Woods Life Cravings


Hello, all!

I apologize for my absence over the last several months. I’ve been selfish with my time and have spent little to none writing. I appreciate all the emails from those of you who have checked in. We are still alive and well!

After sharing our first year in detail, I’ve struggled with finding much to write about that would not seem repetitive. If you were to write a blog about your life for a year, the second year might prove to be more of the same. At some point, the novelty of anything that was once new, wears off. We have settled into a routine, and to the reality that this is our every day. What once seemed crazy, has become our life!

A couple of months ago I had a fellow tell me that what I do here in the woods is no different than what every other wife or stay at home mom does anywhere else.

On one hand, that couldn’t be any more true. Nothing about my day to day is extraordinary. Most days can be pretty monotonous. I try to do a little housework, play outside, take a minute for me during nap time, prep for dinner, and bedtime comes soon after.

On the other hand, there are not many who have lived part of their life void of community. Sixty-four miles in on a dirt road from a community. At times, this woods life factor can be completely refreshing. Other times, it is daunting. Unlike other families who lived here years ago, we are able to keep in touch with family, and to have immediate access to the internet (thank you HughesNet). I am so thankful for that most of the time. Then again, it is also serves as a constant reminder of what we’re missing.

This past week I visited Machias to help my Mom and Dad with the reopening of Helen’s. That was something I was not going miss. On Sunday, I waited tables. Within a few minutes of conversation with a sweet man and woman, the connection that I was “the Warden’s wife” had been made and they said they had been following my blog. We laughed as I shared a few woods stories. After a while, I realized that the gentleman (who is a Vietnam veteran) and myself, flew from Bangor in 2005 to the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. He remembered me as “the girl who sang the national anthem”. At this point we just started hugging each other. I am HORRIBLE at names and can’t remember…but if you’re reading this, that connection made my day!

Coming up on my third fall as a hermit, I know what it feels like to spend days and weeks “alone”. The North Pond Hermit was an exception. Most of us need community, and it is definitely a craving I experience often. I was thankful when I left Machias, that that need felt fulfilled.

I know there will come a day when I crave the solitude.



Rianne Ackley

About Rianne Ackley

I grew up in Downeast Maine but have recently relocated to the North Woods. I live in Clayton Lake where I am a stay at home Mom to two beautifully wild little boys and wife to a Maine State Game Warden. I am a lover of the simple things in life...a good book, a song, a rainy day, a bowl of white popcorn, etc. I have a slight obsession with all things food. Love cooking it, eating it, looking at it, smelling it, reading about it, etc. I am a firm believer that life is what you make it.