Friday, January 08, 2010

We Need to Ratify a Pet Policy

It's not that the children are obsessed with adopting kittens, bringing home stray dogs or raising llamas. It's their mother. Lord help us, their mother is the weakest, silliest, most pagan (from Latin paganus, meaning "country dweller", "rustic"), farm-wishingest citizen in suburbia. And if this post does not turn away lurkers and readers alike, well maybe nothing will...

Here is Benjamin Franklin Thunder-Cat. He is a bad kitty. It says so on his passport. He gets nippy and scratchy. He thinks he's toilet trained. He is not. Maria knows I call him my furry baby. I also call him beast, monster, and Woodgie-woodgie love muffin. He is more than enough pet for any family. And yet we have another cat and a hen. We had a parakeet, but he got wise and gave us the slip. Easy come, easy go. I thought about getting Maria a fish for her birthday, but I resisted.

Just because I resisted buying a gold-feeder to swim in a bowl of water, does not mean I have good sense.

I am the weakest, silliest, most pagan (from Latin paganus, meaning "country dweller", "rustic"), farm-wishingest citizen in suburbia.

And I am a rat wrangler.

Meet Pepper, fancy rat and nose wiggler.
She is curious. Scurious. Sweet and docile and fun to watch.

Hello Polly.
Polly is timid, sweet and docile. She loves to take her lunch in to her hut with her.

Pepper and Polly are my Winter Solstice gifts to the children, who all agreed that Maria's class rat, Cheddar, was great fun to have over for a weekend visit. When I tell the story I emphasize the children's love and fascination with the cute, scampering critters known as "fancy rats." But the children tell it another way... affectionately, a bit warily and with humor they say, "Mom, you're crazy, you know."

At least Gretchen gets it. When I was debating my impulse, she came on board all the way and said that rats are great pets. She wistfully recalled a childhood practically overrun with pet rats. When she said she and her sisters had twenty-one rats, well I felt positively sane for only wanting two. And she is right. Rats are great pets. Easy to care for. No biting. No barking. They like to visit and explore, but are happy too in their modified bird cage.

Benjamin agrees... Oh, never mind. Who cares what he thinks?

I love rats.
They're delicious.

No. The real experts are little girls. Izzy and Maria know a fun pet when they get their hands on one.

And just before Christmas, when little girl excitement and energy was at a high watermark, Izzy and Maria were tickled pink to take turns loving and feeding and holding Pepper and Polly.

Rats give you the giggles.
Their tails wiggle and their whiskers tiggle.
(sorry :: poetic license)

"Soft voices" and "gently" were the words of the day.

The "Ratty-Rats," that's what Gretchen calls Pepper and Polly. Izzy called them Polly-Holly and Peppermint, which I thought was awfully clever.

tap-tap-tap... hello?
Is anyone here?


Either they've all rushed to their local pet shop, because they see what fun we are having, or Chickenblog is being cut from blog lists everywhere.

Come back. We don't bite!

Must Glue-Cut-Glitter-Stitch Something

It's almost overwhelming how crafty I feel. Not sinisterly coiling a handlebar mustache-kind of craftiness. I need to make something.

Maybe I should sinisterly coil my own mustache. Bitter Betty is crafty that way.

Unless I clean my office/studio/nerve center first, I will be putting the cart before the horse, but it's almost overwhelming how crafty I feel and I cannot wait. Something whimsical is bursting to get out of my head. And inspiration is calling.

And if my crafting is justified and purposeful, something hyper organized for say... next Christmas, then I can have fun and relish that elusive sense of accomplishment.

I'm going to do something. Seriously. Must. craft. create. make. I'll download Lady Harvatine's "O, Holy Night" and start basting and snipping to her lovely voice and the ukuleles strumming...

Wednesday, January 06, 2010


Who knew the new year would be so full?
Tomorrow is Maria's day to bring snack.
Yesterday I made spaghetti from Monday's meatloaf.
Today I wrote for an hour and then decided to let "it" go unsaid.
Saturday is the launch of FIRST build season. Go robotics!
My mom was here.
Grandma is here.
I brought home a worm wrancher's compost bin.
Must order worms.
There are two new mammals living in the Bird House.
Every day I do something new to settle in to our home.
Every day I pause, in disbelief, and revel in the joy of being home.
My go to daily uniform is in a sad state and I will have to buy another pair of jeans. ASAP.
I want to blog about Betty and Joe and Chango and Benji and Pepper and Polly, but I first need to resolve my pathetic camera situation.
Good things are coming.
This post is kind of spastic.
So am I.
I hear coyotes.
I awake to the calls of barn owls that sit in the pine trees.
How are you?