In Search of My Kindred Spirit – An excerpt from Ocean Rhythms Kindred Spirit

DSCN0299 Sea Dog Dance

Today my thoughts are with those affected by the hurricane. My friends in Sunset Beach, North Carolina, seemed to have fare a little better than the other coastal towns like Wilmington. So in honor of them, here’s an excerpt from my book, Ocean Rhythms Kindred Spirits, to be released Tuesday, September 25, 2018. Hope you enjoy it.

The essay is titled, Finding My Kindred Spirit, and it talks about finding a perfectly inspirational place some search for all their lives. I was lucky to find this place of calm about 7 years ago. So drawn to this spot, I return year after year…

“Two days later, on a radiant Carolina morning, with canteens and cameras in-tow, hubby, the dog and I, made our journey down the beach to the Kindred Spirit Bench from the 40th Street beach access. Along the way, we took time to soak in the sights and sounds – seagulls soaring overhead, driftwood wash ashore, and children building sandcastles.

Arriving at our destination, my carefree animal child with the ice-blue eyes hopped up on one of the two weathered benches aside her Earth Mother. We cast a gaze onto the flat hard sand watching passersby carefully select seashells from the shallow tide pools.”

Hope you enjoyed the sneak peak. The quote below precedes the essay in the book.

“Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.”


Peace, love and sand dollars,


DSCN0300 Russell, flag, Kindred Spirit blkwht copyr

Simple Truths….

As I was rummaging through various pictures frames stored in our basement, I stumbled upon one with a photo card inside.

The caption on the photograph said, “These are some simple truths…and the dogs know what they are.” Joseph Duemer (b. 1951)

Looking back on all the canine loves of my life, starting with my first dog Lassie, I can see the importance in simple truths.

Dogs Simple Truths001

Here are a few truths taken from “101 Simple Truths We Often Forget.”

1) “When you’re up, your friends know who you are.  When you’re down, you know who your friends are.”

Who better to know you, than your best friend – your dog?

Dogs can sense when you’re sad.  They lend a paw, or gaze at you with those big soulful eyes.  It never fails, when tears trickle down your cheeks – they’re by your side to comfort you.

2) “Most of the bad things you worry about will never happen.  Most of the bad things that do happen will have never crossed your worried mind.”

Dogs don’t worry; but they are guarded.

My heart dog, Sasha (who’s running free on Rainbow Bridge) had an uncanny way of accepting a human into her alliance.  You passed the test if you were allowed to stroke her silky black and tan fur.

One crisp spring morning while walking dogs near the St. Charles train depot, a stranger approached me saying, “Pretty dog.”

Call it intuition, but the hairs on Sasha’s back stood up.  Snarling, she flashed her pearly whites like the wolf in “Little Red Riding Hood.”

Did I initially worry when this man approached?  No. Thank goodness I had my little girl to figure things out.  Because bad things can happen in an instant.

Don’t worry about anything.  Pray about everything. (Philippians 4:6)

3)  “You have every right to be happy, but it’s up to YOU and only YOU to exercise that right.”

A dog’s happiness is transparent.  My little Aussie pooch likes to run figure eights at breakneck speeds around the tall pampas grass and the magnolia tree in the back yard. And certain ‘human’ words get those spirited canine legs moving even faster!  Her joy fills me up.

A treat, a toy, a loving glance…is all our furry friends need to make them happy.

We choose to be happy, or not.  Be happy.  Sing a happy song.

Read Stumbling on Happiness if you get the chance.

And remember… dogs know the simple truths.

Have a happy day!