Bye, bye 2019. Hello, 2020.
Happy New Year to all! I can't' believe it's 2020. Does anyone remember Y2K? What a big fuss about nada. Here we are twenty years later, alive and connected more than we probably should. I have so much and so many to be thankful for and to. This list is by no means complete but a start. Thanks to Wild Rose Press for bringing me into the garden. And it's from that Rose Garden I've met some amazing people. A special shout out to Elf my editor, Amber my second eyes. Rene the queen of commas. How about a hand for all the guests on Welcome to the Campfire. Week in and out you all amaze me. Then there are the family and friends who support and encourage. Judy, Deb, and Noemi you guys rock. My family especially my biggest cheerleader, Pete. You are the hubby extraordinaire. An not least of all my Creator and Sustainer, the Lord Jesus for all His mercies, which are new every morning.
This year has been filled with many ups and downs but mostly ups. Here are some of my personal highlights.
Let New Year 2020 be a time of peace, love
and the implementation of the most secret dreams.
If you've clicked through my site you can't help but notice I like to camp. My Dear Husband, hereafter referred to as DH, and I love to travel and are now coming to the place in our life where we get to do that. Everyone has their own tale of why they put it off, but time and money held us back. We thank the Lord each day for our jobs and the life we are now able to lead. Nope, not rich. Nope, still working. But retirement is closer than ever.
DH hates to fly. I can't stand most hotel accommodations. Can I have an amen at how gross the bed spreads are? I've taken them off and stuffed them in the closet but diligent maids find them and put them right back on.
With that in mind, and retirement coming, how were we going to see all we want to in this great country of ours? At home we basically live outside. Over the years DH has built decks, patios and pathways lined with landscaping. If the weather is nice we are out. It wasn't a far leap then to think-camping.
We've done it before. Tents, pop-ups, and my sister has had a motor-home for years. It wasn't a hard decision to come to especially when we saw what was available to us.
So, we've begun our travels. Near and far, in the time we can spare, practicing for the future. Recently we were in Hagerstown, Maryland and Lancaster Pennsylvania. During the day we took trips to local places of interest. Historical, architectural; wine and craft beer tasting is a bonus. And we've found some hidden gems.
Every time were in Lancaster our money is well spent at Town Clock Cheese Shoppe in Gap, Pa. The owner will take you on a trip around the world through cheeses. This years favorite, cheese aged in a cave in France. How cool is that.
You can find them here
And what is cheese without a glass of wine to go with it? You never know when you're going to stumble upon a gem. The Blue Mountain Wine Crafters was just the ticket. Located in---you're going to love the name---Funkstown Maryland, and it had an added bonus. If you follow my Instagram of Facebook you'll see it right away. Here's the link to a very nice, fun, and knowledgeable staff www.bluemountainwinecrafters.com/ You even get to paint.
My final traveling gem for this trip? Last post I showed you a picture of a Black Beauty book I picked up. One of my other favorite childhood reads was Heidi, by Joanna Spyri, and guess what? Yes, I did. Heidi now sits on my shelf alongside Black Beauty. She's a little tattered and worn but aren't all well read books and well lived people? Next on my list, is to finish my C.S. Lewis' Narnia collection. I need the Silver Chair and The Last Battle. Each trip out, instead of collecting rocks like Lucy did in the Long Long Trailer, I think maybe I'll relive my childhood through the stories I find on the shelves of the bookshops lining the roads of the good ole USA.
What books remind you of good times or gems have you found in travels?
“A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” – C.S. Lewis
Once upon a time...
That's the way so many tale began. As early as I can remember books were an important part of my life. My mom will tell you that from the time I was a baby, books were my toys. She says I never tore the pages or wrote in them. That they were always clutched in my hands. Little Golden Books are some of my earliest memories. The Pokey Little Puppy in particular sticks out.
As I grew older the love of reading never left me. There were two apple trees on our property. One green and one red. The green tree was my favorite. On any nice day if you looked up, there you'd find me with my nose buried in a book. Animal books were some of my favorites and if they had horses extra bonus. This year during a trip to Lancaster Pa as one of our regular stops I found this
This edition of Black Beauty by Anna Sewell has no date. I realized that I don't have any of my childhood books. We moved quite a bit when I was young and what you didn't need you didn't take. After picking this up memories of other horsey books came to mind. Seabiscuit, War Admiral, National Velvet. How many of you held Misty of Chincoteague and dreamed of having your own horse? How about the Black Stallion? I still think it was one of the most beautiful scenic movies made.
I was one of the lucky girls. Three horses made their way into my life. Cocoa was an old man my parents bought from a riding stable. I still laugh when I remember how he was the houdini of the horse world. He could untie knots and open latches faster than Secretariat (If you're a horse person you know who that is).
Carrie was my second horse. She was a beauty. A dark bay mare with a star (a white mark on her forehead) and one white sock. She was a quarter-horse/thoroughbred. It broke my heart to leave her behind after my father died and we had to sell the farm.
Years later Apache came into my life for a short while. He belonged to a friend who let me pretend he was mine. Apache was a cantankerous meanie at times, but we worked it out.
To this day the soulful eyes and smell of a horse brings me peace. My fantasy work in progress, Aimhirghin, Kingdom at a Crossroad, show the special relationship between Haana and her mare Fianna.
Do you have a special animal in your life? Many of us do. Whether it's a horse, dog, cat, or some.other, leave me a note and tell me about them.
I plan to explore the relationship of books and animals in our lives over the next months and hope you'll join me. Below is a tribute to one of the greatest horses. Do you remember when he won? I still get chocked up thinking about him.
The essential joy of being with horses is that it brings us in contact
with the rare elements of grace, beauty, spirit and freedom.
Sharon Ralls Lemon
Hi, my name is D. V. Stone. I am a multi-genre author of two independently published books. Felice, Shield-Mates of Dar is a fantasy romance. Agent Sam Carter and the Mystery at Branch Lake is a mid-grade paranormal. Recently, Rock House Grill, a contemporary romance has been signed with Wild Rose Press.