A Weekend In The Woods

We arrived late Friday night to the White Mountains of Arizona.  We pretty much set up camp, had some dinner and went to bed.  Saturday morning while sitting outside with our coffee, I noticed the dirt moving near the fire pit when all of a sudden out popped this cute, little, fuzzy, gray mole face.  Apparently he was curious to his new visitors.  It didn’t take Abby long to figure out that there was something in there.  She stuffed her snout as far in as she could. 

A few minutes later the mole popped his head up from a hole a few yards away and watched Abby furiously dig at the ground.  I wondered if he was upset that all his hard work was being undone by a curious pooch.  I think he was mostly curious though.  I wish I had gotten a picture of the mole. 

Smokey did really well camping.  I did end up finding her a sweater, in the garage no less.  It must have belonged to one of my other ferrets at one point.  It was too bulky though and really impeded her ability to move her front paws.  The nights were really chilly.  We wore our winter clothes.  But the days were fantastic. 

A girlfriend of mine saw this same picture of Smokey on Facebook and asked if we had caught a squirrel while away.  I had to explain to her that this was my ferret; a much beloved pet.  Too funny.  Smokes loved camping.  She is such a little climber so I had to really keep an eye on her while out.  Sunday morning, while doing dishes, I turned around and she was up on the kitchen table with her nose in my coffee.  Little monster.  Luckily she is so darn cute.

She and Abby both did really well.  This time we stayed at a campsite so Abby didn’t have the luxury of running free.  Smokey sniffed around the campsite and when she was done she would stand up against my pant leg.  Two little girls from a neighboring campsite came by with their Dad to check out Smokey.  Smokey loved the attention.

Saturday was the perfect quintessential Fall day.  We had always passed by a sign in the small town of Strawberry that pointed out a historic school-house.  For some reason my pictures of the outside of it will not load onto WordPress.  This new camera phone has been very tricky.  I did, however, get a picture of the inside from the window. 

It’s not the best picture.  You can probably see my reflection in the glass but it shows a little of what was inside.  What you can’t see is the pot-bellied stove near the front.  This school was in operation from the late 1800s to the early 1900s. 

While we were there Hubby noticed a sign for a dairy up the street that sold cheese and fudge.  The man can smell food from a mile away, I swear.  We headed a few miles up the road where the asphalt gradually turned to dirt, until we came to Fossil Creek Creamery.

The creamery sold items made from goat’s milk.  Here are a few of the welcoming committee.  They also had llamas, including one I got to lead.  She was really adorable.  All white with a permanent smile on her face. 

Of course we didn’t leave without making a few purchases.  We bought goat cheese flavored with shiraz wine and marion berries, goat milk fudge with pecans, and then a few caramels to eat in the car.  We also purchased this hot garlic sauce that came in a small mason jar and was out of this world good.

We drove back into town via the dirt road.  The breeze picked up just as we were getting ready to pass a tree full of bright yellow leaves.  They flew over the truck and their scent mingled with the warm air.  For a second I thought I was back in New England. 

After that we stopped at a small market and a gentleman was selling homemade mango salsa and homemade tortilla chips.  He wore a Hawaiian print shirt which was as vibrant as his personality.  We sampled a few of his wares and purchased some salsa and chips (it was not a low-calorie weekend by any stretch).  There was a cozy little restaurant tucked into the ponderosa pines that we also have passed quite a few times.  Today we stopped for lunch.  It was really nice to sit and have a sandwich while drinking a cold Guinness.

We returned to the camper where Smokey was sound asleep.  I don’t think she even noticed we were gone.  Hubby took Abby for a walk and I took a nap.  We prepared a hearty beef stew dinner in the crock pot (thanks Zoom!) for later that night and ate it with crusty wheat bread.  It was delicious! 

My parents are making me wear this dorky jacket.

The night was really cold.  I haven’t worn a winter hat since visiting Alaska a few years ago.  We dressed Abby in her jacket and Smokes just stayed in the camper.  I meant to mention that when we got up on Saturday there was still some snow visible in the shadier areas. 

Hubby thought it would be great to bring the satellite tv hook up.  I was hoping he wouldn’t but didn’t say anything.  He tried setting it up Saturday morning and it just wasn’t working.  He spent some time on the phone with customer service who insisted it was the box.  He knew that wasn’t it.  I have to admit, I was secretly relieved that it didn’t work.  It was so peaceful up there and there were only a few other campers near us as it is off-season.  On Sunday morning, while packing up, he discovered there was a slice in the cable line which was probably the real reason it didn’t work.  Such is life.  And no, it wasn’t me that placed the slice in the cable.  😉

9 thoughts on “A Weekend In The Woods

  1. I so love living vicarously through your trips! And I am now craving fudge : ). Happy Thanksgiving, my friend!

  2. Sounds like you had a ton of fun! I’ve never taken animals on trips before–except when I was little. No spooky ghost stories this time? 😉

  3. ElizabethFrank123

    Well it sounds as though you had a great time 🙂 a lot of homemade stuff! I’m glad Smokey behaved herself

  4. I love all the mentions of food in this post 🙂 I love goat’s cheese and recently had some which had honey in it which was very nice. What are marion berries?

    I’m glad the television didn’t work – solitude is what I think of with camping; I don’t think taking a lot of technology into the “wild” benefits our soul. (of course I might disagree if there was a season finale I was about to miss 🙂 )

  5. I have really enjoyed reading about your camping, Monsoon. Sounds like you guys have had a good time with your pets. Its great spending quality time with them, isn’t it?
    What does goat’s cheese taste like? I’ve been wanting to try to make goat-cheese brownies 🙂

  6. Looks like Camping with all your critters was a great success!!!!!! I am sorry though that your MIL could not join you. Hope she enjoyed the shower!

  7. Smoky couldn’t climb a tree, could she?
    Sounds like such fun, just spontaneously exploring places that look intriguing. BTW, you can and should eat all you can in the mountains. The higher altitude makes your body work harder. Also it takes lots of carbs to stay warm when it’s freezing.

  8. The photo of the Smokester is so very cute!!! And, you had me at “fudge”. So glad you got some peace and quiet time. Very necessary.

    • Isn’t she so cute with her nose up in the air? I guess I’m a bit partial. That fudge was incredible. Its amazing that there is any left.

      And thanks, it was so nice to get away. A friend of mine calls these little get-a-ways “Happy Marriage Weekends.” I think I’d have to agree.

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