Beautiful Girl

As I've kept up with this blog over the past 8 or 9 months, I have made a concerted effort to remain true to the title by keeping the majority of the topics about the "sweethearts" in my life, particularly those closest to me.
It has been on my mind for a long time now that I have failed miserable to devote much attention to one of my most special sweethearts… the one that was with me before my sweethearts on the hill, before my precious Charlie, before my angelic Sam, before my handsome husband… before I became an Agrestic… and event before I became a Hatcher.
Part of my delay is that I've wanted to give her the lengthy introduction she deserves… and that takes extra time to pull together.  
But when I've spent the past 3 days of Christmas capturing photo after photo, memory after memory (albeit indoors, which is still a huge challenge for me and my camera) and the photo subject that has touched me the most is this precious sweetheart, I decided it's time. 
No more delays.
And what better day to honor my beautiful girl than on her Thirteenth Birthday! 
Braxton is the first real pet I've ever had. I got her when I was 21 years old, and she was 6 weeks old. From that moment on, she has been the single most devoted, loving, loyal, and understanding sweetheart I could ever ask for. Her one mission in life is to love and be loved… she has been there for me with a smile and a wag every time I've walked in the door. She waits patiently for my attention as I greet my kids and my husband… and sometimes has even waited through me making dinner, feeding the kids, bathing them, putting them to bed, getting myself ready for bed… until she finally gets something… it may just be a glance, a pat, a little rub… and she's as appreciative and loving as she would have been three hours prior with hours of attention. 
I know the term "unconditional" sounds a little cliche, but I truly believe that the word lacks meaning until you've experienced being loved by a dog. It is true love in the most raw form… it is absolute perfection. I believe it is Love as God intended Love to be.
Thank you Braxton for being such an amazing part of my life for Thirteen Years. Thank you for showing Sam and Charlie what a gift it is to be loved by you. Thank you for accepting me and never turning your back on me, even when I was too crazy with babies to give you attention. Thank you for taking such excellent care of our whole family. Thank you for being the pinnacle of our home. What a gift it is to see your wagging tail every time we enter, whether we've been gone for a week or for five minutes. You will forever stand out as being one of the true blessings in my life.
Happy Birthday!


  1. *wiping tears from eyes* - what a lovely tribute to your beautiful sweetheart. I'm sure if she could talk, she would thank you for such a loving home all of these 13 years! She's a lucky girl, too :)


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