Sydney received April for her 5th birthday in 2008. She had wanted a pet sooooo badly, so we agreed she was ready and responsible for a hampster. I can still remember walking through Pet Smart on that Friday, with my 5 day old baby Stella in tow. I can remember looking at all of those beady little eyes and twitchy little noses and thinking to myself
What on earth am I doing, we have a brand new baby, and i'm buying my daughter a rat.
Well, my internal debaucal was cut short by the familiar ring of my cell phone. It was Tim telling me to get home, because Austin cut his hand and needed stitches. I quickly picked out the cutest hampster in the bunch, and all of her new household accomodations, and was on my way.
Sadly, the little rodent spent it's first night in a cardboard box in the basement because by the time the boys got home from the hospital it was too late for Sydney's party. Leave it to your older brother to wreck your party!
Over the years, Sydney and April became fast friends. Syd made her toys out of toilet paper rolls and fabric scraps. She took her responsibilities very seriously, and rarely did we need to remind her to feed and clean her. April made visits to Sydneys pre-school, kindgergarten and 1st grade classrooms.
When I bought her that cold February day, I was informed that hampsters have a 2 year life span. After 2.5 years, she had a good long happy hampster life. Syd understood this, but was devestated nonetheless. She decorated a shoe box and we buried her out back.
Because she was such a good hampster mom, I promised Syd we could get another. Going to PetSmart with 5 kids is nothing short of a field trip in and of itself. Dyl convinced me to buy him another hermit crab, Stella screamed at every single dog walking through the store, and Austin left ticked because I wouldn't buy him a parakeet.
Meet Lucy Kay...out new domesticated rat :)
Every Wednesday the kids and I visit the farm down the road where I pick up my weekly share of produce. It always goes the same. We get there, the kids stop in the barn and say hello to the dog, turkey, chickens and goats, and then they disperse. Dylan and Sydney head to the pond out back to catch frogs, and Austin takes Stella by the hand and they visit the horsebarn. Eventually Sydney meanders back, and the 3 of them chase the cats and kittens around.
Well, last week, each of the kids came out of the barn holding kittys. The farm owners told them that they were abandoned, and that the kids could have one. I must have been in a really good mood that day, because we now have a little kitten that lives in our garage.