Fun with Fibs
And Speaking of Worms ...

Two Worms, a Bird and a Bug ...

... or was it an insect?

In the past few days there's been a significant increase in the interaction between my boys and the natural world. A sure sign of the season, and generally speaking, a very good thing. I say that now, but in my previous life (i.e. before kids) I used to be what you'd call squeamish.

While I've always loved nature, it was the furry and feathery kind, I appreciated most. The slimy and scaly kind? Not so much. Over the years, however, I've mellowed and learned to go with the flow. Originally these were going to be three separate posts, but instead I have lumped them all together.

And now for a few snippets from our lastest animal adventures ...


Wormy and Squirmy


"These are my friends," insisted Crackerjack, holding out a hand of worms for me to meet.

"Yes, love," I replied, "But, you know, they really don't belong inside our house. They like it better outside ... where there's dirt and sun and air and other worms to play with ..."

(Crackerjack and I have ongoing insect issues, as referenced here in a previous post.)

But before I knew it, I found myself saying, "Hey, wait a minute, honey! Let me first just grab my camera ..."

The picture above is of Crackerjack holding out the aforementioned worms, and yes, that's my family room carpet they are dangling over.

But such is the world of blogging; the rules just keep changing!


At Least it Wasn't Strong Wings


It began with a loud, sickening thud. We were playing in the family room this morning when we heard it, and our eyes all swung to the sliders. We really hated to look. I love those glass doors for the wide view of the yard, but they're a dangerous magnet for songbirds.

Sure enough, a small bird had hit the glass door and was lying, stunned, on the deck. His left wing was splayed out, his head was at an angle, and his breathing was fast and furious. Four pairs of eyes became glued to the sight ...


When we realized he was a Junco we nervously counted his legs (we are rather attached to a one-legged Junco called Strong Wings; read more about him here). After a few minutes, he hopped up on his feet (and there were two) and he opened his beak, as if gasping for air.

It was quite fascinating to observe this bird at such a close range. We tried not to bump the glass so as not to startle him before he was ready to move. The boys remarked on his beauty ~ the shading of his feathers and his little glowing eyes. Yet those eyes seem to be shut more than open, and his breathing was becoming quite labored and slow.

I found myself wondering ~ what kind of lesson will this turn out to be? A simple bird observation or something more complex (like the circle of life)?

But hang on ~ there's a happy ending! The Junco must have been just catching his breath, because after ten minutes more, he finally flew off towards the woods.

And a collective phew was made by all.


What on Earth?

The bug you see below, captured in rather amateur fashion, is a mystery to us. We see them quite often, even in the winter, when a mild day comes along and the windows are opened. Invariably one of these critters will find its way in, moving slowly, sometimes flying, always looking this ugly. This guy was tossed outside, but not until after I was able to get a clear picture ...

Do you know what it is? If so, please leave a comment!