Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Words


Words bring us together, a fundamental human connection that we rely upon throughout our lives. Words are tangible links to feelings, reflecting what cannot be seen.

Words explain us, defining us to ourselves, as well as to others. Words describe who we are and who we want to become.

Words document our journey, telling where we have been and where we are going. Our road is paved with words unspoken and landscaped with words screamed in vain.

Words can claim us, chain us, even decimate us.

Yet words mark our paths, showing us the way, encouraging us, moving us forward, lifting us up, taking us to where we have never been, even setting us free.

Words announce our arrival into this world and words commemorate us when we leave it, left to forever echo in the hearts of those who cared.

Words remain.

McGuffyAnn Morris

Her Sister's Shadow

Product Details


By Katharine Britton


Betrayal leads to loss, subsequent resentment, and eventual estrangement. Two sisters experience events that tear them apart, sending them in different directions, living oceans and decades apart.

Unfortunately, as too often happens in life, it is a funeral that brings them back together. Finally, however hesitantly, one sister reaches out, and the other sister tentatively returns home. Both it is both sisters who need the healing of reconciliation. In the end, they realize they need each other. 
Katharine Britton captures the emotions and the complex dynamics between sisters. She is both sensitive and wise in dealing with an intense familial issue.

Wordless Wednesday

Hosted by Hilary of Feeling Beachie

Chats on the Farmhouse Porch (19)

 
It's time to visit Patrice, and Wendell, of course. Come with me to Everyday Ruralty for a chat on their porch. The questions this week are:
Questions
  1. What's your favorite day of the week? Why?
  2. What's your favorite Christmas movie?
  3. Is there a Christmas Carol that's special to you?
  4. Is there an art or craft that you'd love to be able to do?
  5. Do you have a live Christmas tree or an artificial one?
My Answers:
1. My favorite day of the week is Sunday. We usually sleep in a little longer than usual, and most Sundays are NASCAR or football...or both! Ultimately, it is also a good day to just spend time together. Thankfully, Bill & I both enjoy the same things.
2. I have a few favorite Christmas movies. I love "The Gift of Love", with Marie Osmond. It is really a version of "The Gift of the Magi", by O. Henry. I also love "A Christmas Story" ("You'll shoot your eye out!"). And I love all of the Muppet movies and specials, as well as Peanuts. (Truth be known, my inner-child is still very much a part of me!)
3. I have many favorite carols, so it is hard to pick just one. "O', Holy Night" brings me to tears.
4. I always wished that I could crochet. I wish I could make throws and sweaters and scarves...I just never learned.
5. We have a live tree. However, we are conscientious about making sure trees are replenished. Tree farms are good for this, and there are several in our rural area. We also compost ours after it has served as our Christmas tree. It becomes part of the next year's garden!

Thanks for the visit Patrice and Wendell! Hugs!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Don't Sing at the Table


Life Lessons from My Grandmothers


By Adriana Trigiani


In this memoir, Adriana Trigiani introduces us to her grandmothers, Lucia & Viola. Through their approach to and way of life, they were lifelong role models. Their life lessons are their legacy.

Adriana writes a chapter on each woman, giving her history while giving tribute to that woman. Each chapter is a gift to that woman and to the reader, as well. Many photographs add to the beauty of the book and bring the history and the women to life.

Clinging to traditions and simple values, Lucy and Viola managed to forge ahead through life and all that it brought, including the most difficult times. Spirituality and morals were the foundation for both women; this they imparted upon family and generations to come. Chapters in the book share their wisdom on marriage, children, and the many aspects of family and life.

The lives of these very real women are relatable. From their roles as working women and mothers, they faced what many women face today. It is their spirit and common sense that immortalize them.

This is a very special memoir, and much more. It honors two very special women. Their wisdom, advice and lessons are timeless. All women should strive to be this type of role model for future generations. It is sad to think that not everyone has women like these grandmothers in their lives. Those who do should indeed honor them.

Happy Birthday!

Happy 1st Birthday to Grizelda & Chloe!
(and to Moon & Willow, their siblings!)

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Here's hoping you have plenty
to be thankful for!
Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Wordless Wednesday



Hosted by Hilary of Feeling Beachie

Monday, November 21, 2011

Ghost on Black Mountain


By Ann Hite

Much more than a ghost story, this is actually several stories interwoven throughout the history of Black Mountain. This novel is written in parts. It is told through the voices of integral characters of the story. Each voice is true to character, time, tradition and place.
We meet many of the people of Black Mountain as we learn of its secrets and history. Within the shadows of Black Mountain are many roads with unexpected twists and turns.

The book begins with Nellie, a young woman who goes against her mother to marry. Hobbs is an abusive man. As Nellie learns the secrets and depth of his abusive nature, she comes to terms with not only his past, but her future. Through Nellie we also meet many residents of Black Mountain.

Josie, Nellie’s mother, is the second voice telling the story. She gives her viewpoint, as a mother watching her daughter make life-altering mistakes. She tells of things that happen after Nellie leaves home for Black Mountain.

The third voice of Black Mountain is that of Shelly, born and bred there. She is an unwilling helper to Nellie, knowing more than she wants to of Black Mountain and its dark secrets. She and her family know the truth of Hobbs and his evil ways.

Part four is told by Hobbs longtime lover, Rose. She is an outsider who comes to the mountain looking for Hobbs and answers. She believes in Hobbs, knowing nothing of his deeds. She gets more than what she came for, also becoming part of Black Mountain and its secrets.

The voices that tell parts five and six are tightly woven, as mother and daughter Iona and Annie shed light on Black Mountain and its dark secretive history. Also outsiders, they are drawn to Black Mountain by circumstance. They bring the parts of the book together, completing the circle of voices and questions long unanswered.

The twists and turns of choices, consequences, and secrets run throughout this novel. Only in the end is there understanding and forgiveness, much like real life.

Ann Hite is an extraordinary storyteller. The Ghost on Black Mountain is quite a story!


Pondering with Brenda

Hosted by Brenda of Fiction with a Purpose


The prompt this week was: What the Heck?

Immediately, I thought: "What the heck...?" Is this prompt, "What the heck, why not?" or is it, "What the heck, what now?" After much pondering (thanks, Brenda), I came to the realization that there are many responses to this. In fact, often one leads to the other, and sometimes with surprising results.

Bill and I live a very simple, stable life. We planned it that way, worked at it, actually. We have lived over twenty-three of our thirty-plus years in the same simple house. We try to be good citizens and decent people.

It was a shock when after thirty five years in one career (22 years at one place and 8 years at another when the first place closed), Bill was laid off. After smoke and mirrors, false hope and empty promises, Bill was without a job. What the heck?!  What were we going to do?

Unemployment only lasts so long and Bill is not one to be idle or complacent. He put out dozens and dozens of resumes! Finally he took a job to fill in the monetary gap, until a position within his field opened up. What the heck? What choice was there?

After a year of that job, it was not working out on many levels. The pay was poor. The environment was less than desirable. It was not Bill. The economy being what it is, there is nothing moving in Bill's field of work. He decided perhaps it was time for a change. What the heck?

He had to do something, so he went back to school. Bill completely changed careers. He is currently going through the rigors of orientations and trying to adjust to his (our) new life.

There have been many What the Heck? moments for us, from family to health, in the past few years. We have learned that sometimes the best-laid plans are not what actually happens, and we are left to wonder What the Heck? Ultimately, however, decisions must be made. Life does go on. It is what it is. What doesn't kill you can make you stronger.

So, What the heck; what now? leads to What the heck, why not? The future reveals the answer to both.

Oh, what the heck?!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Follow (Friday) Four Fill-In


Hosted by Hilary at Feeling Beachie is the host of this Hop.


Each week, Hilary lists four statements with a blank to fill in the answers on your own blog. If you want to join the fun and come up with four fill in’s of your own check out her site. If she uses them, she will add you as co-host to the hop! This week’s co-host is Jen from Just Another Day , who came up with the last two statements.
This week’s statements:
1. I love the smell of ____
2. When I fly, I ____
3. I don’t like ___ but I ___.
4. My favorite ___ is ___.

My Answers:
1. I love the smell of the Estevant Pines in the Keweenaw Peninsula of the U.P. (MI).
2. When I fly, I do it extremely rarely. (Though I wish I could really fly...)
3. I don't like conflict, but I realize it is a necessary evil, essential to stand up for yourself and your beliefs.
4. My favorite poem is Warning,

Elegies for the Broken Hearted

Elegies for the Brokenhearted: A Novel

By Christie Hodgen


This novel is beautifully written, though often sad. It is pieces written to various people who have affected the life of the narrator.

As a whole, the book is thoughtful, well written, and very believable. Separately, each piece is sensitive, poignant and moving. Each piece, each elegy, is unique in itself, just as the person and the relationship was.

Each character is genuine and the portrayal of the relationship is heartfelt and even heartrending at times. The thought and feeling involved in each gives pause and reflection of those people over the course of one’s own life. Each of us can think of the many people who have entered our lives. Each person has affected us in some way, for some reason or purpose. This book addresses that idea.

Christie Hodgen’s novel will make the reader think about the people in your life that have brought you to where you are now, including the “broken ones”. Sometimes it is these broken people who have the deepest impact on us. For our narrator, Mary, these broken people included her uncle, friends, including family friends, and ultimately her own mother.

It will make you consider the way you affect other people, because we all do affect each other in some way. That’s life.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

Cat Thursday


        Happy Thanksgiving to All!

Farmhouse Porch Chat


Please join Patrice and her wonderful weekly chat over at  Everyday Ruralty
Here are the current discussion questions and my answers:

Questions
1. Where would you take the blogger group for a chat, if they came to your house?
2. How do you handle "toxic people"? They're the ones  that are very difficult to be around and generally don't bring out the best in us.
3. In high school, were you the athlete, the cheerleader (actual or just your personality), the geek, the social butterfly, or lost?
4. What's your favorite thing made from apples?
5. Do you do most of your shopping in stores or online?

My Answers
1. I have a big back yard, with bird feeders and a birdbath that are usually very active. There is also Dewey's now well known special birdhouse. 
2. I have learned to distance myself from toxic people. While it is not easy, and can be even painful in some cases, sometimes it is all that you can do.
3. In high school, I was a "ROTC". This is its own group, as the ones mentioned are. In fact, I was second in command of our Battalion, of over 100 cadets. 
4. My favorite thing made from apples is apple cider, especially hot with a cinnamon stick!
5. I usually shop in stores. It's easier with returns, exchanges, etc. I tend to be particular too, so this way I feel more sure of my purchase.

Thanks, Patrice! Hugs and a carrot for you, Wendell!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Dewey’s Special Birdhouse

      
I'm not the one with the green thumb; that would be Bill. If it has fur and/or a pulse, I'm good. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy plants, especially flowers. I'm pretty good with my angel-wing begonias, and my mum gardens do well. I'm just much better with animals. I get critters; we connect.

I was skeptical when the locust tree popped up in the far corner of the back yard. I didn't like the thorns. I was sure we could find a "better" tree. I called it a “scrub tree”. Yet, Bill took to it immediately. His green thumb was itching to get this tree growing. He said it was perfect; it was meant to be there. Bill insisted that he had wanted a tree for exactly that spot. So there it was: a locust tree that just moved itself in. How could I argue?  Along with all of the critters we rescue, Bill rescues plants.

This was not a tree that I would have chosen however, when the wildlife took to it, I finally accepted it. It was now part of our yard. As it grew, birds began living in it! Orioles would stop there. King Birds regularly used the tree. Woodpeckers, Nuthatches and Brown Creepers could be seen skittering up and down the tree often. Cardinals and Blue Jays seemed to be present constantly. Wren would sit there and sing to their little heart’s content!  The locust tree now had a purpose. If the birds loved it, so could I. 

We had been given a birdhouse when our beautiful niece and god-daughter passed away. Dewey was only eight years old when she died during an asthma attack. She was an extraordinary child, so very full of life and love. There had never seemed the "right" place before for this special birdhouse. It just didn't seem appropriate to put it out in the open, unsheltered. The cedars and pines seemed somehow wrong, so serious, dark and stern. They attracted birds that showed no interest in this little house. Yet, this locust tree seemed to attract beauty and life. It was so busy; just like Dewey! With this in mind, we mounted Dewey's birdhouse on the fence post, next to the locust tree.

The wren moved into the birdhouse immediately. They worked hard to set up housekeeping. So, when the tornado came through, taking down half of our fence, we were devastated. The birdhouse was not damaged, but the fence post hung loose. By the time the fence was repaired, the wrens had been forced to abandon it.

The following spring, when nesting season began, we watched Dewey's birdhouse with much anticipation and hope. One morning we heard the wren cheerfully singing in the locust tree. By noon, they were filling the birdhouse with twigs and bedding. We were overjoyed at the return of life to Dewey’s birdhouse.

Unbelievably, the next day a terrible storm tore through our neighborhood, taking an adjoining section of fence with it. I was shocked! How could this happen again?! I could only imagine what the wren thought! I knew there was no family in the birdhouse yet, but I feared that the birds would never trust this little house again. I feared Dewey's birdhouse would remain abandoned forever now. 

The fence was repaired, but the real damage was done. The wren had moved on. I could hear the wren, as they nested in neighboring trees. I would see them happily coming and going, but Dewey's birdhouse sat empty, now abandoned. This made me so sad. I imagined it made Dewey sad, too. We were devastated yet again.

One day shortly thereafter, I noticed the male wren sitting in the locust tree. He was singing loudly and joyfully. I then noticed twigs and grass sticking out of the birdhouse. I was hopeful, but cautious. I was afraid to get too excited yet. I knew Dewey must be watching from the heavens with anticipation, too!

Later, Bill was out doing yard work when he saw a little bird's face peeking out of Dewey's birdhouse. In the locust tree, the male wren sat singing with what seemed to be much satisfaction. The wrens were back! They had moved into Dewey's birdhouse!

Our hearts were again full of joy, as well! We are sure Dewey was, too. She was all about loving and sharing, always offering help to whoever needed it, in any way that she could. Dewey always wanted everyone to be happy, even animals. Her favourite song was, “Sunshine on My Shoulders”, which truly summed her up. 

Dewey's legacy is simple: love, giving from the heart, unselfishly. Her spirit lives on.

For Dewey, with love:
16 November 1987-13 June 1996…
forever in our hearts.
                                               
                                                     
My "Golden Sky" Blogfest Memorial

The Golden Sky Blogfest!


















The Golden Sky

comes after the storm…

By E C Stilson

The Golden Sky is a prodigious book. To realize that this is a journal is astounding. I feel privileged to read such an intensely personal and intimate book.

E C Stilson’s writing is heartfelt and genuine. Her ability to take emotions and capture them so clearly on paper is extraordinary. With each sentence and paragraph that she writes, she makes you feel.

Very young, E C marries Cade. Together they start a family, having little Ruby. By nineteen, they are expecting their second baby, Zeke. But there are unexpected problems, and there is unforeseen sorrow of the deepest kind. At two months of age, they lose baby Zeke.

The death of her son rattles her, her marriage, and her family to its very core. Cade becomes lost in his own grief. Determined to give her daughter the love and life that she deserves, E C pushes herself forward.

Grief, as love, changes us. When we lose a love we lose a bit of ourselves, and grief moves into that place. We each grieve differently, as did E C and Cade and little Ruby. We have to heal within our own heart and soul before we can see to reach out to another. But when we do, we can complete our healing.

E C Stilson takes you into her world of heartbreak born of the deepest and truest love. She opens her soul to us, baring her innermost thoughts and feelings. For her to share this sorrow so clearly and eloquently, is brave and beyond altruistic. She has a genuine gift for writing. I recommend E C Stilson and her book wholeheartedly. She is amazing.

                                     

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Wordless Wednesday



Hosted By Hilary of FEELING BEACHIE

Sunday, November 13, 2011

What Moves Me


The Prompt:
What Moves You?


Every Thursday, Brenda of Fiction with a Purpose poses a topic to ponder. Inevitably, it becomes a challenge for me and my writing. Sometimes I ponder it so long that I end up not blogging about it! Brenda has really become a wonderful friend, an inspiration, and she moves me to actually share my thoughts. So...after reading her post, I thought. This is ultimately what I came up with to share.

Nature moves me. The seasons, the sky, the sun and the moon, the stars...lakes, waterfalls, trees...wildlife, animals. My personal connection with animals has been a deep one, an integral part of my life and who I am. From working with animals professionally to rescue work, I have learned much about and from animals. Animals are true to themselves and each other. Animals are genuine and honest in their feelings and in their actions. I am moved by this.

 I am moved by the many homeless and abandoned animals. I am moved by the orphaned ones who die because humans don't care, because humans are irresponsible. I am moved by the will to survive that animals exhibit, in spite of man's inhumanity.

Last year, a woman took in a young, ill, stray cat. On Thanksgiving, the cat had kittens. She was too ill to care for her kittens. I took in the litter of four kittens. They were also very ill.  For weeks I bottle-fed them every two hours. I kept humidifiers going so they could breathe. But they made it; all four kittens survived. Their will to survive moved me to help them. They wanted to live; they deserved to live.

Grizelda & Chloe Jo will be a year old this Thanksgiving. They were from that litter. (Their siblings, Moon & Willow, were adopted together into another home.) They move me.

The Litter at three weeks

Grizelda & Chloe Jo at 11 months

Belatedly Following Friday Four Fill-In

Photobucket

Hilary of FEELING BEACHIE says,


"Each week, I plan on listing four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs. If you want to join the fun and come up with four fill in’s of your own, please email them to me at feelingbeachie@gmail.com. If I use them, I will add you as co-host to the hop! This week’s co-host is Sarah from the Mama Pirate
I would LOVE it if you could please help me spread the word about this hop…. So, please tweet, FaceBook share, andadd the linky to your post…"
This week’s statements:
  1. My first car was a ___
  2. I find a ___ very relaxing
  3. Red ___________ make me think of _______________.
  4. Next year, ___________ will ______________.
My Answers:
1. My first car was a 1970 Camaro...it sounds better than it actually was...*lol*.
2. I find a cup of hot tea very relaxing.
3. Red feathers make me think of the pair of cardinals that live in the pine tree.
4. Next year, my writing will be much more disciplined.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veteran's Day, 11-11-11




My most sincere
thanks & appreciation
to all Veterans of the
United States of America.
Thank you. God bless you
& God bless America. 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

It's Cat & Author Thursday!

                                            Love cats?  Join us!

Geneen Roth & Blanche

Their very special book!

The Dark Side of Innocence





Growing Up Bipolar

By Terri Cheney


Many books have been written about the often misunderstood illness known as “Bipolar”, but few have been written about a bipolar childhood. Terri wrote this book with the hope of shedding light on this illness for the parents and loved ones of these children.

Terri Cheney tells her heartbreaking and frightening story of growing up trapped within herself. She explains that even as a child she was aware of her moods and her feelings being controlled by what she called “The Black Beast”. It controlled Terri and everything in her world. Though she was acutely aware of it, she was just as aware of its effect on her. She felt helpless, completely at the mercy of this relentless “Black Beast”. She also felt the strain of the burden of keeping it hidden.

Terri is honest and open in discussing her feelings and behaviors as a bipolar child. She tries to give insight and shed light on the actions associated with this illness. Terri tells of the moods that ranged from her “Disneyland Days” to her suicide attempt at age seven.

Throughout her youth, Terri struggled with extremely high intelligence that put her in advanced classes. This exposed her to situations far beyond her years, and excited the Black Beast to almost consume her.

Terri Cheney’s writing is powerful and compelling. This is an important book whether you are bipolar, know someone who may be, or want to understand this confusing, complex disorder.

"The Gales of November Came Early"


























































                   November 10, 1975


The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald

The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down,
of the big lake that they call Gitche Gumee.
The lake, it is said, never gives up her dead
when the skies of November turn gloomy.
With a load of iron ore, twenty-six thousand tons more
than the Edmund Fitzgerald weighed empty.
That good ship and crew was a bone to be chewed
when the gales of November came early.

The ship was the pride of the American side
coming back from some mill in Wisconsin.
As the big freighters go it was bigger than most,
with a crew and good captain well-seasoned.
Concluding some terms with a couple of steel firms
when they left fully loaded for Cleveland
and later that night when the ship's bell rang
could it be the North Wind they'd be feelin'?

The wind in the wires made a tattle-tale sound
And a wave broke over the railing
And every man knew, as the captain did too,
'twas the Witch of November come stealin'.
The dawn came late and breakfast had to wait,
when the gales of November came slashin'.
When afternoon came it was freezin' rain
in the face of a hurricane west wind.

When suppertime came, the old cook came on deck
sayin', " Fellas, it's too rough to feed ya'."
At seven P.M. a main hatchway caved in, he said,
"Fellas, it's been good to know ya'."
The captain wired in he had water comin' in,
and the good ship and crew was in peril.
And later that night when his lights went out of sight
came the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Does anyone know where the love of God goes
when the waves turn the minutes to hours?
The searchers all say they'd have made Whitefish Bay
if they'd put fifteen more miles behind her.
They might have split up or they might have capsized,
may have broke deep and took water.
And all that remains is the faces and names
of the wives and the sons and the daughters.

Lake Huron rolls, Superior sings
in the rooms of her ice-water mansion.
Old Michigan steams like a young man's dreams;
the islands and bays are for sportsmen.
And farther below Lake Ontario
takes in what Lake Erie can send her.
And the iron boats go, as all Mariners know,
with the gales of November remembered.

In a musty old hall in Detroit they prayed,
in a Maritime Sailor's Cathedral.
The church bell chimed 'til it rang twenty-nine times,
for each man on the Edmund Fitzgerald.
The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
of the big lake they call Gitche Gumee.
Superior, they said, never gives up her dead
when the gales of November come early!

        ~written by Gordon Lightfoot~

~In Honour & Memory~

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Wordless Wednesday


Hosted by Hilary of FEELING BEACHIE





Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Struck by Living

Spirituality in everyday living

From Depression to Hope


By Julie K. Hersh



Julie Hersh draws on her lifelong journal to share her struggle with depression. Her ability to live a seemingly normal life while battling fierce inner demons is heartbreaking. She is open and honest in her feelings, offering personal insight to those who also suffer long-term depression. Julie gives insight to loved ones of those battling depression, as well.



The role of family and medical community are integral in Julie’s book. She offers suggestions and possible solutions. She proves one can deal with and ultimately recover from this often hopeless nightmare of depression. Too often this problem goes unspoken or ignored, leading to devastating actions and consequences. But it doesn't have to; there is hope and recovery.



"Struck by Living" gives hope to those who understand the depths and desperation that may come with depression. There is hope, and Julie Hersh shares it eloquently. I am glad that she has been “Struck by Living”, and offers it to others.

Chats on the Farmhouse Porch: 16




It's time to join Patrice over at Everyday Ruralty for a nice Farmhouse Porch Chat.


The questions this week are:

1. Dreaming asks: What accomplishments make you the most proud?
2. Suzanne asks: When did your family first come to the country which you now live?
3. Wendell asks: What's your favorite way to serve carrots?
4. Do you decorate with anything that has Santa or Father Christmas when you prepare for Christmas?
5. Do you prefer big dogs or small dogs? Something in between, maybe?


My Answers are:

1. The accomplishments that make me the most proud are those associated my writing. Even more however, are those associated when I overcome some struggle (health, personal, life lessons).
2. Good grief! My family is far-flung and fragmented! I know some relatives have been traced back to 1652, from England to America. However, there were Cherokee here already!
3. Wendell, I'm with you...I like them raw and fresh!
4. My husband, Bill, loves St. Nicholas ("Santa"). We do believe...
5. We love dogs! Our biggest was our yellow lab, Grits. He was our first "FurKid" together. We already had my elderly "mutt" Velvet, who looked like a small black beagle. We have had many in-between, through the years. I admit I am very fond of Shelties, in part due to size. Maisie was 14 lbs. She was perfect, in every way. We love critters!

Please join us on Patrice's Porch over at Everyday Ruralty!



"Outrider"

My wonderfully kind veterinarian, Dr. John Plishka, is also a very talented painter. His art studio is TYJ Art, and is also on Facebook. John Plishka's painting "Outrider" is a finalist in the Richeson 75 Animals, Birds & Wildlife 2012 online exhibit.


Here is the link to the show: www.richeson75.com


I am hoping you will like his art enough to vote for his painting to win a "People's Choice" Award. Thank you, and enjoy the show!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Beautiful Unbroken

One Nurse's Life


By Mary Jane Nealon


For Mary Jane Nealon, she knew her entire life that she was meant to serve others. Her role models were saints, and those who could be saints: nurses, such as Clara Barton. She read the biographies of truly admirable women, mostly saints and nurses that she would strive to be like.

Mary Jane follows her dream into nursing school. There, her dream takes on a new and very personal meaning. Her younger brother becomes seriously ill with cancer. When she loses him to the disease, she finds healing for herself in her nursing career and in poetry.

Poets have used this medium for hundreds, perhaps thousands, of years. Poetry can put feelings into words helping to sort out feelings and events in one’s life. It is cathartic and healing.

Writing poetry helped Mary Jane in her healing and coming to terms with issues, and it honed her skills as a writer. She brings her poetic sensitivity to her memoir. Here she speaks of some of her experiences as a nurse in many difficult, even desperate situations. She works for some time as a medical flight nurse. Later she works men’s homeless shelters, and the first AIDS ward in New York City.

This is a remarkable book, beginning with a title that is appropriate and poetic. I don’t know if she will achieve saint status, but I know some nurses should. Mary Jane Nealon may be one of them.






Saturday, November 5, 2011

"Follow Friday Four Fill-In Fun"

Photobucket


Hilary of FEELING BEACHIE says:
"Each week, I plan on listing four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs. If you want to join the fun and come up with four fill in’s of your own, please email them to me at feelingbeachie@gmail.com. If I use them, I will add you as co-host to the hop! This week’s co-host is Irene from the Soap Box.  She came up with the last two statements!
I would LOVE it if you could please help me spread the word about this hop…. So, please tweet, FaceBook share, andadd the linky to your post…"
This week’s statements:
1.       I have never been to ___
2.       I hate to admit it, but sometimes I tend to be ____
3.       If I didn’t have___________________I’d be completely lost
4.       _________________________is always the best feeling at the end of the day.
My Answers:
1. "I have never been to Spain, but I've been to Oklahoma." (Three Dog Night; couldn't resist.)
2. I hate to admit it, but sometimes I tend to be reclusive.
3. If I didn't have my reading glasses I'd be completely lost.
4. A hug or cuddle is always the best feeling at the end of the day.
Okay...now hop on over to FEELING BEACHIE and visit Hilary!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

"Pondering with a Purpose"

         Hosted by Brenda Youngerman 
            of Fiction with a Purpose


Brenda's prompt this week is: 
"Online Friendships I am Thankful For"


This is hard. I really am thankful for each and every one of my followers, and I have many friends. I have gotten closer to some, for various reasons. At Brenda's request and urging, I will attempt to list some of those that I am especially thankful for.


Brenda of Fiction With a Purpose...I adore Brenda. She is funny, intelligent, makes me think, inspires me, gets me writing even when I am having "issues", and she truly cares. She is genuine, and yes...I think we would be BFF...in fact, I believe we are working on it.


Hilary of FEELING BEACHIE...Hilary makes me feel good when I go to her blog or talk with her. She makes me feel like I am welcome and belong.She is creative, sweet and funny.


Kea of Fuzzy Tales...Kea always comments and we share a common bond of love of critters. I love her blog, her posts and I think she is very enjoyable.


Pat of A View from the Edge...Pat is fun and such a faithful friend. She is always there, interested and involved. I love her blog.


Old Kitty of Ten Lives and Second Chances...we see eye to eye on critters, okay cats in particular. She always comments and is very supportive. I think she is a sincerely nice person.


RoryBore of Time Out for Mom...she is another who comments and is involved. She is very supportive, sincere and likable.


Beth (my kindred spirit), Elisa, Sherri, Lesley, Susan, Amy, Tera, Michelle, Lori, Anna Jean, Marion, Anne, Tess...and the other many authors that I have connected with. You are all very special to me. It is you that keeps me reading and blogging about books. You are special writers. I am thankful for not only your sharing of your gift, but your sharing with me personally. I am thankful for your support and kindness. You are all wonderful. 


Again...this does not exclude those I have not mentioned. I appreciate each and every one of you. Thank you all.