Monday, January 11, 2010


I have been in Kansas visiting my daughter and her husband who recently deployed with Fort Riley's 1st Infantry Division Headquarters. The weather here has been cold. I stopped looking at the weather channel when it hit 8 below zero ( 25 below zero windchill ). Needless to say I haven't been able to spend much time outside. Even my usual long walk around the neighborhood with Silvio, Terry and Andy's cute pug had to be cut short.

Lucky for me though Terry's home has large windows and her development borders some forest, a few fields and the Wildcat Creek, so I have taken the time to look out on the snowy hills for different birds and animals. (When Nick and I visited in October I brought Terry a "Birds of Kansas" a field guide by Stan Tekiel )

Last Friday morning, I looked out her dining room window to see a red fox in the forest across the street from her home. He was walking through the snow and on top of some fallen trees- his color really stood out against the white snow covered hills. How I wish I had brought my camera.

On Saturday morning while eating breakfast, I noticed some pretty blue birds flying into the pine trees next to her house. I think they were male and female Eastern Bluebirds. Their blue coloring matched the photos in the field guide exactly. This is a bit north in Kansas for them to be in the winter but I think that was what they were. I also saw starlings and crows.

But the best part was a beautiful bird gliding right outside the large picture window. At first I thought he was a Turkey vulture but the underside of his wings were white and the tips of the wings were dark brown. Out came the field guide again. He was a male Northern Harrier ( hawk). Gliding like he did reminded me so much of the Bald Eagles we saw when we were in Alaska. Stan's notes for the Harrier says " Harriers glide just above the ground , following contours of the land while searching for prey. " The photo you see of the Harrier is from photographer Phil Myers and the eastern bluebirds are from

So the Harrier was out there gliding along. And I am gliding along finding that I can put thoughts of cancer further back in my mind while keeping my eyes open to new experiences.

Every Day is a Blessing! I am blessed to see such beautiful birds.

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