Sunday, January 9, 2011

A Sunday Moment from the Two Year Old

Daddy watched Braeden play with the train today before it was put away with the Christmas decor.

Daddy: Braeden, when I was a little boy, I played with that train. That was my Polar Express.

Braeden: Oh! Was it smaller?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Hamster or Heister?

I don't believe I shared news on a relatively recent addition to our family earlier in the winter. After some thought and consideration, it was determined we would acquire a teddy bear hamster from a local pet shop. Thus, Natasha was welcomed into our home.

Well, mostly welcomed. I mean... I was rooting for the bearded dragon. The girly girl wanted something cute and fuzzy, so she enlisted her father as a lobbyist. After mild negotiation, she was able to make the pet selection of her choice, and the lobbyist received primary responsibility for supervision of cage cleaning duties. Hey, all is fair in love and pet acquisitions.

Natasha, however, does not seem willing to accept her appointed role of dim witted house rodent.

One night, before her noisiness had her relocated to our downstairs level, she escaped through a poorly aligned Habitrail ball. After the better part of an hour, we tracked her to a cluttered corner of my bedroom. More recently, she found a poorly latched hatch in her little plastic penthouse. I watched her push it up again and again until she nearly popped out of it. I then solidly clicked the hatch, thinking myself the intellectual superior- for the moment. A few days later, in our family room, I happened to catch a light thumping sound, and I looked up to see her flopped on the floor by her cage, looking rather startled. I grabbed her before her getaway gathered much momentum, and back into the cage she went. I double checked that the hatch was secure, but later that same night, we heard rattling sounds behind our component system. Her cage was empty, and sure enough, she sat perched on a bunch of cables. Her blue plastic penthouse view was thereafter obscured by a layer of packing tape.

Well, we were starting to think this plastic cage idea was very cutesy, but very ineffective. Did the tape solve our issue? Predictions?

Yesterday morning, Todd was readying for work as the kids and I lazed around in bed. As he exited the bathroom in the hall, he exclaimed in a reprimanding tone, "ABIGAIL ROSE!" Well, I was shocked as to what in the world my daughter had done already when she had barely been out of bed yet. I immediately became defensive of her, yet listened to his next words...

"NATASHA JUST RAN INTO YOUR BROTHER'S ROOM!" It seemed he was about to accuse her of being careless with her pet.

Abigail looked confused.

"Wait a minute," I said. I had distinctly checked the cage, and Natasha was in it when I went to bed the night before, and I really hadn't thought Abi had left the upstairs since waking. "Abigail, have you even been downstairs this morning, to take Natasha out of her cage?"

Abigail said, "no!"

The hamster was wrangled from Braeden's room as we considered this mystery. Abigail ran downstairs, and the metal barred door to the cage laid plainly open. We put Natasha back in the cage. We agreed at some point within 24 hours, a glass aquarium would be her new home. Todd affixed a butterfly clip to the cage door as a temporary solution and went to work.

By this time, it was clear we had an escape artist on our hands. Little did we know her more disgusting crimes were yet unidentified!

Todd and the children went out for the glass aquarium when he returned from work (notice, I still avert primary responsibility for housing the little beast). They decorated her glass enclosed space with its new amenities until dinner was on the table. After we ate, Abi was excited to relocate Natasha. She was excused to go look at Natasha while we finished eating.

"Mommy!" she said. "There is a CHAIN in Natasha's cage." I asked her what color it was, and she said it was gold. Huh?

Now I was confused. I don't often have moments when I think, kids are so weird, and just ignore my daughter, but I admit this was one of those distracted moments. MISTAKE! I didn't really take her seriously until she came at me holding a sticky, balled up cluster of tarnished silver, intermingled with a few moist pine chips and other... clumpy unidentifiable deposits.

Eeww! I recognized the chain as one of my silver necklaces as I rinsed it loose from congealed hamster saliva and... other things. Not only had that little critter escaped, scrambled all over the house and somehow climbed the stairs up to our bedroom level, but she had swindled my silver necklace (I know not from where), tucked her treasure into her sneaky little pouches, and kept it there safe until she could deposit the booty to her inept prison! One can only speculate as to what her next steps would have been. Was she going to use my lovely necklace to bum a few extra smokes from her cell block mates, the goldfish?!

We will never know.

My necklace has been soaked in hot soap. The mini-swindler now resides in her transparent home. Time will tell if her plots of mischief are now thwarted. I admit, I give her a good bit of credit for being a clever little beast. Now as long as she stays within bounds I won't have to bring in a boa constrictor as her new warden.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010- A year in review

HA!! No, I wouldn't do that to you. Even if you're a complete stranger, I would not subject you to a review of my last 12 months. It's not a huge secret that I wasn't a fan of 2010 from the start, and that remained pretty consistent. Alright, look, the year was not without its upswings. That in mind, I'll be generous and say it was a FAIR year. I had some nice visits with friends and family, under a range of circumstances. I watched my kids grow and develop in amazing ways, and in seemingly good health. I managed to live another year in a beautiful place surrounded by beautiful people. But as for the separations, deaths, stresses, and uncertainties of 2010, I have only this to say.... HUMBUG!

So, I'm going to roll with this newfangled calendar year with a jaded acceptance of an often unpleasant reality and a mild dose of hope. 2011 won't be a starry eyed surprise. 2010 left too much of its baggage. But hey. It's not 2010 anymore. That's a start.

In the event you were wondering, I'm not much up to making resolutions. That's not necessarily a life philosophy. I just don't feel I am in a position to resolve much of anything presently. That said, I'll work on stuff, just as I always do, with timely things taking on more timely focus.

My fiery personality needs stoking. Yet, some dear pals are having babies! That means I need to try and be nice sometimes. That's what people are supposed to be around babies.

A bridesmaid's dress awaits me in 2011. Heaven knows I don't have many of those left, so a little more discipline in the physical arena might be smart.

I should probably mop my floors sometime this year. Yeah. That would be nice.

You know, I'd also like to try to get back into writing some more, even if it's just right here in Blogylvania. It's simply not fair of me to keep from enthralling my loyal readers for such large spans of time, don't you think?

I'd kind of like to take up smoking too. It looks like a nice way to break up the tension in a day. But no, that would be yucky and unhealthy and that's a pretty dumb thing to work towards. Maybe I can just take tea breaks that have to be alone, outdoors, so no one else inhales my second hand breakfast tea fumes. Sure, that works.

So, into 2011, come what may.
I wish you a year brimming with life's fullness... and if it turns out to be full of better stuff than mine, then just shut up about it, won't ya?