Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Family Chef

As Hubby has been busy buying ingredients & preparing for our Christmas dinner, I got to thinking about the family chef when we were growing up. As I've stated before, my mom was not one to cook so this is not about her. . .

We had the goofiest, yet remarkable, dog when I was growing up. She was a Shepherd/Samoyed mix – not too big at about 45 lbs and she had the trademark Samoyed “smile”. We named her Ayla.

She would watch us get on the bus in the morning and be waiting with a smile & tail wag when we returned in the afternoon. Her entire butt would wiggle back and forth she was wagging her tail so hard.

She was agile enough to jump over our four foot fence. Most of the time it was to get over to her buddy, Lady, next door. Lady was a beagle mix so there was no jumping for her. While the neighbors liked our dog and were glad Lady & Ayla got along instead of constantly barking at each other, the dogs would tear up the yard. We had to start keeping Ayla on a leash in the back yard.

After a bath, she would race down the stairs, into the living room, rub her head & side on the carpet, go around the coffee tables, then, back up the stairs. She would repeat this several times until she felt she was sufficiently dry.

Ayla was good at curling up next to you and resting her head on your lap when ever you were sad or not feeling well. She would use her nose to push your hand up so she could tuck her head up under your arm.

What made her so remarkable is that she could cook!

A few facts:
She had a double bowl for water & food.
The food she was raised on was dry.
There was a rug under the bowl.

When she was hungry, she would “cook” her food.
She would dip her nose in the water and slosh some over to the food. Then, she would push her nose into the food a few times to mix. Repeat this dip, slosh, mix activity about three more times. Next, she would use her nose to fold the rug up over the top of her dish.

About a ½ hour later, she would return to eat her dinner.

We tried watering it down for her – no go.
We tried giving her canned dog food – no go.

We never understood it and have never heard of another dog that did this. But it was typical of our Ayla – goofy, but remarkable. Miss her lots.

Silver lining - I have lots of good memories of childhood. All kids should have a pet of some kind.

2 People Laughed Along With Me, Won't You?:

Anonymous said...

I loved our dog. Ayla was my buddy, my best friend. My heart was broken the day we had to give her away. I would ride my bike with her running beside me, I would dress her up in coats and hats, she would lay with me on the floor while I watched TV. I remember the day you and I picked her out. Remember how little she was, she looked like a little white puff ball. You also forgot to advise that Ayla could surf. Remember the lake and the big raft mom would lounge on...Alya would surf for a minute until she could get comfortable. However, this dog HATED water. Never seen anything like it, she would want to be on the raft but would not dear get one pretty white paw wet. Yes she was a goofy but remarkable dog. I miss her very much also.

Anonymous said...

AYLA - what a friend she became to us. I remember she was not allowed on the "living room furniture", that was only for company!

One day when I was drying my hair (under the old fashion buffont dryers), she was watching the kids leave for school. She then backed up from the window, turned and walked toward the company only couch. Forgetting I was sitting on the floor drying my hair, she took a leap into the air to land on "said" coach and as she was coming down her body turned toward me and we made eye contact. She suddenly had this "OH SHIT" look on her face as she tried to land on the floor instead of the coach!!!!! It was that "I'm in deep shit look "and with her tail between her legs she went and hid behind the fake tree we had. Almost as if to say, "you can't find me here". I laughed so hard I almost wet my pants.

When we would go out, and come home, we would unlock the door and see her with her tail between her legs heading for her private cage - I would say, "She's been on the coach again" and sure enough we would feel the coach and it was all warm (and her white hair was a dead give away). What a stinker she was.......:)

We had more fun with her.........I miss her too.

The Mom

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