Behind the Scenes: Sammy


Aaaahhhh, Sammy.

Meet one of my two “boys.” :)

And behind this picture…more stories than I can possibly begin to tell you.

I could tell you that the reason we have him is because he and I fell in love one night in a pet shop in Bandung, Indonesia and how I had to take him home in a taxi…and how the taxi driver charged me double for the simple reason that he didn’t like dogs and he could.

I could tell you about the utter heartbreak we experienced when he was stolen from us and missing for six days…and how we paid a ransom, literally, to get him back. (That story is in the book… ;))

But today, I’m just going to tell a bit of the silly and sweet of this crazy, lovable, completely loyal pooch named Sammy.

We tell people that he is our Indonesian dog, which is true. Andre is from America, Sammy is from Indonesia

and I kind of think it’s cute that it ended up that way.

Sammy has been, from day one, all kinds of mischievous and loyal and ornery and loving, rolled up into one, big, lion-ish golden retriever with Really. Big. Paws.

No joke.

For years we’ve found it hilarious that he will lie in the direct sunlight when it’s HOT out, and take a nap.

That would be what he’s doing in this particular photo. πŸ˜‰

Andre is usually lying nearby in the shade because he gets that lying in the sun is…well, it’s HOT.

Especially when you have golden retriever fur.

Not that I would know…I’m just imagining here. :)

He would do it on a daily basis when we lived in Indonesia. (Read: when the temperatures were pushing 95 or 100.)

We would watch him and think he was crazy as we still-sweated in our not-outside-in-the-sun living room. Yet a good part of his days were spent basking in the glorious (and did I mention HOT?!) tropical sunshine.

Maybe he was soaking up all he could because he knew eventually we’d stick him on a plane bound for the Midwest. And snow.Β Which he loves, by the way..

The truth with this dog is that he’s always been a little odd.

The first time we offered him ham, he wouldn’t eat it. What dog turns down meat?

His first interaction with Andre, as a twenty-or-less pound puppy, began with him trying to jump on top of our poor, confused, American dog. We still laugh about that.

He always has to have something in his mouth…usually in the form of a stuffed animal. (And he will steal one of Maelie’s if he can’t find one of his four or five.)

He still lives to greet us at the door in his usual, run-full-speed-and-almost-knock-us-over, manner…whether we’ve been gone for a week or two minutes.

The truth is, this crazy dog wormed his way into our hearts immediately…

And we love him like the crazy that he is.


It’s Tuesday, and this link up at my friend, Crystal’s place is becoming one of my favorites. It’s pretty sweet (and sometimes tear-jerking, so bring tissues) to read the stories that come with the photos of life…especially the photos where there’s so much more going on than what we see.

Social media and online relationships can make us feel like everyone else has it all together. We’re edited, proof-read, Pinterest-perfect versions of ourselves (or so some might think!) when – in reality? There is an unfinished pile of laundry around the corner. That cute toddler smiling for the camera just had a massive meltdown seconds ago. That yummy breakfast-for-dinner you just showed us on Instagram? It’s because the cat licked the chicken that was supposed to be for dinner.

“Behind the Scenes” is a fun link up where we show those photos – but tell the real story behind them. The sneak peek behind the scenes, a look past the edges of the photo to the real life behind it.

Take some time and come on over to check out the silly and sweet of what goes on behind the camera lens…I promise you’ll leave smiling.



  1. So sweet. I can’t wait to read your book. It sounds so exciting! You dog is beautiful, have a great day friend!

  2. Sammy is so pretty. I have never been a dog lover but I have to admit that our new pup has stolen my heart. (Don’t tell my family)

  3. Quirkiest dog I’ve ever known, but also the most loyal. If I didn’t know better, I’d say he’s aware of the lengths we went through to get him back when he was stolen.

  4. This post reminds me how much I want a dog! :) It’s so cute how they all have their own personalities. Your Sammy looks like a lovable companion.

    Stopping by from Behind the Scenes…

    • I’m definitely biased, but go for a golden retriever. They’re awesome. :) Thanks for stopping by, Alana…blessings!

  5. What a sweet boy! I love quirky in all its forms, so I think he and I would get along just fine. Unless he figures out that I’m a cat person. πŸ˜‰

  6. So he’s a pretty perfect fit in your adorable, lovable, slightly weird family. πŸ˜‰

  7. I love the story of Sammy… we have a beloved beagle named Charlie and I can’t imagine our life without him…

    • It’s amazing how dogs become family, isn’t it? Give sweet Charlie a hug for me! :) And hugs to you, sweet friend…enjoy your week!

  8. Precious post about your dog. We don’t have a dog, but some day we might. Our boys adore dogs…but my husband and I are cat people. However…just this year I am finding our cat annoying. I think a dog would be more fun. Ahhh…times change us and our kids! Don’t we all like to lounge in the sun? πŸ˜‰

    • Dogs are so much fun. And our daughter adores them…our lives are definitely a little crazier but the good kind. Go for it! :) Blessings, friend!

  9. He’s so sweet :) I can relate! We have a Sago πŸ˜‰ We recused him from a PCS and drove all the way to Mississipi to get him just because from his picture we decided somehow he was the one. And he was….and I’m not an animal girl…but he’s really not a dog anyways, he will be quick to tell you! God places us all in families….even if our fur children have more hair than a gaggle of poodles…..

    • Haha…yep, we know Sammy was meant to be part of our family. And he really is a perfect fit because, truthfully, we’re all a little quirky. πŸ˜‰ Blessings, friend…hope you have a great week!

  10. Oh dogs hold such a sweet place in our hearts!! This made me smile and laugh when reading it! Glad you have him in your lives! :)

  11. Awe, love it. We have a golden too, and our dogs are soooo much a part of our family. We bought a bigger car so we could be sure they can travel with us. :)

    • Haha…so did we! We bought a minivan just days before our daughter was born…and I insisted on it because we have two goldens. :) Blessings, friend!

  12. Sammy is so sweet! Loved reading this!!

  13. Such a sweet story – he quite obviously has captured your hearts & made himself part of your family :)

  14. We had dogs growing up and I loved their unique personalities! What a great post, thanks for sharing!

  15. Proud owner of a quirky, four-legged “boy”, too. I can’t believe how our dogs can steal our hearts. Great post. I didn’t know you wrote a book…looking forward to hearing more about that.

    • They steal them and never give them back, don’t they? πŸ˜‰ So I did write a book…as in I wrote it and am praying there’s a publisher out there who likes it! (I kind of did things backwards…) Anyway, am working on a book proposal and can’t wait for the day when I can share it with all of you!

  16. Oh man, this makes me feel guilty, because our odd and quirky doggie isn’t quite as loved as he once was. :( I’ve been meaning to write a post about him… someday I might :) Love Sammy, though. He looks like he probably thinks of himself as a lap-dog, too πŸ˜‰

    • We love our dogs like crazy, but things did change when Maelie came along…and they needed to. They’re still our boys, but ya know… :) Yep, Sam would totally be a lap dog if we’d let him. Ha! Love you, friend!

  17. I love the sweet and funny little stories. Sammy is so big and beautiful! I would love to see him and our little Maddie ( 6 pound Shih-poo) next to each other. It would be hilarious! So glad to connect again, Friend!

    • Thank you, Angie! That would be fun to watch…he’s had a few interactions with smaller dogs, but not a 6 pound pooch! :) Blessings and happy week to you, friend!

  18. He is a beautiful dog. Our furry friends are part of the family and we often tell people we have 6 children: four canine and two feline. I love how each one has their own personality. I am a firm believer that they have souls.

  19. Dear Mel
    This is my first time linking-up at Crystal and I was glad when I saw your beautiful smile. Made me feel right at home. We have a Yorkshire terrier who absolutely hates to be bathed. This morning my husband had the honors and when Daisy heard the bath water running and the word shampoo, she was gone with the wind! Your Sammy is quite a handsome chap!

    • You are so sweet…I’m glad you linked up! And I had to smile at the bath time story. Sammy is very similar…my hubby usually has to drag him across the yard. :) Blessings, Mia!

  20. Oh I love this story of Sammy! It made me smile and laugh too. What a special fellow he is. :)

  21. I’ve always loved Golden Retrievers and your Sammy makes me want to go out and get one! Your story made me smile :)

    • Thanks, friend! Yep, I kinda think every home needs at least one golden retriever. Just my opinion, though! πŸ˜‰ Have a great weekend!

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