Ode to Joy

This morning I awoke, feeling my heart fill with gratitude for all that my life is. The snow banks are melting, which I hope means Spring will soon show her gorgeous and welcome face. Maybe soon, I can open windows and let her in… what a refreshing idea that is! For now I’m airing out my pillows and drying my pillowcases out on the front porch. I might be able to at least smell Spring as I fall asleep tonight.

If I were a singer, I would burst into song. But alas, mine is a speaking voice, and not a singing one. I scare even myself when I try to sing. I once had a priest tell me that he heard someone say about a "bad" singing voice that if God made it that bad, then perhaps he deserves to hear it. I replied, "Maybe so, but my fellow humans don't."

I'm also grateful that I've had so many appreciative comments from you, dear readers, that I cannot help but feel confirmed for sharing my story, which I feel called to doing. I want to tell you how much it means to me that you are so generously showering me with these confirmations.

I've also had several media events that are giving me renewed energy. Erik Wesner, who writes the blog Amish America, has posted a Q&A with me about Bonnet Strings. He is offering two books for a giveaway. If you'd like to enter, please head on over and leave a comment.

I had the great pleasure of interviewing with a reporter, Judi Brinegar, from Asheboro, North Carolina, where I will be speaking next week. You can read that story here.

And yesterday a radio interview aired on Vermont Edition, one of the programs on Vermont Public Radio. Ever since I had my first book published, I have envisioned being interviewed on this program. And then I was! I attribute the success of this interview to Patti Daniel’s careful reading of Bonnet Strings, and her thoughtful and insightful questions about it. She had my story flowing out of me without effort. You can hear that interview and read an excerpt of Bonnet Strings by following the links. If you like the interview, I hope you’ll leave a comment to let her know.

So on this day when the sun shines and the snow melts, I give thanks for the great privilege of being alive and for all the blessings in my life, including living in a beautiful home with the love of my life. There is no way of knowing how much more time we have on this earth together, so I thank God for this year, this month, this week, this day, this hour, and this moment. 

And I am grateful for all of you. There would be no point in writing if there were no readers.

Do you have songs you play when you are feeling joyful, or that celebrate Spring? Will you share them? 

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8 thoughts on “Ode to Joy”

  1. It lifts my spirits to hear of your joy. How wonderful!
    I’m always amazed and in awe of God’s handiwork when it comes to the beauty in nature. Just look at the simple elegance of the purple crocus you have posted. How I wish I could stroke its soft lavender petals with my cheek. In a way I feel I’m praising God when I gaze at His natural miracles and just say “Thank you, Lord.” I said it a lot this winter when the snow would pile up on the bare branches of the trees and dress them in a white sparkling gown.
    I’m not a big Christian music fan, but there is a song that really touches me called “Beautiful Things” by Gungor. Otherwise I don’t have anything in particular that strikes when Spring shows her lovely smile.

    1. Fran, isn’t that so true? I often feel closer to God out in nature than I do in a church. Your words inspired me to listen to “How Great Thou Art.” How I love the song!

      What a gorgeous description of the crocus. How I love that flower!

      I will be listening to “Beautiful Things” next. Thank you for the reference.

      Have a blessed day!

    1. Thank you, Tom, for the reference. I’m listening to it now. And what a beautiful post, too! You are truly a remarkable photographer! And I love the name you gave yourself, “The Backroads Traveller.” 

  2. Meg Schoenemann

    Funny you should post about songs on the day that I finished reading Bonnet Strings. For the last week I have had a song in my head that seems to speak to me about how you might have felt on your wedding day-or maybe even since that night on the pond in PA. The song is Susan Boyle’s “Who I Was Born to Be”. Perhaps you know it? Wondering if you agree with my thoughts. It lifts me up every time I hear it which has been frequently as I’m playing it again and again on my car CD. It will probably be that way until another song enters my head and heart to take its place for awhile.

    1. Meg, what a gorgeous song! I am very touched that you thought of that song when you read my book. Susan Boyle is a new artist to me… where have I been? She’s amazingly talented and quite famous, I see!

      Love your description of how a song enters your head, it has its cycle, and then another song enters. That is exactly what happens for me. You’ve just put a new one in! Many thanks.

  3. Songs, well, to show my age, your passage made me think of a couple of Beatles songs; “Here comes the Sun” and “All you need is Love”. And for pure harmonic bliss; “Because”. With so much negativity in the world, in the news, on TV, it’s refreshing to read that some folks are happy and are thankful for what they have and where they are. And to that end I’m thankful for reading your Blog and your openness and honesty that you write of. You, whether you know it or not, provide a sense of community to us readers (OK I’ll speak for me). And I appreciate that. I hope to meet you one day. Seeing you in the films and other interviews is one thing, but not the best thing. I’m in Michigan and I know your coming up here to speak this summer. I hope I can make it.

    1. We can think of our age as something to hide, or we can think if it as we are that much wiser. So maybe you are showing your wisdom when you share the songs. Those are the ones David thought of, too. He is a huge beatles fan. He and Paul McCartney were both born on June 18, though Paul is several years wiser than David. 

      I am truly touched by your kind words, Derek. I like the community of readers I have, and there are moments like when I read your note that I am moved to tears. But as you say, it is meeting people in person that I value most. That way we can see one another’s expressions, body language, tone of voice… the whole person. And besides you can only hug in person.

      I sure hope our paths will cross… I would like that very much.

      Now I’m going to listen to Beatles’ songs while I package books. 

      Take good care,


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