Sunday, November 04, 2012

A Heartfelt Farewell to Zak

My friend, Kim Wagner, got in touch recently and told me about the heartbreaking loss of her beloved dog, Zak. When you look at the pictures of this beautiful boy you can see how easy it was to love him!



Here are Kim's words about her precious Zak:
 
Heaven, St. Louis, Pittsburgh, and Heaven Again 

Zak was definitely our gift from Heaven. He was found wandering the streets of St. Louis. From St. Louis he ended up in Pittsburgh in our home. The first time we saw Zak we knew he was special and we were right. Throughout the years everybody who saw him always thought he was the most beautiful puppy they had ever seen. Although when we adopted him he was already six years old. 

 
I ( Zak's Mommy ) am a childhood diabetic and have suffered various bouts with the disease throughout the years. When Zak came into our house he immediately knew when something was wrong and I wasn't feeling well. He would come by my side and not leave until he knew everything was alright. Zak was my four-legged Angel here on earth with a heart as big as this world. 

He was special until the very end. Everyone who met or saw Zak wanted him as their own. We were the lucky ones, though. God sent him to us. Zak gave us so much joy and love over the years and he'll always have a special place in our heart and home. Towards the end our other three dogs could never stop kissing him morning, day, and night. He has left us now and made his trip back to Heaven where he will be our Guardian Angel forever until we all meet again. We love you Zak.
 
Kim and Bob Wagner

Kim,  I'm so very sorry about the loss of Zak - I know how special he was to you. May he watch over you from the starry skies until you can be together again.

With love,
Chris
Lighthearted Press

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Loss of an Angel

If there’s one thing any animal lover understands it’s the feelings of heartbreak and loss when someone loses a cherished four-legged friend.  

My friend, Ellen Meade, lost her dog, Pixie’s Angel, last week. Here are her thoughts about her beloved Pixie. 

Pixie's Angel was truly an angel. She was white with ears shaped like an angel’s wings. She had one son, JoJo who I helped bring into the world, with her permission of course. She was the sweetest girl I ever knew and she is now with her sister, Kiwi, with whom she liked to "hunt" bugs and lizards. 

She was the sweetness in our home - always ready to curl up in your lap and gift you with kisses. She was always happy and loved to play in the sunshine. 

She had just turned 10 years old on June 8th and died August 25 on the eve of National Dog Day. One of her last gifts to me happened in the early morning when she rolled over on her belly and allowed me to rub her softly. She was weak and I knew her time was limited, but she did that for me. Her last gift to me was to die in my arms, giving me the gift of not watching the needle help her cross the Rainbow Bridge. She left this world on her own terms and is now hunting lizards in Heaven. 

I can envision her white body, soaring over the clouds in her new home waiting for the day we will meet again. 

Goodbye my sweet Pixie - my special little girl - I will love you always.
 
Love,
Mommy
 
Watch over your mommy, Pixie, until you can be together again. 

With love,
Chris
 
Publishing magical books for animal lovers 

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Need some kitty love?



Toad, Willow and Sullivan are looking for a good home.

These three kitties are currently with Mary Anne Miller, central Oregon cat lover and all around earth angel.

Mary Anne says the 10 week old littermates are beautiful…and full of spirit. If your heart and home can handle three kitties they can all be yours, or they can go to separate homes.

I remember when my cats - Dickens, Pippen, Molly & Star - were only ten weeks old. It was such a delight looking at the world through their kitten eyes and discovering just how magical everything was.

If you would like to know more about these precious cats you can email Mary Anne at mothermary55@comcast.net or reach her through her website www.feralcatbehavior.com.

Purrs,
Chris
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Paw Prints of Love

You’ve got to love a woman who tattoos paw prints around her wrist!


This beautiful wrist belongs to Crystal, the counter employee at the post office who took care of my package this morning. Crystal explained the paw prints are for each of her special critters, and she will be adding a new paw print soon!

There is also a new two-legged addition to the family on the way – Crystal is pregnant with her son. The baby will be named Lucas, after one of Michael Vick's dogs. This special dog now resides at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, after having been removed from the hell-on-earth existence he and the other dogs endured because of Vick.


Crystal has met Lucas at Best Friends – she had the picture on her cell phone to prove it! She makes the journey to Utah twice a year to interact with the animals and staff. Whenever I meet people who've visited the sanctuary they all have one thing in common - the same shining eyes and hopeful voices as they share stories about the animals they met and how their lives have been transformed by these wonderful creatures. 

As I left the post office I could feel Crystal’s love for animals flowing from her heart into my own. It was one of those little unexpected moments that happen in life…the kind that leave you quietly breathless.

XOXO
Chris Davis
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Squirrel lessons

He’s been coming to my yard for several weeks now. I don’t really know for sure that HE is a HE – it just feels that way to me.

He crawls under the fence and drags his broken body up the hill. I can tell his eyesight is impaired, but he always finds the sunflower seeds scattered in the yard. He grabs a pawful of the precious morsels, stands up and immediately falls over. Unable to stay in an upright position, he rolls over on his back and enjoys his feast.


When the seeds are gone, he rights himself and crawls around until he finds more goodies. Then the eating routine begins again. This goes on for hours.

And OH, the delight when he finds a peanut!

When his belly is full, he crawls down the hill and heads out of my yard, his tail disappearing under the fence.


Sometimes he doesn't show up for a week, and I wonder if my little friend has gone to squirrel heaven. Then I notice him on his back, in the middle of all the other squirrels, and my heart is overjoyed to see him, again.

He lives a simple life, and despite his challenges seems to find joy and delight in everything he does.

So many lessons from this special little creature…

Chris Davis
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A thoughtful way to comfort a grieving animal lover after a loss

When Kim Wagner told me about her magical way of bringing comfort to  loved ones who've lost a critter I knew this was something special.

Bob & Kim Wagner, along with Abbey, Alfie, Ziggy and Zak
"Can I share this with other animal lovers?" I asked her. Kim said absolutely!

Kim has partnered with Animal Friends in Pittsburgh, PA. When someone she knows loses a cherished pet, Kim makes a donation to the organization in memory of the lost critter, who is now an angel animal.

And what do angels do best? Why, they watch over us!

Here's where the magic comes in. If Kim had made a donation in memory of my dear cat, Pippen, I would have received a card from Animal Friends telling me about the donation and letting me know that Pip was now the Guardian Angel for Betsy, a kitty at the shelter who was awaiting adoption. The card would tell me that Pippen would do a fantastic job of watching over Betsy until she found her forever home.

And that would have brought me so much comfort.

If you love this idea as much as I do you might want to pass it on to other animal lovers and rescue organizations!

Chris Davis
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Cat blocks door to avoid dental surgery!


Ok, that didn’t happen – but it ALMOST did!
My sweet kitty, Star, was scheduled to have several teeth extracted yesterday. I had everything planned so we could easily get out the door for our early morning appointment.
What’s the saying…PEOPLE MAKE PLANS AND GOD LAUGHS.
Since Star couldn’t have any food, I put her in the bathroom so I could feed her sister. When Molly was done, I went to let Star out but the door would only open about an inch. My little sweetheart had pulled out the bottom vanity drawer, which butts up to the door.

And there was Star, sitting in the drawer…staring at me. There is not a mean-spirited bone in her body, but for just a second I do believe I saw a smile on her face!
Well, I panicked. I envisioned someone needing to take an axe and hack through the door. I ran into the garage looking for ANYTHING that might help. That’s when I saw the pry bar!

I was just able to get it through the opening, and slowly…VERY slowly…I was able to close the drawer and retrieve my clever kitty.

I was really fortunate, because Star (who channels Houdini) routinely opens drawers to the point that they fall off their rollers.

Had that happened, I wouldn’t have been so lucky.
By the time I got to Mt. Tabor Veterinary Care I was pretty frazzled. When I walked in the door Theresa (right) and Sarah (left) seemed to know how to calm me down.
I waited in the beautiful main room while Star had the procedure. Who wouldn’t be at ease in this lovely space? I was given updates several times, which helped with my nervousness.

Finally, I was brought back to the wonderful Dr. Krissy Bussman, who was holding my little girl in her arms. I couldn’t believe she was awake…Star, that is, not Dr. Bussman.
I brought Star home later in the day, and she immediately went into the cat enclosure to stalk the chipmunks who were running on the other side of the screen.
So, all in all, a successful day.

In the future, I’ll be much more careful about where I confine Star. I’ve also informed her that the tool belt she put on her Christmas list AIN’T GONNA HAPPEN!

Chris Davis
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Monday, April 23, 2012

Looked who joined us for dinner!


It was 82 degrees yesterday – a perfect Earth Day!

I met a friend for dinner at a riverside restaurant, knowing the views along the water would be lovely.

Did I say lovely? I meant unbelievable!

There, in the planter box outside the window, was a Canada Goose. She was peering in through the glass, perfectly at ease with the guests in the restaurant and the people out on the deck.

We both thought the same thing - how cool!

Then the goose stood up and we realized she was sitting on a nest filled with eggs! We also saw the daddy, who floated nearby in the water.

We were there for several hours, during which time Mother Goose came and went from her nest a few times.
Papa Goose stood watch, honking at anything that might have been a threat to the kids.
The sun set, and Mama’s day was finally done.
She stuck her graceful head into her feathers and went off to dreamland.
So very special!
Chris Davis
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Friday, March 30, 2012

The Animal Abuse Awareness Campaign and NASCAR – it’s all about Lily

Lily was a 6 lb. Chihuahua who made her home with Barbara Hitchman in a 55 and over gated community in Menifee CA.

Lily got loose from her home on January 26, 2012. Their neighbor, Larry Edward Jaurequi, came out of his home with a golf club and approached the dog, said authorities.

According to The Californian:

"Without reason or cause, the male swung the club against the Chihuahua as if driving a golf ball off its tee," Riverside County sheriff's Sgt. Sergio Rodriguez stated in a January news release. "The force of the swing sent the animal flying through the air. The suspect was preparing for a second swing when he was stopped by people that just witnessed the attack."

Hitchman rushed Lily to a veterinary clinic, where the dog died. The dog's injuries included a lacerated liver, brain damage and a fractured leg.

Mr. Jaurequi was charged with three felony counts and pleaded not guilty to all counts at his arraignment on March 19th. Another court appearance /hearing is set for April 16, 2012 at the Riverside Hall of Justice, Riverside, CA.

A memorial vigil for Lily will be held on Sunday, April 15, 2012, at 3:00p.m. at the Menifee Dog Park located at the corner of Menifee Rd. & Aldergate Drive, Menifee, CA.

My dear friend, Kathleen Otto…a passionate animal lover…lives in Sacramento and was following this tragic story. She and her husband, Jack Sellers – of Jack Sellers Racing - wanted to bring awareness not only to the horrific death of little Lily, but to the plight of the thousands of animals each year who are injured or killed by their abusers.

Jack Sellers Racing will be presenting “The Animal Abuse Awareness Campaign” at the NASCAR K & N Pro Series race at Havasu 95 Speedway, Lake Havasu City, AZ on Saturday, April 14, 2012.

The hood of the #15 car, driven by Jack Sellers, will feature Lily’s photo and include the words “Stop Animal Cruelty, Protect The Innocent, Be Their Voice.”

What can you do to help? Here’s what Jack and Kathleen have to say:

“We, at Jack Sellers Racing, are urging everyone to speak up against animal cruelty. YOU can make a difference. Show up at arraignments and hearings for animal abusers in your community (you may not be allowed in the courtroom, but you can show up at the court). Let the judge and the district attorney know that you support the maximum sentence in these cases.

If you want to show your support and are unable to attend the arraignment and hearings, write a letter to the presiding judge and the district attorney handling the case. Let them know you support a felony conviction with a tough sentence and let them know why. You CAN help be the voice for these innocent victims of animal abuse."

If you would like to be “Lily’s Voice” please write immediately to:


Judge Helios Hernandez
Riverside County Superior Court
4100 Main Street
Riverside, CA 92501

Please reference Lily’s Case Number: RIF 1201384. Let Judge Hernandez know that you are against a plea bargain in this case and that you support a felony conviction and harsh sentence for this heinous crime against Lily.

You can also contact Paul E. Zellerbach, the Riverside County District Attorney, about this case. Correspondence sent to the DA should reference Case Number DA 291728. Emails can be sent in care of his executive assistant, Laura Topping, to lauratopping@rivcoda.org.

Letters can be mailed to:
District Attorney Paul E. Zellerbach
3960 Orange Street, 3rd Floor
Riverside, CA 92501


All letters and emails must be received before the hearing date of 4/16/12.

Thank you for helping to obtain justice for Lily!


Chris Davis

Lighthearted Press

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A Furry Farewell for Mom

I originally posted this blog in 2007, a year after I had lost my mother to Alzheimer's disease. As the years go by, I find myself missing mom more and more. So, this is for you, mom - and for Lucas, the cat who guided you home.

Dear friends,

For nearly a year I have been holding the following story close to my heart. On March 29, 2006, I lost my beloved mom to Alzheimer’s disease.

Mom was never much of an animal lover, although she did watch over the many dogs who shared our home when I was growing up. She didn’t care for cats at all, which makes this story even more precious to me.

A Furry Farewell for Mom

You need to come quickly,” the hospice nurse said. “I believe your mother is actively dying.

I knew this call would eventually come, but I still dreaded hearing the voice on the other end of the phone. So the Alzheimer’s disease that had ravaged my mother’s mind and body was finally coming to an end. A lifetime of memories filled my heart as I drove to the nursing home. I ran to my mother’s room, but my sister’s tears told me that mom was gone. Sprawled out next to mom was a large, striped cat named Lucas.

Chris,” my sister, Aeylin, said,you would have been proud of this cat – he was here the whole time.”

In the many years I’d been going to the nursing home I had never seen Lucas. The day before I’d gone to visit mom, and stretched out next to her was a large, unfamiliar cat. One of the caregivers told me the cat’s name was Lucas, and went on to say that Lucas comes to be with certain residents when he knows they are near the end of their life.

I watched him curled up next to mom, who was completely unresponsive and had no interaction with him.

Anyone who understands them knows you can’t keep a cat someplace it doesn’t want to be. Lucas was there because he chose to be there.

When I got the phone call the following morning and came to say goodbye to mom, I wasn’t surprised to see Lucas there. My sister said she’d been holding mom's hand, and had noticed a change in mom’s breathing. Then the cat had gotten up and nudged my mother's hand, which alerted her that something was wrong. The nurse confirmed that mom was gone, something Lucas apparently knew the moment it had happened.

When I came back the next day to pack up mom’s things, Lucas was asleep on mom’s empty bed. The staff told me he had alternated between walking around crying and sleeping on the bed that had held my mother.

As the author of For Every Cat An Angel and For Every Dog An Angel, two books for grieving animal lovers, I know in my heart that all critters have a guardian angel that watches over them. Now I had been privileged to watch one of these precious creatures BECOME an angel to my own dear mother, who had always been afraid of dying. I knew Lucas had come to guide her home.

Losing my mom has been very painful. I am flooded with memories of all the cupcakes she baked – with no advance notice – for some school activity or event. I am remembering all the doll clothes she sewed, all the dance recitals she attended and, yes, all the furniture she antiqued!


But it is a comfort knowing that when mom was finally done with her body, and was ready to go on to the next great adventure, it was with her two loving daughters...and one very special cat...by her side.

Miss you, mom.

Chris

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Cat and Squirrel

It was one of those special moments.

I happened to glance out the door just when a squirrel was trying to make friends with the cat statue on my deck.

This beautiful sculpture was sent to me by my dear friend, Judy, after the loss of my black cat, Sammy.


I ran to grab my camera and caught these cute photos through the window.

It's hard to see, but the squirrel is actually licking the cat. Maybe that's how squirrels make friends!

I know exactly what the squirrel is thinking here.

"Darn, the jig is up. Hope this doesn't wind up on Facebook!"

It's interesting that the statue has been out there for many months, but this is the first time I've seen a critter pay any attention to it.

I think Sammy is enjoying this from up above!

Chris
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Helping black cats find their forever homes

It’s a sad truth – black cats are often passed by when it comes to adoption.

Those beautiful ebony faces and sleek black bodies just aren’t as eye-catching as the more brightly colored felines in the shelter.

Mary Anne Miller, long-time kitty lover and advocate for cats in need, understands this fact all too well. She’s devoted much of her life to taking care of high-risk strays and at-risk bottle babies, nursing them back to health and helping them find loving homes.

Mary Anne noticed that black cats were being passed over by potential adopters. “Don’t you have any other colors?” people kept asking her. So she decided to play “dress-up” and started putting the cats in small-size doggy clothes.

“I tried to go with vibrant colors and prints to offset the royal blackness being photographed. People were amazed that feral cats and kittens would tolerate dress-up.”

As soon as people saw photos of the black cats in their colorful attire the lucky kitties started flying out the door! One lady, who adopted not one but TWO black kittens, told Mary Anne that she had never considered bringing black cats into her home.

Mary Anne says the clothing is only used for photo ops. Once the photo is taken, those clothes never go back on the cat. She also tells adopters that dressing up kitty (other than for Halloween or Christmas) should not be attempted.

If other rescue organizations are interested in using Mary Anne’s techniques she offers this advice:


“It isn’t a matter of just putting the clothes on and taking the photo - you have to work with the cat and use food as a bribe to get them to accept the clothing. I used mealtimes as my measure. Once they were able to eat their entire meal without backpedaling away from me in their new threads, I knew that they would stay still for a photograph.”

I ADORE black cats, like my sweetie-pie, Star, lounging in her cat enclosure. I can’t imagine not having this magical kitty in my life. I’m grateful for cat lovers like Mary Anne Miller, who devote their lives to bringing forever cats and their forever families together.

You can learn more about Mary Anne by visiting Feline Express and Kitten Rescue. She is also in the process of forming a non-profit organization called CATS – Caring About The Strays.


Purrs,
Chris Davis
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Gone to the dogs!

What a joy – spending time with two oh-so-sweet pups at a doggie outreach event!

The pups, Bell and Patch, came from the Multnomah County Animal Shelter - the same shelter where I adopted my dog, Jake, back in 1995. Or was it Jake who adopted me?

He and I spent many fabulous years together before I lost him in 2006. Although my life has been happily devoted to my kitties since then, I still miss having a pooch by my side.

Being around Bell reminded me of meeting Jake for the first time. She couldn’t wait to run up to each visitor and kiss them, sit in their laps, roll over and wag her entire butt on the floor! Everyone fell in love with her…which was easy to do.

And then there's Patch, a precious 3 lb. Chihuahua who has two traits I admire the ability to love easily, and the ability to pop off to sleep when it’s time for a quick power nap! Fetching in her little pink sweater, I suspect this sweetie-pie will be adopted very soon.

This fun evening reminded me of all the magical dogs who shared their drooly love and joyful spirits with me throughout my life, leaving their paw prints forever in my heart.

Somewhere down the road I know another pup will find me. Until then, I hope I’ll get to have more “doggie fixes” with critters as sweet as Bell and Patch.

If you’re interested in learning more about these pups, or the other animals up for adoption at the shelter, be sure to visit the Multnomah County Animal Services website.


Chris Davis
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Paw prints in the snow

This morning’s snow was unexpected. After all, it IS the first day of March.

The snowfall was light, so I didn’t have to worry about the outside critters being caught in a blizzard, or concern myself with being stranded on the hillside.


This snow would be gone in a few hours.

Which left me free to appreciate one of the dearest gifts that often comes with snow - seeing paw prints on the deck.


I’m always a bit awed by a paw print - as if I’m in the presence of something sacred. Like many animal lovers, my kinship with the natural world is lifelong and deep.

Knowing creatures have been out in the night is comforting to me...a reassurance that the timeless connection I feel with them can never be broken.

It’s as if they want me to know they’re watching over me, and that all is as it should be.

And that brings me peace.

Chris Davis
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Monday, February 20, 2012

Seeing Sammy Again

He was on the deck, in the middle of the night!!

I had come downstairs at 3:00 this morning, after having been up for hours with a touch of food poisoning.
The cats were ecstatic – EARLY BREAKFAST!! I put out their bowls, then strolled by the deck door to check for Sammy.

As some people know, Sammy was the outside cat I fed on the deck for 8 years. I was never able to get near him, but I provided a house, food and flea meds, which helped make his life easier.

He'd beaten the odds many times. Five months ago my beloved boy vanished, presumably lost to a coyote that had come through the woods that day.

But I NEVER stopped looking for him.


And at 3:00 this morning…there he was!!

My heart stopped – SAMMY! He was actually sleeping in the house!! I knocked on the door and he lifted up his head, so I knew he was ok! Tears streamed down my face as I ran into the kitchen to get his special food. As soon as I had fed him I’d call my friend, Judy, who knew that if he ever showed up again she’d get a call from me no matter what time it was.

The can opener turned and I took off the lid. Odd…the label was correct, but I could tell the food didn’t look quite right.

Then I noticed that the can opener was sitting on the table, and not on the counter.

Then I saw that the living room furniture was sitting in the kitchen.

And then I knew the heartbreaking truth – this was a dream!

I didn’t know I had gone back to sleep. I shot up in bed, and the realization that this was just a dream – that Sammy was NOT waiting for me on the deck – tore me to pieces. To have that joy ripped away was gut-wrenching. It had felt so real…so unbelievably real.

I sobbed buckets of tears...and then I finally stopped crying for him.

But I will never...ever...stop looking for him.

Chris Davis
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Friday, February 17, 2012

Are cats REALLY less affectionate than dogs?

The other day I had an interesting phone chat with my Aunt Mary.

My Auntie lost her husband a few years ago, and while she’d love to bring home a dog for company she isn’t allowed to have one where she lives.

She can, however, have a cat.

Aunt Mary doesn’t want to do that, though, because she’s heard how “aloof” cats can be. She wants a friendly pup who will follow her around and lay by her feet.

I always smile when I hear someone say that, because for most of my life I thought along those same lines. I’d always shared my life with dogs, often three or four at a time. People got used to seeing me walk my herd through the neighborhood.

It was my dog, Jake, who changed my thinking 14 years ago when he found a tiny tabby kitten in the yard. The kitty had a brother and several sisters, and Jake’s beautiful heart knew he needed to bring these kitties inside so he could take care of them.

Jake fell head over heels for the kitties…and so did I. When Jake left us in 2006 I thought for sure another dog would find its way to us soon. But the kitties asked for something that would impact those plans for another doggie.


They asked for some dog-free time with me, so I could have the chance to REALLY understand the world of felines.

When they were done, I wouldn’t just know a few lines of “kitty” – I’d actually SPEAK CAT!

So here we are, six years later…Star and Molly still by my side, their siblings Dickens and Pippen flying through the stars with my angel doggies.

What have I learned about cats?

I know that cats express their affection differently than dogs do. Star and Molly know that I deeply love and respect them, and I feel their love for me down to the core of my being. I appreciate their unique personalities, and value all that they bring to my life. We are a family. We can count on that love, and don’t have to constantly be in each other’s presence to know that the bond connecting us is real.

I know that some cats will come when called and others will completely ignore you, all of them tuned into radio station WIFM – what’s in it for me?

On the other hand, there was that one cold winter’s night I was sprawled on the bathroom floor with a bad case of food poisoning. Molly curled up next to me for several hours…and she never moved. Perhaps on that particular night WIFM stood for what’s in it for MOM?

I know that the love I share with my cats is loose and fluid. Each of us gets to be who we are, there for each other in spirit but not necessarily attached at the hip.

Perhaps that is the truest and purest definition of love. Perhaps I wouldn’t have been capable of participating in a love like that when I was younger. Maybe I wouldn’t have been able to do it at all without a cat showing me the way.

Loving cats has changed how I define love. It’s changed me.

For the better…I think.

Chris Davis

Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Art 101

It was there in the closet, next to the keepsake box.

I drew this with oil pastels when I was about 10 years old. You can still see the tape marks along the top where I must have stuck it somewhere.

There is an innocence to this artwork that brings me to tears.


Those happy, wide-eyed Raggedy Ann & Andy faces radiate unimaginable joy.

Yet, when I drew this I was in an impossible situation at home, horribly abused by one parent who was enabled by the other. In looking back, I’m not sure how I survived. I guess being a stubborn New Yorker had its blessings, even as a child!

Perhaps I drew what I had never known, but on some level was desperately seeking.

I have made peace with my past. However, looking at this picture touches a part of my soul that still seems to be lost, looking for my home…and for Mommy.


Chris Davis
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Kissing Bruce Springsteen

Do you have a keepsake box?

You know, the place where you’ve stashed all your treasured memorabilia from years gone by?

I was looking through my box of stuff the other day when I came upon an old Christmas card. It was dated 1976, signed by Aunt Trudie. She wasn’t my aunt. Her nephew was the late Clarence Clemons, saxophonist fo
r the Bruce Springsteen band.

The memories came flooding back.

Suddenly I was standing along the wall during a Springsteen concert in NYC – DO NOT ask me how I got in there! It was my third time in as many nights. The sweet woman standing behind me introduced herself at Clarence’s aunt.

“Would you like to go back and meet the band?”

WOULD I??

Everything after that is a blur…except the part about kissing The Boss! THAT I remember.

Long before I wrote books for animal lovers I made my living as a singer.


I had a different name, a different look and a different life. A large part of my world was wrapped around music.

Seeing this card from Aunt Trudie brought back so many good memories. I was having a wonderful time on this unplanned journey into my past.
Why not keep going?

To be continued…

Chris Davis
Former Singer
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Year of the Dragon

I love dragons.

The magic. The mystery. The fantasy. I love it all!

I even found a place for a friendly dragon in my new book, Forever Paws, up there in the stars with the dogs and cats.


So, imagine my delight the other day when I opened a package from my dear friend, Judy Ditfurth, and staring back at me was a fabulous stuffed dragon in all its teal blue glory!

I immediately knew this was a female dragon.


The moment we locked eyes it was clear she had accepted me as one of her own. I was now under her protection. I started calling her Grandma.

Why I had such a strong reaction to her wasn’t clear to me at first. I kept thinking about those dark, penetrating eyes.

And then I got it.

This dragon looked a lot like my Mother’s mother – my Grandmother - a kind and gentle woman.

A coincidence?

I think not.

Note: For many years I’ve had only one book on my coffee table – Dragonology. The only person who ever noticed it was a three year old child.


Hmm...

Chris Davis
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers

Monday, January 16, 2012

Rescue gear for pets - is your fire station equipped?

Last week I stopped by my local fire station.

I wanted to see if their trucks carry small oxygen masks specifically designed for dogs and cats. I was THRILLED to learn that all the stations in my district are equipped with masks in varying sizes for small animals.


According to Public Information Officer Steve McAdoo, the oxygen masks (also known as “snout masks”) went unused for 3 or 4 years, and then suddenly they were needed at several fires, resulting in the rescue of 5 pets.

Imagine if one of those lucky critters was yours!

I often wondered if the little signs many people (including me) have on their doors warning emergency crews about inside critters are helpful. While the signs can provide important information, Steve said there are other ways pet parents can help keep their critters safe in the event of a fire.

If you call 911 to report a fire be sure to tell them there are animals in the house! That info will be passed along to the fire crew as they’re on the way, and those oxygen masks will be ready to go.

According to Steve, one of the most important things you can do is keep your critters isolated in one room, with a closed door, as opposed to giving them the run of the house. A pet confined to one room can be found more easily, and that closed door could mean the difference between life and death.

This is especially true with cats. Steve said that, sadly, unless a cat gets out of the house on its own it often won’t survive a fire.

In case you’re curious, these pictures were taken in front of my home. You see, in addition to asking about critter safety I had voiced concerns about truck accessibility to my own home in the event of a fire.


Carol Evans put me in contact with Steve McAdoo, who passed along my concerns to Mike Carlsen and asked for a drive-by to check out my home.

I thought someone would pull up in a car…maybe a 4WD. Saturday afternoon I knew something was going on outside when my cats suddenly flew off the couch and scattered to their favorite hiding places.

I looked out the window and there was the fire truck and crew! They assured me they COULD make the 90 degree turn onto my funky little road in case of a fire.

These people are wonderful!

If you have any concerns about fire safety I urge you to contact your local fire station as I did. I know you’ll get all of your questions answered.
I can’t guarantee the fire truck will show up!

Chris Davis
Lighthearted Press
Publishing magical books for animal lovers