From My Picasa album: AsherFrom ReptilesThis was a post I’d been meaning to move over to our new blog for some time, but I just didn’t want to re-post something so sad. Then, unfortunately, we lost Jason’s stepmother, Marti, suddenly from an aneurysm. It was so unexpected. Jason’s father died several years ago at almost the same age. If there is an afterlife, I hope that they are together now. I never got to meet Jason’s dad, but I did meet Marti. She was a sweet and intelligent woman. (Above are some paintings of Marti that we have hanging in our house – they were painted by Jason’s father.)I also have to mention that since this post, we lost our skink April (Irma’s daughter) passed away. We will miss her.From previous post:We’re coming up on the anniversary of Jason’s father’s passing, and I wanted to take a few minutes to remember a couple of special people. Even though they weren’t human, they touched us and were family.Asher was a wolf-dog hybrid. Not like how every person with a husky or malamute mix thinks their dog “might be part wolf” or how every white American is part Indian (with a feather, not a dot), but *really* wolf. Her father was full wolf, and her mother was 75% wolf (off-spring of a male wolf and a female half-wolf, half German Shepard). That made Asher 86.67% wolf. And she acted like it. I was her alpha female, and she was my best friend. She taught me a lot. She taught me how to play hide-and-seek. She was mischievous. She stole my things and hid them when I wasn’t paying attention to play tricks on me – and then laughed at me, with her squint-eye wolf grin. It’s been over a decade since Asher passed on, and I still think about her often.Rudy and Irma were prehensile-tailed (or monkey-tailed) skinks. Jason had had them for years when we met. They were mates and raised two offspring together. These skinks, unlike most other reptiles, live in family groups and colonies. Rudy was ill when Jason and I were dating. He died shortly after. We took him to the Columbia river and released his body into the water. Irma missed him. She still took care of the two babies, but it seems that once they were old enough, she just kind of wasted away. Nearly a year later, Irma died at our house in Long Beach just before we got married. We brought her body with us to Portland when we got married, and the weekend before our wedding, on a beautiful evening we sent her to join Rudy. The babies – not so baby anymore – April and Augustus are still with us and thriving.