During Vacation Bible School I taught the 2 year old class. I always have a kiddie pool full of sand outside the fellowship hall for the kids to play in. This year was no different. I covered it with cardboard each afternoon. That particular week in June found us under tornado watches and warnings three afternoons. By Wednesday the pool was full of water on top of the sand and the kids couldn't play in it. Friday afternoon during clean up it was still full and I couldn't lift it to empty it. This past week, 6 weeks after VBS, Mikie and our family friend Mark, went to empty the pool. When Mark tipped it to pour this weeks worth of rain out something jumped out at him. I wasn't there but would have loved to have seen Mikie and Mark's faces. What jumped out was a large bullfrog and a smaller one.
Mikie hollered for Maggie to come see what they had found. He picked up the larger frog, the little one hopped away, and handed it to Maggie. She carried it through the parking lot to the pavillion before she headed to the playground to show off her frog. The kids on the playground were terrified of the frog. They were running around and screaming, trying to get away from her. She pretended to kiss it. She was so close that if it had moved she would have kissed it.
Maggie got in the car, Slimy the frog in hand, and we rode home. I told her, "If you let that frog go we won't make it home." I just knew she would let go, Slimy would jump across the seats onto my shoulder or lap, I would panic and we would wreck. Well, fifteen minutes later we unloaded at the house, Slimy still in hand. Everyone of our kids held it. Mattie pretended to kiss it too.
Maggie carried Slimy around to the patio and placed in the plastic pool. It had just a little water and lots of bugs. Frog paradise? So we thought.
The next morning before we went to register Mattie for second grade we went to check on Slimy. Maggie couldn't find him. One side of the pool had fallen over, she lifted it. "Slimy shrunk," she yelled. Out hopped a smaller, bumpy frog. Definetly not Slimy. The look on her face was priceless. She really believed that he had shrunk during the night. She couldn't catch him. So while my eggs burned on the stove I chased Sparkles around the patio. Finally she was back in the pool. We fixed the pool in hopes that Sparkles would not escape. Off to registration to meet Mattie and Maggie's teachers.
When we returned home Sparkles had jumped over the side of the pool and was gone also. Maggie was sad and looked all over the yard for Slimy and Sparkles but neither could be found. An exciting evening and morning, a new pet gone. A little girls heartbroken but ready for another adventure.
Maggie will catch something else one of these days. She's afraid of nothing. For the time being we will keep Green Eyes the cat, and an aquarium of fish and snails. But come Knoxville Fair time we hope to bring home a huge bunny. And to answer Uncle Buddy's repeating question, "Why can't you get those kids a normal pet, like a dog?" Dogs are fun but catching your pets is more fun. I figure I'm going to be catching that bunny a lot in the next few weeks.