Life’s Chapters


For many of us, me included, feeding the birds was sparked by a family member who shared their love of nature. In a way, it was a gift that was given to me and my siblings. A gift that has lasted a lifetime.

Through the years, feeding the birds has become increasingly part of my daily life. I enjoy watching the birds as I drink my morning coffee. I laugh at young fledglings who demand food like they haven’t had a meal in days. I absolutely love seeing the bright red of the Northern Cardinal male against the black and white, winter landscape.  These are little the gifts that renew my spirit each day.

As we age, it may become harder for some of us to fill feeders, tend gardens, mow lawns, and shovel snow. Many of us downsize into senior condos or apartments. In doing so, we often must say “goodbye” to our birds.

The following stories show how much we value our birds and all the joy and beauty they bring to our lives. Ideally, senior living environments will allow some kind of communal bird feeding station as it will spark social interaction, and even fond memories as they transition through another one of life’s chapters.

A woman came in the store last week, tears were running down her face as she asked if we could help her unload her car. She had birdbaths, feeders, and related accessories. She had sold her home and she was transitioning into senior living. Letting go of “her birds” was her last undertaking before she left her beloved home. She was grateful we could help her pass on her well-loved feeders.

A father and son came in the store last week, they had just lost their loved one to cancer. She loved “her birds.” Please share these feeders and birdbaths with others who will treasure them.

A young woman who lives with her grandmother stopped in recently out of desperation. She was hoping to find a way to brighten her grandmother’s days. We set her up with a tray window feeder. The grandmother shook her head “NO” as her granddaughter hung the new feeder. Soon they had cardinals, chickadees, and goldfinch arriving daily. The grandmother is so thrilled to have the birds visit her each day.

Several women visit the store on regular basis. They bring their husbands along as the bird store is a safe, fun outing for them. Their husbands are struggling with memory loss, but they are cheered by their backyard songbirds.

An elderly couple stopped by to say “goodbye” as they were transitioning to senior housing. Both used walkers. They expressed their genuine gratitude for years of enjoyment.

A longtime Frequent Feeder Member was going through a divorce. She treasured her birds especially her orioles. She purchased a Frequent Feeder Membership for the new family who has since been in to purchase Bird Berry Jelly. The original homeowner still shops with us and has attracted orioles to her new home.

A young couple came in looking for seed. They had recently purchased their home from a family member and wanted to continue his legacy of feeding the birds.

By Eagan Manager ANN MCCARTHY