More Than Just Pets

Pets, Family And Memories

There were so many pets that brought me happiness as a child. There were a few that made me cry when I lost them. There’s one class of pets that somehow became a family passion. They’re called “Fishes.”

One day, when I was about 6-7 years old, my father brought me and my sisters 3 colorful Koi fishes. One was golden-yellow, the other orange and one a cool mixture of black, white and bright orange. I was so happy and excited. We didn’t have an aquarium then so my dad placed the fishes in a rectangular yellow plastic container with an aerator to circulate the air and create some cool looking bubbles. I would wake up each morning so excited to feed the Koi fishes. Then they grew so big that we need to make a pond. It was the beginning of my love for these amazing , gentle and colorful creatures.

Red Shrimps And Guppies

Last March, on my trip to the Philippines. I didn’t realize how my sisters got so intensely passionate about freshwater tropical fishes. The entire backyard was full of ponds and aquariums. These aquariums were still left overs from a fish store me and my sister put up 12 years ago. There were so many varieties from the red and blue tailed guppies to the rare red shrimps to the enormous catfish. Every morning, I would watch my sisters, nieces and nephews feed the fishes with so much joy. They told me that they find it relaxing and therapeutic. Sometimes I would wake up in the morning with their almost melodious laughter. It was a beautiful way to start a brand new day on top of a freshly grind brewed coffee.

Some of these catfish were sold to a catfish breeder. We kept a few. They were huge. I was amazed that it can crawl on land. We found one that jumped and found it’s way to our gate. It was very alive with lots of energy to spare. We placed it back in its pond. Yipee!

One of my beautiful nieces. She happily caught a guppy. Looking at them reminded of how me and my sisters were growing up. We had a lot of fun times playing and discovering the world around us.


Every morning a new exciting adventure awaits from the simple joys of feeding the fishes to exploring the nearby Islands. The only thing that I didn’t have much was “time.” I can only do my best to experience as much memories as I can with my family. At the end of the day, I can’t help but say, “Thank you. I had a great time.”

One of my fondest memories, was seeing my son feed the fishes with his Uncle Rocky. My son looked so happy and excited. He would lean over the pond in such a way that he looked like he’s about to dive. Like a split second flashback, I saw my little self feeding the guppies, letting them feed and swim on my palm, some of them nibbling my fingers. I remember not just the image but of what it felt like. It was a happy, childhood magical moment always frozen in time.

“Dad, watch this,” shouted my son as he held his hand under water with the fish food  floating on top of it. Then I saw the guppies swimming on his palm. Some nibbling the food while others curiously nibbling his little fingers. His smiled, laughed and jumped with glee. I just stood still silent and hanging on to the moment for as long as I can.

Pets are more than just pets. They are a part of us. A part of our family. A part of a wonderful memory that sometimes we get lucky to recreate.

Sunday Post: Pets

I hope this entry for my Sunday Post about “Pets”  made you remember the many beautiful memories your favorite pet gave you and your family through the years.

About these ads

About Island Traveler

A devoted husband and father who tries to make a positive difference in the lives of his family and friends. A person who finds inspiration and strength on those he loves and who loved him in all aspects of his life.
This entry was posted in family, Inspiration, Island Summer Of 2012, kids, Life, photography, Post A Week, Weekly Sunday Post and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

69 Responses to More Than Just Pets

  1. restlessjo says:

    What a lovely share this is. Apart from the odd goldfish “won” at the fair, we never kept fish but I love watching them in a large pond or aquarium. My mam and sister were both dog crazy and couldn’t imagine life without.

    • Thank you. I had a dog when I was a kid. Me and my sisters adore him. We’ll play with him everyday, give him a bubbly bath but one day he got out and never came back. It broke my heart and It was something I didn’t want to experience again. But now that I’m older, I think I’m ready for one, plus my son loves dogs.

  2. dadirri7 says:

    Thank you for sharing your wonderful experience with fish! I had almost forgotten that we had fish in a big glass tank on the kitchen bench for many years …. now I will have to go searching for photos. Your photos are so lovely, and the involvement of the children, what rich memories they will have too.

    • Thank you my friend. I hope you’ll find those photos soon. Looking at pictures brings back happy memories. Makes you look back to the wonderful past like it was just yesterday. The kids in my family just love fishes. I guess it’s genetics.

  3. Sabina Brave says:

    Koi fishes are beautiful :)

    • Koi fishes are awesome. It’s amazing when they flock on your hand and nibble while you feed them. Some would even let you touch their back. Thanks Sabina.

  4. Beautiful fish, beautiful children. thanks.

  5. fgassette says:

    Thank you for sharing your wonderful, detailed memories of your pet fishes. Your detailed discriptions sparked long forgotten memories of the fish tank my family had long ago. You had me remembering bringing the first ones home in a plastic bag. Thank you also for the link to my blog.


    • The “first” happy moments, more during childhood will mostly likely never be forgotten . These memories help us appreciate how lucky we are to have these moments to feel happy aorund friends, family and yes, pets. Thanks Francine.

  6. misswhiplash says:

    I am not too sure about Cat-fish. They are such ugly crreatures and had I seen one hopping down the path I would run a mile , just as I do snakes….But they are still God’s creatures so as long as they remain in the tank I will be content to love them a little

    Much love to you and family xxxxx

    • I wouldn’t catch a big catfish with my hands. They kind of creep me out too but the babies looks really cute in a tank or pond. You’re right , they do crawl like snakes. Thanks Patrecia.

  7. The Hook says:

    Pets enrich our lives immeasurably, don’t they?

  8. jakesprinter says:

    Beautiful post my friend i love all of it , Thanks for sharing this :)

  9. eof737 says:

    I like fish… They are fun to watch in their tanks too. ;-)

  10. Excellent post! Great memories. I love koi and at one time kept fancy goldfish. Maybe in my retirement I’ll take up that hobby again. ;) Thanks for stopping by my site.

    • Thank you. It was a joy to visit your blog. One of my dreams, to have a huge koi pond in my backyard. Somewhat similar to the Japanese inspired Koi ponds.

  11. Imelda says:

    Wow! My son has been wanting a fish pet. We do not know if he can handle the responsibility yet. So we let him have brine shrimp for now. It is amazing how those tiny miniscule shrimp could bring so much joy to him. Maybe, he will graduate to real fishies one day.

    • Thanks. Brine shrimp sounds fun. You could start with guppies or fighting fish which requires less maintanance and oxygenation. They’ll do well with a small bowl, even a recycled clear plastic jar which by the way was my first aquarium growing up. Kids love creative stuff. It also helps them to use their imagination.

  12. Northern Narratives says:

    I really like fish. It is an activity that can be shared by family and friends and gives many wonderful memories in return.

    • Thank you. Taking care of fishes is indeed a fun and interesting activity for the whole family as well as our friends. I do know a few wherein great friendships were started from sharing their hobby to each other.

  13. shoes says:

    What a great story of memories and the creation of new ones surrounding the pets we love. Pets are family whether they be dog, or fish, or bird or…

    • Pets is a person’s bestfriend and family. The joy they give to us is priceless. They will always be in our thoughts and memory no matter how old we get. Thank you for sharing.

  14. Keri says:

    So wonderful that you can share this with your family!

    • Thanks Keri . I was blessed to be a part of it all. Family events is worth celebrating everyday.

    • It is a wonderful experience . Last night I showed my son the pictures of the fishes and what he did last March in the Philippines through my posts. His face lit up and excitedly told me to refresh his memory. We bought had a great laugh before he slept. Thanks Keri.

  15. Gilly Gee says:

    Fish are great pets for children! I used to have tropical fish indoors and koi out in the pond :-)

    • Indeed they are great pets. I can get lost in thoughts for hours just sitting close to a koi pond and feeding them every now and then. Just a peaceful activity. Thanks Gilly.

  16. Great memories, fun pix, adorable kids, colorful fish. Nice post. :-)

  17. Cathy G says:

    What a beautiful story! Thanks for sharing!

    • Thank you Cathy. It is a story about love and family, something I saw when I also read your post about your parent’s testament of love and devotion throughout the years. Just beautiful.

  18. susielindau says:

    I am a huge fish fan and have had aquariums for years! I had a tank full of guppies while growing up back in Wisconsin!
    Fun Post!

    • Thank you. That sounds really exciting. Guppies are fun to breed. They make babies almost everyday. I remember how excited I was as a child seeing them swimming around the waterplants. Pets makes us feel like kids all over again.

  19. auntyuta says:

    ‘The entire backyard was full of ponds and aquariums.’
    This must be quite a sight. A lot of care is involved in looking after all this. And your family is so joyfully caring day in, day out. It is great seeing people do something they can enjoy this much!
    I loved all the photos. Thanks for sharing!

    • Thank you AuntYuta. The ponds were not hard to maintain, mostly once the good algae grows and the waterplants, somehow a balance ecosystem exist. The aquariums needs to be cleaned every now and then. It is a fun family activity and kids totally love it. It’s a great way to teach them about nature.

  20. This is a great story! Pets are so special in people’s lives and definitely something that I’ll always remember about my childhood!

    • Thank you. I lot of my happy childhood memories was and still is related to pets and I’m always thankful for those moments. We should cherish them always.

  21. WordsFallFromMyEyes says:

    What lovely memories, & photos in between. They were such clear, beautiful pics. The little girl holding up the bowl with the tiny, tiny life in it is my favourite.

    My son & me in the last couple of months took over two cats around 2 years old that had lived together in a man’s home, but the man was moving overseas. He was really choosy about where they would end up, but sadly, when I tried to give him a photo update of them – Sherlock & Sparrow – the email bounced. So I got it wrong, or he gave it wrong.

    Anyway! What we love most is when we arrive at our front door & put the key in the lock, I say to my son, “Do you think there will be one furry face looking at us or two?” The other day he guessed one & was right! The thing is, they know the sound of the car and so sit in the lounge facing the door and we see them as soon as we enter. LOVE them :)


    • Thank you my friend. I enjoyed reading your comment particularly that part where you have your son guess how many cats is waiting at the other side of the door. Pets are our family and they enrich our lives bringing joy to us everyday.I wish you and your son lots of happiness, peace and love. And yes that goes to Sherlock and Sparrow too.

  22. thirdeyemom says:

    Another beautiful post as usual! :)

  23. starlight says:

    as always, i love the way you tell your stories..

  24. Paula says:

    These are some beautiful memories :)

  25. Russ C. says:

    This is a very nice post :”> I’m touched. Pets really are family. It’s sad once you loose them.

    • Thanks. The loosing part was the hard part. Once we had a pet pig which me and my sisters raised when she was a piglet. When she grew up, she made more cute piglets but when she really grew old,she was taken from us. And we know that it would not end up well. We all cried. We were kids then and had this notion that life is forever. It was one of our first experience of death, loss and pain.

      • Russ C. says:

        :(( that’s so sad. we even once had a female dog named Chiki. She was found by my sister. Chiki was actually following her from school to our home. Thus, we adopted her :3 the saddest part is that she died when she was pregnant :( she was hit by a car.

      • Sorry to hear that. That is a sad and traumatic death. If its me I would be crushed too. Whenever I see a dog runned down and left by some heartless person, it angers me that someone can be that cruel. Accident is one thing, intentional infliction of pain is another. thanks for sharing .

    • They are a part of us always even if they are no longer here physically. Their memory will always stay in our hearts. Thanks.

  26. What a great post ;)

  27. My father in law used to have fish tanks. He grew different types of fish but his favorite were the fancy tailed guppies. He was always very relaxed. I think it was the fish that helpede him stay calm. They are so very tranquil to watch. It is probably the easiest type of pet for a child – well – with supervision until they are older. My nephew tried to eat one after he popped his hands into a fish tank. These photo’s depict a big love of them. I enjoyed this post very much.

    • Thanks Isadora. Wow, your nephew tried to to eat one? Like Sashimi only live. I was curious as a kid, and might have attempted something like that. Fish and pets is part of our growing up, discovering the world, exploring things, making wonderful memories.

      • I guess I should have said he was 4 years old. lol
        I do like Sushi. Maybe, if I had fish tanks I wouldn’t. It was nice to read about a different kind of pet then dogs, cats and birds. Very nice writing about your experiences with them.
        Blessings .. Isadora

  28. Freedomborn says:

    Hi island traveler this Post did indeed touch my heart, our little Missy died on Holidays and yes she was very much part of our family and we miss her but she is in our heart so is not far.

    I use to breed Tropical fish for many years, Guppies, Mollies, Swords and Angel fish, Scavengers etc, I was passionate about them and still love fish of all types. I use to have to stop myself from going into Aquariums or I would want to buy more to add to my family even though I had breeding tanks, it was a wonderful way to relax by just watching them.

    Thank you for sharing you brought back many memories, we missed you.

    Christian Love from both of us – Anne

    • Thank you Anne. Indeed it is a relaxing and rewarding hobby. I did breed those fishes too except the angelfish. My favorite were the Cichlids. They were so fun and colorful. Perhaps one day I get to breed them when I’m back to the tropics. We are blessed to have these pets in our lives. God’s creations are all indeed beautiful. Best wishes to you and Ron.

  29. Food Stories says:

    Really enjoyed your post and pics … The memories did come flooding back :-)

  30. Ron says:

    Thanks for the photos and memories and reliving your past through your boy . Lovely when we can do that makes the moment more special.


  31. It is so relaxing to watch fish swimming. The koi do get pretty big and I love their bright colors. Thanks for sharing this wonderful post!!! Have a super weekend. ~Sophia

  32. orples says:

    I’ve never really thought of fish as pets the same way as you would a dog or a cat, but they are wonderful to have around. I love to watch them swim about in large aquariums … very therapeutic, to me, anyway. I really hate cleaning fish tanks, which is why it’s been awhile since I’ve had any fish of my own. I do like to check them out in the pet stores, or at other people’s homes and/or some businesses though. Those Koi are really beautiful.

  33. arianadourre says:

    I came to your post from the comment left in my channel and got to say I’m glad I did. The photos were beautiful and you’re lucky to know a fish breeder in person. Haha I tend to go check out all the fish in my local pet store/ aquarium even though I do not intend to buy them at all.

Comments are closed.