The Gift that Keeps on Giving: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle this Holiday Season

It’s finally the holiday season, the most wonderful time of the year! Although we’d love to gather with family and friends as usual, times are different. COVID-19 may have presented its challenges, but that surely won’t stop us from connecting with one another to spread love and holiday cheer!  

With the holiday season comes lots of gifts, packages, and deliveries. One of the best ways we can connect and support one another through this is by reducing, reusing, and recycling our material. Doing so will benefit humanity’s most precious gift that keeps on giving: Mother Earth.

The question is, how can we put our best efforts towards reducing, reusing, and recycling our materials used for gifting? First, it’s important to remind ourselves of gifting material that is recyclable and not recyclable. 

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It Isn’t Spring Until the Birds Arrive

Eastern bluebird
With spring finally gaining a foothold in the upper Midwest as temperatures rose above 60 degrees Fahrenheit this weekend, everyone including myself has been spending more time outdoors. Like my fellow blogger Karen, I am a gardener and have been digging and planting everything from raspberries to currants to apple and peach trees.

However, one of my favorite parts of spring is hearing and seeing all the birds that flit around my property. Ironically, I was outside in a hat, gloves and coat when I heard my first redwing blackbirds of the season but since then, robins have taken up residence, and the house sparrows have returned, stealing the grass seed I scattered on my rather thin lawn. Nuthatchers are entertaining to watch as they peck at tree bark upside down while they hunt for food. An eastern bluebird has taken up residence nearby, and I enjoy spotting him every day, sitting in a tree or resting on my shepherd’s hook. The chickadees are fun to spot as they switch branches on a tree. Crows occasionally stop by especially if I have left out some pizza crusts for them. Turkeys have even hung around my front lawn, and I startled them (and they, me) as I opened my front door and they quickly flew away. I was up early one morning before most birds were active and all I could hear was “gobble, gobble, gobble”.

I’m still learning about all the different birds that stop over on my property as I expect there are more I have not identified. Which birds do you enjoy spotting in the spring?