Monday, June 20, 2011

the very best part of the photoshoot...

Thank you so much to those of you who left us comments and sent emails about the Renovation Style photoshoot!  I do not know yet which issue the feature will appear in, but I promise the second I know, you will know!

While I loved everything about the photoshoot, my very favorite part of the whole experience was having these professional photographs of Ella taken by the assistant photographer, David McCaughan.

These photographs are a gift that we will cherish forever.
David did a wonderful job of capturing Ella's soul. 
Ironically, the photos were taken almost six years to the day that we adopted Ella (she was a little over a year old at the time) from the SPCA in Dallas (I am forever grateful to the person who found her and brought her to the pound so that we could find each other.)  It was on this very rug that I took the first photograph of her that day... how time flies.
She is seven years old...  and she is my heart.
















86 comments:

  1. Joan,
    I understand exactly how you feel about Ella. Beautiful photos. I'm glad you found each other.

    Kathleen (and the three pups)

    p.s. Still on blog vacation. I'll be back this summer.

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  2. Kathleen- So good to hear from you. Thank you for this and your other comments- I've missed you. I have tried to visit several times, so look forward to your return! Kisses and wags to the pups!

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  3. What a beautiful job the photographer did with these pictures. It is so amazing how these loving creatures become the light in your life. I lost my Maggie two years ago and my heart still hurts. I completely understand how you feel. I can't wait to see the issue come out of your home. It is so very beautiful. Wenda Scott

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  4. I could always tell by the photos you posted of Ella that she has such a sweet soul and these just confirmed it! Rescue pups know when they have been given a second chance in life and Ella seems so humble and proud! Congrats on the photo shoot I can't wait to turn every page in person!

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  5. Awww, What a sweet face Ella has and lucky her to have someone to love her so much and a beautiful home. Is she doberman or doberman mix? Thanks for sharing her professional portraits.
    Please give Ella an "ear scratch" or "tummy rub" for me...her choice. :)
    Babs

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  6. By any chance was Ella looking at you in the second shot down?
    I love that shot the best.

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  7. BEAUTIFUL photos! What a wonderful little present from them. How sweet of them to do that.

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  8. Wenda- I am so sorry about your Maggie. I do understand. I mourned for a year and half after we lost our first pound pup, Kelsey. It took me that long to finially go to the pound to "just look" and we found Ella that day. Ella never once lost eye contact with me and I fell in love at first sight. She looked nothing like I "thought" our next dog would look like, but that's love for you- you really have no choice;) Ella was my lesson that only by loving again can you start to heal...

    Babs- we really have no idea though we have heard "everything" from pit bull to doberman to black and tan dachshund (she is 'really' long;) to greyhound, to coonhound.... I would guess she has a little bit of lots of breeds!

    Anon 11:46- YES!!! she WAS turned looking at me as I was at the desk/computer behind her saying something to her. I adore that one too!

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  9. We have just 'found' a wonderful little dog ourselves. I can understand how you feel about Ella, such lovely photo's, how kind of them to include those. Nothing quite like Dogs, they sure have a way to add oodles of fun and love in your life.

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  10. And she posed so nicely too. Great pictures, to treasure.
    - Joy

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  11. much older sister SusanJune 20, 2011 at 12:16 PM

    I am crying as I look at these pictures of Ella. I miss her. David captured her gentle, sweet, calm spirit.

    We still laugh about the time she met Vince and Roxi and how they 'herded' her around the yard all day and she was glistening from their puppy slobber. She would look at you and Dan as if to say "Please, take me home!"

    Vince and Roxi have filled a hole in my heart that I didn't even know was there.

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  12. As a veterinarian, we see so many strays and pets in need. 8.5 years ago, Maggie, my little Lhasa, came to me after horrible abuse (the details would make anyone sick!). She is now 12.5 years old, and my little soul mate. Her and I, will forever be a team. I love how Ella's sweet soul has been captured for you in the photos. What a sweet girl!

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  13. Don't we wish we really knew what our dogs were thinking? They just love us so honestly and without judgment. They are beautiful pictures and I understand why you treasure Ella & the pics. She has a beautiful face!

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  14. I love Ella! And I love that you found her at the local animal shelter. We have 2 cats and got them from the humane society, one just two years ago as an adult. My other guy is 18 years old. I can't believe we found him that long ago. Like you, I LOVE my babies!
    Best~
    Karen

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  15. Oh I needed to hear your lesson on loving again...I lost my beagle, 14 years old, last year. I still don't know if I can go through it all again. Your message makes me pause.
    xoxo Dianne

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  16. Amazing pictures of Ella. She is lucky and she is specialto be in your life. Congrats on the photo shoot. I bet it was so much fun. ~ Debi

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  17. Sometimes it's the littlest of things that are the most precious. It's those little moments that steal your heart and make you forever greatful. Ella is just beautiful and you are so lucky to have each other.
    The house is just beautiful. I so enjoy following your journey.

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  18. Any chance we'll get to see the first picture of Ella on the rug?

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  19. Oh, Ella is a beauty, wonderful photos.

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  20. I just had a feeling Ella was looking at you or Dan.

    I think her expression is just "I love you so much--I melt." You are clearly her heart.

    Anon 11:46

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  21. She is adorable! Dogs are amazing creatures and they are true members of our family. Precious!

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  22. What a great memento of your photo shoot and a wonderful keepsake of your beautiful Ella!

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  23. Beautiful pics! Ella looks like my Tazzy. Taz was rescued from an interstate rest stop dumpster when she was aprox. 4 weeks old. We've had her ever since and she's almost 15 yrs now. It's amazing the devotion and love these animals give back to us. I'm so happy you were able to share Ella and her personality with us. Love your posts. Your home is so beautiful and full of warmth.

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  24. She's so sweet! I can see why you love her so. Dogs have that unique quality of making you feel they are part human. The photographer captured her so sweetly...

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  25. Ella is so cute! I love how she's part of nearly all your posts. It's amazing how close pets are from us... It's a relationship built through time: seven years means probably you can understand each other very well, now.

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  26. so excited to hear about your news and will look forward to seeing the issue! ella is wonderful... the heart of the home... xx

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  27. Dianne- it really is the only thing that 'softens' the pain... do think about it.

    Nancy- I actually did look for that photo several days ago right after he took the pictures, and couldn't find it. I have seen it recently, but just can't put my finger on it- hopefully I'll find it soon. She was really skinny and had a little "hot" spot from poor nutrition on her back. Days after we got her home she developed kennel cough.... I knew she was perfect when she let me lay a kleenex under her little nose and she kept it there!

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  28. Oh what wonderful photos of Ella. I know you cherish them. He did capture her "heart" for sure. She is such a dear.

    Carolyn

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  29. Dianne and Joan, I agree that loving again helps your heart. When I lost my Maggie, I knew I could not go through that again. After about a year I had the opportunity to get a new puppy that actually is a great-grandpuppy to my Maggie. What a gift. She even has a droopy ear like her great grandmother did. It does help.
    Wenda Scott

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  30. I love these photos of your Ella, I am sure that she brings you so much joy! You are so right, these are the most wonderful and special photos! What a wonderful gift from the photographer.

    I am amazed how much one can love their dogs, I cannot even imagaine what I will do when something(old age) happens to my dog, Munchen. Each day I learn so much about life from her, how to stop and smell the roses, or the jasmine, or the basil, how to take pleasure from a five minute nap in the sun and how to enjoy a meal.

    Thank you so much for sharing these special photos with us! I, like every other person who follows, cannot wait to run out and get the magazine. Congratulations again!

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  31. Your Ella is beautiful and the photographer captured her so well. We just lost our elderly Border Collie and I treasure ever picture I have of her.

    Kat :)

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  32. ...what a gift animals are to us...what is it about having that extra heartbeat about the house that makes a home so complete...

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  33. I know what you mean about your pet being your heart. I adopted my two cats as babies-Max is 19 this year, and Sebastian is 12 (he came from the Ft. Worth SPCA) And they made the long trip with us last year to our new home in Nova Scotia. I can't imagine my life without them, they keep me so entertained!
    p.s. I love your blog too!

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  34. Kat- I am so sorry...

    Layne- our "Kelsey" came from the Ft.Worth Humane Society!

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  35. Ella won the puppy lottery the day you found her at the pound. From a Humane Society volunteer, thanks for rescuing her.

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  36. Congratulations on your feature in Renovation Style magazine. Your home is amazing and will make an awesome article. Now you relax and enjoy all the things you got done off of your to do list. The pictures of Ella are so sweet; I can see why you love them.

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  37. Beautiful ... and I notice that you updated your photo of dear Ella on your sidebar, too. The last one is my favorite.

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  38. Love the photos, she is such a beautiful girl!
    I understand your love of her, my two dogs;Yellow Labradour and English pointer both six years of age are my everything! Only when you love a dog like that can you understand the deep connection you can have with an animal! Your friend in New Bruswick Xo

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  39. Such sweet photos! My Abbey was featured in the book "Dogs of Central Park" which was published after she passed. I treasure the photo of her with the Belvedre Castle in the background!

    And yes - nothing softens a broken heart after the loss of a beloved pet - like the love of another. One will never replace the other - but I cant imagine my life without puppy love.

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  40. Oh Ella, you are so, so beautiful. A-M xx

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  41. What a sweetheart. I'd love to see that first photo you took of her. Would be so cute to see them side by side.

    ♥ sécia
    www.petiteinsanities.blogspot.com

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  42. Ella is a beautiful girl. The photographer captured her personality so well. We have a rescue dog and we think she is beautiful. I'm going to try to have a dog portrait done of her as a gift to my husband. Right now I'm reading The Art of Racing in the Rain which is told from the viewpoint of a dog. The book will make you go hug your dog constantly.

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  43. Pretty, pretty girl! I'm a dog girl myself and have two dogs who own me!

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  44. Love, love, love the doggie pictures. What a treat to have such great documents of her life. Our Maddie girl is getting up there in age and I just can't imagine our life without her.

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  45. I love all the different expressions on ella's face. What a sweet doggie soul she is.

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  46. isn't she lovely! you may think I am crazy but I can actually feel the love in your post for Ella. and from those who have left comments. I have always thought our pets are packages of unconditional love.

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  47. Oh how beautiful. Ella is so photogenic, and what an excellent photographer.

    ~Donna

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  48. These are such beautiful images of Ella, love her big soulful brown eyes. I totally understand how you feel about Ella since bring Dylan home he has been my life.

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  49. lovely. the second one made me tear up a little. it's the same sweet look I get from my sheltie, sir budrow wilson the third.

    donna

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  50. I just read this post and the last about the shoot. What an experience! And how flattering for you that they brought little in the way of accessories. I for one don't have a few extra gorgeous urns hanging around, lol! :) Although I wish I did. In fact, I wish your house was mine! What a treat to have you share this. And, I must agree, as a fellow dog-lover (seriously love my dog), I agree that the images of Ella are just the best. I can feel from you words how much that baby means to you. I can totally relate! Good luck with the publication and I can't wait to see it all in print. Congratulations.

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  51. How beautiful...you can see her sweet soul in each of these gorgeous images!!

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  52. Wonderful photos of your 'girl' !! Bless you for adopting from a shelter, warms my heart....So many dogs & cats waiting for families, they can be saved, 'one dog at a time'.

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  53. Oh, I love Ella's face. So sweet! I know what you mean about your dog being your heart. Our two girls are so important in our lives. When we go away for an overnight without them, I keep thinking about them, hoping they aren't too lonely. They are quite special. I enjoyed your post on the photo shoot and look forward to buying the magazine. What a bonus to have had the professional photographer on the shoot take such lovely photos of beautiful Ella. Enjoy them!

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  54. What a sweet thing, and I'm not even a dog lover! I'd love her up I'm sure!

    Megan

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  55. Oh - BEYOND adorable!! You should have them framed - they are really just so sweet and charming!!

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  56. It amazes me how these little furbabies become real babies to us...when my daugher was a jr. in college she came home for Thanksgiving with more than dirty laundry....she had a baby puggle/Sydney with her...she recently took a job in CA...Sydney just joined her and I miss them both so much....so this dog has been to college, flew across the country and is now living on the beach LOL What a life !!!

    While I had her all to myself, I taught her to sing/howl to How much is that Doggie in the Window (it's a riot)...... as a kid I loved LASSIE, I always waited for the wave at the end of show...YUP I taught Syd to wave...what a special little thing she is...

    Love those pics of Ella.....I am so glad you found each other..

    Have a wonderful day,
    Kathy :)

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  57. those photographs brought tears to my eyes...

    no greater LOVE...than the LOVE of a dog

    so HAPPY to stop by and see this today

    PURE DELIGHT

    sending love,
    kary and teddy
    xo

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  58. Congrats on the photo shoot and thanks for sharing the pictures of your sweet Ella. You're both lucky to have each other.
    After losing my little 18 yr. old toy fox terrier a year and a half ago I just adopted another (a puppy) who was left at the pound. I was hesitant to take in another dog but it has indeed made a happy change in my life. The difference between an older dog and a puppy is scary and challenging, but we're getting along pretty well!

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  59. Ella is a treasure.
    Nancy w.

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  60. Dogs...I love them! It looks like Ella might have some dachshund in her. My favorite! Can't imagine life without a dog....

    Judy :)

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  61. Oh my goodness she is a love. So excited for you, what a wonderful way to celebrate your home and loving life!

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  62. Oh, Ella's beautiful...you can see her sweet soul in that sweet face...wonderful images!
    xo J~

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  63. Ella is so precious...those eyes...that sweet soul.....

    Andrea @Big Creek Cottage

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  64. Ella is such a beautiful girl and I LOVE her collar! All of our animals have been rescues. Wish we could convince everyone to adopt from a shelter! Did you know black dogs are usually the last to be adopted? This of course makes them the most euthanized, too. Thanks for sharing Ella with us:)

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  65. Awwww...
    You know how I feel about Pups so I totally relate to this post :)
    besos to you and Ella.

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  66. I want to paint Ella on a huge canvas! She is just so beautiful.
    pve

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  67. I've been reading Ella all of your comments and she thanks you with wiggles and wags!

    Judy- I grew up with miniature dachshunds and I think you are right! Not long after we adopted Ella we saw a photo of a black and tan dachshund and it looked "just" like her. And- she is really long!! But then she also has the softest patch of white and black speckled fur at her throat which reminds me of an Austrialian Shepherd! So, back to the guess that she has a little bit of a LOT of breeds in her!!

    Jill- I couldn't agree more- I am a huge advocate for adopting AND for adopting older dogs which often are overlooked for the cute puppies. I have heard that about black dogs, but didn't know it 20 years ago when we adopted our first dog, also black.... I obviously have a fondness for black dogs now, and I'm sure that knowledge that they are last to get adopted plays a little role.

    That reminds me of a story- back in Dallas Ella had a friend Pearl(a little adopted pit mix that we loved) and Pearl's next door neighbor made the comment to Pearl's mom that Pearl was inherently "MEAN" because she was black- AND this was a college educated woman- isn't that unreal.

    Patricia-- ahhhh to see that sweet face on a huge canvas!!

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  68. I have tears because we just put our sweet little 16 year old pound puppy to sleep last week. So glad you have that precious little girl in your life. And now these lovely photos. :) I know you will treasure them for years to come.

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  69. Joan, I've been reading your blog for quite a while, but these photos of Ella have prompted me to comment for the first time. I do love your wonderful house, but, for me, the best part of your blog is Ella. She is so beautiful, and those soulful eyes really grab my heart. You are very fortunate to have such a friend by your side every day. Thank you for sharing these photos with us.
    --Gail

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  70. Ella is beautiful and yes, the photos are lovely of her! I can see why that would be your favorite part of the photo shoot!!!! We are now in the US and last night my daughter Bekah saw a commercial for adopting an animal at a shelter and asked if we could do that instead of buying a dog :) We live near an Army post where there are always lots of abandoned dogs :( Your postings of Ella have certainly pushed me in the direction of considering doing just that ~ adopting. We had a Min Pin, Lady, years ago, and Ella reminds me of her every time I see her. :)

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  71. How great it is to have these photos taken...they're beautiful...I miss my dog so bad...maybe it's time to get another...hmmm

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  72. Oh my, these are such beautiful photos. I know what you mean about loving a dog. My sweet dog Sadie was also adopted and we treat her like the Queen that she is. She is the most loving dog we have ever had, hands down. Sadly, we just found out that she has a tumor on her trachea. We are devastated. She is too young (7 years old) for this. We are heartbroken. Thank the Lord for people like you who love animals so much. I am glad you and Ella found each other.

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  73. Beth,
    I have tears as I write this... I am so, so very sorry about Sadie. I truly understand how heartbreaking this news is. Seven 'is' way too young. I am so sad and sorry. Hug and kiss and hold her tight... Ella and I will send Sadie puppy-prayers.
    joan

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  74. Hi there, I am just wondering where you found the gorgeous dog collar? It is stunning?

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  75. Pink Door- thanky you! I found the collar at a pet shop in Dallas (unfortunatly it is no longer in business). I, too, thought it so stunning that I bought about 4 of them;) Ella's mommy has a wee bit of a "issue" with buying pretty collars, but that is the only one I have purchased multiples of;)

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  76. Hi Joan- Catching up on all your posts....and this one just makes me smile. I can imagine what a thrill it was for them to treat you to some one of a kind photos of your heart!!

    She sure is a good dog!!

    hugs-
    Carolyn

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  77. She is so adorable! We too have a rescue dog...a blue pit that was on death row simply because of her breed. We had recently sent our pit bull of eight years to the "rainbow bridge". She had lymphoma. We had already fallen in love with the breed, so when we heard of Kinze from a friend who works at a pit bull rescue in Sacramento, Ca. , we quickly made the 3.5 hour drive there to meet her. She is so sweet!

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  78. Ella reminds me so much of my old doberman that I adopted when he was a year old as well. I've never had a dog take my heart and run with it like he did. There were many a hour spent sitting on the floor with him sharing secrets... those deep soulful brown eyes looking at me just like Ella does in these pics. He's been gone for four years now, but I still choke up when I think of him. I miss him so much. The are the most wonderful dogs in the world. Thank you for sharing her pics. Give her a hug for me!

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  79. Beautiful photos of such a sweet soul. I love the way he captured the love in her eyes when she was looking up at you. There is not much better in this world then the unconditional love of a dog! (I type this as one of my two beloved labs sends me love from the chair.)

    I wish I was a reader at the time of the photo shoot - I'm sure it would have been amazing to see your home in a magazine!

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  80. What a gorgeous dog Ella is. Her sweet soul comes through in these photos. You are so fortunate to have in your life, Joan. She is my favorite part of your blog. You could post photos of Ella every day and it would make me happy. Thank you for sharing her with us.

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  81. Oh that chocolate brown nose is the. best.

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  82. Thank you so much for sharing these beautiful pictures with us. I love the last one. Looking into her eyes is like looking into her heart. You are so lucky to have her. We have them for far too short a time. So nice to see that you have so many followers who love their furbabies so much, too.
    Lauren

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