The Fairy Dance

fAIRY TUNNEL

Giggles echoed through the trees. The wind blows through the tunnel carrying fallen leaves with it. Shivers run down your spine as you no longer feel alone. Where were the giggles coming from? There was no one there. You spin around to see if someone is over the ridge and again, find no one. You decided to accept the fact that you are not alone. You speak into the air, “Thank you for allowing me to hear you.” With soft steps, you make your way through the tunneling trees. You think you see movement above you at the root level but it is too fast, or too small, to be seen. The giggles are in front of you now. You stop again but this time, you kneel. “I mean you no harm.” You say, then bow your head, but not your eyes. This time you are prepared. They are beginning to trust you as well and move slower. You catch a glimpse of a flutter. Are your eyes deceiving you? They are too small to be children. Very slowly you raise your head to the level of your eyes. Standing, no, floating in the middle of the road is five, 3-inch figures. They are out of focus, like a hummingbird, flying so fast you can’t see their wings or get your eyes to focus on them. They catch sight of you staring at them and are gone in the blink of an eye. The wind rustles the trees again and the moment has passed. The magic is gone and you rise, ever so slowly, wondering if you really saw something or are going insane. You shake your head and continue on your way, never to experience anything like it again.

The Weaver

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The weaver sits in the middle of the circle of stone, the full moon beaming down on her, feeding her its power. Her task never-ending, to weave and mind, cut and start anew. Where one life ends, another begins. Does this life deserve another chance or should it end here forever? The interlocking weft was perfect as an eternity of practice would lead to.

”Ah yes, this one will be a good match for this soul, let’s interlock them here.” Another weft and another life begins. Arianrhod sighed and stretched and lightning lit up the sky. She seemed to get the most done when the moon was full. Tonight’s tapestry seemed to be perfection. Her wrinkled, old fingers moved with such grace and speed, in and out, through and through. Her silver hair whipped in the breeze as the mortal’s appearance over the horizon disrupted her work. She was caught off guard as no one ever dared approach her before. The human had a strange aura to her. And Arianrhod cocked an eyebrow. The mortal bowed as she reached the outer birth of the circle to the weaver.

“What are you and how dare you interrupt me on such an important night?” The weaver asks.

“I apologize my goddess, but I have questions and this is the only time you are on this plain.”

The goddess sighed as she knew the mortal was correct. “How can I help you? And what are you? I can see you are different.”

“Thank you, ma’am. I am a Druid, among other things, and I’d like to know about my, well, my life.”

“Excuse me? I do not share such things, I don’t care who or what you are. Your life is what you make of it, you ought to know that.”

“I beg your pardon, ma’am, but that is not true. You are responsible for the warps and loops we take. I wish to know if mine is always so… well, so knotted and tangled.”

The goddess took a deep breath, clearly annoyed. Just then, lightning ran across the sky again and the druid gulped. The mortal was pushing her luck, but she had to know. “Come here druid, let me see who you are.”

Taking a few more steps towards the goddess, the druid straightened her back and dared to look her directly in the eye. Her orange hair flourished in the wind and the moonlight reflected off the silver scar across her face by her left ear. The goddess took her in and returned her gaze.

“Fenella MacPhearson, dear child. Why did I not know it was you? You would be the only mortal impudent enough to approach me.” The druid smiled, almost in pride at the statement. “I cannot tell you what you want to hear, but I can tell you your life will be long and very, very full and wondrous.” And with that, the weaver turned back to her tapestry and the druid walked away from the circle.

What NaNo really looks like

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National Novel Writing Month or affectionately called by its participants, NaNoWriMo, is a sprint to write 50,000 words in 30 days! It is a challenge to not only get in that amount of words but also to find the time to write, often for hours a day. For a lot of participants, like myself, normal daily activities get pushed to the proverbial ‘back burner’ and either do not get done at all or are picked up by other family members. For a lot of us, we know the demands of this challenge and have made certain accommodations or arrangements with family members to help pick up the slack. Spouses, children and often even extended family such as siblings and parents either chip in or, at the very least, are understanding when we are less available during this time.

I for one, am blessed to have the support of my entire family, but things still get left undone, or half-done (as is normal with teenagers, right?). Laundry may get washed but sit around the house in baskets, the meals I took the time to prep at the beginning of the month get burnt or never started. And let’s not mention the dishes… UGH! If it doesn’t go in the dishwasher, it doesn’t get washed without an adult-sized meltdown by the momma that is in search of her favorite teacup that just happens to NOT be dishwasher safe.. (Why does any manufacturer make such a thing anymore? I mean, seriously!? Heathens, I tell ya!)

I have honestly been sleeping curled around a pile of clean clothes and my messenger bag for weeks now and last night, they were finally knocked to the floor. I started to get upset and yell, then I realized, this was my mess and my fault. Instead of scanning Social Media for “Inspiration”, *coughs* horseshit, I SHOULD be doing something ACTIVE. Those super-smart Scientist people actually say that physical activity makes you think clearer… Yet I sit on my butt all day and stare a blinking cursor wishing words would come… *facepalm*

Even when it does things to us we are not always proud of, why do we continue to do this time and time again? Year after year why do we submit ourselves and our families to this craziness? Simple! For me, it’s the challenge! The adventure! The endless possibilities and the promise of some amazing, and not so amazing, stories being told. I for one, look forward to it every year. Even though I love schedules and routines, I can’t wait for November to come. (For the truly dedicated, we even do a similar challenge in July!)

Another thing it does for us that I like is it helps us create a new habit of writing daily. Experts say it takes about 21 days to create a new habit and NaNo gives us 30 days of writing something creative every day. If I can write even 10 minutes every single day, then I am creating a new habit that will carry over into the next month and beyond. If I expect to become a famous published author, I need that habit in my life.  SO what does NaNoWriMo really look like? Chaos wrapped in a beautiful bow of community and togetherness and new, amazing habits that can affect your entire future. Come write with me!

Coffee and memories

74599561_1541521946012682_1168767747790733312_nAs I sit here on a beautiful EARLY Saturday morning, cuddling my niece, I had a reverse flashback and hope and pray I am making her proud.
Grandma always seemed to have a cup of cold coffee sitting somewhere in the living room, but never complained about it being cold “I like it that way” she would say.. I doubt that was true but that she had grown accustomed to it always being cold by the time she got to drink it. One of the smells that reminds me of her is cold coffee.. I guess today, by chance, I made my coffee like hers, and yes, it’s cold already.. I get up early many mornings because I keep my niece while her mom works.. {I don’t mind because she is a sweetheart, she is family, and she has a special place in my heart (always will) anyway back to today} I think I mentioned it because I wonder how often she got up early and rolled her eyes because we woke her and wanted breakfast, I wonder how often she leaned in and kissed our cheek with her coffee breath thinking I just want to finish my coffee so my eyelids will stay open. I know it’s hard to imagine her ever thinking that because we never saw that and she never mentioned it, but as a mom and caregiver I think it, but don’t show it, and wonder what went through her mind as she cuddles us with love and patience as I do my niece..
I guess I am writing this here because it’s a Saturday and I smell like coffee and my grandma and want the other mommas and grandmas smelling like coffee, with a cold cup sitting somewhere getting all the cuddles from their little ones thinking how much you wish you were in bed.. do you really? Would you really rather be in bed instead of getting cuddles? “They’re only little once” so soak it in.. they don’t care that you smell like coffee.. one day they will too!

 

(Written in July 2019 and lost without having published… )

FOOD… GLORIOUS FOOD?

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Food, glorious food.. but is it

Why is it that “most people” revolve their schedules around food? At least in the culture, I grew up in, they did. I mean, our grandparents grew up in the great depression where food was scarce, plus there were the dust bowl and other historical factors. I also understand that the farmers that provide our food need to be fed on a schedule to keep their bodies performing so they can tend their farms, but why has that mentality trickled down to our generation? We as a country are so obsessed with food. Instagram is full of pictures of what I ate today, Facebook is full of recipes and fad diets. Even New Year’s resolutions are based around food and exercise.

I grew up in a small town in the south and my days were marked by the meals times my parents, and honestly, probably those depression era grandparents that trickled down to my father, set in place. “Breakfast was the most important meal of the day”, it was how your body and metabolism got started. A jump start, if you will. 1950’s it was everything from ham, eggs, biscuits, and pancakes to mountains of eggs readily available from the back yard. Today, for most, it’s a sausage biscuit, cereal or pop tart… for me, coffee.. Yup, just coffee. And heaven forbid if lunch wasn’t at 12:00 noon.. like, seriously my dad still comes home, or inside from the busyness he’s doing AT NOON! He just KNOWS it’s 12! He has that internal clock set from a young age that 12 means food… Even if he ate at 10, or 11:30.. ok, maybe not THAT drastic, but you get my point. I also understand that kids in school need fuel for their brains to continue working throughout the day… what I don’t understand is why we all seem to have the mentality that it is the center of our lives? (And yes, bodies need nourishment, but can’t our bodies tell us that, not a clock?)

Let me elaborate on that last one. I have seen so many parents bashed for underweight children, or overweight children because they don’t fit on some chart, they are told they don’t fit the model… umm, ok YAY Please DON’T FIT THE MODEL! I have seen parents fuss at their kids for not eating all their food on their plate because it’s waste… but momma, you let them put that much food on their plates and momma, dear momma, if they are full they are full. I realize that may start a controversy, but this is my blog, so bye bye.. look, if a child grows up feeling they have to empty their plates, isn’t that teaching them to eat even after they are full? Isn’t eating when you are NOT HUNGRY teaching them to overeat? Isn’t the U.S. the country HIGHEST in obesity? Hmmmm…. see where I am going here? Food is fuel and should never be anything more. Our bodies have come with signs that tell us when to eat. Babies cry when they need nourishment, kids ask for snacks. We KNOW when we are hungry, why must it be regimented? Did you know what you crave is typically a sigh of what your body needs? So get this, if you think you want candy, your blood sugar may be low, eat a piece of fruit. Crave chocolate? Eat DARK chocolate to release the serotonin you need.  Red meat? You need iron, eat nuts, seeds, or beans (or that steak if you can). You may just need more protein… Chips or salty things? may be a sign of mineral deficiency. Google it! At least give it a try and feed your body what it needs!

Furthermore, why the hell is junk food cheaper than real food? Seriously! Pizza rolls are a dime a dozen, chips are party size bags for $2, a small bag of apples are $3 and an air-filled bag of lettuce is $2.50! Did you know we waste more food in this country than anywhere else on the planet? Yet we have people starving in our own country! We like pretty things, so we THROW AWAY the ‘imperfect’ fruits and vegetables!!! We throw bruised produce away, and baked goods that were cooked ‘yesterday’. I honestly do not get it!

So, I guess what I’m trying to say is, feed yourself, when it is hungry. Feed it what it needs. But for the love of food, do not revolve your life around it!

Rough Seas

The two sea hardened men stood on the docks admiring their crew whilst they unloaded the crates and barrels of goods. “There’s just something ’bout doin’ it the old fashioned way that gives the men pride,”  the captain said to the merchant. His blonde mane and beard speckled with grays whipped in his face as the wind blew through the harbor.

“I know what ya mean. Them big cargo ships just take all the care and connection out of it,” the merchant replied. The folds of his kilt also caught in the wind gave the two men a laugh as he mooned the passers-by behind them.

Up on the ship the crew worked diligently, flowing like the waves that rocked them. Unceasing in the eb and flow of unloading, yelling to each other through the rough and breaking air.

“Something about that one in the red shirt seems different though, is that a boy liftin’ them crates with the ease of a seasoned sailor?” the merchant asked.

“The little one with the cap on? Nae, that be a woman, and one me best sailors, too.” the captain replied as his chest swelled with pride. “She be a greenhorn just a few years ago but ye couldna tell now. She’s one me best men, and the crew loves her, too.”

“A woman! Doesna that cause issues with tha men, if you ken what I mean?” The merchant asked skeptically.

“Nae. Thought it might but they took to her really well. She be like a mother hen to ’em all, yet works as hard as me engine. She never complains about annathin’. No gillyin’ about how somethin’ is too heavy or too big, not the weather, nae the hours. She cooks a mean shepherd’s pie, too.” He laughed as he mentioned the cooking, “but don’t ask ‘er to cook ya nea else. She just might burn ya kitchen out.”

The merchant laughed and the conversation continued as the crew finished unloading the portion of the freight that was due to this port. One by one the crew slipped below deck as their jobs were complete and emerged with a backpack or duffel slung over their shoulders. They passed the captain and asked permission to go to one place or another and promised to return the following morning as they prepared for departure to the next port. As the woman approached she had a nervous look on her face but the captain knew what she was going to ask. Her tent poles stuck out of the bottom of her hiking backpack and told him right away she wanted to meet up at the next port, as she had asked before. “So which port will we be meetin’ you at this time, m’ lady?” Her anxiety shifted slightly. ”Ullapool, Sir.”, she replied with a nervous breath, her eyes searching his face as she knew what she was asking of the captain.

“Ullapool! That’s clear across the highlands from here!”

“Yes sir. I figure it’ll take about a month, and if I time it right as I have it mapped out, I should get there about the same time you do. Assuming you allow me this leave of absence and have a position available for me when I meet you there.” She said, in one long rehearsed spiel in an attempt to not let her captain interrupt her plea.

“I just don’t understand why you insist on running through the highlands like a stag ever’ so often.” You do so well at sea. If ya didna work so hard and so good I’d never let ya go!” The captain exclaimed, clearly exasperated with the crewman. “No other cap’in I know would allow such shenanigans!” He softened as he saw the pleading look on her face. She looked as though she was going to break down in tears at any moment and he quickly added, “ but cráite you, you ken how to soften a man’’s heart dinya now.” He sighed, “One day you’ll explain yerself, but go on befer I change me mind lass.” He dropped his head in defeat and shook it as he turned to watch her go. The merchant spoke up for the first time throughout the exchange and said, “Mùthaidhean, she’s got all y’all wrapped dunn she?”

“I’ve overheard enough to know a bit about her and where she came from. That combined with what she told me when I hired her, she needs this. She isna ‘confined space’ kinda gal. I dinna think I’d get as good work out’ve ‘er if I dinna let her go from time to time.”

“Really? What’s her story? She’s obviously American.” The merchant asked.

“That, my friend, requires a pint or two. Ready to go?” The captain sighed, clapping his hand on his friend’s shoulder.

“Aye, let’s go mate.” and they turned towards town, the crewmen feathered out before them. A small clump were surrounding the woman, pleading with her to not leave them again. “I just dinna understand why ya need to leave us again! Din ya love us?” The youngest man in the group pleaded.

“Aye Duncan, I do. But I love me more and I need this. I need my time in the hills. You’re from Skye, for God’s sake! Surely you can understand the NEED to be there from time to time.” she tried to explain to the boy.

“I only need to be there when me mother demands it,” he stated with disdain, “but yours is in America.”

She sighed, “How can you take the beauty and wonderment of your own country in such disgust?” Shaking her head at the boy.

“I dunno, you left yours and it’s pretty grand, too.”

“Touche’, but I left for far different reasons than yours, if you recall.” She replied flatly, putting the boy in his place. He dropped his head and felt ashamed for even comparing the two. “Yes ’em. I’m sorry, that was mean and uncalled fer, can you forgive me mum?”

“Of course I can. Just don’t be such an jerk next time, deal?”

“Yes ’em, I’ll try.” He replied sheepishly.

“Good boy, now off ya’ll go. Enjoy your night. I’ll see you in about a month. Work hard and don’t make me hear a bad report from the captain about any one of you!”

“Yes Ma’am,” they all replied as they shuffled off to the pub. She stopped outside the door, watching the men she had come to love over the past few years gather around little tables, laughing and drinking with few cares in the world. Their lives revolved around the boat, the merchandise and the captain. Little else mattered to them. A life she could only wish to have. Her past came rushing back like a storm in the middle of the Bering Sea. The boy had no idea how much he reminded her of her middlemost child. His spunk and curiosity. His true innocence of life’s hardships and how cruel it can be. She took a deep breath and slipped into the pub to a corner table meeting the bartender’s eye. He nodded in acknowledgment and sent a waitress over with a triple of scotch. She drunk it down in a matter of gulps and paid the waitress as she slipped back out into the growing darkness.

via Rough Seas — reneechristianblog

April Showers?

Yes, I am writing this May 1st. But what a month April has been! I am so overwhelmed I figured here would be the best place to share. I am hoping, wishing and praying that May is full of flowers because I am sick and tired of showers! (And I don’t mean rain.)

Do you ever just want MORE? Want to get away from your mediocre life? Ever feel like a hamster on a wheel? Maybe it’s a mid-life crisis… I don’t know but it sucks. I work from sun-up to well beyond sun-down and I am tired of never doing enough or earning enough or being able to do anything. I have dreams and ambitions and I barely get by. They say “so change it.” “Do something to change it.” I keep trying and nothing gets any better! I look for a job and get zero callbacks, I work harder at my current positions and end up finding more expenses sneak in.

My husband and kids are all happy with their mediocre life. I am NOT! I am so frustrated and I feel like nothing is going right. I have always pushed for more. My Senior year in high school I could have done half a day but I choose to take Harder classes to push myself. I was in the school choir, but I wanted more so I auditioned to join the elite group. I got in. I was in dance classes… I took more and pushed myself to do better, harder, longer. I studied until I fell asleep in my books. Always pushing for more, for better… In my past jobs, I wanted to do a good job and get recognized by management. I pushed and excelled to do my best at all times. When I joined CrossFit, I pushed my body harder and harder to hit those PRs and lose the weight my inactive lifestyle and poor food choices earned me. I never Rep’ed! NOT ONE WOD in over a year…

I want, no, I NEED a breakthrough in life!!! Maybe this is what a mid-life crisis looks like. I don’t know.. But I will never stop fighting and pushing for more! One day I WILL>>>

*Have my book(s) on the best sellers list

*Travel

*Be in the shape I desire and achieve the physical activity level I desire.

*Have successful children that no longer accept a mediocre life for themselves!

Now… who’s with me?

Heartbroken

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My eyes burn, my heart aches. I have no words for how I feel. A punch in the gut, a slap in the face. Can I just sit on the sofa holding my children and cry? My mantra for the week is “She has new organs, she has a new body. It all works perfectly now as she dances at His feet”.

As a mother your worse fear is your children passing before yourself. When you you’re young, you know people die. You know your parents will pass before you do, when you marry, know that its a possibility of your spouse passing before you. They have words for those losses, that pain is expected in your life time. But no one can quantify the pain of loosing your own child. No words can describe it. Whether they pass before you meet them or 16 years after they are born. Its indescribable! I have lost two in utro and it hurts so bad I can still remember the day(s), the events surrounding them, the emotional turmoil knowing I couldn’t do anything to help my child. That even in the safest place in the universe they still died. This week my heart is breaking for another mom in my circle whom had to tell her daughter good bye. As believers, we know they will meet again, but for a mom, its never soon enough. I hurt for the life lost. I hurt for the smiles, the light, the wisdom this young woman shared with everyone she met. The Lord commissioned us to “Be My Witness” and that is what she did! Though every battle she faced, every struggle, every surgery, every set back, every triumph. She brought her community together in prayer and serving, in sacrificing of herself and teaching other how to be selfless. She was an amazing person I am blessed and honored to have known her and to have her teach me such lessons in faith and humility and how to have fun even in the worse of storms. Her smile lit up a room as she shone in the love and grace of the Father. Emily you WILL be missed by ALL!  Till we see you again my sweet, amazing friend! -RC

Wedding In Paradise

bora boraDusk had just enveloped the sleepy town of twin meadows like a warm blanket when the beautiful lawyer stepped out of the limo outside the Elks Lodge. Music played inside where the happy couple and their guests partied. She entered the lodge and was escorted to a small room past the restroom on the left where the young bride was seated. “Ma’am, the lawyer is here”, the gentleman that escorted me here said to the young woman whom was facing the wall.

She turned around slowly wiping the tears from her face and straightened herself. “I’m sorry I had to call you so late Belinda,” the bride said sheepishly, showing a gap-toothed, saddened grin.

“Its ok, hunny,” Belinda replied with a thick southern drawl, “what happened? You were so happy when I spoke to you earlier.”

“Brad disappeared before we cut the cake and when Scooter found ‘im he was up Nancy’s skirt in the men’s dressin’ room!” She said exasperated. “I thought he’d changed! I thought… He PROMISED he was done foolin’ around! That I was the only one for him! I’m such a fool!”

“Awe Mel! What an ASS!” Belinda supported(whats the word I’m looking for?) “so you want me to try to get it annulled?”

“Yeah. I wanna go on our honey moon trip alone and I don’t want to have to see his sorry ass when I get back, so I want it done ASAP so I can get the hell out of here!” Melody said, practically bellowing by now.

At that Belinda got up and walked out of the room towards the ruckus.

* * * * * *

Melody reached over from her lounge chair to grab the umbrella laden drink. “Thank you,” she said ginning unabashedly at the cute waiter in short shorts. He nodded curtly, turned and walked away. She took a sip and sat back in her seat enjoying the sound of the waves and the heat of the sun.

“You know’, Belinda said suddenly, breaking the silence. “this is nice and all, but I’m getting bored. Lets DO something!”

“Ok,” Melody laughed, “lets go scuba diving or jet skiing. You pick.”

Jet skiing!” Belinda exclaimed. “The thought of a wet suit right now is not appealing.” The girls got up from their lounge chairs, grabbed their towels and walked towards the docks owned by the resort.

The guys running the jet ski rentals were obviously cut from an Abercrombie and Fitch catalog. Melody laid the flirting on think as molasses, “well, hello boys,” she said in her southern twang. She propped her elbow on the counter in such a manner that her right breast nearly fell out of her bikini top. “MEL!” Belinda exclaimed, embarrassed by Melody’s behavior. “Sorry guys, she’s had a little too much to drink today. We’d like to rent a jet ski that I will be driving.”

It’s ok, we’re use to it,” the man on the left said in an Australian accent as he picked up two life vests and handed them to Melody. The man on the right took Belinda’s information and told it was included in their registration.

“Really?” Belinda said, astonished that Brad had actually planned for something like jet skiing when he made their honeymoon plans. “That’s awesome! Thanks.” Belinda turned towards Melody and saw the poor girl fighting with the life vests. She rushed over to her and helped her get hers on. The ladies got on the jet ski and took off across the water.

They didn’t return their stomachs were rumbling and it was nearing dusk. There were different men at the docks then when they left and Melody was sober. They rushed to their rooms and rinsed off the salty water and threw on sundresses before walking down to the seaside restaurant for dinner. The waiter, dressed in slacks and a flowered button down shirt like the rest of the waiters, sat the ladies in a window seat looking out at the ocean. “So Mel, have you figured out what you’re gonna do when you get home?” Belinda asked finally. The question, no matter how inevitable, had been weighing on her mind for most of the trip. “I mena, I know you don’t want to think or talk about it, but without the prenuptial signed, you have no house to return to.

“You think I don’t know that?!” Melody said, her voice strained as though she was trying to not scream or cry or both.

“Mel, I didn’t say…” Belinda was interrupted by Melody again.

“I have been trying to figure that out for the past three days! I very well can’t look at apartments or anything from Tahiti now, can I?” Melody stated exasperatedly. “I figure I’ll get a hotel room when I get back until I can find something.”

“Ok, that’s all I was asking hunny. I just wanted to make sure you were thinking ahead.” Belinda said quietly and quickly changed the subject.

* * * * * *

Two days later the ladies boarded the jet for the flight back home to Alabama. “Thanks for bringing me Mel,” Belinda said as they stepped on the plane. “I really needed that break.”

“Shoot girl! I’m just glad I didn’t have to go alone. Who knows what kind of trouble I would have gotten into if I didn’t have a chaperon!” Melody laughed aloud.

“True!” Belinda laughed. “If they even let you on the jet ski you probably would have drowned.” she said laughing even harder. They laughed and talk all the way home, much to their co-passenger’s regret.

 They shared a cab from the airport to Belinda’s apartment where they said their good byes for the week was over and life had to return to normal. But was was Melody’s new normal suppose to be? She had been with Brad since middle school and had been living with him for two years. Where should she tell the cabbie to go? She sat back and took a deep breath. “Take me to the Wesley motel on 5th Avenue please