Wednesday Vignette – honored guests

Okay, this is an absolutely terrible photo, but I will keep trying until I get it right. This is the perfect opportunity (and reason) to learn how to properly focus my camera on what I actually want to portray – rather than just randomly point and shoot and occasionally get lucky. But, as it is the most exciting thing going on in my life right now, I can’t contain myself. I need to share it NOW!


I was chatting with a neighbor the other night when, all of a sudden, she discovered a little hummingbird laying on eggs in the giant magnolia. Imagine that; one of the smaller creatures frequenting our yard, nesting in the largest creature of them all. Mesmerized, we watched her for a little while, until we felt bad about the probability that we might be disturbing her. And yet, I can’t seem to leave her along completely. I like to go out front, coffee in hand, and sit on the steps and wait for her to take a snack break.

She was very strategic in where she built her nest. There is a massive, blooming fuchsia about 5 feet away from her. Fuchsias, of course, turn to ugly sticks in the winter, and for as much as I don’t appreciate its winter presence, from the end of April to first hard frost, it’s a non-stop hummingbird buffet. She’s a smart one, my little hummer…  Just in case she might occasionally like a hit of her favorite junk food, I moved the hummingbird feeder from the backyard and planted it in front of her, as well.

Anyway – again – forgive the crappy photo. The way she has positioned herself she faces east, and is illuminated by the morning sun. Mornings are the best time to try to eternalize her. Once she is shaded by the leaves, it gets pretty dark in there. I snapped this picture on my way to work today. If it weren’t for the fact that I was running late, I would have kept going, until I had a decent shot. Alas, there will be more mornings… if I ever get that perfect shot, I will be sure to show you. More to come…

About annamadeit

I was born and raised in Sweden, By now, I have lived almost as long in the United States. The path I’ve taken has been long and varied, and has given me a philosophical approach to life. I may joke that I’m a sybarite, but the truth is, I find joy and luxury in life’s simple things as well. My outlook on life has roots in a culture rich in history and tradition, and I care a great deal about environmental stewardship. Aesthetically, while drawn to the visually clean, functional practicality and sustainable solutions that are the hallmarks of modern Scandinavia, I also have a deep appreciation for the raw, the weathered, and the worn - materials that tell a story. To me, contrast, counterpoint, and diversity are what makes life interesting and engaging. Color has always informed everything I do. I’m a functional tetrachromat, and a hopeless plantoholic. I was originally trained as an architect working mostly on interiors, but soon ventured outside - into garden design. It’s that contrast thing again… An interior adrift from its exterior, is like a yin without a yang. My firm conviction that everything is connected gets me in trouble time and time again. The world is a big place, and full of marvelous distractions, and offers plentiful opportunities for inquiry and exploration. I started writing to quell my constant queries, explore my discoveries, and nurture my curiosity. The Creative Flux was started in 2010, and became a catch-all for all kinds of intersecting interests. The start of Flutter & Hum at the end of 2013 marks my descent into plant nerd revelry. I occasionally contribute to other blogs, but those two are my main ones. For sure, topics are all over the map, but then again - so am I! Welcome to my blogs!
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21 Responses to Wednesday Vignette – honored guests

  1. It is fun reading about your trying – keep doing so.

  2. Tina says:

    What a gift!! I’ve never seen a hummingbird nest, except in photos, and certainly never seen mama in building action. You’ll have lots of entertainment for the next weeks. I hope you’ll continue to post about this. My WV is also a bird thing; thanks for hosting!

    • annamadeit says:

      I had only seen photos of them too, before seeing some in the rafters at a couple of nearby nurseries. And now this – at a much closer distance, for convenient viewing. Trust me – it’s tiny! So cute, and I’m doing my very best to be respectful of her privacy. Going to read up on this camera focusing thing…

  3. bergstromskan says:

    How lovely, even it looks like a morel to me. Please keep working and sharing. We all long for news filling our hearts with joy

  4. Did you see the photo I shared on FB a few weeks back of the small nest I yanked out of its safe spot while doing garden clean up? There were four eggs, I felt so horrible. I tried to get it back in the right spot but of course mamma never went back to tend that bunch. In the end they fed a scrub jay. Ugh. I’m glad you’re having a much nicer experience with your nest.

    My WV:

    • annamadeit says:

      You know, I DID see that… I’m so sorry! I can totally see feeling horrible about it, but it really wasn’t intentional. And everyone who knows you knows that, so please don’t beat yourself up. It could happen to anyone. Hugs!

  5. Kris Peterson says:

    I hope your hummer and her offspring prosper – and that you eventually get the photo you want. I’ve got lots of hummingbirds but have yet to see a nest here. They seem to hang out in the peppermint willows way above my head, and I suspect they may be nesting there as well.

    • annamadeit says:

      They are so tiny! Had it not been for the trained eye of my neighbor, I would likely have missed it. And now, I can’t walk by without checking in… 😀

  6. hb says:

    My neighbor has a nest right outside her kitchen window for the second year running. Mama raised one pair successfully last year, and after success again this year, is on her second round of eggs right now. Enjoy watching the little miracles grow.

    • annamadeit says:

      Thanks, hb – I definitely am! I kind of envy your neighbor for being able to spy from the other side of a window pane. I always feel like I’m stalking her, when I get too close.

  7. tonytomeo says:

    Ah, just yesterday, my colleague down south told me that a hummingbird family built their nest outside of one of the windows of his bedroom, within view from inside – which is better than them nesting inside.

    • annamadeit says:

      Haha – yes, better for sure! Like I told hb, I wish I could see her from the window. It feels kind of rude to be craning my neck from below to spy on her…

      • tonytomeo says:

        Some birds do not care. The reason I made that comparison is because a few birds started families in my former home. Doves tried to do so in the dining room, but got evicted. A pair of some unidentified starling sort of bird set up residency in my shower. By the time I realized what they were doing, there was already an egg in the nest, so I could not evict them. I never looked after that, but I believe that there was only one chick. It grew up fast, and they all left. At least the mess was negligible in the shower. It was creepy though.

  8. Jason Kay says:

    So cool! Would love to fund a hummingbird nest. They have not arrived yet this year, which may be just as well given the cold.

    • annamadeit says:

      The Midwest has had such a lingering winter this year. My Ohio mom said they expect freezing temperatures this weekend. Yikes! Hang in there, Jason – spring will come!

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