Monday, June 6, 2011

Bye-Bye Birdie

The kids and I watched as cardinals built a nest in the bush right outside our kitchen window.

We squealed with delight when we saw 3 perfect eggs appear one day.

We roiled with anger when a snake slithered up the branches after those eggs-- and we chased him off with a stick.

We saluted the parents who tended and tended and tended to the three perfect babies that hatched from those eggs. Thin skin, bulging eyes, little tufts of feathers-- they were cute in the most vulnerable, pathetic of ways.

They waited, mouths open, for Mom or Dad to drop in a morsel. After only a few days, the brownish-gray fledglings were ready for their big moment.

They hopped from branch to branch, tentatively testing those wings. Ever solicitous, Mom and Dad Cardinal watched from outside, Jake and Molly inside-- Molly's arm draped around Jake's back.

I stood behind, watching my no-so-small ones watch the smaller ones. In a matter of moments, all three birds took flight. It wasn't graceful, but it worked.

Jake turned to Molly and said, "They just grow up so fast."

Amen, kid.


Anna Lefler said...

Oh, this post gave me chills, Anna. Just beautiful.

:-) A.

P.S. And thanks for your kind words over at my blog - I really appreciate that!

Ellen aka Ellie said...

The Father's Day before my dad died, we sat and watch a mother and father cardinal fly back and forth feeding their three babies. We were all fascinated, even my son's father who comes from the "big city" aka Chicago.

Love the comments, your kids are perceptive.

Stimey said...

That is absolutely the cutest ever.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

That's precious! And a bit of a roller coaster - I gasped at the snake part.

Heidi said...

Come on! How adorable! So lovely.