They came anyway.

She painted it metallic pinks and purples. Covered it in foam sticker butterflies and hearts. We hung it on the fence and waited.

The rains came and the heat, too, and the paint started to peel. A sticker and then two and twenty washed away.

A few butterflies remain and today, she squealed a whispered jump for joy in my ear.

“They found it! Look, mama!”

Howdy, new neighbor. Make yourself at home.