Tag Archives: birds

Great Blue Heron. Day 5

Great Blue Heron, SC Aquarium 6/27/12

Silently he flies,


swoops and lands atop the roof.


Look how he perches there.

So regal. So serene.

He worries for nothing.


He rests.

He stretches his neck and ruffles his plumes in solitude as he gazes across the marsh.

What is he thinking of, I wonder?


As for me, I can only think of his beauty and

how I long for the apparent peaceful repose and

stillness that allow him to simply watch and wait.


He is not disturbed when another joins him.

His friend is smaller and stays in his own space,

clearly not meaning to intrude.


So they sit.

Together, but apart.

Each now enjoying his own rest.


Shrimp boats. Children. Wildlife. Barges.

All go by on their watch.

The smaller friend speaks and lights away while the regal one remains.


The sun sinks slowly over the marsh.

Sadly, I must go,

but he stays on.






At my house, we are big fans of anything that has to do with the beach and birds. One weekend afternoon recently, Hubby, Jacob and I headed down to Shem Creek, a sleepy little area near Charleston where there are a few restaurants and a kayak rental place along the boardwalk. The boys planned to kayak for a couple of hours,  and I was going to find a place to sit and read. Emma, of course, was off spending time with her BFF. Yes, the rest of us are apparently chopped liver.

Off they went. I watched them as they paddled up the creek and hurried to the end of the the pier so I could wave at them as they passed by.

Afterwards, I meandered back down the pier heading toward the kayaking place. I contemplated going in to one of the restaurants there along the creek to sit and have a cold drink while I waited. As I was walking that way, I could hear all the noise. People talking, laughing, music playing. I had envisioned a place that was a little quieter.

I walked on and came to the end of the pier where there were some restrooms and a covered area that faced back toward the marsh. There were a few rocking chairs and so I took up residence there for the next hour and a half. I’ve been wading through  Les Misérables since September and thought this would be a good time and place to get caught up.

Easily distracted as I am (shocker!!), I sat down in that rocker, opened up the Kindle and tried to read, but was instead captivated by feeling the sunshine and the breeze, smelling the salt air, and watching the scene in front of me. The marsh. All the birds. Boats passing by in the distance. The families coming to walk the pier.

I felt so warm and content in that moment and so grateful for the beautiful creation that God has given us to enjoy…if only we will be still and drink it in.

And then, along came that heron.

Sorry, Jean Valjean. Guess who’s chopped liver now? Les Misérables would have to wait.

I couldn’t take my eyes away from that heron and from the marsh. I was bummed that I did not have my camera with me, but afterwards, I was sure that my little point and shoot could not have done the scene justice anyway.

I am thankful for such beautiful things to see and experience and enjoy. I am also thankful for the moments when I take the time to stop, to rest and appreciate it. To be quiet—something I struggle with! To forget the worries of the day and be grateful.  When I do that, I am never sorry. I am always refreshed. And I am filled with thanksgiving for the beauty of creation—and for the Creator.


Filed under 30 Days of Thankfulness, Poetry

She said what?

I know this will sound like heresy to some, but as I peck away on the minuscule keyboard of my iPod Touch, which takes For. E. Ver., I think all my PC friends may find it in their hearts to forgive me.

That said:
If we had any extra money, and it would have to be A LOT, I would run, not walk, to the Apple store and buy myself a Mac. Not kidding. I have bashed the Mac snobs of this world in the past, but no more. Please forgive me. I think you may be on to something. A billion viruses out there attacking the PCs of the world VS. the eight known Mac viruses. Hmmm. More money up front but twice the computer life and less aggravation. Hmmm.

For the second time in a month, I am hauling my PC to the Geeks for them to “diagnose” my blue screen of death. Two weeks ago, they cried “Motherboard” and sent it off to be replaced. Fortunately, our warranty was good and that expense was covered. And then they claimed it was cured with the exception of a couple of minor viruses which were no cause for immediate concern. Less than one week after getting the machine back, the blue screen is back as well. What the heck? Oy.

So there is my sad story. But I am determined that I will not be kept from the blogosphere! Thus, I tap on these tiny letters of this, ahem, Apple product, and press on!

In other news, Jacob and I were able to attend our first volunteer training session at The Center for Birds of Prey yesterday. He has loved raptors since he was about 8 years old, especially bald eagles. We are now in a position to volunteer and be up close and personal with these amazing creatures. He was in heaven yesterday–as was I–as I watched him just soaking up every minute of our time there. I am so excited to see where this might lead for Jacob! At the least, we will count his time and education there as an elective for school. At the most, it will be an amazing experience and who knows? Maybe a career opportunity.

Yes, there is the obligatory poo scrubbing, but everyone who volunteers there has to do it and it is essential to the health of the birds. We were there as they worked with the falcons and hawks that are used in their educational demonstrations, which was amazing to see! Have you ever seen a peregrine falcon dive at 200 miles per hour? It is quite an awesome sight! Owls, falcons, kites, hawks, eagles, kestrels, vultures…every kind of raptor you could imagine. It was so very cool!

The not-so-coolness of the experience took the form of ” food prep”. Let’s just say that the diet of the raptors includes fish, small rodents and day old chicks–all DOA, so no murder takes place, thankfully–but the prep will take some adjustment on my part. (This from the girl who does not scale fish or break down a whole chicken…call me a wimp, I don’t care.) Jacob gets quite a kick out of seeing me grossed out. Nice, right?

Yeah, he should have plenty of opportunities to mock his mother in this process. What we do for the kids, eh?


Filed under Day to Day, Homeschooling, Jacob

I don’t speak Whinese…much.



Enjoy the green in honor of St. Patrick’s Day.

“Untold suffering seldom is.”  ~Franklin P. Jones


Word Of The Day: fanfaronade (fan-fare-uh-‘nayde) A noun meaning empty boasting:  bluster.  Sentence: We soon found out that Christopher’s claim that he could play the bagpipes was nothing but fanfaronade–he turned out to be just as bad as the rest of us.   I know some people like this, don’t you??  I mean, I’ve always bragged about my bagpipe skills…thankfully no one has ever called me on it.



OY!  The weekend is over again.  The horror!

Last night, as Emma mopingly started to head up the stairs, she peeked back around the corner at me and said, in Whinese, “Mooooom, the weeeeeekend is never loooooong enough.”  I generally don’t reply when my children speak in Whinese, but this time I had to agree with her and give her a hearty, “I knoooooow,” complete with head tilting and foot stomping.  Waaaaah!  Somebody call the waaaaaambulance!

So, that was that and it didn’t stop Monday from coming.

We are able to console ourselves with the fact that it is a 3 day school week.  My kids’ spring break starts Thursday.  And for the first time in 4 years, their spring break falls around Easter.  In Iowa City, our spring break always coincided with the university, so it was NEVER around Easter.  I found that to be a bummer.  Previously, we had always had a week off from school in the spring and it always included Good Friday and Easter Monday.  Always.  So it was a bit of an adjustment when we moved to Iowa City.  Now we’re back in the South, baby.  We are going to go visit the in-laws for the weekend.  It will be nice.  Hubby is anxious to spend some time with his folks.  I’ve mentioned before that his dad is in poor health. 

The following week, the end of spring break, Emma is going on a trip.  WITHOUT HER MOTHER!!  I am a bit devastated, but I suppose I will survive.  She is going to fly to Iowa to visit her peeps.  What?? You may ask…BACKSTORY:  It goes like this…hubby has 3 sisters.  Sister One lives in NC.  Sister Two lives in Iowa City, IA (they moved there a couple of years before we did and I think they will be living there for the rest of their natural lives) .  Sister Three lives in SC, about 3 hours from us and she goes out to Iowa about twice a year to visit sister number 2.  She has invited Emma to travel with her to Iowa so she can visit her peeps.  Sisters Two and Three and the grandma have gone in together to get Emma her plane ticket as an early birthday present.  Now you are all caught up…So she won’t be flying by herself.  But still.  I will miss her.  She won’t miss me.  And I’m sure she will have a great time.

Last Friday afternoon we visited a new bird store here in town.  They have some way cool birds.  For example, there is Rocky, a Moluccan Cockatoo.  (The picture is not Rocky, but another like him.)  The coloring is so beautiful and that dude can ring like a telephone!  Not kidding.  It is freaky.  There was a fellow in there, not an employee of the bird store, but OBVIOUSLY an avid bird lover.  He was just a wealth of information.  Following us around the store sharing tidbit after tidbit.  <insert awkward smile here> We finally leave the store, hop in Big Red and then Jacob says, “Mom, that guy was like an information desk…only, without the desk.”   Oh, how I cracked up at that one.  That kid is full of ‘ em. 

I’m off to do some much delayed housework.  We are expecting some friends in for a couple of days this week.  I always find that somewhat motivational.


Filed under Day to Day, Kids