How many minutes of my day do I spend looking out these windows?
I can’t even begin to guess.
Sometimes, I see exactly what is out there beyond the window panes–trees, the grassy (or this of year, not so grassy) yard, the driveway. I often look out to see the UPS or FedEx truck pulling up to the house. Now and then, I’ll see a herd of deer or a family of squirrels.
Other times, I don’t see any of that. I see the island of Chincoteague, where several of my books take place, or the Italian vineyard in Whispering Vines, or my Buffalo Springs setting in the Ozark Mountains. Whatever book I’m working on, I can envision the scenes outside those windows like the setting of a play. The actors move about before my eyes and tell the tale that my fingers tap out on the keys.
There are days when I look out and see the past. I see Morgan and her best friend playing in the yard. I see Katie hitting the tennis balls over the retractable net. I see Rebecca returning from college, speeding up the driveway as the dogs bark their welcome greetings. I see Easter eggs everywhere and snow white Christmas deer lovingly made by my father. I see my dear, sweet Misty coming back from her swim on the last day she was with us, her tongue hanging out, tail wagging behind her.
These windows alert me to the change of seasons. Through them, I see snow falling, rain dripping, trees budding, flowers blooming, and turkeys roosting. Every day, week, month, year, there are subtle changes signaling the passage of time.
There was a time when there was no window, just an open space waiting to be filled. Those days were more than twenty years ago, when Rebecca and Katie were little, before there was a Morgan walking alongside them. Those were the days when we never admitted we didn’t know it all.
Today, I’ll tell you straight off, I don’t know it all. Even after twenty-six years of parenting, I don’t know much of anything. Every day is a day to laugh and a day to cry, a day to make mistakes and a day to learn something new, a day to feel my best and a day to feel my worst. Every glance out that window brings something new into my line of sight, and every new day does the same. I’m constantly learning, growing, giving, receiving, living, and being.
There are things in this world I cannot change–the passage of time, the growth of a tree or a child, the falling of snow or the will of God. My job is to live life and live it well, love those around me as much as I can, use my talents for the glory of God, and know that I am in control no more than that leaf that falls to the ground just beyond my window screen.
It’s not easy, watching time pass, seasons change, children leave, people and pets say goodbye, and cars drive away that will never come back. It’s not easy staring out the window, waiting for the rain to stop or the snow to melt or the grass to grow.
But each day, when I sit down at my desk, I see a new day, a new leaf, a new snowflake, a new blossom. Something beautiful is always taking place right outside my window even on days when the sun isn’t shining or when the screen is dirty or when the dogs leave nose prints smudged all over the glass. All I have to do is take a look with my eyes and my mind wide open. I will take each day as it comes, never knowing, but always relishing, always learning from, always enjoying whatever sight will come to me as I look through the windows of my life.
Come see Amy on one of these dates:
April 9, 2022 – First Landing Wine and Arts Festival, St. Clement’s Island Museum, Clements, MD
June 4, 2022 – Christ Church 350th Anniversary Fair, Broomes Island, MD
June 18, 2022 – SunDial Books, Chincoteague, VA – The Launch of My New Chincoteague Trilogy!
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What I was writing about one year ago this week: Choosing Life Over Fear.
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Amy Schisler is an award-winning author of both children’s books and sweet, faith-filled romance novels for readers of all ages. She lives with her husband and three daughters on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Her books, Picture Me, Whispering Vines, and Island of Miracles are all recipients of Illumination Awards, placing them among the top inspirational fiction books of 2015, 2016, and 2017. Whispering Vines was awarded the 2017 LYRA Award for the best romance of 2016. The Good Wine, the sequel to Whispering Vines was released in June of 2021. Island of Miracles has outsold all of Amy’s other books worldwide and ranked as high as 600 on Amazon. Her follow up, Island of Promise is a reader favorite. Amy’s children’s chapter book is The Greatest Gift, and her most recent suspense novel is Summer’s Squall.
Amy’s second book in the Chincoteague Island Trilogy, Island of Promise, was awarded First Prize by the Oklahoma Romance Writer’s Association as the best Inspirational Romance of 2018 and was awarded a Gold Medal in the Independent Publisher Book Awards 2019 for Inspirational Fiction. It is the 2019 winner for Best Inspirational Fiction in the RWA Golden Quill Contest, Best Romance in the American Book Awards, and a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Award of Fiction. Amy’s 2019 work, The Devil’s Fortune, a finalist in the Writer’s Digest Self-Publishing Awards and winner of an Illumination Award, is based, in part, on Amy’s family history. The third book in Amy’s Chincoteague Island Trilogy, Island of Hope, was released in August of 2019. Amy’s book, Desert Fire, Mountain Rain begins her new Buffalo Springs series. Book two, Under the Summer Moon, was released in December of 2021.
Amy’s books: Crabbing With Granddad (2013), A Place to Call Home (2014), Picture Me (2015), Whispering Vines (2016), Island of Miracles (2017), Stations of the Cross Meditations for Moms (2017), The Greatest Gift (2017), Summer’s Squall (2017), Island of Promise (2018), The Devil’s Fortune (2019), Island of Hope (2019), A Devotional Alphabet (2019), Desert Fire, Mountain Rain(2020), The Good Wine (2021), Under the Summer Moon (2021).