I am down to one kid in a pretty big house.
A house built for 3 kids and their friends and our friends.
One of my friends recently downsized in a really big way.
She moved from exactly the same sort of neighborhood as I live in.
Homes with a homeowners association, but several acres between each place.
She and I both have been known to say that we'd never live in a neighborhood where neighbors can see in your kitchen (bedroom, bathroom, garage) again.
She and her husband got tired of caring for the large house on a large property.
She moved into exactly the sort of place we both said we'd never do.
After visiting her new house, I'll admit to a bit of jealousy.
I know how long it takes her to clean her house and how long it takes me to clean my house.
I know how long it takes her to tend to her yard and how long it takes me to tend to my yard.
As I sit and type this, there are dog hair fluffies floating about on my floor.
My kitchen is not cleaned up.
My bed is made, so that's something I guess.
Anyway, every time I think that downsizing sounds delicious, I see something.
I see something that I would never see if I lived in a smaller house on a smaller lot.
This morning, I saw this.
"What, you saw the top of a tree?", you ask.
Look carefully---in fact, if you click on the photo, it should get bigger.
Near the center, about 2/3rds of the way up the picture you should see white and orange and black.
A large bird caught my eye as it lit in the top of my owl tree.
A striking figure.
A gorgeous bird.
A Mexican Eagle---that's not really an eagle at all, but a falcon.
A bird nearly 2 feet tall with a wingspan of nearly 4 feet.
As I tried to sneak in for a closer picture, a Turkey vulture shooed him away.
Turkey vultures and Caracara compete for food.
Caracara's have a wide and varied diet.
Eating a dead animal is far easier than catching a live one.
Anyway, if I lived in the smaller house in a neighborhood, I would never have seen this bird.
I only saw him for a moment, but moments like these make me terribly happy.
It makes the house and yard work all seem worth it.