"...IF YOU FOLLOW YOUR BLISS, DOORS WILL OPEN FOR YOU THAT WOULDN'T HAVE OPENED FOR ANYONE ELSE." - Joseph Campbell

"SOMETIMES ON THE WAY TO YOUR DREAM, YOU GET LOST AND FIND A BETTER ONE." - Lisa Hammond

"IT IS POSSIBLE AT ANY AGE TO DISCOVER A LIFELONG DESIRE YOU NEVER KNEW YOU HAD." - Robert Brault


"IT'S NEVER TOO LATE TO BE WHO YOU MIGHT HAVE BEEN." - George Eliot

"WE DID NOT CHANGE AS WE GREW OLDER. WE JUST BECAME MORE CLEARLY OURSELVES." - Lynn Hall

"GO CONFIDENTLY IN THE DIRECTION OF YOUR DREAMS! LIVE THE LIFE YOU HAVE IMAGED." - Henry David Thoreau

Monday, December 28, 2009

** My Plan For 2010 **

I’m not one to make New Year’s resolutions. I know that 99% of the time, people just say what they think others want to hear, or what they know in their hearts they should do; such as quitting smoking, exercising and losing weight. Luckily, I’m not fighting any of those battles. (I quit smoking many years ago; I do exercise, even though it’s quite minimal; and I’ve already lost 10 lbs. and am on my way to my goal of 20 lbs!)

I do have some definite plans, though, as to how I will live my life in the year 2010. I’ll call them Steps 1-2-3.

1) I will not waste so much precious time. I am awake approximately 18 hours every day, and some of those days, I certainly don’t accomplish very much.

2) I will get my home office organized and keep it that way.

3) I’m going to consistently write my memoir and get it completed.

All three steps basically boil down to one thing: More Time for Writing!



"There is never enough time to do everything, but there is always enough time to do the most important thing." -- Brian Tracy

Sunday, December 27, 2009

*** LET IT SNOW, LET IT SNOW, LET IT SNOW! ***

Oh, the weather outside is joyful
And the fire is so delightful.....
And since we've no place to go....
Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

Ahhh. I couldn't ask for anything more on this beautiful Sunday afternoon. I'm enjoying every task I'm performing....such as laundry, straightening up different rooms, cooking, watching a little NFL football on TV, answering e-mails, helping to keep the fire in the fireplace roaring.....all while watching those beautiful snow flakes falling, swirling, looking like a favorite snowglobe of mine!

I hope everyone is also enjoying their day as much as I am!

Friday, December 25, 2009

*** Christmas Day 2009 ***

** I got my wish! We're having beautiful snow flakes!!! Some are light at times, some really large and heavy at others! (It truly looks like the photo I posted below!)

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Seasons Greetings....whatever fits your style and mood!

We'll be with all our kids and grand kids later this afternoon. I can only imagine the excitement and noise going on in their homes this morning!

Peace, Joy and Wonder to all of you.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

** Christmas Eve 2009 **




"It's December the twenty fourth, and I'm longing to be up North...."

I was feeling the same way the past couple of days, as the temperature kept climbing and we received a deluge of rain instead of the lovely snowflakes which would be so much more appropriate this time of year. But today the temps begin to drop drastically and our forecast is for some light snowfall. Yippee!!

If we just have flurries on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, that is all I ask. I just want to see and feel and be surrounded by the magical quietness, the glorious wonder, the miracle that is ** Snow! **

(The picture above was taken from my back patio in Janurary 2008.)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

** A Charles Dickens Christmas **




The movie: A Christmas Carol and the other versions of the wonderful Dickens tale (Scrooge...the musical with the fantastic Albert Finney, and Scrooged...the comedy with hilarious Bill Murray) have been favorites of mine for many years. I love the story of a miserable, greedy man learning how to be loving and giving again, especially at such a late stage in his life.

At this holiday time of year, when giving is stressed....especially to people who are less fortunate than we are, it's always wonderful to see people doing good things for others on the television news, instead of the usual pain and suffering we're constantly subjected to. And many of us ask ourselves, after the cheer and good will is gone and forgotten....WHY is it forgotten? Why do most of us tend to only think of those in need during the holidays? I've heard of a saying that's something like: Need knows no season.

I received a Christmas card today from the wonderful people at the local Habitat for Humanity office. I was immediately struck by the quote on the front of the card, and knew that I must post it on my blog:

"I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year." --- Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

I will often remind myself of this quote and I request all my friends to do the same. There are millions of people in our world that are so much more worse off than any of us may think we are.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

** Various Thoughts on a Sunday Evening **

This morning I decided to change my comment formatting from Open Comments, to Saving for Publication, and I'll receive an e-mail to review them before they actually appear on my blog. I really don't like doing it that way, but until further notice, that's how it will work. Just wanted to point that out for anyone who leaves a comment and wonders why it didn't post automatically. 

I had a combo-weekend: both productive and lazy! And so, I'm ready for a very productive day tomorrow. No time for laziness the rest of this week. I've got lots to do, in every corner of my life!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

** Incredible Coincidence & Friendships for a Lifetime **

My writer friends and I have similar likes and dislikes, mostly I guess because we are creative, thinking women, who really see the world around us.We have such camaraderie, kindness, generosity, support for each other, and hilarious times together.

Last night, two of my writer friends and I got together for dinner and the exchanging of Christmas gifts. One of the friends and I discovered last week that we both had bought the exact same gift for the third friend. Out of all the millions of "writer related" gifts we could've chosen, how in the world did we buy the exact same day planner??? It's called The Reading Woman and contains gorgeous pictures of various works of art depicting women reading! Plus it contains many inspirational quotes. (Tammy and I are still mystified and shaking our heads about this incredible coincidence! She happened upon hers at a local book store. I bought mine online after browsing for "writer gifts", "women writers gifts", journals and calendars.)


I've never experienced such acquaintances, friendships, or allies, all pertaining to one particular "group" of people. I've even developed immediate friendships online, due to my contacting someone because I loved the way she wrote, and vice versa.

How amazing it is to be a writer.....a published writer.....at this stage of my life!

All I can say is, with the continued support of my wonderful writer friends, "the best is yet to come"!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Trouble With Posting My Photos

I haven't posted anything since our big Chicken Soup for the Soul book signing on Saturday, the 12th, because I wanted to include some photos I took, but my computer is not cooperating! The camera worked fine, the pictures look great, but when I try to install them onto my laptop, it says something like it can't find my photo program! And when I tried to download it again, something didn't work properly. Eeeeeekkk!!!

I really dislike computer problems!!!!

Guess I'll have to do a little more investigating tomorrow and hopefully can get it fixed! Until then.....

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas! ♪♫♪♪♫

Friday, December 11, 2009

** CHARLES DICKENS-ESQUE ATMOSPHERE **

* Reminder: Tomorrow, Saturday December 12th,
    Main Street Books in Historic St. Charles:

  Chicken Soup for the Soul --- Canned Soup for the Body

  Please stop by between 1:00 and 3:00 pm, bring one canned good for a local food pantry, save 10% on your total purchase. Buy some of your Christmas gifts: Chicken Soup for the Soul books, autographed by local authors!!  (Photo below is of 4 of the 7 writers attending, myself included.)



  Hope to see many people there!  

  http://www.stcharleschristmas.com/    

   http://www.mainstreetbooks.net/

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

*** Did Somebody Say WIND?? ***

We're not getting the blizzard that many states are suffering from today, BUT....since around midnight or so last night, the wind has been causing some damage, and waking up quite a few people...yours truly included!

It's enough to take breath away (including Tiger's!), scoot around patio furniture, and blow empty, Christmasy-wrapped boxes out of the little, wooden wagon in our front yard! Luckily, when I looked out my door for about the 6th time this morning, and noticed that 2 of them had jumped right out of that wagon, they were still in MY yard. I grabbed a coat, ran out and retrieved them, plus the ones still in the wagon, and brought them inside. (Another fortunate thing was that I was not still in my jammies!)

I think it's definitely a good day to stay inside and do a little baking, work on my Christmas cards, and get some writing accomplished! I think I'll call some of my relatives in Iowa, too, and see how they're doing.

I'm soooo grateful I don't have to go anywhere today!

Monday, December 7, 2009

** Christmas Joy on Main Street **

Those of you that live near me, are very aware of our beautiful and quaint Main Street in St. Charles, Missouri. During the Christmas Season, it is filled with charm, enchantment, & so many activities: http://www.stcharleschristmas.com/

Please stop by Main Street Books this Saturday, December 12th, from 1:00 to 3:00pm for a special event:

Chicken Soup for the Soul….Canned Soup for the Body

Seven St. Charles/St. Louis area Chicken Soup for the Soul writers will participate in a multi-author book-signing on Saturday, December 12th, 2009 from 1-3 p.m. at Main Street Books, 307 S. Main Street, St. Charles, MO 63301. Customers can bring in a canned good to be donated to a St. Charles food pantry and receive 10% off their entire purchase that day. Refreshments will be served at the signing. For more information, please visit: http://www.mainstreetbooks.net/.

I will be part of this with my writer-gal-friends: Tammy Goodsell, Teri Sanders, Linda O'Connell, Pat Wahler, Sherri Stanczak, and Patsy Zettler. Between the 7 of us, I think we must be published in about 20 Chicken Soup for the Soul books! Purchase some wonderful, autographed books, enjoy some free refreshments, and help a good cause by bringing at least one canned good!! And, no, they don't have to be canned soup! Any canned good will be greatly appreciated!!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

** Various Ponderings on a Sunday Evening **

Parties: Yesterday, two of the writers groups I belong to, held their Christmas Parties. I hated the thought of missing one of them, but it really wasn't that big of a decision when one was about 2 miles from my house, and the other about 30 miles! (Sorry SLWG friends! Too bad we couldn't "tele-commute"(is that the word I want??) both parties!

So.... I attended the Saturday Writers party and had a great time. A few people read some of their work and they were all really good. As I recall, all had funny moments that got laughs and chuckles. I had a chance to chat with friends I don't see very often and also met some new writers, wishing to join our group. Oh, and did I mention lots of yummy food? All in all, a very good time!

Blogs: I've "met" some wonderful people because of my blog, and not too long ago discovered a couple of neat options. Did you know if you click on the "Next Blog" link on your home page, it takes you to a person's blog that shares your interests? Blogspot recently changed this option. It used to just randomly take you to anyone's blog...maybe in a different language and sometimes in a genre you might not want to see! I tried it again yesterday and came across different writer or book lover blogs. I didn't have time then to really read them, but put a couple in my favorites and will go back to them later. Also, if you go to your Profile page, and click on one of your favorite movies or books, etc. it will take you to a page full of others that also has that movie or book in their profile! Sometimes, you won't automatically find anyone who might be of interest to you, but other times it works! That's how I just "met" Daisy, who also loves Erma Bombeck books! We have already become Followers of each other's blogs. Give it a try and see how many fantastic people you can meet!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

** Writer Web Sites **

I discovered two different websites yesterday that are looking for, from what I could tell, writers to post personal essays on their sites. They both looked so intriguing I thought I'd pass the info along!

Catholic Mom:  http://www.catholicmom.com/

Mom's Who Need Wine: http://www.momswhoneedwine.com/

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**Also, my story "Thoughts On Love & Forgiveness" which is included in Chicken Soup for the Soul; Divorce & Recovery was also published online last month at http://www.beliefnet.com/. It can still be found under: www.beliefnet.com/Inspiration/Chicken-Soup-For-The-Soul/2009/12/Thoughts-on-Love-and-Forgiveness.aspx. If you get a chance to read it, please feel free to leave a rating   ;-)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

** First Snow Flurries Last Night! **

We had our first snow flurries of the season last night, and as always, I ran to the door to look outside. I texted my 22 year old son, Mark, because he too loves winter and snow. He was disappointed, though, because he wasn't seeing any in his part of town.

I think it's so neat that he and I share that child-like wonder when it comes to enjoying snow!


And, I guess it's mostly because of that little tease of what will surely arrive sometime this winter, that I added many more Christmas songs to my Play List today. Please take a few moments to listen as it randomly plays songs that may be some of your favorites, or just click on the ones you would rather hear. Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

** Happy December 1st **

Where has this year gone? Isn't that what we've been saying every December for quite a few years?

I haven't posted for a week, which is really unusual for me......Just been busy enjoying the "Thanksgiving Season"! The days of baking in preparation for our family dinner the Saturday before....The day of friends and fun on the actual Thanksgiving at a dear friend's home....My very first shopping adventure on the day after Thanksgiving.....and visiting my wonderful friend who I sometimes lovingly refer to as "Crazy Rita"!

Three weeks ago, Crazy Rita had open heart surgery and came through with flying colors!! When Sherry and I visited her last Friday, we were amazed and thrilled to see her looking so good....looking and acting like her old "crazy" self....looking and acting as if nothing had changed....But, knowing her the way I do, I'm sure that "something" has changed. I can't imagine what, though, because she had already been such a funny, optimistic, faith-filled woman, even in the middle of career issues, family concerns, etc. That will surely help her, too, as she goes through her physical therapy.

I'm so looking forward to taking her to lunch one day soon. I can't wait to hear what funny, crazy things she has to say!