I’ve been sitting at my computer for 15 minutes, staring at the blinky cursor. This morning, that cursor is my nemesis. It’s reminding me that I have no new ideas in my head to formulate a blog post. So instead of rattling my brain for a new observation or quip, I’ve decided to tell you a story of old. In social media land, it’s Throwback Thursday (#tbt) so I thought I’d follow suit and throw it back to almost 4 years ago when we got Nash…
It was 2011. My kids were 8, 5, and 3. We were finishing up a kitchen renovation and my baby was almost potty trained. Almost. I had always thought our family would get a dog at some point but since we had babies first, I figured we’d wait til the last one wasn’t making messes on the floor before we jumped into dog ownership. I had always had a dog growing up and thought every kid should have a dog. We parents, justify getting pets by saying, “It will teach the children responsibility.” If you‘ve owned a pet and have children, you know this is a lie from the pit. It’s a fable of sorts; it’s a cute story but it’s not true. Everyone knows the mom takes care of the pets, that’s why they like her best. If I were an animal I would like the person that fed me the best too. Anyhow, I had it in my head that we needed a puppy. My husband was apprehensive to say the least. He didn’t grow up with pets. Bless. He agreed to my plan because he’s familiar with the saying, “Happy wife happy life.” After he gave me the green light, I started hatching a plan.
I thought Christmas would be the perfect time to get the kids a puppy so I asked the one person I knew who would love to gift my kids a puppy for Christmas. My mom. She’s a dog lover to her core. She would love this plan! I told her what I wanted to do and asked if she and my dad would want this to be their Christmas gift to our family. She of course said yes and started researching puppies. We only had 2 requirements; we wanted a small dog that didn’t shed. My mom warned us that in her experience, girl dogs were easier to train. I didn’t have a preference so I thought that was fine. The easier to train the better since my 3 year old was ALMOST potty trained but not quite.
My mom would send me links to breeder websites and we finally narrowed it down to one breeder. He raised Shi-chons. Half Shi-tzu half Bichon frise. Their faces looked like little teddy bears. They were precious. We went over during Thanksgiving break to look at the litter and decide which one we wanted. I think there were only 2 left, a girl and a boy. The girl was smaller but the boy was cuter. His face ya’ll. It was like looking at a little stuffed animal. Kyle even thought he was cute. I knew my mom said a girl would be better but I couldn’t get over the boy puppy’s cuteness. (I also judge books by their cover. Sue me.) We had to get the boy. We told my mom that’s the one we wanted. She was fine with it but I’m sure in her mind she knew cute only gets you so far in life. Oh well. We’d just have to see for ourselves.
Christmas Eve came and my parents were staying with us. We decided we’d have to give the kids the puppy that night since there was no way we could hide him until morning. Our plan was to make up a scavenger hunt that would lead the kids to my parents holding their new puppy. We made up clues and hid them around the house. We let the kids know that they were going on a scavenger hunt to find their Christmas present from Nana and Pepaw. They were beyond excited! I mean, who doesn’t love a scavenger hunt? We handed them the first clue and they were off…
Kyle and I followed behind them with a video camera, asking them questions along the way. When asked what they thought the present was the general consensus was either a big pile of candy or a big pile of toys. We couldn’t wait to see the looks on their faces when they found out it was a puppy. They were going to lose it! (Side note: I looked for this video all morning on my computer and couldn’t find it. It must be buried in our old camcorder that we never use…)
The last clue led them to the closet in our master bedroom. I’m about to wet myself I’m so excited! They open the door and there are my parents holding their brand new puppy. They stand there for a second then Paxton says, “Aw, Nana and Pepaw got a new puppy.”
They’re not getting it.
We say, “No, guys, this is OUR new puppy! This is Nana and Pepaw’s Christmas present to ya’ll! Can you believe it?!”
Have you ever watched your kids’ faces when they are expecting one thing and get another? It’s brutal. The looks of disappointment were soul crushing. They were expecting toys and candy and they got a dog instead. I remember Paxton saying in his least excited voice, “So we have a pet now?” Oh, Expectation, you really are the thief of joy. Blake, the youngest, was the only one who was excited about the new addition. And to this day, Nash likes him the best out of all the kids.
(This dog adores this guy. I think the feeling’s mutual. And for the record, Blake put himself in the crate.)
Once the kids picked the name Nash for him they seemed to warm up to him more. I did feel bad for my parents though. They’d gone to all this trouble and the kids gave them a less than desirable reaction to their sweet gift that I told them to get. (Note to self: always have a bag of candy ready just in case the original gift bombs. Another note to self: ask your kids if they want a puppy before actually getting them a puppy.)
It’s all water under the bridge now. Nash is a part of our family. He loves us and is the sweetest dog you’ll ever meet. He makes you feel like a million bucks when you walk through the door although I could do without the incessant jumping. I could also do without him barking at every blessed car/person/animal that walks by our house but you take the good with the bad, right?
So there’s my Throwback Thursday ya’ll. I hope it makes up for me having writer’s block so early in the morning!
Follow me on Instagram: @cpallen216
Can’t get enough? Click here. I’ll send these to your inbox