The weeks started flowing by and weeks turned into months. The kids were getting ready to start their new school and be with their new friends.
There were plenty of kids their age in the neighbor and it was a welcomed change. In Louisiana you were not always close to your neighbors.
It was a nice feeling to see a new school, but I was a little uneasy since the boys would be in Lyons Creek Middle School and Jess would be attending Winston Park Elementary, but I was assured by Kim that the kids would be fine and if for some reason they got released early she could pick them all up and watch them. Since Kim was a stay at home mom she offered to take care of Jess for me after school so I decided to take her up on her offer and give her a little money each week for helping me out. I never realized how much aftercare could cost for one child.
My saving grace was the boys wouldn’t get home until 4:45pm from middle school so they didn’t need aftercare; they just had to check in with me upon their arrival home. I was told that because of their age it was okay for them to be home by themselves, I trusted them but I was still a little leery, but both Kim and Ty assured me everything would be fine.
Plus Ty let me know that when summer hit if I didn’t get into the City’s Summer Camp program they could both watch the kids. I asked her how both of them could watch my kids and she said she had the summer’s off since she worked for the school board and had the same time off as the kids. Plus she said she needed the break too so she opted out of summer school since these younger kids were tough on your psyche after eight months of a school year.
I loved my new neighbors more and more.
We seemed to speed a lot of time outdoors when all of us were home and I felt like I had a family again.
I still had Gran and I spoke to her every Sunday but I felt like my parents abandoned me when I chose to move. I did the adult thing and invited them down for a visit and they said they would let me know. As for the Merlotte’s, Bernadette pretty much ignored my phone calls so I gave up on trying to be the better person and stopped calling.
It was her loss, not mine.
But my BFF Alcide never left me at all; he talked to me via text message and phone call every day. He told me he couldn’t lose me as a friend and the distance didn’t matter to him. I loved him like a very close friend and he would never leave the friend zone in my mind even if he insisted he move down for us.
Like I said before I just couldn’t do that to him. I had already been down that road with Sam and I didn’t want to repeat history again. If love was out there for me I would find it but I was not going to be desperate about it, it will happen when it happens. Or it may never happen, not until after the kids are grown, I have to look at all things in a positive mode or I would drive myself insane.
So like every grown ass woman I had my toys to help me along and I lucked out that there was an adult store on my way home from work so I could run in at any time and buy me something new… Look at me, the hussy… And of course I had my fantasy men and lately only one man was featured in those fantasies but damn if I could remember his name. I guess I could always ask the girls and find out if maybe he did buy the house next door. But of course I never got around to it.
It was at the end of September that we heard through the HOA that the house next door had been sold and some work was being done to the interior, we still hadn’t heard if we would have new permanent neighbor’s or renters or who had even purchased the home.
Remy had spoken with the mail carrier, Kenya, and she said that no personal mail was being delivered to the address, it was all junk mail. I told Remy that I would still take out the junk stuff and throw it out so it did not get over run and fall out onto the ground. You see our mailboxes were side by side so it was not a big deal to me to do that one little thing of keeping it tidy.
It was the neighborly thing to do.
October was fast approaching and that meant the boys birthday was coming as well and I didn’t know what they would want this year. I told them I needed ideas, but what they came up with was not even on my mind, but they both agreed on what they wanted.
What was it you ask? A dog, not just any dog, two dogs so they could each have one and the other would not be lonely while they were at school.
So being that we were going to start fresh I gave in and told them we would go to the rescues to find a big dog or two. But they (the dogs) had to get along. I wanted two girl dogs but the boys wanted two boy dogs. I knew this was going to take us a while to figure it all out since we couldn’t agree on anything.
Jake took the lead and researched local rescues. The humane society had some nice dogs but they said that if we wanted to get two at one time we should call around to see if any of the rescues knew of multiple dogs being rescued together, that way they would get along from the start and there would be no alpha issues.
I hadn’t even thought about that.
As the boys birthday was only a few days away and we still didn’t have any viable options I asked them if they wanted to change their gift.
I was told, “NO”.
So we kept on looking until one night we saw a local rescue mentioned on the news, well it wasn’t really local but it was in Palm Beach, but it was close enough. They were moving to a bigger facility and rescued primarily big dogs and they tried to have the dogs interact with the other guests (dogs) at the rescue on a daily basis, they even had a group that had been rescued together.
So we put together a plan and called the rescue. We were invited up on Saturday to BDRR (Big Dog Ranch Rescue–http://bdrr.org/) and we were told that once we looked around and found a dog(s) they would want to do a house visit to make sure we had the room for a dog, let alone two. I asked them if there was any way to check out the house before we went so in case we found what we were looking for that day we could bring our new pet(s) home with us. I explained to them that it was a 40 minute trip to the rescue and we were new in the area and didn’t want to get lost. They agreed to send out a counselor the next night at 6pm.
The kids were excited so they made sure their rooms were picked up and everything was ready for the home visit. Our counselors name was Pam Ravenscroft and she was a very nice person.
She loved Jessica’s room a little too much and stayed in there with her for about 20 minutes discussing how Jess came up with the ideas of her room patterns and colors. I thought it was touching and Pam asked if it was okay for her to steal some of her ideas. Well Jessica was over the moon on that and Pam promised to stay in touch with her. She said that her brother had bought a new home somewhere close by to us and before he finished painting her room, since she would be living with him, she was going to change her color pallet and details.
I had to laugh because I could only imagine what Pam’s brother was going to think of her new room ideas… I hope he liked PINK.
Pam also stopped in the boy’s room and asked them quick ideas for a 6 year old boy’s room, as her son Joseph would be moving in with her brother too, since she lost her husband Stan when he died overseas and her brother was kind enough to take both of them in. She proceeded to tell us that her brother was rarely home since he was an undercover police officer so it would be a match made in heaven since he would be gone a lot and she hated living by his eccentric rules… he tended to be highhanded even though he meant well.
She was coming with baggage and he accepted it since he wasn’t dating anyone because of his job. He was even allowing her Great Dane, Bubba, to move in too. So while he was having renovations done inside he was also building a nice big dog house in the back yard for Bubba to enjoy while he was outside.
Pam finished up our visit and told us she would keep in touch with us since she didn’t have many friends and since she was a dog person and we were dog people we would get along fine.
The boys were excited the visit went well and we were all looking forward to Saturday. Well let me tell you Saturday didn’t come soon enough. The kids couldn’t sleep Friday night and they were up at the crack of dawn trying to get me out the door. We were supposed to be there at 10am so I told them to get ready and we would stop and have breakfast first. They chose Steak and Shake which was less than a mile away so it was a quick trip and once we finished we headed off to Palm Beach.
When we got to BDRR, Pam was waiting for us outside the door. She asked the director if she could show us around and then show us her picks that she had for us and any other that we saw while walking around.
Jess wanted puppies. The boys told her NO. I wanted a Golden Retriever or Lab. The boys said NO. It was then I found out they had been on the sites gallery and saw pictures ahead of time and they knew who they wanted to see. They just let us walk around and let us think we were helping them out.
Sneaky little shits… but I loved them since they had this already figured out.
So Pam brought out her picks and I was impressed but didn’t fall in love with any of them, neither did the boys. Jess was too busy playing with the puppies to even care so I let her be.
The boys gave Pam a list they had already written down and knew who they wanted to check out.
Squish a Neo Mastiff, Keystone a Great Dane mix, Thor a lab/hound mix, Sparky a hound mix, and a brother and sister Great Pyrenees mix. We were told that Squish didn’t get along with other dogs very well so we opted out on her even though she was loving and gentle. Keystone was a trip he was playful and a handful, of course Jake fell in love with him. Thor was also gentle but once he stared howling we all said NO… Sparky was a good mix with us too but him and Keystone just didn’t like one another. The boys were getting disappointed but I told them we didn’t have to choose today we could come back another day and that is when Pam brought out the last two on the boys list. They were beautiful. Jess even came back over when they came out, they were a brother and sister and the rescue wanted them to be rescued out together since she was deaf and her brother helped her out. I fell in love instantly as did the kids.
So that is how we got our new house mates, Cleo and Caesar.
Author’s Note: This is the rescue where we got Buddy and Dottie from, who are our Great Pyrenees Mix’s and yes Dottie is deaf. This is their story and how we came about getting them, they were skinny and abused when they were rescued three years ago. But I can tell you now that they are both at a healthy weight and happy. They both get away with murder but they are dearly loved by the whole family. Even by the cat, Oreo, who adopted us when she was left behind by a neighbor. I may include her later in this story. KY