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Archive for May, 2008

Japanese Fighters

Edward finally graduated from Kindergarten. In his mind, he’s ready for 4th grade–at least that’s what he tells people. To celebrate this milestone, we asked him where he wanted to go eat and what he wanted to do. Without missing a beat, he blurted out “Red Robin” (read $10.00 hamburger) and “Buy some pet fish!”

You see, a teenage neighbor had given Joseph a beloved “beta” or Japanese Fighting Fish that was bestowed upon him by a now ex-girlfriend. So Edward had been vying for his own fish for several months.

At least he is a child who knows what he wants, so after perusing the offerings for a few minutes, he quickly points to a tank of tiny goldfish. “Five of these—that’s what I need!” Now these look so tiny to me, and I’m concerned about the potential voracity of the blue thing, named “Wyn,” that we’ve already got. I also don’t want another tank on my kitchen counter.

So I approach the seventeen-year-old “Pet Specialist” with my concerns. “Oh no, they are completely compatible!” she promises. Edward beams. The specialist plops the five fish in a baggie and rings up our total: 64 cents. Man, I got off cheap…or so I thought.

The next morning, one of the five fish (or should I say half of one of the five fish) is floating aimlessly at the bottom of the tank. Thankfully, his missing half is hidden by the decorative pebbles so that Edward only notes that he is “searching for food down there by the rocks.” Yes, isn’t he diligent?

A few days later: “How come we started with 5 fish and now there are only 2?”

And then the ominous question, “What’s that furry stuff growing on my beautiful blue fish?” (I should have taken a picture but, really, it was gross.)

I won’t bore or pain you with the details of researching the “fur” and realizing it was some fungal infection scientifically called “Saprolegnia.”  Maybe it was transmitted by one of the 5 “Kindergarten Graduation” fish? How we purchased some costly “vitamins” in hopes of reviving Wyn, to no avail. How H hastily flushed the infected Wyn down the toilet (when he started gasping uncontrollably at water’s edge) without consulting anyone or giving anyone the chance to say his or her farewells. How this broke many hearts and resulted in a much later than normal bedtime due to histrionic wailing (a little too convincing for my taste).

But yet how one spunky “Kindergarten Graduation” goldfish remains, albeit alone, happily munching the expensive vitamin food.

Now he’s the real fighter.

Posted on 21 May '08 by , under Humor/Disconnected Miscellany. 1 Comment.

Potty Training Hits the 1-Year Mark!

“Ooops—those princesses are wet again!  Oh well…”

Yes, congratulations are in order for Sue, who, after one year of potty training still does not elect to use the potty.  It does not matter that we remodeled her bathroom with stylish travertine tile and purchased white “spa” towels with her own pink monogram.  It does not matter that everyone else in her preschool was potty trained mid-year.  It does not matter that she cannot move up in her Sunday school class until she potty trains.

(She prefers the baby class because she believes she is actually one of the teachers.  And at this point, the teachers like having her around since she is so tall she can actually pick up some of the wobbly, sobbing one-year-olds and calm them down.)

After hearing how tough it is to potty train boys (and managing to get that done for both by 2 ½ thanks to aiming at bushes and puffy floating cereal pieces), I was sure potty training Sue was going to be a cinch!  Boy was I wrong.

Below is a list of all the things friends and family have suggested, I have tried, but have failed.  Please pass along your own ideas!

  • Allow child to purchase own pink, “princessy” panties.
  • Buy decorative Princess Potty Seat.
  • Buy Potty Seat that sings a song.
  • Buy soft Potty Seat insert.
  • Remodel 1990s era bathroom attached to her room.
  • Have a Potty Party.
  • Watch encouraging “potty videos” like “Bobby” and read potty-training books like Everyone Poops.
  • Use incentives like candy, special trips to fun spots (like Chuck E. Cheese) and treasure boxes with prizes.
  • Have older friends show her how they potty and be encouraging.
  • Make a chart with stickers showing successes.

I have come to accept the cold, hard fact that she simply does not care.  Preschool starts in exactly eight weeks and to be eligible for the three-year-old class, one has to be potty-trained…hmmmmm…

Posted on 17 May '08 by , under Humor/Disconnected Miscellany. 2 Comments.