Imitate the Wise

Every afternoon or evening, when it’s not ninety degrees outside, I take my dogs on a walk. The puppy is tethered to a leash, of course, and may be for some time as we’re just beginning more intensive training with her. However, our ten-year-old lab (who is expertly trained and comes to me in and instant, standing by my side until I tell her she can go) has the pleasure of running free, and she relishes in chasing rabbits and plunging head-first into water-filled ditches (no rabbits have been caught or harmed). In fact, Rosie is a head-first kind of dog. We used to worry that she would hurt herself each time she went barreling down the hall toward our bedroom only to find the door closed after she rammed it with her head. Luckily it didn’t take long for her to learn to test the door first to see if the air conditioning fan had slammed it shut again. I keep waiting, though, for her to ram a culvert or a tree as she plunges ahead at break-neck speed.

It’s not unlike watching people or even governments running at break-neck speed, heads jutting forward, throwing caution to wind. So often, we go through life without ever looking up or ahead. I’m not talking about those who never look up from their cell phones as they cross a busy intersection, but really, isn’t the result the same? To push ahead, forge recklessly into the unknown, and never stop to see what’s coming up.

Read more

A Time to Grow

Last spring, my husband did something he should not have done. It wasn’t entirely his fault. He got caught up in yard work and wasn’t thinking and pruned all of our hydrangea bushes. Let me repeat, last spring…he pruned all of our hydrangea bushes. For anyone who knows about gardening, you know this is a big, HUGE no no! We didn’t have a single blossom all summer, not one. Kind of fitting for 2020, I guess.

All summer, I kept hoping we would see a bud, but we had nothing. It was disappointing but a powerful lesson to learn…

Read more

Where Two or Three are Gathered…

The past few days have been a blur for Ken and me. We returned from a trip with friends in time to pack up the car and head right back out again. We spent the day driving toward a city almost six hours away where we said goodbye to our youngest daughter after a full day of setting up her dorm, running to the store for last minute things, buying the last of her books, and getting her settled for her freshman year of college. On the way home, we made a quick, late-night stop to see daughter number two and check out the on-campus house where she will spend her junior year. We were exhausted when we pulled into the driveway just after midnight last night, and the house seemed awfully quiet this morning, but we are so happy for all three of our girls as they each begin a new school year (oldest daughter is beginning her final year of law school).

I wish so many things for my girls as they embark on or continue with new chapters of their lives. I wish for good health, happiness, wisdom, and faith. Most of all, I wish them fulfilling, lifelong friendships. We should all be open to new friendships, no matter where we are in life, how old we are, where our career is headed, or what stage of family life we are experiencing. I have seen first-hand how much friendship can change and enhance your life. That was made more clear than ever this past weekend. Read more

How Many Licks Must We Take?

my-wordly-girls.jpgAs a parent, I’m grateful that all three of my girls are intelligent, that they have traveled enough to be worldly, and that they understand the importance of doing well in school. However, I can’t help but wonder… as my girls were growing up, as they were experiencing all of those wonderful things, visiting foreign places, and learning how to navigate the world, did I remember to teach them the importance of being wise? What do I mean by that? Intelligence is a function of the brain. Worldliness is a function of experience. Doing well in school comes as a result of hard work and studying. Not a single one of those has anything to do with wisdom. Wisdom is a gift of the spirit and comes entirely from God.

So how do we achieve wisdom? Read more

Just One of the Girls

IMG_6795aThis past weekend, our dear friend, George, came to visit and brought his almost-ninety-four-year-old mother with him. George’s mother, Helen, is the most spry ninety-four-year-old I’ve ever met. Despite the walker she uses to get around, she is eager to explore, meet new people, and experience new things. My daughters, ages seventeen and nineteen, adore her and couldn’t wait to have her visit us.

IMG_6804.JPGEverywhere we went, the girls insisted that Helen be with with them – the car, the restaurants, the dinner table, everywhere. They wanted to hear the story about how she met and fell in love with her husband. They wanted to hear tales about her sons when they were young. Most of all, they wanted her to teach them about her favorite pastimes – crocheting, jewelry-making, and other crafts. The more craft projects she told them about, the more they wanted to learn.

IMG_6800.JPGBefore the end of the weekend, our house had become a mecca of bead-making. Katie and Morgan invited their grandmother and their friends over to share in Helen’s wisdom of making paper beads. They sat together, for hours, making bead after bead, while George filmed the craft lesson and I took pictures. After a long while, Helen and George left to go back to their B&B (our two-level house not conducive to a walker). Katie and Morgan hugged Helen goodbye and went back to their work. When the sun hung low in the summer sky, and the kitchen began to grow dim, we insisted that they give up their work for the night and rest their fingers and eyes.

When Ken and I laid in bed that night, a warm, happy feeling encircled us both. Something about the day was so special, so beautiful. Girls who normally spent their spare time playing video games, running the tennis court, or watching Netflix, spent the better part of the weekend gleaning every morsel of knowledge they could from a woman nearly eight decades older than them. I’m pretty sure that the casual observer would have seen no more than a group of women sitting at a table playing with paper; but what we saw was a ninety-year-old woman, her eyes sparkling with delight, hanging out with the girls, reliving her teenage years, and remembering what it’s like to be a teenage girl, accepted by the other girls as a true friend. And it was a beautiful sight to behold.

Sunset

The second book in Amy’s Chincoteague Island Trilogy, Island of Promise, is now available in stores and online.

 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 MeWhispering Vines, and Island of Miraclesare all recipients of Illumination Awards, placing them among the top inspirational fiction books of 2015, 2016, and 2017. Whispering Vineswas awarded the 2017 LYRA Award for the best romance of 2016.  Island of Miracleshas outsold all of Amy’s other books worldwide and ranked as high as 600 on Amazon. Her latest children’s book, The Greatest Gift, is now available; and her novel, Summer’s Squall, can be found online and in stores.

You may follow Amy on Facebook at http://facebook.com/amyschislerauthor, Twitter @AmySchislerAuth, Goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/amyschislerand at http://amyschislerauthor.com.

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).