Friday, July 09, 2010

Observing Nature

Drinking nature is an unquenchable thirst. ~ Berri Clove

I'm sitting her with monarch pillar, Xi, watching him munch. It's truly amazing they eat as much as they do -- he's about two-thirds grown, and is going through two HUGE milkweed leaves a day.

We found eight more monarch eggs yesterday -- I don't have enough containers, though, so need to go out and get some more Gladware-type containers. Lots of people raise monarchs in one huge box, but I find that it's easier to put them each in their own so the chrysalis isn't disturbed. I also prefer a plastic container so the milkweed leaves stay fresh and moist (I also put a bit of floral foam at the tip of each stem to help keep the leaves fresh -- yes, I spoil the pillars).

I'm encouraged by the number of eggs we're finding this year. And, once we can get back to the library (if it's ever not 90+ degrees outside), I suspect I'll see even more.

Here's a picture or two of Xi I took this morning... isn't he gorgeous?

And a photo of one of the five swallowtail butterflies we released a couple days ago (it's on my DD's swimsuit):

We have the coolest spider outside on one of the milkweed plants ... it's a female goldenrod crab spider: pure white with a little splash of red. She's fascinating to watch.

In fact, IMHO, nature is fascinating. Sometimes I think people just don't bother to notice, but I've found that my DH is starting to get into the groove. This morning, he watched Xi eat for several minutes, and then later as he was getting his boat ready, he noticed a small green spider spinning a web on on of the metal fixtures and stared, then commented on how perfect its web was. I had to wreck the web to move it, but I was still tickled that DH had stopped long enough to observe and be interested.

Have you taken the time to watch nature lately? It's pretty amazing.


In other news, they're predicting a LOT of rain to hit us tomorrow. Yay! The only problem is, there may be flash floods in some areas. Still, it's going to be a HUGE help. Unfortunately, the hot weather will return after the rain.

I picked my first squash yesterday. My cucumbers are getting huge. So ... while this heat has been drying things out tremendously, it's also causing things to grow (we won't talk about the weeds ... it's just been too hot to get outside and weed, so things are a little crazy).


In writing news, this story is going really well. It's been fairly easy to write, which must mean it's the one I'm supposed to be working on. Setting the timer for 20 - 30 mins each day has been helping, too. It keeps me focused AND gives me a goal to strive for.


You Are Egg Sushi

You aren't the most adventurous person in the world, but you're trying to step out of your comfort zone.

New things tend to freak you out a bit, especially if they are very different from what you're used to.

You prefer to take baby steps whenever you undertake something challenging. Too much at once can overwhelm you.

You tend to be cautious and disciplined. You think through every action you take, even if evaluating your options slows you down a bit.

That's about right...



Maria Zannini said...

That caterpillar is huge!

Have you taken the time to watch nature lately?

I make it my job. :) The more I observe, the more I learn.

Dru said...

I love nature and when I get a chance to observe, I'm in awe.

Wowo, look at how big he is.

Have a good Friday.

Terri Coop said...

Hi! I'm Terri and dropped by via Maria's blog party.

I live in a very small town and gladly share my yard (and unfortunately my house) with all types of critters, great and small.

I love watching the big garden spiders and have a rather amazing wolf spider living in my little landscaping patch. Multiple generations of bright red squirrels live in the big tree with a matriarch the size of a small cat. They are a joy.

Amazing caterpillar pics, I can't wait to see the butterflies.

I'll drop back by one day and amuse you with the tale of our ladybug infestation!


MaryC said...

Good morning, Marianne. I love your nature pictures. Congrats on the writing going well. Mine has been too and this morning I got inspired for a whole new story while walking the dog. If that keeps up, he's going to find us going on lots of walks.

Wow, Terri. I hope to hear about your ladybug infestation. I saw some footage on CNN a few months back about an entire town infested. It was amazing.

Hope everyone has a peaceful and productive day.

Brandy said...

Nature is awesome in it's beauty. I wish more people took the time to observe and enjoy. A ladybug flew into the house last night and we all scrambled to get it back outside before the cats could get to it.

Great news on the writing! And on the fresh veggies!

I hope you get the rain you need safely.

My quiz answer was the same as yours. *G* And since I seriously freak over any change? Yeah.

I hope you have a fabulous day!

Anonymous said...

OH love the pics, sooo cool! Sounds like they are all doing great!

Tori Lennox said...

I like butterflies but other bugs tend to creep me out. We're all better off if we don't see each other. *g*