Slim and Franke

Slim and Franke
Happy New Year

Friday, August 20, 2010


There was a tree next to our house that I was able to climb easily. It was my safe harbor as a child. It was my place to do my thinking and day-dreaming without interruption or family demands. I think of that tree often when our youngest granddaughter visits and takes her place as high in our cherry tree as she can climb. She would spend all day there if we let her. It makes me smile to imagine all the creative thoughts she is having (or schemes she is plotting).

My home now has many places that offer refuge from outside interruptions. Blogging offers a source of escape. My art is easily distracting from day-to-day issues. Curling up in a corner of my sofa with snacks and a glass of wine to watch a Netflix movie or read a book or listen to a book tape is rejuvenating. Closing up the chickens and goats in the evening gives me sacred moments to gaze at the moon and stars and know the promise of new strength for the next day.

I cannot speak for Ron and where he finds sanctuary but when I see him on a tractor spending hours mowing, digging and sculpting our property, I believe he finds solace in the beautification process.

Perhaps I must admit that in these retirement years I seem to spend more time in safe harbor than I do on the high seas of chores, traumatic news, world politics, fair and unfair. Who wants to step out into all of that if they don't have to?

Do you have need in your life for sanctuary and where do you find it?

*** *** ***

Oh, I keep forgetting to tell you this story. Did you know that Ron gave me a gift of George Washington's original hatchet that he used to chop down the cherry tree? Ron swears it is the original hatchet and that he only had to replace the head twice and the handle three times.


  1. My sanctuary used to be reading books, knitting or blogging. Now walking I guess is my sanctuary, although I don't do it very often. It's peaceful and I have alot of beautiful trails to choose from. And what a great gift from Ron...who cares if it's an updated original, lol.

  2. I have quite a few of those sanctuary places myself. What you said about safe harbors versus the high seas is so very true.

  3. That tree is glorious in its spreading branches - like welcoming arms.

    It's wonderful to have those pockets of peace in a day. When I'm in the garden, I immediately relax. Watching the night sky has the same soothing effect (I know we both appreciate the moon phases, Annie :) ) Being with animals has always been another pocket of peace for me. And writing is less relaxing mentally, but stretches my mind in a different direction. Photography has become that way for me in the last 10 years or so, too.

    Ron sounds such a delightful man. I'm so glad you have each other.

  4. That's funny about the hatchet. :)

    I think of my home as my sanctuary. I'm surrounded by things I love. A wise woman once told me that your home should be like welcoming arms when you walk in and I feel that. I also love the back porch overlooking the Hiawassee River at my sister's mountain cabin. So peaceful.

  5. Ha! Ron is hilarious!

    As for my happy spot, I have many, actually. In my bed watching Netflix movies is one of my favorite activies and it rejuvenates me. Last night I saw "The Red Shoes," recommended to me by Naomi, "The Old Old Lady of the Hills," and it was excellent...a long movie though. This weekend I'm watching "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo," which I've also heard great things about.

    I also enjoy my morning coffee at the computer in the playroom (where I am at this very moment).

    I like drawing in the dining room which faces my pool and the backyard where the lady (and her boy toy) sometimes hang laundry out to their skivvies (which can kill a creative mood, let me tell you!).

    Hope whatever you do tonight, it rejuvenates you. I love what you did in Coby's book, btw..."The Single Father." It almost made me a good way, of course. :)

  6. Oh, yes,Annie, I love get up at the crack of dawn, get a cup of coffee and watch (Promise you won't laugh now) Judge Judy...

    She starts my day off with a bang!

    About that hatchet Ron gave you.

    It reminds me of the guy who was building a new chicken coop. He was using the materials from the old coop to build the new one, but wasn't going to tear down the old one till the new one was finished.

    I always enjoy your stories...

  7. Now that I am retired I have lots of sanctuaries...many like yours. I do love a canoe or hike with my camera because then I get to go twice...once again when I get home.

  8. What a beautiful tree and wonderful for climbing. When I was a child, there were two Australian pine trees in our front yard. They were great for climging too. The neighborhood kids gathered there, and we often had "war," throwing the little "pine cones" at each other. They are about the size of a small walnut.

    In my front yard is a big cedar tree. My children did some climbing in it as well.

    My little granddaughter (Ella, whom Ginny blogs about) has a tree in her front yard, a Japanese maple. It isn't too big, but she has maneuvered her way about that tree since she could walk almost.

  9. Thanks for commenting on my blog. I love to "meet" new bloggers. I guess I would say that my safest harbour is within myself ... and trying to keep out of other peoples business.

  10. Love the hatchet story! I find sanctuary in time alone - reading, having an iced drink, walking, etc.

  11. Bonnie – Walking is a great sanctuary. I also feel at peace on my exercise bike.

    Ralph – I hope you are finding much sanctuary since your retirement. That adjustment is sometimes difficult.

    Talon – “Pockets of peace” exactly. Leave it to you to describe it perfectly. The tree is not my actual tree but isn’t it a good one? Ron is more than delightful:)

    Lynn – I’m embarrassed to tell how long it took me to get the joke about the hatchet. I kept looking at it wondering why it didn’t look older if it had been George Washington’s. Yes, my home is my very best sanctuary filled with things I love and stories to go with them.

    Scarlet Ily – Yep, you know Ron is hilarious. Hurry and watch the Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. It is a British version and Hollywood is coming out with another. I am betting Hollywood doesn’t stay as close to the book as this early version. They do leave out one major detail but it is easily compensated for. Now, about the “playroom”, would that be yours and the husband’s or the kid’s? LOL Glad you liked my markering in Coby’s book. Have you ever found your book?

    Nancy – Ron and I have a battle of Judges. I love Judge Judy and he loves Judge Joe Brown. I won’t use my hatchet on him though. LOL By the way, I’m working on a chicken coop just like the one you described.

    Tabor – What a great way to look at your photographs as doubling your travel experience. I will think of that a lot from now on.

    Beverly – It looks like trees have been sanctuary for many of us as children. I wish I knew where that tree in the picture actually is. I'm not ever sure it's a photograph. It might be a painting.

    Ginnie – I’ve been spying on you for a while but just not commenting. You have a very neat blog. I don’t want to be in other people’s business either but I sure love reading their adventures. LOL

    Riot Kitty – What’s in your iced drink? Yep, I see you welcoming sanctuary with your exit from the work world. Have a great weekend.

  12. Annie,

    You know, Judy and Joe are polar opposites.

    Judy wants ONLY the facts. If they try to tell her anything else she tells them to go on Dr. Phil.

    On the other hand,Joe loves all the dirt..Never mind the law case or who is right and who is wrong, just tell me how many booty calls the guy has made recently....

  13. Love the joke!

    My sanctuary is my work - believe it or not.

  14. Hee-hee-hee! Love the hatchet story!!
    I think I have more that one place I escape to. In my house when I am particularly stressed I go to my keyboard and ask Heavenly Father to give me music from heaven. It comes and as I play the tension lifts, the clouds dissapate and I can carry on. Outside I like my lawn swing where I lean back and watch the clouds, but the best place for me to find peace is by the sea. I watch the waves come in and then receed and its like thay carry my troubles away with them.

  15. Yes as I've got older I've found I need more time and space just to unwind, chill but also to just have peace and quiet so I can let my creative mind work. I find it impossible to be creative when things are busy, noisy and hectic.

  16. Loved the hatchet story... but perhaps Ron forgot the moral of the story? te he! ~ jb///

  17. Nancy -- You are so right about Judy and Joe being polar opposites. I like her no nonsense approach. But Joe can be pretty entertaining as well.

    Kenju -- I do believe that your work is your sanctuary. At least the creating part. I'm not so sure about the delivery part in this heat.

    Mountain Mama -- I envy your musical ability and always watched my sister go to the piano for her restoration. I was so jealous that I could not play.

    LL Cool Joe -- I enjoy some background music but I don't like loud banging talking noises when I create.

    LZ Blogger --Surely you don't mean to imply that Ron might be lying about my heirloom hatchet? LOL

  18. What a lovely and heartwarming made me feel good just reading places of solace are very similar to yours...and my swing on the deck...and of course the the beach in my chair...with the wind and the salt air...I also love my bed....Mmmm we have a lot to be greatful for..!..I love love ..that lucky to have such a beauty in your yard..!

  19. smARTee -- Oh how I wish that tree was on my property. I got the picture from google images. Thanks for visiting my blog!

  20. Since I retired, I find sanctuary in my family, the yard, my flower beds, books, writing, cooking, and music. I did not seem to have time for these things when I was still working. It is wonderful to have these places. I, too, had a tree as a child that I would climb to the top and imagine I was doing all kinds of things. I think we all need sanctuary in our lives.

  21. Howdy
    Oh how much I needed this post !!!!!!
    Life has me in great need of a special tree .
    I am so happy that you had a tree ,I do think that all children need a tree to climb .There are so many things one can learn while sitting in the top of a tree.
    Ron has the gift of giving I am so glad he did and you shared :)
    I simply want to thank you for being here .Your blog is such a great sanctuary for me when I visit .
    Forgive me for being one of those on lookers in blogland who forget to leave comments ,but I somehow think you'll understand .
    There are times to read and times to comment.
    Blessings of joy to you and yours .
    Big Hugs
    Until Next Time
    Happy Trails

  22. Sounds like Ron has a great sense of humor! It's also wonderful that he does all that work around there. I'm sure he enjoys it.

    I used to find it relaxing to mow the lawn, using a riding mower of course. That was when I had more to mow and I could just ride and think and still get the job done. With mowing here I have to keep my mind on what I'm doing since the road is nearby and some of those people just fly by. Right now my sanctary is going out to a restaurant to eat. I know it sounds crazy and some people say they'd never go to a restaurant alone. I enjoy going to one with a nice view and just sit there alone and be served my food and I can eat and just enjoy the view and relax. If a conversation starts with someone then that's fine too, and also enjoyable and relaxing.
    The downside is that eating like that isn't good for my bohunkus and thighs and not good on my wallet! I need to find another outlet to relax.

  23. BTW, I have not found my book and I do hope you create a little something for me that I can put into a new book. Holland and I love your work!

  24. thesouthernlady64 -- We sound a lot alike and basically I could simply call my sanctuary "retirement".

    Terry -- Your blog gives the rest of us a sanctuary of amazing thought to start our days. Your cheerfulness, through your own hardship, is very uplifting.

    Rachel -- I know how blessed I am to have Ron and his ability to maintain our property. All of his machinery transforms him into a young man.

    It does not surprise me that you go out and eat alone. More people are at ease doing that now days and you seem to have such confidence anyway. Why not let people wait on you for a change.

    Scarlet Ily -- I responded to you by email. It breaks my heart so to think you book is lost.

  25. I do that night sky thing when I get home from work n open the car door about 2 am- unless people are around with their noise n bright lights. This place is my spot when other folks aren't intruding on my quiet-

    Never know when ya might need a hatchet (n a joke)!

  26. The only safe harbor I used to have was the place I went to in my imagination when things became too unbearable in the real world: there was a gentle stream at the base of a hill, and a lone tree sat on the side, with me beneath it.

    That was then, this is now: my computer and the world at my fingertips.