A few weeks ago, around the end of June we happened upon a little nest at the edge of the woods. The nest was only about 3 feet off the ground, supported by a couple of very thin branches and bouncing around each time the wind blew. It did not seem like an ideal place for a birds nest.
Inside the nest were two tiny eggs with a few light speckles on them. i got a quick look at the mama bird and she was small, grey and didn't really have any distinguishing features.
The nest had a rather unique look to it, so i started looking up a few different kinds of birds and their nests, and i believe this nest belongs to a Vireo. Each time we walked down to the creek we peeked inside the nest to see if the eggs were still there.
On July 9, we were excited to see that the babies had finally hatched! They had no feathers and their eyes were closed. They opened up their beaks looking for food as soon as we got near.
We checked them again on July 14. The feathers were just beginning to come in now, but their eyes were still closed. My daughter was completely fascinated by these little guys.
Just a few days later on July 17, we checked them again and were excited to see that they had feathers and heir eyes were open. They grow so fast!
When we checked them on July 21st there was only one baby in the nest. i hoped that mama was teaching the other baby to fly, and this one just hadn't gotten there yet. i didn't have my camera with me at the time, but i took the kids back a down a little later and both both babies were gone.
In the very bottom of the nest was a tiny snail shell.
i actually hadn't noticed it, but my daughter did. She believes it was a gift left from mama bird, thanking us for checking on and watching out for her babies when she wasn't sitting on the nest. :)
It doesn't matter if we are raising butterflies, tadpoles or watching baby birds grow...there is so much magic in the world. It is such an amazing feeling to witness my children experiencing that *magic* with so much enthusiasm and appreciation. It is in those moments that i feel like i am doing something right.
To find the universal elements enough;
to find the air and the water exhilarating;
to be refreshed by a morning walk
or an evening saunter;
to be thrilled by the stars at night;
to be elated over a bird's nest
or a wildflower in spring
- these are some of the rewards of the simple life.
~ John Burroughs ~