Sunday Bookends: Visiting Old Stomping Grounds, preparing the garden, and very different book genres on my list


If I usually comment on your blog and I haven’t lately, please don’t feel slighted. I am having a horrible time keeping up with blog commenting lately. I’ve been having a few busy days with homeschool winding down, attending a writer’s conference, trying to stick to a self-set deadline for Harvesting Hope (the book formerly called The Farmers’ Sons), planning a garden again this year, running various errands, and reading books I told people I would read for them.

I was recently telling a blogging friend how my errands take a little longer than some people’s because if I want to go to a bigger store, like a Walmart or Aldi’s, for groceries, I have to drive 45 minutes to an hour either north or south or west. Friday we drove north because I had planned to pick up my new eyeglasses. Sadly, the optometrist’s office has new hours I wasn’t aware of and is now closed on Fridays. I still had to pick up a Walmart order 20 minutes further so we kept driving, back to the town we moved from last year. Because we were going to the town my son spent most of his childhood in, he asked to take his bike so he could ride around town while I picked up the order and made an Aldi’s run. 

He likes to walk or ride around town and reminisce about the good days of living in the town. I vaguely miss the place, but mainly the idea of what could have been in regards to failed family and business relationships, and friendships are at the forefront of my mind when I return.

It was nice to see the house our family lived in for about 15 years. The new owners have remodeled some and I’m glad to see it. What they’ve done to the front of the house – transforming the odd red paneling on the front of the house to blue — is what I always wanted to do when we lived there.

My children commented several times Friday that the town had been a good town to live in and that they miss the house. Sometimes I do miss the house, but I don’t miss the town much at all, especially now that the place is being infiltrated even more by drug dealers and addicts. My husband said he has been writing up a lot of police briefs for the newspaper he works at related to drug incidents in that area recently.

Last weekend I helped my dad and family rototill and prepare the space for my garden in between sessions of an online writer’s conference I was able to attend via zoom. The two main speakers for the event were James Rubart and Rachel Hauck, well-known Christian fiction writers. I plan to write a blog post about the event later this week. The conference was so much fun I am saving up money for another virtual conference being held in Philadelphia in August.

As for the garden, I hope to pick up the seeds and plants this week, but I can’t plant anything until we install the fencing around it. Otherwise the deer will eat my plants. For now my cat and probably all the neighborhood cats are using my raised garden beds as their litter boxes. Little Miss and I have decided to plant potatoes, summer squash, carrots, beets, cucumbers and maybe green beans. We probably don’t have the space for all that, but we’ll see.

What I’m Reading

I finished The Sowing Season by Katie Powner last week and really enjoyed it. It is the story of an unlikely friendship between a 15-year old girl and a 63-year old retired farmer. The book takes the farmer, Gerrit, through the emotions following him selling the farm he worked on his whole life, as well as various family issues that resulted from his past workaholic nature. The young girl, Rae, is dealing with her own issues stemming from her parents urging her to do well in school so she can become a lawyer like her father. Throw in a teenage crush or two and you have the makings of an engaging story that kept me reading late at night.

I started a new book this week that is similarly engaging. Love Happens at Sweetheart Farm by Dalyn Weller. 

From the back of the book: What if your pursuit of happiness robs someone you love of theirs?

 Lexi is the frazzled owner of Sweetheart Farm and B&B. Ian is a burnt-out fund manager desperate for a way out of his soulless job and an engagement he never wanted with a woman he doesn’t even like.

 And when Ian shows up at the B&B, needing space and quiet to rethink his life, there’s certainly no way this pampered rich city boy could ever be a suitable match for Lexi. But her wise and hilarious grandmother keeps sprinkling that blasted sweetheart herb everywhere and praying for lonely hearts to find love. And God listens.

I’m also still reading Kindness Goes Unpunished by Craig Johnson (A Longmire Mystery book) and Rooms by James Rubart. The Craig Johnson books are not “clean” and not my usual type of book but I am in love with the characters. Just be warned if you ever pick one up that there is swearing and some other not-so clean subject matter.

Little Miss and I finished On The Banks of Plum Creek by Laura Ingalls Wilder this week as well.

What I’m Watching

I started watching Jonathan Creek this week. I’ve heard a lot about the show over the years. I’ve only watched the first two episodes, but so far I like it. I’m watching it through AcornTV through Amazon.

Tonight I’ll be watching episode five of The Chosen, which is a crowd-funded TV series about the life of Jesus. They show the episodes on Youtube and they are available for 24 hours and then you have to download the app to watch the rest. The first three episodes are still on Youtube currently. 

I know I’ve mentioned the show here before. If you have seen other shows or movies about Jesus and didn’t like them, then you definitely have to watch this one. It’s nothing like any other show you’ve ever seen about the Bible. Here is a preview for Season Two.

What I’m Listening To

I have been listening to podcasts about fiction books or how to market books. It’s starting to make me feel very inferior in this whole book writing venture, but then I try to remind myself to just have fun, which has been my motto since I started sharing my fiction here on the blog.

I’ve also been listening to Cory Asbury’s live album.

What I’m Writing

Last week I shared two chapters of The Farmer’s Sons (Harvesting Hope), one on Friday and one on Saturday.

On Thursday I shared a Randomly Thinking post.

So there’s my week in review. How about yours? What are you reading, watching, listening to, writing, or doing? Let me know in the comments. 

5 thoughts on “Sunday Bookends: Visiting Old Stomping Grounds, preparing the garden, and very different book genres on my list

  1. My daughter loves The Chosen. I have been busy too and it has been getting harder and harder to keep up with blogging plus my laptop is not the best right now. It is getting really bad here in the city with addicts too. So sad with how easy it was to attack and weaken a whole country. Just take the broken and sick ones and get them addicted. It is better that you are outside the town now, more peace and all that nature. Have fun with your garden. Even though you are really busy and can’t visits as much I still love reading what you all have been up too. Have a fun week and stay safe out there.


  2. You guys picked some fun stuff for your garden! Plant the potatoes last, and if you run out of room you can always plant them in a container!

    Jonathan Creek is such a neat show! Although if you watch with your son, there is an episode with lots of nudity! Billy and I were like well, ok then.

    On the Banks of Plum Creek was one of my favorites in that series – that and Farmer Boy. 🙂


    • The first episode had a lot of naked lady paintings so I haven’t let him watch with me yet.

      We are on On the Shores of Silver Lake now but it is a little sad because it’s after Mary went blind.

      Good idea on the potatoes! Thank you!


  3. Lisa, just like you, my blogging time this week has been sporadic. While I am still busy with writing, my prayers and thoughts have been with my Mom as well as several WordPress acquaintances. My wife and I are qpreparing to travel to my native Montana (been away for almost two years). Your book’s revised title speaks with a strong voice . . . Harvesting Hope. God’s peace and blessings to you and your family.

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.