Sunday, May 3, 2015

A Common Foe Unites a Neighborhood

It was a good day!  Two sons were baptized at church by the youth pastor and Chris. These are the best pictures we could snap without totally making a spectacle of ourselves at church!

Baptism was followed by a birthday lunch for Papa's 70th birthday!

Grateful for so much family to come!

And we celebrated my niece's and nephew's birthday too!

After family left, the neighbor kids congregated in our yard to fight a common foe.  See blog post.

Quite frequently a pack of neighborhood kids congregate in our yard.  The group is composed of a sweet mix of kids that love each other, but rarely agrees on anything.  A conflict over the placement of a kick ball base can unleash a feud rivaling the Hatfields and McCoys.

Tonight I was fiddling with dishes in the sink when I peeked out the kitchen window.  I noticed neighbor kids trickling into our yard.  One was armed with a water gun.  A recipe for disaster.  It only takes one "accidental" spraying to release a typhoon of tears and trouble.

But then I became distracted, and thoughts of water guns and neighbor kids slipped my mind.

Fifteen minutes later, I return to my post by the kitchen sink and peeked out the window.  I spied the pack working in unison.  Intrigued, I placed my kitchen towel by the sink and slipped out the back door to observe the scene more closely.

Caleb screamed, "Everyone grab your best weapons."

The neighbor kids sprang to action.  Some clasps water guns.  Others gripped frisbees.  One held a bat.  A few wore protective gear in the form of lifejackets (smart thinking in a landlocked state like Indiana!). 

Caleb continued, "Everyone hide behind the tree."

A half dozen children raced behind a tree the width of my leg.  Perhaps a 1/3 of one child was hidden behind the thin trunk.  

I had to ask.

"What ya doing?" I inquired with a smirk.

In a sergeant-worthy tone, Caleb barked back, "We're getting rid of the bees on the play set."

Of course.

So obvious!

Caleb returned to his military mission.  He instructed the neighborhood infantry, "When I say go, storm the play set."

The neighborhood kids braced for his command.  At the count of three, the soldiers pushed forward.  My unsuspecting play set appeared to be no match to the barrage of attacks from frisbees, water sprays, and baseballs.

Still, the bees stood their ground.

Caleb instructed the troops on Plan B.  

Bait was needed.

He pulled out a Diet Coke can from our refrigerator and placed the open can near the slide.  The group crouched behind the swing and waited to attack the enemy.

Apparently one solider got thirsty during the wait and decided to drink the bait.  He was immediately scolded and shamed by his fellow warriors.

Plan B (or was it Plan Bee:)) was somewhat successful. One carpenter bee and two wasps fell victim to the attacks.

At that point, children were called home.  Baths were required.  Dinners were served.

The bees turned out to be a blessing in disguise.  These winged insects served as a uniting force among the neighbor kids.  They dropped petty disagreements over whose turn it was on the swings to stand next to their neighbor clutching a water gun facing a common nemesis.  The neighbor kids used their collective wisdom and creativity to face their adversary together.  The bees transformed a ragamuffin group of kids into a skillful team of vigilantes.

Neighbor kids: 1

Bees: 0

For today.....

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