My Grandmother's legacy

by Lisa Ladd
(S. Portland, ME)

I never gave much thought to birds as I had lived in a city apartment most of my adult life. My Grandmother however LOVED Cardinals. For gift giving occasions, I would always be on the lookout for Cardinal trinkets, jewelry, and apparel that I could give her. The last thing I gave her was a candleholder with a cardinal on it.


My Grandmother died in August of 2003. I had just bought my first house several months earlier. My mother called me at work when she heard of Nana's passing. I immediately left work to be with my mother who I knew was devastated. I made a quick stop at home to meet up with my husband who was going with me. As we left the house, my husband glanced into the backyard and saw a cardinal in one of the bushes lining the backyard. We both just stood there for several minutes, silent, staring at the bird. Other than pictures, I had never seen one before.

The first thing I told my mother when I saw her was that we were visited by a cardinal while on the way out the door to see her.

We all agreed that it was a calling card form Nana.

Today, I have 3 feeders that I keep stocked for the birds. I see cardinals on occasion, and think of Nana each time.

In November, my husband was diagnosed with cancer. The day I found out, I looked out my window and saw the elusive bird. I know it was a sign that everything was going to be all right. So far so good...




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Jan 06, 2009
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Still With Us
by: Anonymous

I have come to understand we are blessed with reminders of our loved ones after they are gone from us... When I see butterfly's flitting flower to flower playing in the wind I feel my daughter Amanda who passed in 2003 is near; the rich humus smell of fall leaves on a breeze and I know my Mom is close by; when the crows start to chatter I know my Grandma isn't far away (she loved feeding the crows though most farmers think of them as pests). Funny thing is, these occurrences seem to happen when I need them most, if I need advice or even a little cheering up.

No doubt your Cardinal friends are there to comfort you. No need to ask how or why, just take strength from their visits and enjoy the moment :-)
Sending my prayers and best wishes for your husband's speedy recovery.

Jan 05, 2009
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Northern Cardinals are very special!
by: Anonymous

What a wonderful story. We all enjoy bird watching for different reasons and this is a story that I will not soon forget. Thank you for sharing your story with us.

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