About a month or so ago, The Niece and I were playing in the backyard and I thought it'd be cool to introduce her to the grand childhood pasttime of making a pill bug curl up into a mini-armadillo ball. We hunkered down and peered into the grass in search of pill bugs.

In short order, one of those little insects was crawling toward us. I gently touched it's back and we watched as its survival instincts kicked in and it became a little pill bug ball. The Niece was fascinated by this and had to touch it herself. It was a close call but she didn't actually succeed in making pill bug paste.

It was then she decided that this particular pill bug's name was Harry. Nothing like anthropomorphizing itty bitty bugs, right?

After being rolled around the cement pad outside our back door, Harry figured out that he need to get the hell out of Dodge and trundled himself back to the grass. The Niece now had to find more pill bugs.

This is when we met Raspberry. And I'll have you know that I did not influence The Niece's choice of name for this bug at all. She must already associate blue with raspberry on her own (the blue raspberry Icees/candy/other things that are bad for you I've bought her on occasion I'm sure have nothing to do with it). Raspberry was a bit smarter than Harry and stayed in the grass where she (The Niece insisted Raspberry was a she) was safe(r) from poking and prodding. I had never seen a bright blue pill bug before so this was a new experience for both of us.

The Niece was in full pill bug mode by now. She found another one and proclaimed that its(her) name was Lipstick. Yes, Lipstick. The Niece is a girly-girl 3-year old who loves lipstick, all forms of make-up and all the glitteriness that goes with it. Hence, there is now a pill bug living in the backyard with the moniker Lipstick. Lipstick, however, is a shy pill bug and stayed in the safe zone in between the concrete pad and the yard. She dug herself under some loose grass and when encouraged (read: poked with a twig), just burrowed in deeper. You might say she's a tad anti-social.

We've since visited the pill bug enclave several times and added baby Owie to the fold. There's even been a pill bug family reunion at Nojoqui Falls a couple weeks ago. Considering my love of bugs (please note intense sarcasm), I am so thrilled that I fostered this love of pill bugs in my niece.

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15 Responses
  1. Ah, the good old days of pill bug hunting. My sister and I used to love finding them. We never did name them, though. I love that one is called Lipstick. She must live up the hill from her cousin, Chapstick. ;)

  2. Lil Says:

    Oh yeah, we've gone through blush, eye shadow, and several unpronouncable names as she's run out of make-up names that she knows. Eeesh. :-)

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