Since the red male cardinal started coming to my patio, I have never seen him in the company of the female cardinal, who usually isn’t close behind. But this particular bird, which I think is a northern cardinal, is alone.


Perhaps he will make friends with a new inhabitant to the patio, Deputy Rusty. I got him at the nursery in front of the antique mall the other day. 

Why Deputy? Well, he watches over the patio and never leaves his post. He looks a bit official, standing up so straight, so I dubbed him Deputy Rusty. 

On the other hand, Rusty does have a bit of a “dotty” expression on his face. I don’t think he’s the sharpest knife in the drawer. (Think Barney Fife.)

But I have taken a liking to him. Maybe he will set the cardinal straight about the fact that he needs to find a mate.

I worry about the cardinal. Is he lonely? Why does he flit among the objects on the patio, singing away? Do you think he’s trying to sing a mate his way? Gender confused?

I can’t wait for this iris to open. Apparently I batched several colors of irises in one pot when I moved. That’s okay. I love variety. 


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  1. Oh, Brenda!! Blacklist last night…….. SO GOOD!!!! How will we make it until Sept? I wonder if in late summer they will run the first season again. It would be fun to watch and see all the things I "missed" the first time around. And now that I know the story line ending for the season, it would be interesting to see all the inferences from the season and how they fit together in this puzzle. (I suppose I can find it On Demand, too.) I hope they don't "tweak" it too much and lose some of the edge they have. So many times the first season of a show is so good and then they forget what really made it that way and go off in some other direction.
    The new sheriff in town is great! Barney Fife for sure….
    In the spring, at least here in WI, we see the male cardinals much more than the females. I believe the ladies are on the nest. I do sometimes see them just at dusk in the evening. In a few weeks they will travel together again, and soon w/ the Littles in tow.
    I bet doing laundry will never be as much fun as it will be today, once you are all put together and ready to go! Have fun!!

  2. Deputy Rusty will surely stay his post. He looks very trustworthy.
    Is there a secret to getting cardinals to come to the garden? I have heard them occasionally, but they never come in. Maybe they are just passing through, maybe I live too far North.

  3. Hi Brenda, i have cardinal pairs coming to my feeders, most of the time the lazy male sits on the ground squawking at the female waiting for her to drop seeds to feed him. Not so much difference from humans, huh? And Rusty is too cute. Jean

  4. Brenda, tell Judi she is thinking of John Malkovich. Meanwhile, I liked the Rusty Rooster and the reference to him as Barney Fife…I am thinking the same thing! Looks like a Deputy Barney to me. 🙂 Hope you get that washer-dryer working by sundown today!

  5. We've had cardinals nest in our yard (central Illinois) and the females are pretty scarce during the Spring. The don't leave the nest when eggs appear. Very early in the am and pm do they leave the nest only after the babies are born. I see the pair of cardinals together in the winter at the feeder or eating on the ground. The males are so focal when the females are on the nests.
    I want to thank you for getting my husband and I hooked onto Blacklist. I told him one night let's see what that show is all about. James Spader has always intrigued me. He reminds me of another actor and his name has left me but I think he is getting his own TV show soon about a pirate. Oh, I wish I could think of his name. He starred with Sally Field in a movie where he played a blind man. Sorry a senior moment. Ha!

  6. Your Rusty Rooster is adorable! The little things you add to your garden make it such a delight – who wouldn't want to come sit and visit for awhile! From Fairy Gardens to yard art – every corner has something interesting to draw your eye there! Thanks for the inspiration – AGAIN!!

  7. It could be the female cardinal is sitting on some eggs. Maybe they have a nest somewhere nearby. When she's on the nest, the male will bring her some food.

    Deputy Rusty looks a little lonely too. I think you'd better be on the lookout for a hot chick for him to hang out with!

  8. Deputy Rusty is a piece of work! Very cute little guy. He's lucky to have your wonderful patio to be in charge of. As for me, hooking up washers/dryers, that's a man's job, or a plumber. I wouldn't know where to begin. We don't have cardinals out here, but I do have 3 cockatiels in a cage. A friend rescued 15 and gave me 2. My female mate to my male had died, so it seemed perfect to bring him 2 friends Well for 3 springs now she's been laying eggs, up to 17! She and her male companions watch over them and sit on them. So far we are at 8. Nothing ever happens and after a while I remove them from the cage. If one ever hatches I'll be shocked!

  9. The females, not being as brightly colored, don't stand out as much. Could she be hiding in the shrubs? Not sure, but you are right, as I usually see them together also. Love your little deputy there. The Blacklist? Never really got into that one. It looked too violent! Have a wonderful week and good luck with your washer!

  10. Sadly it is the last episode. Red looks smashing with the little yorkie. Your deputy is so cute. Hope you get your washer combo all properly installed. Once it is all hooked up you should show us a tutorial in photos. I am curious to know how it works.

  11. We have a lot of cardinals where I live. I rarely see a female, but often hear and see the males. You watch more closely than I do, but the females here are just so good at hiding and seem to stay close to where their nests are. The males are out having a good time and the lady birds are stuck home with the kids. I envy you your iris. I just love them.

  12. I love your beautiful photos today. So happy that I got to meet Deputy Rusty! His arrangement of different colors is what make him so unique.

    I sure am hoping that you get your new washer/dryer hooked up and can begin to enjoy the it. It sounds awfully complicated to set up. But the control is very similar to my LG washer and dryer, so it will be easy to operate.

  13. Oh I love your Deputy Rusty! Everything is lovely! I see the red wagon!!! Wel as for the combo…why cant thing just be simple? Oh a drain hose? Never heard of it and then where does the drain water go? Totally lost and ashamed to admit it….hope the plumber can get it ready for you. Have a great day!!

    1. I did manage to get the shipping bolts out, which was no small feat. They were in there very tight. Got all the way, (which was maybe two steps if I admit it, and I just did) to the part where you begin to attach the hoses. Hot and cold, but neither said which one goes where. So does that mean it doesn't matter? That told me I'd better call in the cavalry.

    1. I have all these instructions. Ah, but first you have to find the instructions written in English. And they never seem to be first anymore! What's up with that?

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