Right before we left for the East Coast, Mitch and I drove our fam down to my in-laws’ lake house for a little weekend getaway. And Noodle stayed behind. We weren’t planning on leaving her with my mother- and father-in-law, but they graciously offered to take her to make our crazy holiday travel itinerary a bit less challenging, as our 12-hour drive back East for Thanksgiving had been VERY tough. (You guys are amazing. Thank you!) We love Noodle so much, but dachshunds, by nature, are a tricky breed. While they’re the funniest and most lovable dogs you’ll ever meet, they also require a ton of attention and tend to be mischievous and extremely needy. (Traveling with little Noods is–not surprisingly–pretty difficult.) It was really hard to leave our little hot dog behind, but we knew she’d be a LOT happier at the lake. The lake is, after all, her favorite place in the world, and she’s downright obsessed with my mother-in-law.

We were reunited the night after Christmas. We arrived at the lake sometime around 3 a.m., and everyone was fast asleep, Noodle included. But right when we walked in the door, we heard her tail go crazy in her crate. We let her out and she climbed (and peed) all over us in excitement, haha. You know those YouTube videos in which dogs absolutely lose it upon seeing their owners for the first time in months? It was very much like that. While we don’t normally let Noods sleep in our bed, I fell asleep with my arms around her long body, her head next to mine on the pillow.

We celebrated Larkin Family Christmas the next night, and we had so much fun with Noodle. My sister-in-law found the cutest dachshund wrapping paper, and Noods was showered with gifts. Her favorite was the giant variety pack of tennis balls. SO FUNNY. If you’re familiar with dachshunds, you probably know how much they love tennis balls. Noodle lost her little mind, and proceeded to rip her new toys apart for the next several hours. ;) It was the cutest, and I couldn’t stop hugging her.

We also gave Noodle a great big bag of her absolute favorite dog food from Beneful. If you have a dog, you seriously have to try it: it’s called Beneful Originals with Real Beef, and it’s the only food that Noodle enjoys eating. I’ve spoken about this in the past, but she’s SUCH a picky eater, and much prefers human food to dog food. ;) Before we found Beneful Originals–made with whole grains, accents of vegetables, and farm-raised beef–it would take her a solid two or three days to finish a bowl of dog food. Now, though, she eats the correct amount of food every day and is able to maintain her weight. She’s healthier and happier as a result! If your dog prefers other flavors, Beneful also offers chicken and salmon recipes.

Anyway, please enjoy way too many photos of my dog at Larkin Family Christmas. From our family to yours, happy holidays!

This post was sponsored by Beneful, but all opinions are my own. As always, thank you so much for supporting the partnerships that keep Kelly in the City up and running!