joe passed. I made a painful decision, but it was in her best interest. I do not regret the decision and would not have missed it for the world because she heard my voice right up until the end. One of the other veterinarians wrote in the sympathy card that the greatest act of love I ever showed Rommie was letting her go. I agree.

If I have another dog, I hope I get the privilege of saying “I’ll meet you at the door.” to him or her as well, instead of them passing in the night or while I am at work.

My Life Now

There is joy in my heart most days but writing this post brought tears. However, writing is good therapy and tears are healing.

Now it is time to focus on finding a fantastic new job and who knows, maybe a fantastic boyfriend.               😉

I leave you with one of my favorite pictures, the closing used in most of my personal emails, a line from The Last Farewell that sums up my feelings and a quote from Betty White.


For you are beautiful and I have loved you dearly, more dearly than the spoken word can tell. 

The Last Farewell

Roger Whittaker 

Once someone has had the good fortune to share a true love affair with a golden retriever, one’s life and one’s outlook is never quite the same.

Betty White

AZ Quotes

Rommie & Michele Mutate Into Sewer Rats

Call me “Michaelangelo” and call Rommie “Splinter.”

“In The Beginning”

Monday 5/12 was a fairly typical day.  The only thing different about the morning was my hair appointment before work. The plan was to color my hair that night and paint my nails Tuesday night.

As usual, God had other plans.

“Gimme Shelter”

Once at work, the day progressed normally with a high volume of calls. Then a storm blew in and with it a lightning strike that messed up the phone system. The storm passed, as all storms due, and we continued to go about our business.

About 15 minutes before closing I was on a call and the gentleman asked about our weather. I told him it was pitch black and we were going to get another round of storms.  He was a few states west of me and they were getting storms too.

We figured out what he needed to purchase and as I was taking his credit card information, my supervisor walked through the call center shouting “Get to the tornado shelter now!”  I told my customer I need the remainder of his credit card information quickly, as I was being ordered to the tornado shelter.  He gave me the information, I hit the enter button and told him his order went through and disconnected the call. Luckily he signed up for automatic order confirmation and got a notice via email.

I made it to the shelter along with other staff members.  We were there about 15 minutes when the warning expired and we headed home.

Not “Singing In The Rain”

It was a steady rain when I left the building.  Everyone in heaven turned on their faucets once I pulled onto the 2 lane road. The down pour was so heavy I wished for a place to safely pull over. The shoulder was not wide enough so I drove home at a snail’s pace. The windshield wipers barely kept my windshield clear. I remember thinking I must get that stuff to put on windshields which helps visibility in rain and snow.

White Lines And Red Lights

I stopped at the first stop sign which is at a nasty intersection and was able to somehow make it through even though I could barely see if there was oncoming traffic.  It is a short drive home but that night it felt like hours.

The only way I could see the road, was by looking for the white line.  It brought to mind the famous line from the song “Lover” by the Michael Stanley Band (this song turned many a Northeast Ohio girl to mush back when it was released…and still does).

“Thank God for the man who put the white lines on the highway.”

The line is so famous the audience sings it when Michael performs it in concert.  The song takes place during an Ohio winter, but that line applied to this storms torrential downpour as well.

To update the song, I would also add:

“Thank God for the man who put the blinking red lights on the stop sign.”

For those red lights were the only way I knew I was at the intersections where I needed to turn.

“Go Greased Lightning”

Once on the street that intersects with mine, I still could barely see and was not sure if I was getting ready to turn onto my street or in someone’s yard. It was only because of a streak of lightening that confirmed I was turning onto my street, which was a river.

My driveway was not visible after I turned on my street. Thanks to a sheet of lightening, I was able to see it.  Then just as I turned onto the driveway, all hail broke loose.  Thankfully my car only suffered two little dings in the trunk lid.

“Are You Still Alive?”

I expected Rommie to fly out of the bedroom and about knock me over due to her mild case of thunder phobia.  However, she did not greet me at the door.  I hollered “Are you still alive?” and she came sauntering down the hallway.  Joe must have been keeping her company in the bedroom.

No sooner than I got home when another tornado warning was issued.

Down into the basement Rommie and I went.

The Fountain Minus The Three Coins

We were there about 15 minutes when I heard it…. gurgle, gurgle, gurgle.  I immediately knew where the noise was coming from and when I looked into the laundry room, I saw a fountain of rainwater coming up from the pipe that goes from the tub into the sewer system.

Truthfully, I would have been surprised if water had not come up.

Pipe from tub that washer empty's into & plastic tube from dishwasher.

Pipe from tub that washer empty’s into & plastic tube from dishwasher.

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post “Sewer Rats Part 2”

Stink, Stank, Skunk – An Early Rommie Backyard Safari Adventure

I was reading  “The Calm After the Storm” over at Belle Grove Plantation Bed and Breakfast’s blog by my blogging buddy Michelle.  She saw a skunk on the plantation and hopes no one tells her golden retriever Hurley about it. While reading her post I was reminded about Rommie’s first skunk encounter.  Yes, just like Lay’s Potato Chips, one just isn’t enough.

Rommie Gets A Face Full Of Shaving Cream – well sort of

I let Rommie out just before bed one night and she immediately took off underneath our deck.  All I heard was rustling, then she came out the other side and was lying in the grass with lots and lots of foam oozing out her mouth.  She looked like she was about to shave her face.   I panicked and picked her up, opened the sliding glass door and hollered

“Joe, something’s wrong with Rommie. She’s foaming at the mouth”  

At this time I did not smell anything. Joe opened her mouth and stuck his finger in to make sure there was no foreign object inside.  Once he opened her mouth there was this horrific stench (a hundred billion trillion times worse than skunk) that suddenly filled the air.  I took her to the bathroom and started bathing her while Joe grabbed the flashlight and went outside to carefully look around the yard.  After a few minutes, he came back in and said it was indeed a skunk.  He saw it walking down our small slope to the back fence.

Judging by the amount of foam, Joe figured she bit the skunk right on it’s rear end and took a direct hit in her mouth.

After Rommie went through a “lather, rinse and repeat” cycle, we toweled her dry and the three of us went to bed. Unaware the worst was yet to come.

It Gets Stinkier

The next morning was a bright, sunny day and Rommie jumped into bed with Joe and me.  She was her normal happy, smiley self, no more pouting.  Joe and I were petting her when all of a sudden it happened –

Rommie burped. 

Phew! does not begin to describe skunk burps.  They are worse than skunk smell wafting through the air and worse than what she smelled like before her bath. Skunk burps are very, very potent and pungent.

Joe and I flew out of bed.  We could not get away from her fast enough.  It was enough to make us gag.  Rommie just sat on the bed looking at us as we fled not understanding why we left her.

Time Heals All Wounds

Thank goodness she was not physically hurt by the skunk.  No trip to the vet for possible stitches (this time).  However, nothing but time took away Rommie’s skunk breath. It is the only time Joe and I found it unbearable to be around her.

The Second Time

Encounter #2 happened about two years ago.  Yes, it was once again late at night when she chased the skunk to the back fence and took a direct hit on her face.  She came flying in, sat down and started squinting her right eye and desperately smacking her lips together trying to get some foam out of her mouth.  Off I go to the only grocery store open late at night, which was 3 miles away, to get more peroxide, Dawn dish washing detergent, and baking soda. It was between 1 a.m. – 2 a.m. before we both got to bed.

The next day however, we were off to the vet as there were scratches around her eyes. Thankfully no damage to her eyes and the scratches did not require stitches.

Lesson Learned? 

Even with 2 encounters in seven years, I am sure Rommie has not learned her lesson.  She just wants to play with everybody, no matter their size, shape, or smell. Too bad us humans, are not that way.

Now I am off to see how much peroxide, baking soda and Dawn I have in my cupboard.  Might need to stock up – just in case.

Have a joyous day and may you never have to smell skunk burps.   😉

Good Tuesday Morning

I crawled into bed last night after finishing this post.   Then I grabbed my Kindle off the table beside my bed, turned on Eric Wyse’s “In The Garden – Inspirational Piano Hymns”, and snuggled under the covers.  As I was drifting off to sleep, a smell came wafting through my window…


Rommie, even smelled it as she wanted to go outside and find the black kitty with the white stripe down it’s back.  I told her no, just go to sleep my precious fur child.

Rommie & Michele’s Backyard Safari Adventure – “Doe A Deer”

Well, I do not know why Mom called this “Rommie & Michele’s Backyard Safari Adventure” as I was asleep in the foyer when this happened. Shame on Mom for not waking me so I could greet my guests.

Mom said she took most of these pictures through the sliding glass door as she was afraid opening it would scare them off.  She did manage to quietly slide it open and snap a few picture.

Mom and I are so blessed because not everyone has a scenic view like we do.  So I hope you enjoy Mom’s snapshots.

Love, Hugs and Sloppy Wet Kisses to all!



img_6984 - 5-7

2 deer in woods and lilac bush

Deer # 3 looking for the other two.

Deer # 3 looking for the other two.

All 3 looking at camera ( you can only see the eye of one deer by the tall green leaves.

All 3 looking at camera ( you can only see the eye of one deer by the tall green leaves.

Rommie & Michele’s Backyard Safari Adventure – A Perfect Fall Day – by Rommie

Woof, Woof, Woof,

It’s Rommie.  Mom is off finishing her article for a new local magazine debuting in January 2013.  Her article about dealing with grief will appear in the February 2013 edition.

So in the meantime, you are stuck with me!

Yesterday was in the upper 70’s if not warmer and that means one thing – Swimming Pool Time!!!!!!!!!!

In between writing, loads of laundry and cleaning the shower curtain with stinky stuff, Mom got my swimming pool out of the shed and cleaned it up.

I had fun chasing tennis balls around the yard and then going for a dip!  It was a perfect way to spend a fall day.  Here is a picture of me enjoying the day.

Hope everyone was also blessed with a gorgeous day.

See you later.  Mom will be back tomorrow, in fact she has already put the post to bed.

Love, Hugs and Sloppy Wet Kisses,


“Rommie’s Perfect Fall Day”

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