The Castle Herald
Every Picture Tells A Story

Beaucoup? We have much: we have liberty!


Cosmos from my garden

For many Americans, the time before the economic meltdown of 2008 and the following recession were times of plenty. The French might have used the term “beaucoup” to describe that era because so many had so much.

Then the recession came and, like a drought, dried up our land of plenty.

For those who had so much and lost it, it was as if we had lived in two different worlds: the world before 2008 where there was a sense of  personal and national abundance, and the present time of insecurity and scarcity. The aftermath? American’s sense of optimism and hope dried up.

Some interpreted this difficult interlude as a sign that U.S. prosperity has ended and something beautiful has been lost. But America is still here; the problem is that some Americans lost faith in their dreams, and in their country’s great destiny.

This summer, much of  the country suffered heatwaves and drought. Drought has become a symbol to me of what the last several years have done to the country. Just as the heat shriveled up the flowers this summer, the recession shriveled up our country’s resources: the jobs, savings, and the property that has always been part of the American dream.

Putting  loss aside is difficult.  But isn’t it time to stop mourning and turn to the future? Isn’t it time to remember the courage of our ancestors and fight for our dreams again?

As I’ve looked over this summer’s garden, instead of mourning what was lost,  I’ve  cheered myself up by looking at our pictures from past bountiful summers. Summers when nature furnished plenty of water; summers when there was much.

Such lovely flowers! Beaucoup blooms! We had so much! Flowers that were bright, lush and abundant.

To find that abundance for ourselves and our nation, the citizens of the United States must begin again. Taking care of a garden is hard work, even without a drought. And rebuilding our economy and our nation will take effort. As Rudyard Kipling said, “Gardens are not made by singing ‘Oh, how beautiful!’ and sitting in the shade.”

We must start with the faith that what has been great can be so again.

And we must remember that no matter what has been lost, much still remains.  We must remember the bounty of our past, and then work to reclaim that abundance for ourselves in the future.

This summer I’ve rejoiced over those pictures from the past and used them to restore my hope, not just for my flower garden, but for a bright future for myself and for America. If we need encouragement,  we can look to American history to give us examples to follow and the courage to do the work.

We experienced good times because of the work, wisdom, faith and strength of those who came before us. They left us gifts: the founding documents, and their bravery, the foundation on which our forefathers first built the United States.

The first and the greatest gift that they gave us was the gift of liberty, the freedom and independent spirit that  is the cornerstone of America.

Through their sacrifice the founders built a special nation, like no other on earth. They left us  principles and  a unique system of government.

Without liberty, there would have been no substance, no lasting foundation for America. That enduring foundation is a wonderful place for present-day citizens to start rebuilding our lives and  our country. Next summer we can plant new gardens, but tomorrow we can begin to rebuild a stronger and more prosperous America.

America remains the land of bright futures. It is the home of the American dream, built on a foundation of liberty.  There is work ahead for Americans, but we can do it!

John Paine said, “Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, like men, undergo the fatigues of supporting it”.

As we work on during this summer of doubt and drought, we must recall that, “To live in freedom is to Dwell in Sunshine!”

Prairie Princess card from

City Castle’s Prairie Princess card


Final Quote is from City Castles, Prarie Princess- Patriotic Card : May you always Dwell in Sunshine! @   Item#SO2003-1