She actually did great overnight...Charlie, that is. I'm sure it was hard for her to be away from her mother and siblings, but she was great...and all tuckered out by the time she went to bed.
I took her out at about 10:30 last night, to do her thing, and then carried her up to bed with me. We'd put a crate and a cozy bed into our bedroom, and that's where she'll sleep...right by my side of the bed. This way she's contained for night, but near enough to us that she'll have the comfort of our presence; she can see me easily from her crate. She cried for about five minutes when I put her in, and then flopped down and slept...for about five hours. At about 3:30 this morning, I heard her scratching about so I took her outside for a little potty break; it only took her seconds to do her business. I think she hoped it might also be play time, because when I put her back to bed she cried, off and on, for about twenty minutes. But then she settled again and slept until about 6:30am. I thought that was a pretty darn good first night home. I imagine she'll be up at least once every night for the next few months, until her bladder is big enough to last the night.
I let Seth get up a little early with me (usually he's in bed until 7:00) and the two of us took her outside for her morning's business. Then, because it was raining overnight and her paws got muddy, I showed Seth how to run some warm water in the sink and how to clean and dry off her paws. A nice thing about having a small breed of dog is that she'll always be small enough to do this kind of quick paw wash.
Then Seth got to spend some one-on-one time with her before Lizzie was up, and to say that he loved this would be a gross understatement. He's already so in love with her...I think he'd lay down his life for that little thing. He's so gentle with her and thinking about her comfort and what's best for her. All of the nurturing instincts we've already seen in him when he's with animals are shining through, just as we'd hoped. This is a boy, if ever there was one, who needs a dog in his life; animals just seem to bring out the warmest parts of him.
Charlie was incredibly full of beans this morning...amazing what a good night's sleep will do! She was crazy energetic and adorable to watch as she bounced around the room playing with Seth. It's obvious that she adores little people - her ears were all pricked and her eyes totally alert as she watched Seth's every move and she actually engaged him in play. She has a wonderful personality and I think I'm going to really love this dog...I've kinda already fallen for her...hard not to when she already totally adores my kids. The reputation of Havanese dogs to be wonderful with children seems already to hold true for this little one.
At one point, as Seth and I were sitting on the floor playing with her, Seth leaned against my shoulder and sighed. Then he quietly said, "Thanks, Mom...this is the best day of my life...again."
When Lizzie was up a while later, I could see that Charlie altered her style a little with Lizzie. Lizzie likes to hold Charlie like a baby and is constantly trying to pick her up...and is a little anxious yet when Charlie gets too hyper. Several times I saw Charlie slow down a little when she was around Lizzie and she was quiet and gentle with Lizzie when Lizzie kept picking her up. I'm amazed that at not-quite-9-weeks-old, Charlie is clearly already adapting herself to meet the different kids's characters.
Matthew was the last downstairs this morning and walked into the kitchen with a sleepy smile. "I woke up dreaming that we had a little dog named Charlie, and then I remembered that it was real, Mom, and it was the best feeling in the world. We have a dog! I love her so much." Charlie greeted him enthusiastically, too, in all of her wiggly glory, and Matthew lay flat on the floor to let her have a good lick all over his face and ears. It was adorable to watch him laugh with that sense of pure joy.
I'm sure the novelty will wear off after a few weeks, but already I'm thinking this was such a good decision, and the perfect time in our family's life. She's going to be a terrific dog!