October 28, 2010

No Ducks Pond...

In the sleepy town of Hamlin, New York, we lived on a pleasant five-acre piece of property up until just two years ago when we headed south and out of state.  We had the house in Hamlin built, and the fill needed to go around the base of it was gathered by digging what was essentially a humongous hole in the backyard.  Our son Scott was seven years old when we moved in, and upon learning this hole would become a pond, he suggested we name it Ducks Pond.  I asked what we would do if there were no ducks, and quite naturally he decided it would be called… yes, you guessed it.  "No Ducks Pond" was born, still without water and certainly without ducks.
One heavy winter and wet spring later, the hole had filled with water and we had a pond.  My husband Joe obtained a permit to stock it with fish, thereby officially declaring it to the county as No Ducks Pond.  He filled it with grass carp, bass, and perch all so that the kids could enjoy fishing in their own backyard, despite the fact that the property butted up against a wonderful creek that flowed with fish and spilled into Lake Ontario.  Joe felt that it would be nice for the kids to have something even closer and easier to fish in than the creek.  That’s just the kind of dad he is.  We had wonderful times by that pond, some spent having campfires by the fire pit Joe and Scott built next to it, some fishing, or throwing rocks into it, and some just picking “corn dogs" (what the kids called cattails) from along its banks.  Over the time we lived in that home we all fell in love with No Ducks Pond.  My father put together for us what looked like a cock-eyed old sign, and I painted our pond’s name with pride on it, along with a few corn dogs for decoration.

When we decided we would head south a couple years back, none of us wanted to leave our pond behind.  The nasty New York winters, yes, but not our beloved pond.  We couldn’t take it with us, clearly, but determined to keep the memories we built there, we took something to remember it by and planted it firmly in the front garden of our new house.

I’m sure it looks odd to visitors who don’t know the story, but to us it looks right at home.  We Wilburs have little regard for propriety and convention if it gets in the way of happiness.  And so I encourage you to fill your house, inside and out, with what makes you smile.  If you have your own special story like this, I’d love to hear it, and I’m sure others reading here would too.  Please feel free to comment below and share it with us!


  1. I simply loved this story. Your love of your family and all around you comes through so clear. I always loved building memories and traditions in my family. It is so important to children. There are those who do not realize what children retain, what they absorb and how it is so important for us instill in them the good. YOU and Joe have certainly achieved all that, and you certainly have many years to keep adding to it,and I am sure abundantly! Your children are very fortunate. God bless you and your family always.
    Michele Jones

  2. Thank you so much for your kind words! I appreciate it!