Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Next Time I'll Buy Them A Stuffed Animal

We purchased one of those Intex Metal Frame pools for the yard. It's 18' X 48", so it's a nice size. On Saturday we measured off the area for the pool and Mr. Schmitty took a shovel and dug the shape of a circle. We need to level off the area, as our yard is very bumpy and on a slight incline, so the pool doesn't collapse. While he did this, I cleaned out the shed, which was a huge mess. A thunderstorm rolled in right after the circle was formed so we needed to pack it in. It now looks like a UFO landed in our backyard.

We were too tired and hot to make dinner and the troops were getting cranky. We decided to go to a local diner. On the way there I saw something in the middle of the road. It was a box turtle! I told Mr. Schmitty to go back and save it before someone ran it over. We almost had.

Of course, the kids started to scream yell whine ask politely if they could keep the turtle as a pet. Why not? I remember finding one as a child and having it for a while. I told them that we could keep it for the summer only and as long as they took good care of it. When school started, I told them that it would need to go back to the woods, near where we found it. They agreed. But seriously, who am I kidding? We know it will be a nightmare when it needs to go back in September. But these are the Days Of Our Lives.

By the time we had gotten it back home, the kids had already decided on the name Cooper. Mr. Schmitty and I really wanted to call it Dunlop because we almost ran it over with our new Dunlop tire, but we were overruled. Mr. Schmitty placed it in a large bucket with the clumps of grass he had dug up for the pool. That came it handy, didn't it? What great timing that Cooper has, such a super smart turtle!

We went out to dinner and W. made sure to save the veggie garnishes for our new boarder. When we returned, the Italian Ice truck was down the street. All of the neighborhood kids were there and after everyone got their treats, my kids invited them all to see their new pet.

After the kids ran to my house, one of my neighbors said, "You know turtles can carry salmonella."


He nodded and two other neighbors agreed. CRAP! This is what I get for reading blogs instead of the news.

I took off for the house, "STOP! Put the turtle down and step away from the bucket!"

I shooed everyone in the house and made them all scrub their hands raw wash thoroughly. I then whipped out the antibacterial gel, just to make sure there weren't any trashes of Cooper germs left. I told them all to stop complaining that their raw skin now burned go back to eating their ice before it melted.

Later on, I told my kids that they could not touch the turtle anymore and explained why. After some drama, a look up on the internet to prove I wasn't lying because, "I'm such a mean mommy and I would purposely let them bring home the turtle just to take it away again," and some hugs, the turtle was released back into the wild.

Poor kids, things are so different for them. They can't be kids, like we were. No turtles because they carry disease. No licking the cake batter because you'll get sick. No playing in traffic because you might be run over. What?! Only my parents allowed that?

I came to the realization that we just don't have any luck with animals. First the fish, which by the way, I just received a check, two days ago, in the amount of $52.00 with an apology letter from PetCo. Yea me!

I'm sticking with dogs. Though after this episode, Ruby was almost sent back to Ohio.


Zephra said...

Did you ever stop to think about all the things we did as kids that is now not considered not safe?

Mrs. Schmitty said...

Zephra...yes, and it's pretty funny. No seatbelts, no helmets, etc., etc.

Queen Goob said...

I'm glad Cooper is safe back in the wild....until his next "roadtrip". And Ruby???? O. M. G. She is CUTE!!!!!!

Karly said...

Eh, a little salmonella never hurt anybody. Oh wait...yeah it did.

So...about this pool...do you like it? We were thinking about getting the same one but can't decide. Cleatus is a big baby and doesn't want to set it all up. I say DO IT, MAN. The kids need SOMETHING to do and its either the pool or one of those inflatable water slides.

Bonnie the Boss said...

Yeah, and we didn't have to wear seat belts or hemets either.
I am glad you got the money from the fish.
Tell the kids my kids would understand. We don't have any pets mostly because I don't need anything else to clean up after.

The Fritz Facts said...

We had a turtle when we were younger, that my dad almost ran over.

Kids get screwed now, so many things out there that our parents didn't know about. No playing outside until you are 900 years old. Blah blah blah. I let my kids do things I did as a kid, and laugh when friends look at me like I am crazy.

Jennifer H said...

Ruby is adorable...but what did she get into?

Seriously, how did we all survive? All those turtles we played with, all the trees we climbed...no seat belts.

I'm sure Cooper is quite happy spreading salmonella to the other turtles, the way Mother Nature intended. :-)

Mrs. Schmitty said...

Queen Goob: I hope he looks both ways next time before he attempts crossing the street!

Karly: I sent you an email.

Bonnie: I keep getting pets...and then I curse myself for the mess. I was good recently though, I wanted a cat, until I saw all the hair fly up in the air when I pet her.

The Fritz Facts: I know, I still let my kids lick the bowl. It kind of gives me the willies...but I did it...and they LOVE it so.

Jennifer: T. and a friend made mud pies...she decided to smash her face into one. I heard her scratching at the back door to get in and went absolutely hysterical when I saw her.

Momo Fali said...

My parents used to let us make "storm forts" out of golf umbrellas. We set them up during thunderstorms in the middle of the yard.

Mrs. Schmitty said...

Momo Fali: OH CRAP! LOL

Super B's Mom said...

NO WAY Petco finally sent you a refund! Saweeet!

When I was little I let my baby chickens drink spit off my lips. Was that dangerous? Good God they could have pecked my lips clean off....

Nothing like some good 'ole sally-monilla to ruin a turtle good time.

Dr. Pepper said...

Hilarious... that very last part that is.

Oh and you have done a wonderful public service by telling all of us that turtles carry salmonella. I had NO idea and with two boys and living in a neighborhood where I could potentially see a turtle someday, well, I thank you in advance. You just saved us a lot of grief. Damn turtles.

Maria said...

Ah. Liv found a box turtle once. I had not heard about the salmonella thing and she kept that thing in her BEDROOM for nearly a month before I picked it up to clean it's cage one day and found some sort of fungus growing on it's bottom shell. I debated whether to take it to a vet or not, finally decided to set him free and let him take his chances in a nearby stream.

I don't recall Liv getting sick while she had him, but your story sort of gives me the willies knowing that he LIVED IN HER ROOM.

And, I remember all those wonderful metal slides, a jungle gym, wooden swings, etc on the playgrounds of my childhood. Now everything has been replaced with that playdoh colored plastic....and they aren't nearly as fun.

Mrs. Schmitty said...

Super B's Mom: I don't know if that was dangerous...but a little gross, no?

Dr. Pepper: Glad to be of service!

Maria: I had no idea either, thank goodness for those neighbors! The park near my childhood home had a ginormous metal slide. We used to rub wax paper on it to make it extra slippery. You'd sail forever at warp speed! It was the greatest!

EE said...

OMG...can't believe that PetCo came through for you!!!

Leigh said...

Awww Ruby! Funny picture.

Yep, indeed they do carry salmenela. All, ALL retiles do. So when they ask for a boa contrictor, you can still use that excuse.

I am Cooper will be happy to be back to freedom.

DOgs are soooo much easier.