Thoughtful Thursday Bird Rescue

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It’s funny but you would think all the birds in our neighborhood have our address memorized. Whether they’re hungry, thirsty or need help, they know exactly where to go.

Last Saturday, hubby came home and saw something odd in the street in front of our house. When he took a closer, he saw it was a young bird, a fledgling. You could tell he wasn’t doing well because he was slumped over. It was getting dark so we put him in a box in the garage till morning because the rescue center had already closed for the day and mama bird was nowhere to be found.

We tried giving him some water but he refused so we just kept him safe for the night. First thing Sunday morning, we took him to the South Florida Wildlife Center where they rescue over 10,000 animals every year.

I couldn’t figure out what kind of bird he was. I’ve seen these birds a lot on my walks and the adults are gray with a bit of brown and a black patch on the head. They have pointy beaks and are everywhere here.

After searching the internet I finally found a bird that looked like him. It was a gray catbird.

Apparently these guys make a call that sounds like a cat’s meow and thus their name. They are masters at mimicking the calls of other birds and are known for singing beautiful songs. Sometimes they sing for as long as 10 minutes at a time. Very impressive!

I found this short video on Youtube that gives some pretty interesting facts about these birds.

I called the Wildlife Center to check up on the little guy and they confirmed he was indeed a gray catbird. They did everything they could but sadly weren’t able to save him πŸ˜₯

I was really saddened by the news because I had high hopes. We gave it our best effort and sometimes that’s just how it goes. That’s life I guess. I will say that I keep my eye out for these catbirds on my walks and really appreciate their beautiful songs even more.

I hope that you get to enjoy these beautiful birds in your neighborhood too. Have a great day and thanks for stopping by!!!

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Thoughtful Thursday Yellow Crested Night Heron

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Yellow Crested Night Heron Fledging

I was very blessed this spring to watch these beautiful birds make their nests high up in the oak trees that line our streets. A few years ago we started with only 1 nest and now we’re up to 5 nests in all. As I went on my daily walks, I was eagerly watching each nest as babies began showing their heads one by one. These new birds have now taken up residence in our neighborhood and I see them often by the lakes.

When they were very young we would come home at night to see them walking in the middle of the street. I guess they were still trying to figure it all out. They would even visit me in our backyard every now and then.

These herons forage for food at dusk and into the night. However, you may also see them foraging during the day. They tend to walk slowly on land or in shallow water and will sometimes stand completely still waiting for dinner to come to them.

Yellow Crested Night Herons are primarily found in the Southeastern parts of the United States. Adult herons will lay anywhere from 2-8 blue-green eggs in a nest. Both parents will incubate the eggs for 21-25 days. Once the eggs hatch it’s up to both parents to feed the babies. They haven’t been studied enough so there is no data as to when they take flight and leave the nest. Fully grown they measure 1 ft 10 in to 2 ft 4 in. They are simply beautiful and amazing to watch.

I hope your enjoyed this little snippet about the Yellow Crested Night Herons and are able to see some. These are some of the photos I was lucky to get on my walks.

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“Beyond even the darkest clouds the wide, open blue sky goes on forever. Trust, let go, and allow yourself to take flight. So fly! Only then can you soar.” ~Martta Karol

Baby Mocking Bird Rescue

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You never know what the universe has planned for you. It always amazes me how the timing has to be so perfect in order for things to happen. Yesterday morning I went on a walk with my hubby. On our walk I was busy looking up in the trees for our new herons. Thankfully, hubby was looking on the ground and saw this tiny little chick just sitting in the middle of the road.

We quickly scooped him up and got him out of danger but weren’t having any luck finding the nest or mama bird anywhere. He was too small to be on the ground and on his own, especially on a busy street. We ended up taking the little guy to the South Florida Wildlife Center where they will care for him and release him when he’s ready. This also gave us the opportunity to donate to the center for all the great work they do. I love their slogan: “Saving Wildlife in our Urban Jungle.”

Sadly I’ve seen quite a few birds that have died this summer. The National Audubon Society sent out an email blaming the extreme heat for killing lots of babies. Although there’s no one better than a mama bird caring for her young, the odds were stacked against this little guy and the staff at the wildlife center agreed we made the right choice to bring him in. It was a small deed but nevertheless a good one and it felt great saving this little life!

I was surprised that we still have little babies like this in the middle of summer. Always thought this was more of a spring time event. Do you have the same where you live?

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Welcome Rosie

Chanel our cocker spaniel was pretty sad when Cocoa passed away last summer. She got her happiness back to a certain extent but not like when Cocoa was here. So we’ve been waffling the idea of getting a new pup. We finally decided to go for it and this is our new baby. Welcome Rosie, a Blue Roan Cocker Spaniel from Orlando Cockers.

I know our lives will be turned upside down with this new little bambino in the house but she’ll be good medicine for Chanel and all of us, because life is just RosieπŸ’

Wish me luck!

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Cocoa (left / 2007-2021) & Chanel (right) – Sable Cocker Spaniels

Red and Green Journaling

Most of you know I recently participated in Jodi Ohl’s Color Lovers Challenge. Since I used a canvas for Day 24, Red & Green, I saved a place in my journal to come back to and this is what I ended up with.

This journal spread really makes me laugh. The poor little red bird doesn’t seem too happy with the notes the little green one is belting out. He’s almost looks like he’s freaked out by it πŸ˜‚

With that said, I chose this quote from an unknown author that I thought went well: “No matter what people think of you, always keep singing your own song.”

Have a wonderful weekend!

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Color Lovers Challenge – Days 10 – 13

I joined Jodi Ohl’sΒ Color Lovers Challenge which runs 30 days so I’m posting several days at a time. If you missed my earlier creations, I’ll have links at the bottom of this post. These are my latest creations:

Day 10 – Happiness

I did a watercolor wash with a watercolor butterfly painted separately and then cut out. I added a quote from the Dalai Lama” Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.”
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After putting everything together in the journal I made a last minute change and decided to write the quote directly on the page. This is why you shouldn’t create art when you’re tired because I finished this late at night and well, I left out the word “made” from the quote πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ Oh well…

Day 11 – Neutral

This was a little challenging because I love my bright, fun colors. I painted an abstract and added a quote by Teilhard de Chardin “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience… We are spiritual beings having a human experience.”

Day 12 – Vibrant

I debated on using this but it just went perfectly for the prompt because it is most definitely vibrant. This is actually a work in progress. I’m painting a 24″ x 36″ canvas with bright fun happy colors. So stay tuned for the finished piece.

Day 13 – Spring

Since I used a canvas for Day 12, I thought I’d continue with this 9″ x 12″ one. It’s one of my favorites for spring. When I think of spring, I think about cute little bunnies. There’s lots of color and texture on this piece. My favorite part is the crocheted flowers. What do you think?

In case you missed my previous pages, just click the links:Β 

Day 1

Days 2 thru 5

Days 6 thru 9

I hope you’re enjoying my entries for the ColorLoversChallenge. Have a wonderful week!

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Underwater Watercolor Journal Page

I gave myself a challenge to create a journal page in 90 minutes or less and this is what I ended up with. I started with a quick pencil sketch in my Strathmore 9″ x 12″ Visual Journal. Next I used watercolor pencils to paint the page and let it dry. I added detailing and shading with colored pencils, Sakura Micron Pen 005 and a white Posca Pen. For a little texture, I filled in the bubbles with Inkssentials Glossy Accents. And of course, lets not forget the bling with Stickles.

Give yourself a challenge and see what you can come up with. You’ll be surprised!

Have a fantastic week!

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Thoughtful Thursday – Happy Birthday Chanel

Chanel

I want to introduce you to Chanel, my other Sable Cocker Spaniel who is turning 9 years old today! She is a very special little girl who is my daily inspiration.

At 3 years old, Chanel went completely blind. At first she was upset and frustrated but a few days in, she mapped out the house by following the walls with her nose. She went around again mapping out where the furniture was and used her sniffer to determine what room she was in.

Chanel maintained her status as the alpha and learned new commands like follow me, stop, turn and listen to name a few. She had every reason to wake up unhappy with the hand that life dealt her, but she chose happiness. You see, Chanel never got the memo that she was blind and life should be over because of her disability. The only thing she knew was that life was going to be a little different from here on out. She still plays fetch but instead of looking for the ball with her eyes, she uses sound and smell to find it. It’s incredible to watch.

I know that if this would have happened to me I would’ve had a very hard time adjusting. Everyday I watch in awe as she navigates her day with courage and a heart filled with love. Chanel has a super wonderful attitude that gets her through life.

I wish we all had more of Chanel’s positive attitude. Life will always throw you curves balls and even knock you down sometimes. But you always need to find the positive in every situation, especially the challenging ones. Change doesn’t have to be a bad thing, it just means it’s time to adjust to something new and see where that takes you on this incredible journey we call life. Remember, it is your attitude that determines your altitude.

Happy Birthday Chanel!

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“A positive attitude gives you power over your circumstances instead of your circumstances having power over you.” ~Joyce Meyer

Thoughtful Thursday – Remembering Cocoa

Cocoa (left) and Chanel (right)

I have two beautiful American Cocker Spaniel girls, Cocoa (14 yrs) & Chanel (9 yrs). They’re both sable in color but Cocoa has a brown nose and Chanel’s is black. Cocoa loved people but other dogs, not so much. She was somewhat freaked out by them. It was comical to watch when we tried socializing her with other dogs at the park. So one day I had the bright idea to get another puppy to help her get over her fear.

Long story short, it didn’t exactly go as planned. It took Cocoa a few years before she finally warmed up to Chanel. Cocoa turned 14 years old in May, but sadly she went to doggie heaven this past Saturday morning. The end came quickly but she waited for all of us that morning so we could say our good byes before crossing over.

We miss her a lot, especially her crazy antics like helping us unwrap presents, singing Happy Birthday or howling when the phone rang. She was always in the middle of family life and was a super smart pooch that was trained with very little effort on my part. I could just talk to her and she understood what I was saying. When anyone got sick or was feeling blue, she was always there to comfort you. Cocoa was my constant companion in the art studio, always at my feet the entire time I was painting.

One thing her passing has made me think about was how important it is to be in the present moment. I truly enjoyed her crazy antics and how she always had her own way of doing things. I’m so grateful that Cocoa came into our lives as she was a very special and unique girl.

Take the time to slow down and really enjoy sharing special moments with loved ones whether a furry friend or the human kind. Life is ever changing and time doesn’t stand still. So don’t miss one minute of the magic that life offers you everyday.

I know the angels have Cocoa now and it’s all good.

πŸ’– Cocoa, you are forever in our hearts πŸ’–

“Dogs are not our whole lives, but they make our lives whole.” ~ Roger Caras

Watercolor Painting – Angel of Wisdom

This is my newest watercolor painting, Angel of Wisdom and she’s painted on 9″ x 12″ 140lb Watercolor Paper with professional paints. I had a lot of fun creating her with the owl in bright, fun colors and lots of love πŸ’–

Available for purchase in my Etsy Shop: FlowingWatersArtShop

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“Angels descending bring from above, echoes of mercy, whispers of love.” ~ Fanny Crosby