Monday, March 29, 2010

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish

A couple of weeks ago, Megan announced she wanted a fish. I am not sure where she got this idea, but it didn't seem to fade with time. Since this seemed WAY better than any fur bearing pet she could have suggested, I agreed she could have it if she paid for it. That was no deterrent at all, because Megan is RICH. You see, Mac has an intense aversion toward using change. In fact, the only reason our floor isn't two inches deep with coins, is because Mac pays for almost everything with credit card (don't worry finance friends, we pay it off every month). Instead Mac gives his pocket change to Megan, who's piggy bank has eaten over $60 in the last three years!

So last weekend I took the kids out on a little fishing expedition. First we hit up Goodwill for a bowl ($2.99 as opposed to $12.99 at the pet store) and then it was off to Petco. On the way, I said we could get two goldfish for Megan's bowl so Liam could have one, too.

We checked out all the pets and then moseyed over to the fish tanks. When I inquired which goldfish would do okay in a bowl, he told me none of them; even goldfish need aquariums. Really only Bettas would work for a bowl.

Bettas are also known as Asian fighting fish. They live in the rice paddies in Thailand. We did (safe and non-harmful) experiments with them in my college Animal Behavior class, where we put the bowls of two fish next to each other or up to a mirror and recorded what the fish did. We then had to draw conclusions about the aggressiveness of the fish (red vs. blue; male vs female; self vs. other). It was SO boring. I can't remember anything about it except my paper had the same title as this post. So I wasn't really thrilled to buy Bettas. But Megan and Liam, thought they'd be great. And since I already promised Liam a fish we had to get two. At least the price was right: $2.99, and Megan paid for Liam's, too. With the fish food, we ended up with a bill around $13, which we paid for in change, much to the delight of the cashier.
No way was I buying another bowl, even if it was Megan's money. So Liam's fish gets to hang out in a nice vase. The pebbles and glass are from my green house and art supplies, respectively. I come from a family of master recyclers (aka cheapskates)!
So now we are a family with two kids, two cats, six chickens and two Bettas (and about 50 pond goldfish). Quite a zoo!

(Forgot to mention that our fish are named Magnolia and Otis!)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Nearly As Old As The Dinosaurs

Last week Megan helped explain dinosaurs to Liam:

"Liam, all the dinosaurs are dead. They died before any people were born, even Mom and Dad."

Friday, March 5, 2010

Medium Liam Turns Big

Megan convinced Liam he had to be three before he could be called a BIG boy, but he didn't like it when Megan called him little. So for the past month Liam has dubbed himself "Medium Liam."

But on Feb. 18 Liam made it to the BIG time: his third birthday! (how do I get so far behind on this thing??). Unlike Megan's b-day, we had a very quiet celebration: dinner at home with Mamaw. But why would he even notice who was missing when he had this awesome Lightning McQueen cake?The green gel icing didn't work at all for the eyes; it kept dripping, but over all I was pretty pleased with my handy work. Besides there were the not too subtle plate and napkin hints to clue you in to what the cake was supposed to be.The kids got all excited for presents and THEN we gave them more sugar!
Liam enjoyed a special phone call from Auntie Al before trying out all the new stuff, like a remote control car and a scooter!
So now Liam has graduated to Big Boy. However, he still throws a fit when I try to call him "hombre." Maybe when he turns four.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Megan's Idea For Peace In Oregon

Megan and Liam are starting to understand Oregon football. "Why do some people like the Ducks and some people like the Beavers?" Megan asked me. I tried to explain about schools and cheering for your alma matter, but Megan still seemed perplexed as to why we had to choose sides. No worries, she knew just the solution:

"If you were a platypus you could root for the Ducks or the Beavers!"

Instead of segregating into Ducks and Beavers, why don't we Oregonians come together as platypuses? or should that be platypi?? I can hear the cheers now:

Listen to the thunder
of the mammals from down under.
We'll smack you with our web-foot legs,
And bomb you with our quizzical eggs.
With our beaver tail
We can not fail!
So hear the cry from our duck bill:
The platypi are here to kill!'s not working for me either. I guess we are better off sticking with the Ducks and the Beavers.