Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Butterflies & Clams

I must have truly missed out in my younger years living in such an urban setting.  There are many pleasures in city living but the pleasures of living closer to nature is pretty incredible.  While I may whine about the deer pooping all over my lawn, the weird giant rodent things eating every one of my flowering plants (killing my beloved peony!), the birds chirping at 4 in the morning, seeing incredible things up close and personal is delighting me. <---run-on sentence, IN ACTION, LIVE on WONDEGONDIGO!

I went out to pick some flat leaf parsley during the weekend and saw many of these gorgeous caterpillars serenely hanging out among the stems.  Upon research I found that these are Eastern Black Swallowtails and they exclusively feed on plants in the carrot family (parsley being one).
I think they will go off elsewhere to cocoon to develop into the beautiful butterflies with the black wings, but I will enjoy their company for a short while.  My parsley is looking a bit sad and brown, and so I'm very glad they are being enjoyed by these insects.

from Floridata.com
source: here
Pretty butterflies!  And the vibrant green on the caterpillars blend expertly into the parsley plants.
Not that I am a huge bug lover or anything.  I have recently discovered a hive of angry yellow jackets under my deck!
 
Speaking of recent pleasures, after first trying this in New Haven, CT many years ago, I ate this delectable white clam pizza.  It was so salty but full of garlic-y and ocean flavors on top of a very well cooked and charred crust.
I think next time, this pizza will also require the accompaniment of bacon.  Yah?

Any recent simple pleasures you want to share?  Makeup pleasure is also good and always welcome!

19 comments :

  1. I don't even remember the last time I had pizza *cries*. With a husband allergic to garlic and dairy, there's no fun in pizza left. But I made a tasty beef strogonoff yesterday! And cream of zucchini soup! Yum.

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    1. *crieeeees* monika, when we get together lets get some pizza, eh? this place is out of the way for you, but we can arrange a cheesy, garlicky meet up. what say you?

      I loveeee the abundance of zucchini in the summer. love that vegetable!

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  2. Whoa! My kid will go gaga over that huge caterpillar. We had this jar-loup (basically a mason jar with the lid cut out and a loup inserted, so you can put something inside the jar and look at it up close) for his birthday and he's been "collecting" insects ever since.
    Simple pleasure.. ahh, definitely iced coffee. Not normally a coffee person but iced coffee hits the spot lately. Thanks for the post!

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    1. wouldn't Tod just love to cuddle and squish it? There were some HUUUUUGE ones hanging about. Have to admit, as wondrous as these caterpillars are, imagining how squishy they are is kind of giving me the creeps. Also looking at butterflies close up also gives me the heebie jeebies.

      Iced coffee! Yum! I love it cold brewed with a good glug of half & half! No skim milk for me!

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    2. Heck yeah, only half-and-half will do with the iced coffee.. milk just doesn't cut it.

      The Tod is actually surprisingly gentle to the insects. He loves slugs (which is another thing that gives me the jeebies..) and those things are just.... let's just say one not supposed to handle it all that much before it get squished accidentally, and the Tod managed to not squish them, well, sometimes. I just let him go with PapaLorp when he wants to visit his sluggies/insect friends..

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  3. Pizza is dangerous, can't have a lot of cheese and I don't want to risk ingesting onion/garlic/chives but I do like home made pizza.

    Caterpillars in my garden are moths, not pretty ones :( and a cockatoo loves to come over and shred my plants.

    I love a good creme caramel or pana cotta, made with real vanilla bean and hopefully with a nice berry coulis.

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    1. Selphia! Cockatoos! that's amazing! Sounds all nice in theory to have amazing animals around...except when they come and eat up all your garden plants. I am so devastated about my peonies. I was expecting blooms next year! D:

      I want to try a panna cotta, too! I've been hoarding vanilla beans so this sounds like a good idea for company next time. Yum.

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  4. I am finally breaking lurking on your blog just to comment on that delicious, wonderful Frank Pepe's pizza.

    LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE.

    I'll be back, once I cobble an online identity. :]

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    1. Will you come back as "Clam Pizza Lover?" Because that or "Clam Makeup Pizza Person" are both excellent names. :D
      The pizza was SO FINE, but gah! So salty. I think I drank a gallon of water after I ate pretty much the whole pie.

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    2. Oh man, maybe that's going to be my new online handle. More honest than "l33thaxx0r".

      My opinion: best drink with Pepe's pizza is birch beer. So bad yet good.

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    3. Birch Beer is good, but I had Root Beer that day! SO GOOD!

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  5. Animal Planet Live!! I haven't seen a caterpillar for so long! We're only getting monstrously huge snails all over the place every time it rains (which is like every day recently)

    And now I have a hankering for pizza! Clam pizza sounds yummmm! Clam and garlic is one blissful combination! 1 hr till lunch....stomach embarrassingly talkative.

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    1. :) When you say giant snails, I develop a craving for dimsum and those snails you eat with a toothpick. When I look at a caterpillar, I don't thikn I want to eat it.

      You know what is horrible? Something I look at my own blog posts and get super hungry.

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  6. Pizza? Did you say pizza??? That one looks so delicious, thanks for the inspiration I just might make one over the weekend. Cat & I have been enjoying several different toppings on our homemade pizzas recently.

    Simple pleasure? Last week I was able to observe a brown squirrel in my yard, a rare thing in the city! :)

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    1. Helene! My fellow food-a-holic! I love briny flavors and on a pizza crust with all that garlic! HEAVEN! HEAVEN!

      Helene, how do I know if my peonies are dead dead, or just sad? Something ate all the leaves off all my peonies. Are these plants goners now?

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    2. Me thinks they're just sad. If the stems are still green just shorten them a bit and you could try using a mix of soap and water to spray them every few days or so to keep bugs away. Iirc it's about 1 or 2 tbs of dishwater soap in one litre of water (about 4 cups). You could also remove some of the half eaten leaves so the plant won't waste energy trying to keep them up. If you do spray them, do it in the evening so the sun won't damage them (droplets can become magnifyers) and don't forget under the leaves. :)

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  7. YIKES!!! I saw clams and i went for it.... but it's bugs bugs bugs! Pretty bugs but eeeks! :PPP *squirmish chick* But that pizza looks delish... and now my confused mind is going delish bugs? Bug pizza??

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    1. I know! this is a post that gives simultaneous SQUEES and EWWWWS and YOOOOMMMMS!

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  8. You lucky Belly! Nature is pretty rad! Nothing comes close to country living. I hope the caterpillar gets to grow into a pretty butterfly, not everyone of them do :(

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