Monday, March 6, 2017

Gaia and Nugget

There are so many things I said I wouldn't do as a parent.  I will never give my kids a pacifier, I will never let my kids ......(insert numerous activities), I will never drive a minivan.  This list goes on and on.  All of these things I have done and more.  Before having kids, I had no clue about what these little beings do to you.  
Well, one of the many things I said was, "I will never have caged animals in my house".  That too has come to fruition.  Meet Gaia and Nugget, our newest family members.
Grady has asked for some kind of reptile for years.  Don't get me wrong, I love reptiles!  Snakes, turtles, lizards.....bring it on.  I just hate to see animals in cages.  I made a deal with Grady after talking with his teacher.  
You see, Grady is somewhat of a slacker....ok a big slacker.  He is a super smart kid with so much potential but if he isn't interested, he won't put in any effort.  I went to school and spoke with his teacher.  As we were talking, she showed me where he moved his desk area too.  It was sandwiched in between the lizard and turtle terrariums.  He sits on a stool next to his scaly friends and does his work while watching out for the class pets.  His teacher recognized his passion for animals (his idol is Steve Irwin, his writing is about poaching, etc).  Together, we came up with the idea of Grady working hard at school to earn a gecko.  Guess what?!  It worked!  Grady is more engaged and involved in school.  After months of working hard, we adopted Gaia.  

Gaia, the crested gecko

She is so loved that she travels around the house.  Here she is watching the boys work a puzzle.

Myles would not dream of being left out of the gecko earning.  So, I though of something that Myles needed to work on.  Myles has what you would call a bit of an anger problem.  Or as he likes to call it "anger tissues".  He has had these anger issues since birth.  We are working on him breathing or counting when he gets angry instead of screaming or hitting.  Okay so we are still working on this one.  BUT Grady earned a gecko so I broke down and got Myles one as well.  Myles has come a long way but is still an angry work in progress.  

Meet Nugget, the gargoyle gecko

As a naturalist, I work with all kinds of interesting people.  I just happen to work with a guy that sells reptiles on the side.  He had a huge operation in his house and it's a part time job for him.  

Just look at this room full of reptiles!  So, with my reptile hookup, it was easy to find healthy geckos. It has been great to be able to text or call our expert whenever we have a question.

Emma was heartbroken that she couldn't have a "baby lizard".  "I need a baby lizard too"!

Poor girl!  I explained that she was too young to have a baby lizard but I would let her pick something else out.  Something of the non-living variety.  She has been begging for cheese balls.  You know the nasty, bright orange balls of chemicals? I have always refused to buy them but her crocodile tears had me stopping for some cheese balls.  Just another thing that I said I wouldn't do as a parent.

Searching for the perfect gecko

So far, Gaia and Nugget are still alive.  The boys are responsible for them.  If Grady slacks off or Myles stops working on his "anger tissues", they go back to Bryan.  

Thursday, February 23, 2017


Grady started drum lessons in January.  He absolutley love it!  He told me, "mom, you know how I have never been into sports? Well, I'm really into drums.  I love it".  You can find him drumming along with songs, at the dinner table (much to my annoyance), and on most surfaces.  He practices without being asked which is amazing.  While drums are the loudest instrument in the world, they totally suit his wild personality.  Rock on, Grady.

After playing for a month, we bought him a drum set.

Winterish Photos

It seems as if Spring is right around the corner.  A little early this year, but I'll take it.  Although, climate change is occurring rapidly, this mama doesn't like the cold winter months.  Here are a few random photos that I have taken throughout Jan and Feb.

Our first snow.  It wasn't much but the kids loved it


Trampoline fun in the winter

They are strange boys

Pip loved the snow too

Watching the snow fall

Ceasar preferred to stay inside

Hot coco after some sledding

Winter time is perfect for the indoor pool at the gym.  We go there often

Emma was asked to go hang out with our neighbor, Sherri. She adores her time with Sherri

The ever social Grady is always at a friends house or a sleepover.  Always.  Here are the 21 Cobras, his band.

With this warm weather, we have gotten in a few winter hikes

There has been some selfie taking

More trampoline time

Emma took these beauties

Emma and her class pet, Gus.

We've done some bike riding and had a few accidents

More cold weather jumping


Myles is playing indoor soccer this season

My constant companion in the kitchen

Making tortillas was messy business

Some time at Lake Tomahawk

The duck whisperer

Josh is becoming an expert manicurist

Who needs clothes to get there nails painted?

Pip is waiting for Spring to arrive