What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?

What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?
Remember: "When God closes a door, He always opens a window!" You never know what might be out there waiting for you!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

On the 4th Day of Advent My True Love Gave to Me...

On the 4th Day of Advent my true love gave to me, 
a Scrub Jay in a pine tree!

For those of you who do not know what a Scrub Jay is...here is more information:
http://fl.audubon.org/birds/florida-scrub-jay    But to sum it up...This elusive bird lives only in the scrubby woodsy areas of Florida.  The Ocala National Forest, where I live, is an excellent habitat for the Scrub Jay, as the forest is also known as "The Big Scrub".

So, today, on this fourth day of Advent, my true love (hubby) took me to walk where we are searching for our (what I am calling) Charlie Brown Florida Cracker Christmas Tree.  So named because the Christmas trees grown in Florida, at least in this part of the state, are not your perfectly shaped spruce, fir, or scotch pine type trees that you can get in most other parts of the country.  The natural Christmas trees that you can go out and cut here in this part of Florida are known as sand pines...because they grow in the sand and have  shallow root systems.  They grow very tall, but before they do, there are some areas where, with a permit, (and payment of $7.00) we can go and cut our own Christmas tree!
So that is what we have decided to do this year, replacing our almost 20 year old artificial tree with a real live Florida Cracker Christmas tree. I call it a Florida Cracker tree because the "Florida Crackers" were the first pioneer settlers in Florida...mostly cattle and citrus farming people and just good old country folks.  They would go out in the woods and cut their own tree for Christmas, and they weren't the fancy trees of their city and northern friends...just ordinary little pine trees that served the purpose just as well.

Since we live out here in the forest, and these cutting areas are close to where we live, I figured it was a good time to try it out and see how it goes.   We got our permit yesterday, and now we are on the search for the perfect tree.  I'm not in a big hurry, because I don't want it to die before Christmas if we cut it too soon.

So we went back to the woods today to continue our search, and that is when we saw this beautiful Scrub Jay, flitting around from tree to tree and to the bushes, calling us and welcoming us to his part of the scrub woods...

 When we go back again I intend to take some unsalted peanuts and see if he will come to me, as they are known to be very friendly birds.  We shall see how that goes...




Isn't he beautiful?   I feel honored to have had this special visit with him today.  He really didn't seem to be very afraid of us, even though I am sure he doesn't have much opportunity to communicate with humans very often.  Perhaps he is lonely out there in the big old scrub woods!



Of course, there are plenty of other creatures out in those woods to keep him company, I have no doubt.  We saw plenty of tracks of coyotes, bobcats, rabbits, turkeys, and even bears...so you can be assured he isn't too lonely...but maybe he just likes to meet and greet strangers...and has the gift of hospitality!
Perhaps he would make a good innkeeper...and would welcome 
the Holy Family to his woods....

Thinking about which...since it is the Advent Season...the time of preparation for the advent of our Lord Jesus Christ....the time of celebration of His birth...and the time to look forward to His soon return...
I wonder how many of us would make a good innkeeper?

I saw this picture on the internet the other day

How about you?  Do YOU have room for Jesus in your heart and life today?
Would you welcome Him into your home if given the opportunity?

Christmas is more than just the perfect  (or NOT so perfect) Christmas tree, gifts, parties, and even more than church programs and musicals...Christmas is about accepting the greatest gift of all,

Jesus,
born in a manger,
died on a cross,
rose from the grave,
came back to tell us that because He lives 
we can face our troubles and sorrows 
and look forward to eternity in heaven with Him
Forever!!
Hallelujah!!
Amen!

I hope you have enjoyed the opening of this Advent Window for today!  We just never know what surprises we may find in our ADVENTure  preparing for Christmas!  Who'd ever thought a Scrub Jay would appear?  A special gift along the way...Thank you, Lord, for brightening our way!


14 comments:

  1. Love this post! Yes, he is a beautiful bird! We have just plain old blue Jays here in Tennessee. They're pretty, but mean! As for being an innkeeper, for me it probably depends on the day. Just being honest!

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    1. Oh Debbie, I totally understand about "the day". The day after Thanksgiving I was so wiped out Jesus would have had to revive me before I could let Him come in. He understands this, however...and has mercy and compassion on our weakness. He gives strength to the weary, however! Isaiah 40:29 That is good news! Hope you and Pappy are doing better now that you are getting rain. Praying for you.

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  2. A lovely post, beautiful photos (such a pretty bird!) and indeed we do have a place for Jesus in our home and hearts! Can't wait to see the tree you finally pick!

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    1. Thank you Terri. I can't wait to see the one we pick as well. It is getting to be quite the adventure! It is good for all of us to remember the reason for the season...Jesus! I'm glad there is room in your INN for Him!! :)

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  3. As I've never seen a Scrub jay before, I was totally enchanted with his beautiful photos. Glad you met a new friend on your Christmas tree hunt. And I don't think you're too early to cut one fresh, Pamela. Just place it in a bucket of water until you're ready to place it in the stand. We cut a fresh Christmas tree only once, but I recall that it lasted forever!
    Blessings to you!

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    1. Thank you Martha Jane. Scrub Jays are hard to find...so I was quite thrilled to have this encounter today! I am waiting to cut a tree probably next week. We are praying for some rain here first as it is quite dry, and I want the trees to get plenty of moisture in them before cutting as well as after! Besides, I'm having too much fun searching for the "perfect tree"! Blessings to you as well dear friend.

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  4. Such beautiful photos Pamela. I have never heard of a scrub jay before living here in upper New York State I've seen so many birds but never the jay you mentioned. A pretty bird indeed. Looking forward to seeing the photos of the tree you picked out. Have a day of blessings my friend.

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    1. I am glad you enjoyed the pictures of the Scrub Jay. I was thrilled to meet up with him today as they are somewhat rare and hard to find, except only in this area and a few other places in the state. I will definitely post pictures of our tree once we decide...probably next week as I want it to get some rain/moisture before cutting it. It has been very dry here lately, and it will help the tree last longer if it has had a good soaking naturally before cutting it. Praying for rain tomorrow! Thank you for stopping by for a visit! Have a blessed and happy day/week!

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  5. Pam: Thank you for this post. My grandmother spoke of "Georgia Crackers", she was born in Georgia and lived in Florida for at least two parts of her life. I love the colors of the bird.

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    1. Yes, I have heard that old time Georgians were also called Georgia Crackers, as well as the Florida Crackers. So your grandmother was a southern gal? I was thinking today that Girls Raised In The South are called G.R.I.T.S. Ha ha! I hope you know what grits are! Thank you for stopping by my neck of the woods today! Have a blessed day, my friend!!

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  6. A pretty bird! Florida does have it's wild places, doesn't it? It's not all hotels and beaches and Disney World. :) I hope you enjoy your tree. Years ago, we went out and cut down our tree at a tree farm near by. They do look different but we loved it.

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    1. Yes, I prefer the wild places of Florida to the man-made tourist traps. I know they help our economy, but I hate to see our natural beauty spoiled by too much tourism and construction. I am looking forward to this tree...I know it will be different, but I think I will love it too!

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  7. I loved the graphic you shared, I saw it on facebook and it immediately spoke to my heart. I rushed to show it to Mr D, he felt the same...We are innkeepers of the Holy Spirit, we need to let Him in! Always enjoy your post and visiting with you!

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    1. I just saw your comment today. Sorry! Yes, we ARE innkeepers of God's Holy Spirit...and we should always make room for Him! Too often we crowd Him out with our busyness...and then wonder why we run out of steam and faith. 'There is room in my heart for You."

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