Walking over leaves,

crunching with the weight of my body,

standing on the wooden bridge,

Observing the beauty that surrounded me,

also the beauty I was standing on,

my Timberland's being my adventure buddy,

seeing all the beauty around me.

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When I was walking in the forest preserve,

I saw something beautiful

I was quiet and still,

only listening,

producing just my breath,

opening my eyes to see pure beauty.

A deer standing before me.

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Coffee Clutch

Sipping our drinks

nothing to hear but clinks.

Talking in Starbucks

mocking all the weekly events.

Sharing stories the other missed out on

daring to tell secretes.

Being with a friend

feels freeing.

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The cutest kitten in the shelter, Pumpkin, meowed at me

sitting there,

looking to me,

for love only few can provide,

filling a gap in his tiny heart,

him filling the loss in mine.

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The large engine rumbled,

Hands gripping the rubber,

Trees filled with colored leaves,

I was happy

beyond the road

in the forest

past the pond

among the trees

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My "Happy Place"

Memories are what fuel humans to continue, to strive for more. Not one elderly person wishes to have fewer memories, maybe the bad ones could dissipate and they would be okay, but in the end memories are one of the only things we have. My favorite memories are me in the forest, doing anything, even doing nothing. When people tell me to find my "happy place" I find myself standing in the middle of the circle at my cabin, where three trails combine. That is my happy place, in the middle of fall, watching the leaves spin to the ground. Walking, ATVing, snowmobiling, checking the trail cameras with my dad, it doesn't matter what I'm doing, as long as I am in my happy place. My happy place is where all fears go to die.

My happy place could be a nature haters worst fear. Being mindful I stand, hearing, the only sound coming from myself being the occasional inhale followed by an exhale, followed by the sound of trees whistling in the wind, birds, the occasional deer. When I am here, Wisconsin, the middle of nowhere, all my problems go away, if only for a weekend. All the drama with friends, the post, work, it all is a little speck of dust on this planet we live on. Ultimately all my worries will no longer concern me. This place helps me to remember that. All the things that happen in my life put another notch on my belt, but when I'm here I leave my belt inside, toady I don't need a belt, I just need nature. It keeps me grounded when I feel like I'm on top of a volcano, coals heating up, about to explode.

I hope this place never leaves my life. I can't see into the future but I know even if I do move I will include visiting the cabin in my travel plans. I hope to one day get married here, the ceremony being in the circle where the paths connect, the reception being under the pavilion where the tractor is stored. I would like to start the rest of my life in the place one of my first memories of my childhood was created. I vividly remember playing in my plastic house while my dad was adding an addition to the cabin. This place is going to be a part of my future, I'll make sure of it.