Freedom

Today is the day we celebrate America and our freedoms. There are many things I could write about our country and its freedoms, but none as beautiful as the following poem by Walt Whitman. I Hear America Singing encompasses the entirety of who and what America was when Whitman penned these words in 1860.

I Hear America Singing

 
I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear,
Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it should be blithe and strong,
The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam,
The mason singing his as he makes ready for work, or leaves off work,
The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat, the deckhand singing on the steamboat deck,
The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench, the hatter singing as he stands,
The wood-cutter’s song, the ploughboy’s on his way in the morning, or at noon intermission or at sundown,
The delicious singing of the mother, or of the young wife at work, or of the girl sewing or washing,
Each singing what belongs to him or her and to none else,
The day what belongs to the day—at night the party of young fellows, robust, friendly,
Singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs.
 
 
Source: Selected Poems (1991)
 
4th of July

 

Traditions

Our lives are filled with traditions, especially around special days and holidays. Tomorrow is July 4th, Independence Day, here in America. Traditions around this day abound. Flags waving, parades, BBQs, family gatherings, fireworks, wearing the red-white-and-blue.
 
At our home, we have a tradition observed for many years. A favorite community band hosts a patriotic concert on the 3rd of July in the early evening.
 
Bob and I drive our red Mustang convertible to the concert. And enjoy the thumbs ups we receive along the way.
 
The thumbs ups aren’t just for the convertible. The icing on the cake is the wearing of our made-for-the-day baseball caps. Yes, they reflect our patriotism.
 
This year I have to pass a test—getting in and out of the low riding convertible. We need to be sure there’s no chance of me undoing anything I’ve accomplished thus far in my recovery.
 
Can you tell there’s a part of us that hates to break with tradition? 

 

Feature image attribution: Jill Wellington from Pixabay 

10 Christmas Gift Ideas for the Writer in Your Life

Who doesn’t enjoy receiving gifts related to the work they love to do? No one! And that includes writers.

My hope in writing this post is to ease your shopping burden, and offer you some online shopping options made just for the writer in your life.

 

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Under $20

  1. Writer Emergency Pack has the tools you need when you get stuck ($19.99).
  2. Just One More Chapter, a book quote necklace. Handcrafted in the USA ($15.99).
  3. MRCUFF Fountain Pen Cufflinks Pair are perfect for the male writer ($19.99).
  4. Poets & Writers Magazine Subscription is a perfect gift for writers of any genre
    ($16.95 with varying option renewals).

Under $50

  1. Scrivener Software, for either Mac or Windows, is a great benefit to any writer. This is a download product ($45.00).
  2. A curated, themed box of pens, notebooks, pencils, and items designed to inspire sent monthly with subscription (Monthly subscription $29.00).
  3. Bellaa Decorative Bookends make an elegant gift for the writer or book lover ($29.99).
  4. Leather Journals are always popular with writers and those who like to track their days ($49.95).

Under $125.00

  1. Boxed Set of the Major Works of Charles Dickens in hard cover ($114.49).
  2. Kenneth Cole Reaction Columbian Leather Flapover Computer Case has a classic briefcase style in Columbian leather ($99.44).

 


 

I hope you found some helpful ideas in this list. If nothing here seems right, think about providing your writer with a day in a quiet place to write as long as desired. Quiet time is worth so much to a writer.

Gratitude: The Healthy Attitude

As my recent writings can attest to, my focus the last couple of years has been on renewing and recovering health. Step by step, inch by inch, exercise by exercise–progress is being made.

With Thanksgiving Day just hours away, my thoughts have focused not so much on how I feel or don’t feel, but on what I have to be thankful for. On Sunday, we gathered with our son and part of his family to celebrate a sixth birthday for our great-grandson. And additional family time is planned throughout the holiday. Family gatherings or any other gatherings are beautiful expressions of shared love.

In the past couple of years, although some days haven’t been so easy, I’ve learned that showing gratitude for something improves my attitude. It’s a prescription that comes without monetary consideration. Lately, I’ve been letting my gratitude slip and the difference is notable. And it’s so simple. Gratitude is truly a healthy attitude.

Before I go, I want to wish you and your family a beautiful Thanksgiving celebration. May your turkey be juicy, your stuffing not dry, your cranberries a deep red, and your favorite pie on the dessert table!

Attribution: Aliexpress.com Attribution: Aliexpress.com