Saturday, May 27, 2017

Sands of Time

Mae never felt comfortable celebrating her birthday. It seemed like much ado about nothing. Still, she couldn’t help but feel nostalgic when the calendar reminded her of the day.

Mae was alone since Rudy had passed away. The kids were all grown, with lives of their own. Everyone was so busy these days. There was just no time to spend together anymore.

Mae felt her birthday was just a time to reflect on the past. Looking through old photographs, one caught her rapt attention. The beach! It was always a favourite family vacation spot.

Closing her eyes, Mae could feel the soft breeze and smell the fresh air. She could feel the warm sun and sand, too. Mae could even hear the laughter of children. They were all there, again. Together.

A gift to herself. Through tears, she whispered, “Happy birthday to me”.

Story: McGuffy Ann Morris
Word Count= 146 words
Image: The Storyteller's Abode

Shared with:
Flash Fiction/Photo Prompt,
100-150 words inspired by photo

Kaleidoscope of Sound: S

Bill said, "He's a hotshot, a show off and a control freak. But, he's amazing. So, its all good."

Brian Setzer

*Please remember to leave your comments or questions for Bill. Thanks!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Snowball Forever

My heart broke when I received the email from Ellen of 15andmeowing today. Snowball had lost her battle. Like Ellen, I can be superstitious when my furkids are sick. So, we prayed.

Each time we lose a furry love, they take a piece of us with them. They leave a hole in our hearts that no one else can fill. Now, there is another furry angel, because Snowball has received her special wings. 

Snowball was blessed to have been safe in the home of Ellen and her hubby for as long as she was. Their love for their furkids is unconditional. Ellen does so much for cats and their people. She is a blessing to all who know her. Please visit Ellen to show your support as she grieves Snowball's crossing. 

This one is for Snowball...she will be loved and missed...forever.

Friendly Fill-ins: Week 55

We are happy you are here for another week of friendly sharing! As always, you can find the fill-ins here and at each Thursday. On Fridays, we post the linky for sharing. The first two fill-ins are always provided by Ellen. The final two statements are offered by myself. You are welcome to answer in the comments, but if you link up, even more people can share!

Thank you for being here today. I appreciate your friendship, your time, and your comments. I know that life is busy, and time gets away easily. So, thank you for being part of my journey and sharing yours with me. 

Please check out my "58 Things"post today. I share some things about myself that you may or may not know. It took a lot of thought to come up with this list to share. I invite you all to take up this birthday challenge on your next birthday. If and when you post it for your birthday, please make sure to let me know. I would like to read the things that you share. 

Have a safe Memorial Weekend. It is the unofficial start of Summer. Enjoy your loved ones, free time, and gatherings. Please, do remember to take a moment to honour those who died in active military service. We owe them so much respect and gratitude. They earned it.

Here are my completed fill-ins:

1. My idea of roughing it is no restroom facilities, no showers, no electricity. That is how we used to camp out when I was growing up in Texas. We went on camping and fishing trips often. Those are happy childhood memories!

2. I never get sick of talking about happy memories that Bill and I have shared over the years. We have been married thirty-six years in June, so there are a lot of happy memories. Many of them have critters in them, naturally. The stories do get retold often, too.

3. My youth taught me the essential things that I would need in life. I watched others and learned what not to do. I also learned about the kind of person that I wanted to be. I am thankful for lessons learned by watching and listening. History does not have to repeat itself.

4. My "golden years" are being charted as I head toward that sunset. I don’t want more stuff, just more happiness. I know what I need and what is important. My needs are minimal. I have learned that for me, less really is more.

~May you always find happiness in what you have!~

Now, it's your turn. Please link up with us here. Or, you can answer in the comments.

58 Things

Today I am 58. With that in mind, I was challenged to share 58 things about myself. (Thank you, La La in the Library.) Since I don't celebrate my birthday, I thought this might be an interesting way to reflect. I did put a lot of thought and feeling into this project. So, in no particular order, I share these fifty-eight things about myself. 

1. I was born at 12:01 A.M. 

2. I am an old soul. 

3. I am a first-generation Northerner. 

4. Growing up, I went to eleven schools. 

5. I am a realist.

6. I have an acute, often dry, quirky sense of humour.

7. I often use my sense of humour as a defense mechanism.

8. I am a voracious reader. 

9. I have arachnophobia. *augh*

10. I have severe claustrophobia.

11. I come from a long line of storytellers. I use mine for good, though.

12. Writing is how I sort through thoughts and feelings.

13. Without cats and dogs in my life, I feel incomplete.

14. I converted to Catholicism at age 18.

15. I contemplated joining a convent.

16. I believe in the supernatural and mysteries of faith.

17. I am a Peanuts fan, especially Snoopy and Woodstock.

18. I wear blue jeans (exclusively).

19. I wear a lot of tie-dyed clothing.

20. I am a Muppet fan, especially Kermit.

21. I love to fish on a lake.

22. I have a solid moral compass.

23. God is my anchor, always.

24. I was in ROTC for four years (and excelled).

25. I have handled and used an M16 rifle.

26. I am a lifelong Bette Davis fan.

27. I was a vegetarian when I was ages 17-20.

28. I am completely at home with nature.

29. I choose words carefully because of their power.

30. From early childhood, I have been very intuitive.

31. I withdraw when I feel overwhelmed.

32. I believe in karma.

33. I did not cry as a child because I saw it as a weakness.

34. I love and use old rosaries.

35. I have witnessed the magic of the Aurora Borealis.

36. I believe there is hope in a sunrise.

37. I think a sunset is proof of survival. 

38.  I believe in divine providence.

39. Autumn is my favourite season.

40. I feel God in the stars and moon.

41. I believe in angels. 

42. My favourite days are cool, cloudy, and rainy.

43. I feel a deep respect for trees.

44. Clouds inspire me.

45. I both love and fear storms.

46. I first drove a car when I was twelve years old.

47. I got my driver’s license at age twenty.

48. I was a passenger in two near-fatal car accidents, at ages 18 and 19.

Age 20

49. I am an incessant deep-thinker.

50. I love flowers, bees, and butterflies.

51. I am more comfortable with animals than I am with people.

52. I have had exotic pets, but do not advocate owning them. 

53. I know I am a dork and am fine with that. 

54. I have a very active inner child.

55. I am a very private person.

56. I love the colours green and blue.

57. I have an exceptionally good memory (a blessing and a curse).

58. I am an active hugger. *Hugs*

~Thank you for being here today!~ 

Kaleidoscope of Sound: R

Bill said, "Fate is a mysterious thing. Waylon was a bass player for Buddy Holly. He gave up his seat for the Big Bopper, "The Day The Music Died". Waylon went on to become one of the best country singers of the 70's and 80's."

"Rose in Paradise"
Waylon Jennings

*Please remember to leave your comments or questions for Bill. Thanks!
It may take a day or two, but he will answer. Please check back for a response.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Fill-in Statements: Week 55

Every Thursday, Ellen of 15andmeowing and I provide the fill-in statements. Please come back on Friday, when we post our answers with a link-up. Learning about each other and making friends is what it is all about!

Here are this week's statements with the blanks:

Week 55: May 26, 2017

1. My idea of roughing it is _____________.

2. I never get sick of talking about ____________.

3. My youth                              .

4. My "golden years"                               

Kaleidoscope of Sound: Q

Bill said, "Chuck Berry was an original. His playing technique wasn't refined, but was "close enough for rock and roll", as a guitar player would say. If a chord is played off-key, a rock guitarist might call them "jazz" chords. Chuck played a lot of "jazz" chords on this video. He was an outstanding entertainer with huge stage presence. He deserves to be on this list, too."

"Carol/Little Queenie"
Chuck Berry

*Please remember to leave your comments or questions for Bill. Thanks!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Saturday Night

Kaleidoscope of Sound: P

Bill said, "I wonder how many of you remember this one. I first heard this song in 1974, and always wondered what it meant. I liked it, though. I just think it sounds cool. However, Annie did some research to find out the meaning behind this odd song. Here is what she found... 

The title comes from the "Matchstick Men" paintings by L. S. Lowry. The paintings are considered dark and filled with stick-like figures, mostly of men. The paintings depicted 20th-century life in the industrial areas of England. 

Francis Rossi, the lead singer of Status Quo, wrote the song, “Pictures of Matchstick Men”. He wrote this dark song shortly after marrying his first wife. Rossi has said that he immediately realized he had made a serious mistake. He became very depressed, feeling he was just going through the motions of life. While hiding in the bathroom from his wife and mother-in-law, he wrote most of the song. He completed it later, while sitting in a lounge. The song was an immediate hit in 1968, and is still popular today."

"Pictures of Matchstick Men"
Status Quo

*Please be sure to leave your comments or questions for Bill. Thanks!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

God-Shaped Hole: A Novel

By Tiffanie DeBartolo

Living and working in fast-paced LA, Beatrice Jordan is a jewelry designer. Tired of being alone, she responds to a personal ad. On a whim, writer Jacob Grace had posted, “If your intentions are pure, I am seeking a friend for the end of the world”.  She could not resist an ad like that.

Perhaps by fate, these two develop a real relationship. They even help each other come to terms with unresolved feelings from their difficult childhoods. That is quite a feat in itself. But, they also awaken new feelings in each other, some that are even harder to tame.

This is a love story for the lonely, quirky, creative people in the world. It speaks to those who are looking for something, someone, to hold in the middle of their hurricane. They seek someone that is like them, and they believe, deep down, they are out there.

Fifteen years ago, this book was published by Sourcebooks. With a cult-like following, God-Shaped Hole has survived to become a classic in its own right. Come and read the bittersweet novel that helped define and shape a generation. Celebrate the elements of life and love, because these are the things help us become who we were meant to be.

Kaleidoscope of Sound: O

Bill said, "Billy Joe Shaver was a major contributor to the 70's Country Outlaw movement. He never became a superstar, but he wrote many of the hit songs of that era. His life is a living country song. He was married five times, three times to the same woman! His son, Eddie (featured in this video), who played lead guitar for both him and Dwight Yoakam, died from a heroin overdose. Billy Joe has fought many demons and survived. This guy's the real deal."

"(I'm Just an) Old Chunk of Coal"
Billy Joe Shaver, with Eddie Shaver

*Please be sure to leave your comments or questions for Bill. Thanks!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Kaleidoscope of Sound: N

Bill said, "We're halfway through my "Kaleidoscope of Sound". So, its intermission time, with some comic relief. These guys really added a lot of creative fun to "Laverne and Shirley". No one makes sitcoms like this anymore. However, these two actually made an album. In 1979, they were even on American Bandstand! Michael McKean later went on to make the mockumentary "This is Spinal Tap", which is a cult classic. Sit back and enjoy a good laugh!"

"Night After Night"
Lenny & the Squigtones

*Please be sure to leave your comments or questions for Bill. Thanks!

Sunday, May 21, 2017


It had been years since he left the familial nest. He had been rebellious and unappreciative of his parent’s way of life.

Older now, life had taught him hard lessons about humility and redemption. Time was of the essence, as he realized his parents were aging, too.

This self-proclaimed flyaway was headed back home, before it was too late.

Story and Image: McGuffy Ann Morris

Shared with:
Writing Challenge,
five lines or less, inspired 
by the word prompt:

Kaleidoscope of Sound: M

Bill said, "Many of you probably remember Paul McCartney's hit version of this song. But, I prefer this unpolished version by Rod Stewart and the Faces, my all-time favourite rock band. Yes, the same Rod Stewart that used to be a rock star, and the ragtag bunch of Brits that made him famous. This one's for Annie."

"Maybe I'm Amazed"
The Faces

*Please be sure to leave your comments or questions for Bill. Thanks!

Saturday, May 20, 2017

The Snow

Winter was early this year. Rains had changed to freezing. Now, strong winds brought snow into the valley.

Pa said he had to go bring in the cattle. They didn’t understand this storm; they needed him. They would get lost and perish on the back forty.

He made me promise that I would wait for him to come back. He said to stay inside the house and keep the fire going. I swore that I would mind Pa, no matter what.

Through the frosted window, I watched snow cover the trees with its icy beauty. I was worried sick about the cows, though. And, now Pa, too.

Pa has been gone for days, or is it weeks? I can’t remember. I tried to keep the fire going. But, I am so cold, and so very tired. I kept my promise, if it matters anymore. 

Story: McGuffy Ann Morris
Word Count= 146 words
Image Prompt: loniangraphics

Writing challenge:
story of 100-150 words,
inspired by photo prompt

Kaleidoscope of Sound: L

Bill said, "John Prine is another great storyteller. His songs are Americana folk tales. John Prine was never considered a great "star", perhaps by his own choosing. However, his followers are very devoted. Just by chance, we live just a few miles from the "twin lakes" that this song is about."

"Lake Marie"
John Prine

*Please be sure to leave your comments or questions for Bill. Thanks!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Friendly Fill-ins: Week 54

Welcome to another fun-filled week! Thank you for being here. As always, you can find the fill-ins here and at each Thursday. Then, on Fridays, we post the linky for sharing. The first two fill-ins are always provided by Ellen. The final two statements are offered by myself. You are welcome to answer in the comments, but if you link up, even more people can share!

We are on the edge of Summer. It is getting warmer and sunnier. Everything is blooming and in full colour, now. Bill and the furkids gave me hanging baskets of Angel-Wing Begonias for Mother’s Day. I love these! I have two baskets of red ones, and two baskets of red and yellow ones.

I hope your world is filled with flowers and fun. Start making those Summer plans, even if it is just to relax! We will be staying home and working on the house

The fill-ins really made me think this week! How about you? I look forward to reading your thoughts. Here are my completed fill-ins:

1. I have googled many things, usually for research purposes of some kind. I think it is important to continually educate myself. It not only makes me a better person, but a better writer, too. Googling is a great research tool. However, I use it in addition to reading books, not instead of reading books!

2. I have heard there are good deals on eBay. I am a little skeptical, however. I know people who use it often to both buy and sell, but I think it is a bit scary. There are just so many scams and scammers.

3. I think that we have become a disposable society. To our own detriment, we throw away dishes, containers, things that were in containers, clothes, household items, automobiles, and everything in between. But, even worse, we throw away lives, in both pets and people. If something does not work out the way we want it to, we throw it away. Then, we immediately fill the void with what or whoever catches our momentary fancy. Of course, that often gets thrown away, too, because there is no investment. I think this all comes down to the simple fact that commitment and loyalty have been thrown away in this fast-paced world. We need to get back to what and who are really important. Those are the things that last, anyway.

4. Chloe Jo truly thinks she is the one in charge. I guess we let her think so. But, she cannot help herself. It is interesting to see how everyone lets her have her way, too. It is all about keeping Chloe Jo happy. She insists. “If Chloe Jo ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy!”

~Wishing you a beautiful day!~

Now, it's your turn. Please link up with us here. Or, you can answer in the comments.