BARS and Melody (They’re Opening Performance)

If you want to see how it started.


I hope you enjoyed these two as much as I did. Following your dreams is what being hopeful is all about.

I can’t wait to start my school year off showing this video to my classes for our first writing assignment.

Blessing to you all for the New Year!

If you have time, read my resolutions for the next several months. If not, I hope you were blessed by the videos.

The New Year is here and that means it’s time to hear all of our friend’s hopes, dreams, and aspirations for the coming year.

Most of my friends have given up on making a New Year’s Resolution.

I find that sad.

Actually, what I truly find sad is that we seem to think that we are allowed to only make resolutions once a year.

I try to make three or four new resolutions every ninety days. It is sorta how I measure my own personal life and growth. Am I doing anything with my life? Does my life have any meaning? And if so, what does it mean right now?

It’s fun to be nagged by my closest friends about the resolutions that I have made that have fallen by the wayside… In truth, that probably means that what I was wishing to attain was not as important to me as what I once thought that it was. (Knowing this can be a great thing!!!)

For the next three months, these are my new writing resolutions:

To keep a weekly blogging schedule of the contests and challenges that I wish to enter and check them off as I am successful.

To empty my ‘blogging follows’ only three times a week. (I seem to get very depressed as the emails accumulate and I sit and watch them. Now, I will take an allotted time as do something about it! No negative feelings attached.)

To enter some form of a contest/ publishing opportunity at least two times a month- hopefully three.

To try to expand my writing comfort zone by writing at least one piece I am somewhat happy with that is 500+ words in length. (I am very comfortable with the 100-250 word limit… but if I wish to aspire to dreams that I have placed on the back burners of my consciousness, I need more than 100+ words!)

Now that I have not only put them in print (which I usually do) but I have made them public to the world… we’ll see if I find myself more driven to see if I truly want to lay claim to these new steps in my life.

Written for The Daily Post: December 31, 2016. Hopeful


A New Year’s Rat: FFftPP-2017 Week 1


I would like to give a hearty welcome to all flash fiction aficionados.To find the new Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner Home Site click here.

Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner is a weekly writing challenge designed for both the flash fiction newbie and the more experienced writer. It is the desire of this challenge to allow writers the opportunity to clear the cobwebs from a more tedious and involved project. Becoming a part of a new and growing writer’s community might be just what the doctor ordered to rejuvenate your writing juices.

All writers, from newbies to the seasoned, are invited to in the fun.

You can join the community of writers for the home page by clicking on the LIGHT BLUE ITALICIZED LINK above and share your writing…

Or to join the community of writers from here….Click on the Blue Frog to share.

Thanks for your participation.


A New Year’s Rat

“Your cheeses are divine, Claudia.”

“Thank you, Ramon. I am so glad you could make it. Is Sheridan here?”

“She is under the weather, poor girl. But I would not have missed your New Year’s bash for the world.”

“I’ll have to call her.”

“Don’t bother yourself. Sheridan is always finding reasons to dampen a parade. But that is my cross. Your wine? A Cabernet Sauvignon from Shafer, I believe. It is magnificent.”

“Thanks, Ramon. I need a quick check with the caterers,” trying to politely step away.

“Oh, Claudia,” reaching to stop her by the elbow. “I don’t believe little hubby Marcus is home tonight. Is he?”

“Marcus’ll be home for the New Year… If you’ll excuse me.”

“But Claudia,” not allowing a polite departure, “Tonight, I have no curfew… You have no hubby… There are succulent cheeses and delectable wines… You know what they say about mice and their play?”

“Oh, bless you, Ramon.” Claudia turned to face him squarely in the eyes. “The winter lodge, I almost forgot.”

“The winter lodge?”

“Yes, our Marcus’s grandpapa’s old hunting lodge just beyond Manchester.”

“Oh, what a lovely getaway.”

“It is. Marcus had wanted me to call the exterminators. The field rats around there are becoming quite a nuisance.”

Written for Flash Fiction for the Practical Practitioner: Requirements: Using the photo prompt, create a 200 word flash story.

Playing Hooky


Playing Hooky

“Probably over 100.” Mom held her hand against my beaded forehead.

“When I called, Doc said that if we kept up the cold compresses the fever’d break.”

“We’ll give it till morning.”

I snuggled a wee bit further under Grandma’s wonky star quilt.

Mom sat down near me. “What else can I get for you, Nicholas?”

“Some hot chocolate, please.” I eked out.

“Grand,” Mother said.

“With those tiny marshmallows,” finishing my request.

“Right away.” And Mom was gone.

“Too close, Bethany.” Nicolas said to his older sister. “Better take the hot water bottle. Mom almost sat on it!”

Written for The Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge: Requirements: December 29, 2016 prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a cozy story. What is it to be cozy, to experience Danish hygge? It doesn’t need to be culture-specific, but it can be an interesting point of comparison or contrast. A character might long to feel cozy, or you might describe the perfect cozy scene. It may or may not include Prosecco.

The Center

Photo credit: Jen Lund

Ruben always lit a candle on the way. Sometimes more.

It took him only a few moments; a respite, before having to buck up and face the overwhelming bleakness of The Center.

His quiet times at the Basilica of St. Nicolas were needed… Tranquility and stability that seemed to emanate from the very structure itself.

Ruben wasn’t sure what he believed. How could a God of compassion allow such hopeless carnage? Its infestations felt even among the children?

Still… what could it hurt?

With another unspoken prayer, Ruben turned. The children at The Center awaited.

Originally posted at The 100 Story. December’s Photo Flash Fiction Prompt. 

Without a Goodbye

PHOTO PROMPT © Shaktiki Sharma

“What’s your name, son?”

The lad didn’t speak. Clutching his Army-surplus backpack more tightly to his chest he simply stared straight ahead.

“You waiting on the next bus?”

Again, only silence.

“Mr. Burgoyne, I only want to help.”

The lad looked surprised… then he looked at the labeling on the backpack and smirked.

“Was that your dad’s?”

“It is my dad’s. He’s not dead.” The response was more forced than just a casual statement.

“You going to see him?”

“They say he’s missing. But he’s not dead. He would never leave without me being able to say goodbye.”

Written for Friday Fictioneers: Requirements: Using the photo prompt, create a 100 word flash fiction story.

The Fight for Isabella

This week’s photo prompt is provided by Iain Kelly.

A full second after he bellowed “Go”, Caleb prodded his steed. There’d be no joking of unfair advantages.

Father was always making jovial competitions out of life’s decisions; forcing him into father/son skirmishes… Compelling him to persevere… Placing a challenge just beyond his reach… Wanting him to experience the sweet sweat of a victory well fought… Learning to rise again after a hard defeat.

Caleb used to think that his father didn’t approve of some of his decisions… But Father fought- and sometimes won- decisions that Caleb knew were good decisions.

The night of his celebration into clanship, Caleb asked his father about their constant fights. “Life seems too easy for you, lad. You succeed at everything. It’s my job to make sure you to mount every obstacle that challenges you.. as if the entire world against you.”

The race… permission to court Isabella.

There were many others that dreamed of her.

He would have to fight – maybe even Isabella’s father…

But with this one, he wanted to know Father was in his corner.

With this one, he may have to fight the world to win.

Written for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Requirements: Using the photo prompt, create a flash story of 150 words.