I never thought I would hear myself saying it has been kind of fun sorting through my mother’s collection of saved greeting cards.
The vintage cards are really the best. But anyone who inherits thousands of greeting cards has to make a decision regarding what to do with the cards. I have opened every card and read every name.
If the card had been given to one of my siblings – it goes in their packet of memorabilia. The cards with notes in them are certainly little treasures. And the vintage pictures on the front are so fun to look at. I did learn those who put scrapbooks together will often use vintage cards, so I will likely find someone who will be happy to be the new owners of a collection of old greeting cards.
I found a birthday card my sister Jeanette had received from one of the Gabriel girls – who were our neighbor ladies when we were growing up.
Verna Gabriel was known to type our name and address on the envelope. She lived two houses from us – but she placed her cards in the mail – and it was wonderful to receive a card on our birthdays.
The Kimpel kids learned the combination of the little post office mailbox – which was P. O. Box 299 – and it was fun to turn the knob in the directions it needed to go before it would open, and we could reach in and retrieve the days mail. We often rode our bikes uptown or picked it up on our way home from school. Our Aunt Pearl worked at our hometown post office.
I recently wrote an article about what a true-to-life board game would be like, and it seemed to me the little characters that would make their way around the board would surely be shaped like little ostriches with their heads in the sand.
I shared that article with my proactive wellness discussion group. Like most of us, I did not know much about ostriches – but I did know they don’t really put their heads in the sand. I started to wonder why it was such a popular belief. And of course that information is a click away.
The legend regarding ostriches with their heads in the sand may have started because people have noticed them picking up pebbles in their mouths. Ostriches ingest sand and pebbles – which help them swallow their food. Another reason may be because ostriches will fall forward in the sand and lay their head on the ground if they feel threatened. This makes their body resemble a bush to passing predators. Ostriches will often do this if they are attempting to protect their eggs.
I was interested in finding an ostrich figurine or toy – so when I was shopping recently in the toy department – I had to laugh about being drawn to anything that looked like an ostrich – the flamingo and the crane and even the llama seemed to jump off the shelf at me. The store employees who were helping in the search found they were doing the same thing and gravitating towards anything that looked like an ostrich.
I chuckled because I had to make myself think what the ostrich looked like amongst all the little animal figurines. An online search brings up quite a few ostrich items, and it’s pretty cute stuff.
I decided to order a children’s book about ostriches. I had plans to read the book and then give it to my grandson for his birthday. Would it be considered ‘used’ or ‘re-gifted’ if I read it before passing it along to him? He loves books, and he loves animals – so I felt the purchase would end up being a good one.
In my sister Jeanette’s folder of saved cards and memorabilia, I came across one of Verna Gabriel’s poems, and I smiled when I realized she had typed a poem about ostriches.
Her poem reads:
“The Ostrich is a silly bird,
With scarcely any mind.
He often runs so very fast,
He leaves himself behind.
And when he gets there has to stand
And hang about til night,
Without a blessed thing to do
Until he comes in sight.”
I think it has been since third grade since I cared about the ostrich. But after reading this poem, I wanted to know a little more – like why they are ‘without a blessed thing to do.’ I always knew they could run fast, and they could not fly – but now I wanted to know how ostriches spend their day.
It made me wonder if I had ever seen an ostrich in real life – at any of the zoos we have visited. My husband didn’t know either. I told him ostriches stand 9 feet tall, and they often weigh 400 pounds. He didn’t know that. And their eggs are equivalent to the size of 24 chicken eggs. The ostrich can run 45 miles per hour. It would have to be fun to watch them run – and I did find some online videos of the silly things.
There are many good ostrich books to choose from online, and I was searching for my book on a Wednesday night when snow and cold was predicted for the weekend. So if I placed my order fast-like, I would have a little bit of fun reading material for the weekend – and perhaps I could finish typing about the ostrich after I read my grandson’s new book.
So my new Ostrich book arrived just a day after I ordered it – and I learned that Ostriches are native to Africa, and they live in the grasslands. In the mornings and afternoons, ostriches feed. They walk around slowly with their heads up high to look out for danger. They rest in the middle of the day if it is very warm out. Females keep their eggs warm and safe during the day, and the males take over at night.
At night it can get cold in the grasslands, so an ostrich will wrap its wings around itself like a blanket.
I was recently in conversation with friends who were discussing a picture of a sloth in a tree, their habitat, and the reason why they so rarely exit their tree.
We were laughing and I thought to myself that I sure don’t know a thing about sloths. And I really don’t want to write about sloths, but I know I will. So I ordered a book about sloths to arrive with my book about ostriches.
Then I saw an online article about the baby kangaroos who had survived the recent Australian fires. And they were so stinking cute. They were wrapped in warm blanket-type totes. And there went my mind thinking about baby kangaroos. Really, I know that baby kangaroos hang out in their mother’s pouch – but for how long?
My next question was how did God come up with all these little and big creatures. How did he come up with so many different flowers and birds and the lakes and the seas? And sea shells and rocks and gems. He knew to hang stars in the sky – and how to make them twinkle. And snowflakes – how did He figure out the snowflake?
If I had been in charge of creating the world – I would just think I am not creative enough to create creation.
It seems there will be no end to the things to write about and be fascinated with. God’s green earth has no boundaries – and we can only imagine what heaven must be like once we are done marveling at the things God put on this earth for us. Will there be authors in heaven? Will we continue our writing and our reading? Surely there will be musicians in heaven. There will be talent in heaven.
Heaven… I’m trying to remember where I heard it said that no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love Him.