My name is Kim, and I love where I live. I grew up in the Annapolis area. I still live here, with Brent, my husband of 17 years and our two children, Becca and Connor. We live in Amberley, a neighborhood of about 180 homes situated on a peninsula surrounded by Whitehall and Ridout Creeks, just off the Chesapeake Bay. We’re three minutes off Rt. 50, about 30 miles from Washington DC and Baltimore, under two and a half hours from the Atlantic Ocean, and 15 minutes on a boat puts us in the heart of historic downtown Annapolis’ harbor.
The first time I drove into Amberley was in May of 1987. I was a senior in high school and had recently met this dreamy guy at work. We went to a party one night after work, and I followed him and his friend back to his parents’ house so we could see his new stereo. I was amazed as I pulled onto the wooded main road that the air was so much cooler. Being surrounded by water and all the mature trees keeps the temperature down.
I ended up marrying that dreamy guy in 1994, had our first baby in 1999 and our second in 2001. Fast-forward to the summer of 2004 when we settled on our home in Amberley. And yes, his parents still lived here (and still do today) – our new home was right next door to theirs. After owning two previous homes together, this house was “the one” where we knew we’d still live even after the kids were grown and out of college.
Even though we’re so close to multiple metropolitan areas and all they have to offer, when I drive into my neighborhood it’s like I’m transported. Mature trees of all kinds – maples, tulip poplars, dogwood, holly, many different varieties of oaks, gorgeous beech trees (my favorite), walnut and hickory. Beautiful homes nestled among these trees. The main street makes a loop around the entire peninsula of our neighborhood, and all the homes on the one side of the road are waterfront. There are two smaller inner streets that intersect the main road, that’s where we live.
But the best thing about our little slice of paradise? The wildlife. I’m still amazed at all the creatures literally in my back yard. White-tailed deer, fox, all sorts of songbirds, hawks, eagles, crows, osprey, blue herons, more squirrels than you can imagine, oppossum, raccoon, rabbits, turtles, snakes, frogs, toads, moles, bats, mice.
And dogs. I know, technically a dog is not wildlife, but we’re a neighborhood of dog owners. It’s comical how you can talk to a neighbor, “Do you know so-and-so?” and the response is inevitably, “Oh, are they the ones with the chocolate lab or the beagle mix?” Homeowners are known by what kind of dog they own. (Me? Our Maddy is a four year old, 65 pound rescue pup of questionable background – lab, husky, greyhound, who knows what else.)
I work from home, mostly freelance writing and editing. My “office” is typically my big, beautiful kitchen addition, sitting at my spacious island with windows on three sides. So I look out my windows all the time. And daily, I get a glimpse at the wildlife in and around my yard. In the seven years we’ve lived here, we’ve witnessed so many fun, interesting and sometimes sad things happening with the suburban wildlife.
So in addition to the somewhat dry writing I do for a living, I wanted to put down our wildlife stories in a personal blog. I hope to accompany many of the stories with photos, although they aren’t of the best quality and won’t be better until mama gets herself a nice new digital camera.