Friday, December 9, 2011

I have been back in California for almost two months, and boy does it feel like it! Since I sold my car last October I have been walking, using the bus and bumming rides to the places I need to be. It's tempting to go out and buy a car sometimes but I feel like I would be disappointed in myself. I love taking the bus and I love forcing myself into situations that I would never experience if I had a car right now. In these two months I have found a job, quit the job, cut my hair, not shaved my legs (ha!), enrolled in Spring college courses and have begun looking for another job and an apartment! whoo!

Anyways, this summer was amazing just like last years'. I made great relationships and had great adventures into the backcountry of northwest Wyoming. I won't soon forget it and, as usual, I can't wait until my next! :)

The day I left Grand Teton Nat'L park the mountains hid :(

Now I have a year (and then some) left in California and I will be all done with school and obligations here! Til then I am excited for the adventures I will have here in that time- an apartment, school classes, and whatever else comes my way!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Everyday that I work I am asked what I do.
Obviously, I am a host in a Wyoming
They want more than that.
They want to know what I do outside of hosting.

Am I a student?
Did I graduate?
Where do I live?

Depending on who is asking the question, the answer can go either of two ways:
-I am a college student and have about a year left. I'm studying Human Development
-I am taking time off of school and am traveling and learning through life experience rather than textbooks

Also depending on who I am speaking to, I may throw in how most of my friends have graduated and are still working at their local yogurt shop...just to make my point a bit stronger. 

I get a few responses, but the ones I enjoy the most are when I am told that I can get anywhere just from my smile. Apparently, I have a smile that will take me places.

"Honey, with a smile like that, you'll get anywhere. You're far ahead of most people."

Friday, April 22, 2011

While being out completely on my own the past few months I have learned quite a bit. I have learned how to speak up for myself  while at the very same time how to let things go.

As a wwoofer I was given the opportunity to see life in a whole new way. I experienced many things that I would have never even known existed. Making food, sharing space, working hard, and having conversation with so many individuals was my favorite part of the experience. I made friends from all around the United States and even the world, and was welcomed by complete strangers to share in a part of their life.

Being on my own also gave me more guts and a far greater realization that I can really do things on my own. It takes a little work, a lot of courage and optimism, but I can do it. I can create my path and succeed. I can do it!

Now I'm just thinking about the plane ride that I will be facing on Sunday...It will surely be better than the bus and the train, but it's going to test me. It always does. But I'm ready for it.


Monday, April 18, 2011

It's official. My week at Deer Creek Farm in Sheridan, Oregon has come to an end. Tomorrow I'll be driven to Salem and be on my way back to Southern California. It's not a trip I'm looking forward to, but a trip that I know I can enjoy. After a day on a bus being home will be nice, but I'm glad I'll only be there to enjoy it for a few days, because any longer and I'll go slightly insane.

Things I'm mostly looking forward to at home consist of coffee shops, my sisters and my pup Zayda. Throw in a few friends and I'm set to leave again.

Sunday morning I'm off to Ohio to begin the next portion of my adventure. I call it SUMMER LOVIN'. To me that means that I get to be loved up, love where I am, and just love living. Sounds pretty nice, right? I thought so. So yeah, countdown to Sunday begins! Six days!

Friday, April 15, 2011

me and Brewster
Patty and Scott are great company to have, I'm beyond glad they are here to hang out and help feed the animals with me. They are wonderful people who have funny vulgar mouths and love to cook.

Today Patty and I hung out all morning. I made oatmeal and watched Criminal Minds while snuggling with the cats and dogs. Then I took out the piles of trash from inside the house to outside in a horse trailer. Afterward I took a nap and listened to some music. It was a very nice morning, minus the rain that's been coming down for the past two days.

When I woke up from my nap I got my dirty clothes back on and went out to the horse barn to start cleaning stalls and filling waters. The horses were being extra funny today. Lips were curling up, whinnies were being heard, and bodies were rubbing up against me. Along with that was the playful behavior of them taking the rakes out of my hands, tipping over the poop buckets and trying to eat my clothes. I wasn't too sure about miniature horses the first day I met them, but now I am really starting to warm up to them. They're like goats, just a little bigger and without horns and with beautiful fluffy manes. After feeding the horses I met up with Patty again and we went out to the alpaca barn to feed all of those weird looking animals. I managed to make amends with Smokey, the evil Llama, and he mostly left me alone and kept his spitting for Patty.

Now after finishing all of our feeding chores Patty and I went back inside to meet up with Scott who made us dinner! Delicious chicken with delicious rice with a little bit of delicious asparagus and swig of delicious wine to wash down all of the deliciousness.

I love great days with great funny people who yell at dogs with lines like "for goddamn jesus fucking tits!". Definitely characters. Definitely good company. Definitely a fun and interesting day.

Tomorrow we're going into town and then I have my work cut out for me! I have a list of chores I still need to get done before Matt and Marguerite get back from their show. Whew! Night ya'all.

Scott, Me, Patty!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Mini Horse/Alpaca Farm in Oregon!

Now in Oregon, my life for the week is that of an Alpaca/Mini Horse farmer. I have spent my days so far cleaning out horse stalls, staring at Alpacas and running away from one of their evil llama's named Smokey. Marguerite and Matt, the owners of the farm, are amazing and fun and feed me chips and wine, which I do not mind at all.

My first day on the farm I got to learn feeding schedules. I was so very tired from being on the bus all day, but I had a lot of fun. The horses whinnie and the Alpacas have intimidating teeth and the Llama spit!

My second day I helped clean and organize a horse trailer, cleaned their center aisle of the horse barn, cleaned a majority of the horse stalls and emptied at least ten buckets worth of mini horse poop in the process. By the end of the night I was ready to sleep. And sleep I did!

Now, the end of my third day, I am very tired AGAIN! It's a great feeling. Today I accompanied Matt to a nearby farm to retrieve some horses and horse show stuff. This basically means that I rolled two horse carts, and carried a bunch of jumps and poles and horse saddles up a huge hill where the trailer waited. I then came back to the house, had lunch and then cleaned all fifteen mini horse stalls and emptied some alpaca poop buckets. During stall cleaning I also had some sun breaks where I laid around with the dogs on various pieces of wood whenever the rain/hail storm broke and the sun shined down on us. After I finished the stalls and Matt finished grooming his horses, we had some coffee and left to meet up with some of his clients for horse training.

Tomorrow Matt and Marguerite leave for a horse show! I will be at their home to keep the animal stalls clean and do some spring cleaning out around the farm. It should be pretty fun as well as leisurely. I'm rather excited.

Pictures will be up as soon as I actually take some, and real stories will follow soon after!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Working on the goat farm has been nothing but fun since I arrived late January. I've gained muscle, farm know-how, a greater lust for life, and many wonderful memories with wonderful people and animals. I have tested myself with the elements and managed to keep a smile on my face when it was dark and rainy for days at a time.  

Waking up at 5:30 to do an outdoor shift in the 30 degree rainy weather was no easy feat at first. My fingers were numb (my toes more so) and everything was frozen making work difficult. Add in the fact that at this point I could also barely make a hay bail budge and carrying two buckets of water made my arms muscles spazzy. I had my work cut out for me. I went about slipping on ice, and trying to lug heavy bags all around the farm before the milk came up from the milk room to be processed. Often times I had barely gotten anywhere in my list of things to do and would have to work a long while after processing milk. My work was cut out for me!

Now I lift things easily, and everything is a breeze. The animals love me and come up for their daily dosage of love (now that I have WAY more than enough time I sit down with them and give everyone hugs, kisses and scratches behind the ears).
Being in the milk room has improved drastically since the beginning as well. No longer do I come out of the room covered in goat poop and frazzled. I recognize each of the goats teats and can tell when one of them feels sick. I can open the milk room door and holler "Come on down for milking my friends!" and have a mob of my newly found goat friends running at my door.

I remember when I was heading out here I was worried that I would be lonely living on a farm. How wrong I was! Not only have I had wonderful interns (that are very very different than I am) to share my days with, but I have had an entire farm full of life to hang out with. Animals are the best company. Hands down. On days I have felt down I go to the tent we have the goat kids in and sit in their hay feeder with them. Hooves go flying across my face and tugs are felt at my head as they pull my strands of hair every which direction. In fifteen minutes I can easily overdose on baby goat love and feel back to normal.

Now I'm preparing myself to leave. Slowly cleaning up my trailer and tidying my belongings together. I look out the window and feel pangs of sadness knowing that I'm going to be leaving chickens clucking me awake in the morning, and being chased out my door by a ferocious turkey. No longer will I have to wake up at 530 to feed animals or milk out fifty goats. Working on this goat farm has been the best impromptu adventure I have had and I will definitely be coming back for stints whenever I can.

Next week I will be heading out to Oregon where I will be working on a mini horse farm for a week before ducking home for a minute and beginning my next adventure of living in the Grand Teton National Park for six months.

Life is exciting and brings a smile to my face constantly.

...I'm going to have to start brushing my hair again. :)

Thursday, March 24, 2011

 Enjoying the great Northwestern sunshine listening to Mazzy Star with my two wonderful friends, Arrow and Cedar. I couldn't possibly think of a better way to spend an afternoon!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Last night I didn't sleep well. All I could think of was digging a hole for my little Annie pup. Her body has been in a bag laying in the hamper bed since Marcia brought her back from the vet's office. So, even though I didn't have a morning shift today I still found myself very much awake and in a manic state. The hole. I need to dig the hole. I needed to dig my hole before the other pups found my little Annie's body in the shed and started to tear her apart. They're nice little pups, but they like to shred anything they can get there little razor sharp teeth on.

I finally got her buried though. It was raining lightly when Deleah and I decided to go out and start digging. We dug and dug and dug. And after tons of rocks and a few feet into the ground later we decided it was deep enough. Then Deleah went to get the hamper bed that had Annie's body in it. It was then that I realized once more that she was really dead and that I wouldn't been seeing her anytime soon and started to cry again. As the tears started to roll down my face I became very protective. I wanted Annie pup to be buried correctly. I wanted her to have a respectable funeral. The hole was to have the sides straight and the bottom flat, like the kind of hole you would lower a casket into.

Once Deleah got back with the hamper she untied the bag Annie's body was in and then I, using another bag, reached in and picked up Annie's body and lay her in our freshly dug hole. I made sure she was comfortable and helped her into her puppy napping position. She would sleep on my bed, her feet curled up, her head on a paw. Naturally, that's how I positioned her. Her body now comfortable laying in the bottom of the hole, I said a few words. I told Annie how much I had grown to love her in the week we had shared together and that I hoped puppy heaven was a lot of fun. I then reached into the hole and gave her a final pat on the head, another "I love you Annie pup" and then began to toss dirt back into her hole.

Her body now rests under the ground and her grave is adorned with a tire we found nearby, a big beautiful mossy rock and a few smaller sized rocks to fill the area with.

I love my Annie pup and I won't soon forget her.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

"I'm going to go check on the goats," said Marcia. Ten minutes later Marcia comes back running to get me. A baby goat had been born and was discovered by Marcia when she went to 'check on the goats'. Baby goats are the most adorable thing EVER. They're born with their little hooves first, then a little nose/mouth/tongue combo and BAM! Baby goat on the floor.

I ran to the barn with Marcia and helped keep watch over our new goat mom, Persephone. After popping a 'pregnancy bubble' and a pull later, we had two baby goats. One more pop and pull and there's three kid goats walking around! It was around this time that it was discovered that another goat, Edna, was going to be delivering her babies tonight as well. This time, however, I was going to be left in charge of the birth because Marcia had Valentines Dinner reservations with her hubby.

After quizzing me about what to do under different scenarios, she left and I felt powerful. Soon, a baby goat would be born to my hands. At this point all that was happening was the mucus like goop hanging out of her girl parts. Next would be the bubble, maybe another bubble, maybe another bubble after that and then the bubble with the baby in it. I continue my work of feeding all of the farm animals and check back regularly.

Looking over the gate, having been gone what felt like minutes, I see the bubble and a little hoof inside of it. This is THE bubble! I feel the rush of excitement take over my body as the thrill of having another baby goat in the room gallops about my mind. I already decided I wanted to be the best happy helper to this goat and make her birthing process as easy and pain free as possible. I stood there and watched, poked and prodded a bit.

As her contractions got closer together, the fear that also accompanies the thrill of having a baby goat born by you, began to set in. What happens if I fuck this up. This is a freakin life and I'm being in charge of it! I haven't gone to school for this...!! I called for Deleah who was in the milk room a short ways away. I needed reinforcements stat! We watched, poked and prodded some more. Edna was pushing more and more. Deleah poked around Edna's lady bits to see what baby goat position we were dealing with and was greeted by a not so gentle baby goat bite! It was right after this I put on my gloves and was pulling out a set of hooves, followed by the cutest little mouth with the cutest little tongue sticking out of it.

There was only one problem we could see now. Edna insisted on walking around. And there was now a baby goat dangling half in and half of Edna's body. The cry of life filled the room. Edna responded with her motherly goat noises, her baby still dangling half way out of her body. It was time for action. We pull the baby the rest of the way out and I pick it up and start swinging it from side to side gently trying to relieve it of any liquids in its lungs.

"DON'T MESS AROUND! DO IT HARDER! Don't mess around! IT'S DEAD! OH MY GOD IT'S DEAD!" Deleah had taken the baby out of my hands and was swinging it around the room trying to bring life to this baby goat that she swore was dead. I stood there stoopified. I had just been talking to this baby. I had just watched it lick its nose and talk while being thrusted out and sucked back in to its mom's body. There was no way it was dead. Deleah put it down on the towel and watched it freaked out and thinking it was dead still. I prodded at the baby, I knew life was in it and that it was still getting used to be out of the womb and in a stinky goat stall.

Baby goat began to move around on the towel.
"It's ALIVE! It's NOT dead! and it's a boy!" Joy overtook Deleah and we continued our process of 'goat delivery'- squeeze out it's nose and mouth to get rid of gunk, rub it with the towel and get it to suck on its mom's teat. Operation goat delivery was successful. A short hour later her second baby was born and could be found walking around with its sibling.

Friday, February 11, 2011

RIP Annie

I just found out that Annie died at the vets this morning at four. They think it's because of the vaccine which was given to her as an eight way. Which means they injected eight different vaccines into her in one big jumbo shot and it wrecked her body and destroyed her life. Instead of being a cute a puppy that gets to hop about, chase chickens and live a long life like all of her other brother and sister pups, she spent her last few days feeling horrible and dying young. I'm glad that I got to spend the time with her that I did and cover in kisses at every possible moment and that she was able to sleep that last night with my tyedye blankie. I pray that she gets to live on the rest of her days in heaven as a happy go lucky pup chasing butterflies and frolicking about everywhere and that the people who returned her and gave her those vaccines go to hell and burn.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Tomorrow I have been here for two weeks and boy, does it feel like a lot longer than that.

Being on a farm means you have to change the way you think. Not every animal is a pet or wants to be pet for that matter. Not every animal can be your friend, and as much as farming is fun, it is also a job and you have to think business to stay successful.

Here at this farm I have already encountered more than enough of these 'farm moments' for this reality to set in. First came the moment I had to help load Piper the goat into the truck so she could be taken to the butcher. She was a nice goat and had six nice years of life, and has already been enjoyed in more than six meals already. We make sure to include her into the title of the meal to remember her by. Today we had Piper Tacos. They were delicious. The other night we had spiced Piper and Coconut Sweet Potato soup.

Another moment came when pregnant Natasha, another goat, became very ill. She was having trouble breathing and stopped eating and drinking water. We called a vet to come help us, but the stress of him poking and prodding her pushed her over the edge. I sat in her stall talking to her all night and petting her and giving her encouraging words when I saw her eyes flutter and her life slip away. We didn't realize she was walking the line of life and death and had to make the quick decision to cut her open and try to save her two babies who we felt moving just moments before. I was soon in a stall with a dead mommy and her two dead kids. Along with the guts and fluids that spilled out of the mom in the impromptu attempt to save their lives. I pet her velvety nose and spoke kind words to her until there was not an ounce of movement in her body. Then I had to help load her into the tractor and look up how to recycle her body. So that night I experienced death, but the very next day I experienced life!

"Look for the bubble and then call me on  my cell phone, alright?!" said Marcia, our boss. Me and Deleah agreed and then looked at each other and then at the butt of the mom goat Gabriella who was standing in front of us and then back at each other. Bubble? Right now we only saw a long mucus looking string swaying and gooping out her back end. Gabriella had started having contractions earlier in the morning. It was now 8am and freezing and we are sitting in the barn waiting for a goat's bubble to show. As her contractions progressed I found out what the bubble was. And boy, was it bubbly. Have you seen one of those pooping cow keychains where you squeeze it and that sticky stuff bulges out its butt? Well, picture that, but with a goat and goat's vajay and you now know what the bubble is. The bubble appeared, we made the call, and some time later a little hoof, another hoof, a nose with a little red tongue sticking out its mouth. She pushed and pushed and pushed and finally we could help pull the little kid out. It's a boy! Gabriella licked him and talked to him and he talked back and within minutes he was trying to walk around and having his legs go out from under him like the scene from Bambi where Bambi is on the ice trying to walk. A while later Gabriella had her second kid. A boy again! The baby goats were fun to play with and stayed at the barn for a few days nursing on their mom and playing in their stall until they were sold. Bummer. But we have more than a dozen goats waiting to give birth this month so there will be more chance to pull baby goats out of goat vajays and play with them!

The next tough moment happened today. Earlier this week a woman returned one of the dog's she bought from the farm five weeks ago because the dog had an overbite and she had wanted to breed her. I saw the dog when I finished my shift and instantly fell in love with her. I also noticed that she wasn't feeling good at all. I named her Annie because she had little freckles around her nose. Annie slept in my trailer on my bed and in the hamper bed that I made for her. Annie also got very sick. She wouldn't eat and the few times she did over the past few days she either threw up or diarrhea'd out. Many of these happened in my trailer during the middle of the night. So not only was I working my shifts, but I was also taking care of a sick puppy and cleaning all of her messes. Today she hit a rock bottom though. She was breathing really hard, was having difficulty walking, and was throwing up a lot. We gave her some liquids through an IV and brought her to the vet. Now she's at the vet and I'm back at the trailer. Turns out she somehow got a twisted intestine, which is not only very painful, but very expensive to fix. The toughest part of this tough  predicament is the fact that Annie is a farm dog. She's being sold as a $500 dollar farm dog and in order to save her life it's going to cost around $3,000. Essentially, the farm can't afford to give her the surgery, so we're left to pray that her vet miraculously cures her and she gets better and can come back and be my trailer dog. I left her at the vet in her hamper bed that I put together with some pillows and my all time favorite tyedye blanket which I hope brings her good luck and comfort at the vets.

So, so far the farm has made me some fabulous friends (both animal and human), and has toughened me up. I don't cry when I go sliding around in the mud outside my trailer and scratch up my knuckles on the big rough tree, I don't cry when I slice open my fingers opening up the barbed wire gates, I pick up bales of hay and bags of alfalfa only half struggling and waking up to begin a shift outside at 5:30am when everything is dark and frozen no longer phases me. I slide my feet into my rubber Guess boots I bought on sale at Macy's before I left, pull on a couple layers, put on a smile and begin my day.

Every day comes with a new adventure and every day I learn something new.
I couldn't ask for more.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I have arrived at my new adventure site! I call it GOAT FARM! And as long as I'm not being chased by the evil turkeys (that tend to linger outside my door) everything is hunkydory! I get to milk, process the milk, feed the animals, clean stalls, make homemade meals, and soon will be starting to garden! The best part of it all is that no matter what I'm doing there is always an animal around to keep you company and talk to. Inside the house there are cats and rat terriers, and around the farm are parrots, big guardian dogs, goats, chickens and turkeys. Never is there a dull moment. Ever.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Chuga Chuga Choooo Chooooo!!!

So I took the train up the coast from Los Angeles, CA to Seattle, WA and I must say I feel my trip was rather successful. First off, my seat was the roomiest because I was in the first row of seats in my car. CHING! Second off, the first 13 hours and last 8 hours I didn't have a seat partner. And thirdly I had a lot of amazing (and many first time) experiences! Such as? Being offered pills, pot and alcohol in one sitting (first time experience) and seeing the sights around me change as I traveled through three states and many regions. I saw coastlines, forests, snowy mountain tops, warehouses, homeless camps, city lights and so much more. The most difficult part of the train ride for me was trying to sleep. I didn't want to miss anything even if it was dark outside and there wasn't much to miss, and it's uncomfortable trying to fall asleep in the confines of your own chair space...

Well, now I am at my hostel and it's my birthday still so I am going to attempt to recruit some talkative people in the room over to go get a drink with me or play a game or something...tomorrow is going to be even more fun. I heard talk of trampoline tag and although I don't know what that is, it sounds like fun!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

And they thought it was funny

Every so often I see my dad. Today happened to be one of those days because the 'every so oftens' also usually correlates with a special event or holiday. If you have been keeping up with my life then you will know that soon will be a special event (me leaving school and the state) and my personal holiday (birthday) So, naturally, it was time to see my dad.

We began the night by meeting at his new almost up-scale home in fashionable Laguna Beach at a dinnerly time (7pm). We then went to a different fashionable city (Dana Point) to have a finger licking good dose of BBQ, with some vegetables on the side. It was nice to see my dad, have a good meal, a good beer to go with the good meal and to have some other wonderful people around me too-sisters, sister's friend, step-brother, step-mom (the usual)

Lets get to where the story thickens: And They Thought It Was Funny
At this meal there was the passing of Christmas presents (to me) because I had neglected to visit on Christmas. It was during this passing of  presents that I received The Pants. I capitalized The Pants because they are that important. It began as a joke, a gag gift, if you may. But ended in a huge smile and a "I can't wait to wear these out in the REEEEAAAAL world!" in a high pitched very enthusiastic voice, MY voice.

The Pants are wool. They are striped green and yellow. They have little polka dots. They sit (if you wear them correctly) high above the belly button. And they are mine. And I love them and they look good with my new Guess rubber boots that I bought at Macy's for 50% off to wear at my new soon to be location: Goat Farm.

Pants that were given to me as a gag gift, I think gagging me for what they have interpreted as my new hippy way of life, were welcomed with open arms. The Pants are kind of weird, a lot ridiculous but very much reputation making as what I would interpret as 'this girl has chutspa' and they may make me feel better for having to leave behind all of my shiny decorations as I begin my journey in a few days. I won't have decorations for my room, so I will adorn my body in fashionable decor these new striped and spotted wool pants.

I feel my wardrobe is now complete.
I feel like I may be off on my way.
I feel ahhhhmazing

And they don't even itch.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

First off, I get to keep Zayda! It took almost losing him to another family for reality to hit my mom that if he goes away he doesn't live here anymore! I'm glad it's working out that he gets to live with my mom permanently now and that I can go off on my way knowing he is somewhere safe and loving. My entire family loves him and many people check into the house to play with him during the week.

With that stress out, it brings me to my current question of Train or Plane?
I finalized my start date in Washington for the 28th of this month and now I need to decide and book my travel. If I take the train it will take me a day and a half to get to Seattle. If I take a plane it will take two and a half hours. The train would give me a chance to put a check mark next to that line of 'go for a train ride'. I like public transportation and the many things it can do for people and though sitting on a seat for a long period of time in a vessel on a track can sound slightly...unappealing, it sounds like a fun adventure. Another thing I'm taking into consideration is my 22nd birthday, which is next wednesday. Do I want to be around people I know on my birthday or will being around 'strangers' be alright with me on that day. But then again, I'm not much of a celebrator when it comes to traditional holidays or traditional stuff. I am more of a happy go lucky celebrate random things and have random celebrations when they feel needed and that often doesn't occur on designated days of celebration. So maybe I will leave on my birthday, or the day before, actually. Exciting!

Life has a lot of change and lot of room for improvement and growth. I like that. Actually, I LOVE that. I'm ready to be out wandering by myself and learning how to get around independent of others. I went through my stuff again to see what I want to take with me, which is not much. Now I have to pack the stuff I would probably need in the future and donate the rest of it. It's slightly nerve racking that my journey is going to be me, my backpack and whatever I want to put in my backpack! And a happy face, of course. Still I need to get some warmer layers, some boots and a pocket knife. Yeah, a pocket knife...yipes!

Today I also chopped my hair off! No longer is it all the way down my back. It now rests at my shoulders, just long enough to be in a pony tail. It was a slightly impulsive decision. I walked in to a salon, made my one request for hair long enough to be in a pony tail, and walked out with short hair!

With so much change in the air I can't help but to breathe in deep and enjoy it!

Saturday, January 15, 2011


Just over a year ago I was blessed with my new best friend named Zayda. He has four legs with four fluffy paws, a bushy tail, cute beady eyes and a tongue that graces your hand or face right when you need it. He needed a home and I swooped in and gave him one. Yet however much I may have helped him, I feel selfish that I didn't give him a home that could have kept him for the rest of his life. He's almost three and already has at least three different places to rest his little sweet head. It makes me really unbearably sad to think about that fact.

Now I have to face reality. And that reality is that it would be selfish for me to keep him any longer. My home is my mother's home at the moment, and soon my home is the road of the unknown. This leaves little to no room for Zayda. I won't say I have not had many nights dreaming of taking him with me but then I come back to reality. I remember that my little best friend gets tired after walking a mile and prefers playing with toys that squeak rather than chasing after sticks in the woods. He would probably die instantly if he saw a bear. Not quite the kind of dog that you can take out on a rural adventure. I also make myself remember that I won't have a home after I leave my mom's house at the end of this month and that he, my little best friend, deserves a home.

That's why responsibility is such a hard thing, especially when it comes to those you love. I am responsible for thinking of what may be better for him, his life. And as hard as it is to face, and as much time as I spend trying not to face it, his life would be a lot better with a family that can shower him in constant love and in one stable house. His life would be more fulfilling to grow up with some little kids, or to keep an older person youthful with his puppy like ways. It brings me to tears, makes my lips tremble and my heart hurt, but it's true that Zayda deserves better. Better is what I aim to give him and will give him because I love him so much.

In the past year Zayda taught me what it's like to use your last twenty dollars on dog food instead of that cd you've been dying to buy for the past month. He showed me how it feels to be so protective you drill whoever is thinking about taking him out to the park three times and then make them repeat everything you told them back to you to be sure they were listening. We gave each other trust and love and many nights spent on the couch watching Gilmore Girls. Together we have gone on walks, been to the dog park, had field trip shopping expeditions and been flat out lazy lounging around the house all day. And now I want to give him the real home that he really is deserving of. And I want to give that to him because I love him more than I thought possible for me to love anything right now.

These next few days are going to be the hardest for me. Then the next few months. It was hard for me to leave him this past summer. I missed him constantly, cried occasionally, and was always gushing to my co-workers about what a great dog he is and showing them all the pictures and videos I had on my laptop and phone. Me and Zayda will always have our bond and that's really what I need to think about. He's not dead, he's just getting ready to start making memories with someone new. That's why I'm excited for him. I hope that the home I find or turn him over to gives him everything and more, because that is what he needs, and deserves.