The Ear Muffs

Ah, summer mornings.  When I can open up the back door and let the kids out…for as long as they’ll stay out.  But, every summer, they have to re-adjust to the unexpected mass of bugs that jump out of the grass to greet them as they run around.

“Ahhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!   MOM!!!!  BEES!  EVERYWHERE!  GROSS!  EW! MOM!!!!”

Living by the lake has mostly advantages, but there are a few pesky things I could do without.


We have bug seasons here.  Mayflies, Muffleheads, Canadian Soldiers, Noseums…They have many names…but no matter what you call them one thing is clear.  They are annoying, and they are everywhere.  Just like the ‘summer people’ who show up in droves and forget how to drive.  (Funny, they can all find their horns, though…)

First are the Muffleheads…and I’m just going to call them what I’ve always called them even though it may not be their real name.  They gather in massive clouds around the lights at night, and swarm the grass and bushes in the morning.  They leave green spots on cars, boats, houses…anything you leave out at night.  I sympathize with my kids on this one.  I run through swarms of them in the morning, occasionally getting blasted in the back of the throat with one.  It’s tough to know whether to try to cough it up, or just swallow it and be done with it.  Gotta stick to dark pants while they’re in season, because there’s no way to avoid sitting on one.

In between bug rounds the spiders are slowly beginning to take over.  If we don’t have a professional come out and spray a few times a summer, the front door with be covered with webs by mid-June. Even with applied chemicals, anything left out in the back yard  has to be hosed off each day before the kids will go near it.  Again…can’t blame them.

After the Muffleheads come the Mayflies…or Canadian Soldiers?  I get them confused.   But, they get so bad around here they have to be shoveled off the streets in places.  Especially on the islands.  You can’t miss them, because they freeze in place when the sun comes up, wings sticking out flapping in the breeze.  Although they make for easy fishing bait, it’s nasty to hear bugs ‘POP’ under your shoes when stepped on.

Like anything, the kids become numb to the bugs after a while, and start giggling when the Muffleheads land on their arms, and quite enjoy ‘popping’ the Canadian Soldiers under their shoes.

“Mom!” Brianne laughs…” there’s an Ear Muff on my swing! ha ha ha ha!”


It’s really a mass of bugs at the lakeshore.  Biting flies, mosquitoes…all kids of stuff.

However, small price to pay to live by the beach.  And, have a constant laugh watching my girls react to constant battering of insects.  If you come up to the lake to vacation?  Buy sunscreen with bug repellent.  I can sell you some real cheap if you can’t find it.  lol.

Happy Bug Seasons!


Rain in the Forecast…

We’re somewhat preempted to grumble about rainy days.  Even the weather channel girl mulls over rainy forecasts, trading in her ‘sunny day’ forecast enthusiasm for a more glum tone.  Every wonder why that is?  What’s so bad about the rain?

It makes no difference to my kids what the weather is doing outside…their focus lies solely in the fact that they want to be out in it.  They aren’t worried about getting soaked, or their fingers becoming cold and pruney.  All the rain means to them is rain-boots and puddle splashing as we meander down the street.

In the grown up world, we are sometimes slightly over-informed…

There has always been, and will always be, and abundance of rain to grumble about.  Weather we hibernate inside until the sun comes out is up to us.  Fear of getting soaked to the bone has never kept me out of the rain…to the point that I remember my Mom pulling up beside my teenaged self running through a thunderstorm, asking if I wanted a ride home.  Being my Mom, she knew all too well that I meant to be out in it.  Being a good Mom, she had to make sure I was OK, anyway.

From birth on, children need their Mom’s assurance that everything is OK.  It’s evident in the look of approval my girls seek to splash in puddles…even with rain boots on.  An extra hug…a pat on the back…’Mommy Cuddles” as my older daughter says.  Kids are no more afraid to ask for extra encouragement than they are to get soaked in the rain.  Self assurance is just another basic human need.

You can learn a lot from a toddler.  How to let go and play in the rain…how much hurt a hug can heal a bruised self confidence…

But toddlers can learn a lot from us, too.  Like, how to let go and play in the rain…how much hurt a hug can heal a bruised self confidence..

We shouldn’t ever assume that just because we’re adults we need any less assurance than our kids.  It’s OK to let go and play in the rain.  To face seemingly mundane or difficult tasks…and with fearless abandon seek extra hugs of encouragement when needed.  That’s where faith kicks in, as well.

We’re all just grown up versions of the kids we once were.  Put the rain boots on and splash around.  Life if short.

Happy Splashing…



Getting splashed by the lake at sunrise.