First there was "J-man"...
spinning an anchor to hang by"J" position - beginning the process of shedding his skin for the last time, revealing...
the most beautiful chrysalis ever. Eliza was the one to find it,
and was suitably awed.
And introducing Wee Willy, who was a little confused as to
whether the milkweed was inside or outside the jar.
This process is never anything less than magical to me. I used to work in a nature retail store in Madison, Wisconsin, and for a time we sold potted milkweed plants with eggs or small monarch caterpillars on them. They were a part of a project that tracked the monarch's migration to Mexico, and I was so attached to them, each one, that I would stay long after the store closed to watch the stages of transformation, or come in early to see what had happened overnight. I love watching the girls spend time looking for Willy among the leaves, or exclaiming over the golden dots on the chrysalis. Anika doesn't remember the painted ladies we had a few years ago, so this is all new again for her, which makes it feel new again for me. I think Dan feels outnumbered by critters in this house, but surely he knows the lay of the land by now...the flora and fauna spilling into the house from the outside world is part and parcel of the gal he married.