It’s strange to go from absolutely detesting birds to actively watching and oohing and aahing over them. When I lived in the city, the birds I encountered were the ones you’d curse at, where you’d be covering your head in hopes that nothing would drop on you from above.
But moving to the suburbs has opened up a whole new world of backyard bird-watching. My husband and I have to laugh at how quickly we’ve become these bird fanatics, spending breakfast conversing about the kinds of winged creatures we’ve spotted outside. And waking up to birdsong? Incomparable. So much better than sirens.
One of the most common sightings we have in our backyard is the cardinal. Which comes as no surprise—the cardinal is the state bird of Virginia (where I live). Copious sightings of the red (male) and less red or brownish (female) feathered friends keep us entertained. But there’s a spiritual element to cardinals that I only recently learned of, which adds another delightful angle to catching a glimpse of them.
Have you ever heard it said that cardinals appear when lost loved ones are near? Upon hearing the saying, I felt great comfort—with the abundance of cardinals in our yard, it seems lost loved ones are always with us. Perhaps that’s true in one way or another anyway, but having something beautiful to help visualize it is especially lovely.
That’s what Dune Jewelry had in mind when it created its cardinal necklace, a sterling silver token made in collaboration with spirit medium Tiffany Rice.
“Even though they may not be here physically, the cardinal is a sign that your loved one is with you in spirit guiding you through life’s moments,” said Rice in a press release.
For Holly Daniels Christensen, founder and designer of Dune Jewelry, the collaboration was an ideal fit. “We have received so many heartfelt letters from customers over the years telling us a meaningful story about a lost loved one,” she said in a press release. “They have sent us flowers from a funeral or picked a sand from our Sandbank that holds a special meaning to them. I have always wanted to offer a design that symbolizes hope, so when I met Tiffany, this design came to life naturally!”
Like much of Dune’s product line, the cardinal pendant allows the customer to select elements from Dune’s signature Sandbank, a supply of sand, soil, rocks, flowers, and other materials from over 4,500 locations around the globe. It’s a beautiful way to memorialize a loved one with something custom and meaningful.
Top: Cardinal necklace in sterling silver (pictured with elements from Valley of Fire, Nev.), $140; Dune Jewelry
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