A Cowboy for Christmas.
When I got the text asking if I would be willing to watch a former foster dog while his adoptive family went out of town for the week, my first response was “Of course”! Maybe I felt privileged that they would even ask, maybe when I named John Wayne it was for my Dad and having that little low riding pup in the house would in some crazy way be like having a small part of my Dad with us on Christmas.
He had grown since I saw him last, his long, long body and short stubby feet were no match in cuteness to his expressive chocolate brown eyes and giant ears. When we met the family in the parking lot of Frisch’s just off the highway early Christmas afternoon I knew this was going to be a treat.
I know when I say he is the perfect dog, you might find that hard to believe but he is. He has a soft gentleness about him very easy go lucky and funny, oh is he funny! We sat around Christmas night laughing hysterically at him and Tully rambunctiously playing for what seemed like hours.
Of course Tristan was beside himself with joy and was as wiggly as ever upon seeing an old buddy leaving no doubt the dogs remembered each other. Even Maggie who just looked at me thoroughly disgusted that I brought another rowdy boy home eventually was caught snuggling with the handsome cowboy and even let him lie in her favorite spot.
Melinda and Bob joined Mom and I for a great dinner, watching the dogs and playing board games which I pathetically lost at. It is a sense of real family for me, a sense of tradition which as I get older has become incredibly important.
We feasted on a great dinner which INCLUDED my mom’s famous stuffing. (You might remember in the Thanksgiving post she dropped it on the way over) This time it arrived safely and I didn’t even have to call for a police escort, which I might have threatened to do. We had a goat cheese, bourbon soaked cherry and pine nut stuffed pork tenderloin, roasted root veggies with an herb butter, garlic spinach, a cranberry apple relish and for dessert a fresh apple cake with cream cheese frosting. Dinner was great and I enjoyed my food , I did not feel bad about partaking in the celebration, I was satisfied and full on a day spent with people I love and dogs who always show us the meaning of what it means to give gifts that you can’t buy in a store or order online. The unconditional love of Tristan, Maggie, Tully and John Wayne would serve as a reminder of what the season should be about.