CURRENTLY Fall 2016 Blog Hop: How I’m Finding My Bliss
Back by popular demand: a new CURRENTLY Fall 2016 Blog Hop.
Along with some blogger friends, I’m sharing where I am currently in life, what I’m reading and watching and what I’m loving and dreaming about this fall.
Sit back, have a read, and check out some of my recommendations if you’d like. Then visit the other #Gr8Blogs listed at the end of this post for more Fall 2016 CURRENTLY inspiration.
The last book I read was All the Missing Girls by Megan Miranda. The novel caught my eye because of the unusual way it is told in reverse, going backwards in time.
As the book begins, the reader learns about Nicolette’s current life. She’s from a small town in North Carolina and escaped to Philadelphia, but returns home to take care of some family business. Nicolette is quickly pulled back into the mysterious disappearance of her best friend a decade before. Only days after her return, another girl goes missing. The plot thickens.
The novel was a bit confusing, but the story definitely kept my interest. My perspective and suspicions shifted drastically as I moved backwards in time. Not to brag, but I did guess the ending about a quarter way through the book, but maybe because I’m a writer who looks at plot lines very closely. Everyone I know who read this book was surprised by “who done it.” I’d give it four out of five stars.
Just finished Season Five of Longmire. If you haven’t seen this series, you’re missing out. Check it out on Netflix. I love, love it. Robert Taylor plays the charismatic sheriff and is supported by Katee Sackhoff (from Battlestar Galactica) and Lou Diamond Philips, who so marvelously plays my favorite character, Henry Standing Bear.
My husband and I also recently watched the Ron Howard documentary, The Beatles: Eight Days a Week, which covers their touring years from 1963 to 1966.
If you’re a baby boomer like me (or even if you’re not!), you’ll love the great footage of the Fab Four’s earliest – and most joyful and optimistic – performances. Howard provides a real feel for these four extremely close young friends on their exhilarating and crazy journey as Beatlemania kicked in and how it affected them.
The first wave of baby boomers were reaching their teens and, as the documentary points out, there were more teenagers in the world during that time than any other age group. As you watch the footage, once again, you’ll be amazed by and wonder exactly what inspired such hysterical pandemonium – the massive shrill screaming, fainting, and weeping of completely obsessed girls. Not even The Beatles themselves could figure it out.
The four, only teens themselves when they were starting out, formed a special tight camaraderie. As the documentary shows, they lovingly looked out for each other, as the only ones on earth who truly knew what it was like to experience the insanity that ensued. In fact, The Beatles were so close that decisions had to be unanimous, Paul McCartney explained. That included their brave refusal to perform if the audience was segregated as was typically the case in the Deep South during the 60’s.
The documentary demonstrates brilliantly how the fame and chaos sadly took away The Beatles’ pure and innocent joy of performing their music. And no wonder. Suddenly it took hours to restore a semblance of order at their concerts, people were injured, and the band received death threats as a result of John Lennon’s remarks comparing the group’s popularity to Jesus. The lyrics from their song, “Help!” takes on new meaning in light of these events: “When I was younger, so much younger than today…And now my life has changed in oh so many ways.”
The Beatles swore off touring and went into the studio to experiment with their music a few days after they were forced to perform during a torrential rainstorm in an open-air stadium. Tour roadie Ed Freeman confesses in the documentary: “My job was to sit backstage with my hand on the plug and the instructions were: If anyone fell down, knocked out by the shock, then I would pull the plug and that would stop the show. It was a joke.”
I saw this documentary after attending Desert Trip which featured McCartney. Considering all the challenges this band faced in the past, it was good to see that he has rediscovered the joy of performing in front of a large audience once again.
A nostalgic must-see. The documentary is currently available on Hulu.
As a professional writer, many people encouraged me to share my experiences as a full-time caregiver for my Mom who suffered from Lewy Body dementia (a cruel combination of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s) to help other caregivers and family members with loved ones who have this debilitating disease.
At first, I couldn’t do it. The heartbreaking experience of watching my Mom rapidly deteriorate both physically and mentally before my eyes, the difficulty of taking care of her at the end when she began to lose all bodily functions, as well as her death were all too painful to relive.
Although it still won’t be easy, after a year and a half, I’m ready to tell my story and put all my feelings into words in honor of my dear mother who I loved more than life itself. She faced her disease courageously.
It is my hope that my experiences, my successes, and my mistakes can help other caregivers and all of those who are losing their loved one a little bit at a time like I did. I want to help them cope with the challenges, learn how to take care of themselves during this challenging time, and succeed with their noble and important role as a caregiver.
My God and my refuge, who saw me through the last few challenging years and continues to bless me in so many ways. My loving husband who has supported and loved me for more than 38 years. My children and grandchildren who bring me such joy.
The above photo of our family was taken at breakfast while visiting my youngest son and his wife who live up near Sequoia National Park. Later, we all visited Kings National Park – my first time there and it was gorgeous. Loved that quick weekend trip too!
I live in the California desert where we have long, long hot summers. November is the first month we’ll have temperatures that hopefully are no longer 90 degrees-plus. We planted our fall garden with the grandchildren last weekend. I’m looking forward to many pleasant evenings on the patio with a roaring fire, a good book, and a glass of wine. Also anticipating some relaxing time on our sailboat as the summer crowds at the beach die down and we enjoy our new slip in a quieter area.
Still wishing for that trip to Africa and it looks like my lifelong dream may become a reality in the next year or so…stay tuned.
*Making Me Happy…
That I am privileged to live another day.
So there you go. Thanks for stopping by and sharing a bit of my life with me. For more Currently Fall 2016 inspiration, visit the #Gr8blogs below.
CURRENTLY Fall 2016 Blog Hop: Finding My Bliss
By Sondra Robbins Rymer
CURRENTLY Fall Blog Hop: Find Your Autumn Inspiration
By Cat Michaels
CURRENTLY Fall 2016 Blog Hop: Autumn Inspirations and Obsessions
By Auden Johnson
CURRENTLY Fall Bog Hop: Autumn Bliss
By Carmela Dutra
By Corrina Holyoake
If you are so inclined, please share some of what’s inspiring you these days in the comments below.
Image courtesy of [in order of appearance] everydayplus, artur84, and Master isolated images at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.
Hey, happy to share via twitter, google +, facebook, etc today 🙂 I need to catch LONGMIRE! I have not seen it at all… your words touched me about your mom, I have been caring for my parents. My dad passed away it will be two years this Christmas and he suffered various health problems including dementia. My mom is starting to have issues. Its hard. I have no words really, it’s heartbreaking. HUGS.
Thanks for your thoughts and hugs, Sondra. Thoroughly enjoyed your CURRENTLY blog along with the stunning pics also! Fun to read what everyone is up to this fall.
I must check out your book, Julie, especially since it has NC roots and is told backwards. I am missing out on great video by not straming…LOL. Though hard to bring up memories and put down on paper, your non–fiction book will help many families going through difficult times. Your blogs you posted during that time were beyond-moving and also uplifting. Can’t wait to read it.
Hi Julie! Great post! You like the Beatles too! My son took me to see Paul McCartney a few years ago and it will be etched in my top memories forever! 🙂
My thoughts are with you as you go through this time with your mother. I have many friends experiencing the same thing and I know that is not easy.
You have a beautiful family! We are on board at 38 plus years also! <3
With family in the CA desert, I know how that is: no rain, water drought, and hot temps! Winter is on it's way!
Have a great November!
We have a lot in common, Rosie! Beatles love, long-lasting marriage – we are lucky girls! Thanks for your thoughts regarding my Mom. It has now been a year and a half since she passed and I’m learning the truth that, although caring for my Mom and then watching her die left a scar, time is indeed healing. Like the quote from Fr. Craig Scott: “From every wound there is a scar. And every scar tells a story. A story that says, ‘I’ve survived.'” Thanks for stopping by and leaving your thoughts. It always makes my day.
This was a very moving blog post Julie. Thank you for sharing. I can only imagine how hard it must be to bring up the memories and write them down. I am sure your non–fiction book will help many families going through difficult times and give them practical comfort and suggestions. Love the family picture too!
Thanks so much for your thoughts and encouragement, Carmela. That I can help other families with the book is my greatest hope. And it is that wonderful family in the photo I am fortunate to be part of that gets me through the tough times. Can’t wait to read your CURRENTLY blog too!
When you talked about your book, it made me think of my Mom. She’s a cancer survivor and was driven to write a book about her experience. She really didn’t want to because it was so painful. She wrote and published the book. I don’t know how much it helped her but she doesn’t regret it.
Thanks for sharing your Mom’s experience. It is so encouraging to know that although it was painful to put her experience down in words that she doesn’t regret it. I don’t think I will either. Thanks, Auden!
Lovely blog post and so pleased you are now ready to share your experiences with others about being a care giver. It must have been an incredibly difficult time for you, I can understand why it has taken so long to put thoughts down to paper, but it will be amazing! And omg so jelous about the trip to Africa! Have you got space n your suitcase ha ha.
Thanks for stopping by, Corrina. Just read your CURRENTLY blog – wow – you have a lot of creative juices flowing! Best wishes with all your projects as you pursue your passion full-time. Yes, SO excited at the possibility of going to Africa. Dream come true. Enjoy your trip down under to Australia as well!