Writer on a Horse
And a Dog

The world looks better from the back of a horse and the roads of life are easier with a good dog beside you.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Good Old Days

Being the sixth grandchild of fourteen, I discovered a few things very early in life

1. Granny's lap is only so big and everyone gets a turn being rocked

2.You might be bossy but that doesn't make you the boss

3. Blame everything on the younger kids

4. Granddaddy's are much grumpier than Granny's

5. Don't eat grapes off the vine all day... bad, very bad

6. Don't eat apples off the tree all day... Worst

7.  Don't eat peaches off the tree all day...Worst that worst

8.  Good thing I don't like pears ... I might not be here today

9.  Don't lock any of your cousins or brother in a wrecked car in Granny's field, in July,  with no water... they might sweat some but your butt will be sore for a week

10. Love your family with all your heart even if it seems like they don't love you... they do... maybe this one took me longer to figure out.

I'm only in one of these pictures ... can you pick me out?  I'm the one smirking like I know something everyone else doesn't ... I probably do and I most likely will be in trouble before the night is over.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Spiritual Journey Thursday.. Stepping out of your comfort zone

This is a really hard blog for me.... because I'm open to anything, I will ask anything of anyone, I will talk to anyone, do anything... but water ski and I would do that except I nearly drown every time I try.

I was raised by a Yankee mother who told me every day..."Patty Jean, you're as good as anyone but no better than anyone."

I lived next to a Granny that told me every day..."God has special plans for you, don't let him down."

I had an aunt on my Daddy's side (he was the only boy) that told me I didn't matter because I would not carry on the Trousdale name to which I would say "Thank Goodness!"

If I didn't win in sports, I tried harder until I did.  If I wanted to create something like a quilt, cooking, gardening ... I tried until I did it and was good at it.  My mother died when I was 27 but she was sick three years before that.  My Granny died when I was 18 and I miss talking to her every day.  So, I guess I stepped out of my comfort zone when my mother died.  I had to do more for the family, be more for my brothers, work harder to be sister, daughter, wife, mother.

Now, don't y'all dare feel sorry for me because it has made me a confidant woman.  Able to solve any problem the world throws at me and able to be see and appreciate all the special blessing in my life.

When I was fifty years old, I told my husband I wanted to start writing again.  I had not written anything since high school.  He said okay and turned back to the television.  I said, "I wasn't asking for permission, I was asking for your blessing."  He said, "Okay."  MEN!

I thought about it for about a month... where to start... then my Granny's words of wisdom came to me.

Start walking you'll come out somewhere.

So, I did.  Conferences, reading how-to books, writing, retreats, and making writing friends

Wait, I think I've gotten off topic here... stepping out of comfort zone.  Here are some pointers.

1. When someone you love dies... remember the love ones you have alive. Hold close cherish memories that will keep them alive in spirit.  Write them down and pass them down

2.  Remember who you are but don't be afraid to change.  Take ballroom dancing classes, learn to paint, climb that mountain (oh no scratch that I hate to hike...but you can climb that mountain) ride a horse, scuba dive but don't water ski you might drown.

3. It's okay to end a feud.  You don't have to say their right, just start the conversation.  I'm sorry I upset you, can we talk about it.

4. Fear is your brain saying to be careful... Be careful and proceed

5. Throw your face into the wind and laugh... cry at the beauty of a sunset, kiss your love everyday with the passion you feel in your heart.  Knock down those comfort barriers, grow, reach for dreams, learn something new everyday.

Look in the mirror every morning and say... I can... and do it

I'm going to share one of my flash fiction (only it's not fiction for some)
All I want to say is baby steps toward a goal is all you need.  Believe in yourself and everyone else will believe too.  Afraid to let others read your pieces... get over it ... who cares if they like it or not.... listen to them... think about what they say and grow..... some of my best stuff came from listening to people who didn't like my story.... I got beyond what they were saying and understood what they were saying.  Okay, this is just a piece I wrote one Thanksgiving morning after visiting a nursing home.  You might be sad for what she lost but I'm happy she has that plate and memories.

A winkled finger touches the rose and ivy design on the china plate.  Tears fill her eyes, and she quickly closes them.  Reaching for the handkerchief she always keeps in her sweater pocket, Labecca wipes the evidence of emotion from her cheek. 
Any emotion brought questions, doctors and medicines to stop you from feeling.  Memories should be allowed to flow because they painted joy, hope and love into your life.  With them your essence is like a masterpiece painted by an artist; without them you are like a wisp of smoke waiting to leave. 
Labecca looks around her small room with beige tile on the floor, beige paint on the wall and earth tone bedspread on the bed.  No color!  She feels herself fade into the neutral texture of the room and its nothingness strangles all hope of happiness from her. 
She glances down at the only piece of china left from her life as a daughter, sister, mother and wife.  Every Thanksgiving she had set her wedding china for her family’s feast.  After the meal, she washed each piece by hand to preserve it for the next annual tradition.  But what happens to tradition when you’re the only one left?
Carefully placing the plate in the wire basket attached to her walker, Lebecca struggles to rise and starts the long walk to the dining area.  As she shuffles down the sterile hallway the sound of children laughing haunts her.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Spiritual Journey Thursday... Finding Joy

Check out Margaret  I've put random pictures of my joys and below are my thoughts on finding joy

Finding Joy:  This is such a simple action because it only takes opening you eyes to what is around you, opening your ears to sounds around you, opening your heart to beauty around you.

I have a life long friend that has decline in health and spirit the last five years.  I picked her up early one morning (we both love to yard sale) and I promise you she looked like she hated everything and everybody.  I took her to McDonald instead and bought her coffee and said sit.  "Tell me where has all your joy went."  I was not prepared for to the bitterness and sorrow that poured out the next two hours.  To sum up her lack of joy... her life has not turned out like she planned it.

 Errrr Hello ... you can't just plan it you have to live it... be active in the steps taken .. and stop crying when things happen... change them.

So I cried a river that day... sobs of heartache for a dear friend I couldn't help.   Every plan I suggested was shot down...

Her..I want to travel but can't afford it...
Me..book a low cost trip in advance... plan it with the knowledge of how much you can spend.  Doesn't your brother have a camper.... ask to borrow it that will cut cost in half
Her... we're not talking  he hasn't called me in weeks
Me... have you called him?
Her... oh you always did take his side
Me ... sigh

Then I took the big plunge:  I told her that her lack of happiness was a problem only she could fix.  Thinking up excuses are so much easier that finding an achievable path to joy.  I told her to start small... take a walk and look... really look at the beauty just outside her door.

I went home and hugged my husband, kids, grandkids, dogs and thought about hugging a chicken but thought better of it..... no joy in being pecked and getting chicken poop on you.

So finally, my thoughts on finding joy.... only you can do it... you can't find others joy.  A person's joys are as different as fingerprints.

I"m going to list my top ten

1. Greeting the early morning ... with a cup of coffee in my hand I walk my yard to enjoy my flowers and throw the ball for my dogs then going to the barn

2.  Feeding my chickens and cats... I get up one hour early to spend time with them before I go to work

3. Sitting on my front porch and napping... I have tons to do but everything else can wait

4. Finding a great book that I can't put down

5. yard sale and thrift store visits with friends or by myself

6. Quilting

7. My family... their joys fill my heart... their joys are my joys

8. helping others... I deliver over 12 dozen eggs every week to elderly and single moms

9. Watching movies with my grandbabies... I;m the type person that watches a movie over and over...the babies broadens my selections... they will not watch a movie they've seen... except Harry Potter

10.  finally but not last My husband... he makes me mad enough to spit but he is my joy

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Spiritual Journey First Thursday and the word is REACH

 Donna writes about her one little word for 2017, the word Reach.

Reach can touch so many emotions... you reach for love or you reach to save.  You reach to comfort or you reach to achieve.

So, when we reach  it pulls us out of our comfort zone, over our personal protection wall where we hide so people or the world can not hurt us.

 Hiding... really how boring is that!

I start every morning reaching... for my toes (I wish) a cup of coffee.  That small urn of comfort starts my day quietly and calmly.  No coffee... look out!

I reach out to my friends and family to reassure myself that they are all good.  This is a personal reach.  I'm sure they like to know I care but it eases my mind more than theirs.

I reach out to creative side and try to work but confess that reach has been short lately.

I reach out to my animals and fill my title of caregiver.

There were times that title held much more responsibly.  I was caregiver to sick family members, a parent raising kids and a grandmother just loving those babies.

The reaching out to kids and grandbabies are different today... they don't need raising anymore but they still need to know you love them.

My number one reach every morning is to let my husband of 48 years know he is still my everything.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Shed the tears and move on... words to live by

We all have bad days... painful days... blue days
But who wants to feel like that forever.  Not me!  Being sad over things you can not change is useless energy used to pull you down.  Have feelings ... all of them ... but keep the happy loving ones close to your heart and let the others go...

 These things make me Happy!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Happy Planting

My back hurts. my nails are dirty, and my feet... I smell of mulch and rich dirt and my hair got cut short yesterday because it smelled like sweat all the time.

Some of you are saying What?  while others are nodding and smiling.  Okay, I will come clean... or humm dirty... I'm a bulb pushing, limb pruning, leaf pinching, ground tiller, seed planting, organic fertilizer.... addict

I am a Gardener

Planting is hard work, planting is time consuming, planting is heaven to me.

If you don't garden, try it.  If you garden, well you know in your heart that it is exercise for the soul.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

2017 Progressive Poem

Once again, I signed up to do the Progressive Poem hoping I would be able to meet, no embrace the challenge.  It might be just one line but to me that line makes me part of something wonderful. 

Thanks Irene for organizing this.  Okay, I've stalled long enough.... my line is at the bottom in bold print.

I’m fidget, friction, ragged edges—
I sprout stories that frazzle-dazzle,
stories of castles, of fires that crackle
with dragonwords that smoke and sizzle.

But edges sometimes need sandpaper,
like swords need stone and clouds need vapour.
So I shimmy out of my spurs and armour
facing the day as my fickle, freckled self.

I thread the crowd, wear freedom in my smile,
and warm to the coals of conversation.
Enticed to the stage by strands of story,
I skip up the stairs in anticipation.

Flip around, face the crowd, and freeze!
Shiver me. Look who’s here. Must I disappear?
By hook or by crook, I deserve a second look!
I cheer. Please, have no fear. Find the book.

But wait! I’ll share the lines I know by heart.
Mythicalhowls, fierytones slip from my lip
Blue scales flash, claws rip, the prophecy begins

I now hand off this adventure to BJ at Blue Window  I can’t wait to see where you will take us.

Here are the links to everyone doing a line for this year’s poem.

3 Doraine at Dori Reads
4 Michelle at Today's Little Ditty
5 Diane at Random Noodling
6 Kat at Kat's Whiskers
7 Irene at Live Your Poem
8 Mary Lee at A Year of Reading
9 Linda at TeacherDance
10 Penny at a penny and her jots
12 Janet F. at Live Your Poem
13 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche
14 Jan at Bookseedstudio
15 Brenda at Friendly Fairy Tales
18 Buffy at Buffy's Blog
19 Pat at Writer on a Horse
20 BJ at Blue Window
21 Donna at Mainely Write
24 Amy at The Poem Farm
26 Renee at No Water River
28 Michelle at Michelle Kogan
29 Charles at Poetry Time
30 Laura Purdie Salas at Writing the World for Kids

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Spiritual Journey Thursday: New Life/Spring/Easter

Violet Nesdoly has the spotlight this month and she's going to be talking about New Life/Spring/Easter. If you want to check out her blog here is the link Violet Nesdoly

New Life

Of course, we all think of babies at the mention of new life.  But, I like to think outside of the box.

Isn't the moment we take Jesus into our heart the beginning of a new life... and I don't think new born Christians are babies... maybe in verse but not in body.

When we marry or finish college or just move into a home of our own don't we start a new life.  All these things and many more that I've not mentioned change us... we are no longer the same


A time of un-flawed beginnings.  The blossoms on a tree or a first date.  Maybe a chance encounter with a stranger who might become your very best friend.  


I know many people see Easter as a new beginning but I see it as a end.  When Jesus died, he mended the rift between God and humans.  The sins of Adam and Eve were washed away and the beacon of hope was handed to us all.  We answer only for our own actions... good or bad.

So, to conclude, I think all these words mean one thing... I grow, expand, learn and become a better me

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Spiritual Journey Thursday: Connection

So first I have to say... I'm really bad... I broke my promise to myself to blog twice a week.  I know everyone is saying WHAT!!!!  I promise I will not promise again.... I'm going to break the connection.... hahahaha..snort!

Okay deep breath, stop laughing and get serious.  Doraine is counting on you to connect with the others in this group. 

Today's word is Connection:  to check out  my friend's one little word go to her blog at Doraine Bennett

Again I want to give the definition for connection: 

a relationship in which a person, thing, or idea is linked or associated with something else.
"the connections between social attitudes and productivity"

The something else in my universe is ME.  The seconds, minutes, hours or lifetime of connections with friends, family, strangers and GOD broadens the borders of who I am.

I had the pleasure to have lunch with Doraine last year.  We had beliefly met at SCBWI conferences but never really talked.  Irene Latham, Sheila Renfro and myself traveled to Warm Springs, Ga for a writers retreat filled with writing, debating, and reading .... and of course history.  Oh what wonderful shops we visited in Pine Mountain.  I connected with Doraine that day and she became a part of my connection circle.  

Connection by Ramesh Kavdia

The connection begins with words
As prayers, praise, poems.
Words connect the feelings.
Feeling connects the emotions.
Emotions connect the heart.
Heart connects the heart.
By waves and energy
By love and frequency
Then we fly higher
Or we drown deeper
We see the soul.
We see the soul full of
Joy, truth and love all together
We move towards Eternity.
We move towards Divine.
We move towards Bliss.
And we meet God.
Then we see God in every heart.
Then we see love in every heart.
We connect with all universe. 

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Spiritual Journey First Thursday

I'm taking part this year in Spiritual Journey First Thursday and will be hosting it in July

Today I will be commenting on 
Leigh Anne Eck  histurn.blogspot.com
one little word for 2017

What fun to get and receive impute from so many different personalities.

Here we go:

I like to get the down to brass tack part first... definition
  1. 1.
    an upward movement; an instance of becoming higher.
  2. 2.
    an increase in amount, extent, size, or number.


  3. So those are nice words to becoming higher, to leap, to climb
  4. My question is why... the answer is easy (I like easy answers) to become more, better, to evolve into a more complete you.... yea I'm in.
  5. At her blog Leigh Anne talks about her rise for this year.  It sounds like she has the perfect road map to a year escalated with joy, happiness and goals reached.  

  6. Okay rise to me for the year...I'm so bad... I set goals but never reach them... I start them but always another project lures me away.

  7. My rise will be to stretch for the next branch on the tree of my goal.  I'm going to leave those other projects on the ground (or in my case the kitchen table) until I'm finished with what I've started.

I've already started my spiritual rise with meditation... I stop for just a few minutes to realize how blessed I am.

here are some of my favorite quotes about rise

An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity. 
Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Great minds have purpose, others have wishes. Little minds are tamed and subdued by misfortunes; but great minds rise above them.”Washington Irving

 and finally I want to share one of my favorite poems, why??  because we're all slaves to something

Still I Rise

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may tread me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard
'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin' in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I'll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history's shame
I rise
Up from a past that's rooted in pain
I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.