New beginnings

Celebrate endings—for they precede new beginnings. ~Jonathan Lockwood Huie

This week, and the last few months, have been about endings and beginnings. I am nearing the end of the mixing and mastering of my Watershed CD , a three year effort. We hope to send it for duplication in a week, thanks to the engineering wizardry of my husband/sound engineer Bill. We spent the last half of the spring semester teaching from home because of COVID restrictions and realized how much we liked being home all of the time. I spent hours at the piano, sketching new ideas while looking into the green woods.


Angel was delighted to have us home 24/7; we snuggle a lot on the sofa.

The garden got some extra attention too – early summer was beautiful, in spite of  the late hard frosts.

Heat and drought were hard on the garden in June and July; although some plants bloomed, the flowers were short lived. It rained last night, with loud thunderstorms and heavy downpours – this morning the trees and plants are green and glowing and the garden looks lush again. gardenafterrain

We liked being at home so much these past several months that when the chance came to retire earlier than expected, we both took it.  Bill and I are now officially retired from our teaching jobs of 30+ years. We have been celebrating with cake, cake

with wine,


and with mornings on the deck complete with guitar music. billgtr copy

All the things I love the most are here – the sound of the wind in the trees, the dance of a hummingbird at the flowers, the ebb and flow of the seasons, my piano, a house full of books and of course my husband and Angel. I am leaving a large part of my life behind with no regrets – it was a good ending – and now I am ready to begin the third act. I am still a composer, a gardener, a writer, a photographer – but now I have time to reflect, to explore, and to be more present on this page.

The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life. ~ Steve Jobs


I hope that you are all well in these most difficult times and that you are able to stay safe, full of hope and surrounded by love.

For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning. ~T.S. Eliot, Little Gidding

54 thoughts on “New beginnings

  1. Just catching up on reading blogs…and per usual, yours is beautiful and inspiring, Congratulations on your retirement! I know you will enjoy it and make wonderful use of its time! I am also looking forward to learning when your new CD is available!

  2. Wow, Lynn, I am so happy for you both! Great timing! (And how nice that you don’t have to deal with all the ins and outs of COVID academia now!) You have written and photographed a beautiful testimony to knowing what you want and being at peace with your life here. I can feel it. I have to mention the garden, too, so beautiful in the fog. The Creme Caramel iris is a lovely complement to the I. virginiana…the peony looks like it was very happy, maybe because it bloomed before the weather challenges. The after-the-rain photo is astoundingly lush. The domestic bliss photos all reflect your happiness. Congratulations. 🙂 (I know you’ve been busy but if you get over to my blog, look for the “Just One” post about little native orchids – I think you’ll like it).

  3. An excellent entry to your blog…a time of peaceful, anticipatory transition–more creative wonderment ahead. You must be very grateful for such a lovely home, Angel and Bill! I enjoyed the shots of your piano, Bill, and your canine pal. Hoping to hear more from you the coming months– and onward.

  4. What a great place and time to begin again!
    I’ve often thought about how fortunate some of us are if we have a yard and garden to ‘shelter in place’.

    • Margy, I’m in some Facebook gardening groups – the constant thread since April has been the great fortune and comfort people feel to have a garden as they shelter in place. I’m looking forward to “living” in mine. 🙂

  5. Congratulations Lynn. As always your blog makes me happy. The peace you have with your transition is inspiring. Your landscape is layered with design and spirit. Be well.

    • Thank you, Janet – so nice to hear from you. “The peace you have with your transition ” – I hadn’t thought of it that way but it rings true. Be well – hopefully we’ll get back to visiting local gardens again sometime soon.

  6. Lynn, I’m so happy for you! Your garden photos are absolutely gorgeous! I look forward to seeing and reading more of your most interesting posts!
    Nancy Watson

  7. I am so haapy for both of you. Finally I had get to see Bill’s photo. Best wishes for your retirment life. Let us know when your music will release. MIss you guys. Love~~

    • Thank you, I-Kai – wonderful to have you stop by here too! Bill is playing guitar for hours every day and then working on the final mix for my CD. I will definitely announce that when it comes out. We think of you often – very proud of you!

  8. Congratulations to you both on your early retirement! I keep hoping the university where my husband teaches will smarten up and start offering the old guys (like my husband) early retirement packages. *fingers crossed*

    It’s so wonderful to get glimpses of your garden again. Enjoy your time there and doing whatever it is the muse draws you towards. 🙂

    • Thanks, Robin! The offer was unexpected but welcome – I hope that happens for your husband too. It has been great to return to the garden now that I’m not prepping multiple classes for fall – reading and thinking is also high on my new priority list 🙂

  9. What a rich and wonderful time for you two! I have no doubt it will be a rich and wonderful adventure! all the best!

  10. New beginnings – I’m sure you’ll both be very happy with your creative lifestyle. Music and a terrific garden to tend, what else could you possibly want or need? OK. Books and cake. And coffee. And wine… 🤗

  11. Joy and gentle peace to both of you as you explore this new adventure; I have found it anything but “retiring,” but the independence and creativity have been exhilarating, and the naps restorative.

    Excited for your new CD to enter the world, too!

    The gardens look as glorious as always; thank you for these beautiful glimpses.

    Hugs to you and, of course smooches to Angel. Be safe and well. xoxox

    • Thank you, Kitty. I’m planning to turn down all “offers” for projects for at least a year – I need those restorative naps! The opportunity to explore new ideas is exhilarating – I’m glad to hear that you’ve found it so. The garden needs my attention but now I finally have time to give it. Angel sends smooches back – she’s been a very happy girl 🙂

  12. Lynn, Congratulations on your decision to retire! I can assure you it is a wonderful time. Allow yourself to enjoy every second of it. I’m sure the creative juices will flow even more freely than before. All the best to you and Bill.

    • Thank you, Chris – so nice to hear from you! Bill is playing his guitar 5 or 6 hours a day – happy man. We’re finishing up my orchestral CD this week and I’m already working on new ideas. Yes, this retirement thing is very cool – never thought we would get here! Bill says hello – hope we see you sometime in the future.

  13. So you’ve retired to do what you live, and you have a recording coming out. Congratulations! I can’t wait to hear the music, make sure you let us know when it’s ready and where to find it.

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