Suzy, my 10 and ½ year old, (cannot forget the ½), found a Horney Toad on the walk home from church on Sunday. She was thrilled because this week, today in fact, is the pet parade at school and all we have around this house is some fish. It has been quite a fantastic thing watching her take care of this toad. Poor thing lives in a little quart jar but it is the most decked out quart jar the world has ever seen. She changes the grass almost daily. She arranges the rocks and twigs to perfection. She catches flies and makes sure there is water in the pop top lid. And all the toad ever does is stare back at her, his eyes half shut and lazy most of the time.
At lunch today I will take the toad to her and she will be so proud showing it off and I have to admit the little creature as boring as he is, is mesmerizing to watch. Saturday we are going up the canyon with Suzy’s Aunt and Uncle and cousins and she will let the little creature go. I wonder if he will even think back at his time in the quart jar. Probably not, but if he does I hope he realizes the care that one little girl took of him. Left to another child, a boy perhaps, and I wonder if he would have lived to see Saturday come and his freedom.
It’s amazing to me how something so little can bring so much joy. Suzy taking care of her toad, me watching her. The whole family in one way or another has been fascinated and none of it has cost us a penny, well maybe a quart jar. How often do we look around the corner waiting for the something that will make us happy? How many of us search for that next trip or next dollar that will buy us happiness and not even realize that it’s sitting in a little quart jar on the little old fashioned sewing machine in the front room or in the eyes of the little girl that is taking care of it.