Friday, November 2, 2012 - I was sitting at my father's desk, borrowing his computer to check emails, when a female cardinal tapped at the window in front of me.  What was this all about?

The cardinal flew off, only to come back a few minutes later, and she tapped again.  And again she flew off.  When she came back and tapped a third time, I decided to research cardinal symbolism online.  The top link took me to a website called The Cardinal Experience, where I found one possible answer:

"The female cardinal's voice in the world may remind a woman that she too has a voice and it may be time to find it and begin expressing herself."

What is so funny about this is that I had already chosen a story to use in teaching my afterschool lesson this following week, and the story is about a cardinal.  It goes like this...

One morning, while looking out the kitchen window, I spy a cardinal on our picnic table.  A cardinal is a brilliant red bird with a black mask and a pointed crest atop its head.  Have you ever spotted a cardinal outside?...

Have you ever watched a cardinal bully smaller birds in the neighborhood?  "Birdie, birdie, birdie," it teases.  Have you ever noticed how a cardinal rules over the bird feeder?  It flaps at other birds as if to say "Get off!" This is my food."  Yes, the cardinal is a fighter and has even been known to attack its own reflection in a window.  Whap!  Ouch!  Have you ever heard such a thump against your window?   
Do you know what a Blue Jay is?  A Blue Jay is a bright blue bird with a white mask and belly and a pointed crest atop its head.  And, it's an even bigger bully than a cardinal. 

Seconds after the cardinal appears on the picnic table, a blue jay lands on the table, on the adjacent corner, and takes an unfriendly hop at the cardinal... then, surprisingly, it suddenly stops... Imagine.. It stops, quiet and still... for there on the table... between the cardinal and the blue jay sits a white badminton birdy... it’s bald head pointed skyward like the head of a dove... "Birdie, Birdie, Birdie. Three birdies," I mused, "red, white, and blue!"

Between the two quarrelsome birds rested a badminton birdy, like a quiet dove.  Setting an example of peace and patience, the dove teaches us to pause. 

When we feel upset or angry, we can choose to stop and sit still for a moment...
calm our heart and take a deep breath...
and slowly let it out...
let it out and relax...
because anger only causes more anger...
like war only causes more war.
Instead we can settle into peace and calm.
Have you ever noticed how calm defuses anger and gives people time to think and work things out?  Have you ever noticed that?
Click on drawing above to download coloring sheet pdf.

When I tell people this story, they tell me that I have a wild imagination... but there is more to the story than just imagination
This story was a gift from Heaven, perhaps written by our Creator(s), carried down by Angels, and presented through Nature's own actors,... before my very eyes, so that I could share it with all of you. 

After sharing the "Three Birdies" story with Suzanne, who is the store manager at Wild Birds Unlimited in Warwick, she shared some facts with me about blue jays.  Blue jays are the vigilant watch birds of the neighborhood, calling out warning to other birds if a hawk or owl is sighted.  Blue jays use a wide range of vocalization and are able to mimic other birds.  As birds of "clarity" and "intellligence," the cunning blue jay will cry like a hawk in order to scare other birds away from the bird feeder.

On Sunday, two days after the cardinal had tapped at the window, I heard a bird laughing at me from up in a tree overhead.  What kind of bird sounds like that?  I looked up and a blue jay flew out of the tree and off over the house.  I did not know that blue jays could imitate laughter.  Yet, there it was... a mocking jay... laughing at me.

As you walk outside among nature, try to attune yourself to the guiding signs that are likely to appear before your very eyes.  If you are interested in joining me on the next page to learn more about the mystical meaning of this story, click on the little book below.

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