A little furry addition to Flora’s Table Home

Hello Everyone!

I decided to barge into your houses on this lazy Sunday late afternoon to share some… news (I don’t even know which adjective I should be using here! I guess for lots of you, it would be “great”).

As you may know, I’m not a people person. I love to spend time with myself, I like to keep to myself and I’m very, seriously – very bad at small talk. To make you like me even more ;-) let me add that I’m not an animal person either. I have never wanted a pet when I was a child and I have never dreamed of taking care of any living being who is unable to go to the restroom and flush the toilet.

Needless to say, the idea of having a dog never even crossed my mind until… did you notice that kids almost invariably so to speak reshuffle the cards in their parents’ lives? ;-)

When I got pregnant with her majesty, Stefano came up with the “brilliant idea” to get a puppy so her majesty and the puppy could grow up together. Only a man could come up with such a cute and, at the same time, dumb idea!!! So of course I ruled that out right away…

Since then, I have been dodging the “puppy bullet” for seven years! Seven wonderful pet-free years! I could always come up with a different reason not to have a dog: her majesty was too little, we didn’t have a yard, we were about to change home and city and it wasn’t the right moment. I was pretty sure that sooner or later they would get tired of asking and forget all about this idea and I would be saved forever. I couldn’t be more wrong! Those two just kept conspiring, regrouping and changing their battle strategy.

Stefano is well aware that sleeping is – by far – my favorite activity. My bed is my reign and my heaven and, for me, there is no other place like that. One late morning this past fall, I was still sleeping (of course!) when my daughter, pushed by my sneaky husband, asked me for the countless time if she could have a dog.

In that specific moment, I made an unforgivable mistake. I said “maybe”! The battle was over and lost for good because they hung on that maybe which eventually turned into a “yes” in the next couple of weeks. Next thing I know I was in the car with the two conspirators to go check a few breeders out across New York State and Connecticut.

To make a long story short, our “English type” chocolate labrador puppy, that her majesty decided to name Sofia, set her paws in our house on December 16, turning our house and our lives into complete chaos.

To sum it up, Stefano and her majesty are over the moon, my dad (who is a dog lover) is very happy, my mother is complaining and driving everybody crazy every time Sofia has a “bathroom” accident in the house and… as for me? I have never been big in the feelings department and it takes me a very long time and quite some effort to express them so, for now, I only feel like conceding that she is one of the cutest thing I have ever seen, isn’t she?

Well, please wish me luck and stay tuned! ;-)

Francesca Xx

PS: Thank you very much for all those who checked in to make sure we were alright as a result of winter storm Hercules: we definitely are and honestly it has not been that bad where we live – we got about one foot of snow (much to Sofia’s delight!) and the temperatures dropped to 1 F (or -18 C!) but we have been coping just fine! :-)

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About Francesca

I am a cook and the founder and art director of Flora's Table, the fine cooking and wine blog. Check us out at www.florastable.com :-)
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50 Responses to A little furry addition to Flora’s Table Home

  1. Pingback: Sofia | Clicks & Corks

  2. She is SO beautiful. You’ll all have such fun with her!

  3. Oh Francesca, I feel as if we have too much in common! I am very much an introvert and love to have space and time to myself to recharge. I too detest small talk and am absolutely abysmal at it. And, sleeping (or napping) is one of my absolute favorite activities. With all that being said, Sofia is absolutely adorable! Matt and I have been thinking about getting a puppy and I showed him pictures of Sofia after which he fell in love too. I’m sure that once she’s potty trained she’ll be winning over your heart as well!

    • Francesca says:

      A suggestion, Heather? Keep thinking! ;-) Since you treasure your recharging time and your sleeping/napping time as much as I do, let me just tell you one thing that I didn’t know before Sofia entered my house: puppies (like babies) do not, I repeat do not, sleep through the night and every time they wake up (like very two hours) you have to take them out. Not funny especially in the middle of the night with freezing temperatures outside. :-)

  4. She is sooooo beautiful, you will be smitten, it won’t be long. Like you, I am not much of a people person and detest small talk, but dogs, I love them! Puppies are cute, but once they settle down in adolescence then adulthood, there is no better company and devotion, such consistency is hard to find in people. Good luck with the mayhem of puppyhood!

    • Francesca says:

      Thank you for your best wishes. I greatly appreciate them. Puppyhood is … a double face medal at least for me. Cuteness on one side, constant tiredness on the other. I’m still debating with myself which one prevails … ;-)

  5. talkavino says:

    She is the cutest! Enjoy!

  6. Darya says:

    What a cute puppy! Great pictures. Good luck with getting used to her, I know it must be difficult, I have never owned a pet (except for two baby magpies that had fallen from their nests I raised as a child, but that only lasted about a month before we let them fly away), and can’t imagine having to deal with an animal. But she is soooo pretty, Stefano did a great job with the pictures. Happy New Year to all your family!

  7. Francesca. Great story and great pictures. We had Percy, a beautiful Yellow Lab for 15 years. She was a wonderful and loving part of our family and is still missed. Enjoy Sofia, she will change your life for the better.

    • Francesca says:

      She changed my life for sure, Richard! I’m still looking for the better though! ;-)
      I’m sorry to hear about Percy. Now, I can understand. They become family members and I can only imagine the sorrow when they leave us.

  8. Mary says:

    Oh my if she isn’t the cutest. You will enjoy every moment with her. Congratulations on your newest family member – she’ll be quite the love of your lives!

  9. Map of Time says:

    Aw! She’s too cute. Labs are great dogs, I’m sure she’ll bring you much joy, Francesca, you’ll see. Perhaps even turn you into an animal lover. ;) Admittedly dogs, especially in the puppy stage, can be a lot of extra work but they give so much back to us.

    On another note, it’s a relief to see you all didn’t settle for a Newfie – they seem to be drawn to water disasters… ;)

    • Francesca says:

      I would go that far, J.G.! :-) I don’t see myself being an animal lover anytime soon. I’m still trying to decode my feelings for my own dog! ;-) Anyway, I confirm. Huge amount of work! :-)

  10. chef mimi says:

    You are about to experience the worst times in your life, as well as the best times in your life. Or, I guess you already have since December 16th. I will never have a puppy again, but I so cherish the years that I did. There’s nothing quite like it. Congratulations!

  11. chef mimi says:

    Also, Sofia is absolutely beautiful. And the photos are stunning!

  12. Beautiful puppy! I love dogs but I’m scared with the commitment :). Congrats to your new family member!

    • Francesca says:

      I was scared too and now I’m starting realizing why! ;-) I’m happy I didn’t get Sofia when her majesty was a puppy too. It would have been too overwhelming for me. :-)

  13. Flora, forget the puppy (thought adorable) I love your honesty about yourself and I love you for it!!

  14. Sofia is beautiful, I love her bone rug, so smart. It doesn’t matter that you don’t at the moment love the puppy in time you will love the puppy for the happiness that she brings to your family.

    • Francesca says:

      Thank you, Maria! These past four weeks have been a lot of work and I feel exhausted. I guess I have to find the strength to “cope” with my superenergetic puppy for a few more weeks. Everybody keeps telling me that after 6 months, it’s heaven on earth! :-)

  15. Dear Francesca,

    I wish you a ton of luck with the latest addition to the household. Sofia is hyper-cute and Stefano’s pictures are so very good.

    I relate to so much of what you say in the introduction, I love my own company need to spend time alone to resettle myself – I am a classic introvert! The way you told the story was so engaging and so easy to read, indeed I read it twice. ;)

    With many good wishes
    B xxx

    • Francesca says:

      Thank you, B! Glad you liked it! I’m having a very hard time adjusting my schedule to Sofia’s. I’m missing my own time and I feel exhausted all the time. Everybody keeps telling me that it will get better! Let’s hope… :-)

  16. Oh Francesca Sofia is adorable. You will warm up to her, sounds like you are well on your way, I’m like you, I love being alone, well the pugs are here with me but they mostly sleep. Best of luck with Sofia, you will be fine. Glad you made it thru the storm, we got 8 inches now for the deep freeze. Stay warm all of you!

  17. Glad to hear that you did not experience the worst with the weather.
    My husband is an animal lover and owned several dogs (before me).
    Sofia is adorable, and strangely I’m sure, she will grow on you and will be your companion.
    Stefano’s photography is amazing. Just gorgeous!

    • Francesca says:

      Thank you, Fae! Before you? Did you “veto” dogs? ;-)

      • My father also owned dogs (we had a big house on a huge land in Iran), and when we moved to Japan. we had a cat. To put it simple, I love animals from the distance. My husband, M’s dogs lived more than 16 years each because he kept/loved them dearly (btw, they were all famous athletic dogs, frisbee champions, i.e. Noodle the Wonder Dog. Many dogs have been named after Noodle). M and I met in our middle ages (8 years ago), right after M had lost his last dog, Princess Pasta. At that time, M had already decided that he will not have another dog. (For a silly reason that he may not live long enough to be able to tend to his dog). I had no objection. ;)

      • Francesca says:

        I see. I guess when you lose your pet after all those years, the sorrow is really deep. What a lovely name she had!

  18. Dina says:

    Dearest family of four,
    what a truly great Christmas gift for the whole family! Did the Christmas tree survive the holidays without any minor accidents, we wonder? :-) Sofia is the cutest thing we have seen so far this year, we hope to see a LOT more of this adorable chocolate puppy in the future, especially me! I grew up with lots of dogs and find it very hard to imagine a life without the company of a dog. My father was breeding German Shepherds in Norway, so I first learned to bark, and then to speak. :-) Unfortunately, Kb is not a dog person, I count on Sofia’s support to convince him to change. We’re almost at a maybe now…
    Have fun! Enjoy the hectic 3-4 months to come, she will rapidly calm down growing up! :-)
    I’ll be glued to the screen waiting for more photos. It’s good to know that you are warm and safe!
    Big hugs to all four of you
    from the four of us
    Dina xx

    • Francesca says:

      Now, I get it! Your siblings had paws! ;-) Well, do not count on me to convince him but I promise I’ll keep my mouth shut about the craziness and the tiredness of my first month with Sofia. :-)

  19. If you have to have a dog, then it’s best to make it a loveably cute one. My son was always after me to get a dog–he loves animals. He used to come in the house after playing outside when he was five-six, and tell me elaborate stories about what the birds and the squirrels were saying to each other. I finally gave in, too. It made him very happy. But the dog was much more devoted to me than to anyone else in the family. I guess dogs like introverts who’ve never wanted a dog.

    Sweet pictures!

  20. Fig & Quince says:

    Oh how I rue that I’ve been remiss in being able to check with my favorite blogs and missed this epic (& adorable) news and event in your life! Where to begin? Sofia is so delightfully irresistible but maybe that’s just Stefano’s photography? (Kudos for the gorgeous shots, the action shots in particular are my favorite) and I love her little dog tag name. I have begun to be partial to cats all over again and I like dogs (and used to have a sweet puppy) but much like you, I’d prefer not to cohabit with a creature that sheds and can’t use the modern facilities, ahem! And there’s a great emphasize for just-so house hygine in my culture so I kind of understand and feel for your mom. That said, once you take that bullet, pets give so much and make such an indelible place in the family, that they kind of make up for it. Anyway, I’m thrilled for Her Majesy and Stefano, and triple-thrilled for Sofia who scored such an awesome household and family (lucky dog!) and chuckling while also being thrilled for you as well and confident that you’ll entirely warm up to the idea of now being a dog owner. I also chuckle to myself knowingly as how you’ll have to adapt (and probably grow to enjoy it despite yourself) when you’ll have to deal with the socializing aspect of the dog parks and dog runs. It’s not just the dogs that hangout. You will end up making small talk and chatting with other dog owners, ha ha! …. Anyhow, sorry for the LONG comment but this is huge and I wanted to get most of what I have to say off my chest. Woof woof! :)

  21. Sofia says:

    Aww, so cute <3 :-)

  22. I finally understand why you and Nina get along so well, you share the love for beds and sleeping….:)

  23. Pingback: Saint Emilion Chronicles #6: Chateau de Ferrand, a Visit and a Wine Review | Flora's Table

  24. Oh my GOSH!! HOW did I miss this? SHE IS FREAKING ADORABLE!!! can you tell I love dogs? :D:D:D Her face is so sweet. You won’t regret it, pets are the best addition to a family. Congratulations on Sofia. Now I want a puppy too! cheers, smiles and hugs. K Xx

  25. Francesca says:

    Yes, of course I can tell, Kim! You love everything on four paws! ;-)
    F. Xx

  26. Pingback: Sofia – An Update | Flora's Table

  27. Bizou says:

    Well, even I said we are somehow alike but I must admit to you that in the pet department we are not alike. And I am SO happy for her majesty, Stefano, & even you that you’ve the precious Sofia.
    You all must be a big happy family. Right? I hope. Just by looking at that fuzzy chocolaty beauty I’m all smile.
    Thanks for sharing your happy story.

    • Francesca says:

      Thank goodness, we are happy … at least most of time! :-) Yes, Sofia is a joy and we cannot remember our life before her arrival. She amazes me every day! :-)

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