We checked it daily, watered the plant and waited for a sign that at least one of them had hatched. Finally, after a week, we were rewarded with this:
|Not one, but both of them hatched within a day of each other. Olivia promptly named them "Jane" and "Millie"|
|They grew quickly, going from tiny caterpillars to large, fat ones over the course of the next 12 days.|
|Then, on day 19, Jane (don't ask me how she could tell them apart) curled up and hung motionless for a few hours|
|When we looked the next morning, she was shedding her skin.|
|Before this, I always thought they wove a cocoon around themselves|
|But as we watched, it became clear that she had already changed inside and would become the chrysalis itself.|
|Another 12 days later, we came downstairs and found her already out of the chrysalis, drying her wings.|
|We carried the plant outside and took off the net.|
|Almost immediately, she fluttered down to the concrete. That's when we noticed that "Jane" was actually a boy.|
Olivia promptly renamed him Benny.
|I guess Benny wasn't used to his new wings yet because he wouldn't really attempt to fly and was willing to climb onto our hands without the slightest hesitation.|
|After a couple more minutes of prompting, Benny took flight. He didn't go far, though, before he landed in the grass and struggled to get upright. I picked him back up and looked for a place to put him.|
|In the meantime, Ezra went back and forth about whether he wanted to hold Benny, but he finally did.|
We finally placed Benny on top of a tall, wooden stake in the yard and he sat there for a good hour while the kids ate lunch. At some point, I looked out the window and he was gone. Now we wait for Millie...