Friday, March 17, 2006

In Memory of Kitty

Kitty was given to us when Kelsey was just 3 years old. The two watched cartoons together on the couch. Kitty quickly replaced Kelsey’s baby dolls and could often be found strapped in Kelsey’s baby doll stroller. Sometimes you could find him in that stroller rocketing up and down the hallway. He seemed to enjoy these rides! He knew to just jump up in the baby-doll stroller so that he could go for rides. He enjoyed jumping in empty laundry baskets on cue. We could carry him around in boxes or laundry baskets – he was a very brave kitty!

When he would attack our arm we could calm him down by rubbing his nose. We don’t know why this would tame him.

He thought he was one of the children and would follow them if they crossed the street. He always wanted to be where we were. He would sit with the family on the couch if we were all watching tv or a movie. Kitty slept at the feet of our bed waiting for us to fall asleep so that he could sneak up to our pillows and sleep by our heads. Well, after he outgrew the “attack feet under the sheet” stage. Sometimes he would stay out all night, but he was always meowing at the door in the morning.

Kitty got hit by a car two years ago and with some time and $$$ was almost back to normal. After he got hit he was never as playful as he had once been. I attributed much of it to age as he was probably about 5 years old. He did still go up in trees and follow us around, but he never jumped in a laundry basket again.

Because of infections resulting from those many injuries we had to put him down yesterday. We had two extra years with him.

Kelsey and I have cried off and on for days. For days because we had made the decision a week ago but couldn’t follow through with it.

I thought the boys weren’t too concerned, but today while I was talking on the phone to a friend, Christian, (4 years old) told me that he had something to say - so I handed him the phone. He whispered, “Kitty is dead” in a very serious tone. So, I guess though he doesn’t cry with us he still thinks about it. Christian is right here with me while I type this and I told him, “I’m writing about Kitty what do you want to say?” and he said, “Kitty died.”

Little children are so black and white sometimes.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

University of Texas' Open House

This event, though wonderful for families who are interested in attending UT or visiting college campuses, was not just for teens! There were even activities for the young ones, like Christian. This was basically a big 'show and tell' and 'science fair' all in one. UT students from each dept.

or professors had set up demonstrations, experiments, and activities. We visited many different types of labs, We made slime, got to see a solar powered car (I asked many questions about the car and the solar panels), saw a wind tunnel, saw a trebuchet, saw water flowing uphill and what happens to objects as they move along that flow, watched the vortexes created in flowing water when the water has debris or an obstruction in its path, felt an earthquake thanks to T-Rex, built structures out of gumdrops and toothpicks and then tested the strength of the creations with weights, looked in a few microscopes.. So much to see and do!!!

The next UT Open House is on March 3, 2007. So let's go! The drive was easy and the day was so much fun and it was FREE.

My favorite part of the day was when our children, inspired by all the experiments they had seen, decided to try to break the world's record for the longest string attached to a set of balloons. They collected string from other balloons, took donations even, and tied the strings together until the balloons soared above a nine story building. It didn't take them long to encounter problems and make some very scientific observations about their endeavor. Eventually the string broke and this huge group of balloons floated off dragging behind it well over 100 feet of colorful string! It was quite a spectacle and some of the UT students were taking pictures of our kids as they did this.

We want to recreate this again when the wind is not as strong - maybe at the beach.