A Grandma’s Love

Grandma Susan reading Klaus the Mouse and other Silly Animal Tales to her grandchildren

A Grandma’s Love.

Grandma Susan (as her grandchildren fondly refer to her) is the kind of Grandma I aspire to be.

In fact…  she’s the kind of human being I aspire to be.

I met Susan through her oldest grandson, who was my youngest son’s “roomer” in college.

To know Susan is to love Susan.  Her joy for life, her positive attitude, her love for her family, her smile, the undeniable glow that radiates from her and touches everyone she encounters….  There is something very special about Susan, and I am so fortunate to call her my friend.

Without my even knowing, Susan purchased a copy of the book I announced authoring and illustrating about a month ago, Klaus the Mouse and other Silly Animal Tales.  When she received it, she gathered her grandchildren – now aged 13-27 (and even the spouses of those that are married now!), for a fun reading.  They happened to be gathering together for a bridal shower for one of her granddaughters, but they all took some time to sit down with Grandma Susan to listen to a few “silly stories.”

Can you believe how sweet this is?

You see, Susan is a retired school librarian and long-time lover of books and reading to children (and especially her grandchildren!).

I guess it really is true that Klaus the Mouse and other Silly Animal Tales is a book for children of all ages, and it’s been so fun hearing stories from folks who have purchased the book.

Susan’s granddaughter, Charrie, told me Adele the Gazelle was her favorite character.

Thank you, Susan, for sharing your love, and for all your beautiful grands who gave permission for us to share.

I’m a new grandma, whose first granddaughter is not even a year old, but I hope I will be as loved and adored as Grandma Susan when my grand(s) are teenagers and married!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

The Flowers of Fall

The flowers of Fall
are the beautiful leaves

that in the summer
produced the forest’s shade.

The emerald and olive and mossy greens
turn to persimmon and crimson and gold.

The joy of Autumn
is in the cool, crisp breeze.

that carries the memory
of warmth and life and growth.

A breath of air inhaled
full of brisk, invigorating possibilities.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Klaus the Mouse and his friends have become a Book!

Klaus the Mouse and his friends have become a Book!

Some of you who have been hanging around here for a while at TheCreativeLifeinBetween may remember Klaus the Mouse, who lived in a teeny tiny house.

You might also recall Hedy the Hedgehog who didn’t like to go to bedy.

Hedy the Hedgehog

Then there’s Chuck the Duck and Pam the Lamb.  There’s an Otter named Potter and Mig the Pig.

Adele the Gazelle has a smell that casts a magic spell, and what a phenomenon is a Fawn named John!

Chippy the Chipmunk, Rooty the Rooster, Hal the Colorful Cow, a Bumble Bee Named Buzz, and Gail the Snail.

They all joined together in this sweet little collection of watercolors and silly rhyming tales.

Thanks to so many of you who encouraged me along the way.  You helped make it happen!

My first published book!  A collection of silly tales for children 3-103.

If you would like to purchase, here is a link:  KLAUS THE MOUSE.

Happy Reading, Happy Sharing, Happy Laughing.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

I want to ask you …

I want to ask you …

What makes your heart skip a beat?
What memories cause goosebumps on every inch of your skin?

I want to ask you …

Who has hurt you so deeply that you have lost all confidence in who you really are?
What loss has caused bitterness in your soul?

I want to ask you …

If you could be anywhere right now, doing anything you wanted to..
where would you be, and what would you be doing?

I want to ask you …

When you take a deep breath and close your eyes, what is the first thing you think about?
Does it make you happy, or does it make you sad?

I want to ask you …

What makes you want to jump out of bed in the morning?
What makes you smile when you go to sleep at night?

I want to ask you …

What do you think life is really about?
What is our purpose?

I want to ask you …
but is it okay?

Maybe I should just ask you …
How was your day?

Isn’t that
the polite thing to say?

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Just Do it Anyway

Elvis the Penguin at the National Aviary, Pittsburgh, PA - September, 2017

Elvis the Penguin at the National Aviary, Pittsburgh, PA – September, 2017

Just Do it Anyway!

It might be scary.
It is probably risky.

What if someone is watching,
and it turns out to be a flop?

What if people laugh?
What if they say, “I told you so.”

There’s a pretty huge chance it won’t work out.
But guess what?  That’s the point!

Be brave!
Just Do it Anyway!

 

This is a mantra I am trying to reiterate to myself.  I am taking on new experiences, new challenges, new risks – with my art, writing, self-development….

It might turn out to be a great big flop, but I’ll never know if I don’t just do it anyway!

Is there something you’ve always wanted to do?  Pick up a paint brush?  Write a book?  Travel to a faraway place?  Learn a new skill?  Begin a new relationship?  Record a song?  Learn to fly?  Heck – maybe it’s even just a new hairdo?

It might not turn out……..

But then it might?

If you don’t just do it anyway, how will you ever know?

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

 

This Past Week

This past week I received a surprise bouquet of flowers
from a generous friend named Gary
who grows the most beautiful dahlias.

This past week I also learned I lost a dear blogging friend
whose name was Terry from his beautiful husband named Gary
after I spoke to him just the day before sharing my love and admiration.

This past week I worked and I played and I laughed and I cried
in determination and freedom and joy and in sorrow
for family and friends both cherished in my life and those I have lost.

Tomorrow is Labor Day in the United States.
A day set aside to honor the American labor movement and the contributions
workers have made towards the strength, prosperity, laws and well-being of our country.

I think about Gary laboring over the beautiful flowers he planted.
I think about Terry laboring to breathe when I spoke to him the day before he died.
I think about Gary laboring to get through the days following the death of his love.

I think about those who labor to provide comforting care to hospice patients.
I think about those who labor in hospitals and emergency rooms and trauma centers.
I think about those who labor to protect our country’s freedom.

I am grateful for a weekend of respite
and the opportunity to work
this past week.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

 

On Being an Uncle: A Charlie Guest Post

On Being an Uncle:  A Charlie Guest Post.

As many of you may recall, I became an uncle about nine months ago.

I gotta tell you, this job just gets better and better every week.

“We” are now eating some “solid” foods by “our self” sitting in the “high” chair.

It is very important for me to stay close by during mealtime to catch anything that hits the floor…  or happens to be shared by a swinging hand.  (And I must say, blueberry puffs with purple sweet potato are quite scrumptious.)

“We” are also now getting much more mobile, and “somebody” likes my squeaky toys, my ears, my tongue, my paws, and my nose.  “She” even takes my bones right out of my mouth.

But that’s okay.  It’s all in a day’s work of being an uncle.  And as long as she tosses me a blueberry puff or two, I’m totally fine with the rest of the havoc!

Mom says I am a really good uncle.  I like when she tells me that.  It is usually accompanied by a chin scratch or an ear rub or possibly a treat!  She really, really likes being a grandma, so I guess its a good thing I like being an uncle…

Woofs & Wags,
Charlie

Charlie is an adopted dog with brown eyes and a white-tipped tail who brings joy and laughter to his family and friends.  Charlie is a gifted writer, raving food critic, cat, chipmunk, and donut lover, and exceptionally photogenic model.  Some of his best friends are Mike the UPS Man, Cliff the Mailman, Jaeger the neighbor dog, and ANYONE who delivers pizza to the house.   If you would like to read more guest posts by Charlie, simply type “Charlie” into the Search box at the top right hand corner of this link: thecreativelifeinbetween.com.   If you would enjoy a companion like Charlie, please consider pet adoption.

Lately…

Mars, PA - Late Summer Sunrise - August 20, 2017

Mars, PA – Late Summer Sunrise – August 20, 2017

Lately…

Lately, I’ve been reading
“The Storyteller”
by Jodi Picoult.

It has touched my heart deeply,
profoundly moved my soul,
and makes my hands
want to bake Chocolate Babka.

It’s made me consider,
Inside each of us is a monster.
Inside each of us is a saint.
The real question
is which one of them will
we nurture the most?
Which one will smite the other?”

Lately, I’ve been binge-watching
Bloodline
on Netflix.

It’s made me realize
how past family secrets
and hurtful lies
can cause lasting scars
and shatter lives.

Lately, Hubby was out of town
on a business trip.
Not far. Not long. But not here.

It’s made me realize
how much I truly miss
the little things
I too often
complain about.

Lately…
I’ve been thinking about
a new perspective.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi