You know that little thrill of licking brownie batter off the spatula just after you put the pan in the oven? (Oh, is that just me??) Anyway, we all like to sample a bit of whatever we’re whipping up in the kitchen, don’t we, — especially if we’re cooking when we’re hungry? It’s so hard to wait. And that’s how this past week felt to me with the tease of a couple of warm March days. I could taste spring!
My first taste involved one of my daughters and the mitre saw she inherited from my Dad. (Stay with me here.) We’re going to be building new garden beds for my backyard this spring. Several weeks ago, we took a road trip to the only two Home Depots in the area that carried the cedar two-by-sixes we needed. Long story, short, we spent an hour or so cutting some into four-foot lengths and trimming the rest to eight feet. We’ve got some work ahead of us still, but seeing them all cut excited me. I can’t wait for gardening season!
The second taste involved another of my daughters. She lives almost two hours away and works as a baker. For both of those reasons, we had’t seen her in person for months. I’d been waiting for decent weather on one of her days off, so we could spend some time outdoors together. Last Friday, the promise of temperatures in the high fifties, or even maybe sixty degrees, was just what we needed. And it did indeed turn out to be a beautiful day!
We hiked a trail at a local state reservation. We watched for birds and talked a bit about photography as she tried out the new camera she got for Christmas. It was midday, so bird activity was minimal. After walking for a while, we actually thought we might not see any. But then a few nuthatches and chickadees flew right across in front of us and sat chirping in the trees for several minutes. We walked on and saw a large black-ish bird fly by at a distance. When we got to the spot, we discovered a pileated woodpecker. A second one flew by a few minutes later. Even though they moved too fast and stayed partially out of view, I took one poorly focused picture — enough for proof, if not for hanging on a wall. All in all it was fun and left me pining for more warm spring days.
Today, I’m grateful for purple finches at the bird feeder. (This photo is of my feeder — no success photographing the purple finches, yet.)
I’ve been feeding and watching the birds for years, and I’ve seen plenty of house finches with their red tinted heads fading into brown streaked bodies. But the other day, I was thrilled to discover a pair of purple finches at the feeder, the red on their heads extending right to their tail feathers under all their brown streakiness. I hope they visit again soon!
Today, I’m grateful for the bright red cardinal that sat perfectly poised atop a broken tree waiting for me to snap a photo with my long, yet somewhat inadequate, lens. I’m learning that sometimes it’s better to enjoy their visits in the moment, through a pair of binoculars, and then let them go, instead of trying to capture an image. 🙂
Today, I’m grateful for noisy blackbirds — the way they arrive in a raucous flock and alight in the trees, making so much noise it’s like the trees themselves are singing. And then they descend on the backyard bird feeder like someone’s throwing a party! 🙂
People all over the world count birds in real time to produce a snapshot of the global bird population. This is the first year I’ve participated. Any excuse to just sit and watch birds for a while! Fun!
Yesterday, I accompanied my mother to her doctor’s appointment where we talked about the need to have her hearing checked. I waited while they sloshed the wax around in her ear and left her feeling more hard of hearing than when we arrived. It made me appreciate my own ability to hear — birds singing, music playing, my novelty bird-clock ticking & tweeting, rain roaring on the roof, and so much more!
Today, I’m grateful for the birds at my feeder. I could stand at the window and watch for hours. I see chickadees, tufted titmice, juncos, blue jays & cardinals, and the occasional woodpecker. It’s a hoppin’ bird-party spot!!! 🙂