In One Year and Out The Other

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For those of you who do not receive our weekly newsletter, I just had to share this fascinating and fitting video to close out 2016 and bring in the New Year. Our symbol for 2017 of celebration, elegance, and soul.

This science project was a total Pope Family team effort created this past week and will continue for the next 10-14 days. We are now proud owners of a half dozen caterpillars. Woody facilitated this biology experiment in our outdoor patio laboratory by bringing these creatures home the day before Christmas. Hali photographed, filmed, and added the commentary. Carli edited the video and provided names for each of our new pets.


 Creating a video is not as easy at it looks

Lucky for me, this time I have Carli nearby. She has some pretty mean, rapid-fire, movie editing skills. I sure wish I could keep up with her. Anyway, a big shoutout to her for her help on my second YouTube video. You can find her on YouTube at HiCarliii.

A New Hobby?

Nah, I don’t have the stamina for learning movie editing. Combing Craigslist has alway been a Woody past time, but finding free monarch caterpillars was unusual. And, so he thought, what the heck? A new hobby has been born, albeit brief. Or, more fitting, thankfully brief.

The critters have been a delight to observe. We’ve spent hours watching them gorge themselves on milkweed. Eating it like corn on the cob, starting on one side of a leaf, munching to the central vein, stop and start again on the next “row”. Eat and poop, eat and poop. Never knew caterpillars discharged so much poop – like a hamster! Next thing you know we discover a couple of chrysalises and realize it almost happens in a blink of an eye, how did we miss that episode?

Then I’m struck by the parallel morphing has, with this time of year and New Year’s resolutions: can’t we all shed our skin and try something new on? For these little fellas, they are all in, and there’s no going back. . .at least we can change our mind, if we have to.

So, ladies and gentlemen, I have for you, the transformation of a caterpillar to chrysalis. The live action time was a total of 7 minutes, 7 seconds. As you’ll see, we won’t make you wait that long:

We have a total of 6, gold-fringed, lima beans hanging in our patio. In another week or two, maybe we’ll hit the jackpot, and have a monarch video to share with you.


In another week these pupas will reach the final stage of their life-cycle. Their stage debut of Imago. In the mean time, we are patiently awaiting the emergence of six magnificent monarch butterflies and their dance among the bougainvillea.

For those of you who would like to receive our weekly newsletter, subscribe today and join the ride. We will try our best to capture the rebirth of these caterpillars and include the footage in our next edition.

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About Woody

We are a couple who took the first step toward a life of traveling in May, 2015. Staying within the continental US, we amp'd the adventure-factor by traveling in a VW Vanagon, circa 1985. Our mission is to share irresistible and compelling stories conceived from this lifestyle of travel.

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