If money talks, what do you think this ten-dollar bill says about Scout?

If money talks, what does this ten-dollar bill say about Scout?  

This photo essay begins with my parents. Fritz was their shelter dog who was “supposed to be” a small mixed breed, but his body grew to match his personality.   Before his Alzheimer’s, Dad used to say, “Let’s talk, Fritz,” and they


Maggie was our first rescued dog. For 13 years she was Jim’s hiking buddy, my cuddle pal, and a treasured member of our entire family.  She was included in all travels, every hike, holiday and event.  She was also Scout’s “angel” who made our hearts ready for the last puppy in her litter, waiting for us to find her at the Humane Society.



From the first hour, Scout got plenty of hugs, love…and also a lot of patience.  (Chewing has been her favorite sport, as seen in top picture.)





This is Scout with “Squeak,” her first chew toy and still her favorite little friend.  Like a baby with a favorite blanket, Scout can’t go to sleep at night unless she has Squeak.



Dogs bring their own new friends into the family.  Here, Scout rests with her friend Kodi, a chocolate poodle, after a busy play date.  Kodi’s parents Jeff and Karen, have coffee on the deck with us, Scout’s parents.  Kodi is now in training to be a Companion Dog.  We miss her.

On previous posts, I’ve shared our daughter’s family pets: Munchkin, the kitten adopted from a farm family; and Duchess, the gorgeous all-black German Shepherd who was adopted from a soldier being deployed from Ft. Riley.  All of our pets have made our family bigger, better, more patient, and also pet-happy and very fur-friendly.

OCTOBER IS “ADOPT A SHELTER DOG MONTH”   Shelters are always looking for good adoptive “parents” and are also in need of donations to continue providing for homeless animals.





Filed under autumn lessons, Dementia/Alzheimer's, friends, importance of doing good things, lessons about life, lessons for great-grandchildren, making a difference, Things to be thankful for


  1. I miss having a dog. I can’t have one since I am gone so much. Our shelter has a store in the local mall and I am always tempted to walk out with a dog.

    • I’ll tell you what Jim used to say to me, Gerlinde. Never go to a shelter unless you have someone with you to keep you in line when one of the dogs steals your heart. ❤ Scout stole mine just by putting her paw on the glass opposite my hand on the other side, and Jim says he knew that puppy would be going home with us. Those little scamps are very good at winning us over. 🙂
      I hope that you have dogs with family or friends to cuddle and play with for that "fur fix."

    • Molly Mosher

      Sometimes shelters just need someone to volunteer to come in and “play” with dogs, or to help socialize them. Perhaps you could look into volunteering once in awhile to do that.

      • We could do that…IF we could bring Scout along.
        Today a lady was walking past our house with her rescue dogs–Keaton and Griffin–and Dad petted the dogs and started talking to their owner. We ended up having a Play Date on the spot; it lasted 30 min. with lots of playing and running, and now Scout is happily worn out. It looks like we might have an opportunity to socialize the neighborhood rescued dogs now. Plus, it’s so good for Scout, too! 🙂 ❤

  2. Scout sure is a cutie, Marylin! I remember the photo of your father and Fritz…definitely one of my favorites. Have a great weekend! xo

    • The picture of my dad with Fritz is one of my favorites, too, Jill, so I use it whenever I can. I miss them both; Dad was so sweet and calm with Fritz, who waited for him to come out and “talk.” 🙂

    • Molly Mosher

      When Grandma, Grandpa and cousin Nic went to the pound to “look” at dogs, they of course were taken with the little fuzz ball. Nic often recalled that on the way home, while trying to come up with a name for the puppy, Grandpa had suggested the name “FRIEND”. Although the name Fritz really fit him, he was definitely a friend to Grandpa (and the rest of the family, too).

      • And your Grandpa’s favorite dog growing up was named Buddy. So Buddy and Friend are kind of the same names. 😉 Fritz was a hard-pulling dog on walks, but he never pulled too hard when Grandma walked him. Which shows how your grandmother was someone not to take for granted–she wasn’t timid in straightening out misbehavior! If it weren’t for the dementia, you could ask her, and she’d tell you stories to support that.

  3. juliabarrett

    Scout looks so grown up! And very hound-ish! She’s got loads of hound in her. I’ve adopted many dogs, never a shelter dog. Although we’ve adopted many shelter kitties!

    • The picture doesn’t show that she has a full-flag tail that stands up and wags back and forth, Julia, which is definitely not hound. She also has some lab and shepherd qualities and of course beagle,too, she’s a very interesting blend of breeds. Like Maggie, she seems to have gotten the best quality from each breed. She just turned a year old and is 30 pounds, and is amazingly fast and strong. None of this figured into choosing her at the Humane Society, of course. When I put my hand on the glass and she walked over and put her little paw against my hand from the other side, we were goners. 🙂 ❤

    • Molly Mosher

      Julia, as much as I love our German Shepherd – Duchess, and Mom and Dad’s dog – Scout, I am much more of a kitty person. My Munchkin who is 15 years old now, is such an important part of my everyday life. I really don’t know what I will do when I lose her! 😦

      • juliabarrett

        I know how you feel about kitties. Our last kitty died a year ago. He was almost 22! He had a great life!

  4. WE sure love our rescue dog, Dot. We have only had her for three months but she is already a big part of our family!!

    • And as I remember, Darlene, you set up play dates for Dot, too.
      It’s a wonderful surprise, how these little fur balls wiggle into our hearts and families. 🙂

      • Molly Mosher

        It is so funny to see/hear about play dates that you set up for Scout. I am not sure that when I was a little kiddo that you set up as many play dates for me! Scout must be the favorite daughter! 🙂

      • You had a way of playing well and meeting others without having official play dates, Mookie. And back then I don’t think I ever heard of play dates for kids, though they’re popular now. You were outgoing and busy doing lots of things–but not chewing furniture or barking at dog walkers out in the park…or at least I don’t remember you doing that. But you also weren’t the last of your litter, left alone in a pen at the Humane Society…
        Love you lots, Molly! 🙂 ❤

  5. Rescued pets are the bet. It would be sad to go home to a home without a pet friend.

    • Before Scout, Jim and I used to have weekly breakfast dates with movies, etc., Kate. After Scout got out of the yard just once, even though we fixed it, now we have to take her to Camp Bow Wow to safely play with other dogs and then pick her up afterward, so date day is much more complicated. But you’re right, Kate, it’s worth it to have our dog at home to come home to.

  6. Beautiful dogs, Marylin! I love that Scout has her special bedtime toy. 🙂
    Our well-loved little boy cats came from a shelter.

    • It really is sweet, Marril. Scout is confident, funny, nearly fearless (even if there’s thunder, which is rare), but she really counts on having Squeak in bed with her. Just to be safe, we’ve bought another identical toy and put it away, though we don’t want to have to test it. I’m afraid Scout would know the difference and arch an eyebrow at us, like “Really? I don’t think so.” Dogs–and cats–are so funny and can really catch us when we try to fool them. 😉

    • Molly Mosher

      It really is pretty funny how she knows that toy is for bed time…not for play time!

      • But just in case–and don’t tell Scout this, okay?–we have a spare Squeak packed away. If the real Squeak gets lost or falls apart (she’s already missing an ear), we’ll have a back up. Kind of like when little Gannon’s blankie accidentally got given to Goodwill. I remember how upset he was, and how you had to go through bags at Goodwill looking for it. Nope, we don’t want a repeat of that! 😉 ❤

  7. Nancy Parker Brummett

    Furry friends are great! All that unconditional love.

    • And Scout even proudly returned the mouthful of torn money, dumping it at our feet like it was a gift. Fortunately, Nancy, banks are understanding and helpful if you can provide most of the pieces. The unconditional love goes both ways. 😉

      • Molly Mosher

        Well at least she didn’t eat the money completely. Then you would have had to make sure it didn’t come out as two fives or a five and five ones!

      • Very funny, Molly. 🙂
        I remember when you supposedly swallowed a quarter. We about panicked. It was good you were young and couldn’t identify coins well; it turned out you’d swallowed a dime. So much smaller…but we didn’t “search through everything” to see if we could find it when it came out.
        Love you lots, Mook! ❤

  8. Such precious fur baby memories and photos, Marylin.
    I know how much joy and love they bring into our lives.
    Adopting a fur baby not only helps us humans, but provides a home for the less fortunate fur-humans.
    Happy October. ❤️

  9. Marylin, the picture of your dad with his dog was especially touching, knowing that he lost that bond when the Alzheimer’s became too serious. We had lots of pets on the farm, but have had only two pets, both cats, and both while our children were growing up. I like animals but do so much traveling that it isn’t practical to have them. I think there could come a time in older age when a dog or cat would be a great pal. Someone to talk to, like your dad said.

    • Fritz was Dad’s ultimate excuse not to move from their house to an apartment in the assisted living, Shirley. At first he said no, that Fritz was too big to move to the apartment. But he had Alzheimer’s taking hold even then, because Fritz was already dead. When we reminded Dad of that, and told him how Fritz had been buried in their back yard, Dad had a new excuse; he couldn’t move away from where Fritz was buried. Finally, though, it all settled down, and we could remind Dad about how he’d ask Fritz if he wanted to talk, and Dad would smile.

  10. That Scout has a darling face! Would like to give her a hug!

    • And she would knock you over with enthusiastic affection. We’re working on “off!” as the command to keep her from jumping up; her wagging flag-tail whips back and forth so fast that it alone can knock us off balance. She’s just now a year old–we got her at 10 weeks–and she’s a fast learner, on everything except chewing (see the money picture) and jumping up to greet people.
      It’s so good to hear from you, Claudia. I hope you’re doing well and will be posting again. I always enjoy you writing very much. ❤

  11. Scout is looking beautiful, Marylin. Pretty face!

    • Thanks, Jenny. That glow comes from chewing on ten-dollar bills, or maybe it’s from running around at the dog park…and charming us into playing all kinds of “her” games. It had been three decades since we’d had a real puppy; it’s been quite an experience, but we wouldn’t trade Scout for anything. 😉

      • Molly Mosher

        The whole family really enjoys little Ms. Scouters! It is pretty fun to watch Grace and Gannon with her. I am not sure who wears who out when they play together, but it is enjoyable time for all!

      • There are times when we all still miss Maggie–she was older than both kids and put up with a lot and still loved them–but now both the kids are the older ones who put up with Scout and love her. Ah, the tradition continues in our family! ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

  12. Don

    Beautiful, Marylin. What would we do without them. Special, special friends.

  13. We still miss our CJ and sometimes when I come home I half expect to be jumped on and treated to the Wheaton Hug. Digs really are special

    • Even with Scout to keep us busy, Rod, there are still moments when we think Maggie is here, too. And when Scout is being adorable and funny, one of us will often call her Maggie. They stay in our hearts forever.

  14. Where would we be without our dogs Marylin? Our Jordan is now about eight years old and she was a rescue pup. We adore her and she is part of our family. Thank you so much for writing a post that encourages people to adopt shelter dogs. ❤️

    • You’re welcome, Joanne. Those of us who adopted shelter and rescue dogs treasure the specialness of having them in our family.
      We found Maggie before our granddaughter Grace was even born, so she was always there, patient with Grace and Gannon tugging on her and curling up with her. They were as sad as we were when Maggie died.
      Now, with Scout, they’re the “big brother and sister” and take on those roles. Penelope will be so cute with Jordan. ❤ These dogs definitely know the importance of family.

  15. Jim

    Love your title, sweetie. The double meaning is pretty darn clever! It speaks volumes about our little Scout’s favorite past time–chewing up anything and everything she can grab hold of. Your readers will not be surprised to hear that the missing parts of the $10 bill are somewhere in our backyard by now! ❤

    • Right, honey, but neither of us is prepared to go looking for it. 😉
      I still like our plan with Scout. We’ll be patient and keep working with her, but then in–oh, say three years or so–we’ll celebrate her maturity by getting new furniture and carpeting. Sounds like a good plan, right? ❤ ❤

      • Molly Mosher

        In three years you may be so tired of keeping up with Scout’s energy, you may not care what the furniture and carpet look like!!

      • Uh…three years? I’m almost too tired to care now… 😉 But having Scout helps keep us focused and semi-alert. And laughing and happy. Scout does for us many of the same sweet things having Grace and Gannon has done for us…and of course continue to do. 😉

  16. Molly Mosher

    When I think back to all the wonderful 4 legged babies we have had it makes my heart smile. They each were so different, yet all served a specific purpose in our lives. From Paige and Chelsea and Abra, to Solomon and Calla Lily and Carson, to Munchkin, Monty, Milo, Maizey and Magic, to Maggie, Boots and Diva, Zoey and Duchess and now Scout….they are all such important parts of our lives. Thank goodness that Grandpa and Grandma set the tradition of taking in pets. They taught us to care for and love them unconditionally.

  17. Molly Mosher

    Mor-Mor this is Gannon. Remember how scared I was as a little boy of Zoey. Now that I see pictures of how little she was I think it is really funny that I was so scared of her that I carried a big stick while I was playing in the backyard.

    • Oh, sweetheart, Mor-Mor wasn’t going to bring that up. You were such a little guy, and Zoey knew that even as a Pug she could chase you around.
      What Grandpa and Mor-Mor remember was how we had to chase you around, Gannon. You were about 2 and we took you, your mom and sister Grace to see HAPPY FEET. You ate the kiddie treat before even the previews were over, and you wanted to get out of the movie theater. Grandpa and I followed you and your busy happy feet all over the mall for over an hour until we rented a stroller to strap you in. We were exhausted. You were wonderful, though, and we still laugh about it. ❤ ❤

  18. Molly Mosher

    All my life I have had pets at my house and at your house, Mor-Mor. Dogs and cats have always been around and I love them very much. At my Poppa’s old farm I also used to take care of the cows but that was before I knew where hamburger came from. I love animals and I want to always have them around me. Love you Grace

    • Whew. Glad you said that about the cows, Grace! You named the cows and called to them, and they came right over to the fence. We all dreaded the time you would find out where hamburgers came from… 😉
      You are our trusted babysitter with Scout, and you are wonderful working with Duchess, too. And Munchkin loves to sleep in your room. You are definitely our Pet Whisperer, Gracie! Love you! Mor-Mor

  19. Jane Sturgeon

    Oh Marylin, this whole post is a delight: your photos, memories and your family’s comments. There is such tender energy in the photo of Jim holding Scout. Your grandchildren’s comments are priceless. Much love flowing to you all for sharing and sparking such tender memories, some of them very recent. Strokes for Scout. ❤ xXx

    • Thank you, Jane. If it weren’t for the ocean separating you all, you would connect beautifully with our daughter and our grandchildren. You all have the same tender hearts and happiness in all you do! Many hugs to you! ❤ ❤ ❤

  20. Beautiful dogs, one and all, and what beloved members of your family! Since moving back to the UK in 2003, we haven’t had a dog (hope to again in the future…), but my kids grew up with Bonnie, a mix Collie-Lab and Monty, a black Lab. Both lived to 14, both dearly loved. We also adopted other dogs from Woods Humane over the years. Sadly, not all worked out due to behavourial issues, but we were promised they would be housed with families who could handle them and not put down (one was agressive and with three young children, we couldn’t take the risk…). One was a mix Coyote/Queensland Heeler – can you imagine?! – we called Whiskey. He was as sharp as a whip and a real character, but he killed some of our chickens and kept escaping. Finally, we gave him to friends who owned a huge ranch where he could run free to his heart’s content! Thank you for sharing your darling family pet photos dear Marylin and for highlighting the importance of adopting. Where would we be without our fur families? 🙂 ❤

    • Oh, Sherri, Molly had a black Lab named Monty, too! Such a wonderful, floppy, loopy, energetic dog. And there was speculation that our beloved Maggie, because of where she was born out in the country and also some of her characteristics, might have some Coyote among her breeds, too, so we have some dog-types in common. Why am I not surprised?
      Many hugs to you, Sherri! ❤

      • No surprise at all Marylin! Have a wonderful weekend my dear friend, I’ll catch up with your latest post on Monday as I’m off to spend the weekend with my boys, sending love & hugs to you! 🙂 ❤ xoxo

  21. Our Daisy eats paper and money too! We’ve found numerous bills of various amounts in the yard after she’s passed them! Sneaky! Your Scout is adorable and her name suits her well. XO

  22. Thanks, Robyn. Luckily, we found the pieces of the $10 bill inside the house…I don’t know that we would have looked outside. 😦
    When I took the envelope to the bank and dumped the pieces on the counter, the teller laughed and said, “What kind of puppy do you have?”
    I was glad we weren’t the first. ❤

  23. Such a beautiful heart warming blog.

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