Regrets, I’ll Have At Least One. Cows go Moo, SapSuckers Go Tap Tap Tap

December 2023 me is going to cuss the living daylights out of January 2023 me. The way I took down the Christmas tree, with all the lights hanging/dangling/hiding/tangled between each section was a crime in the making. But I just didn’t have it in me to untangle, remove and sort the lights as a sane person would. I’m going to be so regretful of my impatience next Christmas.

*We generally go to GA for Thanksgiving and when we get back home, I stress about Christmas decorating because I’ve generally not done any shopping or planning and decorating just adds to my dread. (reading that again and it’s evident that I don’t have my shit together; I swear I used to) I declared to the Coach that this year, I will decorate the house entirely before we depart for Thanksgiving.

Hey, when November comes, can ya’ll remind me of this great idea and can someone come help with the light situation? Pretty please?


Peanut finally had her first visit to the Ranch just before we came back to Florida. The Coach wanted to document the property via his fancy-ass drone before more work on the land was done. The Cows were mooing and mooing as cows do and Peanut the Bad Ass was growling, from the safety of her SUV.

A bit later, when we were walking or in the UTV and a cow was close, The Bad Ass started shaking and hiding behind me. She’s such a baby.

As we were venturing around the property, I was really enjoying the Winter look to the place; I mean, it’s not as pretty as when everything is lush and green, but the winter perspective is to be appreciated. There were gobs of blue birds and downy woodpeckers flitting about; I’ve never seen a downy woodpecker (of course I got excited) and I rarely see bluebirds, so that was fun.

Our favorite tree
A still shot over part of the property that the Coach captured with his drone.


Back at home, I spotted an unusual-to-me bird in the tree outside my office window. I knew it was a woodpecker, but what in the Baskin Robbins 31 Flavors is it? After squinting my eyes through the blinds at least twenty seven times and then looking through my handy dandy laminated bird guide for our area that arrived with my AARP card, I realized what I was seeing was a Yellow Bellied Sap Sucker. THEY DO EXIST!

Again, I might have gotten too excited about this and what has my life come to?

Did birds exist before I turned 50? Most likely, no.

Although, I still have this memory from when Lindsay was in kindergarten, explaining one morning to her teacher that she was So Tired because the birds woke her up early. I was probably too busy to notice them.

Please tell me I’m not alone in my enjoyment of The Birds and especially The New-to-me Birds.

Are you embarrassed at how I stored my tree for the next year?


38 thoughts on “Regrets, I’ll Have At Least One. Cows go Moo, SapSuckers Go Tap Tap Tap

  1. Your ranch property is beautiful and that tree would be my favorite, too! Looking forward to seeing it fully leafed out! I don’t think I have ever seen a bluebird in the wild! Anyway, there is an app you can get on your phone called “picture This”. You can use these apps to identify birds, bugs, plants and rocks. You just take a picture and it identifies what it is! It’s a lot of fun!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The tree is divine, and we must name it at some point.

      I have that app and use it for plants all the time. I didn’t know you could use it for birds too! SWEET.


  2. I believe you can officially call yourself a land baron with the purchase of this ranch. Beautiful tree, beautiful spread, beautiful cows. What more could you ask?
    As for sapsuckers don’t be too excited. Those little beasts have turned our lovely white birch trees into Swiss cheese. We’ve had to cut down three thanks to their endless pecking. While I love all birds, they are destructive little bastards.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Am I a Land Baron or Land Baroness? 😜😳

      Well, so far I’ve only seen one of the sapsuckers, so perhaps I’ll be spared. We do have a plethora of red-bellied and piliated and knock-on-wood, nothing has been destroyed as of yet.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. What beautiful cows. I realize they are not yours and will be mooving on, but they really are lovely.

    And I’d have fallen for the very same tree.

    I am a lifelong Bird Enthusiast, and I saw my very first bluebird a few years ago. I almost cried. Likewise my first pileated woodpecker (those things are as big as chickens). And I’m still unreasonably excited each early spring when the bufflehead ducks return to the lake. You’ve caught The Fever now; there’s no turning back.

    The only way to forgive yourself for the shameful way you deChristmased is to reChristmas earlier, and in stages. That way, you won’t feel panicked or annoyed. Accept it and allow for it. Either that or spend a couple hours per week now (or maybe in March) reorganizing your mess.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. March? 😳 I hear you. I will do better next year. Wait, I mean THIS year.

      The bird thing is real. We have pileated woodpeckers here and in GA. They are mesmerizing and, yes, as big as chickens.


    1. See, fifty. It’s a magical birding time for us.

      I spoke to my husband about covering the tree and storing it in one of our garages, he was on board, but when I searched for a good cover, I couldn’t find one big enough. They sell them, but for shorter trees than ours.

      Maybe next year, I’ll remove the ornaments and cover it with XL sheets and leave the lights on. The lights are always an issue for me. Thanks for that idea.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m over 50 and an interest in birds has not struck me yet. Maybe when life is less hectic here. I have been wildly entertained by a squirrel who nested in our gazebo and then moved her babies one at a time while I watched. She carried them in her mouth and followed EXACTLY the same path with each one. I assume she was Finnegan’s presence was making her lose her nuts/marbles – or whatever.

    The property is beautiful. Your little brave-behind-car-windows pup is a hoot. I love his jacket, so stylish.

    I took down all of my Christmas decor in one big sweep this year, but I’ve been struggling to get the bins back down in the basement. I just finished putting stuff in the last bin last night (it was all on the dining room table). Tank leaves for Ireland today and I just told him that he’s gonna help me carry it down before he goes. The lights are still in a heap on the floor, so I feel you. If you are looking for a lights buddy to help in January in Florida . . . I’m your gal. Happy to tear myself away from the windy city. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, you’re not a regular fifty-year-old; you’re a cool fifty-year-old. 😉 Maybe when you have time on your hands, you’ll notice the birdies.

      I’d also be fascinated by the squirrel’s move from one area to another.

      We’ll have a meet and greet and light sorting party!


  5. O.K., first of all, I’d like you to know the rabbit hole you sent me down with your “dolphins make her cry” phrase. I read the rest of your post, while the whole time the back of my brain was going, “dolphins make me cry, dolphins make me cry…” I knew I knew it, but just couldn’t place it. So then I googled that and it led me to Hootie and the Blowfish and now I can rest easy. (I Only Wanna be with You for anyone else who was going a little bonkers).
    Pack up the tree however you want because if you live in my house, it’s the wife who is going to unpack all the Christmas stuff and do the decorations anyway. I’ve always loved watching the birds. My dad was like that. I, honestly, got a box of suet “cakes” to put in the suet feeder as a Christmas present from my husband. I get irrationally excited if I see a cardinal. (I’ve received cardinal ornaments for Christmas presents as well).
    Your new property is so pretty, and I would love that tree, too. -Jenn

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m SO SORRY. I thought it was apparent. Doesn’t everyone speak in lyrics? 😉

      I’m also the one who packs and unpacks for holidays, so it’s my mess to make or clean up as well.

      I always have cardinals; there’s a nest in the yard almost all year, and I’m still excited to see them, so I get it.


  6. Suz, I will join you in your bird excitement. We had some sort of hawk (a Cooper’s I think) come land in our yard over the winter break and I got Very Excited about it, to the point that I was texting photos of it to anyone I knew who would be remotely excited by it. They were… not as excited as I thought they should have been. But it was so neat!

    The property is gorgeous. I love winter, and how it wipes everything bare and the landscape just has to stand there, naked, but still has such dignity and beauty.

    Except for those vicious dog-eating cows. I can’t believe you would expose your precious Peanut to such dangers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, had you texted me a pic of the hawk, I would have joined you in the excitement. I’ve also seen a few around here, and they are magnificent. (even though I know they’re eating the yard bunnies–nature, whatcha gonna do?

      Dog eating cows! Thanks for the giggle.


  7. I’m right there with you, Suz…I also swear that I used to have my shit together. Now about those lights….the only way to not have regrets in December is to throw the whole tree (lights and all) and start fresh – otherwise December You is going to hate January You.

    I’m not terribly interested in birds (and I’m in the 50 area) but I do love when the cardinals and blue birds make their appearance in my yard.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Bijoux

    It really IS fun to see a new bird. We get a variety of woodpeckers and the pileated is such a delight to see. He’s a cartoon come to life! I got excited this summer because we had a ton of bluebirds, which seemed unusual.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. bibliomama2

    A yellow-bellied sap-sucker is a REAL BIRD? It is entirely justifiable to be excited about that. And if I had to take the Christmas tree down myself I would have done the exact same thing – maybe next year just throw it out and buy a whole new tree.
    I also have a pipsqueak dog that is brave far away and a chicken up close.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m not a bird person, that’s all there is to it. I know they’re out there in nature doing all sorts of things, but I don’t care about them. I don’t want to hurt them, just also don’t want to know any specifics about them. There, I said. Try not to hate me.


  11. You’re absolutely not alone. The first time we spotted a cardinal after moving to Wisconsin, Tara and I both squealed out loud. And then burst out laughing over the ridiculousness of it all, but hey…where I come from, the birds are usually blue, not red! It’ll be a novelty for some time.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. When we bought a house five years ago, my husband put up two bird feeders and I have no idea how it became my job to keep them filled, but I worry about the birds when we leave the house for more than two days and keep a count of how many I see. It’s weird and I don’t know what happened or how I became interested. Maybe it’s just a think that happens in your brain when you turn forty?

    Liked by 1 person

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