Cleo & Friends
Needless to say, despite any preconceived notions upon our late night arrival, ultimately Cleo the Wonder Pup had a stupendous time the following morning once my sister arrived toting two particularly spry and playful dogs of her own! Although Kirby eventually later in the week somewhat soured to playing, instead opting to assume the role of the old maid to ensure that nobody had any fun in her general vicinity (or maybe she just didn’t want Cleo, the smaller one who kinda looked like her, getting hurt???), Sunny on the other hand went absolutely freaking nuts and played with this dog with little concern whatsoever for health, sanity, or safety of the furniture and other breakables potentially around them! Seriously, after a while I think we all got used to it and learned to tune their rough housing out, but initially to hear all of their snarling and biting and tackling each other, you’d think that Michael Vick had decided to stick his head in and say hello for the holidays…
Still too soon on that one?
Meeting Baby Madelyn
Tell me – is this kid freaking adorable or what?! Being completely serious for just a moment, despite all of the anticipation that has been building since this little girl was born back in September, I was honestly a little taken aback by just how much I enjoyed seeing this kid face to face, and holding her, and watching her smile, and trying to make her smile when she wanted to be stubborn. I don’t really know a lot of babies, so I wasn’t really even sure if I knew how to hold her right and all that jazz, and yet much to my own amazement when Lori handed her over it all just sort of came naturally.
I don’t want to ruin a perfectly nice blog post by getting all mushy and stuff, but there were definitely more than a handful of occasions where I caught my wife “pleased” at my sense of ease through it all with a smile on her face…
Maybe next year, but in the meantime – look at that baby!!!
There’s No Business Like Snow Business
Now one thing that admittedly I’ve found extremely weird since I’ve gotten here is that for the most part, there really isn’t all that much snow on the ground at all. I mean, there’s maybe a couple of inches – enough to make your shoes crunch when you walk through it – but certainly nothing anywhere near what I recall growing up, when the yard would literally have at least 3 or 4 feet of standing snow in it at all times, thus pretty much rendering the fence around the backyard completely moot and also ensuring for a variety of playtime activities like sledding, snowball fights, and the building of forts and snowmen and whatnot.
And it probably sounds a little out of place coming from me, of all people, because I’ve always been very clear that the weather in Northern Michigan was one of the primary factors that drove me to Florida, but I actually kinda miss all of that snow … at least while we’re here on vacation, anyways! As long as I don’t have to drive in it and I’ve got enough clothes so as to not completely freeze to death during my encounters with it, I don’t necessarily mind the snow strictly as a wintertime backdrop and for playing around in it. I mean, the dogs have still managed to have a good time with it … well, once Cleo figured out what it was, anyways … but my wife had kinda been hoping to make a snowman while we’re here and unless we’re willing to shovel up half the backyard (…which I’m not…), it looks like we might be stuck just watching Frosty on tv… 🙁
But speaking of classic ’80s Christmas programming, I’ll end tonight on something that we’ve been doing a lot of since we’ve gotten here … frankly, it’s a big part of what I’ve been looking forward to in coming up here … and that’s just really embracing holidays past and reliving all of the fun things that we used to do during this time of year growing up. On more than one occasion, we just sat around watching Christmas specials – A Garfield Christmas, Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas, A Muppet Family Christmas, A Charlie Brown Christmas – the list goes on and on! My Mom ordered a Honeybaked Ham, and even though we actually have it a lot back home because there’s nearly one right across the street from us, it still all built to help bring back all of those great memories of sitting around snacking on crackers and Christmas cookies, watching Big Bird contemplate Santa Claus’ bigger than a dump truck fate, all the while with lights on the tree sparkling and snow falling gently outside.
Sure, overtime my wife and I work to develop our own holiday traditions and I’m sure that once we have a kid they’ll spring about all the more, but in the meantime reliving some of those old memories and really just relishing in the good times I enjoyed growing up serves my holiday cheer just fine…
“Why is it every Christmas I get drug out of my warm bed just to see some stupid old relatives? And why do we always have to go to that stupid old farm? Why can’t they come here where my warm bed is? And why am I whispering?”