Introducing Lily!

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Meet Lily, the 1 year old golden retriever I adopted sight-unseen, not even a picture! ❤️

I think by now, all you guys know how powerful the love between Tuck + I was. I couldn’t even THINK about getting another dog without feeling sick for the longest time. I told Tuck, if it was going to happen, it would have to come in a way that I least expected + that there was no doubt in my mind he was behind it.

So flash back to this past Friday, Feb. 24th. I was in Sedona with my husband for a quick little weekend. I had a heavy heart thinking about how in a few days it would be 1 whole year without Tuck. Sedona is a super special place for us both + it is also an extremely powerful place with energy vortexes. We were in the car, on our way to one of our most favorite hikes, when I turned to my husband and told him I’m expecting something awesome on the trail today. Whether it’s a beautiful feather, or an experience that just moves me. As soon as we stepped foot on the trail I instantly thought of Tuck + how much fun we always had hiking. I could just feel him with me. 

Now, fast forward an hour or so when we are resting on a rock, having a snack. I hear my husband say “look” and I turn my head only to see a golden retriever barreling towards us. He runs right up to us + then straight to our bag of snacks. The owners apologize and say that he usually stays with them unless he sees food. We had a good laugh, as Tuck was the same way. He sat with us + soaked in some love/snacks. My husband said “well here is your something awesome”! The dog was licking my face + I started to break out into happy tears. There was no doubt Tuck send me these golden kisses. 

For the rest of the hike I was just absolutely beaming. We sat down at a stream to relax + I dug into my backpack to pull out some dried mango to snack on. I instantly though of Tuck, again, as he loved dried mango. I’d always share a little piece with him. Right as I pulled it out, my husband goes “Look, there is a red golden”! He was just trotting by with his owners. 

Shortly after, while sitting on an energy vortex, I went into meditation. I had a vision of a young lady + her husband walking up to me with a young golden retriever + they told me she was available for adoption. Shortly after I drifted off into sleep while laying on the rock with the river flowing past me. 

When I woke up, we started the hike out. As we were nearing the trailhead, I saw a couple doing a photoshoot with, you guessed it, a golden! I creeped on them until the shoot was done and then left the trail feeling SO full of Tuck’s love and so grateful for all of the little signs he sent me.

As soon as we got back to the AIRBNB, I turned my phone on. I had a voicemail from someone at the dog shelter I volunteer at, Orphans of the Storm Animal Shelter. It said: “Hi, Elena! We got a young beautiful sweet golden retriever in today. She is under a year old and I’m guessing she is going to end up getting adopted today or tomorrow. She’s super cute so just wanted to let you know”! I screamed + told my husband, this is it. I immediately called he back saying we wanted her. She had no photo to share as the shelter was about to close for the night and nobody snapped one of her. She said they wouldn’t be able to hold her until we got back from Sedona, so I called my mom to see if she could go pick her up for us. The next morning, as soon as the shelter opened, my parents picked up Lily and brought her home.

I wouldn’t be home to meet her until late Sunday night. Now, naturally at this point, some fears started to creep in but I just kept reminding myself that Tuck + the universe was orchestrating this all. That entire day I was being sent signs that lead me right to this: a sweet golden girl being delivered right into my life. We got home from a long day of travel to the sweetest little angel I ever did meet.

Now, in only a few short days, Lily has stolen our hearts + neither my husband nor I could imagine life without her. She has settled in SO nicely. She is unbelievably sweet, playful but also has the best off-switch + loves just relaxing, laying on the couch. She is gentle + eerily similar to Tuck in a lot of ways including having a ball obsession + expressive eyebrows. She LOVES her toys/bones + is able to entertain herself. It’s the cutest to watch. She sleeps all night, without making a peep. She is AMAZING with people, wiggles her whole body in excitement. She is not reactive in the least when she sees other dogs walk by but we haven’t let her engage with any yet. Taking it all slow! She comes when called, knows sit, paw + is getting better at ‘wait’ before eating and exiting the doors. 

When we got her we were told she was a flight risk + that she slips collars, but I believe she was just trying to find her way to her forever home! She sticks right around us and the only place she wants to run is back into our house or into the car!

I’ve yet to hear of anyone else who agreed to adopt a dog they didn’t even so much as see one photo of beforehand, but it was one of the best decisions i’ve made + totally meant to be. I’m so glad she found her way home, thanks Tuck for protecting her until she did.

Thank you Orphans team, especially Sandy DeLisle for leaving the voicemail I will forever cherish.

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