Monday, July 23, 2007

Monarch Monday

Summer is the time when one sheds one's tensions with one's clothes, and the right kind of day is jeweled balm for the battered spirit. A few of those days and you can become drunk with the belief that all's right with the world. ~Ada Louise Huxtable

Yesterday I did no writing at all. It was a lovely day, so I mixed LASR business (a lot of it actually... big things are exciting!) with walks, weeding and fresh air.

Now it's Monday, and life is back on schedule, the way it's supposed to be. Our across the street neighbors are leaving for their place in Arizona (now... would YOU go to Arizona in July??) for the week and have offered us the use of their pool. DD is thrilled (she is a water baby), and I hope the weather cooperates.

Big happenings this week for my friend, Allie! Her first book, One Night In Boston, releases with Samhain. I know Allie is planning some great, fun stuff to celebrate, so go visit her and see what's up! Oh, and grab a copy of her book -- I've read most of it and it's a winner (I still haven't read the end, so I'll be hurrying to Samhain to get a copy of my own the moment its available).


Pillar Place: Swallowtail -- it's quiet in the neighborhood. Jill, our last pillar, is preparing to pupate. She did a bit of wandering and is currently hanging from the side of the box in preparation for her purge. By this time tomorrow, she'll be a pupa. And then there will be nothing happening until the beginning of August.

Pillar Place: Monarch -- Little Otto has tripled in size already. This doesn't mean much, since he was microscopic to begin with. When I looked in on him last night, he was about half an inch (if he stretched) long.

I discovered that Monarch pillars have a startle reflex -- if the leaf shakes, they assume it's a bird and leap off the leaf. Sometimes they spin a little bungee cord, but not always. I suppose they figure they'll be able to climb back up with the danger has passed. Yesterday, we had a problem with the leaves beginning to wilt and fall onto the eggs, so I went in with little bamboo stakes to hold them up. That didn't seem to bother Otto, thankfully, who went right on eating.


When DD checked on him later, she must have breathed too hard or stomped on her way in and jiggled the box because he leaped! She panicked. "MOM! We have an EMERGENCY! Otto's hanging from a THREAD!"

This is bad news because there are small cracks between the blocks of florist foam and the bottom of the container is full of water -- the cracks are small enough that a mid-sized pillar will be fine, but not these tiny creatures. They could easily get lost and drown.

Thankfully, by the time I got upstairs, Otto was back on his leaf.

I don't know if my heart can stand the excitement.


Mocha Frappuccino

Hyper and driven, you'll take your caffeine any way you can get it. Frappuccinos are good, but you'd probably chew coffee beans in a crunch!


Jen said...

I'm glad the latest tragedy at pillar place was averted! And I don't even need the frapp test - I know I'd be crunching those beans!

Enjoy the pool and congrats to Allie! I'm heading over to her blog now.

Allie Boniface said...

Thanks for the mention! Less than 24 hours now...very exciting!

groovyoldlady said...

My heart was beating wildly,
My breath coming in gasps,
When my cute little 'pillars grew up,
It turned out they were asps!!!

(Weird, I know. Sorry. Time to go!)

Brandy said...

It really is like a continuing saga for the 'pillars, isn't it?

I was Cafe Vanilla Frappuccino. (Which is hilarious because it's my favorite drink from StarBucks!)

Glad you were able to relax yesterday and I hope your monday is productive!

Melissa said...

I'm like Brandy. Cafe Vanilla Frap!!!! I usually drink Vanilla non-fat steamers so not too big a surprise there!

Alice Teh said...

Thank goodness Otto is fine...

I've read the excerpt of Allie's book. Sounds exciting! I'm going to try and see how I can get a copy for meself.