My dog ran way… one of the highlights of the Christmas season

I know what you’re thinking: he CANNOT be serious with this post title! Maybe he’s being sarcastic?

Well, you are kind of right and kind of wrong. The story goes that once every blue moon — day — my beagle finds a way to escape. Especially when I visit family in Florida. You see, at home in Nashville the house and yard are pretty much dog proof. I’ll admit though, that the OTHER dog escapes more here in Nashville, but in Florida it’s Piper the Wonderdog who takes advantage of every opportunity to… go wild? Go rogue? Go wildly rogue.

Over the Christmas holiday was no exception. Coming off a previous trip when we visited in the summer and where she escaped for 4 hours, I was really just hoping this holiday vacation would be nothing dramatic. We made it about halfway through the trip and then it happened. The great Beagle-dini disappeared into thin air.

“Where she goes we do not know. She is ruled only by her wandering nose!”

A quick canvasing of the neighborhood came up empty and before I go further I’ll paint a picture for you of what the area looks like. A few houses and lots and lots of woods. What do you have when you combine a forest and a beagle? I don’t know but I’ll tell you what you DON’T have… a beagle. It’s like tossing a fish into the ocean and telling it to stay by the boat.

So after that first look and finding nothing, I was having flashbacks of the 4-hour ordeal months earlier. In that fiasco, my parents were a major part of the search to find her and because of a smart move by my Mom, we were able to reunite with the rascally Piper. This time, so far, I was wandering around on my own and knew this was a fool’s errand if I didn’t find her in the first 10 or 15 minutes.

Guess what? I didn’t find her in the first 10 or 15 minutes. It was on to plan B. Who do you call when you need something done? I pulled out my phone and called Mom. Now, remember this is the Christmas holiday so in the house were 16 people doing holiday things like watching sports, playing games, and who knows what else a small group staying socially distant. I could hear them in the background as I relayed the news that Piper had gotten out and was missing in action.

You guys, my Mom was AWESOME. Within a minute or two she had assembled teams and everyone sprang into action. There were 5 or 6 groups headed out in all directions to track down the elusive illusionist Beagle Copperfield.

Because all hands were on deck, we found her within 10 minutes. My brother-law spotted her a few hundred yards away from the home base and soon after, with the help of my nieces, she was cornered and waving the white flag tail of surrender.

“Until next time…” she thought mischievously.

If it were just me looking, I may have never found her. I learned a couple of things because of this.

  1. Some things you just can’t do on your own. I’m so hard-headed and want to just do stuff myself. It’s hard for me to ask for help. But thanks to my family jumping in, the problem was solved.
  2. Never ever, under any circumstances, let a wild beagle out in the wild without a plan… and a leash.

Sooooooooooo… was my dog running away a highlight of the Christmas season? Well, not exactly… but from this situation I saw my family drop everything they were doing to help me find Evil Beagle Knievel. They rallied quickly and it was just a great feeling to have them help in that way, something I couldn’t have done alone.

My parents, and family, are the greatest.

-Out of the Wilderness

flowers, flyers, and a ferocious beagle

Breaking news: I have new guests in my backyard. The first picture here is a flower that I had no idea was even part of the makeup of my yard! A tiny bit of the backstory is that this area actually had a tree in it not too long ago till a storm blew it down. Now, I guess there’s room for things like this to show up? It looks like some kind of hibiscus… with a few visitors of its own.


Next up is a moth/butterfly creature that is beautiful. The problem with these guys is that they rarely stay anywhere long enough to get a good photograph but I’m very thankful to get this shot.


So far these things have been pretty, right? Then we get to this guy.


While I wouldn’t call a cicada “pretty” by the standard definition, they’re very fascinating to look at (when they aren’t haphazardly flying towards your face!). Kind of like this insect… pretty in it’s own freaky way. I would’ve had more pictures of the cicada, certainly the blurry photo isn’t the best, or wouldn’t have been the one I chose… but…. I only got one photo before… how do I say this delicately…. well…. let’s just say I’m the only vegan in my house and I’ll let you decide what that means.


Good day to ya!

-Out of the Wilderness