Spread the word…and we will spread our wings!

In loving memory of my father, Richard Gaunt Oct. 16th, 1924-August 10, 2013

Dad & Little Wingsmall

Dad feeding Little Wing
May, 2013

My father was one of my greatest supporters and cheer leaders in my life.  He seemed to maintain a true appreciation for life and for all people, whether they were the waitress at the waffle house, the ticket lady at the movie theater or the President of the United States, he showed unconditional love and respect.  He always asked for a name, always tipped, and treated people with love and kindness because he genuinely cared about them.  Dad didn’t have a lot of money yet he was one of the richest people in my life with the generosity of his heart.

And when his physical heart could not pump out that love any longer he said goodbye.  

 

Remembering those who serve….

 

Memorial Day 2011

This Memorial Day, there will many ceremonies to honor those who have served in the armed forces. One such ceremony is just outside Asheville, NC held at the State Veterans Cemetery in Black Mountain, NC. Please join us in remembering those who serve, and have served at 10 am, Monday, outside the cemetery chapel.

Asheville White Dove Releases has had the honor of presenting the white dove release finale both for Veterans Day and Memorial Day since 2006.

Please watch REMEMBER ME

 

A Special Dove Story Update….continued

Mareta5-9-13On March 9th of 2013 a funeral service was held for Mareta Morgan at the Green Hills Cemetery in Asheville, NC where a white dove release was presented as a tribute to her life.  Unfortunately the final bird was attacked by a hawk which has rarely occurred in the 8 years I have been presenting dove releases however on this day it happened to one young bird.  Following the service I found the small dove, severely injured, who was miraculously alive, brought her home and witnessed her will to survive.  I named her Mareta and was able to establish communication with the daughter of the deceased.  It seems, Mareta the dove kind of became a testimonial to the strength and tenacity of her mother, Mareta, and therefore represented something very special to this family.

I am happy to share that now two months later to date, Mareta the dove appears fully healed.  She recovered most amazingly and is flying here at the house and loft with all the other birds as though she had never had a brush with death.

Notice how you can barely see the spot on her Mareta’s chest…and how she holds her head up proud.  May your will to live and your strength of flight be ours to behold, dear Mareta the dove.

One People, One Bird, One Wish…

For thousands of years, white doves have been a traditional symbol in wedding ceremonies. To the ancient Egyptians, the dove represented quiet innocence. The Chinese saw the dove as a symbol of peace and long life. To early Greeks and Romans, doves symbolized love, devotion, and caring. The dove was the sacred animal of Aphrodite and Venus, the goddesses of love.dove image
In these ancient cultures, the groom would give a dove to the bride, symbolizing his promise to help care for her and for the family.

These days, Doves are regularly released at weddings as a blessing for the bride and groom.

 

Doves pair up for life, so they are a true representation of love and the eternal commitment that a couple have made.

Continued…This tradition has become hugely popular at weddings in the United States and the UK in recent years. It is also quickly gaining popularity in Australia.

There are many bird fanciers that have put their expertise to providing doves for release at events around the world.

It is really easy to have a spectacular white dove release at your own wedding that is just as enchanting as it would have been for people that participated in the weddings of ancient times (probably much more!).Fontaine Vinyards thumbnail

This tradition has become hugely popular at weddings in the United States and the UK in recent years. It is also quickly gaining popularity in Australia.

There are many bird fanciers that have put their expertise to providing doves for release at events around the world.

It is really easy to have a spectacular white dove release at your own wedding that is just as enchanting as it would have been for people that participated in the weddings of ancient times (probably much more!).

This video gives a beautiful visual and verbal explanation.

The story of Little Wing

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Carried in my warm sweater pocket

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seen with a full crop of food…

In the bird world Spring flings come early with mating and laying in January and February. It has to do with the increase in daylight.  It is not unusual to find the “Rock Doves” in my loft going to nest even though temperatures do not very well support the tiny hatchlings survival in such cold weather. Nevertheless one day while doing my routine feed and watering, there on the floor of the loft not far from what was a makeshift nest was a naked featherless hatchling lying on the floor seemingly dead and quite cold. I picked up the small featherless apparently abandoned bird who was probably only maybe a week old old and put it in my hand discovering that there was still life in it.  I held it for some 20-30 minutes until there was clearly a sign of life and blood flow returning.

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Snuggled like a little kangaroo

Occasionally for whatever reason, of which I do not know or understand, a parent bird will abandon it’s young and this was one of them. There is no restocking of the nest for the parent had made it’s decision and sometimes for good reason.  Most often I allow mother nature and mother bird to take their own course.  Mother knows best and the strong survive. This may be one of those rules of the animal kingdom where we should not intervene.  However, this time I did and the small helpless cold bird came back to life in my warm hand on that very cold February day.

Once the small bird was warmed, hand feeding began, usually twice daily in the first week.  Now I have hand fed many birds in my history of bird-keeping over the years and I must say that it can be a long process depending on the avian species.

Little Wing

Little Wing

The pigeon variety is actually a much shorter period until weening maybe about 6-8 weeks. This I am grateful for!

That afternoon was the beginning of my relationship to Little Wing, LW for short. I will say one thing, she/he (not sure yet) is one of the most photographed Rock Doves in my bird world environment and this story has only begun.

 

Balloons Blow…Don’t Let Them Go!

It will be Earth Day this next Monday, April 22nd, 2013. We are raising awareness about the littering of helium balloons. We will be passing out flyers in our community this weekend advocating alternatives to releasing balloons. One of these, of course, is releasing white doves. We ask that you join us in our campaign and let people know BALLOONS BLOW…DON’T LET THEM GO!

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Easter Sunrise white dove finale’, Erwin, Tenn.

We have been honored for the second year to participate in the annual Easter Sunrise Service in Erwin, Tenn., a courtesy of Valley Funeral Home managed by funeral director, Mike Peterson. ValleyFHEasterSunrise.jpg3

I make my way in the dark to the NC/Tenn. overpass before dawn to arrive at Evergreen Cemetery just before the first light of the day.  A small gathering of dedicated people, dressed warmly for the cold mountain temperatures and slight rain showers, are awaiting this meaningful Easter Sunrise Service. The small crowd all join in prayers and song to celebrate with enthusiasm in their voices. As Christians, there is a strong connection to the symbolic meaning of this holiday.

Michael Peterson awaits the right moment to release the white doves at the Easter Sunrise Service.

Michael Peterson awaits the right moment to release the white doves at the Easter Sunrise Service.

As the sun slowly rises over the mountains and the songs rise to the occasion, the finale of 20+ pure white doves are released from two white baskets symbolizing the joyous recognition of Christ arising.

All eyes are on the doves as they circle once, twice and or three times. There was a quiet feeling of gratitude as we all witnessed the doves join and fly off into the horizon.

And this is how Easter morning began…for one small group of worshipers in their community in Erwin, Tenn. this March 31st, 2013.

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                                                 Hallelujah!

 

A Special Dove Story…Update

Mareta 4-3-13

Mareta 4-3-13

Perhaps you read the previous post of this amazing story of the white dove that survived a hawk attack last month during a white dove release on March 9th, 2013.  As I previously stated, occasionally there are attacks from predators and this is something we cannot avoid if these birds are given the freedom to fly, which is their nature and delight.

Groce Funeral Home graciously shared a version of this story on their GroceFuneral Home/facebook page if you are interested in reading it.

I would like to share the following exert from their post: Mrs. Morgan’s daughter has written to us (Groce Funeral Home) and says, “Dale, I can’t tell you how much this has meant to my family. God works in mysterious ways. This bird so represent’s my mom’s strength and fighting spirit. What a blessing!â€

Mareta is continuing to gain strength each day since her incredible attack. She is a small dove, petite in size, yet shows great tenacity in her ability to recover from her almost fatal incident.

I saw Mareta the other day flying within the loft and enjoying the outside porch.  Her wound, although visible, is healing quite well.  I can see new pin feathers surrounding the affected area.

And just today I watched as Mareta ventured out for the first time since her attack from the loft into the yard to enjoy the wet grass from the rain with the other birds. Then suddenly in a moments time I saw her take flight with the flock.                                                                                                
Amazing! Wow, in just 3 weeks, Mareta is back at flying!                              
She circled twice but she knew her limits returning to the loft…for supper.                                         What a spirit she has for survival! Yeah!

 

 

What happens to your online presence after you are gone?

Recently a discussion was going around about what advice you would give a teen about online safety. There was a report on accounts where the owner creator died. This brings up many questions that are surfacing regarding the online presence of the deceased.

Apparently few states have laws providing facebook access to accounts by spouses and children and literally there are 10s of thousands of them out there. What laws need to be created to protect the deceased and their families regarding cyber space?

So think about it, what happens to your online presence after you are gone?
Do you just live on in cyber land surviving countless facebook upgrades and live forever in cyberspace? And what are you relations going to find? grave stones1

How can family’s legally access these accounts and make the appropriate changes to close them?
Should passwords be included in Wills and Testaments so accounts may be accessed more easily?
This is another reason to be aware of what you post online because it could wind up being your cyber memorial.