Monday, February 27, 2017

Fish and Cats

Because I KNOW you want to hear our crazy pet stories! Or maybe I just want to remember them. And have them for the kids to remember so they can make their own kids laugh (or roll their eyes) somewhere down the road.

Either way…

So, here’s the background.

We are long-term fish-sitting for Olivia Choate until she returns to Arkansas in May. She has a 10-gallon tank that used to have multiple fish in it. By the time it came to us last January, it had one.

My Olivia decided that it was a shame to have such a big tank for only one fish, so she determined that the other Olivia’s fish needed friends. So, she bought several fish last spring. They were gorgeous! But, one by one, they died, just like Olivia C’s original fish had. No clear reason why. They just died.

All except that one fish.

I have no idea what its original name was, but after all the other fish died, the girls changed its name to Jim. Actually James. As in, James Moriarty. Yeah.

For a little while, during a stretch last fall when we actually had some cool weather and the bedroom was chilly, Angie decided to add her Betta fish to the big tank. The big tank had a heater. Her little Betta tank did not. So, she was sure Jada the Betta would be more comfortable in the big tank. But, she left the little tank filled and sitting right beside the big tank.

One day, Jada was missing from the big tank. She was discovered swimming around in the little tank!

Angie moved her back and covered the little tank. A day or two later, she actually SAW Jada jump out of the big tank and land on the lid of the little tank! Fortunately, the weather was warming up, so she just slid the Betta back into the small tank and left it there.

Jada has never tried to jump out of the small tank. Never. We’ve had that fish for a year and a half.

It gets better.

Angie’s crazy new cat, Rose, LOVES the fish. She stalks them. When the big tank was full, she actually got up on the dresser and was caught multiple times stretching her paw toward the tank. She never actually got a fish, but she sure did want to!

Now that Moriarty is the only fish in the big tank, she doesn’t even go near it. She still eyes Jada and tries to get to the small tank, but she completely ignores the big tank.

As you can imagine, there are all sorts of theories flowing around our house about Moriarty. First came the name change and the jokes about the homicidal fish. Now there are theories that none of the animals can actually see him, so the other fish didn’t know when he snuck up on them to kill them. Somehow Jada just sensed the danger and ran from it. But that’s why Rose completely ignores Moriarty now and only haunts Jada.

There’s also the theory that Moriarty is an alien with a perception filter that makes him look like a fish to us, but not to other animals.

And the imagination continues to flow.

Who knew being a pet owner – or a pet sitter – could be so mysterious?!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Not Quite Ordinary Observations

Something about Today…Tuesday, February 21, 2017

We got rain! It started last night and rained into this morning. Oh it was lovely! Our gauge measured 1.6 inches, but I think it missed some of the early rain from last night. It all makes today’s grayness that much more tolerable. How I love rain!

Something about the Week

It’s a bit of an odd week, but obviously also a bit more flexible, as I’m actually getting back to writing! Whew! The first couple of weeks of February were a little crazy.

Something I Have Observed

God doesn’t teach us things in a vacuum. Often, a brother or sister is learning the same thing at the same time. For me, it’s sometimes someone else at church. But, more often than not it’s my precious friend Joanna. Even across thousands of miles – and sometimes even when we aren’t able to chat with one another – God so often works on us in similar ways. It’s such a precious thing!

Then, there is when it’s within my family. I love that the most. When God is working on Doug and me individually, but we don’t really realize it until we hit a certain point that ties it all together. Or when one of the kids comes with a question they’ve been mulling over for a while, and I am so excited to discuss it because I’ve been mulling over something similar. Or we all share the same insight from a Bible reading.

We were made for community, and God reminds us of that every time He teaches us something new!

Something I Have Read or Heard

“All relationships require effort. But how can we compare knowing the one and only God to any other relationship? It’s overwhelming. How are we even worthy to learn?

“And yet our great God has spoken. He has condescended to communicate to us, revealing his character in a covenant treaty.”

- Aimee Byrd, from Theological Fitness

Something on My Mind

Parenting is tough. Praying for myself and several dear friends as we navigate and balance raising Christ-centered kids in the middle of this ugly, nasty world. Wow. The greatest joy is knowing that each of our children can personally connect with the Lord Jesus Christ. The grief is knowing that, at some point, they can each also choose to turn away from Him. There is not a perfect parent among us, and I’m sure all of our children could point to mistakes we have made or will make and blame us for their decisions. But, ultimately, we can only obey the Lord as best we know how each step of the way, learn from our mistakes, and continually entrust our precious, precious babies to Him. And pray. Oh so very much!

Something I’m Thankful for

Watching answered prayers roll in and hearing my kids shout, “Yay!” when I share them.

Also thankful for the rain!

Something about My Kids

We went on a field trip last Friday. We asked each child to write something about the trip so I can post it on the blog (coming later this week or next week, as I have time). Their personalities have been so clearly revealed through their contributions! Angela sat down and spent all of Saturday morning typing up a 4+ page report of the trip!! Steven sat down and slowly churned out his five sentences. Olivia – my writer – still hasn’t written a thing. Why? Because it’s not school and it’s not her novel or her poems. Silly girl.

It’s so much fun to see their personalities come out through things like this!

Something I’m Working on

Getting back the flow I had in January. And trying to write 10,000 words toward a novel this month, as well as the other writing I need to do. It’s an ongoing process of learning to let each day flow according to God’s design rather than my plan, yet still living within a diligent routine. And, I may or may not reach that 10,000 word goal. But I’m sure going to try!

Something from Hibbard Academy

For the first time EVER, we are on target to actually end a school year at the projected time. Not only that, but that projected time is before Memorial Day. Oh, and not only that, but some subjects will be finished early! This has been a good year.

Something That Makes Me Smile

Discussions during morning quiet times – that aren’t always so quiet because we’re discussing. (And Angie’s face because she couldn’t figure out why I was taking a picture of the discussion!)

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Oh, and this cute face.

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Something Coming

Let’s see…relative normalcy the first half of the week, but I leave Thursday morning to go work a homeschool convention with my boss. If you’re at the Texas GHC this weekend, stop by Well Planned Gal’s booth and say hi!

The girls get to go bowling Friday night and will be working a temp job Friday and Saturday. So, there’s no telling what mischief Doug and Steven will get into! Then, on Sunday night, we have a missions fundraiser meal after church. Looking forward to that, too. But, I think I’ll be crashing on Monday!

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Different Sisters

My girls get along beautifully. They love each other and live together well.

But they do not share interests.

While Angela is busy knitting or crocheting anything she possibly can, Olivia is anxiously anticipating next Thursday’s science lesson.

She gets to dissect a worm. The dissection kit awaiting her also contains also a frog, a crayfish, and several other things. She’s very, very, very excited about all of this.

Angela, meanwhile, is perfectly content to put off biology as long as possible.

Warning: pictures will probably be forthcoming. Because dissection. Fun stuff! (Can you tell who Olivia gets it from? I still remember how much fun it was to dissect a shark in college, despite the horrific smell!) So, if you’re like Angela, you might want to skip those posts. Don’t worry…the title will be nice and vague so you have no idea what’s coming.

Oh wait. That’s not a nice thing to do, is it?