Friday, January 31, 2014

Makeup tip by Cowgirl Dirt



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Snacking

Since my son was just a toddler, he referred to this snack as a 'special' and now that he is a teenager, I can't think of anything else to call it. Sometimes, I'll refer to it as a large 'special' which would then include at least two cheeses, some roasted peppers, olives and maybe, another meat. Today I  prepared a regular 'special', it's what both he and I love to snack on when he arrives from school.


Have a look at my recipes!


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A Lonely Place

It’s a lonely place with non-descript people searching for meaning, searching for something that gave them the esteem they begged for in their lives. Even the TV commercials talked of buying bigger, better, being the envy of ‘friends.’

Gated communities try to keep out the rif-raf but the gates aren’t strong enough and the walls not high enough. Anyone, you know, ‘those people,’ they could get through and when they did, well, they fit in as easily as anyone else who knew the key code.

Miles of strip mall shopping stretching from town to town screaming out with gaudy signs along the way, restaurants and coffee shops proclaiming their connection to the places the owners came from to have a ‘better life’ but all they did was re-create the life they had, with the same people they knew from where they came because all the same people came too. When together, they talked about how much better their lives were because they had so much shopping and so many restaurants and how their house was bigger, better and in their private thoughts, they were the envy of ‘friends.’

I see homeless seniors and I'm sad for them, not knowing why or how they became homeless. I see mid-aged men and woman burnt brown, aged beyond their years looking like they fell from a box of raisins.  I look around for the little ones; I see the parks but not the children. Maybe they are hidden in gated communities where they have a bigger, better life.

I look around and I feel cold. I feel lonely,

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Capturing the French Quarter!

Just love the people in this VIDEO!!!! You may too, enjoy!


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Thursday, January 30, 2014

The Valentine’s Day Romantic Movie Survey | Women's Voices For Change | #WorthyCause

From semanier.com 
 "Vote for your favorite romantic movie and help Women’s Voices raise up to $25,000 for BabyHeart, the International Children’s Heart Foundation, which treats children in developing countries born with heart disease.
Vote for your favorite romantic movie between now and February 14. Chosen titles will be listed as soon as possible after your votes come in. On Valentine’s Day they will name the favorite, and post every one of your comments.There’s substance to this story. An anonymous Women’s Voices donor has offered to contribute $5 for every entry, up to a limit of $25,000. The proceeds will go to BabyHeart, the International Children’s Heart Foundation, which treats children in developing nations who are born with heart disease. The foundation provides direct care to as many children as possible in the short term; sends medications, surgical supplies, and diagnostic equipment to medical facilities in developing countries; and trains surgeons and medical staff so they ultimately can provide care for their own people."
Click here The Valentine’s Day Romantic Movie Survey | Women's Voices For Change

What a wonderful and simple way to support a worthy cause. If you are a blogger, please consider a post about this cause and if you aren't, please vote and share this post to any or all of your social media accounts. 
Thank you to A Femme d'un Certain Age for letting us know of this cause.


Much appreciated,
Maria'


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Books, books, books

A comment on social media gave me the idea for this question:

           What are your three favorite books of all time? 
                                      Please share in the comments below ...


From beneaththerowantree.blogspot.com 


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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Ira Glass

“Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.”

― Ira Glass

Ira Jeffrey Glass is an American public radio personality, and host and producer of the radio and television show This American Life.

#IraGlass

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Being a writer

I've been reading what others have done to move closer and closer to that space where they are comfortable calling themselves a writer, where being a writer is their work.  I’m slowly crawling there though it is harder than one might think.  I’ve been comfortable saying I would write more and I’ve been comfortable saying that I’m willing to share my writing with the world, but am I really? 

Must you have a publishing house give you a title or are you a writer once you pen your first story and present it to the world.

It’s incredibly hard to put one’s self out into the world knowing that you will face rejection time and time again.  Even with a simple blog, I find this to be true.  Many of my friends don't know I have a blog.  I guess it is easier to put myself out into the world among people with whom I do not really know, but I am getting bolder.  Admitting that is a first step for me.

Was I a writer from the very moment I handed my fourth grade teacher, Miss Caro, a fake book report?  The class was assigned a book report and we were told to choose a book from the library and write a review, a book report as they were called back then.  I loved the library as a child and I still do as an adult but I did not go to the library for that assignment and I did not pick out a book to read.  Instead, I wrote a review of a story I made up.  I created a story, title, and author, and then wrote a review.  I barely remember the story, after all these years, except for the main character who was a young wheelchair bound girl who struggled at school.  The review of my fake book is what I handed to Miss Caro as the book report she assigned. 

She never knew or if she did, she chose not to say anything.  I still wonder if she was just a little curious about the book for which I was supposedly reporting as she could have easily checked to find the title and author did not exist.  Well, she gave me a high mark and that was important at the time, that and the freedom to write, and make my own story.

You see, it is easier when you are a child, when you have nothing to lose.   

~M

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Monday, January 27, 2014

excerpts from untitled

She delighted in watching the light as it cast its shadows through the glass building.  Off in the distance were snow-capped mountains.  She loved the light here, the way it played across the skies and each moment held a different feeling.  The wind picked up her hair and she started to dance, spinning around and around, arms high, reaching for the sky. Her dance made her feel, made her heart sing and the day became night and the wind ceased and she was calm.
      Lyn opened her eyes and stared at the white ceiling as she ran her hands over her stomach and breast as she lifted her head slightly to tame her hair to one side.  She was dreaming again, the same dream that came often.  When she was awake, she could close her eyes and conjure different scenes and always, the light played its part along with the natural beauty of the land and the uniqueness of the place.  The only problem for Lyn was she had to open her eyes and often what she saw when she opened her eyes didn’t please her much.                                                                                                                                  © 2014

*excerpts from untitled are snippets of a larger piece that I am working on, please feel free to comment and let me know what you think.

From http://www.excitingcpa.com/

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Sunday, January 26, 2014

Old style bookstore ... Shakespeare and Company

I think I could be quite satisfied with this bookstore. Perhaps they'd allow me to make a home in a comfortable corner. Let's visit!

http://shakespeareandcompany.com/

 This looks comfortable! A cup of coffee would be nice too ...

http://shakespeareandcompany.com/

Lovely! 
"Be not inhospitable to strangers
lest they be angels in disguise"

http://shakespeareandcompany.com/
Is that a bed I see?



A unique way to display!



Well this looks interesting ... hmmm!
Look closely.


37 rue de la Bucherie, 75005 Paris, France  & they have a facebook page for those of us on the other side.

I could definitely enjoy time here!

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Friday, January 24, 2014

Cécile McLorin Salvant - I Didn't Know What Time it Was (Live at Dizzy's)


She is only 21 years old ....

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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Beautiful Song ... A Great Big World & Christina Aguilera - Say Something


Say something, I'm giving up on you.
I'll be the one, if you want me to.
Anywhere I would've followed you.
Say something, I'm giving up on you.

And I am feeling so small.
It was over my head
I know nothing at all.

And I will stumble and fall.
I'm still learning to love
Just starting to crawl.

Say something, I'm giving up on you.
I'm sorry that I couldn't get to you.
Anywhere I would've followed you.
Say something, I'm giving up on you.

And I will swallow my pride.
You're the one that I love
And I'm saying goodbye.

Say something, I'm giving up on you.
And I'm sorry that I couldn't get to you.
And anywhere I would've followed you. Oh-oh-oh-oh
Say something, I'm giving up on you.

Say something, I'm giving up on you.
Say something...

http://agreatbigworld.com/


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Breakfast of Champions ... Chia Seeds and T'eff

This is my new favorite breakfast that is not only good looking; it's delicious and very healthy!


I've combined Farina with Teff, Chia and a splash of Maple Syrup. It's that simple!

Teff is the world’s tiniest grain and it hails from Ethiopia. It's name is Amharic for 'lost' which is a completely sensible name given the tiniest of things tend to get lost. Teff grains can't be refined or processed, they are so small and it's a cereal grass that packs a nutritional punch. I purchased my Teff from the Bob’s Red Mill which I found at the organic market.
From nutricionysaludenjaume.blogspot.com 
“Teff leads the grains in calcium content, which helps strengthen bones and may reduce PMS symptoms. One grain of Teff is up to 40% resistant starch, which can help you lose weight if you replace the other carbs you’re filling up on, what I call “carbage” (processed foods like white bread, potato starch, sweets and the like). Teff can be white or dark in color and can be found at your local health food store or online for about $8 per pound. One serving size is about 1/4 cup and 160 calories. Sweeter and milder than wheat, Teff has a molasses-like flavor. Teff can be cooked hot for a nice breakfast cereal – 1 cup of Teff with 2 cups of water or juice, cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until it’s thick and the liquid is absorbed. Add fresh fruit on top. Teff is also available in tortillas for a great wrap or to make quesadillas (a lot better than refined flour tortillas and gluten-free too!).” From Dr. Oz

This is how Teff looks as it's growing ... pretty!
From en.wikipedia.org
My breakfast also contains Chia Seeds, Salvia hispanica, which when I first heard about them, could only think of the Ch Ch Ch Chia Pet commercial you see on television. Chia Seeds are chuck full of Omega 3 – fatty acids and are full of antioxidants. Chia is high in Fiber, and it expands making it fill you. It’s great for weight loss and good digestion. Chia has pretty much no taste at all and so it can be added to many dishes to increase nutrition. You can soak the Chia Seeds in a cup of water for about 15 minutes before use or soak the seeds in a clean glass jar in the refrigerator. They will stay for about 4 or 5 days.
“Chia absorbs up to 12 times its own weight and expands to curb your appetite, so adding just an ounce or so of chia seeds to your diet can reduce caloric intake and help lower the energy density (or calories) of foods, plus double the amount of fiber you receive.” From Dr. Oz

Look at how beautiful it looks whiles it grows!
From deborahsmall.wordpress.com 
Prepare the Farina according to instruction, as it starts to thicken, add a tablespoon of Teff and a tablespoon of soaked Chia. Once thickened, add maple Syrup and your choice of fruit or nuts.

Absolutely delicious!

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Eye Liner Pencil Sale


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Sometimes it's part of the story

“In my story you're the villain. But in my heart, you're still the reigning King.” 
― Coco J. Ginger

From happeningarchive.blogspot.com 
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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Writers wanted! Join Beach Walking in the Desert as a guest writer and expose yourself ...

Fairy Tales, daydreams, travelogues, adventures, awakenings, short stories ... all possibilities, as long as they are written from your heart!

Do you want to inspire and at the same time get more exposure for your writing?
I am looking for creative guest writers to write for the Beach Walking in the Desert blog (BWD). Some of the topics I am interested in covering include short stories and essays, book reviews, poetry, art, inspiration and lifestyle. A western or southern voice is preferred.

But ... I'm just as poor as you are and I can't pay you. I know, that's pretty sad but if you want to write just for fun and you don't want the follow up required in having your own blog or you want the exposure for another reason, then let's chat.

If you are interested, please have a look around the blog to get a feel for the blogs flavor, then email me at BeachWalkerMari@gmail.com with your idea for an article. 


#WritersWanted
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Monday, January 20, 2014

Doing for others ... life's most urgent call.

"Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?" ~~Martin Luther King

While scrolling through posts on Facebook this morning, I found quote after quote from Martin Luther King, some with inspiring pictures of the man himself in honor of his day and in remembrance of what he stood for during his short lifetime. All wonderful and important quotes to remember and to share. 

Many understand his cause as only a black/white issue but is it really? Racism may have been the seed but his cause became so much bigger, so much more diverse. In my simple worldview, it all comes down to one thing and King expressed it beautifully when he told us that doing for others is life's most urgent call. 

Isn't that what it's all about? Relationships ... 

We have relationships with every other being in this world, simply because of the nature of life and human living. It makes sense to do for others; it makes sense that doing for others is what upholds humanity. If each person helps another, without judgment, without cynicism, without superiority, we uphold them and build community, a place to come together. 


The simple act of doing something for someone else tears down walls, makes good neighbors, builds trust, opens communication, creates a space where sharing is normal and skin colors don't matter, where nationality is a proud blessing in which others could share in the culture, where differences disappear. 

That's the world of grace and acceptance where I could surrender.
From www.gypsytornado.com

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Sunday, January 19, 2014

Good-byes and Hellos

“Don’t be dismayed at good-byes. A farewell is necessary before you can meet again. And meeting again, after moments or lifetimes, is certain for those who are friends.” ~Richard Bach
From www.emmalouiselayla.com
I'm some distance from most of my dearest friends and I miss them terribly. Oh, just the mundane things like sitting for a cup of fresh brewed coffee and talking about everything under the sun. Martini's at the bar of a loud and very busy bistro heartily enjoying the atmosphere and people watching, dinner out sharing good wine and lots and lots of laughter, or late night talks about things not normally shared, while watching the inky night through the screened porch. 

However, friendship doesn't mean that you have to see each other every day. It does however mean that you keep your friend's memory tucked into your heart and firmly in mind while you journey elsewhere for a time. Bach puts it into perspective reminding us that we have to journey in order to enjoy the moment of return when you see your friends again. 


I journey. I've moved more times than most people think is necessary but each experience I have is always a lovely adventure. Each time I reconnect, it has made my connection stronger. For me, that is the bonus!

~~~

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This is for you!


moreloveletters.com  #LoveLetters
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Saturday, January 18, 2014

excerpts from untitled

    "As Lyn sipped her coffee, she remembered days spent as a child with Aunt Claire singing and dancing in her garden while they picked flowers for the table and veggies for a salad.  They would make rag dolls of old cloth and put on mini plays at the table in the sun room and they made sure to have plenty of afternoon tea parties.  Lyn would put on mounds of her Aunt’s jewelry and a big hat and she would serve real tea and sugar cookies, made earlier in the day, while showing off her best manners.  Then they would head to the stable for a ride on their favorite horses before the afternoon would close.  Her Aunt Claire had made Lyn’s childhood magical"

   "Lyn knew of her French heritage, her Aunt and her mother were French, her father was an American but she could hardly believe her Aunt left an apartment in Paris. A vision of Paris somehow reminded Lynn of Aunt Claire saying, “But you know mon trésor, your life was always meant to be beautiful.”         © 2014

*excerpts from untitled are snippets of a larger piece that I am working on, please feel free to comment and let me know what you think.
Photo from thealternativebride.blogspot.com
#Paris
~~~

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Loving bloglovin’

I've started using bloglovin’, and I am so happy because now I can keep all the blogs I read in one place. Just love it!! So, I had to tell you that they have a great App for IPhone and Google play. It’s really easy, practical and you'll be able to follow all you favorite blogs including mine ;)
I think you'll like it. So don’t wait any longer, download it right here, just click the icon below!


Read all your favorite blogs on your iPhone,
Android or iPad.


  • Add any blog you want to follow
    1. See new posts in a beautiful feed
    2. Discover the best posts in Fashion, Beauty,
      Interior Design, Food, DIY and more


      


    ~~~

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    Art from the heart ...

    Are you familiar with Carrie Ballantyne’s artwork? 
    I came across her work recently; obviously a bit late to the game since Carrie has been an artist for probably more than 30 years and I am just in awe of her talent. I am not exactly sure what it is, perhaps the colors she uses, (I am neither an artist nor a critic) but the people she portrays seem as if they could' walk right off the page.' You will be drawn right away to the eyes of the person she portrays; there is depth that is not usually found in others work.  Her oil aptly named North Country Cowgirl is striking. I have several favorites including Pearl of Santa Fe and Sterling. Guardian of the Pup is a sweet pencil drawing that somehow reminds me of my boy.

    It is artwork that you just have to sit with for a while and perhaps you can conjure up a story behind each picture. Have a look for yourself and let us know what you think!
    Guardian of the Pup by Carrie L Ballantyne Pencil ~ 13 1/2" x 10 1/2"
    This is the work of  Carrie L. Ballantyne
    You can read more about Carrie on her website and also this well done article done a few years back.

    ~~~

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    Friday, January 17, 2014

    You've come to visit! Thank you and I appreciate that you are here!

    "But along the way, don’t discount the progress they have already made. Become quick with praise. Because that is where life is lived. That is where strength is found. And that is where joy is deserved—both in your child’s life and in your own." ~J Becker 
    ~~
    Read this from Joshua Becker this morning in a post about praising children for their accomplishments, but it's not just true for children although it's so important. It's just true for all of life too? Couldn't the last line be easily changed to "both in THEIR life and in your own."

    ‪#‎Perspectives‬ Don't forget to lavish praise where it's due today.

    ~~

    Certainly appreciate your comments and would be so happy if you'd share my posts!

    Thursday, January 16, 2014

    Life's about the sunshine you make.


    “Walk with the dreamers, the believers, the courageous, the cheerful, the planners, the doers, the successful people with their heads in the clouds and their feet on the ground. 
    Let their spirit ignite a fire within you to leave this world better than when you found it...” ~Wilferd Peterson~

    From Travel Channel on Tumblr 


    Certainly appreciate your comments and would be so happy if you'd share my posts!

    Monday, January 13, 2014

    Mustang Spring Stories & Poems by Deanna Dickinson McCall


    I spent a good long week reading Mustang Spring: Stories & Poems by Deanna Dickinson McCall. It was much longer than I would normally take to read a book of 154 pages but you see there were stories to think about, poems to sit with and feelings to feel and in one particular story that touched home for me, tears to be cried.
    This is not a sweet book. This is a book of raw emotion depicting ranch life as it truly is including the good and the bad, the coming together of community and the real terror of how nature can take its toll. Deanna’s writing is to the point, she doesn’t skip the pain, she doesn’t hide the facts and she doesn’t use flowery descriptions because to do so would not do justice to the life ranchers live to provide the food that comes of cattle and to care take the land.
    For anyone who does not know the ranching life, there is a bit of education in these pages and for those that do; there is an understanding and a sense of the familiar. I enjoyed this read and have earmarked a few poems and stories that I truly enjoyed and I will go back and re-read them from time to time.


    Deanna and her family ranch in southern New Mexico. To learn more about Deanna and her writing, visit her Facebook page at Deanna Dickinson Mccall Author. He book can be purchased at Amazon.
    ~~
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    Sunday, January 5, 2014

    Sedona Princess (The Sedona Stories) ... A review

    Sedona Princess by Sunday Larson is a lovely story of pain and loss wrapped in a blanket of love. The authors use of language enhances this story and enchants the reader. Strong characters make the reader want to know what's next in this delightful story. The ending was exactly what a reader would want and creates a space for a next in series book.


    Sunday is also the author of Secrets of the Missing Crown: A Pilgrimage of Change which I reviewed some time back. After writing this review of Sedona Princess, I went back to read what I wrote about Secrets of the Missing Crown and the common theme in both reviews is enchantment. I am enchanted by her use of language and enchanted by her stories and maybe you will be too.

    You can follow Sunday on her Authors page on Facebook

    Certainly appreciate your comments and would be so happy if you'd share my posts!

    Wednesday, January 1, 2014

    Accidental Lives by Linda Kendall McLendon ... A Review


    Accidental Lives by Linda Kendall McLendon is the follow up novel to Unintended Lies, which I reviewed some weeks back.  This series features Catherine DeLong, a strong woman with soft emotions who experiences a series of exasperating events in her life. This story was a page-turner of completely unexpected events, highs and lows and without giving away the best parts of the story, I can say you will not be disappointed.  Rather than close loops on story lines, this second book just created new relationships with endless possibility and I cannot wait for the next installment.

    Linda’s sense of place, her keen awareness of nature comes through in the beautiful descriptions of the environment and her ability to carefully draw characters keeps you interested and involved in the emotions.

    Learn more and keep up with Linda on her Author's Facebook Page

    Certainly appreciate your comments and would be so happy if you'd share my posts!