And Dingo Was His Name-Oh

There was a farmer, had a dog, and Buddy was his name-oh!

Then one day a new family moved in up the road. Buddy paid the new family a visit to welcome them to the area, as is the custom in East Texas.  Buddy liked the new family. In fact, Buddy like the new family a whole lot. Buddy spent the night and the next day. And the next day.

The new family did not know Buddy’s name and so they called him “That Dingo Dog”  because, in fact, Buddy looked like a Dingo.  Dingo fell in love with the children and the children fell in love with Dingo.

Every couple of days, the new family would load Buddy into the car and take him back to his owner.  But the next day, or sometimes later the same day, Buddy would be back hanging around, trying to blend in.

One day, Buddy’s owner came and got him. They were moving to a new farm, 10 or 15 miles up the road.  Buddy jumped into the truck and the children cried and waved goodbye to Dingo Buddy as they drove away knowing that they would never seem him again.

But. The next morning Buddy-Dingo was sitting by the back door.   A call was made to Buddy’s family and they came and got him.  Once again, the children cried and waved goodbye to Dingo Buddy.

The next morning, when the sun came up, Dingo was laying by the back door, thumping his tail and waiting for the children to come out and play.

And that was the end of Buddy.  Buddy’s family never came after him again and no effort was made to return him.

Buddy became Dingo and is now living happily ever after in the East Texas country side with three children who adore him.

They say you can’t choose your family. Unless you are one lucky dog, then you can.

And Dingo was his name oh!

Sunday Morning Quarterback

This morning after Sunday school, I hurried down the hall to get Sean out of his class. Before he saw me in the crowded hallway, I spotted him tentatively coming towards me carrying his little Bible. He was wearing a worried expression. A big tear was on the verge of tumbling down the sweet terrain of his face. All of the other children had been picked up by their parents and he was the last one.

When he saw me, his face lit up with recognition and he ran towards me. I bent down on one knee with my arms open wide, ready to swoop him up, lips puckered ready to shower him with kisses and promises that I would never ever forget him or leave him behind.

And like a quarterback running for the end zone, he tucked his Bible under one arm and straight-arm blocked me with the other, knocking me out of his way. As he sailed past me, I heard him calling with unrestrained glee, “Gigi! Gigi! Gigi’s here!”

I picked myself up off the floor and unpuckered my lips just in time to see Godmother Gigi getting my kisses.

Gigi 7, Antique Mommy 0. Good thing we’re on the same team.

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Santa – What Not To Wear

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This past week, we took Sean to North Park Mall to have his picture taken with the North Park Santa, who is known far and wide in these parts as the best Santa around. And of course nothing but the best for my kid will do, so I took him to be traumatized by the best Santa in town.

From what I could observe in the 30 hours I was in line — and I’m a quick study — is that tiny children do not want to sit in the lap of a strange man under glaring bright lights while a line of yet more strange people gawk at the spectacle of it all and somewhere off in the dark, a doofus with a camera in one hand and a jingle bell in the other is screeching “Smile!” This makes little children cry. And it made me cry too when I had to fork over $10 for a picture of my child whose face was unrecognizably screwed up in angst and terror. But then I will go to great lengths to capture the magic of Christmas.

Not to be deterred from my quest for Christmas magic, I arranged for Dick, Sean’s beloved Godfather, to come by the house in a Santa suit thinking that a familiar voice and face in familiar surroundings might make it more of a magical experience. I could then snap a photo of my darling little boy all lit up with joy on Santa’s lap, capture the stupid magic and be done with it. The only magical thing that happened on Santa’s lap was that Sean did not spontaneously combust and catch the tree and drapes on fire, although not for lack of trying. Even after Dick took off the hat and beard, Sean could not be consoled. Only when Dick had completely changed into non-Santa clothing, was Sean happy again.

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So I’ve decided it’s not Santa that is so traumatizing for Sean, it’s the fashion accident that is Santa. And that probably makes Mrs. Claus cry too.

Photos: Apparently clothes do make the man. Same guy, same night, different clothes.

The Hair Cut

After the 7th or 8th time someone referred to my little boy as “she” this past week, I caved in and made an appointment to have his beautiful golden curls whacked off.

This event, more than any other, has made me grieve the passing of his babyhood. All of the previous mile markers were victories, and really with his DNA, growing hair is a victory, albeit probably short lived. But in spite of all that, this cutting of his baby curls just seemed to be a passing of a point of no return. And I didn’t want to pass that point without kicking and screaming and wailing and gnashing teeth just a bit. I want to go back and do it all over again, even the really hard parts.

Immediately after I called the salon, I called Godmother Gigi, she of The Magic Purse. I’d heard horror stories involving little boys and barber chairs (specifically my own two nephews) and I begged her to meet us there knowing that she could get the best out of him. And being a nurse, I knew that she could help me if I fainted.

But then I remembered that she’s a labor and delivery nurse and that it’s her policy to step over or on anyone who’s fainted and attend to the patient.

GiGi is always pulling out some fascinating object out of her magic purse, like keys, that make his big blue eyes glaze over in unequaled and unconditional adoration. I could pull an elephant out of my purse and he’d yawn and squirm to get away.

Gigi showed up on time with the magic purse in hand, out of which she pulled Sean’s Godfather, Dick (sometimes known as Poopah) — which was even better than keys. Dick is really a 10-year-old boy dressed up as a responsible adult and he does cool things that little boy’s love, like drive tractors and fly commercial airplanes.

Anyway, Carrie, the stylist, hoists him up into this little car and pops in a Thomas the Train video and sets about the task of quickly and unceremoniously chopping off the best two years of my life. Dick ran the video camera, Gigi worked the magic purse and I stood in the corner trying not to sob out loud. At the end of this amputation of my motherhood, some strange little boy who I’d never seen before, but remarkably resembled my husband, happily popped out the car/chair ready to move on with the rest of his (sniff sniff) life.

As Sean handed Carrie the tip, she handed me a “Frequent Reward Card” which states that after nine haircuts, the 10th one is free! Oh boy. Let’s see…. with one haircut every two years, we’ll be getting that free one in 2024 – just in time to send him off to college – the ultimate umbilical amputation.