Sunday, April 10, 2011

Welcoming New Family Part 2

Ben wasn't the only one recently getting acquainted with our house. Evan and Crystal brought Piper for her first visit to the ranch. If you read Crystal's blog, you'll see many more photos than I have.

But I get to talk about the special times that grandparents have with the kids. Those moments when the parents are in the shower. Or talking to each other about something other than the baby. These are the snippets of time that help us create the shining memories of our grandchildren's lives intertwining with ours.

It's usually something simple, such as sitting by the fire, holding the baby while she watches the flames leap and glow. Or holding her while she's still in a 'milk coma,' both of us slowly waking up to the day.

 Later on it'll be walking down to the farm, tossing rocks in to the creek, petting the soft noses of the horses and laughing at the antics of the goats. All small moments that add up to something pretty grand.

Piper is just beginning to discover her world. She is very content to let it swirl around her at this stage. Soon she'll join in wholeheartedly. But for now she watches, smiles, gurgles and sleeps.

 Oh, and lest you think she's too perfect, she does cry occasionally. Sometimes very loudly.

Welcome to our world, little girl.

Welcoming New Family

We have a new member of the family. Spoiler's not a baby. No, he's a dog named Ben. We've had him for two weeks now, the official trial bonding time for dogs. Amazing that people in 'relationships' take months or years to make a commitment and our dogs will do it in a fortnight. I think we could learn something about living decisively from the hounds.

Goddy really is happy about it. Really...
We didn't intend to get a full-size Australian Shepherd. Our intention was to one day, maybe, consider or at least talk about, a mini-aussie. One day. Well, one day came sooner than expected when my friend, Becky (love you, pal) sent me a Craigslisting for a mini. To shorten a longish story, the folks who were fostering that pup got all bonded with him and couldn't bear to part company. But they had Ben, who they'd raised from a pup but weren't so attached to. Gentle Ben, they call him.

And he really is. Eccles the cat might disagree but they're still working things out. When Murphy gives Ben what-for by leaping at his throat - not a dangerous situation since she is nearly toothless and gags on his fur - Ben ducks his head and turns his eyes away, slumping into a patient puddle of adolescent angst. I know that's an oxymoron but that's what it looks like.

Goddy, bless him, wasn't too keen at first and still isn't too sure about the cat chasing thing (he does love his cat time) but Ben is working his doggy charm and I think we're good to go.

I love having a larger companion in the woods, one who doesn't get sidetracked too much with his nose and disappear behind small bushes and twigs like Murphy does. She's gotten to the age where a few minutes of snuffling around just about does it for her daily fresh-air time.

We had our annual walk on the Grasslands today. I guess that makes it official for Ben, since he's been included in a tradition. Welcome to the family.