Some announcements

Willow Flycatcher

This is a post for news-y bits that I’ve been collecting over the last week or so. I thought I’d just hold on to them all and put them into a single non-nature post. Well, still nature-related, just not directly so.

First, I’ve participated in a few blog carnivals that all came out recently. Carnivals are a great way to sample the writings of many different people, as well as learn about many different, varied things. I invite everyone to browse over to It’s Just Me (aka The Egret’s Nest) for I and the Bird #78. Lots of great bird-related stories, from close to home to far abroad (no matter where home is for you!). Once you’re done there, check out Gossamer Tapestry for the latest Circus of the Spineless (a carnival dedicated to – you guessed it – invertebrates of all shapes and sizes), edition number 34. And finally, wrap it up with a visit to Earth, Wind and Water to read all about our arboreal neighbours in the Festival of the Trees #25.

Northern Pine Looper - Caripeta piniata

Some exciting news of a more personal nature, the field guide to moths that myself and The Moth Man will be co-authoring has been bought by Houghton Mifflin and will find a home in their Peterson field guide series. We have yet to sign the official documents, but the deal has been done, and I’m very excited to get started on the project! During negotiations it also came up that they’re planning a re-design of the Peterson series in the next few years, of which ours will be one of the first. It will be in the style of most bird books, with the images opposite the text and maps. We’re pretty stoked. Our deadline is 2010, so expect to see the book hit shelves in a couple years (if not before!).


And finally, a few days ago Voice of the Turtle passed on a Tree of Happiness to me. The “award” or recognition includes the above image, which is written in Portuguese. Not speaking Portuguese myself, I had to run it through a web translator. Actually, I ran it through several, since none of them are perfect. Roughly, the words mean this:

You have just received the Tree of Happiness.

It is still just a little seedling, but depends on you to grow steady and strong.

Plant it in your heart, water it with smiles and kindness, feel the fragrance of its flowers, the sweet taste of its fruits and share its shadow with whom you want!

The good things are better still if we can share them with people dear to us; then be a generous person and share this tree with your friends.

So plant happiness where you go!

You’ll see how many people come closer.

Will you?

This would be better if I had an actual little seedling to nurture and grow and share, but in the absence of that, a recipient is supposed to list six things that make them happy, and pick six other bloggers who deserve such an award (presumably because their writing makes you happy, rather than that you think they need an infusion of happiness).

Things that make me happy (in no particular order):

1. Breathing the fresh air, feeling the breeze in my hair and the sun on my face, listening to birds sing, out in the quiet of the countryside on a warm day.
2. Sharing my knowledge with someone and watching them grow, or seeing their enthusiasm or amazement in the subject. Blogging falls into this category.
3. Doing good by someone. Anyone, friend, family or stranger.
4. Sitting in a puddle of sun with a book in my hands, a tea at my side, and a purring cat in my lap.
5. Spending time with Blackburnian. Catching up with my best friend or family.
6. Art supplies. I like playing with them, too, but really art supplies are my version of the woman’s shoe collection. Don’t send me into an art store unsupervised.

I started to list six blogs that I felt were worthy recepients. I got up to six, then realized there was no way I could pick just six blogs who exemplified the qualities set out in the Portuguese above. So instead, I point you to the blogroll in my sidebar. All of these bloggers show some or all of the qualities listed, or I wouldn’t have included them in my blogroll. If you haven’t visited these sites, I highly recommend you do.