Monday, October 31, 2011

November 2011 Picture Book Month!

November 2011 Picture Book Month!


Read * Share * Celebrate!

What You Can Do to Celebrate Picture Book Month

* Create posters and hang them around your school and library. Posters are available for download in the media kit. Be sure to include the book covers of your favorite picture books.

* Tweet the cause and use the hashtag #picturebookmonth

* Tweet reviews of your favorite picture books. The NY Public Libraries are doing this! Use the hashtag #picturebookmonth

* Get the Picture Book Month Twibbon, a digital ribbon that can be added to your Twitter avatar or Facebook profile picture.

* Ask a picture book author/illustrator to visit your school or library.

* Ask a picture book author/illustrator to do a Skype visit with your school or library.

* Do some picture book activities

* Read and share a picture book!

Warm Fuzzies Blog Fest Week #2

This week, we’ll cater to those of us who are completely possessive over our WIPs and don’t want to give anything too telling away. Instead of posting something intimate about our writing, post a picture or piece of music that describes your WIP.

What do you look to when you write? What inspires you? How else do you use your creativity? Music? Pictures? Art?

So here's my inspiration for my current WIP that I'll be working on during NaNoWriMo.

Can you guess? No peeking at my NaNo profile..

November National Blog Posting Month is hosting a contest/giveaway to celebrate National Blog Posting Month. For those who blog and want to take the challenge of blogging daily in November, and be eligible to win something, add your blog name and url to the form. The blogroll is open until 11 pm EST on Nov. 5th.

I'm # 126 on the list!

If you love to blog, why not join the fun?

The End to the Between

Today is the last day of NaBloPoMo's theme between. It has been interesting trying to come up with different topics around the premise of the word. I've actually had a great time writing everyday on this theme. It has been enlightening to say the least.

Tomorrow I will embark on several challenges including NaBloPoMo.

Happy Halloween!

When Beauty Meets Morbid

When Beauty Meets Morbid
Debra Elliott

Joe hovered over Michelle, doting on her like a lost puppy. He'd fantasized about this very moment
when he'd have her all to himself. Now she was there and his alone. In high school Joe had always
worshiped Michelle Collins, but she was a cheerleader and he was a science geek. The two didn't socialize,not in high school anyway. Not anywhere really, except here in the morgue.

She lay on the metal table, her perfect and pristine form unaware the science geek she made fun of
all those years ago was about to tear her beautiful body apart. The corner of his pencil thin lips curled intoa smirk. Finally, after twenty years he had her right where he wanted her. Joe gathered the necessaryinstruments to perform his duty, after all he was the town's only mortician.

He washed her in the sterile solution before proceeding. The morgue reeked of death, but Joe
savored the smell. It was "her' smell. Next came the daunting task of organ removal. His mind was
clouded. Joe needed fresh air. He needed a cigarette.

Joe grabbed a fresh, starched white sheet and placed it over his high school crushes body before
exiting the morgue. Once outside he lit up the strong menthol cigarette and took a few puffs. He snubbed the rest on the brick wall and went back inside to finish Michelle Collins.
She was still lying on the table. Of course she would be, he thought. She's dead as a doornail. He
shook his head. "Michelle, Michelle, Michelle... why did it have to come to this?" He half expected her to answer.

If only she had agreed to dinner, she wouldn't be lying on the slab of cold steel. And he wouldn't
have had to kill her. Why did it have to come to that? Beads of perspiration formed on Joe's brow. He
probed her insides until he had removed all of her vital organs. He threw them in the metal bucket at the foot of the table, except for her heart. Joe had a special place for it prepared.

He held up her cold, dead heart. His face grew dark and a morbid laugh escaped his mouth. "I told
you one day Michelle you would be mine."

Joe took her heart and placed it in a formaldehyde filled glass jar, sewed her up and went home with
her pickled heart in a jar. It was like carrying moonbeams around....

© 2011, Debra Ann Elliott

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Two Days

In two days I'll be a writing machine. I'll be lost between my words and pen, between the ink and paper. I'll be lost between my characters and their problems, between my imagination and their reality.

In two days NaNoWriMo begins and I'll be lost between my computer and my family, between getting my word count done and sanity.

Harvest Your Blessings

The theme this month over @ christianwriters blog chain is harvest.
Be sure to check out all the great posts. Links on the right.

For my harvest theme I have chosen to write about harvesting your blessings.

One of my favorite sayings is 'How to Plant Your Garden' (author unknown). It is a great reminder of the harvest of blessings we can receive. I want to expand on the different ways we can reap what we sow.

We can harvest our blessings and reap great rewards.

How to Plant Your Garden
First, you come to the garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses

For the garden of your daily living,
Plant three rows of peas:
1. Peas of mind
 2. Peas of heart
 3. Peas of soul 

Plant four rows of squash:
1. Squash gossip
2. Squash indifference
3. Squash grumbling
4. Squash selfishness 

Plant four rows of lettuce:
1. Lettuce be faithful
2. Lettuce be kind
3. Lettuce be patient
4. Lettuce really love one another

No garden is without turnips:
1. Turnip for meetings
2. Turnip for service
3. Turnip to help one another

To conclude our garden we must have thyme:
1. Thyme for each other
2. Thyme for family
3. Thyme for friends 

Water freely with patience and cultivate with love.
There is much fruit in your garden because you reap what you sow.
-- Author Unknown 

Harvest your peas:

Mercy, peace and love be yours in abundance. Jude 1:2 NIV

When you harvest peas within yourself, you will reap the rewards of peas of mind, peas of heart and peas of soul. Peas is something the Lord gives to you in abundance. He wants you to plant it in your spiritual garden for it to grow. If you don't cultivate your "row" of peas your spiritual garden will wither and your peas will die.

Tend to your peas of mind. Don't let your thoughts grow like weeds or unwanted vines.
Tend to your peas of heart. Don't let your heart die on the vine.
Tend to your peas of soul. Don't let your soul wither in the scorching sun.

Your "peas" are what grows in your garden, but only if your tend to them. Grow what the Lord planted...grow your peas.

 Harvest your squash:

Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Colossians 3:12 NIV 
 The Lord planted squash in your spiritual garden for many reasons. He wanted you to cultivate compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. In order for your garden to produce a bounty of goodness you have to grow a variety of squash.

Squash gossip. Gossip is your spiritual garden's worse enemy. It's like a parasite that will infest your crop. Gossip will fester throughout your blessing harvest unless you plant squash. Squash gossip. Let your blessings grow into kindness.
Squash indifference. When you grow indifference in your spiritual garden you cultivate lack of interest, concern, or sympathy. You can't harvest your blessings when you grow indifference. Clothe yourself with compassion and gentleness. Put your gardening clothes on and dig deep into the soil of your garden to find your blessings.
Squash grumbling. When you cultivate grumbling in your spiritual garden you cannot harvest the blessing of patience. Grumbling is like hard, cracked ground you cannot till. Patience cannot sprout unless you plant squash. If you want to harvest the blessing of patience sow squash.
Squash selfishness. Humility...does it grow in your spiritual garden? Do you sow humility or reap selfishness? The Lord planted squash in your spiritual garden so humility could flourish, not selfishness. The harvest of a selfish person is one of  an empty harvest. When you grow humility you harvest many blessings. Your bounty will overflow as the Lord intended. Tend to your spiritual garden and plant squash...

Harvest your lettuce:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.Love never fails... I Corinthians 13:4-8

I Corinthians 13 verses 4-8 says it all when it comes to planting lettuce in your spiritual garden.

Lettuce be faithful. Faithfulness is a wonderful blessing you can cultivate in your spiritual garden. The harvest you reap when you are faithful servants will be abundant. Till your garden with the seeds of faithfulness from I Corinthians 13:4-7. Lettuce be faithful tenders of our spiritual gardens.
Lettuce be kind. Kindness is another blessing you can reap from our spiritual garden. When you reap kindness you will harvest the seeds of blessings the Lord has sown for you. Sow your garden with the seeds of kindness from I Corinthians 13:4-7. Lettuce be kind tillers of our spiritual gardens.
Lettuce be patient.  Is patience growing in your spiritual garden?  Love is one of the blessings patience will yield from your harvested garden. It's a wonderful reward for all your hard work you put into growing a beautiful garden. Patience tends to need more TLC when you cultivate it. It can't or won't grow if not properly taken care of. Water your seeds of patience with I Corinthians 13:4-7. Lettuce be patient observers of our spiritual gardens.
Lettuce really love one another.  Love is what holds your spiritual garden together. It is what you harvest. It is what you should sow. It is what you should reap. Love is the blessing you should harvest. Plant love from I Corinthians 13:4-7 in your garden filled with weeds and brambles. Lettuce really love one another so we can be harvesters of many blessings.

Harvest your turnips:

"Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning," Luke 12:35 NIV

Turnips are root vegetables that are planted deep within the soil, just as you are planted deep within your spiritual garden. The Word of God nourishes your spiritual garden. It is sown with seeds of love, hope and faith. When you reap what has been planted you also reap a harvest of blessings.

Turnip for meetings. This important turnip provides your spiritual meal. You can feast on the harvest of the Word. You need to cultivate it daily. It's harvest will bring you a bounty of blessings. Be rooted in this turnip.
Turnip for service. Giving service to others is a rich reward from your spiritual garden. When you serve others you serve the Lord. You reap what you sow. The harvest of your service is the blessing of your time and effort. Be a turnip for the Lord.
Turnip to help one another.  Turnips are profound elements to any spiritual garden. Your garden needs them. When you till your spiritual garden, till your neighbors. When you cultivate your spiritual garden, remember your neighbor. You plant, your sow and you reap for the purpose of harvesting blessings, but your spiritual garden is not only yours, but your neighbors. Turnip to help one another and reap the benefits of your harvest.

Harvest your thyme: 

 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens...  
Ecclesiastes 3:1 NIV easily it is to forget to plant it in your spiritual garden. Thyme needs to be harvested to enrich your blessings.

Thyme for each other. When you plant thyme in your spiritual garden, plant enough to share. It is a precious commodity, but one that needs to be shared. Harvest with care.
Thyme for family. Plant the seeds of thyme for family. This thyme is the most rewarding of the harvest you will reap. You will receive many blessings from this gift of thyme.
Thyme for friends. In cultivating the seeds of thyme for friends, you not only enrich their lives, but yours as well.

There is a thyme for everything. Their is the sowing of thyme, the cultivating of thyme, the reaping of thyme and the harvest of thyme. With each comes the blessings you have brought forth from your spiritual garden. Don't let thyme pass you by...

Christian, Christian quiet content, how does your garden grow? 


Saturday, October 29, 2011


It's only a matter of days before the transition begins. I feel as if I am in limbo, trapped between being a good writer and a great writer.On November 1st I will transition myself into a writing machine. I will become a writing fool, a monster spewing forth words.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Only Four Days

Only four days left before I embark on a writing journey. I am kind of stuck between what I was going to write and changing my mind and going in another direction.

I really don't know until I start typing or putting words onto paper. I don't like the idea of being stuck and not sure of where I want my writing to go.

Only time will tell if I stay stuck between the idea I have now and a fresh new look.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Between Genre's

As a writer do you ever feel torn between genre's? I know I do. I have a hard time finding my niche. I love to write fiction as well as non-fiction. I write romance, fantasy, SF and anything that I take a fancy too! I can't help myself.

I consider myself a Christian writer, though not always is my work Christian. I do write secular stories.

So if you ever feel torn between genre's, write what you want, write what you feel. Why choose?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Between the Web

Between the web you wove
words of deceit...
You created a lair of lies

Between the web you wove
words of sweet...
You created a tangle of alibis

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Between Writing and Work

Ten months ago I made a choice and stopped working outside the home, to pursue my writing. I did write, but the way the economy is I couldn't continue to write and not bring in enough income for us to survive. So I make the decision to go back to work. I am now working PT (4 hours) a day. It's a little money to help make ends meet.

Yea, it takes away from my writing, but I feel it is what God wants. He answered a prayer yesterday and I know it was His way of telling my He no longer wants us to struggle.

I also know that the right writing opportunity will come along and we will no longer have to worry.

So if you struggle between writing and work, why not try to do both.  

Monday, October 24, 2011

Does She or Doesn't She?

This week I found a great blog fest. This week's topic is This week, be it good or bad, funny or sad, share with us the best response you’ve heard when you’ve told someone you’re a writer. Also, tell us, do you tell other people that you’re a writer?
It also happens to fit with my between theme.

Sometimes I don't even feel like a writer. I'm published but I don't advertise the fact. I'm not sure why? I guess I'm afraid of the reaction I will get and believe me I've got some doosies.

When I tell someone I'm a published author the reactions I get the most is "Really? What have you published or do you make a lot of money. How come I've never heard of you?"

I hate everyone of those reactions. I now tend to stay quite about what I love to do. So, to answer the question I've become cautious in who I tell. It's become like a secret I sweep under the rug or hide in the closet.

I've become a  "does she or doesn't she" writer.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Do You Ever Feel You're Caught Between Parallel Worlds?

Do You Ever Feel You're Caught Between Parallel Worlds?

This is a question I ask myself daily, but I never have an answer. Some days I do feel caught between what I love to do and the ones I love. I feel caught between the world of writing and the world of my reality.

There are days when I think everything I do, say or touch falls to pieces. I feel my worlds are going to collide any minute. My life is a surreal reality caught between parallel worlds.

I'm Taking My Blog 'Getting Through the Hurt and Learning How to Heal' and entering the Women of Faith Contest 2011

Women of Faith Writing Contest 2011

I am entering. I'm taking my blog posts 'Getting Through the Hurt and Learning How to Heal: A Journey Through Post Abortion' and turning into a book.

Here's the prologue:


After an abortion you may experience many facets of an emotional roller coaster. You may feel hatred, guilt, shame and yes, sometimes even relief. These gamut of emotions run deep creating wounds that may never heal and permanent scars that can last a lifetime.

In order for you to heal, mend and start the recovery process you must travel down many different roads and go through the fire before you get where God is taking you.

Your life will never be the same after an abortion. You must adjust your internal emotional clock in order to realize you are human and God has already forgiven you. Now, you must learn how to forgive yourself.

All the negative voices inside you head will worm their way into the crevices of your soul if you stay in the dark place of life.

I want to take you on many journeys and through the fire until you reach God's purpose for you.

He does not want you to suffer. He brought you through the storms to help the hurting, heal the broken and harbor the lost.

You may go through the journeys many years or only a day, but you will come from the ashes into the beauty a stronger woman so you can fulfill God's purpose for you. It took me over thirty-five years to realize I needed to go through the journeys and fire before I could fulfill my promise to God.

I got through it and so will you. With the Lord leading my hand, I will show you what God has planned for you too!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

I planted a little story seed...

Jenny Matlock

From Jenny Matlock's Saturday Centus:
THE PROMPT THIS WEEK IS: I planted a little story seed...
WORD COUNT - Not to exceed 100 words, plus the six words of the prompt. 106 total maximum words.

I planted a little story seed watered it with words to watch it grow into a wonderful novel tree, flowing with goldenrod yellow and burnt orange leaves. The pages blow in the wind weaving a story of make-believe and dreams of another place and time. In between words burst through cavorting with imagination.

I planted a little story seed tilled it with blood, sweat and tears to watch it grow into a magnificent novel tree, gathering specks of imagery, painting a picture of amazement and wonder. The pages wisp with each gentle breeze back and forth, back and forth charting dreams of planted little story seeds.

The Lie He Told

My heart jumped out of my chest. I was certain he could hear the thunderous thump, thump, thump. I tried to steady my shaky hand. I wanted my aim to be dead on.

I watched John and his mistress cavort. They were like clock-work. Every Saturday they would meet at the park. He would push her high in the swing. They acted like a couple of school kids. How could he?

The gun shook violently in my hand. They didn't see me. The massive oak tree hid me from their view. Why John?  I gave you twenty-five years of my life. This is how you repay me.

John and the pretty young thing he chose over me continued their jaunt like they were the only two in the world. I cocked the 38 Special and aimed in their direction. My palms sweated profusely. I wiped them on the side of my jogging suit. I didn't really have a plan. No get-a-way, just shoot them dead and wait for the cops.

Suddenly John and his girl toy ran toward my direction. I panicked. Did they spot me?  Bile rose in my throat. It was now or never. They got closer to the edge of where I lay in wait. They were like rabbits caught in a snare.

I stepped out from behind the massive oak tree and caught them off guard.

"Suzette!" John's shocked voice cracked. His eyes widened. "I....I can explain," he muttered.

Girl toy didn't say anything. She tried to hide behind John, but I grabbed her thin, barely there tee-shirt and yanked her back so she could face me.

I saw the fear in her eyes.

I pointed the gun at them. "Well John, looks like you lied again."

"Suzette please. It's not what you think. Please let her go."

"Please," I screamed. "That's all you have to say."

He began to shake. I had him right where I wanted him.

"How could you be so insensitive? I thought you were happy?"

I didn't give him a chance to answer. I pulled the trigger twice and blew their brains out.

For the Indie Ink Writing Challenge this week, Seesaw challenged me with "insensitive" and I challenged Kat with "the good,the bad and the ugly".

Red Ribbon Week October 22-30, 2011

The theme this year is It's up to me to be drug free.
About the Event
Red Ribbon Week is the oldest and largest drug prevention campaign in the country. Although the start end dates can vary slightly depending on the organization and source, Red Ribbon Week generally takes place the last full week in October, with the weekends before and following the last full week included as appropriate celebration dates. This year Red Ribbon Week will be celebrated October 22-30, 2011.

Red Ribbon Week serves as a vehicle for communities and individuals to take a stand for the hopes and dreams of our children through a commitment to drug prevention and education and a personal commitment to live drug free lives with the ultimate goal being the creation of drug free America.

 And, perhaps more importantly, Red Ribbon Week commemorates the ultimate sacrifice made by DEA Special Agent Enrique "Kiki" Camarena, who died at the hands of drug traffickers in Mexico while fighting the battle against illegal drugs to keep our country and children safe.

The Story Behind the Symbol
Enrique "Kiki" Camarena grew up in a dirt-floored house with hopes and dreams of making a difference.

Camarena worked his way through college, served in the Marines and became a police officer. When he decided to join the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, his mother tried to talk him out it. "I can't not do this," he told her. "I'm only one person, but I want to make a difference."

The DEA sent Camarena to work undercover in Mexico investigating a major drug cartel believed to include officers in the Mexican army, police and government. On Feb. 7, 1985, the 37-year-old Camarena left his office to meet his wife for lunch. Five men appeared at the agent's side and shoved him in a car. One month later, Camarena's body was found in a shallow grave. He had been tortured to death. 1

Within weeks of his death in March of 1985, Camarena's Congressman, Duncan Hunter, and high school friend Henry Lozano, launched Camarena Clubs in Imperial Valley, California, Camarena's home. Hundreds of club members pledged to lead drug-free lives to honor the sacrifices made by Camarena and others on behalf of all Americans. 2 These coalitions began to wear red badges of satin, red ribbons, as a symbol Camarena's memory. The Red Ribbon Week campaign emerged from the efforts of these clubs and coalitions.

Today, Red Ribbon Week is nationally recognized and celebrated, helping to preserve Special Agent Camarena's memory and further the cause for which he gave his life. The Red Ribbon Campaign also became a symbol of support for the DEA's efforts to reduce demand for drugs through prevention and education programs. By wearing a red ribbon during the last week in October, Americans demonstrate their ardent opposition to drugs. They pay homage not only to Special Agent Camarena, but to all men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice in support of our nation's struggle against drug trafficking and abuse.


Talk to your kids about being drug free...
Get involved in community activities...
Get involved with your child's school...
Get involved with your local police...


For more about Red Ribbon Week:

Red Ribbon Pledge:
As parents, we will talk to our children about the dangers of drug abuse.
We will set clear rules for our children about not using drugs.
We will set a good example for our children by not using illegal drugs or medicine without a prescription.
We will monitor our children's behavior and enforce appropriate consequences, so that our rules are respected.
We will encourage family and friends to follow the same guidelines to keep children safe from substance abuse.

As a grandparent I am glad my grandson's school is involved in Red Ribbon Week

Some of the activities his school has planned include various themes throughout the week and well as collecting goods for food banks.

What is your child's school doing this year? What are you doing?

Friday, October 21, 2011

Who Stands Between

Who Stands Between

Who stands between
right and wrong?
weak and strong?

Who stands between
good and bad?
happy and sad?

Who stands between
today and tomorrow?
pain and sorrow?


Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Difference Between Seasons

In the winter white
snow falls
covering all

In the spring green
flowers bloom
erasing gloom

In the summer blue
sun shines
winter behind

In the fall orange
leaves cascade
beautiful parade

Today is National Day on Writing

Today is National Day on Writing...

Why a National Day on Writing?
In light of the significance of writing in our national life, to draw attention to the remarkable variety of writing we engage in, and to help writers from all walks of life recognize how important writing is to their lives, NCTE established October 20 as The National Day on Writing. The National Day on Writing
points to the importance of writing instruction and practice at every grade level, for every student and in every subject area from preschool through university (see The Genteel Unteaching of America’s Poor),
emphasizes the lifelong process of learning to write and composing for different audiences, purposes, and occasions, and encourages Americans to write and enjoy and learn from the writing of others.

 What You Can Do!

Involve Your Community!

It is important  that you as a writer or reader get involved and stay involved in writing. Words are powerful and can change peoples way of thinking.

Writing is thought to be so important The Senate passed resolutions in 2011, 2010, and 2009 declaring October 20 the National Day on Writing.

Why I write?
I write to change the way people think about ideas, ways of life and to make a difference in someone's life. My words may never reach the multitudes, but if just one person takes away a positive and spreads the word then I've done something to change an attitude.

Why do you write?

My tips for writers... 
Ever since I can remember I have always been told write what you know. I don't subscribe to that school of thought. Sure, it's a plus and positive, but if we wrote what we know wouldn't we be cookie cutter writers.
I want you to write what you feel. A good writer writes from their heart not their head.

Today get involved. Shine your light on another person who may want to write. Be a mentor. Be a supporter. Be a giver. Be a teacher. Be a healer. Be a writer.Be you!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Between Now and Then

Between now and then. This statement has always puzzled my train of thought. What does it really mean? Does anybody have an accurate clue?

From the time I can remember I've always heard or known  the statement has existed, but never known what it was suppose to mean. Between now and then we what?

As a child I can recall my grandmother said it a lot when folks took sick. "Well, between now and then we'll just pray," she'd say. I wanted to always ask her, "between now and what?

What is then? How do we get to then? The way I interpret the statement is this way: between now and then (then being death) we are suppose to live the life as the Lord intended. There are suppose to be in betweens. Between now and then I think we are to live our lives in the now. If we are Christian's then we know what will happen in the then. It's what happens between now and then that truly matters.

 You might ask yourself what am I suppose to do between now and then? The answer is simple. The bible lays out your between plan so you can get to then.

 The only 'between' between now and then is Jesus.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pick a Number Between One and Six

This past Saturday my family and I attended a fall festival at our local church. There was food, fun and family events we enjoyed. Part of the main attraction was Captain Carl Kelly, a Christian magician.

We were getting ready to leave when my grandson wanted to play a few more minutes, so he ran off to slide and the rest of us decided to watch the magic show. Little did we know that my daughter would be a part of it...

Captain Carl engaged the audience and asked for volunteers. He called a little girl up to the stage and asked her to pick a person from the audience to join them. This went on until he had six people on stage. Now this is where my daughter comes into play. The last person picked had to choose the smartest person from the audience to participate. My daughter April was chosen.

Captain Carl weaves Christianity in with the magic he performs. In the act in which my daughter participated he had six various cards. He told the audience each card represented different ways people thought they could get to heaven. He lined up the six chosen people in front of the audience and gave each a card. My daughters job was to pick a number between one and six. April chose the number six. 

What he did next was amazing! He spelled out the number six and told the remaining five people to reveal their cards. The first card revealed a water sign. Captain  Carl told the audience that a lot of people think the only way to heaven is through baptism. He went on to explain that baptism is alright, but that wasn't the way to heaven. The process continued with several other ways people thought they could get to heaven. This continued until Captain Carl got to the last person. He had the little boy reveal his card. Can you guess what was on card? If you guessed Jesus, you are correct!

People in the audience burst into applause. Tears were flowing. It was awesome. Captain Carl's act was entertaining and enlightening. 

 Captain Carl's message wasn't about the magic, but about how Jesus is the number one way we can get to heaven. He is the Son of God and the Savior of Man.

 So when you are tempted to pick a number between one and six, remember there is only one number and that is the number 1!

More about Captain Carl Kelly's mission:
Captain Carl Kelly ESBC courtesy Jenny Hoffman Ellison

With Christian Magician J. Carl Kelly, discovering Gospel Truth can be
exciting, heart-warming, inspirational fun for the whole family!

J. Carl is an Christian magician who combines Music and Magic to engage audiences and clearly
present Gospel Truth. He has delighted audiences across the country and around the world. He even
presented his world famous “Music and Magic with a Message” presentation in England with the
Queen (near by and just down the road).

With J. Carl, your group will laugh, clap and be actively involved in making the magic happen. Yes you
will “SEE the MAGIC”. More importantly, J. Carl can clearly present the powerful truth of the Gospel.
Both the program and the message can be tailored to meet the unique needs of your event.

More than mere entertainment, J. Carl uses his programs to present the gospel of Jesus Christ. Once
he has established a relationship and captured the audience’s attention, he can present the Gospel of
Jesus Christ in a simple, meaningful way.

J. Carl got his start in magic as a child, when he would perform magic for his brother and sister and all
the kids in the neighborhood. After coming to know the Lord in the fourth grade, he became involved
with magicians who came to his school and church, and J. Carl started presenting the Gospel through
his magic performances like he saw others doing.

J. Carl’s involvement in performing and ministry continued through his college years at Troy State
University in Troy, Alabama where he met one of those school magicians again. He worked with the
Troy State University Baptist Student Union’s youth ministries and started his ministry as a youth,
music and missions leader where he used his magic to express and gospel message.

And the rest is history… 

Monday, October 17, 2011

Today is Black Poetry Day and the Birthday of Jupiter Hammon...

October 17th is Black Poetry Day. The birth of Black Poetry Day came as an anniversary of the first published African-American poet, Jupiter Hammon, who was born into slavery in 1711 on Long Island.

With the birth of the Harlem Renaissance, Black Poetry has strived to become what it is today.
Famous black poets include
Maya Angelou
Sterling A. Brown
Lucille Clifton
Toi Derricotte
Paul Laurence Dunbar
Jessie Redmon Fauset
Angelina W. Grimke
Jupiter Hammon
Langston Hughes
Claude McKay
Anne Spencer
Ntozake Shange
Natasha Trethewey
Margaret Walker
Phillis Wheatley (one of the first female black poets)

Today is also the birthday of Jupiter Hammon:
Jupiter Hammon (October 17, 1711 – before 1806) was a Black poet who became the first African-American published writer in America when a poem appeared in print in 1760. He was a slave his entire life, and the date of his death is unknown. He was living in 1790 at the age of 79, and died by 1806. Hammon was a devout Christian, and is considered one of the founders of African American literature.

An Evening Thought

Salvation comes by Jesus Christ alone,
The only Son of God;
Redemption now to every one,
That love his holy Word.
Dear Jesus we would fly to Thee,
And leave off every Sin,
Thy tender Mercy well agree;
Salvation from our King.
Salvation comes now from the Lord,
Our victorious King;
His holy Name be well ador'd,
Salvation surely bring.
Dear Jesus give thy Spirit now,
Thy Grace to every Nation,
That han't the Lord to whom we bow,
The Author of Salvation.
Dear Jesus unto Thee we cry,
Give us thy Preparation;
Turn not away thy tender Eye;
We seek thy true Salvation.
Salvation comes from God we know,
The true and only One;
It's well agreed and certain true,
He gave his only Son.
Lord hear our penetential Cry:
Salvation from above;
It is the Lord that doth supply,
With his Redeeming Love.
Dear Jesus by thy precious Blood,
The World Redemption have:
Salvation comes now from the Lord,
He being thy captive Slave.
Dear Jesus let the Nations cry,
And all the People say,
Salvation comes from Christ on high,
Haste on Tribunal Day.
We cry as Sinners to the Lord,
Salvation to obtain;
It is firmly fixt his holy Word,
Ye shall not cry in vain.
Dear Jesus unto Thee we cry,
And make our Lamentation:
O let our Prayers ascend on high;
We felt thy Salvation.
Lord turn our dark benighted Souls;
Give us a true Motion,
And let the Hearts of all the World,
Make Christ their Salvation.
Ten Thousand Angels cry to Thee,
Yea louder than the Ocean.
Thou art the Lord, we plainly see;
Thou art the true Salvation.
Now is the Day, excepted Time;
The Day of Salvation;
Increase your Faith, do not repine:
Awake ye every Nation.
Lord unto whom now shall we go,
Or seek a safe Abode;
Thou hast the Word Salvation too
The only Son of God.
Ho! every one that hunger hath,
Or pineth after me,
Salvation be thy leading Staff,
To set the Sinner free.
Dear Jesus unto Thee we fly;
Depart, depart from Sin,
Salvation doth at length supply,
The Glory of our King.
Come ye Blessed of the Lord,
Salvation gently given;
O turn your Hearts, accept the Word,
Your Souls are fit for Heaven.
Dear Jesus we now turn to Thee,
Salvation to obtain;
Our Hearts and Souls do meet again,
To magnify thy Name.
Come holy Spirit, Heavenly Dove,
The Object of our Care;
Salvation doth increase our Love;
Our Hearts hath felt thy fear.
Now Glory be to God on High,
Salvation high and low;
And thus the Soul on Christ rely,
To Heaven surely go.
Come Blessed Jesus, Heavenly Dove,
Accept Repentance here;
Salvation give, with tender Love;
Let us with Angels share.

Jupiter Hammon 

The Word Between Halloween

Halloween is only two weeks away and since the posting theme this month is between I wanted to write about the word between H and een: ALLOW.

I'm a Christian and yes, we ALLOW my 7 year old grandson to trick-or-treat.
Here is more about that Happy Halloween?

 The key word is you allow your child to trick-or treat? Do you allow your child to have fun?

We allow Cameron to be a kid, but we set ground rules. We only allow him to go to certain houses in our neighborhood. We only allow him to eat certain candy. We only allow him to wear a certain costume.

I think by allowing your child to celebrate Halloween you are letting them be a kid. I don't think your being a bad parent or even a bad Christian.

Do you allow your child to celebrate Easter and Christmas? Both are religious holidays sprinkled with secular traditions: i.e. Easter Bunny, Santa Claus....

So as All Hallows Eve fast approaches are you going to ALLOW Halloween in your house?

Photo by: Taste of Home    

Coffin Pumpkin Cake Recipe

 20 Servings
Prep: 1 hour Bake: 40 min. + cooling

3/4 cup butter, softened
1-1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1-1/2 cups canned pumpkin
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 cup buttermilk

2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
3-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
2 to 3 teaspoons maple flavoring
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
2 cups crushed gingersnap cookies (about 40 cookies)
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in pumpkin and vanilla. Combine the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, salt, ginger and cloves; add to pumpkin mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating well after each addition.
Line a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan with waxed paper and grease the paper; spread batter into pan. Bake at 325° for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add confectioners' sugar and enough maple flavoring to achieve a spreading consistency. For filling, in a small bowl, beat 1 cup frosting with whipping cream until soft peaks form.
Cut cake into a coffin shape (discard scraps or save for another use). Cut cake horizontally into two layers. Place bottom layer on a serving plate; spread with filling. Top with second layer.
Set aside 2 tablespoons frosting for writing; frost cake with remaining frosting. Sprinkle with cookie crumbs. Cut a small hole in the corner of a plastic bag; fill with reserved frosting. Pipe "RIP" onto cake. Store in the refrigerator. Yield: 20 servings.

Coffin Pumpkin Cake published in Halloween Party Favorites , p30 Taste of Home

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Blog Action Day 2011:Food For Thought

I am proud to be taking part in Blog Action Day OCT 16 2011
Blog Action Day is an annual event that unites the world’s bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day. Our aim is to raise awareness and trigger a global discussion around an important issue that impacts us all.

For 2011, our Blog Action Day coincides with World Food Day, so the topic of discussion for this year will be food.

As I was reading through a few of the blogs I follow I noticed a lot of my bloggy friends were posting about Blog Action Day 2011. I had never heard about it and was curious. Their topic today is food which happens to coincide with World Food Day.

I thought how can I approach the subject of food and world hunger, easy because I've been there.

Have you actually ever gone hungry? Do you know what it feels like to put your child to bed hungry? I do!

My family lives on a fixed income so it's from pay day to pay day. Hand to mouth. We don't starve like the millions of others on the vast planet, but there are days I'll go without so my grandson won't.

I think about how blessed we are that we do have remnants of food on our table, when so many have to scrounge the trash bins for a minuscule morsel. Is it fair? No!

The food banks are bare like Old Mother Hubbard's cupboard. The government programs are running out of funding and officials turn a blind eye, sweep the hungry under the rug or out the door.

Hunger is a world-wide epidemic. It won 't go away over night(it will probably never go away).

The only decent meal some children get is at school(one of the greatest blessings for a child)because their parent's can't afford food.

Your neighbor may go hungry tonight because they had to choose between paying bills or buying medicine. Your child's friend may go to sleep with an empty belly. How will you respond?

A lot of good intentioned people talk a good talk, but don't walk the walk.  Which are you?


Between The Silence

Between the silence
I hear your words
ticking like a time bomb
ready to explode...

Between the silence
I hear what
you don't say
your words corrode...

Between the silence
no a sound spoken
my soul implodes.

Stop the Presses

For the Indie Ink Writing Challenge this week, Mark G challenged me with "A daring plan to save print news industry" and I challenged femmefauxpas with "After twenty-five years of marriage...".


Newspaper boxes bare! I couldn't believe my eyes. It finally happened. The Save-a-Tree lunatics had won. The print news industry ceased to exist. I had to do something to stop the madness.,

I couldn't live without my daily fix. I loved the smell of fresh ink, the warmth of a crackling newspaper between my fingers and black ink smudged hands. The Save-a-Tree loonies had to be stopped. But how?

I had to devise a plan. I wasn't about to let a bunch of nuts stop the presses. I had to have an actual newspaper in front of me. I enjoyed the daily crossword puzzle, reading the obits and of course the comics.

Desperate times called for desperate measures and this was a desperate time. My mind ticked like a time bomb waiting to explode. My palms oozed sweat. It was time, time for me to spring into action.

I methodically got dressed in the green and brown uniform I nabbed from the back of an open Save-a-Tree van. I gazed in the mirror at the stranger starring back at me. Perfect. I pulled my long brown hair into a ponytail. I wanted to look the part and so far so good. I was determined to make myself fit in with the lunatics if my plan was to work.

Nobody would ever suspect I wasn't a Save-a-Tree member. I would be able to stop them and save the presses. My plan would work. It had too or the newspaper industry would be lost forever.

I mingled with the group and no one suspected a thing. They climbed into the back of the van and so did I. I pulled my backpack close to my body. I had to be careful or the explosives would detonate before time.

The group chattered about their next mission and I kept silent. I didn't want to conversant. I needed to keep my mind clear of unwanted thoughts. I was on a mission. I had to follow my plan.

The group was too busy talking to even really notice me, to notice a stranger among them. When the van stopped a few miles outside of town, it was time. Time for me to complete my plan. I exited the van first, leaving my back pack behind. I slammed the doors and jammed them with a metal rod.

The people inside begin to rattle the doors, but it was too late for them. Too late for me. I pulled the detonator from my jacket pocket and pushed the switch.

DISCLAIMER: This story is purely fiction. I meant no harm to any group per se.I don't think anyone  who wants to save trees is a lunatic nor would I blow them up.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Are You Torn Between?

When I sat down to write todays post I wasn't sure where I was going with the between subject. I was actually lost, but I figured out why I am lost... I'm torn between, torn between my love for writing and my love for my family.

I love writing, but I also love my family and here lately I've felt as if I must(have to) choose. I don't like being torn between my two greatest passions.

 There is an inner struggle going on inside myself. I am compelled to write, but am I compelled to stop writing because my family wants me to choose?

Why should I have to choose either over the other? Isn't both gifts from God? Was I not chosen to write my words, thoughts and feelings down onto paper?

Is it fair I have to decide(be torn between my two great loves)?

I feel like I'm living inside the song 'Torn Between Two Lovers' only this is a real life struggle... a real life battle.

Today as you sit down to put your words to paper, are you torn between? Do you feel like you must choose between the lesser of two evils?

I will probably never be able to choose one or the other. I am passionate about both. Both are my life. I won't ever stop writing. I will not pent up my words because I am told I must or else(that's not my character).

Friday, October 14, 2011




Thursday, October 13, 2011

Caught Between Perfecton and Procrastination

 As NaNoWriMo approaches, my fear is going faster than I can keep up. I've participated two years and never finished. This is year three.

I want to cross the finish line with 50,000 words written but somehow I get caught between perfection and procrastination.

 You see, I'm a perfectionist. Everytime I write a paragraph I have to edit it. I can't help myself. The purpose of NaNoWriMo is is write 50,000 words in thirty days without stopping to edit. Can I approach the perfection hurdle without stopping? In all honesty I haven't a clue until I start writing.

 Another problem I face is procrastination. I am the world's worst procrastinator. I never finish what I start or I keep making excuses as to why I can't find the time to start.

As November 1st gets closer, I can feel the nerves inside me jump. My two writing enemies are getting ready to gang up on me.

 Don't let anyone tell you perfection and procrastination aren't a writer's worst nightmare...
These two can steal your writing mojo. I know. I've been there and hopefully this month won't find myself caught between perfection and procrastination...

It will be hard, so I just categorized myself this way...  

  I'm a perfect procrastinator....

Broken Daddy

Broken Daddy

He is unaware his daddy is gone forever
broken into a million pieces
now only fragments of his life

He is oblivious to why his daddy is gone
broken off from his life
now only missing pieces of a puzzle

He is unknowing of why his daddy left
broken out if time
now only a distant memory

He is forgetful his daddy was really here
broken again from within
now only fleeting time

He is nescient his daddy will never come back
broken from this earth
now only a drifting soul

He is unknowing his daddy is dead
broken forever

Originally written April 8, 2011 for the 100 word challenge.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Between Religion

Today is Worship Wednesday and also day 12 of NaBloPoMo.

In my between post today I am going to talk about religion. It's a touchy subject for many people, but one I feel needs to be addressed.

Most people float between religion. They make up their own set of rules. They do as they please, not worrying about the consequences of their actions or God.

In other words they are displeasing their faith and religion. When you believe in the Lord, your life is no longer your own, you belong to Him!

 "God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth." John 4:24 NIV

 We also tend to float between the Gospel and religion.

The Word of God is truth. It is the Gospel and we as Christian's must believe it, trust it, obey it and live it!

No doubt some people twist the words in the bible to fit their own needs. There again, they are in the "I'm out to please myself" mode.

Pleasing yourself doesn't please the Lord. To please the Lord, you must obey the Lord.

 Jesus replied, "Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them."  John 14:23 NIV

 Religion isn't hard to follow. You are already a believer in the Lord. You have faith and trust in the Lord. You already know His word is the truth. You can't float between religion. You can't go around in life only pleasing yourself, thinking there are no consequences. THERE ARE!

 When you only please yourself, you are pleasing Satan....

 "Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness and who seek the LORD: Look to the rock from which you were cut and to the quarry from which you were hewn;"  Isaiah 51:1

Don't be a floater...don't go through life between religion...

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

NaNoWriMo is Upon Us Writers

Well, it's that time again! NaNoWriMo is two weeks away. For those who may still be living under a rock NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. Basically, you have 30 days to write 50,000 unedited words to create your novel. There are prizes at the end of your month long ordeal.

This is my third year. The last two times I didn't finish, I let life get in the way. This year I plan to complete my novel in 30 days and collect my prize.

I would love a few NaNo buddies:debraannelliottwriter

If you are competing this year...way to go! Are you palms sweating yet?

This year's project is romantic fiction.


Zelda Zimmer has it all: a great life, a fabulous career and a handsome fiancé. Her future is mapped out until she reads the pink plus sign on the home pregnancy test. Zelda's world falls apart. Desperate to keep her job and save her upcoming marriage Zelda tries to hide her pregnancy. When Howard her finace finds out things get ugly. He gives her an ultimatum: me or the baby. Zelda doesn't like ultimatums. She chooses the baby and her life changes forever.

Dr. Reed Miller is on vacation in the Montana mountains when is vacation is interrupted by a very pregnant Zelda Zimmer. He delivers her baby and is forced into their lives against his better judgment.
Reed isn't prepared for a make-believe ready made family. He already has one.

Plans change. For Zelda Zimmer and Dr. Reed Miller their plans become intertwined. When Zelda goes into labor while hold up in a Mountain cabin Dr. Reed Miller is the only doctor available. Zelda must rely on a complete stranger to save her and her baby and keep her secret.

The Distance Between Your Heart and Mine


The distance between your heart and mine...
miles in between entwined

The distance between your heart and mine...
souls in between rewind

 The distance between your heart and mine
lost in between confined


Perfect Poet Award Week 53

Thank you Poetry Palace and Ava for the Perfect Poem Award

I nominate Poetry and Ice Cream for the next award.

Here is the poem:

October in the South

October has blanketed the South
with burnt orange, magenta, and golden

Autumn is in the air…
October is what I now

October has blanketed the South
with warm colors of Fall.

Autumn breezes gently blow…
October hand I now hold.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Between Jobs or Life As I Know It!

I've been out of work almost a year by choice. I have a lot of health problems, so I stopped working. During my hiatus from the work force I've been able to spend time writing and with my family. I've also had time to contemplate my life.

My health probably won't get any better, but I can't sit around forever. So I've made a very tough decision I am once again going to try and enter the work force.

I don't know how it will turn out. So I am going to take advantage of the time I now have between jobs to focus on what needs to be done in "real" life.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

A Picture Paints a Thousand Words

The NaBloPoMo theme for October is between. This picture conjures up a thousand words for the theme.

My thousand words:

I am stuck between the unknown, forced to compromise my values. I cannot go on. I am forged between two heavy stones that break my bones. I cannot go on. I am welded between the past and future, present forever gone. I cannot go on.

Between silence
Between death
Between tomorrow
Between reality
Between all
Between yesterday
Between today
Between lies
Between truths
Between right
Between wrong
Between infinity....

No, there isn't 1000 words, but I'm between thoughts.

The Guardian: Who's Alice?

With this week's II prompt I am able to continue the saga of The Guardian:


Alice wake up,”a soft voice called my name.

Someone was calling me Alice again. Why did everyone insist I was Alice. I was Dorothy, but nobody
believed me.

Who's Alice?” I answered.

Another strange creature approached me. “You are of course. We've been waiting for your arrival.”

I was still confused. I didn't know where I was or how I even got there. All these weird creatures called me Alice. I just wanted to go back home. Wherever that was?

I was in some type of room. It wasn't very big. I felt like I was inside a cage being watched by a
hundred pairs of eyes.  

The creature smelled like rotten eggs. It was hideous. I tried to move, but  I was restrained.

Who are you?” I spat at the creature.

Who are you?” The creature mocked me.

I didn't answer. It was useless. I flung myself down on the metal cot and sobbed. 

Don't cry Alice,” a smaller creature comforted me. It was almost child-like. I wasn't frightened of this one. It was docile, unlike the larger one.

I.....I just want to go home,” I sobbed.

The child-like creature touched my arm and rubbed my matted hair. The goo from it's fingers stuck
to my skin. Yuck!

Alice you can't leave,” it whispered in my ear.

The larger creature approached the metal cot.

I curled up into a ball.

We mean you no harm Alice, but you have to save us.”

Save you?” This creature had lost its mind. I had to save them!

Clank, clank, clank. Something pounded on the metal door.

Alice, we have no time left. The Great McGuffin has been destroyed and the Dark Lord's power
has been vanquished forever. You must fight the snail colony and retrieve the Dark Lord's power.”

Fight a snail colony?” This creature was  absurd. “I'm a human or hadn't you noticed.”

Yes Alice. That is why you are here. Only a human can destroy the snails and restore the power to Dark Lord.”

These creatures wanted me to fight a bunch of slimy, icky snails. I hated snails,but I wasn't about to
risk my life for the hideous creatures that stood in front of me.

Alice please.”

Great McGuffin or Dark Lord , I didn't care. I wasn't going to risk my life. 

Who's Alice's?”

For the Indie Ink Writing Challenge this week, fatdogscribe challenged me with "The Great McGuffin has been destroyed and with it,the Dark Lord's power has been vanquished forever. Now what happens?" and I challenged trish3kids with "the hand that rules the universe".

Part One
Part Two 

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