Life as I know It

My photo
San Luis Obispo, California, and South Bristol, Maine, United States
Author ~ Illustrator ~ Lecturer

Friday, September 16, 2011

Give in to joy-Don't hesitate!

The first pumpkins of autumn. 

The last bouquet of the season.

Lengthening shadows of September.

For years now I have lived this quote– 

"To be a professional writer one must be prepared to give up almost everything except living...The first lesson to be learned by a writer is to be able to say, 'Thanks so much. I'd love to, but I can't. I'm working.'"
Edna Ferber
A Kind of Magic, 1963

For a few days, I have taken play time and enjoyed every fleeting second. I know that my time here will be ending in about a month. I am trying to memorize every rock on the roadside, every scent, the sounds of the sea and laughter, the last calls of the terns, the flash of the departing hummingbirds, and the tastes of meals shared with friends.

I am so happy to announce that I am able to offer a chance to win a $50.00 gift card from Amazon for one of you who leave a comment on my blog. I was visited by the Fairy Hobmother, from appliancesonline,  who acknowledged my comment on a posting and who let me know that I was the lucky winner. So leave a comment on this short posting and perhaps YOU will be the next lucky winner.

All joys to you...and remember not to hesitate.


P.S. Please visit my newest Lowe's blog posting and leave your valued comment. I so appreciate hearing from you!


FlowerLady Lorraine said...

Yes, oh yes, give in to the joy of each and every day.

Sharon ~ Your cottage there in Maine is truly a peaceful delight. I loved seeing the water shimmering on the walls.

Thank you for this encouraging and inspiring post.

Hugs ~ FlowerLady

Susan said...

I'm sitting at my desk, trying to catch up even though projects call to me. I've been watching one of our crows, peering through my bushes of beautiful blue hydrangeas fading to sage green, retrieve his stash and he stops to look at me. It's these moments I find the most serenity.
Thank you for sharing your observations. Love you, Susan

Cris, Artist in Oregon said...

What a lovely little cottage. Your time there this year is much shorter then usual so enjoy every ouch of joy from it. Thanks for sharing the view.

Blondie's Journal said...

I'm happy you took some time out to play...isn't that the biggest joy?! I truly enjoyed your video, seeing your pretty cottage and the reflection of the sun on the water dancing on the walls...this time of year is heavenly! It makes me sad that the lake will freeze soon, but I guess every season brings us something new. Will you be going back to California?

Your giveaway sounds very generous. Amazon seems to get most of my money these days! It's such a shame that Borders book store closed, I miss the browsing and of course the coffee and scones! lol!

Have a wonderful, peaceful weekend, Sharon!


Lady Dorothy said...

Oh, how fabulous to see the water lighting up your walls! I've been thinking of writing about joy, so this was so timely. Thank you!

Cher' Shots said...

I love this entry. I'm still in the dreaming stage of becoming a writer, I can't seem to get past the first word although all kinds of things cross my mind. I also love the quote you posted. Its that time of year to memorize what moves you - here it will all be covered with snow soon. Pictures do help come mid winter.
'hugs from afar'

Pat said...

There are so many sources of Joy in our lives - visiting your blog is one of them. I always feel refreshed after reading your words.
Have just pulled the last of the basil that grew from the seeds you sent - chopping fresh leaves for a sauce tonight. Don't want to let go of summer...

Leanne said...

I always smile when I see a blog post from you.
We have lots of spring joy happening in the garden at mo.
Love Leanne NZ

PS books bring me much joy...


Hi Sharon, You're so right about enjoying each and every moment. Your "Last Bouquet" is beautiful. It must have been a pleasure to hunt for just the right ingredients.

Wylie said...

This post, the thoughts expressed and the video of your lovely cottage really touched me this afternoon.

Thank you so much, Sharon! Happy Birthday!

rebecca sweet said...

Thank you for giving so much joy to all of us, Sharon. Your reminders are always so important and so welcome in our busy lives. The water's reflections on your walls are absolutely mesmerizing. Have a wonderful weekend filled with boundless joy! XXOO

Larkrise garden girl said...

Give into the joy is a great title to a book. I give into my joy in my garden,working on quilts and listening to the crickets in the evening. It's the simple things of life that capture that joy.I hope to grow old cherishing moments of Life that touch my heart. Cheri

Diane said...

I am watching those lengthening shadows and I do not like them at all. I am already trying to jump 6 months ahead :-))) Diane

Robin Larkspur said...

The video of your beautiful little cottage by the sea with your warm words was very inspiring. Thank you for sharing these words of wisdom and pretty photos of your nest. I do so enjoy visiting your world.

Leslie said...

i love the little bird you photographed for your header! and i am always attempting to live in the moment (not always successful at it, but always trying.) it seems there are many choices that we must make in this life, for various reasons, but always there is the gift of each day we are alive, and that is reason for rejoicing...

marcia said...

Ahhh I'm all for the JOY too!

I've learned there IS joy to be found each and matter how small and no matter what strife in the days. Sometimes you have to search harder for it, but it is there and it's that JOY that makes life worthwhile.

So nice to hear your voice!
I haven't been keeping up with blogs too much this summer but you have been in my thoughts.
Love to you and Jeff

Sharon Lovejoy said...

Dear Friends,

I think you all know that I photographed the little robin right outside the front door to Beatrix Potter's Hilltop.
Lovely, lovely.

Marcia, thanks, didn't you have a BIG wedding to prepare for? Also, I had a sore throat and am glad you could recognize my voice.



Vee said...

Ahhhh, that was so nice and I so enjoyed the peek around your cottage and the glimmering walls and the views beyond. Have a very happy Birthday week!

Just dropped a bundle at Lowe's today so I'm certain that I'll go and read your newest post there.

Anonymous said...

lovely photos, I've been looking for your posts, I enjoy seeing your garden,,

Jennie said...

I very much enjoyed your video. I always love hearing someone's voice for the first time and yours is lovely. your video brought me joyful tears. I could feel your purpose for this video and I soaked it up. joy. I noticed several items that until now I've only seen in still photos. two new things that I especially like - the lamp by the door and the sailboat on the screen door. I'm sure I don't have to mention the view is amazing. thank you for another wonderful post!

Unknown said...

Your reminder to take joy came at just the right time! We are finally having a taste of autumn here in the south -- nippy temps at night, wonderful walking weather in the day -- though we are still far from our last bouquet (the perennial sunflowers - helianthus maximilia - are only just now blooming) and I'll need my shorts and tanks next week when it's back in the 80's.

La Table De Nana said...

I love the video too:)

What a pretty seashell:) I love the water on the walls too.
I've often dreamt of living on the water..

You are right..when we feel Joy..we should give in to it.
It's an amazing feeling..
Even your screen door w/ the sailboat is cute:)

Great place..En JOY.

Sharon Lovejoy said...

Diana, I am working down in Orlando at the end of September...will I need to dig my summer clothes out of the trunk then??


Kay's flowers said...

What a lovely glimpse into your world! I love the way the water shimmers on the walls and just makes me want to come over and join you fir a cup of tea and a nice long chat. Give in to joy at every moment.


Cristy said...

Thank you for offering this great prize. I would love to win it. I love your quote about what writers need to do. Thanks.

Elizabeth Ann said...

I have enjoyed your writings for a very long time! I still have a picture of your sunflower garden in CA in some very old magazine - I just loved it. Thank you for sharing a glimpse into your summer home, it is simple beautiful.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sharon,
I just LOVE hearing your voices---it made ME joyful just looking around your little cottage fun!! Thank you for so graciously sharing it with all of us!
Joann in CO

queen of the castle said...

You once came across my blog posting of our sunflower house and left a comment that I actually printed out, taped to pretty paper, and hung in my kitchen. I read it when I need some encouragement to keep bringing beauty and joy into the lives of my five young children. Your weekly blog post is an encouragement too, to see someone living such a beautiful and artistic life filled with warm friendships and delightful food, amazing flowers and charming birds, and JOY. How could you not be who you are with the name Lovejoy?

Happy Birthday Sharon! I wish you many more years of joy and love.

Annelies said...

My daily mantra is choose JOY. I even shared it with my six month old grandson when he was in a cranky cry, but all he did was look at me with a strange curiosity(G)!!!!

Lydia said...

I gave up being an editor to write because writers must have a life while editors pray for one.

Melissa said...

Another lovely post. Thanks so much!

Sharon Lovejoy said...

Lydia dear,

With your permission Jeff will forward on your words to my beloved editor who is finally retiring. We have worked together for 17 years! She has been my guiding star, but it is time for her to really live a life.

Thanks for this...we got a kick out of your words.


Lori ann said...

i just love you sharon. this was an awesome post and video. yes yes and yes!

and amazon? pick me pick me!! :)

Donna OShaughnessy said...

Great quote about saying "no" when you must write. Always hard for me to do but getting easier.

Love the pumpkin photo's, but I am missing your peaceful place for you!

kj said...

awww sharon, i wrote a long comment last night and lost it all. but last night i could not open your video. this morning i've just spent time in your cottage with you. oh your voice. it is a kind and caring voice, so obvious that you are the real deal.

thank you dear friend.

how cold are you? i know about that and i know you are cold and hopefully only cozy cold!

i will take your advice today 1000%. i can see my dog stella's chest rising and falling and i am glad she is alive, glad she loves her cookies, glad she feels like soft cotton and smells like popcorn.

not to copy lori, but i know she won't mind: i love you too!


Kay Guest said...

Because I always have so much to say, I decided to create my own blog. I had no idea that you can work and work at conveying something that is truly passionate to you, and you can completely miss the mark...Kudos to you for always hitting it spot-on!
All joys to you and enjoy every minute of your time left in Maine. Oh, and I loved the wedding that you showed us recently. The photos were gorgeous.

Hindsfeet said...

needed this word this mornin', Sharon.....*so* very timely.....

"Give in to Joy--Don't hesitate!"

Thanks with all my heart,

(oh, didn't just leave this comment for the gift can give it to someone else : ) )

Gill said...

I enjoyed your film around your cottage.

Beatrix Potters house - I love it there. I have a hankering to go back to the lakes but we have not been able to go this year.

Rebecca said...

Happy Birthday Week, Sharon! Joy--embrace it when you recognize it; extract it when you can; extend it to others (as you have just done)!

Elizabeth said...

I love the reflection of water on the walls!
I am listening to the Canada Geese honking as they fly overhead, that always makes me smile.

Anonymous said...

I find joy and inspiration in your blog, Sharon. Thank you for reminding us to enjoy even the little things in life. My husband and I were marveling at the full moon the other night...such a beautiful sight (all of the night shadows) and a simple joy. Good health and family are blessings as well as joys...your video reminds us to keep those things "up front"! Have a wonderful birthday, Sharon.
Cindy in ME

Lili said...

Oh how beautiful those reflections of the water are on your cottage walls! I know you are just savoring your time spent there. The sound of your voice is so soothing, I really enjoyed listening to you again! xoxo ~Lili

Bonnie K said...

Glad you have had time to yourself, as you give so much of yourself to others. Enjoy the month. I love the pumpkin and apples.

Vicki Boster said...

Hi Sharon - You are making every moment count in your beautiful cottage. I love the photo of the lingering shadows - so peaceful - I would love to be sitting there in the late evening sun.

I hope you are well - not having too much of a busy schedule. Enjoy the last days of summer~~


Shirley-Ann said...

You have a beautiful blog! So glad I found you ;o). Your cottage in Maine is stunning! Looks like the perfect place to spend summer.

Shirley Ann

Anonymous said...

Sharon - Thank you so much for sharing your shimmering cottage walls and your words of joy with us. The simple beauty of your room is a thing of joy.

May the birds twitter a sweet Happy Birthday to you this week. Maybe they'll decorate your room for you a la Cinderella. Enjoy! Sharon from Maine

Claudia said...

I'm sure you will miss your beloved Maine when it's time to return to California. Are you getting a taste of autumn? It's amazing how quickly the leaves have started to turn here in upstate New York.


Carol said...

Dear Sharon, You are a joy! Thank you for this heartwarming post. I love the video and seeing the water shimmering . . . reflecting on your pure white cottage wall . . . so enchanting. It was great to see your reflection too!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! Many Happy Returns to the Day! What a sweet cottage . . . so cozy and I love your analogy to the inside of a seashell. You are a marvel! Beautiful! Beautiful Post! Beautiful voice too.

Debbie said...

Sharon, I love your cottage in Maine! I always enjoy reading your wonderful blogs on your adventures and books.
Happy Fall!

Benjamin Vogt said...

Last bouquet already? Man oh man!

Thea said...

enjoy your month. someone told me the other day that when one prioritizes their life they must remember to put housecleaning way at the bottom of the list, esp. on a beautiful day. now that's a recommendation I'm happy to take! hugs! ps i'm out in denver with my dad again - its gorgeous! t

Gert said...


What a lovely cottage you is so inviting & welcoming! Love your birds & flowers!

xoxo Gert

Cooking Up Faith said...

I love all your beautiful pictures. I'm learning that to write means to give up almost everyone's opinion of what you should write or what you have written, except that which God has placed in you to write!

LindyLouMac said...

I am not looking forward to winter, shorter days and lengthening shadows, but always enjoying every day and living it to the full.

Gina said...

I love the title of this post! Thanks for reminding me to take time for joy!

sarah-jane down the lane said...

Pumpkins! Now that's a great idea - I shall add them to the shopping list, pumpkin soup, perfect velvety and just what I fancy! I couldn't work out what I wanted until just now, thanks Sharon!

Sarah x

Privet and Holly said...

Every season
has its own
joys. People
seem to shudder
at times when
they think about
Minnesota winters,
but people here
embrace that
season with as
much love as
the others : )
I was graced by
a visit from the
FH last week and
donated my "wish"
to Operation Smile.
What a lovely and
unexpected gift.
How generous of
you to offer your
own wish to your
readers.....A very
Sharon gesture!
xx Suzanne

Janessa said...

We visited Maine for the first time this summer and love seeing it through your eyes. Treasure your time there!

Jenny said...

Dear Sharon, I was so excited to see your comment on my blog. I've been a fan for several years now. And own all your books; they are beautiful and inspirational. I know many home school moms that feel the same. Adding you to blogs I follow :D Great post, your first photo reminds of something I want to try with my kids soon. Charlotte Mason had a Book of Firsts the kids would make nature entries into every year and thus enjoy the seasonal changes.

Unknown said...

Oh, yes! September by the sea is magical...!Good for you for taking time to "imprinting " late summer glories to take home with you back to California!
We are soaking in all we can too!
Much love,
Boz and Deb

Kristina said...

What wise words you have given us. I have barreled through summer without enjoying much of it...horrific work schedule, family illnesses, garden failure. I am determined to slow down and enjoy the fall before our long, frigid, dark winter arrives! :)

Happy@Home said...

Your last bouquet of the summer is so pretty and my favorite type of floral arrangement.
I loved your video for the opportunity to see your lovely cottage, hear your voice and most of all the message you shared. It is such good advice and I plan to remember it and put it into practice. Thank you for that.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing the lovely cottage by the sea!! What a joy to live in such surroundings, even if just part of a year!! And you are so is good to look for joy and to give into it. We are alloted so few days in this life, being joyful every one we can is so important!!
Elizabeth in NC

Pondside said...

Just a month left! I don't know where the time goes.
Joy - well, it's there, all the time. It's just to stop long enough to breath it in!

Kim said...

I'll throw my hat in for that certificate! Thanks so much for writing, Sharon. Your blog is a quiet joy for me.

PatsyAnne said...

Your photos and words place me on the side of the ocean in Maine - enjoying what I can for the next month, but realizing that soon we will be together at the other ocean in a garden filled with flowers and bees and possibilities. And possibly reading a new book purchased with the giftcard.

Tammy Heller said...

Sharon, I remember seeing your Maine cottage in Country Living for the first time...It was absolutely charming...I remember the shoe box size guest room with the turkey redwork shams and the quaint kitchen with open cupboards displaying vintage dishes...and oh my...that cute, cute 1920 stove!! Thanks for spreading your joy!

Sheila said...

Sharon, I love Maine, and I love your blog. Enjoy your last days there.


Sharon Lovejoy said...

Thanks Sheila!

Made our reservations last night. The reality sets in. You begin to look at things so differently. As if you're saying a silent "good-bye" to everything.

Happy days!


Sharon Lovejoy said...

Hi Tammy, that shoe-box-sized guest room is now my postage-stamp-sized studio. I can look out onto the water as I work (and1it makes my jobs take twice as long). I never get used to the view.

Our 1920s stove, named Augustine after my grandmother Clarke who ALSO had great legs, is still in use, but kicking up some trouble. We are trying to find someone skilled in rebuilding these old gems.

Thanks for your sweet words,


Cottonista said...

Thank you for your sweet comment on my blog! I love your pictures of Maine--they bring back memories of our honeymoon there. I hope you are having a wonderful, peaceful day!

Jude Walsh said...

It is always about balance, isn't it? As I try to honor my writing practice I remind myself that part of that practice is to allow the necessary space for play and to just... breathe in the beauty of the simple things I love.

Anonymous said...

Love your blog and also autumn beginning - love the white pumpkins!! Nanc

One Woman's Journey - a journal being written from Woodhaven - her cottage in the woods. said...

Its me again
I smile at your entries
always a blessing
and make me smile...

Stephanie Roth Sisson said...

Oh Sharon! I have just gotten up and seeing your just perfect video of your seashell cottage and hearing you talk about the water reflecting on the wall...thank you, Sharon! And Happy Birthday! XO Steph

John'aLee said...

Loved your post. It is what I needed thank you!

Vicki Boster said...

Hi Sharon- I'm not here to enter- just so happy to have the time to visit your blog. You are so right that each day brings simple blessings. We should all take the time to enjoy all those simple things.

I know you are going to miss your beautiful place- but other blessings await you at the end of this next road you travel. Enjoy these last days of summer- our 3 week travels took us away from the last of summer here- as much as our trip was fabulous- I grieve that summer is truly gone. I know what is just around the corner--

Aunt Jenny said...

I just loved this post. I always enjoy your pictures, and words.
My blog is private now for a awhile. if you want to still read it I would love to add you to the reader list. I just need your email address. You could let me know at mantijenny at Yahoo.
Have a great week!

Anonymous said...

What a treat to view your video and hear your voice. I had given you a different voice in my head!

Give in to the joy. A good piece of advice for sure. Thanks for sharing and enjoy the rest of your Maine stay.


Kalyan said...

Simply beautiful...lovely!

Unknown said...

thanks for visiting our blog :D
Cecilia @ rather barefoot than bookless

Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

Such good thoughts.

Webmaster said...

Thanks for the chance at this great giveaway!

Mrs. Goodneedle said...

Sharon, "extracting joy"~ what a wonderful concept to employ! I, too, just celebrated a birthday and I am so very grateful for each and every thing. I appreciate this post today more than you'll ever know, I am going to give in to the joy that surrounds me this day and in the days to come. Thank you.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Happy belated birthday, Sharon! I enjoyed listening to your video about feeling joy this morning. Mary Oliver is one of my favorite poets. I have been swamped with work and obligations lately and was feeling a litle low after the 9-11 anniversary, so it was very encouraging to hear you say that we need to practice extracting joy from everyday life. I will make myself give into joy today and relax a little. Thanks for the inspiration!

Teri said...

I heard about the Fairy Hobmother on another post someplace. Is it really something? It sounds so made-up, doesn't it?

a woman who is said...

Yummy bouquet and those white asters...lovely.

Mozart's Girl said...

Dearest Sharon...this is so late, but I am just catching up on posts after my sister's visit & didn't want to miss one of yours. I love this...noticed the water shimmering on the walls, and then you said the same thing! And hearing your sweet voice was so lovely, reminding me of our meeting...over a year ago now! Wishing you a wonderful last few precious Maine days and a safe trip West xoxo Rachel