I’m Not Faking It – I’m A Happy Person So Get Over It!

Me and Es

These couple of days of great weather, really have me longing for cookouts, swimming, steamed crabs, fun family times and on and on but I had a few minutes today where my mind was actually clear and the first thought that popped into my head was in those few minutes, there wasn’t a single thing I NEEDED. I was completely content and God help me, I was HAPPY just to be alive! We all have wants, be they about our relationships, our health or even things but in those few precious minutes, I was content right where I was.

I have a great job with people I enjoy working with and I’m also pursuing my life long dream and have reached the first level as an author (Published! Twice!), I had a great lunch, I have a loving and supportive family, wonderful and interesting friends, entertainment, the means to communicate at almost anytime with anyone I need or want to, a roof over my head, clothes on my back and transportation to go where I want or need to.

I also have debt, physical pain daily, I need to lose weight, I don’t get enough rest, I don’t get out as much as I used to, I have some strained relationships and some that sadly, have been completely severed, I’ve nearly lost my home and I could go on all night but the point I’m trying to make is this; just because I choose not to complain and put my problems or aches and pains out for the world to see, does not mean my life is perfect. Those closest to me know what I’ve been through and what I deal with every day of my life but we all go through things and I just don’t feel I want or have to share it with the world. I’m not pretending when I post my joy. I have reached a place in my life finally where I AM joy. Yes, I make no apologies for being a happy person. There were many years that I wasn’t. I choose to celebrate my life; the good the bad and every shade in between and I celebrate your joy as well.

So point-blank, what I’m telling you is just because I don’t put my dirty laundry on blast on social media doesn’t mean my washer is empty. What it means is my washer runs constantly. My washer is my spirit and my soul and it’s removing the stains of regret, personal problems, money problems, aches, pains and failure. The majority of my laundry is due to external issues. Shit gets splattered on me all of the time but why should the whole world have to smell it?

So, this message is for those who look at me and think my life is wonderful because that is what I choose to share. Since I’m feeling open and generous this evening as I sit here with swollen ankles and a backache, please rest assured that NO, my life is as far from perfect as yours but I have chosen to not burden the world with it but rather contribute love, honesty, strength, hope and joy. Although occasionally I may complain about my hair.

Have a good night.

Inside the Mind of the Author

Hope from the Ocean

Hope from the Ocean – Coming Sunday March 30, 2014!

Inside the Mind of the Author

After I chose this topic to write about, I started to take it back but then I though, “Where’s the fun in that?” The inside of this author’s mind isn’t completely uninteresting so perhaps, there’s something inside this big blond head that you may be interested in knowing. Besides, I have this agonizing way of not taking things back. I have things that do not fit or that I hated when I got home from the store or gadgets that just didn’t work but I just couldn’t take them back. I made the choice to bring those things into my world so I should be stuck with them, right?

Stuck is a good word for my mind. Things go in but they can’t get out.

I realized early on in life that I could draw and paint and did that pretty much daily until I could write, then I did them both. On that journey, I also realized I had the ability to remember things other people couldn’t and could draw and write things I’d seen or heard directly from memory but only if those things left an impression on me. These images did not necessarily have to be enclosed in what by most standards are major events. They just had to leave an imprint for some unknown reason. This has been a lifelong curse as much as it has a gift. I can still see Christmas Eve 1969. We were running up to my sister’s apartment next door after midnight. I can still look down at the sidewalk and see my pink furry slippers in the light bit of snow on that city street. Unfortunately, I can also vividly remember finding my sweet cat Pumpkin, bloody and lying dead beneath the tree outside of my sister’s apartment when I came home from school one day. He’d been hit by a car.

I don’t even have to close my eyes. The really rough part of it all is the emotional memories live in there too. That flash-memory of Christmas Eve makes my heart race and seeing poor Pumpkin in my mind can bring tears to my eyes and then anger. No, I couldn’t tell you what I wore the first day I ever went to school but I can tell you I was wearing a red and brown plaid dress and brown Mary Jane’s the day a goat ate a chunk of it at a petting zoo, on a Saturday at the old Glen Burnie Mall. I was about four or five. I was scared to death. I can still see that crazy goat dragging me along as I screamed for help. Stop laughing. Okay, go ahead and laugh, I’m sure most of the people at the mall did too.

Inside my mind is fifty years of memories, visuals, emotions and yes, even voices from my entire life and if you don’t believe me, I might as well not even bother to tell you about the day I was in WalMart and heard a woman speaking a few racks over and immediately said, “That’s Mrs. Morris, my first grade teacher!” It was. I hadn’t heard her voice in over twenty years. The true blessing in all of this mushed up gray matter is being able to remember the majority of every significant event in my life. They may fall into the category of what one may not think of as significant but to my brain, they were. Having a vivid imagination married with a photographic memory may not be a blessing if you’re trying to forget things but to a writer, it feels like you’ve been given a library of work that is yet to be written.

Cookies, Babies and Really Cute Kids

These are some of the most important parts of life right? What’s life without cookies? What’s life without adorable babies? What’s life without really cute kids doing really cute things at Christmas time?

Here are a few pictures from my Saturday.

Cutie Cousins Ryder and Esme

Cutie Cousins Ryder and Esme baking cookies! (Well sort of!)

Ryder and Esme

Our cuties are having a bit of hat trouble!

runaway hat

Runaway hat!

 

extra sprinkles

I don’t think we have enough sprinkles

Esme Asleep

All of that cookie baking wore her out!

 

Harper and Scarlett

“Hey what’s on TV?” – “Wait I’m trying to get this hang nail.”

Play Time!

We love our together play time!

 

Harper smile

Well hello there! Miss Harper is awfully cute today!

More Harper Smiles

Wait MomMom! Here’s an even cuter smile for you!

Harper Sleeping

All of that cuteness is exhausting!

Esme, Jess and Scarlett

Phew! Thank goodness their Mommy showed up to help! She’s cute too!

Poppy

Poor Poppy! He sure is cute though with that baby snuggling him!

Home Remedy

MomMom is feeling a little under the weather.

           That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

More on the Baltimore Book Festival

One of the many benefits of being an author at any book festival is meeting other authors and finding out about not only their works but their lives. One such person we had the honor of meeting was U.S. Marshal Louie McKinney. We chatted with him about his life as a U.S. Marshal and some of the more high-profile cases he was involved in.

One Marshals badge

Another new author we enjoyed chatting with and getting to know was Jax Jillian. “Jill” writes paranormal romance and I LOVE her book cover! I’m definitely looking forward to reading her book “Larkin’s Letters” and her follow up novel, “Ryan’s Letters” once it is released. Best wishes for much success Jill!

Larkins Letters

A big shout out and thank you to all of the authors we had the pleasure of meeting on Saturday!

And The Thunder Rolls

Storms

Amen to this! I’ve been through a whole lot of storms and each one has washed away the burdens, the strife, the need to be perfect or of feeling incomplete, and I’m stronger and more fulfilled than I could have ever imagined. I don’t have or need “things” to make me feel important and certainly not to make me happy. My life is far from perfect. My bank account is always on E at the end of the month but I have been so blessed to be able to surround myself with an amazing cast of players who have stood through those storms with me, put up with my bullshit and mistakes and who have welcomed me to do the same for them, while others washed away.

Together, we will ride out this storm with no umbrellas or raincoats, and no shelter except for each other but what more do we really need? You have to know who your people are, through both the gentle spring showers and the violent, hard rain that comes at you from every direction, as you dodge lightning strikes and the thunder shakes your house. The ones who slap you hard when you need it and the ones who wipe your tears. The ones who stand by you when you’re on top and the ones who pick you up when you fall. If you haven’t figured out yet who they are, you better get busy figuring it out.

My heart hurts because one of these people will be moving on to the next life very soon. A Matriarch. A woman who’s respect had to be earned but who’s love was unquestionable. She’d give you that slap and then wipe your tears, reminding you that life isn’t fair but at the same time showing you every damn second of it is worth it – even the storms. What an honor and privilege it has been to be a part of her life for the past twenty years.

Oh the blessings I live with, that I cherish and am so thankful for.
All of them rainbows and flowers after the storms.
My beautiful family and friends.
My wonderful children and grandchildren.
Here comes the thunder.
Let it rain. Let it rain.

Granny June Bug

Granny June Bug

“FIREFLIES” Book Signing – Success!

Happy Reader Lauren M.

Happy Reader Lauren M.

Saturday May 4, 2013 was such a beautiful day! The weather was warm but breezy, the cocktails were cool but warming and the company was nothing less than an assembly of positively charged human spirits who if smooshed all together could light up the whole city of Baltimore!

Signing line

Beautiful Friends!

These are my people. They are the beating hearts and luminescent souls, of what has made up my entire life and carried me to the here and now. Old friends and new acquaintances alike had come to celebrate with me and the result was that “Fireflies” brought friends together who hadn’t seen each other in years, connected new friends and brought out joyous memories of all of our good old days. Those memories danced about my back yard patio deck like bubbles on the air. As each bubble popped, a new memory would rise up and float about…and then the next and the next.

How have I been so fortunate to know these people? What have I done to bring all of these blessings into my life? I sat alone Saturday night after the party and that question kept coming back to me over and over until it brought tears to my eyes. I’m not perfect. I’m certainly not an angel but somehow, some way, as I’ve traveled through this world, I’ve managed to meet, touch, somehow effect and above all develop an attachment to the best beating hearts and luminescent souls that any living, breathing human should ever be so blessed as to have in their life.

Obviously, along this road there have been those who were repelled by my light and my refusal to smother it and as heartbreaking as it is for me to give up on anyone, that’s just what I’ve had to do. My mantra has become that it isn’t what you do or how kind you are, it is your motivation for the things you do that defines you. I have always had the uncanny ability to know what drives others and what their true motives are, maybe even before they do. Sometimes that is a gift. Sometimes it has been a curse…that turned out to be a gift.

I am right where I am supposed to be, with those I am supposed to be with.

When you are surrounded by the energy and love that I was surrounded by on Saturday, you can’t help but know you’ve learned how to make the right choices. You’ve grown to understand the importance of having that positive energy and that light in your world and you’ll guard it with your life.

Oops! I lost track but yes! Yes, there was also a book signing Saturday and it was very successful in that I was so happy to see all of those beautiful faces and thank them in person for supporting me! Some people brought their own books and some purchased books as well as brought their own. Finally being able to talk about the book with readers and friends was the best! I love hearing feedback and how the story touched them, even if only in the smallest ways.

I’ve started the second book about the story of the Whelan’s and their wonderful family. I can only dream that this next book will once again bring all of these beautiful souls back together for another Spring afternoon.

By all means…bring lots and lots of bubbles!!!

My Beta Readers - Kim, Kathy and Cheryl

My Beta Readers – Kim, Kathy and Cheryl