Sleuth Mode

I don’t know if they’re year-round residents, or seasonal, but a clear view of the side of the neighboring house reveals magpies and a pileated woodpecker vying for the same construction space. Their tactical maneuvers are like watching a Blue Angels airshow.

Hint # 9—If I were a trout (rainbow, brown, or westslope cutthroat) I’d be tickled pink to swim in the river a stone’s throw from my sabbatical location.

My temporary home away from home is glorious. And even though there’s a solid, six-foot wooden fence around it, I had an unwitting guest—a doe—who cleared the fence to get in but was mystified on how to get back out.

If you’ve followed this blog for any length of time, you know I’ve always wanted to be a magician, international spy, and mad scientist. In the blink of an eye, I claimed elements from all three and transformed into sleuth mode.

Mist-like, I slipped out of the house sight unseen, unlatched the gate, and slipped back inside. When the doe took a double-take at the fence, she saw an opening and beat a hasty retreat.

What was your last sleuth-mode escapade?

Reminder, the caveat of the Looking for Laurie game stipulates: “The first person to type the accurate city and state of my sabbatical location into the comments section of the Mar 28 post will receive a personalized copy of Note to Self: A Seven-Step Path to Gratitude and Growth for themselves or as a gift to someone else.”

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

These Boots Are Made For Walkin’

A minimalist, not only do I live light, I pack light too. For my three-month sabbatical I brought two pairs of jeans, four 3/4-length sleeve shirts, a down vest, a down jacket, jammies, and under clothing—including woolly pulleys.

My footwear consists of snow boots, snow shoes, and slippers. Serious slippers!

Hint #8 — From in the state, and out, people travel from all over to enjoy the year-round outdoor recreational offerings in my sabbatical location. Good thing I brought snow boots, because hiking (trails are prevalent) is great for clearing the cobwebs in one’s mind before writing.

While hiking, it wouldn’t be surprising to see these types of tracks: mule deer, grizzly bear, elk, wolf, fox, coyote, and raccoon.

My boots leave tracks too, but my goal is to leave the slightest footprint on the planet, while at the same time making a lasting impression on its inhabitants—one that’s positive, uplifting, constructive, and healing.

What type of tracks do you leave?

Reminder, the caveat of the Looking for Laurie game stipulates: “The first person to type the accurate city and state of my sabbatical location into the comments section of the Mar 28 post will receive a personalized copy of Note to Self: A Seven-Step Path to Gratitude and Growth for themselves or as a gift to someone else.”

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

The Space Between

It’s the space between words on a page that make reading enjoyable. It’s the space between notes in a musical score that makes listening pleasurable.

Hint #3 — Globally there are eight species of pelicans. Only two of the eight species live in North America. During my sabbatical, I won’t see any because they’re wintering in states south of my geographic location. If it were summertime, however, I might be gifted with a sighting.

Life has spaces.

Some are shorter than others—the space between breaths, blinking, and heartbeats.

Some are longer than others—the space between cell phone upgrades, careers, and changing homes.

Life happens in the space between. And it’s meant to be savored.

Do you give yourself enough space?

Reminder, the caveat of the Looking for Laurie game stipulates: “The first person to type the accurate city and state of my sabbatical location into the comments section of the Mar 28 post will receive a personalized copy of Note to Self: A Seven-Step Path to Gratitude and Growth for themselves or as a gift to someone else.”

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Craters of the Moon

On the return leg of a road trip to Montana—we stopped at Craters of the Moon National Monument in the Snake River Plain in central Idaho. To see it, you’d think you’d just stepped off a spaceship onto another planet. Here’s a photo of the terrain:

According to the brochures we received at the visitor’s center:

“Craters of the Moon is a vast ocean of lava flows with scattered islands of cinder cones and sagebrush—a volcanic wonderland that is fun to explore. In 1969 NASA astronauts Alan Shepherd, Edgar Mitchell, Eugene Cernan, and Joe Engle explore the monument while training to visit the moon.”

It made me think about life on other planets; lifeforms we refer to as “Martians” or “Aliens.” If they visited us, they’d probably feel extremely out of place. On the flip side of that coin, we’d probably feel extremely out of place on their planets too.

photo-on-10-14-16-at-11-10-am

When was the last time you felt out of place?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Katydid – Or Did She?

Walking along I saw what looked like a leaf laying on its edge. Curiosity piqued, I went over and took a closer look. A katydid!

The detailed veining on their green, oval-shaped bodies makes each one look like a leaf— phenomenal camouflage when you spend the majority of the day eating leaves in tree tops and don’t want to be seen by a predator.

With ears located on their front legs, katydids rub their front wings together to sing. Preferring to walk and climb, they have the ability to fly short distances, but do so only when they feel threatened.

This little gal wasn’t scared of me. In fact, she let me give her a ride out of traffic on a twig.

When was the last time you hid in plain sight?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Seeing Spots

Mary Engelbreit is famous for her quote — Everyone needs their own spot — and her colorful, smile-inducing artwork. And while she was referring to dogs in this quote (a big nod to Willa here):

I think everyone needs their own spot, too — as in location. Some indoors, some out, I have several. Here’s one example:

In addition to any animal companions you may have in your life…

Where’s one of your favorite spots?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Got Mud?

When I travel to the San Diego area I make a point of visiting the meditation gardens at the Self-Realization Temple in Encinitas. Located on a cliff overlooking the ocean, their aquatic gardens are home to colorful koi fish and lotus flowers.

A lotus flower grows from the bottom of a muddy pond rising upward, emerging at the surface where it blooms into a beautiful flower. At night the petals close and it sinks beneath the surface only to re-emerge in the morning with the sunrise.

In my perspective, Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh’s observation, “No mud, no lotus,” is a lovely metaphor for the human experience.

Have you got mud? Turns out, it’s a good thing!

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com