Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: Something I Collected as a Child

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I have one predictable and one unexpected answer for this week’s prompt.

The predictable answer: books. I had several relatives who would send new books to me as Christmas and birthday presents. Between those gifts and the libraries I visited, I was always lucky enough to have something good to read.

cupped hands holding soil and earthworms

This isn’t me, but you get the idea.

The unexpected answer: earthworms.

Yes, I’ll explain this one.

After my two pet hamsters lived out full, happy lives and went to hamster heaven, my mother repurposed their old glass cage into a container to grow a few plants. She placed it in my bedroom.

I was about nine or ten at this point and wondered how my plants would fare if they didn’t have any earthworms to aerate and enrich their soil.

This thought bubbled to the front of my mind again the next time I went outside after a storm and saw earthworms lying on the sidewalk. Worried they might drown, I picked a few up, brought them home, and put them into the soil where they’d be safe from predators, careless humans, or future thunderstorms.

This was something I continued to do every so often without thinking to tell my parents about my private collection of rescued earthworms.

When I was eleven, my family moved a few thousand miles away to a new home. One of the last things we did before we moved was dump out the soil and plants from that container into the backyard.

My perplexed (and maybe slightly horrified) mother saw dozens of earthworms wiggling their way free as we emptied out the soil. She asked why there were so many of them, so I told her. Mom was too stunned to reply at first.

I didn’t get in trouble, but she did gently tell me not to rescue any more earthworms in the future. Apparently, they can fare quite well for themselves if you leave them to their own devices.

I’d like to think I amused my parents! If nothing else, they had ample proof they’d raised a compassionate child.


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34 Responses to Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: Something I Collected as a Child

  1. How fun! Both my girls used to play with worms when we went fishing. I, myself, don’t like to touch them! I hope you can stop by:


  2. Tammy Schoch

    I forgot about that! 😄

  3. I can see my grandkids doing that. And, I am sure the plants in that aquarium grew a lot better than they would have! Earthworms are great. Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Mary Morgan

    Wow! What fun, Lydia! And a great idea for my grandkids. Great post!

  5. I have actually raised worms before — but as an adult for my garden. Honestly, it’s fascinating to do (their behavior and responses are interesting, but I like science/nature so I’m a little weird) and I love that you did it as a child! So funny.

  6. That’s a really cool story. How wonderful to see the earthworms thrive.

  7. You’ve gotta love all critters, right? I know someone who keeps a worm farm for composting. Worms are way underrated!

  8. That’s a really neat memory! I think I was too squeamish as a kid to pick up earthworms. I still am not fond of the feel of them (and I’m afraid I’ll accidentally hurt them).

  9. Sydney Winward

    Great post! What a unique collection.

  10. Morgan Lechtenberg

    I always felt bad for the little worms on the sidewalk too. I would pick them up and throw them back to the grass (the very place they crawled out of in the rain, lol) thinking that I was saving them. Great post!

  11. It’s not all that strange. I feel bad when the little worms crawl onto the driveway pad and dry out before they can get to the grass. Then again, I’m not around when they do so I can’t move them, either.

  12. Collecting earth worms is a new one for me. Good for you.

  13. Oh I loved your post. rescuing earthworms, that’s got to be a first. I admit that when I see them on the sidewalk after a rainstorm, I still pick them up and put then in my garden or lawn. Figured couldn’t hurt. LOL Thanks for sharing. Here’s mine.

  14. I mean, “Mother of Earthworms” maybe doesn’t have the same cachet as “Mother of Dragons”, but I like it. And I wouldn’t want the earthworms to get stepped on, either. Thanks for stopping by earlier!

  15. You’re braver than me. I could never bring myself to touch worms.

  16. That’s really sweet! I’ve never been brave enough to pick up a worm!

  17. RS

    I mean, as far as invertebrates that don’t mix well with the squeamish go, there are definitely worse things you could have brought in the house. That’s got to be the most unusual animal rescue I’ve ever heard of, though…

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