A Change of Plans

So, I didn’t get around to posting yesterday, but I decided that was probably a good thing because I really didn’t have enough to say about the characters in my book to fill a paragraph, let alone a full blog post. Instead, yesterday was all about family.

We packed up the whole family, filled a backpack with snacks, two others with water, and headed off into the woods on the back of the farm. Josh knew of a hickory tree the loggers had cut and was interested in seeing if the treetop had any straight lengths that would work for making an axe handle. The little kids were eager to get down by the creek so they could play in the water and look under rocks for salamanders. The big kids—well, they’re always ready to go on a walk, enjoy chopping wood, and like to lag behind talking about the current board game/video game of choice. And me, I went looking for flowers.

Someday I’ll get this website figured out enough to post pictures, but for now, if you have Facebook you could slip on over to my author page and you’ll see some of the wildflowers we have here on the farm. If you have Instagram, you can see some of the same pictures there. They range from dogwoods, to wild violets, to unknown splashes of color, to apple blossoms, to pear, redbud, and whatever else we come across in the woods or fields.

This time of year is the best for finding hidden pockets of flowers in the woods and I had fun yesterday, traipsing after Josh and the kids, pausing to take a quick shot of whatever caught my eye. The kids have fond memories of doing the same thing with their Grandma, and I hope they look back on these family hikes as another fond memory.

It wasn’t all just fun and flowers though. Josh had that hickory tree in mind and we set up camp there (so to speak) and set to work cutting lengths of wood to use as blanks for axe handles. Josh got the cut for the first section started and after a while he went off to do something else and our oldest son and I took over. We have a Silky KatanaBoy and yes, that is a Very Good Workout. It’s fun though and doesn’t feel too much like exercise so I enjoyed it. A couple of the older kids took the little kids down to the creek where they had tons of fun. Every once in a while we’d hear a burst of laughter or some splashing (they had their winter boots on so they could walk in the creek), and when they got thirsty they’d show up at the tree again.

Josh split the first log we cut, but decided he’d need to rethink the splitting method because it splintered too much. The branch we were cutting was also slightly bent, which he doesn’t want and couldn’t see for sure until it split not-straight. We all had fun though, and without even looking for them, we happened upon a morel. Then another. By the time oldest daughter was done, she had at least thirteen very small morels marked out. We’ll go back in a week or two to check them as they were all too small to pick. That was a fun find though.

Then we came back to the house for the reason Josh took the day off—Buddy’s belly poke. He HATES getting his belly poked. Thankfully, it only happens once every ten days (if the sensor doesn’t stop working) so he’s able to breathe a sigh of relief when it’s done and start the countdown again. We’ve learned that the afternoon is the best time to apply the sensor, at least during warm weather. He can go outside and even though his belly is still hurting, he has enough things to do to distract him. Rather than curling up on the couch for the two hours it takes for the sensor to warm up, he straps his receiver to his person and wanders around until he’s sufficiently able to move freely. Whereupon he’s tearing around on his bike with his sisters, digging in the dirt on the logging road, racing up and down the bank on the side of said road, etc. Having that distraction makes those two hours of warmup time so much easier on him, and everyone else.

So we set up camp down in the woods behind the barn, had lunch, made s’mores because we could, and while Josh and the big boys challenged each other to a tomahawk throwing competition, I wandered around the yard taking photos. Then we got rained out and came inside for supper, an episode of Star Trek (the original series), showers, dishes, and boring things like that.

It was a good day. Relaxing, despite the hard work. Lots of family fun, even though we weren’t all doing the same things at the same time. Refreshing, despite the heat—yes, it was actually warm enough to be hot at times. And the signs of spring we are seeing everywhere we turn are comforting. The cold weather will clear up—eventually. The rain cooled things off again, but hopefully soon it will be warm like that all the time.

Don’t forget the CelebrateLit April showers promo is still running, but there are only 12 more hours to get your entries in. First prize is a copy of each of the books in the promo, the grand prize is a $200 Amazon gift card.