It’s a… butterfly!

This morning when Daniel came in to wake me up, he had already checked the caterpillars.

“They’re not hatched,” he said.

On my way to the kitchen, I checked and he was right. The chrysalides were still intact.

I went to the kitchen to start making breakfast, walked back to check on the chrysalides, and—just in those few minutes—we had a Painted Lady butterfly!


I called the boys and they came running.


We watched closely for most of the morning, hoping to see another emerge, but then we had to go to Mass and, from there to our Catholic Charities adoption picnic. On the way home we each took bets on how many more butterflies would have emerged. If we’re lucky, we’ll have five at the end.

I guessed we would have no additional butterflies, John said we would have one more, Daniel said two more, and Leo said three more.

As it turned out, father does know best, and when we arrived home, we had one more.


We were especially excited to see the second one because that was the chrysalis that had been knocked to the floor of the jar by one of the other caterpillars.

Tonight I tried to talk everyone into family “screentime” outside the netted butterfly habitat. No one thought that was a good idea.


As for me, I could sit and watch them all day. They are so delicate and fascinating. They respond to noise and movement outside the netting. They fly and walk and climb. It’s entrancing. I’m regretting not taking the week off from work to sit and watch my butterflies.

I mean, um, the boys’ butterflies. Right. Because this is absolutely for the children.

This photo was actually taken by our 5-year-old.

We are supposed to release them within a week of shedding their chrysalides, so we are hoping the other three will emerge in the next couple days.

I will keep you updated…if I’m not too busy sitting here watching butterflies.

We ordered our butterfly kit here. 

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Catholic Review

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.