The Good: my birthday was this weekend and I had two nights of good food and good games.("Wise and Otherwise" is a crack up--sort of Balderdash with obscure proverbs that you have to finish, such as, "An old Japanese saying goes, 'By poking the bush....' "and the real ending is something about snakes. For real.) I also got some fun gifts. Here is a sampling:
The Sad: Georgia's gerbil Emma died Saturday morning. After chores, Zsa went to check on Emma and noticed she was barely breathing. Dave and I had resusitated the gerbils once before when they were sick, but sweet little thing died in my hands as I did rodent CPR (stroking her chest fur). Poor Georgia came unglued, then Millie, and Bea, not wanting to be left out, made herself cry too. "Emma was the firstest gerbil we ever had!" Wahhhhh! "Emma is a dead Emma!" Wahhhhh. When she had no more tears for Emma, Bea started contemplating other things that made her sad: "We have no more crackers and will have to go the the store to get some!" Wahhhhhhh. [here is Zsa with Emma last month]
The Furry: Gerbils are social creatures and the books say they need a companion to thrive, but introducing a new one is tricky. So we headed to our local Petco and talked to the lady who suggested we get two new young sisters, so that even if Minky rejects them they'll still have each other. Jonah picked out the one that looked like a miniature squirrell.
Georgia got one that looks like a chipmunk with a star on its forehead. She said to me, "When I can trick my mind into not thinking about Emma, I don't feel so sad." She named hers Sarah, and Jonah named his Casey in honor of the FBI handlers on "Chuck," mine and Joe's new favorite TV show.
Here is Millie with the survivor Minky. [Please check out Millie's front tooth that sticks STRAIGHT out and refuses to fall out. We've taken pliers to it and wiggled it to death and Thursday night I got out 3 kinds of thread and the damn root busted the thread. ] We were warned that the "old" gerbil will often reject the new ones and to introduce them slowly, having different cages, etc. Sweet Minky was delighted at her new playmates and got anxious when we took them out of her cage. So while there was no fighting amongst gerbils there was contention with the kids over how to lodge them and in whose room.That afternoon the Snow girls came over to attend Emma's funeral. The weather was warm enough that I could dig a hole in the patch of ground next to big rocks where I have ground cover roses growing. Her coffin was a heart shaped pink box from the dollar section of Target and her shrowd was a pink napkin Parry gave me that Emma liked to shred. We all got teary. Georgia bawled.
When the 3 gerbils were still having a lovefest that evening, Dave took Bea and Millie back to Petco to even out the numbers. We purchased the last gerbil sister for Bea so there's a pairs in Joe's room, and a pair in Georgia & Millie. Bea is so excited that she has a gerbil and she can't stop talking about it: "I have a gerbil stister her name is Rhino she is orangey and soft but hers claws are scratchy like my mom's nails so I don't wanna hold Rhino my new gerby. She's orange." She here's a picture of Rhino and since Bea's too scared to hold her I'm adding one of Bea doing gymnastics. This is her version of a backbend which she calls a "bangaroo."