Another month has slipped by without me making time to write a blog entry. Dad’s Memorial Service was August 2nd. My siblings and I worked hard to make it a wonderful occasion, celebrating a life well lived. There was standing room only in the church. The Clarion American Legion Post sent an impressive contingent, complete with a special reading, a 21 Gun Salute, and flag presentation to the family. The somber tone lifted a bit when we came to the part of the service where congregants were asked to share memories…for almost an hour siblings, grandchildren, great grandchildren, aunts, cousins and friends stood and told their stories. We all felt lucky to have each other, and to have been born to our parents.
My cousin, Maureen, came to visit for the week of August 3-8. She found a class online, The Past is Not the Past, about William Faulkner. I gained a new respect for his writing and look forward to reading more of his work. After class each day we went to the Amphitheater for the Ken Burns presentations. It was packed, the biggest crowds they’ve ever had at the Institute! It was a privilege to be there, he is the most impressive speaker I’ve ever heard, humble and incredibly knowledgeable. We saw clips of The Roosevelts, which will be shown on PBS, September 14-20 at 8p.m. and 10 p.m.. (USA Weekend magazine rates it the top pick for fall TV viewing.) We were also shown unedited clips of Vietnam, the January 2017 PBS Burns project. It’s even more powerful than the current one. I don’t think there was a dry eye in the place after those previews. One day we stayed for author E.L. Doctorow’s reading from Andrew’s Brain. He was entertaining, we bought each other the books the next day for our birthdays. (I found his reading to be more interesting than the actual reading of the book.) Two days we attended N.P.R.’s Krista Tippett interview interesting guests for her weekly radio show. I haven’t started reading her book, Einstein’s God, yet. I’ve lived within an hour’s drive of Chautauqua Institute for more than thirty years and never took advantage of their classes before…like so many other things, better late than never!
I’ve been busy finding time to spend with grandchildren, they will all be back in school by September 4th. I had fun taking each of my four youngest granddaughters school shopping and buying them a few cute things for their back to school wardrobes. They wear sizes 000, 00, 0 and 2; I swear, my body skipped those sizes!!
This is a sad day for me. My eighteen year old handsome, smart, kind and nice grandson left for Airforce basic training in San Antonio, Texas today. I am proud of him, he’s a straight arrow kind of young man. But I am afraid too. Tears keep sneaking out when I think of him.
I graduated on June 20th and my teacher/mentor told me to take two months off from writing. And I did, though my brain kept spinning story lines, etc. as I’ve been busy gardening, painting the house and porches and with settling Dad’s estate. Slowly I’m getting back in touch with myself, as well as my friends.This week I will finally get back to my writing.
My essay, A Writer’s Recommendations on Marketing, is included in the new anthology, Writing After Retirement, edited by Carol Smallwood, published by Scarecrow Press, and to be released by October 1.
I will keep you posted on this one.
I have had two reviews published in online newsletters:
Then go to Hooked on Books on right hand side of website, find
review of Time Traitor by Todd McClimans
Click: http://www.storycirclebookreviews.org/availablereviewcopies.shtml then go to Mainstream Fiction,
scroll down to Sing in the Morning, Cry at Night by Barbara Taylor.
Keep reading my friends.