Thursday, October 30, 2008

Warmth in Numbers: Lessons from the Puppy Pile

Okay, so I let the fire go out yesterday. It was partly forgetfulness (I can't imagine what else I could've been thinking about!). And it was, in part, deliberate. The one time I thought to throw wood on the fire, it was mid-afternoon, and the sun was just starting to peek through the clouds. I thought (mistakenly) that it was going to warm up outside (note to self: wrongo, moosebreath), so I figured I'd let the wood stove cool down, and if it got cold later we'd just restart the fire.

I forgot that DH had a dinner function at work last night. That means me flying solo until 9-ish p.m.: that is, me getting 9 pups, 5 cabin-fevered Labs, and 24 yo son through dinner on my own. That was followed by puppy clean-up, pen clean-up, and (oh, too bad) puppy socialization and 1:1 pup work on my own (grin!). Factor in phone calls and the World Series (yay Phillies!) and a new episode of Criminal Minds (one of my favorite TV shows), and much for getting the fire restarted.

This morning, it was downright cold downstairs when we came down (not to worry, we leave the puppy heat lamp on all the time in case the pups need more warmth). It should be cold in here; it's 31 degrees (F) outside. The thermostat says it's about 65 degrees in the house, but it sure feels chillier than that.

Well, yesterday I posted how the pups were spreading out sometimes to sleep on their own. Hehe. I think that's more a factor of temperature now than anything else. Yesterday, when they spread out, we had the wood stove going, which makes the entire downstairs really warm (sometime too warm for me). Instead of downright cold, it was downright hot. They're smart pups; nobody wants to snuggle when it's hot (canine or human).

This morning was, however, an entirely different climate. :o)

Here's how they were sleeping earlier when I first came downstairs and it was chilly in here (yup, that's all nine pups, and I'm not even going to attempt to identify who's who):

Here are a few closeups of the same shot:

Me thinketh they were perhapseth coldeth last nighteth. No worries, though... they're just fine (and they had the heat lamp and sheep skins if they wanted them).

But it made me think again about the warmth we find in others. I suspect, just like pups through a chilly night, we need the warmth of others to get through life's chilly spells.

We need our own puppy piles. :o)

And sometimes, when life is really cold, we need them just to survive.

My puppy pile consists of DH, my DTS, my BFF Kath, my human kidlets, my ministry team at church, and yes, even my Labs. They keep me warm when circumstances chill me to the bone. And today I'm remembering to be thankful for them. Today I'm remembering to tell them so, too (thanks, puppy pile folks -- you know who you are -- for keeping me warm and alive).

Who's in your puppy pile? Maybe take a moment today to say "thanks" to them even if for no other reason than they're there for you when life grow cold.

And life does get cold sometimes.

'Til next time,


Mary said...

My husband, Lab and I have a puppy pile everynight when we go to bed. Our little Hope (who is the size of a small pony) always has a huge smile on her face when we do this and we all look forward to it. There is nothing better than a puppypile. In fact we have a name for it: Our pretty precious pony puppy pile.

JuliaR said...

Still no actual pups in my puppy pile but I have my DH and he is the best. Emotionally, my puppy pile is full of friends and family - they are just not here in body all the time. But I think you can have spiritual puppy piles. :)

kayceebeebee said...

My son has a 107 pound yellow lab named Bull that he "puppy piles" with which we have enjoyed together, with my husband, my second son, his girlfriend, my mom-in-law and myself.

A wonderful dog, that Bull! He's so sweet. Looks just like your Elsie, too.