Just another day in the boondocks…

Tree against foggy Lake Superior

 Last night Laurie of Speaking of the Heart commented, “Kathy – I love that you live in the boondocks and that I can live vicariously through you!” 

 That simple statement resulted in huge glee.  I love living in the boondocks…and sharing it with whoever wanders by this blog.  

Sunlight on bed comforter

 “Boondocks” means a remote and undeveloped area.  That’s what we are.  We live in a cabin in the woods twelve miles from the nearest town of L’Anse which has 2,107 people (as of the 2000 census–heaven knows how many it has now.) 

Looking down to the Falls River

 Shall I share a story from long ago?  When I was twelve years old my family drove up to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in a station wagon.  We kids slept in the folded-down back seat.  (This was before the days of mandatory seatbelts.) 

 We stayed in a really neat cabin near Mass City, courtesy of friends.  It really was a neat cabin.  But try to imagine this from a twelve-year-old viewpoint.  There was only an outhouse.  The mosquitoes and black flies buzzed as big as chickadees and swallowed innocent “downstaters” whole.  (“Downstaters” are folks from Lower Michigan.  Also known as Berry Pickers.)  It was 90 degrees in the backwoods.  My mom and I stayed in the cabin reading our novels while the boys and Dad ventured enthusiastically into the woods. 

 I–honestly–prayed to God to “get me out of this godforsaken place.” 

Red maple flower atop leaf

Guess where God decided I should live my life? 

 Yep.  You got it.  In this “godforsaken” place.  In the boondocks. 

 Which has turned out to be…paradise in disguise. 

Red fire hydrant in morning fog

 We ended up moving here at the tender ages of 21 and 22, newly married, pondering whether we really wanted to relocate to Alaska.  We settled in an old house in the farmlands of Pelkie where the toilet froze solid in the winter and our pet was a shower spider named Sarah.  (I am not kidding.)  OK, we  had a dog named Bucky, as well, who was poisoned when he trespassed one too many times on the neighbor’s farm. 

Oregano in still life

 I probably prayed to God to get me out of that situation, as well.  

 But, strangely enough, thirty-two years later we’re still here.  We live even further out in the boondocks.  (God, apparently, has quite a sense of humor!) 

 And, you know what?  Life is good.  It is really good.  I would recommend boondock-living for everyone.   🙂

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

36 Responses to Just another day in the boondocks…

  1. I love the boondocks and your dialogue with your home turf. I just posted some of mine for you to see. We used to call downstaters “Gnomes” because they live below the bridge. I love ordinary life. That is my canvas. I just collected a handful of art supplies- a label off the honey jar we used to deliver a bundle of birthday daffodils down the street.. my tea label from earlier today. There is a meditative quality to your presence in being present that I so enjoy and find sisterhood with you. Here comes the “Ding-a-Ling” man- can you believe it? April? He is rushing the season. Love and hugs, your fan, S

    • Kathy says:

      My goodness, Suzi, I love reading what you write about your “ordinary life”. And yes, Downstaters are apparently Gnomes. LOL . I like that better than Trolls!

  2. Snoopykg1 says:

    Ok Let me see I hope this works….

    I am trying to post the song..If not go http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVPJvk4t6SQ

    Kathy, Thanks for sharing the great pictures of the boondocks…I asked Barbara to have a retreat where she is, but your place would be great too!
    I can also see Laurie getting into it too around the campfire, a drumming circle and lots of great stories!

    • Kathy says:

      I remember that song! How cool that you posted it here, Kim.

      A retreat would be cool…wouldn’t it?…I don’t know where everyone would sleep though!

  3. Barb says:

    I am happiest at places where I can actually have a small piece of wilderness all to myself. Your homestead and the surroundings seem to offer that possibility.

    • Kathy says:

      Barb, it’s been a great gift to live in the wilderness and have so much open space. Part of the reason for writing this blog is to remind myself of that!

  4. Gerry says:

    Wait, wait – you have a fire hydrant?!? I am impressed. We have a couple of lakes, some pumps, and a reservoir sort of thing that looks like a giant kiddie pool. Rob the Firefighter tells me that if the Writing Studio and Bait Shop ever catches fire I am to flee at once, before even calling 911. There is apparently no hope for the house, but I am heartened at the thought that he thinks there is hope for me.

    • Kathy says:

      (Gerry, the truth is–the fire hydrant is in L’Anse. There are NO fire hydrants way out here in the boondocks. I agree that there is hope for you in the shop starts ablaze! Yikes, what a thought…)

  5. LagarLika says:

    Your post today reminded me of my father. He loved all the insects and animals that usually scare most people. One day he found a scorpion in the bath tub and he decided to keep it. I’m sure he named it, but I don’t remember the name… He kept it in the bathroom in a transparent bag, put a stone in it and for some days caught insects to feed it. Finally I convinced him it was cruel to keep the scorpion in a bag, I downloaded some info about scorpions habits and everything I could find to free the poor scorpion. Thanks for bringing me back that memory! 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      LagarLika, we didn’t tell a single soul (at the time) about Sarah the Shower Spider. Don’t know about making friends with a scorpion, though! (Don’t you love these kinds of stories???)

  6. Colleen Lloyd says:

    Hi Kathy…yes, I so agree, life is good. And God does seem to have quite the sense of humor! Like you, I have come to this delightful conclusion from much personal experience and looking back, wouldn’t change a moment of it.
    Enjoying my daily walk in your woods.

    • Kathy says:

      Colleen, glad you are enjoying walks through our woods. That is cool…makes me want to continue! (Even with that wicked since of humor God seems to have…)

  7. pearlz says:

    I love the maple flower on the leaf picture, and boondooks what a word!
    I am not sure if I live in a boondooks as well, an aussie one that is.?

    • Kathy says:

      June, boondocks is an “old” word that has been around…longer than we have! I’m not sure if you live in the boondocks…depends, I suppose, on how many people live ’round you. 🙂

  8. Reggie says:

    Your life in the boondocks is definitely entertaining! I still marvel at the fact that you somehow manage to write something every day. You are a prolific writer, Kathy! And I love that you get your inspiration from details in your surroundings that some of us might not even notice. I love coming to your blog and reading about your life. 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Reggie, I’ve been writing since I was 9 years old (when I wrote my first novel about escaping from the Nazis). It is NO trouble to write every day. Sometimes it’s challenging to write in an entertaining way every day, though. sometimes I worry about people getting bored reading every day…

      • Reggie says:

        You sound like me – I also wrote all the time when I was little. A LOT of short stories, mostly adventures involving horses. 😉

        Kathy, there is *NO WAY* we’ll get bored with what you write.

        Even if you occasionally, very occasionally, think that you have nothing earth-shatteringly profound to say that day, just sharing your thoughts and feelings about exactly that is going to elicit a response from us. You’ve probably noticed that you have a lot of readers who care enough about you to leave comments, no matter what you write about.

        So you’re off the hook already. We ain’t gonna get bored. You can take that as a given. 😉

        And besides – if you don’t feel like writing any words that day, you can always “just” post a photo, even one without a caption, rather like the ‘Wordless Wednesdays’ that I’ve seen on some blogs.

        Actually, I just googled that term, and it seems that it is such a common feature on blogs that there is even a Wiki Answer page for it – isn’t that incredible???

        AND did you know that there’s even a website with that title?

        I’m just completely thunderstruck… Where’ve I been in the blog world that I’ve missed that?!

  9. Cindy Lou says:

    Never thought I’d say this, but I like being a semi-hermit in the boondocks! 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Cindy Lou, you are so much more of a hermit than I am! I love your hermit-ness. Of course, that’s probably why I hardly ever see you…

  10. jeffstroud says:


    It is never just another day in the boondocks! To you each day is a sacred gift to unwrap and share with your senses, as your spirit offers you the opportunity to share the gifts of living in the boondocks offer.

    I really like the first photography, very moody. Well done. I just love taken the photojournalistic journey with you each day!

    I am Love, Jeff

    • Kathy says:

      wow, Jeff, love how you just said that. You know, taking that photo in the fog was pretty cool. It did feel really moody…other-worldly. Mystic. Thank you for your support, dear friend.

  11. Dawn says:

    I have a big part of me that is hermit. But I WOULD like my toilet not to freeze! LOL!

  12. Kathy – i love it, I Love It, I LOVE IT!

    I’ve read through it twice — chewing thoroughly on each enjoyable bite. Each photo is terrific. My favorite is “Red maple flower atop leaf.”

    Laurie Buchanan

    • Kathy says:

      Oh good, Laurie, glad you liked this (since you inspired it.) I love when people read and digest slowly. It is an inspiration for me, since I sometimes seem to digest way too quickly!

  13. Trudie says:

    Always look on the bright side of life … 🙂

  14. Barbara says:

    Love the “Tree against foggy Lake Superior” shot – so striking… Paradise can be found wherever nature can touch our lives so deeply.

  15. truels says:

    Nice to join your life in the boondocks (never heared that word before?!) – I must content myself with visiting “my own boondock” in the western coast of Jylland (Denmark) in a weekend or holiday 🙂

  16. SnoopyKG1 says:

    Outside under the stars….

  17. Kathy says:

    Kim, only if the mosquitoes and black flies aren’t biting! They are…challenging…during the summer months…

Thank you for reading. May you be blessed in your life...may you find joy in the simple things...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s