I love treasure hunting. Any time of year, I scout the yard for relics and other clues as to who has come to visit. Creatures large and small leave tracks in the snow, and winged dinosaurs drop eggshells in the Spring. Nibbles out of the raspberries and pears tell stories of busy groundhogs, squirrels, birds, deer, and bear, busy at work securing nourishment and habitat. Some have welcomed new little additions to their families; others have met their fate. As the once bright yellow forsythia flowers wilt and fade, the pink and white blossoms of the apple trees take their place. Entrances and exits fade into and out of each other. The morning offers a chorus of chickadees, warblers, and wrens accompanied by the percussion of a downy woodpecker... or the squeal of a chipmunk being snatched up by a Cooper’s hawk. Dusk fills its silence with infinite peepers and the mating call of a red fox. The opportunity to know these creatures and to study their relics up close is a great privilege; and whether the stories bring laughter, tears, or jaw-dropping awe, they all have meaning. They all have purpose.