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Outlaw Gnomes

Early last fall, when Robin & I were first planning our Christmas gift shopping list, we asked my Mom, who lives with us now, and has everything; “Mom-What do you want for Christmas?”

Mom’s answer? “A really neat Garden Gnome.” Which made perfect sense. Mom has always been a great gardener. In addition to everything else, She still has lots of gardens. “Garden Gnomes for Mom” went on our list.

Shortly thereafter, Robin & I found ourselves shopping in Lake Placid. Lo & Behold! Right in the display window of a big shop on Main street- a set of THREE awesome looking wooden garden gnomes, each a foot and a half tall. They seemed PERFECT!

We went inside the store and inquired:

“How much for the Garden Gnomes in the window?”

The saleswoman’s response: “I’m sorry, Those Gnomes are not for sale today. Come back on Monday or next week. They might be for sale then.”

Just our luck! We apparently walked into a store in downtown Lake Placid and tried to buy the only 3 items not for sale! Leave it to garden gnomes! I thought I heard them snickering amongst themselves as we exited the store.

Well, as luck would have it, we found ourselves back in Lake Placid about a month later. I returned to the same store. The three gnomes were gone from the window. I walked up to the counter. A different woman was there.

“I was here to ask about the wooden garden gnomes you had in the window. I tried to buy them about a month ago, but was told they weren’t for sale. Are they still available?”

The woman behind the counter winced in response….”OOOOOH! I’m so sorry! No one ever should have told you that! Unfortunately, we sold them just last week.”

That’s garden gnomes for you! They’re sneaky!

Shortly thereafter, I was driving through Watertown with Mom. We were on our way home when we spotted some very nice chain saw carvings for sale by the road. We stopped and bought one- a Bald Eagle, perched majestically on a rock. The piece was extremely well done.

We met the carver, hard at work carving other projects in his shop. I could tell right away from his saws, his setup, and the quality of his work- two things for sure- This guy knew his way around a saw- and this guy had talent!

I’m no slouch with a saw myself. I cut firewood & when the need arises, sometimes fell trees. This guy though- he’s far more than “no slouch”- He’s an artist!

I took the eagle, and my Mom, home. We put the eagle in her garden. I got to thinking; “I wonder if this guy would chain saw carve us a gnome?”

I got online, found some garden gnome pictures. Robin & I went back to his workshop. We showed him our pictures and asked “Any interest in carving a gnome?”

He looked at our photos, nodded, and accepted on the spot. We commissioned a set of three, for Mom, for Christmas: “Saranac”, “Dexter”, and “Placid”. Three of the last places my Mom & Dad lived before he passed and she moved in with us.

As it turns out, only “Saranac” made it for Christmas. Apparently “Dexter” and “Placid” are still in the slammer. Still doin’ a stretch for a job they pulled way up north.

When my son RJ helped me unload “Saranac” from my truck last night & hide him for Christmas, RJ asked;

“Dad, Where do you FIND these guys?”

I said- “Son, Outlaws just seem to have a way of finding each other.”

Kind of like Garden Gnomes. Sometimes YOU don’t find THEM. They know where you are. When they’re ready-THEY will find YOU.

“Saranac” found us.

I’ll post an update when “Dexter” and “Placid” do too. Our carver’s workin’ on breakin’ them outta gnome jail with a chain saw before the first signs of spring.

For now, I’ll end with a tidbit of Outlaw advice:

Sometimes instead of lookin’ real hard, it works best to let what your lookin’ for find you.


Until Our Trails Cross Again

May All Your Garden Gnomes Find You!



Outlaw Gnome Update:

There’s Been an Outlaw Garden Gnome Jailbreak!

Meet “Placid”

“Saranac”s Ax Wielding Older Brother

Placid was scheduled for release at Christmas, but his parole got DENIED!

He FINALLY made a successful Mother’s Day Escape

But it sure was a close call!

Somebody called the Cops!

We almost got BUSTED!

Dexter didn’t make it out!

He’s still in the Garden Gnome Slammer.

Not to worry though!

We’ve still got a good chainsaw man working on the inside.

While Saranac, Placid, & ADKO

Plan one more Outlaw Gnome Escape

Only then will our Outlaw Gang

Be Finally complete!

Author’s Note: Placid’s Ax head is a sacred relic. Personally hand dug and salvaged during archaeological excavations from the 19th century farm lot next door to our house. I cleaned it up,wedged and handled it myself. Thought Placid might find a good ax handy in making his Gnome Jail Break!


When planning jailbreaks, these are good things to keep handy:

A good man on the inside, a reliable vehicle,and a good cover story.


Until Our Trails Cross Again:

The Adirondack Outlaw Gang:

“Placid” “Saranac”


***Outlaw Gnome Jailbreak Update II***

The 3rd Outlaw Gnome brother finally made his escape!

Read the full story in “What’s in a Gnome?”

Folks can find it right here on my blog.