One of Josie’s birthday presents this year was a butterfly growing kit. We sent away for the caterpillars and they came in about a week in a jar filled with their own food. They are painted lady butterflies. We grew three into chrysalises and then put them into the mesh cage to watch them transform, hatch and grow. The girls loved watched how big they got and it was very noticeable how quickly they grew from day to day. Josie had done this same thing in school, although she missed out on parts because we went on vacation so she was excited to see it all. Last Sunday morning they hatched into butterflies in a very short amount of time. We had two quickly and the next one came two days later right past breakfast. We got to keep them for a week and watch them fly more, and eat, but all in all they didn’t do all too much. The greatest excitement for the girls was checking for them to hatch several times a day. The cats actually weren’t even too excited about it until about halfway through the week when Mio finally noticed that we were growing bugs in the house. He looked so excited and so happy that we were growing bugs for him to chase! I felt bad taking them away, but then the butterflies got to live in the bathroom when we weren’t directly watching them to make sure they didn’t become cat food. George and finally Fred noticed them too a few days later. Never did see Ezzy particularly take an interest.

Josie watching for them to hatch


Josie examining the first butterfly

Josie standing next to the butterly cage

On Sunday morning it was time to let them go as otherwise the book warns you’ll have way too many caterpillar eggs. Or perhaps just wreck their business of selling them? Either way I was ready to be done protecting them from the cats and feeding them. I think Josie may have been able to do more for them, but Celia definitely does not have the fine motor dexterity to be careful enough so I did the care and feeding work. We gathered a few neighbors who happened to be around, Zach, Ethan and Charlie and opened up the cage and the butterflies went nowhere. Just the same as what happened at school. We eventually got a leaf and lifting them up and encouraged them to fly happily away, nothing bad happened instantly and so everyone was happy. One even landed on Zach’s bright yellow sock to check it out for a while. Overall it was a good experience I’d recommend and I think we’ll do it again sometime, but not right now.

Jordi holding the buttefly on a leaf

Butterfly on Zach's sock

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