Saturday, July 28, 2012

The Great Ash Sphinx

     Yesterday I had the pleasure of seeing and holding a Great Ash Sphinx caterpillar. That is not my photo. I unfortunately left my camera at home during my hike otherwise I would have taken a picture of my sons holding the caterpillar over their wide open mouths. I researched it when I got home and found that it's host plant was probably an aspen. What a large thing it was! It was hairless and I thought that sharp thing sticking out of its butt was going to poke me or sting me or something. But I put on a semblance of bravery for my little followers that were on my hike with me. The last thing I want is for my boys to be afraid anything in the animal kingdom. What a shame that would be! To be co-inhabitants of this planet and be afraid of one another! I know it happens all the time between different peoples and races but when humans are afraid of peaceful animals, its a shame! (Yep, for all of you people out there that have killed spiders for me, I know I sound like a hypocrite. But I'm trying not to be.)
    I bribed my nephew, who is 11, to swim to the middle of an alpine lake up by Brighton Ski Resort for $2. He took the bait, thankfully! Gosh I'm grateful for him! There's not a better example for young boys than a boy that is slightly older. And when they do something like that, its even better. Sherms was down to his underwear and feet in the water ready to go, but I had set a time limit and he didn't make it. My boys would have stood with just their feet in the water for hours debating whether they should go for it or not. So, Isaiah made it back safely and shivering. I was proud of him. I read a part in "Last Child in the Woods" about a boys school or a boys camp where their focus is to give boys heavy adrenaline producing activities, like swimming in cold lakes in the morning hours, or surviving in nature on their own for a period of time, etc. so they can actually know what real adrenaline is rather than have the boys get stuck thinking that mastering a level on a video game is a real adrenaline rush. So Jonathan and I are trying to do this, on a budget of course. We are not rich compared to most Americans, but we do have a lot and can still do a lot for our boys. I believe that all we need to do is study, read, plan accordingly and give our time to those things.

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