Day 25: Surprise, surprise.
(Surprise, surprise, surprise!)

I’ll be the first to admit it’s a little obsessive, my love for the birds that share our little corner of the world. I spend an inordinate amount of time standing at the big kitchen window watching them come and go. I find them remarkably beautiful, those creatures, their activity fascinating. The other day, for instance, I happened to be standing there when one of our two Kingfishers dropped straight down from the sky to catch a fish in Bickley’s Pond. And those Goldfinches! The pack has grown to 10 or 12 birds that arrive around 9 am and fuss and holler over the prime spots on the bird feeder like it’s a kindergarten playground. And heaven help me when I see a winged creature unfamiliar to me. I run for the zoom lens faster than…well, let’s just say the sighting of a new bird is quite an event in our household.

And so you can understand the magnitude of a realization I made just last month when talking with my friend, Katy. It seems she and her sweet girls, Eva and Helen, have been feeding mealworms to the bluebirds to encourage them to nest in their yard.

I don’t think I’ve ever watched a successful nest, much less a bluebird nest I said to Katy that morning, a little astounded at this new realization. There was that dove’s nest on our front porch two Springs ago. We kept our eyes on those parents, who attended to those eggs faithfully. But we left for vacation and when we got home, there were no babies. In fact, there was no nest at all.

I thought about that nest all day long. Then on my drive home, I stopped and bought my very first birdhouse.


We decided the birdhouse was meant to hang in a tree, based on its design. But try as we might, we simply couldn’t find a secure enough spot in our yard to attract any type of bird for long. We finally came to the conclusion that what I had bought was a decoration rather than a functional birdhouse. And so (rather sadly) I removed it from the tree and placed it on a porch table just outside my studio’s big window.


There it sat looking pretty for about three days. And then I noticed this.


A great deal of fretting commenced as I moved about in my studio, unusual bird fretting that piqued my interest. And so I went out for a closer look. That’s when I discovered this.


Right there in my decorative bird house, a nest and five—count ’em, five—blue eggs.

Every dream I have came true in that moment. A bluebird nest, with eggs, right there at my studio window. Just where I can watch every move.


I made a promise to that Mama right then and there that I’d help her keep an eye on those eggs, do my best to keep the snakes and sparrows and wrens and squirrels away. I feel it’s rather vulnerable in that spot, that nest, and I feel responsible. And yet I don’t dare move it.

And so we will wait. And watch. And we will hope against hope that in no time at all there will be five more little bluebirds making their home right here on Bickley’s Pond.

30 Days of Grace III