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Puppy Love - Winn-Dixie and Blue

February 8, 2005

From Abbe - the true story of one contest, a lost dog, and happily ever after:

"We have a rule in our household that whenever one of our kids asks to be read to, we read. No exceptions. Even if the kids are getting dressed for school, the baby's crying or the cat is barfing on the rug. We read a lot at our house, and I am always looking for new material.

My daughter received Because of Winn-Dixie as a Christmas present this year from her Aunt and we fell in love with the book immediately. We are excited to meet Opal, the Preacher, Gloria Dump, Otis and of course, Winn-Dixie, when the movie opens on one of four movie screens in my little town on Feb. 18.

So, I was happy when our new friends at Nettwerk America called offering movie prize packs for Folk Alley to give away that included the book, a soundtrack CD and, of course, the plushy dog. They were interested in Folk Alley because the music has a real singer/songwriter feel to it and Jim's already added songs from the movie to the Folk Alley playlist.

This soundtrack makes a girl smile. First, I was drawn to the Emmylou Harris song, and then delighted by the Be Good Tanyas. Other fun songs include The Clapping Song by Shirley Ellis and Glory Glory by Patrinell Wright and Gloria Smith. Both songs transported me immediately- one to feeling like a 10-year-old girl again while dancing around the living room with my daughters, and the other to Sunday worship at Reverend Al Green's church in Memphis, TN.

And then, just as I was working on putting together the contest around the Because of Winn-Dixie soundtrack, my dog Blue ran away and all I could think about (while trying not to burst into tears at work) was Blue, and all of my pets that had gone on before. Nice timing...

Blue, name inspired by the traditional song Ol' Blue (performed by Bill Staines on the One More River CD), is a Border Collie that likes to run. Most days find her chasing the other dogs, cats, chickens, goats or horses on our property, Lucky Penny Farm. But her favorite animal to chase is deer, and this cold January day she ran into the woods in happy pursuit. Unfortunately, when the deer got away, she kept on running. Down the Headwater Trail into town, first visiting the lumberyard (where they fed her a can of wet food), and then visiting the Save-4 Mini-mart (where they fed her a can of wet food).

No one could reach us. Her collar with ID tags was sitting on the kitchen counter -- removed the night before for a long overdue flea bath. When Blue didn't come home that night I couldn't sleep, and I listened to the coyotes howling in the woods and wept.

The next morning we created "Lost Dog" posters (so easy with modern technology), and distributed them at the local shops and meeting places: post office, gas station, library and liquor store. Neighbors and strangers stopped to offer their assistance, and the community was in search of Blue.

Hallelujah! It worked. Someone saw those fancy posters, recognized the dog and telephoned. Actually, it was the clerk at the Save-4 store who found Blue a temporary home with a girl who works at the video store, and within 24 hours (due solely to the kindness of strangers) we brought Blue home. Although she oddly smelled like Febreeze, she was no worse for the wear.

Because of Winn-Dixie is a story about a girl and her dog, and now you have heard my story as well. I look forward to hearing your stories about your special pets. A quick disclaimer -- I may have a soft spot for any tales about goats.

Thanks for listening, sharing and being an active part of Folk Alley.

Abbe Turner"

Posted by Ann VerWiebe at February 8, 2005 4:57 PM

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