Friday, August 26, 2016

Celebrate The Small Things - August 26, 2016



 

My husband saw a game at Target that looked like fun, so he bought it. He said it got good reviews and that it was #1 in Japan. Something like 10,000 were sold in the first month or two. It’s called One Night Ultimate Werewolf. He thought it would be something fun we could do as a family because one day the kids will be too old to want to hang around us anymore. It’s sort of a card game and a board game without the board. You download a free app for an announcer to guide you which helps a great deal. I don’t really like board games, but it was fun. The games are quick, like 5 minutes. My youngest son and I got the werewolf cards in the first round. Everyone has to close their eyes until the announcer tells you to open them. Everyone plays the role of the card they get. The announcer says something like, “Werewolves, wake up! Open your eyes and look for other werewolves.” My youngest son and I opened our eyes and knew each other was a werewolf. He put his hand on his mouth to stop himself from laughing. Everyone else had their eyes closed. I thought he was going to give himself away, but he didn’t. The Troublemaker can switch your card with another person’s card while your eyes are closed, so you don’t know if your role has changed during the course of the game. The game was so fun that the kids wanted to buy the Vampire version and the Daybreak Werewolf version. You can combine the games and play with the werewolves and vampires together or play the games separately. We just heard that the alien version is going to be on Kickstarter in a few days. I was guessing there would be a zombie one first. We are looking forward to playing the game again this weekend.

Our gardener fixed the leaking pipe in our yard and fixed all the other sprinklers while he was at it. Yay! Apparently, a huge root from a nearby tree grew under the lawn and broke the pipe. He cut it with a shovel and tore it out. It was about a yard long and 2” thick. Almost immediately after that, our dog started acting strangely. She came out of her crate and started panting and pacing. For three days she was acting as if she was afraid of something. She tried to hide and went in and out of the house. She went into our bedroom where she knows she is not allowed. I put the baby gate up which usually stops her from crossing, but this time she knocked the gate down and hid in our shower in the bathroom next to our bedroom. She has never done this before. I couldn’t get her out of the shower. I tried scolding, threatening, and sprinkling water on her. She wouldn’t budge, so I left her there. Our bedroom door was closed, so she couldn’t get into it. She wouldn’t even go back to her crate or to her bed which make her feel safe.

At first, I thought the root released some sort of tree spirit. I did a thorough blessing of the house, my car, the front yard, and the back yard. I didn’t really feel a difference, though. Then I heard about the earthquakes in Italy, so I thought the dog was feeling some sort of EMF from the Earth due to the earthquakes. She seems to calm down in the evening and nighttime. Maybe something geological or astronomical is blocking the energy or EMF from reaching us at that time. In the daytime she really freaks out. After the aftershock on Wednesday, she calmed down a lot, but that was closer to the evening on our time.

I texted my friends to see if their pets had been acting strangely, but they were all fine. Only my son’s friend’s dog was panting and shaking on Wednesday. His dog also went back to normal after the aftershock, just like our dog. I read that there have been major earthquakes not only in Italy, but Japan, Indonesia, and Myanmar almost every day since August 19. I’ll have to monitor my dog and the earthquakes to see if there is a correlation. My youngest son said he saw a red creature in the doorway to the hall after I blessed the house. I think it was his imagination, but I lit some sandalwood incense just in case. Five minutes after I lit it, the dog came out of the shower after being there for almost 2 hours. Odd.

Last weekend my aunt’s ashes were placed in a mausoleum. During the prayer, a hummingbird flew into the glass window over the altar and knocked itself out. It happened right when the reverend said my aunt’s name. Almost everyone saw it, except me (of course), my mom, and my youngest son. My husband said it was loud, but I didn’t hear it. I was concentrating on the prayer. My cousin was freaked out. She was clutching my husband’s elbow saying, “Did you see that? What was that? What does it mean?” Everyone thought it was dead, but it disappeared, so it must’ve gotten up and flown away. My other cousin’s girlfriend walked in late and said she felt wind by her legs, so it must’ve flown by her legs. I wasn’t afraid at all. My other aunt just giggled and said, “That was my sister.”

I turned on the sprinklers yesterday and discovered that the sprinkler heads that the gardener fixed were starting to act like they did before. One was weak and another one shot straight up in the air. They were fine on Monday when they were fixed. *Sigh* I’ll just have to deal with them when the gardener comes back. For now, though, I’m celebrating the other sprinkler heads that are working.

I’m also celebrating my progress on building a web portfolio. I have my query letter and dummy ready to send out to agents, but they want to see a link to a portfolio which I didn’t have. Jumping through hoops... It’s not quite done, but it’s getting there. Not bad.

My cousins in Arkansas drove an hour to see my sketchbook on The Sketchbook Project Tour. That was so nice of them! I’m pretty sure they are the only family members that went to see my sketchbook out of my 100+ family members. I love them!

I’m reading El Deafo which has renewed my desire to create comics. (My desire to create comics waned in the past few weeks because I've been stressed out about the crimes in my neighborhood. There were two more this week.) I wrote down a few good ideas I got this week. I just have to do it. Good or bad, I just have to get it done and let the chips fall where they may. The flame is being lit again. It also helps that I'm listening to the TCJ Talkies podcast where comics creators talk about their craft.


What are you celebrating?
Check out the blogs below for your reading pleasure and please visit our hosts' blogs:
Lexa Cain: http://lexacain.blogspot.com/
L.G. Keltner http://lgkeltner.blogspot.co.uk/
Tonja Drecker http://tonjadrecker.blogspot.com/
If you would like to join our blog hop, visit Lexa Cain's blog for info.

1.

Lexa Cain2.Fiction and Film
3.Writing Off the Edge4.Kidbits
5.TheCyborgMom6.Thoughts and Ideas from Deanie Humphrys-Dunne
7.My Inner Geek8.Intentional Insights with S. Kelley Harrell
9.Constantine10.My Miracle Life
11.Writing, Reading, and the Pursuit of Dreams12.Shells Tales and Sails
13.Lara Lacombe14.TF Walsh
15.Life, Yoga and Other Adventures16.About myself, by myself
17.Suzanne Furness18.Elizabeth Seckman
19.Avalon20.Cherdo on the Flipside
21.My Baffling Brain22.Planet Kimberly
23.Shah Wharton24.Mere Joyce
25.Victorian Scribbles26.Tanya Miranda
27.God, Entertainment, & Annoying Things28.Ann - A Friend of Jesus 2013
29.Special Teaching At Pempi's Palace30.Square Pegs
31.Patricia's Place32.Yvonne Van Dalen
33.Anne Higa34.My Antimatter Life
35.Bouquet of Books36.Lightravellerkate
37.Curious As A Cathy38.Julie Flanders
39.As the Fates Would Have It40.Crazy Old Lady
41.In My Own Words42.Allison Bruning
43.Tamara Narayan, Author44.My Creatively Random Life
45.Yvonne Ventresca



Friday, August 19, 2016

Celebrate The Small Things - August 19



 

In my last post, I wrote about my indoor plumbing problems and the ghost in my house. I blessed the house and put salt on the threshold of the front and back doors. Well, within a few days, the sprinklers in the front yard were weak. I thought the gardener had damaged the sprinklers somehow. Some of the sprinkler heads were not popping up. I pulled the grass around them and tried to pull the sprinkler heads higher, but that didn’t work. I decided to shut them off and just use the hose. When I reached the faucet, I noticed a big puddle of water in front of a bush where the sprinklers didn’t work. I thought there was a sprinkler that I didn’t know about buried under the dirt. I dug into the mud to look for the source of the water, but soon realized it wasn’t a sprinkler head. I’m pretty sure it’s a broken pipe. More plumbing problems! It makes me wonder if I pushed the ghost out of the house and into the front yard. I don’t know how to bless a front yard, so I’m just burning some sandalwood incense on our front porch. I have no idea if that will do any good, but it’s all I have time for right now. Haha. I don’t even know what sandalwood does.

I’ve been preoccupied and stressed out all week about a rash of crime in our neighborhood. Burglars breaking into houses in groups of 3-5 guys in the middle of the night when people are at home, a thief stealing packages from porches, a couple breaking into a house at 9am and running from police into a nearby elementary school while school was in session, a thief breaking into my neighbor’s car in their garage, a burglar trying to break into a house at 6pm when the sun is still up and the neighbor home, etc. My neighborhood is quiet with a lot of senior citizens, so criminals are taking advantage of that. Some neighbors have guns, so one of these days it's not going to end well.

BUT the good things that have happened amidst all this is that I met a lot of new people this week. I got to know my neighbors better and made friends with more people at the gym in talking about all this crime. One of the girls at the gym that I got to talking to is also a writer! Now I have someone I can talk to on a regular basis to share information about writing and commiserate with. She knows a lot about health stuff and might be able to help me with the floaters in my eye. (I got hit in the eye about a year ago while practicing self-defense techniques.)

AND another thing to celebrate is that I stumbled upon a writer’s group last weekend by accident…or fate. We were in another city to see a Godzilla art show that my husband is a part of. (His painting has a sound box that roars. Check it out on the Creature Features Facebook page if you’re interested.) When we left the show, we drove past a shop called Dark Delicacies. My husband said he had heard of it and thought it was pastry shop that made monster themed pastries, so we stopped in. (We were hungry.) It wasn’t a pastry shop. It was a boutique that sold monster themed clothes, books, and other items. In the middle of the shop was a group a people having a discussion about publication and writing query letters. My husband urged me to listen in. He discovered that it was free to sit in and that they meet once a month. I met the guy who runs it and a few other writers. It must be in my horoscope to meet new people this week, especially writers! Lol I learned a few things and will definitely be back next month. Plus I bought a cute sweatband with a pink skull on it there for a dollar. I wore that sweatband to Zumba which caught the attention of a girl in the class. I mentioned where I got it and that there was a writer’s group that was meeting there. That’s how I found out she was a writer, too and we became friends. I’d seen her at the gym for months, but never had a conversation with her. I think that a lot of acquaintances and even relatives have more in common with us than we realize. If we just stop to mention a few things and bring different topics up, we would find these things out. Like, I didn’t know that I had some things in common with my aunt that passed away in January until I heard her eulogy.

Oh, and I almost forgot that we binge watched the TV show called Stranger Things and loved it! I don’t get to watch TV much and this was a show we could watch as a family. The kids were scared, but they wanted to keep watching. It was a nice thing to share as a family. My friend texted me that there were a few scenes that dealt with teenage sex, but it was too late by then. Thank God it wasn’t too bad. 


What are you celebrating?
Check out the blogs below for your reading pleasure and please visit our hosts' blogs:
Lexa Cain: http://lexacain.blogspot.com/
L.G. Keltner http://lgkeltner.blogspot.co.uk/
Tonja Drecker http://tonjadrecker.blogspot.com/
If you would like to join our blog hop, visit Lexa Cain's blog for info.

 1.
Lexa Cain2.Fiction and Film
3.Writing Off the Edge4.Kidbits
5.TheCyborgMom6.Thoughts and Ideas from Deanie Humphrys-Dunne
7.My Inner Geek8.Intentional Insights with S. Kelley Harrell
9.Constantine10.My Miracle Life
11.Writing, Reading, and the Pursuit of Dreams12.Shells Tales and Sails
13.Lara Lacombe14.TF Walsh
15.Life, Yoga and Other Adventures16.About myself, by myself
17.Suzanne Furness18.Elizabeth Seckman
19.Avalon20.Cherdo on the Flipside
21.My Baffling Brain22.Planet Kimberly
23.Shah Wharton24.Mere Joyce
25.Victorian Scribbles26.Tanya Miranda
27.God, Entertainment, & Annoying Things28.Ann - A Friend of Jesus 2013
29.Special Teaching At Pempi's Palace30.Square Pegs
31.Patricia's Place32.Yvonne Van Dalen
33.Anne Higa34.My Antimatter Life
35.Bouquet of Books36.Lightravellerkate
37.Curious As A Cathy38.Julie Flanders
39.As the Fates Would Have It40.Crazy Old Lady
41.In My Own Words42.Allison Bruning
43.Tamara Narayan, Author44.My Creatively Random Life
45.Yvonne Ventresca


Friday, August 12, 2016

Celebrate The Small Things - August 12



 

I meant to post this last week, but I had a series of unfortunate events. Our air conditioner is finally working, but it’s a temporary fix. That aside, we had a week of plumbing problems.

It started when our kitchen faucet started to leak at the base. Every time I turned the water on, it leaked onto the countertop and into the open cracks along the wall and basin. The water attracted the ants that came in through the cracks in the caulk. I went on YouTube to learn how to caulk a sink and patched it up. It’s not as easy as it looks, but I got the job done.

Again, I consulted YouTube and learned how to change a faucet. I was confident that I could do it all on my own. I decided I would change the leaky bathroom faucet too since the water was already turned off in the house. Well, it didn’t go as smoothly as I had hoped. To make this long story short, this is what happened. Over the course of three or four days, I had to make several trips to the hardware store. Something leaked every day. It went from the faucet, to the valve, to the water filtration tank, another valve, the drain pipe, and then the water filtration housing. When one thing was fixed, something else leaked. It was like that old cartoon where the character plugs up a hole and then another opens up and so on. It was disheartening and strange.

Before I was able to fix the last leak, my husband saw a ghost in the kitchen. My kids saw the same thing in their room. As usual, I saw nothing. I blessed the house before I fixed the last leak and waited a few hours to let the blessing kick in. Then I fixed it. I had doubts that it was going to stop leaking but it did. All I had to do was clean a screw for the last leak, but the screw didn’t look very dirty at all. I didn’t think it would solve the problem, but so far it hasn’t leaked again. Knock on wood. Haha.

I told my friend, Lisa, about it and she asked me if our plumbing problems started happening after my aunt’s funeral a few weeks ago. It seemed like it, but I wasn’t sure. She said she had breathing problems since the funeral and she doesn’t have asthma. She also saw curtains at the church moving, but it wasn't the a/c. We discussed a strange lady who was at the funeral that gave us the creeps. She was not a family member, but she was videotaping us. We speculated that maybe she was a witch or a psychic vampire. I told Lisa about a prayer she could use to deflect negative energy. 

The next day, I asked Lisa if her breathing problems went away. She thought about it and was surprised that they did go away after she said the prayer. My plumbing problems went away as well. Hmmm. Strange. In any case, it’s reason to celebrate!


What are you celebrating?
Check out the blogs below for your reading pleasure and please visit our hosts' blogs:
Lexa Cain: http://lexacain.blogspot.com/
L.G. Keltner http://lgkeltner.blogspot.co.uk/
Tonja Drecker http://tonjadrecker.blogspot.com/
If you would like to join our blog hop, visit Lexa Cain's blog for info.

1.

Lexa Cain2.Fiction and Film
3.Writing Off the Edge4.Kidbits
5.TheCyborgMom6.Thoughts and Ideas from Deanie Humphrys-Dunne
7.My Inner Geek8.Intentional Insights with S. Kelley Harrell
9.Constantine10.My Miracle Life
11.Writing, Reading, and the Pursuit of Dreams12.Shells Tales and Sails
13.Lara Lacombe14.TF Walsh
15.Life, Yoga and Other Adventures16.About myself, by myself
17.Suzanne Furness18.Elizabeth Seckman
19.Avalon20.Cherdo on the Flipside
21.My Baffling Brain22.Planet Kimberly
23.Shah Wharton24.Mere Joyce
25.Victorian Scribbles26.Tanya Miranda
27.God, Entertainment, & Annoying Things28.Ann - A Friend of Jesus 2013
29.Special Teaching At Pempi's Palace30.Square Pegs
31.Patricia's Place32.Yvonne Van Dalen
33.Anne Higa34.My Antimatter Life
35.Bouquet of Books36.Lightravellerkate
37.Curious As A Cathy38.Julie Flanders
39.As the Fates Would Have It40.Crazy Old Lady
41.In My Own Words42.Allison Bruning
43.Tamara Narayan, Author44.My Creatively Random Life
45.Yvonne Ventresca



Friday, July 29, 2016

Celebrate The Small Things - July 29, 2016

 

I am now a month without air conditioning, so I'm not a happy camper. It's just about a constant 86 degrees in the house, day and night. It's 91 degrees outside right now. My mother came over a few days ago and couldn't see because it was so dark in here. We keep all the blinds closed and the lights off to reduce heat. I was outside in the hot sun for about an hour yesterday cleaning the area around the blower fan. What fun. I pulled the weeds around the back of the unit and even opened up the unit. I turned the power off to it and found that it was iced over. The good part was that the ice kept me a bit cooler out there in the hot sun. Long story short and many YouTube a/c videos later, I THINK our hypoallergenic filter is too thick. It's keeping the dust out, but also keeping the air from flowing through it. I bought a new filter today and am anxious for it to be installed. My husband doesn't want me to change the filter because it's on the ceiling and the grate is heavy. He's afraid I'm going to fall off the ladder or drop the grate on my head. That's how clumsy he thinks I am. So, the kids, the dog, and I are sweating it out in the house until he gets home from work.

BUT, what I do have to celebrate is that my sketchbook is on tour with The Sketchbook Project and in my sector of the planet this weekend. The tour will make several stops around the U.S. before it heads back to New York where it will remain in the Brooklyn Art Library. It is also up on The Sketchbook Project web site so people can view it online. My sketchbook is called Still Dreaming. Here is the link if you would like to view it: https://sketchbookproject.com/library/17564

Another thing to celebrate is that my painting will be on display and up for sale at the Banfill-Locke Center For The Arts art gallery starting tomorrow, July 30 through August 27. The opening reception is tomorrow 6pm-9pm. Dave Schrader, the host of Darkness on the Edge of Town radio show will be there. I wish I could be there, but it's many states away.

In the past couple of weeks, I modeled for two drawing classes and made $75. My husband and one of my sons also modeled on different days. My husband liked the paintings that one of the artists did of us so he bought them. My youngest son will be modeling next Monday, so we plan on buying a portrait of him as well.
 
I was going to wear another Hawaiian dress for the second drawing session, but discovered that it was too tight. That dress used to be loose on me, so I cut carbs, watched my eating, went back to my weightlifting program and lost about 4-5 lbs. in the past couple of weeks. I'm starting to feel better now, less bloated and I can move around a bit more comfortably. Seeing people drawing me fat was a motivator to lose weight.

Last week we went to the fourth funeral this year. My aunt had dementia and was suffering for five years. I'm glad that she doesn't have to suffer anymore. Now she's in a better place and that's something to celebrate.

What are you celebrating?
Check out the blogs below for your reading pleasure and please visit our hosts' blogs:
Lexa Cain: http://lexacain.blogspot.com/
L.G. Keltner http://lgkeltner.blogspot.co.uk/
Tonja Drecker http://tonjadrecker.blogspot.com/
If you would like to join our blog hop, visit Lexa Cain's blog for info.

1.

Lexa Cain2.Fiction and Film
3.Writing Off the Edge4.Kidbits
5.TheCyborgMom6.Thoughts and Ideas from Deanie Humphrys-Dunne
7.My Inner Geek8.Intentional Insights with S. Kelley Harrell
9.Constantine10.My Miracle Life
11.Writing, Reading, and the Pursuit of Dreams12.Shells Tales and Sails
13.Lara Lacombe14.TF Walsh
15.Life, Yoga and Other Adventures16.About myself, by myself
17.Suzanne Furness18.Elizabeth Seckman
19.Avalon20.Cherdo on the Flipside
21.My Baffling Brain22.Planet Kimberly
23.Shah Wharton24.Mere Joyce
25.Victorian Scribbles26.Tanya Miranda
27.God, Entertainment, & Annoying Things28.Ann - A Friend of Jesus 2013
29.Special Teaching At Pempi's Palace30.Square Pegs
31.Patricia's Place32.Yvonne Van Dalen
33.Anne Higa34.My Antimatter Life
35.Bouquet of Books36.Lightravellerkate
37.Curious As A Cathy38.Julie Flanders
39.As the Fates Would Have It40.Crazy Old Lady
41.In My Own Words42.Allison Bruning
43.Tamara Narayan, Author44.My Creatively Random Life
45.Yvonne Ventresca