Bonding over Bugs


Spot the bug!

Today marks the day of two weeks leave from work for both myself and Mr EC. Two weeks to spend with our two girls!

Next week we will be sunning (hopefully) ourselves in Anglesey. This week we decided to potter around, do household chores, go to the park, just…whatever.

Today involved a visit to Fletcher Moss Park in Didsbury, a beautiful park with botanical gardens, lots of wide, open space and (perhaps of utmost importance to young children) a cafe that sells ice-cream.

The afternoon made me realise how rushed I usually feel in my life, to the extent that I don’t often get the chance to just have spontaneous and opportunistic fun with my daughters. For part of the week they’re with a (great) childminder while I’m at work. For the two days I’m not working I try to pack as many activities as possible: toddlers groups, dance classes, play dates with friends. Weekends we’re all together and we usually madly try and catch up with the chores and see grandparents.

All much fun, but often tiring and lacking some, well, spontaneity.

So, picture us in the park on a sunny autumn day. We were just whiling the time away when I suddenly said to nearly-three-year-old “let’s do a bug hunt!”

Off we went, inspecting trees, rose bushes and shrubs (I’m no good at this stuff so apologies that I can’t name them). Along the way we took turns to pretend that we were the dragon, chasing the other one. This involved me grasping the gate to the botanical gardens, shouting “heeeelp!!!”, which must have presented quite a picture to passers by. Crucially, I didn’t care.

Here’s what we found:

  • One worm, under a large stone.
  • One black beetle, on a leaf of a rose bush.
  • One tiny red spider on a tree trunk.
  • One snail, attached to some reeds.
  • I think we were both very pleased with the fruits of our labour. We had smiles on our faces for the rest of the day.

    It did feel like a re-bonding experience after quite a hectic time involving my return to work, appointments with consultants for eczema, death of a family pet and just general flying around being a working parent.

    For me, I’ve realised that I try and organise the hell out of everything. From now on, more spontaneity is in order!



    Working Mum of two, living in Didsbury, Manchester, in a house which breeds washing, mushed up raisins and various toys in the brightest primary colours. Oh, and the odd empty wine glass.

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