Stay-At-Home Puppy Daddy

Ripley and Lance ham it up during a California photo shoot.

It’s obvious I don’t plan these things more than a day in advance since Lance just reminded me that I forgot to shine a spotlight on his tenure as a stay-at-home puppy daddy while we lived in California.

(In this scenario, we don’t count Kitty, since: 1) she’s pretty self-sufficient; and 2) Lance hates her.)

While, sure, we were increasingly stressed by the financial crunch of Lance’s unemployment, there were several good things to come out of our time in California, one of them being that Lance finally got to live out his lifelong fantasy of being a stay-at-home parent.


Sure, Ripley isn’t a baby (a baby would probably take away too much attention from Lance’s Cher impressions, so that’s a nonstarter right there), but he’s cute and just dependent enough on us to be endearing and not obnoxious.

Before California, Lance claimed that his true calling, besides the Broadway stage, was the home. As somebody who came from a family where both parents always worked, I admittedly couldn’t quite grasp this concept. Nevertheless, I didn’t care for being perceived as seemingly anti-“stay at home parent,” so I just went along with it.


Over the first several weeks, Lance’s newfound free time led to a wealth of great dinners and an inversely proportional decrease in my bank account…hrm… Lance baked under the sun near the pool and gained the nice shade of taco-flavored Doritos (I’m obviously hungry while writing this.)

Lance's original caption to this photo was, "Never coming back to the East Coast, y'all." Whoops.
Lance’s original caption to this photo was, “Never coming back to the East Coast, y’all.” Whoops.

Lance and Ripley, already two peas in a pod, fused at the hip over those few months (there’s your Side Show reference, Lance.) I’ve been told from reliable sources that Lance and Ripley would just stare at each other for extended periods of time when they had nothing else to do.


I often told Lance that I was surprised at how much he was holding it together during the never-ending job search. If I were in his shoes, I imagine I’d just shut down out of how unfavorable the forecast looked.

But I realize now that if it wasn’t for Ripley to take on walks, to take weird selfies with, to snuggle with during naps and to indulge with treats at every opportunity, I don’t know if Lance–and, by extension, we–would’ve gotten through it as relatively smoothly as we did.  Ripley was our little fuzzy light in the dark.

He seems like an unassuming doofus, but we owe a lot to our little noodle-head doodle-butt.



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