I am a profound lover of animals.  I have two cats and a dog and they are my kids.  They bring me joy everyday, all day.  I love their personalities and their unconditional love.  As much as they can be predictable, they constantly surprise me when they deviate from their routines and do something crazy.  Claire recently decided she loves to sunbathe in my herb planter.

Trouble Cat (the infamous “TC”) claimed the large wooden salad bowl that had been a gift and at one time made an artistic display for my salads.  Now it serves as a cozy bed for TC to curl up in.  It’s his bowl.

Zorro, my dog, is a pure delight.  Everyone loves Zorro and I am stopped all the time when we are out so people can ask about him, comment on him or simply love him up!  He loves the attention, but it never goes to his head.  He has remained humble, loyal, lovable and affable – a girl’s best friend.

All three of my kids have been rescued from pet rescue organizations.  I believe there is a karma to rescuing pets.  They know they’ve been given a second chance and they live life to the fullest – and love you to the fullest.  I’m blessed with a very loving household that is filled with fun and sometimes, shenanigans!

In Napa, there are many wonderful areas for Zorro and I to explore.  However, one of his paws-down favorites is Alston Park.  Alston Park consists of acres and acres of grasslands tucked amidst vineyards and lying against the backdrop of mountain ranges.  It is a sanctuary for dogs – pure heaven for the furry creatures to romp in the grasses, meet new friends, exercise, and run off-leash to their heart’s content.

When I first moved to Napa, Zorro was 12 and he did not have a single urge to make new friends.  He was quite content running around with me and keeping active on his own.  However, when he discovered this park, he rediscovered the puppy in him.  I’m not sure if it was the fabulous weather and no longer enduring the brutal heat of Arizona, or the gorgeous lush surroundings (this fabulous green stuff growing in abundance in Napa), or the ability to run in acres and acres of grass and sniff to his heart’s content or a combination of all of the above, but he came alive!  Rather than staving off new potential friends, he bounded to greet them at the park.  He is a social butterfly and can’t wait to meet all the dogs.  He frolics through the grass and the wind blows his long coat.  He sniffs and picks up the scents of his friends and the critters he hopes to catch. He embraces life and wears a look of pure bliss.

I meet a lot of great people at the park and they all marvel at Zorro.  I am consistently asked how old my puppy is.  They are astounded when they hear “12” – years, not months.  I tell all of them he loves Napa and it has turned back time to a renewed puppy-hood.

Zorro’s love of life is a refreshing reminder to savor each moment.  To look at the world around me and all its wonders.  To live with anticipation and then enjoy the moment when it arrives.  To keep a healthy outlook on life and to PLAY!  To meet new friends with exuberance.  I’ve learned many lessons from Zorro.  I often wonder who was rescued and who was the rescuer.