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The 5 senses in French + Smokey's Grief

Goodbye, Breizh.


                         Breizh. May 17th 2006- July 25, 2015


Yesterday we said goodbye to our beloved golden retriever, Breizh (a.k.a. Braise, and Brez). We are so grateful, dear girl, for all of the happiness you gave us.  We can never thank you enough. Repose en paix.

I leave you, dear reader, with Jackie's words:

Tu étais toute ma vie, depuis mes 7 ans, ma première meilleure amie, ma fifille je t'aime, tu es parmi les meilleurs anges. 25/07/15

You were my whole life, since I was 7 years old, my first best friend, ma fifille I love you, you are among the best angels. 7/25/15. 

Braise and Smokey, golden retriever dogs
                              Breizh (right) and Smokey

Breizh leaves behind her 6-year-old son, Smokey, her vineyard family, and a pack of loving readers who have cheered her over the years. Thank you for your love and support.

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For more online reading: The Lost Gardens: A Story of Two Vineyards and a Sobriety


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Carla Polastro-Nigro

Sit tibi terra levis ("may the earth rest lightly on you"), sweet Breizh...


Very sad news, I am sending you a virtual hug!

Jacqueline Satterlee

So sorry to hear about your beloved dog. C'est vraiment très triste. Je pense à vous.

Sue Aran

I am saddened by your loss. Thank you for sharing your vulnerability with your readers - it's rare. Sue Aran


Just remember what a lovely life she shared with all of you. She will live in your hearts forever and will always be a part of you. Take extra care of smokey now as he will miss her as do you.

Deborah Carter

Oh, that's so sad! I am so sorry to read that! She has many fans amongst your readers. Sending best wishes to your family. She will be missed!
Deborah - Australia

Deb S

This breaks my heart. I'm so sorry to hear this. God's golden angels don't stay with us long enough. No matter how long we get, it's just not long enough.

Patrine Baptist

So sorry for you all, I weep with you

Marcia Gainer

Oh, Dear Briezh...so very sorry.

Marcia Gainer

Oh, Dear Breizh... So very sorry


I am so sorry to read this sad news and for all of you, especially Jackie whose childhood connection is something so special.


She was loved... and shared love. Her little face in all the your pictures over the years brought many smiles. Remember with a smile...

Jocelyn Limpert

I'm so, so sorry for your family's loss -- and Smokey's loss, of course, too (you're fortunate to have him as a link to his mother). Losing a canine companion animal is one of the saddest things we have to go through.

Maureen Winterhager

So sad for you all - her smiley face no longer......hugs from Maureen xx

Richard Travers

Such a sadness for you all. Courage.

Petrina in Brittany

Sending love & hugs to you all. I shall miss Breizh's lovely face in your beautiful photos. Special hug to Smokey too.


Hi Kristi,
I am so sorry to hear your sad news. All my condolences to you and your family. In the short time that I have been reading about your family through your blog, I could sense the love and fun that Breizh has brought to you all. But what a wonderful, fun, challenging, delicious, adventurous life "en plein air"you have provided for her. Breizh has been there as you brought up your children, had her own family, met so many people, probably learnt a little about wine- making( and cooking). What a gal!

adeline richarson Ile de La Réunion

Quelle mauvaise nouvelle, impossible d'essayer d'écrire en anglais... Quelle perte pour vous tous, une amie chère, un membre de votre famille s'en est allée... J'ai perdu mon golden retriever il y a quelques années aussi. J'y pense toujours avec beaucoup d'émotion et d'amour. Chaque fois que je vois un arc-en-ciel, je sais que c'est lui qui nous envoie un signe. Bon courage à vous et gros calins à Smokey, il va se sentir bien seul... mais vous êtes là

Debra McPhee

Sorry. Really tough to lose a beloved pet.

judith bryant

You'll hold in in your hearts forever... and even that will only barely equal the love she had for all of you! Will Smokey be sad too?


Sincere sympathy Kristin and to all your family. Breizh was a dear friend who was fortunate to have lived in your loving care. Treasure and find comfort in the happy memories of Breizh.
Margaret - Australia

Kris in Breizh 22

So sorry to hear of your loss. You gave her a good life, and that is more than can be said of so many dogs. She was a beautiful girl, you have some good memories, and her son. You will always have her in your heart.


I am so sorry. I know the experience well and my heart goes out to you and your family.

Jackie Sand

Oh, such sad sad news. The loss of a beloved pet is the huge loss of a family member. Such a sweet disposition and loving "mother" as well. You've given her a life of love and adventure, provided richness for her and she gave back so much. My tears are flowing.


Dear Kristin and family,
Having lost 2 Goldens we feel your pain. Losing a member of the family is so sad. Shortly after one of our dogs died, my husband saw a new Golden Retreiver puppy being walked on a leash who would not stop pulling his master towards my husband. With the look the puppy gave him he was sure that our dog's soul had retutprned in a new puppy. Not sure if it's possible but it's a nice thought.


I feel like she was part of my life...
Blessings to Braise and you who told us about her and brought us joy with every photo and story. So hard to say goodbye to our beloved family members...
Sad news. Kisses to Smokey.

Angela Sargent

As someone said, "tears are the price we pay for loving".
Heartbroken for you xxx Angela

Eileen Threefoot

Breizh certainly seemed like a wonderful dog, and was well-loved while she was with you. My condolences on your loss. Amitiés, Eileen

GG Collins

Adieu, sweet Breizh. You will be missed by all. GG


So sorry to hear of your sad loss. My heart goes out to you all.
Big hugs. xx

Bob Campbell

I have always loved dogs and know the deep pain when they leave us. The only way I know to feel good again is to get another dog as soon as I can. You already have one to carry on after his mother. That was wise. I believe all dogs go to Heaven and await a reunion with their families!


PS Breizh didn't have a bad angle- she was so photogenic, with a gorgeous happy face.

Hank Sweet

So sorry for your loss Kristin. Retrievers are very special dogs.
I must be sitting in a draught as I type - my eyes are watering!

Christine Dashper

Oh Kristin I feel for you all. Sending big hugs.
All my best wishes

Dana Wilson

We are so sad for you.

We love our pets as much as our children and more than some of our relatives, I'm afraid; (certainly more than that unpleasant Uncle Jim). There seems to be one in every family, someone is who exists just to make trouble for everyone else. ;-)

If every human were more like a golden retriever this would be a better world.

We hope Breizh had a peaceful death, surrounded and comforted by her family.


Dana and Lynn Wilson


May the dear one rest in God's arms and may God send his angels to comfort you and your family (including Smokey) Breizh may be gone from your sight but still in your heart forever.


Dear Kristi, I'm so very sorry. Breizh was a beautiful girl, and such a loving companion. I know what sadness it is to lose a dog, and I'm so very sorry for your pain. Dear Smokey will miss her, too. And poor Jackie... I'm so sorry. With love, Vicky


My heart is breaking for you all. Losing a best friend is the very hardest to do. RIP, Breizh. You've left wonderful memories for your family and us.
I am very sorry for your loss.


Hi again Kristi, I didn't mean for my email address to be shown - maybe you could please delete the comment? The sentiments remain. Vicky

Jackie Durham

I am so sorry for your loss. I'm so glad I had an opportunity a few years ago to hug her and pet her--such a sweet dog! I have her picture in my memory book, and I now hold all the family and Smokey in my heart. Smokey must be grieving too. At the end, only love is left, and that's big. Here I am about 4,000 miles away with tears in my eyes--Breizh touched so many hearts with her love over the years. I'm happy for you that you had her so long--but never long enough--focus on what is left--the love. Thank you for sharing pictures with your readers.


Nancy Ketner

I'm so sorry for your loss. i looked forward to seeing her in your posts. Take extra care of Smokey because he is missing her too.


How can I be so moved by the loss of a dog I've never met? I feel like I know lovely Breizh through your beautiful photographs and from following her adventures for many years. Our sincere condolences to you and your family.

With you, Breizh led an idyllic doggie life, a canine heaven on earth. So many dogs in France aren't as lucky. Please, if in the passage of time you consider a companion for Smokey, please think about rescuing a dog from an SPA. It could be another Golden. Or a puppy. There are so many dogs in need. I have a rescue hound lying at my feet as I write, the best thing I ever did was to adopt her. Sorry to proselytise at this moment of sadness, but when we're looking for forever homes for SPA dogs in over-crowded kennels, we couldn't dream of a better home than yours, full of love, care and companionship.

RIP beautiful Breizh, a very special girl. I will miss you too.


My sincere condolences, Kristin, Jean-Marc et famille. Our dogs are family and our children. Hopefully great memories of the past will ease your pain. You are in my thoughts.

Rest with the Angels, Breizh!

With love,


Heather in Arles

I am so incredibly sorry for your loss and to that of all of the Espinasse family, Smokey most certainly included. I know that Breizh has crossed the Bridge and is no longer suffering or in fear because of her epilepsy. She loved and was loved dearly and the flame of those embers will stay lit forever.
With much Love and Great Sadness,


I am typing this through my tears as I know how devastating it is to have a beloved dog, a very important member of the family pass on. My deepest condolences are with you and your family, which of course inçludes Smokey. Reading your blog over the years both as a, now former, winery director and one whose love and passion for dogs and all animals knows no bounds, ir feels as though the neighbor's dog has passed. we've watched Breize raise Smokey and protect him as best she could from that early attack. Read about their antics. And prayed when Breize was diagnosed with cancer. When you wrote about having to look for her and finding her under a bush, I think it was, I thought, is Breize feeling that it's time? I send the family a big hug.

Lisa Kennedy

This is such sad news and you are all in my prayers. What a lovely dog Breizh was. Thank you for sharing her stories and photos with us through the years. Give Smokey a big hug. He had a super Mum!

Roger Anderson

Kristin, I'm so sorry for your loss. Gone to soon! I know she will always have a place in your heart. I know the pain of losing a beloved dog. My wife and I had to put down our two dogs two years ago very close to each other. I'm so glad you have Smokey to love.


John Dale

My heart sank when I awoke to this sad news about your beautiful Breizh. She joins our Shannon, Molly, Murphy and Bailey, all goldens we have had and miss so much, as I hope they meet and play over the Rainbow Bridge. I am so truly sorry for your loss.

Pamela from NC

I'm so sad for your family to lose your beloved girl. She was a courageous girl and protective, loving mother to Smokey. One of my favorite photos ever is the one of her cuddling Smokey after his injury. I had it printed because I love it so much. People always asked, 'Are those your dogs?" And I would reply, '"No, but I feel like they are part of my family..." Then I would encourage them to read your blog! Today, I say goodbye too, though I never got to say hello.


So very sorry for your loss....Breizh was a beautiful girl. Hugs to you and to Smokey, too.

Lisa Smith

Let our words wrap you all in comfort and support as you grieve the loss of your beloved fur-kid, Breizh. She was a very fortunate girl, who was loved and treasured, as I am sure she loved and treasured each of you. Breizh left you with the gift of Smokey and so many precious memories.....sending a very big hug to each member of your family today and in the weeks to come.
With much love,
Lisa xx

Tish Tyler

I am so sorry and so sad for your loss of Breizh. She was a faithful companion and oh so beautiful.

Monica Gfrorer

I am so sorry to read about your loss. It is never easy. All we can do is be grateful for the time we have had with our wonderful canine family members.

Barbara lynch

So sorry for this sad time for you and your family. It is always so sad to lose a beloved dog, the pain seems too much at times. But your memories will see you through and she will live on in your heart.

Vicky from Athens

I'm so sorry for the loss of your beloved Breizh. I know how you all feel - I've lost many over the years and it never gets any easier. But you have many happy memories to lift your spirits and keep you laughing through the tears. May she rest in peace.


I haven't written you in a long time, but must tell you how moved I am by the loss of your beloved dog and all the tributes to her. As a dog lover who has had to make this difficult decision, my heart is with you.

I am in France right now, in my little house in Puivert, in the Aude. I'm alone (my husband died less than two years ago) and also grieving. My own two dogs are at home with a friend, and I miss them every day. My sister was here with me for two weeks, but I know I need to experience living here on my own again. My husband and I were married in Puivert and spent most of our summers here since. I am writing and painting, learning to live with loss, and thinking of you in yours.

All my best,
Susan Ludvigson


Beyond sad to learn of the loss of your sweet Braise. Will hold you and your family (including Smokey) in our hearts while your hearts heal. Our pets are often our best, if most mischievous, selves.


I am deeply saddened by this news. Breizh was a fine pup, and all of us who knew her -- that is, all of us who have read your stories on this blog -- will miss her deeply. My heart is with yo

Sonja J


Geraldine Ventura

Dear Kristin and Family,
This news has saddened my day as I recall the loss of my own dear pets. You have been very generous in sharing the words and pictures of your beautiful dogs with all of us. Thank you. We will miss her loving face in your blog.


Ma plus profonde sympathie Kristine.

Lauren Averill

She will be mourned all over the world....We are so sorry for your incredible loss. If you had a flower for every time you think of her, you would walk in a garden forever... Sending love.


Dear Kristin, words fail me. I still remember the loss of our first golden, 7 years ago. And now as I watch our second one age, I am reminded what a crater the loss of a pet leaves in your heart. I am so sorry for you and your family.

Kate Dickerson

Dear Kristin -

I have tears in my eyes, as if I had known this lovely dog personally. Thank you so much for sharing her pictures and her adventures over the years. The great thing is that your memories of her will always be with you.

Thinking of your whole family, Kate Dickerson

Anuradha Sudan

So sorry for your loss.

Susan Dautel

Today's post just broke my heart. Having lost my little furry angel this year, I know the ache and also the feeling of thankfulness for the years of unconditional love. I also know the comfort that friends can give at this time. I send back to you and your family the sweet words of comfort you shared with me. Time and cherished memories (and your beautiful photos) will help the ache. That furry face will always be a part of the fabric of your family's life that you have been kind enough to share with your readers. Thank you for that.


So sorry doesn't come close to how I feel about this for you. My eyes are full of tears. Losing such a sweet animal is a heartbreaker, for sure.
Peace and grace,

Dana Chapeskie

So sorry to hear. My thoughts and prayers are with you all!🌼

Sue J.

my deepest sympathies, Kristi. you loved her so.

Frieda Oxenham

I know no words will help at this time and nothing I can say will be a comfort. I lost my greyhound girl a fortnight ago and I think I see or hear her all the time. They become a part of our heart and when they leave us we simply need to grieve over them and shed our tears.
I also know that some time in the future we will be able to look back and share our sweet memories. Dogs that live with loving humans have wonderful lives and in exchange they give us their unconditional love forever. We are lucky to have known them but that is also why it hurts so very much.

Sevahn Merian from Michigan

Dear Kristin,

Sending love to you and your family on the loss of your beloved dog. Thank you for sharing with all of us, your loyal fans, the many happy photos of Breizh, and all the stories with Smokey and Breizh, for so many years. Hope you find solace in all the sweet and kind messages from your readers. Yesterday I did see a rainbow in the sky...and now I know why. It was the sign Breizh was on the way to pet

Irene Sietmann

I am so sorry to read of the loss of Breizh. We've all read about the happy times and now the incredible sadness. I know that kind of pain, but you must know the joy your family gave to her and she to you. All I can say is that she will be waiting for you on the other side of that rainbow bridge and think of the reunion! Irene

Dawn Anderson

Dear Kristin,

So sorry to hear of the passing of your beloved dog. Just know that you have friends from all over the world who are sending you and your family love and sympathy.

Dawn Anderson

Cindy Mc

Dear Krisitin I am truly sorry. Thank you for giving us an opportunity to know your beautiful Breizh and her adorable boy Smokey. In our family we are facing this very soon. I hope Smokey and all of you will be okay. My love and prayers. xoxo Cindy

Anne Devore

I am truly saddened by your loss...what a wonderful dog she must have been. My condolences to you and your family in this time of loss. Dogs prints on your kitchen floor are nothing compared to the ones they leave in your heart. Watch for signs that she's still around...any time I lost a dog inevitably they'd let me know they're still with me...one even saved my life! I don't remember the author who wrote it but one of my favorite dog related quotes is "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our life whole." Blessings, positive vibrations and lots of love coming to you and your family from me and all the others who follow your posts.


So sorry to read about the passing of Breizh, Kristin and family! One of the most beautiful dogs I've ever seen (in photos) and known of through your posts.

Herm in Phoenix, AZ

Salut Kristin,

Breizh was the subject of the most popular poem on my blog . . . . http://herms-rhyme-thyme.blogspot.com/2012/02/lost-lady.html

Also, Rudyard Kipling wrote a poem that’s appropriate here . . . https://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=5914183185974269714#editor/target=post;postID=7565211157141328260;onPublishedMenu=allposts;onClosedMenu=allposts;postNum=47;src=postname


Ah to be a beloved pet. Have so much ejoyed Breizh's adventures over the years. Lovely photo and words of rememberance. Perfect tribute to a very special soul.


She was loved by all your readers....

Anne Ryan

Farewell, Sweet Friend....You've crossed the "rainbow bridge"...and leave such admirable memories for your dear family and so many friends.


Adieu, sweet girl.

Laraine Lippe

So sad to learn of this very sad news. I also send a virtual hug to you and the rest of your family. How is Smokey?

Laraine Lippe

Chris and George

Dear Kristi,

Beautiful Breizh...our tear filled thoughts are with your whole family. The story of her life is a happy and colorful one and she leaves you with the most wonderful gift, sweet Smokey. We have endured this loss over and over and understand that time helps to work through it. May the emptiness and sadness eventually give way to comforting and happy memories for all of you. Our hearts are with you all, especially dear, sweet Smokey.
As I write this, thunder is rolling and lightning is flashing. I wonder if the angels are crying....but I will watch for the sunlight through the clouds...the same glowing sunlight surrounding her in the photo. Thank you for sharing Breizh with us over the years~

Nancy Mulloy-Bonn

Through her life as described by Kristin, she remains in our memory as a gentle mama who lived life her life very well. Her perfection as a dog brought joy, and now momentary sadness, to her famille in Bandol, and also many moments of happiness to the reader. Merci, Breizh.

Shannon (Alexandria, VA)

Thank you for all the wonderful stories, sweet girl. What a companion!

Sharon Marchisello

I am so sorry for your loss. Pets are truly family members. I am sad, too, as I felt like I knew Breizh from reading your blog posts.
Condoleances a toute la famille!


So sorry for your loss. You are in my thoughts and prayers, Kerry

Marie laSalle

Une vie bien vécue. Elle était aimée et elle aimait. Que nous ayons tous la même chance

Cheryl Webster

It's always too soon to lose our sweet, sweet angels but certainly 9 is way too soon. I lost my golden girl, Fiona, 4 months ago and it still makes me cry. Say hello to my Fiona, sweet Breizh. She will be a great companion at the Rainbow Bridge.


Such sad news. You are all in my thoughts. I hope you feel a little comfort in knowing that not only did Breizh give you so much, but you also gave her a wonderful life.

Janet MacKenzie

Dear Krisitin,
The photos of Breizh you've shown us throughout the years and the stories you've told of her antics, show how much a part of your life she was. She knew she was loved and treasured. In so many ways her life was richer, better than the lives of many children in this world. That you have a huge hole in your heart now is certain, but Breizh lives in Smokey and in all the memories you share of her.
Dogs are better than people; more highly evolved. They give us unqualified love, they teach us to live in the moment. May you be comforted by the knowledge that her life with you was joyous for you both,
With great sympathy,
Janet in Greenwich

Jan Greene

Oh, dear friend and companion. Such a loss for you all and the whole family of readers. Braise joins a new family and waits for us over the ridge! Thinking of you!

Jeanne in Oregon

Oh, I am so sorry for your great loss.

Bren Allen

We are so sorry to read about the loss of your sweet girl. Our pets leave their pawprints on our hearts for sure. Have you ever read the Rainbow Bridge poem? It is lovely:

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent. His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....

Author unknown...


I'm so sorry to hear this sad news. My thoughts and prayers go out to you.

Karen W. - Parkton, MD

My heart is very heavy for you all and for Smokey. Jackie's words are very true. She is with the best of angels.

Pat Cargill

Dear Kristi and family, I am so sorry for your loss; yes, the heavens have gained the dearest, sweetest 4-legged angel...always in our hearts. Hugs, Pat

Myrna Laracuente

So, so sorry for your loss.

Anne Irons

I am thinking of you as I remembered my beloved grandma who went to heaven many years ago. Her birthday was on July 25th. I am very sorry about your loss. 💜💛💚💙❤️


A sad day for all of us. What adventures Breizh had! I've loved reading about her. May she be at peace and play.

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