Category Archives: birds

early morning bliss


I went to bed early last night with a sore throat, woke up this morning feeling refreshed. The house is dark and chilly, the sun is just now coming up, and all of the boys are sleeping. I can hear owls hooting in the distance, birds tweeting in the pine trees in the backyard above our deck. I want to grind some coffee beans, but I don’t want to wake anyone up. This quiet is so rare.

We have tulips sprouting in the back yard, and the leaves on my beets are growing bigger by the day. I hope the tulips flower next week when my parents arrive, and that I can dig out the beets from the soil and share them on the dinner table. I swept the deck of pine needles; I’m excited for spring.

I’m feeling the baby kick often now. I’m only 24 weeks along, but it’s an active baby, says my kindly doctor from Michigan, who hugged me the last time I saw her. I tried to have CM feel the kicks — I put his chubby four-year-old hand on my round belly. “Be patient,” I said, but the baby didn’t kick. “I love my new baby brother,” he said.

I’ve been absorbed every day in this presidential race — consuming as much information as I can find. I sit in my pottery shop and trim wet clay off of the feet, listening to my friends at NPR. I’m comforted by their voices in my shop. Today is mega Tuesday — and this evening, after dinner, I’ll watch the numbers roll in on my phone.

I’m waiting for the click of the door, for CM to peer at me with adjusting eyes and then collapse into my arms. For CP to call out, “Mama, I’m awake! Hi mama!” And then we start our day together. Every moment with them, I think about how we can spend as much time outside as possible — the park, a hike, the Botanical Gardens. I want my boys to love the fresh air, to get dirty and feel free and unencumbered by the world.

And now that the sun is fully up, I’m ready to grind my beans and smell my espresso bubble up from the stovetop.




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Filed under birds, family, happy, Uncategorized

crazy for hummingbirds


“You have a hummingbird feeder!” said S. as she looked out our kitchen window to the backyard.

“We do?” I thought. (Yes, I am that clueless). This was in January. The first week in February, my mom and I were sitting at the kitchen table, and a hummingbird hovered above a bush and peeked in at us, spying on our conversation. It suspended in air, as hummingbirds do, flap flap flapping. “Look!” we said. “Wow!”

So, last Tuesday, I decided to make use of the red feeder. I boiled one part sugar with four parts water, let it cool and about an hour later went to fill up the feeder. I didn’t know I had to put the lid on to pressurize the water and the concoction disappeared down the kitchen sink. So I patiently made another batch, filled up the feeder and hung it back on the tree.

The next day, there were no hummingbirds. Nada. The water must have frozen overnight, I thought. Another day passed, no hummingbirds. I looked up the migration patterns. Some species should be in the Mojave desert, I thought.

And then, Friday evening, I saw a hummingbird at the feeder. I practically knocked everything in my way in my excitement to get my camera. I flung the patio door open, ran outside, and, completely forgetting that hummingbirds are timid, ran to the tree like a goon and scared the little guy away.

I’ve never been that interested in birds, but I vividly remember a third grade book report I did on hummingbirds and how amazed I was that they fly backwards. They are beautiful creatures. And now I’ve turned into that crazy bird lady, looking for my two “friends” — the green and magenta hummingbirds who visit regularly.




Filed under birds, photography, Uncategorized