Remember how I said that I'd never get a dog? If you didn't hear me say it, let me assure you that I did, in fact, say it. Well, I did get one. Well, sort of. I'm referring to HT who has found her voice which sounds an awful bit like a tiny yappy dog.
I mean that very lovingly, of course. Do you ever picture your kids as cartoon characters or is this just something weird that I do privately? I've always pictured Bean as a Japanese anime cartoon because she has such big, expressive eyes. And because HT shouts a high pitched "RUFF, RUFF, RUFF!"at every four-legged creatures she encounters, I picture her as a Sandra Boynton cartoon dog. Specifically, I picture her as tiny white Shih Tzu puppy with a bow on top of her head because I like gathering HT's blond hair in one tiny pony tail on the top of her head leaving a spray of little curls on the back of her head. Adorable, right?
My little yappy dog is fond of walks in her stroller, holding my hand or in Bean's tricycle. She follows Bean around everywhere and has little interest in playing with babies, preferring instead to keep up with the big kids on the playground. At the lake, she strolls right into the water, without glancing back her anxious mom. I finally understand the inclination of parents to leash their kids.
My little yappy dog also sits at my feet while I prepare dinner, begging for scraps and in doing so, I've found that she is capable of eating much more than I would have anticipated. She's pulled leeks and scallions out of the refrigerator and munches on them. Red peppers, celery and carrots are gnawed on while I sauté away. Tomatoes are eaten like apples and cheese disappears practically overnight in this house and it's no longer entirely my fault anymore. Although, she doesn't necessarily beg for food, she does point and shout, clearly articulating her demands better than most people.
This stage amazes me. HT toddles around pointing and yapping. She is constantly connecting the dots, trying to distinguish dogs from squirrels and bunnies. She marvels at every stuffed animal, but has a clear preference for bunnies, stroking the long ears on the many stuffed animals that have found their way into our home. Most bunnies still elicit small barks from her, but more often than not, she will cuddle them or make them hop around our house.
Dogs are man's best friend, right? HT is mine. She is attached to me like no other. Although, not a cuddler like her sister. She will happily sit on my hip and blabber on affectionately to me and her sister. Bean shouts constantly to HT to "Use your baby words!" HT responds accordingly by mimicking our conversations, complete with head nods and hand gestures. She's my little buddy. She doesn't wag a tail, but her enormous smile on her face tells me that she's pretty happy most of the time.