No Vacancy!

Only a couple of weeks ago, there were abandoned homes in my neighborhood. Small, empty shells of former families. Mothers and fathers and babies too, who lived there until nature ran its course.

I’m happy to say this has changed. Spring seems to be the reason. It’s the season. Signs of activity are everywhere. Sticks for rehabbing lay near a bungalow of blue. A few onlookers too. Suddenly there aren’t enough homes to go around.

Yesterday, two women were arguing over a wooden house freshly painted in green. It was a sight I wouldn’t have believed, yet there they were, only a few feet away from me. One seemed to be the bully. She was bigger than the other, and it was obvious the house did not fit her needs. She barely could get through the front door! With head and body poked all the way inside, her tail feathers swished on the outside. Back and forth in colors of royal blue, black and white. They seemed to be ruffled and shook like a fan from side to side. She squeezed with all her might. “I think I can…I think I can.”

I watched as the smaller gal put up a fight. It was, after all, her right! She was pretty and plump. Beautiful too, in shades of sky blue with a bright red breast. The house seemed to be a perfect fit for her. She moved in with ease, staking a claim on what was to be her own. Within seconds, the bully gave up, flying off to find another house before all of the local real estate was swallowed up.

Last night I woke to a sound of banging against the tree outside my bedroom window. The new neighbor was busy building her nest, making sure all would be right for the eggs she would soon lay during the day or night.

I smiled a sleepy smile to think of the wonders of nature. New couples have moved into abandoned homes throughout my neighborhood. Hints of spring are everywhere. Before long, babies will be born.

No, I don’t believe there is a vacancy anywhere!

*pictures of birds courtesy of Google Chrome

New Beginnings

Ahhh…new beginnings.  Soaking them in like a sponge in the sea.  While laying on my patio with sleepy eyes facing up my imagination sees the brightest blue ocean waving, “Good Morning.”   Yes, a teensy sail of white passing by.  There it goes….floating…..floating.

In real life, a turquoise watering can is filled to the brim.  Held in the right of my hand so heavy and full it nearly overflows.  Sprinkling ever so slowing…Yes, falling from tiny holes pierced through a round spout of white.  Cold, fresh and clear sustaining life to colors of new beginnings.

My annual painted pots, freshly planted last weekend sip straw rivers under the warmth of the sun.  I tend to them like newborn infants, gifts from God invisibly growing older each day.

To the side of a brown pot, a bright yellow petunia seems a bit taller today.  Nearby, greenery planted in an old bird-bath appears fuller and brighter in a way.  And, on my stoop of brick pavers, assorted flowers pushed to the depths of sooty earth sprout to shout words of inspiration to anyone who gives them a second glance…a smile…a chance.

A slight breeze of cool air whispers through trees of my little forest land.   There, new leaves of waxy green hang from limbs, sturdy and strong.  Hidden within, nests of new snug between two after a long season of winter.  Six different songs are heard from feathered friends while a woodpecker whittles away.

What is that I hear?  Look again to the sky.  There, a bright red cardinal flying by!

Ahhh…new beginnings!




Stepping onto the patio this morning reminded me of movie scene.  The genre with intriguing posters, enough to draw me in.  The sky was eerily colorless, with mist and fog surrounding everything my eyes could see.  When taking a breath of air, my lungs felt heavy and full.  Puddles remained on patterned bricks, while new bird feeders were tossed to the ground.  The evening before, it had rained the whole night through.  Deep thunder shook my home with walls rumbling from outside to in.

My son warned me about this week on Sunday.  He expected to work a lot of overtime at the Weather Service.  “How many days,” I remember asking him?  “Most of the week,” he answered, without missing a beat.  “Beginning on Tuesday.”

Within minutes the ceiling of the endless sky opened wide, showering the green grass while bending new flowers in half.  Raindrops fell hard and fast, turning to hail the size of marbles.  Regretfully, patio bricks were pummeled, chipping red pavers here and there. Nearly everywhere.

Suddenly a screeching sound was heard, startling Doodle dog and even myself.  There on my phone, an automatic alert.  Checking the text it read,  “Warning, Flash Floods Within Your Area.  Not Safe for Driving.”

With the coming of spring, I must accept the weather that accompanies it which often includes running to the basement without electricity.  Provisions are stashed in case of an emergency.  Flashlights, water, food and medication together with blankets and even a change of clothes.  Hopefully, they will never be needed.

Here in the mid-west we are all in for several new months of thunderstorms and lightening.  Hail, high winds, and even tornadoes are here or may be coming our way.  We accept many concessions with God’s gifts of the season.  Still, to feel warm sunshine falling on the naked of my face while passing the beauty of flowering trees during a walk with my dog.  That, together with watching the blooming of my mother’s yellow roses all seem like a very small price to pay.  At least on this day.


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The Perfect Day

Dare my mind believe spring has sprung?   Truly, just begun?

The clocks were set back prior to sleep last Saturday night while I hoped seven hours of slumber would magically feel like eight upon my wake.  When lids lifted ‘later’ than usual Sunday morn, it was easy to pretend.  Opening blinds of white to see a sun of yellow, it shined so bright…high in the sky.  I had to bend my neck to the right while peeking through slats to see it there.

Grabbing a robe, Doodle dog followed every single step, meandering through rooms and spaces small until we were out the double doors atop the patio.  Bricks of red felt unusually warm below bare feet and paws.  Snow was gone.  Could it be so?   Birds were chirping, flying feathers near.  I glanced above to see never-ending blue without a cloud in sight.  A perfect morning with a blanket big covering the ground below.

After weeks and months of cold, could it be true?  Oh, to count my blessings.  I would not argue with such wonder.  Never, oh no!

I spent much of the day walking….w.a.l.k.i.n.g.  It seemed like miles at times.  No boots or gloves or a single scarf of stripes around my neck.  No wooly hat upon my head.  Bare hands held a wide string of dog at my side in the warmth of 66 degrees.  I spoke to neighbors and little ones in the streets.  Smiles of teeth and jokes to tickle my inner belly.  Silly fun!  Shook hands and met new neighbors never seen before.  Played in poofs of dust from colored chalk drawn on driveways.   Shared time with family and marveled at the antics of an innocent child with curls who lived in a place called Wonderland while basking in the glory of golden rays upon my face from God above.

Yes, it was the perfect day……