The sideways tame chipmunk caper

My guy, talkin' bout my guy

My guy, talkin’ bout my guy

Dear Reader, so much has happened since we last communicated, ‘way back in June of 2015.  Had I been blogging in August you would have met our tame chipmunk, a very sweet and sassy fellow who took over our hearts.

Since you and I are now reacquainted, you must meet Chippy.  In all the years we’ve lived in the north woods of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, we’ve never met a tame chipmunk.

This guy initially crept forward to snatch the proffered sunflower seeds, slowly, slowly,then less cautiously, then–nibble, nibble, nibble.  GULP!

The next day he ran forward and up my knee.  Oh yum! he said, Can I have some more?  He stuffed his mouth to the brim.  Five seeds, twenty seeds, forty seeds.  He’d run up and down our legs, our arms, anywhere a stray sunflower seed roosted.  Then off he’d leap toward the garden–hello, goodbye, see you tomorrow!

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Posted in April, 2016 | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 49 Comments

The $99 blog


Hello, my blogging friends!  Coming to you live from Lake Superior where the April weather snows like crazy one minute and then sunshine and clear skies exist the next minute.

Yep, it’s spring in the Upper Peninsula.  It’s almost bipolar.  We locals learn to expect its ups and downs, its refusal to fit neatly within the seasons.  We may WANT warm weather and chirping robins and blossoming daffodils but, darn it, it’s still often snow showers and 28 degrees.  (-2.2 C)

Just like me!  One minute (last June, wasn’t it?) I’m ending this blog forever.  Now it’s being resurrected, similar to the Easter Spirit of last week.

I just paid $99 to to roll away the heavy stone from in front of the cave where this blog was buried, perhaps never to resurface.

Why? you ask.  Why did you bother doing that?  What’s changed?

Because, I reply, I really miss writing.  I need a space to yak.  Last weekend I joined Google+ for five minutes, invited twenty friends, posted a blog, felt like it wasn’t quite right, and deleted.

I came, I wrote, I deleted.

Isn’t that a story some of us know?


So today I’m forking out the hard-earned cash to resurrect this forgotten blog.  To have a space for the next 365 days to write whatever comes to the surface.  I may write once.  In which case, this blog post will cost $99.

Two times–well, then each will cost almost $50.  You do the math. If I write 365 times, well it’s almost free–but, really, please do not expect that!

Some of you may be wondering:  why the heck does she have to pay money to post on her blog?

Well, my faithful friends, it’s because she’s exceeded the allowed gigabytes in photographs by almost three times the allowed limits.  (That’s because she was ignorant when she first began blogging in 2010 and inserted those HUGE photos with multi-MB’s, instead of the ladylike pictures with kilobytes.  She’s sorry now, but it’s too much work to go back and prune yesteryear’s photos to appropriate size.)

So I say “hello” again maybe nine months later–about the time it takes to have a baby–although that wasn’t happening here–and we’ll see what develops.  Thank you to any faithful readers who are still around!

baby k

This was Baby Kathy.  A long long time ago.  (She’s still rather unpredictable!)







Posted in April, 2016 | Tagged , , , , | 104 Comments

Until we meet again, my friends…

Lake flower

Lake flower

Dear Friends of Lake Superior Spirit,

Thank you so much for more than five years of reading these thoughts.  Looking at these pictures.  Imagining this life here in the Upper Peninsula.  I have appreciated you more than you will ever know.

However, it seems lately, that this life has turned in a different direction.  The interest has turned away from the camera.  Away from sharing daily stories.  Away from jabbering and telling tales about porcupines, Lake Superior and garden vegetables.

For the love of chipmunks

For the love of chipmunks

Have you read that study which says the average blogger blogs for three years before turning away?  Some of you friends have blogged for two, six, ten or more years.  You shall blog until your heart moves you elsewhere.  I honor each of you for listening deeply to what you need to do.

My heart has turned me away from much time on the Internet…except for occasional posts on Facebook, with whom I now have a halfway-reconciled relationship.  However, all of you friends who have commented and shared of your lives during these past five years (and at least four more years at other sites) command a special place in this heart.  Thank you for sharing of yourselves.  Thank you for being my friend.  I think of so many of you often–even when we don’t speak or email.

Building blocks of friendship

Building blocks of friendship

Do email if you’re inspired.  Do share of your special lives.  I am honored to hear from each and every one of you.  The address is kathydrue@ gmail dot com.  It has been a great joy to continue a sharing relationship with many of you in the past many months.

And who knows?  Tomorrow or next Tuesday or August 10th or next January or 2017 I may be inspired to start sharing once again here at Lake Superior.

Lake Superior stone

Lake Superior stone

Until we meet again on this blog or elsewhere, may peace be with you.  May you find that for which you’re searching.  May you sing in the morning.  May you smile at sunsets.  May you follow your heart’s own true path into that which you deeply desire.

Blessings always,  Kathy of Aura, woods dweller, lover of the Lake Superior shore

Our beloved shore

Our beloved shore

Posted in June 2015 | Tagged , , , , | 89 Comments

100% Backwoods Yooper

Last week Barry and I drove to a Baraga-Ontonagon high school basketball tournament, about an hour from where we live.  We found ourselves ‘way back in the Upper Peninsula (Yooper) backwoods, re-living a family memory from the early 1980’s. Barry kept telling me to write a blog about our experience. I kept telling him, “Please, YOU write a blog about it!” Finally, he agreed. Please welcome my latest guest-blogger, my dear husband, as he shares our latest adventure. P.S. He’s publishing it in his column in our local newspaper, the L’Anse Sentinel.


The Rousseau Bar

The Rousseau Bar

It was September, 1979. We young Lower Michigan emigrants landed plop-dab on the old Mustanen family dairy farm on the outskirts of Pelkie. The rented farmhouse was our first UP home. Landlords Ned and Toini Moberg watched over us.

I had won a tough interview process for a L’Anse Sentinel reporting job over a talented woman writer who chewed tobacco.

Kathy was hired for an office position at Baraga County Memorial Hospital. In our early 20’s we were unknowingly laying the foundation to becoming Yoopers.

Among Kathy’s family in the distant “Thumb” of the Lower Peninsula we were something of celebrity, or perhaps just nuts. Her mom and dad knew very well this region from their dear friends, Don and Ann McConnell. They visited the deepest, darkest, buggiest and snowiest woods of rural Mass City at least annually. Don is related to the Miilu clan there.

And so it was, we young upstarts were almost neighbors. K’s parents, Joanne and Dale, soon made the trip north with the McConnells. It wasn’t long before we were at the Miilu A-frame camp, playing cards flying across the tables, a barrel wood stove and gas lamps adding charm and heat. I have a distant memory of eating bear. . .

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Posted in March 2015 | Tagged , , , , , , , | 67 Comments

Itching relentlessly


A rash feels like raspberry plants.  Oh so prickly.

A rash feels like raspberry plants. Oh so prickly.

Forget it, friends.  No pictures of icebergs, snowflakes or squirrels beneath the bird feeder.

My life has narrowed to one perspective.



It all started with jumping jacks.  Or perhaps leg scissors.

I found myself with Sue and Nancy in the pool jumping up and down, up and down, up and down, c’mon, don’t stop, keep those legs movin’, keep those arms circling around and around and around.

Twice a week, Tuesdays and Thursdays.  Once again, I fell head-over-heels in love with water aerobics.

It’s a sure-fire way to combat cabin fever, don’t you know?

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Posted in March 2015 | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 90 Comments

Jagged ice fields of Lake Superior

A field of jagged ice on Lake Superior

A field of jagged ice on Lake Superior

If you’re shivering and cold here on this winter day, you might choose to visit another blog.

I am aiming to show you some photos of jagged ice on Lake Superior here in Aura, Michigan.  At the foot of Saari Road, just in case some of you locals might care to bring your camera and visit the ice field.

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Posted in February 2015 | Tagged , , , , , | 108 Comments

Sprinkling petals atop snow

Dawn shadows on snow, deer tracks

Dawn shadows on snow, deer tracks

On some January mornings the sun rises and casts lemon shadows against the blue-shadowed snow.

In the night deer nibble spruce branches and bed beneath them during this dark phase of the moon.

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Posted in January 2015 | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 80 Comments