Friday Favorite: Between Heather and Grass

Laurie Graves shares a beautiful review of Between Heather and Grass on her blog Notes from the Hinterland, alongside music by Jon Batiste! Thank you so much for sharing this Laurie, we’re so happy you enjoyed our second collection! xxx

Notes From the Hinterland

I decided to change the title for my Friday posts. Formerly, it was What’s Making Me Happy, but I had borrowed this from the excellent podcast Pop Culture Happy Hour, and I thought maybe it would be best to have something different. There is a fine line between admiration and plagiarism, and I didn’t want to cross it.

So now the title will be Friday Favorites, but the content will be the same as I list things that made me happy or caught my attention during the week. Often I list three things, but today there will only be one as it needs to stand by itself.

Long overdue to be featured on this blog is the very beautiful book, Between Heather and Grass: Poems and Photographs Filled with Love, Hope and Whippets. It was published by my blogging friend Xenia Tran, who has the lovely blogs

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Supporting Children with Cancer UK and Dogs Trust

We are grateful and delighted to support Children with Cancer UK through the sale of Between Heather and Grass in memory of our nephew Jamie Baker.

Thank You Certificate from Children with Cancer UK

It was lovely to make our first donation to this wonderful charity. Children with Cancer UK works hard to find better and kinder ways to treat children with cancer.

If you want to support the charity directly please visit their website here where you can find out how to make a difference.

a blue and white whippet standing on a mountain trail

We have also made our first donation to Dogs Trust, in memory of Flynn, Fergal, Seamus and Ruby.

Thank You Certificate from Dogs Trust

Dogs Trust is the UK’s largest dog welfare charity and has been caring for dogs in need for more than 128 years. They take in dogs that have been abandoned or handed in by owners who could no longer care for them and find them new, loving forever homes.

They have micro-chipped more than 1.1 million dogs and neutered more than 827,000 dogs since 1999 and provided special foster homes for dogs from families fleeing domestic violence. In addition to these services they run educational programmes in schools, training programmes for owners and actively campaign on dog welfare-related issues.

To find out more about their work or to support Dogs Trust directly, please visit their website here.

two whippets on a mountain trail with lochans visible below

A very big thank you to all you fabulous people who have bought a copy of Between Heather and Grass, left a review and helped to spread the word and raise awareness of these two wonderful charities.

If the book is new to you please click on the icon below for a peek inside.

look inside feature for Between Heather and Grass
Look inside …

Wishing you all a very happy Monday and a great start to the new the week,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Rag Tag Daily Prompt: Fantabulous

Word of the Day Challenge: Ecstatic

Haibun: A Star Follows

a black whippet walking through a tidal pool with a ball

The sea retreats as the sun rises, leaving ripples in sand and glittering water. It’s great to be back on the beach. Pearl runs after balls and catches them mid-air. Eivor walks more quietly and gazes past the headland. We both rest our eyes on the mountains and hear a gentle voice saying Stay, stay a little longer.

august moon
walking through tidal pools
a star follows

© Xenia Tran

a blue and white whippet running through a tidal pool with a ball

The above haiku is an echo poem to the closing haiku in A Message from the Stars, a tribute to our nephew Jamie Baker (1977-1986) that features in Between Heather and Grass.

Below is a trailer video for the book which includes this haiku, as well as a clip of Eivor and Pearl on the beach you see in the photographs above.

A special post will follow later this month about the money we have raised so far with the sale of the book.

We wish you all a happy Thursday and a wonderful rest of the week,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/2000 s – ISO 100.

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Rag Tag Daily Prompt: Stars

Sunday Stills

We are deeply honoured that the lovely Anne Leueen from Horse Addict is featuring a haiku from Between Heather and Grass with a photograph of her beautiful and soulful horse, Biasini, today. Thank you so much for this wonderful post dear Anne xxx


I did not take this photo. It was taken by my friend Carmen (Queca) Franco at a clinic with Janet Foy last week. I think it is a beautiful photo of my Biasini. The words below the photo are not mine either! They are by Xenia Tran and her book of poems “Between the Heather and Grass:” You can find her poetry and photo posts at Whippet Wisdom.

Heavenly music

part of us remembers

the angel’s harp

Xenia Tran

I believe Biasini can hear that music.

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2019: Favourite Moments Through the Seasons

As the year is winding down we look back at 2019 with a lot of gratitude. Nature, her rhythms and her beauty have been the star in our photographs and poems and we treasure every moment we can spend exploring the great outdoors.

We are grateful to all of you who come here to visit and walk along with us, for your lovely comments and all your support.

Here is one more celebration of the joy and peace that nature has brought this year, throughout the seasons.


This has been the mildest Winter since we moved to the Highlands, with a few days in February reaching temperatures of 17C. Although we saw plenty of snow on the higher ground, we only had a light covering here on the coast.

Some of our most popular Winter posts were Two Ravens, Winter Mist, Bathing in Light, Colours of Joy and A Walk in Rosehall Forest.

Two Ravens, Winter Mist and Bathing in Light also feature in Between Heather and Grass, our second collection of photographs and poems published in aid of good causes.


Spring was glorious this year. The snows from the higher ground had melted early and we had plenty of rain to nurture the soil. After the heatwave and forest fires of 2018 we were especially grateful to see so many buds and green leaves. We enjoyed forest walks, strolls and zoomies on the beaches and explored a few glens further North.

Our most popular Spring posts were My Friend, My Rock, Nature’s Spirit, Song of Sika, Passing Spring and This World we Sail in.

The haiku from My Friend, My Rock (The First Swallow) and edited versions of the other four poems mentioned above all feature in Between Heather and Grass.


Summer was as pleasant as Spring with plenty of rain to keep it lush and green. The temperatures never exceeded 24C, which made it perfect for walking and exploring and gave us some wonderful days in the West.

Our most popular Summer posts were Quiet Beauty, In Praise of Trees, Songs in the Grass, A Special Encounter and Radiance.

Edited versions of Quiet Beauty, A Special Encounter and Radiance feature in Between Heather and Grass.


Our Autumn was relatively dry and mild, perfect for more walks and exploring a few new places. Between Heather and Grass was published, which has been a true labour of love. After the whirlwind that followed our walks in nature offered an important breathing space.

Our most popular Autumn posts were Morning Glow, Beaver Moon, Heron in the Wood, Cover Reveal and Across a Carpet of Leaves.

We want to say a very big thank you to all of you who take the time to visit and comment on our blog and to those of you who share your experiences through your own posts, photographs and poems. You are all an enormous inspiration and help make this world a better place.

Thank you to those of you who have bought our books and shared your reviews. It is much appreciated and we look forward to continuing our support for good causes.

A very big thank you too to all the lovely bloggers who host regular prompts and challenges. With so many photographs and impressions to chose from it’s a great help in finding a focus or different angle from which to approach a subject.

We look forward to what 2020 holds in store and wish you all a great start to the New Year. May this new decade bring new understanding and greater care for animals and our natural world, with increased compassion and peace among human beings.

a black whippet and a blue and white whippet in black jackets on an autumnal forest trail

You can see the 2019 highlights from our sister blog Tranature in Looking Back at 2019 – Thank you for the Magic.

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Lens-Artists Weekly Photo Challenge #77: Your Favorite Photos of 2019

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Between Heather and Grass: #Poems and #Photographs Filled with Love, Hope and Whippets by Xenia Tran @WhippetHaiku

Cathy Ryan shares a beautiful review of Between Heather and Grass on her blog today. Thank you so much Cathy, we’re so happy you enjoyed it! xxx

Author: Xenia Tran

Published: November 2019 by Holistic Linguistics

Category: Creative Non Fiction, Poetry, Photography, Verse, Book Review


Welcome to Between Heather and Grass – Poems Filled with Love, Hope and Whippets, our beautiful, soulful sequel to Sharing Our Horizon and our second book for whippet lovers, dog lovers and lovers of nature. The book features poetry, breathtaking photographs of the Scottish Highlands, and our two adopted whippets Eivor and Pearl. The majority of the poems are haiku, haibun and tanka, written in rhythm with the seasons. The poems and photographs illuminate each other and are both calming and inspiring, inviting you to dip into this collection many times over.

Between Heather and Grass is Xenia Tran’s second book of verse, complete with photographs of the spectacular scenery of the Scottish Highlands and not forgetting her two gorgeous rescue whippets. The complementary poetry and photos capture the majesty of…

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Names from the Hat

A very big thank you to all of you who put their name into the hat for the chance to win a free copy of our forthcoming book Between Heather and Grass via our Cover Reveal post.

We closed entries yesterday afternoon in order to prepare individual cards for today’s draw. The idea was that Pearl and Eivor would pull one card out of the hat each.

Pearl wanted to go first:

a blue and white whippet in a jumper on a dog bed
a white dog's paw holding a pink card with 'Anne' written on

Congratulations to Anne Leueen from HorseAddict!

Next, it was Eivor’s turn:

a black whippet in a jumper with his nose in a woolly hat with pink cards
a black dog's paw holding a pink card with 'Cathy' written on

Congratulations to Cathy Ryan from Between the Lines Books ‘n’ Stuff!

I wanted to take another picture of Eivor when Pearl made a bee-line for the hat and flicked a third pink card on the floor.

They both looked at me as if to say there’s another name from the hat.

a blue and white whippet tipping pink cards out of a woolly hat

We decided it would only be fair to let this one count too:

a white dog's paw holding a pink card with 'Pearly Greyhound' written on

Congratulations to Pearly Greyhound from Annabelle Franklin’s blog The Literate Lurcher!

A very big thank you again to all of you who participated. Our book is officially released into the world tomorrow and will be available in paperback, ebook and Kindle editions.

We are publishing a special Book Launch post tomorrow in co-ordination with the children’s cancer charity we’re supporting. This is also the day our dedicated Between Heather and Grass page will go live.

Congratulations to all three winners. If Annabelle, Anne and Cathy can get in touch via email or via the Contacts Page, we will get signed copies out in the post to you on Monday.

Wishing you all a wonderful Thursday,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Rag Tag Daily Prompt: Architect