I’m gradually getting my appetite back after losing it during my stay in rehab. I don’t know when I’ve ever eaten a better and more delicious bowl of chili…homemade here at home.

There’s ice, sleet and snow on the ground, what I hope will be the last winter storm, although the ground covering is very pretty and its just right chili weather and to make it a bit more enjoyable, I have a ringside seat sitting at my kitchen table looking directly out my kitchen window where a large hawk that I have been watching for the last few weeks, as it soars and strikes in the open field between my neighbor’s Wesley and Goldie’s place and mine.

I see it often dipping and diving down from the tall catawba tree, searching and discovering a morsel or two, and lighting on the telephone wire nearby. Mother Nature has a knack for choosing the best actors when she decides to "put on a show."

Today it’s perched on the lowest branch of the black walnut tree, a few feet from my kitchen window, carrying on a conversation with a red headed woodpecker who has been a resident in that tree for sometime. This is the first time the big hawk has ventured up this close. He’s huge!

He’s perched in the same black walnut tree where I sat one evening in my kitchen during a spring storm, watching a large bolt of lightning rip the bark from its trunk.

Some of the smaller and bare limbs are hanging so low, with the light blue sky as a background, I can pick out objects. I see a heart, a face and the perfect letter of an "L" in calligraphy.

I’ve watched a lot of "goings on" in that black walnut tree. The squirrel feeder nailed to its trunk is the reason I never harvest one paper shell pecan from the big pecan tree in the back yard, although it produced a bumper crop this year, judging from the destruction of limbs and leaves on the ground.

The big tree was void of a pecan before maturing. What the squirrels didn’t devour, the noisy crows helped themselves to.

The handsome hawk is still perched and seems in no hurry to leave, which is fine with me.

In the meantime, I think I’ll sit here a little longer, fluff up the pillow behind my back and have seconds on another bowl of homemade chili.