Our newest addition -- meet Rabito

Or Inigo. Or Milman. Or Dodo. Or perhaps the cutest dog in the world.

One of my Christmas presents from Tom was a dog or a cat, so last weekend, he and I took a look around for a scruffy mutt dog that wasn't too big and wasn't too small and we found him on a site devoted to rescue dogs from Spain.

Rabito (means "Small Tail") was rescued by the Animal Life Aid Service, a group devoted to saving animals from all over Europe. Rabito comes from Spain, and was literally saved from death row, where he was sent after his family decided, after 9 months, that he was too big to keep. Spain -- nice people, good food, but not so nice or good if you are a dog. Instead of trying to find new families for dogs, they simply kill them. So people from ALAS saw Robito when his "turn" was just two dogs away, ealized he shouldn't be there and saved him. He was sent to a foster home in southern Netherlands, where he stayed for 2 months, waiting for us to find him.

And we did. While looking through postings on the internet, we came across Rabito's photo and instantly knew he was our dog. We rented a car and drove for about two hours to get to a small town close to the Belgium border. The people who took care of him were lovely, and have fantastic kennel facilities that they open up for rescue dogs free of charge. Rabito was a bit scared at first, but warmed up quickly and even let me hold him in my lap all the way home. We walked a long way back to the apartment and Rabito's head must have been spinning to go from a farm to a big city with trams and helicopters and bikes with bells and cars too.

He has been adjusting beautifully, including sleeping all night last night and quickly figuring out who we are. The three of us went on a big walk today in Westerpark, where dogs can run around free (though not Rabito yet) and there are lots of trees to use and lots of mud to play in. And then he got his first bath.

Tom and I are in love, and Rabito seems happy too. Now we get to be a family!


Marco + Pasquale

My lovely friends in Amsterdam, via Italy. On Christmas day I was lucky enough to be invited to their flat for Christmas lunch with Marco's sister, her two boys, a coworker of Pasquale's and Pasquale's parents -- their first trip outside of Italy and their first trip on an airplane! I could not think of a better place to spend the afternoon. Though I was the only non-Italian in the group, I felt so welcome. Pasquale's father kept telling jokes through the meal, which Marco graciously translated for me. I had to laugh well after everyone else in the room, but I did laugh. When I told him (and had translated), "I have to remember these jokes so I can tell my father." he raised his glass and said, "To Papas!" At which point I teared up. Of course!

These are photos from the Wieden+Kennedy Christmas party. Marco is the one in the glasses. In looking back on the year, I am very aware that I have been lucky enough to make some lifelong friends. That doesn't happen often and I am so grateful that these two fine, funny gentlemen came into my life.


This is why I love Tom Lyman

He had me at the tweed hat and wellies.

The fact that he is the funniest man to walk with amidst the Dover sheep is a fantastic bonus.