Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Fieldtrip to the Animal Doctor

Carter frequently has school groups and scout groups, etc requesting to come to the clinic for a little tour. He always enjoys showing them what he does, and the kids love it. It seems like every kid thinks they want to be a veterinarian at some point in their growing up years - I know I did. I realized that even though our own kids have spent quite a bit of time at the clinic, they probably don't know a lot of what Dad does, or what lots of the equipment is for. So I asked Carter if he would mind giving our little preschool co-op group a tour. He said to come on down.

First we checked out an exam room and talked about what kinds of pets everyone has at home, and discussed how animals sometimes get sick, just like we do. Entering the surgery room Carter had the children put on surgery caps, which they thought was a hoot. A tech had set up the room for a mock procedure so they could see all the instruments and stuff. Carter showed them the laser and he burned each of their names into a tongue depressor.

Kyler was so proud when he diagnosed a broken leg on an x-ray. I did manage to recognize a litter of unborn puppies, but for the most part I am mystified at how they can pick up such crucial, minute details from those cryptic pictures. Next, they had prepared a series of microscopes for us which were focused on some interesting critters - a louse, a flea, and a tick. The kids looked and looked again. They couldn't get enough.

Their favorite part was probably just petting the puppies and kitties. The kids got to watch a dog having a bath and also see the groomer in action, which was cute. And they pretended to be big dogs and sat in the boarding kennels. It was sweet how concerned the children were to see the critters with bandages and "owies." Thank you to the wonderful staff for being patient with us and preparing such neat things to see, and thank you to the hot doctor who showed us around. I think all the children loved it, and Kyler and Shaylie were proud of their cool dad.

Friday, May 8, 2009

My Great Brains

I'm definitely NOT referring to my own "great brains." But Jayden and Makenna both elected to participate in the Great Brain Project at their school this spring. They each had to research a topic of their choosing, then present what they learned in some creative way. Jayden chose to study Sasquatch, (because who doesn't need to know a little more about that?!) Makenna chose koala bears, because they are cute. They had to present it first to their own classes and then in an assembly-of-sorts in the school library before the other kids and their parents. They both did beautifully and I was so proud of all their hard work, so I wanted to showcase their projects.

Jayden had Carter help him make a plaster mold of a "Big Foot" which was kind of fun, and he downloaded some recordings of "actual" Sasquatch screams, which was hillarious!

Makenna shared what she learned by writing a couple adorable poems about Koalas.

Kyler and Shaylie also felt the need to get in on the action and they made their own projects. They cut their favorite animal pictures from Ranger Rick Magazines. Shaylie's is about butterflies.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Stitching Up Brennan

Last week Shaylie and Brennan were running laps in the house while I clipped coupons (My new hobby...) when I heard, "Tag! You're it!" Crash!! Followed by screams. I hurried over to find poor Brennan holding a cut on his head. As soon as I had him cleaned up enough to get a good look at it I knew he needed stitches. I loaded up the van and we took a trip to see Dr. Dad. Brennan was remarkably unphased by the whole thing. Once he got over the initial bonk, he happily rode in the van and munched on a snack. I couldn't believe it. He calmly explained to Daddy that he bonked his head. Carter agreed that sutures were in order. The nice tecnicians came running in with little toys and a sucker, but I can't say they helped much. This part was awful. After he was numb, I had the horrible task of holding my sweet baby still for the procedure. Poor Carter had the even worse job of stitching him up. I could tell it was hard for him. These pictures were taken right afterwards.

The good news is that it has healed up beautifully and the stitches can come out probably tomorrow. I think I'll snap one more picture to add to this post of the stitches as they look now. Thank goodness for Dr. Dad and Diego band-aids!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Spring is in the Air

....And the birds are in the grill!

So a few weeks ago we spent a weekend up at the cabin watching General Conference with the family. When we came home we discovered that a pair of birds had decided to build a nest in our BBQ grill! I couldn't believe it. And at first I was adamant that they had to go. I opened up the grill and was planning to toss all the grass and garbage out, but I didn't quite have the heart. Then I got a better look at the birds and noticed that one of them has a broken foot. The poor guy hobbles and hops on one twisted leg. Well, there went my resolve. Needless to say, a bird family lives in our grill. It was so amazing how hard they worked - they must have made thousands of trips back and forth carrying more stuff for the nest. The children have really enjoyed watching the birds (so has the cat) and they have completely stayed away from the grill so they don't frighten them (the cat, not so much. She is banished from the back deck).

I don't think they have laid any eggs yet. We've been afraid to peek for a week or so. And if any bird experts out there know what kind of birds we've got (you can click on the picture to see it enlarged) please let me know. Specifically, what their nesting habits are and how soon we might get our grill back. And Carter says "Do your part; save the birds...invite us over for BBQ."