Life in Hidden Places

Somehow, the week has zoomed by and it’s already over.

Tuesday was JJ’s day off from work and we were busy. We both had errands to do so we combined our tasks and went together. Our first stop was at the grocery store. JJ’s park ranger job is winding down for the season and he needs to find another job. After much thought, he decided to try to get his old job back. He liked it well enough and it’s close to home, which is a benefit in the winter. I waited in the Buggy (our name for the Xterra) while he went in to talk to the manager. He returned with a smile on his face. The manager said he could certainly return. Five of his co-workers told him they were glad he was coming back. He begins as soon as his ranger job ends–I think in early September.

Our next errand was to the farm store. I needed to get poultry feed, straw, and cat food. JJ helped me load everything the back of the Buggy.

Waiting for JJ

Our last errand was to the college bookstore so JJ could get his books for the fall semester. Well, actually, one of his co-workers at the park suggested that he find out what books he needed and then buy them at Amazon, which is what he did. At the bookstore he searched for the titles and ISBN numbers of his books and then, using his phone, he bought them from Amazon as I drove us home. He calculated that his books would have cost him more than $400 at the bookstore, but he got them for just over $200 from Amazon. A huge savings.

I waited in the Buggy while JJ was in the bookstore. I had brought along my crocheting to help me pass the time. I recently bought a book filled with patterns for cute little toilet paper roll holders and I’ve been busy this week making several of them to sell at Teric’s Treasures, my Etsy store. Here are the ones I’ve made so far:


Fingerless Dragon Gloves

I’ve also begun working on two pairs of Fingerless Dragon Gloves for my friend in Australia. She is my very first international customer. She chose one pair to be made with Dragonfly Unforgettable Yarn and the other pair with Lakeside Unforgettable Wave Yarn. Both are very pretty. I discovered that the Unforgettable Wave Yarn is a slightly thicker yarn so it takes more yarn to make it–slightly more than a skein for each glove rather than one skein for two gloves. The glove will be thicker but also warmer than the other. I really enjoy making these gloves.

Uhh….I think not. Nope.

In addition to running errands and crocheting, I have done my regular chores. I mowed the lawn and did laundry on Wednesday, which was the last sunny day before more rain moved in. After I mowed the lawn, I considered practicing golfing on our little homemade golf course. Ok, we only have one “hole” so far, but I am washing cans after I empty them so we can expand our course. EJ had left the golf balls in the “hole” and I changed my mind about practicing when I found a critter had taken up residence in the “hole.” No way was I going to put my hand down there.

I try to take my camera with me whenever I go outside because there’s no telling what I will see. I love watching for–and capturing with my camera–beautiful flowers, interesting insects, or awesome wildlife. Besides the spider on the golf balls, I’ve seen a young rabbit hiding in the grass at the bottom of the driveway several times when I’ve walked down to get the mail. One day as I walked to get the mail, I surprised–and was surprised by–a chipmunk that scurried into the grass. Another day I saw a long slug in the driveway, and I also watched a bug carry a dead spider. I’ve watched a long line of ants marching from one side of the driveway to another. And, of course, I’ve identified new birds that I’ve never seen before. It’s all interesting. It’s like playing a Hidden Pictures game, trying to spot life in hidden places.


This morning EJ walked out the door to go to work, but then he called out to me and pointed down. I looked, and there was a young garter snake stretched out on the porch. He (she?) was just over a foot long. The morning was cool and rainy so I suspect he had crawled there for warmth? He wasn’t moving, so I felt brave enough to take some photos. I was concerned that the snake would go after the chicken and duck eggs, but EJ said garter snakes eat insects, not eggs. The snake really was quite pretty in a reptilian sort of way. I’m ok with snakes as long as they aren’t dangerous and keep their distance.


I am friends with the Michigan Audubon page at Facebook. Several days ago they posted that they were looking for roosting sites of chimney swifts so they could monitor them. At our old place downstate, we lived a block from an old school that had been converted into apartments. Every autumn, we would watch hundreds of chimney swifts circling the school and diving into the chimney to roost. It was an exciting experience that I looked forward to every year. I shared the information with Michigan Audubon and put a marker on their map.  A woman from the organization emailed me, and I sent them a video I had taken of the chimney swifts. She replied, “Would you mind if we shared your video on our social media pages or website? We don’t have much footage from Michigan roosts and I think it’s very inspiring!” I thought that was cool, and I said “yes,” of course. Here is my video:

I love living in Northern Michigan and I honestly don’t miss much from downstate. However, I do miss watching the Chimney Swifts.



2 Comments on “Life in Hidden Places

  1. Wow, lots of wildlife. In western South Dakota during the frontier days, garter snakes were valued as a creature who could help with rodent control since bring cats on the journey to homestead was almost impossible in those days. Always enjoy your posts, and glad JJ was able to get his job back, and yes, my daughter does the on-line shopping for books too. It makes much more sense.


    • I always enjoy your comments, Lucinddalines.

      I’m perfectly ok with garter snakes helping with rodent control! I enjoyed your bit of SD homestead history. I was at first concerned the snake would go after the eggs, and I’m glad they won’t. I’ve read stories from people in Homesteading Facebook groups of snakes going into coops to eat the eggs. I would totally freak out! Of course, there are other types of snakes around here….

      Liked by 1 person

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