Saturday, March 01, 2008

Eastern Bluebirds and Other Nice Treats

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I ask you, is there a bird more attractive than an Eastern Bluebird? Maybe…not. Its sweet, gentle song and true blue coat makes me gasp and stop in my tracks. Every time. I will never tire of the Eastern Bluebird.


We were on our way back from purchasing lumber to erect our four Bluebird nesting boxes yesterday. A small committee is working on establishing a Wildlife Habitat on campus. I told Bob, our facilities manager, that we need to hurry and get them up, even though I hadn’t seen Bluebirds on campus in about three months. Two small flocks on the open field next to the parking lot were all I saw, back in November or December. I’ve been missing them on campus and at home.



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An hour later I was on my way to drop off mail in the neighboring building when I saw a flash of blue fly by. I knew I brought the camera for a reason! I was in his territory and he sang sweetly, keeping a close eye on me.



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He’s looking for a mate like another male did last spring, fluttering circles on the Dean’s office window. Our Dean thinks the Bluebird admires her all day. I don’t think so. If this Bluebird is Johnny, I wonder what happened to Millie?

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It was cold, bright, and very windy so I found a rock to keep my mail and signature folder from blowing away. You see, I lost track of time while he flew circles around me, from tree to tree. I missed the mail courier.


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The word "stunning" isn't good enough.

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And there’s more…


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Isn’t this the most beautiful garden hose bib you have ever seen? Only the plumber knew what I meant by “hose bib”. NC folk call it a spigot, pronounced “spikkit”. Ok. I’m gitt'n it. I’ve been whining and moaning about having a garden hose near the pond and now I have it, only ten Mary steps away from the pond water. No more hauling 150 feet of heavy duty garden hose on my back, over the fence and across the back of the house, cursing all the way, knowing I'd need to haul it back and roll it up again.

And there’s more…


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A new utility sink in the garage! Cleaning bird feeders, paint brushes, and muddy hands (in warm water) will be a breeze!


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I couldn’t wait to decorate it.
Don't need diamonds. Just gimme Bluebirds, spikkits, and utility sinks.

40 comments:

mon@rch said...

Mary, I love hearing about your bluebirds and how wonderful you guys are building some boxes for them!

Jayne said...

A girl after my own heart! Indeed, takes very little to make us happy Mary! So glad your bluebirds are back and ready to start nesting.

Amy said...

Beautiful photos of Mr Bluebird. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Love the blue bird pics but I'm afraid it will be a while before we see them here in SE. Minn. There is still way to much snow on the ground, but it is something to look forward to.
Pretty neat sink in the garage for quick clean-ups before going in the house. A good place to clean up pups too.
Nature Knitter's Mom [Betty K]

JeanMac said...

The sink in the garage is the best thing - now we all want one! You're just so shmart.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Bluebirds are the best! You got some really great shots! Better be careful Mary, there gonna soon catch on and not let you out of the building during work hours. :)

I love the sink in the garage, a great idea for cleaning those bird feeders and dirty hands. They ought to be standard equipment in garages or laundry rooms.

Susan Gets Native said...

You know, every time I bring out the hose in our backyard, I think of you. Now you have your own SPIKKIT!

I'm scared to try and provide nests for our bluebirds this year. I have way too many HOSP. But maybe....

crazyforcinema said...

Today I saw my first Eastern Bluebird (actually a small flock of 3 or 4 males). I drove out to a lake on Long Island to see a few life ducks (got 'em) and on the way out of the parking lot saw some movement in the brush. Lo and behold, my first bluebirds. Totally made my day - they are truly beautiful. I couldn't stop looking at them.

Island Rambles Blog said...

love the bluebirds, could you send me some here. Glad you are all set up with the sink in the garage, what a good idea and now the pond will always have fresh water .... such little things please us birders...we are a strange breed!!!! I celebrate the new sink and tap!!!

Carol said...

I bought a bluebird nesting box and was just thinking today that I need to get it up or I'll never even have a chance of getting a bluebird to take up residence. I'm not sure I'll get a bluebird to nest in it this year anyway, but I have to try.

I got me one of them utility sinks in my garage. I love it, though mine is not quite as nicely decorated as yours. In fact after 11 years of use to clean up all kinds of pots and all, it is looking a bit, shall we say, stained.

Carol, May Dreams Gardens

Anonymous said...

Oh Mary I am so happy for you! Your new "spikkit" (which is how we pronounce it here too) and sink will make things so much easier for you. I haven't seen a bluebird yet (not ever) but I'm sure looking forward to seeing one.

Angie

Annie in Austin said...

Your bluebirds have always made me jealous, and stunning is the word, Mary. You are so in synch that you just knew he'd turn up, didn't you.

Now I'm also jealous of the utility sink...but that amenity may be more attainable than the elusive bluebirds.

Happy March!

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Cheryl said...

I am loving the bluebird, he is absolutely stunning. The birds seem to fit in with the country they inhabit. America seems to have a vast array of birds, stunning colours and fairly large. Here are birds are less colourful and often small. It really does fascinate me. They are, of course, all beautiful in their own way.
I love that sink, your a girl after my own heart. My husband bought me a fantastic wheelbarrow for my birthday once. I was over the moon, my friends thought me quite mad!!!!!

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Just the most handsome bird. Mr has to get his territory arranged before he can invite a proper Mrs in to nest. They will live happily ever ...

Love your new spikkit and sink. Lucky girl.

nina said...

Your bluebirds are precious--more precious than diamonds.

Isn't it amazing how the practical amenities can just be the most wonderful gifts!? That's what I'd call a set tub--looks nice with a spigot!
Your decorating skills--nice touch.

I'll bet you can hardly wait...for spring!!!

nina said...

p.s.

We put up bluebird houses last spring--didn't attract bluebirds, but had a ball watching the activity they encourage.
Good luck with yours--may you have lovely tenants!

NatureWoman said...

Wow, Mary, you are the best, getting those guys going on the bluebird boxes! I *love* your photos. Bluebirds *are* beautiful!

Toni said...

You must have amazing energy that birds love to be able to get the photos that you do. they are beautiful. And now you will have blue bird houses to watch them make homes. yea!
Up north here we call it 'Spikkit'

RuthieJ said...

Oh Mare, your bluebird pictures are fab-u-lous! Can't wait for ours to start arriving back in MN.

Congratulations on your outside faucet (that's what I call it). Hopefully you'll get good use from it once water restrictions are over!

I'm envious of your garage sink! I have a big one like that in the basement, but having one in the garage is so much more convenient for birdy & gardening chores. Maybe in my next house.....

thepowerguides said...

You are so lucky , we do get bluebirds but out resident Bluejays seem to scare them away .

They are so cool to look at

Steve From
The Power Bird Watchers Guide

Peg Silloway said...

Bluebird heaven! I've never seen one in the flesh and feathers, but love their terra cotta and azure coloring. Thanks for taking the time to capture them so beautifully. Those are lucky bluebirds on your campus.

Oh yes, a deep sink and a bar of lava soap - you're ready for anything. Enjoy!

Mary said...

The bluebird pics are super! Such a lovely bird. I like the Millie and Johnny post, too :-)

Roy Norris said...

Bluebird, such amazing colour Mary

Mel said...

What a set of beautiful pictures!!! That bluebird is so CUTE!

Mary said...

Tom, all I need to do now is get some strong diggers to get it DONE! This week!

Jayne, I'm pretty simple and easy to please, too. I wish the Bluebirds would show up at home, though.

Amy, isn't he beautiful? The first photo is a little enhanced with software because it was taken very far away.

Betty, I know you still have snow. I'll bet in a few weeks it will melt and you'll put those coats away... My dogs require a bathtub and a closed door! They hate baths! :o)

Jean, everyone should have a sink in the garage. It should be a standard feature in every home.

Robin, if they can't find me, they know where to look..."Oh, that Mary is out with her camera again..."

Susan, I know how you feel. I looked at some Bluebird nesting boxes and others for wrens, Chickadees, etc. but I'm hesitating. Those damned HOSPs scare me at my house. I might try just ONE soon.

Crazyforcinema! Yay! Isn't it a sight for sore eyes? A flock of bluebirds. Lovely.

Ocean, you are right. Us birders love the little things - like a nice deep sink to clean feeders in... LOL!

Carol, try the nesting box. If the Bluebirds don't show up, you might see other birds finding interest in it. I'm going to try one or two this year and see what happens.

Angie, I love my spikkit! HA! I wish Bluebirds to peek into your windows.

Annie, you should have a garage sink. As far as the Bluebird, I was almost certain there wouldn't be any on campus this year. He surprised me.

Cheryl, LOL! Your wheelbarrow story made me hoot. A friend of mine in Maryland was showered with luxurious gifts for Christmas one year but her favorite gift of all (one that she boasted about) was a brand new shovel and hoe.

Lisa, I know...I can't wait to see who he invites. I hope this spring will be full of bluebirds at work if I can't have them at home :o(

Nina, I think I'm going to try two nesting boxes at home. One for bluebirds and another for wrens, etc. and see what happens. The house sparrows are a problem but I want to try. Oh, yeah...The simplest things in life are the best :o)

Pam, I don't think I can dig and set the lumber by myself so I'm going to offer fast food coupons to some strong men on campus to get the job done THIS WEEK! LOL!

Ruthie, you're right! Until the water restrictions are lifted, I won't be using my new "outdoor faucet" very much. I can use it for the pond, however. It's an exception. I had a utility sink in my basement in Maryland and appreciated it. Having one in the garage is even better, and it wasn't too expensive!

Toni, well guess what. When I was growing up in MD, I called them spikkits, too :o) I have a Philadelphia accent, too, so they say.

Steve, thanks for stopping by! Your blog looks interesting and I will give it some thought. Those Blue Jays are great birds but quite pushy.

Peg, good to hear from you. Tonight I'm going to check your blog (tee-hee). Cleaning feeders and pond work was so much easier today...

Mary, Bluebirds are magical. Glad you enjoyed the photos.

Roy, thank you for visiting. You are always welcome here.

Mel, HI! I'll be over to visit soon...

Sandpiper said...

LOL @ bluebirds, spikkits, and utility sinks. ;-) Great posting. I'm envious of your bluebirds!! Fantastic pictures!!

KGMom said...

SO, you had a red, white and blue post, eh? (Get it?)
Anyway, love the bluebird photos--just so lovely. Flocks of them? No.
I see an occasional bluebird here--just not fair!

Sherry at the Zoo said...

Those blue birds are gorgeous! I love the pics.

I've never heard of a bib, but I know what a spikket is! LOL!

I like the lambs too (in your post below!)

Q said...

Dear Mary,
Your Bluebird photos are very beautiful! Is there space in your your house for a framed photo of one of these? I think a gallery of your pictures would be so lovely. I see a picture of Johnny framed and matted! He looks outstanding. Every day you could catch a glimps of this beautiful bird and your great photgrapher's eye and be reminded just how great life is! Work maybe a bother but seeing Bluebirds makes it all worth while.
Your life just became so much easier! Having water close to the pond and a sink so deep will save you time and energy! Maybe you will be able to sit outside and play with the girls and watch your darling birds come and go.
I am so happy for you!
Nesting boxes at work and at home will be excellent. The Bluebirds will follow you home for those good meal worms!
Happy March,
Sherry

beckie said...

Mary, now that is taking the time to see what is around you! Great pictures. And I love that you have a spikit and a new sink. Who says women aren't easy to please?

Laurie said...

Bluebirds are such friendly birds, don't you think?

Grace, Every Day said...

Lord have mercy, Mary - look at your, with a million comments! Glad that the entire blogging world seems to be appreciating you!

Spigots for me, girl - and it IS beautiful! Love the new sink, too.

And the birdie pictures are good, too....

You are a doll. Thanks for brightening my day!

nikkipolani said...

I love all the photographs today, Mary. All things of beauty - from that gorgeous bluebird to your handsome hosebib.... all good!

Cathy said...

Oh joy! The bird who wears the sky on his back and the earth on his front!

These blogs from the southlands are just about all that keeps me going! You should see it up here! ARGGGHHHH.

Mare, your bird pictures knock my socks off. And that tidy looking utility sink makes me wear green on my face. (That would be the envy of a messy-winter-garage owner:0)

dguzman said...

Wow, I'm so envious of your new utility sink! And yes, that's a beautiful water faucet, as we say in Texas. Your bluebird is bluer than any I've ever seen.

I gotta get me one of those sinks...

Kathiesbirds said...

Mary, those bluebird photos are priceless! What an extrodinary shade of blue! I'm jealous of your utility sink! I use to have a laundry sink in my previous house but not here. Now I have to do all the dirty work in the kitchen or bathroom. Yuk! Glad you don't have to haul hose any more!

Owlman said...

Great photos. I'm hoping that my Blue Birds will be back in their box this spring and that they'll play nicely with their neigbors (Tree Swallows).

Larry said...

It looks like you're getting a little spoiled by those bluebirds!-Great pictures to cheer up the day.

Anonymous said...

The bluebird is indeed gorgeous (the color!) but what really made me swoon is that utility sink. I have longed for one of those for countless years. Excuse me while I wipe the drool off my keyboard. *sigh* Hopefully one day...

donna said...

Well, I was looking for the name of a "set" of bluebirds and came across your site. Do you think it is a flock? Anyway, I wanted to tell my sister that we had some young ones to fledge just this week here in west central Georgia. Seems awfully late to me, but I'm not complaining!
I, too, am envious of your spikket and outdoor sink. I got a potting shed a couple of years ago, so I'll have to ride that one for a while.