Oct 2 2011

Seeing: Now & Then

Melissa Crytzer Fry

Yes, as the title implies, you’re in for a present-&-past smorgasbord this week. This post will showcase what I saw this weekend, and take you on a trip down memory lane, highlighting some of the things I’ve seen since my first blog post in June of 2010.

Hubby and I took a road trip this past weekend to one of our favorite destinations: Northern Arizona. Before we made our way to Flagstaff to see my Little Sis, who is attending Northern Arizona University (Big Brothers Big Sisters), we stopped at the Tonto Natural Bridge State Park for lunch. This area fulfilled my nerdy geology needs and my love for the state of Arizona. Click to enlarge.

I am always amazed at the stark contrast between Arizona’s low desert (where I live) and the high desert with its pine trees and Pennsylvania-esque feel. I captured this photo outside of Flagstaff. Minutes after snapping this shot, dime-sized hail pelted the truck’s windows, and when we entered Flagstaff, Mt. Humphrey was covered in its first snow of the season. Click to enlarge.

And, now, to the past … My trip down memory lane was inspired by a nomination I received from the fabulous Tracy Mangold (@InkyTwig), to participate in the Seven Links Challenge, which asks bloggers to identify their own blog posts in certain categories (to breathe new life into some old musings). So, without further adieu, my responses:

  1. Most Beautiful Post: Did I mention how difficult this is? I don’t know my most beautiful post (isn’t that a bit presumptuous?). But I do know I liked the way I felt during this particular morning and hope I captured it in words and photos: Foggy Isolation.
  2. Most Popular Post: Creative Companion: Cat vs. Dog. This post, I think, was the catalyst that finally drove some traffic to my blog. Who can resist photos of cute kitties and puppies?
  3. Most Controversial: I have yet to write this post. But, rest assured, it is simmering (partially written). It will focus on Arizona’s mining past and present (photos have already been snapped).
  4. Most Helpful: I’m cheating here, but I’m going to choose two (because these are probably the only times I’ve offered helpful advice): Colors of the Desert , because of its suggestions about use of color in fiction, and State of Flow for the suggested creativity exercises that allow writers to tap into that “creative zone” at will (something I still need to master).
  5. Most Surprisingly Successful: I didn’t think many readers would share my love of the desert saguaro, but the first in my Saguaro Series, End of Mighty Saguaro , garnered a lot of comments (as did my second and third posts).
  6. Post That Didn’t Get the Attention It Deserved: I’m a bit biased here, but Rancher Wannabe is one of those posts that I felt really showcased the desert southwest (and my adoration for it). The photos, the experience, everything about it rattled through my bones. But, alas, I only got a handful of comments.
  7. Post I Am Most Proud Of: Oh, Baby!, because of my obsession with the nesting great horned owl (next to a busy highway) and the emerging fuzz ball babies that I actually captured in photos. The words in this post seemed to flow effortlessly, too.

Part of the Seven Links Challenge includes nominating five other bloggers I admire*. If you don’t know their work already, I encourage you to visit:

*Sorry I couldn’t list all of you, you mind-blowing bloggers, but – readers – if you check my blogroll, you’ll see more of my favorite stand-outs.

So what about you, writers, readers, bloggers? Did I pick the right posts? Can you share with me some of the favorite posts YOU have written on your blog? I’d love to take a peek!


21 Responses to “Seeing: Now & Then”

  • avatar Suzie Ivy Says:

    First, thank you for including me and placing me in such wonderful company! You’ve given me a lot to think about. Also thank you for letting me revisit your wonderful posts. Oh Baby is one of my favorites as well.

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    Melissa Reply:

    You’re so, so welcome! I love your blog, and I think other readers need to learn more about your fearless attitude (and sharp wit). So glad you agreed that Oh Baby was one of your faves!

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    Julia Munroe Martin Reply:

    I’ve read all the past posts that I’d missed… have to say the Rancher Wannabe is probably my all-time favorite! LOVE IT! And you reminded me of my childhood dream to live on a ranch!

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  • avatar Julia Munroe Martin Says:

    I am so happy you nominated me, and I will definitely be participating in the Seven Links Challenge! I love the idea to highlight past posts, but I’m especially excited because there are at least three of these that I haven’t read. And I LOVE your posts. So yay, I can’t wait! And *yes* I will definitely be commenting! (I hope that’s okay.) I would also add that the State of Flow post has defnitely been the post of yours most useful to me, but I am especially fond of the Mighty Saguaro because it’s the first post of yours I ever read! Thanks again, Melissa! (p.s. I am so jealous that you were in Flagstaff, one of the most memorable places I’ve driven through!)

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    Melissa Reply:

    Wow. I didn’t realize you were such a “newbie” to my blog. Ha ha. Can’t wait to see the ones I’ve missed from YOUR blog as well. Yes, Flagstaff IS heavenly. I was scouting for bald eagles the whole time, but didn’t see any (on past trips, have seen multiples). That field of yellow made up for it, though. It was breathtaking in person. And you have to click to enlarge it to get a better ‘feel’ for how brilliant the colors were.

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  • avatar Hallie Sawyer Says:

    I remember almost all of these posts and not surprised to see them in your list. You have created a loyal following because of your insightful, reflective, gorgeous, and fun posts. I look forward to reading many more.

    And thank you for including me in your Seven Links Challenge! This will be painfulfun to reflect on own my posts. 🙂

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    Melissa Reply:

    Thank you for the kind compliments, Hallie. Happy to include you in the Seven Links Challenge. You deserve it. You have had some KILLER posts… in fact, I would say most of them fit that category.

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  • avatar Jolina Petersheim Says:

    I remember so many of these wonderful posts, Melissa. Many of the ones you highlighted were my favorites as well. Thanks for the trip down memory lane!

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  • avatar Cynthia Robertson Says:

    Oh I love Flag…so jealous you got to be there! The drive up is just lovely.
    Your photos are beautiful, as always, Melissa. Love the yellow field. North AZ sure is different from the south.
    Thank you so much for the nomination! I’ve only been blogging for 7 months, so my selections won’t be difficult.
    Of yours I especially like your Foggy Isolation post, and Oh Baby (love the baby owls!).

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    Melissa Reply:

    Have you REALLY only been at it for 7 months? That doesn’t seem possible? But of those seven months, you’ve created so many compelling posts. I remember your post about e-books being fab. In fact, I think that was the first one of yours I ever read.

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  • avatar Erika Marks Says:

    I love this post–selfishly because I get to visit the posts I may have missed before you and I connected!

    Truly, Melissa, while I have ALWAYS had a fondness for the SW and been fascinated by its architecture and natural landscapes, your blog and your gift for capturing it in your photos has made me RAVENOUS to get there. One day, my friend. Until then, I am so grateful for your blog!

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    Melissa Reply:

    Oh, Erika. I would love nothing more than for you to visit us in the SW. You’re right; it’s so, so different than any other place in the U.S. When your schedule clears, you just let me know!

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  • avatar Nina B Says:

    Oh! That’s a fun exercise. It’s probably good for all bloggers to think about how they’d complete this assignment (even if just for ourselves, not to publish.) If we can’t answer certain ones like “most controversial” maybe it would stir some new ideas for posts.

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    Melissa Reply:

    Yes… this was an interesting exercise for those reasons (and I knew I hadn’t done many ‘controversial’ posts, though a few have been simmering). You, on the other hand, have mastered the controversial post … Ha ha! (I’m thinking Twitter thanking crisis, etc.) All great posts!

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  • avatar Rachna Chhabria Says:

    Hi Melissa..I remember almost all the posts. Especially the pictures of the Saguaro are my favourite.

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  • avatar Mahesh Raj Mohan Says:

    I used to drive through Flagstaff on my way from Oklahoma to California for college and was amazed at how different it was from the rest of the state!

    I also love your past post ideas … it’s been a lot of fun reading them over the past few months. 🙂

    Most of my posts have been more business-like, but I am fond of the one where I compare myself to the Wolf from Pulp Fiction, 😉

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  • avatar Girl Parker Says:

    Well, I for one, LOVE your Rancher story and especially love the picture of flame red cardinal in the dry branches. Gorgeous! I also appreciated your goal of wanting to add “atmosphere” to your novel. How do you feel that’s coming a few months later?

    And, THANK YOU, my dear for including me. What a compliment! Molte Grazie, my friend.

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  • avatar Tracy Mangold Says:

    I’m so excited about this because it gives me a chance to check out posts I might have missed or were written before I was blessed with your friendship! As always, your posts are thought-provoking-wonderful and just fascinating! Well done!

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    Melissa Reply:

    Thanks, Tracy. I felt the same way about reading your 7 links challenge. Thank you so much for nominating me.

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  • avatar Beth Hoffman Says:

    Your blog is so wonderful and unique that it’s incredibly difficult to pick which posts are my favorites, but I’d have to say that my top two are “Oh, Baby” (I love owls too), and “Magic Everywhere.”

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    Melissa Reply:

    Thanks so much, Beth. The compliment means so much! I am kind of partial to that “Magic Everywhere” post, too. Glad you enjoyed it.

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