Archive for September, 2008

Monte at 4 months

I’ve had several faithful readers asking to see pictures of the puppy. She’s getting big and a bit full of herself but she is still sweet and well behaved. Our latest adventures are learning to walk on a leash. This is a real challenge since her breeding is for her to be independent and free to work.  But for me to take her walking with me on the road, it is a skill she must learn. So far, even though she cramps our style a little bit, the decision to get her was a good one.

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Monarchy Update

Just when I was ready to give up and resign myself to thinking that my Monarch Butterfly was not going to emerge from the chrysalis, lo and behold, there he was. In a previous post back on September 6 I mentioned that the process takes about 10 days. It’s been 21. I checked on him when I got up this morning. The chrysalis had been progressively becoming transparent and this morning it looked like more of the same. When Roger went over to his office, he came back to tell me, “He’s out!”

So it is with great joy and wonder that I introduce to you our brand new arrival. He’s been hanging around all day, resting and letting his wings fill with fluid, expand and harden so he can make the long trip to Mexico for the winter. We wish him God speed and sweet sipping from the flowers along the way.

Fall Color

The beauty of nature never fails to captivate me, especially in the Fall. Monte and I took a walk today – a perfect Vermont Fall day – and here’s a little sample of some of the things we saw along the way.

Paste Paper Boxes

Remember that paste paper I made a while ago? Later, I got together with another friend and we had a play date at her house. We made more paste paper which I used to make boxes. Pang at Six Loose Ladies showed us how to make the box from scratch and then cover it with our new paper. We added embellishments for the “knob” and I added feet to one of mine.

Covering the constructed box with paste paper

Making the lid

Adding the base and auditioning the top embellishment

The finished products.

Jig Zone puzzles

I really like Jig Zone, an online site with lots of jigsaw puzzles. I do their puzzle-of-the-day every morning to get my brain in gear. I thought it would be fun to use some of my own photos for puzzles and embed them on my blog here. But it seems the best I can do is to post a clickable link to take you to my album on their site. Soo… here’s my first attempt. See how fast you can do it.
JZhibiscus Jigsaw Puzzle

Monarchy

Back on August 18th, as I walked back home from town I checked the milkweed plants in the field across from the Tucker farm. Under one of the leaves I found the tiny little white egg of the Monarch butterfly. I wasn’t sure I would find any this year because there have been so few of the butterflies around. But there it was. I pinched off the leaf and brought it home. Into the bug jar it went along with some extra leaves in case the caterpillar emerged.
After I set up the jar, I realized we were headed out of town in a few days. So into the car went the bug jar since I was certain the egg would hatch while we were away. True enough, it hatched on the 23rd. The tiny little caterpillar munched slowly and I had a few days to scout out some fresh leaves. They tided us over until we got home. The more it grew, the more it consumed and soon it was eating 3 leaves per day. It molted several times, shedding it’s skin so it could grow some more.


Yesterday I noticed the caterpillar up around the top of the jar spinning lines of silk. By the evening it had attached itself to a tiny silk button and was hanging in a J shape from the lid. While I was at work today it changed into a beautiful green chrysalis. In about 10 days it should emerge as a beautiful Monarch butterfly. This is an amazing miracle. How does it change from a black, yellow and white caterpillar to a soft green chrysalis with tiny black and gold specks. And then there is the mysterious transformation inside that snug little place. God made it that way and He knows. It is up to me to be in awe and to wonder.
Be sure to check back in 10 days to see what comes out. In the meantime, check out the life cycle of the Monarch here.


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