My Latest Mischief

Late last fall my pal Paul and I built a sugar shack in the woods and got our old gear together. We built a new concrete block firebox, found our old heavy iron chimney, stainless steel tanks and pans that had been sitting in the woods for years. We made a plan for tapping trees in the spring and here […]

Maple Syrup – 2018

July 3, 2017 It's been really great to be back "home" in northern Michigan - with plenty of gray days and a lot of rain in May and June, the sunny days stand out and take center stage now that we're into more predictable weather patterns. And, being by the waters of Grand Traverse Bay and Lake Michigan, there's always […]

A Good Summer (so far)

Naples, FL The country’s been wringing its hands and turning itself inside out for the past few months and I have to admit that it’s gotten to me from time to time. There’s a lot going on that I don’t approve of….enough that I’ve been questioning myself for not speaking up, for not doing anything about it. So today, the […]

Women’s March 01/21/2017

Sorry, Pal… but I’ve gotta cut you loose. The stuff you’ve been posting here on Facebook isn’t having the desired effect I think you’re looking for; I’m not buying it. In fact, I get nothing but a dark-cloud feeling of sadness and disgust every time I see another one of your posts condemning the politics, the President, or the candidate […]

Unfriend Me, Ok

Sunday, November 29,2015 After spending a great summer in northern Michigan building a happy little house with a friend and living on a quiet lake in the woods, I’m back in Naples for another “season”… the season that the snowbirds come to from the north and east coast for warm air, dolphin watching and salty water. I enjoy being a […]

Another Season In Naples

The weather changes here in October. The leaves change from green to everything, the air chills and the animals start moving through the woods across the counties looking for the last of the good eating, running for their lives from the hunters. Life changes here in October. I grew up in these landscapes, had adventures and businesses, had lovers and […]

Shades of October

August 23, 2015 Some of the best time I spend when I’m up north is with the most ordinary things. It’s home. It’s familiar. On any given day I’ll take a drive down one of the county roads I’ve driven a hundred times and find something worth a few minutes and a closer look. Summer’s winding down and there’s a […]

Ordinary Things

I recently wrote an article for the local newspaper about a soldier who recently received the Bronze Star.  I interviewed the 35 year old Marine Corps gunnery sergeant over the phone, followed up with a little background from the citation he’d been given by his superiors and some quotes I’d taken down during the course of our conversation. I wrote […]

Will Simpson – Warrior

July 22,  2015 Just got back from spending a week in the Montana wilderness and am back “home” in northern Michigan. After spending the last few summers in Florida it’s a real treat to be in the north again, surrounded by landscapes more familiar and friendly and with friends I’ve known all of my life.  I’m living on a little […]

Summer on the lake…

I left Michigan for Florida  five years ago and coming back this year finally feels like coming “home”.  As much as I’ve traveled in my life, there’s never been a place that has the same resonance for me as northern Michigan. I hope to find a spot to keep and return to through the year. I’m staying in a small […]

Birch Lake

Vietnam Memorial Traveling WallThe traveling wall came to Marco Island for five days in February and was well visited by the locals and tourists. It’s an amazing accomplishment. I was immediately impressed by the ranks of volunteers helping visitors to find names on the wall, giving presentations describing the history and challenges during the Vietnam conflict, weapons, vehicles and the […]

The Wall That Heals

It was a completely enjoyable surprise to have a visit from Mike Williams and Kathy Cloninger on Valentines Day. They were traveling back to Nashville from a week in Key West and Naples fell in the path of their way home. The first time I met Mike Williams he was half-dressed and coming out of his tent at Camp Cuisine […]

Mike and Kathy

Northern Michigan is a special spot and has been “home” all of my life (regardless of where I may actually be living). The most colorfully vivid changes in season come as winter announces it’s impending arrival, usually in October, when the nights turn cold and the first frosts start stripping the hardwoods. November turns the land and sky in shades […]

Elk Rapids in October

This was the third time I was invited back to Jim and Wendy’s place in Montana and once again this getaway was the highlight of my summer. It was like a great dream… with no phones, no Internet and all of my best music pals at every meal. It doesn’t get better than that for an old cowboy singer like […]

A Little Summer In Montana

Around the county in a sturdy black Jeep Alas, the years are beginning to show on the old ’92 Cherokee. If she’ll just give me one more season, I’ll give her a rest next year. I’ve tugged logs out of the woods with it, stumps out of the ground and covered over 300,000 miles since I bought it in 1999. […]

Life in the Leelanau

Taken from Isadore at intersection of Leelanau county road 645 and French Road
Summer in the Leelanau There’s a little hideaway spot in Leelanau County where I go to work and write several times through the warmer weather and I’m heading up for most of July and August. The trusty ol’ Winnebago still makes a fine living space…I’ve had it since ’97 and just couldn’t bring myself to part with it. Full bathroom, […]

My Getaway

I got an invitation from my friend Jenifer Hall to stay at her little bungalow on Big Pine Key for a few days while her family came for their annual visit. It was a getaway opportunity I couldn’t pass up. I headed across Old Tamiami Trail from Naples on Wednesday morning and enjoyed a quiet ride across the Everglades to […]

The Keys on a Weekday

Lamb’s Songwriter Retreat 2013 November 6-11, 2013 – Harbor Springs, MI Had a fantastic time on the retreat staff this year with best pals John Lamb, Katie Wallace, Dana Cooper and Lisa Redfern. The participants were outstanding in every way – great talents, enthusiastic songwriting and as always, full of surprises. Everything was wonderful except the weather! Cold! Gray! Chilly […]

Lamb’s Retreat

Santa Barbara… A Few Days On the Beach… My ‘Swan Song’ Concert… October 24-27, 2013 Planned for a year… Over a year ago my friend Kate Wallace made me promise to come to Santa Barbara and play at her house concert venue – Trinity Backstage. I promised I would. So, earlier this year Kate called me with a date – […]

Santa Barbara – Swan Song Concert

August 21 – Sept 5, 2013 Leelanau County, Michigan Wherever I travelled this year, people asked me about living in Southwest Florida… wasn’t it too hot and humid? Was the city too busy? When am I moving “home” to Michigan? All I ever say is… life just keeps coming one day at a time… you never know what’s just around […]

Leelanau Fall

Winding down from a busy year… December 7th, 2013 – Naples, FL This was a busy year, with great adventures and the best of everything – but it’s good to be home for a few weeks and through the holidays, and nice to have the time to put the busy-ness in life on the bottom shelf for awhile. It’s warm […]

Summer of ’13

Scouting the Florida Keys May 10th, 2013 Took a helicopter ride out of Marathon with my friend Jen on her birthday and got some great photos of the Seven Mile Bridge, Pigeon Key and the blue-green shallows surrounding this middle-ground in the Keys. Marathon started out as the spot that Flagler’s railroad set up headquarters for the completion of the […]

Keys by Helicopter

Researching The History of the Keys February 3, 2013 I’ve been traveling to the Keys almost every weekend – and I’m caught up in the history and the mood, taking notes and enjoying some great new friends. The history of the Florida Keys is colorful and, well, “historic”. Discovered by Juan Ponce de León in 1513 who claimed it for […]

Learning the Florida Keys

[ click on photos to enlarge ] January 2013: Florida Keys The Florida Keys are a series of small islands and “cays” stretching from just south of Miami all the way to Key West, bordered only by the ocean to the south and Florida Bay to the north. In 1905, Henry Flagler, one of the three owners of Standard Oil […]

The Key West Extension