I need a mailman!
Whenever either of us uttered those words, we'd hear a rapid answering woof and no matter where he was, Jeffie scrambled to go on a shipping run.
He took his responsibility as the Mail Man for For Love of a Dog very seriously in spite of absolutely hating to ride in the car. Yes, the Mail Man would softly woof under his breath the whole way up our lane to the mailbox and even all the way to the Post Office and back home again. He hated traveling so much that you would think he would not answer the call: I need a mailman.
He never missed a mail run.
I tell you this to explain Jeffie's final resting place.
We've always buried our animals. This time - knowing the weather called for heavy rain for several days - we opted for cremation. I spent a lot of time online shopping for an urn for Jeffie's ashes. Some I saved to Pinterest, some are saved to my Etsy favorites. Elegant urns, handmade wooden and ceramic containers, personalized custom urns and even some vintage boxes, cookie jars and cannisters.
Then the Dog Daddy came across an antique post office box front. We've had it for many, many years and simply never gotten around to doing something with it.
It was meant to be.
I purchased a very cool set of vintage kitchen canisters. Solid wood with lovely dovetail joinery, we sanded one and simply finished it with Briwax. Cut out the front to add the PO box front and ... viola!
Fittingly, the canister we used for Jeffie is the one marked for sugar.
Suspended from antique brass chains are a collection of talismans or totems for prayers and remembering. The word re-membering has a talismanic meaning. To member something means to bring together in a particular intentional way which is the function of a talisman and prayer.
Jeffie's prayer talismans include:
- Owl which is Jeffie's Spirit Animal. The owl is an old soul, a keeper of ancient wisdom and is deeply connected with wisdom and intuitive knowledge.
- Butterfly which is a very powerful symbol for transformation and metamorphosis and is closely tied to spirits and souls.
- Crow which is an omen of transformation, protection and spirit guide. The Osage Indians believed that crows bring good news.
- White rose symbolizes hope, joy and new beginnings and is often used to represent love, especially a love that is pure.
- Teardrops acknowledge the loss of a family member or loved one and indicate healing and comfort, reassurance, and positive energy
- Hearts symbolize love, unity, connections and compassion.
- Dog bones are associated with spiritual development and represent one's helpers and family.
- Angel a symbol of devotion, spirituality and faith. Angels also symbolize divine will and are the messengers of God.
I also included Jeffie's dog tags and some other charms, including two of my handmade dog breed charms - a Golden Retriever and a Border Collie - since these are the two dog breeds which made up our Jeffie.
Right now Jeffie is resting in good company. The wonderful framed photograph of Jeffie was my favorite Christmas gift this year and came from my good (and very thoughtful) friend, Kristi. It is engraved that brilliant Will Rogers quotation: If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went.
You'll also notice the cool personalized key chain and the Norman's memory candle from my sweet (and also incredibly thoughtful) friend, JoAnn. Jeffie's favorite collars (one from JoAnn in Jeffie's KU Jayhawks colors) rest with him in addition to "Jeffie artwork."
I need a mailman!
And in my heart I hear the answering woof.