Angel Jake at the RBC (Rainbow Broadcasting Corporation)

Angel Jake at the RBC (Rainbow Broadcasting Corporation)

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

For Auld Lang Syne

With my thoughts somewhere over the Rainbow Bridge, for my dear Jake, who would have turned 12 this New Year's Day, I visited Bob and Sophie's blog over at the Rickety Old Farmhouse and clicked on their link to this perfect version of Auld Lang Syne. A gift from the Scots, written by Robert Burns, and sung the way it should be.

Happy New Year dear friends here on earth. Happy memories of all our furry friends who have left us and are together at the Bridge. 

...Tak a cup o'kindness yet, for auld lang syne!

Joan and Just Harry (aka J. Harold Dog)

Thursday, December 12, 2013

They Could Never Open Packages without My Help!!!

Dad lost his phone the other day. He kind of knew where he had lost it and when we googled it using a special GPS app, he actually could see where it was... in somebody else's car. Since it was password protected and he didn't want to go accost an unknown person to get his phone back, he decided to get a new phone. It arrived yesterday and, of course, he could never have gotten it out of the box without my experienced help! Noses and paws are sometimes more efficient than opposable thumbs, right?

See how easy that was with my help!!! What would they do without me????

Just Harry (aka J. Harold Dog)

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Just Harry Tells Tennessee Thanksgivukkah Tales

So, there I was. 
My muzzle and beard combed. 
Toys and kibble in a Happy Thanksgiving bag. 
Waiting at the door, tail awag, in my best sit-stay while dad went and opened the car door and beckoned me to come jump in the car.

And where did I wind up? At camp for six sleeps while the folks went  off to Tennessee to see my human brother and sister-in-law and their two adorable small persons for Thanksgivukkah.

I might quibble over my kibble about this abandonment if I hadn't already met one of these adorable small persons (and even confiscated one of her toys on her July visit to us) and saw the six-month tummy bump for the other one and knew the folks would have taken me on this trip had they been gone for a longer enough time so that driving made sense. That's pretty mature of me, right?

Anyway, here's what they told me about their trip and the fun times they had with the little ones. First, out came the  sweaters and gloves and scarves because the temperatures hovered in the 20s. Jake and I experienced those temps twice over Christmas in St. Louis so we understand. Mom made us struggle into our Irish oatmeal sweaters just so she would feel warmer!

The town is on the Cumberland River, which is really pretty when it stays in its banks. Barge tows go up and down the river, which mom always likes to see.

For Christmas, the river was dressed up with all kinds of lighted trees and images, including a fascinating tunnel with blinking lights that was exciting to walk through. Again, 21 degrees, just right for two Floridians!

Mom and dad appreciated the cardinal!

And a ship!

And a bundled up Olivia!

But, now comes the really important part. Mom and dad discovered that Ms. Olivia, all of 18 months now, actually knew who they were when they arrived: Grandpa Jack and Grandma Joan. She has a picture book with all her relatives in it and she was practicing before they got there. 

Olivia has also been paying a lot of attention to her little sister, Phoebe, who was celebrating her one-month birthday when the folks arrived on November 26.

Olivia helps her mom take care of Phoebe and is very gentle with her.

I think my mom and dad really like this grandparenting stuff! They spent hours playing with Olivia, reading books, identifying colors and animals, and enjoying what a smart fun little girl she is. Also, she gives lovely kisses on request.

But let's not forget the animal members of the family. My pal, Marcy.

And two C.A T.S, Mistletoe and Holly. I heard mom actually spent quite a bit of time with those two felines, but I forgive her because she probably just missed my furry presence.

In addition to feasting on turkey, everyone went on two foodable excursions. The first was to a pub that brews its own beer.

 Olivia had to check out the flight of beer that mom ordered. 

The second excursion was to a Japanese restaurant, where Olivia tried sweet potato sushi and practiced her drumming skills with the chopsticks.

There's lots more to say. I just hope the next time mom and dad feel the urge for this grandparenting stuff that they take me along. After all, am I not smart and fun and don't  I give great kisses????? And of course I do recognize them on sight (or sniff)!!!!

Just Harry

Monday, November 25, 2013

Thanksgiving Wishes

Hi Everyone,

Sometimes it's hard to remember to be thankful when so many things for which we are unthankful happen around us. But then we have to remember that it's all part of this amazing but unpredictable thing we call life, for which we are always thankful.

Since I'm not as deep a thinker as our Angel Jake was, that's about as far as I can go with this thought; but I want everyone to know that I'm doing my best to fill Jakey's paws and make mom and dad giggle like they used to. So Happy Thanksgiving to all my pals in the US and thankful wishes to everyone else no matter where they are!

By the way, I learned from Bogie T. Sherman at the Bridge that residents there can eat anything they want... all that yummy Thanksgiving stuff that we dogs are usually deprived of -- so I just want to send a message to those who are there: Dig in!! And Jake, sample a bit of everything for me, won't you please?. Mom won't have to tell you to watch it or you'll turn into a roly poly porky dog! Enjoy! We love you!

J. Harold Dog (aka Just Harry)

Friday, November 15, 2013

Remembering Essex

We never met for real, but Essex, a beautiful collie living in Key West, was my date for one of the fantastic virtual events so many of us attended thanks to the talents of our friends.

Today Essex crossed the bridge suddenly, unexpectedly, leaving behind Joe, her dad, and Sherman, her young great nephew, so we want to tell the Key West Collies how sad we are and how much we will miss her.

Dear Essex, We hope you have already found Deacon, who left for the bridge a while back and have met up with so many of our other pals from the DWB as well as my brother, Jake. 

God speed, lovely lady! We had fun that night, didn't we!!!

Just Harry.  

Sunday, October 20, 2013


Hello pals,

It's been just more than a month since my brother and best pal left for the Rainbow Bridge and I've been pretty sad. As I know a lot of you have too. But mom and dad have been spending lots of time with me and persuading me that Jakey would be very disappointed if I didn't buck up and, especially, if I didn't continue his blog -- our blog actually, Barkalot BOYZ, but you know, he was the older brother and the writer and all that stuff so I kind of deferred to him on lots of important things.

But now I have something really important to tell you. That is, important to a certain segment of the US population and not so important to others. 

Our team, the St. Louis Cardinals, is going to the World Series.

That's pretty important here in our family. BUT WAIT, that's not all. Two of our bestest pals -- Agatha and Archie -- are also going to the World Series. Yep, last night a grand slam in the seventh inning clinched it for the Boston Red Sox so us dogs will all have, as the saying goes, SKIN IN THE GAME!!!

This is how it happened. To get to the World Series, our team had to beat the Pittsburgh Pirates, the home team of three more of our bestest pals... Scruffy, Stan. and Laciecakes. That was really tough  because, while we wanted to win we didn't want our pals to lose either (Except for our dad, whose blood flows Cardinals red and maybe Gussie and Teka's dad too). But once we did win, we dogs -- Gussie and Teka and Scruffy and Stanny and Aggie and Arch and me and for sure Angel Jake -- all got together and decided we would put all of our terrier energy and tenacity and persistence into having both of our  two teams - the Red Birds and the Red Sox -- win. And they did. So now we are back to wanting to win but not wanting our pals to lose... but whatever happens, WE'LL ALL STILL BE THE BEST OF FRIENDS!!!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


Four  months. No sign of signature ear!

A favorite spot

I’ve thought a lot about this since our Jakey left for the Bridge last Wednesday.  Ever since I told my closest friends how sick he was, and then, when the end had come, shared the sad news on his blog and on facebook, and with the fox terrier groups I belong to, I have been graced with such an outpouring of love and caring thoughts that my heart is so full there is almost no room for the tears. Almost.
Another favorite spot.

Welcoming the folks home.

And then it hit me, without Jake … and yes without his brother Just Harry… I would never ever have met all these kind, inspiring people and shared so many funny, sad, heart-breaking, exhilarating, life-changing moments with them and their dogs. My life would be so much poorer.
New brother seems OK.
How did it happen? First there was the wire fox terrier group.  Nigel, Boozle, Linus, Gimlet Rose, Chad, Charlie D., Libby Longtail, Alle and Jack – these were among Jake’s first friends who opened the door to this amazing world of dogs who talk and express themselves and have serious opinions! Then some of Jake’s more adventurous wirey pals, tired of just tearing toys apart and chasing balls, said, try blogging, you’ll like it.
Getting ready for a weatherdog broadcast.
That led to the discovery of Dogs with Blogs, which, when the Barkalot Boyz joined in 2007, had several hundred doggers; but soon grew to more than a thousand. One of Jake’s first pals was Gussie (and Teka) whom Jake zeroed in on because Gussie was wearing a St. Louis Cardinals bandana. Our team!
Learning to cheer for the Redbirds!!
Wearing Cardinal bandanna usually works!
Then he got to know so many others: Wires like Asta, Butchy and Snickers, Lenny, and Jackson; the Airedale contingent like Oscar, Maggie, Sunshade and Jaffa, Bogart, and Gooberstan; others like the Key West Collies, Joey, Wally, Ruby Bleu, Sophie Labrador, the Whippets, Lorenza;  and later Scruffy and Baby Stan and Lacie, Eric Square Dog, Petey, Martha and Bailey, Bertie, Mango and Dexter, Molly and Taffy and Monte and Winnie, Gabbi and her siblings, Khyra, Crikit and Sparky and Ginger, Max, Dewey Dewster and Asta Marie, Wilf and Digby, and  all the others, some still here, some with Jake on the Bridge, looking down and caring for us from on high.
Passover seder with Elijah's cup on the right.

Outside on a Sunday afternoon.
In the beginning, it was all about dogs talking to dogs. Their humans all wore dog masks as far as I was concerned, and that’s how it was supposed to be.  But then Oscar, an Airedale pup we had just gotten to know, died suddenly.  And immediately those dog masks came off as hundreds of real people wrote on his blog to express how devastated they were at his passing.
Prufreding mom's stuff.
Mom's stuff invaded my bench
Years have gone by since that moment. The dogs still talk to each other in their zany ways. But now their humans are dear, dear people whom I have come to love as close friends, family even. And that is Jake’s gift to me and to my husband Jack, his dad.
But one more thing. I couldn’t end this without adding Bogie T. Sherman and Ozzie Madison Shpigel to this caring universe that is Jake’s gift to us. They were there to welcome him when he landed at the Bridge. And they have helped and continue to help so many dog families adjust to the reality of their loss, somehow made less of a loss because of Bogie’s and Ozzie’s loving embrace.  Ah, if only the world at large were like our dog world, how much sweeter this earthly journey would be.