Monday, August 13, 2012

Blank Page Musings


There is nothing quite like staring at a blank page on my 22” monitor. I close my eyes and I start typing whatever comes into my mind. I don’t think about mistakes or grammar errors. I just type. This is what I call a brain dump. I clear my mind of anything and everything that inhibits me from letting the creative juices flow. I block out the world except for the sound of my keyboard and the ceiling fan. I start to see something emerging on the horizon. It is not clear yet, so I keep typing.

Our cat, Blacky, and I were out on the swing on our back patio this morning. He was beside me as I stroked his black shiny fur. He is our mighty hunter. We call him the Black Panther. He has a kingdom of roughly 55 feet by 75 feet that he keeps clear of rodents, squirrels and rabbits. The protector of the six raised garden beds my wife nurses. She is an Iowa farm girl who loves to have her fingers in the dirt. She has a green thumb. I tell her she could throw seeds off our black porch and they would grow.

This summer has been hard on the garden. We are short some twelve inches of rain. The grass crunches under our feet as we walk through the yard. Our tomato plants are withering, after producing a good crop. The winter was so warm that our blackberries bloomed early and were cut short by the heat. Our cucumbers gave out a couple of weeks ago.  This is the first year she planted eggplant. We have a couple coming along. The sunflowers that remind me of my home in Kansas are starting to droop.
We made a trip to Baker Seed Company a few months ago and bought some heirloom seeds. I was amazed at the number of melons, cucumbers and other vegetables. Some I have never heard of. We bought some Chinese beans that grow up to eighteen inches long. They look something like licorice. We cut them into green been size and stir fry them with  homegrown onions, tomatoes, green peppers, summer squash, cucumbers and shrimp( not home grown). We then spoon it onto a bed of whole grain brown rice and sprinkle with soy sauce.. Makes my mouth water just thinking about it.

The strawberry popcorn we planted has shriveled up. We water every other day obeying the city ordinance. The flowers are doing fine. The morning glories and the naked ladies are blooming. I enjoy macro photography so Barbara has planted wild flowers on the west side of the house to attract butterflies.


Tomorrow morning, after church, we will enjoy a brunch with some of our six children and fourteen grandchildren. I do all the cooking—bacon, sausage, eggs, hash browns, coffee and toast. Barbara or one of the grandkids takes the egg orders from fifteen to twenty hungry people. I, Grampa Tom, have one rule—you can order your eggs anyway you want them, but you have to take them any way you get them. This tradition began a while back when we were suffering child/grandchild deprivation.  So operating from that old saw “ if you feed them, they will come” we initiated a monthly brunch. Now they ask, when’s brunch? We catch up with family news, cousins play with cousins and just hang out for a bit. Of course the quiet that descends after is very welcome! It is a great life here in southwest Missouri.

My eyes are open now. I am a writer .My resident editor is my wife, Barbara. My first novel, Night of the Cossack, was published when I was sixty-nine years young. 
Scribbling from the sometimes creative/sometimes scattered mind of Tom Blubaugh







18 comments:

Liz Flaherty said...

It was nice spending the morning with you, Tom. I like over easy, but it's just fine if you break the yolk.

Linda Robinson said...

Oh, no! Tom, I only like scrambled...no raw egg for me! But, I'll be happy with just bacon and hashbrowns, too. I enjoyed your blog. :-)

Jessica Nelson said...

OOh, brain dumping sounds like a great idea! lol
Hope you enjoyed your familly breakfast. :-)

Harry Wegley said...

Tom, I admire anybody who can compose at the keyboard, no matter how they get it done -- especially someone who didn't grow up with keyboards. I'm stuck with pencil and paper. But I do love a blank sheet of paper.

Sharla L. Shults said...

What an enlightening post! Never thought about just dumping the clutter in the attic of my mind. May have to try that. . .

Breakfast sounds devine! My favorite meal of the day. Eggs . . . cooked! Any way you like:>)

Deborah McCarragher said...

Great post Tom. I love the idea of the "brain dump" - just to whisk the cobwebs from your mind. Sounds simply liberating!

We have a lab/pointer mix (her name is Kai)and she's a lizard hunter. Our husky (his name is Sky) is the opossum/armadillo hunter. We live on a Preserve that backs up to a large creek.

FYI - I'll take breakfast anytime - and I love eggs - just not too runny please :)

Wanda said...

Enjoyed reading your post, Tom. Loved the part, "If you feed them, they will come. So true, and a monthly brunch sounds like a great idea.

Blessings,
Wanda

http://windowpanewriting.com

Jack Robinson said...

Hello Tom,

I enjoyed this post. The way you blend all of the elements together is wonderful. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

If I may, I did notice a typo in your post. At least to me, it seems to be a typo: "I tell her she could throw seeds off our black porch and they would grow."

Linda Hays-Gibbs said...

Really great interview. Great perspective

tomynate said...

Thanks, Liz.

tomynate said...

Thanks for commenting, Linda.

tomynate said...

I did enjoy it, Jessica. It's only fair to tell you, after you do the brain dump, it refills fast.

tomynate said...

Thank you, Harry. Sometime the old fashioned way is the best way.

tomynate said...

Thanks for visiting, Sharia.

tomynate said...

Thanks for sharing, Deborah. It's amazing the personalities God has given animals.

tomynate said...

Thanks for the comment, Wanda. I promise you good times if you impliment a brunch.

tomynate said...

You're right, Jack. It should be back porch. I must have bad Blacky on my mind.

tomynate said...

Thanks, Linda.