Tuesday, June 23, 2009

On That Farm He Had Some Ants

There are some things moms shouldn't have to do. Unfortunately, with a husband in the Navy, and currently away at school, this mom doesn't always have a choice. I recently had to put on my big girl pants and tackle the very scary...

Dum - da - dum - dum - DUMMMMMM.

ant farm.

I really have no one to blame but myself. For some odd reason, I thought an ant farm would be a great birthday gift for Sullivan's 9th birthday. I didn't account for the fact that the ants would arrive after Chuck left. What was I thinking?? Obviously - I wasn't.

Those of you who have ventured into the world of ant farms know that when you buy the "farm", you receive a coupon to send away for the actual ants. Sully anxiously awaited the arrival of his harvester ants. I admit to being a teensy bit excited. Again - what was I thinking??

The ants finally arrived yesterday. I had splurged and also ordered the special ant club membership, which came with some extra goodies.

We nervously opened the box.

Sully tentatively lifted the book and papers and underneath it all the ants awaited. We both jumped when we saw the tube.

If I wasn't nervous before, the words, "ANTS CAN BITE" in big letters and the caution not to touch said ants surely put a huge fear into my heart.

This is the poster that came with it.

The directions said to put the tube of ants in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes to kind of sedate the ants. Calmer ants sounded good to me!

(Does this picture make anyone else feel faint? Ants next to my precious strawberries???)

Now, to make it clear. Having the actual ant farm in my house wasn't worrying me. The part that I was scared of was opening the tube and getting the ants into the farm. What if they started crawling out of the tube and on my hand?? What if I accidentally spilled some onto the table?? So many scary possibilities. The more I thought about it, the sicker I began to feel.

Finally, the time came to step up to the plate and take one for the team. Sully kept repeating, "My mom is scared of the ants." Well, yeah! I was scared, but Sully didn't want to dump the ants in either so was it really fair for him to be making fun of his mother?

For protection, I donned an oven mitt. Just in case one of those suckers tried to bite me I wanted to be prepared. It took forever to get the lid off the tube. As soon as I had twisted it off, I dumped that bad boy into the top of the farm. As the ants came sliding out, I let out a myriad of screams. It reminded me of the time I had to kill a bee in our house. I am deathly afraid of stinging insects. Far more than ants.

I quickly put the lid back on the tube and the top on the farm. Then we all looked expectantly into the ants' new home and what did we see?

Dead ants. Lots of them.

Great! The directions said some might die en route to our house and that was okay because there were plenty in there. It also said try not to put the dead ants into the farm. Seriously?? How do they expect you not to touch the ants, but also keep the dead ones out?? They should have sent someone along with the ants to do the job.

I looked at my son's crestfallen face and looked back at the tube I held in my hand. There were still a few live ones moving around. Being the brave mom that I was pretending to be, I once again took the lid off the tube and the top off the farm and forced a few more live ants to their new home.

I know you want a close up.

So, now we wait. I will keep you updated on the ants' progress. And, all I have to say is - Chuck, you owe me one!


  1. This is the funniest blog post ever. I'm laughing out loud.

    I would have been acting the same way as you, only probably even more neurotically. I would have put the tube of ants into a ziploc bag or other container before sticking that in the refrigerator near my food. (My thoughts: What if it broke? What if the ants came marching out and into my food?)

    When it came time to open the tube and insert the ants into the farm, I'd have taken the whole thing outside. (What if they came marching out into the house? What if they turned aggressive and covered my body or the kids' bodies? Have I seen too many horror movies?)

    Otherwise, about the same. I'd have been screaming, not looking, hyperventilating, and then getting the heebie jeebies the rest of the week (as in, feeling like ants were crawling on me).

    You are brave, brave, brave. I commend you. And laugh at you. I mean with you. Yea, I commend you and laugh with you. That's the ticket.

  2. I guess I owe you one. You act like the ants had chainsaws and flamethrowers. All they do is pinch a tiny bit if they bite. Some people are a little reactive to the ant's saliva and a rash from them. They aren't fire ants or army ants where you really need to worry a ton. I will admit thay they do look pretty big. At least is wasn't a spider farm!


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