Audrey raised Monarch Butterflies by herself this year. She had help looking for the eggs and caterpillars, but she fed them and cleaned them by herself, with a little help from Andrea.
It was a rough year for her. She had trouble finding the babies and she lost a higher ratio of them then normal.Â Considering one in ten survive in the wild, her losing 5 or 6 out of 25 or 30 is not so bad. She had a hard time losing them. She was glad none of the chrysalises fell this year. She did have one die in the process of forming his chrysalis and another die right after forming his.
When this caterpillar was roaming for a place to form his chrysalis, Audrey needed to clean the cage. While the screen was open, he escaped from his babysitter (me).Â I did not notice he was gone.Â Audrey came up to me laughing and told me we had an escapee–and he already finished his web.Â We let him form his chrysalis on the bottom of the cage and then propped the cage up so he could emerge.
Today is Allan and my 16th anniversary. It was one of the best ones that we have had yet. The day started with Adrian walking into the room and waking us up by saying, “Happy Anniversary!”
The kids were really into making it extra special. They went shopping for special treats for us. They also made Chicken Quorma, one of our favorite dishes, and salad for dinner. Then they let us take a walk while they cleaned the table, washed most of the dishes and got dessert ready.Â For dessert we had a huge heart chocolate chip cookie and cookie dough ice cream. We were give two extra large Tootsie rolls for our gifts (to share of course) and Mark gave us some hard earned money for a coffee shop date.
One of Audrey’s butterflies emerged today and they said it was our “Anniversary Butterfly”. They said that we had to release it. So we enjoyed putting it one the Butterfly Bush while they took pictures, just like I do for them.
I love you Allan. I am so glad that God gave you to me.Â You are my wonderful knight, my hero, and my best friend. I look forward to the next sweet 16 🙂
Audrey is raisingÂ Monarchs again this year.Â Megan got to enjoy her first Monarch when the first two were released yesterday. She did not like her new barrette at first, but very quickly got used to it.
We were able to spend the last week with friends at Lake Ann camp near Traverse City, Michigan.Â It was a lot of fun!
Mark and Andrea spent the week as campers and did many new things.Â Megan, Audrey and Adrian got to spend time playing in water, riding bikes and being outside most of the day.Â We also got to participate with Uncle Dave’s Jump Start camp this week.Â Adrian rode the bus for the first time and discovered what sand dunes are.
If you want to see the kids running down sand dunes, or other pictures from our trip, you can find them here.
This weekend, we had Allan’s cousin and family over. Allan got some of the kids to help him dig a fire pit. We had been talking about building one in the woods for awhile.
The pit turned out very well! The boys and Allan did most of the digging, Andrea was our photographer and helped with the construction. Allan and his dad worked on the brick laying. Mark and Uncle Kai made a wonderful dinner for everyone.
We enjoyed the fire, roasting marshmallows, eating s’mores and being able to relax together.
Only a dad but he gives his all,
To smooth the way for his children small,
Doing with courage stern and grim
The deeds that his father did for him.
This is the line that for him I pen:
Only a dad, but the best of men.
Thank you God for such a wonderful Daddy to my kids!