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Thanks to Lisa Pearce for organising yet another wonderful calendar competition featuring just some of our amazing rescued Labradors!


Chairmans Christmas Message

The Autumn leaves and the falling fruit can I understand bring on melancholy, I know the evenings are long now the clocks have gone back but I love this time of the year, walking through the woods as the leaves turn colour and fall gracefully to the ground and then kicking them back up in to the air for the dogs to jump and chase and try to catch. Chocolate Labradors like Meme are pretty hard to see in the woods in the summer let alone in the autumn when she disappears perfectly against the background leaf litter. There is Christmas to look forward to , the anticipation is much of the enjoyment for me, I shall be organising the Scouts Christmas concert, the Vicar is booked and as usual his brief is to say a few words on the “Spirit of Christmas” and as usual this will provide me with the opportunity to shout “Vodka”. Organising the concert allows me to dictate the carols, there was some contention last year as to whether ‘When Santa go stuck up the chimney’ truly is a carol but there has to be some advantage to being in charge and the Beavers, Cubs and Scouts love shouting Achoo, Achoo, Achoo almost as much as I do. I shall have them all singing “Good King Wenceslas”, I include it every year as a prompt for the vicar, the good King going out in the snow to give food to the poor man, the true spirit of Christmas.
I shall start studying the holly trees to see which have the brightest berries and at the same time I suspect so will the birds but I don’t begrudge them, too much. My view of Christmas as I am sure it is for so many was formed in childhood; Choosing a tree and then spending most of a day trying to wedge it into a bucket with bits of brick so that it stood vaguely upright, Dad coming home from the office on Christmas eve with a briefcase full of Christmas cards and then pining the cards to lengths of red crepe paper, of course the family cards carefully placed on the mantelpiece, the family service at church on Christmas morning with the Turkey already in the oven, a houseful of relatives and friends and often those who had no large family to spend the day with joining in the general good hearted chaos.
When we were young we would spend Christmas with our Grandparents, everyone piling into the car with the dog and a boot full of presents to travel down to Southampton, as the years passed they came to spend Christmas with us and now we take our children to their Grandparents on Christmas day.
Our family Christmas has changed very little, there are more dogs but the spirit is the same. I hope very much that however you choose to spend the Christmas period, kicking up leaves in the woods with your dogs or lounging by the fireplace in front of Bing Crosby the spirit of goodwill will be with you and of course your dogs, at a time when so many worthwhile charities are looking for support I would like to thank you for yours on behalf of all the wonderful dogs that will playing happily in the woods or lying peacefully by a warm fireplace this Christmas, thanks to you.