An Old Friend Returns on My Birthday… Sammy!


Dear Reader:

When I returned home late Saturday afternoon… I checked on my gardens immediately. As I walked the alley between the side garden and the back garden a bit of red caught my peripheral vision-I looked across a large expanse of yard and there was a red cardinal ( Sammy) sitting perfectly still on a bamboo branch… staring straight at me … I quickly grabbed my phone and took a quick photo… but I was so far away I knew I had to risk slowly moving in closer!

I kept moving in as Sammy calmly watched me and when I got just a few feet away I took the title photo shot… so close! Sammy tiled one wing as if waving at me-a long lost friend and then flew a way. After over a year… Sammy came back to see me!

For many of you new readers… you don’t know the love-hate relationship Sammy and I experienced for about a two year period. It started with Sammy attacking both side door mirrors on the then ” Big Green” -my old Saturn Vue-that got stolen twice before being crashed by a young car thief.

Sammy had pecked the side mirrors unusable-probably what caused the final crash as police chased the young car kidnapper.

It was my fault, indirectly, that Sammy and his family disappeared about a year ago-I got so tired of banging and yelling at the squirrels for getting in the bird cages in the side garden and destroying the plants and flowers that I took the bird cages down.

But now Sammy had returned…another great gift on my birthday! We both had missed each other!

Love this resolution!

Artist Kelly Rae Roberts took a peek back in her art journal, recently , and saw the artwork ( above) that she had created a long time earlier. Suddenly she remembered the message behind the painting that she sent out… Her question was: How do you finish the prompt, “From this day forward…”?

We are creatures of habit and equate the term ” resolution ” with New Year’s Eve… but what if we all stopped scurrying around long to come up for air, look around and take time to re-assess a change we want to make in our lives right now? In other words ” From this day forward” what is a significant yet subtle change that would warrant ” more ” in our lives- more love, peace, or flowers please.

As much as I love flowers …right now I would choose love… letting my family know more often how much their love means to me and how appreciative and filled with gratitude their love lifts me.

The thought started when Tommy thanked everyone for their sincere, heartfelt sorrow and caring over the loss of their little Khaleesi. Suddenly everyone was expressing love and complimenting Tommy and Kaitlyn for their generosity of giving older dogs (who had been mistreated) a chance to have a forever home… the pets would not die without experiencing what real love is. What an amazing gift.

I realized we shouldn’t have to wait until a tragedy befalls one of us to let each other know how much we care for each other. A quick text or email that reads ” The sun is out today and I just thought of you… have a great day!” Love you!

So until tomorrow… if you have a response to ” From this day forward…”- please feel free to share your resolution with our readers.

Today is my favorite day-Winnie the Pooh

Yesterday really was a favorite day…. Gingi picked me up and we went to Middleton Plantation for long walks and scrumptious desserts. So beautiful! What an amazing birthday adventure! Thank you from the bottom of my heart Gin-g!

The camellia bushes were filled with buds … just about to burst open… but try as hard as we could-we couldn’t find one bloom.

Until… I got home and walked into my backyard….one gorgeous bloom had popped open while I was at Middleton- it would not be out-done by a formal garden camellia bloom! Way to go ” Cammy!”

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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5 Responses to An Old Friend Returns on My Birthday… Sammy!

  1. Jo Dufford says:

    So happy Sammy is back. Hope he doesn’t like your new car mirror. I love Middleton. Know you two ladies had a great day. Keep celebrating your birthday as long as possible! Loved the post today.


    • Becky Dingle says:

      We did and I love the never-ending birthday…Middleton…what a wonder of the world we have in our own backyard!!!! Love you Jo!!


  2. Nancy says:

    Happy Belated Birthday. I read your post everyday and they are helping me find a new road in life. Thanks


    • Becky Dingle says:

      Nancy…your thoughtful comment touched me today and turned it into my “favorite” day. The thought that something I said helped you in anyway…fills me with much gratitude for the connection completed. I pray the road you are searching for lies in wait nearby!


  3. Rachel Edwards says:

    Loved being with you…we will do it again…


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