If that picture that's right there to the left isn't enough, hint: it's not a new baby. I know. There were a lot of you out there really gunning for that, but to you, I'd say--in the nicest possible way--mind your own business, and back off, buddy! (Seriously--how many kids and when people have kids and if they can have kids and [insert anything else you can think about kids here] is a personal decision, one which I'm surprised many people seem to think they should butt their noses into. Don't. Soapbox, done.)
Nope--we're getting a pet. Not just one pet--TWO PETS.
TRC and DC have been clamoring for pets for quite some time. TRC had a pet meal worm, which turned into a beetle--and he really loved that thing. (I'm not making this up.) He's been asking for anything--fish, gerbils, hermit crabs. You name it. So after much deliberation and research, Denisa and I are getting two degus.
Their social critters. They're cute. They can be trained. They live longer (sometimes as long as 12 years!), and the local Mt. Blue Agway sells them. :-) I didn't want to get something that had a high probability of dying too quickly. (Not to say our degus are going to last forever, but I'd at least like a good shot at some quality years with the things.)
TRC and DC are ecstatic. I'm going to go pick the first one up today after work. The second should be arriving soon.
In the meantime, I've been researching all about them (because, you know, I'm a librarian). What to feed them. What they need for housing. What they do for exercise. I'm fast becoming a degu expert. I bought TRC a book about them (the book pictured at the beginning of this post, actually), and he's been reading up, too. Over the past two afternoons, I built a little house and play area for them out of some scrap wood I had lying around. Three levels, a staircase, a ramp, and two houses. Maybe a bit more elaborate than I'd planned, but for some reason, I'm quite excited to have these rodents come live with us. (As opposed to the rodents who come live in our walls each autumn. And the chipmunks who use our garage as a shortcut. And the rat they like to play with. I've got rodents all over the place--you'd figure I wouldn't want anything to do with any more. But then, I never claimed to be sane.)
We'll see how the experiment goes. I will say I've been very surprised already by how much stuff little critters need to live. They ain't cheap. I can't imagine how expensive a dog would be. (The plan with the critters is to have someone critter sit them when we're gone on vacations. Or to take them with us. We'll cross those bridges when we come to them.)
So there you have it. My big announcement. Wish me luck--something tells me I might need it. :-)