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It’s always time to be thankful, but now seems a good time to look back on the year and all the amazing scenes I’ve witnessed and all the support I’ve had from you.

This year was our very first trip to Cape May. I keep going back to those photos to find inspiration for painting. Last week I decided to paint one more oystercatcher from that trip. The shot above of black skimmers was taken on Nummy Island, where we saw at least sixty skimmers and a lone tricolored heron. Photographing birds in flight continues to be a challenge, but there might be something there that could work. What do you think? Yesterday Kate got her 200th bird species of the year—a redhead on Burr Pond here in Vermont. I am always thankful for her company and enthusiasm on our trips. Sharing the beauty of these birds continues to be a joy for us. At a time when the news of bird species decline can be somewhat dire, I’m thankful for everyone who is working so hard to put that in check through habitat improvement, citizen science, and just sharing their appreciation with the next generation. I’m thinking of the Grassland Bird Trust, the Vermont Center for Ecostudies, and all the amazing work of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. But most important, I’m thankful for your support. Not just sales of cards, prints, and originals, but for all the little notes I get whenever I post a new painting. While I’m sure that some of you think of my bird obsession as a bit odd, it means a lot that you take the time to read my posts and share your experiences and ideas with me. This year, let’s see if we can make some time to spend together in the field. I know some pretty good spots, and I bet that you do too.

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