I’m Back…

Yes, I am and happy to be sharing Sundays with you again.

John is on the right. He was probably about 8 in this photo. The other two boys are his brothers.

I’m somewhat rested but definitely much more focused. I decided to conclude my break and post today because today would have been my son John’s 50th birthday. That day was a very hot Sunday just like today. If you knew John, send a birthday wish heavenward. If you want to know more about him, read a post from a few years ago.

I know if John were still alive, I’d have many more of these to-do items off my list.

When I took my break, I felt frustrated with the landscaping project. Well, I think that project will never end as it’s still in what I refer to as a seriously major mess.

In the shade mid morning. Ugh

We’re enduring a heat wave, something that doesn’t happen for extended periods of time in Wisconsin. The heat is coupled with no rain, and we’ve officially been designated a drought area. So the photos I’m posting today are from plantings I’ve photographed in yards other than mine. Why? We’ve not turned on our outside water due to the landscaping, and I’ve chosen not to plant anything this summer because of that project.

This week I had the opportunity to see some beautiful photos the results of a couple trips a friend and her husband took. He is an incredibly photographer. Of course, he has all the right equipment to capture in photos nature and landscapes that take your breath away with their beauty and their detail.

Lovely purple clematis in a friend’s garden.

Anyway, I also enjoy taking photos especially of scenery and animals or birds in natural settings. My photos will never be the same as his even if I had his equipment because his vision, his unique way of composing or envisioning his shot differs from mine.

I thought about this in relation to other artistic skills or talents. Take writing for instance. Two writers might hit on the same setting and even similar elements in their plot, but both those stories end up very differently. I thought about this concept while reading a book recently. The book had a subplot similar to one of mine in Seasons of Wine and Love. Same circumstances for the subplot, same state, similar characteristics in the heroine, but very different in the manner the story unfolded and the heroine’s journey.

As I’ve become more immersed in the skills of writing and preparing for publication the best story I can, I realize that this has impacted how I read or watch a TV show or a movie. Not that I look for what isn’t right, but to see different approaches to plot elements and how that’s done, why it worked or didn’t for me. In some ways that detracts from what used to be my simple enjoyment of such items.

Window box–thanks to another friend

My husband does this with his cooking and his analysis of possible recipes to try. He makes the recipe, then tears it apart to decide how he might make it better. Or maybe never remake it as it didn’t turn out as he expected. He carries this trait into dining out. Always he’s trying to determine what spices or herbs make the dish or not. What he might do to make it better.

Finally, I think this idea has some merit in our personal lives. As we get older and experience life more in all its manifestations, we take that wisdom and apply it to our lives and what we experience each day. Hopefully, that allows us to make our lives better or easier. Not make those stupid decisions we’ve all made in our earlier years. If you’re one of the few who never made a stupid decision, you’re very lucky and very wise.

For most of us the path of wisdom is living through our lives with all its bad decisions as well as good ones, but learning from both.

Lilies from hubby

I guess that’s why I call what I write Wise Women Fiction. My heroines are on that journey.

So I’m glad to be back. I hope you have a wonderful and safe July 4th holiday if you are a reader who celebrates the day the US celebrates our independence from Britain.

See you next Sunday.

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15 Comments on “I’m Back…”

  1. Hugs to you on your frustration with your landscaping project. That was me two years ago. Last year we redid stuff, and this year I’m thrilled with the yard and how pretty our porch is. Hubby’s been keeping the lawn nice and trimmed, too, so I enjoy sitting outside with a book again. 🙂 When it’s not 98+ degrees–we haven’t hit 100 in the GRB area yet (that I know of).

    Happy birthday to John, and yet another big for you. Enjoy the good memories today.

    Love you!

    And great post, as usual. 🙂

  2. Your words, “Our lives are the fodder for our words and the worlds we build with them” are so perfect, Casey. This is how I think of my writing.

  3. Edie Ramer Says:

    I put geraniums in a pot outside (but it’s a big one!). That’s the extent of my gardening. Otherwise, we have flowering bushes and day lilies. My husband takes care of them, but watering the geraniums is my job.

    I’m sending happy birthday upward wishes to John. He was a really cute kid.


  4. Edie,

    I’ve done nothing this year so you’re ahead of me. John always loved birthdays, especially his. So I’m quite sure he’s enjoying any wishes coming his way, especially if they come from lovely ladies. He did enjoy the ladies.

  5. Patti,

    And those words are so very true–even though I did say them and repeat them often. Whenever I feel upset about something in my life, I stop and think, “Okay, how might I use this someday?”

    Thanks for stopping by.

  6. Kathy Says:

    Happy birtday, Johnny a playmate of my youth and cousin. I hope you are surrounded by many loved ones in heaven. Peace to you, Mary Jo in this bittersweet day. I hope you are remembeing a little boy who captured your heart 50 years ago today and that you find joy and peace in that memory. Kathy

    Welcome back! I have missed your posts and your wisdom it is a highlight of my Sundays!

  7. Stacey,

    We’ve actually had a couple of readings well over 100 and with the high humidity because of the lake, it’s beastly. The landscaping mess is making such a mess we can’t sit outside at all even if the weather would be decent as things are way to littered with dirt and debris and I don’t have time to clean it every day.

    Thanks for stopping by and also wishing John a happy day.

  8. Kathy,

    Thank you for missing me. I missed doing this blog every Sunday but I needed to breather to figure out how we are going to deal with the latest crisis in caregiving for Steven. Now that I’ve come to terms with how to deal with it, I’m back dispensing my words of whatever strikes me sometime between Friday night and Sunday when I post.

    Hope all is well in the Twin Cities. I know you’re as hot there as we are and you get the humidity also. John is surely surrounded by many loved ones who’ve left us just since he died, not counting the ones who died before he did. That comforts me. I hope that comforts you also as I know your Mom died 12 years ago this past week. I said a little prayer for her that day.

  9. Happy Birthday to John. As long as you remember him, he will live on … Good to have you back. I missed our Sunday visits. Great post, lovely photographs and as always enjoy how you blend the arts.

    Enjoy the Fourth !!

  10. Florence,

    You know when I read your marvelous blogs, I realize my world is so small these days. Thus I so appreciate your photos and explanations of all the neighborhoods and byways along with the well known spots of NYC.

    That is a gift I appreciate every week and look forward to a bit of a “journey” even if it’s in cyberspace.

    I hope you’re not in a part of FL where the rains have been so bad. Perhaps you could send an inch or seven to the north?

    Thanks for stopping by and you enjoy the 4th also.

  11. Kathy Says:

    Thanks for thinking of mom – I went to mass thatmorning and thought of all of them. It was our pastor’s last daily mass and he was such a gift to mom and dadand Aunt Lorraine especially in the last years – they loved him alot. As we all did he had been at St. Matts for 34 years. I’m sure Steven would remember him from the Holy week services he attended with us. He retired this morning – much deserved but we will miss him.

    Have a good week – I’ll be looking forward to next weeks post.

  12. Anne Parent Says:

    I’ve missed reading your words of wisdom and I’m so glad you’re back. This blog was extremely thought provoking for me. Because of you, I’m going to take a closer look at all the things in my life I have to be grateful for. The pictures were wonderful! Have a blessed 4th!

  13. Hi Anne,

    Saying I’ve missed your coffee meetings doesn’t begin to express how much I feel the isolation from my writer friends. I’m nearing the end of the major revision edit for my next Dessert Dames book and hope I get that finished this week.

    I don’t know how you’re keeping up with all your doing but know that I’m in the trenches cheering you on.

    You also have a great 4th and stay cool.

  14. Welcome back, Casey. Lovely pictures. Keep those flowers watered (and yourself, too) in all that heat!

  15. The flowers aren’t mine to water though I did water my perennials yesterday as they were really wilting. No rain forecast for the next week. This is seriously not good for our crops.

    Glad to be back. 🙂

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