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Nini vacationing in Florida for the winter.

Everyone who knows me well also knows about Nini, my beloved and full-figured Chihuahua.  The two of us have been together many years and in that time I have learned so much from her!  She helps calm me down when I am anxious and stressed. She is my little stable rock. I feel safe and at ease with her around me.  Even though she is getting up there in years (almost 17), her ageless spirit and positive attitude are infectious. People often think she is a chubby little puppy because of her playfulness.

Last week, my post was about why I love being around children and today’s post is about my other love, animals! I used to be more of a cat person as I always felt dogs were high maintenance and needy.  But Nini came along and changed the way I think about dogs.  They are much more low key than you think.  I have learned so much from having Nini in my life.  If you are a dog or animal lover, I think you would agree with me from my list below.  Although Nini has gone to Florida for the winter with my parents since she is not a fan of the cold, (she’s an old lady, ya know) I miss her terribly and I cannot wait to bring her back with me in March. I hope you enjoy reading my insights below and please share with me what you have learned from having pets in your life.  I love getting your emails and comments. So keep them coming!

The five things I have learned from Nini:

1. Unconditional Love.  She loves me when I am up, when I am down, when I am hot, when I am cold, even when I act silly and crazy, she loves me no matter what and demands nothing in return.  Well, other than to feed her and take her out to do her business. 🙂

2. Quality time together with the one you love. How great of a feeling is it to come home from a long day at work and see someone so happy and thrilled to see you? For those of us in relationships, don’t you wish you have a partner that regardless of the years you have been together, every time you see each other, it’s as though you are still in the honeymoon stage? Nini just wants to be with me all the time right by my side and protects me from shady strangers and surroundings.  I love how safe and wanted she makes me feel. 🙂

3.  Silence and stillness is ok.  Being a high achiever, problem solver, and someone who loves to be active and productive, it is quite difficult for me to be still.  Along with the practice of yoga and meditation, Nini also has taught me that just being still and doing nothing actually helps me to be more present, more centered, and more peaceful.

4. The importance of taking naps.  Our fast-paced environment does not really appreciate the value of unplugging the body and giving the mind a break.  I have taken short little naps with Nini and it helped me to recharge, refresh, and rejuvenate myself.  After a short nap, my body feels rested and my mind feels more alert and sharp.

5.  True love will stand the test of time and distance.  From the moment Nini and I met, it was love at first sight.  I knew that this was my dog and she belongs to me and we must be together.  So I stole her from my mother and she became mine. 🙂 Over the years, I have traveled lots and lived many places and was not always home. I would leave Nini with the neighbors, with my father, with my mother, with an assistant, and with friends…and even dog sitters that she hardly knew and has never met.  But no matter how many people and places she has been with, I am still her one and only mistress that she is loyal and devoted to. She has taught me that true love takes patience and grows stronger through times of challenge. No matter how much time and distance is between Nini and I, when we see each other, her love and excitement for me is still the same.  It feels like we have never been apart to begin with.

If you are ever in the Washington, DC Metro Area, come visit my office and showroom in Old Town Alexandria and meet sweet Nini. You will fall in love with her! Perhaps you can join us in a meditation session.  Nini loves meditating!

Photo of Nini surrounded by tu-anh flowers taken by Charles Martin

Nini modeling for my accessories collection. Photo by Charles Martin



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