When the Rest of the Story Is So Much Better

When the Rest of the Story Is So Much Better

dining room and a yorkie

I have the most wonderful, incredible, amazing friend Andrea who loves dogs.

Like if-you-only-had-one-blanket-and-it-was-cold-give-it-to-your-dog kind of love.  Or your last drink of water.  Or the shirt off your back.

You get the idea.

In other words, her dogs are her family.

And ever since I have known her she has been on a mission to rescue every single dog on this planet and just between you and me….

….that is a really big job.


Really big.

the cutest yorkie on the planet

So this Christmas the twins and I decided to surprise her by donating to an incredible non-profit organization that saves shelter pets and helps them to find new homes and gives them a second chance.

Because everyone deserves a second chance.

Especially at Christmas.

And when they sent her the notice, she e-mailed me with 547 exclamation points and called us and told us how happy she was and wished us a Merry Christmas and we laughed and celebrated and the twins baked cookies.

And I thought that was it.


The end.

laundry room and Yorkie


Until after the new year when Andrea went all Paul Harvey on me with the rest of the story.

You see, she wanted to surprise us and save another dog from a shelter.

And she did.


bon bon

Except she didn’t just save one dog.  It’s so much of a better rest of the story than that…..

….because the dog she saved?

She was pregnant with puppies.

And the best part?

The shelter called to see if she wanted to name them.

And so it is that there are now two little girl puppies named after two little blonde-curly-haired-blue-eyed giggling-cookie-making twins.

Whitney and Westleigh.

PS  Our little Yorkie we rescued, Bonzai, celebrated, too. 🙂

PPS  If you ever want to make a difference in the life of a dog who needs a second chance, you can find out more about Partners For Pets….here.

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  1. Love it, LOVE it, LOVE IT!!!! (I’ll try to contain my happiness to four exclamation points.) 😉 I love the adorable pictures of Bonzai, the heartwarming story, and the spelling of Westleigh. Have a fabulous Friday!

  2. This organization would be a great way to pay it forward.
    I never realized how much our black lab was a member of our family until she passed away last year.

  3. awesome! I love andreas love and commitment for animals.

  4. Awww, Miz karriane….that is awesome! How great of you and the twins to do that for her to begin with, and just look how it has mushroomed and grown and blossomed!
    You guys a raising some pretty neat kids who are going to make some pretty neat adults.
    Always up for a heartwarming story about animals….
    PS I love the names you gave the twins….

  5. Michele Riggsbee :

    All of my pets are rescues! They are the very best! Thanks for such a lovely story to start my day!

  6. Dogs are so special, they give so much love and ask so little in return, thanks for the beautiful story and thanks for sharing your laundry room, I don’t think you have ever shown it before.

  7. Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww……………. I love … love …. love this!!!!! Welcome to : “Whiney & Westliegh” … 🙂 Pups sure do have a way of rocking our world!!!! :)) … and I also was thinking that I’ve never seen your laundry room!!! NICEEEEEEEEE!!!!

  8. Yvonne Shafer :

    I love all those who rescue animals. Their hearts are so big! I work with a fabulous group rescuing greyhounds. Each dog we get off the track knows it’s getting a second chance. Thank you, Karianne, for spreading the word and for rescuing Bonzai!

  9. Christina in FL :

    Dogs and cats and horses and bears and so so so SOOOO many more! May we live in a world where no one, non-human or human, has to suffer.

  10. Love it, Karianne! I have to tell you that seeing the pictures of Bonzai (Love the name!) inspired me to go to the pound and adopt. We now have “Miso” and she is heartwarming our lives!

  11. Sweet story…sweet twins…you and twinkling eyes are raising some great people! 😉

  12. Love this story…..and the rest of it:) Love the twins’ names and now two sweet pups are graced with them. And impressed with your twins’ hearts and souls too!

  13. This is so awesome! My family volunteers at a local shelter too, which happens to be owned by our good friend. One night, my daughter and I helped deliver some puppies from a sweet mama. We are now the owners of the first-born of that litter! She is our sweet Zoella! We have even had the opportunity to name a few others and always rejoice when any of them go to their ‘fur’ever home.! Your puppy is precious and thanks for supporting our dog friends!

  14. Michelle Rudis :

    What a sweet story, what an adorable Yorkie and what great names! And as a matter of fact, I do have a friend almost exactly like that. And the fun part is, my rescue Chihuahua is best friends with her rescue Mastiff 🙂

  15. I have 2 little shih-tsu pups that I adore! If I could I would adopt more. No animal should have to suffer, & and would be so greatful to have a loving family! I was thrilled that your story inspired one adoption & maybe more to come… love the pics of your little Yorkie too.

  16. How sweet! Your little pup is so cute. I love a good rescue story. We rescued our sweet dog, Dixie, from a place called Death Row Dogs. They saved dogs from “death row” and placed them in homes. She is the sweetest puppy in the world.

  17. How cute & sweet!!! My love is Siamese cats, and all of mine have been rescued from our local Humane Society 🙂 There just is something special about giving an animal a second chance and they give us one too! Take care in the weather coming your way!! And by the way, missed you last week-end, you weren’t in Indiana 🙁

  18. Aaaawwweeee! Warms my heart. 5 years ago December 11th we rescued our chocolate lab from a shelter. Our first pup!! Now spoiled to the max.

  19. Ok I don’t normally comment on things but can I just say that you are a breath of fresh air and I wish there were more people in the world like you. The planet is a much much better place because you have walked this earth!! Have an awesome day and stay safe because if I have read things correctly you are in Kentucky and currently getting pounded by snow.

  20. That’s such a great story! I love dogs (of course) and your Bonzai is such a cutie!! Oh I just love his face.

  21. Animals can make your happiness level go far beyond 10.. We adopted 2 labs and they are our best friends. Bonzai is the cutest. My kids named our dogs after trees.. Bradford and Cypress.. What a hoot.. I bet your daughters love it.. Have a great weekend everybody. Go out and get at least 15 min. of sun. Say what you are thankful for, count your blessings, then make some ones day with a smile.

  22. Such a nice story! Thanks for sharing. Love dogs as well I have 2. Yours is a cutie! Lisa @ Sweet Tea N’ Salty Air

  23. Wow! This is such a great story. How awesome that your family gave such an wonderful gift like that. That is what I think Christmas is suppose to be about. Jesus came to make such a difference in our lives and I think it is so wonderful when we make a difference for someone else.

  24. Awww…that’s AWESOME:) You gotta love animals! PERIOD! Especially dogs:) I love my puppies and I spoil them rotten! We had 2 Shih-Tzu’s until our youngest son decided that he was going to rescue another dog…and while at college to boot! Niiicccceee…LOL! My husband of course flipped his lid (and that’s putting it mildly). We named her Marley, and she’s a pitbull. Now you would think that she’s runs the house, but that’s “Sir Stewarts” job:) He’s was the runt of the litter- a tiny Shih-Tzu. He’ll take ya down one toe at a time, but Marley thinks she’s mama’s lap dog! Thanks for sharing that story:) Have a great weekend Ms. Thistle!

  25. aw, cute!
    Funny, my twin sister is like that. Matter of fact, she has 7 dogs and 2 cats. All rescues. I didn’t inherit that gene. I mean, I want shelter animals/strays to get good homes, I just don’t want them all at my house. LOL. Sounds like a good cause. I might have to donate in my sister’s name. :o)

  26. Bonzai is one lucky little pooch!!!
    Love, love this post! Great cause!!

  27. Such a sweet story!! Totally put a huge smile on my face today!

  28. Awwwwwww!! How sweet. Sometimes I can figure out how your story is going to end and I thought for sure YOU were going to get two little girl puppies. You have a wonderful heart and so does the rest of your family. Isn’t that what life is all about?? Taking time to care and give a little? Yes indeed — those puppies will have a wonderful life. God bless people with hearts — I think St. Francis of Assisi already said something about that 🙂 I want a statue of St. Francis for my garden — Big hugs!!

  29. Tina Matteson :

    How sweet!!! Your little dog is adorable too. Can you share what is behind the white ruffled curtain in your laundry room? Dying to know. I love that room.

  30. Yay for Rescue!!!! I have two boxer dogs that are both rescues and since I don’t have children, they really are my children. They are the canine loves of my life!

  31. My daughter is really invited in an English Setter rescue group – her Derby dawg is a rescue. They occassionally have been known to keep dogs waiting for a family – and even have driven certain dogs to the airport to fly away to a good home or three! : – )

    We have been cat people and have rescued many over the years. We lost our best one, Romeo last May and we’re done now. My heart cannot get over that one. So we donate, but we’re done. Here he is if you want to see him. I loved him more than I love most people. Haha. Don’t tell my family I said that, lol. Here is the link to my post:

    I hope you come see what a cutie pie that special friend was. /Sniff.

  32. Wonderful story. So many needy animals out there…….do you know about freekibble.com? It checks out as legit, and donates free kibble to dogs and cats and cat litter too. You answer a trivia question and right or wrong, they donate food to shelters. Quick easy way to help .

  33. Love LOVE the rug under your dining table. Can you tell me where you got it?


  34. After I lost my Murray I swore never again would I have another dog becuase my heart could not go thru that loss again. 8 months later a co-worker told me her neighbor found a pup eating out of a dumpster in an ally – could I come see if I could tell her what kind of pup it was? Well… of course no one could keep her. I cried for months after I loss Murray and now I cried again because I had to make a decsion. Miss Maddie Rose has been with me now for 9 years. The vet said he thought she was 4 months old when I finally decided to bring her home. The best or strangest part of the story is she looks and acts like my Murray. Miss Maddie Rose is the love of my life now and is a spoiled rotten little girl which is fine with me. When I tell this story, I always add that God gave me my Murray back only she’s a cute little girl. Isn’t life a funny thing???? Heap all your love on Bonzi – he’ll give it back ten fold. Thanks for such a beautiful story, Karianne…. You always have such wonderful and positive things to tell us 🙂

  35. What a wonderful, heartwarming story!!! And your dog, Bonzai, is just way too adorable!!! There’s nothing like saving a dog or cat! We have four rescue cats and my best friend, my dog Cocoa!!

  36. That’s so sweet! A person who loves animals always has a good heart! We’re a rescue dog family as well. We have two Italian Greyhounds – we got our boy through For the Hounds, a greyhound rescue organization, and our girl through our Italian Greyhound Meetup group. They are a big part of our family and so loved by our boys. It’s so nice of you to donate to such a good cause for your friend!

  37. This is such a great ending to an absolutely AMAZING story to begin with 🙂 Plus, it really hits home for me this week. Just a few days ago my husband and I saved a former hunting dog that was walking up and down the highway by our house. It’s so awesome to hear that there are others doing similar acts of kindness all over the country. Thank you for sharing!!

  38. Great feel good story and lovely gift

  39. I work with 3 rescue groups in 2 semi rural counties. Best, heartbreaking, joyfilled work ever. Anyone decluttering for the new year, sheltes always need towels. If you have laundry detergent you don’t like, shelters wash tons of linens evey day.

  40. What a beautiful gift! Yes I agree that rescuing is so rewarding! We rescued our cat ( I’m allergic to dogs, but I love them <3 ) . It was the greatest gift we could have been given.

  41. You and yours are too good!!!

  42. Debbie Esparza :

    My heart is singing with great joy! I totally understand where your friends heart is. I am always so happy when ordinary people go out of their day and week to save a pet. They are the voiceless, the pets, and we must speak up for them. I thank her from the bottom of my singing heart!

  43. Squeee!! I love this story so much! We have 3 rescues and are working on building funding for our shelter. Your little one looks so much like our Chorkie – Sammy – love, love love!!!

  44. I soooooooooo LOVE this post! Andrea sounds like a lady after my own heart…good on her for doing what she can to give a voice to the voiceless and help the helpless…I hope she knows just how special she is and how much of a difference she is making to this world through her generosity, empathy, and kindness. And how wonderful of you and your family to make a donation in her name to her favourite charity…this is a truly thoughtful and heartfelt gift and I’ll bet she was totally blown away by your generosity, kindness, and thoughtfulness…not only did you touch your friend’s heart deeply with this gift, but you helped some puppies who soooooo needed it…well done, KariAnne!

    As I’m sure that you and Andrea would attest to, all furkids deserve a loving forever home…they aren’t just “pets”, they are family, once you take them into your heart and home…they give soooooooo much in return for just a little bit of love and kindness shown to them, don’t they? I wouldn’t know what to do without my Hoss…he means the world to me…I have been so very blessed to have him in my life. Unfortunately, the time is coming very soon where we will have to part…this is the hardest thing about taking a furkid into your home, but he has made even this impending sorrow all worth it…he has been a very good friend to me all of these years…there are none better.

    Your sweet Bonzai is just THE cutest furbaby EVER! He has fast made his little way into your hearts and become a vital part of your family, hasn’t he? He will never stop showing you what an excellent decision you made the day you took him home, KariAnne…may you have many more days to share with one another! And thank you, from the heart, for being such a good friend to our four-legged brethren!

  45. The story and the rest of the story – all wonderful! My daughter and son-in-law have two rescue dogs and one cat (along with a non-rescue dog) and had another who passed away before rescuing the last one. They also rescued another VERY thin, wandering, homeless dog who they nursed back to life but then he got really sick. My daughter slept on the floor with him for two nights. After two vet visits (and a lot of money…) the vet said she felt he would recover with a lot of treatment and that her mom was willing to adopt the dog and pay for the care. A happy ending.