Thank you all so much for all your kind words on my last post and Mim's final update. I still cannot believe we're going to be a family of four (or seven, counting the pets) by this time next week. It all seems so surreal - I'm simultaneously incredibly excited and terrified all at the same time. And speaking of pets and babies, I figured with Mim arriving next week and me probably not having any time to blog (or eat or sleep) while I'm soaking up all her newborn goodness (oh, that newborn smell!), it would be fun to have some of my very favorite bloggers contribute some guest posts on a topic near and dear to my heart - DOGS.
If you've been reading this blog for any length of time, you know that our pups mean the world to us. We have two dogs - Mally (a 13 year old Shetland Sheepdog) and Sage (a 3 year old English Cream Golden Retriever). Mally is a mama's girl and has been my dog since college. She's getting pretty cranky and crotchety in her old age and prefers my presence exclusively, without the toddler anywhere around, and I can't say I blame her there. We recently learned that she's nearly deaf (common in older Shelties) and is still battling some hip arthritis, so she's not the biggest fan of being chased, ridden, wrestled, harassed and tackled by a toddler. She's still a wonderful dog, but she prefers sleeping in to early morning wake-ups and thinks the best part about having a kid in the house is all the food he spills that she gets to eat. She tolerates Mac, but unless he has cheese or chocolate for her to steal, she tries to ignore him.
Sage, on the other hand, wants nothing more than to be side-kick extraordinaire to the toddler. I think she knows that Mac gets all the attention around these parts, so being his BFF basically makes her the first lady of the house. Since he was born, Sage has been at Mac's side - watching over him, licking his feet and defending him against the cat and Mally. She's his biggest fan and he can do no wrong in her book. She lets him crawl on her, stand on her, ride her like a horse, grab her tail, pull her ears, touch her teeth, stick his hands in her mouth, etc. She's so gentle with him. Of course, she will flatten him like a pancake if he gets in between her and the tennis ball (and he's had multiple faceplants to tell that story), but all in all, she's so good with him.
I'm a firm believer that kids benefit from growing up with pets. I know there is scientific data to back this up (kids with pets have fewer allergies and lower blood pressure), but my reasoning is based purely on personal love of animals and my experience growing up with dogs and cats. I blame my parents for being such animal softies - we always had a couple dogs, multiple cats and maybe even a hamster or some fish around while I was growing up. We helped take care of them, fed them, groomed them and loved on them. We learned lessons from them about sharing, being responsible and even on getting sick/old and loss. I think having pets contributed a lot to the person I am today. Our lives are just so much fuller with pets - and yes, much dirtier and hairier, too, but worth it.
Ryan and I both feel strongly about our kids growing up with animals in the home. In addition to our two dogs, we have a cat and a tankful of assorted fish. If it was up to me, I'd probably have a hamster, a turtle, a horse and maybe a little pot-belly pig running around the house as well (thankfully my husband does not allow me to just bring home stray animals). We've really loved watching Mac interact with the animals and learn how to be gentle, how to feed them, brush them and play with them. He knows to be easy with Mally. He's learned that the cat will chase him if he has ribbons. He insists that Sage accompany him everywhere he goes.
So let me introduce a new series I'm going to be hosting over the next couple weeks -
The Dog Days of Summer
This will be a series of guest posts about two of my favorite things: babies and dogs. Be prepared to be blown away by the cute photos, adorable stories and hilarious happenings from mamas of kids and dogs from around the blogosphere. Starting next week, I have 12 wonderful bloggers lined up to keep you entertained over the next couple weeks with stories, anecdotes and adventures of kids and dogs while I'm busy adjusting to life as a mom of two. I hope you love their stories as much as I do. And be sure to leave them some comment love (because really, that's the best compliment to a blogger!).
And don't worry, there will still be Mac related posts, baby Mim updates and lots and lots of photos coming from me over the next couple weeks as well. Don't think that I can go more than a couple days without posting adorable pictures of my kid(s). You can also follow along on Instagram and Facebook, for more frequent posts.
Upcoming "Dog Days of Summer" guest posts from:
- Megan @ Hello Newlywed Life
- Julie @ The Girl in the Red Shoes
- Chrissy @ Simple Joys
- Ashley @ Words About Waverly
- Alyssa @ My Husband’s Watching TV
- Vanessa @ Sunflower State of Mind
- Lindsey @ Itz Linz
- Mateya @ The Best is Yet to Come
- Natasha @ Hello Happiness
- Jenny @ Chronicles of We
- Jess @ Being Mrs. Beer
- Natasha @ Schue Love