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A long time ago, I was a child. (I started out as Cathy First from Colon, Mi.) For the past several years I’ve been an adult. A lot of things went on between those two stages of life; probably no more or no less than anyone elses. My husband and I moved to “da U .P” from southern Lower Michigan several years ago (yes we were trolls at one time). We owned and operated and operate Clementz’s Northcountry Campground and Cabins just north of Newberry, Michigan until May 2015. We have grown kids and grandkids (who all live downstate). My passion is life and all that Nature has to offer us and trying to photograph it in unique ways. Our intention in life is to see all that Nature has to offer us. We hope that you will be a part of our adventures as we cruise through our lives together. Come back often!

Saturday, October 24, 2009



I think it is Saturday. Good thing I brought a calendar along. I have to X off the days so I can keep track, or turn on the cell phone to see what date it is (which getting a cell signal way out here is by luck….I DID finally get our TV tuned in…we get 5 stations, two of which are cartoons!! At least one of the stations is CBS so Dan can watch Survivor on Thursdays!!)

Monday we officially start our positions. Abbey will pick us up early Monday morning for our first staff meeting and then hopefully a tour of things. Dan and I have been slightly busy at our new home spot (aka campsite) cleaning things up around here, working in the little cabin cleaning it up and repairing a picnic table that must’ve been constructed by little people. It is about the height of a child’s table so we literally put it up on blocks. Dan had to tighten a bunch of bolts before it was safe to set on. The thing weighs a ton. He was so looking forward to cooking outside on his new portable gas grill, but the table wouldn’t have held it any more than it would have held us. AND with the bear population (of which we haven’t seen any yet!), it might not be a good idea to fry bacon outside!

It took us a better part of a day and a half to get the 5th wheel arranged. We can’t connect directly to the water connection because no matter what ya do (including driving to Kitty Hawk for a new RV hose, which has to be 30 miles one way from here), the connection won’t stop leaking. Our RV hose worked fine at home, but now it and the connection don’t like each other. The RV hose that we bought from Wal-Mart in K H wouldn’t even connect to our fitting! ARRGGGG. So, we’re just using the holding tank until we can figure something else out (and it isn’t washers; Dan tried that too). It isn’t a big “leak” but enough that Dan doesn’t want to run it that way because he doesn’t want to chance the steady drip somehow getting inside the 5th wheel and making things wet and us not knowing it. I’m thinking he could jimmy up a little “eaves trough” type thing and divert it down the hose and away from the side of the 5th wheel.

I need to talk about mosquitoes. The mosquitoes that are HERE are about ½ of the size of Michigan mosquitoes! They are so little!! They are just as troublesome and they do bite. I look like someone has thrown little straight pins into my skin. I’ve got bites all over, but the bites DON’T ITCH!!! And the mosquitoes are only an issue in the evenings, but last night I think it was too hot for them because they weren’t an issue at all.

About the homes down here….yep, they are prepared for hurricanes. Lots of strange looking shutter things on homes and businesses. I don’t mean they are fastened down, but they are there just in case. And the homes are something to see. There are many, many homes like the one in the movie “Nights in Rodanthe” (which was filmed down this way), then there are others that instead of having a garage for your car, there is a boat slip for your cabin cruiser. It is wall to wall sea side homes.

Tonight, we are going on a “howling”. It is something that the NWR (National Wildlife Refuge; remember that for future uses) does every so often. We met one of the other volunteers yesterday; he takes care of the red wolves that cannot be released into the wild yet and he also takes care of the venomous snakes (great to know, but who in the hell takes “care” of venomous snakes…and why would you want to?? )…in fact he had one in the back of the truck…did we want to see it? NO THANKS, not now, maybe later when it might be dead. He went on with his comforting story of the snakes and how there are so many venomous snakes in this area that a documentary is being made using this area. Now, I’m thinking we need another strand of electric fence around our parameter…a low strung strand of it. Anyway, about the howling. People meet at 6 p.m. at Mill Tail Creek Rd and caravan into the woods and listen to the wolves howl. I know that may sound strange that living in da U.P. of Michigan that we would have any interest in listening to more wolves…but these are RED wolves; not like the wolves in our area…and much smaller.

It is deer season here and they can hunt deer with dogs….which Dan and I don’t approve of, but it isn’t our place to approve or not. However, after seeing the “countryside” we can see why dogs would be necessary for a successful hunt. I will get some photos eventually and eventually HOPEFULLY actually be able to post them (still traveling to the Welcome Center to use their wifi). The countryside is SO THICK. Deer season will be over the end of this month and then there will be NO unauthorized traffic on the “road” we live off from. For you farmers out there; in this area, they plant soy beans and we figure the fields musts be tiled (considering that most of this is wetlands).

If time allows (since I am using the Welcome Centers wifi and I don’t want to overstay MY welcome) I will try to check out some of my favorite blogs and maybe be able to upload a photo or two. I for sure need to know how Tim (DVM’s Wifes Life) is doing. You guys have been in our thoughts while we’ve been gone. (While I AM doing this, poor Dan has to find something to entertain himself with and there is only so much he can do in the Welcome Center or sitting in the truck!!).

Don’t give up on me!! I’ll post every chance I get!!!


  1. Glad you and Dan made it there all right and are getting settled in.It"s cold and wet here.Spending the day in the shop.take care.Max

  2. Must be nice to be there, minus the hurricanes and stuff of course.

  3. Well, you will be tickled to know that we woke up to four inches of snow this morning! (See my post tomorrow!). But now it is about 6:15p and most of it has melted). Thank goodness.
    Yikes, I would be afraid of snakes there for sure. I would like everything else but THAT. I probably would get swelling from the mosquitos, too...but the warmth would be nice.
    Looking forward to hearing more about your new life there....write when you can. Stay safe!

  4. So glad to hear you are safe and sound down there where it is so much warmer than it is here. It is so very cold. Don't you miss that? Do you miss us Michiganders up here in the cold and rain? Freezing our hineys off even with our flannels and fleece?
    Wow. Sounds like such an adventure you and Dan are on. I am so excited for you. But the snakes? Yikes. Red wolves? Hmmm. Bears? Holy wah eh!
    I haven't been online in quite sometime and finally blogged today after a week and a half hiatus. We are doing fine and I so appreciate you thinking of us. The biggest issue we are having is trying to get Tim weaned off the steroid. It is certainly an issue right now. Anyway, so glad to hear from you and how North Carolina is treating you. Look forward to hearing about your new home!

  5. The environ of your new home looks just lovely! Wish I could visit for a weekend stay over. Would've got enough to satisfy my lensual pleasures!

  6. Wow! My first comment is "look at that view"! Second is "lucky". Glad you hear you guys are starting to get settled in . What a difference than the great north you are so used to. I cannot wait to hear of all your stories and experiences.

  7. You can see for miles out your back door! Awesome!
    Glad you guys are settling in. Hope work goes well.

    You are the second blog I read today mentioning bears! YIKES! No bacon, okay :-)


  8. Thanks everyone for checking in! Please continue to follow!! Posts will be few and far between at times!


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