Monday, February 24, 2014

Cupcakes and an Egret

"Look at the birds of the air"
Matthew 6:26

My girl and I headed off to run an errand today ~ to buy cupcakes.  Today is her birthday, and we went to a friend's for dinner, so we brought dessert.  And once or twice a year we like having an excuse to head to a cupcake bakery nearby.  They specialize in "exotic" flavors like guava, mango, and passion-fruit.  Oh, and my girl's favorite:  piña colada.*  She likes her some pineapple coconut!

{*Please notice that the Apple of my Eye taught me some accent marks, 
so I'm a little more knowledgeable than I was when I discussed bobsleigh!}

Anyhow, as we drove down our street, I had to come to a sudden stop when I saw an egret walking along the sidewalk.  He was so beautiful.  Long and tall and willowy.  He was just slowly walking, with very plodding steps, with his beautiful yellow-orange beak pointed almost straight up. 

He walked up the sidewalk, and then turned into a driveway, wandered a few paces toward the house, then turned and continued back to the sidewalk, making his way toward the next house.  My daughter and I just sat and watched him for several minutes, before reluctantly moving on to our quest.  I wanted to watch his graceful movements forever, to try and figure why he'd visited our humble street.

Here's the thing: we live in the suburbs.  I don't expect to see egrets as I drive down the street.  It's a pretty tree-sy neighborhood, but it's primarily houses and streets and sidewalks and driveways.  Not much to attract an egret.  Well, I suppose there's probably a pool or two on our street, seeing as it's Southern California, but not a lot. 

There is a greenbelt and a walking trail, maybe a mile and a half away.  There's a stream there, and I'm sure it's a lovely place for an egret.  And yet I'm not sure I've ever even seen one there. 

It was special and delightful to come upon this beautiful creature in an unexpected place.  And I wished for a moment that I lived in a place where I could expect to see something like this more often. 

And then I wondered, if I did live somewhere more egret-friendly, would I lose the wonder and joy I feel when I see one?  I do love seeing the woodpecker who comes to visit our apple tree, and I stop what I'm doing to watch and listen.  And the same goes for the phoebes and martins and sparrows I sometimes see.  And while they're less lovely, I also stop to watch the lizards that skitter along the wall in our backyard.  So I like to think that I'd never stop appreciating the beauty around me. 

But I also know that I probably do stop being thankful for other things in my life.  It's just human nature.  And of course I wouldn't realize I've stopped being thankful for something, because I've stopped noticing whatever it is I've stopped being thankful for. 

I think maybe if I'm more thankful to Him for reminding me to be thankful, that I'd find myself even more thankful, for more things. 

So starting today, I'm going to be more thankful for thankfulness.   Join me, won't you?  Thanks.

~ "O Lord, how manifold are Your works!
In wisdom You have made them all.
The earth is full of Your possessions" ~
Psalm 104:24


  1. I was going to correct you and say that's not an egret, it's a heron or possibly some kind of crane, but then I thought it best to check Wikipedia first, and Wikipedia corrected me -- egrets ARE herons. Several varieties exist. Some are short, some are tall, some have long necks, some have short necks -- so I am the one who stands corrected. I was heretofore familiar only with the Florida kind of egret -- which I think must be cattle egrets.

  2. lol... I almost double-checked to make sure I was right, but decided not to, because I was pretty sure, and because I was also pretty sure you'd let me know if I was making a mistake. :) I knew I could count on you!