Sunday, June 15, 2008

The Turtle Hunters

The following post is evidence in my ongoing argument that video games are not a direct cause of Nature Deficit Disorder. My kids had video games readily available, and yet today they hunt turtles.

Calvin had already caught three small painted turtles by hand, but he decided he needed a net of some sort to increase his success. I told him I had some mesh bags left over from planting seed potatoes, and he remembered we had this old, warped tennis racket. I mean, I was Calvin's age when I took a few tennis lessons and used it. So it's old, and it sat outside over winter. Calvin cut the strings off and, armed with staple gun (yikes!), turned warped tennis racket and potato bag into useful turtle net.
Then the Turtle Brigade set out. If you're worried about life jackets, like I know my grandma would be, our pond is mostly shallow, especially where the kids were stalking turtles, and I was supervising the whole adventure. And these kids know what they're doing in that kayak.

I especially liked watching how these brothers worked together, considering how much of their time they spend arguing about this or that. Nature provides a common purpose.

The kids caught a total of five turtles today, and decided to release the turtle we had held in the aquarium all winter. We noticed its shell was not as hard as the wild turtles' shells, and we thought it would be better off in the wild. I wish it all the best.

Of course, we had to have some turtle fun, on my new tablecloth.

We now have an aquarium with five turtles, four two year olds and one last year's hatchling.

My kids keep reminding me how sweet life can be.


Jayne said...

Awwww... now THAT is priceless!

Lynne said...

That sounds fun! I wanna come and hang out with you and your kids!

MojoMan said...

What a great way for siblings to spend a summer day together. I bet they'll remember times like that forever. And, no electronics or gasoline involved.

Erica said...

Haha, love the turtle race. Looks like the boys all had a blast!

Floridacracker said...

Such a kid thing to do.
How cool are those guys? ... waaaay cool!

Deb said...

Jayne- priceless it was. I even put off gardening so I could witness it all.

Lynne- Well, come on up anytime! You'll be making the trip to Hasty Brook on a regular basis now that you'll be building your cabin- Sweet! We're on the way...sort of.

Mojoman- I like electronics or gasoline involved. I was thinking of that after I drove thirty miles round trip to take Mr. Attitude to T-ball tonight, and the first thing he wanted to do when we got back home was go turtle hunting. It was kind of chilly out though, and the kids ended up playing soccer with Togo the dog. Which was also pretty sweet.

Erica- A blast was had by all. The turtle races were way too fun.

FC- Wonderful kid stuff going on spite of our best efforts to keep them in front of the TV. :)

By "those guys" do you mean the turtles or the kids? Both are waay cool.

Anonymous said...

what a delightful post! this brings back such great memories deb.. your kiddos are going to have such a precious treaure chest of memories too.. priceless :)

oh! email me when u have time.. i have a childrens book on turtles i'd like to send you-it has a photo of mine inside, a great little read

John T said...

A few years back our boys who are 15 and 16 now, came home with a little snapping turtle that we named Nemo. He lived in a twenty gallon aquarium. We'd buy a scoop of crappie minnows at the bait store and Nemo would spend the next week hunting them like a cat hunts a mouse. In that time all of the minnows would be gone. In the spring of the next year Nemo left his twenty gallon tank for the Mississippi.

Deb said...

Cindy- Nice to hear from you! I'll send an email soon. :)

John T- Fun! Calvin said he has seen a little snapping turtle in the pond, and I don't doubt it since I've seen them laying eggs in our driveway. I hope he catches one some time!

nina said...

So nice to see your boys enjoying the hunt together.
Yes, nature gives them a common purpose--a sweet time for you to witness.