Stake in the Ground

We’ve been in Boise for almost a month now and love it here! And while our possessions are only semi-unpacked (we’re enjoying a 3-month lease while looking for more permanent digs), we’ve definitely unpacked our lives and are settling in:

  • We’ve met several people who’ve introduced us to more people — expanding our sphere of friendly people
  • We had our delightful neighbor’s over for a back porch chat
  • We got Boise Library cards and I’ve dog-eared a favorite writing table
  • We thoroughly enjoyed the Idaho Botanical Garden


    “Selfie” taken at the Idaho Botanical Garden — less than 2 miles away

  • We went on a guided bicycle tour of homes in the historic East End
  • We have Boise residential parking permits on our vehicles
  • We’ve been out to dinner and breakfast with new friends
  • We discovered the greenbelt that runs along the banks of the Boise River where giraffes peek over the zoo enclosure as we pedal by on our bikes

Giraffes peek over the zoo enclosure as we pedal by on the greenbelt

  • We’ve enjoyed a multitude of culturally diverse cuisine
  • We daily enjoy the designated bicycle lanes
  • I’ve pitched a project to one of the local newspapers and submitted an article to another
  • Our girls — Lexi and Willa — are getting their legs walked off at the dog park and on our excursions around town
Walking dogs

We live mere blocks away from the dog park

  • We walk or ride our bikes to Whole Foods daily to pick up fresh produce where we’re on a first-name basis with some of the employees
  • We’re getting ready to take the Idaho driver’s license test
  • We have “Cheap Date Night” at the River Room set as a recurring event on Monday evenings
  • We’ve potted several vibrant-colored flowers
Stake in the ground

We’ve stuck our stake in the ground

In other words, we’ve stuck our stake in Boise’s fertile soil and claimed it home!

When was the last time you stuck your stake in the ground?

© Laurie Buchanan

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86 thoughts on “Stake in the Ground

  1. The last time we planted a stake was here on the hill overlooking the western half of the Shenandoah Valley. We have some literal posts in the hill itself — good fences that make good neighbors. The neighbor’s cattle graze on the other side each night, chewing with the sounds that take me back to childhood.

    Love traveling and moving with you, Laurie. Thanks for sharing your adventures. You’ve give me a model for how to blog from the road this summer.

    • Shirley – A dyed-in-the-wool nature lover, I like the idea of cattle grazing close enough that I can hear them chewing! I’m glad you’re enjoying our adventure. I look forward to your posts-from-the-road this summer 🙂

  2. Wow! You’ve done a lot in a month. There have been times when I’ve moved and spent the first month barely unpacking. You’ve already made friends with giraffes!
    Thanks for the inspiration.
    Vincent Paz

    • Vincent – We’re fairly high-energy people so “get ‘er done” is part and parcel for us. And let me tell you, we had NO idea the zoo was there so seeing a giraffe on our bicycle ride was quite a surprise! I always keep my camera at-the-ready and was glad to capture that shot.

  3. You’ve nested, staked your claim – and are obviously thriving. Our stake in the ground is living here in Killarney Shores for 35 years. Our home is also Cliff’s business address as an artist, so we probably won’t be moving until he closes up shop, which doesn’t appear to be any time soon.

    Besides fences covered in wisteria, the “stake” in the ground I enjoy most is the burbling water fountain surrounded by begonias and bougainvillea just now.

    I will keep my fingers crossed about your passing that driver’s test – ha!

    • Melissa – We’re enjoying the bajeebers out of ourselves here in Boise (and so are our dogs). Everything we like to do is within walking or bicycle distance. And while it’s urban, it’s doesn’t have a city “feel” to it. Rather, it’s down-home, welcoming, and comfortable 🙂

    • Carol – I took that photo in downtown Boise where those beautiful flowers (I think they’re Island Poppies) are planted in front of a bank building). I agree — this move was definitely meant to be 🙂



    *”I believe in the sun even when it’s not shining.* *I believe in love, even when I’m alone* *I believe in God, even when He is silent.” *

  5. What a nice feeling, to find that sense of belonging! Good for you! It comes, I think, from having an open heart, ready for new experience. Thanks for sharing your new adventures!

  6. Glad you’re settling in so quickly. Good on you two! We’ve moved several times since we’ve been together, but we have remained here for the last 15 years and we rather like it. I hope it all goes well for you there. ❤

    • Joan – Not wanting to feel rushed, if we need to extend our 3-month lease, we will. We know the geographic location we want to buy in, now it’s a matter of finding a small home we love in our price range. Where there’s a will, there’s a way 🙂

  7. I’m in love with Boise through you! It feels like part of me is settling in and enjoying every single one of the experiences you’re describing. As for putting down my stake…quite often, in the present moment. The stake of being aware. *grin* Keep the enthusiasm coming!

  8. What a wonderful way to get into your new home and its surroundings. My ex and his current wife also rented (a house on a hobby farm of all places) when they moved to Vancouver Island on British Columbia three years ago until they found a place to buy.

    I’m not moving but am getting back into my garden and gardening community events – much later this year because of the winter ice storm and cold snowy spring. It’s the damaged trees that my heart cries out for.

  9. Loved this post. You really are inspiring. Makes me want to try new things, reach out and find new kinds of happiness..

  10. Sounds like a wonderful place Laurie. Glad you’ve made your claim. Five years ago I stuck a stake in the ground where we’re living now. Feel completely at home. 🙂

  11. Congratulations. I think you found your happily ever, after. : )
    Me? I stalked my claim in 1999. We were on a hunt to find a new home–fleeing from the too big (for us) city. The ferry docked at Mayne Island and before our car hit land, I turned to my husband. “We’re home,” I said.
    He replied, “Don’t you think we should look around, first.”
    And so we did…

  12. Laurie you look like you’re having so much fun . It ‘s such a lovely place to live… good luck to you both .
    We have sold our house in Halesowen ( subject to contract I know ) all ticking along ok at mo . So this will be our first move for 26 years …to our ‘Half House ‘ in Wales . Half being the operative word . We do have a caravan in the garden, so it looks like we’ll be living in it, certainly up to the Autumn…yipes it’s going to be tough but fun .

    I think we put our stake in Welsh land many years ago , when I fell hook line and sinker for the coastline ,so now my dream is coming true, and for some unknown reason, I’m a little scared aggggghhhhh!!!! lol
    Take care Cherry x,

    • Cherry – Congratulations on the pending sale of your home, please keep me posted. No need to be a “little scared” — your “half house” in Wales is going to be a fantastic move for you; I can feel it all the way down to my toes 🙂

  13. Seven years ago someone finally moved into the vacant house 2 houses down. The family was from Maine. I made an apple pie and went over to introduce myself and for 6 years we were good friends and K brought 2 other neighbors outside and we had a monthly coffee time. But the real reveal for us, was watching K and her family explore out city, county and state with such joy was amazing and got us out and about to re-discover our staked turf. Now K and her family have moved back to Maine ( she does come for a visit now and then) and each time she gives us fresh vision of our “place” K has been so many places and she always points out what we do well – no where has she been that has so many healthy eating folks ( she informed us that we were #1 in the Nation) Our recycling program is so way ahead of it’s time from any other place she has been….She has never been anywhere in the USA where most of the homes are powered by green energy, nearly 100%) And today! she emails about the beauty of spring we celebrate here.

    So I salute your smiles and adventures – you will help help all those you encounter re-stake their claim…

    …but then you already knew that. Love the up top bouquet

    • Patricia – Oh, what a wonderful story you’ve shared about delightful, effervescent K.

      I’m glad you enjoyed the header photograph. My jaw nearly dropped on the ground when I saw them in their vivid finery gently dancing in the breeze 🙂

  14. Wow Laurie, you both have really entwined yourselves in the fabric of this town, the erstwhile main hub and capital of the state known for its potatoes and (as you have confirmed) is scenic resplendence and hospitality. It is amazing what you managed to accomplish in the relatively short time you have been there, but I am not at all surprised that Whole Foods, the town library and the bike path have seen some action from you both. I am sure you will soon find your permanent abode, but great to see you are already being greeted by your first names. The best always!

    • Sam – It’s been a wonderful time settling in. One of my favorite “haunts” is the public library. I just turned in “The Last Camellia” by Sarah Jio, and picked up “Catching Kate” — a story that takes place in 1916 — by Robin Lee Hatcher 🙂

  15. Hi Laurie

    Very glad that you and Len love it there.

    The last time we stuck our stake in the ground was 16 years ago. The move from Waitakaruru to Kaikoura.

    When we arrived I knew about a dozen people. Now I’m on a first name basis with about a third of the 3,800 residents. I love that about small towns.

    I think our stake is fairly firmly planted now.

  16. You both look so happy! I love your sense of discovery and curiosity Laurie, as well as appreciating what Boise has to offer. A positive open mind in a great way to start any new adventure. May your stake become roots and your branches reach to the sky 🙂

  17. Laurie, love those flowers popping in your header! I, too, have become fascinated with Boise, having never paid it 2 minutes worth of attention in my life. Now it seems to be the very place one would want to claim as a Forever Home. When I was offered this small cottage in the N. Georgia hill country 10 years ago, it took me no time to say yes. With my Gypsy years behind me, I was ready to return to the land my family staked out in the 1820’s. These days I stake Snow peas and tomatoes in the garden, I am about as grounded as it gets and enjoying every day of it!

    • Sandi – I’ve seen photos of your home area and I can think of no better stake in the ground than that for snow peas and tomatoes in your wonderful garden! It’s so well suited to you — like hand in glove! 🙂

    • The Vanilla Housewife – Thank you for your kind words. And it’s great having giraffe right around the corner (I’m so glad we’re not responsible for their “poop patrol”) 🙂

  18. well, Laurie — I stuck some asparagus and tomato plants in my front yard this past month . . . does that count? I will just get asparagus trees this first year but I hope to get delicious tomatoes along about July and August.

    Boise sounds like it is getting along well with you and Len. Those giraffes are wonderful.

    • Barbara – Asparagus and tomato plants absolutely count! We’ve got a yellow pear heirloom tomato plant on our porch and Sandi suggested pickling them – she said they’re delicious that way! 🙂

  19. Interesting! Good to know that “new” is fast becoming “home”. Change is the only constant thing in life, like they say. It’s always awesome when we choose the changes we want and consciously work towards them.
    I’m so happy for you Laurie!

  20. Sounds like a busy (in a good way) and exciting first month! Renting and then looking is a great way to avoid undue pressure to find the “right” place immediately!

    • Tiny – You’re absolutely correct. The leisure of renting is providing us with a cool, calm, collected, and un-pressured perspective as we look for a home to purchase. We’re not in any hurry — and that feels good 🙂

  21. Sounds like such a great move for you! Congratulations… not easy to do (in my experience). I guess that answers your question about when I’ve put the stake in the ground: never, really. I’ve tried and tried but I think as a result of frequent moves as a child, I never really fit in anywhere. Instead my stake has become my family and they are what tether me and make me belong. Again, so happy for you!

  22. Wow, it’s amazing how much you’re accomplished in a month. At the rate you’re going, Boise will seem like home before you know it. 🙂

  23. Note to self: visit this blog as much as possible. I am in awe of your posts and thank you for engaging us each Tue. Boise is wonderful. I am just down the coast in LA and if you and Len ever stop over in LA, I will most definitely take you to lunch. Our stake is in Studio City just next to Universal… about a fwy. exit away. The beauty of nesting again and taking your time to pull in the place you want is so cool. I still tour my place and am inspired to start up on my blog again thanks to you. Have fun Fun FUN with your new digs.

  24. Since college, I’ve put a stake in the ground 7 times. And each time, the experience has been fun and exciting and scary and exhilarating and I’ve learned oodles. My guy and I put in a new stake 4 years ago from New England to SF bay area, and soon, we will be pulling that stake out and finding a place to once again go through the fun, excitement, fear and exhilaration. This time, I’m more stressed, but to tell you the truth, I’m following your experience here, and taking comfort in how much you are enjoying your new home.

  25. So glad to meet you via Marian. We’re moving this month. You inspire me to write a similarly enthusiastic post — Wow, just read all those bullets 🙂 — when I return about our “stake in the ground” out in the country.

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