Today the Sprouts released two Monarch butterflies after watching them go from stripy little caterpillars to cocoons and, finally, to brilliant orange and black beauties.
Big Sprout definitely took a more scholarly approach to the endeavor. She read the instructions carefully on how to care for her 'pillar, and glowed with quiet satisfaction when the entire process went exactly as described.
For Little Sprout, on the other hand, this was an adventure of epic proportions. Every movement, every moment was a discovery for her.
I was so proud as I watched both my girls gently open the "bug box" that their little friends had been living in. They carefully tipped the boxes on their sides, encouraging the Monarchs to take flight and explore the world outside their tiny little homes. They watched, fascinated, as the butterflies floated up and away with unexpected speed into the treetops.
There is something magical about watching butterflies flutter through the air like wind tossed leaves. You can't imagine that their flight is intentional. They seem buffeted by every current in the air. Yet they always seem to end up exactly where they want to be.
We all stood there, barefoot, on the deck as these fragile creatures took off into the wild unknown. My Sprouts watched the Monarchs, and I watched my Sprouts. Awe and honest, bone-deep joy radiated from their faces, and they looked positively angelic.
It was a good moment.