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I enjoy walking in my neighborhood for many reasons. Fresh air, exercise, and my enjoyment of nosily checking out old homes top the list. I have also discovered that most of my ideas for new articles just “come to me” and nestle down cozily in my brain somehow while I’m walking outside.

But today’s walk has a different purpose: to take the time to recognize and appreciate all of my blessings. Thanksgiving is a mere two days away, and I want to give a (silent) shout of gratitude to God, the Universe, and as a little reminder to myself for all I have been given. Please join me on my walking adventure.

Nature – Among today’s natural eye candy were a stout four-trunked white birch tree, and a scraggly apple tree which surprisingly still had a few lonely apples attached. The birch was beautiful; majestic. It looked like a pre-planned yard decoration, rather than just a strange happenstance of nature. And the apple tree … strangely, the owner had carefully covered each individual apple in ladies’ nylon pantyhose. If anyone knows the reasoning behind this, please post a comment below. I was both baffled and bewildered by this sight.

Architecture – Most of the homes in my neighborhood are modest little bungalows. Small square footage; large price tag. Our neighborhood is full of very old homes … many with a story dating back to the 1800’s. During today’s journey, I saw the strange but oddly beautiful combination of a teeny-tiny blue bungalow with grandiose white pillars befitting a Southern mansion.  This combination somehow worked for this tiny, yet proud little house.

The other structural highlight of today’s walk was a home with a small popped-out addition built to overhang a small creek in the yard. I imagined how it would feel to sit in that addition, warm and cozy with a hot cup of coffee and a book in hand. What a gorgeous view.

Wildlife – On today’s stroll, I saw many gray squirrels, flitting about. I had two feisty Chihuahuas snapping at me through a fence. I saw a beautiful and regal-looking orange cat bathing himself on a porch. As I walk, I wonder if any of these critters realize how unseasonably warm it is today.

During my little adventure today, I said a silent prayer of gratitude for many things: the beautiful weather, my health, my family. I am thankful to live in America, where it is safe to walk outside alone. I am thankful to be a homeowner while only in my twenties. I am thankful for the beautiful expressions of nature that I witnessed today in the trees and the animals. I am thankful to feel a sense of belonging in a neighborhood where pride of ownership rings bright and true through the meticulously maintained yards and polished windows.


Andrea Busche - Freelance WriterAndrea Busche is a twenty-something writer who works for an electric company by day.

In addition to writing, her interests include reading, hiking, snowshoeing, personal finance, and wine. She and her husband live 3 blocks away from Lake Superior in Duluth, MN in a very old house with their two cats.

Andrea is available for freelance writing opportunities; she specializes in informational magazine articles (any topic – she has covered everything from adoption to zoos), and satirical essays. To contact her with a writing request, please call (218) 391-9568.

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Buck Anderson
# Buck Anderson
Wednesday, November 25, 2009 6:40 PM
Andrea, thank you for the wonderful article. I also have the priviledge of living in a country community that is nestled between lakes and woods. Most of our neighbors enjoy the pastime of walking the neighborhood and spotting deer and wildlife.
Andrea Busche
# Andrea Busche
Thursday, November 26, 2009 7:45 AM
Thanks, Buck!

The place between lakes and woods is a beautiful place to be.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and all of your readers!

Andrea Busche

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