Tag Archives: relationships

When a Break Turns Into a Sabbatical

I’m back. I took a little break from writing and blogging this summer thinking I would be back at the keyboard by late-August or early September…it is now October 13. I suppose that is more of a sabbatical than a break. I didn’t expect that I needed or could even tolerate this much time away from writing. I guess I was wrong.

I stepped away from my laptop in June for family and for personal reasons. I will be writing more about both of these in future posts. In short, I wanted to spend as much time with my daughter before she started her senior year and I needed some time to process some things privately. I was concerned that if I continued to blog I would process publicly–and prematurely. Given these few months, I know I made the right decision in both of these cases.

The time away also allowed me time to get started on some much-needed and long-overdue projects around our house. I will be posting regularly about our “Take Back Our House Project.” I have some great before and after photographs, will share some of our dirty, little secrets and the solutions we have found. We are still very much in the process of this project and will be continuing to work on it throughout the year.For a sneak preview, check out my Instagram posts.

I’d love to hear from you about your own projects: how do you get started, what keeps you motivated, how you juggle the long process with living life, etc.

So…I am glad to be back. I am determined to keep writing and to continue to share my journey and struggles, battles and blessings.

God’s peace, my friends.



Lessons from Miss Frances: On Living, Loving and Laughing

"Lessons from Miss Frances on Living, Loving and Laughing" on www.amywatsonsmith.com

Lessons on life come from many people.

I have learned a great many things from the women in my life. Generations of women: mother, daughter, grandmothers, aunts, cousins, friends, teachers, mentors, employers, . . . .

These women came from different places and different times. Our paths crossed perhaps for but a minute or we may have walked together for many years.

Not all of the lessons taught were ones that I wanted to learn–or for that matter, thought that I needed to learn. Many were learned the hard way.

The wisdom they shared ranges from the practical to the philosophical and includes: entertaining, parenting, graciousness, marriage, having a thankful attitude, being a lady, maturing spiritually, etc.

So, who is Miss Frances, you may ask?

Well, for the purposes of this series of posts let’s just say she is an old friend of the family. In all honesty she is an amalgamation of the many women in my life and as such, she is the wisest of us all.

I look forward to sharing with you on a regular basis lessons from Miss Frances on living, loving and laughing

When You Hit a Bump in the Road

Bump in the Road


Everything was going along according to plan. The summer was over. School had started. I had developed a schedule that would allow me to work on my various writing projects on the two days I worked from home still leaving time for domestic duties, Bible study and an occasional coffee date with a friend.

But then…the bump in the road.

It was the expected unexpected. The reminder that my plans are not always His plans.

Why am I always so surprised–mystified even–when something like this happens?

This time the bump in the road was my 77-year old mother’s broken wrist and impending surgery. She was suddenly completely dependent on others (i.e., me). You never realize how much you need two working hands until you only have one.

We had much to be thankful for however. She broke her wrist not her hip. She fell in a public place and many people came to help her. The ER doctor was able to get her wrist back in position relatively easily (though not without a great deal of pain). We were able to get to her very quickly. Although surgery was still needed, it was scheduled in only a few days and went very well. She started becoming stronger and more independent within a few days of the surgery.

My mother has lived with us for ten years so we were able to help her with very little change to our normal daily routine (one of the reasons we made this change all of those years ago). While I do work part-time outside of our home, my job is in my husband’s medical practice, so I was able to take off the time I needed easily. I have the flexibility to drive my mother to her many doctor’s appointments, run errands for her and help her with whatever physical difficulties she was experiencing.

The biggest challenge for me was putting aside my new carefully planned schedule at home. I would have to put off the writing goals I had set. Fortunately this affected no one but me. I have to admit that I was feeling a little grumpy about my sacrifice.

And then it hit me. This was a major bump in her road as well. And a very painful one.

Once again I was reminded that our relationships on this earth are meant to be ones of interdependence. At different times and in different ways, the balance changes. There is a continuum of dependence-independence in every relationship but perhaps particularly within families. It is humbling when I remind myself that this balance has been different and will shift again.

As the days of her healing progress, I am learning to be more flexible with my own schedule and goals. I am trying to be more patient with myself and with those around me. I am discovering yet again what is important to me.

And I am trying to remind my self that so many of the best parts of life are in the bumps and detours and delays.

Edisto: Old School Beach Vacation, Part Two

The second half of our week away at Edisto Beach was just as great as the first half. The weather at the beach held out for most of the week. Unfortunately our friends in Charleston were not so lucky and one friend who was expected to join us was stuck in town. In the end we hosted lots of friends–and loads of God sons! We are truly blessed.

Now, back to the real world…

Click here to see part one of Edisto: Old School Beach Vacation


Not all sunshine

Not all sunshine


Sweet George

Sweet George

Morning ninja moves

Morning ninja moves

Sea turtle nest


Where are they?

Where are they?

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sea oats



Impromptu picnic below stairs

Impromptu picnic below stairs


The race

The race





Boys / Photo by James McKinney



Good bye

Good bye

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Packing up

Packing up


Until next summer

Until next summer / Photo by Michael K. Smith, Aug 2013

All photos are by Amy Watson Smith unless otherwise indicated (August 2013)