Before I knew it, it was time to head to the vet clinic to pick out my new puppy.
Before I could even get to the door though this horse kept trying to nuzzle me. Now, don’t get me wrong, I like horses. Actually, I like Tiberius. This horse was too in my face. I started to get a little panicked.
“SPARKS! Leave the poor lady alone!”
“Jesus Christ! It’s you!” Oh, that could have gone better.
“Well, actually my name in Dr. McNamara but you can call me Finn. I know you from somewhere…”
“I’m certain you don’t.” Please don’t remember me…
“You’re the bartender!”
“Well come on in, ma’am. Let’s see if we can get you hooked up with a puppy.”
We headed inside and I desperately tried to think of something to say.
“Nice scrubs. Do you always wear such goofy patterns?” Note to self: Don’t ever speak again.
“Well, yes, I do. I’ve found that kids tend to get a little anxious when I’m about to give their beloved puppy a vaccine and if I wear some kind of silly scrubs we have something to talk about as a distraction.”
Oh my God I am such a jerk. “So where are those puppies?”
“Just around the corner in the back room. I’ll let you get to know them and I’ll drop in after a few.” Oh thank God. The less I have to talk to him the better.
I headed into the back room and found two adorable little mutts romping around. Before I even got all the way in the door this little guy was already investigating me.
“Well hello there, little fella! Hey, Dr. McNamara! What’s this guy’s name?”
“He doesn’t have one. I just call him Puppy B. I find if I name them, I get attached. That’s how I ended up with the two dogs out back and the horse you met our front. Nope, he’s yours to name if you want him.”
“When can I take him home?”
“Well he’s a bit young to leave his mother, yet. I’d like to give him another month or so to do some growing if that works for you? I’d say he’ll be ready to go home about the time spring rolls around.”
“That will do just fine, Doctor. How much will I owe you?”
“I’d like to take you on a date.”
“And if I refuse?”
“Well, you still get the puppy but you’ll miss out on a free meal and some riveting conversation. Think about it. You’ve got a month until the pup is ready. You don’t have to decide now.”
As I walked out I saw my new puppy destroying the newspaper. What did I just get myself into?!
Two days later it was time for the Christmas party.
I felt a little bit sad that Muppet wouldn’t be an only dog anymore. We had a thing going and a new puppy was going to ruffle us a little bit. I knew she could handle it though. It was me that I was worried about!
She kept me company while I prepped everything for the party. I think she was hoping that I would drop something for her. She’s too dignified to beg for food but she knows I’m good for a crumb or two.
Right before the party started I realized I didn’t have anything remotely Christmasy in my wardrobe. I threw on a red sweater over a white tank top and decided to call it good. I decorated the house…I mean what more could they want.
It didn’t matter anyway because everyone just wore their regular old clothes. I was kinda bummed that Liv and Mike couldn’t make it. The kids came down with the flu so obviously they weren’t going to get on a plane for 5 hours.
But Mom and Dad made the trek with Adam and Hannah. Hannah was still early in her pregnancy but she was looking and feeling good. Their daughter Hadley was an adorable little monster who kept both of her parents very busy! I was looking forward to meeting my niece but she was staying with Hannah’s parents because nobody wants to take a 7 month old on a plane for 5 hours.
After dinner we opened gifts. Adam and Hannah bought me a sketch pad because they knew I’d taken up drawing. While I was messing around with it, Adam wandered around the house.
“Penny…I think we need to hold an intervention with these egg gems. You had an egg gem issue when I lived with you and apparently it has gotten out of control.”
“That is literally my nest egg, Adam. That collection is worth more than this house!”
“Collect away, big sis.”
Mom helped clean up after the party. I have a feeling she remembers those big parties we had when I was a kid and nobody helped with the dishes. I had to admit I was pretty stoked about the family moving out this way. They are good people.
The party didn’t end until the wee hours of the morning. We were all so busy catching up that we lost track of time. Needless to say I slept in super late.
I was about to hop in the shower when there was a knock at the door.
“Who the hell visits people the day after Christmas?”
I threw on some clothes and went to see who it was.
“Delivery for Ms. Penelope Sutton.”
I opened the package and it was my acceptance letter and orientation packet to Eden Grove University.
“MUPPET! I GOT INTO COLLEGE!”
I did a little happy dance while Muppet yipped and ran in circles. I was going back to school for a business degree. Who knows where it will lead me!?