We've had a particularly springy kind of spring this year. I guess it was the harder-than-usual winter, I don't know. But all of the leaf-spouting and flower-blooming started a couple of weeks later than usual...and it seems that there was nothing gradual to the process. Really, it felt like one week the trees were all sticks, and the grass was all brown...and suddenly the next week the leaves were completely out and the grass was spotted with wildflowers and needing a mowing.
And because of this suddeness, we had what I heard referred to on the news several times as "The Perfect Pollen Storm." It wasn't just the trees and grass that were suddenly green -- everything outside was green, coated with a fine layer of pollen. Everyone had allergy problems, even people who have never before had allergies. And I think I used a gallon or two of windshield wiper fluid during those couple of weeks just trying to keep a line of sight.
Well, now that the pollen has settled down a little bit, the trees have been dropping their pollen sacs. There are quite a few pine trees behind our house, and their pollen sacs have been of particular interest to Josiah. They're all over our back porch...and have an eery resemblance to worms -- or caterpillars. When Joey discovered that the back porch was covered in these creatures, he was fascinated. There were "ca-piwahs" everywhere! Anytime we went outside he simply had to pick up a few. But then after some time spent poking and prodding, over the course of several days, he apparently discovered that they were not alive, and therefore could not be caterpillars...so he began calling them, "not ca-piwahs."
Now everytime we go outside, he has to see the "not ca-piwahs." And even though he now seems to realize that they're not alive, he still has to check them out. He still squats down and looks for awhile, picks up a few, carries them around, and pets them. Several times a day he asks me to open the back door to look at the "not ca-piwahs." He usually brings the few that he picks up into the house, but then after several minutes of carrying them around he always wants to put them back outside....and now recently, with potty training under our belt, going potty outside has become a fun new trick...and apparently it's lots of fun to use the "not ca-piwahs" as targets.