Just another Monday Morning…

What’s with me and sleep? Again, I was sound asleep. And startled awake by a loud ‘tornado siren’ like noise. I must have made some type of sound while I slept.

Son:  It’s okay Mom—just my alarm.

I quickly dropped back off to sleep for a while longer. When I came to, I was spooning with the Little Black Dog. This happens. She loves to plaster herself against me when she is sleeping. She especially loves to burrow into me, her head tucked against my cheek. IF she can get away with it. And she snores.

Snippets of conversation invaded my consciousness.

Daughter: Do you need to brush your teeth?

Son: Not yet.

Daughter: Just let me know if you need to use this bathroom.

Son: No. I’m ready. Gonna go sit in the family room.

On it went…the normal morning routine. And though I was only half awake, I was (for the millionthtime) grateful for my kids easy relationship with each other, that they work together, get along and peacefully co-exist. ‘Clanking’ from the bathroom—the hairspray, brush, curling and/or flat-iron making contact with the sink–interrupted my warm, fuzzy thoughts.

Me: You’re clanking.

Daughter: I know. I’m curling my hair.

Me: Grace (the Little Black Dog) and I are holding hands.

Daughter: You can curl my hair.

Me: Huh?

Daughter: You seem to be looking for amusement…

Me: I don’t think so. We don’t want to get up yet.

Me in My Head: Not a chance.  I was not getting out of my warm, comfy bed to wield a hot object at 6:45 am. Somebody surely would have been hurt.

Daughter: We’re almost ready. Nick’s been up since 5am.

Me: Why?

Daughter: He got up early to read.

My boy has NEVER  been a ‘bookworm.’ I knew he was reading for a school assignment. A few more warm, fuzzy feelings for my Son’s motivation levels.

Then I remembered the No-Bake cookies I made the night before–and was suddently inspired to hop out of bed.

As I strolled into the kitchen, I spotted my son. Fully dressed, connected to his iPod and relaxing in our new/old  Retro 1960s chair. It’s THE CHAIR. It rocks, it swivels and it’s unbelievably comfortable. I originally put it in my bedroom, so that I would have a “Thinking Chair.” Then my children convinced me to ‘share.’ So I moved it to the family room. The downside?  We can’t put our feet up. The ottoman I upholstered in a cute blue and green plaid to match The Thinking Chair sold in just one day. (Much of my home is “inventory” for Green Door–my eBay store.)

Son camped out in THE CHAIR.

Me: What are you doing?

Son: (deadpan) Pondering.

Just out of bed and I had my first laugh for the day.

I grabbed a couple of No-Bakes from the fridge and headed for the family room . As I shuffled past the sliding door on my way to our giant, overstuffed sectional, I noticed  it was pouring rain outside.

And wondered if my daughter knew this? Might not be the best day to curl her hair…

I grabbed a laptop for my Morning Ritual of emails, eBay and other odds and ends.

Me: Those are really GOOD No-Bakes.

The Red dog pranced over to me, wagging wildly, so I patted his head. He sat down and scratched his ear, with a back paw.

Rocky and Grace (our puppy) lounging in the family room

As he was about his task, the Little Black Dog bounced over and knocked him on his a%$. The Red Dog continued scratching his ear from a laying position. He never missed a beat.

My son and I laughed until we couldn’t breathe.

As we snickered, the Little Black Dog continued to try to get the Red Dog to play with her. She stood over him, resting a toy on his head—a HEAVY Kong toy. Kong toys are like mini-bricks. She then clubbed him upside his face with the toy…before she finally dropped the toy onto his nose, with a thump. It  rolled to a stop between his paws. He perked up his ears to look at it for a second, like it fell from the sky.

The Red Dog continued to lounge…he was probably ‘pondering,’ as well.

Our laughter was interrupted by Daughter, standing in front of us fully dressed and ‘prettied up.’ But wearing  just ONE shoe.

Daughter: Do you know where my other brown shoe is?

Me: No.

Daughter: Just asking. You seem to know these things…

I got up to have a look around, but didn’t see it.

Daughter: No worries. I put different shoes on. Did you know this is a Calorimeter?

Me: Huh?

She stood at the counter and assembled her morning jolt of caffeine…via hot tea. We have several Adult Sippy Cups—that’s what I call the insulated cups with the screw on lids that not only keep a drink hot, they also keep liquid from spilling. She was holding a screw top lid for one of those…

Daughter: Stops the flow of heat.

No comment from Son or I. We weren’t looking for a dissertation on the Calorimeter this morning. (Or ANY morning…)

We loaded into the car. My pretty (curly locked) daughter in the back seat with the dogs. The dogs ride to school  every morning, because they like to ‘come with.’ Son rode Shotgun in the passenger seat,  because he is my second stop.

My rule: He who gets dropped off first, rides in the backseat. He who gets dropped off second rides Shotgun. I refuse to drop a child off; then ride to the second stop with the other child in the backseat, that makes me look like a chauffeur.

Daughters rule: Both dogs ride. Or NO dogs ride. (We don’t leave the Red Dog behind, because he might get sad.)

Son’s Rule: Nonexistent. He has no RULES. He simply gets in the car.

Me: (repeating…because I often repeat myself) Those are really GOOD No-Bakes.

Daughter: I know. That’s why I waited until I was on my way out the door to grab just ONE. Otherwise, I would have kept going back for more.

Me: I had three. Or four?

It was a rainy, dreary Monday morning. I am a single mother to teens…and dogs. I am STILL looking for a permanent career. I am STILL working at gaining a degree of financial security. Much in my life is still up in the air…

Yet I am at peace. My household hums along smoothly and seamlessly most days. And I am grateful for my dogs and children—for our easy camaraderie. Our silly routine of half thoughts and half sentences. That we understand each other. Or at least pretend to…

Life has NOT gone as expected. Despite my (often overwhelming) pile of challenges, I am content. And my children? They seem content, as well.

Things aren’t nearly Perfect. But life is good. And on this dreary morning, I think I might possibly be the luckiest person in the world.

Gone to the dogs?

I could have slept really, really well last night. Instead, I slept badly.

All because of the Red Dog—AKA Rocky, our Golden Retriever.

Last evening, I let the dogs out before shuffling off to bed.

But only one dog went outside.

The Red Dog was not interested…

Tossed on his back, paws up in the air—the dog was counting sugarplums. I could have flipped him over and dragged his 85 lb. body from the couch. But I lacked the energy.

And yes. I ‘trained’ the Red Dog—or didn’t train him. In my defense, Golden Retriever’s are known more for their tail wagging enthusiasm, than for being obedient. And for being really, really cuddly and cute.

The Red Dog obeys…eventually. Or when he feels inclined. Or when somebody waves food that catches his attention…

For example, when he is smelling something fabulous outdoors—a pile of crap or a dead fish on the beach–he comes when I call him. It just takes a while. And requires a bit patience. He looks at me…then continues sniffing around. When he is ‘good and ready’, he runs over to me, tail wagging, ears flapping as he bounces around.

He is a wonderful companion. Sweet and happy. But he does what he wants to do. When he wants to do it.

And last night, he wasn’t in the mood to get off that couch. And I wasn’t in the mood to change his mind.

Used to his personality, I let him be and went to bed. My mistake.

He roused me at 2:15 am, by panting inches from my face. He needed to go potty, so I dragged myself from the comfort of my bed and shuffled out to the family room to open the back sliding door. Was there a choice?

The Red Dog piddled. Then bounded back inside and came to a sliding stop near the “Good Dog” treat jar. Waiting. Tail thumping wildly.

I obliged him with a treat. Then dove back into my comfy bed, the other (smart) dog a step behind me. No sooner was I wrapped up in my blankets, eyes closed, Grace dog curled around my ankles—when the Red Dog was BACK!

Panting in my face. Again.

I threw the blankets aside. For the second time.

This time, I stomped to the back door…lacking a bit of my good humor from the first go-around. Was there any reason he didn’t take his dump the FIRST time I let him out?

He took his time out there. And I did NOT rush him, because I did NOT want him to wake me a third time.

That is why I am a little groggy this morning, not quite ready to greet the full day ahead of me.

The Red Dog?

Not to worry, he’s napping.