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.


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.


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


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.


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


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


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….


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!)


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:


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!


Peanut’s (Totally G-Rated) Shower Scene — December 30, 2014


Peanut’s video from one day (earlier in the year) when he was really enjoying the water spigot outside.  He had so much fun!

(Ironically, he is not really a huge fan of the water when we are inside the house.  He gets his drink and then he’s done and hops out.  Cashew is the one who will sit and soak in the water bowl (aka, his bathtub) in the mornings.)

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


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!


July 2012:

Just a baby!

       Just a baby!

October 2014:


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.)


July 2012:


         Teeny tiny!

October 2014:


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



They love their food.

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


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!!





Just Keep Swimming…Just Keep Swimming… — July 29, 2012


When we first got our little turtles, the first thing David did was find an e-book about them and download it for me!  We’ve tried to follow everything that the book (and all the other stuff I’ve read) has said about them.  We were really happy to find out that our little three-toed box turtles (so named for their little three toes on their back feet) are mostly land turtles instead of aquatic turtles.  The ones who primarily live in the water are very complicated to keep!  Not only do you have to get the water’s chemical setup treated just right every time, but you also have to constantly change it because the turtles are very messy, especially while eating.

Our terrarium setup is really pretty easy.  We recently solved one of our few dilemmas, and that was the idea of trying to allow the turtles to be diurnal, meaning, keeping them on a set day/night schedule.  You’re supposed to give them a heat light/UVB light setup during the day, and then give them a dark environment at night.  We had the light setup, and we also had a heating pad setup so they would be warm even with the lights off, but our schedules were so random (with such long days) that we were having a hard time giving them the 12 hour “days” and the 12 hour “nights” that they like.  Finally, we found a neat timer setup at Petsmart that turns the lights on and heating pad off at 6:30 am and then turns the lights off and the heating pad on at 6:30 pm.  Yay!  That’s much better.

But even though they are mostly land animals, they do enjoy their morning baths and other trips to the water.   The books said that they do love to swim at times, so we decided to set them up a little pool party.  :)  I took the plastic container they came in and filled it partway with warmish water.  Then I took their two water bowls and turned them upside down to use as docks.  One bowl is large enough that it lets them be where it is dry, with easy water access.  The other bowl is shorter and gives them a chance to take a rest in the water without having to actually get out.

They loved it!  We fed them worms during the pool party to keep them entertained.

(I love how Peanut gets little “cartoon eyes” at the 14 second mark.  Cute!)

Of course, their little shells keep them rather buoyant, so diving for worms is a bit of a challenge.  It’s hard to reach the bottom when you can barely get below the surface!  Peanut is much better at diving than Cashew.  (But of course, Peanut also loves to eat….good motivation!)  It’s so funny when they keep trying to dive and just keep springing back up!

They are such sweet little turtles.  When the pool party is over, they burrow down in their cage and sleep the entire afternoon away.  Swimming makes you tired!

(Peanut is the larger one, of course!)

Cashew got a huge piece of leaf stuck to his lip one day. I couldn’t stop laughing at him. He walked off with it still stuck!