An Unwelcome Interruption

Dear Readers:

You may have noticed that there was no Red-tailed Hawk Story post last weekend. My deepest apologies – and even more so because there will be no post this weekend either. The truth is that most of you probably know more about what has been happening at the nest the last two weeks than I. Illness does not respect one’s plans. The last few weeks have offered few times that I have been able to get on my computer, much less watch cams. I’ve been putting off even trying to release this post because well, frankly, it’s embarrassing. This has been an odd season in many ways. For some in the Cornell Hawk Cam community it has been a season of personal tragedy. Together with some other factors and the various technical issues (I don’t mean that as a criticism of the Lab as there is only so much one can control) – it’s just been a somewhat unsettling and exhausting time. Even without health issues.

With all that said, it is my heartfelt hope that Big Red and Ezra and their precious family have continued to bless you and bring you joy. It is a joy that I know stands true although I have not been able to tune into it or even feel it much lately. It is a joy that stands true although it seems like there has been so much heartbreak on so many bird cams this year. I am deliberately NOT elaborating – if you know what I mean then you know what I mean.

If there is one “theme” to this blog – that runs through all the entries – it is the gift of healing that is brought to us by the unspeakable and sometimes terrible beauty of nature. You may or may not believe this gift is from God. A few days ago I watched the movie The Choice. There were some things that I did not like about the movie itself but this is not a movie review. Anyway, at one point Gabby says to Travis, “If you can tell me why it [the night sky with the moon and the stars] is so damn beautiful, then I will stop saying my prayers.” Well, exactly….

That isn’t to say that a lot actually makes sense to me about God these days. But that’s a whole other story. All I am saying here is that the joy holds true. So as you watch Big Red and Ezra and the Gs finish out this season, may you feel that blessing soak into your very being.

Lastly, whatever I have or have not been able to connect with lately – some Cedar Waxwings have found the berry bushes outside my apartment window. Like everything else, my photography activities have been severely limited. However, I leave you with two pictures I was able to get and I hope you like them.

Please forgive me if it takes me some time to respond to any comments that may be made on this post.

With much love,


DSC_0024 Cedar Waxwing

DSC_0047 Cedar Waxwing


  1. Kate says:

    So sorry about your illness! Hope you are beginning to heal. These pictures are breathtaking — thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Susan Heffner (aka Susanna) says:

    Elly – Wishing you strength and wellness, peace, hope and love. Your pictures, like you, are beautiful!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Amanda Frost says:

    Thanks for this newsletter. Sorry it was so hard to write. And thanks for the brilliant photos of the waxwings! Wish mine in Santa Barbara hadn’t become so scarce…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Alice Witt says:

    The lives of each of us may be ordered by the Lord in a beautiful way for His glory, if we will only entrust Him with our life. If we try to regulate our own life, it will only be a mess and a failure.

    Only God, who made our brain and heart, can successfully guide them to a profitable end.

    I pray God blesses you in ways you never even dreamed.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Carol Di Lernia says:

    Thanks Elly. Love, healing, and health to us all. The pictures are wonderful, I love the waxwings. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Elly: As Peter Pan spoke to Tiger Lilly (I think I remember correctly)….”you are the sun and the moon and the stars”. Elly, he would say this to you too!!! You have more gifts in your little finger than most have in their entire body!!! Were you ever notified last year that my donation to Cornell was in your honor.??? Please be strong but be careful in your healing. Thank you for sharing your many talents and gifts to this not so secret admirer from Michigan. I also remember Peter Pan saying to Michael as he was teaching him to fly…..”lovelier thoughts, Michael!!!! I certainly would include you, your Journals and Big Red and Ezra in those lovelier thoughts…..let’s all fly!!! You are the best Elly and Iwish I could send even an ounce of the joy you have given all of us. Take care……precious cargo as we say.

    Liked by 1 person

    • elly k says:

      Merrill, thank you for this kindness and also I will never forget that you made that donation to Cornell in my honor – I do not feel that I deserve that but am truly touched by the love and encouragement in it.


  7. CrabtowneMd says:

    Your photos are stunning in their clarity and color. They deserve a magazine cover ! May each day be brighter than the one before for you. Wishing health, peace and strength to all.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Jane Keutzer says:

    Your photos of the waxings are beautiful! I pray you will feel better soon. Illness dulls the edges of everything we look to for peace. Take good care of yourself!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Maureen M. says:

    I wish you healing and strength, Elly. Love and prayers are being sent your way. And about this year’s particularly wrenching heartbreaks on the bird cams…I do know what you mean. Knowing that anything can happen in nature does not diminish the pain and suffering – endured both by the birds and by those of us who monitor their lives. I try to remember to ‘look up’, both to the sky and to God. Your beautiful photos replenish my faith in nature and beauty.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Love you Elly ❀ Beautiful pictures, beautiful words, beautiful you ❀

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Lynn Meier says:

    Beautiful, Elly–as always. We all appear and disappear in the hawk group as life intervenes. Some share more, some less. I want you to know you have been missed, and my thoughts continue to be with you. You have already shared so much with us, and you’ve built a beautiful and useful legacy in the process. Please take care, and I look forward to your further contributions. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Deb says:

    Dear Elly, This post, as all of your posts, is beautiful and meaningful and truthful and heartfelt. For all of those things and much more, I thank you. Your Cedar Waxwing photos are wonderful! I’m glad you have them to bring you some joy. The important thing is for you to take care of YOU. We are all here for you, I hope you know. Wishing you strength and health as we turn the calendar to June. Sweet summer sightings for you, too!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Tiffany Simmons says:

    Elly, I haven’t had the chance to follow the hawks live this year, but have always appreciated your contributions to documenting this pair. I hope whatever is going on is a passing storm and wish you the best. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  14. ambph1 says:

    Elly, your eloquence is as usual, breathtaking. I am saddened to hear of your illness and hope that better health will find its way into your life again soon. Sending much white light, like the light you have sent into our lives for so long. Take good care.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. GhentArt says:

    Elly, I haven’t been able to connect much at all for various reasons and am embarrassed that I just saw your post here. I hope that you are healing and that all the love and beauty you have spread is making it’s way back to you.

    Liked by 1 person

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