Sunday, October 26, 2008

National Geographic in My Own Backyard!

So, I'm not a huge fan of spiders, but I dislike the fruitflies that inhabit our kitchen more than I dislike spiders. And so I've adopted a spider. It chills under the corner of our kitchen window, which is right over our sink. It's just a little thing, and not too pointy or leggy or generally creepy. However, it's still a spider and so I keep an eye on it. You know, to make sure it's not hatching millions of babies or plotting to kill me in my sleep, or something like that.

Well, this morning I was cooking some oatmeal for breakfast, and glancing periodically at my pet spider. It was in kind of a funny position, so I wanted to make extra sure there was no sinister plot being hatched. Then one of the times I looked over, it became clear what Spidey was up to - it was shedding! It's old legs were still in place under our window ledge, but its body was hanging down by a piece of . . . something, and its new legs were sticking out. They were pointing up and away from the wall - kind of floating, as if they were underwater - and they were a translucent grey. They looked soft, instead of jointed, and occasionally Spidey would carefully move one or more. It looked more like a jellyfish than a spider. It was so cool! I wanted to stay and keep watching, but I had to leave for stake conference. As it was, I was almost late because I had to stop a watch my mini National Geographic show a least a little bit.

Before I move on, I want to add that yesterday, as I drove home from the stake Young Women leadership meeting, a Great Blue Heron flew over Carpentar road, and landed in a pond-like area on the west side of the road. It was huge! Like Sputnik! And gorgeous.

Also, (yes, I'm still rambling about animals) this summer while Tyson and I were at Ford Lake, we saw (and I gleefully followed) a Cedar Wax Wing. Apparently, they've become rare in recent years (What animal hasn't?). And they're so lovely!

Finally, I saw the absolute weirdest insect this spring. It was just chillin' on my driver's side mirror as I got into my car in the parking structure at school. I didn't notice it until I rolled my window down - and then I promptly rolled it right back up! All told, this thing was about as long as my hand, wrist to fingertip. It had two sets of transparent wings that reminded me of a dragonfly. It was striped like a yellow jacket. Its six legs spread out from its body, high and wide like a spider. But it's head, thorax, and abdomen were slender and delicate. And it had this creepy, funky, looonng black spike of a tail. Seriously, that spikey tail thing had to be a good three inches long! It was at least as long as the rest of the body, probably longer! But it was flexible, and how could a bug that delicate wield a spike that large as a weapon? (Not that I was going to risk it; I kept my distance.) It baffled me. I still don't know what it was. And I'm lucky I'm alive, because it hung on to my window all the way home, and I kept staring at it while I drove. :P


So, yesterday I attended the stake's Young Women Leadership meeting, and I learned that we are encouraged by the Church leadership to have blogs of our own. As I understand it, the basic idea is to "be a light unto the world wide web." This makes sense to me, and, in a desire to be obedient, here is our family's blog!

I knew I would give in and do this eventually, but I had decided to wait at least until we graduated, if not until we had our first child. Nevertheless, here I am. :)