Category Archives: Dogs


‘Tis February — the month of Valentine’s Day! So I thought I’d share a few things I love. Because, er, the world needs more love, yeah?

First, even though I’m a little behind on newfangled music, I stumbled over this song from a country-western singer (!) that I loved. It has an odd sci-fi quality to it I thought. Plus…love. Apparently the heroine in the video is also the singer’s wife. How delightful is that?

Second of the things I love… I finished a book! The first of 2017. 🙂 Man, I LOVE the feeling of finishing a book. It’s a new title from one of my pen names, Jenna Dales, who has been sadly languishing on a far back burner while I cavort with my other pen name, Elsa Jade. I’m tempted to pit them against each other in a Thunderdome-style write-off. But that wouldn’t be very loving, would it? So in the interests of fairness, sisterhood, and romance, Jenna Dales’ story is off to New York and while we wait to hear back, Elsa Jade is going to write the next story. Wish me lucky in love, and we shall see whom readers love more!

And thirdly, for a touch of real-life romance… Here are my two best beloveds, both of them smiling.


Happy almost Valentine’s Day!

Spring Cleaning: Sock Love


When was the last time you thanked your socks? Yes, your socks. The stretchy knit cocoons that slide over your feet, absorb sweat, keep your tootsies free of blisters and your toes toasty warm. Have you appreciated them lately? Complimented them on their hard-working and humble status as a wardrobe staple?

Okay, I haven’t thanked my socks either, however, I read a book recently that suggested I might just start praising them. “Hello, socks. I read this book called

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing,

 and author Mari Kondo says I should thank you.” Sounds a little kooky, right?51H8x07Fd7L._SX351_BO1,204,203,200_

Maybe it is and maybe it isn’t. Since our March posts are all about Spring Cleaning I thought this might be a good time to indulge in a little organization and purging. Starting with my always-a-mess sock drawer. Despite having many, many pairs of socks, I rarely find what I’m looking for EXCEPT for the standard sporty white ankle socks I buy in bulk. Apparently I’m doing things all wrong in the socks department. Beginning with folding.

I don’t.

I’m a stretched-edge ball-style sock storer. This might account for my not being able to find any socks I want to wear besides the aforementioned white ones. Dress socks? They’re in their somewhere…

Or the dreaded alternate “Christmas socks”, a bespoke grey with tiny snowmen. Almost passable for office wear unless I’m in a meeting, I brush my leg against the table, and “Let it Snow” rings out. In July.

If you take any nugget of wisdom away from this blog post, it should be “Beware the Musical Sock.” I digress.

Ideally, according to Mari K, socks should never be stretched! Think gently folded, rested in an upright position, supported by the other socks I’ve also taken the time to thank for their hard work.

Oh, and color coded.

This is where she lost me. And despite a great start of the sock drawer, I got sidetracked and someone else (my bloodhound) found the socks. He’s a fan! A very big fan of socks and expresses his gratitude for my socks in the form of slobber. That counts, right? dogsox2

SWTBSM Dog Looking for Bitch who Likes Sticks

Sammy_calendarSingle White Tan and Black Shepherd Mix would like to meet a single female dog (any breed, mixed okay too) who likes long walks and swimming for sticks.

Name: Sammy aka: Sam-Sam, Boop, Sam, Fuzz Butt, Crazy Pants, Beast, and Dang Dog.

Age: Not sure, but the vet thinks I was around 2 years when my humans found me chasing cars in the middle of a busy street and took me to the animal shelter. So, that would make me around 13 now.

Ethnicity: Some sort of Shepherd mix and I probably have some hound in me too based on my coloring and upright tail.

Career:  I am a bit of a seasonal worker. In the summer my main focus is to retrieve sticks from the lake. I take this job very seriously, so please don’t interfere when I’m in the water. I will growl at you. In the winter, my main job is to make yellow snow. Year long, I am the pre-rinse cycle for the dishwasher. This duty I also take very seriously, so seriously I sometimes tackle people when they leave the table with a plate in their hand.

StickHobbies: Playing with squeaky toys, encouraging any  humans around to pet me, and naps.

Favorite Food: Cheese, Salsa, Curry, and Peanut Butter. Separate or together, it’s all good.

Likes: Squeaky Toys, Sticks, and walkies.

Dislikes: SQUIRRELS!

My Dream Date: We’ll go for a car ride (my favorite!) to the dog park (my favorite!) where I will entice you to chase me by barking non-stop in a very annoying high pitch. I’ll also chase you. After we’ve done that for a while and I’m tired, I’ll try to mount the dogs larger than me which will cause a fight and then the humans will put the leash back on me and make me leave. Hopefully you’ll come with us and we’ll go for a long hike in the woods (my favorite!). I used to be able to run off-leash during hikes, but I don’t hear all that well anymore. When I run ahead on the trail and take a wrong turn, I don’t hear the humans telling me come back and so I’m often lost—sometimes for hours. So now all walks are on-leash, but I still love them.

If any of this sounds like something you’d enjoy, please have your humans contact my humans.

PS. I should probably tell you I’m snipped. We can still be intimate, but we’ll never make puppies together. At least I think we can be intimate, so far I’ve only tried out my suave moves by humping human legs and stuffed toys.


Love Unflinching: The Story of Angus

Is it just me or is February a busy month? With Superbowl over, and the Year of the Monkey (Chinese New Year) officially upon us, there’s barely a moment to make plans for Valentine’s Day. Which why we are dedicating this month’s theme to the best love of all, PUPPY LOVE.IMG_5779

It could also be an excuse to share MORE of our favorite dog photos.

A little less than one year ago a five month old puppy named Angus came home with me. A re-home. A Christmas present gone wrong, he was an ad on Craigslist.IMG_5760

Last winter, I really didn’t want another Bloodhound. Really, really wasn’t ready. Still grieving the loss of Frankie, my first Bloodhound, I’d already booked a vacation back east. I didn’t want to deal with the complications of boarding a puppy. To top it all off, I wasn’t certain about my future income.

Yet my heart was breaking. There was a Bloodhound puppy that needed a home. When the timing is right, I told myself. When my job situation settled.

I’ll just look, make an appointment with the owner and help her make sure she adopts him out to the right type of owner – Bloodhounds are not a breed for everyone. They’re working dogs, and quite destructive when bored.

And there he was in all his soft-eyed, slobbery glory.IMG_0419.JPG

After visiting him twice a day for three days, and having him sleep in his crate with my husband’s old stinky t-shirt, we were ready to bring him home. On the fourth day, he hopped into our car without hesitation and began his new life with us.

The heart wants what the heart wants. Or in the words of Rudyard Kipling, “Buy a pup and your money will buy Love unflinching that cannot lie.” IMG_0309

A picture is worth…

I’m a day(ish) late with my post this month. But I have an excellent excuse. July at See Jane Publish is photography month, and I was out taking awesome pictures.

I mean, maybe the photos themselves aren’t awesome, but I had an awesome time TAKING them. For the Fourth of July weekend, I had family in town and we met for feasting and fireworks and fun. Temperatures have been unusually high here, so my mom and Monster Girl I headed for the hills. We hiked in the mountains, splashed in the river, and I filled up my 2G mem card. Oops. I won’t bore you with all of them, but here are a few of the highlights along with a few sorta photography/life tips from a half-assed amateur button pusher.

Tip #1: Choose a perspective

Jessa Slade hiking with dog SW Washignton 
Jessa Slade hiking with dog SW Washignton

We here at SJP love our dogs. Here I have the same dog, same lake, different thoughts. It can be interesting to shift the lens from “big picture” to “little picture” and see what’s to be seen through that new eye. It helps, of course, that in the second image, Monster Girl is swimmed out and ready to pose a little.

Tip #2: Learn from the masters

Jessa Slade bw newt

I’m no Ansel Adams. No large print silver gelatin for me. But his art and conservationism are inspirational. He recalls upon his first visit to Yosemite “there was light everywhere…” That’s a beautiful way to see photography, art, and life: light everywhere. Adams preached previsualization — working out how a shot would appear before clicking the button. In my stumbling way, I try to do that with my writing by plotting and prewriting. To varying success, much like my photography. 😀 But I liked this little newt floating under the trees.

Tip #3: Make the most of the mood

Jessa Slade mountain SW Washington photography

Jessa Slade Mt St Helens

Like Adams said, light is everywhere. But somehow for me, the light is usually shining right into my eyes when I’m trying to take my shot. Oh well. If I can’t get the unobstructed, light-drenched front of Mount Adams, I’ll take the moody, mysterious backlit misty Mount St. Helens. Maybe by the time I hike back, the light will be better.

Tip #4: Take the shot

Jessa Slade waterfall hike

Sometimes I get weird about taking boring pictures. I mean, how many waterfall pictures does the world need? But I had a photography professor who said he expected to take one good shot for every hundred clicks. And this was in the days of film! So if I take a bad picture, I remind myself I have 98 more to go before I get to the good one. Plus, even the most boring waterfall picture is still a pretty picture at the halfway point of a good hike.

Tip #5: Look out from the lens

In the end, even if I don’t get the shot, I still get the memories. So I make sure to put down my clicker toys sometimes and just live.

If you have tips for taking good pictures, please share in comments. I’m always looking to sharpen my skills. And my focus. 🙂

Side note: For the next three days, OMGReads is featuring a “Stuff Your eReader” 99¢ sale for mid-summer reading madness. My alter ego Jenna Dales is featured in a box set HOT BEACH READS, and my other alter ego Elsa Jade has her first book in the Mating Season Collection, Wolves of Angels Rest: HERO, available. Check out all the titles here.

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