The singing of birds

Hungry birds: these babies sing for their supper! May 2008

These hungry baby Robins can’t yet sing for their supper, but they would if they could!
Our York back yard, May 2008

“For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come…”Song of Solomon 2:11-12

Let’s hope the winter is mostly past by now, and the rain, while not over and gone, will surely give way to more sunny days ahead.  The time of the singing birds is definitely here, and I hope we will all enjoy it!

What are your favorite springtime joys?

One year ago today:

This most amazing day


  1. What a lovely photo! Spring has sprung! 🙂

    • Yes indeed! I’ve been disappointed several times this year, but I think this is it. I have our upstairs window open. 🙂 Hooray!

  2. Good morning! when i think of springtime in the southern usa, i think of wisteria and its delicate fragrance.. and of yellow jasmine draped untamed through the canopy of the countryside!

    i just finished reading ‘silent spring,’ so the title of your post hit home – while the sound of those baby wrens under the eaves provided backdrop music!

    excellent photo!


    • Ah, wisteria! I love it. I remember it from childhood, although the memories are so far back that they are somewhat vague. I learn so much from readers of this blog! I am unfamiliar with yellow jasmine, but looked it up and thought “Honeysuckle!” and then read that the jasmine is highly toxic and sometimes kids who confuse it with honeysuckle get a bit of toxins into their system that way 😦 so maybe it’s good I didn’t know about it – but I love flowering vines and especially those with the trumpet-shaped blossoms! From what I read, it sounds as if you might have jasmine where you live now also?

      I have never read Silent Spring except for excerpts from it, but I have been influenced by its message, and I am thankful for it. Jeff and I had a long-running debate about using any form of pesticides in the lawn and garden – I am adamant about not allowing them in the house, and he mostly acquiesces to my insistence that I’d rather have pests than poisons, even outside — but it used to drive me crazy that he would sometimes use Roundup or herbicides without wearing gloves. Since his cancer diagnosis, I think he’s almost 100% in agreement with me about it now. I keep telling him that with the chemo, his body can’t handled any more toxins and I think he knows that better than I do.

      I’m so happy you had the serenade of baby wrens to accompany the blog! I wish I could figure out some way to build sounds into the posts sometimes. Probably a good thing that I can’t! 🙂 So glad to hear from you here!

      • ah but you can! go to sound cloud! i have a few little sounds uploaded.. i record them on my camera via video and extract the sound… or i ask the laptop to ‘record audio’ and it immediately records a wav file…

        the only bad thing w/me sharing that wi/you is that i will not be able to listen to your recordings unless i’m in town using faster connections!

        • WOW Z, this is an amazing site! Thanks for telling us about it!! Funny but until you mentioned it I had never noticed that the “add media” button in WP shows both a camera AND music note – you’d think that would have given me a clue! But anyway, I certainly didn’t know about this “sound sharing” site, and I can’t wait to explore it!! Lately I feel like a kid in a candy store…with my hands tied behind my back!! So much neat stuff out there, so little time…

          • yes, and wp keeps improving and giving us new toys.. it helps keep our brains healthy!!!

            • I still know relatively little about it but it’s lots of fun to learn.

          • go to dirk maassen’s site.. (sp?) – his piano is incredible, and he has some free downloads.. he gave me permission to use one of his songs w/the butterfly video .. he asked that he approve it before i shared it w/the world… there are some great people on sound cloud. wp’s ‘frizztext’ has gone all but off the scale w/his creativity on there, but my internet is too slow these days to enjoy the music!

            have fun, nina!

            • Thanks Z, I will definitely do that! I love piano music, and that’s probably what I’d most like to include sometimes. If nothing else, I will have fun exploring that site while Matt is in the hospital. After he recovers a bit, he will probably enjoy it as much as I do. He loves music.

      • Rene

        Honeysuckle & jasmine smell very similar, in my opinion. You have to look very closely at the flowers, but can tell the difference. I remember tasting honeysuckle nectar when I was a kid, but not how to extract the proper part of the flower (probably better, as I prefer smelling it anyway).

        • Yes, we used to lick the nectar off honeysuckles (you have to pull the stamen through the base of the flower to draw it out). As a kid I was bewildered as to why my ambitions to accumulate the nectar in a jar always failed. 🙂

  3. raynard

    Julia the birds singing, eating and “trying not to be eaten by stray cats especially where I live. Going to the park and seeing families together.Going down to Sonics, the drive in movie or”Stewards to have people on roller skates bring you your food.( they still do that up here. Let me share the good news I just got. My middle daughter is graduating college next month. The baby girl attending the same college are both getting awards so when I found out the dates , I might be attending that. May is shaping up to be busy .Julia, Life is about people, how you treat them and how you spend time with them to make memories.( Sorry if I sound so”Walt Disneyish” ( glad I didnt say “Oprahish right ? lol be blessed

    • CONGRATULATIONS Raynard! I always love to hear of parents who are graduating alongside their sons or daughters. Definitely cause for celebration, so I hope you are able to go. I didn’t realize they had Sonic in the north. I don’t know why, but I always thought of it as a southern chain. Sounds as if spring is nearly sprung in your part of the country, so let’s hope the mama and papa birds keep those cats at bay. I think Oprah and Disney both spread a lot of smiles so it’s OK with me if we get a bit Disneyish or Oprahish here sometimes!

  4. Rene

    My favorite “spring thing” is the smell of the flowers, particularly citrus. I love summer more as a season, because I love to swim & go to the beach and have always liked having the time off work; but springtime walks are glorious smelling—and let me know that summer is on its way!

    • Rene, I think the smell of citrus is my favorite thing about it, which is saying quite a lot since I love all the citrus fruits and even eat lemons sometimes (but try not to make a sour face when doing it). However, I don’t get the joy of smelling the flowers since all the fruits we get come from elsewhere. I miss that about CA, where our next door neighbor had Sorrento lemons and little oranges and didnt’ ever want to eat them, so he let us have the all and we had fresh lemonade 10-11 months of the year. Summer in California is fabulous, no doubt. Maybe the best season there, except for in San Francisco where it’s often COLD then. On the central coast and in Nor Cal, it was actually warmer in the autumn than in the summer, or so it seemed to me. Summer in California always felt to me more like Spring everywhere else. Not the oppressive heat, humidity and insects that can mar the “dog days” in the south. Shame on me – already complaining about hot weather when we are finally shaking off this long winter! 🙂 I love the L-O-N-G daylight hours of summer, which allow me to walk at dusk, which I enjoy. In the winter we’re always fixing or eating dinner at that twilight time.

  5. Sheila

    FROM WALTER: Dear Juia, I’ve been wanting to chirp you up for a few days ’cause I have a problem that is quite disturbing. My mom, Sheila, has inherited a clock from her father-in-law and she thought I’d enjoy it, so she had Bill hang it in my domain, FAR from their bedroom. Did I mention that it’s a cuckoo clock? I think she told you that I make a “tick tock” sound. 🙂 At first, I thought it was for April Fool’s Day. That little bird comes out every 30 minutes to tell me he’s “CUCKOO” or else he’s calling me that. You seem to know my mom well. She speaks of you often! Do you think there’s hope? For her or for me? Love to all, Walter

    • Dear Walter, that mechanical bird is just jealous of your real, colorful feathers. Either that, or he thinks you need to know how to say “cuckoo” to go with your “tick tock.” Anyway, he’s only introducing himself; cuckoo is HIS name, he’s not calling you that. But I can see where it would get on your nerves. If you lived closer, I’d tell you to escape to our house, but I think the travel time would wear you out.

      In any case, there is one way you can stop that cuckoo, but it won’t be easy. Do you see those fake pine cones hanging on chains underneath his house? Watch closely and see which one moves the fastest while he is making noise (this will be easiest at noon or an hour before). Then if you can somehow manage to get that particular pine cone off that chain, the bird will SHUT UP until someone puts it back. The hard part will be getting the pine cone off the chain. Bill or your Mom could do it easily but you’ll have to figure out how to get them to do it. Maybe you can convince your Mom that you’d LOVE to have it in your cage. But admittedly, that’s a long shot.

      The only other thing I can tell you is that sooner or later the bird will probably break, and you can hope they won’t get around to getting it fixed for awhile. How old is that clock? I have one I got from my parents and it stopped working after it was almost 50 years old. Depending on how old your Mom’s clock is, that may be good news, or bad…If it’s bad news, as a last desperate measure, you can start acting psychotic and hope she tries silencing the clock before she starts spiking your food with some kind of sedative. Good luck, and let me know how it goes!

    • singleseatfighterpilot

      Walter, I feel your pain (and my name is not Clinton)! When I was first in the Air Force – actually, I was already an officer, and was able to live in an off-base apartment. Anyway, I would literally have 05:00 report times.We inherited just such a tormenter as you describe. Mr. Cuckoo would wake me up at either eleven or twelve, and in an effort to silence the monster. I would stagger over and unwittingly turn off my alarm clock. Mr. Cuckoo had to become a silent wall decoration, or I would have never made 1st Lieutenant. Good luck, Walter – say “Beautiful, quiet, wall-hanger.”

      • In all fairness to the Cuckoo, I must point out that he is not here to defend himself.

      • Sheila

        FROM WALTER: Wow…1st Lieutenant! So you fly too? “Birds of a feather, flock together.” Thanks for the advice, with the emphasis on “quiet”!

        • Sheila

          FROM WALTER: Juia, that’s a great idea! I’ll tell Cuckoo that you want him to come up there and defend himself. I knew you’d help me out. 🙂

          • Walter, something tells me he’d only repeat himself… 🙂

  6. What a lovely image to come back to after my winter blog reading hiatus. I hope you are well. Yes, it’s time to sing!

    • Hi Tony, it’s great to hear from you again! I know you have been very busy lately; I’ve kept up with your blog from time to time but we have been similarly time-challenged here. It must be the most universal challenge in our world. I hope this spring is VERY good to you!

  7. Look at those little darlings. It definitely is very spring like.

    I look forward to the Lilacs and Apple Blossoms in the spring and getting summer cloths out of the back of the closets. Then there are the much loved flip-flops too. I really dislike wearing socks, they’re so restrictive on the toes. But we really can’t go barefoot in the winter.

    • Lilacs and Apple Blossoms! That sounds wonderful. I wonder if I can find any around here? Still no cherry blossoms yet, but I think they will be here soon.

  8. The first trillum is always a wonder to me, and flinging the windows open is a joy. We have so much rain here (Oregon) in winter yet I love its music. Walking without having chilled hands is a relief when spring arrives–and putting my sandals on!

    • YES to all of the above! I am so happy to be able to walk 2-3 miles without FREEZING! At times I’ve even carried heated stones in my pockets to keep my hands warm, but they always cool off before I’m back home. HELLO SPRING, let the celebration begin!

  9. MaryAnn

    In Spring, I love to round a corner & become startled by the gorgeous “explosion” of a myriad of trees all in bloom! It seems it happened overnight. Then, when the wind blows, it looks like snow. I stand amazed that God continues to showcase His Creation for us!
    Lovely shot of “your” baby birds.

    • Thank you Mary Ann! Isn’t the beauty of the world like a continual love note from God? 🙂

  10. Fabulous photo! Oh my goodness, is there anything sweeter?

    • Thanks Alys, I just love the baby birds. They grow up and leave the nest so quickly, but I always enjoy seeing them while they are here.

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