Find your local sunflower field.
Repeat as necessary.
Everyone is friendly in a sunflower field. We even ran into friends who rode bikes 52 miles that day to see the flowers. (We lazily drove and then stuffed ourselves with plantains and black beans.)
The insect life was fascinating in the field. Like a visual puzzle, once we looked for them, caterpillars emerged everywhere.
Grasshoppers were hanging out.
It was all peace and harmony until I unexpectedly turned my head and got a close up of what I believe are Wheel bugs (part of the Assassin Bug family) who were considering an intimate moment. I ruined their mood and terrified the stranger behind me with a very un-sunflower field-like shriek.
They’re much easier to appreciate when they’re not at the top of your nose.
Even the sunflower field is “friendly” in return. Adventure Buddy came out pollen covered from sunflowers grabbing her.
Look up the Tecumseh Land Trust outside Yellow Springs if you need to hang out in a field. It’s just down the road from Young’s Jersey Dairy where goats need petted and cheese curds need eaten.
Oh, fuck no! I haven’t been on a date since 2006. My situation is basically the condemned Haunted Cavern Ride complete with echoes and cobwebs which in this case works because …..
BERNADETTE GOT PREGNANT!
(Yea, I’m in a weird relationship with my garden spider.)
That saucy minx had a tryst! I bet it was when she moved house. Way to get some, Bernie!
The egg sac appeared today (articles say there might be 3-4 of them) and Bernadette is a hot mess. Her web is tore up from the floor up, and only partially constructed. Also -WARNING TEENAGE GIRLS– her abdomen is all deflated and wrinkly. That body-ody-ody is not what it used to be.
Those curves are no longer kickin’.
In other news, I’m putting my house on the market because that sac could hatch up to a 1000 baby spiders come spring.
Oh, the things I wake up to out my windows. I can’t complain or begrudge the squirrels the sunflowers. They do all the planting after all.
I don’t normally see such red tummies on my squirrel squad.
The rain keeps knocking over our sunflower jungle. This sunflower was trying to get in the house.
Does this web make my spider’s butt look big?
Seriously! I have posed this question on Instagram (@Kstewand4cats) and on my personal Facebook page and nobody wants to comment. The most I got was a “maybeeee??” from MomBert.
I realize that this question when asked between humans is usually a trap, but this time it’s motivated out of mild curiosity…maybe concern. I don’t know. Bernadette is her own spider and she can take care of shit! (Yea, so a former student named her. It seemed to work.)
It really seems like she hasn’t eaten well for a couple of days and, trust me, I check that web MULTIPLE times a day for my own safety because she’s right out the living room window. There have been no obvious catches for a few days. I had that same thought process you have when you suspect a frenemy has lost weight: “Hmmmm, bitch looks smaller. Hate her.”
Finally, Bernadette scored today. Two big carpenter bees! She was using one for a juice box when the other one hit the web and she was frantically on it! Girl was hungry. I was sad for the loss of pollinators, but also acknowledged that these guys are real dicks when it comes to my wooden fence. I helped out by tossing in a stink bug because they are murdering sons of bitches, but she thinks they’re tasty.
So is she smaller and is that a result of less prey or is there a giant egg sac somewhere waiting to take over the world? I’m hoping a spider expert just wanders in to this because there is only so much spider research I can do before it feels like my skin is going to turn inside out from creepy crawlies.
I realize an 8 day time span is not significant when considering booty sizes, but these were the most comparable photo options.
Bernadette in late July wrapping a Japanese beetle.
Yea, this is me literally chasing a butterfly, and yelling, “Let me take your picture” as it dive bombs me. It finally agreed to pose.
I had to take these pictures after photographing the garden spider to cleanse my brain of the creepy crawlies.
Peace out, sunflower.
I train all my bees to synchronize their steps.