Life Lessons, Mothers and Daughers


At first, I thought the debris strewn all over my front porch came from the gutters, after a soaking spring rain, so I gathered it up and threw it in the trash.  But when more debris mysteriously reappeared the next day, it dawned on me that the mess was the building materials for a bird’s nest.  This time, I left it alone.

My own building project – total kitchen and bathroom reno – was finally completed and, over the weekend, as I was busily putting my own nest back in order, I kept watch from my living room windows as a robin redbreast built her home on one of my porch pillars.

She’s not a very good housekeeper, I thought, as the unruly nest began to take shape.  There was a bit of masking tape and paper weaved into the structure.  They use whatever they can find…  And the nest wasn’t the perfect little basket I imagined, as much of the dried twigs and loose grasses spilled down the pillar.

Once she took up residence, I felt compelled to keep tabs on the expectant mother.  I felt guilty that I’d thrown away her initial attempt at building the nest.  Each time I entered or exited my front door, she grew skittish and quickly flew away, only to return minutes later.  Now my movements are tentative, and I’m careful with the door.  I feel protective of her and of the tiny blue eggs I imagine beneath her.

That robin might not be the impeccable housekeeper that my mom has always been – that she has taught me to be – but she’s guarding those fragile eggs with the fiercest maternal instinct.  With Mother’s Day coming, that little bird has me thinking about what it means to be a good mother.  It doesn’t matter how neat the house is, or if a mom – especially a harried, working mom – gives her kids PBJ’s for dinner.  A good mother gives of her time, she nurtures, and she puts her children’s needs before her own.  Her love is boundless.

To all the moms – and especially to my mom – Happy Mother’s Day.

You are truly amazing!  XOXOXO


6 thoughts on “NESTING

  1. MaryAnne says:

    Beautiful observation! Been there, done that! Hope you’ll be able to take pics of the progress, as I did! It’s enchanting!


    • MaryAnne – hope you had a nice Mother’s Day yesterday. All weekend long the male robin was in the nest along with the female – guarding the eggs. I can’t wait to see what happens once the baby birds hatch! Chris


    • Hi Mary Anne – thought you would like to know that the baby birds hatched. I can see 2 for sure and there may be a third one. I have tried to get a photo but the female Robin is guarding them. I suspect when they get a little bigger they will peer out from the nest and at that point I may be able to get a picture.


  2. Sheila Reiter says:

    Dear Chris,
    I’ve been waiting anxiously for your blog and realized that you were busy with your “nest.” We had a similar experience with a nest of blue jays outside our bedroom window. They are a noisy bunch and this group was no exception. However, we grew to love these little birds and watched them grow. We saw them hover over the edge of the nest until one day a brave one flew to a nearby branch. That was it. The rest gathered their courage and one by one left the nest and did not return. We mourned their loss but admired their pluck. Thanks for reminding me of a sweet time my Charlie and I shared. Happy nesting, dear Chris.
    Am I writing too much???????


    • Sheila – thought you would like to know that the baby birds hatched. I can see two of them but there might be a third one. The female Robin is not budging from the nest and the male Robin brings the food (worms and other creepy crawly things).


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