On life's journey, whether traveling around the world or walking around your block, there's lots to learn about life, love, and the pursuit of happiness, so lets dive into a new ocean together!

Monday, July 15, 2019

Lady Traveler ... Home for awhile. What Now?

To know someone here or there
with whom you feel there is an understanding
in spite of distances or thoughts unexpressed~~
that can make of this earth's garden.
Goethe


Sunset from our back yard on Lake Murray

Rob and I are settled in our cozy condo on the lake.
Well, there's still lots of odds and ends to do.
For example, Rob is painting the backyard deck as I write.
Bought a pontoon boat.
Sold the motor home.
Took a vacation to Texas.  Now what?

We've spent the last four years on the road.
so after a few days around the house,
we look at each other.
Rob: "What do you want to do?"
Me: "If I watch another HG TV show, I'll scream!"
"Boat ride?"
"Yes!"


Fun with family & friends on the pontoon

The RED (Retired-Extremely-Daring) dog days of summer are in full swing.
I'm doing a little gardening in our front yard.
We've continue to have family and friends over for
BBQ's (grillin') and boat rides.
I'm taking time to visit with our
wild and crazy neighbors.
Truthfully, the place is pretty peaceful.

Leaf's Garden. It's grown lots since this pic.

The most positive aspect about being home more?
We can be more involved in our local church
 Flourish Church.
I'm excited about the ladies Bible study that began last week
(not to forget our ongoing Bible study that meets on Wednesdays).
Rob led the Men's Monthly Fellowship breakfast last week.
Rob: "The food is scrumptious!"
And I only have 2,700 more words to add to
Lady on the Run.

The lazy days of summer are blissful, just the way I like it.
But we always need to ready in season and out
because we never know who God will send across our path
that may need a word of encouragement to get them through their day.

I wish you oceans of peaceful summer days.

All sunshine and sovereign is God,
generous in gifts and glory.
Psalm 84:10

Monday, June 17, 2019

Remember Lady Traveler's First RV Road Trip?

What were we thinking?
We weren't.

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--I took the one less traveled by,
and that has made all the difference.

Our first little motor home at the Wimberley Texas Flood 2015

For those of you who are new to my Lady Traveler blog
here's Part 2 of a little story about our very first
RV Road Trip in 2015.
We didn't plan to buy the 1987 Mallard Sprinter motor home,
but for $5,000, how could we go wrong?

Part 1 and Part 2 blogs are posted on the website:

Part 1, my previous blog on this website, tells how we stumbled across
this little darling.
Read and enjoy!

Relaxing after a long day volunteering with first-response team
Christ In Action (CIA)

Now, after reading my story, perhaps you might want to hit the road
in some sort of RV ... motor home, 5th wheel, trailer ... lots to choose from.
The choice is yours.
Whether you're retired and/or looking for some way to help others,
or you just want to go travelin',
an RV can take you just about anywhere your
little heart desires.

All in a day's work to help bring hope to America's families
Volunteering with Christ In Action 2015 at the Wimberley Texas flood

We traveled in our Mallard Sprint for six months
until we met our beautiful 2004 American Tradition 40-foot home-on-wheels,
Moon River.
That's when we really took off for places unknown.
25+ (I've lost count) states and have loved every minute.
After watching hours of the Travel Channel,
we began experiencing God's beautiful country first-hand ...
... east, west, north south.
We've met wonderful friends of whom I still
communicate via Facebook, blogs, e-mails, and Instagram, 
and even meet again on life's highways!
It is a small world after all.

Lots of states on Route 66, including Missouri to visit son Shawn (4 times).

I love expanding my boundaries.
Rob and I have lived in Sweden and traveled to over 25+ countries,
including living on a World War II ship for 14 months.
(I have my favorites and perhaps I'll return one day to
Israel and/or Italy).

Tuscany, I love you!

Wherever you are, make this a good day ... your best day!
It's your choice.
And ... keep that body movin'!


Teach us to number our days aright,
that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
Psalm 90:12


You can order my book, Lady and the Sea at:
or

Monday, June 10, 2019

The Runaway

The Runaway

Our days are identical suitcases ~ all the same size ~
but some people can pack more into them than others.

When wRiter's Block hits ... close the laptop and run away!

A little over a month ago I had been writing my heart out
until my eyes crossed and my tummy growled, begging for food.
I only had time to indulge in another cup of coffee.

I love when God gives me the words that flow from my heart,
to my brain, to my fingers, and on to my computer.
If you're an artist, you know what I mean ...
... the juices start flowing.
You're fearless!

But when that mean ol' writer's block comes a knockin',
what do you do?
Hide?  Stay in bed?  Go shopping?  Not me.
 This Lady Traveler shuts down the laptop, backs away from her desk and ...
hits the road!

This happened recently,
so I dropped this suggestion on Robinski over morning coffee.
"Lets go to Texas!"
"Uh, sure, okay.  When?"
"Next week, before we sell Moon River."
Our motor home had been for sale for over a month.
A few bites, but no sale.

Memories of our last chapter.  Ready to turn the page for the next chapter. 
We had no longer hung our clothes, stored some food in the pantry and frig,
and locked the door of our beloved RV,
ready to leave the next morning for the lone star state, when, out of nowhere,
a gentleman vacationing from Idaho took one look at her, and wham!
Our beloved RV was sold.
So, what did we do?
We unloaded clothes and food,
re-loaded clothes in our car,
and hit the road for Texas the next morning as planned.
Good-bye writer's block!

I love our road trips, but this trip was definitely different than most.
We were usually in our motor home towing our Ford Escape.
This trip we were driving our red car.
Confession: I began having RV withdrawals.
Rob wasn't asking me to check my "RV Parky" app for rest stops or fuel stops.
I missed 'sitting up high' over the traffic on I-20 west with
Popcorn sitting on my lap.
(she stayed home in a kennel that spoils her rotten).
No more fixing BLT sandwiches at rest stops.
But I kept these emotions to myself.  Why?
I glanced over at Robinski.
He was really having a relaxing time cruising down the interstate in our red Escape.
"Why do you look so happy?" I finally asked.
"No stress," he quickly answered.

I then realized that with all the fun and adventure we'd experienced,
the responsibility that had been on his shoulders
these past 4 1/2 years had been heavy.
"Hey, lets pull over and have lunch at that Mexican restaurant," he added joyfully.
He didn't have to worry about finding a parking space large enough for our home-on-wheels.
Can all you RV owners agree to all of the above?
Note: Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't trade a minute of our hours on the road,
but lets face it, there are moments when you ask,
Why did I buy this monster?
Cruising down one of many interstates across the USA ~ 2015-2019
We had a wonderful two-week-Texas-vaca' on the road
visiting family and friends,
stopping by Magnolia Table in Waco, Texas ...
and staying in hotels,
unloading overnight bags, and
eating lots of complimentary breakfasts of
bacon, eggs, OJ and coffee.
Note: when looking for hotels online, read the reviews.
For me, I always make sure a hotel is rated high for clean and safe.
The Hampton Inn is good for one-night stays, or longer.

Home sweet home on Lake Murray
I returned home refreshed, but tired.
Then came the head cold.
Pray. Rest. Don't spread germs. Stay home. Rest.
Now, a week later, I'm getting back to normal,
and the writing bug has returned.
Yesterday I finished my June blog for the website
Retirement and Good Living (soon to be published)
This morning I'm writing my Lady Traveler blog.
Now my eyes are starting to cross, and my tummy is crying out for food.
More coffee and rest, then I'll continue adding a few thousand more words for
Lady on the Run.

So, if you're getting any kind of block,
back away for awhile.
If you can't take trip, then take a walk.
Outdoors does wonders for your body, soul, and spirit.

Until next time,
I wish you oceans of safe summer blessings!
And remember ... keep that body movin'!

Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
Psalm 90:12



Friday, April 12, 2019

Lady Traveler ... What Now?

Lady Traveler asks ... What Now?

Writing in Barcelona, Spain

Have you ever asked yourself, what now?
Most of the time we don't have time to ask ourselves that question.
We're too busy going from one project to the next, one destination to the next.
Before we think, Do I really want to do this?
or
Do I really need to do this?
We forge ahead.


Today I'm wondering if I'm biting off more than I can chew.
Most of you know I published a book several years ago,
Lady and the Sea.





Have I bit off more than I can chew?

Over the last few years I've shared this story at many venues.
Now, in the near future, my next book
Lady on the Run will be published.


If you can't run, then walk

So now, I'm asking myself,
Can I begin this process all over again?...
...to gather even more followers...they're now called tribes.
And, oh, all the marketing that it entails,
not to mention the speaking engagements.
The theme of Lady on the Run is
Finding the joy of running your physical race and your spiritual race~at your own pace!

Since my knee replacement three years ago my pace is power walking.
Hours of walking.
Keeping my body movin'.
With a title Lady on the Run, 
I have to be an example, right?

The list goes on...and on.
You writers, walkers, business owners know what I'm talking about.

Me running 1/2 marathon  in 1979

So what now?
Do I stop mid-stream?
or
do I run the race that is set before me?

I wouldn't be asking myself these questions if I were younger.
But I'm 73!
I move slower. I look forward to my afternoon siesta.
On and on.

Then I remember the words spoken by the main speaker at the 
Carolina Christian Writers Conference last month:

"Reclaim your time...shed distractions. 
Be still in your calling, your purpose, your anchor.
Choose rest.
Create and honor a sacred place of prayer, meditation, and rest."



I'm not a philosopher nor am I a counselor.
But through the years I've learned a thing or two.
One,
If I don't have an answer,
I ASK GOD.
Two,
Our Creator has the answers.
He's waiting to walk with us through life.
Three,
so I wait to hear from Him.


As I'm writing this blog, I realize that I must close for now
and go to my sacred place to find my answers.
That is where God is.
I suggest you do the same.

Let's find our answers together as we run--or walk--the race that's set before us!

Hebrews 12:1

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Lady TraveleR is back on the island.

Lady TraveleR is back on the island

On the Road again ... foR the last time?
I no sooneR Returned fRom my wRiteRs confeRence
than Rob planned a Road tRip foR us.
Yes, I was getting Restless,
but a road trip so soon after I returned home?
"We're only driving up the road," he said.
"We're going to Dreher Island?" I asked.
"Why not? It's one of our favorite hangouts.
Besides, this might be the last trip before we sell her."
That did it.  I almost forgot that we're planning to sell
Moon River, our beautiful home-on-wheels.
"Yes, we shall go to Dreher Island," I replied with a note of sadness. 

I'm glad Rob had the bright idea to spend some days at Dreher Island State Park.
Pure serenity and peace to be surrounded by the
tall pine trees, the chirping birds, not to mention all the friendly campers.

So here we are, camping on Lake Murray in our motor home, 
just an hour north of our cozy condo on ...
Lake Murray.
I'm glad that God put the bright idea in Rob's heart to come here.
where there are less distrRactions.

Today I'm typing aways at our little table in Moon River,
sipping on FolgeRs, glancing out the window
at the same lake I admire every day from our patio.

We've enjoyed many sunny days at Dreher Island on Lake Murray
Prosperity, SC
But at this moment I'm looking at the lake from a different angle.
This might be the last time I'll be glancing out the window of our
home-on-wheels.
Wheels that has safely taken us thousands of miles to over 
25 states in the past three years.
Sadness and thankfulness fill my soul.

Campsite at Dreher Island State Park, one of our favorite getaways.

I continue typing, trying to fill my mind with thoughts of what to write
in my next blog for the Retired and Good Living website.

Then I stop and say a little pRayeR.

Sometimes that's what we have to do with our present situations.
Instead of looking with our narrow minds,
we need to pray and ask God to show us our
circumstances from His angle.
For you it might be your relationship with your mate, a friend, a neighbor, or a recent loss,
a change in lifestyle ....

Now, I can turn my thoughts to an unwritten blog,
chapters that needs to be revised ....

Yes, I'm really enjoying my days here at Dreher Island,
just an hour north of our home on the same lake,
in my home-on-wheels,
perhaps for the last time (tear).


I shall Rejoice in the LoRd foR all that He has done for me,
and foR what He has foR me in the days to come.


Tuesday, March 5, 2019

To wRiters, tRavelers, and Runners #walkeRs out there in Lady Leaf Land ...

To wRiters, tRavelers, and Runners #walkeRs out there in Lady Leaf Land ...

A safe-sorta-sunny harbor day in Ventura, CA 2018

I'm loving my time at Leaf's Lake House,
but a touch of cabin fever was beginning to settle in.
Not to complain but ...
so much rain ... too cold.
Then just in time, it's time for
The Carolina Christian Writers Conference!

Two days hanging with
fellow writers, friends,
gifted speakers, editors, and authors
left me inspired to continue my writing journey.
Mostly.

I admit there were moments I caught myself thinking, 
What are you doing here?
What makes you think you can write?
You still have SO much to learn.
All the negatives that haunt the writer
loom around every corner,
waiting to tear you down,
shred any confidence you may have
in your writing skills.
So I wait for those profound words
that will drive me to keep typing on,
forging me ahead to finish 
that article, that blog, THE BOOK.

The words come from the guest speaker.
She softly says,
Reclaim your time, your activities.
Shed distractions.
Be still in your calling, your purpose, your anchor.
Choose rest.
Create and honor a sacred place of prayer, meditation, and rest.

Ahh.
Such kind words.  Wise words.
So much better than all the worrying and negative thoughts
that invade our minds each time we receive yet another
Rejection letter.

On Lady Leaf's Loft wall as a reminder to ... Type! Type!! Type!!!

The last moments of the conference
gave me a very positive meeting with a
major representative from a trad-publishing company
regarding my manuscript, Lady on the Run.
Another Ahh.

There is light at the end of the writing tunnel.
I am called of God to write.
It all shall come to pass in God's timing, not mine.
I'm again inspired to write on!


Your angel is running with you!
Drawing from my original '70s Lady on the Run manuscript

In the meantime,
What Now?
This RED (Retired-Extremely-Daring) lady continues to
venture to the gym, walking with the international Run 4 God group,
and head out my door for the invigorating power walks.
Living healthy is keeping our bodies moving---at our own pace.
And to plan the next tRavel tRip to ....


I wish you oceans of wRiting, Running #walking, and tRavel blessings!

Let us run with patience the race that is set before us--at our own pace.
Hebrews 12:1

www.sharonleaf.com

Remember to drop by to read my latest blog on website:

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

pRepaRing to tRavel to ...

pRepaRing to tRavel to ...

The view never gets old.
I've downsized. I've simplified.
Now I'm Ready ... to Travel.
Next week I'll be taking a shoRt Trip to
the CaRolina ChRistian wRiteRs ConfeRence in
SpaRtanburg, South CaRolina.
I love spending time with fellow wRiters
and listening to talented, gifted authoRs, editoRs, and otheR
renowned guest speakeRs.

Lady's Loft ... my office. My  iMac is behind closed shutters.
Artwork, books, photos ... all my dear-to-my-heart treasures.
I'm enjoying each and every day for what it has given me.
The lazy, balmy ones,
sunny and waRming to the heaRt and soul.
And oh, the cold, rainy, windy ones
that cause my body to shiver
when I step outside to walk little Miss PRincess PopcoRn 
on the boaRdwalk by the lake.
It's on those 30-degree days that I welcome
the warmth of our cozy condo.

These past weeks have given me much to warm my heart.
Having our son Shawn here for three days lit a fiRe inside me
that has kept me peaceful and somewhat melancholy.
I have many memories to cheRish until we're together again.
Thank you, LoRd, for giving me a very special birthday gift.

I always look forward to the times I can spend with daughteR Jacquie.
She drops by whenever she can,
for hot tea and hot conveRsation.
They're in the midst of building a house.
(Oh, the patience they have shown during this process).

Makes my heart happy to see my book in the Lexington Library
(it was checked out the next day)

Knowing daughter CaRRie (in North Carolina)
and son Jason (in SoutheRn CalifoRnia)
are happy and doing well
keeps the ambeRs glowing.

Yes, I'm a blessed lady,
thankful to God for allowing me to live anotheR day.

So, what can I give back?
A smile at the marRket.
A hug to a neighboR.
A phone call to a fRiend.
An encouRaging word to someone who is
waiting for good...or disappointing...news.

After reading what authoR/fRiend StaRR(light) AyeRs
shared about me in her inteRview with me yesterday,
I Realized once more how blessed I am to be living my life in full technicoloR!
Please Read when you have a few minutes:


And the peace of God,
which passes all undeRstanding,
shall keep your heaRts and minds
thRough Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6

I wish you oceans of daily blessings!

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Simplify means Slower

Simplify means SloweR

Just another day in paradise ... in our backyard

I'm finding that when I slow down a bit,
I actually get more done.
I spend time in the morning
sipping my coffee, talking to God,
and making my mental to-do plan.
Through the years I've learned to be flexible.
Why?
Because I know that somewhere between
morning coffee and bedtime
God will invite me to step into His story.
I've learned that His story is always better than mine.

Morning coffee at Hemingway's Restaurant at
Bass Pro Headquarters in Springfield, MO


Don't get me wrong ... this RED (Retired-Extremely-Daring) hasn't always been all that flexible.
I like things my way.
Who doesn't?
But after a few minutes, I give in to God.
I sigh.  He smiles.
And we walk together hand in hand,
fulfilling another success story.

I know I'm a simple person,
and I'm simply okay with that.
I am who I am.
In my travels, whenever I compare myself to someone else who has
accomplished great and mighty things in their lives,
I become gloomy and self-critical ...  you know what I'm talkin' about
because you often feel the same.
My advise.  Don't compare.
Run the race that is set before you
Run--or walk--at your own pace.
The results?  Happy feet!
Happy heart!
Happy life!

I'm simply happy with my family, daughter Jacquie and son Shawn here in the south.
(my recent 73rd birthday celebration)

Author Hallee Bridgeman invited me for an interview on her blog.
You can read all about this RED on 
www.halleebridgeman.com/interview-with-sharon-leaf-and-a-giveaway/

Until next time
I wish you oceans of simple blessings!







Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Lady Traveler's "What Now?" series

"What Now?"

Our backyaRd at sunset

Happy New YeaR!
I don't make new year Resolutions
but I have ideas of what I want to achieve.
If you don't believe me,
check out my December 2015 blog.

My woRd for 2019 is
"SIMPLIFY"
As you know, Rob and I recently downsized from our home
to a cozy condo on Lake Murray
that forced me into the SIMPLIFY mode.
Now that we've been at the Lazy Leaf Lake House for almost two months,
guess what?
I'm still SIMPLIFYING.

I'm blogging a "What Now?" series for a great website
This website is packed with useful information for people of ALL ages
but focuses on those who are retiRED and who are thinking about retiRing.
PouR a cup of FolgeRs and read some of my personal and helpful simplify tips.

This beautiful plate was a gift from my longtime friend Shirley L. many years ago.
I'm SO glad I didn't donate or toss it.
Until next time,
I wish you tidy drawers, clean closets and oceans of New Years blessings!

He gives power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increases strength.
Isaiah 40:29




Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Lady Traveler's Cozy Christmas

Lady Traveler's Cozy Christmas
The most wonderful time of the year!

Unto us a child is given,
A Saviour, Christ the Lord
(my 40-year-old nativity under the tree)

Rob and I are loving our cozy condo on Lake Murray.
Each evening we sit by the fire, admiring our Christmas decorations.
(yes, I had enough energy to decorate.  I can't help myself)
As we sit, we count our blessings.

We are blessed with four wonderful grown kids.
We still call them 'our kids.
Four on-the-go grown grandkids.
Three fast-growing great-grandboys.
Our sweet Popcorn.
And our fabulous friends.

For our age, we are quite healthy.
We keep active, almost too active ...
... not at the local gym, yet ...
just active with every-day chores.
But we do try to take time for our little afternoon siestas.

I'm keeping this blog short,
but I'm including a recent blog I was invited to write at:
www.retirementandgoodliving.com
(my blog "What Now?" can be found under 'blog')


Our cozy villa says, "WELCOME!"

Christmas Eve by the fire -- food, fun, and opening gifts.


The GLITS* gals
*Girls-Living-In-The-South
Me.  Grand Destinee.  Daughter Jacquie

We're already talking about hitting the road!

Until next year,

I wish you oceans of Christmas and New Year blessings!

For there is born to you this day in the city of David 
a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord.
Luke 2:11