Stranded in Paradise (30-word Thursday)

Huntington Beach, CA (2016).


Brush the sorrow from your heart and allow the salty breeze to twist peace and playfulness between the strands of your hair. Paradise awaits in shades of blue and white.


Cinder Soot (100-Word Challenge)

This week’s 100-Word Wednesday (Week #7) (hosted by @Bikurgurl ):


Image credit: Olivier Guillard


During the drive up the tree-lined forest road, winding along the southern tip of the serene lake, my mind wandered, wondering what might be left of the small cabin that saw the sun rise and set on countless unscripted days of my youth. The path was no longer well-worn but the trees whispered my name. Upon seeing the shack, memories flooded back, thick with the stench of wet moss and pine boughs. The tilted front deck sighed under each step, the torn screen door dangled from its hinges, and inside, the fireplace still cradled pounds of ash and expired timber.


Live. On. Purpose.

“Life is full of intention.”

I overheard this admonition from a co-worker the other morning. Life is full of intention.

How very true!

boots-in-concrete It was humorous to eavesdrop on the conversation a bit longer – between the newly-hired receptionist and one of the business owners who, truth-be-told, is favoring the thoughts of retirement yet dragging his feet through every day of existence as if wading through wet cement. “You’re one of those” he accused her, as she practically danced from the copy room to the front lobby of the office.

Most would assume that an age difference between the two individuals played a large part in creating such a chasm, but they would be mistaken in this case; it’s purely a difference in attitude. And an attitude difference by choice! The business owner, whether intentionally or unbeknownst to even himself, chooses to go through his days with the most curmudgeon perspective while the receptionist looks forward to new opportunities, seeks out adventures, and views adversities as fortuitous contingencies for learning and growth. There is purpose and intent in the perspective chosen by each individual – in the simplest of terms: glass-half-full, or glass-half-empty.

pouring water in a glass collection isolated

Personally, I know there are days when the screech of the alarm ripping me from slumber and the peace I so treasure in the few blissful hours of rest I actually obtain each night sends me into a “wading through wet cement” state of mind, and I have to stop myself even before my toes touch the floor, petitioning for peace and grace, and I breathe in a prayer for the patience necessary to make it through whatever I may face once I’ve left the bed. But, then, I know there are also those days that I fail to recognize my inner curmudgeon, and burst into the storms of the day, a hurricane of emotion myself – ready to ravage peaceful villages and destroy whole communities with gale-force torrents! Where, on those days, do I place my intent?
Is there ever a situation when a drop in a still (not frozen!) pond does not create a ripple? Can purposefulness be left in the closet and only reached for when occasion calls for it, such as a rain coat, an umbrella, or a pair of sunglasses? Can intention be turned on and off like a light switch to suit a mood or circumstance? Or it is a fully-on, wholly-in commitment?


Life is full of intention.

I will have to “tattoo” this somewhere where I will see it and be reminded (by literal, visual sight, or merely by striking, uncomfortable metaphorical and/or physical pain…) that what I do, and how I act – and react – is a deliberate and intentional choice I make… Or rather, it should be!



How is starting a small business a way to simplify? I’m not exactly sure! However, I’ve done exactly that!

This is my first attempt at online sales, and I’m just quickly sending out a blog post to direct some traffic…

Right now, there are two  three basic products – with hopes for more as I commandeer time to create. Both All are 11oz ceramic mugs, with simple yet fun thoughts inscribed. (note: they are microwave and dishwasher safe!)

I hope you enjoy these enough to consider purchasing them for yourself, your friends, your family, your co-workers – whomever you think may get a kick out of owning something unique!



Simplify Coffee Mug

Be a Flamingo Coffee Mug

Crazy is Relative Coffee Mug

ALittleSmudged Storefront

Night and Day (100 word challenge)

As has become the Wednesday tradition, I am participating in @Bikurgurl‘s 100-word challenge (Week 6). Thank you for stopping by! (image credit: Bikurgurl 2016 )



Opposite sides of the same coin – created equal, yet so vastly different! Insomuch as the night without the morning’s sunrise would be incomplete, the day without the rejuvenation of the night would be unbearable. Sweet and bittersweet in a lover’s dance, separated by circumstance, with the fire of temptation still burning between them. Walls built up of bygone encounters – emotions that once fed the soul are now boxed up and spirits that quenched the thirst for adventure, seemingly held captive in fragile glass bottles, as if the past could so easily be discarded. They say dark cannot exist without light…



I just wanted to take a quick moment to sayImage result for polar bear hugs imagesImage result for thank you hugs




to those that have taken the time to read and subscribe to this humble blog!

Today, the 50th Subscriber has clicked that lovely lil’ COME FOLLOW ME button,

and for that, I’m dropping balloons, tossing confetti, and shooting off the fireworks!

Image result for balloons and confetti gif

Why? WHY NOT?!

Life is more enjoyable if you find things to celebrate!

So, again, THANK YOU, and I hope you continue to enjoy your visits!

Untold Story (30-word Thursday challenge)

I nearly stepped on this fragile egg shell in my haste to get off to work… It blended in with the gravel of the driveway, especially with the showers overnight bringing a uniform gloss to everything. It set my mind reeling for the entire drive (2016).




So delicate and almost unnoticeable. Was this the start of a beautiful beginning, or a tragic demise? The untold story resting silently amid the shallow pools of the rocky driveway.


Curiosity and the Kit

For a while (I’m almost embarrassed to mention how long), I’ve been working on a “children’s” story – inasmuch as the Chronicles of Narnia are children’s stories, but you get the intent. Because of school demands, outrageous work hours, and a cavalcade of health setbacks, this story line took a back seat to, well, life, and its trouble-making hoodlum buddies. It has been this particular story, though, that has been tugging at my ‘novelistic’ heartstrings, begging that I return to my innermost passion, picking up the pieces that I had left scattered across my multiple flash drives as well as what I can recall from memory, having lost nearly the full beginning chapter to a virus-ridden hard drive. I was recently struck with a bolt of inspiration, almost audibly hearing one of the young characters in a conversation with her wise, gentle mother. I seized the opportunity to share an intimate moment with Mademoiselle Muse while she decided to grace me with her presence, despite the ungodly hour on the clock – sleep, be damned! – and such progression is always high-potency fuel on the fire! I’m hoping over the course of the next few weeks, this creative awakening takes up residence without fail and I’m able to continue developing this particular story line; I would love to see these characters come to life and be enjoyed by others!

For now, a tidbit to share with you all:



Willow was coaxed from the comfort of the den, the silken fur tipping her ears swayed by the melodious fog that caressed the timbers as it rolled up from deep within the valley. Against her nature, she sat quietly, watching the wispy air finger its way up and through nearby trees, convincing stubborn leaves to twirl and tremble, wave and waltz with a commanding gentleness. A shimmer of brilliant light shone from around the high back root of the Borealis tree, drawing Willow’s attention. Where the light was coming from was a mystery, as the fog still rested in the canopy overhead. The young fox crawled toward the illuminated root, battling curiosity and trepidation.

“What is it, young one?” the soft, tender voice of Sequoiasong patiently beckoned from just outside the den’s opening.

“A light…” Willowwood stammered, refusing to turn her gaze from the mysterious spectacle. “A brilliant light, like nothing I’ve ever seen before, Mother! I don’t know where it’s coming from; but I don’t want to lose it! ”

“And what is your plan for this light, Willowwood?” Sequoiasong needled. “Will you snatch it up in your jaws and drag it off somewhere, burying it as a prize for yourself?”

“I just want to see where it’s coming from and where it leads.”

“Are you sure you want to know that much about something so mysterious?”

“Of course I want to know!” The petite fox hopped up and down on all four of her dusty paws in a dance of wild impertinence. “And I want to know why the fog sings.”

“You hear the fog singing? What is it saying to you, my young one?”

Willowwood’s frolicking halted and she tilted her right ear toward the sky. “I don’t understand what it’s saying, Mother.” She pinched her eyes tight as if shutting out all light helped with auditory senses. “I’m not even sure there are words… Just a haunting song… A haunting song – so beautiful – my heart, Mother…”

“Breathe, Willow…”