Posted in Parenting

Wild Thing

I mentioned in a previous post that I don’t kill spiders (or other insects for that matter).  This means that we have a few resident eight-legged friends hanging around in the corners of some rooms of the house.  My children have grown, hum…accustom to them? fond of them?…I’m not quite sure which word would best describe their relationship to our household spiders.  Anyway, during each meal, Charles and Amélie look up at the junction between the ceiling and the walls of the dining room to find out which of the spiderweb hammock one of our resident arachnids is chilling in.

Usually, they find the spider and then go back to their meal.  This morning, however, something unexpected happened.  After spotting the resting spider, their attention was drawn to another spot on the ceiling.  I followed their gaze and saw a spider taking a leisurely stroll on the living room ceiling.  We watched it as it approached a helium-filled balloon and then, to their utter surprise, let itself fall to the ground.

With a sense of urgency in his voice, Charles immediately asked me where the spider was.  Now, if you think that it was because he was afraid of the spider, think again.  The simple fact is, he was concerned about its well-being.  I assured him that the spider was fine and then proceeded to place it inside an overturned glass bowl.  Charles came close to observe it and together we watched as it crawled inside the bowl.  We got a good look at its legs and pincers and abdomen.  Then, we brought it downstairs to relocate it to the garage.

As we were coming up the stairs, Charles’ boundless curiosity and scientific mind decided to hook up:

Mom, that spider was weird wasn’t it.  It was walking around instead of sleeping and hiding like all the other spiders.  Is it because it was a wild spider?

Haha!  I guess that means all of the other spiders in the house are pets?  Oh well, at least they’re low maintenance!

Posted in Parenting

Snow Day

Today was supposed to be a “me” day.  I was miraculously off work and so figured I’d go drive the kiddo to daycare, come back home, catch up on my course, maybe do some housework, take a decent nap… y’know.

Except this morning, I woke up to this.

Oh great...snow...
Oh great…snow…

Yeah.

There was just no way that I had enough motivation to shovel behind my car, remove the snow from it then drive 30km (and back) on less than stellar roads.

Snow day it is!

During the morning, Little Dude helped me with the laundry (he loves taking the clothes out of the dryer and putting them in the hamper).

He then reused the skills he rocked yesterday evening and swept the floor.

After that, he split his time between playing with his toys, giving me some hugs (it is Valentine’s Day after all), observing the geckos and watching some skeleton runs and the men’s long program in figure skating.

In the afternoon, he played with his velcro monkey.

Then, I got him all dressed up and we went to get his father at work at the end of the day.

I am Charles, the abominable snow monster.  Hear me ROAR!
I am Charles, the abominable snow monster. Hear me ROAR!

My me day may not have happened, but it was still a pretty awesome day all around!

I sooooo love you Little Dude!

Posted in Parenting

Ask Away Friday With Atlantamomofthree

Valerie contacted me a while ago to ask if I would be willing to do Ask Away Friday with her for the month of December.  I was SUPER thrilled and, of course, accepted right away.  We exchanged ten questions with one another and will be presenting our answers on our blogs for everyone to read and know us better 😉  Valerie, Jhanis and Kerry who have done AAF before answered with pictures so I tried to provide some with my own answers.

Here goes!

1.  Do you have any pets?

Yep!  I have three actually!  One sunglow gecko that was rescued from an owner who couldn’t remember the last time he’d fed him, one leopard gecko who I’ve had for nearly 5 years now and a three-legged green anolis.

2.  What does you son’s bedtime routine look like?

We keep things simple.  The bedtime routine starts with a bottle, followed by a bath, followed by teeth brushing.  Then I get the little guy in his jammies and sleep sack, turn on his white noise machine and hold him in the rocking chair for a couple of minutes before putting him down in his crib.

3.  Show us pic(s) from a recent celebration

Though I love to take pictures (of my son! lol) I’m not really the celebration type.  BUT I do have a couple of snapshots from the anniversaries that we celebrated at my parents’ house last weekend.  One of the birthday cake and one of the little dude digging in.

4.  What are a few of you son’s favorite things to play with (at the moment)?

Hands down Charles loves his Duplo blocks.  He loves to put them together and bang them on one another to make noise.  He has also started to show an interest (an actual one) in books.  He grabs them from the shelf and comes to sit on me so that I can read it to him.

5.  Do you decorate for the Holidays?  Let’s see them

We actually decided against decorating for the Holidays this year because Mr. Curious would get into EVERYTHING.  We will be putting up a tree and decorations next year though!

6.  Where do you buy your groceries?

We’re lucky enough to have three grocery stores within 5 minutes of each other (and our house).  We typically go to 2 out of three each week depending on the specials.  We go to Super C, IGA and Provigo.

7.  Can we see your city’s library?

Sure thing 😉  I’ve actually only been there once, but it is rather nice and has a great selection.  Now that I’ve revisited it (to take a couple of pictures), I feel like going back!

8.  How does the inside of your car look (clean or messy)?

Well, um… y’know… I’ve never been very good at keeping the inside of my car clean.  It’s actually not THAT bad right now because I cleaned it up a couple of weeks ago…

9.  What is your favorite room in the house?
 
Must I choose?  I love the family room because it is chalk-full of books and games and I love the basement because that is where all the video games and gaming consoles are.
 

 
10.  What is something that makes you smile?
 
This.  This little guy makes me smile every day.  Every.  Single.  Day.  Today, the first thing he did when he got home from daycare was toddle his way to the pantry, grab a box of crackers and start snacking away.  Oh boy, can’t wait for adolescence to hit…

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This was really fun!  Anyone up for doing AAF with me?

Posted in Blogging

My Dog Has ADD

This is what a typical morning outing looks like with our dog.

5:30 am, Abby (formally Gracie) is whining in her crate.  Her bladder is full and she just can’t wait to get out.

Me: Abby, do you need to pee, come on, let’s go.  *Opens the crate*

Abby follows to the top of the stairs, tail wagging furiously and looks as I put on my shoes.

Me: Abby, come *grabs the leash*

Abby stretches comes down the stairs and sits.

Me: Good girl, Abby.  Lets get the leash on you.

Abby thinks: Ooooh look some hands!  I love hands!  I want to play!  *Tries to nibble on my hands as I attach the leash to her collar*.

Me: *I stand up and put my hand on the door handle*

Abby thinks: Oh that’s right, I have to sit quietly before she opens the door.  I probably should sit, I really need to pee.  *Sits and looks up at me with excitement*.

Me: Good girl.  Come on.  *Opens the door*

Abby thinks: OhMyGoshOhMyGoshOhMyGosh!  So many yummy smells.  *Pulls forward, tails wagging like mad*

Me:  Abby…*waits for the dog to sit down* lets go pee.

Abby thinks: Pee, pee…that’s right, I really have to go.  *Walks out onto the grass, following my lead.  Smells to find the right spot.*

And then, the fun begins…

Abby thinks: Oh look!  An acorn!  I LOVE acorns!  I want it!  *Pulls towards the left, but is stopped by the leash tugging on her collar*

Abby thinks: Ooooooo, a leaf!  *Pulls towards the right*

Abby thinks: Is that a cat I smell?  *Tugs forward on the leash*

Abby thinks: Hang on, wait, I’m outside walking right now.  Just walking.  This is nice, I think I’ll just follow…Holy crap!  A dried up worm.  I want to eat it.  *Lies down on the ground and attempts to lick the dried up worm off the ground*.

Abby thinks: A BIIIIIIIIIIIIIRD!  *Bolts forward and jumps up to try to catch it as it flies away*.

Abby thinks: Wait, what were we doing again?  Oh yes, I need to pee.  Now, if I could just find a spot.  *Pees on the grass*.

Me: (finally!)  Good girl Abby!

Abby thinks: OK, now that that’s out of the way, I want to keep walking a bit.  I like walki… Awesome!  A branch!  And it’s so long too.  *Pulls towards the left*

Abby thinks: Argh, so frustrating,  This leash thing won’t let me go where I want.  *Decides to walk nicely for a bit*

Abby thinks: This is booooooring.  Oh!  I know!  I’ll just play with the leash!!!!  *Bites down on the leash and attempts to play tug of war with me as we make our way back home*.

Me: No Abby.  Drop it.  *Wrestles with the puppy to get the leash out of her mouth*

Abby thinks: Ooooooo a GAME!  *Drops the leash to playfully bite my hands*  *Stops nibbling on my hands to bite the leash*

I could go on and on, but I suspect you get the point.  I adore her, but she is young and sometimes drives me nuts.  We’ve hired a dog trainer though.  The first thing we’re going to work on is walks.  Then, we’ll move on to other things.  Like not biting humans…

Abby, rockin' the "bat look" with her big floppy ears.
Abby, rockin’ the “bat look” with her big floppy ears.

 

 

 

Posted in Parenting

Our Family Grows!

Before you ask, no I am not pregnant.

We do, however, have a new family member; an adorable canine companion for our home!

Her name is Gracie and she is a (approximately) 5 month beagle/dachshund mix.

Gracie, the day we brought her home.
Gracie, the day we brought her home.

I’ve been meaning to get a dog for a while now.  During my last years at my parents’ home, we had a beagle.  When I moved out, I went into an apartment and wasn’t allowed any dogs, as such, I purchased some lizards and so, our family grew.  We started out at a reptile shop where we bought our first leopard gecko.  She unfortunately died due to an accident with her house.  But then we got Cocotte (who we named after my sister, or rather, the nickname I’ve been calling her by for years), a leopard gecko and she thrived…and is still thriving.

Later on, we ended up returning to a pet shop and got a brown anolis.  I fell in love with one in particular who only had three legs and a visible scar healing where he had recently lost one.  My partner wasn’t too sure we should bring it home, because he was afraid he’d die on us.  I was sure that if he was still alive, it was because he was a fighter and he would prove to be very resilient.  What you have to understand, I work with students who have learning difficulties of all sorts, as such, I have a tender heart towards the underdogs.  As such, we went home with our three-legged friend who we named House, in honor of Dr. House.  He is doing great!

Then, last year, a co-worker of mine who heard that I had lizards at home, asked if I would like one more.  You see, his son had one but wasn’t taking care of it.  My co-worker couldn’t even remember the last time the little creature had eaten!  After consulting with my partner, we decided to give the little lizard a new home.  When I first saw him, I was heartbroken.  The little gecko was naught but skin and bones and his tail was so skinny that it looked like it could break off with the slightest touch.  He was also very aggressive, attacking anything that came near him and did not want to be handled at all.  It was clear that he had suffered through some serious neglect.  Well, we started by taking care of his primary needs, namely providing him with a UV lamp, a heat mat, a fresh bowl of water and feeding him every day and then began working on getting him to be more trusting of the human hands that came near him.  Though he still refuses to be handled, he does not systematically attack anymore and now looks GREAT.  We called him Ti-Loup (lit. Little Wolf) because he was such a fighter.

And then, not too long ago, I started wanting a dog again.  It seemed like as good a time as any: we have our own house, our back yard is rather large and fenced, I’m home full-time for another month and a half.  I went on the petfinder website to see if there were any medium sized dogs in our area.  I wanted a good family dog that didn’t get too big.  I also did not want a barker and wanted something with short hair.  I’ve always loved both beagles and dachshunds and my partner  was rather partial to beagles, especially after getting to know Big, the beagle that my parents have.  I also chose petfinder over a pet shop because I wanted to give a dog a second chance.  There are so many families that get a puppy and then abandon them when they move or when they find out that they are too much work, I figured that adopting was a good option.  That’s when I found Gracie.  She had been found abandoned and walking the streets.  They estimated that she was born in February 2013 from her teeth (still a puppy!).  She had been taken in by a non-profit animal rescue in our area called Nali Animal Orphanage and had been placed in a foster home to await adoption.  We went to see her last Saturday and brought her home that very same day.  Now, we get to spend a week to two weeks with her before finalizing the adoption process.  At the end of our trial period, a representative from the animal orphanage will come check in with us to see how things are going and if there are any serious issues that would warrant her being placed in foster care once more.

I am very certain that we will get to keep her.  No one (including my son) seems allergic to her, she is well taken care of and is beginning to adjust to her new surroundings.  She is not eating yet, but has only been with us for about 36 hours so I expect that when she accepts that this is her new home (I read that the grieving period can last from 3 to 7 days) she’ll start eating again.

My son is starting to get used to her.  At first, he would cry every time he saw her.  Now, he actually lets her approach without crying.  He has also started reaching out to pet her when he is well rested and she is lying down.  It’s so cute!  I have to watch her because she’s still a pup and will sometimes nibble when she wants to play and I have to watch my son because he has a tendency to try to grab things rather tightly (like her ears or her tail).  So far, though, there have not been any successful attempts at nibbling or pulling.

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Charles and Gracie chillin’ on either side of the play mat. Notice that Little Dude is facing the dog as he plays with his hands.