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AND THEN THERE WERE THREE
10 April 2006
Talk about mixed emotions.
The day started, as usual, around 5 a.m., with Fudge announcing that he was through with sleeping and it was time for me to be AWAKE. I tried to ignore him, but eventually got up some time before 5:30.
As I walked around the house, I wore the usual cluster of puppies around my feet. Peggy always refers to children as "ankle biters." She hasn't lived until she's had these real ankle biters! I got them fed and by then there was stirring from the cage where Queenie, Bruno and Peanut had slept a decent amount of time.
I fixed a batch of formula--a big batch, because I knew that at least half of it would go into the toddlers--and I started the first feeding of the morning.
It's so much fun watching the toddlers. Desertnut has posted some great videos of baby hummingbirds over the last several days and when I looked down at the faces of the toddlers all demanding their share of the Esbilac, that's all I could think of, a nest full of baby birds, all clamoring for food.
Fudge's method was to sit back and bark. He wanted special service. Didn't want to bother putting his paws on my knees with the riff raff. Wanted me to lean way over to give him his own special treat and was going to yap until he got his way.
We eventually got through the feeding, got the babies back in the cage, and the toddlers playing outside.
Before Walt left for work, he spent some time outside saying goodbye to each of the puppies.
I wasn't sure when Ashley was going to arrive. Our morning routine went on pretty much as usual, with me working, the toddlers either sleeping or playing outside in the unseasonably clear, somewhat warm weather.
Around noon, I realized that Ashley was going to be there soon, and I really wanted to take one last brief video of each of the toddlers before sending them off to the country to grow up. I set up the camera (still just the digital camera--it will be a long time, I fear, before I'm back in the mini DV business again) and just as I was ready to start, Sheila began barking at the front door, announcing Ashley's arrival. The final video never got made.
Ashley packed up the pen, which has been my salvation this past week. It seemed strange to see the family room without the pen I'd grown so accustomed to.
Then Ashley scooped up 3 puppies. I had Curly, who, over the past couple of days has become my favorite, as Fudge has gotten louder and more demanding. Curly is still this plotsy dog, not terribly bright--he never did figure out the dog door and when I lifted up the side of the pen for the puppies to wiggle out from under, he never could figure that either, but would stand up and hang onto the wire so I'd have to pick him up.
But he was a great cuddler. Pick up any of the others and they became a squirming ball of tongues and tiny teeth. Curly just settled into your arm and was content to be a big soft teddy bear. He'll probably be about 80 lbs when fully grown and will be a wonderful pet for someone.
We loaded the puppies into the cage in the SPCA van and then they were off to nearby Penryn, where they will have lots of room to run around in and to get bigger before they are put up for adoption.
It was sad, but no tears. There was too much work to be done. And babies to be fed.
I spent the afternoon cleaning up, which involved no less than five extra large loads of sheets and towels, if you add together all that were on the floor and those that made the outside bed. I was determined that by the time Walt got home, the house would be back to normal again.
I even kinda sorta got the kitchen clean. The previous night I'd thrown leftover sushi at him for dinner because we were on a tight schedule (I was reviewing a show) and I was up to my ears in puppies. I was also determined that this night we would have a "real" dinner.
(Funny aside: I guess people just don't cook any more. I bought staples at the supermarket, which included butter and eggs and the clerk asked me if I was going to be baking anything, as if it was strange that someone would be buying butter and eggs in this day and age)
So we are toddler-less, but Queenie, Bruno and Peanut are starting to open their eyes and already seem to be "more mature" (relatively speaking) every time I go to feed them.
We're already starting the bonding process.
But I wonder who is cuddling Curly tonight...
PHOTO OF THE DAY
The babies' mother was a water spaniel...