Our Little 3-Year Olds — May 7, 2015

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Peanut and Cashew are turning 3!  I’ve been looking through some of their “baby” pictures lately and have been really surprised at how much they’ve grown up.

PeanutandCashewMay2012

One of their first pictures together, May 2012.  Peanut is a little bit older than Cashew, and is definitely a little larger here.  He’s also a little lighter in color.

PeanutandCashewincageMay2012

So tiny!  They usually slept pretty close to each other in their cage back when they were babies…

PeanutandCashewSleeping032015

And sometimes, we’re lucky enough to catch them still sleeping in a row!  (Peanut’s still a little lighter in color, but Cashew’s done a lot of catching up in size.  He’s actually a little bit larger than Peanut now, and he’s got more shell growing in!)

We just recently had to start separating them into their own cages, so they’re independent turtles with their own rooms now, hehe.  They are both males and we think they were competing for space, so now they have cages across the room from each other, within viewing distance of each other.  I think they’re happier with this arrangement, and they’re still friends — they get to hang out together when we’re home with them.

PeanutandCashewJan2013

I love this picture of Peanut standing up on those little spindly legs he used to have!  He’s much larger than Cashew here…

PeanutandCashewwaterbowlDecember2012

And they actually used to be able to share their water bowl!  (Please excuse Peanut’s wide rear end…he still has that feature….)

CashewwaterbowlDec2014

Cashew, present day,…same water bowl….but now he takes up the whole thing all by himself……

And we had to take action on Peanut’s wide rear when he really started expanding and could no longer fit in the log hideout in his cage….

winniethepooh

He was doing a Winnie-the-Pooh every day trying to run and hide in his log!  It was really hilarious and he somehow always made himself fit, but we finally stopped laughing at him and got him a larger log.

Turtles at their first Christmas:

Peanut and CashewNovember2012Christmas

They both have always considered David to be their own personal climbing toy.  Cashew’s new game is to swan dive off David’s desk and into David’s shirt, using it as his trampoline.  (We’re going to have to get a video of it.  He really commits to it!)

PeanutandCashewNovember2012CrawlingonDavid

Peanut is hiding under David’s collar, back when he was small and still fit under there.  Cashew is on David’s hand, about to take off and climb the rest of the way up…it was a long climb back then.

CashewTurtlePowerOct2014Cashew has Turtle Power!

Peanut and Cashew November 25 2012 021

Of course, this was the baby pic of Cashew that made him famous.  :)  Still one of my favorites of him!

So I couldn’t resist a redo….

GrowingCashew2Peanut’s baby pic…

PeanuteyesclosedMay2012And now, he’s bigger than a handful…

PeanutinHand2015But he still loves to be held.  He loves nothing better than to sit and watch tv with us.

And if Cashew’s famous pic is my favorite of him, then I also have to share my favorite pic of Peanut:

PeanutLookingUp

So so cute!  He was sitting in my lap asking to eat, and his expression here is just too cute.

It’s been a fun and interesting 3 years.  We’ve learned a lot about our little chelonians, and we’re sure to continue learning more as they continue to grow and mature!

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I Remember When You Were Knee-High to a Grasshopper! — October 6, 2014

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David was sorting through some of his work papers the other day.  He found this picture in the midst of his papers and showed it to me:

The Smallest Turtles!

       The Smallest Turtles!

I could not believe that Peanut and Cashew had ever been so tiny!  (Cashew is the smaller one at the top.  Peanut is the lighter, larger one at the bottom.)  It just reminded me of how much they have grown in the two+ years that we’ve had them.  They have just gotten massive!

Peanut:

July 2012:

Just a baby!

       Just a baby!

October 2014:

PeanutQuarter

Peanut has always been the larger of the two.  He has grown steadily the entire time we’ve had him.  He’s super sweet and loves to just be close to us.  He is the happiest when he’s asleep in the crook of my arm when I am sitting on the couch watching tv.  I am pretty sure I could just carry him around 24/7 and he would think it was great.  He’s a cuddler.

I always kind of thought that Peanut might be female, but now that he’s getting older, we have learned that he is definitely male.  He’s also starting to develop some orange freckles on his face, another male characteristic.  (Males often have orange and red faces, though not always.)

Cashew:

July 2012:

cashewquarter2

         Teeny tiny!

October 2014:

CashewQuarter

Cashew was our little runt for the longest time.  Peanut was growing and growing and Cashew just wasn’t.  But never fear — one day he became the Hulk and all this new shell came in almost before our eyes.  (That light ring at the base of his shell is more new growth.)  There were days when I’d see him in the morning and then by evening I’d swear he’d grown more in just those few hours!  He is also a male.  I always thought he was because he has had little orange racing stripes on his face since we got him, hehe.

Cashew is our crazy turtle.  He’s our own personal drill sergeant. We think he knows my alarm clock noise because he loves to get up when I do.  I come into the living room, turn on the light, and there’s that turtle – already awake and ready to get up!  On the days when I do sleep in, I can sometimes lay in bed and hear him beating on the glass of his cage — “Get up!  Get up!!!  I am hungry!!”

Cashew knows no fear.  When I hold Peanut, he finds a nice warm spot so he can cuddle up and snuggle.  There is hardly any snuggling with Cashew!  David usually has Cashew, and that turtle will climb all the way up to David’s shoulder, and then turn around, head facing downwards, put both arms and both legs straight out, and then sllliiiiiiiiidddeee on his belly all the way down!  David has to have a blockade ready for him so he doesn’t go off onto the floor!  He loves it.  He will do this over and over and over again.  It’s really funny to watch, and you can tell he’s having a great time.

Side-by-side, they are almost identical now in size:

In their water bowl.  They used to swim around in here together, but clearly now it's a one-at-a-time event.  (Those are shavings on Cashew's back from the cage - he was buried under them a few moments prior.)

In their water bowl. They used to swim around in here together, but clearly now it’s a one-at-a-time event. (Those are shavings on Cashew’s back from the cage – he was buried under them a few moments prior.)

Cashew is the darker one on the left, and Peanut is the lighter one on the right.  That’s really the fastest way to tell them apart anymore – they are just too close in size to judge!

My only question: how did they get so big!!

photo 1

Oh.

Yeah.

They love their food.

Peaches and Pills — November 22, 2012

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Our turtles reaped the benefits of feasting on peaches just in time for Thanksgiving –

Love the way Peanut has to sit IN the plate….while Cashew eats daintily from the side.

David and I went way more casual this year for Thanksgiving than what we even usually do.  Generally we go to Denny’s for Thanksgiving.  This year, we both worked and then we came home and ate pasta!  (So see, I actually COOKED on Thanksgiving!  I think that’s remarkable.)  We’re going to have nachos here in a little bit.  Super easy.  It cracks me up the way everyone complains and complains about cooking for Thanksgiving.  That is all I have been hearing about for weeks now.  It’s not a law that you have to kill yourself in the kitchen for this one little meal!  Do what you like and be happy.  It’s just better.

We also (finally!) went to see Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 2!  Wow, that was a good movie!!  That wasn’t really my favorite book (er….part of book, I guess) in the series, so I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the movie.  Go see it!  (And yes, I did work the Twilight Marathon and Premiere day last Thursday.  That was a crazy day!  We sold out our entire cinema – entire building! – for the premiere.  It was tiring and fun at the same time.  Everyone was excited and actually pretty easy-going about it all, so that made it nice.)

I got a nice surprise last week that made for a good Thanksgiving gift – no more endocrinologist visits!  YAY!  Remember last year – 2011 – when I was diagnosed with thyroid issues?   They put me on synthoid even though I never had any symptoms and my bloodwork results were irritatingly inconsistent in every way.  Well, I played nicely and took the pills as prescribed, and I did all my bloodwork, and did all my doctor visits and everything else.  I finally asked to get off the medicine last December, just to see what would happen.  I still had no symptoms and the bloodwork had not changed significantly since being on the medicine.  I went through all of 2012 getting lots of labwork done and it just kept coming back normal.

So, the endocrinologist decided that since everything has been normal for so long that I must be okay!  She still insists that I have Hashimoto’s Disease, but that it must be in remission.   No matter, I say.  I feel symptom-free and my lab results seem to agree with it, so that’s exciting!  I will take that good news any day!  Happy thanksgiving to me!

Here’s to fewer doctor’s visits in 2013.  I was getting famous in the lab at the doctor’s office though.  My tiny, hard-to-find veins were a true challenge to everyone.  (And they were in love with my Peanut and Cashew stories.  :)  Who wouldn’t be?)

…And Turtle Treats! — October 13, 2012

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We are always trying out new foods with our turtles.  After the now-Internet-famous video of the raspberry eating turtle (also named Peanut!), we decided to see if our babies would eat raspberries.  David’s parents had a container of raspberries one day, so we snagged a few and brought them home.  Both our turtles nudged at them with their noses:

hmmm….this does not appear to be a worm…… I am not impressed.

 

This might actually be pretty good! I might have to try it!

So Peanut just totally did not even try the raspberry.  He walked off indignantly.  Cashew, though, at least tasted it!

That was all he wanted of it though!  I gave them several other raspberries over the next few days, and even cut them up for them, but nope.  Not interested!  I guess we won’t get famous on the interwebs for our raspberry eating skills.

——————-

We did have a lot of success with another new thing we tried recently – a Turtlebone!  Yep, our turtles eat bones!

(This was the first time Peanut saw the bone.  It is brand new here.  Note how smooth it is.)

These are actually cuttlefish bones and are essentially the same thing that you’d put in a bird cage.  I read about them in my turtle book and since they were only a couple of dollars at Petsmart, I figured we didn’t have anything to lose!  They help the turtles get more calcium in their diets and they also help their little “beaks” not to get overgrown.  I noticed early on that Peanut had a rapidly growing beak, and he was even starting to get “tusks” before we got him the Turtlebone!

Peanut LOVES this thing!  He chews on it at least once a day that I know of.  He’s loud too!  It sounds like he’s sharpening a knife when he clamps down on it!  Look how much he’s eaten:

Little triangle-shaped bites all over the bone.

He’s funny though because he doesn’t want anyone to watch him eat it.  If he sees me come into the room when he’s eating his bone, he’ll turn around and scamper off.  However…..there is evidence……

….well……that just looks suspicious……. :)

I just crack up every time I see him with that white mustache!  It has done wonders for his beak though.  No more tusks!!  I’m glad he likes it so much.

I haven’t seen Cashew eating off the bone yet.  I hope he does.  His beak hasn’t really needed the trimming down that Peanut’s did, so maybe he just hasn’t felt the need to chew on it yet.  (Or else he’s just sneaky and I haven’t seen him!)

We love to nap under here!

 

 

 

Turtle Tricks! — October 8, 2012

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When we first got our turtles, the first book I read about turtle care stated something that surprised me: turtles can learn how to beg!  I thought that was funny, especially because I didn’t know at that time how personable turtles could be.  The book said that once the turtles got to know you, they would start trying to find ways to get your attention.

Well. We have certainly reached that stage! –

Can we come out and play?

They have just gotten silly lately about begging for attention!

Peanut really wants to be held.

They have become masters at maintaining eye contact too!  They see you outside the glass of their cage and start their pacing…back and forth…back and forth.  They occasionally hit their shells against the glass, and whether intentional or not, it makes some noise!  They press their noses against the glass and put both little hands up, pawing the glass in their attempt to get someone’s attention.

Here they were marching back and forth at the same time. They like to work together because who can resist TWO begging turtles?

Sometimes Peanut gets really wound up and tries to stand up on two feet!  He gets against the glass and works at it until he is a vertical turtle!

“I’m a vertical turtle!” says Peanut.

The problem here is that turtles just weren’t made to be vertical!  Those little spindly legs don’t hold all that weight well, and the shell throws him off balance when he’s standing up.  So, next thing you know, my vertical turtle is on his back, little arms and legs waving helplessly as he waits to be rescued! (Cashew, so far, is too refined for all that nonsense.)

So, what’s the point of all this begging?  Well, sometimes they just want to get out and run around.  More commonly, though, they want to be held.  They love to get warm and fall asleep.  It makes all their efforts worthwhile.

Cashew, sound asleep in the crook of David’s arm.

 

 

We’re Growing!……Right?? — September 3, 2012

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Peanut and Cashew have been with us for more than three months now!  We’re so attached to those little babies!  If you had told me six months ago that I’d spend my evenings holding turtles to keep them warm….or worse, that I’d be cutting worms with razor blades as part of my daily routine…I would have thought you were crazy!  These are the two most spoiled turtles in the world!  (Did you know that they love it when you feed them their worms one at a time with tweezers?  hehehe.)  I don’t know what we’ll ever do when we go on vacation.  We’re going to have pages and pages of directions for whatever poor soul agrees to take care of them! :)

I took pictures of them back in May.  They posed with my cell phone and a quarter so we could see how much they were growing.  I knew Peanut was growing, but I wasn’t completely sure about Cashew.

Here’s Cashew’s growth progression:

May 2012 is on the left. Today’s pic is on the right.

Other than the fact that I wasn’t perfect with my photography, can anyone see any difference in the size of this turtle?  I really almost could not tell which pic was from May and which was from August!  I’m just glad I could check to see when the picture was taken!  Poor little runt!  :)  I do think his shell has gotten a little taller, but you can’t tell that here.

Here is Peanut:

May 2012 is on the left, today’s pic is on the right.

I think Peanut has definitely grown.  He’s gotten very round and wide.  He is also much heavier than he used to be!  (This makes sense.  He eats everything!)

We’ll have to check back again in a few months more.  Maybe Cashew will hit a growth spurt.

In the meantime, we’ll just keep cutting up worms, sharing fruit, and giving them a warm place to snooze.  :)

One of my favorite pictures right now. Peanut was trying to explain that they were finished swimming and were ready to go back to their warm cage. Those little teeny legs can’t hold all that weight! hehe!!

 

 

 

 

Turtle Babies Update! — July 8, 2012

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Whew!  Life has been extremely busy lately!  I’ve started to wake up every morning with these questions first in my mind:  1. Where am I going today?  2. What time do I need to be there?, and 3. Did I get up at the right time?  So far I’ve made it to the correct job on the correct day at the correct time, but you know it’s only a matter of time before I show up at the right place with the wrong keys, or something similar!

I am very much enjoying being back at the cinema.  It felt like I was back home from my first evening there and it’s been really nice to be back in that little world!  It’s funny that it has hardly changed at all! (And yes, Clarissa, you were right – you never forget how to make popcorn!)

But today we are going to talk about all the cuteness of the little baby turtles living in my house.  I can’t help but marvel at how they continue to do cute things every day to impress us and make us laugh.

Peanut and Cashew still take their morning baths every morning.  My morning schedule is different just about every day, so sometimes they are waiting by their water container for me to hurry up and get there, and other days I have to unbury them from the depths of their cage and wake them up.  (They’re so cute with their little sleepy eyes!)

Cashew is on the left and Peanut is on the right.

Peanut is much larger than Cashew these days!  In fact, Peanut sometimes nearly crowds Cashew out of the water.  He just shoves Cashew to the side when he wants to walk around.  Cashew is still a little runt, but he eats worms like crazy now so he’s sure to start catching up soon.  (And yes, those pink things to the side of the water are doorstops.  We are using them as turtle ramps!  They have a bit of a time trying to get into that water container, so we were hoping the ramps would help.  Well, they love going up the ramps….but then they can’t decide what to do next!  They can’t quite make the connection that they’re by their water, so they just end up coming back down the ramp.  Hehe. I finally bought them a very small water container that they can step in and out of more easily, so they do have access to water when we’re not around.)

Cashew is contemplating getting out of his bath. (Peanut is hoping to see worms appear.)

 

Cashew is moving so fast that he’s a blur! (And yes, Peanut’s lips are stained black from eating worms covered in dirt! I think it gives him a hilarious little smirk.)

Cashew’s little routine in the mornings is to get out of his bath and start munching on his morning leaf.  Sometimes he is so loud with his leaf that I can hear him all the way into the bedroom!  Peanut isn’t much of a morning eater.  He likes to dry off under his log, nap a little, and then come back for his leaf.  It’s unusual to see both of them at their leaf together.  They’ll nibble on just about any green leaf, but they love butter lettuce the best.  They eat nearly a whole leaf every day.  (I think this is Cashew’s favorite food next to worms.)

Peanut has long ago decided that worms are the best food ever. (Second choice might just be tomatoes.) If you remember, it took Cashew a little longer to get on the worm bandwagon, but now he loves them too.  It was funny how one day he just turned!  I was offering him worms every time I fed Peanut, but he would always walk right past.  Then one day, he picked up a worm in his mouth and carried it off and buried it.  I thought that was weird, but then the next day, he went and unburied it and ate it!  And that was all it took!

Of course, this has led to some funny moments between the two turtles.  I started out trying to feed Cashew surreptitiously, trying to give him his worms before Peanut even noticed.  That did not work out well!  Cashew is a slow eater and it was only a matter of time before Peanut noticed what was going on.  A mad turtle would suddenly appear at the opening of his log, glaring out at the sight before him.  Then Peanut would take off running like a freight train, straight for Cashew and the worms!  (A running turtle is truly a most hilarious sight.  He looks like he’s doing a very fast army crawl, and it’s surprisingly loud!)

One time Cashew was eating his worms and had his back to the oncoming freight train that was Peanut.  Peanut was barreling ahead at full speed and Cashew was completely oblivious.  Peanut clamored over into Cashew’s bowl, started to stomp right on Cashew, trampling him, and had just about reached for the worm in Cashew’s mouth when I stood up and said, “NO! We do not steal food!”  All the scuffling in the cage completely came to a stand still!  Two little turtle heads looked straight up at me, and then Cashew bent his head down and went, “Ptooey!” and spit out the worm.  hehe!

So now we have to feed the babies separately.  Peanut eats his out of his worm plate outside of the cage.  Cashew prefers to eat his in the water, so he stands in the little water dish and eats his.  Peanut knows his worm plate and he seems to always have one eye looking out for it.  Watch him appear at the end of the log –

He’s very dramatic about his eating.  He loves to chomp down on them.  The pieces are usually still wriggling and I think he likes to make it a challenge by swooping down on them.   One day I cut the segments a little longer than usual, and when he chomped down on one, the worm jerked up and the other end of the segment hit him in the eye!  He was completely unfazed by it all and just kept eating.

And we can’t forget our little Cashew:

Lately we’ve been experimenting with letting them swim and dive for their worms.  They like to swim!  We put them in the water together so they sometimes end up battling over the worms.  There was an epic tug-of-war the other day!  (Peanut used his size to win, hehe)

Every day is fun with these little babies!

 

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