Tag Archives: The View From my Window

One Year of Epiphanies!

24 May
I love this. Apples still clinging to a tree in December in Washington State.

One year ago today I began an adventure. One which I was wary of, but also excited to begin. One which I had avoided – being a person who tends towards hearths and comfy chairs as opposed to mountain climbing and exploration.

It’s not that I dislike exploration – on the contrary – it’s just that I like my bed, and my favorite mug and my books all around me, beckoning to me with their promises of entertainment and comfort.

I have always said that, rather than comfort food, I have comfort books.

Okay, some of my favorite pictures from the past year. This is my mom and sisters many moons ago – shot taken by my father.

But I’ve gotten off my topic – which, if you’ve read me much over the past year, you know is not unusual.

Several years ago a friend of mine told me that I ought to start a blog. She said this quite a few times over the following months and each time I told her, “No way. I already don’t have enough time to do what I’m supposed to do as it is. If I start to write more, I’ll be even more behind.”

I sometimes wonder if she questions now just what it is that she unleashed.

Winter a few years back.

Because, finally, I looked seriously into blogging and, on May 24, 2011, I posted my first post!

For many years now I’ve enjoyed writing my family’s annual Christmas letter – and I’ve often gotten nice comments from those who receive it. I look at this blog like a giant, year-long Christmas letter. Like the Christmas letter I never have enough time or space to write. I once met the new husband of my husband’s cousin’s ex-wife – did you get that?!! – and he said, upon meeting me, “Oh, the person who writes novels every Christmas.” Yep. That’s me. And now I don’t have to stuff my novels into envelopes once a year – instead I post them for the world to see!

There is beauty to be found on the prairie.

I began with the intention of posting once a week. “Tuesdays with Gretchen” was my catch phrase. But gradually I began to up that to twice a week. That’s a good amount for me, especially when, in January, my local newspaper asked me to begin a blog for them as well. That blog The View From my Window is a wee bit more local in flavor, though not, by any means, always. It’s really just more of the same epiphanies I have here, just more…Minnesota-centric. So anyway, posting on that blog approximately three times a week makes for five times in all and that’s more than enough for me. It was such an honor to be asked by The Daily Globe to be a part of their blogging world, and they print my articles in the newspaper once a month (or more) which has been fabulous.

I live in a small community and it’s such a hoot to have people comment to me almost every time I go to town about reading my posts in the newspaper or on-line. Today, for the first time ever, a salesperson saw my name on my bankcard as I handed it to her and she said, “Oh, are you the Gretchen O’Donnell who writes the blog for the paper?”

“Why yes, yes I am.”

Just a cool fall picture from the neighborhood.

I began to blog because I love to write and, as such, I’ve been working on a writing a book for the past four years. It’s hard to get much work done with three children, the youngest of whom is five years old. But it’s coming along and writing for this blog, while perhaps taking time away from the book, has also been a tremendous encouragement to me as a writer.

And so I continue to write – both the book and the blogs – and who knew, one year ago, where I’d be today?! I’m looking forward to what the year ahead holds.

Star Magnolia – my parent’s garden, a couple years ago.

I am thrilled to be a part of your world.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for being a part of mine.

Here’s some more of my favorite shots that I’ve posted over the past year…

The Great Amaryllis Experiment.

Two of our kittens – as seen in The View From my Window!

The Sioux Falls waterfalls – on the Big Sioux River in South Dakota – from a post on my second blog.

I didn’t take this shot, but it was part of my story on my knitting fiend friend Sheri Hall…

One of my favorite pictures of all time. Meep washing dolly clothes, several years ago.

I love the angles. Vancouver, British Colombia, Canada, December 2011.

Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris.

Love the angles. Love the buildings. Paris, February 2011.

The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. This photo was taken by my husband, exactly one year after our trip to my old hometown of Berlin.

There’s nothing like a lucky shot. Hoar Frost (Galaverna!) on the trees and some birds I unknowingly scared up.

Seining in SW Minnesota – a photo from my other blog.

Cascade Falls, Orcas Island, Washington

A brave rose in December. Orcas Island, Washington.

P.S. – I just double checked and apparently I BEGAN working on my blog on the 24th…but actually posted my first post on the 31st. Oh, well. Math never was my strong suit…


17 Jan

Okay, so you never know what a day will bring, do you?

In the midst of all of the Minnesota Moments excitement last week, I received an e-mail from the local newspaper – the Daily Globe – asking me to be a part of their Area Voices blogging world!

Wasn’t that nice?

I didn’t have to think about it too much before I said, “Sure! What do I have to do?”

Well, I have to start a second blog! This new venture – The View From my Window – which you can find as of today at http://www.theviewfrommywindow.areavoices.com – does not mean that this blog will look any different or be posted any less frequently! The two blogs will be much the same in style, though the new one will probably consist of more local topics. There may be times that I “re-work” posts from here at “Epiphany” that you might have already seen in the past but that I’ve worked on and made better than ever! Ha.

So why, if it’s not going to be that much different, am I starting a second blog? Mostly because they asked me to, which was an honor! But also because this gives me a new way to be heard/seen/read/enjoyed by a very large number of Upper Midwest Newspaper readers – the Area Voices blogs come from all over the region, not just my little town. In addition, if I’m particularly applicable and/or fabulous, they might print me in the paper…which would be fun and gratifying to be sure.

SO…please check out The View From my Window! I’d love your you to follow me there as well, if you’re willing! (Get to the link from the blogroll at the right!)

I’ll see you there!

%d bloggers like this: