Little things mean a lot

Northern Cardinal, Cardinal, Cardinalis cardin... 

I wanted to make sure you saw the link I posted yesterday, so I reposted it below. A friend in one of my bird groups sent the link.  He lives in Norwich England and the shot is from the Cathedral spire. According to Craig, the weather has kept the mother on her nest the past few days.  The link explains the rest.

Birders, or twitchers as they are called in England use these camcorders to birdwatch. 

Years ago, I set out to become a biologist.  My interest was botany, specifically ferns, but it could have easily been ornithology or the study of birds.  I am nutty about birds. One of the reasons I no longer have cats is because I keep birds.

I acquired my interest in birds from Aunt Marge and my maternal grandmother, Nana, who taught me about bird watching and raising birds. My Nana is gone now, but I keep watching birds as she did. When I was a child we lived with my maternal grandparents. 

It might seem strange, but I have more vivid memories of the interior of Nana’s home and the things she did more than any other childhood memories. I remember her making coffee in a dripolator.  And, Nana raised Gloxinia.  She even developed a white one for the Burpee Company.  She also raised pet birds.  I recall Nana kissing her birds goodnight before putting them in their sleep cages.

Some of my birds will kiss me, and a couple will try to take my nose off.  Why would someone keep a bird who tries to take her nose off?  I have become very attached to them, and they are no more trouble than cats or dogs.  In fact, they are less trouble. Besides, I have small birds, not big parrots.


Earlier in the week, I was sitting in the parking lot at the post office waiting for David to mail a package when I heard a thump.  I looked out the dashboard window and saw a Crow and a smaller bird which appeared to be a sparrow sail off into the grass.  The Crow held the sparrow down and gave it a hard peck on the back of its neck, then he flew off with the limp Sparrow hanging from his claws. He headed across the street to a tree where he had a nest, undoubtedly.  Until then I did not know Crows hunted and killed smaller birds.

Today, I was standing in the open door watching the front yard and a male Cardinal landed on the Holly tree near the door. He then flew over to the Lady Banks rose-bush and paused before moving into the twisted brambles.  I watched him intently as he approached what appeared to be a nest where several small heads popped up and began chirping loudly.

The Robin is back says David.  Yesterday he watched a parent Robin pulling fat worms from the front lawn and feeding a fledged baby nearby. Watching the birds has now become a favorite pastime for David.  Amazing what you discover when you slow down and smell the flowers. 


The Torpedo Factory Arts Center at Alexandria, Va

David has promised to take me to the Fish Market tomorrow for my birthday lunch.  The weather will be absolutely perfect and I can get a nice summer salad (with crab meat) which will work with my Weight Watchers diet.  No cake for me tomorrow, I had my treat earlier this week when he took me to the Heidelberg Bakery after my Doctor’s appointment and I got an almond croissant.  It didn’t bust my diet, but it did put a hole in my extra points for the week. Ah well. such is life. I would rather have a crab salad any day. And, the Fish Market is across the street from the Torpedo Factory which houses the Alexandria Art League and a cluster of local artists.  I see a new art work in my future. So much for cutting down on clutter.

16 thoughts on “Little things mean a lot

  1. That website was fascinating. When I was watching it the other day, the mother was nestling right over the chicks to keep them warm.

    And again….Happy Birthday!!


  2. I’m not much of a “twitcher” myself, but there is a cardinal who comes by the dogwood tree outside my office window now and then, and I do enjoy the flash of red, the delightful surprise, and the whole idea that we’re sharing our little corner of the world.

    Anyway . . . happy birthday from me as well!


  3. Being late to comment makes me right on time for your Birthday. Have a wonderful day full of pleasure and enjoy the start of your 7th decade.
    Natrue is wonderful to watch till you spot it in the raw. I saw a road runner mug and kill a red wing black bird and will never forget it.


  4. “Twitchers” …i’ve never heard that birders are called that in England. I love it. I enjoy birds but my Mother was a true expert. She knew all the songs and even identified a rare one for the Audubon Society back in the 30’s.


  5. I love cats anyway. 🙂
    Fahitas: I can refried, no fat, beans. I chicken breast-skinless and all fat removed. 1 green pepper, I onion. Cumin…seeds or ground. Oregino – good shake. I big clove garlic. I package fat free flour tortillas. Mince 1 tomatoe and 1/3 head of lettuce, slice an avacado.

    Steam thin strip cut veggies in 1/4 cup soup….such as veggie broth. Add spices. remove from pan. No points.
    Cut chicken breast into thin strips . Saute in leftover broth and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add veggies back in, cover and steam about five minutes or till done. 4 points.
    Briefly heat beans if you want them, and warm the tortillas in an empty pan. Put it all together and eat. Makes 4.

    It’s really simple. Chop and slice, heat, and eat with hot sauce that somebody else makes. 🙂


  6. One of my cats liked to kill birds. Feathers all around the patio! Ugh! Have you ever tried to sweep up feathers flying in the wind? I almost broke my vacuum cleaner once trying to suck up the mess – never again! Well, my 2 cats are now in cat heaven, but I don’t miss them that much.

    I love crab cakes, but a crab salad will do. And take pictures of the art work in your house, Dianne. I wonder what they look like.


    • I hate the neighborhood cats. After one of my cats was killed by a car, my other cats were never allowed outdoors. I don’t know what is the matter with people who let cats roam (I was one until I wised up). 1/cats can pick up all sorts of illnesses out-of-doors; 2/cats can get hurt by dogs, cars, etc.; 3/ cats use other people’s gardens as a litter box and it stinks; 4/ they kill birds.


      • Well, for my cats, it was either the outdoors (where they were born) or the Hawaiian Humane Society, where they could be adopted or euthanized. Indoor pets would ruin my leather furniture and carpet.


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