A YEAR TO REMEMBER
Another year is drawing to a close, and it is time to recall the highs and lows. In our Keswick home, the year started out in quarantine, with many restrictions placed on us by the government as to our coming and going. We remained home in Canada during the winter of 20/21 as travel was prohibited because of covid.
God blessed these ‘snowbirds of six years in the south’ with a mild season—cold enough to maintain a giant ice-skating rink on the lake, which the community enjoyed while still able to social distance in the great outdoors. We dragged Muskoka chairs to the lake, a fire pit, and supplied the wood for families who wanted to gather. Many cookies and thank you notes arrived at our door from grateful neighbors. So, the blessing was two-fold: the project gave pleasure to many and it provided us something to do. We also enjoyed many rides on our ATV on the lake and back roads, all bundled up in our winter gear.
In early March I did suffer covid symptoms, (but did not become part of the statistics as I never tested, just endured - lol) and not to the point of hospitalization—thank you Lord. Just a lot of aching and fatigue, and of course, the loss of taste and smell. It was funny and strange to stick my face into a zip-lock bag of cut-up onions and not smell a thing. And when food has no taste there is no enjoyment there, so I ate less and lost a few of those extra pounds. In the dark moments of life, it is important to find the light, the positive encouragement that finds its source in Jesus.
In March we had an addition to the family. Our very first great granddaughter. My son became a grandpa, and my grandson became a father. What a joy this baby is. One of those good-natured treasures parents pray for. She hardly ever cries, sleeps and eats well, and smiles at everything around her. It was wonderful blessing to welcome the first of the next generation into our family.
In April we went to Manitoulin Island. It was chilly but Paul wanted to get the bathroom renovations complete as he was scheduled for shoulder surgery in early May. Well, that did not happen. He figured if he could accomplish all that physical work and keep the pain bearable, the recovery time for surgery was not his idea of a fun way to spend the rest of 2021. As a result of the cancelation, I not only got indoor facilities at the cottage but we worked on many upgrades as the summer progressed. We love our little cottage on the island, its seclusion and back to nature when you want the quiet or fellowshipping with friends nearby when the day called for socializing. Camp time was a great blessing with great speakers and life changing moments, and the daily devotions held outside at the pavilion, were a wonderful way to start the day.
Providence Bay - a day walking at the beach - is a 10 minute drive.
In June, God provided us a buyer for our trailer at Braeside. They were ecstatic to begin their fun times with their young family, and that softened the blow of leaving the park. We’d worked there for 7 years; Paul head of maintenance and me leading the housekeeping department, and then enjoyed another seven summers just hanging with friends. The sale seemed logical, as owning and maintaining four places is just not sensible or manageable. Now we just have three—home base, Manitoulin in the summer and Florida in the winter.
By the end of October, we closed up the island cottage and returned to Keswick. When the border to the USA opened in mid November, we eagerly planned to head south. We had the family home for an early Christmas celebration and left afterward for our winter escape. These are 3 of my grown granddaughters in their Christmas Eve attire and puppy Bella.
We have been here in Florida for six weeks now, and enjoy a much freer lifestyle. We are still cautious as the new variant of covid sweeps the world, but we are double vaccinated and choose life after nearly two years of isolation and tight restrictions. When we have done all to stand, stand in the confidence of God who cares for His children, measures, and directs our days.
That brings us to today: December 30, 2021.
I have had a successful writing year, publishing 16 books in 12 months. It got a little hairy-scary at the end, but they are all out there. Both historical and contemporary clean Christian romance. Each one holds a unique place in my heart and it feels like I have made 16 new couple friendships—it’s weird how real fictional characters seem that exist in an author’s head. I loved bringing you all the adventures, twists and turns, and the happily-ever-after romance. YOU CAN SEE THEM ALL HERE
It is my hope that the romantic tales have blessed you over the past year, as you’ve read the stories for both entertainment and encouragement, seeing that God leads and guides in the everyday life of His people—even if they are fictional. Our lives often take on similar unbelievable obstacles and it is my goal to point you to the source who provides all the answers while whisking you away to another world filled with diverse characters, fun, and intriguing plots.
If I have accomplished these things, I have done my job.
So, it is now time to close this time of reminiscing, and I hope you have enjoyed taking a sneak peek at my life this past year. It’s been one of ups and downs but I choose to rejoice in the fact that God is still on the throne, and even when we do not understand His ways, they are perfectly aligned in bringing about the end of His Book.
Keep the faith and God bless you all.
From Marlene, at Heartwarming Romance.