#AdventWord #Hear

In 2017 after years of struggling to hear, I finally got hearing aids. Some of what I now hear, I would rather not. I’m really pretty uninterested in other peoples’ phone conversations in restaurants! But, oh, the calls of birds! Sometimes I stand in my driveway and just listen for awhile. I’m working on learning to identify birds by their call, but it is slow going. I didn’t even look for birds or try to photograph them for many years because hearing them is a huge help in locating them, and I couldn’t. Now my frustration is being able to…

#AdventWord #Sign

Since moving to the south twenty-some years ago, I have said and even more often looked at a bald cypress tree and thought, “Who needs Christmas trees when you have cypress trees?!” They are, in and of themselves, a sign of the south. In the early fall, when their “leaves,” which look like evergreen needles but aren’t, begin turning a brilliant coppery red, they are signs of coming winter. And for those of you who think we don’t have winter, just know that last night, it was colder in Louisiana than it was in Missouri. So there! See all those…

#AdventWord #Purify

Salt marshes are not merely havens for waterfowl. They also help mitigate our human mess. Thick stands of smooth cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) and saltmeadow cordgrass (Spartina patens) trap mud and sand in their dense root systems, stabilizing the shoreline and preventing erosion and flooding. The ecosystem as a whole helps filter polluted runoff. Creation gives us yet another glimpse of incarnation.

#AdventWord #Majesty

O Oriens, splendor lucis aeternae et sol justitiae; veni et illumina eos habitantibus in tenebris et umbra mortis. O Morning Star, splendor of eternal light and sun of righteousness: Come and enlighten those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.

#AdventWord #Traveler

If it hadn’t been for the big storm, I would never have encountered this little guy! Indeed, I had no prior knowledge that the wonderful world of sparrows even included one called “fox” with a solid gray cap and bright russet feathers. Fox sparrows migrate from their nesting sites in Alaska to as far southeast as Florida to spend the winter. We do not usually see much of them in northeast Louisiana. They fly over us while we are sleeping. But the snow and ice of February 2021 brought them down into our yards. Lots of them and many other…