Saturday, September 4, 2010

late summer memories

Praying Mantis got away on us.  Remember he was a present from Daddy?  He ate well for one day in captivity. Day two he ate nothing.  Day three we decided to let him go.  Daddy and Peter really wanted an egg sac, which they scored by catching a female praying mantis two years ago.  But alas, research pointed to this guy being a boy.  Boys do less well in captivity; they like to move around a lot.  The girls are happy to sit around and get easy food.  

Did you know that female mantises often attack and start eating the male, even during the mating act--which then lasts longer, because of the urgency of the matter?  What's up with all that, God?  

My Mary was very unhappy that Mr. Mantis got to dine on small butterflies, which she just loves to catch--hour after hour.

My sweet baby girl will be 21 months in a few days.  I am in a panic about it.   Many times I've tried, but I don't think I can adequately express how much I love babies!   I fear I will have a dip in contentment in my life, for a time, as I adjust to the passing of this stage.  Counting blessings will help. 

I looked at recent fair pictures of both my husband and myself and I was astonished.  We look very old.  No wonder people stare at us in public, with our brood of four young children, at our ages!  It's so easy to forget our advanced ages, because as I said before, we don't feel old.  It's all so strange--to see a photo and be shocked and saddened at the personal changes.

All hands on board for homemade chicken soup.  There was a hint of fall a couple weeks ago. (Then several days of 90 degrees).  Anyhow, Peter was at the table slicing carrots and celery for the soup.  Mary kept sneaking up and eating little pieces of carrot.  Finally, Peter said, "Mary!  Stop it.  Don't you know the Bible says not to gorge on food?"

I had to laugh!  This, spoken from Peter, who loves food to no end, skinny though he is.   

 "Did you remember that from Proverbs, Peter?", Mom asked.

Peter smiled.  "Yes."

Trying not to look too amused, I said, "Well, I'm glad you listen so well to Scripture readings.  That's outstanding.  But bites of carrot don't exactly equal gluttony."

Mary felt triumphant.

This girl!  She can eat a lot of berries!  It does look a little like gluttony here, doesn't it?  

My advice?  Undress your baby before feeding berries.  The stains don't always come off.

It was 90 degrees at the fair last weekend.  Phew!  The animal barns were stifling!  

The bunnies and turkeys were our favorites!  

We had the best time!  All of us!  There's just something about attending a county fair together.  It's a summer highlight, for sure.  I was sad to see the day end, and I wasn't alone in that sentiment.

Their first taste of cotton candy, courtesy of Daddy.  Did I ever mention my husband is like Templeton the Rat (at county fairs)?  When we watch Charlotte's Web, we always have to tease Daddy.

Little Beth was so hot that day!  Daddy is like a camel.  Loves the heat.

Gobble gobble!

Homeschool Group's Not-Back-to-School Party (last Tuesday).

This is at our friend Kim's house.

One of the Monarchs we said goodbye to.  Peter still has five chrysalises left.  When the last butterfly flies away this year, it will be a sad day for Peter.  As Paul keeps saying, "This has been a great summer!"  My children really lived this summer!

Twisting each other at the park yesterday.

It had been two weeks since we were last at this State Park.  I was amazed at the changes!  It is looking like fall.  The brilliant, lush green hues are gone.  While I love fall and often think it's my favorite season, I must admit, this has been a great summer!   I will miss this park's summer face.  

Even though it looked like fall, it was a sweltering 90 degrees during our visit.

Jesus blessed Peter with a tree frog!  He was on top of the world!  Even though he had prayed that morning for various caterpillar sightings, and for a female praying mantis, he got a tree frog instead.  I reminded him that he had spent a good month praying for a tree frog earlier in the summer.  He remembered and smiled.  "You never know when Jesus is going to answer a prayer, do you Mommy?"

We were all amazed at this adorable little frog.  Even Paul--who doesn't heart life science like Peter does--felt this little frog was a blessing.

Three hours later, little froggy died.  We were devastated!  Our joy deflated!  Life is like that, isn't it?  God gives and takes away.  One of these summers, Peter will hopefully observe nature without wanting to contain it.  I can't force it on him.  Kids go through this; it wasn't his fault.  But memories of beautiful little tree frogs that die in captivity will inspire him to let them be.  

Working on catching a butterfly for Mary, who was having a bad catching day.  Tears flowed.

I've just got to catch a butterfly!

She knows that cute little tree frog is in that stroller somewhere.  It amazed her.  No, she wasn't the culprit in his demise.  I believe it was the heat, unfortunately.  Or being handled.  They don't like being handled, we found out through research.

Leaves were falling off the trees at an amazing pace!  They tried to catch as many as they could.


Today, Peter wanted to write an e-mail to his homeschooling friend, Elizabeth.  She's as nerdy as he is when it comes to life science.  Here are the first and second e-mails, which I mostly typed to her, as is.  Forgive his spelling!  He sprints through his writing, focusing only on the content at this point in his "career".  LOL

Hiy Elizabith,

I was wundaring how much your fiar beley tods cost (fire belly toads)?  If they are posen (poison) it is ok.  Did you know that they los (lose) their posin in captivude?  And you said sumthing abot a river with lots of newts.  Where is that?  And do you know of sum plas weth lots of tre frogs?  

Love Peter

Hiy Elisebith,

Do you know of a plas that sels salamadas (sells salamanders)?  If you know of plases with amfibeens (amphibians), ples tell me.  

Did you get any new pets?  How is your crafish?  What did you do this summer?  

My aunt came.  We went to the bech.  We went in the pool a lot.  We went to parks every week, and  I raised many Monarch's.  My dad cot me a praying mantis.  We let it go.

Love, Peter

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