There comes a time of day where nothing feels quite as good as the heaviness of blankets, mixed with fluffy pillows, soft cotton sheets and a familiar smell. In the wee hours of the morning, I can burrow myself in and feel as if I never have to leave. In the late hours of a long afternoon, I can dream of the moment I will be cocooned once again. As I shed my clothes at the end of a day and finish going through my usual bedtime routine, I anxiously await the moment I will fall into bed, snuggle between the sheets and feel (safe) as if the burdens of the next days can wait.
Ginger, sleeps in our bed too, but she has always had a bed (or four) of her own. I think it must be a similar kinship that dogs have with their beds as we have with our own. Her first bed was three sizes larger than her small, 8-week-old puppy self. She was in it so much though, that we used to pick her up while she was still laying on it, fold her up and take her with us to the next room or in the car. For that reason, it became know as “the taco”. If she was not in “the taco” and it was time to go in the car, all we had to do was set it near the door and she would jump into the bed, waiting for us to fold her up and be whisked away to another adventure.
Buffy’s last bed was only a few months old when she passed and Ginger wanted nothing to do with it; perhaps because it was monographed with Buffy’s name? At one point, (obviously) unable to throw the bed out, we decided to see if Ginger would at least use it outside. For similar reasons as her first bed, this bed (aka the blue bed) became known as “the outdoor taco”. Next came “the raft” (her new inside bed with high sides and cute pinstripes), then the replacement “raft” (which really just meant that the first “raft” went to the bedroom and second one replaced the first in the living room.
Then, along came Buddy. His first steps in the house (before he was even “ours”) led him straight to the “living room raft”. Ginger must have set him straight early-on when we were not home, because he didn’t make himself comfortable in that bed again, for many years. Buddy did however, resurrect the taco. It had long-since been abandoned by Ginger. It had not been removed from our office however. Once Ginger realized how valuable the “taco” still was, she decided she liked it again too. Buddy was again without a personal bed.
I was at Mud Bay one day and saw a little teeny bed with tall fuzzy sides and a goofy (but appealing) bone design in the middle and it was on sale for all of $14.00. I thought it might be nice to bring home, just to see if Buddy might like it next to our bed since we noticed he jumped off in the middle of the night. We usually found him laying on the floor, all alone, no bed, (which broke our hearts as he was our family now).
I brought it home, set it on the open end of our L-shaped couch, where Buddy always laid (because of a rookie move I made, placing him there in the first days he was in our home, before he knew his boundaries); he hopped right in. Problem was, he didn’t want to leave and he didn’t want the bed to leave the couch, ever! We were stuck with that bed (not pretty either or frankly, even meant for permanent use), sitting on our couch, for over a year. Ginger had her “raft” and now Buddy had his “dinghy” (very appropriate in a Gilligan sort of sense). It was his and his alone. Ginger let him have it and he held on as if it were bringing him to shore, no matter how long the journey.
The “dinghy” was finally replaced by “sheep” one Christmas, who is large and apparently a pretty cozy friend (plus much more chic on the Italian couch). Still, Buddy had no bed. No real bed of his own, that is. We paraded many new beds into the house and set them on the floor next to “raft”; all were rejected and returned.
Sheep makes an obligatory visit outside.
As for the “outdoor taco”, Buddy hopped off of it the second we put him on. One summer, I am not sure which, maybe only the second Summer, Buddy began using “outdoor taco” when Ginger was sitting elsewhere on the deck, basking in the sun. We had bought another outdoor bed for him, which Ginger took control of too. When we saw Buddy laying on the “blue outdoor taco”, one sunny afternoon, our hearts melted from love. He was so small on it that he looked lost in a pool of comfort. “Buffy” was monogrammed above his head; it was then that we started calling him Budfy. He fell in love with “outdoor taco”, so Ginger fell back in love with it too.
A long time coming, Buddy finally wins a spot!
Finally, in an attempt to retire “outdoor taco” for good, after many, m a n y years of excellent service, we ordered a new outdoor bed. It was from LL Bean (excellent, long-lasting rough-and-tumble beds). It was the same exact bed as “outdoor taco” except it was one size smaller and had a cuter outfit. We planned to let Ginger and Buddy share the most recent outdoor bed with this one and retire “blue outdoor taco” to a needier home. The new monogram for “orange taco” is “BuG” (Bud (ff) y + Ginger).
That was last summer. Since then, as Fall came around, then Winter, and currently into Spring, Buddy finally, now, has his bed. There is no catchy, silly name attached (other than the rarely-used “orange taco” when clarity is needed); It just belongs to Budfy. In it, he sits alongside his sister, in her “raft”. Side-by-side (something we never thought we’d see to this extent). When Ginger leaves her raft, he often jumps from his bed to hers, depending on his mood. He hops from bed to bed, around the house and in the car. He is never scared or shy and Ginger let’s him have his way. It is this new orange bed though that he has claimed to be his own. He has not only found his bed, he has found his happy place, his forever home.
This is not a recipe. Because there are no recipes in my Happy Place, just good food + love. I found some love, in these English muffins. I did not make these English muffins. My lovely friend, Paula, hand-carried them to me from North Bethesda, Maryland, where some clever people at Summer House made them.
They blew my mind.
Mind-blowing English muffins.
Really! Take my word for it!?
I have no photos, of the muffins. Because I (we) ate them (and it was one of those opportunities where the moment(s) didn’t need interrupted with fussing with a camera).
The first, just toasted, near midnight, slathered in butter and a little bit o’honey.
Next, as a bun for hamburgers (thanks Pete, for the tip).
This morning (er…afternoon), we brunched on a most exquisite breakfast sammy (AKA – sandwich). It had procuitto, crisped to just the proper crisp. It also had an egg, organic, farm-fresh (like, actually, really farm fresh…makes a difference, yes!).
The egg, fried. Just. Not too fried, but just fried. There is a difference!
It also had cheese. Beecher’s Flagship cheddar. This doesn’t slice well so it was partly sliced and partly just chunked on. Makes no difference in the yumminess factor.
Chunked on = thick, gooey cheese (yum!).
But, back to the muffin. Oh my.
Paula, thank you! Next visit…pleeeeese?
our happy place!