Puppy Love (Part 2)

Selling is a valuable life skill. Like many secular abilities, selling can be used in a supernatural realm as we effectively “sell” the benefits of our Catholic faith to others. The passion our son Benjamin felt about getting the new puppy was a great opportunity to teach him how to sell.

On our drive back home I strategized with Benjamin on the best way he could approach Daddy to increase his chance of agreeing to get the puppy. We discussed the responsibilities involved with caring for a puppy and the importance of doing his current responsibilities well to prove that he was mature enough to get a new pet.

When we picked up big brother and sister at school, who were equally excited about the prospects of getting a new puppy, we took the discussion further. We created a contract of all of the jobs needed to care for the puppy along with current chores often halfway completed with mediocrity or not completed at all. Everyone agreed what part they would do and signed their name on the contract. We then listed the pros and cons (with a long list of pros) of why we should make Daisy the newest addition to our family. The whole process and the kids’ excitement opened my eyes on how important this was for them.

At dinner the kids presented their proposal to Dad. I could see him softening. He told us he would think about it. My friend requested that we let them know one way or another by Friday, as it was their goal to have all of the puppies in their new homes by then.
Thursday evening it was official. The kids could get the puppy.

Joe and I had previously planned to take a “vacation-in” for three days with our babysitter coming to our house to stay with the kids and us staying at her house for some couple time. We couldn’t bring the puppy home until Tuesday. We thought it would be self-sabotage to our relationship with a great child care provider to inflict a new un-potty-trained puppy on a generous babysitter. Because of the delay, I took all three kids to the car dealership where our friends worked on Friday, so they could all get the chance to see Daisy before the weekend.

We drove into the lot just in time to take all the puppies out to potty. Trish and Brian waited for us and then let us join them and the nine seven-week black lab puppies in the open field behind their dealership. Our three kids with big smiles on their faces were intermingled with the puppies who were frolicking around, running and playing, and (some were actually urinating) with the backdrop of the bright Kansas sun glimmering through the grass.

In the car on the way home, our kids exhibited a quiet sense of satisfaction and joy. A dream they had worked together to achieve would soon come true.

Catholic Women’s Guide to Healthy Relationship Tip: Teach your children important secular skills; they will serve them and us well in helping to build the Kingdom of God.