On the First Two Nights of Hanukkah……..

My mommy gave to me………..

A vacation at Family Pet Resort while she staffed another successful Vets Journey Home weekend.

Veterans group receives honorary citation

Written by  Eric Mayes, Philadelphia Tribune

Friday, 07 December 2012 14:59

City Hall Resolution

Councilman David Oh, left, Gene McMahon, founder of Vets Journey Home; Wanda Pate Dennis, the city’s veteran coordinator; and Lloyd Knight, instructor of the Air Force Junior ROTC at Abraham Lincoln High School participated in a special ceremony recognizing Vets Journey Home.– ABDUL R. SULAYMAN/TRIBUNE CHIEF PHOTOGRAPHER

A group that is sponsoring a weekend retreat designed to help veterans heal the emotional wounds of combat was lauded this week by city council. Vets Journey Home received an honorary citation from council and special recognition from Councilman David Oh.

“To those who come back, to those who do not come back, to those who come back with injuries, do we not all, who have benefitted from the sacrifices of the few, have much to consider, much to give back and much to remember,” said Oh, in remarks as a special ceremony Thursday afternoon at city hall. “They ask for so little.”

Oh presented a citation from the city to the group’s founder Gene McMahon, who thanked council and urged the entire city to stand behind veterans.

“It takes an entire community to help heal the vets,” he said. “It takes a community to welcome them home and welcome them back into their hearts.”

Vets Journey Home is sponsoring a free weekend retreat in Wernersville, Berks County this weekend for eight combat veterans. It will include six veterans from Philadelphia, one from New York and one from Reading. It operates programs in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Wisconsin, Michigan, California and Texas. McMahon explained that the retreats are limited to 10 participants because of the intensive nature of the program. It is specifically tailored to assist returning veterans deal with the emotional scars of combat.

“We provide a safe, nonjudgmental environment, staffed by military and civilian volunteers … where veterans can share their experiences with one another and know they are no alone,” he said.

Society is generally more understanding of veterans with physical wounds but often war leaves invisible scars.

“A lot of vets come back and they’re carrying wounds deep in their heart and deep in their soul,” McMahon said. “They’re having a hard time when they come back. They’re in turmoil.”

That turmoil often leads to behavior that makes resuming a regular life difficult – anger that can lead to fighting, divorce, estrangement from children, family and friends and even trouble with the law.

“They spiral down,” said McMahon, noting that 18 veterans commit suicide every day. “That’s a national tragedy.”

This weekend’s retreat will be capped by a public ceremony at 4 p.m. Dec. 9 at the Jesuit Center chapel, 501 N. Church St., Wernersville, Pa. 19165.

“This is an opportunity for the community to honor and welcome home … these veterans, to truly honor their service,” he said.

Santa’s Wingdog

Getting ready to see Santa ClausHello friends…….I’m writing from my vacation at Family Pet Resort. I’m not sure I’m allowed to be on the computer since I had my nighttime treat and belly rub and was tucked into bed hours ago. I arrived Friday for some much-needed R & R. I wrote the other day that mom took me to see Santa Claus. He was at Buzzy’s Bow Wow Meow. Then I went to Pet Smart and he was there too. So here I am and guess who was also here this weekend??? Yup – Santa. This can’t be a coincidence. Everywhere I go, he’s there too! I thought he had to get ready to deliver toys to all the good boys and girls. I can’t wait for him to come to my house with lots of toys because I’ve been good all year! Okay, well maybe not all year. Most of the year….hmmmmm, maybe not most of the year either. I’m going to ask the concierge how many days there are in a year….Uh oh – that many?

So……I’ve been good a couple of days!!!!!!!!

Now I know why Santa’s stalking me….he just asked me, Sir Pugsley -King of Cuteness, to be his wingdog on Christmas Eve. I asked Comet and Prancer if it was okay. They deferred to Blitzen. He said it was cool as long as I look the part. I’m off with Santa for my flying lesson. I’m a little nervous; I hope my aeroacrophobia isn’t a problem….

More later!

Love, Pugsley

Who's the cutest Santa dog EVER???
Who’s the cutest Santa dog EVER???

My Visit With Santa

I was so excited Saturday. Mom got me dressed up to go see Santa Claus at Buzzy’s Bow Wow Meow in Narberth, PA. All proceeds from the photos go to People/Animals = Companions Together’s (PACT) Military Foster Program to place the dogs, cats and birds of deployed military men and women into loving foster homes. 

I tried to be a good boy so that I don’t end up on the Naughty List. Well, I wasn’t so good. I lifted my leg all over the store (not on Santa naturally…..that would be VERY naughty). Some lady ratted me out to mom who was looking the other way, picking out gifts for my dog and cat cousins. Mom and I both looked at the woman and guess who it was……Aunt Loraine from Clear Channel. BUSTED! By my friend!

I thought we were peeps Aunt Loraine. I just wanted the other kids to know that Pugsley was in the house.

Mom cleaned up after me (she’s good at that because I give her so much practice). I’m totally gonna get coal in my stocking again this year. It was worth the embarrassment to sit on Santa’s lap and tell him what I want for Christmas. However, I don’t think I’m going to get a baby brother or sister this year. Allegedly, I’m two handfuls of pug trouble and mom can only handle one of me. I got sick on the carpet and broke a glass all in one day yesterday. I can’t help it if I’m excitable and get into one pug predicament after another. Mom should wear skates when I’m around.

So I promise to be better. I still have 20 days left before Christmas. If I’m a very good boy, maybe I’ll get a shiny new toy.

What’s that mom? What do you mean Hanukkah starts in THREE days?

Uh oh! I’m totally screwed! There’s always next year!