With 3+ dogs in our house, you can bet we’ve had issues with lingering pet odors. No matter the season (especially here in Maine) these dogs can go outside for just a few minutes and come back covered in mud…or who knows what!
Honestly, I wish I could say that our dogs have never had accidents in our house, but I would be lying. Between puppies learning to use the bathroom and dogs getting sick, we have had our fair share of smelly dog messes.
And I’m not gonna lie… we do let all our dogs up on our bed. When we first got Ali, we tried to keep him off it but he would just wait until he thought we were asleep and then jump back up… over and over again until we just let him up there with us. Now they all think it’s their biggest dog bed and we have to wash our blankets VERY often. Even then, sometimes the dog smell just doesn’t go away which can get pretty frustrating.
Not to mention the not so wonderful wet dog smell that never seems to come off the towels after using them to dry the pups off. Nothing worse than thinking you have a nice clean towel only to be ruined by a musty wet dog smell!
That was until Tide introduced us to their powerful dual-liquid formula detergent Tide One Wash Miracle! It contains odor-eliminating agents that actually give you an amazing clean! Plus it’s really easy to use, just remove the cap and label, pour it in your washing machine to activate the solution, drop in the canister, and start your laundry. Then just remove the canister before moving laundry over to the dryer.
Tide One Wash Miracle is safe on virtually machine-washable fabrics and can be used in front-load, top-load, and high-efficiency washing machines. But it does not replace your regular laundry detergent; it’s meant to be used only on those that need an extra-powerful wash.
I was a little skeptical because some of the items we washed, haven’t smelt nice in a long time… But I’m happy to say that Tide One Wash Miracle really made a big difference!
If you are struggling with lingering odors, I would highly recommend trying Tide One Wash Miracle! Use code OFFERS20 for 20% off your purchase!
Last year we were invited to stay at the dog friendly inn Paws on Pelham in Newport, Rhode Island. Now when I say dog friendly, what I really mean is every little detail in this adorable inn was created with dogs and their humans in mind. From the super cute wallpaper decorating the walls to the gorgeous water fountain and marble bowls in the main space. They even have the perfect wall mural for photo shoots/selfies with your pup! I told my husband to take notes because I just loved how beautiful everything in this inn is!
Timing couldn’t have been more perfect for our trip to Paws On Pelham. Not only was it mine and my husband’s 1st wedding anniversary but we were able to drop off our little foster pup Marlie to her new forever home on our way! I’m not gonna lie, I cried on the way, during and after we dropped Marlie off. We got her when she was about 10 weeks old and had her for a solid month. She is deaf and partially blind so she was a challenging pup to have around. She had this insanely loud, high pitch cry that she would scream anytime she was awake and couldn’t tell you were near her so in some ways we were ready for her to move on… But she had so many other great features that made up for the loud cry and I knew I was gonna miss spending my days with her.
Paws On Pelham was the perfect distraction for us, it was so nice to be able to go on a fun adventure immediately after saying goodbye to Marlie. We brought Jax and Jasper with us and thankfully they were such good and patient boys on the long drive there. It was a 4+1/2 hour drive from our house in Maine to POP in Newport, RH and lets just say we were all thrilled to finally arrive and get out of the car!
The wonderful Inn keeper Allison, went above and beyond for us- I really can’t say enough nice things about her, she made us all feel so welcomed and the pups couldn’t get enough of her! After we got settled in we took the boys for a walk into town. Newport has such an awesome atmosphere and we couldn’t get enough of it! We couldn’t walk more than a few yards before someone wanted to meet and pet our dogs. Some people even took their photos with them! It was so great to see how dog friendly Newport is. I mean there is even a long list of dog friendly business’s in the area on the other side of the ‘do not disturb’ sign for your door at the inn. We spent the rest of the evening feeding then walking the dogs before we ordered ourselves some dinner to eat back at the inn.
Our room was a cute spacious suite with a living room, bedroom and bathroom. The living room had a keurig coffee maker and a mini fridge AND both rooms had a tv in it! It was a pretty awesome. The next morning we got up and went downstairs to the Grab & Go Cafe where Allison made us the most delicious breakfast! She even asked us if there were any dietary restrictions she needed to know about when we checked in.
After breakfast, we decided to go on an adventure to help tire the pups out before trying to take some photos at the inn. We drove just a little ways to the perfect spot- the Newport Cliff Walk! We had the perfect fall weather to go with the perfect ocean view and it was a great way for us all to get some exercise in and have fun at the same time! We spent way more time there than expected because we literally couldn’t walk more than a few yards before someone wanted to stop us and talk or say hi to the dogs. We didn’t mind though, it was a great socializing experience for the pups (and us) and it was fun meeting other dog crazy people!
When we got back to Paws On Pelham, we went around the Inn taking photos with the pups. We started on the RUFFtop Deck and worked our way down to the back patio. The whole place was so quiet and peaceful, even on the front porch. We were all pretty tired by the time I was done snapping photos so we went back to our room and I edited photos while everyone else was napping.
We all had so much fun and didn’t want to leave the next morning. Allison made us another delicious breakfast that we took on the road with us since we had such a long trip home. We left this dog friendly inn thinking that it really has the PERFECT name! Paws On Pelham is 100% worth the drive-no matter where you are coming from! We would highly recommend to anyone who loves to travel with their best friend- their dog.
Not only is Fort Williams Park a beautiful dog friendly park on the coast with lots to explore but it is also the home of the Portland Head Light, the most photographed lighthouse in America!
With over 90 acres of recreational space, we have only explored some of it but we plan on making a trip back there soon! Between checking out the lighthouse (and of course getting a photo of it) and walking the cliffside loop to the rocky beach, it’s easy to spend a whole afternoon there. And that’s not even mentioning touring the Arboretum, the Children’s Garden, the Goddard Mansion and of course Battery Keyes and Battery Blair!
Also there are vendors in the park during the summer offering crepes, lobster rolls, sandwiches and gelato! Oh and there is even an off leash area for all those good behaving pups out there! Sounds like a perfect Maine summer day to me!
Since my husband Dave and I are generally shy people when we are out exploring, it was pretty funny that the first time we visited, the place was packed with tourists from a cruise ship that docked near by. When your walking around with 3 beautiful goldens and 1 adorable little boston terrier/pug mix… you get stopped a lot.
We get stopped so much that we have to plan for extra time when we go out with them. But we totally get it, I would probably stop other people if I walked by a group of adorable dogs! It is actually a great way to meet new people and I find its way easier to talk about my dogs then it is to talk about myself so it works for us!
Most of the people from the cruise ship that stopped to talk to us were missing their own dogs. They were saying how they wished they could have brought them with them or how their kids are pet sitting and sending them photos. Others had goldens in the past and told us some of their favorite memories of them.
I’ll never forget this one woman who stopped us to compliment the pups and give them some love. Unfortunately, she had just lost her golden the day before while she was on the cruise and her golden was home with her daughter. My heart hurt for her, I know how hard it is to lose a loved one and not being there must make it so much harder. But Tavish, Jax, Jasper and Ali all made her smile from the moment she saw them. I feel like we ran into her for a reason, to share a little joy on a difficult day and that alone made the whole trip worth it.
Definitely put this on your must visit list! With all of the fun outdoor activities and beautiful scenery, you just can’t go wrong. Who knows you might even meet some new friends!
Keep these tips in mind if you visit Fort Williams Park & Portland Head Light: * Open from sunrise to sunset * Has a carry in/carry out policy. There are no trash receptacles in the park. * Now has a parking fee. Click here for more information. * Click here for more information about Fort Williams Park & Portland Head Light
Keep reading to view more photos from our adventures at Fort Williams Park & Portland Head Light!
Just kidding- no they don’t! That is part of what makes dogs so special. My dogs have never cared about how my hair looks! And trust me, my hair (or lack thereof) has looked pretty crazy throughout the years!
Growing up I had beautiful long thick hair that just started falling out when I was around 17 years old. I remember trying everything I could find that said it helped with hair growth but nothing ever worked. Turns out, I have androgenic alopecia which is also known as female pattern baldness. I ended up cutting my hair really short, right out of high school because it was so thin and was just getting worse. For the last 12 years, I tried really, really hard to not let it stop me from being my true self but deep down, I know that I lost a piece of myself when I lost my hair.
That is why I’m so grateful to have always had dogs in my life, I don’t know what I would do without them! I started spending all my spare time with my dogs instead of people. Dogs don’t care how much hair you have, even if they have better hair than you!
In October 2015, about a week after I had to make the hardest decision of my life to put my sweet sheltie (Jake) of 10 years down because he had cancer & was in pain. Tavish’s previous owner, whose a friend of the family asked if we wanted him because she was looking for a new home for him. Dave and I have known (and loved) Tavish since he was a puppy, we even watched him for a week or so once, so we knew he would be a great fit in our family. However, since I had just lost Jake and we already had my late grandmother’s dog, Ali, I wasn’t quite ready for another dog… but thankfully my parents were! I remember them saying “well… can we do a trial run, just in case it doesn’t work out?” Believe when I say that trial run only lasted about 30 seconds! He’s been a loved member of our family ever since!
Unfortunately our beloved Puppa Tavish unexpectedly passed away on March 5th 2019 surrounded by family. We still can’t believe this happened and miss him terribly. He was a truly amazing dog that came into our lives when we needed him most and he brought so much joy with him everywhere he went, we will never forget him. Up until his last day with us, he was full of life, love and attitude like always! Our family won’t be the same without this joyful golden but we will always see him when we look at Jax and Jasper.
Tavish was such a happy, handsome dog who LOVED attention and you couldn’t help but love him! The more time we spent with him, the more he made us smile and after a lot of thought, my mom decided to stud him out and bring home one of his puppies. That is how we got the joyful goofball that we all know and love as Joyful Jax! Once my mom brought him home, you can bet I was at her house every spare minute I had! He was such an adorable little fluff ball of joy and we loved watching Tavish and Jax play together! They constantly made us laugh and even though this may sound crazy, they genuinely made us feel happier.
I LOVE taking photos, so naturally I would capture every moment I was with them on camera. I couldn’t help it- they were just so adorable and they brought so much joy into our lives! That’s when I realized that I needed to share these photos with other dog crazy people and I created the Instagram account’s @Joyful_Jax, @Puppa_Tavish & @BestBud_Ali. People seemed to love our dogs just as much as we did and the pages grew way more than I ever thought they would! So my husband Dave and I started spending all our spare time taking the dogs on adventures and photographing them along the way to share with our new community.
After each adventure, we would come home exhausted, sore, and sometimes even frustrated because it didn’t go as planned. But most of all, whether we were just in the back yard or out exploring somewhere new, we would come home with little more joy in our hearts. At the end of March 2018 Dave and I brought Jasper home and of course I had to create an Instagram account for him too @JasperTheFriendlyGolden. Over the years with the help of my pups, I started growing stronger and stopped caring so much about what others thought and started caring more about what I thought.
In October 2018, I made the biggest decision of my life and quit my safe and reliable job of 11 years so I could focus on doing what I love; photographing my best friends-my dogs! I absolutely LOVE what I’m doing now and I’m so grateful just to have the opportunity, however as someone with really thin hair, it’s not easy for me to get in front of the camera with my dogs. I’m not even kidding when I say that I wear a hat 95% of the time-sometimes two hats, just to hide my thin hair (or lack thereof.)
I know that some people might not understand why it can be hard to live your life to its fullest when you have such thin hair or suffer from hair loss. Some say “it’s just hair,” or “your beautiful the way you are.” And don’t get me wrong, I know that those are both true statements but what no one really talks about how much hair is apart of your identity and how difficult it is to not let it negatively impact your life.
I spent the last 12 years worrying about how my hair looked or if you could see straight through it to my scalp and worried about how the wind, water, lights would affect it. Living through my 20’s worried about my lack of hair sucked and it wasn’t easy but I’d like to think I went through it for a reason. I always did my best to not let it stop me from living my life to its fullest. However sometimes it did and still does but I wouldn’t be nearly as strong as I am today if I didn’t go through so much of my life with thin hair.
Don’t get me wrong, I embraced my thin hair as much I could, I tried not to dwell on it, I tried to focus on the positive things in my life- like my dogs and I started going to yoga/meditation classes (which I really didn’t think would help but it really did!)
But nothing made me really feel like myself again until I put my first wig on…well that is after my brain adjusted to seeing myself with a normal amount of hair again! I had to wear it around the house and out on short trips where I knew I wouldn’t run into anyone I knew for a full week to get adjusted to having a normal amount of hair. Now I’m so excited to have options again and honestly I’m kinda mad that I didn’t start wearing them sooner!
We are all self conscious about something whether it’s our hair, acne, weight, ext. but we cant let it control our lives. When I’m struggling to not let my lack of hair control my life, I go do something that makes my soul happy and that usually makes all my worries disappear… for awhile anyways!
Are you or someone you know living with hair loss? Or do you ever feel self conscious about something else? How do you stop it from controlling your life?
Over the last couple of weeks we have been taking the dogs out on Lovejoy Pond! It has been really fun because there is enough open space for us to let the dogs off leash and RUN. Great way for them to get some energy out!
Jax and Jasper (sometimes Ali too) love to play ‘catch me if you can’ and run as fast as their legs can take them in circles around us! We have to bring multiple toys and treats along with us to keep their attention. Once one of them gets the toy, they run off trying to get the others to chase them (and they LOVE it even more when we chase them) so we always have to keep another toy on hand to bribe them with later.
You may be surprised but we usually keep Tavish, our oldest and wisest on a leash. We don’t always hold on to it but I think just knowing it’s on him reminds him to behave. Tavish is usually the best behaved dog in the family but he has a wild side and when we are out on adventures, he is the most likely to sneak away when we are not looking. It doesn’t help that he is SO good at it, he waits until we are distracted (usually by Jax or Jasper) and then quietly walks off like he’s doing nothing wrong. He’s also a PRO at selective hearing… I know he hears us yelling to him to come back but he won’t turn around or even acknowledge us until we say the right words “want to go for a ride?” – Works every time!
And of course they ALL love rolling around and making snow angels! It doesn’t matter if its the perfect ice for skating or icy snow, or slushy snow. Sometimes we can’t even take a few steps onto the pond before they start trying to roll around and they are still hooked up so they get completely tangled! Lets just say its a good thing Dave is a very patient man!
Here are some of our favorite photos from our ice adventures so far this year!
We would first like to thank everyone for following our adventures through our Instagram pages! Here are our top 9 photos from each account for 2018:
We had such an awesome year and we are so grateful for every moment of it! First of all we brought Jasper home at the end of March, had a puppy party/reunion with Jasper’s litter mates in June, went on some really fun adventures including visiting friends from Rangeley to Boston!
We went camping at Cathedral Pines and at Matagamon Wilderness Campground. Hiked trails up mountains, to waterfalls and to the ocean as well as through a bog & dense forest that would make Mother Nature proud! We floated the East Branch of the Penobscot River and spent a ton of time paddle boarding in the Sandy River and at our favorite secret swimming hole!
We collaborated with some awesome brands including 250 Main Hotel, Nestle Poland Springs, Daniel Wellington, United Pets US, Gaston Luga, Pet Kind/Canada Fresh, Soufeel Jewelry, Artist Averil Burner & Insta360 One!
October was a BIG month for us, not only did Dave and I get married (yay!!) but I also gave my two weeks notice at my job at the Credit Union so I could focus on my dream job, health and dogs!
Since then I have been working really hard on setting up my new business Joyful Goldens and creating content that makes you smile! So far it has been so much fun and I can’t wait to see what 2019 will bring!
To start the year off right we are excited to announce that we have made our first product; a Joyful Goldens Wall Calendar for 2019! Trust me when I say it was not easy picking only 13 photos to use but we did our best and hope you love them!
Our first visit to 250 Main Hotel was when Jasper was just 12 weeks old and we had so much fun! First of all its on Main Street in Rockland and everything about the place makes you feel like royalty! So we were pretty excited when our favorite pet friendly hotel said they wanted us to come back!
Before checking in we decided to go for a hike at Camden Hills State Park. It was steep for us and also very icy, but we made it to the summit! After enjoying the view, we took a few photos and then made our way back down the mountain.
It was dark by the time we checked into the hotel but that didn’t stop us from checking out the view from the rooftop deck! Not only is Main Street lit up with beautiful Christmas lights, but right in front of the hotel there was the coolest lobster trap Christmas tree that had us in awe!
We received a very sweet welcome back note from the manager Ruth and the rest of the wonderful 250 crew. Plus they set out doggie bags, dog treats and coupons to The Loyal Biscuit Co., a healthy pet food & self serve dog wash pet store which is just a little ways down Main Street!
We spent the night on a very comfortable king sized bed that the dogs loved to jump on and off, our whole time there. We woke up to watch the sunrise come up over the ocean from the rooftop deck but it was too cloudy to see. We quickly enjoyed the view and then went back inside to warm up! After that, we braved the cold once again and took the dogs out for a walk. Before checking out, we took advantage of the beautiful morning light by capturing photos in a few different rooms!
We had such a great time in this beautiful pet friendly boutique hotel! Perfect place to stay whether your from Maine and need a staycation or if your traveling here!
Click here for more information about 250 Main Hotel in Rockland, Maine.
When Jasper was just 3 weeks old we brought a red and white Christmas tree skirt to set all the puppies on for some photos. The pups were so tiny that we were afraid to even touch them- WHAT IF we accidentally hurt one?? Luckily they were so cute, we were able to pull ourselves together and play with these sweet tiny pups. 😉
They stole our hearts the moment we saw them. We never wanted to leave these pups, we would stay for about an hour and a half every visit.
We tried to set all 12 of them up in a long line… however every time we set one down, they would immediately move and climb on top of each other. Since we didn’t want to disturb them much and let’s be honest, they look adorable doing ANYTHING, we just let them be.
I just love photographing these amazing little dogs! It’s definitely a dream of mine to be able to photograph puppies and I’m so grateful this is what I get to do!!
I have so many ideas ready to go for the next time I get to photograph some adorable golden puppies!
Here are a few of the best photos we got back in February 2018:
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Last year Dave and I spent what felt like FOREVER trying to get just one good Christmas photo of Jax and Tavish for their Instagram pages. Just about everything that could go wrong, would go wrong for us (Murphy’s law) and I’m pretty sure I left the house thinking we didn’t get any good photos. Thinking about it now all I can think is how easy it was to get two dogs to sit for us compared to the four dogs we try to pose now!
Anyways we ended up with some pretty cute photos of Jax and Tavish plus a few with Ali. The one with Jax and Tavish wrapped up in Christmas lights with their eyes closed is our most popular photos to date! It has been shared more than a few hundred thousand times and been featured on some big social media pages! I love the photo but had no idea how much everyone else would love it either! Sometimes the photos I think are going to do awesome, don’t and the photos I think no one will really like but its all I have to post, do amazing!
Taking these photos with Jax at just over a year old had made us wish we would have taken Christmas photos when my mom first brought Jax home in January 2017. Seriously, what were we thinking?! It was only a few weeks after Christmas and it would have been so easy to leave a few decorations up for photos! But we didn’t and we missed out on a bunch of what I can only imagine to be very adorable puppy Jax photos.
I made sure I didn’t miss the opportunity to take Christmas photos of Jasper when we brought him home at the end of March 2018! During his first two weeks with us, we set up an artificial Christmas tree and took photos as often as we could. I wish we had taken more but let’s be real, when working with dogs, you do things on their schedule, not yours. Plus Jasper was only 8-10 weeks old so when we told him to sit and stay he looked at us funny and then completely ignored us.
To make the whole process easier and more enjoyable for all of us, we would bring all 4 dogs outside to try to get some of their energy out before trying to get them to sit still for photos. That only works half the time though because we tire out WAY before the dogs do.
We also keep their favorite treats and toys near by to get their attention but by the time you get one dog sitting still and where you want him, another dogs moves or stops cooperating. Our photo shoots usually take about an hour or so, we make sure to take breaks in between and we usually end up saying “lets just try one more time” about 3 times before we stop.
It’s definitely not easy and even with all the frustrating moments that photographing these 4 amazing dogs bring, I just love photographing them. Every photo shoots brings us closer and leaves us with memories that are now really funny to look back at. Some moments take us longer to laugh about but we always end up laughing!
We tried to recreate the photo of Jax and Tavish wrapped in Christmas lights with Jasper and Ali but it (like every other photo shoot) did not go as planned. We may not have captured what I was going for but still got a few cute photos from it!
Do you try to take photos of your dogs? Leave a comment below if you enjoy photographing (or at least trying to photograph) your dogs!