Everyone Has a Story…

Reality television – Love it or hate it?

Reality TV is a guilty pleasure most people love…or love to hate.  Personally, I have never been a big fan of it, but there are certain reality competitions that I find entertaining.  I enjoy cooking competitions like MasterChef and Hell’s Chicken because I love to see what kind of food combinations the contestants will come up with next!  And I have to admit that Gordon Ramsay is a favorite of mine – His occasionally foul mouth and gigantic ego actually mask an intelligent and empathetic family man.  I also like So You Think You Can Dance for the entertainment factor – I am the furthest thing from a dancer, so I find it so amazing what these dancers can do with their bodies, and the music is great too!

The over-dramatics on many reality shows often disappoint me – The more skeptical side of me emerges and begins to doubt a lot of the angst and conflict.  Much of it seems staged or blown out of proportion to gain ratings, which really turns me off.  I know I am not the only one who feels this way.  However, there is something irresistible about routing for an “underdog” or hearing someone’s real-life story.  Many individual’s stories, when they are real and without the added over-dramatics, can be very inspiring and uplifting.  Take Shane Garcia’s story for example (you can see it here: http://youtu.be/kQC6dO-ovUc).  There is something so moving about his story, as well as many others, that keeps people watching.

To me, I think this is the real key to reality TV’s huge success.  Sure, this genre of television is popular with networks because it is comparatively inexpensive to produce when measured against the cost to produce a standard, scripted show.  I see the appeal there, although I think some networks really bog their prime time slots down with a few too many of these shows.  But without the personal stories and triumphs, I think the audiences would lose interest.  Everyone has a story, and some may choose not to share theirs.  But those that do share their stories, have the power to give the rest of us hope and can inspire us to go for our dreams!

Everybody has a story…What’s yours?

Meet my Pibble, Keira!



This adora-bull furbaby is Keira!  She is an 8+ year-old pibble.  A “pibble” is a gentler, kinder term for a pit bull-type dog, which accurately reflects their true nature.

Unlike a lot of animal lovers, I didn’t really grow up with animals in the house.  As a child, the only animals I had lived in cages (hamsters) or bowls (goldfish).  When I was about 12, I successfully begged my mom to get me a cat.  Unfortunately, Cleo grew up in the pound and was never very healthy.  By the time my mom and I realized anything was wrong, her kidneys were already failing…

I was never a big fan of dogs growing up – I wasn’t comfortable with them, and the few I had known usually just sniffed my lady parts which didn’t help me to feel any more comfortable. LOL!  It wasn’t until I married a man who grew up in a house full of animals, that I really ever got to experience dogs first-hand.  Although my marriage did not last, one of the good things that came from it was my love of dogs, especially my furbaby, Keira.

Keira, then known by the name Koda, was abandoned by a neighbor of my then-in-law’s who was moving out of state.  A friend of the family was supposed to pick her up the next morning, but when my then-husband arrived at his parents’ house that night after work, she was still there waiting in the fenced-in yard – no one had ever come to fetch her.  It was an unseasonably hot June day, but some how she had survived the heat.  He let her into the house, where he immediately realized that she was not housebroken!  OMG!  I still remember my then-husband leaving me at the house with her to pick up something for dinner, and she left a deposit right inside the front door – I had to tell him to come around to the back porch when he came back with dinner, otherwise we would have had a huge smeary mess on our hands! LOL

This dog is so smart, that she housebroke herself in less than two days just by watching my in-laws’ two dogs.  It was like a lightbulb went on in her head, and she suddenly realized, “Oh, so that’s where I’m supposed to do my business!”  My then-husband and I did not want to take her to a shelter, because we feared what would happen to her there, so we spent a week or so trying to find a home for her.  After several failed attempts, it was clear that we had ourselves a dog.  I still remember the very first time I ever saw her – She was in the yard, jumping against the fence and wagging her tail, trying to get my attention.  She was just the happiest and sweetest pup I had ever seen, despite a life lived in a cold, dark basement alone with very little food.  It was clear to everyone how much she loved us and the feeling was definitely mutual.


We knew we had to rename her, because my in-laws’ dog Kody was becoming increasingly confused whenever we called her by the name Koda!  We threw around several names, until I said, “What about Keira?  I think it suits her!” and everyone agreed.  This June it will be 8 years since we found her, and although my ex and I are no longer together, we both still love her very much.  We don’t have any human children, but we do share custody of our furbaby (I’ll talk more about that at a later time).  Most people laugh when I tell them that, but it’s not as unusual as you might think!

The main thing that Keira has taught me and made me more aware of is that pit bull-type dogs are one of the smartest, sweetest, silliest and most people-oriented dogs on earth – and they are a sorely misunderstood “breed”.  They are often given a bad rap, especially by the media, thanks to many irresponsible owners.  Yes, they are strong, but they were never meant to be guard dogs.  They were bred to be people-pleasers, so when their owners train them to do horrible things or mistreat them, they can become dangerous – which is true of any dog of any breed.  But if you give a pit bull-type dog a loving home, they will reward you for the rest of their lives.  Keira, although strong and able, would never have any desire to intentionally hurt a person – In fact, I always joke that if someone were to break into my home, she would probably just lick the person to death!  So, a guard dog she definitely is not, but she is a wonderful and loving companion who I am proud to call my baby-girl.  She is my sunshine, my light, my world!  This dog makes me soooooo happy! :-)

Give pibbles a chance!!

Welcome to The Laughing Lily

My name is Susannah, and I would like to welcome you to my blog, The Laughing Lily!

with Simba

The Laughing Lily


Many people have already asked me, “Where did you come up with the name for your blog?”  Well, the answer is three-fold:

  1. My name, Susannah, means “lily” in Hebrew.  The lily also happens to be my favorite flower.
  2. I love to laugh, and do so all the time – when I’m happy, when I’m nervous, when I’m excited!
  3. I wanted to convey a happy theme. :-)

Many people have also asked me, “What will your blog be about?”  Well, I have too many interests to stick to just one, so I will be blogging about a number of different topics that interest me and that are near and dear to my heart!  I hope to share these things with you in the most positive way possible.  I don’t deny having a darker side – who doesn’t? – but I feel there is enough negativity and ignorance out there already.  I have no desire to add to that!

So, sit back, relax and enjoy the ride…I know I will! :-)

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