Guys! Help me welcome these bros to the pack! Who can say no to a pair of matching kittens? Not this girl. I have been toying with the idea of Coop Cats. Raise some babes in my chicken coop to help keep the rodent population down. ((And help me get my mitten mitten face fix)) Luckily, here in the valley, there is no shortage of cute kittens. These two brothers were swooped up from a barn situation. There is a young lady doing some great work with trapping, spaying, and releasing cats in the area. Such a great cause! Adopting kittens saves the world!
If there is one thing a dog can teach you it's simply this. Be Here Now.
It's Halloween to most. But over here its closing day of fall bear. The guys tell me this year's hunt has been harder than past. Early storms followed by hot days make consistency non-existent. The factors that go into a successful hunt feel more like luck most often. But what is luck really? Just a stacking of circumstances. The fate of heavens. God's all seeing eye having a plan. As I packed up my blind for the last time this season, I reflected. The sunset was spectacular. Skies on fire amazing. These are the moments I hold close. And leave my cozy aspen nest with a full heart instead despite never pulling the trigger. The wind blows louder, the trees snap with gust, and everything is alive. Each movement peaking the senses.
Until next year.
After a night of hunting. Enjoying the moon and stars on the hills.
So much time has past. I only have excuses. But, no one really likes excuses. Instead I give you action. I've made a promise. I will be here every day, from this day, for a full year. You have my promise.
Idaho has a way of making you appreciate each day as its own. Especially in the seasons that shoulder winter and summer. The sunny 55 degree day watching meadowlarks cruise the fields to the sparkles of fresh snow twinkling in the morning sun. Waking each day to a new adventure. Thank you, Idaho.
I woke early while the light was still blue. Early for us, I guess. My morning chores always the first thing on my mind. Bathroom break the pups, greet and water the hens, start a fire in the shop. I find comfort in these daily rituals. I prepped the water for the hens, suited up and headed out. The heavy snowstorm has really meant rain in the valley.
I stepped outside, the eave of the roof dripping on my forehead. You can instantly tell when something isn't right in the coop. Their nervous clucks echo out the cracked window. Like a choir of anxious children. I hurried along my beaten path. Threw open the door. One of the young ladies was pressed against the ceiling, balancing on the chicken wire. I spoke sweetly to her. "What are you doing up there, silly girl?" The entire flock was stacked into one corner of the house. And in the other corner sat the most beautiful owl I have ever set eyes on. An old hen laid at its feet, lifeless. My heart began racing.
The warm weather melted away all of the snow. All of the snow that was blocked right up to the little hen-sized door. And our friend must have hopped right in during the early hours of morn. With easy words and gentle persuading (and a guiding shovel) I was able to replace the owl back to the open Idaho sky.
It was a magnificent, sad, humbling, blessed morning.
I'm born of bakers. Born deep in the Northwoods of Wiscosnin, to early rising hardworking hands. Bakers by trade. Bakers by passion. My fondest memories are in a kitchen. Whether it be my grandfathers shop or my mothers. Flour flying, the heat of the oven warming the space.
I'm blessed to carry the skill they've taught me. To work the dough with my hands and feed the soul.
My fingers were frozen the instant I crossed the threshold of the door. A sun shining clear morning brings out the blues of winter and the bitter cold. Winds danced all night. Knee high drifts creating a new topography in the yard. The coop was cozy under the glow of red light. Fresh water and a snow snack for the Mother Cluckers. They chirp with excitement. The reward is tucked into the lower left hand nesting box, like always. Three beautiful browns.
I was flying solo for just a couple weeks. Enjoying the freedom of doing whatever my heart desired. Only answering to the chickens and the pups. I'm good at being alone. I like it. I actually love it. So much time to think, reflect, and scheme. What does it all mean? Where are we going? Is this the right path? You know, all that deep shit.
I'm happy to report that the novelty of being alone wore off. That my desire to share life with someone so dear overruled my desire to run around without reins. My brain realigned with my heart. My heart rolling her eyes at how long it took for the brain to catch up. And the path is a beaten, clear as ever. A good feeling. A great feeling
This blank space has been staring at me for a month now. The desire to swoop up KalicoForest as a domain had been on the back burner even longer. But suddenly the switch feels like cheating. Like dropping a best friend on the side of a dirt road and driving off. Never looking back. But then I come back down from my dramatic daydream. And use this as a step. A step up.
I recently had the opportunity to reconnect and work with a dear childhood friend. She's an amazingly beautiful bombshell of a redhead, who also happens to be the best graphic designer I know. Mind you, she's the only graphic designer I know. But this truly shouldn't take away from the compliment. I live in a tiny bubble surrounded by working class men and fluffy dogs. Okay, back to the story. She loves me, I love her. And she gave me the chance to do a little writing, photography, and editing for her quarterly magazine! See what I mean- she's amazing! The fall issue, Indigo, is hot off the press. If you aren't fortunate enough to live in the deserts of Las Vegas you can flip through the online copy here.
To enjoy the rest of my Idaho ramblings and soak in some snapshots head over to my old space.