Hey there, girlie girl! It’s coming up on five months since I last kissed your face and held you in my arms. I’ve been trying to keep myself busy but with the insane tree pollen season it seems I’m home a lot. We have such sunny days right now that whenever I look at the living room windows I see your nose prints there at the bottom, and a couple further up, too. The scratches you made with your nails mark the windowsill and I can almost see you standing on the sill, huffing at something below that just wasn’t quite bark-worthy.

I spent Easter Sunday at the winery with a friend and kept thinking “This place needs more Mina.” It never is the same there without you, greeting all the other dogs, walking around the grounds as you madly sniff everything possible, and giving you the forbidden Milk Bones from the jar on the tasting bar.

It might be time to unlock the bedroom doors again. I’ve hated doing that in the months since you’ve been gone – it makes me feel like I’m locking you out. I know you can go wherever you damn well please, so I hope you haven’t been offended by the change. But it’s warmer now and being locked in the room feels suffocating and just odd. I miss hearing your collar tags jingle from the living room where you preferred to sleep in those last couple of years. I miss the sound of you lapping water from your bowl, and I miss getting up to check on you whenever I heard an odd sound.

I miss you, sweetie. I always will.