Icing on the Cake

It has been a busy month for Frankie and I!  Full of more joy than I think I can even begin to express.  We visited Pigeon River school and Kohler school so far, and next week we will be visiting Longfellow school.  Every school has been so incredibly warm and welcoming to Frankie and I.

Today we visited with K-5th grade at St. John the Baptist school.  The school that looms large on top of the hill.  A picture of Frankie, drawn and colored, hung on the school doors as Frankie and I entered. I couldn’t help but smile.  As everyone welcomed us, we rolled/walked down the hallway to where we were to do our presentation.  Lined up on the wall were more pictures of Frankie drawn by the 1st graders.  My heart did a leap and I was touched beyond words.  I expressed to the teacher I had wished I had brought my camera to take a picture of all the drawings.  She said, “Oh, those are for you to take home!”  Really?  I felt like I was just handed a million bucks.

It was hard to pick just one drawing to share, but I share this one.  Pretty sweet, I think.  They were all great!  Just great.

A small table covered in a lace tablecloth was at the front of the room with a bouquet of Daffodils.  Also a pink gift bag with a card that read to “Mrs. Techel and Frankie.”  A rocking chair sat next to the table so I could read Frankie’s story.  Who could not help but feel welcome with all those wonderful touches?

As each child made their way out of the doors today, they each patted Frankie on the head and thanked us for visiting.  I feel like it is me who should thank them.  I don’t know who gets more out of this.  And now for the icing on the cake… one little boy said, “You know that one picture of you in your slide show?  You look just like Vanna White!”  WOW!  Really???  The teacher and I laughed and I told the young man how he made my day.  Vanna White, huh?  Indeed it is a wonderful comment… and I will treasure it.  But I must say, I’m pretty happy these days being me and being known as Frankie’s mom.  It is an honor, an absolute honor.

Is it Christmas Yet?

I have a feeling some of you are mumbling under your breath with the title of this post!  Not to worry, I don’t want Christmas yet either!  Spring is FINALLY here and I am soaking up the sun and relishing in the warm winds.  But, I received a wonderful poem today from Olive’s Mom, Jill and simply did not want to wait until Christmas to post it.  It is just too special.

Frankie has been making many new friends via cyberspace and her favorite friends are other dachshunds in dog carts she is meeting.  Olive’s Dad, Eric wrote the most beautiful poem about Olive and we asked if we could reprint it here on our blog.  So, here it is: (thank you Jill & Eric!)


Some things we take for granted, in a life that moves so fast
The simple things we have aren’t always meant to last
To walk the beach at sunset, to run and jump and play
Can be taken in a moment, and forever locked away
For someone sweet as you are I can’t believe it’s true
To simply walk and stand is impossible for you
I pray for my "little girl" a miracle might come
To bring back all the feeling in your limbs so weak and numb
We really truly love you more than you could ever know
Your image fills our minds every single place we go
You are whole in our eyes Olive, you are perfect and complete.
Not an inch of sweet has left you from your head down to your feet
Our beautiful girl, shiny treasure from the sea
She’s our "Belle of Sanibel", Our little sweet "Olive B"
If given just one wish for Christmas do you know what it would be?
To see our "Sweet Pea" run and play Underneath our Christmas tree.
By Eric Watson

A Tribute to Pete of, “For Pete’s Sake”

Pete (http://home.maine.rr.com/thevervilles/photos.html), the adorable, blind and deaf dog of Linda Verville, made his journey to heaven on April 7th, 2008.  He lived to the ripe old age of 15.  Pete was a beautiful example of not letting blindness or deafness get in the way of living his dog life to the fullest.  For more on Pete and his book visit, http://home.maine.rr.com/thevervilles/home.html.

I met Linda when I was doing research on my children’s book about Frankie.  Linda was instrumental in providing feedback about her knowledge and experience in taking Pete to schools to share his positive message.  Linda gave of her time freely to me and encouraged and guided me at the beginning of my book about Frankie.  We had this kindred connection for animals.  She loved Pete so much and truly believed he could make a difference in the lives of others.  And that he did, most brilliantly.  I can just imagine the pain of her loss of Pete.  He worked at her side, sharing a message of hope and inspiration to all those they met.  They brought many smiles and touched many, many hearts deeply.

Even though Pete has moved to another realm on his journey, I believe he will be with Linda always.  He will travel in spirit next to her.  Linda and all the lives Pete touched will never be the same again… their lives are better and stronger because of the lesson of compassion Pete taught.  He will live on in the hearts of many… including mine.  Thank you, Linda for sharing Pete with others and thank you, Pete for teaching us that life is about living it to the fullest, no matter what.