Last year the events of my life caused me to miss the anniversary of Oma's ascension by a couple of days. When I returned to the cottage I found something quite unusual. I had never seen anything like it. The living room/kitchen is an open concept design with windows facing in three directions. The cedar deck surrounds this bright and open space that is the focus of Oma's Cottage.

It is a natural phenomenon that birds sometimes see their reflection in a window and since they are territorial will fly towards the reflection in an attempt to encourage the intruder to find some place else to settle down. Often this can be persistent and it usually is marked by some staining of the window where the bird has flapped its wings against the glass.

What was unusual in this case was that evidence of such behavior was clearly visible on four windows facing all three sides of the living room. Not only that but the activity was persistent enough that considerable guano had accumulated on the areas just outside the windows that were clearly used as perches.

Was it just a very insistent bird with strong territorial tendencies or was it a messenger seeking to leave word that an anniversary is not to be missed? It warms my heart to think it was the latter. Especially since birds have been so prominent in delivering messages from Oma over the last six years.

So this year I made it a point to settle in to my writing retreat during this special time of reflection. Thanks to Rod, a friend and a writer of excellent life stories himself, I found a path to capture the diverse stories of Oma's life and made great progress on the book.