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A long time ago, I was a child. (I started out as Cathy First from Colon, Mi.) For the past several years I’ve been an adult. A lot of things went on between those two stages of life; probably no more or no less than anyone elses. My husband and I moved to “da U .P” from southern Lower Michigan several years ago (yes we were trolls at one time). We owned and operated and operate Clementz’s Northcountry Campground and Cabins just north of Newberry, Michigan until May 2015. We have grown kids and grandkids (who all live downstate). My passion is life and all that Nature has to offer us and trying to photograph it in unique ways. Our intention in life is to see all that Nature has to offer us. We hope that you will be a part of our adventures as we cruise through our lives together. Come back often!

Thursday, May 22, 2008


Our home is very empty. Both loves of our lives are now in better places and hopefully with each other again.

While Dan and I are both very sad, we did feel relieved last night. Not just because yesterday was a long day of waiting till the vet arrived and knowing what was coming once she got here, but because it WAS the best thing we could do for Nick. Even though Nick went through the daily motions of being our good boy and still trying to please us, it was like his true spirit wasn’t with us and now his body, mind and soul has been released to catch up with his spirit. And for those of you that have met him, you know what I mean.

Dr. Cheryl arrived about 6 p.m. last night and we had prepared the dining room table so we could stand Nick up on it (the preparation was in case he had an “accident” when she put him to sleep). She first checked him over and talked with him a bit while she gave him a tranquilizer to keep him calm until she administered the other injection. Dan, Cheryl and I shared a lot of memories with each other about Nick. You could tell she would miss him too.

Nick loved to run; he LIVED to run. That is what his breed does. When his Dad and he would go for a walk (always on a leash), I would sometimes go outside as they were headed back and yell at Nick, “Come here boy!” Dan would let go of the leash and Nick would run flat out; ears folded back (I suppose for less wind resistance!), legs off the ground with long flat out strides and a HUGE smile on his face. THAT is what he loved. Recently, he hadn’t been able to do that; probably not for a month or maybe longer…he could trot, but not break out in a run like that. So my prayer to God was that after Nick got settled in with Chewy in pet heaven that he was able to once again run like the wind. He didn’t need a prayer for eyesight or hearing because he was totally alert (which made the decision harder).

The corner where he slept at night is bare; that bed is gone. We put him on it in his coffin and Dan covered him up with Dan’s old Carhart jacket that Nick liked to lay on. I was able to “hobble” out to the barn with Dan to say my final goodbyes but I was not able to go out to his gravesite due to my ankle. I felt badly that Dan had to do that alone, but I think maybe Dan truly might have wanted it that way but wouldn’t say so to me because he knew I wanted to be there too.

So another chapter in our lives together has closed and we have vowed not to have any more dogs. But Dan has since added a clause to that vow; not to have any more dogs while we still live here. You don’t realize how much of your life revolves around your pets (assuming you don’t have kids at home) until there are NO pets.

I don’t know if I have this out of my system yet or not, I may feel the need to write more again some other day. But in the meantime, Dan and I thank you for your comments and your emails.


  1. Anonymous2:08 PM


    I am sorry to hear about Nick. We know, all too well, the sadness you and Dan feel. Our thoughts are with you...

    from your seasonal neighbors up the road.

  2. Cathy,
    I discovered your website during the fire last summer. My hubby and I have a cabin at EBSC and yours was the only place to get current and constant info. Also, it's keeps me (a Yooper who relocated to "trollville") informed to the area so dear to my heart.

    I am so sorry about your loss. I cried when I read your web. Having had both our cats (16-1/2 and 19) put down during the past few years, it is so tough and emotional and yet, you know when it's time.

    Those darn pets though, they love you so unconditionally, no matter how bad your day, there they are. I too vowed no more but after 11 months, I go and adopt a brother and sister cats and two years later, they are our family. (Dogs are at retirement, when we're home more).

    Grieving is individual and takes time but I know your two beloved pets are running in pet heaven with no aches and pain and the wind flapping Nick's ears back .

    I am sorry for your loss.

    Terri from Milan

  3. Anonymous9:17 AM

    I stumbled across your blog while looking for something. My goodness ... my heart goes out to you. Tears streaming down my face cuz we are dog people, too. It's true - ya know when it's time. And I think the pets do, too. My sincere condolences to your family.

    Kirsten in Central NY


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