So I made you wait more than a day for the answer. Sorry.
What do "yesterday's" two objects (homeless stuffed animals and a pile of gravel) have in common?
Anyone who has visited my home in the past TEN YEARS or read this previous blog post should have guessed the answer: A fish tank.
Specifically, it's a 65-gallon fish tank that we emptied back in 2000 when we moved to San Francisco (then back to Chicago). It got filled with stuffed animals during the move, and the stuffed animals didn't leave it again until four weeks ago. Frankly, the jokes about it needing a crane arm to look like one of those arcade games never got old.
But now that joke is so 2009, because the fish tank is a proper fish tank again.
We tested it first to make sure it held water after almost 10 years of being dry. Success.
Then we called in Cousin Bob, who is our experienced aquarium man in the family, and he helped us buy a new filter and get the gravel clean and all the fun stuff.
Here's Cousin Bob on gravel duty (remember this photo is four weeks old, the Christmas tree is down by now):
And here's my husband assembling the filter:
Then we put in half a dozen hearty starter fish (zebra danios) and let the tank cycle for a month to get the bacteria on track.
This coming weekend we'll get the water tested and -- voila! -- add fish!
But not this kind of fish. This is Baby X. We do know the difference. :)