Thursday, October 25, 2012

* A Leap of Faith, Again *

I went through some of  my older blog posts yesterday, searching for just the right information to share...once again.  When I came upon this one, I decided to post it again. (It was an "I Wonder" post on March 9, 2012.) It was very meaningful to me then, as were all the wonderful comments I received, and it's very meaningful to me now as well, for very different and new reasons. (If anyone would like to read the comments on that original post, just click here)

Lately I've been thinking and wondering about Leaps of Faith. Don't you just love that phrase? Such thoughts and images come to my mind. But there is a group of images that is unsurpassed...


(all images courtesy Google)

I'll never forget the first time I watched Indiana Jones in The Lost Crusade take that "Leap of Faith." I held my breath, and then when I saw the "bridge" he walked across, my stomach got weak and I almost passed out because of my fear of heights! And no matter how many times I watch that scene, it effects me the same way -- -- emotionally and physically. My heart palpitates, I don't breath, my stomach does flips, and then BOOM...Indy accomplished the impossible. He believed. He HAD TO believe...and I cheer, usually out loud!

Anyone trying to achieve something of importance in their life has opportunities to take that "leap of faith," but how many of us actually do it?? Looking back, I know I've made a few of them, but they were more like "small steps of faith." (Every step in the right direction counts, though, right?) 

I'm working on the sequel to my memoir now, and will most likely need a few "leaps" along the way! 😀

 “Sometimes your only available transportation is a leap of faith.” -Margaret Shepherd

Monday, October 22, 2012

In the Zone

Good Monday Morning! I've been in my writer's zone for quite a few days now. That's why no recent posts.  

This morning, though, I'm meeting with my friend, Tara (above) to go over a speaking engagement for a writer's workshop she is in charge of. Tara and I met in April 2009 at a Habitat for Humanity event, and later I wrote  her story about losing everything in Hurricane Katrina. It was published in an anthology "Thin Threads; More Real Stories of Life Changing Moments" in 2010. (I'm also including it in my memoir.)

Until I'm back.... 

Enjoy your week! 

Take time for yourself. 

Delight in the beauty around you.

And Laugh....often!

"Each day comes bearing its own gifts. Untie the ribbons." -- Ruth Ann Schabacker

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Autumn Bliss - Part 2

Hello Everyone!

As I wrote on Monday's post, I'm sharing some photos taken during our walk.....Vern and I. 

I started taking them as soon as we left our house. Some of them aren't very good, but I'm surprised they're not all one big blur! I managed to get Vern to stop for a second or two when I wanted to take a picture. The two of him in front of me with the outstretched leash were taken while we walked. That was  a bit hard to do! Sometimes he's on a real mission to get to where we're going, and other times he zigzags, stops and sniffs. (I also want to point out that I always carry a little Doggy Do-Do baggie. We don't leave anything behind to show that we were there!)

A couple of the pictures had to be cropped a little more than I really wanted to do, but I also wanted to get rid of street names.

As you can see, we live in a newer neighborhood, where some of the trees are quite small. Everywhere I drive, though, is prettier than the next. I could practically run off the road just looking from tree to tree! (Don't worry, I'm kidding, but I do take in as much of their beauty as I can!)

This last picture is of our neighbor's tree which is right next to our driveway. Our garage is there on the left. When the wind blows, the leaves just flutter down from it and it's like a dream world. I just have to get a picture of that!

* The photos will enlarge if you click on them.*

"Listen to the trees as they sway in the wind. Their leaves are telling secrets...." -- Vera Nazarian, The Perpetual Calendar of Inspiration

Monday, October 15, 2012

Autumn Bliss

Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a beautiful, blissful weekend. 

Mine was really nice. The weather was perfectly autumn-like.

Vern and I were able to get out and have our routine walks, during which I marveled at the gorgeous colors of the trees.

I also decided that I must remember to take my camera on our walk today. I think the leaves must be at their peak and I don't want to miss taking some pictures. 

Speaking of Vern.....Here he is visiting his back-fence-neighbor! Although we've had Vern for a year and a half, we hadn't been letting him run around without being hooked to his chain. But...when he'd be out on the deck with us this summer, and notice that "Max" was out in his yard, he cried to go see him. The first couple of times, The Ronald took him on a leash to the fence. After that, Vern was allowed to run up to it on his own.
Max on left. Vern on right.

The two of them are so cute. Neither barks; they both run right to the fence, look and wag their tales, and do some sniffing. Then they walk away to take care of their business, and after a few minutes we call Vern back to our deck. It's just adorable.

*Welcome to my newest followers, Stephanie Cracknell and Carol AnnI hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you! *     

Lastly, what better way to end this post than with a picture of a cute pooch enjoying himself amid falling leaves, and a beautiful quote for the season.  

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Walking on the Sunny Side of Life

Finding the Music in Life

Today’s post is in participation with Women On Writing’s mass-blogging event, "Everybody is Talking About Finding the Music in Life."

We are celebrating the release of Sonia’s Song by Sonia Korn-Grimani. To read about the blogging event and follow the symphony of participating bloggers visit Wow - The Muffin
To read the Q&A with Sonia, visit Wow - The Muffin - Interview

Share your comments on any participating blog for a chance to win a copy of Sonia’s Song!
* I forgot to post the deadline to leave a comment here or at other participants, for a chance to win the book...print or e-book...winner's choice! Deadline: Thursday Oct 18, 11:59pm (Mountain Time)

Sometimes it's so easy to get caught up in our daily struggles or traumatic events from our past that we feel like "poor, poor, pitiful me." But, instead, I think it's so important to not dwell on those things, and to start looking for the find the "music in our lives." 

As a participant in this Mass Blogging Event, I've been asked to share what helps me stay positive in this crazy world we live in. 

I love to listen to many styles of music!
(Below is taken from my blog post of October 4, 2011)

"There is nothing in the world so much like prayer as music is." ~William P. Merrill

When most people think of the The Beatles, I doubt if "prayerful music" comes to mind. We all have our favorite songs of theirs, ranging from the very first pop/rock tunes until the final more contemplative recordings. 

Somewhere in my past....maybe 15 or 20 years ago....two of those songs became prayer-like to me. The music and lyrics would pop into my mind, just when I needed them. I'd either sing out loud or only "in my head," depending on whether I was alone or not!

Those two songs are: 

The Long and Winding Road

Let it Be

I've read various so-called explanations about the lyrics of these songs, and it doesn't matter to me what the "real" meaning is or isn't. I know what they mean to me and that's all that counts.

Wind chimes make me happy.

I see beauty everywhere I look.

I'm crazy about Vern, especially when he smiles at me!

And I love my family.....every last one of them...

I believe in laughter, and kindness, and joy, and wonder, and forgiveness, and I think most of all HOPE.

Having hope has always gotten me through the saddest, most difficult days of my life. I always know that things will be better, and that I have the strength to get there. 

* If you're a regular reader of my blog, you know that I always end with a relevant quote.

"I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge. That myth is more potent than history. That dreams are more powerful than facts. That hope always triumphs over experience. That laughter is the only cure for grief. And I believe that love is stronger than death." -- Robert Fulghum All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten

Sunday, October 7, 2012

* Nostalgic Sunday *

It's Time for Another Nostalgic Sunday

These cooler autumn temperatures always make me sentimental. Going back to school every fall was one of my favorite things; shuffling along side streets and purposely walking where I could crunch through dried leaves, the chill in the morning and night breezes, and some warmth in the sunny afternoons.

And the smell of the first burst of furnace air.... Ahhhh.... I was given that gift this weekend. There's only a couple of odors that immediately carry me back in time and this is one of them. 

The house we lived in until I was seven had a coal furnace in the basement. I remember seeing the delivery truck come by and unload a bunch of loose coal down a chute, and also seeing my dad shovel coal into the furnace.

Microsoft Clip-Art

What about you? Do you have any memories of furnaces or fireplaces? 

"There is no season when such pleasant and sunny spots may be lighted on, and produce so pleasant an effect on the feelings, as now in October." --  Nathaniel Hawthorne

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Busting Through Writer's Block

I don't remember exactly when I finally busted through my writer's block. 

*You would think I'd remember the exact day of such a momentous occasion, wouldn't you? And it hasn't really been that long ago. But, as I've mentioned before, my long-term memory is wonderful....and thank goodness, since I'm writing a memoir! But, my short-term memory...Sheesh, I don't even know half the time why I walked into or out of a certain room.*

This morning as I was getting ready for my day, it hit me. And so, you know what I did? I immediately grabbed my handy-dandy pencil and paper, jotted it down, folded it and put it in my pocket. *Yay for those simple writers' tools!* 

And so, in case I haven't already done so, I just had to share my little revelation in hopes it might help someone else:

* I realized I was writing the chapters of my memoir as if they were Chicken Soup for the Soul entries. 

* They weren't quite personal enough. 

* They didn't sound like me. 

* I know all about "Voice" in writing, and I know what mine is.

* But I also think there are various levels of that voice. 

* I needed to write more like I really talk. 

* There I was, sharing events of my life in my writing, and it just didn't sound like "me."

THAT did it. THAT was my answer. THAT was my breakthrough. 

It sounds so simple, doesn't it? Yes, in hindsight it is. But that's how it happened to me. And when I finally realized it, 

I began to write! 

The words poured out of me and I felt like I'd been hit with Writer's Lightning! 
Image: Microsoft Word Clip Art

Those of you who've read my posts involving prop planes and my writing, will get a kick out of this! I can't believe there even is a Clip Art like this.

I know this is blurry, but I love this picture. See Vern's paw on his rawhide chew bone?
Awwww, isn't he adorable?? 

When my beloved, pal Vern, and I went on our walk today, I saw prop planes fly over, again, just as they always do...just for me.

"We shouldn't forget that the universe moves with us, is at our back with everything we do." -- Natalie Goldberg

Monday, October 1, 2012

It's October 1st, So Where's Becky?

Be back soon...gotta get back to writing as many hours a day as I can!

Thanks for stopping by here and over at Jen's blog. 

I'm guest blogging today at Jennifer Daiker's fabulous blog:Unedited

Grab your coffee or tea, stop on by and say hello, okay?

photo taken by Becky: one of my Maxine sticky-notes!

"It takes a lot of courage to show your dreams to someone else." -- Erma Bombeck