I have not been sewing lately. My husband and I have been taking care of a puppy. Specifically, a grandpuppy. Our son and his wife visited her family over Christmas. They were going to take the puppy with them, but at the last minute worried that he wouldn't fit into the carrier allowed in the tiny, under-the-seat-space on the airplane. A phone call: "Would you consider taking care of Royer?"
Now, my husband and I are not dog people. But it is a big commitment to care for a 10-week-old puppy, and no one else was available during this busy time of year. So, of course, when a wonderful son and wonderful daughter-in-law ask you to care for their beloved puppy, what is there to say but "Yes, we'd be happy to."
We drove up the afternoon before their early-morning flight to watch Royer's usual routines and write down our list of instructions. Then we brought him home. It felt like bringing a baby home from the hospital. You have no idea what you're doing, but you have to learn quickly - and you do.
Royer quickly took over the house. His food and water bowls were placed in a corner of the kitchen. Toys and bones were scattered about the living room. His crate sat next to the piano. The stairs were blocked off with a large suitcase. Glass doors to the sunroom were shut to close off access to the Christmas tree and all those wonderful ornaments. We learned to shuffle everywhere because Royer always followed CLOSELY, and we didn't want to accidentally step on one of his cute paws.
The toughest part, of course, was bathroom duty. In December. With snow and cold and wind. At midnight. At 7 in the morning. Whenever we were sure he wanted to go out and whenever we were unsure that he wanted to go out but weren't willing to take the chance on being wrong. (We were wrong a couple of times and regretted it.)
But what feels like a chore to a human is a source of delight to a puppy. Oh, the wonderful things to be found in the snow! Pinecones and pine needles and dead leaves! All waiting to be dug up and sniffed at and wrestled with and explored. I'm usually snugged up tight in my warm house after dark, so it's a new experience to be scrambling through the snow on a clear, crisp night with an excited puppy on a leash - who should be making a quick job of going to the bathroom if there weren't so many exciting distractions.
Royer is back with his parents now. There is no suitcase blocking the stairway. Doors are open. Cuckoo clock chains are hanging low to the ground. We have plenty of time to sew and read. But we miss the soft fur of a golden doodle puppy, and those big, expressive eyes. And the way he always liked to lay right at our feet and have his tummy rubbed.
My husband and I are not dog people. But we are definitely grandpuppy people.
4 cups (24 ounces) chocolate chips
2 cups peanut butter
1 cup (two sticks) butter
1 box (23.5 ounces) Wheat Chex
4 cups powdered sugar
1. Melt chocolate chips, peanut butter, and butter in a 3-quart saucepan.
2. Pour cereal into a large bowl. Pour chocolate mixture over the cereal and mix well to coat.
3. Put powdered sugar in a brown grocery bag. Dump in cereal mix and shake well.
4. Put in freezer to cool.
For humans - not puppies!
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