Summer. You beautiful thing. Wisconsin is really showing up this summer. Cold mornings, and sunny, warm afternoons. How you like THAT, all you big show off palm tree states? We got ya on the ropes now, suckas.
It’s clear to me that I’m getting old. Scott is too. I know this because we keep having more and more conversations about important things. Like the Bluebird I saw on the fence during my walk at lunch. Or, the Cardinals Scott is enjoying watching as they hover over our flower bed. I think some people wake up one day, and they’re like, “Gadzooks, I’m old! When did this happen? I didn’t see this happening.”
I see it happening.
My parents have a little birdhouse on their porch. My mom has hoped that a bird family would move into this little bird house for a couple of years now. Guess what? I have a new step-bird-sister. A little bird gal moved into that house with her husband (I’m assuming these two aren’t living in sin. They seem like good people), and they had babies. These creatures carry little, tiny pieces of food in their mouths, pop through the little house’s door, and disappear to feed, and spend time with their little bird family. I could watch this family all day.
One night, while my sister, Heidi, and I were eating pizza on the deck, we were watching these bird parents feed their children. This feeding thing seemed like so much work. You’ve got all the hunting for worms going on, and then all the trips back and forth through the little birdhouse door.
We got feeling kinda sorry for our sister-bird and her husband. Heidi said it seemed like a shame that our sister-bird and her husband were wasting their lives with this non stop work. I agreed. I told Heidi to roll up her piece of pizza and jam it through the little bird house door. The bird parents would surely thank us for a night off, maybe even the whole week. That’s how you solve problems in nature.
I heard that it has been scientifically proven that looking at a tree can help with depression. I understand that.
My niece, Naomi, told me that the famous poet, Walt Whitman, said something similar to this thing about trees a long time ago. My niece is smart. She likes poetry. Scott and I slept in Naomi’s bed over the fourth of July. We saw that Naomi has a Walt Whitman poem written on her ceiling. After Scott and I got into bed, we looked up at the ceiling and I read the poem out loud. When I was done reading, Scott and I were quiet and contemplative for a moment. We meditated on the words that were just spoken. I asked, “Did you understand that?”
Scott said, “No. Not a word.”
What are you supposed to do when the children get smarter than the adults? You fake it. That’s what. I told Naomi that the poem was beautiful. I was moved to tears, really.
That wasn’t a total lie. It’s not like Scott and I know NOTHING about Walt Whitman. We do know he was mentioned in, “Breaking Bad.” We’re not completely ignorant about literature.
Nature is what we have been enjoying this summer. The other thing we are enjoying is kids. Our siblings’ kids, especially. I’m so glad we had our basement finished. I actually have only sat down there a few times. But we ARE using it to host family, and that makes me smiley and satisfied.
Both of Scott’s brothers have come with their families from the far away land of Iowa to stay with us this summer. All three of Scott’s siblings have little kids. Gosh, kids are the best.
I think almost everything kids have to say is funny. Scott’s brother Tom, and his wife Haley came to visit us before the fourth of July. Tom and Haley have two little boys, 3 and 18 months. One morning, I was making breakfast. I could hear these little guys talking to each other as they walked up our steps. Preschool conversations. That’s good stuff.
My nephew’s voices filled my heart with happy nostalgia. I remember how our little guys wrung me dry by nightfall with their relentless energy. Somehow, by morning, I couldn’t wait to see them again. It’s a miracle every day.
I’m consciously focusing on simple, life enhancing things this summer: birds, family, kids. I’ve been feeling a little over exposed to ideas and information lately; I need simple stuff as an antidote. I’m not sure what is wrong with me. I used to very much enjoy learning about other people’s opinions. I am a pretty curious person. I didn’t know before that other people’s opinions are like everything else: best in moderation.
In some respects, I am fairly impressionable. I rarely start a discussion intent on proving a point. I have a ton of questions about many things. The internet has just ruined me. I feel like I’m trying to hear everyone, and there is so much noise. I’m not hearing anyone at all. Instead, I want to recommend to some folks, a special evening of trying to keep their yaps zipped. Bless their hearts. Of course.
I’ve become a bitter, old, bird-watching woman.
I told God what was on my heart about this subject. I asked Him for a word. He told me two things:
1. Stop listening to people; listen to me; take time to hear My voice. It takes practice.
2. You’re awfully noisy yourself. You write a blog.
The second part was a little fuzzy. He was cutting out; I probably heard Him wrong. He might have actually said, “You should buy another hog.”
I’ll wait for confirmation on that second part.