Tuesday morning, Spot went missing around 8 a.m. I started getting worried about him by 8:30. By 9, I was driving up and down the road looking for him. No Spot.

A couple hours later, still no Spot.

Then I had to go out. I came home around 4:30. Halfway down the road, I came across the Ornery Angel and her three little children, walking. (If you don’t know the Ornery Angel story, read here.) Supposedly, each time I pick up the Ornery Angel, my motivation is tested. When I can finally pick her up with no motivation other than seeking the goodness of mankind, she will evaporate (as her only purpose on this planet is to test me) and my place in heaven will be secured. Only because I keep thinking it will make me a better person to pick her up, it ruins the whole thing, so picking her up actually does me no good. But since I pick her up anyway, knowing it does me no good, does that then make me a better person, after all?

My logic defies even me.

And besides, to be honest, I wanted to ask her if she had piglets yet and make sure she remembered that she was going to give me one.

I stopped my car and rolled the window down. She looked at me like she wanted to let out a big sigh of irritation that it was me again. I asked her if they needed a ride. She hesitated, then said, yes. Her car was broken down, and in fact, was broken down at home so she had walked all the way (over 2 miles) to meet the bus to get her kids and they were on their way home.

All four of them piled in and I asked her about the piglets. They’d had 12! And she mentioned giving us one. Or two. Or more. They want to get rid of them as soon as they’re ready to go. I told her about Spot and asked if she’d seen him. She said she had seen him earlier, all the way out the road, headed for the hard road, which was bad news.

I’m thinking this is how Spot ended up in the McDonald’s parking lot to begin with. He’s a wanderer, a brief sojourner, a rolling stone, breaking hearts along the way. I tried to remind myself that we didn’t set out to bring another dog home, he’d only been at the farm for two days, and surely we wouldn’t miss him.

But we missed him.

That same day, Dookie-the-farm-shih-tsu went to the groomer.

Dookie, before.
A fashion don’t!

Dookie, after.
A fashion do!

He’s almost like a new dog after he comes home from the groomer. Except he’s still cranky and he’s not our new dog.

We missed Spot.

I kept looking for Spot on Wednesday. I’d called my cousin and asked him to watch for Spot since he’d been last seen headed in his direction. My cousin’s farm tends to attract strays. I was out yesterday and came home around 4. The Ornery Angel’s car was working again and it was parked in my driveway.

And she had Spot.
She’d seen him on the road, picked him up, and brought him home to us.


P.S. Everyone decided that Spot should be renamed Boomerang. I put a pink collar on him since it was the only one I had and I’m going to get him one of those engraved tags with our phone number.


  1. Dru says:

    I’m glad Spot was found.

  2. Missy says:

    Hey Suzanne – if they’re looking for more takers Pete and I would like a couple of the piglets too!

  3. Kathleen in Michigan says:

    Happy Belated Birthday to Ross!

    And I am so glad that Spot/Boomerang made it back home. It sounds like your persistent niceness to the Ornery Angel is breaking through.

  4. beekudzu says:

    Maybe you’re the Ornery Angels’ not-so-Ornery Angel and it’s your purpose in life to make her a better person. Only, when she is, you won’t evaporate. You will have chickens that lay lots of eggs, goats that like to be milked and roosters that aren’t mean.

    Glad Spot made it home ok.

  5. Michelle Willingham says:

    Glad you managed to get the dog home! :woof:

  6. CATRAY44 says:

    Pigs? You know what that means?! LARD!!!

  7. Snapper says:

    And so you and the OA finally got to have coffee and really chat?
    Yay for having him home!

  8. Mim says:

    Oh the big 18 bday…when my son turned 18, I told him to give me a little time to adjust to him being an adult now because a 17 yr old habit would take some time to change…he is now 27 and I still have trouble remembering that he is an adult now…Old habits are hard to break…..Mim :ladybug:

  9. Diane says:

    Glad Spot is home. I have an Ornery Angel in my life. I just realized it. It is a family member at that. And I get tested all the time. We get along ok most days. But there are times I wonder why I try at all. Then I get a God answer from time to time telling why I am in her life. Or why she is in mine. Most people do not understand. I guess we do deep down inside.

    It sounds like your Ornery Angel might need a friend, and needs to first figure out if she can trust you or not. I bet there is a long story to her life and why she is the way she is.

    I am reading your new book. I can see you and your farm in this book. So far it is pretty good. A nice break from school books.

  10. wildcat says:

    Boomer has the sweetest face!

    And it’s nice to be able to look Dookie in the eye again. :yes:

  11. CindyP says:

    It’s taken a while, but it looks like Ornery Angel just might be coming around to the country folk way of thinking! I’m so glad she brought Boomerang home to you, but he just may be a wanderer….can’t stay in one place too long….I once had a dog that after 3 days would make the 4 mile trek to my BIL, stay for a few days, then head back home. He would get out of anything we put him in to take his treks. :woof:

    Happy Birthday, Ross!! An “official” adult! :dancingmonster:

    And it’s so nice to see Dookie’s eyes!!

  12. KentuckyFarmGirl says:

    So glad Ornery Angel brought Boomerang back! Hi Dookie, looking good!

  13. Stefinity says:

    Spot is the cutest little thing ever! I too have a soft spot in my heart for stray animals — I would have kept him too! So glad he came back home. God Bless the Ornery Angel!! I’m sure Dookie feels much better after his haircut, he just won’t admit it because he was trying to make a fashion statement!

  14. Wammy says:

    If Spot/Boomerrang is part beagle you might as well put a bell around his neck…they love to run and sniff. I greaw up with beagles and have one now. One of our beagles grwoing up was named Boomer short for Boomarang…small world. And my neighboprs and kids in the neighborhood help get Ella Bella back everytime. Gotta love it!

  15. Lisa D says:

    The collar means Spot is yours now :0 no denying it!



  16. CATRAY44 says:

    Looks like he may have some Rat Terrier in him- should good little dog (and poetic justice if you end up with the real rat dog, lol.)

  17. Taiya says:

    Awww… he’s really yours. ๐Ÿ™‚ That’s sweet.

  18. Minna says:

    Besides engraved tag, a microchip might be a good idea, too. I just read a story about this dog who had been missing for years, but he finally got back home, thanks to a microchip under his skin.

  19. Anita says:

    Maybe Boomerang (Boomer for short?) has been looking for a family to put a collar on him.

  20. JeannieB says:

    Glad the pup is back, it seem like OA is coming around. Maybe she needs a friend, or at least a little attention.

  21. daiseymae says:

    Spot is adorable and I am soooo glad he found his way back home somehow. He seems a bit confused as to where he belongs right now. Keep him close for a week or two and he will be alright…
    Thanks for the nice story, again…

  22. becki says:

    Maybe the OA is in need of a friend, but doesn’t want to intrude for fear of rejection or embarrassment.

    Do you two have a lot in common? Are you both single parents with three children in the wilds of WV?

    And, you are a tough role model. You balance being a farmer, parent, writer, a personal life (that we live vicariously with you), you help out Georgia and the OA, and you still have time to bake birthday cakes and find your pants in the morning.

    You shine. :sun:

  23. Melissa says:

    Just in case the phone number tag gets lost, you may want to write your phone number directly on the collar w/ a Sharpie. That works for us. ๐Ÿ˜€

  24. Linda says:

    Happy Birthday to Ross!!
    Glad you got Spot/Boomerang back. It’s nice the OA is comming around. How many piglets are you going to get?

  25. Fencepost says:

    I think the OA has been treated so bad, that she just doesn’t know how to handle an actual nice person. This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Or not!
    Glad Boomerang is back home. It’s almost as bad as worrying about a child out driving for the first time by themself.
    Oh, and BTW, I have one of those neighbors too. My Dad always said to kill ’em with kindness. But dang, sometimes that’s hard to do.

  26. Nancy Straka says:

    :sun: Yay! I am so glad that you have SPOT back. When we lost our then dog, Jodie for 5 days, she had run into the woods across the street from our house chasing a squirrel, then ran all the way to the other side of it, a county road over. And there she was and not one house looked familiar! This is what we assumed since she was always chasing those damn squirrels.

    So we took a county map and went down quite a few roads and up to many houses to ask if they had seen her. Many people had not. We did this for a few days. I was getting disheartened. But then many people started calling.

    We had left index cards at every house with our info and the dog’s info. People had called us to tell she would not come to them but which way she ran. And run she did, and we saw her trail of running by the calls.

    We got a call early Thanksgiving morning and someone saw her and they followed her and the caller told us the color of the car her hubby was in and we drove to the place and saw his car run out of the trailer park and we followed him and we then went on the high way and called and called her, we thought she was hiding in the field next tot he park, and she came and jumped into my arms, all 68 pounds of her, with a few pounds missing since she ‘d been gone. Man that was a good Thanksgiving!

    I love your stories here. You make my day with your lovely animal stories.

  27. TSannie/annbb says:

    I microchipped our dogs. Doesn’t cost much and the peace of mind is wonderful! How many piglets are you getting?

  28. Sandra Leigh says:

    I hadn’t read about the ornery angel before, so I followed your link. I’m sure your interactions with her are no fun for you, but they are hilarious to read about, And look – you’ve put a big chink in her armour. She brought Spot home. I’m so glad,

  29. Melissa says:

    Uh-oh. Look at that sweet face Looks like trouble!

  30. cgReno says:

    Keep him penned for two weeks if you can. Sometimes that will work, sometimes you just have one that likes adventure. The adventurers are the ones that break your heart, and yet he has survived at this point. Is it possible that he was lost and is trying to go home? Jumped out of someones car who was visiting? many options for little stray dogs.

  31. Nancy in Atlanta says:

    Boomer sounds like a great nickname for Boomerang/Spot! It’s got a big dog sound that he might really like. You have made progress with the OA if she bothered to bring him back to you!

    And – Happy Birthday, Ross – the big 18! Please don’t grow up any faster!

  32. Elise S says:

    Jacks and Russells are as you said wanderers/explorers. I’m sure he loves being yours, but there is a huge amount of world to explore.

  33. Nell says:

    I love the name Booomer for this cute little dog; he looks like a “keeper” for sure!

  34. jean says:

    What did you do to Dookie? You took his manhood. You might as well just give him the pink collar and stick a bow on him. The poor guy. Now the rest of the farm animals are going to pick on him and laugh at him. The shame.

  35. catslady says:

    I normally think things are just random and coincidence but every once in a while something just seems like more than that – that it really happens for a reason. One of those mysteries of life I guess.

  36. becki says:

    52 speaks!!!!!!!!!!!!

  37. SuzieQ says:

    Random acts of kindness, even without the best of motivation, come back to us in some fashion. :fairy:

  38. Donna says:

    “Hunh” is right…I think Ornery Angel had him all along! LOL Hmmmm
    Happy Birthday (belated) to Ross!!!! wow, they grow up fast – my three nephews is who I reference!
    Dukie…the bald dog!!!!!! OHHHH! LOL
    They skinned you! LOL
    They are building (as of yesterday) this huge new apartment complex in one of the fields behind our home, to the left of our backyard….sigh This was country when we moved here in the 90’s…bare fields and so peaceful and quiet…it is now busy, crowded, rat racey and will be MORE rat racey, with the new apartment complex. I am just glad it is not DIRECTLY behind us. However the land has sold directly behind us and we don’t know what is going IN there. All this to say…a farm sure sounds nice! :woof:

  39. Estella says:

    Glad OA is being a little friendlier.
    Poor Dookie! I’ts still too cold and wet here to shave a dog down.

  40. Bev says:

    Good for you for continuing to help Ornery Angel…sounds like she has a very rough, rocky, crocked row to hoe. It is through people like yourself reaching out that she can see kindness in others. Sounds like she is responding.
    I am very glad to hear Boomerang made it home (I like that much better than Spot).

  41. Melissa Marsh says:

    I’m so glad Spot is ok. Whew!

    But I was really hoping for a picture of the Ornery Angel. ๐Ÿ˜†

  42. Ms E says:

    The OA just earned a forever pass in my book. She may be quirky and have difficult life, but kindness to animals speaks to what’s truly in a person’s heart.

  43. Susan says:

    Maybe Ornery Angel is trying to be a better person too! Before you know it the two of you will be the best of friends. :hug:

  44. Jessica says:

    It’s like karma, you give her a ride home, she gives your dog a ride home! Im glad your getting piglets AND spot is back…if you hadn’t picked up the Ornery Angel you might not have ever found him….

  45. Joy says:

    Oh, I just love reading your farm stories. They make me giggle…. ๐Ÿ˜† You really do shine. :sun:

  46. Sheryl says:

    That spot is a cutie! I’m so glad he’s home again.
    Hello Dookie! Nice to finally see that little face. Good, clean cut!
    Maybe things will work out with the OA, you just never know.

  47. Sheryl says:

    I, too, am in awe of all the verious things that you do!

  48. Treasia/Truckerswife says:

    Aww the Ornery Angel may not be so Ornery after all.

  49. Claudia W. says:

    One good turn deserves another. That is how it is in my book. You did a good turn and OA did a good turn. You moved first. Next it will be her turn to move first. I think the turn has already begun with the piglets. It’s cool that things are moving in this direction with OA.
    I’m glad that Spt/Boomer/Boomerang is home again. He will learn. He looks pretty young in that picture, such a sweet face.
    Dookie, oh Dookie…aren’t you a handsome sort withthe new hairdo! I bet it feels good too.
    Happy Birthday Ross! I saved the best for last. I hope your birthday was all you wanted it to be!

  50. Cranberry says:

    Yea, Wow Dookie, you look kinda sad now honey, all of your “ahem” faults is showin’! Maybe ask Miss Groomer to leave a weensy bit of hair on the next time, but you are still so cute with your bottom :snoopy: toofers stickin’ out!

  51. Lisa in California says:

    I like the new name. Boomerang fits him. :happyflower:

  52. shannon503 says:

    awwwesome…you two are going to be BFF’s someday…i just know it!

  53. Sue says:


    is Spot/Boomerang a “complete” dog? Just thinking…if you keep him, he needs neutering, or you may end up with Coco having a very interesting litter!
    The other thing is – it may also help settle him down from his wanderlust.

    Dookie looks so cute all shorn! Bet he’s feeling all light and frolicky now! :snoopy:

  54. Gail says:

    If Boomerang (great name for him!) isn’t neutered, getting that done may help with his roaming.

    Dookie, Dookie, my man, what have they done to you?! All that rumpled fur that gave you such a macho dog look is gone. It will grow back big guy… I just hope new readers that don’t know what character and strength you possess might think you are a “phoo-phoo” dog!!! Think tough Dookie, think tough…

  55. Jean says:

    When are you getting your piglets? We had 12 this spring, too, and the first ones are leaving this weekend.

  56. Alex says:

    :woof: :cowsleep: Is Spot/Boomerang a JRT by any chance?? It’s just that all Jacks are prone to wandering some time or another, so it’s probably just a stage he’ going through testing his boundries with you, if you’re firm and fair he’ll understand and stay close to home :} :3

  57. cutie girl says:

    I think it is a Rat Terrier! I have one named Riley that looks the same as your. :snoopy: :shroom: :duck: :shimmy: :heart: :moo: :happypuppy: :eating: :butterfly: :sun: :hug:

  58. Chickenlady says:

    :woof: Check on eBay for engraved dog tags. I got a couple for my guys and they cost about 3.00 each. Hopefully Boomerang will figure out were his new home is. Strays seem to show up at my place too. Some stay with me and some find another forever home. But they are all safe in the end!!!! Good luck :snoopy:

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