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Reaching Out to Touch…#MFRWAuthor

SUSAN TAYLOR’S BLOG today got me to thinking. About effective advertising, and songs with an impact.

Oh, I took that suggestion to heart. My phone bills were astronomical. Then along came cell phones, and I almost had to take a second job to pay that bill!

But there’s another side. The side that says take that chance, reach out to someone you love, someone you don’t care for, someone you don’t even know.

Susan is one of the people I met through the Your Turn Challenge, inspired by SETH GODIN

If you’re not following Seth’s blog yet, you really need to check him out. He’s about marketing, production, and doing your very best no matter what.

And take a minute to reach out. Over the phone, face to face. It can make a difference to someone.

 

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Faking Your Way to Success

A year or so ago, I found this TED talk from 2012. I remind myself to go back and rewatch as often as possible.

Today this phrase jumped out: “Women feel chronically less important than men” Looks like some of us need to break ourselves out of this state of being.

And  THIS CHART a visual reminder of body language.

Even if I wasn’t born or raised to succeed in something I could ask myself: What does a successful person in this field do? Even more to the point: How does a successful person act/speak/behave? Hasn’t helped with my housekeeping but it has more than once pulled me out of a deep abyss.
Then I found out, more often than not, these successful people were faking it right along with me.

Like ANNA BLAKE a successful horse trainer, Dressage rider, rescue organizer. Just as doubt ridden as the rest of us but moving forward every day.

Step by step, arms in the air. We’re all in this together and together we will succeed.

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A Bit of Jocularity…Seriously

When my post with Peter, Paul, and Mary published, a friend in Kansas called to share a bit of trivia.

It seems her family reunions in HOLYROOD, KS from time to time. The last census shows Holyrood has a population of 447. Right, 447, no commas, no zeros. I bet it would be pretty hard for anyone to prank here since everyone would know everyone else and what they’d been up to.

Lebanon KS is the accepted geographic center of the contiguous United States; Holyrood is due south about two hours.

Although mildly interesting, none of this has anything to do with my friend’s telephone call.

It seems Holyrood, population 447, has three churches. One is Catholic, one is Lutheran, one is United Church of Christ.

The Lutheran Church is St Peter Lutheran Church

Or you can visit St Paul‘s United Church of Christ

The Catholic church is St Mary‘s Catholic Parish House

Think I’m joshing? HERE check it out for yourself.

Yes, truth can be stranger than anything you can make up. My friend suggested I put this in a book…but who would believe me?

In appreciation for you staying to the end: Classic Peter, Paul, and Mary.

Peace and love

 

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More Yummy Biscuits…or Scones Depending on Where You Live

Last month I shared a recipe for ‘almost’ KFC biscuits  HERE

Greta van der Rol, who writes Space Opera, takes wonderful pictures, and lives in Australia, tells me biscuits are those sweet morsels (cookies!) and what I shared was scones. Oooo-kay. Scones for me are kind of sweet and a bit flaky. But it’s all good and yummmmm.

A couple days ago on a Low Carb FaceBook page I saw a new recipe for something I might not call a biscuit…it’s so good, it might need its own name. And soooo simple. I’m hoping to find the original recipe so I can give credit to the very clever person who came up with this.

In one bowl mix 1/3 cup coconut flour, tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp baking powder. 011
In a small bowl combine 3 eggs and 1/3 cup melted butter.
Slowly mix wet ingredients into dry mixture. Slowly fold in 6 ounces shredded cheddar cheese. Shape into bal
ls onto parchment paper. Bake at 400 15-18 min til edges are golden brown. Cool at least half hour. The longer they cool the denser they get.

Yes, they are good. No doubt they’ll keep well refrigerated if they last that long. I’m thinking a nice white cheese would be good. Or maybe with some different spices. Hmmm.

I have news…SUCH news…to share with you.

Tomorrow!

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We ARE Family

My January 27 blog referenced loss. This was the anniversary of my husband’s death, and also his father’s. It was also the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. Someone asked me if I had family at Auschwitz. Being of essentially WASP background, I had to say no.
Except…
With an event of such magnitude, how can we not all be related?


One my father’s side I represent the British Isles…Scot, English, possibly some Irish. We are the Hendersons of Glencoe,. That would be the ones who decided to leave without fighting, or so I’m told. Be that as it may, and it was so very long ago, we are also kin to those Scots who were slaughtered at Culloden in a brutal attempt at domination.
On my mother’s side, I’m American Indian. Choctaw to be more specific. My mother was born in Oklahoma and there’s a saying: if you’re born in Oklahoma and you’re not part Indian, you’re lying. Again, something told to me. And certainly the white folk on this side of ‘the pond’ can’t have much pride in how they treated those who were different.
Fact is, I’m a mutt with delusions of grandeur. After all on one side my ancestors were landed gentry in Merry Olde England. On the other side? There’s some German immigrants and an Indian lady named Liza Blue. I hear there’s also a horse thief and a scoundrel. The horse thief might have been on the more refined side of the pedigree.
Even so.
When something as brutal as the concentration camps happens, we are all family. We must be. We must connect not only to the Jews but also to the Africans and the Kurds and people around the world without a voice to stand against oppression.
“We must hang together, gentlemen…else, we shall most assuredly hang separately”..a statement of a man who was not perfect but who was willing to stand up for what he believed in…Benjamin Franklin.
This probably seems like a disjointed rant. Maybe it is. And maybe I’m trying to express what I’ve believed in for most of my life. There is no such thing of supremacy of any race, color or creed.
We are ALL family

GROUP HUG? Or just giddy fun?

Active

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Gathering Rosebuds

Robert Herrick, 1600s
Pictures from NM gathering for Tom 015To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time
Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
Old Time is still a-flying:
And this same flower that smiles to-day
To-morrow will be dying.

The glorious lamp of heaven, the sun,
The higher he’s a-getting,
The sooner will his race be run,
And nearer he’s to setting.

That age is best which is the first,
When youth and blood are warmer;
But being spent, the worse, and worst
Times still succeed the former.

Then be not coy, but use your time,
And while ye may, go marry:
For having lost but once your prime,
You may for ever tarry.

This is so much a poem of its time, but with a many layered message. On the one hand, this cleric/poet seemed to be encouraging young women to hurry up and marry before they lose the ‘bloom’ of youthful beauty. He celebrates youth and seems to see prime as only those immature years. He lived to the ripe age of 83, remaining a bachelor yet writing sensual poetry. I know there’s a deep story behind those bare facts. Dead Poet’s Society revealed the poem’s most important layer.

Live your life as fully as possible. Love large, write wonderful words, paint amazing pictures, carve sculptures people need to caress.

Carpe Diem…seize the day.

for blog

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Coffee Cake to Bring in the New Year #Am Writing #MFRWAuthors

Ahhh Snow

Ahhh Snow

Welcome 2015, and right on schedule the year’s first snow fall. Lovely in pictures, isn’t it? Not great for driving of course but it looks like it might clear for a while. In the meantime, what better way to occupy myself than by baking yummies to share with friends?

The foundation recipe is from my favorite site, All Day I Dream About Food, here: Cinnamon Roll Coffee Cake Yes, it does taste as wonderful as it sounds. Being me of course I had to change it up a bit, not adding the cream cheese frosting, reducing the sweetener a bit (partially because I ran out!) and adding pecans. I love the taste of toasted pecans. Instead of a single yummy cake, I made three smaller ones so I could share with friends.

Some to Share

Some to Share

And yes I did share!

The coffee cake is great with champagne, and of course wonderful with coffee. It’s not low calorie but it low carb and very filling. Which means it should last a while. I store in a zipper bag in the refrigerator.

Now I really need to get back to Willow Springs. I just left my heroine having to face her past. Ah the angst.

Happy baking!

 

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Sweet Potato Girl by Rob Hart « Nailed Magazine..And Why We All Need to Believe in Feminism

Sweet Potato Girl by Rob Hart « Nailed Magazine.

I read Rob Hart’s musings on growing up male and privileged, and how he wanted to be more. As a soon to be father of a girl, he wants her world to be better than the one he grew up in. Better for her.

So many of my female friends suffered from abuse and misuse by people they should have been able to trust. Around the world, women and girls are less than, as if their society fears females that could be more than. This treatment has been going on for centuries, which does not make it any more acceptable.

How much longer will we shrug our shoulders, murmur “Boys will be boys” and go on about our own lives, as long as it doesn’t affect our own daughters or sisters?

When will we decide this is the true dawn of the new era we’ve pretended to pay lip service to for so long?

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October 16, 2014 · 10:00 am

You Give Me Fifteen Minutes…

A memory from my childhood, reinforced by my years commuting in Los Angeles, is a radio tag line: “You give us 22 minutes, we’ll give you the world,” from an all news radio program. Turns out this was the third all news programming, started in 1924, making the radical decision to go all news in 1965. I kind of miss the all news radio programs, but that’s a topic for another time.

Time management people advise us to break down insurmountable tasks into achievable steps. When that doesn’t work, then only take on the impossible job for a short span of time: ten, fifteen, twenty minutes spent on sorting the mountains of old mail and newspapers on the table, or going through the junk drawers. We know this works, even when we don’t always do it.

When Susan Elizabeth Phillips spoke to LERA , she revealed her production secret: a kitchen timer, set to her personal time goal. For that period of time, she writes. Write or Die will help you stick to that time period, not allowing you to step away from the keyboard until your time or word allotment is complete. You do NOT want to upset Write or Die! Several of LERA’s amazing, prolific, award winning authors (we have more than one!!!) use Write or Die.

I bought my kitchen timer, and yep, wrote for those minutes. Until the timer disappeared in a pile of old mail, and my attention wandered off to other things. I tend to do that, all too often.

So yep here I am back again with another session of BICHOK, which is not a new breed of fuzzy dog. It’s Butt In Chair, Hands On Keyboard. And with a bit more understanding of my own foibles.

Since the kitchen timer, once unearthed, did not work, I turned to my cell phone. Sure enough, there is a timer, so I had no more excuses.

Here’s how it works for me when I sit down to write. The family of dust bunnies I see in the corner, which has been in residence for longer than I want to admit, must be evicted NOW. If the refrigerator is not cleaned out immediately I will no doubt starve to death (an unlikely occurrence but still…) And I jump off my writing stool and take care of these issues. Before you know it, I’m out of time, and wondering where the day went.

Fifteen minutes, during which I do not answer the phone, the door, or any call of nature. I think only about my book. I write steadily, sometimes fast sometimes not. Sometimes strong emotional scenes, sometimes puking drivel. Fifteen minutes I give myself up to my story. Then I walk away and do something mindless.

Mindless might mean sweeping up those dust bunnies or washing some dishes. Maybe bagging the bulk box of chicken necks into

daily portions, for the Salukis. Gardening is a different level of consciousness for me. Not mindless, more of a Zen experience. I garden to be aware of what’s growing for me, and to help fulfill my love of color and beauty.

During those mindless times I realize Matt would never have asked Jess anything which might upset her until after she’s eaten breakfast, since she already tends not to take good care of herself. So I know when I go back to their story, I’m going to fix that scene. Which I can, because it’s now on the screen, not just in my head.

Because I gave myself fifteen minutes.

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Time To Grow Up…as Writers

David Farland blogs on writing techniques and also on writing philosophy.  Today’s Blog addressed the long held belief that any writing was better than no writing. Which does have merit, of course, if our eventual goal is perfection of the written word. But if our goal is seeing our finished book in print, multiple times over, we need to up our game.

At the most recent LERA – Land of Enchantment Romance Writers meeting, four successful (and may I say brilliant?) writers shared their secrets. Jeffe Kennedy Robin Perini Katie Lane and Darynda Jones shared their secrets to success as well as their secret triumphs and failures to a roomful of people who thought they knew about the writing life. In brief, they take their writing seriously, they schedule when they will write and they write. That muse so many of us pretend to need before we can create can show up or not. They write. Given the multitude of awards and best seller statuses shared (check them out!) the system obviously works.

If it works for them, it can work for us. Going back to David Farland, he finishes this bit of writing advice with: “If you’ve been using the “tortoise method” of writing, grow up.” 

Gulp.Dontcha just hate it when something so profound slaps you between the eyes. If your muse wants to take a holiday, let her/him/it. Wave buh-bye while you’re sitting down to pound out your next 1500 words. Guaranteed, she/he/it will be back looking over your shoulder, wanting to be a part of the process.

Me? I’m editing A Question of Honor (first in a series about a ranch in northern New Mexico that helps out PTSD warriors) and writing on Seasons (working title) My heroine in Seasons doesn’t really have a name yet, so far she’s been Leslie, Mel, Jess. Even so she’s having adventures and delving into her painful past. I do love my angst.

Every sunrise is a new adventure

Every sunrise is a new adventure

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