"Boys are found everywhere—on top of, underneath, inside of, climbing on, swinging from, running around or jumping to. Mothers love them, little girls hate them, older sisters and brothers tolerate them, adults ignore them and Heaven protects them. A boy is Truth with dirt on its face, Beauty with a cut on its finger, Wisdom with bubble gum in its hair
and the Hope of the future with a frog in its pocket."
Author: Alan Beck

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Hello....remember me?

Lately I've felt much like the Batman figures I found submerged in our fish tank yesterday-

Trying desperately (but failing miserably) to keep my head above water. 

Not sure I'll ever succeed, but I do try.

Our gerbil, Batman, bit the dust yesterday.  His roommate, Robin, preceded him by a few months.  Perhaps he died of heartache.  Whatever the cause, let me make one thing perfectly clear-

I, Amy Olivas, vow to never, ever again house a rodent of any kind (including, but not limited to: mice, guinea pigs, rats, hamsters, & ferrets) within the walls of my home.  If I happen to get the urge (which may only take a week or two) to succumb to the pleas of my children while walking through the pet store, I give permission to all who may read this post to whack me over the head with the quickest object you are able to grab.  Something heavy and sharp would be most effective.

Gerbils (and everything in their animal category) are nothing but stinky, noisy and rude.  Batman has only been gone for less than 24 hours, but I am already experiencing a new level of peace without him. 
 R.I.P., Batman.

Speaking of little creatures.....Through begging and pleading, we received 21 hen eggs through our local 4H program.  I invited all of our peeps in the hood last week on the day the eggs arrived.  A nice lady named Mary, gave us a short presentation and loaded the eggs into the incubator.  Today is day 6 (of 21) and we are patiently awaiting the arrival of our new feathered friends. 

If you've hatched eggs, you know that perhaps the most exciting part is between days 5 and 18 when you are able to 'candle' the eggs.  Our chick lady, Mary, is coming to our house this Thursday with her fancy candling machine to show the kids what the growing embryo inside the egg looks like when she shines a light behind it.

Who am I to wait for Mary?  It's just not in my blood.

I searched the house and finally found a flashlight that wasn't plastic and covered with several characters from Toy Story.  I gathered the boys and we started picking eggs.  One by one, we took them into the darkness of our tiny bathroom and investigated with our homemade candling device.  Some were clear, meaning nothing was growing inside.  But we did find several with dark shadows (a.k.a.-little baby embryo).  This was too exciting!  I told the boys we really shouldn't be touching all of the eggs, but we took a vote and all agreed....we had to try one more.  I carefully plucked one from the warmth of the incubator and took it into the bathroom.  Another baby chickie!  Excitement turned to disaster as a curious little boy burst his way into the bathroom knocking the egg out of my hand. 

(Think bull in china shop.)

No one said anything for at least 20 seconds.  A period of silence that rarely happens in our home.  There he lay.  A tiny baby chick which was (unfortunately for me) pretty close to being recognizable.  "Are those his eyes?" someone asked.  "Yes, those are his eyes." I answered.  "Awwww.  Wook at his wittle body and his bwood.  He's so cute!" (who knew blood could be cute?)

They're handling this pretty well, I thought.  Until it came.....

"OK, mom.  we don't want him to get cold.  Put him back in his egg so he can live."

I did what I could to turn the situation into one they could learn from.  There we all sat, huddled on the bathroom floor, pointing to and discussing "baby chickie's" parts. 

We haven't touched the eggs since then.  20 to go.  We have none to spare.

So that's what we've been up to.  Burying gerbils and hatching chickens. 

And trying to get a group shot of the boys whenever we can.  Still no luck.

                                           And sneaking in a catnap when we get the chance.
Be thinking of names for the chicks!

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