Caleb had readjusted the blankets before we laid down last night because Piggy is all about moving bedding across the floor to get it just right. And with us in the room Sparky was able to calm down and go to sleep – or so we thought – until the hedgehog started to run in his wheel. Apparently he does this every night and I don’t blame him. It would be a great way to stay warm in a cold, dark place. But I can’t agree with the feces coating in layers on his back – the downside of running and pooping in the wheel at the same time.
So Harvey II – I forgot to ask what happened to the first – begins his nightly routine. Sparky gets up to investigate – stomping on me, jumping over the bed frame, and quieting the hedgehog in the process. Now that the creäture in the cage is not moving Sparky can go back to bed. Not so fast. As soon as we get comfortable again and I start to dream about a hot chocolate bath the two of them are at it again. And Piggy not to be disturbed while she sleeps takes the blanket from the three of us leaving me half cold and two-thirds asleep.
Terri has always been an early riser and her nice weather commute would be 30 minutes, but with the bad weather she is showered, full of two pots of coffee, and has the car dug out, and is halfway down ice road by the time we would get up. Luckily she has today off and we wake at 6:30 am with bottomless coffee cups in front of us and big chairs underneath us. I choose the seat by the window hoping for some warmth from the sun when it rises. Terri has a thing for beautiful views and windy valleys – or maybe that’s just a Montana thing.
I start eating some more crackers and then we make toast for breakfast with homemade apple butter. We take turns letting the dogs outside and our puppies will get their time in the window by the sun, but this doesn’t last long as our dogs are better behaved whether or not they are stuck in a bedroom. Drago is relentless in his barking regardless. Then I figure it’s time to play with Harvey – after he gets a bath. Putting him under running water gets most of it off, but I should’ve left him a small bath to soak in.
I didn’t know if it was the water or the sunlight that seemed to bring this nocturnal animal to life, but I liked it. I wrapped him in a towel and then set him on the table in the sun to dry. He has such a cute face and the tiniest little feet under his cactus coat that he wears. I wanted to take him home and Ted said I could, but I had to think about moving to Bahrain and that I’m only allowed to bring two pets. That’s a bummer. I could put Harvey in a dog-safe ball and then let them all get exercise.
I want to pet him, but every time I get close he moves just enough to make my hand jerk away. He doesn’t have the most touchable back, but I’m sure his belly is one of the softest places in the world. Once he is dry and I have over fifty photos of him, I put him back into his safe corner. It’s a good thing that only Sparky is interested because I know Piggy could do some damage – if only knocking the cage off of the box it’s balanced on. And now with Ted up he can entertain us with hunting trip stories, tales from the sugar plant, and the time he got in trouble with Sammi for playing with the water hose.
Ted pulls the turkey out of the smoker and puts it in the oven. Caleb helps his mom make a cherry pie and Ted makes a green bean casserole. Terri made the apple pie yesterday and quickly whips up some mashed potatoes and vegetarian-friendly stuffing. Out comes the bottle of Merlot, Caleb chops up the dead bird, and dinner is served at 3:00 pm. An hour later I’m ready for a small slice of each pie with some cool whip topping. A football game had been on the TV all day – something Ted could see and that we couldn’t hear.
We started to calm down after dinner and made our way into the living room. We had conversation with doses of Jeff Dunham’s holiday special mixed in. Ted had saved his cigarette smoking moments for outside when he was smoking the turkey, but he moved it into the kitchen while the turkey was in the stove. Now with dinner and smoking out-of-the-way he was free to be in charge of the conversation again. Terri and Caleb fought for their moments and I took the easy way out – sleep.
Ted noticed me starting to slouch or drop my head and wanted to make fun of me for falling asleep before 6:00 pm. I suppose I could be embarrassed being the youngest one there and the first to pass out, but I’m not. I got them together for a family photo – with and without flash – and then Ted wanted to take a picture of the three of us. I couldn’t help but laugh. Most people who I hand my camera to can’t seem to figure it out – even when I do put on the live-view screen. I could’ve offered to take one of all four of us but the battery died and I didn’t feel like getting another one out of the car.
Terri heard about Piggy’s blanket stealing ways and gave us an extra thick one for tonight. The dogs and hedgehog can now dance a midnight ballet and Caleb can toss and turn, but I will be under this warm blanket dreaming about pie diets and their awesomeness. There is still plenty of crust covered apples and cherries waiting on the counter. Terri had some after I did, but the guys were too full from the seconds they had. Terri lets us know that she will be gone early in the morning – before we wake – and that she loves us.