2018 Life Logs, Day 248—Monarch Caterpillars and Fried Green Tomatoes
Date: Wednesday, September 5, 2018
Weather: Sunny and Hot; High 85, Low 68 F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

I was restless all night long, waking up and thinking of more things I should do before heading south for a week. But when morning came, reality set in and I knew I would not be able to get a tenth of those things done. That turned out to be true, but nevertheless, I am ready to go and will continue with that Must Do list when I get home. I needed a whole day to work in the garden, cleaning out dying plants and planting some cold weather crops. That certainly didn’t get done today, so that will be my focus when I return. And I didn’t get the house cleaned, but that can always wait. The nature lover, first-grade teacher, and grandmother in me won out over practicality today. I did have to do laundry so I would have something to wear, and thankfully, that did get done. When I went to Heather and Jed’s to do the laundry, I checked on the Monarch caterpillars. They are getting so big, and they desperately needed fresh milkweed to eat. Heather has cut all the milkweed she has been growing and fed them that, and I have donated common milkweed plants that I bought recently and they eaten all that. I also realized that the 5-gallon aquarium we put them in when they were tiny little eggs is not going to be big enough when the butterflies eventually emerge. We need a net butterfly enclosure, but too late to order that for this year. So, I went to Walmart and bought a 10-gallon aquarium which should suffice. Then I drove to Soares Nursery in hopes they still have common milkweed plants for sale. No luck there. But they said that the local feed and seed store has milkweed growing behind their building and that if I went there and begged, they might let me take some cuttings. That worked, so hopefully the very hungry caterpillars have enough milkweed to eat until they form their chrysalises. That job done, I focused on the laundry, went to an afternoon meeting, and then returned to finish the laundry and make some fried green tomatoes. I know. Why would I spend precious time doing that? The answer is that I picked the green tomatoes to fix for dinner last night, but we ran out of time to fry them. There’s no way I would ever let those precious green tomatoes not be used, so while Jed fixed pizza for the boys for dinner, I made the fried greenies. Jed and I enjoyed them, and neighbor Brian Keefe came over to get his kids and had his very first fried green tomatoes. Heather is in day one of a three-day conference and she wasn’t going to be home tonight until bedtime, but I hope she enjoyed a few greenies when she got home. Sooooo, Monarch caterpillars and fried green tomatoes won the day . . . not the practical things that really needed to be done.

Tomorrow morning I drive to Nyack, New York to have a one day visit with friends Ed and Lynne Kirwin. They were here in June and I can’t wait to visit with them again. On Friday I drive to West Virginia to visit with my nephew Rex, his wife Diana, and a few other family members. On Saturday night I will attend a reception Rex and Diana are having for Rex’s son Billy and his wife Ashley. Then late on Sunday or early Monday morning, I will drive to Roanoke, Virginia, to spend my Aunt Ethel’s 103rd birthday with her. On Tuesday I will drive from Roanoke to Philadelphia to have dinner with Kevin Russell, Claire McKellar, and Claire’s parents, and then spend the night on Kevin and Claire’s floating home at Pier 3 Marina on the Delaware River before heading home on Wednesday. It is a lot of territory to cover in a week, but I am really excited about seeing so many friends and family members in such a short period of time.

2018 Life Logs, Day 247—First Day of School