We had our first ice storm (hopefully our last this season, but who am I kidding?). I had filled this feeder less than 24 hours ago. Now it’s nearly empty again, and covered in ice. I don’t recall seeing actual icicles on my feeders before. Hopefully all this seed is helping the birds keep warm. I’m afraid if I went out right now I’d slip and break a leg, so they’re going to have to wait for later before I can provide the refill.
Our next door neighbor’s cat, aptly named Bubba, comes to our house regularly and waits at the front door. He is expecting us to give him kibble, and for some reason we actually do. He is not starving by any stretch of the imagination. We should not do this, but we do.
I have started calling him Tubba.
I heard a “thunk” at the front window and looked out to see an Oregon Junco sitting on the deck. He (she?) was very still and it was a little bit before I was certain he was still breathing. I went outside and he didn’t move other than to blink at me. I wanted to move him to a safer place, but the first time I started to pick him up he flapped at me – for which I was grateful because it meant everything seemed to be in working order. The second time he stayed calm while I lifted him off the deck. Looking around I decided the best spot was on one of the feeders with a wide base. He sat there calmly for about ten minutes before finally flying off. It did mean I was able to get one good portrait.
Our birds planted a sunflower and we let them keep it. This one has begun harvesting the bounty. It’s good to see them taking steps towards independence.
The redwing blackbirds have found the feeders again. Groups come over and push the finches and swallows aside. They’ve also figured out that unlike the little guys, they don’t have to get inside this feeder to get to the seeds.
Walked by a front hallway window and spotted this Oregon Junco in the Sentinel Pine by the front porch. Quickly grabbed the camera (thankfully on tripod nearby) and was pleased he (she?) was still sitting pretty when I got back.
What a superb idea.
Friends, as most of you know, I get to spend an hour each week with a group of young people going through addiction recovery. Yes. Young people. I’m talking teenagers who are locked away for at least six months as they learn to overcome their addictions. I’m always humbled and honored to get this time with these beautiful young souls that have been so incredibly assaulted by a world they have yet to understand. This also comes with the bittersweet knowledge that these kids still have a fighting chance while several of my friends have already had to bury their own children.
Recently I asked these kids a simple question: “How many of you have found yourself in situations where things started happening that you weren’t comfortable with, but you stuck around, mainly because you felt like you didn’t have a way out?”
They all raised their hands.
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