This past Friday, I took the day off of work. The intention was that I would have some time to spend with the children, while also doing some much-needed moving in activities, i.e., finding a new dentist and locating the box with all of my socks that have been MIA for three weeks.
Soon after I walked the kids to the bus stop, and returned home and served Henry his third bowl of Cheerios in an hour, our door bell rang. It seems that one of our awesome neighbors, found three tiny turtles as he was cleaning out his pool filter.
He was certain that the turtles would drown if he didn't scoop them out, so he rescued them in his blue pool bucket.
Then, he walked them over to our house because we have a creek in our backyard that he thought we could release them in to. But the moment he handed those turtles to us, we kissed goodbye any productivity we had slated for the next four hours.
When they arrived on our doorstep, they were hardly moving.
So we quickly swung in to action.
First, we Googled, "What do turtles eat?"
And then, we ambushed our lettuce supply.
Then, we scurried down to our creek.
Only to realize that the creek was mostly dry.
So we collected some rocks and leaves and sticks.
And filled the bucket with whatever creek water we could find.
And then we brought our tiny turtles back to our house so we could watch them.
And watch them.
And watch them some more ... while wondering if the reason they weren't moving is because they'd all died?
They are so tiny, neither Charlie nor I wanted to release them to the wild until they're just a little bigger. Not that we know the first thing about raising turtles - except they like green leafy vegetables - but we felt like we could at least protect them from being eaten.
What seemed like 10 minutes later, the children were home from school.
And our children, who want a pet more than any children who have ever lived in the entire history of the world, were interested to see that we now have three critters under our care.
"Interested" might not be a strong enough word choice.
The rest of the day was spent supervising the children so that they didn't love the little turtles straight to heaven. And later, when I heard little footsteps pitter-pattering down the hall at midnight, 2:00 AM, 3:45 AM, 4:36 AM, 5:17, 5:18 and 5:20 AM, followed by hushed squealing, I stumbled out of bed to see the kids sitting around the bucket and singing lullabies.
Despite the fact that they lack hair/fur and aren't the most cuddly of creatures, these little turtles are nameable. Please meet Terrence, Flower and Sprigitiz, who also goes by the name of Butterfly.
Flower is very sleepy.
Terrence crawls all over the place.
Sprigitiz, who also goes by the name of Butterfly, is somewhat shy.
We will definitely be setting our triplet turtles free in to the wild.
But probably not until 2022.