Milestones and Pet Names

A couple weeks ago, we took the boys to the Baltimore Aquarium. If you are ever in the area, it is a must see - a wonderful aquarium. Go on Friday after 5 p.m. and three of you can get in for what it would cost one of you usually. And there's no crowd pushing you along or away from things you really want to see.

The aquarium trip is a milestone for two reasons:

First, the aquarium website said to leave the stroller and have the kids walk because there are escalators and moving walkways that make it harder to get around with strollers. Um, yeah. Not so sure about that. I just knew I'd lose Calvin only to look into the shark tank a mere twenty seconds later and see him swimming around with them. So...we bought leashes. And used them for the first time ever in our parenting career.

We found that they are not as bad as I thought they would be, but felt totally conspicuous the entire time that we used them. Especially when I was holding both and the boys ran in opposite directions around the pole dividing the ticket line. And once when Calvin ran in between two or three people to get a closer look into a tank and David lifted the leash over a lady's head to keep hold of it. I guess it would have been worse if he had reached around her, let go of the leash with one hand and grabbed it with the other, like we had to do to untangle from the pole earlier. We'd probably still be sorting out litigation over that.

At any rate, it was comedy. But my previous resistance to leashes was allayed when the first grandma we saw said, "Oh! Where did you get those adorable leashes! I need to get one for my granddaughter!" Granted, I would have felt much better if she would have complimented me on the adorable children attached to the leashes, but I'll take what I can get when I feel like a walking three-ring circus.

And second, it is quite fitting that the first time we officially treated our children like pets led to our brand-new status of an official pet-owning family. Fish. Four of them, in a nice little five gallon tank. Calvin is in heaven and invites everyone up to his room to see his fish. If he starts charging admission, I'll be really impressed.

I told him today that we need to name his fish. To which he responded, "I already named them. I thought of their names last night."

"Oh, yeah? What are their names?"

"Harry, Larry, Mary, Jerry and Gary."

Yes, I said there were only four fish, but Cal came up with five names, so one of them must have a middle name. Or something. I asked David if he had suggested these names, and he said he hasn't even mentioned naming the fish at all. So this all came out of Cal's head, and it makes me laugh so hard. We know a Mary, but no one by any of the other names. The rhyming thing just kills me. I asked Cal when he thought of these names and he said, "Last night when I was asleep."


Angela said...

"While visions of Harry, Larry, Mary, Jerry, and Gary popped into his head...." That boy is a riot.

I got a leash for Ben right after Aves was born and he still had no concept of danger, or the wrath of mom---only I didn't have as much success. It was elastic and he learned how to take it off. There was one memorable moment in the dr's office when an elastic leash was stretched the entire length of the waiting room and snapped off, flying through the air, removing one toupee, two reading glasses, a Parenting magazine, and the skin off of my upper lip. I didn't use it after that.

Your descriptions of "Untangling" was hilarious.

I'm anxious to see who gets the middle name. I hope it's Mary.

Super Happy Girl said...

Aww. "I already named them. I thought of their names last night." Cute. maybe on if the names is a last name. Maybe.

I had my kids on leashes. I didn't care about anyone staring: I'm Mexican, I'm crazy and those kids were gonna stay with me no matter what.
(Ha! that's the kind of people who use leashes...see also the "leash mayhem above).

Glad no one had to call a "Yellow Code" on you at the zoo.

T.S. Eliot said...

So funny. I think those are GREAT fish names. I have to agree with Angela-- Mary Jerry cracks me up. I have fond memories of the Baltimore Aquarium... we went together when we were dating... the Inner Harbor is such fun!

Hey-- I thought your camera was back? Where are the pictures of your precious CalHenry?

someone else said...

What a funny story. As usual, your little guys are most entertaining! The fish names are a crack-up. Maybe the fifth one is for inspiration so you'll get him another fish.

Amanda said...

Your boys sound so adorable. Even when they are tangling themselves up around poles and old ladies. I loved the fishing with sharks comments. That is why I hardly left my house when the twins were little. It was too much for this poor mama to handle. Why didn't I think of leashes?!?

Love the fish names too! LOL!

Anonymous said...

Ha, my coworkers and I have had the kid-leash conversation many times.

Those of us without kids think (like I did before kids) that it is strange and cruel to put kids on leashes like dogs.

Those of us WITH kids? Know that, hello?! once kids learn to walk they are GONE! Putting them on leashes allows them to not be strapped down in strollers like they hate, while also knowing where they are at all times!

Anonymous said...

my parents used leashes on me and my sister about 20 years ago, so it must be successful if they are still around, right? :)

smart mama said...

hey we've got the rhyming thing master- I love the baltimore aquarium one of the best in the world- i did my child life training at johns hopkins- love baltimore!

"Grandi" said...

I loved the leashes! I had the kind that really went around their little torsos and zipped up the back - not the around the wrist kind. They were wonderful! We also used them when we went camping - I could hook Computer Guy to a "lunge line" between trees or cars and he could play to his heart's content in the dirt and have plenty of room to move around and I didn't have to worry about him in the street or the lake!
I also used it when we went to friends homes - attach a wide length of grosgrain ribbon (or similar) to the harness and attach it to the bed in the guest room with big safety pins - or tie it to opposite corner posts. It was great when we hadn't thought to bring the portable bed. They could move around some and sleep comfortably without falling off the bed!

Unknown said...

My mil told me about that new "no stroller" policy and she was very mad about it. They took my niece, who was around 1 at the time. What do you do with them? I like the leash idea, because my Kyle is not a quiet walk by your side kind of kid.

Tammy said...

Sounds like quite an adventure! Loved reading this story...I chuckled through the whole thing! :)
We have a pretty nice aquarium on the Oregon coast...a fairly new one. I wonder how it compares to Baltimore.
And we'll be visiting the Maui Ocean Center this month! Woohoo!

(Sorry...we're getting a little excited over here counting the days...) ;)

Katherine@Raising Five said...

Kids-as-pets - hilarious. I guess that's better than kids-as-shark-bait. You are such the goin' family! I admire your energy (especially when Cal can name pets in his sleep - truly remarkable!).

Pam said...

Little kid dreams are the best.

I'm tempted to put a leash on my husband while he holds the leashes on the kids. Yes, I must have the video camera hidden and I will hold his leash while he holds all the kids...That could win me the 10 grand on Americas Funniest Home Videos. Oh too funny:)