It’s the third annual Pet Blogger’s Gift Exchange! I’m excited that it is also our third time participating. For those of you not familiar with this event hosted by Pamela at Something Wagging This Way Comes, bloggers are randomly matched; not to share physical gifts but to share encouragement, compliments, and linky love. Non-bloggers can join in the fun by following the posts and finding some new blogs they might not be familiar with.
In the first year, I was new to blogging and I made a great new blog friend….we are still friends to this day. The next year I was paired with a blogger I already considered a friend; it was fun to write about each other and I think we each still learned something new about the other. This year, I am paired with someone I know, but that I would like to know better. Other bloggers understand that blogging takes a lot of time, and we don’t always have the time we would like to visit and enjoy all of the other great blogs out there. I hadn’t spent nearly the time I would like reading Groovy Goldendoodles; so I was thrilled to be paired with Cathy; now I would take the time to learn more about her and her adorable goldendoodle Harley.
So I grabbed a cup of coffee and finally sat down to get to know them better. I went back to the very beginning….May of 2011 when she put up her first post. At that time she had two goldendoodles (poodle-golden retriever crosses), Harley and Leo. I enjoyed reading how each of her dogs had come into her life. Harley was not yet two years old when Leo joined the family. Here’s a picture of the two young dogs together:
One of her early posts was titled “THERE IS A GOD (and He loves dogs)”; it was about the joy of coming home to dogs after a bad day. Anyone who has dogs in their life understands and relates to the joy of being greeted by them when we get home…the bad day just melts away. Over the next couple of years Cathy wrote about her life with her dogs, with some posts written from Harley’s point of view. She also covers topics of importance to pet families such as “Are You Prepared for a Natural Disaster?”, and “Hot Cars Kill”.
I got curious about Cathy’s background and hopped over to her About Me page and found out there that she was a military wife who always wanted a dog, but didn’t get to have one as a child. She and her husband had two children, and traveled in and out of the states for years, so she still had to wait before getting that longed for dog. The children grew up, the traveling ended, and now they had a new family of four…this time with two doodles! With everyone wanting to know about their new life with the dogs, she decided to start writing about their adventures.
Things settled in and life was good, but then the unthinkable happened; Leo became suddenly ill and died at only four years old, just this last summer. Having been through my own loss earlier this year, of our 13 year old beagle, and also suffering tragic losses of young dogs in the past, I can relate to Cathy’s pain, as I know many of us can.
Cathy has done her best to move forward, as we all must do, and she shares her and Harley’s pain in a special tribute page dedicated to Leo. I love the quote she has on that page: “We who choose to surround ourselves with lives more temporary than our own, live within a fragile circle; easily and often breached. Unable to accept its awful gaps, we would still live no other way.”- Irvin Townsend . On that page you will also find “Harley’s Letter to Leo”, and a beautiful video tribute to Leo.
She also wrote a touching post “Helping Dogs Through Grief”. Here she talks about Harley’s grief and how she works through helping him. It’s great experience to share with anyone who has multiple pets and loses one. I remember when we lost our dog Maggie, how much Kobi grieved, and I wonder what else we could have done to help him through that. Cathy found some answers to that question.
As I read some of her more recent posts, I realized I had spent more time reading her blog than I thought. A few of these posts were familiar, some I had taken the time to comment on, some I hadn’t. Cathy always replied when I did comment, which is something I really like to see on a blog.
Cathy is carrying on her and Harley’s life and honoring Leo in wonderful ways. Harley is now a certified therapy dog and they visit assisted living facilities and schools. Harley really seems to especially love children! Cathy and Harley are still sharing their lives, with fun stories about their family life, “S’mores/Monday Mischief“, helpful posts for pet families, product reviews, and amusing posts as well. Don’t miss the Fantasy Island post….it is classic especially for us older people who remember the TV show Fantasy Island. Many of her posts are punctuated by fun as well as touching photos.
Cathy’s love for dogs and family shines through in every post. I could go on about favorite posts but you might want to just head on over and see for yourself. You can also find them on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Welcome to Day 18 of the #Advent4Dogs 24 days of giveaways hosted by Kol’s Notes, Dogthusiast, Heart Like a Dog, NEPA Pets & Wag’n’Woof Pets. Today you can win some swag from Inkopious. Click here to enter!
You’ve described Cathy and her doodles so well, I almost feel like I know them (and want to keep up with their goings-on) – thank you! I’ll be following this blog for sure from now on.
Thanks, Kim, I’m so glad to hear that my post made you want to get to know Cathy and Harley. I know you will enjoy it!
I loved your post about Cathy and Harley. I hadn’t been to Cathy’s site before, but am checking it out today. It’s always nice to find someone new with a wonderful blog. Great job!
I am so happy that you enjoyed my post, and mostly that it inspired you to go visit and get to know Cathy and Harley!
Lee Bennett says
Thanks so much for your wonderful comments about Cathy and the boys!
You are very welcome, Lee! I thoroughly enjoyed reading and then writing about them. <3
Chastity Evans says
What AN-IMAL-zing groovy write up on Mrs. Cathy and her doodle boys Leo and Harley! You really captured her story and passion in ONE post. It brought tears to my eyes and made my heart smile at the same time. Happy holiday to you and you family.
Oh, I am SO glad you enjoyed this! Happy Holidays to you and yours as well!
Sand Spring Chesapeakes says
This was a beautiful post you did for Cathy and Harley. I started following them a few months ago and just love them.
Thank you. They really are great and I’m so glad we got paired with them this year!
What a great post and gift to the Goldendoodles. We love Harley and miss Leo. It’s a great blog to follow not just because Harley is so adorable, but because Cathy really writes from the heart and we love that.
Thank you, and I totally agree….I love how she writes from the heart as well.
M. K. Clinton says
OMD! We are huge fans of Cathy and Harley. We had just come to know her when Leo crossed the bridge way too early. She is an inspiration and Harley is the cutest boy. ♥ Thanks for sharing her story.
They have such a fun and full life, and I love reading about their adventures. Leo’s passing was so sad, but I’m glad that they still carry on even without him.
The Island Cats says
We’ve never met the Groovy Doodles before. Thanks for introducing us to them…and we’re heading over to visit them now!
You’re welcome, and I hope you enjoyed your visit with them!
Jenna,Mark “HuskyCrazed” Drady says
I love Groovy Goldendoodles as well, and this was an amazing post! Well done! I didn’t know all of this about the author and I am glad to find out!!!
ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!
Thank you, Jenna! I am glad I was able to share a little bit about Cathy and Harley that even those who already know and follow them didn’t know. It was fun for me to explore too.
Groovy Goldendoodles says
OH MY DOODLE! As only Harley could say “collar us flattered” with such a thorough – thoughtful – heartfelt description of us. This is truly an incredible gift! You completely captured the essence of what I’ve always wanted – for people to simply “enjoy” the antics and adventures of two (right now one) Groovy Goldendoodles. I simply wanted to share all of what I experience with anyone who has a dog – once had a dog – or who would love to have “virtual” ownership of a dog. That was always my goal. Who knew I would get so much more in return! Faithful readers who take the time to read, comment, and share our stories, a community of fellow pet bloggers who “get me”, AND provide endless supplies of lessons learned, methods, recipes, knowledge and unconditional support. And best of all, an opportunity to spend quality time developing relationships through social media with people like “you”, creating as strong a bond as one might have with a next door neighbor. That in itself, is pure gold to me. Thank you from the bottom of my heart and the tip of Harley’s tail, for such a beautiful gift. One I shall cherish for a lifetime. And last, but certainly not least, thank you so much for including/introducing my gentle giant Leo. He is still such a large part of what I do. Happy holidays to you and your family, may you be blessed beyond measure for the love and kindness you share with others. I’m almost finished with your gift… Stay tuned my friend.
You are so very welcome, Cathy, I am thrilled that you enjoyed your gift. This community is so special and that’s because of each and every person (and pet) that makes it up. I know that our pets that have passed are still such an important part of our lives, and I wouldn’t want to leave them out. Happy Holidays to you, and of course I am looking forward to my gift as well!
Super post about a super blog! We’ve been following them for at least a year now and just love those Groovies!
Thank you, Emma! Those groovies really do have a lot of fun over there! 🙂
I like Groovy Goldendoodles myself, but I’ve been slack in reading a lot of posts. I guess it’s just that time of year for me.
I love the Pet Blogger gift exchange, it’s so nice to meet new blogs and bloggers and maybe learn a little something about someone that you didn’t know before.
The exchange really is a lot of fun. I know it’s so hard to find time to write our own blogs, get ready for the holidays, and still visit others. It’s difficult to keep track of all the other blogs sometimes too….I started moving some of my reading to Bloglovin, and then don’t get the time to get on there!
Caren Gittleman says
We are super familiar with cathy because we love her and already follow her blog! Great post!
Thank you, Caren!
2 Brown Dawgs says
It is always nice to meet new blogging friends. I often wish I had more time to poke around and discover new blogs. 🙂
I know, there just aren’t enough hours in the day, are there?
What a lovely post! I definitely want to go over there and get to know Cathy and Harley better. My computer is in the Geek Squad Hospital for a couple of weeks, so I’m not able to blog much at all until I get it back (I’m borrowing my daughter’s computer when I can). I love the whole idea of the gift exchange and wish I’d known about it sooner, I definitely would have joined. I hope I find out about it sooner next year! Here’s wishing you all very happy holidays and a healthy, wonderful 2015!
Thank you so much, happy holidays to you as well!
That’s no fun having your computer in the hospital! I believe the gift exchange is still open through early January, so you could still join if you got your computer back. Just follow the link to Something Wagging at the start of my post. I hope you get a chance to visit Cathy and Harley as well.
Pamela | Something Wagging This Way Comes says
I think you gave me as great a gift with this post as you gave Cathy and Harley.
I’ve really enjoyed getting to know these two (and Mr. Doodle as well) but I never dug back into past posts as much as I could have liked.
I love the way you walked us through the history of Groovy Goldendoodles. It was like when one really good friend introduces you to one of their really good friends and hopes the two of you become best friends.
Thanks so much for joining the Pet Blogger’s Gift Exchange yet again. And for sharing your wonderful gift with us all.
I am so glad you enjoyed this, Pamela, I know I enjoyed writing it, and exploring Cathy’s site. I believe Cathy came to my attention through you, though I can’t remember specifically when that was. Once again though, your gift exchange has helped me to make another great friend! So, thank you for that!