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SouthernAlter
Mar. 17, 2012, 08:51 PM
Anyone else here manage to have one, particularly when there is property involved?

A bit of back story. Married for almost 18 years, DH has been distant for years, I chalked it up to pressures from work, caring for his parents (who live with us), things of that nature. We have a 16 year old child. I guess I thought that once all that was behind us, that maybe we could rekindle something.

He is a very generous person, and loves to help our our child's friends and families, particularly those with single mothers and absentee dads. I have always chalked it up to his giving nature.

Well, 3 weeks ago he came home and told me he is having "feelings" for one of these moms, and wants a divorce.

After much teeth gnashing and shouting on my part, we seem to have come to an amicable agreement (even though it is a bit unconventional). I will keep the farm (which he never wanted anyway, he bought it for me mostly, and a place big enough for his parents). He is going to stay here on the farm for another year, living in the guest room as roommates (which we have pretty much been for a while anyway due to his lack of interest in me in the past years) until my child graduates from high school.

The thinking is that it is the least distruptive for my child, gives him time to find a place to live, and take his parents with him (now, there's a silver lining for me).

This all just seems to be way too easy. Am I nuts for thinking that, or can it really be done cleanly?

FYI - this is not my first divorce, but the others were pretty simple, with no kids and nothing much in the way of assets.

Stellaspeed
Mar. 17, 2012, 08:57 PM
Get that in writing and get a lawyer ASAP..mom and dad and hubby outnumber you and will want YOU to go....and as far as the needy mommies...as soon as they get tired of having to wash the skidmarks out of his shorts, etc, etc, he'll want to come back.

CosMonster
Mar. 17, 2012, 09:04 PM
My parents had a divorce kind of like that. There was some friction, but nothing worse than fights when they were married. ;) I know they were going to counseling and had a lawyer involved early on though. I don't know the exact details but I understand they felt it was better to have things laid out clearly than to just assume things would be okay.

It's definitely possible, though.

SouthernAlter
Mar. 17, 2012, 09:05 PM
It's already in writing and in the lawyers hands.

And I told him that once the ink is dry, there will be no coming back, so he better make sure this is what he really wants.

He tells me that he is not serious about this woman, but he wants to be able to date her without feeling guilty. Honestly, he really is clueless about dating and relationships in general, and yes, we did counseling in the past, and he made no changes to attempt to be a better communicator, and I was putting up with his shortcomings mostly because he is a good father, and provider. So, my crystal ball says that this "other" woman is going to give him a real taste of the "woman scorned". But that is not germain to this topic, I was mostly curious if other COTHers have managed to have a successful amicable divorce?

HighFlyinBey++
Mar. 17, 2012, 09:13 PM
Yes, get it all in writing.

My ex & I didn't use a lawyer. I quit claimed the house AFTER he secured financing that didn't include me. Once I moved out, I considered anything I'd accidentally left behind as lost forever. I refused to argue over "things" unless there was clear ownership or sentimental value. "Stuff" is replaceable. I told him I wouldn't ask for alimony or half his retirement (tho I'd cashed mine out to pay off debts) if he would leave the horses and cats alone. All I wanted was a clean, permanent break and I got it.

We started out as friends (after I moved across the country) and had verbal agreements. Until he started trying to sneak payments for old grudges into the paperwork. Like a tire that blew out on "my" truck while he had it out deer hunting and a payment on my son's braces from 5 years prior to the divorce. It was at that point that I stopped taking his calls and only communicated with him through email. I explained why and told him that he blew any chance of us ever being "friends."

Aside from that--and his whining about losing dinner plates, Christmas ornaments and a toss pillow--the whole thing was amicable and pain-free.

pAin't_Misbehavin'
Mar. 17, 2012, 10:15 PM
Sure, it's possible. I've had one half of a couple come into my office with the deal already worked out and in writing, and all I had to do was file the paperwork and draft the agreement in acceptable language.

But those are the exception, not the rule.

Anyway, I'm glad to see you have a lawyer. Some folks will come to me, with arrangements like yours, thinking they are "separated" and the court will approve their separation agreement. In my state, the people must live in different residences before the court has jurisdiction, so it doesn't work.

But bear in mind that the lawyer only represents one of you, not both. The lawyer can keep you from making a mistake as to the state of the law, like the one I described above. But one lawyer can't advise both of you as to what's in each person's best interests.

For that reason, each party is better off at least consulting a lawyer, and ideally retaining one, before entering into a binding agreement. I say this because
a. Lawyers are like puppies - so adorable that everyone should have at least one:D; and
b. It's awfully common in relationships that one partner is the dominant one. That one can wind up getting the lion's share of the assets without the lamb realizing s/he's gotten the shaft. A different lawyer needs to review the agreement on behalf of each party and tell each of you if it appears to be fair and reasonable.

Best of luck.

Eleanor
Mar. 17, 2012, 10:40 PM
Yes my EXH and I worked out our agreement ourselfs and went from there. I did have to kick his ass out of the house because I was to mad to live with him. He had been cheating on me for awail and I couldn't live with him at that time.

My lawyer was very impressed that we where able to work out everything and he told me that I could go for more if I wanted. He let me know what I was aloud to for me and our son. I then went home and sat down with EXH and we worked out what we felt was fair. I then went back to lawyer and he did up the paper work.

I did end up living in the same house with my EXH for 6 yrs, 2 years after our divorce. He bought a 40 acre horse farm for me to run my training/boarding business at. The house had a full suite in the basement and that is where he lived and our son and I lived upstairs. It worked out not bad for the most part.

He is a very good father and we are not close friends but we can sit and have a meal together and shoot the breeze. Our son is 16 this year and for the most part we all get along (EXH, DS, DH and I) I can't stand his girlfriend and neather can our son. But I don't have to talk to her so it works.

Me gave DH and I a lovely wedding gift, and I know I can ask almost anything of him money wise and he would be willing to help out. But has was always like that, it was his personal time that he is hard at giving.

SouthernAlter
Mar. 17, 2012, 10:54 PM
Thanks so much for the responses so far. It's encouraging.

As to who is the dominant one, that would be me, so I have had to keep my vindictive side on a leash, and do my best to be fair. My soon to be ex has always been fond of telling folks "don't piss off my wife", and in many cases he was proud of it, because it was to the advantage of the entire family when I take on a cause. As bad as this sounds, I am getting the better end of the deal here.

JanM
Mar. 18, 2012, 02:26 PM
Just confirm with a lawyer that the separation agreement works in your locality, and doesn't postpone the legal separation. And first make all credit and banking accounts separate, and that neither of you has rights to the other's bank/credit accounts.

A friend's kid signed one of those no-fault, do-it-yourself divorces, and split the credit card bills up. Before the next bill came (this was before internet billing statements and records) the SOB soon to be ex charged a bunch, including a monthly allotment for some pyramid scheme. The ex-wife ended up with thousands in debts because of this, and couldn't do anything but pay them off.

I do know a few people who had very civilized divorces, but not many. Many start out well, but go down to a nasty situation when the finalizing of arrangements start. Money changes everything with some people.

headsupheelsdown
Mar. 18, 2012, 02:40 PM
My brother and SIL's divorce was like this. We saw them for a belated Xmas gathering in mid/late Jan one year. Like the next weekend we all (incl bro) found out she was apparently going through a huge midlife crisis , was leaving him and their three boys, didn't want custody, didn't want the house and didn't contest anything in the divorce... I think it was all over and signed by April. We were (and still are) all still in a state of shock.

SouthernAlter
Mar. 18, 2012, 04:40 PM
Our finances have always been separate since day one, no issues there. Same for credit cards. Kept the fighting over money down to nothing here.

This whole thing from my perspective is a mid-life crisis/impending empty nest issue on his part, but it is his reality, not mine, so it is what it is.

Right now the hardest part is trying to get my elderly mother to be okay with this, and to continually tell her that I am fine, it is hard to hear her cry on the phone.

Erin Pittman
Mar. 18, 2012, 04:47 PM
Yes, it absolutely can be done. My ex-husband and I had a house together (my first and last little farmette). We separated (but cohabited) in May of 2006, he lived there until about October, then moved out. We sold the house in June of 2007. Split the proceeds and had a very agreeable split of all the "stuff" we accumulated over the years. Very amicable, no lawyers on either side, just a separation agreement that we both signed and then stuck to. We were officially divorced in July of 2007, I think (though I could be wrong about the date!). Good luck!!

SouthernAlter
Mar. 18, 2012, 04:51 PM
Thanks Erin, that was a very positive post, I appreciate the feedback.

Erin Pittman
Mar. 18, 2012, 04:58 PM
Forgot to mention that we were married for 11 years. No kids, though, and my parents weren't surprised at all, so no difficulties explaining it to them.

Kealit
Mar. 18, 2012, 05:01 PM
My parents had a fairly amicable divorce, at least from what I know about it! My mom, a lawyer, quit working when she had my older brother so that she could raise him (and later me!). When they divorced, my brother was 20, which meant it had been 20 years since she'd been in the work force. My dad moved out, leaving her the house and pays generous alimony, including enough for her to go back to school and get a second degree to enable her to get a job that she enjoyed. They share time in a vacation house, which works fine since neither one of them wants to be there all the time. They attended my HS, and later college, graduation together and have always been pleasant to each other when they happen to see each other for one reason or another. As far as I can tell, my dad does not resent the alimony or leaving the house to her.

SouthernAlter
Mar. 18, 2012, 05:09 PM
My parents are also divorced, when I was in high school, and it was not amicable, my mother still gripes about my father to this day (40+ years later), but the both manage to be civil for the rare occasions that they have to be in the same room together.

I just don't plan on being one of those ex-wives, that constantly dredges up the past and the shortcomings of my ex husband, yuck.

JanM
Mar. 18, 2012, 07:02 PM
SA-that sounds very sensible and adult, and I'm hoping everything goes well. I truly think that it can happen for two people and those around them to be reasonable and accepting of the change in the relationship, so I think with time everything will work out. I really agree with you about people who dredge up complaints a long time after a relationship has ended-such a sad way to live.

And because of the long lead time, I think your soon to be ex and his family can really take the time to find the perfect place to move to. In fact, with that much time they could get a really good deal in this economy.

pAin't_Misbehavin'
Mar. 18, 2012, 08:54 PM
Our finances have always been separate since day one, no issues there. Same for credit cards. .

You may consider them separate, but your jurisdiction may not.:) In mine, pretty much all property and debt acquired during the marriage is marital property and marital debt. So it's a good idea to check with a lawyer.

LockeMeadows
Mar. 18, 2012, 09:01 PM
Just went through such a divorce. My ex and I split have of all property, but he now lives with my mom and step-father, so my mom can take care of our son (her grandson), when my ex has him. It works out great for everyone. My ex also got "our" farm, which is attached to my mom's property, so living there makes taking care of the farm easy for him. Holidays are weird, as my ex comes to all of our family dinners. Whatever. We are all happy. My ex and I did not have one fight through the divorce, and our son is the winner all the way around! :)

pAin't_Misbehavin'
Mar. 18, 2012, 09:07 PM
My ex and I did not have one fight through the divorce, and our son is the winner all the way around! :)

Good for you for keeping your priorities straight.:cool::yes:

SouthernAlter
Mar. 18, 2012, 09:50 PM
Just went through such a divorce. My ex and I split have of all property, but he now lives with my mom and step-father, so my mom can take care of our son (her grandson), when my ex has him. It works out great for everyone. My ex also got "our" farm, which is attached to my mom's property, so living there makes taking care of the farm easy for him. Holidays are weird, as my ex comes to all of our family dinners. Whatever. We are all happy. My ex and I did not have one fight through the divorce, and our son is the winner all the way around! :)

Thanks, another positive post, good to hear, and good for all of you for handing it so well.

I'm just hoping I can get my mother to be as accepting of this life change, she is the one that holds a grudge.

kashmere
Mar. 18, 2012, 10:21 PM
I have no idea about the legal stuff, but as a child-of-divorced-parents, I SO WISH THIS HAD HAPPENED FOR ME. If the situation is terribly acrimonious, abusive etc., then separate homes are for sure the way to go, but if possible, if your child can stay in his house and see both parents everyday? Seriously, that is the best thing.

MunchkinsMom
Jul. 4, 2012, 09:14 PM
Coming out from behind my alter, the divorce was final 3 weeks ago, it's been a bit more ugly than I thought it would be, due to the fact that he went public with his affair way before the divorce was in the works, so the local grapevine has been buzzing, which caused most of my angst.

On the bright side, my ex and his parents will be moving before the end of summer, he found another house, and is in the process of moving now. And honestly, I thought I could tough it out for 18 months, but I am now counting the days until they are gone.

I'm doing my best to be civil for the sake of my daughter, but it will be best for him to be out from under my feet.

thatmoody
Jul. 4, 2012, 09:32 PM
It kinda always gets a bit acrimonious at the end, doesn't it? When you intertwine money, love (or ex-love) and power the sparks do tend to fly. But when I come over to Ocala for my celebratory shopping trip (after the lawsuit is over!) I will give you a ring, and we'll meet at the H & Hound for a drink, eh?

MunchkinsMom
Jul. 4, 2012, 10:01 PM
It kinda always gets a bit acrimonious at the end, doesn't it? When you intertwine money, love (or ex-love) and power the sparks do tend to fly. But when I come over to Ocala for my celebratory shopping trip (after the lawsuit is over!) I will give you a ring, and we'll meet at the H & Hound for a drink, eh?

Where is that LIKE button? Oh yeah, wrong site - hahaha. Sounds like a plan!

After reading the posts on this off-topic day (I've been away from COTH for a few months getting all this crap squared away), makes me wonder if there is an epidemic of divorces going on.

JanM
Jul. 4, 2012, 10:31 PM
MM-I wish it was easier, but nothing worthwhile ever is. I know it hurts to find out they moved on (see I can be tactful about someone screwing around-and I hope he gets the explosive diarrhea curse and crabs), but you'll come out stronger and better on the other side, and live well. Isn't living well the best revenge? I think it is.

And there's always an epidemic of divorces that start after the holidays are over. On TOB there are a bunch of divorces, and breakups too, so it's not here. Actually, there have been a bunch at work lately too. Since you are staying in the same house, then change the locks the second he is gone, and if you have hide out keys find a new place to hide them he doesn't know about or you might have things disappear some day-a friend had that happen because she didn't change the locks asap. And I think it turns acrimonious because the other person found out they're not getting everything they wanted, and won't 'win' in their eyes.

And on the positive side you keep your farm, your kid, and don't have to take care of three other adults, so this is going to be better. Now you can have some friends over for some great pajama parties, and do what you want, without having to plan around everyone else's needs first.

Take care of yourself, and be happy.

Gestalt
Jul. 4, 2012, 10:52 PM
I was hoping you would be alright. I understand peoples need for an alter, but then we don't always find out if the person is okay.

I've been divorced twice and it isn't anything I ever want to go through again. Good luck, I'm sending the curse of a thousand fleas to his armpits and to hers!!!!

Hinderella
Jul. 4, 2012, 11:09 PM
It is absolutely possible, but it requires that both parties work very hard at putting emotions aside, settling financial matters fairly and dispassionately, and acting like adults.
Kudos to you for working this out! My ex and I had an amicable divorce, even though he left me for someone else. Sure, I was angry, but really, what was I going to gain by sitting around being pissed off? That only created more heartache for me.
I've helped a couple of friends work through their divorces reasonably well, and I'm the person in our law firm who handles all the divorces, so I've seen a lot. I've definitely seen folks waste WAY too much time and emotion...and money...being angry and trying to "win". No one wins in a divorce, you just try to make the losses as even as you can and move on.
Divorce is never easy, because you're letting go of a dream. But if you can take the inevitable heartache and anger and set it aside, or discuss it only with your close friends, you're better off than if you throw it at each other.
Sometimes things just don't work out. That doesn't have to mean that it 's someone's fault.

MunchkinsMom
Jul. 4, 2012, 11:34 PM
On the plus side, my ex also helped fix all the broken pasture fence boards, after 8 years on the farm where he did little to help with the barn or pasture, that was a shock, but I accepted his help graciously, and we got it done.

There were a few other repairs he was going to help with, but now that he is wrapped up in moving, I guess I'll be finding a handyman to hire.

FalseImpression
Jul. 5, 2012, 12:19 AM
MM. I knew it was you because, since the Angel story, I could not fathom how you could live with your in-laws, work out of your home... always have people around you like that.

I am so glad it worked out for you. How many dogs have you got left now?

Enjoy your horses!

shireluver
Jul. 5, 2012, 02:35 AM
I have been told multiple times that I have the weirdest family. My parents divorced when I was in 2nd grade. Since then, my parents have always been amicable.

They both remarried 20+ years ago and the 4 of them getting along great. My dad and stepdad go hunting together. My mom and stepmom went to Ireland a couple of years ago. My dad and stepmom stay at my mom and stepdads house when they travel to that area and vice versa. Whenever there is a family gathering, birthday party, etc. they all come and there have NEVER been ANY problems. I know it is not normal. They aren't just amicable, but my mom has actually told me my dad was and always will be her best friend, and that she loves him, she just wasn't in love with him anymore and he deserved that kind of love.

I try to have an amicable relationship with my Ex. It took me a long time to stand up to him and now that he knows I won't take his verbal abuse or play his head games it is a lot easier.

MunchkinsMom
Sep. 2, 2012, 06:14 PM
Yay for Off Topic Day!

The ex is gone, along with his abominable parents, who are the root cause of his dysfuntionality and emotional unavailability. And the homewrecker that helped him out the door did me a huge favor.

My home is peaceful. For the most part. The only angst now is when my daughter has had to deal with her father and his trollop. . and comes home crying. And I have to bite my tongue because my daughter wants to handle it herself and has not had the nerve to tell her father how she feels.

He is loosing her, I am gaining a better relationship with her. It's a win for me.

He keeps asking my daughter if I am okay, or angry with him. Her answer is always the same, "no Dad, she's fine, moving on with her life." Why would he even care how I am or how I feel?

I now only have two dogs, my old dog Murphy, and a new dog that I got from a rescue in June, her name is Zeba. My ex took his two. I do admit the thought of taking a road trip up to Viney's farm to bring Angel home crossed my mind. . . and then left, as it would not be fair to Angel, I'm confident she is happy in her new life.

I'll post a picture of Zeba on my PictureTrail account and post a link, she is wonderful, and was a godsend through all of this.

Just wanted to give everyone a quick update.

Proffie
Sep. 2, 2012, 07:35 PM
Nothing to add, except that I'm going through an amicable divorce right now (see my "Horses and Divorces" thread on Off Course).

Our 10-year marriage was dead for the past 2 years, and we just had our heads in the sand. We FINALLY addressed it over the course of one heart-wrenching weekend back in early March.

Thankfully, we were "between" houses and were renting. We also have no kids. I moved out, because the dog was "his" and it's hard to find a place that takes dogs. I kept the horses (boarded) and cats.

We sat down and wrote down all of our larger assets (furniture, cars) assigned who got what and signed it. So far, there are no issues and it looks like we'll be "officially" divorced by Halloween at the latest.

Honestly, once the intial shock and hurt wore off, we get along great. We both realized that we're really good friends, but terrible as a married couple. We even go out for pizza and beer every few weeks. My friends all either think I'm either crazy or that we're getting back together. Neither is true.

NOBODY can tell you what your relationship "should be" like. Anyone who does try and tell you that, probably has an incredibly dysfunctional relationshp of their own and wants some company.

Cheers. It'll get better. At least that's what I keep telling myself :)

JanM
Sep. 2, 2012, 07:45 PM
MM-he keeps asking because he hopes deep in his shriveled little heart that DD will tell him you are devastated by his departure, huddling in a dark room and sobbing constantly in your despair at losing him. He is so full of it. I'm still invoking the explosive, chronic COTH diarrhea curse for him, and wish a nice infestation of crabs on him also.

Living well and moving on is the best revenge, and you deserve to be happy and treasured.

I'm glad to hear your life is so peaceful, and fulfilling, and that your relationship with your daughter is so strong. It's too bad she has to put up with the trollop during her time with her father, but I'm sure as time goes by he'll start finding more excuses for not showing for visitation. There's only so much time and money, and I'm sure the trollop or her successors will be taking much of his time.

AliCat518
Sep. 2, 2012, 08:08 PM
I just read through this thread for the first time, and am happy for the update!

The only amicable divorce I know of is VERY bizarre. These are parents of two of my friends. Friend A and Friend B's parents basically switched partners. They were married and had kids, then all of asudden, swapped! (well, I doubt it was THAT easy!) Very crazy because their sons are very good friends. I recently went to an engagement party and both sets of parents were there--they get along FABULOUSLY!

Enjoy your relaxing life without your in laws. :)

Jackie & Starlette
Sep. 2, 2012, 08:12 PM
My ex and I tried...it actually worked for a few years; we worked through our angers; the holidays we got together for the kids, etc., until he started dating the dreaded 20 year old chickychickybaby...who resented me and thought I wanted him back. So she supported him in his resentments...like paying child support...and succeed to drive a wedge in a frail relationship. To this day I regret we could not stay friends (that's how we started out).

MunchkinsMom
Sep. 3, 2012, 12:13 AM
My ex and I tried...it actually worked for a few years; we worked through our angers; the holidays we got together for the kids, etc., until he started dating the dreaded 20 year old chickychickybaby...who resented me and thought I wanted him back. So she supported him in his resentments...like paying child support...and succeed to drive a wedge in a frail relationship. To this day I regret we could not stay friends (that's how we started out).

I have a feeling that is what has happened here, that the new (trust me, not an upgrade) girlfriend is doing her level best to keep him away from his daughter. I told him months ago that she would do that, and that she would NOT like us being friends, and that I really had no reason to be his friend. I can be a co-parent without being "friends".

It's all good for me, and I'm actually glad to be done with the drama of the past 8 months.

Chief2
Sep. 3, 2012, 02:36 AM
Have not kept up with OT days, so did not know where you were with this, MM. Glad to hear you are moving on. Amen to peace and quiet on your farm.

thatmoody
Sep. 3, 2012, 09:54 AM
So glad to hear that things are peaceful! They are on my end as well - when I have sold the horse (we are downgrading to just DD's pony to save on expenses) I will take a trip to see you :D. Have not had contact with ex-husband thank goodness, although I hear he is not doing well. We are formally divorced, and it was NOT amicable. He sued me for a huge chunk of alimony, which is why I have to sell the horse (he did not win, of course, but it pretty much devastated me financially to have to fight it, which was his purpose). No worries, though - I am fine, and have a saleable horse, at least! DD will keep her pony with no problem, and I have plenty of new client's horses to ride, so will just lose my ammy status with some regret. My trainer is very positive about this change, though, as I will now have funds to show at rated shows, etc.

So it's an interesting year. The new house is very peaceful!

Frank B
Sep. 3, 2012, 01:35 PM
A bit late, but for those facing similar circumstances, this may help.

My Ex and I went through one about 30 years ago, and it worked out well for both of us.

BUT, and it's a big but, my now ex-wife worked in the Trust Department of a large bank and had repeatedly seen how much goes to the lawyers in contested divorces. Also, our goals in life had moved in different directions, and no children were involved. No one got "caught cheating" or anything like that.

We hired a lawyer who was a personal friend of us both, presented him with the agreement we had reached, and had him sprinkle what he called his "legal holy water" on it. His comment? "How can I pay for my new sailboat with clients like you two?"

Good luck in your future life! For others, keeping ego and emotion out of the process will save a lot of money for both parties.

MunchkinsMom
Sep. 3, 2012, 06:28 PM
A bit late, but for those facing similar circumstances, this may help.

My Ex and I went through one about 30 years ago, and it worked out well for both of us.

BUT, and it's a big but, my now ex-wife worked in the Trust Department of a large bank and had repeatedly seen how much goes to the lawyers in contested divorces. Also, our goals in life had moved in different directions, and no children were involved. No one got "caught cheating" or anything like that.

We hired a lawyer who was a personal friend of us both, presented him with the agreement we had reached, and had him sprinkle what he called his "legal holy water" on it. His comment? "How can I pay for my new sailboat with clients like you two?"

Good luck in your future life! For others, keeping ego and emotion out of the process will save a lot of money for both parties.

Excellent advice, at least in the division of property, etc, we mananged to be very adult about it and didn't fight. And that's what we did, hired one lawyer to make sure the i's were dotted and the t's crossed, and to do the submission.

MunchkinsMom
Sep. 3, 2012, 06:30 PM
For those of you interested, here is a photo album of my new dog Zeba.

http://www.picturetrail.com/gid24182086

She is a rescue dog, and came into my life at the time that I needed her the most. And I knew I needed her from the first photo posted of her by the rescue group.

My guardian angel was looking out for both of us.

thatmoody
Sep. 3, 2012, 08:12 PM
She is gorgeous! We lost our old dog, Bear, a month ago - that was rough, but inevitable. Was just thinking about going to the pound for another dog when we found a kitten in our manure pile. Serendipity, and she has been wonderful. I kind of miss having a big dog but my daughter simply loves her, and that's what is important!