Our friends have made The Boy's day, maybe even year. We have a new member of the family, an Eastern Box Turtle who has been named Leo. We really hope we were correct in its identification as a male. Here are some pictures of The Boy and his beloved pet, who, much to The Boy's dismay, was not able to sleep in his bed with him last night.
One of the posters we received from our generous friends gave an overview of the venomous snakes in our state. There are four of them. I asked The Boy if he knew what venomous meant and of course he did. That means poisonous Momma, he said in a tone asking how come you don't know that, you are the adult in this conversation.
On the back of the poster it has the does and don't of handling a venomous snake bite. There are a long list of don'ts including 'don't take any drugs or drink any alcohol after being bitten,' don't cut the bite to remove the venom,' 'don't run after the snake that bite you,' etc. The list of dos is much shorter to include calling 911 and getting help. The Boy asked me to help him read the entire lists. After we were finished he said, "they forgot to say use a band aid, that would be a do."
I know I have mentioned recently that The Boy continues to loose that total sweet demeanor more and more everyday. It continues to be true. He is still a sweet kid to me and his sister. He still cares about people's feelings and whether or not they are fitting in with the group. He hates to see people lonely, especially his peers. I think this is a great quality as long as it is balanced. Throughout the summer, I have seen the balance come in full force. My little boy officially loves everything slinky and slimy and covered in scales. It is GREAT!
A few weeks ago, The Boy told me that he wanted a pet. After our crazy dog fiascoes (one my fault, the other The Husband's), I am a little shy to warm up to the idea of another pet. I really thought The Boy was going to tell me, per his father's direction, that he wanted a puppy. I was going to have to break his little heart by telling him that it isn't going to happen. We are not going to be a dog family, even as much as we would like to think that we are, we are not at this time even going to go down that road. I like dogs. I will play with dogs that are not a part of my family. But, now is not the time for us to introduce another in need of training being into our already chaotic family. Talk to me again in 5-7 years, maybe.
I was worried about the wrong kind of animal. The Boy indicated that he would like a reptile or an amphibian. This is a whole different ball game, but in my mind I am thinking we could do this. We could get a little frog or a turtle, put in in a little aquarium. It might be fun. So, I told The Boy we would have to do some research. Luckily for us, we have two family friends who are into this kind of thing. One is an environmental consultant/ecologist/biologist, etc. and the other is a soil scientist. Both know a lot about reptiles and amphibians among other things. Check out Mark's website. Every moment in our house has the potential to be a learning moment, this was no exception.
So, The Boy wrote a letter to Mark. It was very simple..."Dear Mark, What kind of reptile or amphibian should I get? Nicholas" The response was amazing. I expected Mark to write back and suggest something, but instead, he and his lovely wife, the soil scientist, send back a note with some homework (gotta love that) and pamphlets on snakes. Plus, The Boy got a poster tube with four different posters outlining snakes, salamanders, turtles and frogs native to our state. The Boy couldn't have been more excited. More stories related to these gifts and pictures to come. Stay tuned.
I don't know if I am more cognizant of certain things now that I have turned another year older, making my way quickly toward the "scary" mid-30s, but it seems to me that other folks are thinking hey she is getting older shouldn't she be worried, offended by certain things, etc. I realize I am getting older, but I really don't think it is another person's job to remind me of that. I don't mind, seriously. I wouldn't like to go back to when I was 16, or 21. Those years were fine, but my life now is so much better. So much fuller. Why would I want to subject myself to mean highschool girls or the awkwardness of teenage dating again. Yuck!
What brings all this on is one silly word, Ma'am. To all you nice Southerners out there. It is okay that you call me Ma'am. I don't mind. It is polite. You don't have to apologize. I like it. I am teaching my four year old son to use it along with sir. Please don't worry, I am not offended. It doesn't make me feel old, especially since the same day you apologized for calling me ma'am was the same day I got carded when ordering a glass of wine. It's all good. Keep it up. Your momma would be proud!