Beginner's Heart

Beginner's Heart

goldfinches, titmice, and wrens: what’s your pleasure?

wren on suet feederThe goldfinches have (finally!) arrived. They’re going through about a feeder of thistle seed every couple of days. My sister, looking out the breakfast room window onto the 1-2-3-4-5-6+ feeding and water stations, wondered aloud what this costs us monthly.

It’s not negligible. :) But it’s soooo worth it.


Afternoons like this, when there’s still a chill out, the soft warm light fills the room, slanting across the table as I try to draw a goldfinch. I might as well be counting breaths, I’m so focused. And mornings, the cool blue sky is just the wakeup I need w/ a cup of multicultural mocha. :)

We don’t go to many movies, we don’t have cable TV, we don’t have satellite or dish. Neither of us smokes anymore, and we don’t drink or do drugs. Birds are our splurge — we’ve been known to make detours through Africa just to see the flamingos. But we get almost as excited, these days, when the pelicans take over the sandbars on the Arkansas River.And crows in the pecan tree, or a hawk on the deck rail?  Wow. pelicans november 2


I’m not going to stretch for metaphors — I’m sure you can figure several out on your own. Suffice to say you get to a point where you don’t apologise for your pleasures not fitting what’s expected. Even if it’s ‘only’ runner-up in fastest growing American hobby. :)

There are good reasons, though, that sitting in the light (or the dawn fog, or the chilly afternoon wind, or even rain!) is a small price to pay to watch even sparrows. And why this fixed-incomer is willing to shell out $$ on thistle, black sunflower seed, suet, & other avian treats. Remember the dinosaur? Welll, when you watch a hawk watch a sparrow, you might be right in the (safer!) middle of Jurassic Park. :)

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