Webbed and sustained

The flag flies at a home in Yorktown, Virginia, May 2013.

The flag flies at a home in Yorktown, Virginia, May 2013.

“Liberty is as relevant to modern Americans as it was to the men and women of 1776. We live in a world webbed and sustained by the liberties they won at terrific cost in an agonizing eight-year ordeal.  The freedom to speak our minds, to worship in the churches of our faith, to vote for the political leaders of our choice, to pursue our careers, to manage our individual lives in a hundred different ways, depends on American liberty as it was enunciated and defined in the crisis years of the Revolution.”Thomas Fleming

Happy 240th Birthday to the United States of America!  May our great collective experiment in democracy continue to endure amid the crises and changes of an unpredictable world.  I invite you to join millions of Americans who will be celebrating today, looking back with gratitude and forward with hope.


  1. Independence Day wishes to you!

    • Thank you, Bindu! I am so sorry to be so long in replying. I had a wonderful 4th, as I was able to sit at home with my new grandson while his parents, brother and Jeff watched the fireworks over DC in person. I am thankful for the things we have that are worth celebration. I’m sending you virtual cool breezes and fond dreams of shady green retreats during these hot summer days!

  2. Indeed! Good morning, Julia!
    Last night I was thinking about how I’m glad that Memorial day is prior to Independence day, so we have paid our respects and turn to celebration. It is too large an event to fit both aspects into one day. (Plus Memorial day honors those that have continued to serve ever since).
    Breathe in that freedom!

    • Susan, what a lovely thought. That had never occurred to me before.

      What little I hear of the news headlines often feels scary, depressing or both– I comfort myself with the realization that turbulence is nothing new, and somehow we have survived thus far. “Hither by Thy help I’ve come,” say the words of one of my favorite old hymns. Amen to that, and YES, it is sweet to breathe the air of freedom.

  3. Happy Independence Day!.. Julia and family.😃

    • Thank you, Merry! I hope you and your loved ones had a wonderful holiday.

  4. Amy

    Happy 4th. God bless you and your family. Kiss the babies for me.

    • Thank you Amy! I showered little Owen with many kisses. Grady is unfortunately already at the age where he’s growing less fond of excessive displays of grandmotherly affection (though he does like to take walks with me, especially when they end with a treat). 🙂 Blessings to you too– Jeff and I were speaking fondly of your wonderful family earlier today, and how much you all mean to us. I’ll be in touch soon. Love you.

  5. I liked that phrase “look back with gratitude and forward with hope.” Says it all. Happy Independence Day.

    • Thank you Marlene. I’m trying to make that my goal every day. It does say so much. Hope you had a wonderful holiday!

      • We had a quiet 4th. No fireworks allowed in the park so we just listened as they went off at some park by the river. The family came by Saturday for a while. Good enough. Getting ready for more changes. The kid is heading out for awhile. I’ll be on my own for the first time in over a year and a half. That’s good and bad. Everything in life changes.

        • Marlene, you can say that again. I came to the conclusion a few years back that the most important asset to carry into our later-life years is flexibility– the ability to live with change. Young people have that naturally since childhood is nothing but one change after another, but at some point we dig in and forget to keep growing.

          I like fireworks best from a distance. Especially the noise part– I like it when it sounds so muffled that it takes a few minutes for me to figure out what I’m hearing. As with so many other joys in life (such as elaborate Christmas lighting displays) It’s great to enjoy things created by others who do all the work. Hopefully most such efforts are a labor of love that benefits both participant and observer.

          • I’m not as flexible in so many was as I once was. 😦 Time to work on that.

            • I think it’s very, very difficult to remain flexible as we age– literally and figuratively! But I need to keep trying too.

  6. Julia, May it be so. As Jesus said of His church to His Apostles: “Scandals you will always have.” Yet His Church is still here after over 2,000 years of unsuccessful attacks and persecutions.
    Happy 4th!

    • Alan, thanks for that encouraging reminder. Some things are truly eternal. 🙂 Though the USA doesn’t fit that description, I hope and trust our nation’s best features will continue to prevail over the doubts and fears. BTW just had time to glance briefly at your recent email — can’t wait to read it — “Is Anybody There?” is one of my favorite songs. I sing it to myself often, as I identify with it on so many levels. John Adams is hands down my favorite of the founding fathers. Did you know that many of the words to that song were taken directly from Adams’ actual letters to his wife Abigail? Even the part about the fireworks! 🙂

      • I love that play. And that song is so appropriate unfortunately for our present climate. We must revisit the revolutionary period to re-capture a time when we came together to resist a common threat to our freedom, rather than through our present-day divisiveness assume the role of that threat.
        Yes, I do know the historical aspect of the play was quite genuine.
        Thanks again,

        • Alan, it would indeed be quite a shame if our country destroyed itself from within. I will keep hoping and praying and trusting that is not going to happen anytime soon.

  7. Sheila

    Julia, Happy July 4th, 2016 to you, to your dear family, and the many friends that share their words and thoughts here at “Defeat Despair”. We are so fortunate. 🇺🇸 When I count my blessings, I count you twice….💛

    • Sheila, thank you so much. I feel the same about you! ❤

  8. Amy

    WOW!! Webbed and sustained. I pray that thought is correct. God bless us all and as you said may this experiment continue for many long generations as it was intended. Happy 4th.

    • Amy, a belated happy 4th to you too. We are all OK, I’ve just been swamped with various responsibilities lately. Taking a quick breath to answer comments. We’ll talk soon, I’m sure. Hugs to you and W. 🙂

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