Bluebirds in the Snow

This from Mr. Nature, via the Texas Bluebird Society–look at all those bluebirds! I’ve never seen one in the flesh, although supposedly we have some in New Jersey. Are these among the most beautiful birds in all the world, or what?

And they can cope with winter. If they can, we can. Sure, we put out feeders for them, and that’s a help. But they can probably get by without us. God made them as they are.

And spring is coming–honest. I wouldn’t kid you about that.

Bonus Hymn: ‘I Sing the Mighty Power of God’

I don’t know why this particular hymn is in my mind today, but it’s welcome and I want to share it: I sing the Mighty Power of God, written by Isaac Watts in 1715 and still glorious today, sung by the Mountain Anthems. The phrase that moves me most: “all that borrows life from thee.” We are only here because He is.

I know things are pretty freakin’ awful just now–but look to the heavens, look to the earth, and praise the Lord for His creation. God’s stuff still works, and always will.

Tranquility Break: Deer Feeding in the Snow

We have snow in our forecast for tomorrow. I hope it’s true. I could use a nice, calming snowfall. Just five inches or so.

For the time being, here’s video of some deer feeding after a snowstorm in Iowa. God’s stuff. Enjoy watching them peacefully going about their business. No political hysteria for them.

Occasionally we get to see deer in our own neighborhood. I hope to see some tomorrow.

Tranquility Break: Freshwater Jellyfish

Freshwater jellyfish aren’t rare, but Mr. Nature has never seen one. Another reader reports, “I grew up on a lake that had thousands and thousands of these living in it.” Here we have them in an aquarium.

They’re roughly the size of a dime or a penny, they eat microscopic plankton, and are totally harmless as far as human beings are concerned. I don’t know about you, but I find it quite soothing to watch them. We don’t know exactly how this happens, but they can unexpectedly appear in abundance in bodies of water that never had them before. Some fish do this, too. Birds seem to be involved somehow. Well, they would be, wouldn’t they?

I wouldn’t surprised to hear that many of you had never heard of any such thing as freshwater jellyfish and find the whole idea surprising. That’s God’s stuff for you. There’s always something new to discover in Creation.

Girl, 7: Concert Musician!

My wife said, “You’ve gotta see this,” so here it is. And what can I say but “Holy moly!”?

Anastasiia Tyurina is only seven years old, but here she is, soloing with a Russian symphony orchestra, playing a melody called Valenki on her balalaika–from memory: she isn’t reading music.

The introduction’s in Russian, so I can’t read it–but really the music speaks for itself. Look at the talent God gave this child!

It’s proof He’s never far away.

Sanity Break: The Maned Wolf

 

Jambo! Mr. Nature here, coming to you from Brazil.

What is that? Is it a fox on stilts?

No, it’s an animal few of us in North America have ever heard of, the South American maned wolf. It’s not a wolf, it’s not a fox, it’s just a weird canine that lives in South America. As you can guess by the people calmly watching it, the maned wolf is no threat to human beings. Actually, there aren’t that many of them left.

They don’t bark and they don’t roar: their vocalization sounds like a little bit of both. It seems like it’s safe to leave out table scraps for them.

God’s stuff: endless variation on the basic themes.

Memory Lane: Our Friendly Egret

This video reminds me of a snowy egret who used to keep us company at the house we rented, for vacation, on Long Beach Island. Actually, she was attached to the owner of the house, who lived downstairs. But she liked Patty and me, too.

Every year she flew down to Florida for the winter, but she always came back in the spring and stayed all summer. Often she used to perch in the owner’s boat when he went fishing. Or she joined us on the dock while we fished, or on the deck when we watched the sun go down. We always had some bits of squid for her, or a minnow or two. She would have joined us in the living room if we left the door open, but for the rug’s sake we never did that.

Snowy egrets nearly went extinct in the 19th century, due to the demand for its feathers to decorate lady’s hats. When the demand went away, the egret recovered.

I never saw another wild bird half as friendly and sociable as this egret. We loved her, and it was always a treat to find her still there when we came down for two weeks in September.

And her snowy feathers surely looked better on her than on some silly hat.

Sanity Break: Baby Turkeys

No more nooze today. Here’s some of God’s stuff instead.

Baby turkeys–I’ve never seen baby turkeys before, I had no idea they were so cute! They look like cuddly little stuffed toys. Perfect little turkeys! If you can’t fall in love with these, better make sure you can still fog a mirror.

Animals That Beat the Winter

Here are five animals who show off their Creator’s handiwork by the way they cope with winter.

God’s stuff works!

Mountain goat–they climb like flies on glass; pronghorn–60 mph; fox hunting for field mice under the snow; grizzly bear and cubs–she knows when an avalanche will hit; fuzzy little pikas stocking up a winter’s food supply safely underground: well, yeah! Our God is an awesome God!

And the things we can see tell us much about those things we can’t see! St. Paul was right about that.

Mr. Nature: The Flying Lemur

Jambo! Mr. Nature here with more of God’s stuff, which is thousands of times better than man’s stuff and always works (as opposed to our freakin’ computers!). Today our safari takes us to Indonesia and the Philippines to meet the colugo, aka “the flying lemur.”

It isn’t really a lemur, although it seems to be more closely related to lemurs than to anything else. It’s sort of a primate, but not quite a primate. In other words, zoologists really don’t know where to put this creature.

But if you put it up a tree, it can easily glide to another tree 100 yards away. Kinda of like a flying squirrel, only bigger–two to four pounds.

And now I have to duck out of here before the computer blows up or something.