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Monday, March 28, 2016

Cactus in the Woods

“We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand – and melting like a snowflake.” — Marie B. Ray

Mr. Push-up has yet to appear this year though we’ve had our week of spring.  He and his kin will all reclaim the patio, once the girls are gone. Mr. Push-up is an enormous lizard who constantly does what his name depicts and the ‘girls’ are inquisitive canine toddlers. These are the things I thought of as I packed for our latest adventure.  No, we’re not headed for a group root canal—I just have trepidations; sparkly little dust bunnies of what ifs that hang in my mind like stars on a moonless night.

The truth is, I love adventures as much as I hate leaving home. What a paradox. And it’s not like we haven’t camped in the area for thirty years. But now we’ve purchased a home in the woods, a summer home, with an adequate yard for the girls and ample room for friends and loved ones. This will be a blast! We’ll be out of the brutal desert heat, near tons of lakes for fishing and close (enough) to bookstores.  I got this! I think. But will a cactus still grow in the woods?
Here’s an excerpt from my first journal entry at the summer place, earlier this month:

Patches of December snow still remained on the ground as roof edges dripped in thin silvery waterfalls at midday. A squirrel I’ve named Roger knew we were here immediately and kept up constant surveillance from a tree branch that looks right into the dining room as we unloaded boxes. I’ll have to feed him out front, once the girls get here. Can the fireplace possibly warm this entire cabin?

Turns out, a steaming mug of coffee in my hands on a more than chilly pre-spring morning was splendid! Perhaps next time I’ll take my mug outside; while Roger munches Cheez-its.  And once the snow melts, I plan to check out the haunted forest that everyone speaks about in whispers.
In the meantime folks, I’m just about ready for the 7th annual April A-ZChallenge, are you?

Have you ever felt displaced? Do you like adventures? Do you have one (adventure) planned for this summer?


  1. Hi, dear Diedre!

    You are lucky to be able to escape the desert heat and enjoy an oasis in the woods - your summer cabin. I think your cacti will do alright as long as they can catch at least a brief period of sunshine each day. Those tiny lizards that do push-ups all day long are plentiful here in Florida. My Cocker Spaniel Toto was fascinated by their movement and sometimes went after them. One time she latched onto a larger lizard, a skink, and bit its tail off. I'm pretty sure the skink was able to grow a new tail over time. It's so cute that you have named the squirrel Roger and intend to give him a helping hand-out. Be careful when you explore the haunted forest. You know what happened to the camera crew in Blair Witch Project. :) Be careful on those lakes. You know what happened to those groups of teenagers at Camp Crystal Lake in the Friday the 13th series! :)

    I am not participating in the A to Z challenge, but will do my best to keep up the pace and read the posts of my most loyal friends. That, of course, includes you, dear friend Diedre!

  2. Hi Shady!
    I hope you're right about the cactus surviving because I was metaphorically speaking of myself - ha!
    My Mr. Push-up is now the half the size of a large squirrel but he does have a ton of tiny off-spring.
    I shall heed your warning (bless your heart) about the haunted forest, but I can't resist, you know. At the lake I typically read and write on shore (because I get seasick) while the guys do their fishing.
    You know, the lady at the antique store started to tell a lake story...I'll have to pay another visit and hear the ending!
    I also believe the skink's tail will grow back. My cats were holy terrors on the poor things but they recovered admirably well :-)
    Thanks so much for coming by, dear Shady!

  3. Your home in the woods sounds lovely. I know you and your family will enjoy it. I hate the heat, and although I don't live in the desert, I understand the appeal of escaping. Florida heat can be awful.

    I hope your cactus thrives!

    1. Hi Chrys!
      I imagine you have a lot of humidity there, but how wonderful to have the ocean nearby.
      I think one of the best things about not exactly camping anymore is not having to preserve water. You just never want anything more than when you can't have it;-)

  4. I've often dreamed about having a summer place...just somewhere to go when the weather gets unbearable here. I'm not sure I like adventure too much, though.

    1. Hi Stephanie,
      A respite or change of pace is always good when heatwaves start to fry the brain cells :-)
      When blue and yellow meadows stretch from mountain streams even a curious bee can spark an adventure - one afternoon while reading in the shade of a towering pine I was bombarded with pine cones from above by a laughing squirrel with beady eyes and the rest of my day was energized!

  5. Oh, I'm sure you'll make such memories and enjoy the home away from home so much!! Congratulations! And your blog...I absolutely adore the redo!!!
    Revisit the Tender Years with me during the #AtoZChallenge at Life & Faith in Caneyhead!

    1. Howdy, Barbara!
      I think we will enjoy :-) I guess it's just the permanence of the cabin itself that gives me slight pause. But excitement grows as desert days get warmer.
      Thank you - on the redo :-) I did it on a whim and really am glad I did.
      You bet, I'll be following the Tender Years!


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