It can seem a bit overwhelming, don’t you think?
Saving some species from extinction, getting energy companies to lessen pollution, preserving the rain forests, and all the rest of the work needing to be done can stop you in your tracks.
Can my efforts make a dent? (The answer to this question is at the end of the end of this post in Pope Francis’ Laudato Si quote, but keep reading to read about silly birds.)
Exhibit one: the view out my front window
It may seem hard to measure the impact of our small efforts, but if birds could talk, they’d probably say that your front and back yards make a big difference to them.
Lots and lots of birds stopped for a bath and drink of water in our front-yard fountain this winter. It’s dry, dry, dry here in California.
My list of birds who visited our fountain from July 2015 through Winter 2016 includes:
Spotted Towhee, Cassin’s Finch, Ruby Throated Hummingbird, House Finch, Evening Grosbeak, Downy Woodpecker, Western Scrubjay, House Wren, Warbler, Warbling Vireo, Purple Finch, American Goldfinch, group of Bushtits, Blackheaded Grosbeak, Hairy Woodpecker, Tri-Colored Blackbird, flocks of Band-tailed Pigeons….
Exhibit two: our six bird houses in the front yard
Now, birds are checking out and checking into our birdhouses.
A Mountain Chickadee was making herself at home, but a Northern Mockingbird peeked in on the Chickadee’s nook and stole some nesting materials. Such nerve!
All these shenanigans are fun to watch with my 3-year-old granddaughter! She will sit still and listen and look. Now that says something about the power of nature to inspire.
“We must not think that these efforts are not going to change the world. They benefit society, often unbeknownst to us, for they call forth a goodness which, albeit unseen, inevitably tends to spread.”
Laudato Si (paragraph 12)
Artist’s Note: All these sketches were done with Uniball pens (fine and micro tips). Then I applied an ink wash for shadows.