Linking up with WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge today and the theme ‘Containers.’
You know the old saying, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure?” Well, I imagine the same could be true about what constitutes a relic. This week’s photo challenge theme on Word Press has been relic.
One of the definitions of the word says a relic is “an object surviving from an earlier time, especially one of historical or sentimental interest.” For some, a relic may be just an uninteresting piece of old junk, for another it is fascinating.
On our recent trip south, we visited the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC. Now that place is full of relics – items of historical interest that truly are captivating like furniture, vintage clothing, period décor accessories, old photographs, and original artwork by Pierre-Auguste Renoir and John Singer Sargent.
But I suppose if you weren’t interested in history or the culture of that bygone era, you could find it boring. Not us. My history loving husband found it intriguing and my imaginative self found it equally enchanting.
The impressive ‘big house’ is a 250 room chateau-style mansion which was built and completed in 1895 for George Vanderbilt as a retreat for his family and friends. It sits on 8000 acres, much of it wooded and all of it beautiful, nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina.
As we toured only the rooms open to the general public, I could imagine folks a century ago coming and going. Arriving in the foyer with trunks in tow for an extended stay. Enjoying the elaborate indoor winter garden on a blustery cold day. Lounging on a chaise reading in the library with floor to ceiling shelves holding 10,000 books.
Genteel ladies escorted by well-mannered gentlemen on a carriage ride through the estate. Elegantly attired folks feasting in the banquet hall where 64 guests could dine around a 40-foot long table. Getting some recreation in the indoor swimming pool, bowling alley, or gymnasium. Enjoying a summer breeze and gorgeous view on the loggia. Strolling arm and arm through the magnificent gardens. It is the stuff that historical romantic novels are made of.
Taking a day to ‘go back in time’ proved fascinating for the two of us. Hubby’s love of historical trivia was sated. He posed a question to a Biltmore staff member about an aspect he noticed in the banquet hall, and she answered with surprise that he was correct. She added that in the 11 years that she had worked there, no one had ever gotten that connection on his own. That’s my husband!
And my fascination with vintage things and love for photography was equally satisfied, although I had to be content with only taking pictures outside as no indoor photography is allowed since it is still a privately owned home. Still there were many photo ops to capture my eye.
All of those relics at the Biltmore have been carefully preserved because someone believed they were worthy of being safeguarded. And that makes me think about my own relics. I have a few – they’re not priceless by any means when it comes to monetary value. They’re only priceless to me because they belonged to a family member now long gone.
As I glance around my home at my furnishings, artwork, and personal belongings, I wonder if there’s any item here that someday might be considered a relic and if anyone will consider it precious enough to keep. Time will tell.
“Any relic of the dead is precious, if they were valued living.” ~ Emily Bronte in Wuthering Heights
Linking up with WordPress Photo Challenge
“America, America, God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea.”
Happy Birthday, America!
May we seriously reflect on the great courage and sacrifice our forefathers endured just to provide us, the future generations, with liberty on this Independence Day. And may we thank God for our freedom and do everything we possibly can to preserve it. Will you join me today in praying for restoration of our great nation?
Linking up to Weekly Photo Challenge today.
No, I’m not hopping mad. Or hopping down the bunny trail (you have to be old enough to know Here Comes Peter Cottontail for that one). Nor am I island hopping although the idea of that does sound grand… maybe I just need a vacation.
And I’m not hopping in my socks at the dance (sock hop) either, even though that sounds like fun. Instead, today I’m blog hopping. I was invited to participate in a blog hop (who knew there was such a thing?) for today. My good friend and blogging buddy, Dianna, over at These Days of Mine asked me to join in.
The only requirement to join the blog hop is to answer four questions in a blog post and name, with their permission of course, three fellow bloggers to also answer the questions and post the following Monday. I had no trouble answering the questions, but unfortunately, only one blogging friend was available to join the blog hop. So head on over to D’s place at My Five F’s for her answers next week. (And thank you, D, for hopping with me!)
Here are the questions in bold, my answers in italics:
- How does my creating process work? Many writers have a certain process they follow to start their creative juices flowing. I’m not one of them. I just write when I feel compelled to do so. Usually something I see, hear, or read sparks my interest and sets my mind to writing a blog post. Sometimes I’m composing it in my head before I even sit down at the computer. Or I jot down the idea in a notebook to be revisited later. What kind of things spark my creativity? It could be a photograph I take or something as simple as looking at an everyday aspect of life in a different way. Sometimes it’s a scripture I read or a quote that I come across or even one word that inspires me to write. More times than not, I feel God leading me to write what I do.
- How does my work differ from others of its genre? I’m not really certain that my work is that different from others but I do write straight from my heart, using my own voice and my own photographs. My goal is to uplift and encourage and never tear down, so if I use sarcasm, it’s only in a joking way. I think my writing style is conversational; I write like I talk. Not to be too heavy or serious, yet not silly or frivolous either, I aim for balance. My purpose is to inspire and encourage my readers in some way and always to make my blog a warm and inviting place. I like to imagine my reader and I are just sitting down with a cup of tea and having a nice chat.
- What am I working on? Well, of course I work on my blog regularly and I take pictures a lot (I’m in love with my camera). But I’m also working on a devotional book and –gasp! – I can’t believe I’m actually putting this ‘out there,’ but I’m writing a work of fiction. It may never get published, who knows, but I’m having a lot of fun writing it. I’ve never believed I was creative enough to write fiction and make up characters, plot, and all of that because I’ve always been a non-fiction writer (just the facts. ma’am), but the characters that are running around my imagination and now appearing on my computer screen have taken on a life of their own and are now telling me what to write. A little scary, maybe? But definitely producing growth in me as a writer.
- Why do I create what I do? Sometimes, it’s like I just need to get the words out. I said it before and I’ll say it again – I feel compelled to do so. It’s like a fountain of words just erupts from my heart and mind and gushes out all over the place. When I first started my blog, I wrote for myself, to place the words that swirled around inside my brain into an orderly fashion so I could deal with them. But now, several years later, I don’t just write for myself; my readers are always on my mind. I love to encourage and uplift them by sharing my own experiences in hopes that what I write touches their hearts and gives them pause for thought.
So now you know a little bit more about me. But let me thank you, my readers. Because every time you hop on over here to my empty nest place, you make me happy enough to hop up and down excitedly.
“The writer catches the changes of his mind on the hop. Growth is exciting; growth is dynamic and alarming. Growth of the soul, growth of the mind.” ~ British novelist Vita Sackville-West