Aug. 20 is always bittersweet now; not only is it Bayley’s birthday, but we also lost Fred on this day two years ago. Time always plays with my head; Bayley’s 20 years seems a very long time, but so does the last two years. An aggressive, fast-moving cancer robbed us of Fred-Fred, who was just 5. That was a Very. Bad. Day.

Strange how the furry, messy, loud, attention-hogging, walking stomachs get under your skin. Yes, “only” dogs. But they have a very special power to enrich and bless your life. Difficult and silly to explain and it’s different with people and all that but there it is.

We miss Fred and Bayley … lots, especially on this double anniversary. Still, no rest for the wicked—Fred’s brothers, Feargal and Fergus, are still going Beagle strong at 7-and-a-half and of course His Majesty The Roux has thoroughly Basset-ized the place. And we wouldn’t have it any other way.