The bluebird - FamilyEducation

The bluebird

January 24,2011

On Sunday I awoke briefly at some point and heard an owl in the trees--nearby, I think. Then I fell back asleep. But I dreamed that our pool was open for one day only, and that we had one glorious day to enjoy it before it closed up again until May. It seemed fitting, then, that when I did wake up for the day (at 9:20!)  and headed downstairs with T., we saw the backyard filled with robins! There were probably some 20-30 of them, and they were dropping from the sky, and swooping up again, flitting around the trees, like dozens and dozens of leaves grabbed by the wind and tossed around. I remember this happening last year, actually, only a little later. I would love to find out why they congregate in our backyard around the same time, and I wonder, too, if their earlier arrival this year could possibly mean spring will be here, soon?

Anyway, just as we did last year, T. and I got a little carried away by the sight of all those robins and we started planning out this year's herb garden, and thinking about how glorious it will be when this cold weather finally breaks. T.'s my gardening buddy, and I'm already looking forward to the time we'll spend together outdoors, turning over the soil, and shopping for new herbs at the farmer's market.

Coincidentally, Scott and T. also built a birdhouse this weekend!

As part of being a member of a local Y-Princess group, she and Scott have to come up with a special project or activity once or twice a month and present the project at the meetings. A dollar is donated by each group member for each activity and, at the end of the year, T.'s group will decide which charity will receive their donation. So far. T.'s ideas for projects have been centered around the environment: cleaning up a hiking trail, for instance, taking unused things to the local recycling center, making pine cone bird feeders and, this weekend, the birdhouse. Scott didn't have to buy anything for this project, as the wood was all wood he had lying around in the garage.

"Recycle, Reduce, and RE-USE" T. chanted as she helped Scott assemble the tools for the birdhouse.

The measurements are for a bluebird house, which makes me happy. Years ago, that first February in North Carolina, I looked out the sliding glass doors with L., who wasn't even two yet, and we saw a beautiful bluebird perched on the deck railing. I think it was near the end of February, and I was feeling moody and restless, in that way you feel when you've had to much of winter and too many days housebound with a young toddler, and you feel like spring will never, ever, come.

"It's the bluebird of happiness!" I told L., my mood lifting immediately, and he was amazed in that wide-eyed, open-mouthed toddler way. I always remember that, and the happy-surprised feeling I got inside when I saw that beautiful bird.

When I retold the story of that moment at breakfast over pancakes yesterday, L. claimed to remember it.

"But you weren't even TWO yet," T. pointed out.

"I remember everything," L. said, which is pretty true. I hope he remembers that moment, and that happy-surprised feeling too, I'd love to think we shared that, he and I, on that cold February afternoon, when spring seemed possible.