Tag Archive: campfire


If you’re like me (God save you) you have already asked your family to boycott the holidays and head to the Ocala National Forest or Honeymoon Island and pretend it’s summer! Any self-respecting Chick with Ticks goes crazy this time of year. Too many malls, boutiques, fancy paper, shiny ribbons, and cashola right out the door!! Not enough tromping, mudding, climbing, trekking, spitting or peeing in the woods if you ask me! “But Jacque, aren’t the holidays all about gift giving,” you ask. NO – BAH HUMBUG – I am totally against spending tons of hard-earned cash on crap you don’t really need and some you don’t really want – what I want to share is memories, mud and beer! So, here’s my suggestions on how to have one helluva holiday season Chicks with Ticks style!!

  • On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me – a really great wetlands plant ID book (please ask to borrow it)
  • On the second day of the Holidays my best friend got from me – a one year pass to Florida State Parks!! (hell yeah)
  • Silver Bells, silver bells – yep – got some of those jingle bells – they are great bear deterrents.
  • Chestnuts roasting on an open fire and I got my neighbor some lighter knot tied in a hand-made bow with a note that said good for one fire and a few good stories. Won’t ever forget that one!
  • Up on the housetop…is a versatile  tarp that can serve as shelter, protection, a slip-n-slide, and 100’s of other useful fun things.
  • Rudolph the red-nosed-reindeer – had too much hooch – so we made some infused vodka in a neat decanter….that’ll be hair of the dog for him.
  • I’m dreaming of a LIGHT Christmas – that’s right – LED flashlights to be exact – or those really cool ones that also have that glowing gas in the handle – my buddy Josh has one that makes me jealous every time we go frog hunting!!
  • Over the river and through the woods – a Gazetteer will certainly make the trip more fun than that stuffy GPS…plus – when you can’t use the GPS – the Gazetteer does the job like it always has!
  • It’s beginning to look a lot like hunting season….go for broke and get that pink camo rifle! It’s okay to be a Chick!
  • I saw mommy kissing someone – and she put on Burt’s Bee tinted lip balm first and MAN her lips were soft.
  • Santa Claus (or some other holiday spirit) is coming to town and he better have a yard stick or other walking stick customized by you for your favorite Chick or Hick! Make it fun – think of interesting things to carve or attach to it.
  • Finally – you know you just can’t go much longer without ordering a Chicks with Ticks T-shirt!

So, ditch the malls and halls and balls and get down to the real business of giving. Then duct tape the family and head for the woods! They will forget it when they smell bacon on the campfire! Happy holidays – they are just beginning!

Shadowed Calls

Mexican Free Tailed Bats - courtesy of Bluedots.com

The flame flickers over last season’s oak and the embers twinkle like a million red stars. I sit amongst friends and smores enjoying the Indian Summer. Laughter and dew settles as we relive the events of the day. Out in the forest, I hear something unfamiliar. A call of some wild thing that seems to be wanton and worried. I sneak away, issuing some excuse or other. There’s always twigs to gather and shadows to explore. I stand at the edge of the blackness and listen. Is that feather? Is it legged and winged? I creep closer needing desperately to know what small wonder is awake in the night. The sound is coming from the canopy. This thing – this mystery is living in my forest. Or, am I living near its forest? I can’t leave. I am drawn further and further into the damp twilight. I listen, craning my neck as if my length will cover the distance between it and me. One more time – I hear the bats in the Spanish moss. I linger a moment and smile. I return to the campfire satisfied.

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