Sunday, May 3, 2015

A Peanut for your Thoughts

The forest is alive this morning. Since our return from vacation the blue jays have been distracted from their normal jay activities of flying from tree to tree, squawking at their fellow chipmunks and squirrels, and bogarting in on whatever goods the woodpeckers have found. And of course, all other happenings I miss in a day's time.

Dave took one step out our back deck, looked to the pile of sticks, paper and string debris and asked, "What's all this?" Pointing to the light above I smiled and said, "The birds have been busy building a nest." Everyday I watch as they carefully decide which pieces stay and which simply won't do. Those misshapen twigs are quickly tossed to the discard pile.

Through their hard work, the blue jays allow for breaks. They pick up and carry away all the peanuts I scatter on the ground below. For my up close love of watching, I leave a few on the rail just outside our kitchen window. I notice they are just as meticulous with those nuts as they are with their twig selection. One by one the jays swoop in, size up the offering, choose their favorite, and off they fly to the nearest tree.

But what's funny—if one of those nuts happens to be a single rather than a double, they turn their beaks up. My human brain thinks they first go for the many doubles on the ground and once gone, eventually return for the lowly single.

The life of a blue jay.

The places you go while free typing in front of a window. And this is just one small story of the happenings in the world of the blue jays. I have story upon story about the many insects and creatures of this woodsy wonderland.

I was in the process of finding and making my way so I imagined this time ahead would be kind of difficult. But what I never imagined was my Tahoe dream actually coming true. And that while sifting through what remains, my heart would be wrapped in all that is pure, giving, and real. Continued healing surrounded by the one place, which puts me most at ease is surreal. A combination of this place and our girls whisper through challenges—breathe, take one moment at a time. If you fall, feel a little lost, head in the wrong direction,'re familiar. Pick up, redirect, and start over. It's all by design. For one reason or another, it will all work out in time. And along the way, enjoy the journey! Yes, all things I've learned well over the past six years, but can be forgotten. But in peace, simplicity, and solitude, are also found.

My gaze shifts up and through the window. A jay is sitting, starring back at me. I wonder what he's thinking? Might he be wondering the same? Beautiful blue, at this second I'm thinking how my life closely resembles your nest. Everyday I work, piecing together. I pick up, carefully evaluate, and like you, decide whether it should stay or go.

You're right Jay. This takes time, energy, and patience. More than I envisioned. But anything worthwhile, does.

I think your nest is beautiful. And every piece, in its perfect place. As it should be.

Now Jay, a peanut for your thoughts?


  1. That's actually a Stellar's Jay. I think they're the most beautiful jay, but I also think they have the most annoying squawk of the three I've seen. :) We have a feeder in our backyard, and my son and I, as well as the cat, also enjoy watching the birds, and the squirrels which have un-squirrel-proofed our squirrel proof feeder.

    1. Melanie! Thank you so much! I read your comment and immediately called my dad. I asked a rhetorical question, of which he answered,

      "Dad, how long have you lived up here?"
      "At least 35 year." he said.

      I said, and for all that time you've been misleading me?!? Those blue jays aren't blue jays, they're a Steller's Jay. He didn't believe me. I read him your comment and told him to look Steller Jay up. He did and because everyone up here thinks they are a blue jay, we joked that from now on when someone points to, or references a blue jay, we are now going to act like we don't know what they're taking about, or say we've never seen one up here : )

      Gosh I agree, those Steller's are the most beautiful! Speaking of, they went into warp speed two days ago preparing for the snow. They were carrying mouthfuls of twigs, string, and debris. So much so, it was falling from the sky. It was too funny. They also started swiping the pile of nuts before I walked away.

      I know many don't like them, and when I was in high school used to question my dad (they're so mean) but my dad's view was that they were just trying to make their way like everything else. I think of him too when I watch them <3

      I hear you about the un-squirrel-proofed feeders ; )

      Thank you for your comment. I think I'm going to sharpen my bird watching skills = )

  2. I've never seen this kind of blue jay, I guess it looks so beautiful to because it's so different than the ones here on the East coast. Ours are really mean birds, I shoo them away ;) I love my bluebirds, I've always loved bird watching, so interesting.
    I have 3 nests ,in my curio cabinet, that I've found on the ground after storms. Ready? They are each made out of our hair, 2 with my Guatemalan beauty's(Moriah) long black hair and 1 from my old grey-bleached blond ? ;) long hair.One of them I believe has some of our lost love Luke in it. They are part of my little treasures that mean so much to me and really no one else. Every now and then I take them out and admire Gods work and the little things he gives to us only for our enjoyment, how cool is that?
    Love you and miss Avi ,
    cindy from nc

  3. Hi Cindy ~ I too love bird watching, but apparently I need to sharpen my skills. Melanie let me know they are Steller's Jays! And yes, I agree so beautiful!

    Your nest sound beautiful and oh so personal! My gosh how unique. I have never heard of such a thing, but it made perfect sense after I read your comment and thought about the birds creating their nests. You are a human bird Cindy <3 And of course, I LOVE what you wrote about Luke's fur!

    You're so right about the little things he 'gives' us. I completely agree with you. Those are some of the best gifts of all.

    I love you, and love that you miss Avi. Thank you for thinking of her.


    1. Yes, it's unbelievable how they have woven and lined their nests so meticulously with our hair,I felt bad when I had found the nests on the ground after some storms, I guess they were so light they couldn't hold up to the wind. One of them looks like a hummingbird nest, long and small. I make sure to leave out plenty of "building " material for the birdies. I wish I could show them to you :)

    2. Wow! I've never seen a hummingbird nest! I'd love to. I can just picture you leaving building material, so sweet <3

      Send me some pictures!

  4. Beautiful analogy my friend.

    1. Thank you Sarah.

      Dave read the cutest thing to me. We now have a new saying, "Let's get this snow on the road!" She's adorable and oh so smartsy! I had no idea how many times I actually say that a day! That ones going to stick! We laugh...and laugh! I hope you had a lovely Mother's Day my friend <3

  5. Love the twigs on the deck! Too funny. Oh Jen, you crack me up, I can just picture you, your chin in your hands watching the birds like a child looks out their window trying to catch a glimpse of Santa. Oh, and I saw a commercial today and someone on it said "that's how the cookie crumbles." It made me laugh out loud. You know what you can do with your cookie crumbles! I love you, I miss you, I need to call you.

    1. You know me so well Cam Cam! Chin in hand, like a child!

      Oh my gosh! I wish I saw that commercial! That's too funny! I miss and love you too!!!