Because of that, my Father's Day present includes a hint of family time circa 1999: I'm taking Dad to the beach. Mom already has plans for Saturday, but Daddy and Charlie and I will hop in the car tomorrow morning, blasting oldies and trailing the scent of sunscreen and bug spray as we drive up 95 towards Baltimore. Charlie will have his head out the window in the back, his tongue and ears flapping in the wind, and he'll try to insinuate himself into the front when we turn into Downs Park. We'll spend a good few hours at the dog beach there, playing fetch and swimming and digging holes, before enjoying a picnic with a view of the Chesapeake Bay. On the way home, we'll stop for ice cream - my treat!
A quick note about taking Charlie on adventures like this: traveling with dogs is like traveling with toddlers. You end up packing more for them than for yourself! I love this Ollydog 1L waterbottle, which comes with a detachable bowl that clicks securely onto the bottle. Because Charlie has a history of escaping and tearing off his tags in his wild romps, his collar has his name and my cell phone number embroidered onto it. I can't recommend that enough if you're taking your dog somewhere unfamiliar! I also suggest using a double-looped leash for more control if you're going to a place with lots of distractions. Finally, we splurged on a water-resistant doggie seat hammock a few summers ago and it's absolutely proved its price since - it keeps the worst of whatever Charlie brings into the car off the upholstery, is indestructible and easy to clean, and ensures that he doesn't fall between the seats when he's tired and trying to get comfortable in the back. (It's true. That has happened. It was hilarious.)
I hope you all have lovely weekends, dear readers! And happy Father's Day to your dads.