The Growling Sky – Conversations with Stella, Snoopey, and Tiger

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. I was outside during a rain break, minding my own business when, for no reason at all, the sky growled at me. GROWLED! AT ME! Sweet little Stella who never bothers anybody, well, except for squirrels and cats.

Me:        The sky did not growl at you. That was thunder.

Stella:    Did you hear?

Me:        Yes. The sky doesn’t growl at anybody.

Stella:    It did at me. So, guess what? I growled back. And then it growled at me again. So, guess what?

Me:        What?

Stella:    I ran away. I ran straight to the back door. And you let me in. And I ran straight into my crate, so the sky couldn’t get me. I am so embarrassed. I am a coward.

Tiger:     You are not a coward, Stella. You are just stupid, that’s all.


Stella:    How rude!

Tiger:     Which would you prefer? To be called a coward or stupid?

Stella:    I don’t really have a preference, thank you!

Snoopey:   Don’t listen to Tiger, the bulldog who’s afraid of the dark.


Tiger:     Hey!

Snoopey:   It’s true. How many times does Lady Human offer to let you outside and the second that you see it’s night, you balk and run back to your bed.

Tiger:     So says the one who won’t set foot outside if rain is so much as dripping from the roof or the trees. It’s not even rain anymore. It’s merely water. What are you afraid of, Snoopey? Melting?

Snoopey:    Yes, actually.

Stella:    Snoopey is afraid of falling water. Tiger is afraid of nighttime. I am afraid of the growling sky. All told, my fear is the only one that’s real.

Me:        Oh, the fear is real, the threat not so much.

Stella:    When the sky is angry, it is no threat?

Me:        Yeah, it can be. Thunder means lightning has struck nearby.

Stella:    Lightning? The blue light!

Me:        Untamed electricity.

Stella:    The sky does have fingers then. It did try to grab me. Good news! I was right. The sky does growl. I’m a smart coward.





Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

Puddle Jumpin’ – Conversations with Stella and the Pack

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. Tiny lakes are blocking our path back into the house.

Me:        They are just puddles. Let’s get back in. Rain is starting again in…2 minutes. Maybe. Sometimes they’re pinpoint accurate on these predictions. Sometimes, not so much.

Doodlebug:   Me first. One…two…three…jump! Woo-hoo!

Me:        Well done, Doodle!

Tiger:     Me next! Lope…lope…leap! They said I’d never do that again!

Me:        And look at you now. Well done!

Wiggles:   I can do it! Watch me! Run! Run! Run! Run through the brush and around the other side and… Yay!

Me:        That’s one way to do it. Go on in and get your snack. We’re up against a deadline here. Well done.

Miss Sweetie:    I can do it, Lady Human. Watch me! Watch me! Run…skip…jump…and there!

Stella:    You made quite a splash, Sweetie.

Miss Sweetie:    What happened? My feet are all muddy. I am standing in water. That wasn’t supposed to happen.

Me:        It’s all right, Sweetie. Not all of us are hurdlers. Go on in and get your treat. Times a’wastin. Who’s next?

Stella:    Snoopey! Snoopey’s next!

Me:        Okay, girl.

Snoopey:   If I hadn’t come out here to pee, this would not have happened.

Me:        Snoopey, I know how much you hate coming out when it’s wet. You can run on in. You don’t have to jump.

Snoopey:   I can do this. I can do this. I can run and jump…

Me:        You see! You did it! Your hind feet barely touched the water! Well done! Go on in and get your treat.

Snoopey:   And dry my feet.

Me:        That too. And now, Stella, let’s go. No time left. The new rain is upon us.

Stella:    Carry me so that my pretty little feet don’t get any wetter.

Me:        Honey, I’m sorry. I can’t pick up 50 pounds. I could edge you forward, but you are going to have to do some of the work.

Stella:    Work? You can’t be serious.

Me:        Did you feel that?

Stella:    Sky water?

Me:        Yep. Decision time.

Stella:    Oh. All right. Here I go. Run…run…splash…splash…Aww….

Me:        Good girl! Well done! You got across!

Stella:    Not so well done. My feet are wet and cold. I didn’t make a good landing.

Me:        That’s what a warm house and a soft dry bed and treats are for. Forget this. Let’s go on in.

Stella:    Will it be dry tomorrow?

Me:        According to the weather people, no.

Stella:    What good is it to live in a hot, dry country when it is cold and wet all the time?

Me:        I’ll ask you a similar question during the summer when you complain about being hot and dry.







Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.









Never Let a Friend Stand in the Rain Alone – Conversations with Stella and the Pack

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. It is raining.  It has been raining a lot lately. Announcement: I do not potty in the rain.

Snoopey:   Me either.

Tiger:     Me neither.

Miss Sweetie:    Why is Lady Human standing outside in the rain?

Wiggles:   Maybe she is taking a shower. Use rain. Save water and what the humans keep calling ‘money’.

Stella:    Lady Human is a human lady. She does not take baths outside. I don’t understand why. It seems to be a thing with humans to bathe indoors.

Me:        Come on, y’all.

Doodlebug:   She is calling us to go stand in the rain with her. Is that a good idea? I don’t think so.

Stella:    No! Did you hear that big kaboom? I don’t go out when the kabooms are going off.

Tiger:     Why is she standing out there? I thought humans were smart.

Me:        C’mon. It’s not raining that hard yet.

Stella:    What does she call ‘hard’?

Snoopey:   Should we just stand here like this? Shouldn’t we go outside and stand with her?

Doodlebug:   So we can get wet?

Wiggles:   She just wants us to go to the bathroom, so we can be comfortable.

Miss Sweetie:    I am going to stand with her. She should not be out there by herself.

Snoopey:   I would go, but I am afraid the rain will make me melt.

Tiger:   I will wait for the sky to stop spitting.

Doodlebug:   I am going to take a nap. Dry.

Wiggles:   I am going out with you, Sweetie. Nobody should stand in the rain alone.

Stella:    Oh, very well. I’ll go, too. If someone is willing to stand in the rain for me, I should be willing to stand in the rain for them. Hurry. Let’s run between the raindrops.

Me:   Okay. Well, if you are coming out, I’m going in.

Stella:    No! Traitor! You fooled us! What about camaraderie?

Me:        Camaraderie?  Are you kidding? It’s raining!





Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.






Mud Baths – Conversations with Stella

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges…

Me:        I have a question.

Stella:    Interruptions, interruptions. Constant human disruptions.

Me:        Have you gotten into rhymes?

Stella:    I haven’t gotten into anything today except mud, which, by the way, I would appreciate you cleaning up.

Me:        Wash your feet? Sure, I can…

Stella:    No, I took care of my own feet, thank you very much. I mean I would appreciate you cleaning up the mud outside.

Me:        I think that is a little outside my abilities. We will just wait for the dry air and the sun to do their jobs.

Stella:    I ask for a simple favor and what do I get? Nothing. Typical.

Me:        You want me, little old me, to clean up all the mud outside?

Stella:    Well put. Of course, you are not THAT little, Lady Human.

Me:        The whole ground is made up of dirt. You add water like the rain we had this morning. Result? Mud.

Stella:    Let me see if I understand. Rain, also known as sky water, plus dirt, also known as…dirt, equals mud, also known as yucky dirt.

Me:        That’s about it.

Stella:    And you are a human and can, therefore, do anything, yet you refuse to do a small thing like clean up the muddy mess outside.

Me:        Let’s go back over the whole human thing. Humans cannot…I repeat for the umpteenth time, CANNOT do just anything, period.

Stella:    Nonsense. I see you do the most extraordinary things all the time. What is a little mud?

Me:        How do you expect me to dry up mud instantly?

Stella:    Simple. Use your big human mouth to blow the dirt dry.

Me:        I thought you bulldogs were the ones with the big mouths.

Stella:    Now you are just being insulting. We would never waste our breath on such a dirty job.



Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

Toe Pops – Conversations with Stella and the Pack

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. Now that breakfast has been concluded successfully, which means without any disasters or weirdness…Sweetie. Sweetie!

Miss Sweetie:    Hmmm?

20170315_170602.jpgStella:    I spoke too soon. What are you doing? What’s wrong with your feet?

Miss Sweetie:    COLD! WET! BRRRR! So, I am licking them warm with my warm, wet tongue. Mmmm. They taste good. But so cold.

Stella:    You were not out that long. My feet are not cold.

Snoopey:   I know why. Look at the puppy pool.

Me:        Oh. I see. Wet footprints leading away from it. It has rain in it.

Miss Sweetie:    I love the puppy pool. It is always so comfortable.


Me:        It is always comfortable in the summer when the temperature outside is 100 degrees, not in the dead of winter when the temperature outside is…well, less than 100 degrees. We never know for sure what to count on with the weather here. It was 38 this morning, Sweetie. That’s too cold for swimming or wading.

Miss Sweetie:    The water looked so good, but now my feet are cold.

Tiger:     Did you happen to notice that none of the rest of us stepped in it?

Miss Sweetie:    Yes, I thought you were saving it for me.

Snoopey:    We aren’t THAT nice, Sweetie.

Wiggles:   Do you want me to chew on your feet? That will warm them up quick.

Me:        No, Wiggles, I don’t recommend that. Sweetie, would you like some warm towels? I will give you some if you promise not to eat them.

Miss Sweetie:    That sounds good, except for the not eating them part. I don’t think I can promise that far.




Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

What Are You Looking For? – Conversations with Stella

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. Lady Human is totally distracted which is terrible because it means that she is not paying attention to me. What is so fascinating that it would take your attention away from me, I want to know?

Me:        Weather.

Stella:    That makes no sense. According to you, we have weather every day. It isn’t even daytime anymore. The sun went to bed a long time ago.

Me:        Changing weather.

Stella:    Changing into what?

Me:        Winter. Real winter.

Stella:    Have we been having fake winter? Because it has seemed very cold to me lately.

Me:        We have had an ice-less winter thus far. Rain only.  That may change shortly.

Stella:    Will the sky spit ice blocks like the ones you give us to lick on during the hot times?

Me:        Ice cubes? No, I sure hope not. No, this will be freezing rain and snow. Do you remember snow?

Stella:    Is it good to eat?  Because if it isn’t good to eat, my memory is pretty short.

Me:        The last time we saw significant snow was the day before you came to live with us. I can understand if you don’t remember. I don’t know if there was snow where you were that day.

Stella:    I don’t remember much before I came here. I remember a few things. What does snow look like?

Me:        It is cold and soft and white. When it falls, it is not like rain. It doesn’t run away. It makes no sound. The whole world goes silent. It piles up on the ground and on roofs and on roads. It crunches a little when you step on it. Your feet make deep prints in it so that you can see every step you have taken.

Stella:    That sounds wonderful. Can you see it yet?

Me:        No. But the rain has started. Tall Man called. Rain is failing and freezing as it hits the ground where he is.

Stella:    No! He needs to come home now! Why is he still out there?

Me:        He is helping some friends fix their truck.

Stella:    No! Let the friends fix their own truck. He should not be out when water is freezing from the sky.

Me:        He’ll be all right.

Stella:    I will wait up for him.

Me:        If you wish.

Stella:    Can you see it yet? The real winter?

Me:        No, but I can feel it. The rain has started. Tonight, it will freeze.

Stella:    What will become of us?

Me:        We will sleep and, when we wake, the world will look very different.

Stella:    What will we do?

Me:        Tomorrow, if enough snow falls, we can make a snowman for the first time in years.

Stella:    Forget that! We will make a snow dog! Better use of the precious snow.




Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.



Weather for Ducks – Conversations with Stella

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. A couple of days ago, the sky cried all night. It rained cats and squirrels.

Me:   I believe that the expression is ‘it rained cats and dogs’.

Stella:   Nonsense, Lady Human! Dogs would never be so foolish as to get caught up in the sky just to fall to the ground. Where was I? Oh, yes. The ground was a shallow lake. The humans say that it was great weather for ducks. And Lady Human wants us to go out in this mess because she refuses to build us a bathroom in the house. What do we look like? Ducks?

Me:        It’s not raining anymore.

Stella:    Did the sky run out of tears?

Me:        Sort of.

Stella:    Then what were those water drops that kept falling from the sky?

Me:        Those were drips from the trees. And from the roof. And condensation from the fog.

Stella:    So, rain leftovers. The ground is still soaking wet. My precious toes deserve better.

Me:        Think of it as a mud bath for your feet. Some humans pay a lot of money for that sort of treatment.

Stella:    All humans know how to waste their time. They should go outside here and try our cold mud. Take your shoes off, Lady Human, and dip your toes. Sticky. Mucky. Dirty toenails. The whole package in seconds. Enjoy.

Me:        Mmmm, no. But the fact remains – you all need to go out. Bathroom break.

Stella:    Only when the trees stop weeping. Only when the dirt stops swimming.

Me:        Can you hold out that long?

Stella:    Mmmm, well…now that I think about it…NO! Outta my way! Time to make another puddle!




Copyright 2017 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

It’s Cooler and That is a Bad Thing? – Conversations with Stella

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. The weather is wonderfully cooler, but it is still summer, at least that is what the birds and green leaves tell me. Why is the air not burning, Lady Human?

Me:        We are receiving some rain and breezes from many miles south of here. A hurricane came ashore the other day.

Stella:    Another confusing human word which means what?

Me:        A huge and dangerous storm with much rain and wind.

Stella:    Like a thunderstorm that flashes bright light while rain hits the windows like little rocks?

Me:        No, more than that.

Stella;    Thunderstorms are scary. How can a hurricane be more than that?

Me:        It is the size of hundreds of thunderstorms all circling around a center. The winds are so strong that large trees break and small ones bow and signs and roofs of buildings tear off and go flying and rain floods everything low and rises higher and higher.

Stella:    Have you ever seen this horror called a hurricane, Lady Human?

Me:        Yes. Many years ago, a very powerful hurricane hit my hometown head on. I was very young, but I remember my father boarding up our windows and tying down our yard furniture and my swing set and slide with strong wires so they would not fly off. And I remember my mother putting rolled up towels against the bottom of the doors to keep the water out for as long as possible.

Stella:    And did it? Stay out? The water?

Me:        The rain filled the ditch by the road and covered the yard and came up over the front step and right up to the door. And then stopped. As I recall, the towels got wet, but not the carpet. And then the hurricane passed.

Stella:    Where did it go?

Me:        As hurricanes go inland away from the big waters, they die out.

Stella:    Good.

Me:        They named that one Carla.

Stella:    Humans name monster storms?

Me:        Yeah.

Stella:    Like they are pets?

Me:        I don’t know. Maybe it makes the event more memorable. Instead of calling it Hurricane Number 34810 or something like that. This one is called Harvey.

Stella:    I don’t care to meet him.

Me:        Me either. But many of our neighbors already have.

Stella:    Can a hurricane throw a bulldog?

Me:        Yes, I’m sure it can.

Stella:    Lady Human, will it come here?

Me:        We may get some rain. Don’t worry about the winds. I’ve never seen a hurricane remnant this far from the coast with more than 40 mile per hour winds.

Stella:    If it’s all the same to you, I will be happy to send the cooler air away if our neighbors can be all right. So please, just send Harvey away.

Me:        We will pray, Stella. As always, we will pray.








Copyright 2017 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.




Curfew Violator – Conversations with Stella

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges, and once again, Lady Human has broken her curfew.

Me:        I am a grown human. I have no curfew. Besides, I went to the grocery store at 3:30 in the afternoon.

Stella:    And you said when you left that you would not be gone long. But you were gone long. And do you know what happened while you were gone? Big booms and light flashes in the sky. And rain hit the glass squares in the wall like buckets of water being thrown by a giant.

Me:        That’s an interesting image, Stella.

Stella:    A giant insect.

Me:        Ohhh-kay. Well, the same storm hit the store where I was. That is why I was delayed. The wind blew the heavy rain sideways, so thick and fast that we couldn’t see the parking lot. It was wrapped in gray. It looked like a hurricane.

Stella:    What would have happened if you had never come back?

Me:        Don’t worry, girl. Tall Man would have been here after his work ends.

Stella:    There was no storm where Tall Man is?

Me:        Yes, there was.

Stella:    It was not as bad as our storm?

Me:        A little worse. They had wind and rain and hail the size of ping pong balls.

Stella:    No!!! The Great Creator must tell the sky to stop throwing ping pong balls!

Me:        I am adding that to my prayer list. Really.

Stella:    Why does the sky throw ping pong balls?

Me:        They are actually chunks of ice. You see, water starts to come down through the atmosphere. Way up there, it is very cold and the water freezes; then another wind pushes the ice back up where it gets coated with another layer of water which also freezes, and that keeps on happening until the ice chunk is heavier than the upper wind can support and it falls to the ground…

Stella:    Boring! I mean why can’t the sky throw flowers or real ping pong balls that we could chase or…treats! That would be useful and it wouldn’t hurt if someone got hit by them!

Me:        Things aren’t set up that way. Flowers don’t fall from the sky. They grow from the ground.

Stella:    I think that should be different. I think ping pong ice should not fall from the sky. Flowers should.

Me:        Is that your bulldog plan?

Stella:    Yes.

Me:        Have you figured out how this will take place?

Stella:    No. I am letting you and the Great Creator work that out.

Me:        That is wise. I think that I will turn that over to Him. He is much better at planning how the earth works than I am.

Stella:    Probably a good idea, Lady Human. I have seen how you plan things.



Copyright 2017 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.


Where Are The Stars? – Conversations with Stella

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges, but that makes no difference to the sky. One minute it’s dark. The next minute it lights up with a blue flash. Then it goes dark again.

Me:        Do you feel that?

Stella:    The wind is rising. It feels good. Where are the stars?

Me:        Hidden by clouds. It’ll be almost 20 degrees cooler by morning.

Stella:    Does the blue flashing light make the air colder?

Me:        No.

Stella:    What is the light?

Me:        We call it ‘lightning’. It is electricity.

Stella:    Did the Great Creator make it?

Me:        Yes, I believe so. When I see it, it makes me think of Him.

Stella:    It scares me a little.

Me:        Me, too. God is great. He can be scary, too. But He is love.

Stella:    Is electricity dangerous?

Me:        Sure.

Stella:    Then why are we standing out here in it?

Me:        It’s not here quite yet. Look at the chickens. They know. They’re getting their last feed in before the storm hits.

Stella:    They aren’t usually out this far after dark.

Me:        They sense that they may have to stay in their chicken house for a while. This storm is supposed to pass by in a few hours.

Stella:    Will we be all right?

Me:        By God’s good grace and mercy, yes.

Stella:    How can you be sure?

Me:        Well, He and I have had a few adventures together. I’ve never found Him to be absent or lacking. I’ll have to tell you sometime about the Supercell storm my daughter and I outran 2 years ago. He was with us that day.

Stella:    What if He has gone on vacation, the way the humans do?

Me:        He never slumbers or sleeps. And He doesn’t go on vacation. He is always God.

Stella:    Even now, with the sky all lit up like blue fire?

Me:        Especially now. But He does expect us to use the sense He gave us, so let’s go on inside. Do you feel that? The rain is starting.

Stella:    It feels like a shower except colder.

Me:        Yes. Except colder.

Stella:    Let’s go in now! Nobody likes cold showers!



Copyright 2017 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.


Why Am I Peeing in the Rain? – Conversations with Stella

Me:        Why are we talking about bathroom issues again, Stella?

Stella:    Do you pee in the rain?

Me:        No, well, I’m not going to say never. I have been camping in the wilderness before, but…

Stella:    Well, I have for the last three days. So have we all, we bulldogs that is. If you get to pee inside when it rains, so should we.

Me:        The logistics are a little difficult.

Stella:    Logistics? Is that a word that means ‘peeing in the rain’? Because we want an indoor toilet. Humans understand these things. I know. I heard that man singing on the Picture Box about peeing in the rain.

Me:        Wait! When was that?

Stella:    That old singing movie you watch all the time on the Picture Box. He dances and sings about peeing.

Me:        No. No. No. No. He’s not ‘peeing in the rain’. He’s singing in the rain. Do you need your ears cleaned?

Stella:    Oh, that makes more sense because he seems happy and I am never happy and I never dance when I pee in the rain. I thought it was odd that you kept watching a movie about peeing in the rain when I never see humans do that.

Me:        I am sorry about the continued rain. It is supposed to start drying out tomorrow. Honestly, an indoor toilet for the bulldogs is not an option.

Stella:    Then somebody needs to tell Wiggles. She thinks the whole indoor/outdoor thing is a personal choice.



Copyright 2017 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

Stella’s Blog – No Barking at Breakfast

Hello! I am Stella, Queen (Yes, QUEEN) of the Olde English Bulldogges. Welcome once again to my blog. I like blogging because I have much to say on every subject, even subjects I know nothing about.

The sky has been crying a lot. Rain, the humans call it. But I am dry and comfortable. Why? Because I do not dance in the water like Miss Sweetie and Doodlebug. They are silly puppies and come back in the house painted with mud and who knows what else. I am dignified and all grown up and…oh, what’s that? The cat is running and I must catch her!  Aaaagghh! I slid on the floor. Missed chance! Where was I? Ah, I am a dignified grown-up and I don’t do silly things.

Which is why I want to complain about barking at breakfast.

I like a nice, quiet morning. Breakfast comes after outdoor potty time (take note, Miss Sweetie – outdoor potty time. There is no official indoor potty time ever.) Lady Human calls our food time “The Hallelujah Breakfast Club” and she eats with us. Not the same food  out of our bowls. I would not like that. Everybody, stay out of my bowl! I don’t want your dirty mouths in it. That goes double for Lady Human. I have no idea what humans eat or chew on. I don’t even want to think about it.

I have noted way too much loud bulldog talk during breakfast. Tiger is the biggest loudmouth. If I can wait patiently for my bowl to be filled, why can’t you,Tiger? And Doodlebug does not have to put his five pennies in either.

(Pause for consultation with transcriptionist)

 Two cents. I have been informed that the human expression is two cents. Very well. Two cents. It sounded more like five to me.

The point is they have nothing to say and it is too early to be listening to loud noises. Barking should be used for emergencies only, such as strangers, hurry up bathroom runs, Moon the Cat, and singing the song of our people.

So please, everyone, dogs and people, keep the barking down in the mornings. The only sound that we should hear is bulldog mouths chomping our food. Humans may stay if they eat silently.

Thank you for your kind attention. That is all.


Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges


Copyright 2016 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.



Conversations with Stella – The Crying Sky

Me:        Stella, the Olde English Bulldogge, is back for another conversation about her important question of the day. So what has you perturbed today, Stella?

Stella:   First of all, QUEEN STELLA to you. Others may call me “Your Majesty”.

Me:        Nope.

Stella:   The sky has been crying too much.

Me:        We have been having a wet spring.

Stella:   Why?

Me:        It would take a long to explain and I’m not sure you would understand. I ‘m not sure that I do. Some years are rainy and some are dry.

Stella:   Is the sky sad?

Me:        The sky doesn’t have emotions like that. There are a lot of things going on up there.

Stella:   Is the Creator angry? I heard the big booms over and over again the past few nights. And light was flashing outside.

Me:        Those were thunderstorms. The Creator is far more powerful than a thunderstorm. We can’t even imagine how powerful. If the Creator were angry with us, a thunderstorm would be the least of our concerns.

Stella:   It was scary.

Me:        But you were safe even though something scary was going on.

Stella:   Snoopey was so stupid. She started barking and all that did was make things louder.

Me:        The storms frighten her, too. She was just trying to warn us.

Stella:   Stupid Snoopey! Barking at the sky!

Me:        But you were scared, too.

Stella:   Yes, but I didn’t bark like a silly head. I hunkered down in my bed and covered my face like a smart dog. Lady Human, you talk to the Creator, don’t you?

Me:        Yes, it’s called prayer.

Stella:   I thought so because sometimes you are talking when no humans are around and you aren’t talking to me or the bulldogs. Or to that silly cat. Would you ask the Creator to stop the sky from crying so much and so loudly?

Me:        I’m not going to ask for the rain to stop. We need it for the lakes and rivers and fields. Summer is coming. But I can ask for moderate rain, not so much all at once.

Stella:   Is the Creator mean?

Me:        No, He is kind.

Stella:   Then why are there scary thunderstorms?

Me:        Maybe He allows them so we will remember to look up.


Copyright 2016 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.






Hey, Sky! Give Me a Drink!

We have bulldogs that like to play with water, whether from a hose or a squirt bottle, and we have bulldogs that stay away from that sort of frivolity, thank you all the same. A quiet drink lapped from a bowl is just fine for them. They may be willing to tolerate the occasional bath, just don’t make it a habit.

A rain shower came up suddenly while some of the dogs were outside. One wanted to return to the house right away. When I realized it was raining, I found her waiting by the door. She rushed in, glad to have escaped the falling sky water. Still the others didn’t come and I went looking for them.

They were rolling in the gathering water by the chicken run and, when I called, they looked at me with the surprised, disappointed expressions of kids called in for the night after playing on a summer evening. Awwww! Noooo! Not yet!

Well, I wasn’t going to get all wet while they were finishing their fun. It wasn’t cold. There was no lightning. Oh, well. I went back into the house, calculating how many towels would be enough to intercept the dripping from two waterlogged bulldogs.

When I looked out the door again, the stragglers had arrived and, behold, one of them had her head tilted back with her wide open bulldoggy mouth catching a thin stream of rainwater as it cascaded from the valley in the roof.

Of course, before I could swing my camera up and snap a picture, she had stopped. Enough sky water for then.

I would like to drink pure water from a fountain. Not sure about the roof thing. Maybe if it had a strainer. Bulldogs don’t over think joys like drinking rain as it falls from the sky. I need to work on accepting life’s gifts freely as the gifts of God that they are. Not every drink of water needs to be confined to a glass.


Copyright 2016 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

A Little Rain Must Fall

My mother often employed the old expression, “Into every life, a little rain must fall.” She never knew a bulldog or she would have realized that they reject that sentiment utterly. Like oil and water, rain and bulldogs don’t mix.

Our most recent interactions with a morning-long downpour went something like this:

Snoopey. I knew what was going to happen, but I tried anyway. “Come on, girl, outside quick! It’s a little slower now.” She took five steps toward the open door. Nope! Recognizing the wet mess, she whirled around, ran into her crate, and hunkered down.

Okay, next?

Stella didn’t even lift her head. She opened her eyes, glanced at the door, and closed them again. Nope! I generally know when not to waste my time.

Okay, next?

Wiggles. Sweet, sweet Wiggles. I hustled her through the door before she knew what was going on in the world of weather. (Not always quick on the uptake is Wiggles, but as I said, really, really sweet). She halted just outside, cast a longing look over her shoulder at the dry house, sighed, went “oh, well”, and trotted into the yard to get it over with which she did in double quick time. Back inside, she performed the mandatory ceremonial shaking of the coat.

Okay, next?

Tiger. Eager and quick, she ran to the door, skidding to a halt, cartoon style, with all four legs fighting off the soaked threshold. Nope! Oh, come on, Tiger! I gave her a push from behind, but the feet were planted. Nope! I gave up. Some bulldog battles aren’t worth fighting. She flipped around and rushed into her crate, not even detouring for a morning snarl match with Snoopey. That’s how serious avoiding this rain business was.

We all face trials. Some are easier than others to confront. Our attitudes make the difference in how well we come through it.

“…count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.” James 1:2-3 KJV

Like the bulldogs, I don’t always count rain or some other delay or temptation a joy, but if I let it, it does teach patience. And none of the fussing over it stopped a single drop of rain from falling. We all eventually got a little wet.


©2016 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.