About Blog Title...

As a child, it was one of my greatest delights to visit my grandparents in the spring when the whip-poor-wills began to call. Grandma and Grandpa lived in a remote valley of the Ozark Mountains where there were trees a plenty, and, seemingly, a whip-poor-will, or two, in each one.
My grandmother insisted that a whip-poor-will's call was not "whip-poor-will," but instead, "chip-butter-white-oak." I would listen really hard trying to hear it exactly as she said it was, but all I could hear was "whip-poor-will, whip-poor-will,..." But, I never let on to her.
I remember my grandpa watching and listening, with an amused look on his face, to one of these listening sessions. Shortly after that he began to call me, just for fun, "Chip Butter." It is a name I am proud to wear for I still love to hear that long, lonesome call on a warm summer's eve. And, sometimes, when I listen really, really hard, it seems I can hear quite clearly, "chip-butter-white-oak, chip-butter-white-oak..."

Monday, July 9, 2018

The 365th...

"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks."  ~John Muir

Today, Millie and I are celebrating 365 consecutive days of walking the Chip Butter Trail. Many of our friends~ the deer, the great blue heron, a large red-tailed hawk, and a beautiful indigo bunting~ were all there this morning, scattered somewhere along the trail to see us through.  We needed no other fanfare, for the song of the mockingbird was quite enough, and oh-so-fine!

Walking is not something new to me, for it has been almost a way of life for many years.  It's just that I had never walked every day for a year before.   It wasn't always easy to get up and get out there in all kinds of weather ~ in wind and rain and snow, and scorching summer heat.  But, as William Morris said, "How I love the earth and the seasons and the weather and all things that deal with it and all that grows out of it."       

The hardest week was the first week of January when it was very cold and a fierce north wind was blowing night and day.  I wrote on January 1: "The ponds are iced over, but the cattle are still able to break the ice along the edges.  There were three baby calves born today, but they seemed okay, despite the extreme cold.  The Great Blue Heron was fishing along the shallow creeks where there was running water, and the Little Garden feeder was full of birds, both blue and red.  We took the Woods Trail today, avoiding the open meadow, and covered our faces."  The "We" is Millie and I.  Actually she didn't cover her face, but I covered mine.

I continued on January 2:  "Day's length 9 hours and 52 minutes.  A cold day with no sunshine.  The ice is thick on the ponds.  I fear Millie might run out onto it, and if she should break through the ice,  I would not be able to get her out.  It was so cold this morning that both of her ears were standing quite erect."

Now what?  Keep walking, of course.  But, come next winter when the cold winds blow, I think I may just have to sit those days out.


  1. Congratulations!!
    I was doing that too when we our furry friend Nikita-we took a walk every single day no mater the weather. when she passed on I couldn't walk again for years-we missed her too much.
    I don't think I could walk in this heat any more either.
    I loved your photos!

  2. You deserve a party, Congratulations! You gave yourself a goal and you stayed with it to the end. I am certain Millie enjoyed each and every day. Your scenery is beautiful...year round. I would guess that you would miss it on days spent indoors. I think this is the first glimpse of you I have seen on your blog. Thanks for sharing.

  3. How wonderful your accomplishment of walking everyday for a year! Hip, hip, hooray! My husband and I walk every day (or is our intention), but during the hot, humid days we walk at the mall. Not the gorgeous walk you have been enjoying and certainly not the birdsong! I love the William Morris quote--so beautiful. I'm sure Millie has loved every walk with you! How glorious for both of you. ♥

  4. What lovelycountry you walk through, - I do admire your determination and persistence!!

  5. Congratulations for sticking with your goal! Now, what's next?

  6. What a beautiful, beautiful post! Congratulations. Is there anything more beautiful the the songs of the mocking bird. Isn't nature wonderful!

  7. Love this so much! I'm a walker too. I had my dear Cheyenne, a black lab mix,as my walking partner for a few years until she passed. Now, it's just me and my walking stick! (and phone!)And my walking distance has shortened from 3 miles to 1 mile. But as long as I keep it up, I think I'm doing good things for my body, and I know I'm doing wonderful things for my soul-I hear birds-Meadow Larks, Bobolinks, Mockingbirds, Robins, all kinds of Woodpeckers, Wood Pewee...so many that I know by sound, but not by their names.
    Good walking to you-and many more days of it!

  8. Wonderful accomplishment. It takes a lot of will power to do this. Most people would have chickened out in the bad days. Love the pictures and how you tell us about the walks. Millie looks so happy too. thanks for sharing your time and what you see every day along the trail.

  9. Congratulations! You have a treasure of memories and a real accomplishment, overcoming the (occasional?) "don't-want-to's" and going when the weather was less than fair. :)

  10. Well done. It has been too hot by far to walk here (unless I do it at 5 or 6 a.m.) as we are having a prolonged heatwave in the UK. Being asthmatic, I struggle in the heat.

    I love the photos of where you walk - beautiful and close to nature. I have to stick to the lanes around =here, but as you know, we have wonderful scenery to enjoy.

  11. Congratulations to you and to Miss Millie. That takes some fortitude on your part, I wouldn't have it in me on those cold winter days. Plus I would be afraid of falling or slipping on the ice. You do have an amazing walk down Butter Chip Trail and I can just imagine all the beauty you experienced through the changing seasons. I'm down right proud of you :)

  12. Congratulations! You and Millie have made a great accomplishment. I admire your sticking to your 365 of walking, especially during the bitter cold days of winter. I look forward to seeing your photos and hearing of your and Millie's adventurous walks. Give Millie a big hug and extra snack for being such a sweet girl and grand companion. <3

  13. Lovely post. Nice to visit you again.