How I Spent My Summer

Hello everyone, Winnie Griggs here. Happy Labor Day!

Since I’ve already done a post on Labor Day history and trivia in a previous post (you can read it HERE ), I thought I’d do something a little different this year – take a look back on my summer.

As you may or may not remember, I had foot surgery back in mid-February. It was a long healing process – 12 weeks where I couldn’t let my foot touch the floor and another 2 weeks where I could walk, but only if I wore a medical boot.  This was me at the end of those 14 weeks.

That took me to the end of May. So as summer began I was ready to make up for lost time.  I made a trip to my hairdresser – such a relief to get rid of 4 months worth of shagginess!  Then we made a trip down to my Mom’s – so good to be able to visit with her and some of my siblings again.

It was also in June that my future daughter-in-law invited me to accompany her and her bridesmaids (which included my daughters) to shop for their dresses. The wedding gown she picked is breath taking and the bridesmaids dresses are lovely and I was very happy I got to tag along and be part of the day.

Another thing I was once more able to do was have all my kids and their families over to my house, which is just what we did to celebrate my husband with a Father’s Day family lunch.

The month of June ended with me dogsitting for my daughter’s sweet and frisky Dean while she and her husband went on vacation. Dean made sure that I got my exercise, no matter how hot it was outside!

July was all about the Romance Writers of America national conference – something I look forward to every year. Preparations included getting my notes together for the workshop I was scheduled to present, making sure I was prepared for the board meeting (I’m currently a member of the RWA board), doing a little shopping and getting my hair and nails done.

But I also began to feel that something was still not quite right with my foot. A visit to my doctor three days before my scheduled departure for Denver confirmed my fears. He told me to resume wearing my medical boot and he scheduled a CT scan for the week after I returned.

Determined to find the silver lining, I posted this picture, saying that it had definitely lightened my suitcase to only have to pack left shoes!

Despite having to wear the boot, I had a great time at the conference in Denver.  My agent, the fabulous Michelle Grajkowski, along with her associate Cori Deyoe, invited all their clients who were at the conference to tour the fabulous Molly Brown House Museum with them. The place was a fabulous step back in time and I learned a lot of things I hadn’t previously known about this remarkable woman.

The rest of the conference went equally well. While there were some things I couldn’t do – no dance party for me – I focused on the things I could do.  The workshop Renee Ryan and I presented was well attended and well received. I had opportunities to visit with several editors I’d targeted, my agent and I had a productive career planning session and I was able to meet all of my volunteer obligations. But one of my favorite parts of the conference is getting to spend time with friends, some of whom I only get to see this one time a year. Here are pics of just a few of those friends I reconnected with this year.

Three days after I got home from the conference I was back in the doctor’s office listening to the results of the CT scan. It seems one of the metal screws they inserted in February had shifted and was causing problems that only another surgery could correct. A week later it was done and I was back in a post-op cast with strict instructions not to let my right foot so much as touch the floor. This time I was a little more prepared for the process, but cabin fever is what it is. The only time I get out of the house these days is to visit the doctor. On the bright side, I’m enjoying being able to being able to do a lot more reading guilt free 🙂

Since my surgery I’ve gone through two more casts.  The doctor lets me pick my cast color so I tend to pick colors that make me happy.  I think my next one will be a bright blue 🙂


However, there was a wedding shower scheduled for my son and his fiancee down at my Mom’s (a 5 hour drive from me) that I was determined not to miss. So my three daughters agreed to drive me down in my van and get me there.  It meant packing up my wheelchair, knee scooter and assorted other paraphenalia, and setting up the van so I could sit with my foot propped off the floor for the entire trip.  Here’s what the back of my van looked like for an overnight trip.

But it was well worth it!  The shower was lovely, the guests were all family so it was great having a chance to visit. Here’s a picture of the happy couple along with the cake my very talented sister made for them.

So that was what my summer was like.

How about you? Did you take a fun vacation or stay-cation? Have any memorable moments? 

Leave a comment and I’ll pick one person to win their chice of any book in my backlist.

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Winnie Griggs is the author of Historical (and occasionally Contemporary) romances that focus on Small Towns, Big Hearts, Amazing Grace. She is also a list maker, a lover of dragonflies and holds an advanced degree in the art of procrastination.
Three of Winnie’s books have been nominated for the Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award, and one of those nominations resulted in a win.
Winnie loves to hear from readers. You can connect with her on facebook at or email her at

38 thoughts on “How I Spent My Summer”

  1. Oh Winnie…You and your foot! I sure hope it gets completely well this time with no screw interference. My husband and I left on a driving vacation June 1 and returned home July 25. We headed north from Texas, up to Canada and across to Alaska, ferrying part of the trip. We were in Alaska for about three weeks before we headed back across the Yukon, coming down into the lower forty-eight and drove all the way across to Michigan before making our way back to Texas. What a trip! The sights we saw and the experiences we had were the best!

  2. I sure hope when your foot boot comes off you’ll be good as new Winnie. But the respite after that first surgery gave you the chance to go to the Romance Conferance. Looked like you had a great time. This summer found me just taking weekends down the beach and getting together with family for BBQ and picnics.

  3. Wow, what a wonderful summer filled with friends and family. We moved this year so we had to set up. My husband had this wonderful idea to not bring out old furniture.

  4. I sure hope your foot surgery works right this time around. I don’t have any summer memories. this summer has been the same as many of the others. No vacations, staycation or anything fun. Just the same thing I do every other day.

  5. My summer was also spent in a boot. I tripped over a cat and broke my foot. I spent 3 months in the boot. It had only been off about 3 weeks when I fell and cut my head—10 staples and a large lump. The last month I have spent enjoying being able to get out in my garden and being able to drive again. So I had a sta-cation.

  6. Hi Winnie! I laughed in recognition at your comment about your foot surgery recovery gives you a lot more time to read guilt-free 🙂 Sending wishes that all healing goes well this time … and no more shifting screws!

    Nancy C

  7. Hope your foot gets better. Nothing fun happened here this summer although I did get the kitchen painted and a new floor put down after the dish washer leaked and messed up the floor.

  8. Winnie, you are the epitome of patience and grace. I’m glad you got your second surgery over with and I hope you get back to two feet on the floor soon. It was fun seeing you in Denver and I’m kicking myself that we didn’t get a picture. Darn it! I can never remember to do that when I meet up with old friends.

    My fun summer thing was a trip down to the Texas Coast where I rented a beach house for a week. That was so relaxing. I loved every second and want to do it again next year.

    • Hi Linda – loved seeing you in Denver as well. I’m also bemoaning the fact that I missed a lot of photo opportunities. For every time I remembered to snap a picture, I missed 4-5 others I should have taken.

  9. Winnie, I’m so sorry about your foot. May you heal quickly and completely.

    My Summer was spent reading indoors escaping the Texas heat.

  10. Winnie, you have certainly been through the wringer. A friend of mine had similar surgery and was similarly sidelined. She just had her SECOND foot done.
    Glad you were still able to go to RWA and keep up with your obligations.
    Summer was okay. It’s 100 degrees here so I feel that we are still in it, but I’ve also put out some pumpkins and hardy mums, you can’t fight it. Did a bunch of day trips with my daughter, but my husband takes his vacations in October and December, so we’re saving money and energy for those. Didn’t get to RWA, looking forward to ACFW.
    Good to hear from you in another venue.

    • Hi Kathy. Day trips can be fun – glad you were able to do some with your daughter. And Autumn is one of my favorite times to take vacations – so much cooler and less crowded!

  11. Wow, Winnie, you’ve really been through it, haven’t you–but with your usual good grace! I so glad you got to spend time with family and go to the RWA. Again, you sounded so up beat and with good grace for how troublesome that foot must me. Good luck on it healing fast and completely. Hugs

  12. Winnie, prayers that your foot continues to heal.
    My summer consisted of injuring my leg, many stitches and bandage changes.
    We also celebrated our middle son’s marriage and enjoyed the rehearsal dinner and wedding.
    I enjoyed reading too!

    • Thanks Maryann. And oh I’m so sorry about your injury. Congratulations on your son’s wedding. As it happens, my son is getting married in mid October and the big question is will I be able to walk down the aisle as MOG on my own or will I go in on my knee scooter.

  13. Oh, Winnie. I pray continued healing for your foot. I love that you are choosing colorful casts.
    I began my summer with my husband recovering from complications from cornea transplant surgery he had in March. I’m ending my summer with him recovering from his second cornea transplant surgery. Thankfully, he has not had as many complications this time.

    • Thanks Andrea. And I’m so sorry about your husband’s health issues. Bless you for being there to take care of him – being a caretaker is a difficult, often underappreciated role.

  14. What a nice post. The family events are always the best, but the pictures from the conference are great, too. I totally get it about your foot. About 4 years ago I decided to get in shape so joined the gym w/personal trainer so I would only do workouts appropriate to my age and current physical condition. Three weeks in my foot was broken – apparently my perky young trainer didn’t realize planks weren’t the best idea and neither did I. My bones are extremely slow-healing, or I’m in the tiny minority where they never heal. Have been the boot route, bone stimulator, many, many x-rays. Not painful enough for surgery, thank goodness, just always swollen to a degree so shoe choices and exercise have limits. Had another CT scan recently, meeting with the doctor in 2 days to see if bones have healed “apart” in which case bone stimulator would be pointless; otherwise, trying it again. But compared to your surgeries I have had the easy route. Good luck with recovery – and you’re right, extra time to read isn’t a bad thing!

      • Thanks, and back at you! In all my foot woes I forgot to add that I did have a lovely summer, a stay-cation but lots of reading, contact with friends and family and a good bit of relaxation.

  15. Winnie, you have certainly had your share of woes these past months but I’m glad that you had joyful moments also. My husband went in for a routine colonoscopy the last of March and ended up with a pacemaker so most of my summer has been doing some of the chores he would normally do. Thankfully I enjoy outside work and I am glad that he is now on the mend.
    I wish you a total recovery!
    Blessings to you!


    • Hi Connie. So sorry to hear about your husband’s health issues but it sounds like he has a really good caregiver! Hope the two of you have a more enjoyable time this Fall.

  16. I hope your foot is healing well now and there will be no more problems. I am sure you are tired of having your foot and lower leg in a cast.
    It has been a busy summer for us with many volunteer activities. We did make a two and a half week trip from TN to NH and NY and tried to make it a bit of a vacation. The trip to NH was for my husband’s cousin. The trip to NY was to visit my family. My youngest brother has terminal cancer and my sister had had two strokes. Nice to see people, but would have preferred better circumstances. We have two trips coming up this Fall. One for a friend’s funeral at Arlington National Ceremony and the other for a conference on a neurological disease I was diagnosed with in March. We will make the most of both trips visiting friends and doing some sightseeing.

    As you know and have shown, make the best of the situation and don’t let anything hold you back.

  17. We stayed home this summer. I did get to do some reading, though. Sounds like your summer, despite the foot problems, was filled with joy.

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