Sunday, November 17, 2019

Yes! ANOTHER heavenly gift...

I wrote a Chicken Soup for the Soul story 20 years ago about a heavenly inspired gift I received, per the pact my late best friend and I made right before she passed away.

Last week the temperature dropped to 11 degrees; we had a hard freeze and frigid wind chills.
All of my flowers wilted, shriveled, and hung limp in their pots. Except this delicate little ONE which is still thriving. I believe it is  this year's gift from Rose. I have received a flower every year in winter.

Read the original story about her promise of an annual gift to me. Tell me what you believe.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

A love of language curses through the generations

On Sunday it was sunny, 65 degrees, and then we broke a 100 year record when an early snow and freeze happened Monday.  The temperature dipped to 12 degrees. School closures scrolled the TV screen all day.

Liam, our smart little kindergartener, is recovering from a cold. So we took it easy when he came to spend the day. He loves writing and spelling. We did table work, block building, and he played with toys. 

I popped The Christmas Story video in, and we snuggled under a warm fleece blanket.
He was very interested in the bully, and compared him to Tyrone the Horrible, a character in one of his dinosaur books.  

He liked eight-year-old Ralphie, who had a vivid imagination. He also questioned me about Ralphie's colorful language. "Nana what does son-of-a-bitch mean?"

I gulped and said, "It's a bad word. I'm not sure what it means, just that you aren't supposed to use it." He was satisfied.

And then... Ralphie said the mother of all bad words (it was bleeped) and his mother marched him to the bathroom, sat him on the toilet seat, and put a bar of orange Lifebouy soap in his mouth to hold for a few moments.

Something clicked in Liam's brain. I saw it when he bucked upright and said wide-eyed, "Hey Nana, I KNOW someone who that happened to."

"Who?" I feigned innocence and shock.

He glared at me, and said, "My Nana Tracey." If looks could kill...

"And YOU did THAT to her when she was a kid!"

He was deeply offended and protective of "My Nana" as he calls her when other kids are in her care.

I was wrong, following a norm; cleaning bad words out of the mouth was the discipline technique of fifty years ago. What is the quote? "When you know better, do better." 

What's your bet? Liam will never swear, or he will utter every swear word he can think I did one day when I was five years old toying with bad words. Then it was OVER. LOL

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

The language of love

Winter weather is speeding down the jet stream and heading our way soon. I do not like being cold or shivering. I snuggle under my fleece throw, which puts me into sleep mode way too early. When the sun goes down, so do I.  If I sit on the couch to watch TV I stay awake. If I recline, I'm a goner.

Sassy Boy thinks he runs the show around here. I found him on the bed, grooming himself, licking that fat tummy of his. I asked what he thought he was doing taking a bath on my bed, and he flopped over and laid on my pillow. Obviously we do not speak the same language.

Speaking of language. Michele is doing as well as can be expected. Her brain is healing and she talks and talks. Bill is such a positive and calm man.

He said, "The words are all there. It's like her brain is a library, and all the books have toppled, spilling words everywhere. It's going to take time to upright the shelf and put everything back in place."

I told him he should have been a writer.  I love the way he thinks!

The upside to snoozing early is I'm not munching. I've lost ten pounds and have five to go before December 10th, when my doctor and I will have a heart to heart.

I think the greatest love language is KINDNESS.

And how are you doing?

Monday, October 28, 2019

Playing with fall images

Words are like images; they can be beautiful, playful, stark, shocking. Have you written lately? 

    The ghost watched the squirrel scamper up the old tree
 and chew off a leafy twig.
                                                    She tucked it into the crook of a limb
                                                             padding her nest so big.

                                              When the last leaves turn, drop to the ground,
                                                      cold wind and snowflakes abound,
                                                  ghosts disappear; were they even here?
                                                    Their footprints can never be found.

The scarecrows, though small, have the most fun of all when critters come around at night.
Stray cats go creeping, raccoons sneaking, rabbits trigger our motion light.
They sniff the ghosts, pumpkins, too. Scarecrows chase them away with a great big, "BOO!"

                                     Is it a monster? A person on stilts? A peanut-head circus fright?
                              A long-legged clown walking around, waiting for the darkness of night?

                                            I'll give you a clue. The afternoon sun plays tricks on you.
                                                                 And as you can plainly see...
                                                             it isn't a  monster or wacky clown.
                                                                 It's simply a shadow of ME. 

Saturday, October 26, 2019

"Somebody done somebody wrong"'s a song!

Announcing # 30 on my Chicken Soup for the Soul publication list.  

I am not physically hiding in this book, but my story, A Precious Jewel, is included. On sale date is November 5, 2019.  

I have read more than 3/4 of this book, and each story is one that you or someone you know could relate to. I found myself nodding as I read the stories which are not preachy. They describe the many infractions we have all felt or perceived in our lives. And the solutions are life changers. 

Twitter – @ChickenSoupSoul

Book Link -

Hashtag - #CSSTheForgivenessFix

Sunday, October 20, 2019

Into the unknowns

It's human nature to want to know the outcome even when circumstances are out of our control.

One never knows what lies within or beyond the fog. Driving with opaque vision into the uncertainties of life's what-ifs, increases our fear.

This was a lesson made real last weekend as we left Ozark Creative Writers Conference in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, where I presented two workshops.

Pavement patches, like Band Aids on my worried soul, made me aware that bruises and surface scrapes are minor parts of the whole.

I had no other choice but to trust the girders and pilings that suspend the bridge to support our car as we traversed the span from shore to shore above the unseen flowing waters.

Fog, eerily thick as Halloween spiderweb batting enveloped the bridge, shrouded the river in both directions, and sent a shiver down my spine.

As we encountered traffic in both directions, visibility became more acute the closer we came to other vehicles. My fear lessened when I was able to see beyond the unknown. I breathed a sigh of relief and a silent prayer of thanks when we made it safely across the bridge.

Life has been rough for our family the past few weeks. Bill's daughter received life-threatening brain trauma injuries and is in a rehab hospital out of state. Updates indicate she is making progress. But I want to be able to visit her daily, and that is not possible.

My daughter just tore her rotator cuff and probably will require shoulder surgery. 

Bill has residual leg pain from a previous knee surgery and may require total knee replacement.

Such is life. Into the fog...the unknown. One day at a time. I have to trust God that things will work out. They always do, whether we can see what's ahead, or not. Whether its the way we wish for things to be, or not.

All the what-ifs don't matter, because what will be, will be. Que Sera, Sera.


Friday, October 18, 2019

Opportunities for writers

Don't be a turkey. Share with others. Pass on information to fellow writers. Praise others when they are successful. Come back soon, and I will share my good news with you. Meanwhile, start writing. Check out this link for a list of call outs from Cathy's Comps and Calls.

I get so busy I often forget where I saw a particular call out. This is an extensive list for my writer friends.

If YOU were the person who signed in on my blog yesterday as UNKNOWN, thank you for the comment, but who ARE you?