Tag Archives: home

A New Nest

11 Mar

We have a potted ficus on our porch where a hummingbird has built a nest and filled it with eggs for the past two springtimes. This is a brave, brave mama bird.  The ficus is right by our front door and our house is a busy, noisy house.  Loud kids, loud friends, loud dogs, loud slamming of the door, yet this mama is remarkably tolerant.  I have no idea why she chose this location because I am certain our neighbors (one without kids, one with only one baby and a few who are retired) are much calmer and quieter than my raucous household.  But for some magical reason, she feels safe enough with our crazy family to raise her babies here.

This year she threw us for a loop and we found her dismantling her nest.  We were concerned as the nest we have lived with for two years was torn to shreds.  Was this a statement about our home?  Were we inhospitable?  Was our porch for some reason uninhabitable or an inappropriate place to raise babies?

Then, Sirskatealot and I started noticing a hummingbird buzz by at the end of the walkway.  After  a week or so, I spied the little gem of a nest in a schefflera plant in our jungle.  This perfect little baby home was reconstructed from the original on the porch but with fun new elements, like a shred of toilet paper hidden amongst our plants from years of being tp’d by girls because of Princelightningbolt’s charms.  There are two perfect, jelly belly sized eggs inside.   This mama hummingbird is the hardest working mama in the world. We are thrilled for our spring surprise.  Watching the mama keeping her eggs warm, watching the slow hatching process and the growth of sweet little birdies is a thrill.  Last year we even snapped some pictures as one left the nest.

Spring means new and great things. I am running (ahem, “lightly jogging”) a few days each week.  This peg leg is feeling ready to move on.  I walked on the beach with an old friend today for over an hour without much pain.   I have a new work out partner at the gym.  Track season for Princelightningbolt has begun.  We have had some rain…and a couple beach days.  Princessenpointe is counting the days until summer.  The time change happened last night.  We are ready for newness, growth, a renewed sense of who we are and what we want to do while we are here.

I’ll keep you posted on our baby birds.  We have one tom cat left in our hood (last man standing against the coyotes).  He’s a formidable opponent, but with the freshness in the air and a mama’s determination, I think I will have pics of new baby birds for you soon.  In the meantime, I hope you have a spring in your step.

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A House is Just a House

4 Mar

I live in an area surrounded by giant houses.  We had no idea where we were buying during that weekend real estate extravaganza I mentioned in “Moving…On.”  I love where we live and I adore our friends in those big houses.  However, I have never, ever wanted one.  I have friends whose hobby literally involves house maintenance and house decorating and care.  I appreciate this and admire the beauty of it all.  However, I hate house care and maintenance.  Both Sirskatesalot and I want less of it.  We are terrible with house maintenance like vacuuming behind the refrigerator every six months, cutting back trees, retouching paint.  How boring…we live near the beach and the mountains and have fun kids.  Who wants to stay inside and take care of a structure?.  Ugh, B-O-R-I-N-G!  I want to go.  I want a comfy space, large enough for two big dogs, two big kids, a kitchen for baking, but nothing more.  Really, there is a whole world to see.  Sometimes a house means seeing less of that because it is necessary to spend so much time maintaining that house.   I don’t want more time at home, I want more time exploring and enjoying.  Taking care of a house is not exploring and enjoying.

Homeownership is great, I’m not trying to knock it, necessarily.  I like our home, I keep it tidy, we use the heck out of it with friends and kids and relatives and fun, but it is a house.  It is only a structure.  I feel like some people around here treat it like the universe.  This is sad for many reasons, but one of which is that it is who occupies the house that is of interest, not the house itself.  I gag when I am asked if I want a “tour” of  a home I haven’t been in before.  Ahem, no thanks. How about a cup of coffee and some interesting conversation.  If you have seen one marble bathroom and remodeled kitchen, you have seen enough.  I want more travel or time to do new things.  Or, I am happy to sit at the beach for hours and hours.  I am not happy to organize, maintain, stay at home.  This is not a judgement, this is a preference.  However, I do sometimes feel sad for people I know who stay behind the Orange Curtain most of the year, perfecting their houses to the point where they have no time for friends, outings or travel because the structure has taken over.

A structure is just that.   A few walls to keep us warm and give us space to be a family.  A friend of ours just lost his structure in a natural gas explosion on the east coast (you can Google it…mind-blowing photos). Crazy and scary.  But this is just a structure.  The relationships and the world are still out there.  Just a little rebuilding is needed.  Don’t take these structures too seriously or you might find yourself voluntarily imprisoned in them.  Be careful what you wish for.

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