Wednesday, February 13, 2008

"Thanks" and a red-headed lifer

Make+My+Day+Award Two blogging friends up north in snow country, Trixie at Trixie’s View in Alaska and Ruthie at Nature Knitter in Minnesota, told me I make their day. They make my day, too. Now I have an opportunity to present this “award” to others who make my day. Can I stay up all night and list everyone I know? No. Can I decide who deserves an award? No. Actually, I don’t consider this “You Make My Day” as an award. I think it’s a nice affirmation that everyone needs sometimes. I appreciate and admire everyone in my little blogging community here and I want to tell all of you that YOU MAKE MY DAY. Everyone likes to receive nice surprises, so if you have the time and are inclined to give a pat on the back to those you appreciate and multiply the smiles, please do.

Cathy at Looking Up. She’s has a lot going on right now and I miss her poetic charm and beautiful photos.

David at Leave Me Alone I’m Digging. He lives to dig and transplant his gardens. His writing style is hilarious!

Donna at KGMom Mumblings. I admire her patience with her English 102 students. Donna can write. She's a good book.

Jayne at Journey Through Grace. Jayne inspires me with her optimistic outlook on life. She is the definition of grace.

Julie Zickefoose. I feel good vibes, learn, laugh, and cry when I visit her.

Larry at Brownstone Birding. He hunts down the birds and finds 100,000 a month. His dry sense of humor makes me laugh out loud.

Laura at Somewhere in NJ. You can feel her softness and charm in her writing. Now and then, she rants and curses a little bit and we all love it.

Lynne at Hasty Brook. Sweet Lynne has a lot on her plate right now and I’m so happy when she takes time to post. She always makes me smile.

Nina at Nature Remains. Nina is so in touch and in love with nature. Her beautiful words and photos make me swoon.

Sherry at Q’s Corner. When I feel stressed and out of control, she is able to calm me down. A good friend.

Susan at Susan Gets Native. Susan’s blog is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get :-)

For a real treat, visit them.


I want to share something that happened yesterday. Around noon I saw an e-mail in my home inbox from the county Audubon listserve:

I took my ornithology class to the wetland behind HHGreg this morning and had a ton of waterfowl. Northern Shovelers, Pintail, plenty of Woodies, a Ruddy Duck, Gadwall, 20+ Mallards, some Canadas, and Hooded Mergs. Also a Red-headed Woodpecker, 2 GBHs on nests, 6 Rusty Blackbirds, an immature Coopers strafed the lake, and a dozen female Redwings down in the phragmites/cattails/whatever.

Oh, my. I just couldn’t stand it. I had heard of this spot before but hadn’t visited. So, an hour early off from work, I made the short trip to Concord. I parked behind the shopping center near the dumpsters and quickly changed from high heels to Crocs.


This is the wetland. Birdless. No waterfowl. Disappointed. It began to rain on me but I thanked the heavens. See the construction clearing behind it at the top left of the photo? I took a deep sigh of sadness.


It’s not a scenic place but it’s a hot spot for cavity nesting birds. On second thought, yes, it is scenic. I can appreciate it. I regretted not having my binoculars.


My off-white Crocs sunk into the red clay when I moved closer to the fence to see a beautiful red, black and white flash against the grayness.


My first sighting of a Red-headed Woodpecker was worth the trip and discolored Crocs. I’ll visit again, very soon.


Anonymous said...

Congrats on the Red-headed Woodpecker and a wonderful red surprise just before Valentines Day!

nina at Nature Remains. said...

A Red-headed woodpecker! I've only seen two in my whole life, or maybe the same bird 2 times--that's an outstanding find, and certainly something to crow about!

Thanks for the award--YOU make my day, too.

Susan Gets Native said...

1. Thank you for the award. YOU MAKE MY DAY, TOO.

2. I am so GD proud of you for going out there and getting yourself a lifer!!!!!! Screw the Crocs! A red-headed woodpecker is always worth it! Do you realize how hard it is to see one of those???? I was a birder for like 5 years before I saw one.
Freakin' YAY for Mary.

Q said...

Dearest Mary,
Yes! Red-headed Woodpecker! Beautiful bird! I am so glad you left work in time to see him!
Thank you, dear friend, for thinking of Corner and me. Meeting you has been one of the joys of blogging.
You brighten my day! In a world full of dis-connected people I feel with you, not only do I connect, but I belong. Your caring heart and your "can do" spirit fills me with strength when I am weary.
It is an honor to call you friend and to be yours. Thank you for including me in your life.
You made my day.
Light and love,

Ruth said...

Thanks for sharing you lifer! And you got such clear picture of it. I love surprises like this.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Mary it looks like the Woodpecker is wearing its heart on its head. :)

You very much deserved the award you received. You often make my day too.

David said...

Thank you, Mary. That and the snow made my day!

LauraHinNJ said...

Gosh - they're gorgeous birds, aren't they?

Lucky you!

Thanks for the mention. You do the same for me Mary, you know, I hope.


Julie Zickefoose said...

Lisa, I believe Mary wears her heart on her head too.

Every time I see a red-headed woodpecker I want to raise my hands to the sky and holler. I often do, once I'm out of earshot of the little beauty. They never get old, and oh, are they getting scarce.

Thank you so much for the honor. You make my day every time I read your wonderful blog. So glad spring's coming on. I hope it's a wet one for North Carolina.If I could push these clouds southeast, you know I'd do it.

Larry said...

Red-headed woodpecker- Great bird to find for a lifer! Thanks for the thanks-you are always making me laugh-my wife often laughs when she sees the comments you leave on my blog.-I always hear her saying-Oh that Mary-You've got the gift of being able to entertain people.

Unknown said...

Congratulations on your red headed lifer! Thanks for sharing ;-)

Anonymous said...

The Red-headed is a beauty isn't he. We do not have them here. It is like a gift when we finally see a new bird and you got some good shots. I keep gumboots in the car now, just in case.... cheers.

Jayne said...

Awww, thanks Mary! All the people I'd list have already been gifted with this sweet award, so I'll just say that all my blog friends make my day too, especially YOU! :c)

LOVE the Red-headed woodpecker!!! I've only seen one here, and it was a fleeting glance. What great shots you got! Lucky you!

NatureWoman said...

Very cool woodpecker, Mary!

Anonymous said...

Mary, aren't you glad you stopped, if you hadn't you would have missed that red-headed woodpecker. It was very stark there but beautiful. Sometimes it's worth going out of your way and getting a little dirty. Red-headed woodpeckers are worth it since they are seldom seen and getting rarer.
Nature Knitter's Mom [Betty K]

Cheryl said...

What an absolutely stunning bird, lovely shot.
Come and see my garden birds, they are so tiny compared to some of your monsters...........but they are pretty to!

KGMom said...

Red heads rule!
And thanks for the award--I have no speech prepared.
Actually, what a nice gift from the blogger who always makes my day.

Anonymous said...

Mary, your images of the wetlands are so very beautiful and atmospheric. That woodpecker looks gorgeous against that background.

Anonymous said...

We don't have anything like that up here. Good for you, Mary. I would have loved to see you in your dress up duds, stalking that woodpecker!

Ramblings of a Villas Girl said...

Hi Mary! Thanks again for the wonderful pictures. It is a shame that there is construction going on all over the place and encroaching into wildlife habitat.
By the way, I was tagged by Bobbie and Shelly for a meme. If your are interested the rules are on my blog. It is a meme to write six habits or quirks we have.
Well have a good night. Lisa

RuthieJ said...

Red-Headed Woodpecker (sigh) I'm so jealous Mare. I haven't seen one for a couple years but still remember vividly a summer about 15 years ago when one visited the feeders in my yard. So much of their habitat has been lost. I'm glad you got to see one and get some good pictures to share with us. Hopefully they will never drain this wetland and build over top of it....

Unknown said...

Mary what a wonderful post and honoring your friends. I've seen a red headed woodpecker a couple of times here. They are beautiful.

TR Ryan said...

I got my lifer red-headed this year too. It just takes your breath away - the world stands still - nothing but woodpecker and human and forgetting to breathe. And there was not a human around for miles so the moment was all mine.

Your celebration of life through your photos, through your favorite bloggers, through your view -- all of it is like the golden spark of rising sun on an otherwise bleak horizon. Julie talks about her "Sally Field" moment -- one of my mine was definitely the first time you introduced yourself on my blog. I had been a silent fan for so long. I would give you any and all awards for everything -- you are one of the great ones Mary. And from the land of red dirt, good luck getting that stain off your white crocks but let it always remind you of the red-headed encounter.

dguzman said...

There ya go! Great lifer.

Kathi said...

Red-headed Woodpecker - such a beautiful bird! I'm so glad you got to see one, and got such nice photos, too. Always a tough bird to find, but so worth the effort.


kate said...

It was well worth getting your crocs messy - the Red-headed Woodpecker is gorgeous. (good for you taking off early from work too.)

Your blog makes my day too ... your award was well-deserved1!

Appalachian Lady said...

In Virginia, red-headed woodpeckers are being crowded out I think by red-bellied woodpeckers. I have never seen one so I enjoyed your photo. Joan

Susie said...

What a beautiful shot of the woodpecker! Ours here don't have the red heads, but I can hear one outside as I'm typing.
You always have such beautiful pictures Mary!

Sandpiper (Lin) said...

Wonderful! When I lived in Charleston, SC, a red headed woodpecker would come every day to my house and peck on the pipe that came up from the chimney. What a racket it made! Congratulations on the sighting. They are BEAUTIFUL birds!!!!

Kathie Brown said...

Mary, I'm jealous of your red-head. I need one for my life list. Do you think you could send him to AZ? BTW, you always make my day when I see you've visited my blog or anyone else's. You always leave such nice encouraging and supportive comments. I am still new to this blogging thing, but having you around really makes it fun! I love visiting here also. In spite of the blues sometimes, you have a great sense of humor!

Cathy said...

Sweet Mary,

I just discovered your note on my last post. You are so kind to keep me in your thoughts. Thank you for all the smiles and for being you.


Amy said...

Fantastic wetland habitat! How wonderful! It's bird heaven.