Master of Curiosity

When you are eight weeks old, it is hard to be a master of anything. Surely not sustained focus or potty training or knowing when to bite and when not to bite. But our newly arrived little corgi puppy, Vivi, is a complete master of curiosity.

Eight-week-old Vivi on alert

Watching her step into the big world of our front yard is remarkable. The area is half grass, half patio. It is fenced all around. Winter temperatures here hover in the 40 degree F. range and the grass is always wet. There is traction for racing around—keeping warm and pouncing on green stems.

Inside, and even more outside, all her little systems are on high alert— eyes, nose, ears, and, of course, mouth, mouth, mouth. A seemingly boring, old brown winter leaf blows by. POUNCE. Captured, ready for investigation. Hmmmm .  . . . . does not appear to want to play. Smells safe enough. Tastes bland. Time to run and get a drink of water.

Stairs are a new phenomenon. There are four of them into our patio. When you weigh less than 5 pounds and are only 15 inches long with 3-inch legs, a six- inch step is an almost insurmountable hurdle—well, actually, it is a wonderful challenge! Run and leap—she understands momentum as a force in her favor.

That is a really big step!

I did it!










And a juniper hedge—oh my, maybe it wants to play with me! POUNCE. I am lost somewhere. But I know I can get out. I am a master at getting out! Even with a bare tummy, the texture of the prickly hedge is no deterrent to our determined little dynamo.

Uh oh, where is the puppy?

Vivi, the escape artist!








Vivi knows nothing of owls or hawks overhead or of any malevolence for that matter. She is in complete, total, full out curiosity about this world she has been born into, as should be the birthright of all new beings. When she is outside, I am never more than two feet away (even in the fenced patio when she is running, running, running). Especially at night I am the deterrent to any invisible, observing owl.

Yes, we have bite marks all over our hands and the carpet spot remover Nature’s Miracle is our new favorite cleaning supply. But we are being reshaped and remolded in our 70’s—more flexible, more agile, more hopeful, more joyous. This was a conscious choice. We considered no dog for the freedom of traveling or a young adult dog to avoid the teething, potty training stage. But ultimately the thought of bringing this much joy and companionship into our lives made the choice easy.

And, Vivi has already been a gift to quite a few people in her short week with us! Some call it the puppy magnet factor. I call it being awakened again to life’s possibilities.

Our blue-eyed fairy princess/ambassador










A walk with her through our local village is like walking with a fairy princess with her unusual blue eyes. People stop and want to touch her. They ask about her. They are no longer in their trajectory: now they are curious. They want to talk and establish a connection. Vivi is both a master of curiosity and a master at weaving connection. The fierce little biter regards those coming toward her with solemn eyes, and licks their fingers. Gentled in the moment. Making the world fuzzy again.

Thank you, Vivi, truly our little Christmas miracle.

Ann and sleeping puppy taking in the beauty of a winter day



30 replies
  1. Anne Stine
    Anne Stine says:

    Well, I think she found her way to the right home. She shared some most lovely qualities with the two of you: adventure, beauty, cuteness!, and more adventure – there’s always the next corner, or ridge, or step, or leaf, etc. I love your willingness to take her on and likewise she’s taking you on! May you all enjoy many healthy happy years together. I h ope to meet her in person one day!

  2. Julie Glover
    Julie Glover says:

    Awww, my heart is melting!
    This is a new way of going on retreat — I get the appeal!
    Adorable adorable adorable adorable…
    Thanks for sharing this. I’m going to go hug a friend’s dog!

  3. Meredith Jordan
    Meredith Jordan says:

    She’s beautiful…and those eyes are so soulful! I’ve often thought about whether I’d get another pup when Tashi’s earthtime is up (she’s 13 1/2 in a breed with an average lifespan of 14 years) but it’s SO cold here in the winter (generally 20 degrees and under with wind chill, which one has to consider when standing outside waiting for a dog to do her business)…let’s just say you’re braver than I am. Still, that joy is so tempting.

    Many blessings to Vivi and her Mamas!

  4. Gayle Colman
    Gayle Colman says:

    Pure Joy! Delighting in your precious Vivi and the continuous magic you weave. Happiest New Year! Much ❤️❤️❤️❤️

  5. Tenneson Woolf
    Tenneson Woolf says:

    Ah, the canines teach us again!

    Love your story. And its familiarity — from curiosity to Nature’s Miracle cleaning — with the puppy Terrier that my son has recently welcomed to our family.

    Welcome Vivi!
    Viva la curiosite!

  6. Marilyn Cornwell
    Marilyn Cornwell says:

    Curiosity, connection, awe, and love! What a blessing to begin the new year with new life. As Hatif said, love is the path, the rations and the goal.

  7. Susan Embry
    Susan Embry says:

    What a wonderful story this New Year’s Eve morning! Vivi is indeed a miracle, and a blessed reminder that just to bathe in her blue eyed gaze and listen to her curiosity of play is an omen of a new decade, a new year, a new chance to enjoy life anew. Thank you so much for sharing this! She is adorable!

  8. Harriet Platts
    Harriet Platts says:

    What a lovely story gift! Sitting in a surgical waiting room in a hospital. This invitation to curiosity brings me to the wonders of the present moment, and the many expressions of grace presenting herself.

  9. Ann Eyerman
    Ann Eyerman says:

    You got a puppy! Thank you for this story and the pictures, especially the stair climbing and her lovely lovely ears. I feel so happy seeing her and reading your words. Life is good — even if Vivi is a dog (Rose’s input). Happy, happy, happy new year. Love your way.

  10. Bonnie Marsh
    Bonnie Marsh says:

    Dearest Ann – you got a puppy for the exact reasons we did: so we would be “reshaped and remolded in our 70’s – more flexible, more agile, more hopeful and more joyous.” And Mahalo has been all of that in her 3 1/2 years! Folks LOVE her here at the senior living facility where we moved in May 2019. And she’s made the transition so easily going between our house and Kourtney’s every two days because that’s our 11 year old cat’s limit to her being here! Hope Vivi continues to bring you the joy that Mahalo has, and I know she will. Those little beings weasel into our hearts like no other and our love for them cannot be compared to any other. Enjoy! Enjoy!

  11. Sara Harris
    Sara Harris says:

    Very inspiring and uplifting letter! She’s adorable and could not have found a better home! I want to be reincarnated to you too as a corgi!
    Reminds me to be more curious.
    Happy New Year to all 3 of You

  12. Laura
    Laura says:

    Oh my goodness! She is precious!! What a lucky girl to end up in your home. We are currently in the “toddler stage” with our new kitty, and are enjoying her curiosity and daily improvements in coordination and confidence. I look forward to meeting Vivi ❤️

  13. Kathy Harrington
    Kathy Harrington says:

    Vivi is so precious and cute!
    It is fun reading your blog about her curiosity and wonder of discovering her new
    I love what Susie said about feeling that way with each grandchild. I second that! ❤️🐶

  14. Dr. Jude A. Rathburn
    Dr. Jude A. Rathburn says:

    Wonderful story and beautiful puppy spirit. I bet there are a whole pack of corgis looking down on you and cheering Vivi on. Blessings for this new decade to you, Christina, Vivi and all of your beloveds!


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