Our last show of the year, traditionally, is in Belleville, IL; A Forever Vintage Christmas Market. Joe and I usually take at least one evening to visit downtown to sightsee and do a little Christmas shopping. We love the antique shop, Keil’s Gifts, the best! It’s three floors and full of fun stuff to look at. However, stepping out onto the street after everyone else has gone home is a perfect time to capture the stillness, the lights, and the beautiful window displays that are always lit up when we walk through.
The last few years we’ve had a reason to actually take a walk; we had our sweet Reggie with us. Dogs always give you a reason to get up and move, even when you don’t want to! But this year we are heartbroken, as we just lost her this past week. She was only eleven years old. I say only because we feel we didn’t have her nearly long enough, but it seems like forever, at the same time. It’s hard to believe that we will be a “human only” house. For 21+ years we’ve been blessed…and this is hard. If you’re not “animal people” (dogs for us) then understanding the joy they bring, and the grief when they are lost, is probably difficult. They are family. The loss is real. Everything changes. But for all the hardness, the sadness and the tears, when you lose them, the joy that you experience while you have them, is so much more.
Joe was Reggie’s real caretaker. He made sure she was fed, watered, nails clipped, bed fluffed (every.single.night!)…everything. Which is why he would get so mad, that no matter where I was, she wanted to be. He goes to the shop to go to work, she stays with me. I go to the shop to go to work, she goes with me. Maybe it’s a girl thing…or maybe it’s because I was the one that brought her home (from a show of all places!) She was the runt, the last of the litter that no one wanted. Except for me. I wanted her. And her owners wanted candles. Lucky for us! She was traded on the spot. Candles for a puppy. 🙂 She’s been traveling with us for sometime now, our little mascot. Our team of three is now a team of two. She was a great friend and companion; she traveled well and loved meeting everyone along the way. We will always be grateful that we had her as long as we did! She sure gave us some good laughs!!!
Our pets are such a big part of our lives. Do you have a dog or cat? We would love to hear about your fur babies… if you care to share, just leave a comment below! And MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!
Here are a few snapshots from last December, downtown Belleville.
(I love this shot of Reggie…you can see our reflection in her eye.) <3