Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The Bug Project

People ask me all the time how I feel about our impending empty nest.  I have mixed feelings.  Some days I can't wait to not have to put the brakes on my day at 2:30 and hightail it home, and other times I look at The Big Daddy and think.........hmmmm.  You and me have some catching up to do.

These days have brought about a lot of reflection on this child-rearing gig that I've been doing for the past 25 years and most of what I remember is the good, the barf, and the school projects.

When The Teacher Girl was in 1st grade, the kids had to do The Bug Project.  It came with a sheet of construction paper that the bug had to fit on, and it could be anything your child you dreamed up as long as it fit on the paper you were given.  Like every instruction sheet I've ever been given, I skimmed it, thus not fully understanding the significance of the endeavor.  We helped with the drawing of it as far as advice, and might have put a few sequins on it but it was most definitely a 1st grade effort.  All the bugs were put on display in the hallway so the kids chould show off their work their parents work.

We had no idea what we were in for.

Bugs that lit up, bugs that had moving parts, bugs with their favorite food coming out of their mouth and a bug made entirely of mink because Sarah's mom owned a fur shop.

Sitting on a piece of construction paper in the back was The Fisher Family Bug that looked like it took a long, slow crawl from the trailer park and had been run over a few times in the process.

We learned our lesson and when it was The Boy Child's turn, we stepped up our participation.  I made many trips to the craft store and his bug looked significantly better than his sister's.  Alas, in The Land of The Overachievers and The Overindulged, it wasn't a show stopper.

When it was Mallie Bee's turn, The Big Daddy said, "Don't worry.  I've got this covered."  For a week he toiled at the workbench in the basement working with plaster of paris, paper mache and paint.  When he emerged he was carrying a cricket that weighed as much as The Beester and announced to the family..............

"That school will remember the last Fisher bug."

They did, too, for it was a menacing black cricket so pumped up on steroids that it scared the bejeezits out of kids and adults alike.  When it came home from The Big Show it spooked Mallie Bee so much that we shoved it in the closet with the other scary monsters and called it quits..........

.............which is what we are looking forward to after all these years.

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