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  • Writer's pictureKim McLaughlin

A dog is not a home

I like to entertain you with my titles … this one speaks to the affection for all pets, memories, and the combination of living and inanimate objects.

I didn’t post last month. Life got in the way. However, I’ve got something in store for you to make up for the gap.

Speaking of a gap, there’s a new one in my household: We miss our dear, beloved, little dog Divot! His passing has caused me to ask myself What makes a home? As a Real Estate Broker who is busy listing and selling homes, often running around like crazy — it’s what I do — I have defined many parts of my life as a person hoping to help others. Now I needed to reevaluate how I process sadness; After years spent connecting with clients and exploring what I can do for them to achieve their goals for a home, my own home suddenly became the center of my attention.

Having said goodbye to our little pooch, I walked through my house, a bit dazed, and realized that something was missing. While the home hadn’t changed, what made it home had been disrupted. Divot didn’t care if we had new appliances or had renovated the kitchen; he knew his food bowl would always be there. He didn’t care if we re-painted the exterior or re-stained the trim; he loved his home because of the people in it. He knew how to find everything that made him happy, including the heating vent he would claim as his own during the cooler days.

If we could see our home through a dog's eyes, what would it look like? Would it be perfect? Would it be comfortable? Divot was like a sundial: Whenever sunshine was coming through a window, he would find a warm, illuminated place on the floor to take a nap. He didn’t care if the floors were perfectly laid, or if they were wide-planked white oak or carefully pegged. All those bells and whistles were not necessary; what mattered was the warmth he felt when we came home. He would greet us with a wag and at times a bark until he knew it was us. He would wait by the door for his walk. He didn’t judge the style of the door; he didn’t care about its cost, its finishes, or its height. Divot only cared that he could walk through it to take his evening stroll with us as a family.

There’s a saying I love: “A person will not remember what you said, they’ll remember how you made them feel.” That’s a saying that translates into many areas of our lives. Dogs never actually say anything; they make us feel a certain way with their loyalty, kindness, authentic self, and unwavering respect for routine. They don’t judge where they live; they’re happy to have a place to sleep, eat, and cozy up to their humans. My home isn’t perfect and yet has so many things I love and appreciate: a beautiful view, location, and amenities we’ve added. I appreciate creating memories and being reconnected each day with a fond memory of Divot ... a house is not a home without a dog.

Peace to you,


Bainbridge Island real estate over the past 30 days

  • 25 active residential listings High $4,880,000, Median $1,310,00 Low $539,000, Average days on market 13

  • 29 pending residential listings High $4,580,000, Median $1,150,000 Low $210,000, Average days on market 39

  • 35 sold residential listings High $4,600,000, Median $1,288,500 Low $535,000, Average days on market 24

  • 4 active vacant land listing High $925,000, Median $862,500 Low $299,000, Days on market 20

  • 1 pending vacant land listing $1,250.000, Days on market 35

  • 1 sold vacant land listing $400,000, Days on market 40

  • 2 unlisted homes sold Total sales price representing $2,090,000 Days on market 0

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