Tuesday, November 27, 2012

THE NEXT BEST THING WITH JOHN EMIL AUGUSTINE


I HAVE BEEN INVITED ALONG WITH SOME AUTHOR FRIENDS TO JOIN IN THE BLOG-CHAIN CALLED 'MY NEXT BIG THING'.






THANKS TO MY FACEBOOK OPPONENT BRENDA PERLIN FOR THE SUMMONS TO ATTEND THIS BLOG-CHAIN.  I PLAN TO OUT-WRITE HER IN THE RACE TO COMPLETE OUR LATEST BOOK'S? WHO WILL FINISH FIRST?

YOU CAN FIND OUR PAGES ON FACEBOOK AND VOTE FOR WHO YOU THINK WILL BE THE WINNER.
Facebook Team John Emil Augustine



HERE IS WHAT I HAD TO SAY ABOUT MY NEXT BIG THING.

What is the working title of your book?

Love Seen from Healing is book three in my Love Seen series. I am almost done with the entire rough draft. The first two books are already out and available for download as well as in paperback: Love Seen from Hell and Love Seen from Heartache. The link is below.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

My first book, Love Seen from Hell, was a series of Facebook messages to a friend of mine who had gone through a similar situation to mine; namely, an abusive relationship. I wanted to send her my story and what I had learned in hopes of giving her some perspective. After I realized it was almost as long as a book (my poor friend!), I doctored it up and actually did turn it into a book.

What genre does your book fall under?

It is a non-fiction romance which also very much fits into the
inspirational memoir category.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Almost two months.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

It’s like nothing else that’s out there. The only kindred book is Home Wrecker, as its author Brenda Perlin and I share similar situations in our books.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

Actually, my friend Olivia, who has always been like a kid sister to me, inspired the book. She had been through an awful relationship and was saved from it by a guy who spent a year convincing her to get out of the relationship. Eventually the two of them developed a romantic relationship which didn’t work out the way either of them expected because he was killed. So he saved her and then vanished. I understood
that feeling to some degree, so I shared my story with her via
Facebook.

What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?

These are real-life stories of marriage, divorce, kids, family, and individual struggles from my perspective, i.e. the perspective of a man. That right there can be intriguing to a reader and can also turn a potential reader off. I have heard both responses. Each time I have heard either response, it has been followed by the observation that once into the first chapter, the series simply becomes a heart-wrenching and heart-warming story to which guys and gals, fiction and non-fiction lovers can easily relate and, I hope, can be given a lens through which to see good things about their own struggles as well as their own happiness.



And now, I'll pass the baton to some of my writer friends that kindly agreed to participate in the blog-chain ... stay tuned to read about their Next Big Thing.


Brenda Perlin- Home Wrecker

HOME WRECKER TO BE RE-RELEASED JUST IN TIME FOR THE HOLIDAYS!



MARK BARRY- Green Wizard Blogspot   An Interview With Brenda Perlin On Green Wizards Blog

Sarah Bunchynski- The Awakening.. Sarah Bunchynski Blog Please visit Facebook BeforeTrue Light

Lisa Day- Wolfkeeper's Woman
 Lisa Day Website Please visit the 
  Lisa Day Facebook Author Page


Paige Bleu- Finding Summerland...Paige Bleu Blog Please visit the  Paige Bleu Facebook Author Page



Jessica Kong- A Lost Kitten...Jessica Kong Blog


THE BLOG-CHAIN ORIGINATOR ANDY DUNCAN, AUTHOR OF THE BADGER-BOY BROUHAHA 






Saturday, November 17, 2012

MY NEXT BEST THING WITH BRENDA PERLIN



I COULDN'T RESTRAIN FROM INVITING MY GREAT AUTHOR FRIENDS ALONG WITH MYSELF TO ENGAGE IN THE BLOG-CHAIN CALLED 'MY NEXT BIG THING'.


THANKS TO MY GOOD MATE (SO MUCH A BRIT HE IS) MARK BARRY - WIZARD EXTRAORDINAIRE The Wizard's Cauldron Blog WHO INVITED ME TO PARTICIPATE IN THE BLOG-CHAIN STARTED BY ANDY DUNCAN, AUTHOR OF THE BADGER-BOY BROUHAHA 




HERE IS WHAT I HAD TO SAY ABOUT MY NEXT BIG THING.
 What is the working title of your book?
Home Wrecker

Where did the idea come from for the book?
The original idea I had was to write about the fraudulent wedding business while I was a stressed-out nailing biting bride-to-be. The story altered after fifteen some odd years when this married woman found herself a boyfriend.

What genre does your book fall under?
This is a “true life” story but I call it fiction to protect my reputation (not really) and from having more people come after me than already have.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
You don’t even want to know!!!! Let’s just say it was years in the making!

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Honestly I haven’t compared my story to any other writers but I liked that in my interview with Wiz (Mark Barry) made a lovely little comparison of my writing to Elizabeth Wurtzel’s of “Prozac Nation” fame. He also mentioned Woody Allen’s movie Manhattan...Wow!!! I am going to take that and run. An Interview With Brenda Perlin on Wizards Cauldron Blogspot 

Who or What inspired you to write this book?
All the credit really should go to my ex-husband. Had he not put so much pressure on me to do something....anything...I would not have started writing my story. Also I have him to thank for spreading all the nasty rumors about me all over the web. Had he just sat back and let fate run it’s course there would not have been a “Home Wrecker.”

What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?
Well, the drama still continues. Hurry up and read Home Wrecker because I am now working on a revision and hope for many good changes and new stories. Also, stay tuned for a second book in the series called Home Wrecker: The Brooklyn and Bo Chronicles! It is a raw account from not only a woman's perspective but also gives you a guys perspective as well. 

I do share a lot of naughty secrets. But you will have to read the booK to find out what they are.

HOME WRECKER TO BE RE-RELEASED JUST IN TIME FOR THE NEW YEAR!
Brenda Perlin- Home Wrecker Home Wrecker Blog
And now, I'll pass the baton to some of my writer friends that kindly agreed to participate in the blog-chain ... stay tuned to read about their Next Big Thing.

Mark Barry- ... The Illustrated Woman  Green Wizard Blogspot

John Emil Augustine- Love Seen From Hell... John Emil Augustine Please visit John Emil Augustine's Author page on Facebook Love Seen From Hell


Lisa Day- Wolfkeeper's Woman Lisa Day Website visit the Lisa Day Author Page on Facebook




Paige Bleu- Finding Summerland...Paige Bleu Blog Please visit the Paige Bleu Author Page  

Sarah Bunchynski- The Awakening...Sarah Buchynski Blog
Please visit Sarah Bunchynski's Author page Facebook BeforeTrue Light

Jessica Kong- A Lost Kitten...Jessica Kong Blog
or Facebook Page  Jessica Kong Facebook Author Page



 Lisa Day-The Stepbrother's..... Lisa Day Website

Do stop by Lisa's site.. or visit the Lisa Day Author Page on Facebook 



Thursday, November 15, 2012

Whack Job Home Wrecker


“I was physically attacked by a woman who didn’t even know me. Yes, my boyfriend was her former husband, but she tried to ruin me.”

I don’t know how some people think they are above the law? You can’t attack someone in broad daylight with a large audience and think you are going to get away with it. This crazy lady came unglued. She is the real Home Wrecker in this saga but lives in denial.
Some individuals just seem to lack common sense. Either you have it or you don’t. I have made some pretty bad decisions in my life but I am thankful my mom handed me down her good sense. With that comes a certain confidence. We may not be the sharpest knives in the drawer but if you mess with us, there is no way you are going to get away with it.


Home Wrecker and the gym


“I always considered working out to be a positive thing and better than hanging out in a bar, drinking alcohol all night.”
I have never been a compulsive person but I guess you can say exercise is my obsession. It was not a Home Wrecker but a life saver. I don’t think anything could have helped my self-esteem as much as having a better body image. I was not an athletic youth but once I started exercising at nineteen years old it filled a real hole in my life. Exercise helped give me the confidence that I lacked as a young girl. Changing my body was one thing in my life that I could finally control. There are so many things in life that we can’t change. It felt so good to redefine my figure. Getting in  better shape filled me with so much pride and gratification. It was then that I realized fitness was my passion.



Home Wrecker...the one?



Do you believe in “the one?” Are you of the opinion that there is just one person out there for you?

When I married my (ex) husband I threw away the idea of a soul mate. I just tried to convince myself that he was right for me because he came on so strong. His intensity convinced me that he was “the one.”
Did I go against my instincts? I absolutely did! Have you gone against your intuition and it still worked out?
When I met my present boyfriend there was a just a certain chemistry that even I didn’t understand.
Have you ever met someone and right off the bat you felt as if you knew that person?
Well, that is what happened for me. There was a certain “something” that drew me to him. I just can’t be sure what it was. Had we known each other in a past life, was it an animal attraction, or was it plainly just the right time? I do believe timing is everything. If you are not open to it and the timing is off that can change everything  It might very well change your destiny.
For me, this man is my destiny. I will never understand it completely but at the time we were getting to know each other I knew there was a higher power that brought us together. Sometimes I tend to over analyze things but with this relationship I haven’t done that because it has felt so natural from the start.
He may not be “the one.” That might just be a romantic notion but as things stand now he is the only one I want to spend my whole life with.
My book Home Wrecker is dedicated to this man. His love gave me the strength and motivation to trust in my writing.
A friend once asked me about the early beginnings of this relationship.
“Don’t you feel like your love is tarnished because it started out so ugly, she asked?”
My response to that was a big fat “no.”
Just being able to find this kind of love is a crapshoot. I feel so lucky that I didn’t just smile and walk the other way.



Coffee Shop Home Wrecker


To all the writers out there: Do you remember the last time you wrote with ease and complete confidence? If it was today then you are in good shape.

Lately it has taken me so much effort to get words on the page or more accurately get words on the computer.
Years ago I used to write everyday and I never seemed to have the kind of writers block that I have now. When I think back to those early years (pre Home Wrecker days) I was able to write without a hesitation. I wrote about whatever was going on in my life. I was able to find comedy in the most mundane things and enjoyed making fun of myself and my friends.
When I think about that time I remember my daily routine was so much different than it is today. I used to make it a point to take advantage of my time and head to the nearby coffee shop to write. Once there I would be able to have a clear enough mind and an endless amount of coffee shop napkins to write my story of the day.
It was during a time when we did not have computers or cell phones. I had to write old school, pen to paper. Without all the latest technology there were less distractions so I could get right to work. I could let my ideas flow without interruption. Now, I have to push myself to do what at one time came so naturally.


Guilt is a Home Wrecker


Do you hold onto guilt from a past experience? Do you carry this guilt with you on a daily basis? 

When I left my husband for another man I was criticized by others but more than that I blamed myself endlessly because I knew what I did was wrong.
I have spent an endless amount of time beating myself up over a choice that I made over two years ago. Even though I knew I was not entirely to blame, as my marriage was damaged, I gave myself the Home Wrecker title.
Now that the storm has passed, I have continued to live with this guilt. I have put it all on me even though my husband should share in the responsibility for not nurturing what we had. He took me for granted and did not handle our relationship with care.
Do you feel you deserve to stay guilty for the rest of your life even if it doesn’t serve you well?
I now realize it is time for me to let go of this guilt because it doesn’t do anything but hurt me. I have been given a second chance in life. If I don't see that as a blessing then I would be one ungrateful girl!


Home Wrecker inspiration



How about some inspiration?

Here is a little story written by my boyfriends father. He has already written his autobiography! In this story he talks about being married for 68 years.
Now get out the tissues just in case! I know I needed one.

Today marks our 68th wedding anniversary. I can't believe our God has given us 88 years of life to reach this point in our lives.  I remember the first time I laid eyes on Lyn, my bride.  I had just completed Navy boot camp in Chicago and was transferred to Alameda, California.
I heard there were free dances for servicemen at the Oakland YWCA every night. One evening I decided to attended  as I loved to dance. At that time, as a seaman 1st class, I was only making $50 a month and had to take advantage of all freebies.  I even thought I was a good dancer.  I had been told so in high school by the girls with whom I danced.
I was sitting on the balcony when I saw this beautiful red head approach the receptionist.  It appeared she was having some difficulty being admitted.  I kept watching her until she looked my way and gave me her warm, beautiful, engaging smile. I don't know what attracted me to her as I only liked blondes or brunettes.   I followed her into the dance hall and asked her to dance.  Several men kept cutting in on me but I was persistent and did the same to them.  They finally gave up and I had her to myself for the rest of the evening. However, once during a jitterbug number and tossing her around, my arm somehow became entangled in her string of pikake shells she was wearing.  They sprayed all over the dance floor. I was so embarrassed and began picking up the shells when she assured me it was okay.  They were old beads and didn't matter to her.
When the dance was over I asked her if I could see her home.  She said no but after noticing that it was dark outside she agreed that I could walk her to the train.  I complimented her on her cute hat she was wearing which made some points with her.  I also walked on her left side as a man, at that time, was expected to do.  At the train station I asked if I could see her again.
I could go on forever about our courting days as they were filled with more cheap dates, like touring a cemetery and reading all of the headstones.  Or going roller skating, where she fell and I brushed her skirt off.
It took me 14 months of continuous dating for her to finally agree to marry me.  My patience have multiplied into 68 years of wedded bliss and still praying for many more.




A pet store can be a Home Wrecker...please go to a shelter instead


I never knew the love of an animal until I had my first dog when I was 28 years old.

Growing up we never had pets because my dad said they were dirty as he was a real neat freak. He even refused to let me babysit the class rabbit when I was in preschool.
Since I was not raised with animals I did not feel comfortable around them. Dogs scared me. I was the girl that walked across the street to avoid the neighbors pet. Since I was not familiar with dogs I became deathly afraid of them.
When I got involved with the man who became my husband he and his family were dog lovers. Every card that went out graced a dog on the cover. Since there were no children in the family the dogs replaced that empty spot. They talked about their dogs as if they were their flesh and blood. I thought they were all nuts.
Before we were married he convinced me that we needed a dog. After much apprehension, I agreed. I knew how much it meant to him. His love of animals is what I loved the most about him. I believe he loved animals more than people. He was very much a recluse and not very social, When it came to the animals he became very loving and nurturing.
Our first dog together was a mangy looking mutt from the Carson animal shelter. Early on he explained to me how he did not believe in pet stores or breeders. He told me how much these rescue dogs needed homes. I was reluctant to go to the shelter because I was so used to seeing those cute little puppies at mall pet stores. But once we got there I tried to keep an open mind because I figured he knew what he was talking about.
Upon our arrival I wanted to cry because this pound was filthy and seeing all those dogs in cages was so sad. It was as if we had just arrived at a doggie jail. It looked like a prison camp for animals. My husband chose this particular shelter because he knew it was a kill shelter and he really truly wanted to save a dog's life. In fact, while I was falling in love with a litter of tiny puppies that were newly born he was looking at the dogs that were in the worst shape.
That was when this one shepherd mutt caught his eye. She was thin and sickly looking. Leaving her behind would have been a Home Wrecker.




Negative thoughts are a Home Wrecker


Now that the summer Olympics have come and gone I can’t help but be in awe of all these fresh faced competitors. 

I looked at those athletes from all over the world and wondered how they were able to keep going? Even though they were under so much pressure in some ways it was nothing compared to what they have had to endure most of their lives. They have had to make compromises on a daily basis. They work so hard, all for that one moment in time. These men and women are extraordinary and in my opinion, they are all winners. I can’t imagine dealing with that kind of pressure. Everyday they have had to perform and try to do better than they did the day before.
It makes me wonder why we can’t all try to be extraordinary at something. Why do some people have that kind of killer passion while others just seem to go through the motions?
I think besides this passion above all we need to believe that we can succeed. Lack of passion is a Home Wrecker. We have to really trust that we can achieve our dreams. So many of us second guess ourselves. We are not convinced that the goal is possible. I can’t help wondering if it has to do with how we scrutinize ourselves. Are we praising ourselves or are we being overly critical? These inner voices can really wear you down if they are negative all of the time.
I remember talking to a friend about this very subject. At the time she was deep in therapy and a question that came up in one of her weekly sessions was "how do you talk to yourself?" That was something I had never even thought about. I just never paid attention to how I treated my internal voice. It was then that I realized I was guilty of putting myself down every chance I got. Personally, these voices are not all that forgiving. As much as I try to correct this behavior I find I am often quietly attacking myself. After a while I start to believe those damaging thoughts.
On the outside I may look self assured but secretly I often tear myself to shreds. It is not intentional but it is an everyday occurrence. It is like an automatic response. I can make a mistake and without hesitation those inner voices tear me apart inch by inch. I don’t usually like to admit to this flaw but there it is. It is not something I am proud to confess but on that day it became crystal clear. Once I admitted it to myself I knew I wanted to make a point to change that behavior. It is self destructive and does nothing for me.
So today while I am tackling my daily chores I am going to begin by being a little more complimentary to myself. No more put downs or insults. I am going to exchange the cynical words with new positive ones. I believe if I pay attention I can make this change.



Home Wrecker passion

Now that I have completed my first book Home Wrecker I am considered an author. How funny that sounds. As it is, I do a very good job of butchering up the English language.

I just have the need to write. There is nothing better when my words all come together. It is such a good feeling. Unfortunately, it does not always come naturally. I don’t know that I possess an exceptional gift but just the same I need to write almost as much as I need to eat and sleep. When I have actually written something that works it is the best feeling in the world. It makes me feel like I can breathe again.
I started writing as a teenager. Actually I wrote my first story, “Alexandria the Great” when I was no more than ten-years-old. That story was about an outcast that was misunderstood. That general theme has continued with me ever since. I loved playing with words and telling my tale. While I would read my stories to others I would feel something special inside. It made me feel like I stood out from the rest. I guess you could say writing is my passion even though I never really thought I would accomplish anything with it. I just did it because it was one thing that really interested me.
What is your passion in life? When did you discover this was something that gave you a spark? Are you able to follow your heart and still make a living? 

This boy is not a Home Wrecker


My boyfriends grandson has kept us occupied for a good portion of the weekend. We have been adsorbed in every one of his activities and adventures! He is a good kid so it makes it all worthwhile.

After a better part of a year of knowing this youngster I am starting to perceive myself as a grandmother figure. Even though I don’t own the official title. Just the same I feel very much a part of this nine-year-old's life. I can feel the bond forming by just the little things that he does when we are together. I have started to notice the trust that he has in me by the way he has to be touching me or how he now waits for me to tuck him into bed.
I never saw myself as a grandma or even a motherly type for that matter. When I married my husband, early on we decided we were not going to have children. Truth be told, if I really had wanted a baby I believe he would have complied and vice versa. We were just not that fuzzy on having a family and sharing that much of ourselves with someone other than each other. Call it selfish but knowing what I know now that was the best decision we could have made considering we are no longer together.
The thing is, I don’t know if I would have walked away from my marriage had we been parents. Could I have been a Home Wrecker if there were children involved? I doubt it but I can't say for sure.I just feel lucky that we were not like a many other couples who have to work to stay together solely for the kids. How sad that sounds but is very common.
Making the decision to not have kids does not in anyway mean that I am not maternal. On the contrary, I think I am more maternal than most. If I had a child I believe I would be anxious every second of the day. Maybe that is normal but I think I would be an extreme worrywart. As a parent, how do you not worry? How do you learn to step back and let your children live their lives? I can’t imagine what that would be like. I would fret over every bruise they incurred and then I would blame myself.
Many people I meet ask me why I have never had children after they see the way I seem to bond with them. I too contemplate that question even though the decision was a very deliberate one. I love kids but at a distance. I love knowing that they are not my responsibility and at the end of the visit I can walk away free from all responsibility. Not many people have that luxury.


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Reclusive Home Wrecker


I spent the best part of a week in Lake Tahoe with my outgoing boyfriend, my chatty cousin and his gregarious girlfriend. All three of them are definitely what you would call “sociable.” I on the other hand have learned to be more introverted.

I have gotten used to not conversing too much during social situations. You see, my husband was very much a recluse. He preferred to be left alone if at all possible. While traveling I can’t remember him ever talking to any one other than myself except when he had to conduct business like ordering a meal or paying for a rental car. He just had no interest in corresponding with strangers where I had always been very approachable and friendly. My parents were both extroverts so I was used to bantering with people that I didn’t know. After a while his ways kind of rubbed off on me.
Have you been in a relationship so long that your personality actually changed? How do you change back? Is it even possible? I hope so because I don’t want to be so restricted.
Now after all these years I think I have forgotten what it is like to carry on a good conversation one after another. It can feel like work where at one time it came very natural to me. Years ago I might have been described as a social butterfly but now I think I have become a bit uncomfortable around people. Being out and about feels almost foreign to me.
First of all, I am not used to traveling with other couples. This is all new territory for me. During my entire marriage I can’t remember traveling with other people other than a couple of easy over night getaways. To actually be around another couple for more than a few hours at one stretch was very new to me. I really had to step out of myself as it took all my energy to keep my enthusiasm up.
I hope I will be able re-learn to be more personable. I find those to be positive traits. I think being outgoing shows that you are comfortable in your own skin. I want to be more approachable and likable. Now that I am not with my husband there is no reason to hold back. His anti-social personality was a Home Wrecker.


Home Wrecker vs Friends


As a physical fitness instructor I never had to sell anything to anyone. I believed in my work which made it very natural to advertise my business. I never felt the need to sell products. I never did. I was able to suggest things without having to feel that I was pushing merchandise on my clients.

 Now as an author with a published book on the market the circumstances are different. The most crucial part of my job is to sell my story Home Wrecker. Being a “shameless self-promoter” is what I have referred to as my new job title. Not that it is a completely shameless job. I can’t say I have become all that comfortable with this new job description! I am not very enterprising and yet this book thing has become a real business endeavor for me.
It has been a really difficult process full of disappointments. I thought because I made the decision to take on this very personal project that all of my friends would want to support me and back me up. Well that has not been the case. I don’t want to sound petty but these feelings have been stirring within me since I found a publisher.
Early on I asked one of my closest friends if she would mind reading the manuscript for me as a way to be a fresh pair of eyes. She was unemployed at the time and spent many hours a day at the gym without too many responsibilities. Let’s just say she had the time. To my surprise she seemed put out by my request but to my even greater surprise, even after my book was published, she never got around to reading it. I am not sure what that was about? She read other people’s books and even promoted them on her Facebook page but for some reason there was little interest in mine. I thought she would be anxious to read it!
This wasn't just a casual friendship as we were friends for over twenty years. This is a girl that called me her best friend and yet she couldn’t give my story the time of day.
I am sorry to say that relationship has recently ended. I couldn’t come to grips with her lack of support and after a while I couldn’t get past those bad feelings I was having towards her. I guess I just took it for granted that I would at least start out with the reinforcement of my dearest friends.
I assumed this because, if things were reversed, I would want to praise and back up my friends for any accomplishment that they may have achieved. Anything that would be important to my friends would also be important to me.
To all of you reading this, has this been your experience with any of your projects or business endeavors? Have you been disappointed with your support system or have you been pleasantly pleased?
On a recommendation from my dear friend Roni I have just started reading a new book by Elizabeth Gilbert (of Eat, Pray, Love fame) titled “Committed: A Love Story." I couldn't help feeling a little bit emotional in the beginning where she describes the most important twenty-seven women in her life. It brought tears to my eyes but it also made me feel a bit slighted. It was written with such genuine appreciation. As I was reading her words of adornment towards these people, I couldn’t help feeling negative feelings rise up inside of me.
I love the people in my life, the people I call my friends but how does one lower their expectations and not let it affect their relationships? How do you accept that not everyone is going to be happy or even interested in your work?


The Depression Era was a Home Wrecker


Here my boyfriend's dad shares another moment in the life of a child born during the depression era.

Today I am a very satisfied and happy member of the middle class America, retired now for 38 years. I was born in 1924 as the oldest of 7 children in the cold real depression days in the 1920's to early 1930's.  Those were the days when practically everyone was out of work including my dad.  We went many days without 3 meals a day.  I remember one period of 2 weeks where we only had onion and mustard sandwiches for 3 meals a day.  When we moved into a vacated home we had no bed to sleep on.  We slept on the floor near the fireplace and huddled together to keep war.  I remember hunting rabbits with my bb gun.  Many days I would bring home a rabbit or a bird for meat on the table.
Occasionally I had a job picking strawberries at a penny per basket. I also worked on a farm (14 years old) from morning to evening harvesting hay and wheat for 25 cents a day with a luncheon meal provided.  Boy, did I enjoy that meal as the farmers had meat and vegetables for all of their meals.
I remember too how difficult it was for mom and dad to provide shoes and clothes year round for all of us.  We would go the summer and early fall seasons in our bare feet.  For school we would get a pair of tennis shoes.  By winter we had holes in the bottom of our shoes but still had to wear them to school.  Clothing was handed down from one child to another.  Being the oldest I was fortunate to get the new clothes when they were available.  Most of our clothes came from caring neighbors.
When Roosevelt became president he set up food programs from farmer surplus programs.  Boy, was that nice to pick up canned bully beef, flour for bread, rice and beans.  Later they passed out new clothes for the needy.  My dad received a brand new gray herringbone suit which was only good for Sunday church.  However, I attended one high school function where I was happy to be allowed to wear dad's suit. I really felt I looked like the cat's meow which was used to mean spiffy do or sharp.  Later on we were given a double bed where we four boys were happy to share it each night.  It was a little crowded but we kept warm that way.
Later on dad was fortunate enough to be hired on under the WPA (Works Progress Administration) working on the roads.  This wasn't automatic.  You had to have some connections which my dad had.  Once in a while he would find a side job like digging a trench for a drain pipe at a residence.  I was given the job of using the pick and shovel along with my dad.  My brothers were too small to help.
Later on as the years went by the coal mines and coke burning ovens were activated and dad found a job in the mines and living conditions improved considerably.  During these hard times my family moved at least 12 times.  I don't know if we were evicted or what but these moves were necessary.  I remember some families actually lived in the vacant coke ovens.  These were used to burn coal from the mines to be used in making steel.
As I look back on those days and the easy comfortable living that I am enjoying I bless our Good God for all of the blessings he has bestowed on me and my family.


A Story Without A Home Wrecker


My boyfriend’s dad shares another sweet story about his family during WWII when he was a Marine.

We were married at age 20 during WWII.  I was in the Navy.  After I was discharged from the Navy a friend of mine talked me into joining the U. S. Marines.  He said you only reported for duty twice a month for a couple of days.  For this you were paid about $120 a quarter.  Since I had a low paying job and a baby on the way I joined the Marines.  I gradually was promoted finally to a Master Sergeant.
In 1951 while we were on a 2 week summer training program we were immediately activated and sent to Korea where the war (commonly referred to as a "police action")  I was gone from my family for a year.  At that time we had a son 5 and a daughter 3.  We lived in a 2 story condo and my wife was very security conscious. She was losing a lot of sleep without any security devices.
After a few months of my absence she came up with a brilliant idea.  She had a lot of intelligence and a vast amount of common sense.  Accordingly she invented her own security system.  Every night as she and the children were going to bed she had a box of Kellogg's corn flakes which she sprinkled on each step as she proceeded to the second floor for the night. Needless to say this would have awakened the dead if any one came up those stairs. Upon awakening each morning, she swept up the corn flakes and placed them back in the box for the next night.  When I finally returned home after a year's absence she related this story to me. I gave her a big hug and a kiss for being so ingenious.
To this day we still share this story with friends and laugh about it just as hard as if it were yesterday.


Lacking humor is a Home Wrecker


While shopping this afternoon at Tilly’s, a popular clothing store for teens I couldn’t help feeling like I was back in time. I haven’t worn those kinds of clothes since I was in High School. 

My boyfriend discovered this store from his nine-year-old grandson and wanted to go there to look for surfer style T-shirts. What adult man do you know that still wears teenage style board shorts and trendy surfer-boy tops? He does.
If going there was not awkward enough, he pulled off his shirt in the middle of the aisle and proceeded to try on one t-shirt after another. He was completely unaware that it might have been a bit alarming for any unassuming teenager who just happened to walki by. It was quite a sight, especially since he has tattoos.
Yes, my honey has two big Koi fish swimming around his mid section which he recently had done to cover up his soon to be ex’s nickname. What I have learned is if you get a tattoo of your current loved one, it is almost always the kiss of death to the relationship. I would call that a Home Wrecker! I really believe that. I hope I am mistaken for all of you out there who has your lovers name inked on your body. This is only a generalization but I have seen it over and over again!
Then there is the his Tribal art tattoo that covers his entire back. Should I say more? Probably not!
I worry a mother is going to see him and fear for her teenage daughters. I haven’t been that flustered since I was a silly adolescent. There were many nights my mom would show up at my favorite nightclub wearing pajamas, an overcoat and slippers. Needless to say it was quite mortifying!
This scene today made me realize how I am hardly ever embarrassed by anything these days. Do you remember the last time you felt that self-conscious?
As a kid it seems we are always inhibited over something. As we get older we realize none of it really matters because no one really cares. It is such a freeing feeling not to have to tip toe around worrying about what other people think. How fun it is to be yourself and not have to make apologies.
I better get used to these kinds of scenes because being with my boyfriend is like being with an naive man-sized kid. He takes pleasure in standing out, talking to just about EVERYONE that passes us on the street, and has no problem breaking out in dance no matter where we are. At one time this would have made me blush from ear to ear and maybe even made me want to hide. Now I realize this is a big part of the reason why I love this man so much. In life there are so many harsh realities. If he has the need to party like it is 1999 then I am going to be right there with him.