Even though I constantly share adorable photos of Boomer, I realize that I’m guilty of sharing a lot more of his “bad puppy moments” than I do of his “I’m an angel” moments. My little puppy turned one year old over the weekend, (yep, I love to acknowledge dog birthdays and I’m not even a little bit sorry for that!). We didn’t do a celebration; I think we’re going to save than for the anniversary of the day we brought him home – that’s what we do with my parents dog Charlie.
But just for fun I asked Kathy if she had any regrets about us bringing a puppy into our lives….and even though we’ve had quite a few bad puppy moments [Here’s just a few that have been blogged bad puppy moments 1#, more bad puppy moments and then not forgetting his most destructive moments yet!], we were both in total agreement that getting Boomer right after we got here was the best thing we ever did. He’s added so much to our lives here in both obvious and very subtle ways:
Cuddles: Puppy cuddles, this one definitely falls into the obvious ways category but honestly there is no better feeling in the world that the total adoration you get from a puppy. Boomer is always happy to see me and no matter how grumpy or upset I ever get it is impossible to be anything other than happy around him. A few months ago I was ill and spent a week at home on the couch barely able to do anything besides nap and he never left my side.
Work/Life Balance: Having a puppy at home waiting for you to return from work might seem stressful to some people but to me it’s actually very liberating. You see in my job, where you have to be self-motivated and experiments can take hours or days at a time to complete, there is a very strong tendency (and I would go so far as to say an expectation) for people to work above and beyond the 9-5 routine, including weekends and holidays etc. That’s great as far as work goes, but terrible for life, terrible for stress levels and terrible for motivation. Life is what happens when work is over. Boomer helps me remember that.
A sense of adventure: Having Boomer around has made us think outside of the box when it comes to fun things to do. Prior to coming to SC, when I was home in Ireland, weekends used to be about going out for dinner or going to the movies or drinks with friends (or vegetating on the couch!). Now in addition to doing those things (albeit to a lesser extent) we go exploring! We try to find new places to walk the dog and stumble across little gems like Peachtree rock – which I recently heard has since collapsed! We saw it in the nick of time. We also discovered camping and hiking, which are easily the best way to explore so many different places and we’ve been on at least 5 weekend trips in the last year alone (including Edisto Beach and the Blue Ridge Parkway). Would we have done that without the dog? Perhaps, but most likely no….we would have gone on city breaks, and saved up money for bigger trips. But these short weekend camping trips just the three of us, our cameras, and our tent were everything to me.
Bringing us together: Dogs are messy, no one is going to argue that they’re not! but some of it is good mess if that makes sense? It’s finding a squeaky toy in your bed – or a paw print on a blanket. We talk to the dog almost as much as we talk to each other and the house feels bigger, emptier and quieter whenever he’s not around. We might have filled the house with furniture but he made it a home. He made us a family here when we’re 3000 odd miles away from the rest of our families.
Happy Birthday Boomer - here’s to many, many more years together!