Sunday, January 19, 2014


“It would be a terrible calamity for the world if we eliminated the beggar. The beggar is just as important in the scheme of things as the giver. If begging were ever eliminated God help us if there should no longer be a need to appeal to some other human being, to make him give of his riches.”
--Henry Miller

 Every morning for years I have prayed for God to direct my thinking for the day, in particular to divorce it from the motives of self-pity, dishonesty and selfishness. I always hear "selfishness" and I think that means I have to work harder. I'm beginning to see selfishness is thinking I have to earn love and thereby putting my faith in my own what inevitably become frantic and in the end resentful efforts.

A few weeks ago a lovely reader from a small town in Ireland sent me the biggest donation I've received in the three and a half years since I started this blog--$300. And when I wrote to thank her, she replied, "That's the biggest donation you've ever received?! I'm embarrassed. You should have an annual or semi-annual pledge drive to keep your blog afloat."

Now this is so not my way. But just as a little reminder, I am unsupported by a religious order, steady, employer, organization, institution, patron, benefactor, family, or spouse. 

This is a one-woman operation--albeit one that would make no sense without you.  

So if you read and enjoy my blog--the essays, the photos, the reading tips, the shared meals!--think about coughing up some dough! 
someone will identity this for me,
i'm sure...


  1. You bet, Heather. That's a Loggerhead Shrike!

    1. Thanks, Michael--I think those are the ones that impale their prey on a fencepost or something and leave them there to die.

    2. Yes; they're also called butcher-birds.


    Check out the Cornell Guide. You can download an app for your phone, too.
    I don't have any money to send. But I subscribe to your blog; and share your posts with my friends.

    1. Thanks, Traci! I do have the, or a, 3-volume Audubon Guide but I forgot to bring it with me. I keep forgetting there's now an app for everything.

      And thank you so much for subscribing and for sharing my posts with your friends. I love the idea of letting my PR program be to let my friends spread the word--that's a contribution in and of itself.

    2. From the Cornell Lab of Ornithology

  3. Just wonderful, Heather. I am excited for you and for me. This Christmas, I loved playing the role of benefactor, despite the screams of my inner Chicken-Little (you know the one--she's always yelling about the end-of-the-world, so save-your-pennies?) and a long family heritage of dust-bowl poverty nightmares. So, I couldn't have been more surprised when I realized that it's true--giving is the gift. Sign me up!! :-)

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