The grands have gone home.
[Leif, William, Abigail, and Cleo]
We miss them already, but both the humans and the hounds in the house are, to quote our English friends, knackered.
We had a great grand time with the grands! And their parents, too. The visit was especially stress free for me, because for the very first time, the children were old enough that the whippets had no confusion. They recognised them as human beings and not prey.
Having your husband's grandchildren seen in the eyes of some of your "specialer" dogs as a small thing to be chased down and eaten is NOT conducive to good mental health.
I may not have given the dogs enough credit. They might have done just fine from day one. But, and this is a large but, I was never willing to take the chance. I really didn't want a child with hamburger where their face was supposed to be, and I didn't want to have to put a dog down. So, my way of coping was to keep the "specialer" dogs and children totally separated, never the twain to meet. Giacomino and Maria, Sammy and Mama Pajama were always fine, supervised, but the rest... I just didn't know for sure, and I for sure didn't want to find out the wrong way.
Only there was little cooperation in this endeavor, folks thinking that I was being over cautious or psychotic, and what did I know about dogs?
So, in years past there was the time that I came back in the house from scooping duty to find the dogs released from the dog room, and a young grandchild facing the most special of the special dogs. The dog was backed into a corner, the grandchild was doing the ET scream, hands waving in the air, and every tooth in the dog's face was on vivid display.
And another time when as the mothers and I drove up to our house from shopping, the dogs, who had been crated in the dog room when I left, ran up the street to greet us. The front door was open, and the crates were open, and the gate to the yard was open. And a distant neighbor was wanting to show me the rip in the seat of his pants where Luciano had bitten him.
Now, I give special Looch all kinds of credit. He did not bite either of the grandchildren who were running around under his long pointy nose for the biting. He did not. But when the distant neighbor (who, truth be told is a little special himself, in that he wears all khaki and presses an ancient transistor radio to his ear, next to his khaki baseball cap as he walks aimlessly and harmlessly around the neighborhood) approached the small grandchildren, Looch apparently felt the need to bite the man in his butt.
He did not break the skin. And I gave the man money for new pants and prostrated myself in apology. He still walks by our house and waves a pleasant hello with the hand which is not holding the radio, so I believe he holds no grudge.
But nothing remotely like that happened on this beautiful visit.
On this visit the kids walked the dogs.
William walked Swede William who is named after William. It gets a little confusing, like when I yell, "William don't you dare eat that poop before I can get to it!" as I'm scooping, William the boy looks at me and says, "Gramma Patience, don't worry!"
And in addition to chalking the sidewalk, they chalked each other.
We made awesome thrift store finds!
And Cleo shared her amazing origami skills on the dinner napkins, making the table oh so festive!
Swede William tried to convince the non-doggers that they were missing out on the very best thing in life.
And gave boy William's frog a ride!
Fat Charlie demonstrated how we all felt when they left... We just wanted to curl in a ball and wish they were back.
After a little nap.
hug your hounds