Friday, May 14, 2010


When I was a kid, I had hamsters. My first one, Princess, was a standard golden Syrian. She was the first pet who was mine, all mine, and I spent every dollar I could get my hands on for treats and toys and more cages. I loved those S.A.M. cages that connect with tubes. I did extra chores, used all my birthday money, for her. I think, in retrospect, I got more money for chores than I should have, but think that was probably because my parents knew I was going to spend it all on taking care of my hamster, and wanted to do it all on my own. When she died, I was devastated. Just so completely crushed. It was the worst day of my life until that point. My dad, bless 'im, tried cheering my up by surprising me with another hamster, but Princess the 2nd just wasn't the same. And then there was Buddy, my first teddy bear, a grey one, then Caramel, a caramel-colored teddy bear I nicknamed Carrie, and Bridgette, a teddy bear with a marking pattern like a light standard Syrian. Bridgette died when I was 12, right before I was diagnosed with colitis.

I've been wanting another hamster for a while, but the timing never felt right. Last Thursday we were at the pet store, day after I got out of the hospital, to get Emma a new collar. Her leather one was three years old and getting really nasty. I was hobbling around the pet store and saw the little mice. Charlotte was fascinated by the frogs. I saw a calico fancy hamster in a cage by herself, and the lady said she's been there a while and wasn't so friendly. Catch-22. She wasn't so friendly because she'd been there a while, about six months, and wasn't getting a home because she wasn't nice. But I was smitten. All she needed was a bit of time. I put my hand in the cage and let her sniff me, and gave her some raisins, and within a few minutes, she was letting me pet her head.

Cody and I went home, and I couldn't stop thinking about her. So the next day, Cody got her for me. As he said, for Mother's Day I get to be 12 again and pick up from where I left off when things in life were good. :)

She lets me pick her up here and there now, though I haven't taken her far outside her cage, a good-sized 3-story cage. She loves the tops of strawberries and kale. She's warming up to me nicely, and Cody's warming up to her too. He's never had a rodent in the house that wasn't a mouse coming in from outside. He likes her. :)

She looks like a ball of vanilla ice cream with a splotch of butterscotch and some chocolate syrup. The little brown scattered markings on her face look like nuts. All she needs is a cherry on top, so I named her Cherry. :) These pictures are from Friday, her first day home.

Charlotte's getting to be so big! Wednesday she weighed in at 14lb14oz. I did go to the mamas' group I've been missing out on while being sick. Cody brought her in for me, and I got some help when I needed it. She gets up on all fours and crawls, but crawling goes slow for her. So she'll push up an all fours and project herself forward and onto her tummy, giving an "ooh! ooh!" sound each time she lands. It's so cute. The other mamas were surprised at how mobile she is. She's not even six months and yet has no problem rolling all over the place and propelling herself wherever she wants to go. It's not going to be much longer until she's walking on her own. She can walk pretty well when holding onto hands. In these ways, she's growing up so much. I wish she'd slow down. No matter how big she's getting though or how advanced her progress is, it's not hard to be fully reminded of what a baby she really still is when she nurses, and then falls asleep on a boob-pillow. These are from last night:

This is one from my point of view. Look at how sweetly her pretty pink lips are, and how thick her lashes are! Her forehead birthmark is getting so light that it's easy to overlook it sometimes, and the one on the back of her neck and head is so faint compared to when she was born. The one on the back of her neck and head was pretty big and dark. These marks going away is a visual reminder that time is going on and she's growing up. It seems like it's only going to be a very short time before she's grown up and moving out. *sad face*


  1. Cherry's nose is almost red enough to be a cherry!

    Charlotte looks really sweet.

  2. Thanks! Charlotte is such a sweetheart, a happy baby who smiles first thing in the morning. When she's sleeping in her bassinet, like right now, it takes willpower to not scoop her up and cuddle her.

    Cherry needed a home, and I've been wanting a hamster. It was just right. She's a good little thing and getting more affectionate as she warms up to me more. :)


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