What I did this summer:
Got a puppy.
How have I not written about this yet? It is a great tale of suspense, deception, manipulation, and ultimately, victory.
About this time last year, older 2 were starting at the Middle School. Wise, mature, 7th grade girl often sat on the right side of the bus where she could daily see the clever slogan marketing of the house across the street “Puppies!” and immediately added the phone number into her brand spankin’ new cell phone.
Fast Forward a year: BoyKid was at football practice across the street from the middle school and NeighborKid and BigSis were along for the ride. With nothing better to do, NKid and BSis decided to walk over to the middle school where lo & behold, there was the Puppy House conveniently within walking distance. NKid gets bold enough to call the number & see if there are any puppies currently. Well, butter my biscuits, yes, there certainly were. Shocking.
Meanwhile, I’m yakking on the phone watching practice. Little did I know my world was in need of a rocking which was just moments away.
Interestingly enough, the Puppy Whisperers did not come back all bubbling over. They were actually resigned to the fact that there was No. Stinkin. Way. either family is going to even go see them. Much less GET one.
This reverse psychology thing? Look into it. There may be something there.
So with 45 minutes left to practice & my phone call completed, I figured, hey. I got nothing better to do than go see what my kid & the NKid have been up to.
We got into the yard of the Puppy Home and it hit me like a bolt of clarity infused lightning. “What am I doing? I am not going to be able to walk away from this innocent journey unscathed.” (Read: without a puppy) By that time, they were in sight. And literally? Before I even saw her? THAT my friends was, for me, all. she. wrote.
Two Puppies Left: Belle (not for sale) and ?
YES I WANT TO HOLD HER.
Shut. Uprightnow. GET. IN. MY. HOUSEHOLD!
Brilliant low-key sales pitch + profuse snuggling + sweet talking + crazy cuteness = 1 determined calculating mom and 2 flabbergasted children.
We tore ourselves away and made a call. To TeenSon. Told him to wake up Dad & “meet us at BoyKid’s practice. We’ve got something you have GOT to see.”
Now for strategy. “Under NO circumstances can you ASK if we are GETTING a dog.”
Mopey sad tired oblivious Dad arrives with TeenSon who is in on the plan. BoyKid is done with practice so we walk as a family, (plus NKid who is the mastermind behind this whole expedition…who knows HIS carpet will be in no way effected) over to see the puppies “just to snuggle.”
So now 2 of us have been there 3 times, one of us has been there twice, and 3 more are joining us this time. Farmer Joe knows he’s got us right where he wants us. He proceeds to put puppies in EVERYONE’S hands.
Dad stands firm, reminding us we have a NC trip in the morning and that our house is a rental. Silence. NKid then wonders outloud if there’s a “rental clause for pets.” (Dude. In 10 years, be a stockbroker. Or a realtor. Or a used car salesman. Or raise puppies). Plus he proceeds to offer his Puppy Sitting services while we’re gone or “any time.” Work it. Everyone wisely leaves space for Dad to process. All part of the plan.
We sleep on it and rise the next morning and pack the car already missing our not-yet-ours pet. We think about names. LittleSis wants D.J. for Dixie Jr. Dad likes the mom’s name “Dixie.” Reel ‘er in, boys.
Packed up for the visit to the grandparents, Dad takes a surprise detour to the ATM and then back to Dixie’s Birthplace to leave a deposit. The whole ride back from NC a few days later, we are discussing what time to pick her up in the morning and he ends up driving STRAIGHT TO GET HER from the road. We didn’t have dog food, a bed, a collar, a dish. Not. One. Blessed. Thing. except LOVE.
We picked her up, held a lottery to see who got to hold her in the car (shoulda been NKid if he had gone to NC with us) dashed to Pet Smart 15 minutes before they closed and added a whole bunch of joy to our family.