This morning, I sat in the back yard trying to snap pictures of butterflies drinking out of our feeder. Every time I'd get close, they'd flutter off.
You can imagine my surprise later when Grace came strolling into the house with a butterfly on her thumb. It waited while she posed for pictures, then she took it back outside and it flew away.
Sometimes it seems like Grace is straddling two worlds. One is the normal world that we all live in, and the other is a magical kingdom where people and animals are completely at peace with one another.
Early this afternoon a cool front blew through and left us with much cooler temps than we'd been experiencing. The kids and I decided the conditions were perfect for a butterfly hunt.
We love all of the butterflies in our neighborhood and do not wish to harm any of them. So we decided to capture the butterflies only long enough to identify them, then set them free.
This was my favorite butterfly of the day. I love its big green eyes.
This green-eyed butterfly was sharing his flower with a happy bee.
This ladybug did not want me to take his picture. He kept moving to the other side of the plant, so I had to get creative with camera placement.
Grace and Carter worked together all afternoon long.
After a few unsuccessful tries at putting more than one butterfly in the same box. We finally devised a system of individual containers, which we punched air holes in, and kept in a dark shoe box to help the butterflies stay calm and keep from beating themselves up.
Getting the butterflies safely into these containers was not easy. We took advantage of Grace's magical powers but still wound up with quite a few escapees.
Our prize catch of the day.
I couldn't believe we even saw one, much less caught it (Grace caught it and put it in the container). We put it in the one large container we had, but it didn't seem to be doing very well, so we let it go right after we caught it. As the Monarch gracefully fluttered away Carter looked a Grace with sorrow in his eyes, and said, "We had to let it go. It was the right thing to do."
While we were tromping through the thistles, we saw lots of caterpillars. A sure sign there are more butterflies to come.
We wound up identifying 9 different kinds of butterflies and moths. Some of the pics are blurry because we had to take them through the plastic containers. Some we just couldn't photograph, glass jars would have been much better.