Our puppies, now 3 and 2-and-a-half, will always be puppies to me. While my children will always be my children with cherished childhood memories, they are now both fully adult. I am thrilled with the people they are and are still becoming. I enjoy talking to them about their lives and activities. Granted, I hear far more from my dear daughter than my son. He usually calls when he is bored, while on a long car drive, or otherwise at a loss for amusement. I know he loves me and we will do more catching up later on. Meanwhile, I am fairly sure he isn’t bored .

Fortunately, my daughter is more forthcoming with her daily minutiae. Her frequent phone calls help ease the ache of her physical distance. By car she is 5-6 hours away and thus, not a one-day jaunt. Far enough to require planning for puppie care, if nothing else!

For daily childlike amusement we have Dixie and Duncan. Their breed(s) are known for an eternal childhood of playfulness. They are always up for a romp, a walk, and a view of the front street (Oh look! a bird! Oh look! a squirrel! oh look! something moved!) Each vision is heralded with a joyful ‘woof! Come see!’ and I reminded of all the times children called out “Look! Look at me! See what I can do! See? Look at me! Watch me!” as they do or show me something for the bazillionth time. I would dutifully look up and cheer, or enthusuastically clap applause until my hands were sore and my voice hoarse.

Our grandson Liam is at that age of nonstop chatter, providing a constant backdrop to daily life. I only see him a few hours every week so this is still a delightful development. His mom is handling the endless stream of repitition very well.

As much as those times drove me to distraction when my kids were small, I really miss them. When did it change? When did every piece of their day stop being something terribly important to share with mom? When did they start editing their experiences to only show me what they felt safe to share? I am pleased that my daughter and I can talk about anything and everything under the sun. But I know even her conversations are circumspect regarding certain people.

Perhaps it is a mom-son thing, but Phil and I? We don’t chat. We call and touch base, leaving messages on each others cell phones. A typical phone call where we actually reach one another is 5-7 minutes long (a few have gotten longer but there were extenuating circumstances). I regularly send him snippets of email (he hates to read and won’t if he doesn’t have to and it isn’t about sports) and have stopped looking for answers. If he didn’t update his MySpace page almost daily, I would wonder if he was even alive.

Whenever the puppies go on a tear of “Look! Watch me! See?” and are barking at something outside on the front lawn, I remember the days when Phil would rush up to me, face flushed with excitement, eyes dancing with mischief and say, “Look, mom! Look! Watch me!”

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