Last spring, I was scrolling through “Our Monifieth,” the Facebook page for my hometown in Scotland. Our family had moved to Texas in 2012, and I enjoyed keeping up with things back home. I saw a post about two girls who’d started a “quarantine caterpillar” in Monifieth made up of rocks they’d painted. With the pandemic worsening, my daughters, Nicole and Alex, decided that our neighborhood needed a quarantine caterpillar of its own.
We painted a few rocks with messages of hope, then lined them up along the edge of the sidewalk. We put up a sign inviting neighbors to add their own decorated rocks. Nicole and Alex set a goal of 100 rocks for our caterpillar.
Each day, the girls went to check on the caterpillar. They were delighted to find that it was growing! New rocks appeared every day. People painted encouraging messages, pictures of their pets, even a NASA logo. The caterpillar grew so long that we made signs to mark every 100 rocks. We just passed 1,100. The caterpillar in Monifieth ended up with almost 2,000 rocks.
Our quarantine caterpillar gave us something fun to do during a difficult time. And it helped my girls feel closer to their friends and neighbors in Texas and Scotland.
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