F was given some frogspawn to care for from school just before Easter, and the tadpoles graduated from the small plastic container they arrived in, to a bucket in his room. F has been very responsible about feeding them; I felt very uneasy though about having dozens of God’s creatures living under our roof, without the prospect of ultimate liberty.

But my doubts have been happily confounded. took us all to the local pond shop on Sunday, and bought some pondweed and a bonus pond snail. The pond shop itself was pretty amazing, a suburban labyrinth of water features (mostly inhabited by fish, amphibians and other invertebrates). Now, the big plastic turtle which we originally bought as a sandpit for B nine years ago, and which has since done occasional duty as a paddling pool, has become a new home for the tadpoles, sitting in the drive just outside the garden gates in order to prevent U from experimenting with the water. It has a couple of shelves that its inhabitants can sit on when their legs have grown, and has already started attracting insects. Summer is coming, and it is beautiful.

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