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Sunday, January 2, 2022


By Caroline Clemmons

Happy New Year!

Are you making resolutions for 2022? I prefer to think of mine as goals, plans. As always, one of them is to lose weight. This time I intend to have more success. Our two daughters and I intend to support one another in this goal.

Like other authors, I plan projects for the coming year. This year I’m branching out to include cozy mystery and light women’s fiction with my romances. Writing a variety of genres works for Nancy Frasier, and I’m hoping it works for me—even though I don’t write as fast as she does.

This past year, we acquired a new dog, a toy poodle/mystery breed that showed up on a neighbor’s porch on July 3rd. The neighbors know our youngest daughter rescues animals. This neighbor called our daughter to ask if she would get this frightened dog off her porch.  Early fireworks had terrified the poor dog cowering in a corner. Our daughter is like the pied piper with animals and she was able to charm the dog into coming with her. He had no tags and wasn’t chipped. The vet estimated the young dog was about eighteen months old. Our daughter named the dog Baxter.


In the past, twice we have had a toy poodle as a pet. Hero had mentioned that the next time we got a dog, he wanted a toy poodle.  When our daughter texted me Baxter’s photo, I asked her to save him for me rather than look for another home for him. She did and now he has joined us with our approximately eight-year-old Shih Tzu/terrier mix, Chloe. The two get along well. Baxter gets along with our two cats, Sebastian and Jasmine. On the other hand, Chloe is moody and varies in her cat tolerance.


On New Year’s Eve, both dogs were terrified. I suppose having survived as stray dogs, they were reminded of the time they spent outdoors in who knows what conditions. Unfortunately, the family behind us had a New Years Eve party and set off fireworks until the wee (2:30 am) hours of the morning. Guess who didn’t get much sleep!  Both dogs were scared, but Chloe was so frightened and shook so badly that I was afraid she’d have convulsions. Poor Chloe stuck so close it was if she was trying to climb inside me to escape the noise.

This long explanation is to say that one of our goals for the coming year is to get Chloe to tolerate cats even when she isn’t in the mood. For this, we plan to have a trainer come to the house and show us what we’re doing wrong.

Do you have pets? If so, have you ever used a trainer for them?



  1. Happy New Year Caroline! Poor Chloe- I use my google speakers (like you have) and play ocean sounds - very loudly "Hey Google, play ocean sounds" "Hey Google increase volume" This doesn't drown out all the noise but most of it- so my dogs are rarely bothered by fireworks. I do this every night so that my dogs don't bark at the least little sound from outside.

  2. I only have cats, who've been training me forever now. I hope it goes well for you delving into other sub-genres!

  3. We not longer have a dog since we travel to Florida for five months now. :( I miss having one, but not the work. Our Dalmatian shed like a indoor snowstorm hit the house. It required sweeping all the carpets every other day. Like you, I hope to write more this year. But I'm a slooow writer. Happy New Year, Caroline!


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