Lessons Learned from a Dog ~ Remembering Phoenix

I really cannot believe it has been three years. It feels like yesterday and a lifetime ago all at once that we said goodbye to our sweet old girl, Phoenix. So much has changed since then… where we call home, what we call full-time work, and most importantly – how we live day to day life.




I know I was only blessed to have Phoenix in my life for a short while… 4 years, to be exact. (And some of that was the early stages of mine and James’ relationship, so I didn’t really consider her “my” dog until we moved into our own place in 2009.)

And still… it is amazing what I learned from her in such a short time.




I learned to put down work and play more often.

I learned to laugh at myself.

I learned patience.

I learned how to unconditionally love.

I learned to not take life so seriously.

I learned that having dog hair all over the house is well worth it for the relationship you get in return.

I learned not to take anything or anyone for granted.




I learned that nothing is worth yelling over.

I learned that time is worth more than anything in the world.

I learned true companionship.

I learned loyalty.

I learned to stop and savor the moment (and sniff the air… walk a little slower… and look around at the beauty around me).

I learned that you always have time for cuddles.

I learned that life is short and our time with loved ones is never guaranteed.

I learned to find joy in the every day moments and to cherish it all.




I learned so much from Phoenix in such a short time, and my life is so much more full now simply because she was in it. (And Chloe is way more spoiled because of it.)

I think of her every day, even all these years later, and constantly remind myself of what she taught me. I hope that if I always remember and live these lessons… it will inspire others to do the same. And in doing so her spirit will live on in me and each person who crosses my path.

We miss you so, Phoen-Phoen, and always think about how you and Chloe would have been together (you probably would have showed her who was boss… haha) but we know you are with us in spirit and carry your memory with us always. xoxo



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Christy & James are Chicago based but happily travel anywhere in the world that beautiful love stories take them!