Mea Culpa

I feel like I owe an apology to all the bloggers I regularly follow.

This summer I have been largely MIA.

I have simply not had the time or energy to read blog posts, and even worse, as I look ahead at my calendar for September, it’s just as heavily booked as the past 3 months have been.

To be honest, it’s a nice problem to have, but the guilts are creeping in that I’m neglecting what I consider to be an important part of my life – the online relationships I’ve formed.

In my defence, you’ve been up against some very tough competition in the real world.

This is a small sampling of what my August looked like:

  1. I’ve been doing some hiking in spite of a continuation of the hot and humid weather, but I’ve not let it slow me down much.
Elora Gorge 2
Elora Gorge Conservation Area
Elora Quarry-2
Elora Quarry

2.  I’ve spent time on my bike back on the TransCanada Trail, this time in the Montreal area.

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Along the old Lachine Canal in Montreal

3. I’ve had opportunities to spend time on the water.

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Rivière-des-Mille-Îles, Laval Quebec
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Speed River, Cambridge Ont

4. I made another trip back to Mont Tremblant, Quebec for Son #1’s first full Ironman* race … on the starting line with his dad who was racing his 20th Ironman.

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Ready at the swim start with Jordan, Gilles, and friend Trevor – also racing his first Ironman

They all did very well – even if they were somewhat fried at the end.  This is a race with a 17 hour cutoff. Jordan finished in 12 hours and 30 minutes, Gilles in 14 hours, and Trevor in 16 hours and 30 minutes.

5. I’m so blessed to have great friends in my life and this past month I’ve been thrilled to spend quality time with many of them – both long time friends and new ones.

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Norm Frampton from Norm 2.0 on the Rivière-des-Mille-Îles in Laval Quebec
Stratford
With Deb from the Widow Badass, at the Stratford Festival for a stage production of Rocky Horror Picture Show

6. I’ve spent quiet time with family sharing stories, laughing, and just enjoying each other’s company.

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The quiet outside while everyone was in kitchen getting ready for dinner.

7. And in the midst of all that busy-ness, I managed to abandon the workspace I’ve used for the past 7 years in the dining room and setup my own private little “office” in the basement to explore some new creative avenues.

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Perhaps the honest thing to do would have been to take a break from blogging for an indefinite period of time … but I’m not ready to do that yet.  We’re friends, so I know you will understand and I hope you are enjoying your own grand adventure of discovery.

I’ve squeezed just about all I can out of this summer but I will continue to ride this train for as long as my energy lasts.

On the South Simcoe Heritage Train with good friends, Barb and Lisa.  Riding an old 100 year old train in style … with the windows open.

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* An Ironman is a triathlon comprised of a 3.8 km swim, 180 km bike, and a full marathon run of 42.2 km (2.4 miles, 112 miles, and 26.2 miles respectively)

This post is in response to the monthly photo challenge of The Changing Seasons hosted by Su Leslie at Zimmerbitch.

 

 

107 comments

  1. Me too, MIA this summer. Hey, those of us who blog all know how tine consuming it is… first we gotta do the actual “living” and interestingly its fun to go back and blog a out the summer, as we are doing now as it brings it all back to be relived once again.

    Ironman! Wow! Im so impressed with your hubby!! Thats quite something!!

    Peta

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  2. Sadly the video is not available anymore, and luckily you are still blogging, and I know how it is and we all catch up sooner or later as time permits, but what I most wish to tell you (and hi to Norm, in about 24 hours) is that you give excellent quiet outside. ❤

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    • You had me scratching my head about the ‘excellent quiet outside’ until I went back and looked through the post. hahaha! Now I get it – and thanks. The deepening darkness actually helped to make my messy backyard look good 🙂

      I can’t figure out what is wrong with the stupid video. I’m still pretty new to trying to post videos and obviously I’ve screwed something up. I really should just delete it … eventually 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Joanne, Terri and I are always pleased to hear from you whenever you manage to drop by. And in the meantime, we feel nothing but happiness knowing that you’ve been living the high life – surrounded by loving friends and family, and actively involved in in their lives. And, in the midst of all this togetherness, you’ve managed to squeeze in some me time as well. Good for you girl … you go. ~James

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  4. OMG you are far better at staying in touch virtually than I am…and with all you’ve got going on it is even that more impressive. Do theatergoers not dress in costume for the Rocky Horror Picture Show? I used to go to the movie dressed as Magenta 😉

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  5. One thing that I’ve learned over the years is that blogging is not all or nothing, and there is an ebb and flow to it. You’ve had a busy, fun summer, and I’ve enjoyed reading about your adventures and seeing the pictures! If you don’t have time to read, no worries. Sometimes I go through and read (and comment on!) five posts at a time on everybody’s blogs, because I have been away. And my rule is to never force a post. If I have something to say, I will write it, but I wrote enough filler and clickbait back in my earlier blogging days! It simply isn’t necessary!

    Glad your life is so full right now, and please keep sharing updates whenever the time feels right!

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  6. No apology necessary! After all, “live life full”. I am “guilty” of the same ~ we have been traveling for 6 weeks and now a month with family… have just not had the quiet time to enjoy my fave bloggers. Mea culpa indeed!

    Enjoy every minute
    Peta

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    • Then you know exactly how it feels!! It’s wonderful to be experiencing life, but at the same time there is a ‘hole’ 🙂

      You have been a rolling stone for a while and having so many great adventures! Enjoy!!

      Like

  7. You’re forgiven, Joanne. We all need to take the time to follow our hearts along new paths, knowing that we can return again and be welcomed. Enjoy enjoy. I love your pictures and hearing about your adventures. 🙂

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  8. It looks like you’ve had an amazing summer Joanne. It seems many of us have had a very busy summer. Living in the moment and having moments that make you feel alive are great things. I’m so glad that you found so many to experience. The office I carve out upstairs ended up being the holding area for the bathroom remodel. I’m looking forward to getting moved back into it to work on some more of my creative endeavors. 🙂 Enjoy September. It’s one of my favorite months (I’m a little partial since it contains my birthday 😉 )

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    • On top of everything else you’ve been juggled, you are also doing a bathroom reno?!! I am both impressed and jealous 🙂

      It’s interesting how most people seem to like their birthday month. I hate mine. I’d go as far as to say March is my least favourite month of the year. The weather is always ghastly and it depresses me.
      Like you, I like September so much more 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Joanne, I stopped reading all the comments, so will probably re-iterate some, and maybe not even as eloquently. Life Lived Full… the title and the reality. You should not apologize for that! If you blog once a week, once a month, or once a quarter to give us the glimpse of a Life Lived Full, we all get to see the reality! Just continue to blog on some frequency…your on-line friends do miss you when you’re away. But I know that’s because you’re living life…and I’ll hear all about it eventually!

    P.S. My blogging goal is once a week (like Deb/Badass Widow), but I only hit it about 75% of the time. Hah. And I stop reading others comments and/or leaving a comment if I’m feeling time constrained… it becomes just a “like”. But I love to know what’s up with all my on-line friends…sometimes I’m living life vicariously.

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    • I agree with all you are saying. I’ve said the same thing to other bloggers, but i really thought I could manage it all, and quelle surprise! I can’t. It seems I’m human after all 😏

      Thanks for the kind words though. I admit it is a bit ironic that I feel compelled to apologize for doing what I set out to do.
      I’m hoping there is still lots of life left in this old girl 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Sounds to me like you are living life fully and passionately and that is what is most important. I too don’t visit folks as often as I would like but life is about balance. Enjoy your adventures and spending time with new friends, old friends and family.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are a true kindred spirit and know exactly how it feels 🙂
      No matter how much we do, we think we could have / should have done more.
      It’s been a great summer and I hope your’s has been too!

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  11. While it’s nice to know one is missed, I don’t feel you owe us an apology! I always think social media should be like “I was offline, doing this” ie, living. I am delighted you’re having a knockout summer, so pleased you’re enjoying it, max it out! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Joey 🙂 In hindsight it was foolish of me to assume I needed to apologize.

      Whenever I hear the expression maxing something out, I immediately think of debt – a bad thing.
      In this context though, I like the idea of maxing out the opportunities to enjoy life!! 🙂

      Like

  12. No apologies necessary, Joanne. Look at how late it is and I’m finally showing up. Some of the things you’re doing won’t be available to you in a few months. Enjoy them while you can (and enjoy your family, always).

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  13. This is my first day back from a long summer hiatus, Joanne. Rather than the reading of other blogs as a chore, I like to re-charge a bit and then enjoy them again upon return to the blogosphere. So don’t fret about being away and enjoy what you’re doing. Which, it appears is quite a bit! I admire your new office, and the outside deck is killer. Enjoy! – Marty

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  14. What a coincidence; I just read your blog and my post also starts with Mea Culpa! I too, lost that drive to make the TD post on a regular basis but I feel the guilt and try to get something up at some point. But, you’ve had a busy year with some life changing moments in the family so enjoy the “ride” (bikes and kayaks, etc.) and post when you feel like it. Afterall, we retired from work so we aren’t required to do things by the clock or task; post when you feel like it cause your audience will still be there! I enjoy your posts so I’m happy to see what you post when you want to post it.

    ENJOY, your time!

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  15. Life goes on and should be lived, Joanne. I understand, having been in somewhat the same boat, although part of my struggle includes a part time job. But I’ve gotten a number of trips of various sorts in and will be having more, so I identify. We’ll all still be here whenever you can drop in, so enjoy!!

    janet

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Janet. Our summers are so short and after our long cold winter, I was determined to make every minute count this year. The cold weather will be back soon enough and then I will look forward to spending time in front of a computer screen 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Hey Joanne,

    I admire you for your commitment to blogging and I think you get a free pass to step away from the computer once in a while, from me anyways. I’ve never been able to stick to a blogging schedule…I’ve already failed at my this year’s goal of 1 post per week, which is pretty modest I have to admit.

    The summer is a hard time to blog and I get why many bloggers take a break during this short, sweet season. Plenty of cold, snowy, blowy days ahead to stay indoors and write. So go easy on yourself.

    I love your work space and your photos of your summer adventures, and am so glad we got to share Stratford theatre/kayaking together!

    Have a wonderful time in Quebec City (on my bucket list to visit) and we’ll chat and plan a fall adventure when you get back…

    Deb

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    • oops – I thought I had replied to your comment last week. Sigh.

      This is going to be one of those fasten-your-seat-belts kind of week for me, so today is a bit of quiet before the storm. I too LOVED our time together. It seemed to go by so quickly and I’m looking forward to our next adventure!!

      Hope you have a great week 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  17. I know it’s already been said but you have no reason to apologize. I’m in awe that you do so much and still have time to blog. You may not do as much writing but quality far outweighs quantity. I’m glad you haven’t completely given up on your blog. I would miss you too much.

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    • Awww – thanks Carol 🙂
      I did seriously consider letting my blog go dark … but I know I would miss it too much. I constantly have stories floating around my head. I just lack the time to commit them to my blog.
      Ahhh – the winds of winter will be here too soon and then I will have time enough 😏

      Liked by 1 person

  18. No Culpas for Mea needed 😉
    You’re busy living life and sharing time with family and friends. Sounds to me like the priorities are right where there should be.
    And I’m glad we got to hang out and have some fun together too. Here’s to some bearable weather and an even more active fall – cheers!

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  19. I have been a hit and miss blogger for almost two years now. I was never as prolific as you are/were but my absence has taken some really long breaks between posts…and reading blogs, that is even more rare. I also used to read all the comments…even more rare.

    But, I still enjoy peeking in on all my virtual friends even if I am well behind the blog post date. I have had moments of feeling guilt, but over time I have given myself a little slack…I’m busy building a house which is my biggest priority.

    Enjoy life, and family…never let yourself be ruled by a compulsion to blog or make an appearance. Someone once told me that real life is always more important than virtual. Your real friends will be there when you do make an appearance and will be happy to see you. For me it is not about how often I see my friends…it’s about the quality of the time spent with them. You are top quality!

    Jaw dropped at Gilles’ 20th Ironman. Kudos and well done to Jordan and Trevor on completing their first!

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    • Intellectually, I know that life is lived in the real world. The virtual world is icing on the cake – but I do like icing 🙂
      When I think about how long some of my online friendships have been around – 4-5 years – I’m in awe. Non-bloggers don’t understand it, but these friendships are just as valuable to me as “real world” ones. That’s why I feel badly when they’ve been shelved for a while. It is true though that friends are still going to be there for you when you resurface!

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  20. I’ve been thinking I also need to apologize to my readers for not stopping by. It’s been rough since July, with lots of time for work and vacation and frends/family, but not much time to read blogs. September isn’t looking great for me either.

    On the flip side, we’ve both been able to enjoy our summers and live life faithfully. That’s a good thing.

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  21. I think we all have slow blogging times. I know I have recently been much busier living my real life than writing about it! I do feel bad when I disappear from reading others’ blogs sometimes, but I think we are a pretty understanding bunch overall!

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    • I know I’ve said the same thing to other bloggers in the past, but it does feel different when you are the one sitting in the guilty chair 😉
      We are all a very understanding bunch and that’s what makes this community wonderful!

      Liked by 1 person

  22. I admire your ability to blog throughout the year. I mainly stick to the A to Z in April sometimes write up an overseas trip but I agree there is too much to do. I am turning last year’s A to Z into a photo book which I will have made into enough copies for my new and old family. It takes a long time to fiddle with the new format. The photobook of our trip to Alaska is still waiting to be done. Meanwhile we are heading north to the sun in our caravan as we have had enough of winter at home. It’s not cold at home compared to where you live (more like Los Angeles) but sunny Queensland beckons (more like Florida). Next year we plan to go to Japan in May so I will do a blog on that for sure. It will be so different to anything we have experienced.

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  23. What can one expect from a blogger who titles her blog “My Life Lived Full”? I’m happy you’re living up to that title! Keep on living it as full as possible. We’ll be here to enjoy it when you’re able to fill us in.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Hi, Joanne – I believe that the definition of true friendship is that we can easily pick up the conversation wherever it last ended — without uncomfortable hesitation, and regardless of the time lapse in between. You are a true friend to us all. Your warm, honest nature makes you so, and this post proves it. I’m reading it fairly soon after publication, and already I see many familiar faces gathered here!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree wholeheartedly, Mara. The difference is that I’ve always managed to juggle both. This summer I jammed the calendar. This past winter felt so long, cold, and restrictive that I’ve been making up for it now in the warm weather.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I know I’ve said the same thing dozens of times to other bloggers. Now I know how it feels from the other side. I’ve always managed to do both with reasonable success, but this summer I just gave up on the blogging part.
      I think I made the right choice though 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  25. And, we’re suppose to write a blog post that would be interesting enough to keep you from participating in one of those fantastic activities? Not likely. 🙂 Go forth and enjoy each and every opportunity you have. Just think – when you do pop in for a blog visit you will be treated like a visiting dignitary. 🙂 I applaud your menfolk for the Ironman challenge. Have a great September, and I can’t wait to hear all about it because it will for certain be more interesting than my weeding and deadheading. 🙂

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    • … but I’m willing to bet that your property looks so much prettier than mine! I still have a plant I purchased in the spring sitting in its original pot waiting to be planted 😕 It was intended to replace one of the plants I lost this winter. Every once in a while I apologize to it and then carry on doing something else. I hope it survives an eventual fall planting.

      I can’t believe it’s the end of August already! Although I’m ready for this terrible humidity to go away, I’m not ready for the summer mindset to end.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. You’ve had some wonderful adventures, and got to spend time with friends and family. That’s what matters.

    Your deck looks so inviting, and I love your new creative space!

    I’ve been lazy and not hiking enough. Send me some motivation please! 😊

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    • I LOVE my new space downstairs. I had doubts about being in the basement with little to no natural light, but in fact I like the solitude and the laser focus it gives me. I’m not so easily distracted down here. Not to mention that I no longer feel like an interloper – in a space temporarily until it’s needed for its real purpose. Now I have a true space for all my things. I just needed a nudge from a friend to make it happen 🙂

      It’s so hard to hike in the summer. Here in Southern Ontario, it’s just too humid to be enjoyable – especially this summer. I’m looking forward to the cooler temperatures of autumn settling in. It has however been the perfect summer for kayaking and I’m discovering that I LOVE it!!

      Liked by 1 person

  27. It is always a joy to see what you have been up to and if you didn’t do anything then you’d have nothing to blog about. So get out there and enjoy life as per your blog title. I shall simply admire all the wonderful things you do when you get around to letting me know 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • If you believe that the Universe always needs to be in balance, I guess you’ve been my counter-weight. Unless you really, really like quiet, I’m sorry – but very grateful that you were there to balance the Universe for me 🙂

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  28. You’ve had some really fun and interesting adventures! Your decision to pull back a bit is very understandable and, it appears, a track that several bloggers are taking lately. Believe me, I have considered it to. Enjoy your life in retirement, my friend, that’s what it’s all about!

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    • In hindsight Janis, I really wish I had simply declared a blogging vacation at the beginning of the summer. In the back of my mind I’ve been cognizant of being neglectful – but I wouldn’t change a moment of it. I think we can look forward to at least another 6 weeks of good weather here and I intend to squeeze as much out of it as I can!

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    • omg Lynn, this has been a wonderful summer. I’ve had to turn down stuff because I couldn’t fit it into my calendar. This little train has been picking up speed and I don’t intend to stop anytime soon … if I can help it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • I am having the summer of my life … and I’m hoping for many more adventures ahead before the cold weather sets in 🙂

      I’m so thrilled for both Jordan and Gilles. This has been a long time dream of my husband to race with one of his sons and it’s finally happened. It’s a coincidence that it happened to be a milestone for him at #20. It was a special day and I was relieved to see them all cross the finish line!

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    • If I had been smart, I would have declared a blogging holiday at the beginning of the summer. In my vanity, I thought I could do it all. Ha!

      I will continue to chase adventures as long as the weather is still nice. Right now I just don’t want the fun to end 🙂

      … and yes, my heart is bursting with pride for my son and his first Ironman. As he discovered, it’s a brutal year of training and I’m thrilled it paid off 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • I know I always say that to others who angst about being away from their blog. I do however feel badly about not being online when others are sharing their stories. There just isn’t enough time or energy to do it all!!

      Liked by 1 person

  29. I feel the same way. Blogging is just not that important anymore and reading-wise I am a mile behind. Perhaps in winter, everything will be back to normal -who knows. Blogging is a virtual world, a great escape when real life is not attractive enough I suppose. Why give up living to sit in front of a screen?

    Enjoy your life Joanne, enjoy it to the fullest. Blogging will be still around when we will be willing (or forced) to slow down.

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  30. Hello Joanne! No need to apologize. We all have moments or even longer periods, where we need to take a break from blogging. As to the post, I have never so many beautifully illustrated excuses before. Best wishes! Peter

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  31. What a wonderful summer you have had! Glad that you stopped by to update. Continue having adventures, they are all good for blog posts when you are ready to come back. Janet

    Like

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