Fire Safety (Monday 4 Melanie)


Edmund just completed his training to become a volunteer fire rat.  As soon as he graduated, he wanted to send a special shout out to Melanie and Tommy (his friends from Canada).  


1) NEVER play with matches, unless your parents are playing with them, too!
2) NEVER detonate fireworks from your bedroom closet!
3) NEVER smoke cigarettes (or pipes) in bed - not even the pretend kind!

4) NEVER start a camp fire inside of your tent!
5) NEVER take fire safety tips from a matter how cute he is!


1) DON'T grab a snack (no matter how munchy you feel)!

2) DON'T stop for a toilet break!

3) DON'T turn on the stereo...this is no time for dancing!

4) DON'T play hide-n-seek!

5) DON'T brush your teeth or take a shower!

* Mondays for Melanie is just a silly, fun way to help a special family create awareness about their daughter's syndrome.  Click to this blog post to learn more.  For those of you that enjoyed their "rat spy" video, stay tuned...they're releasing a new one in just a few short days!

Trapped in Forest (Monday 4 Melanie)

Tommy & Melanie decided to take a walk through the forest.  They were having a great time until, suddenly, a cage (intended for a deer) dropped from a tree!  Poor Melanie was trapped!  The kids were afraid, but Tommy never left Melanie's side.  They started yelling for help, and wouldn't you know it - Peter just happened to be passing through Canada!!  Everyone knows how freakishly well rats can hear.  So, within the blink of an eye, Peter was on the scene and he freed Melanie from the cage! 

 "Hey kids, don't you worry, I'll 
have you outta there in a jiffy!"

 That's not the end our tale!  Peter decided to walk with the kids to see that they got home safely.  Rats have GREAT sniffers.  It's a good thing, because Peter smelled danger!  He realized a nasty snake had been following them!  Everyone knows that snakes & rats don't mix.  Luckily, Peter has serious rat ninja skills and this snake was no match for him!  Hip Hip Hooray!  Peter saved the day!

"You take that, Mr. Snake!  Don't you
mess with me or my friends EVER again!" 

* Mondays for Melanie is just a silly, fun way to help a special family create awareness about their daughter's syndrome.  Click to this blog post to learn more.

Boo "Ratley"

Meet the newest member of our family: 

Boo "Ratley"!   

Cheesy name, I know, but it made me chuckle.  Boo's bright red eyes almost look demonic & could give someone a fright, especially if they aren't rat fans! 

Boo is quite adventurous, and very brave!  He dared to go into the mouth of a deep sea angler, and he lived to tell about it! 

Here's how Boo came to live with us...

We went to the pet store because we were running low on supplies.  I almost started to cry when I saw this little Dumbo (it's his breed, not an insult).  He looked so sad, and the store clerk told me he'd been alone for almost 3 months!!!  I know, I know, I know...rats need to be rescued!  I truly believe that going through a rescue organization is a great thing, but I felt like I was still rescuing the little dude.  Rats are social, and it's not good for them to be alone.  Now, Boo has friends, and best of all...he didn't become snake food!  I think that's quite a rescue!  

Ringo is the sweetest, most amazing little boy alive.  No kid can top mine when it comes to compassion toward little critters!  Had to throw a quick photo of him in here, after all....


Happy Mother's Day!

This isn't a rat story on Angela’s blog. I’m her husband.  I've hacked in (with the help of a friend & covert ninja). We want people to know that the author of this blog ROCKS!  

Angie was a beautiful baby...

Who became a beautiful woman....

Who became a beautiful mother....

A standard snowman wasn't good enough for Ringo.  He wanted a snowdog.  Not a problem for Angela!  She whipped it out in no time at all!

Angela came up with an idea to go on a treasure hunt at the beach a few years ago. We buried a small box full of fun jewels and pirate coins and marked it with a big “X” on the ground.  I created a fake map showing how to get to the treasure from the beach house. As part of the authenticity, she arranged for a clerk at a local Pirate Museum to “sell” us the map earlier in the day when we visited the museum. From Ringo’s perspective, it looked as though we just started asking the clerk about pirates and she just happened to have an old map to sell us. And sure enough, later that day, we recovered the legendary treasure of Snaggle-Beard.  Ringo had a blast and our treasure hunt has become a yearly tradition.  Maybe he knows by now that it isn't real but he’s not talking. 

This is a sample of what she puts in Ringo's lunch box each day!  
She's always making people laugh...

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Fun facts about this amazing wife, mom & friend:

* Angela & Ringo share an unusually strong love of animals. They are kindred spirits! 

* She magic!  When Ringo was younger, he’d become inconsolable when he’d get minor scuffs & bumps.  She created the “Magic Kiss” which could probably even heal a broken arm!  It required Ringo to press Angela’s elbows to charge the magic.  Once there was enough magic flowing through her arms, she'd kiss the boo-boo & tickle him until he couldn’t stand it any longer. Complete recovery was almost immediate. Even though he’s a little too old for that nowadays, he’ll sometimes exaggerate the severity of his pain to get a Magic Kiss.

* Speaking of magic, it’s all real to Angela.  Even when she sees a movie about magic, she often doesn't believe that tricks and special effects were used. Once, a friend did a card trick for her. He asked her to pick a card from a deck, memorize it, and place it back in the deck. After he shuffled, he laid all of the cards face up on a table and asked her to find her card.  It wasn’t there!  He asked her to check her pocket, and of course it was there.  She freaked out, and immediately reeled back in disbelief.  How does this make her a good mom?  Well, she has an amazing ability to suspend disbelief and enter a child’s world of imagination.  This allows her to connect with Ringo in a way that few other adults can connect with their children.

 Happy Mother's Day!  We Love You!

Wizard of Oz

Ringo goes to an amazing, arts-based school. They've recently been learning about the Wizard of Oz.  Ringo's teacher does a great job of working his imagination, and her teaching style often sends him into a wonderfully creative frenzy.  Last night, that "frenzy" resulted in homemade Wizard of Oz costumes for our pet rats.  Here's the result...

The Cowardly Lion

The Tin Man

(He's supposed to be a scarecrow.  I think the hat looks more like a Sombrero)

The Wicked Witch of the West


 Toto (a very sleepy Toto)

Glenda the Good Witch

I saved the best for last:  Ringo's Tin Man costume! 

* Once again, I must give Karin over at Flickr credit for this because her creativity is what gave us the idea for these costumes!  Thanks, Karin!

Rat Babysitters (Monday 4 Melanie)

Tom and Nathalie love their children more than anything in the world, but they decided it was time for a weekend away - without the kids!  They went to the Bahamas for Easter weekend!  Being the amazing parents that they are, they called upon the world's coolest babysitters: Peter and Edmund, and their special **Paisley Garden Friends.

They had such a blast!  Melanie played dress up with Edmund, and then got the guitar out.  They wrote some beautiful songs!

Tommy wanted to start working on his next book, so Edmund did some brainstorming with him.  He wasn't too thrilled to learn that he wasn't the main character in Tommy's book. 

Tommy rode across the countryside with Edmund, but poor Edmund required a nap afterward...

Melanie & Tommy were so excited that Easter was the next day!  In fact, they were eager to go to bed!  Peter & Edmund were a little nervous about babysitting for an entire weekend, so they invited their best friends from Charleston, SC to come and help.  Edmund did a great job.  He even kissed the kids goodnight....

And, just as everyone suspected, they all had a FABULOUS time on Easter Sunday, even though Edmund spent much of the day sleeping.  See for yourself....

* Mondays for Melanie is just a silly, fun way to help a special family create awareness about their daughter's syndrome.  Click to this blog post to learn more. 

** Paisley Garden friends are special, magical little creatures made by my lovely, amazing, talented, creative friend who inspires me in some way, almost every single day:  

She brings the Paisley Garden Friends to life, and then she sends them to live with special families across the country.