Monday, November 11, 2019
Today is a special day for all those who are serving and have served in the U.S. Military. Today is Veteran's Day.
Today, I want to say, 'Thank You' from the bottom of my heart for your courage to want to serve our country and to continue to keep us free.
Thank you for having the strength to leave your family and loved ones behind to venture into the unknown for an indefinite length of time.
Thank you for having the determination to stand strong when things got rough while you were on foreign soil.
Thank you for sucking it up when you were away from your family and home during the holidays, time and time again.
Thank you for the countless hours you still marched on without any sleep.
Thank you, from the bottom of my heart and know that each night all the men and women serving in the U.S. Military, no matter where you are, are in my prayers for God to guide you and to keep you safe.
Today is Veteran's Day and I salute you!
Saturday, September 7, 2019
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
I've written a short story I would like to share with you. The idea came to me one warm, sunny afternoon in a coffee shop during my lunch break while I enjoyed a nice cup of ice coffee. I do love ice coffee, even in the winter time. I hope you enjoy and please, feel free to drop me a line a let me know if you enjoyed it or not.
Thanks for reading my blog!
A TIME FOR ALL THINGS
“Hi, Granny.” Melinda Jacobs called out when she opened her car door with all the energy she could muster. It was only Wednesday and she were already tired to the bone from working long hours at a demanding job. The more long hours she worked the further behind she became in her house chores and her pursuing her love of writing. “I apologize I wasn’t able to come by Sunday. I had to work.”
“Hey Puddin.” Melinda’s seventy-eight-year-old grandmother answered coming towards her. “I hate you missed it. I cooked your favorite and a pecan pie too.”
Granny called all her grandchildren Puddin’. It were a custom in her culture all grandkids had nicknames with no indication of their favorite food, drink, sports or etcetera. The tradition is suspected to have begun before the Civil War to prevent the Confederate Soldiers from drafting young boys to work on the fort down on the coast. The county census held the child’s birth name. The prevention of revealing who the boys really were remained in only the use of their nicknames.
“Did you save me a slice?” Melinda stooped down gave her grandmother a hung.
“Honey chil’ you know I did. I baked two pies.” Granny smiled and winked. “I hid one in the pie safe when your mother said you couldn’t come.” Granny turned to walk back to her flower garden of roses.
“Thank you, Granny.” Melinda wrapped her arm around her Grandmother’s shoulder, taking slow steps as they walked together. “Your roses are looking great this year Granny. Have you done anything special to them?”
“No. Not really. Just some loving care here and there.” Granny leaned down to smell a perfect bold, red bloom of a rose called, Hoochie Coochie. “Tell me about your new job, Puddin?”
“Not much to tell Granny. It’s corporate America. I work when they say work or I don’t have a job.” Melinda hunched her shoulders. “The pay and benefits are good, however, the hours are not.”
“That’s not good. What about the Lord’s day?” Granny moved to the next rose bush and began to inspect the leaves and the blooms.
“Work doesn’t begin on Sunday’s until 4 pm. That’s why I didn’t come Sunday. I would have been late for work if I had driven here and tried to drive back.”
Granny nodded her head. “I understand Puddin. There have been many times in my life were I’ve questioned why things were done the way they were.” Granny reached inside her handmade apron, retrieved a pair of tiny scissors and cut a closed bud of a pink rose. With wrinkled, knotted fingers from years of hard manual labor, she cut the thorns from the flower stem. “I know times have changed for you young folks Puddin. I know its harder now than ever to make ends meet. Always remember one thing is for sure. There is a time and place for all things. To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven, #Ecclesiastes 3:1. Don’t ever forget the Lord God, the Sabbath and always keep His day holy. You may have to work on the Lord’s Day. That doesn’t mean you can’t still get down on your knees and thank God for what you do have.”
Granny motioned for Melinda to come closer to her. Granny reached up and placed the rose behind her ear. “Now, that’s a fine rose for my fine looking granddaughter.” Granny turned toward the back door of her humble home. “Come on Puddin’. You look pale underneath your eyes. I bet you haven’t had a decent mouthful to eat since you started working.” Granny stopped and turned back to Melinda. “Come on now, times a wasting.”“Coming, Granny.” Melinda forced her tired limbs to move. Granny was right. No matter what, she would continue to praise God. For it was God who woke her every morning, gave her a job to go to, kept a roof over her head, shoes on her feet, clothes on her back and food on her table. If not for God, she didn’t know where she would be.
at May 15, 2019
Tuesday, January 1, 2019
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
#HappyNewYear from me to you! Where has the year gone? One day I was taking photos for my Memorial Day post and the next thing I know it's #2019!
I am compelled to explain my absence from my blog and all my social media in the past seven months. For the ones who have read my first book, 'A Sister's Love', the main character Flo moves to New York City to take care of her niece and nephew. While there, she takes interest in the well-being of a teenage boy, Daniel. This past summer, I got the opportunity to experience opening my home and my heart to a teenager and an infant. Talk about a major life change! Although, my youngest son is 19 the mother instinct kicked right in gear whenever the little one woke in the middle of the night. I never grumbled when I woke to fetch a bottle, changed a diaper, nor rocked the baby and myself back to sleep at 2 am. My attitude has been I'm blessed to have had the opportunity God has given me. Too often we get caught up in being inconvenienced, we overlook the opportunity that God is preparing us for a blessing.
Although there were times, I chastised myself for not finding the time to write and/or blog, I now understand God had a bigger plan that included life lessons for me. The past couple of years, I have been so consumed with studying the craft of writing and trying to learn what potential literary agents would be interested in reading in my manuscripts, I lost focus on what was more important: my love for writing and telling my stories. So what if I don't properly introduce the hero and heroine on the first page? What's the big deal about showing instead of telling and so what if my characters don't have a concise goal-motivated-conflict? The way I write (my voice) is totally different from all other authors and rightly it should be. My focus for the upcoming year is to complete to manuscripts I've been working on and to continue to ask God for guidance in all that I do. He hasn't failed me yet.
In spite of my once routine life getting all shook up, I had the opportunity to speak with a lady from my hometown, Becky Barfield who sings in a gospel group, FOREVER CHANGED. Based out of Lexington, SC, the members of Forever Changed are from Lexington, SC; Woodruff, SC, and as far away as Pigeon Forge, TN.
Sharing God's love through music, Becky told me about visiting a church and after the singing, a man walked up and introduced himself, 'my name is Jimmy'. Becky described how the wife broke down in tears. Jimmy had dementia and he hadn't known his name in a very, long time.
On other instances, Becky recounted how visitors would introduce themselves after the singing and express how they felt close to their loved ones who had passed.
As I drove home from my church the last time Forever Changed visited, I reflected on the message I received from their song worship and I were reminded of this Bible verse:
1 Corinthians 2:12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
Until next time, I wish everyone a blessed Happy New Year and a wonderful week!
Monday, May 28, 2018
Today we observe #Memorial#Day. For some, today is recognized as a #Federal holiday; a day off from work with pay. Others associate today as a time to prepare their pools for the summer, time to plan their summer vacation to the beach, time to get their boats and fishing gear ready and time to fire up the grills.
For many others, today will be a day for them to grieve, to hang on to the good memories they still have and mourn the loss of their loved ones who served in the US Military.
Umbrella in hand and my camera, I visited a local cemetery near my home where my ancestors are buried. I walked amongst the tombstones in the misting rain with mixed emotions of sadness, gratitude, and admiration.
As I walked along the graveyard searching for the tombstones with small flags saturated from the rain I wondered what the soldiers' lives were like growing up. Were they from a large farming family or were any of them orphaned? Did they get to finish high school? Did they leave a sweetheart behind? So many unanswered questions and a part of history we will not ever know.
Visiting the graves of the soldiers, I just didn't take a photo and rush on. I patiently took my time and lingered for a few moments. Some more than others because I had to clean off the nameplates on the ground. (Trees and mother nature hasn't been kind to some). I took time to read their name, read their birthdates, death dates and then I 'Thanked them' (by name) for their service, for their belief in our nation, for their courage, for their strength to leave their families behind to serve their country, for their integrity, for their never-ending bravery, and for their sacrifice to keep us free.
I wondered what it was like for these young men to go away from home to a new a strange environment. Did their parents approve? Or how many didn't have a father, just a mother, and siblings? It had to have been very difficult and I'm sure the color of their skin and their deep, old-Oxford-Dutch dialogue caused them to be center of attention when they first arrived for basic training. (If you're wondering - the soldiers are all Native American from the Lumbee (North Carolina Tribe.)
Today, I took time from my way overdue chores, from my manuscript to visit and pay my respects to my ancestors at the family cemetery on Memorial Day. This is something I used to do with my grandparents when I was a child. They didn't wait until Memorial Day or any other special holiday, they went when the notion struck. As I remember, it was at least once a month.
This last photo is of my maternal uncle's grave. I visited his grave last. I stood on the small brick retaining wall surrounding the family plot and thanked my Uncle for his service to our country.
As I drove home, I wondered how many others would visit the graves of our soldiers today?
at May 28, 2018
Sunday, May 6, 2018
For we walk by faith, not by sight 2 Corinthians 5:7
at May 06, 2018
Friday, February 2, 2018
Wal-Mart Joins e-Publishing Ballgame?
Just when I thought I had figured out which e-publishing platform I was going to use once I completed my manuscript the publishing industry has changed yet once again.
My research of e-publishers resulted in the five largest retailers: Amazon, Apple iBooks, Nook Press, Google Play and Kobo. At the time, Kindle by Amazon ranking highest on my list of e-publishing requirements. After the newest announcement, its back to the drawing board for me.
#Walmart has partnered with Kobo to sell e-readers, e-books and audio books that will be available at its 4,000 stores later this year. According to #Publishers Weekly, Kobo marketplace 'holds nearly six million titles from thousands of publishers and hundreds of thousands of authors.'
The thought of my book ever getting read according to Kobo's title list is very daunting. Walmart has changed and dominated the retail industry for the past several years. With e-commerce slowly on the rise, the million dollar question is who will attempt to conquer it now? Will it be Wal-mart who teamed up with #Google and now Kobo or will it be Amazon?
I'm wondering if this new partnership between Wal-mart, Google Play and now Kobo are going to tip the scales in not only e-publishing options but most importantly if it will affect the prices of author's books? Most e-books range from $.99 to $3.99 per download. That's considerably a fair price to download a book in the comfort of your home to enjoy on a cold, wintry day. The dishearten part; I receive newsletters on a regular basis from many authors who are giving away their books for free just to gain readership. I'm wondering if that concept is working?
In the upcoming months as after I finish writing my manuscript and get it edited, I have a sneaking feeling my decision to e-publish will be between Kobo and Kindle Direct Publishing.
Today is a special day for all those who are serving and have served in the U.S. Military. Today is Veteran's Day. Today, I want t...
#Flashback Friday How many remembers the Panama Jack t-shirts, sunglasses and other apparel? We thought we doing something spo...
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! #HappyNewYear from me to you! Where has the year gone? One day I was taking photos for my Memorial Day post and th...
Hello Friends, I've written a short story I would like to share with you. The idea came to me one warm, sunny afternoon in a co...