I’m grateful that despite the feeling that spring would never come, it did! The little red tulips are starting to open, the first dandelions are blooming, and the air was almost balmy today as I worked outside tidying the patio for outdoor living again.
One project I’ve been contemplating was moving the phoebe platform and clearing off the old nests. I was so happy to see a phoebe fluttering around and checking it out a couple of weeks ago, and sad that no one moved in. I’m grateful I can still climb a ladder and wield a screw gun; even though I pre-drilled into the joists I still couldn’t get a couple of the screws all the way in, but it’s solid enough to hold a nest.
Here’s the side of the old nest that they used for three years, building it up each time. They like a particular kind of niche for their nest, where it’s protected above and on the sides, to prevent jays or magpies from getting to their chicks, which I think happened one time. I hope that moving the platform over so there is one wide and protected ledge will encourage them to try again. Meanwhile, someone else used their old tall nest for storage and maybe warmth over winter…
As usual, I was grateful for so many things today. I was grateful to spend a quiet morning outside, and then to come inside for a belly laugh and long-distance exercise session with my cousin. I was grateful for a cheese sandwich for lunch and for all the elements of it that came from across the hemisphere to coalesce in my little house in this moment in a delicious blend of homemade sourdough, mayonnaise, Havarti cheese, wild-caught Alaskan smoked salmon, organic romaine, and avocados from Mexico, seasoned with Penzeys Sandwich Sprinkle and who knows where all those spices came from.
I’m grateful for this beautiful handmade red wineglass I used to save for special occasions–until I realized that every evening I’m alive and cooking is a special occasion. Like so many things in my house, this glass holds not only what it’s designed for but the story of its provenance and some meaningful connection: in this case with the dear friend who gave it to me for my fiftieth birthday, at a party that’s a story in itself. Each moment interconnects with every other.
I’m grateful for a healthy dinner of kale and walnut pasta, with garlic, mushrooms, fresh lemon juice, and grated parmesan, seasoned with salt, pepper, and Penzeys Revolution blend. I’m grateful for Penzeys’ integrity and activism as well as their spice blends, which is one reason I mention them so often. They just concluded a 50% off sale on all spices starting with B and C, as well as $1 ‘Fox Point not Fox News’ special, in acknowledgement of the misogynistic work environment at a certain cable network. It takes real … nerve for a retail business to be as politically upfront as Penzeys.
I’m grateful for all the elements of my meals today, and for all the people and energy and resources it took to get the ingredients from the far-flung corners of the globe to the shelves of my refrigerator and pantry, from the unknown walnut and lemon growers to the Italian pasta makers to my patient personal shopper who works for cookies. I’m grateful for the friends I see in person and those I see online and those I haven’t met yet, as well as those I mostly see in the tangible recollections that populate my home.