Really Kicking Up a Dust Storm!!

Dust Storm in Texas in 1935 ©WikiC

Well, I really have a dust storm brewing behind the scenes of this blog. So, if things don’t exactly work right for a few days, BEWARE!

Tomorrow is the 10th Anniversary of Lee’s Birdwatching Adventures. On February 16th of 2008, the first post came out. At that time I was using Blogspot. Then in July of that year, I switched to WordPress, and have enjoyed having the blog here. The name was changed to Lee’s Birdwatching Adventures Plus. That is when other topics besides birds began appearing. Later, I started Birds of the Bible for Kids blog to house many of the Birds of the Bible articles but written for the younger readers. [Kids] It grew from there.

Then about four years ago, I closed down that site for several reasons, like “old age” and needing more “naps.” The blog has continued to exist by having links over to Leesbird.com. The yearly fee has also been continually paid.

Now, I have a desire to re-open that blog and make it active again. As my regular readers are aware, there were missing photos and broken links discovered throughout the blog. I have spent many days and weeks, with the Lord’s help, tracing down and fixing many of them. At one time there were over 4,000 broken links. As of yesterday, there were 610 left to fix. [One reason blogs haven’t been as often as previously.]

While the links have been fixed, those older original posts were revisited. They were good and need to be reproduced again. It was actually fun finding those older blogs. Then the wheels started turning. Maybe the Kids blog needs to be brought back to life.

There are 144 verses in the KJV that tell us to “remember.” So, maybe we should remember and remind the newer generation of God’s truths. Guess that would apply to truthful posts.

“Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations: ask thy father, and he will shew thee; thy elders, and they will tell thee.” (Deuteronomy 32:7 KJV)

“Remember that thou magnify his work, which men behold.” (Job 36:24 KJV)

“I will remember the works of the LORD: surely I will remember thy wonders of old.” (Psalms 77:11 KJV)

“Remember his marvellous works that he hath done; his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth;” (Psalms 105:5 KJV)

Should we not share the Wonders of God’s Creation of birds and critters to our younger generation?

“I remember the days of old; I meditate on all thy works; I muse on the work of thy hands.” (Psalms 143:5 KJV)

Dust storm over I-10 in Arizona ©AZGeology

Oh, yes. The Dust storm! My plan is to move the Bible Birds and the Kid’s Section (with all it’s sections) to the Birds of the Bible for Kids blog. In the transition, there will some broken links caused by all of that. They will be mended as quickly as possible. In time, when all is finished, hopefully without too much time, all will be well again. The post being moved are going to be given current dates by being refreshed and posted anew.

STAY TUNED!

Visit Birds of the Bible for Kids

Harriet Newell Cook – Scripture Alphabet of Animals Re-post

Here is an older post from October 2010 that you might enjoy reading/re-reading. It is written for the younger readers, but all will find plenty of interesting facts about the Lord’s Creations.

Scripture Alphabet of Animals

Harriet Newell Cook (1814-1843) – author of Scripture Alphabet of Animals

Baudet Donkey - Shaky and Brown

Baudet Donkey – Shaky and Brown

While looking for the quoted thoughts by G. D. Watson, “Others May, You Cannot,” I found the Christian Articles Website. It is loaded with articles by numerous pastors and preachers, but also other Christian writers. That is where I found Harriet N. Cook’s “Scripture Alphabet of Animals.” Her works and the others on that website are in the public domain and usable. I have decided to use her as a guest writer and produce the bird sections (finished) she wrote about. The other sections are being done also. They are listed below. Also, her books are available on Google Books and can be read on the computer or one of the eBook readers.

Oriental Turtle Dove (Streptopelia orientalis) by Nikhil

Oriental Turtle Dove (Streptopelia orientalis) by Nikhil

Harriet Newell Cook was born in 1814 and died in 1843. In her short 29 years of life she wrote several juvenile books and thought I would share parts of them here. “Her first volume for the young was one of Natural History, calculated to illustrate portions of the Bible, for the young, and entitled, “The Scripture Alphabet of Animals.” Nearly thirty thousand copies of the work have been printed in its English dress, and eight thousand of the German translation. The style of this work is eminently lucid…”

Her last very interesting work for the young —“The Trees, Flowers and Fruits of the Bible“– she was not permitted to finish, by reason of her death. It was completed by Miss F. M. Caulkins…” (From Memoir of Mrs. Harriet Newell Cook By Lydia Howard Sigourney, at Google Books)

Beasts, and all cattle; creeping things, and flying fowl: Kings of the earth, and all people; princes, and all judges of the earth: Both young men, and maidens; old men, and children: Let them praise the name of the LORD: for his name alone is excellent; his glory is above the earth and heaven. (Psalms 148:10-13 KJV)

It was difficult finding information about her personally. Also, I couldn’t find a picture of her. One thing was for certain, she appears to have loved the Lord greatly and wanted to serve Him through her writing.

See Also:

Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Ant
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Ass
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Bear
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Bee
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Camel
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Dog
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Eagle
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Fox or Jackal
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Goat
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Hart and Hind
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Horse
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Ibex or the Wild Goat
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Jerboa or Mouse
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Kite
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Leopard
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Lion
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Locust
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Mole
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Night-Hawk
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Ostrich
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Peacock
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Quail
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Raven
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Roe or Gazelle
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Scorpion
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Sheep
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Stork
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Turtle-Dove
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Unicorn
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Vulture
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Whale
Scripture Alphabet of Animals: The Wolf

See:

Birds of the Bible

Wordless Birds

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Rounded Up Some Bluebirds

Vol. 2 – 6 The Mountain Bluebird, which is from the Kid’s Section, had some Bluebirds skip out and break their links. They were too pretty to let them get away.

The Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited has some very interesting information about birds, but written from a young reader’s level. Here is the Mountain Bluebird reblogged with some added information and the Bluebirds back on their posts.

This was written back in 2013. Trust you enjoy this article and links to other Bluebird articles.

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Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) for Birds Illustrated

Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) for Birds Illustrated

From col. Chi. Acad. Sciences. Copyrighted by
Nature Study Pub. Co., 1897, Chicago.

THE MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD.

imgi

N an early number of Birds we presented a picture of the common Bluebird, which has been much admired. The mountain Bluebird, whose beauty is thought to excel that of his cousin, is probably known to few of our readers who live east of the Rocky Mountain region, though he is a common winter sojourner in the western part of Kansas, beginning to arrive there the last of September, and leaving in March and April. The habits of these birds of the central regions are very similar to those of the eastern, but more wary and silent. Even their love song is said to be less loud and musical. It is a rather feeble, plaintive, monotonous warble, and their chirp and twittering notes are weak. They subsist upon the cedar berries, seeds of plants, grasshoppers, beetles, and the like, which they pick up largely upon the ground, and occasionally scratch for among the leaves. During the fall and winter they visit the plains and valleys, and are usually met with in small flocks, until the mating season.

Nests of the Mountain Bluebird have been found in New Mexico and Colorado, from the foothills to near timber line, usually in deserted Woodpecker holes, natural cavities in trees, fissures in the sides of steep rocky cliffs, and, in the settlements, in suitable locations about and in the adobe buildings. In settled portions of the west it nests in the cornice of buildings, under the eaves of porches, in the nooks and corners of barns and outhouses, and in boxes provided for its occupation. Prof. Ridgway found the Rocky Mountain Bluebird nesting in Virginia City, Nevada, in June. The nests were composed almost entirely of dry grass. In some sections, however, the inner bark of the cedar enters largely into their composition. The eggs are usually five, of a pale greenish-blue.

The females of this species are distinguished by a greener blue color and longer wings, and this bird is often called the Arctic Bluebird. It is emphatically a bird of the mountains, its visits to the lower portions of the country being mainly during winter.

Heaped in the hollows of the grove, the autumn leaves lie dead;
They rustle to the eddying gust, and to the rabbits’ tread.
The Robin and the Wren are flown, and from the shrubs the Jay,
And from the wood-top calls the Crow all through the gloomy day.
—Bryant.

Summary:

MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD.Sialia arctica. Other names: “Rocky Mountain” and “Arctic Bluebird.”

Range—Rocky Mountain region, north to Great Slave Lake, south to Mexico, west to the higher mountain ranges along the Pacific.

Nest—Placed in deserted Woodpecker holes, natural cavities of trees, nooks and corners of barns and outhouses; composed of dry grass.

Eggs—Commonly five, of pale, plain greenish blue.


Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) by Daves BirdingPix

Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) by Daves BirdingPix

Lee’s Addition:

…In the LORD put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain? … If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do? The LORD is in his holy temple, the LORD’S throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men. … For the righteous LORD loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright.
(Psalms 11:1,3,4,7 KJV)

The Mountain Bluebird belongs to the Turdidae – Thrushes Family and as such have Thrush characteristics. Since blue is my favorite color, the bluebirds are some of my favorites. The Lord has used such variety in His coloration, that I am happy that blue was one of them. We have also the Eastern and Western Bluebirds plus the Asian and Philippine Fairy-bluebirds.

The Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) is a medium-sized bird weighing about 1.1 ounces (30 g) with a length from 6.3–7.9 in (16–20 cm). They have light underbellies and black eyes. Adult males have thin bills that are bright turquoise-blue and somewhat lighter beneath. Adult females have duller blue wings and tail, grey breast, grey crown, throat and back. In fresh fall plumage, the female’s throat and breast are tinged with red-orange; brownish near the flank contrasting with white tail underparts. Call is a thin few; Song is warbled high chur chur.

The mountain bluebird is migratory. Their range varies from Mexico in the winter to as far north as Alaska, throughout the western U.S. and Canada. Northern birds migrate to the southern parts of the range; southern birds are often permanent residents. Some birds may move to lower elevations in winter. They inhabit open rangelands, meadows, generally at elevations above 5,000 feet. Contrary to popular belief, mountain bluebirds are not a species of concern in the United States. The turn around in mountain bluebird numbers is due to the overwhelming efforts of landowners in the West to provide nest boxes for these birds. At one time, mountain bluebird numbers were threatened because of increased agricultural activities destroying habitats.

These birds hover over the ground and fly down to catch insects, also flying from a perch to catch them. They mainly eat insects, over 90%, and berries. They may forage in flocks in winter, when they mainly eat grasshoppers. Mountain bluebirds will come to a platform feeder with live meal worms, berries, or peanuts.

Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) by Ian Montgomery nest

Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) by Ian Montgomery nest

Their breeding habitat is open country across western North America, including mountain areas, as far north as Alaska. They nest in pre-existing cavities or in nest boxes. In remote areas, these birds are less affected by competition for natural nesting locations than other bluebirds. Mountain bluebirds are a monogamous breed. The male can be seen singing from bare branches. The singing takes place right at dawn, just when the sun rises. Females usually build the nests themselves. Eggs: pale blue and unmarked, sometimes white. Clutch Size: 4-5 eggs. Young are naked and helpless at hatching and may have some down. Incubation normally last 14 days and the young will take about 21 days before they leave the nest. Both males and females fiercely protect the nest.

It is the state bird of Idaho and Nevada.

Mountain bluebirds are cavity nesters and can become very partial to a nest box, especially if they have successfully raised a clutch. They may even re-use the same nest, though not always. Providing nest boxes is a great way to observe these beautiful birds. Mountain bluebirds will not abandon a nest if human activity is detected close by or at the nest. Because of this, mountain bluebirds can be easily banded while they are still in the nest.

Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) by Margaret Sloan

Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) by Margaret Sloan

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Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) by Ian Montgomery

Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides) by Ian Montgomery

Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for October 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

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(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources, with editing)

Next Article – The English Sparrow

The Previous Article – The Ornithological Congress

Gospel Presentation

Links:

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Shelly and the Sand Castle

Common Gull (Larus canus) by Robert Scanlon

Common Gull (Larus canus) by Robert Scanlon

Shelly and the Sand Castle by Emma Foster

One day a seagull named Shelly decided that she should fly to the beach to lay her very first egg. Shelly had previously been living near a seaside port beside a large white beach, but she felt it was not the proper place to lay an egg, especially when it was going to be her very first one. Leaving the nest that she had built on top of a pole, Shelly flew across the beach onto a giant rock.

After resting on top of the rock, Shelly surveyed the beach, searching for sticks and dirt with which to build her nest. Looking around, however, Shelly noticed that there were several children building houses out of sand. Thinking that it was a wonderful idea, Shelly promptly decided to build her first nest out of sand.

Children Building Sandcastle -©Pixabay

Flying near the waves, Shelly scooped up some wet sand with her beak until she made a small pile. She spent a few minutes trying to figure out how to get all of the sand on top of the rock. Fortunately, after glancing around, Shelly found a small plastic shovel that no one was currently using. She had seen a few children use a shovel to help them scoop up sand, so Shelly knew how to use it.

Kids Building Sand Castle ©Pinterest

“But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand:” (Matthew 7:26 NKJV)

After shovelling enough sand onto the rock, Shelly dropped the shovel and began meshing the sand together in a big pile, finally sitting on it so when she hatched her egg it wouldn’t fall out.

Shelly’s egg hatched a few days later. She was so excited she quickly found some food to celebrate then came back to her egg. While she was on the hunt for some food, storm clouds gathered and rain began to sprinkle. Quickly flying back to her nest, Shelly was horrified to find that her nest had dissolved and her egg was gone.

Shelly frantically began her search in the sand, but the rain began beating down so hard that Shelly was forced to stop her search and find shelter. When the rain subsided, Shelly tried to search some more, but was so anxious that she completely forgot which rock she had nested on.

Shelly searched the beach until it was too dark to see anything. Finally she had to rest in some shrubbery until morning, though she barely slept because she was so worried.

Mew Gull (Larus canus) by Daves BirdingPix

Mew Gull (Larus canus) by Daves BirdingPix

The next day was bright and sunny, and at once Shelly began her search. She noticed that there were many more people at the beach than yesterday, which made her even more worried. Shelly flew around in circles, trying to spot her egg and hoping that it hadn’t washed away into the sea.

As Shelly flew closer to the ground, she noticed a group of children building a sand castle. One of the children scooped a huge pile of sand, and Shelly could see a huge lump in the sand. When the child put the clump of sand onto the sand castle, the egg rolled down.

Seagull carrying egg to safety

Shelly swooped down and snatched her egg out of the sand with her mouth. She flew away happily, even though she could hear the children screaming and laughing behind her. Thankful that her egg was safe, Shelly immediately decided to build a nest made out of twigs and branches like the other birds. From then on, whenever Shelly hatched an egg, she made sure that her egg was hatched in a proper nest instead of in the sand.

“Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.”  (Matthew 7:24-27 NKJV)


Another great story by Emma. Thank you again for reminding us to heed wise instructions.

Emma Stories

The Substitute Teacher by Emma Foster

Blue-and-yellow Macaw (Ara ararauna)

Blue-and-yellow Macaw (Ara ararauna) by Lee at Gatorland

The Substitute Teacher

~ by Emma Foster

Once there was an elementary school in the middle of Florida. The third grade class of that school had a class pet parrot named Beatrice. Every day, Beatrice would sit and watch as the teacher, Miss Kendall, taught the class. During recess, however, Beatrice would sneak over to the teacher’s desk and read over all of the material. She wanted to not only know what was being taught, but also wanted to know how to teach it to the class.

Beatrice wanted to be sure that she knew everything for Thursday. This was because Miss Kendall was going to be gone on Thursday and Friday for jury duty, and Beatrice was chosen by the school board to teach the class because she was the only one who knew the material so well.

Blue-and-yellow Macaw (Ara ararauna) ©WikiC

Blue-and-yellow Macaw (Ara ararauna) ©WikiC

On Thursday, when all of the third grade class entered into the classroom, they were surprised to find that Miss Kendall wasn’t there. Instead, Beatrice was sitting on top of her desk. Each of the students sat down and waited as Beatrice called the role. After she finished, Beatrice had the class say the pledge of allegiance like they did every morning, and she whistled the “Star Spangled Banner” along with the class afterwards.

Because Beatrice was a parrot, she was able to explain to the class why she was substituting for the day, and moved onto the first subject of the day: reading. Beatrice had the entire class read a few pages in the book they were supposed to read for a book report. During that time, Beatrice read over all that she had to do that day. The next subject was penmanship. This was the tricky part because Beatrice had to use her talons. She was able to shakily write the first few letters of the alphabet on the board. The class did much better than she did.

Blue-and-yellow Macaw (Ara ararauna) ©WikiC

Blue-and-yellow Macaw (Ara ararauna) ©WikiC

Finally it was time for lunch. Beatrice made sure all of the class stayed in a line as they walked down to the cafeteria. She brought along the crackers Miss Kendall kept in her desk for her and ate them there. When lunch was over, Beatrice let all of the third grade class go outside to the playground. She climbed the monkey bars upside down; the class considered this the best part of the day so far.

Blue-and-yellow Macaw by Dan at Gatorland

Then Beatrice and the class came back inside for science. This week was Botany. Because Beatrice used to live in the Amazon before coming to America to become the class pet, she was able to tell them all about the different plants in the jungle.

The last subject of the day was math. This was the students’ least favorite subject. Fortunately, the best Beatrice could do when it came to math was count to five, so it was going to be difficult teaching the class anything. The students didn’t mind, however. Beatrice would have to explain to Miss Kendall that they didn’t get much done.

When the class was dismissed they all told their parents when their parents picked them up how much fun they had, and Beatrice believed she had done a good job. She had the feeling that when she taught tomorrow it would be even better than the first day. And when Miss Kendall returned, she was surprised when the entire class asked if she could repeat jury duty again next week.


Lee’s Addition:

Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth, And makes us wiser than the birds of heaven?’ (Job 35:11 NKJV)

Thanks, Emma, for another delightful story. Birds are very capable of teaching us about their great Creator. Maybe not quite in a classroom like Beatrice, but still, they can be teachers to humans. Those who study birds and other animals, can see the Hand of God at work, if their eyes are open.

Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning. The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. (Proverbs 9:9-10 KJV)

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See more of Emma’s delightful stories

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Wordless Toucan

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The Great Roadrunner Race by Emma Foster

Roadrunner at Living Desert Zoo CA by Lee

Greater Roadrunner at Living Desert Zoo CA by Lee

The Great Roadrunner Race

~ by Emma Foster

In the desert far away, there lived a group of roadrunners. Each of the roadrunners lived in a cactus that he had neatly decorated for himself. One of the roadrunners was named Harold, and he was the smallest roadrunner of all.

Every year, all of the roadrunners would gather together and plan when they would have their special race. This was usually in the third month of the year. This race was incredibly important to all the roadrunners because it was the longest race they ran each year.

Harold usually wasn’t allowed to be in the race because he was so small. This year, however, he decided he was going to prove himself.

Greater Roadrunner (Geococcyx californianus) Reinier Munguia

Greater Roadrunner (Geococcyx californianus) Reinier Munguia

When all of the older roadrunners decided on a date for the race, they were sure to tell all of the other roadrunners in their region of the desert. It was a couple of weeks before the race, so Harold decided to start training himself.

Harold ran as fast and as far as he could for two weeks. Every day he would go a little farther and a little faster. Finally, Harold was sure he was ready for the race, but he still didn’t know if he would win because he had seen the other roadrunners run, and they all had longer legs.

Greater Roadrunner (Geococcyx californianus) by Daves BirdingPix

Greater Roadrunner (Geococcyx californianus) by Daves BirdingPix

On the day of the race, all of the roadrunners gathered around to watch the race. Most of the roadrunners disapproved of Harold being in the race because of his size and how small he was, but Harold still took his place at the starting line. Each of the roadrunners were given a number to wear during the race. One of the roadrunners stood to the side and blew a whistle.

Harold started running as fast as he could. He was actually surprised to see that he was passing other roadrunners. One of the fastest roadrunners was still ahead of him. They were both reaching the halfway point of the race. All of the roadrunners on the sidelines were cheering them on.

Harold was steadily gaining on the other roadrunner. He was getting tired, but he wasn’t about to give up.

Greater Roadrunner (Geococcyx californianus) ©©Nathan Davis Bing

Greater Roadrunner (Geococcyx californianus) ©©Nathan Davis Bing

The finish line was approaching. In a few minutes Harold and the opposing roadrunner would cross the finish line.

Harold ran as fast as he could. He pushed himself harder as they neared the finish line. The other roadrunner began to pass behind him. The finish line was getting closer. Everyone was cheering. Harold crossed the finish line and all of the roadrunners gathered around to congratulate him.

From that year on, Harold entered the race every year, and he became one of the fastest roadrunners in the desert as he grew up.

Roadrunner - Looney Tunes ”©WikiC

Roadrunner – Looney Tunes ”©WikiC

The End


Lee’s Addition:

Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.(1 Corinthians 9:24 KJV)

Emma, that is another fantastic story. I was cheering for Harold all the way.

Sorry, but I couldn’t help but put that cartoon roadrunner in. That is one of the benefits of being the editor.

I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: (2 Timothy 4:7 KJV)

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See more of Emma’s delightful stories

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Kids, You Are Special

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Susie And The Water-skiing Contest

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) by Ian

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) by Ian

Susie And The Water-skiing Contest

~ by Emma Foster

High in North America, as summer was coming, there lived a flock of Canadian geese. They all lived together by a large lake. One of the Canadian geese was named Susie, and she loved to swim in the water every day.

On a particularly hot day, Susie was out on the water when she spotted a group of people in a boat. One person was driving the boat very quickly around the lake. Another person was holding onto a rope and riding along the water on a board of some kind.

Susie was very interested in this new sport she had discovered. She decided to call all of the geese together to watch the people.

When all of the geese had watched the people for a few minutes, they grew very excited. They decided to play the same game too, only they would have to build everything from scratch.

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) On Shed ©Flickr Darron Birgwnheler

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) On Shed ©Flickr Darron Birgwnheler

In an old shed in the backyard of one of the houses by the lake, Susie and the other geese found a long, thin piece of wood, an old rope, a canoe covered in cobwebs, and a few fishhooks. The geese shoved a hook into the back side of the boat and into the piece of wood, and tied the rope to both hooks. One goose sat down in the boat to direct it, four more geese stood behind the canoe to cast it off and push along in the water, and Susie stood on the piece of wood, bending down to hold the rope in her beak in case the hook came off. Another goose stood in the back of the boat to make sure that the hook in the boat did not come out either.

After taking off, the four geese started flying so that Susie was dragged behind them on the piece of wood. It took several attempts before Susie could stay on the board, but by the end of the day she was able to do a few tricks.

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) ©WikiC

The Four Canadian Geese and two friends that joined them. ©WikiC

The next day, one of the geese came back to announce he had seen a flyer for a water skiing contest at the end of the week at that very pond. Susie immediately decided that she and the other geese should enter. It was only Tuesday, so they had plenty of time to practice. Susie wanted to make sure she could pull off all of the tricks she had seen the people do when they were on the lake.

By that Friday, Susie and all of the other geese had had enough practice so that they were able to accomplish all of the tricks. The geese even invented some of their own.

On that Saturday Susie, the geese, and lots of different people met on the lake and the contest began. A few people went before Susie and the other geese. They were really good and were able to perform all kinds of tricks. Finally, it was Susie’s turn. She jumped onto the piece of wood while the other geese got to their positions.

"They Were Off" - Canada Goose ©Pixabay

“They Were Off” – Canada Goose ©Pixabay

Then they were off! Susie did her best to perform all of the tricks she had practiced. This time, she tried to jump higher in the air when she performed one. One of the tricks was when Susie did a flip in the air after jumping the ramp and flying for about ten feet. Once Susie had completed her routine, she skidded onto the grass sticking the landing perfectly. Everyone cheered.

At the end of the contest, a blue ribbon was awarded to Susie and the geese. From then on, Susie entered the contest every year, and she always kept the blue ribbon pinned to the back of the shed where they had found the piece of wood, hooks, rope, and canoe.


Lee’s Addition:

Thanks, Emma, for another great bird tale. You just keep improving and each one becomes your best. This is definitely one of “your best.”

The teamwork and ingenuity by that group of geese reminds me of these verses:

Now the company of believers was of one heart and soul, and not one of them claimed that anything which he possessed was [exclusively] his own, but everything they had was in common and for the use of all. (Acts 4:32 AMP)

O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together. (Psalms 34:3 KJV)

And all that believed were together, and had all things common; (Acts 2:44 KJV)

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Emma Foster’s Other Tales

Guest Authors

Bird Tales

Canada Goose – Wikipedia

ABC’s of the Gospel

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George And The Happy New Year

House Finch (Carpodacus mexicanus) by Ian

House Finch (Carpodacus mexicanus) by Ian

George and the Happy New Year

~ by Emma Foster

   In the countryside, where farms dotted the land along the hills and the only sounds that could be heard were birds chirping and cows mooing, there lived a small finch named George. He lived in a small red barn out in the countryside. George had built his nest up in the rafters where he could look down at all the other farm animals during the day. In the barn, he had a clear view out the window of the sky and the big city very far away.

New Year’s Day was drawing near, and every night for the past week, George and the other animals were kept up late because of all of the fireworks being set off outside the city. One night, George decided he would fly to the city. He had always wondered what people did on New Year’s Eve and how they celebrated the coming year. George figured the city was the perfect place for celebration.

That morning, on December thirty-first, George flew out the window while all the other farm animals were still sleeping, and began flying to the city.

House Finch Resting

House Finch Resting

The dirt road that stretched to the farm eventually turned into a gravel road as George flew farther on. He flew past many apple tree orchards and corn fields until the gravel road split off into two concrete roads. Here there were many different houses and stores.

Every now and then George would take a break from flying and land on a powerline. He was able to see how far he had to fly before arriving at the city.

By the time George could see large skyscrapers up ahead it was late evening. When he entered the city, he could see many other birds flying around looking for tall buildings to land on so they could see the celebration with a good point of view. George passed by lots of buildings, but none of them seemed good enough. He wanted to be able to see everything, including all the people celebrating.

Finally George spotted a large, shiny ball on top of a tall building in the middle of a busy street. Flying to it, he decided this would be the perfect place to watch the celebration because he could see throngs of people standing in the street below eagerly cheering. By then it was late at night, and George hoped he hadn’t missed much.

Times Square Ball

Times Square Ball

Landing on the ball, he watched the crowd, and he remarked how bright the ball was and wondered what it was for. Suddenly it started lowering and everyone began counting down from ten. When they all reached one, everyone cheered. George didn’t know why, but afterwards, everyone started to leave and call for taxis to take them home. George realized this must have been the celebration.

It was late in the afternoon when George arrived back at the farm, and all of the animals were eager to hear where he had been. George was glad to tell all the animals what he had seen, and of how people celebrated New Year’s Day. None of the animals ever understood exactly why people celebrated the day by counting backwards from ten, and George never understood what the huge ball was used for other than to go up and down.

The End


Lee’s Addition:

O sing unto the LORD a new song: sing unto the LORD, all the earth. (Psalms 96:1 KJV)

Yes, they shall sing of the ways of the Lord and joyfully celebrate His mighty acts, for great is the glory of the Lord. (Psalms 138:5 AMP)

What a celebration for George even if he didn’t quite figure out what it was all about. Thanks, Emma, for another great bird tale. Sounds like you must have stayed up and watched the celebration New Years Eve. At least you didn’t have to fly to see it.

You can see all of Emma’s other great articles here:

The Long Christmas Journey

Rock Dove (Columba livia) ©Flickr Oleg Sidorenko

Rock Dove (Columba livia) ©Flickr Oleg Sidorenko

The Long Christmas Journey

~ by Emma Foster

Once there were two birds who lived in Portland, Oregon. Their names were Belinda and Steven and they were pigeons (a.k.a. Rock Doves).

Belinda and Steven lived on top of a stop-and-go light in the middle of a busy street where they had built their nest. They loved the city life so they didn’t mind all of the cars driving by, especially when they honked. They also didn’t mind all of the headlights that lit up the streets at night. Every day, Steven would fly through the city to search for food. And every day lots of cars would drive by.

Rock Dove (Columba livia) ©Flickr Edward Townend

Rock Dove (Columba livia) ©Flickr Edward Townend

As December drew near, it started to get colder. Eventually, snow started to fall. The more snow fell, the colder it became.

Belinda and Steven decided it was time for them to fly down south for the winter. They would spend Christmas down there just as they did every year. They both liked spending Christmas down where it was warm.

Rock Dove (Columba livia) ©Flickr Andrey

Rock Dove (Columba livia) ©Flickr Andrey

They started flying early the next morning because it was going to be a long journey to fly down south. As Belinda and Steven travelled, they were careful to not fly too high when they flew through the mountains because the tops of the mountains were cold and snowy. They flew past many mountains because Belinda and Steven were flying through the Rocky Mountains.

Rock Dove (Columba livia) ©Flickr Ingrid Taylar

Eventually, after several hours, Belinda and Steven reached Death Valley. It was nice and warm there. But Death Valley was a little too warm for them. Fortunately there was a group of road runners that gave them directions to Arizona. Belinda and Steven were already in eastern California so it wasn’t that long of a flight to get there.

Belinda and Steven were able to fly to Arizona and made it there by Christmas Eve. It was nice and warm and the desert was filled with cactuses. Belinda and Steven decorated a cactus with some Christmas decorations they had brought with them so the cactus looked festive.

Together, Belinda and Steven had a wonderful Christmas, and they didn’t even mind that it would still be a long trip back to Oregon. They would have to come back to Arizona next year.

The End

Rock Dove (Columba livia) ©Flickr Ken Slade

Rock Dove (Columba livia) ©Flickr Ken Slade


Lee’s Addition:

Storks, doves, swallows, and thrushes all know when it’s time to fly away for the winter and when to come back. But you, my people, don’t know what I demand. (Jeremiah 8:7 CEV)

Thanks, Emma, for telling us about your migrating Pigeon friends, Belinda and Steven. Smart birds for escaping the winter cold up there in the Northwest.

Keep up the great stories. We are all enjoying them and you a gaining quite a fan club. We are looking forward to more stories through this New Year. Happy New Year.

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See more of Emma Foster’s Stories

ABC’s of the Gospel

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“Movie On Cwismus”

So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. (Luke 2:6-7 NKJV)

Here is a special video sent to me by James J. S. Johnson. It is about kids telling the story of Cwismus (Christmas) by the Mobberly Kids. Enjoy.

Good News

FBT Little Quartet – Christmas Carols

A friend sent me this and thought I would share it.

O let the nations be glad and sing for joy: for thou shalt judge the people righteously, and govern the nations upon earth. Selah.
(Psalms 67:4 KJV)

The Autobiography of a Duck

Pecking duckling ©WikiC

Pecking duckling ©WikiC

THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF A DUCK.
FOUNDED UPON FACT.

“How queer, my child! what a long, broad mouth you have, and what peculiar feet!”

It was my mother, a big brown hen, who spoke. I had stepped from my egg, only a short while before, and as I was the only one hatched out of the whole thirteen, my poor mother was greatly disappointed.

Now, to add to her troubles, there seemed to be something very peculiar about my appearance.

“Yes,” she went on still watching me critically, “I have raised many families, but never a chick like you. Well! well! don’t cry about it. Your yellow dress is very pretty. It doesn’t pay to be too sensitive, as you will find, I am afraid, when you have lived with these chickens. Some of them are dreadfully trying. Dear! dear! how stiff I am! This setting is tiresome work.”

“I wonder what sort of home we are going to have.”

Our home, into which we moved a few hours later, proved to be an upturned soap box. Seven little chickens were there before us.

“The same old story,” said my mother with a knowing air. “People imagine we hens have no sense. I did not hatch those chickens, but I am expected to care for them, as though I did. Some mothers would peck them so they would be glad to stay away.”

She had too good a heart for this, however, and I was very glad to have these brothers and sisters.

Chick ©PD

Chick ©PD

They were different from me, though, in many ways, principally, in their dislike for water. They hated even to get their feet wet, while I dearly loved to get in the pond, and swim around on its surface, or even dive down to the bottom, where such nice fat worms lived.

My poor mother never could understand my tastes. The first time she saw me on the water, she came rushing towards me, screaming and beating her wings.

“Oh, my child! my child!” she cried, with tears in her eyes. “You will drown! You will drown!”

I loved her, and so could not bear to see her distress. It was hard to be different from all the others.

I had a little yellow sister who was a great comfort to me at these times. I could never persuade her to try the water,—but she always sat upon the edge of the pond while I had my swim. We shared everything with each other; even our troubles.

About this time, my voice began to change. It had been a soft little “peep,” but now it grew so harsh, that some of the old hens made unpleasant remarks about it, and my mother was worried.

“It isn’t talking. It’s quacking,” said an old, brown-headed hen who was always complaining of her nerves.

She was very cross and spent most of her time standing on one leg in a corner and pecking any poor chicken that came in her reach.

“Don’t you know why it’s quacking?” asked a stately Buff Cochin who was a stranger in the yard; having arrived only that morning. “That child isn’t a chicken. She’s a duck.”

“What you giving us?” said a dandified Cock, who was busy pluming his feathers. “Whoever heard of a duck?”

“Not you, I daresay,” answered the Buff with a contemptuous sniff. “It’s easy to see you have never been away from this yard. I have traveled, I would have you understand, and I know a duck, too.”

“Well, I don’t care what you call her,” snapped the cross one. “I only hope she’ll keep her voice out of my hearing. The sound of it gives me nervous prostration.”

Greater White-fronted Goose (Anser albifrons) chick ©USFWS

Greater White-fronted Goose (Anser albifrons) chick ©USFWS

As for poor me,—I stole quietly away, and went up into a corner of the chicken house to cry. I was a duck, alas! and different from all about me. No wonder I was lonely.

My mother asked the cause of my trouble, and when I told her she looked sad and puzzled. “I don’t know what a duck is,” she sighed, “things have been strangely mixed. But cheer up. Whatever comes you are still my child.”

That was indeed a comfort to me. For never had chicken or duck a better mother.

There was consolation also, in what the kind old Buff Cochin told me.

I had nothing to be ashamed of, she said, for ducks were much esteemed by those who knew them.

From her this had more weight, for we all regarded the Buff Cochin as very superior. They were well born, and well bred, and had seen life in many places. Their husband, too, was a thorough gentleman.

However, he also was having his troubles now. He was losing his old feathers, and his new ones were long in coming. Consequently, his appearance was shabby, and he staid away from the hens.

Duck Drawing ©PD

Duck Drawing ©PD

Poor fellow, he looked quite forlorn, leaning up against a sunny corner of the barn, trying to keep warm. I believe he felt the loss of his tail feathers most for the young roosters who strutted by in their fine new coats, made sneering remarks about it.

I was very sorry for him, but my own troubles were getting to be as much as I could bear; for just when I needed a sympathetic mother she was taken from me and her place filled by a big, bare-headed hen as high tempered as she was homely.

“Raising a duck,” she said with a contemptuous sniff at me. “I never supposed I’d come to that. Well, I’ll keep you, but understand one thing, don’t go quacking around me, and don’t bring your wet and mud into the house. I’m not your other mother. My children don’t rule me. I won’t have that Mrs. Redbreast saying my house is dirty. There’s no standing that hen anyhow. I’ll give her my opinion if she puts on her airs around me. There’s too much mixture here. One can’t tell where breed begins or ends.”

It was not many days later, before my mother and Mrs. Redbreast came to words and then blows. The cause was only a worm, but it was enough. Mrs. Redbreast insisted that it was hers. My mother thought otherwise, and with a screech of defiance rushed upon her enemy. Dust and feathers flew. We children withdrew to a safe distance, and with necks stretched watched in fear and trembling.

The fight, though fierce, was short. Our mother was victorious, but she had lost the tail feathers of which she had been so proud, and I am sure she never forgave Mrs. Redbreast.

Chicks and Ducklings ©PD

Chicks and Ducklings ©PD

Like children, chickens and ducks grow older and bigger with the passing days.

In time we were taken from our mothers and put to roost with the older hens and cocks. I was not made to roost so I spent my nights alone in a corner of the chicken house.

It was quieter down there—for up above the chickens all fought for best place, and their cackling and fluttering was disturbing.

The old gentleman was very heavy. Not only was it hard for him to fly up to the roost, but equally hard for him to hold on when once there. Yet I could never persuade him to rest on the floor with me. Like his kind, he preferred the discomfort of sleeping on a pole—a taste I cannot understand.

Three Ducklings ©WikiC

Three Ducklings ©WikiC

I was four months old before I saw one of my own kind. Then, one day three ducks were brought into the yard. They did not seem to mind being stared at, but fell to eating corn and talking among themselves.

“Horribly greedy,” said Mrs. Redbreast. “I for one don’t care to associate with them.”

“Now you know what you look like, old quacker,” snapped the cross hen, with a peck at me. “My poor nerves will suffer sadly now.”

These unkind remarks scarcely disturbed me, however. There was a new feeling stirring in my heart. I am afraid you will have to be a duck, and live a long time without other ducks, to understand it. Here were companions, whose natures and tastes were like mine, and I was content.

Louise Jamison.


Lee’s Addition:

A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. (Proverbs 18:24 KJV)

Trust you enjoyed this delightful bird tale about a duck. This was written by Louise Jamison in the Birds and Nature Vol. X, No. 3, Octorber 1901.

Near the end, when our duckling met up with some of her own and made this remark: “Here were companions, whose natures and tastes were like mine, and I was content.” I couldn’t but think of how we as Christian feel a certain bond when we are around like believers.

God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. (1 Corinthians 1:9 KJV)

that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. (1 John 1:3 ESV)

This is from Gutenberg’s ebooks.

Kid’s Section

Bird Tales

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