Peacocks

peacock

On a recent preschool field trip, the peacocks reminded us how beautiful they really are.

When I was a girl, my uncle had peacocks at his house, and I remember hunting for the feathers.  I had forgotten how enormous these birds look when their feathers are fully extended, and how blue they look.  It took my breath away to watch it (while I also wondered why I decided not to take my zoom lens).

peacock 2

It was also interesting to watch the strength it took from these birds to keep the feathers in a fan when a breeze was blowing:

The poor guy had to work hard to keep them out of his face.

But here’s my question for you.  Have you ever seen an albino peacock?  If not, check this out.

albino peacock

Sorry about the view of the cage.  Only one little spot was bent and would fit my lens in it, and this beauty was nowhere near that spot.  I know that I’m a sucker for the color white, but this bird was stunning.

albino peacock close

I was fascinated.  All those feathers, and totally white.

albino peacock close 2

albino peacock side view

albino peacock far

Amazing.

I was really touched by the beauty and majesty of these birds.  I remembered a favorite quote:

“Never lose an opportunity to see anything that is beautiful; for beauty is God’s handwriting, a wayside sacrament.”   -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Glad I got to see the handwriting this morning; what a lovely signature.

Hopeful Homemaker

Happy Mother’s Day!

These are the wildflowers (aka weeds) that my younger children gathered for me for Mother’s Day.

Perhaps it’s the economy, which has reminded me that things don’t really matter much, or perhaps my heart is just more tender this year, but I loved them.  I loved the homemade cards, the honest way in which my 6th grader admitted that the card he made me in music class was really done because it was worth 200 points, the way some of them sweetly cleaned their rooms as a gift to me (and apparently without any encouragement).

But back to the wildflowers.  I overheard a conversation among children as three of my younger ones hunted with two neighbors for their bouquets.  I could hear them running from spot to spot and exclaiming “My mom is gonna love these flowers!”   Over and over they would ooh and aah at how lovely their gatherings were.  At last, not wholly getting the purpose of the picking, my three year old son said “My dad is gonna love these!”  The whole group giggled.  Then the neighbor boy said to him, “Your Dad!  Dads don’t like flowers!  They like cool stuff!”  Very kindly they all then filled in my little boy on the cool stuff that dads like, such as skateboards, bikes, cars and so forth.  It’s a good thing moms like flowers, because they sure made my day.

New Growth

My son has been calling it Sprinter:  the spring that thinks it’s winter.  Around here, it’s been snowstorms or rain almost every weekend and sometimes in between, all of it with what seems like a three mile thick layer of gray clouds overhead.  I actually started writing down and timing when the sun came out each day, and the average duration was about 10 minutes of blue skies before it vanished again.

We have two cherry trees in our backyard.  One has been covered with blossoms and the other seemed barren.  (My son has been cheerfully tapping the snow off them after every storm in an attempt to be sure we can save all the branches.) We take for granted the apparent health of one and worry about the other.  Imagine my delight when I found the first sign of new growth on the seemingly struggling cherry tree.

When the first hints of green were followed by lovely white blossoms, I had to capture the magic of it all.

cherry blossom

cherry blossoms

My tree reminded me of one of life’s lessons:  everyone blooms in their own way and at their own time.  We have two trees, growing side by side in the same yard, and yet they each blossom on their own schedule.  People are like that.  Children are like that.

cherry blossoms 2

I guess the magic comes when we learn to notice and appreciate the signs of growth in ourselves and others.  And be prepared to celebrate the blossoms whenever they come, having hope and faith that they will appear.

cherry blossoms 3

Where I live, it will go from cold to hot in a couple of weeks, with only a fleeting taste of perfect spring temperatures.  I guess I’ve got to just enjoy it while we’ve got it.

And remember.

Hopeful Homemaker

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