Who Does All the Work?

This morning, my husband announces that the Northern Cardinals have returned to the Winterberry bush to begin their nest.

“The male does all the work,” he claims.  “Look at him!”

I start laughing.  “That’s not the male.  The male is the bright red one up in the tree.”  The female is the one working hard to build the nest of twigs, vines, and bark.  She darts back and forth into the bush.  She’ll work for over a week to build a four story home:  twigs first, then leaves and moss, then bark, then grass. 

“Oh,” my husband says after watching the male. “Yeah, the male’s not doing anything.”

Well, actually, we learn he’s on high alert to protect and defend.   What looks like rest and relaxation in a nearby tree is actually guarding.  He also brings food to his mate the entire time and will continue to care for her while she lays eggs and incubates them.

I love learning about Northern Cardinals and how they make life work.  Both work so hard, but in completely different ways.

When I think I’m doing all the work, I realize I’m really not.   Living with flair means we acknowledge all the ways we work together.

(You don’t want to disturb these birds in their nest building phase, or they’ll abandon the site to find another.  I didn’t take photos for this reason!)  

Do you often wonder if you’re the one doing “all the work?” 

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  1. When our kids were young, I used to feel like I was doing all the work because it was so physically draining. But with life came maturity that both Wonderful Husband and I were a team. Yes, he did leave for work each day to provide for us, while I was home with the kids…yet at the end of the day we picked up the parenting/married teamwork. And now that the kids are adults and both of us working full time…the teamwork continues.