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Look what we harvested from one of our tomato plants last night.

This is honestly the largest caterpillar I think I have ever seen. He's kinda cool...and kinda gross.

Touching him felt like touching a living gummy worm. Ewww.

He put a pretty good dent in the foliage of one of our cherry tomato plants so we plucked him off and brought him home, mainly so I could get his picture. (Our garden is at a friends' acreage a few miles south of town.) 

Once we had him here we weren't sure what to do with him, so Brea grabbed her butterfly home in which we put him, and some extra tomato leaves from the volunteer tomatoes that have grown around the compost area, for the night.

This morning when we checked on him he did not seem very happy, so we decided to release him in the compost area where he would have cover from birds, food if needed, and access to the ground. Thanks to a biologist friend of ours we learned he is what is commonly known as a Tobacco Hornworm. We think he is in his final (of 5) stages of caterpillar life and ready to pupate, which he will need to borrow into the ground to do. We will be keeping our eyes open for a large moth to show up around the yard in the coming weeks.



My Most Read Thoughts


Today while I sat in a classroom supervising students as they worked on their math assignments, I watched Lexi through the window enjoying time with her friends during recess. My heart smiled.

Those moments, moments of learning and carefree fun, those are the moments that SHOULD make up a school day. As a Mom, and an elementary school employee, my heart is breaking over the news and images coming out of Connecticut today. 
I send my kids off to school everyday without a second thought that they will return safely come day's end, just as I'm sure each one of those parents in Newtown did this morning.
Every day I walk into my school for work without a second thought to my personal safety, just as I'm sure each of those teachers, paras, custodians, sectretaries, etc in Newtown did this morning. 
Theories will be published. Evidence will be presented. Words will be exchanged about gun control and the need for change in our current culture of violence. I don't suspec…

DIY: Reusable Produce Bags

With Earth Day festivities gearing up for tomorrow, I thought I'd take a moment to post a short DIY tutorial on making your own reusable cloth produce bags. (Tutorial inspired by my favorite crafty mom blog, Crazy Mom Quilts. Produce bags inspired by running into my friend Laura at the grocery store while she was stuffing her produce into these.) This is my next step in the fight against the excessive use of plastic bags.

Our family has been making small environmentally minded changes in our daily lives over the past few years. We use reusable shopping bags. We've stopped buying/using Ziploc bags and plastic wrap. I'm trying to commute around town via bike more. I'm being more mindful about where the food we buy comes from and how it was produced. We more often hang our laundry on the line to dry in the spring and summer instead of just throwing it in the dryer. (Which is convenient at the moment since our dryer has decided to quit drying.) As we use up chemically clean…

Sunday Morning Silly...

Once in a while Dando's curiosity urges him to venture off the bookshelf so he check out other toys in the house.

I think he thinks Froggy is missing a few marbles.