A Home for the Holidays

This post is a little overdue.

Originally, I wanted to share some holiday recipes suitable for family coming “Home for the Holidays”, but then my Stella passed right before Thanksgiving and the past few weeks have been a blur. Today I want to share with you my house guests this holiday season, instead!

Backstory: In the deep, dark hole of mourning,  I was contacted by The Cavalier Rescue about two weeks ago. Two giant fluff monster blenheims were being surrendered to rescue and with the holidays approaching, the list of available foster homes was quite sparse. The list of available foster homes willing to take in an extremely bonded pair was practically non-existent. Knowing my broken-hearted status, they thought that it might be a nice distraction from the absence Stella left behind when the holidays would surely make me sad and….. they were desperate for a foster home.

I agreed to give it a whirl and drove to Mississippi to secure and provide a warm and cozy home for Farrah and Darling this holiday season. Their journey would cross several states getting them from Georgia to Alabama for vetting and then to me in Louisiana. Rescue is quite literally the best thing to happen to these girls.

Overbred and overfed, these girls have some issues that they’ll need to work through before they’re available for adoption. While both need to lose a significant amount of weight, Darling, the chubbier of the two required a mesh implant during her spay due to multiple, multiple c-sections. Farrah had an umbilical hernia repair during her spay. She also has a blown ACL, an old injury that will need to be monitored once she’s lost some weight in terms of whether or not surgery is necessary. They also came to me with UTIs and ear infections, so yay me.

Despite their laundry list of health issues, you won’t meet a more darling pair of Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. We’ve been calling them “the love sponges” because they are seriously soaking up every bit of affection you will allow. And while they don’t replace the memory of my beloved Stella, they’ve kept me from wallowing in my sorrow on a daily basis.

I thought it more appropriate to share them with you rather than a recipe….to me, they are a true meaning of a home for the holidays.

In honor of their temporary stay, I hired a Santa to come to my house.

And before you think I’m entirely insane, every year, the Knights of Columbus at my in-law’s church do Santa sessions for a modest donation. So yes, “Santa” is also my father in law! I get all the photos my little heart desires and the church gets much-needed resources to continue to serve the community.

Santa Paws

 Between the Stella sadness and my husband heading out of town for the LSU bowl game at the end of the month, I had already decided not to put my giant Christmas tree up this year.  It always seems like a ton of work to take down and by not putting up the tree it would allow for a slower, more minimalist approach to Christmas.

Without the tree, though, I’d need to figure out where to plop Santa. My mantle would play double duty this year and surprisingly, I’m in love with the simplicity. And, I don’t have to worry about the girls going potty on my tree skirt….because there isn’t one!

My Charlie Brown trees were added so I wouldn’t be completely treeless and the polka dotted throw blanket (both from Wayfair) provided just enough colorful pop of holiday happiness without being in your face Christmas decor.

You’ll likely see that throw blanket again for Valentine’s Day, too.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels with Santa

I’m so pleased with how well the girls posed with Santa and having him here provided the perfect opportunity for them to ask for a home of their very own.

And, because they’re not called the “Kissing Cavaliers” for nothing, they did not disappoint.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Santa Paws

These girls are seriously the most ridiculously adorable pups and they will make a wonderful addition to any family once they’re available for adoption.

Wishing you and yours a very Merry KISSmas.

PS: My trio also got in on the Santa Paws action. Because, duh.

Milo (6), Murphy (5) and Tucker (9).


  1. This is just so sweet Aimee! You are truly amazing ????! I didn’t know your Santa was a beloved family member… how special. The girls are so cute ❤️ And your boys are adorable ????????????. Merry Christmas ????????????????!

    1. Awww, thank you Barbara! Thank goodness we knew Santa- not sure anyone else would’ve put up with my take a million photos until we get the girls kissy face shot! 🙂

  2. Such sweet girls! We recently lost our 6 year old female Cavalier to MVD. She kissed everyone – people and dogs (and our 8 year old male Cavalier and 2 year old male Lab.). We miss her so much! We live in New Orleans and would love to be considered as their new family. We are signed up online for adoption and foster.

    1. I am so sorry to hear about your female. I feel guilty sometimes about how sad I am considering I have my boys, but there’s just something so darn precious about the females. I know the emptiness your heart must feel. 🙁 I’m so happy to know you’re in New Orleans and interested in the girls! It’s sooooo hard not to get attached to them and I’d love for them to be close enough to continue to visit. Be sure to drop rescue an email when they’re officially posted for adoption reminding them to pull your application.

      1. Yes, I already sent an email even though they’re not available yet. I will be checking their status often! Of course I love my 2 male dogs, but our female was the little mommy of the house, making sure everyone felt loved! Sorry to hear of your loss – it is so heartbreaking!

  3. Love spaniels! Had a cocker for several years. Her name was Honey. I have always wanted a Cavalier but they are so expensive. Would love to have a rescue. Besides our Cocker , Honey, we’ve also had an Akita , Kieshu and then one that tadopted us when we bought our home, Tony!! I’ve Started looking for a puppy but I’m in my late 60’s and hubby mid 70’s, so an older rescue would be good. We’d understand each other’s needs!!! Lol!

  4. What a beautiful story with some very beautiful pups and a foster mom with a heart of gold!! Bless you all with Merry and Joyous Holidays!!!

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