The Bird is the Word-PERSONAL POST

So since I am off on forced hiatus while I recover from pneumonia (almost ready to start sessions again on the 29th!!!), I have had very little to post about on here that isn’t personal. That said, my energy levels are not what they normally are either and so I have had a lot of time for reflecting on my business and life goals for this year and I have decided that it is important to post some more personal things here as well so that you can all get to know who I am as your family photographer and exactly who it is you are trusting to create memories for you and your family.

It is fitting that the first post I am making with this in mind is about pets. I am a HUGE pet lover and always have been (quite literally since I was born). My first job was working at a pet food and supply store for several years, then I worked at a vet’s office for years as well when I was going to college attempting to get my vet’s degree. I didn’t ever really “get” certain science subjects that were needed so I changed my educational goals later on, but have never stopped loving animals with a passion. When our daughter was born we decorated her nursery with a bird theme. I have no idea why as I have always actually been afraid of birds (the only animal I am afraid of really…other than insects), but it just felt right at the time. Turns out she loves birds and has done since she was just a baby! We got her a bird feeder to sit near her window and she has spent many hours enjoying watching the chickadees and hummingbirds come to her window to feed as well as learning how to keep them clean and give them the best food and safest area to eat at. My husband and I talked a little about getting her a bird, but we had never fully committed to it until just before Christmas. She visited a family friend’s home and held their birds and she asked Santa for her first pet…a bird. What were we going to do? I was afraid of birds and they are a huge commitment (even if they do come in a little package!). We did our research and found the bird we thought was right for our family. However, a lot of the information out there on birds is not accurate and we ended up being talked into the wrong bird for us at the pet store. We re-homed that bird after realizing she was not happy and would only end up getting depressed and sick here and purchased the initial breed we had thought was right for us. A Parrotlet. They are not a very popular bird, but they were just the right balance of social bird and caged bird we were looking for. We brought him home and named him Jelly Bean (Beanie for short).

Something was not sitting right with me after a couple of days with him at home though. Although the people at the pet shop meant well I am sure and they seemed incredibly confident with their knowledge, I started coming across articles saying his size cage was too small and the food we had him on was not the best either. I took a trip down to a local bird supply specialty store called West Coast Tropical Bird Studio and I spent an hour talking with the staff members there. During this time I got a proper cage set up for Beanie and even more importantly a balanced diet! The food I had him on and the cage he was in would have created an environment to have bird aggression problems down the road. This is why it is so important to ensure you know what you are doing BEFORE getting the pet. We did things all backwards and thankfully I found information accurate enough to get me to go in and sort it as soon as it was possible. Had I gone there from the beginning I would have saved money and time and would have had a happy bird from the start. His first couple of days here Beanie was louder than a normal Parrotlet, although he seemed happy otherwise. As soon as he was switched to the new foods and cage however, his mood was even BETTER than it already was! He would sit on his new toys and peep softly and happily for hours while I worked, which was actually nice and relaxing to listen to. Since then he has already learned to give kisses, shake a foot and step up onto a finger. He is already a very well loved member of our family and I just wanted to make sure that anyone who reads this knows how important it is to get your pets the RIGHT way. Have patience, research using more than the internet (GO TO SPECIALTY STORES FIRST) and ensure that you are ready to commit to the pet you are adding to your family.

Here is a photo of our new little baby boy (he is only 2 or 3 months right now)

Thank you for reading and taking the time to learn a little more about me and one of the things I am MOST passionate about in my life. I would like to leave you with a quote which I believe in with my whole heart:

Mahatma Gandhi has said “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” Let’s help make our entire nation better by ensuring we do not mistreat our animals and that we seek help in caring for them to the best of our abilities.

  • Gurm - Thanks for sharing Ashleigh! Hope you feel better soon!

    BTW love the title of your blog!ReplyCancel

  • Diem Nguyen - it’s so great how passionate you are with animals. I’m actually kinda jealous I can’t have any pets of my own until i get my own place. :(ReplyCancel

  • Scott Robert Lim - Love the bird photo!! My wife Stacey had a similar bird for 15 years and walked around the entire house! Didn’t realize that birds could be so engaging and lovable. The cute thing was, the bird sounded like my wife, because she was the one who talked to it all the time!! Nice post!!ReplyCancel

  • Tauran - “Wait a minute, that isn’t a real lamp…” – Jelly BeanReplyCancel

  • Lyndsey - What a wonderful blog post!!! So happy Beanie is happier in his bigger cage and is on better food. I also love the quote;) I am also a huge advocate for more animal awareness and giving them the care that they deserve! he is so photogenic too:)ReplyCancel

  • Eldeen - My new little grandbird is adorable, love him already, and yes he is photogenic, but for the record, he really is that darned cute. :)ReplyCancel

  • Bandele Zuberi - Thanks for getting personal Ashleigh! It was great reading about something your’re so passion about and love that Ghandi quote at the end! Get well soon!ReplyCancel

  • lyssa - Love to read you Ashleigh!! Hope u feel better soon.. looking forward to read you more :-)ReplyCancel

  • Michelle Ng - So cute!!!!! So fun and thank you for sharing!!ReplyCancel

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