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Tree Houses, Forts, Hideouts, and Clubhouses

I was rummaging through the books on our shelves today and came across “The Dangerous Book for Boys”.  I bought both of our boys one of these books in 2008.  I signed each book as such…

This is an awesome book, packed full of knowledge all little boys should know, from tying knots to making paper airplanes.  One of the sections covered building a tree house and I tried to recall all the tree houses, forts, hideouts, and clubhouse I had occupied over the course of my childhood.  There were many.

Tree House

My first treehouse was one my father built for me.  It was not much, just some scrap lumber, lovingly crafted together to make a platform beneath the canopy of a persimmon tree that grew along our pasture fence line.  My Dad later moved my swing set down under that tree and I can fondly recall many happy hours I spent playing there.

Clubhouse

There is just something about a pile of lumber that calls to little boys.  When I grew old enough to wield a hammer and saw, I wanted to build my own tree house.  I wanted my next one to be bigger, I wanted it to be higher, and I wanted it to have a trap door with a rope ladder.  So, I when I was ready to build it, I moved to the next tree down the fence line (which happened to also be another persimmon tree) and I built my “grand” tree house.  It was much higher off the ground.  It was twice as big.  It had a trap door AND a rope ladder.  But you know what?  I did not have as much fun in my new and grander tree house as I did in that simple one my Dad built for me. 

Rafting

Isn’t that how life is for most of us?  We are always in search of the next biggest and better thing and oftentimes, what we leave behind in our quests, turns out to be exactly what we needed all along. 

“If I ever go looking for my heart’s desire again, I won’t look any further than my own backyard.  Because if it isn’t there, I never really lost it to begin with.” 

~Dorothy, The Wizard of Oz

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