Mother’s Day 2017 Thoughts

Mother’s Day. It’s a special day honoring the women whose love and influence has shaped us into who we are today. This is my mother, the strongest woman I know. She is a business owner (shameless plug here), lover of the outdoors, and has taught me the importance of loving animals. She has always been the perfect balance of friend and mother, and if I can someday be half the mother she is, I’ll consider myself a good parent. I’m so grateful to have had her support over the years, including my MSW graduation THREE years ago today.

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Bottom line: Treasure the time you have with your mother, because only when you move away will you realize how much having her close by was so wonderful.

Mother’s Day can also be a very rough time for those who have either lost their mothers or desire to be one and it hasn’t happened yet. It is easy to feel alone when you’re scrolling Facebook and see everyone’s Mother’s Day posts. You know what?

You’re not alone.

There is someone else out struggling just like you are.

More often than not, someone has endured a hardship and kept silent about it.

Lastly, stop scrolling.

On this particular Mother’s Day, I was fortunate to be surrounded by my husband; my church family; lunch with neighbors who took us under their wing and act as surrogate parents; and my fur babies, all five of them.

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This dog has the good life.

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So content in her special spot.

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So many personalities in these felines.

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Until the time comes for me to be a mother, I will savor every moment of my fur baby motherhood and always cherish those who have made a difference in my life: My own mother, my grandmothers I lost too soon, and my mother-in-law. Thank you for all that you are to me. I love you.

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Shelter Spotlight

5.14.17-ADOPTED!

Meet Elsa!! My husband and I met this pretty little lady while walking dogs at our local humane society today. I love walking dogs and interacting with them just as much as my husband does, but I love being behind the camera and trying to capture their personalities too. This darling Boxer was a gem to walk and clearly not afraid of a few photos 😉 I mean, seriously. Who could resist that grin?!

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If you are interested in learning more about Elsa or any of her available sheltermates, please contact the Greenbrier Humane Society at 304-645-4775. We are located in Lewisburg, WV.

A Shelter’s Wish List

Those who know me know my love of animals. More importantly, my love and desire to rescue animals. There are way too many unwanted animals in the world and not enough adopters, which is absolutely devastating when you think about the love that animals give us. Below is one of my favorite pictures of my dogs, adopted seven months a part from our local humane society.

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Miner (L) found his forever home with us after having two other owners previously. Leia (R) was a stray who found her forever home with us after no one claimed during her month and a half stay at the humane society.

Anyway, this post is not about the benefits of adopting a pet (although I will gladly write one if desired),  but more so on the ways humane societies need our help to continue running. They do incredible work and depend heavily on the support of the community to keep their doors open. You don’t necessarily have to donate financially, either. There are lots of other ways to get involved.

  1. GIVE YOUR TIME. If you have an extra hour a week, why not walk some dogs or play with the cats? Not only are you socializing the animals and exposing them to people, but you’ll be getting a workout as well. If you walk four dogs in an hour, think of the cardio workout you’re getting without even trying! With cats, socialization is extremely important. They are cooped in cages all day and usually do not get out as much as the dogs. Providing interaction and exposing them to people is a fantastic way to teach them to be social and more friendly than if they were never around anyone at all.
  2. VOLUNTEER AT AN EVENT. Often throughout the year, humane societies host adoption events or fundraisers and could use help with the event. At an adoption event, you could be needed to transport animals back and forth, take pictures, advertise, plan, or actually participate in the event. Fundraisers could use your help with advertising, planning, or running the event while it is going on. If you desire to get involved that way, you can call your local organization and see when you would be needed.
  3. TRANSPORT. Depending on where you live, there may be an online Facebook Transport Group where you help transport animals to local rescues or adopters. It’s a great way to network and meet fellow animal lovers, as well as know you’re saving lives one car ride at a time. I transport sometimes for I-81 Transports and highly encourage you to look into it if you are able.
  4. JOIN THE BOARD. Are you into budgeting, nonprofit management, or simply want to be behind the scenes instead of on the frontline? Joining a board may be perfect for you. You will have a say in how the facility is run and can work towards change for a better environment for so many lives.
  5. DONATE WISH LIST ITEMS. It takes a great deal of items and manpower to run a facility of 50+ dogs and 30+ cats, and some shelters have many more than that at a time. Items such as laundry detergent, dryer sheets, bleach, sponges, rags, blankets, and towels are always needed. Leashes and collars are always welcome as well. This is a short wishlist from my local humane society, although this particular list is not inclusive to everything they need. 16716313_1338494486188705_5167446215428147941_o
  6. MONETARY DONATIONS. Not everyone has money burning a hole in their pocket (a med school family knows this all too well), but if you do have some extra cash, feel free to donate it. I am a firm believer in donating to local smaller agencies instead of larger corporations simply because then I know exactly where my money is going.
  7. SOCIAL MEDIA. In this day in age, the majority of people have a cell phone, iPad, or at least a laptop. If you have a camera, snap a picture of animal needing a home and share it. With the way posts are spread online, your post could reach someone three states away who falls in love with the picture. Boom. The animal could have a home. Social media isn’t all bad!

This list certainly could be more involved, but I hope you get the point that there are many ways to help out animals in need. It gives you a purpose and sense of happiness as well knowing you are playing a role in changing their lives. Are you involved in any way with a humane society or rescue group? I would absolutely love to hear your stories or suggestions! Sirius, Eris, and Harper say thank you 🙂

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Sirius, rescued from a hoarders home of 32 cats.

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Eris, adopted from a feral organization.

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Harper, loving life after being saved during the flood of 2016.