Our local friends have often joked that we should name our house "Ben and Amy's Bed and Breakfast" because we have houseguests so often. We've played host to family for seven of the last nine weekends. What with celebrating Bryn's birthday, my birthday, Shay's birth, and Christmas, November and December have been a whirlwind of activity and visits. In fact, the only two weekends we've had in recent memory without houseguests were the two immediately before Shay was born and, let's face it, I wasn't exactly a barrel of fun during those, considering that all I wanted to do was 1) sleep and 2) go into labor, and who would have wanted to stay with us then anyway? :)
This weekend, we apparently decided to outdo ourselves for the grand finale of family visits by adding the designation of "Kennel" to our "Bed and Breakfast" as well. We had two sets of our good friends go out of town for the weekend, and we agreed to watch their dogs for them. Let it be said that when we agreed to do this, we did not actually realize that it was all going to fall on the same weekend, but once we figured that out, we still thought it would be no problem. Thus this weekend held a visit from my mom Tina and my sister Kristin, plus furry four-legged guests Fina and Ravage.
I have to say that taking care of two little girls plus four dogs all at once is not an easy feat, although it did prove to be pretty fun. Luckily, Shay demonstrated her amazing unconsciousness abilities by sleeping through all the barking, and Bryn thought that playing with the dogs was about the best thing to ever happen to her. She chased the four of them around the house, screaming with laughter, and Ben and I decided that her fondest wish was to just be "part of the pack." She fell completely in love with Ravage (who weighs less than 10 pounds but totally held his own with the big dogs). She calls him "Ravi" and insisted that he sit on her lap every time she sat on the couch. She calls Fina "Fin" and loves to pet her as well. So that little girl was absolutely in heaven with four dogs, an aunt, and her grammy to play with all weekend, not to mention her fourth round of opening Christmas presents. As for Ben and I, we enjoyed cuddling the four dogs in bed all night--a little warm, but definitely nice.
As we head into the new year, it seems that our bed, breakfast, and kennel business will be slowing for a while, thus giving us a chance to start to adjust to whatever "normal" life as a family of four is like. We look forward to the next couple of weeks being pretty quiet, and then in the middle of January, I start up with 2 1/2 weeks of nightly rehearsals for the annual Mr. Zionsville pageant, which I am helping to direct again this year. So quiet weekends will the definitely be highly prized as a time to catch up with Ben after only seeing each other to pass of the girls all week. We're looking forward to the adventures and adjustments that the next month will bring!
Updated pictures of Shay to follow, once I manage to catch my breath long enough to get them loaded to the computer....