Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Middlemarch - Morning Reflectons

The sun was so bright, the weather forecast so positive, that I couldn't resist stepping out the front door early in the morning to smell an early bit of spring. The daffodil shoots are tall enough now that I can see them from the kitchen window, bravely peeking from the dirt and the mulch, hoping it is safe enough to continue to shoot taller, without the possible enemies of snow, ice or squirrels to deter their growth.

A cardinal is singing a repetitive chorus and with a bit of looking I discover him high, very high, in my neighbor's dead tree. With every chorus, his tale jiggles, his tail quivers, as though he is putting his entire body into his song. Is it a mating call? Is he waiting for a sweet female with her brownish golden feathers to come by? Is he scoping out a nest site? And does it matter? It is spring and he is in tune with the world.


I'm not naive enough to believe that a warm middle-march day, one week before the equinox, means that spring is here to stay. The occasional 70-degree temperatures could just as easily be 30 or 40 a few days later. It spoils us and makes us forget how grateful we were for a 50 degree day earlier in the week. We must not forget. 

Only a week before, when the snow was still on the ground, I saw this sweet nuthatch bird at the feeder. He isn't a regular -- that seems to be the role of the sparrows and the occasional chickadee or woodpecker. (Note: Darlene -- whomever you are! -- identified this as a tufted titmouse. I've never seen one before, so thank you and consider it corrected!)


But he and his friend were flitting around the trees, diving in for a quick mouthful and fluttering out again -- not too far, just far enough. 

On that high-50s day, the day before birdsong made me smile, I took my walk to the Ditch, observing not only the geese but the early signs of spring -- small buds on the trees, a jolly robin, skipping from tree to tree. 


On the way home, I tripped on an uneven sidewalk crack and went down -- planting the already bad knee into the cement and twisting more than a bit uncomfortably. A young couple was approaching and kindly stopped, offering help. At first I said, "Oh, no. I'm fine," as I carefully stretched the leg to ensure there wasn't a break. 

As I started to get up, I realized, it was uncharitable to say "no." They were being kind. And one must accept, be grateful, for kindness. Being kind is a gift and accepting it is a quiet way of making those who offered happy that they could help. So, I asked them to stay till I was up and walking, turned about to rise and when the young man offered his arm, gratefully accepted. As they moved on, I felt this overwhelming sense of thanks for their kindness. All was well (apart from a very big bruise and some leftover hurt). But it could have been so much worse. 


And so, on the day after, that warm 70s day, I returned to the "scene of the crime," that pesky spot on the sidewalk, in search of the prescription glasses that must have fallen from my head when I took a tumble. They weren't at home, in my jacket or at Rick's. And no, they weren't there either. But in a stroke of good fortune, my new glasses were ready for pick-up. Timing is everything.

A bit later, I thought I'd check again. Some unknown angel had found the old glasses and placed them on the branches of the tree beside which I'd fallen. I just hadn't looked up before. Yes, grateful. 

Small gifts come in many ways. Saturday morning I looked out the living room window into the brush near the fence. To my surprise, I saw this.


Five beautiful deer were resting in the covered area, as peacefully as they could be. 


I got my camera and they looked up, posing, in a way, although I suspect their gaze was less for the photo than an alertness as to whether or not they were still safe. I was inside; they were out. Yes, they were safe.


We watched each other, very quietly, for a long while until one by one they stood up, stretched their legs, and gracefully hopped the fence into the neighbor's yard. 


It was a breathtaking way to begin the day.


And then there is this one.  

My sunflowers are fading, replaced by a bunch of grocery-store daffodils, their trumpeter faces beaming bright yellow. They will not last either, nor will the warm and sunny day. But there will be other sunny days to come -- and in good time, enough daffodils in my yard to bring in yet another bouquet.


Life is good. 

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69 comments:

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

Oh, sorry to hear about the tumble. I, too, took a fall recently. What wonderful folks to offer assistance.

Ah, yes, life is good, if you are looking for it. And you are.

Penny from Enjoying The Simple Things said...

I am so glad you were not hurt seriously when you fell! One of my sisters trips on an uneven sidewalk at the library a month ago and broke here elbow. Another sister missed a curb at the golf course yesterday and broke her ankle! Needless to say, I am being very careful!

Mia @ My Genre Books and Me said...

I just read your Covid Journal, having come over from Deb Nance's blog. Your watercolors in it are beautiful and the words reassuring. Thanks for sharing it.

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

Sorry to hear you fell but I am glad that you weren't seriously hurt. I am glad friendly people were close by to help/ensure you were ok. It can be hard to accept help. I have had to learn to accept it and ask for it since becoming a parent. I feel guilt at times but then I remember how good it feels to help others and how I never view them as a burden.

We have had some beautiful spring weather here, too. I have started to hear birds singing and Phil spotted a robin this weekend. It's raining today and might turn to snow but if it does snow, I know it will melt quickly. Highs will only be in the 40s but that would have felt glorious just 2 weeks ago, so I will take what we get and look forward to more steady warm temps!

Misadventures of Widowhood said...

Life is indeed good when you get to wake up to a herd of deer in your yard, them feeling safe enough to linger for a while. What a cool experience!

Anvilcloud said...

I think I have only seen it once or twice, but I do remember how effortlessly the deer hop over a fence. It’s quite awesome really.

Julierose said...

Happy to hear that you didn't have any huge injury after that fall--that is such a shock to the system though. ;000 Better rest up and pamper yourself a bit.:)))
Lovely picture with the deer near the bunnies...I want to make a bunny block for my memory quilt...I've kinda stalled on it a bit as my darn old sciatica/etc has made a re-appearance. Will need to get a 2nd shot I am afraid--ugh..waiting to schedule it...
Anyhow, I digress! Hope your day is a beautiful one hugs, Julierose

Divers and Sundry said...

I'm sorry about your fall but happy to see blessings surrounded you. Deer! How exciting! We, of course, never see them here in the city, but I've seen them out in the country and it's always an exciting moment. Cut flowers never last, but they add a lot :)

bobbie said...

Awesome pix!! Thanks for sharing your beautiful world with us ~
I'm glad you weren't seriously injured with your fall ~ and what a blessing that couple was (as was the Samaritan who found your glasses)!!
Hugs ~

Linda Sue said...

Gravity is not our friend these days.I am thinking of broken hip syndrome that takes out more women than we care to count. AND that is my rational for having so much fat padding - good one, eh?

Anonymous said...

I believe those beautiful gray birds are actually tufted titmice, not nuthatches. The crest on the head makes the difference. You are lucky to have them near you and great job with the pictures!
Darlene

Bill said...

Sorry to hear about your tumble. Seeing those deer relaxing is quite a beautiful scene to witness. Have a good day, Jeanie.

Salty Pumpkin Studio said...

Sorry you fell! Good tip to watch out for winter's frost heaves. Love the new glasses, very stylish. The deer look so peaceful, a pleasant reminder of Nature's beauty.

Marilyn Miller said...

I loved your bird pictures, especially that beautiful cardinal. How I wish he would visit me here, but he doesn't travel over the mountains this far.
So glad your fall didn't break anything. The glasses story is amazing. How kind that someone left them in the tree by your area of the fall.
And daffodils on the table always bring a smile. Then daffodils coming up in the garden, what anticipation.
Happy Springtime!

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

I do love daffodils and miss them. I'm so happy you have a beginning of spring to enjoy. Your deer are precious and they don't seem frightened of you at all. Happy Spring!

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Hope you are all healed up from your fall. How lucky nothing got broken. I loved your poetic descriptions of the birds. In Sacramento, we used to get the little tufted tits in winter, but we never had cardinals. I don't think they are a west coast bird. Here in Braga, Portugal, birds are singing from trees, but I don't know what kind yet. Lovely post.

David M. Gascoigne, said...

I am glad that the fall caused no serious injury, Jeanie, and it was kind of you to accept their kindness. I am glad they were able to help, and receive that warm glow that comes from having done so. You have me green with envy at those Tufted Titmice (or Tufted Titmouses, I am never quite sure which is correct). You are a little north of their normal range so it's a great sighting. Maybe some kind of range expansion is taking place and perhaps you will be seeing them more often. If so, they might start to show up around here too.

Linda said...

So sorry about the fall but thank the goodness for the other walkers. Glad someone was there to help.

Beautiful pics of birds and flowers.

Prims By The Water said...

What a nice view of the deer! I went out for lunch to hear a woodpecker, the red wing blackbirds and the robins all sounding their tunes. The best noise though for me was to hear my first freighter of the season give a salute. Blasting their horn to short and one long toot. Spring is here now for me! Janice

My name is Erika. said...

Aren't titmice adorable birds? We have them here year round, and a lot of them. Its so interesting to read that you don't have them the same way. And those deer must have been wonderful to see. They look pretty comfy too. Hopefully your knee is OK now? Those falls are scary when they happen, aren't they? And I do like your glasses. You look quite stylish. hugs-Erika

Sandra Cox said...

Oh my gosh look at that family of deer. Seeing them and the lovely birds, what a blessing.
I'm sorry that you fell:( but glad there were people there to reach out helping hands.
YOU take good care.

Linda P said...

I love your painting of the pretty flowers Jeanie. Deer in your neighbourhood - such a different scene from our neighbourhood, but very interesting to see. Also the different garden birds. I hope you've now recovered from your fall. Take care Jeanie.

eileeninmd said...

Hello Jeanie,
It is nice to have someone there to help you stand after your fall. I am glad you are ok. I love the adorable Tufted Titmouse. What a great sighting of the deer, they all look right at home feeling safe there. Cute photo of you in your new glasses. Take care, enjoy your day!

Iris Flavia said...

Your description of the cardinal sure made me smile big!
Outch to your knee! So glad there were kind people and that you took the offer, too. I think it made you both happy (minus the pain of course).

Timely glasses, phew! I would immediately realize when mine dropped off, LOL.
They look good on you :-)
Awww, like here, people also put things up for their owners to find, nice to learn your plac is as friendly.

Oh, beautiful encounter with the deer.
And Lizzie, so cute. Flowers, oh, yes, life is good!
And sometimes we need a fall to get a reminder...

Valerie-Jael said...

So sorry about the fall, hope your bruised nd pains are now better. Wonderful nature photos, but of course Lizzie is the star of the show. Look after yourself, hugs, Valerie

The French Hutch said...

Spring does begin to tease and offers a glimpse of what is to come. Your fall must have been quite painful and yes, could have been much worse. It's good you had the nice couple stop and offer a helping hand. Thank goodness nothing was broken. What a beautiful way to benin the day when you spotted the deer, such a was a beautiful sight to behold. Glad you found your old glasses too.......

carol@The Red Painted Cottage said...

Jeanie, I’m so glad to hear you didn’t break any bones when you fell. I remember years ago, walking with my mother in the town of Saugatuck, and reminding her to look down and watch where she was walking. The sidewalks were old and unleveled and I think she was getting frustrated with me; but it was just like her to not pay attention and then fall. I missed our deer this year. Not sure if they showed up or if I didn’t look because I was sick.

crackercrumblife said...

What a wonderful gift for those deer to be in your yard like that! And I am so glad that you were not hurt in the fall, and that there were people nearby ready to help. :)

La Table De Nana said...

Beautiful grateful post..sooo many wondrous sights.Tumbles at our age..I tell ya we have to look down too lol not just marvel at all around us;)

thepaintedapron.com said...

I'm so glad you are enjoying some warm temps! So sorry you fell, and thankful you had kind people to make sure you were okay...and great luck you found your glasses! The deer in your yard were amazing! Take care...
Jenna

Carole @ From My Carolina Home said...

No fun to take a tumble, I hope you are OK. Love the deer!

Pam said...

Yikes on the fall. I never used to fall but I fell three times last yr. Two of which could have been bad but with luck I was just a tad sore. Don't you just love seeing deer out and about. I love watching them cross through my yard when headed to the river. Animals out in nature are so pretty.

Rita C at Panoply said...

Life IS good. I like the way you reinterpreted the offer of help and response! And I love how someone put your glasses on the branch. I hope you don't have any further issues from the tumble. Seeing all the signs of spring never gets old for me. I am taking copious photos daily of new growth in my yard, mostly trying to figure things out!

Sandi Magle said...

What a lovely post. You are reminding me--if it ever gets warm again to take a walk with the camera. Our cardinals have been singing up a storm. They are so elusive---yet I know we have at least 2 pairs of them around.

Titmouse are gorgeous and also elusive, but we continue to put ever seed imaginable in the feeders to score some sightings!
Thanks for the lovely morning views, Sandi

gigi-hawaii said...

Yes, I must say that life is good, but what a fall you experienced and on hard concrete no less! Thank God you didn't break your knee cap or ligaments. Yes, it could have been much worse! Those deer were so sweet. Always nice to see your photos!

Pat said...

Good to hear the coming of spring in your way. Sorry you fell, but it was wonderful the couple was there to make sure you okay.
Be careful in your visits to the pond…. Seeing lovely birds is a wonderful experience for sure.
The deer must have felt very safe in you back yard ,during their break time๐Ÿฅฐ.
Hope you are doing well and enjoying early Michigan spring.
I really like your new glasses. But glad you found your old ones.
Take care of you, love Pat ❤️๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿ’

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

So very sorry to read about your fall. Glad you are only bruised, not broken. Gratitude comes in all forms, shapes, and sizes, as you discovered. I, too, fell recently. I went down backwards with a tray of rubber stamps in my hands. I held onto the tray as the stamps flew in all directions. Thankfully, I landed on my bottom and hip, but if I had let go of the tray, I would have put my arms out and might have broken something.

Those deer are a sight to see. They are amazing, because living in the city, I don't get to see nature like that in my back yard. It was also great top see the cardinal and the robin, which I also see here, but not the other birds. Glad you got new glasses. You were lucky to have an angel save your old ones, too. Life really IS good in your world, Jeanie!!

Rita said...

Life IS good. Despite the fall.
Cute new glasses. :)

Miss Val's Creations said...

Beautiful springtime photos. I hope you have seen the last of snow and ice for the year. Spring is such an uplifting time. That is amazing that the deer were not spooked by to taking photos. They are usually so skittish! Luckily you are ok from your fall and found your glasses. The kindness of strangers is quite touching.

SingingRiverSoulSpa said...

It IS beautiful, even with it's spills and sprains and unexpected turns.
I'm glad for that couple, glad for their kindness and for not rushing off
as soon as you were up. And I'm super glad, with admiration, that you took his outstretched arm. I often press right by offers for help, thinking I'm good, I'm good. Sometimes I'm not. I love that you let him help you.
That seriously inspires me.

In my memories, when I look back, it seems like Spring just came. Not the shy and teasing dance it does for real. My memory must be faulty. It does seem like these days it's a few months in turning. Grateful for the daffodils that hold us over:)

Big mid-March joy to you,
Jennifer

Mary Rose's said...

Hugs, big careful hugs to you, dear one. I appreciated the way you told the story of your fall (and rise!) and the recovery of your glasses. The new ones look absolutely lovely.

Sending you spring from the Blue Ridge where the fruit trees are blossoming already: cherries (pink and white), apple, quince, and pear. I picked up some bud-covered sticks on my walks last week and put them in water when I got home. This morning, one tiny but fragrant white lilac blossom.

Cheers to you and Rick and La Cosette.

Joanne Huffman said...

Glad you are ok after your springtime fall (wording on purpose). In this isn the week of rain (at least it's not snow), I enjoy seeing the green gather, ready to burst forth. Spring is all the more appreciated for its bumpy start.

Debbie-Dabble Blog and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

Jeanie,
Love the new glasses...O MY! Those deer would have made me squeal with delight!!! Sometimes we do get a few that come to the edge of the woods on the one side of us but it has become a rare sighting....All the pictures of the Bird's are beautiful....Spring is fleetingly here to as they are predicting a low temp. of 14 degrees here on Monday morning!!! April usually is a cold month and there are snow showers predicted too for the weekend!!! Thanks so much for all your visits!! Stay safe, healthy and happy!!
hugs,
Debbie

Sandra Cox said...

Isn't Mid-March a wonderful word?

William Kendall said...

I had a fall a couple weeks back. No damage done, unlike the fall last November.

Beautiful deer. I wonder if they know about the cat.

Dixie @ Arranged Words said...

So glad to hear you were not hurt after a tumble. And that you found your glass too! Wonderful.
I love your vibrant watercolour.
Beautiful deer and what a sweet kitty.
Enjoy the week...

Lowcarb team member said...

I was sorry to read about your fall.
I enjoyed seeing your photographs especially the deer.
Seeing you in your nice new glasses has reminded me, I need to make an appointment for an eye sight test soon.

Take care Jeanie, my good wishes.

All the best Jan

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Glad the fall wasn't a serious one, jeanie, although any tumble can be scary. It was very kind of the couple to offer assistance and kind of you as well to accept because as you noted, people do want to help and be acknowledged for doing so. Hope the bruise heals OK without becoming too colorful as any bump os mine usually does. Even my jaw was colorful after last week's dental surgery. Thanks for the well wishes. it wasn't something I would look forward to, nor would anyone, but so necessary to prevent worse issues. Nice that a kind person placed your glasses on the branch and that you did re-claim them.

What fun to see the deer in the yard and the birds as well. We are hoping for no more snow, but temps re not staying warm consistently here, yet.

shoreacres said...

I'm so glad you weren't seriously hurt. It's amazing to me how quickly something like that happens. One minute I'm upright and mobile, and the next? Well, you know. I'm usually catching my toe under a line on a boat, but I did once do a face plant in the middle of a deserted one-person cemetery in the middle of a Kansas maize field. I had a blood-filled eye for a while, but I saved the camera. Bodies will heal, but cameras have to be replaced!

anno said...

So sorry to hear about your fall -- you're not supposed to take that admonition to "spring forward" quite so literally! Glad that you were not more seriously injured -- hooray for Good Samaritans, even if they were not strictly needed!

Amazing, isn't it, to have so much wildlife even within the context of an urban-adjacent neighborhood? So glad that your camera is always ready to hand: those are great captures of the nuthatch and the deer -- it would have been a shame to have missed them.

Love the new glasses! And those daffodils? Oh my, be still my beating heart...

DeniseinVA said...

Oh my goodness, I am so glad that nice young couple was there to help you when you fell. I have had several falls over the years and they have left me shaken. I hope your bruises and leftover hurts heal quickly. The new shoots and birds are always a lovely sight aren’t they? Your photos are delightful. I am glad you found your older glasses thanks to a good Samaritan. People can be blessings when needed. Your new glasses look lovely and that’s a very pretty photo of you. I love your flower art and the photo of the deer. A sweet surprise, and your kitty is adorable! Last but never least, your daffodils are a sunny and cheerful ending to today's post. Happy Thursday Jeanie and Happy Spring:)

Pam Richardson said...

Jeanie, I am almost positive I commented on this post but I don’t see it. Anyway, signs of spring are always beautiful. I am so glad you were not seriously injured by your fall and that someone was kind enough to place your glasses where you could find them.

Amy at Ms. Toody Goo Shoes said...

There is nothing more wonderful in nature than seeing the first signs of spring, is there? Rebirth of the earth. I enjoyed your collection of harbingers of spring. So sorry to hear about your fall, but glad that it wasn't anything serious!

Karen said...

Oh Jeanie, how awful. I bet you felt that knock for a day or two. Good that your glasses turned up.
We haven't seen any wildlife out here in the boonies ALL WINTER. On my drive to town yesterday I saw a pine marten run across the road, but that was in the suburbs.

Sandra at Maison De Jardin said...

Oh, Jeanie - How awful that you fell. I believe one has to do such a thing before one understands how scary it can be. I am grateful there were kind souls to help you and that you were not seriously hurt.

Love your photo of the deer - they looked so happy and content.

Take care of you!

Sandra Cox said...

Your painting looks pretty;)

Linda Stoll said...

Yep, those daffodils pushing their way out and up are a sure sign that spring is springing!

Betty said...

I hope you are ok after that fall, as we get older we fall a lot heavier and more prone to injury- I remember doing similar not so long ago and feeling almost tearful at the kindness of strangers who hauled me up mixed with sheer frustration at my own loss of agility!

Breathtaking said...

Hello, :=) I'm so sorry you had a fall, and hope you did not injure yourself too badly. The young couple were kind to help you. I had a bad fall, a couple of years ago, and broke both my wrists. I have been frightened of falling ever since. I loved seeing The Tufted Titmouse, an adorable little bird, and one I have never seen in the wild, so I feel a little envious of your sighting and photos. How fortunate you were to see the deer as well. They posed so nicely for you. The photo of yourself is lovely.
Have a pleasant day, and weekend.

Red Rose Alley said...

Oh, those deer in your back yard! What a gift that was. They look like young ones. And Oh, that Robin. One of my favorite birds for sure. Looks like you still have a little snow? Isn't that grey little bird precious? I love his white belly. And the red cardinal. Oh, how I wish I could see one someday. I'm glad your fall wasn't worse than it was, and so nice of the people to offer help.

Have a restful weekend, Jeanie.

~Sheri

Thelma said...

Beautiful photos of Spring life. Sorry for your fall. I hope you knee isn't hurt. I have arthritis in one and is't not pleasant at times. Take care. Thelma xo

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I'm very glad you weren't badly hurt! And I'm always amazed at the kindness of strangers. I know it is more the normal behavior than people seem to think but I am always pleasantly surprised when someone offers to help. Makes me want to pass it on...as I know you do all the time. Enjoy your week. You really do look fabulous!

eileeninmd said...

Hello Jeanie,
I hope you have recovered from the fall and your new glasses look great.
Great collection of bird photos, the Tufted Titmouse is a favorite. The deer in your yard look very comfy and at home. Lizzie looks adorable too. Your floral watercolor is beautiful. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Take care, enjoy your weekend. PS, thank you for leaving me a comment.

Jenny Woolf said...

I'm glad the tumble didn't do any lasting harm. |And what a treat to see the deer. Wow! They seem pretty calm and happy in your yard - I hope they didn't eat anything though, but it might have been worth it if they had :) Lovely daffodils, they're among my favourite flowers. Our front garden is full of them now.

Victoria Zigler said...

Sorry about the tumble - bet that hurt for some time - though glad someone was not only there but willing to help you up. Wonderful about the glasses being located and placed somewhere you could potentially find them. And I'm delighted for you with all the animal sightings.

Carola Bartz said...

Geez Jeanie, I'm glad you weren't hurt in your fall. Those falls can be nasty. And don't feel bad that you first said "no" to the kind couple. Maybe this is just automatic that we say this, don't accept help because it would be "weak" and honestly, a fall is also embarrassing. I fell with my bike on my way to work a few weeks ago and a very nice lady stopped and helped me. Except for bruising and a hip that still hurts I was fine and fortunately I remembered to thank her for helping me up and getting my bike up as well. But gosh, it was SO embarrassing!

Lynne said...

Thankful the tumble didn’t bring on any broken bones.
Happy you found your glasses too . . .
I like your new frames . . .
And looking forward to seeing your sea of daffodils!

Katie Mansfield said...

I'm glad the glasses were found but I'm sorry about the fall. Your sweet peaceful friends are beautiful.

Decor To Adore said...

Hello sweet friend. I am catching up with you this morning and SO THANKFUL you weren't greatly injured. I fully agree with your thoughts on kindness. That someone placed your glasses in the branches filled my heart with joy. Your new peepers look great. Have a wonderful Easter holiday!

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