Friday, January 15, 2016

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 1/15/16

View This Post on The Website.

The Nature In Us Newsletter
January 15, 2016
By Donna L. Watkins

"More and more as we come closer and closer in touch with nature and its teachings are we able to see the Divine and are therefore fitted to interpret correctly the various languages spoken by all forms of nature about us." -- George Washington Carver, African-American inventor

Subscribe by Email    Twitter    Google+    RSS Feed

Hello Dear Friends!

Spiritual - How's the beginning of the year 2016 been?  Did you make New Year Resolutions?  Have you already let yourself down on those goals?  Don't let slip-ups make you think you've failed.  Remember the old adage "Try, Try, and Try Again!"  It's never too late to be what you might have been.

One thing about writing down goals is that you acknowledge in your own strength you can do little or nothing, but with God Who resides within us, nothing is impossible.  So talk to the Mighty One about your goals and plans and then write them down and proceed.  Expect to fail.  If you don't you've chosen too easy a goal - stretch yourself out of your safe zone.

Butterflies - Monarch Watch put together a brief memo last month describing a concept for configuring I-35 as a Monarch Highway.  This memo is intended to be a starting point for discussion.

View Enlarged Image
Monarch Butterfly on Stonecrop Sedum
View Other Butterfly Photos
Although the memo describes how we might proceed with habitat restoration for monarchs and pollinators along our highways, modifications of this plan could be applied to other right of ways (ROWs), as well as public and private lands.  You can read the complete memo and supporting articles at their blog.

Butterflies & Turtles - Why do butterflies drink the tears of a turtle?  Check out the story here.

Tidbit - Honesty - Thumper, an amazingly honest busboy immediately turns in $3,000 found on floor and gets $28,000+ in return .... so far!  Isn't it great to know there are honest people that even when they're in tough times themselves they don't comprise their character.  Thumper is sleeping at friends' homes, has no car, bicycles to work in the cold and snow, and his paycheck is garnished for medical bills.  That takes a lot of honesty in a person to not even consider it.  Read more.

Birds - I love our American Crows!  They are so large and glossy and they walk tall.  It's a picture that I think we should emulate because of who we are in Christ.  Not in pride or self-assurance ...  not from what we have made of ourselves, but what He has made of us by placing us in Christ.  We need to portray the extravagance of God's love for us and how tall we walk being a co-heir with Christ of so many blessings. 

Many people have flocks of crows that are obnoxious.  We've only had 6 at the largest count.  They may not be welcome guests for some people, but ours are very entertaining.

View Enlarged Image
Beautiful Glossy American Crow at Bird Bath
View More Crow Photos
We have a small pond we dug in the backyard and that's where they usually drink, but for some reason this one keeps coming back to the bird bath for his water.  I assume it's the same one ... but it could be another.  I was rather alarmed to find out that crows don't get to live very long.  Here's a segment from Cornell about the age of crows from a bird bander that tracks data on this kind of thing.  By the way, I've had people say that bird banding shouldn't be allowed.  It's the bird banding that has kept much of the habitat for any birds at all since that data can be considered when large areas of habitat for one or many species is being considered for destruction.

(Source: Cornell website)  Q. How long do crows live?
A. Most crows don't even live a year, having died in the egg or as nestlings. In my study population of American Crows in Ithaca, New York, just about half of the nests succeed in producing young. Of the young I band in the nest a week before fledging, about half are alive and with their parents the next year. Of course some have disappeared and not died, but that's a pretty good survival rate for birds anyway.

Once they survive that first year they have a good chance of making it for several years more. None of my birds try to breed when they are one year old, and some are six years old and still helping their parents. Average age of first reproduction for females is 3.3 years, and males average 4.9 years.

My survival data (biased towards the short side by those that disappear) indicate that some crows should live to be 17-21 years old. The oldest known wild American Crow was 29-1/2 years old (see Dilling, 1988, Ontario Bird Banding Association Newsletter 33: 2-3.). The second oldest known, however, was only 14 years, 7 months (Clapp et al., 1983, Journal of Field Ornithology, 54(2): 123-137). As of November 2010 we have 2, probably 3 crows that were banded as nestlings in 1993 that are still alive, making them currently 17 years and 7 months old.

For more Q&A visit the Cornell website that answers more questions. 

Travel - Unusual Places - Huacachina, Peru - In the midst of one of the driest climates in the world is an oasis town with lush palm trees, flourishing foliage, and a tranquil lagoon which is said to have curative properties. The magical town is called Huacachina, and it can be found not only on adventurers' bucket lists, but also in a barren desert in Peru.  Visitors can visit the surreal settlement and the 100 or so residents who thrive tourism by running small businesses on their greatest resource: sand. 

The oasis flourished in the 1940s and 1950s as a getaway for the Peruvian elite and regained a certain prominence through tourism promotion campaigns in the 1990s. Today it is a backpacker’s paradise and a top destination for sandboarding and dunebuggy rides. But tourism is taking its toll on the lagoon.  Read more.

Tidbit - Outdoor Space - This photo album of 52 inspiring ways to update your porch and patio has some real enticing ways to recreate the outdoor spaces you have.  It's only 2 month till Spring and I'm already real excited about it.  I can see the hellebores bloomingdaffodilsThere's so many ideas from looking at photos.  Check out the options.

View Enlarged Image
Bison in Yellowstone National Park
View More Photos of Bison
View Yellowstone & Grand Tetons National Park Album
Critters - Bison - A genetically pure herd of American bison has been living in Utah’s Henry Mountains, a discovery offering new hope that wild herds can be expanded to once again roam freely in the West.  Most bison alive today have been interbred with cattle after the iconic prairie species was nearly hunted to extinction. But, scientists having run DNA tests on some of the 350 bison in the Utah herd have now confirmed they are direct descendants of roughly 20 wild bison transferred from Yellowstone National Park in 1941.  Read more.

Frozen Deer - A man risks his life to rescue a deer in a frozen river that couldn't get out.  He figured the deer only had minutes to live and being deaf didn't want to waste time calling 911.  So he braved the river, put a rope around the deer's head and pulled her out.  How precious is that!  Read more and watch the video.

Birds - This female Red-bellied Woodpecker must be showing off for some male.  Or maybe she's an aspiring ballerina or gymnast?  She spent about 6 minutes at our suet feeder clinging to a nearby bird feeder as she ate from the suet feeder.  Really odd!  I had considered myself really blessed to get the photo, but she's been back many times eating suet in the same manner.  There's a male that visits also but sits on the suet feeder to do so.  I think it's grand that even birds have their own preferences of life.

View Enlarged Image
Female Red-bellied Woodpecker
View More Woodpecker Photos
We have all of the species 7 species of woodpeckers we see here at Bluebird Cove visit the suet feeder and even the huge Pileated Woodpecker hangs on the suet feeder.

Sometimes I really wish we could talk to the animals.  What interesting conversations we would have.  I bet they'd have a lot of wisdom to share with us.  They probably think it's pretty silly that we worry about things instead of trusting our Creator for them.  We could grow a lot in our relationship with God if we could talk to some of the animals.  One day ... in Heaven.

Spiritual - First Intimacy - I received a book from a friend in Texas this week and it has already touched my heart to the core.  The book is called, "Whispers Of God" by Julie Short.  It's a book that has a poem and a story behind it and a painting by Holly Smith for each one.  She seems to have a fascination for trees and as you know, I'm definitely a forest person.  I asked for permission to type in her first "story behind the poem" in the book which is entitled, "First Intimacy" and received it.  So enjoy .....

I was traveling on business and thinking of a friend's birthday.  I wanted to give her a special gift of encouragement and decided to write her a poem.  I suddenly caught a glimpse of how God, truly sees us, as an infatuated Father adoring us forever.
Julie Short's Website

God's unabashed, unbridled love was unleashed when He created each of us.  Our personalities, our talents, and even our smiles were born out of His love and His dreams.  Nothing was misspent nor was anything withheld.  God's joy is in every molecule of our DNA.  He saw us in His heart and then He created us.  His sole intention was for us to live together with Him, heart to heart, never being separated and always knowing the depth of His love.

Envision, God the Father holding you with a heart of perfect love - the love that never fails, never ends; a love that is always safe, always protects; a love that always encourages, always thinks the best of us; a love that always accepts; and a love that laughs, sings and dances with us.  This is the place of first intimacy.  This is where we see ourselves as children of God, and we can rejoice in the love that first created us and still desires us.

This poem is a refuge for me as it reminds me that He still just wants to dance with me. 

I am always dancing with Jesus so I truly enjoyed this last line of the story!

Donna on Screened Porch
"Carry a heart that never hates , a smile that never fades and a touch that never hurts." ~~ Unknown 

May You Be Blessed With a Peaceful and Joy-filled New Year!

P.S. See anything in here that might help somebody you know?  Please share! 

Here's a link to the online version of this newsletter.

If you simply want to copy and paste the link into an email, here it is:

Posts Since Last Newsletter

Why Does Healing Sometimes Take Time? (DLW)

Probiotics May Shorten Sick Time in Kids

6 Steps to a Warmer Basement

Six Steps to Fear-Free Vet Visits

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 1/1/16 (DLW)

Previous Posts You May Have Missed

The Infinite Power of Gratitude

A Closer Look at Pet Anxiety

Research: Red Meat Causes Cancer

You Don't Have to Be Sin-Free to Please God

Bats Use Signal Jamming To Ward Off Competitors

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 12/15/15  (DLW)

Where Is Your Faith Focused?

Magnesium Deficiency - More Common Than You Think

Twelve Days of Kitty Kristmas

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 12/1/15 (DLW)

Thanksgiving at God's House

Dancing With Jesus

Thanksgiving ... Remembering

10 Ways to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

Video: Canine Winter Boredom - What To Do

7 Everyday Mistakes on Your Digestive System

Receiving Healing

Plant With Purpose (DLW)

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 11/15/15 (DLW)

Photo Galleries

Critters & Garden Photos
Travel - USA & International
Costa Rica

View Posts By Topic

being 60
going green
my healing journey
travel-costa rica
written by Donna

Blog Sponsored by The Herbs Place - Wholesale Prices Always - 30-45% Off

Copyright and Reprint Information - All photos remain the property of Donna L. Watkins, but may be used with proper credit and link back to the website, Articles written by Donna L. Watkins may also be reprinted with proper credit and link back to the website,

No comments:

Share This Post