Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Bug Lovers

I have no idea where they got this from, but my kids LOVE bugs. Now, I'm not one of those squeamish folks who cower at the sight of a spider, but I also don't go seeking them out and pick them up. I don't like the idea of a bug in my bed or a BIG hairy spider, but I'm also not at all afraid to kill them either.

My children, well, I think they may have a future in entomology. They are totally fascinated with bugs - so much so that sometimes I worry about their safety. I can't tell you how many times I've caught them in the foyer playing with the random ants that will occassionally get in near the front door. They pick them up and let them crawl all over them. Caroline has even tried collecting them. Of course, ants do not bother me at all, unless they are in my kitchen and then they are pests. But I'm just surprised at the fun they have with them and how fascinated they are with these tiny lives.

However, it doesn't stop there. When they are outside, they are constantly in hot pursuit of some kind of bug. Ladybugs, spiders, daddy long legs, grasshoppers - anything! And we hear about every single one they see and are bombarded with questions about them. (What's that spider doing? Why is he not moving? Why? Why? Why?) We've used Wikipedia many times to learn a few new things about the bug of the day since Jason and I know much more than average about bugs/insects.

I was kind of freaked out a few weeks ago when Bryce was playing with a small spider the same way they play with ants - letting it crawl all over him. EW!!! And while I know most spiders are harmless, after having found that black widow in our back yard last summer, I'm much more concerned since there are bad spiders out there and my children have no way of knowing what's okay and what's not. So it's really a constant game of watching them since they seem to want to touch every bug they see.

They know a good bit about bees and other flying stinging insects, so I don't get too worried about them messing with them, but that doesn't mean they still don't pepper us with questions every time they see one. (Caroline even had a nightmare last night that a wasp was chasing Jason around!) But they also know about flies and Bryce entertained me for a good 10 minutes yesterday chasing a nasty old house fly around our bedroom.

While I totally think it's great that they have such a fascination with the little creatures and I'm glad they don't have some irrational fear (yet), I still worry what they might do when no one is looking. Although I have a very clear memory of collecting caterpillars with my siblings and neighbors as children and thinking they were the coolest things, so maybe this is just more normal than I realize.


Viv said...

Funny! Since I tried putting at catipillar on Kenzie's arm a few weeks ago and SHE FREAKED! Jay got mad at me for pushing it on her but I was like "but I loved playing with them when I was a kid!"

ICF said...

Hmmmmmmmmmmm.........Uncle Jer comes to mind.