the house!




Popcorn bowl!



Frog hops………Bowl slides.




Frog hops………Bowl slides.




Near step!




Get something heavy.








Dog sees frog.


Tail thumps.








Find something

to slide under bowl!





Hurry outside!



Lift popcorn bowl.



Frog thinks.



Frog waits.



Frog leaps.





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IRENE ZION has been married to the same curmudgeon for 40 years. She has 5 children, none of whom sufficiently appreciates her. The one you probably know is Lenore, who frequently gives her mother hives. Irene paints oil portraits and makes her own frames. She has been described as an outsider artist. Most of her paintings creep people out, especially her family. She finds this to be greatly satisfying. She writes non-fiction for TNB and loves every minute of it. She is writing fiction now too, but is too chicken to show it to anyone. She has two golden retrievers who will inherit anything of worth she leaves behind. Her kids will delight in dividing up her famous cork collection and her notorious stockpile of bubble wrap.

43 responses to “Frog in the House!”

  1. J.M. Blaine says:

    I love children’s books
    & I love levity
    & the life that is lived between
    the spaces
    because that’s where life really
    lives, in frogs
    & dogs
    & popcorn bowls
    & little bits of freedom
    in working together
    with your mate
    to solve just one
    small thing…

    Thank you.
    We need this.

  2. Irene Zion says:

    a change of pace, huh?

  3. Art Edwards says:

    Awesome. Big fun. I’m sharing.

  4. Oh Irene, I just love you and Victor! My toddler tried to set the class parakeet, Mr. Feathers, free. She’ll appreciate this!

    • Irene Zion says:

      We have flocks and flocks of wild parrots here in Miami Beach! The class parakeet, Mr. Feathers, could live a good life down here. (Of course, first you’d have to buy him an airline ticket south….)

  5. Marcia in Illinois says:

    I wonder what the frog was thinking inside the bowl.

  6. Irene Zion says:

    I’m not sure what he was thinking, Marcia in Illinois, but he never stopped hopping inside that bowl!

  7. Lenore says:

    this is the cutest thing ever. i’m glad you got that disgusting frog out of the house.

  8. Irene Zion says:

    One of the terrific things about getting older is that your eyesight gets dim and you can’t see how creepy things are anymore.

  9. Melissa who hates Weston says:

    What a great children’s book. You did not use my cup method but this makes for a better story..

  10. Irene Zion says:

    But, Melissa who hates Weston, you can’t trap a hopping frog in something that small.
    Thank the fates for my trusty popcorn bowl!

  11. Gloria says:

    This would make such a fun children’s book.

    love this!

  12. Irene Zion says:

    If only I had had the new iPhone with its whammo-super camera, Gloria!

  13. George says:

    Shouldn’t you have a photo of someone cleaning the bowl & then eating popcorn!¡

  14. Ed says:

    Frogs. Burmese pythons. Lion Fish. Iguanas. Malaluccas. Just another day in the invasions of south Florida.

  15. Irene Zion says:

    The invader that creeps me out the very most is the Giant African Snail. I’m not sure if I can put a link up here, but if one appears, this is only one of many sites devoted to these repulsive creatures which eat your plaster for their shells and all your vegetation. If that is not enough, the mucus these snails secrete contains a parasite which will give people meningitis if it gets in their eyes, or, (oh my God this is horrible!) their mouths!
    ( If a link does not appear, just google “snails invading Miami.”)


  16. ksw says:

    The frog was thinking- ooh purple haze- then you mesmerized him by rubbing his tummy with the two slides under him- then he was terrified when the frog leg eater released him.. cruel world
    Cute story you should consider the childrens book

    • Irene Zion says:

      Well, I suppose his tummy might have gotten rubbed by the different things Victor slid under the bowl to try to move him, but I’m absolutely positive that Cuisses de grenouille was never mentioned within his earshot.

  17. ursula says:

    I am glad we are living in an apartment. No jumping frogs of any kind. What I am really afraid of are big spiders and we don’t get them either. Those are great photos accompanying your story. What a great “frog” adventure.

    • Irene Zion says:

      Lately we’ve been dreaming of living up high in the sky as you do, Ursula. I’ll miss the critters out in the yard, though.

  18. D.R. Haney says:

    A silent movie by Irene Zion!

    Can we have a sequel with a snake? It doesn’t have to be a poisonous snake, mind you.

  19. Irene Zion says:

    Snakes could be extras, Duke, but they’d never have a pivotal role in a Zion film. The ones in our yard are just not star material. They’re big and showy but they tend to keep to themselves. Wallflowers.

  20. Don Mitchell says:

    Dog sees frog picture is dynamite, Irene. I love it.

    • Irene Zion says:

      Kimchee was very interested in the hopping blue popcorn bowl, Don.
      We didn’t have time to let grass grow under our feet.

  21. Pamela Norinsky says:

    Loved your frog story and the great pictures! Glad you didn’t capture it to cook his little legs!!!

  22. Jeez. Must’ve been fun. You know what I had in my house two weeks ago? Giant fucking centipede. The story did not end so pleasantly, I can assure you.

    • Irene Zion says:

      I actually gagged when I read your comment, David. I gagged and I flashed an entire scene with a monster centipede and screaming and squooshing noises. If I visit you one day, I will not wear my glasses so that all the nasty scary things will be invisible to me.

      • They don’t generally follow me. I just happen to live in a part of the world with an unfortunately high number of them. And particularly vicious ones, at that. If you cut them in half, the two parts will actually fight each other. That’s how you know they’re evil.

        • Irene Zion says:

          I could have lived my whole life without knowing this hideous detail, but my glory days of sunsets and lollipops are gone now, destroyed forever, thanks to you, David. I just spent a half hour googling these repellent creatures because I apparently lack any common sense. Look at this site, if you have the stomach for it!
          Evil is right!

          • Hey! That’s the same kind we have in the garden! And in my livingroom! No joke – that’s exactly the same kind that we get here in Hefei. They’re super vicious and will always go for a bite rather than run away.

            Just so you know.

            Oh, we have a lot of frogs here, too. But generally they get eaten by the people, and so I can’t imagine they’d go into anyone’s house.

        • Lisa Rae Cunningham says:

          …my glory days of sunsets and lollipops are gone now, destroyed forever, thanks to you…

          An enviable quote here, Irene. Oh the monologues I could preface with these fine words.

  23. Jeffro says:

    That has children’s book written all over it. Whether the fact I’ve been reading a lot of Goodnight, Gorilla of late has any bearing on that assessment I do not know.

  24. Irene Zion says:

    Love that book, Jeffro. Always used to follow it with Going on a Bear Hunt, which I’m not surprised to remember. In fact, I probably have a thousand kids’ books still memorized all these years since my kids are grown.

  25. Frank says:

    What a wonderful story Irene -I found it absolutely fascinating -and lots of fun!

    And then I hear -read -all those comments about children’s books…

    Uh-oh… All those years of grad school… All those years of work! And now retirement… Am I regressing?

    When I saw the frog & the bowl, and thought about the bonk shhhhhh….. bonk shhhhhh, I saw in my mind’s eye (it has one, y’know) your beautiful quartz countertop, and something falling on it and it breaking, and watching the somewhat similarly blue bowl inching its way to the edge of something -a step, your countertop, and falling, and breaking…

    And when I got through with the story, after I grinned, I thought



    • Irene Zion says:

      I couldn’t catch him, Frank.
      He was a random-direction high-jumper.
      The best I could do was trap him with a large-mouthed bowl.
      Wait. Why am I explaining this?
      I couldn’t in a million years pick up a frog in my hand, anyhow.
      Not in a trillion years.
      Feeling the frog moving in my hand?
      I have icky-chills just thinking about it!

  26. tamara cohen says:

    dear irene. generally i dont like frogs but your frog i really like. love tamara and jacob

  27. Irene Zion says:


    we set him off on his own
    he never calls…
    he never writes….

  28. Tim says:

    You should’ve smashed that disgusting thing. Frogs are the worst.

  29. Irene Zion says:

    Alas, you northerners cannot comprehend life in the tropics.

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