Well, they’re back. The frogs, that is. Living on 10 acres as we do, we usually have more than our share of wildlife around here, and never is that more true than in the springtime.
The robins have returned, we’ve seen many deer, and there is a pair of tree swallows scouting out the bird houses we’ve put out for them. But it’s the frogs that always make the most dramatic springtime arrival. By mid-April each year, they (wood frogs and peepers according to the in-house natural scientists) have so taken over the muddy spots in our field that it’s difficult to sleep at night. Even through closed windows, the incessant sound of their PEEP-PEEP-PEEP reaches our ears as we lie in our beds.
The part that this prudish mother finds most disturbing is that they make so much noise at night because they are *blush* mating out there. Imagine that–right there, on our property–the scandal of it all!
It doesn’t bother the kids, though, as mating frogs or chickens or other animals are just a biological fact–a part of nature’s life cycle as they experience it here. In fact, I overheard Kateri this morning as she shared one of her “catches” with 2 year old Gabrielle, who was looking and listening intently:
“See, Gabby? These two are mating. The mother frog will lay her eggs and soon we’ll have tadpoles in the puddles!”
It occurred to me that it is a glorious thing to be a child in muddy rain boots, carrying a bucket, sloshing through puddles, and experiencing the fresh sights and sounds of spring first hand. It reminded me of a little rhyme the kids usually learn in kindergarten:
Thank you for the food we eat. Thank you for the world so sweet. Thank you for the birds that sing. Thank you, God, for everything. Amen.