How did I spend my birthday? I had a beautiful day. I didn’t have cake or candles, but I did have special time with my favorite dog walker named Raven. I have grown up a lot in the last year. I don’t cry and carry on when she leaves me. I know she will come and go a lot, and I accept that. You and Raven and I went for a long walk down a long country road and I got hot and thirsty.

I spent part of my day with two of my favorite little girls. They are twins, aged seven years old. When they first met me, they gave me my best toy ever. It is a green rubber tug toy. We tug and pull and nobody wins. I have a chair that I had never sat on until my birthday. This is a photograph of me and Verona, one of the twins. Marcelle is the other. I love them both very much. They love me back. You read Little Women to them, and I try to see how many pages you will read before they jump up and run after me. Oh, dog, do we have fun!!!

I am five years old now. I am not a puppy anymore. But, I am not fully mature either. I will probably always love to steal socks and shoes and other things. You chase me. I run away, and it is the best game ever.

Tonight was the Perseid meteor shower. You lay out on the dock and looked up at the stars and oohed and aahed at the long, bright meteor tails. I stayed inside on the porch and listened to you.

It was a very happy day since friends are what make birthdays special.

Oliver’s Advice: Keep hooking me up with wonderful friends. It makes me happier than cake would.

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