Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Memorable Neighbor Who Scared Us Away (Writer's Workshop)

Growing up, we had a crabby couple on one side of us and my best friend on the other side. There were four of us kids and for some reason, the crabby couple next door didn’t like us. To this day, I really don’t know why. They were both heavyset with gray hair and frowns all the time, but they took great pride in keeping their yard looking nice. They didn’t want anyone walking on their grass so when our ball would accidentally bounce into their backyard, I guess they expected us to just leave it. Well, we walked on their grass to get it but went as quickly as we could. It’s not like we ran all over their yard.

Whenever they found candy wrappers in their yard, they always blamed us even though we never littered like that. Yes, we walked to the corner store often and bought candy and ice cream, but we never threw wrappers on the ground. They would complain to the elderly man across the street about us but his response was to be glad he had a nice family living next to him.

When my mom told me we were going to move, I blew my stack. After all, my best friend lived right next door! This was the only time I really was angry at my parents. I think I was a junior in high school at the time and didn’t understand why my parents would let the crabby neighbors chase us out of our home. My mom explained she saw the man with a rifle in his driveway and was afraid he might shoot one of us or my dad when he came home late from working third shift.

Both my parents had a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ and so I didn’t understand why they couldn’t trust God to protect us or work things out by having the crabby people move. It didn’t seem to me like they were exercising much faith by moving. We moved, but not far. It was only about a 20 min. walk away and at the time, I could make it in just about 5 minutes if I ran. The crabby neighbors also moved away about a year or so after we did.

What would it take for you to move? Was there a time when you got angry at your parents? Did you ever have a crabblepuss for a neighbor?

This is in response to Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop prompts: "A Memorable Neighbor" and "What Would It Take For You To Move?"

You can help Canine Lifeline (a dog rescue organization that saved our dog, Abby) by leaving a comment on any of our blogs in March. We will donate 50 cents per comment at the end of the month.

To find out more about my book and why I wrote it, read the Foreword here.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

A Story of Love (Writer's Workshop)

My Funny Dad, Harry is about love--my love for my dad, his love for me and our family, and ways God’ showed His love for me. My dad was called home to be with our Lord February 16, 2007. I found him dead on the floor of his bathroom with his head against the tub when I stopped by to visit him before work.

At first, I didn’t realize he was dead but couldn’t wake him and called 911. He was a very loving family man, a great dad who was always there for me and I felt so sad that he was gone but happy that he didn’t suffer long and was able to live independently and die in his own home like he wanted. I just wish he didn’t die alone.

I was so overwhelmed that I couldn’t sleep through the nights. There was so many things that needed to be done and I am the type person that likes to get everything on my “To Do List” done each day. That just wasn’t going to happen for a very long time. Many wonderful memories came to me during the nights following his death and I got the idea to write a book in his memory because he was such a wonderful father. I knew there were a lot of books written about abuse, domestic violence and sad tales and thought perhaps the world would like to read about a happy family for a change. After all, “Marley & Me” was a big hit and that was about a funny dog.

I began writing “My Funny Dad, Harry” and remember feeling like it was something God wanted me to do. It was fun writing and although I had no idea how to get a book published, I just trusted God to lead me—he did. One Sunday there was a big snowstorm and church was canceled. I went on the computer to see if I could find out how to publish a book, was going to go on an author’s website where I thought I might find some advice and instead up came Outskirts Press, a self-publishing company in Colorado. To this day I cannot explain how it came up. I never heard of it before but there it was with several packages to choose from and an offer of a representative to walk me through every step of the way. I started writing my book the end of February 2007 and it was published October of 2007.

I still miss my dad very much but know I’ll see him again and hopefully because of this book, others will get to meet him too. I included God’s plan of salvation in an appendix.

This is in response to Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop prompt: A Story of Love.

You can help Canine Lifeline (a dog rescue organization that saved our dog, Abby) by leaving a comment on any of our blogs in March. We will donate 50 cents per comment at the end of the month.

(“My Funny Dad, Harry” is available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.)

Monday, March 7, 2011

Please, Keep Your Hands Off My Stuff!

Harry's dining room table after mom died.
My dad used to always keep a stack of stuff on the dining room table by his place and didn’t want anyone touching it or moving it anywhere else. This was one of the things that used to upset my mom. My dad had a lot of stuff in the basement, in the back room, and in the garage. It looked like a big mess with a lot of clutter everywhere, yet, he knew where everything was.  He liked things handy. I’m like him in this respect.

I generally have a place for all my things and know where they are. That is until my husband moves something without telling me which really irritates me. I like knowing where everything is! Why can’t he leave my things alone? He likes moving his stuff around all the time from one place to another. An example is his book holder that sits on a desk or table (one of the many things Harry made). I think it’s funny that he can’t pick one place and just leave it there. I have no problem when he rearranges his things or even the furniture in the basement that we consider to be his man cave, but he needs to leave my things alone, don’t you agree?

This morning I found my evening pill bottle moved to a different shelf. Now I have it placed exactly where I need it to be so I remember to take it in the evening every other day. My morning pills are on the far left side and my evening pill on the far right.

I read somewhere that it’s good to change things around to help prevent Alzheimer’s from setting in. I’m afraid I am headed for it but since my dad didn’t have it and I take after him, I’m hoping I don’t get it either. Maybe my husband is trying to challenge my mind more.

What about you? Are you particular about your things? Who are you more like—me and my dad or my husband who likes to change things around? Does it make you nuts when people move your things?

You can help Canine Lifeline (a dog rescue organization that saved our dog, Abby) by leaving a comment on any of our blogs in March. We will donate 50 cents per comment at the end of the month.

I linked this post up to Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop for the prompt:  Something you do that drives your significant other CRAZY.  How do you make your significant other crazy?

To find out more about my book and why I wrote it, read the Foreword here. Tweet This
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"My Funny Dad, Harry" Book Giveaway

Congratulations to all the winners of the giveaway for "My Funny Dad, Harry" at Red Pine Mountain. I am so happy that four of my regular commenters won! Read what Tim thought of it at Everyday Living.