so last week, i found a hamster cage at the Goodwill for $6. next door to the Goodwill is a pet shop. when i saw the cage, i knew the only sensible thing to do was surprise my kids with a hamster. my rowan (5yo) loves creatures of all kinds. i think the obsession is more than kids typically have with creatures.
when he was 2, we lived near a pond infested with frogs and he literally carried a frog around all.day.long. sometimes in his hand. sometimes in his pocket. sometimes at the dinner table.
if an earth worm washes up on the sidewalk, he must be rescued. but prior to his departure back in the dirt, he simply must be made a habitat in a shoebox for at least 3 days. think of how many earthworms get washed ashore. that's how many habitats we have made. and heaven forbid we use a worm as fishing bait. no way. not in this house, partner.
last summer, he rescued a one legged cricket and carried him everywhere. the grocery store. school. the bathroom. he would sing to him, and believe it or not, the cricket would sing back.
i love his tender heart. his love for caring for others around him. his love for snuggling with me and the time he needs to calm down when something upsets him. i love that i find him on my pillow in the middle of the night, sleeping peacefully. his precious spirit. his tender soul. he feels and understands deeply.
and he can dance like nobody's business.
so when i told him he could pick out a hamster, his little world erupted with joy.
meet Mr. Cutie Weldon. a chinese dwarf hamster.
rowan carried Cutie Weldon and talked to him and sang to him nearly all day, every day for a week.
but every time foster (6yo) picked him up, Cutie Weldon would attack and bite him repeatedly. either foster tasted really good, or really bad. regardless, Mr. Cutie the Ferocious had to go. we exchanged him for a new, preferably peaceful, replacement.
meet Mr. Cutie the Replacement. a kind, sweet, docile hamster.
when we got home, we noticed some clear differences in "his" anatomy. in fact, we discovered that "he" was very clearly a SHE and was quickly renamed MRS. Cutie the Replacement.
upon further inspection, we noticed her belly bulging out on either side... and her "baby feeding areas" are quite pronounced. yes, it seems that MRS. Cutie the Replacement is pregnant. my little people are giddy with excitement and are checking constantly to make the birth announcement.
honestly, i'm not a hamster/small rodent fan. but the thought of my kids getting to see little baby hamster's born? somehow, i love the idea.
if you are in the mood for a hamster, garage sale a cage and stop by next month...we will most likely have a few hamsters to go around.
i posted this on instagram earlier today and a few friends were kind enough to warn me that hamsters often eat their babies!! i had no idea, and i'm terrified that MRS. Cutie the Replacement will go all cannibalistic and add trauma to our hamster drama. i'm going to have to warn my littles for fear that they witness such atrocities without preparation. perhaps it's the circle of life?
if any of them happen to survive their mother's voracious appetite, we might just get to see the miracle of birth. although at this point, i'm hoping MRS. Cutie the Replacement keeps her manners about her so i don't have to replace her with a hamster eating snake :)