Monday, November 17, 2014

Black Friday Becomes Bless Friday | Christian Activities

Since 2010, Houston area churches have provided an alternative to frenzied Christmas shopping on the day after Thanksgiving. 

article at Black Friday Becomes Bless Friday | Christian Activities

Friday, August 15, 2014

Monkey Man Terrorizes Simians at India Railway Station

Lucknow Railway Station Hires a Monkey-Man to Control Local Monkeys: Sometimes Truth Really is Stranger Than Fiction

When I was a child, my father was stationed at the US Embassy in New Delhi, India, where we lived for three years. I have always been fascinated with India, so after I graduated from college and spent several years working in sales, I went back to India for a three-week tour. India is home to many strange things: snake charmers, sword-swallowers, wandering holy men, maimed beggars, and other oddities that can be a little overwhelming to Westerners.
However, my scariest moment came when I was opening a package of film to put in my camera, and a monkey attacked me, thinking the rattling sound was food. I wasn't injured except for a few small scrapes, as the monkey climbed me all the way to the top of my head where he grabbed the film out of my hand and took off. Monkeys are a problem in many parts of India; they are no longer afraid of humans, because they have learned that where humans are, there is also food. This has become a huge problem in many areas, leading to unusual solutions/

Monkey Man Terrorizes Simians at India Railway Station--Seekyt

One of the strangest stories in recent years has been the Monkey Man of
the Lucknow train station. At the Lucknow railway station in Charbagh,
India, the large monkey population had become such a nuisance that
railway officials were forced to take drastic measures to protect their
passengers and their property. Lucknow is the capital city of Uttar
Pradesh, the most populous state of India, and the busy Lucknow railway
station was home to thousands of pesky simians. The monkeys roamed the
large facility at will, damaging the station, ripping train seats, and
stealing food from the passengers.


Thursday, August 14, 2014

The Myth of the Direct Selling Personality

My Miss Katy: still loved; still missed.

I wish I had a dollar for every time I have mentioned Rodan + FIelds to someone who has replied, "Yes, but you have the personality for it. I don't have the Direct Selling Personality.

These people don't KNOW me. They have no idea I was so shy in elementary school I hid in the bushes next to the playground during recess EVERY DAY in 4th and 5th grade so the more outgoing kids wouldn't bully me. They don't know that for FORTY YEARS, I was not invited to my own high school reunion because I was so shy and quiet in school, apparently no one remembered me.

These are people who don't know that for over 20 years, I published my own local magazine from my home with only my sweet dog for company, because I was perfectly happy quietly working from home by myself. They don't know I wrote for several publications from home after my print publication closed, because I was introverted and preferred to be with my little dog rather than with an office crowd.

These are people who don't know the bite of hunger or the fear you might soon find yourself homeless because of back-to-back natural disasters that deplete your life's savings, retirement, emergency funds and every dollar you own.

They don't know what it is like to hold your beloved 17-year-old companion, pet and writing buddy in your lap -- alone at night -- and watch her slowly die because YOU CAN'T AFFORD THE EMERGENCY VET, and no one has been stepping forward to offer any help with the bills, not even the church where you had finally asked for aid when the money ran out. 

They must NOT know these horrors or they would understand that when you have lost all your money, resources and your precious companion, you either give up, or you beg your friends for money -- or you ask them to encourage you as you start a new business -- one where you have to step outside your comfort zone and learn to be more outgoing, but where you have the opportunity to get behind something you believe in and START YOUR LIFE OVER.

So, please spare me any references to the Direct Selling Personality. The only Direct Selling Personality I know about is the one that says:
"Don't give up. Pick up the pieces and start over no matter how scary your new road might be."

If you want to know about the Direct Selling opportunity that helped me turn my life around, let's connect!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Jesus Was in Direct Sales: The Gospel of Direct Selling

Joseph the Carpenter by Georges de La Tour 
It's amazing how many people are willing to BUY things that are sold, but somehow "selling" and "direct selling" are dirty words! Guess who has been involved in Direct Sales? Almost everyone in the "good ol' days" before things like national retail chains, malls and the internet. This includes many people in Biblical times, like Jesus.

Direct Selling in Days Gone By

Yes, back in those long-ago days we look on with such nostalgia, farmers sold their eggs and produce  directly to the consumer. Dairies delivered milk directly to their customer's doors. Cobblers measured and sold their shoes, seamstresses and tailors measured/made/and sold clothes -- you guessed it -- directly to consumers. 

Methods of Direct Selling

Olden-days entrepreneurs sold their wares from carts, from tents, from boats, from the backs of donkeys, at makeshift markets, and from their cabins and houses or in their customers' homes for generation upon generation. In colonial times and earlier, direct selling was probably the most common form of selling,  because many people had little or no access to cities and stores. People commonly sold goods to each other and used the barter system. Even in rural communities today, direct selling of home-made and home-grown goods is commonplace.

The Gospel of Direct Sales

The Bible tells us Joseph, the father of Jesus, was a carpenter (tekton) and the gospel of Marks says Jesus was also a carpenter. Guess what carpenters do? They sell their services or they sell their products -- directly to consumers. Jesus and his disciples were also fishermen. Guess what they did with all those fish??? They SOLD them -- more than likely straight to the consumers. Oh, the SHAME of it!!!

But the "good news" is there is NO shame in it.

Definition of Direct Selling

Direct selling is the marketing and selling of products directly to consumers away from a fixed retail location 
So, where is the shame in that?

Benefits of Direct Marketing

With direct sales, you aren't dealing with a clerk who has no authority, no ownership and frequently no interest--you are dealing directly with a small business owner--someone who takes pride in his products and his business and who is INVESTED in the business and in marketing his products to build a relationship in order to build a business. 

So the next time you say "direct sales" with a condescending tone or like it is somehow less reputable than other professions -- like lawyers, politicians and IRS agents for instance -- slap yourself in the face and save me the trouble!

Direct Selling Opportunities

Since more and more workers with tenure are losing jobs in major businesses and industries --everything from accountants to retail clerks, from factory workers to teachers -- direct selling is proving to be a very viable business model. It is the oldest,  most reputable and usually the most profitable form of selling, after all. If you would like to know more about a great direct sales opportunity in skin care, partnering with the dermatologists who created Proactive, contact me!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Christian Poets Pen Blog for Inspiring Poetry

There's a blog especially for Blogger/Blogspot poets who write poems from a Christian perspective.Christian Poet's Pen is a great place for Christian poets to publish their poems and get feedback from other Christian writers. Membership is free and each poet gets his or her own personal profile page. If you like to read inspirational poetry, you can also sign up to be a follower and read new poems as they are published. There are already several respected poets contibuting who have been published in numerous anthologies, newsletters, websites and books.

Christian Poet's Pen has a long history. Started in the early 1990s as a bi-monthly print newsletter, Christian Poet's Pen was published for several years, publishing poems and passing along tips, before becoming a section on the website in 1999. For the past decade, the Poets Pen page on has provided a consistant voice for Christian poets.
However, with the advent of blogs where an entire community of posters can share and publish content, the opportunity arose for Christian poets to post their own poems and give feedback to other poets without having to go through an administrator or webmaster. Thus, the Christian Poet's Pen, blog was born in October of 2008.
Poets who want to contribute a poem need only find the comments link under any poem and share their poem as a comment. However, to become a regular contributor a poet must contribute at least two poems in the comments section, as well as become a follower of the blog. Contributing poets will also need to set up a free blogspot profile. After a poet has become a follower and contributed several poems and/or news, more than likely, he or she will be invited to become a contributing writer.
Contributing writers can publish their poems and news as regular blog posts, as well as insert images and edit their posts whenever they need to make a change. Contributing writers are also encouraged to post constructive comments for other writers as well as share news about poetry publications and other news of interest to poets. The Poet's Pen site also features original photographs from contributing poets as well as a section of links to the websites or individual blogs of contributing poets. It is a great place to gain exposure and get the word out about your poetry!
There is no payment for posting a poem, but poets do have the opportunity to join a network of other Christian poets, receiving constructive criticism and more visibility. In addition, contests are planned on the site in the future.
All poets hold the copyrights to their own poems and must be contacted individually for permission to reprint poems.
Come check out Christian Poet's Pen. Enjoy the poems that are there, become a follower, and share a poem or two. You will find a community of Christian poets who are always glad to make a new friend. Write on!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Gospel Music & Entertainment News

 What's going on in the gospel music industry in July?

Find out more at: 
Kathryn Darden - Nashville Gospel Music & Entertainment Examiner - Music Examiner

Friday, July 4, 2014

Journey to the Sea - Poems Inspired by 'The Lord of the Rings'


A Man like You & Journey to the Sea

~ A Man like You ~
A poem about temptation and the corrupting influence of power inspired by J.R.R. Tolkien's Witchking in "The Lord of the Rings"

Once I rode a pony small;
I sat upon my father's knee.
My mother sang fair lullabies
And placed her warm arms around me.
My father said, "Be strong! Be brave!
And strive to win whate'er you do."
I scarce remember, just in dreams
That once I was a man like you.
Once my father passed away,
And I ascended to the throne,
My mother said, "Be strong. Be brave,
And make this kingdom now your own."
I took the sword. I chose the blade
And wielded it to claim my due.
At least it seems thus in my dreams,
When once I was a man like you.
Once a noble came to me
Austere he looked in raiment grand.
Reading the desires of my heart,
He placed the future in my hand.
To me he said, "Fight strong. Fight hard,
This ring shall win what you pursue."
And when I wore it on my hand,
I ceased to be a man like you.
And now my flesh has turned to ruin,
My fine robes rotting with my skin.
And I with man no more commune
Except my howl upon the wind.
My blade now tears through mortal flesh,
Knowing no man's blade can undo
The evil that I have become --
I, who was once a man like you.
So when you hear the howling wind,
Recall my voice as fell it falls --
The scream of evil agony,
Remind you of my father's halls:
The boy I was; the choice I made;
The power I sought; then was seduced.
This evil token on my hand --
Could you refuse it - a man like you?

~ Journey to the Sea ~

A Poem Inspired by Lord of the Rings about an elf's journey to his destiny
Brave archer-son of woodland elves
In evil's growing shadows dwelt
In Elven halls of fantasy
Beneath the stars, under the trees.
Gone, the years of complacency:
No more the magic dinner feasts,
Deer driven out by cunning beasts.
The shadows grew a doom to tell
That must be brought to Elvendell.
A culminating prophecy.
Around the table tales were told
Of dark wraiths seen and rings of gold;
As tempers flared he made his case
To aid a friend, defend his race --
Irked by the dwarf's obduracy.
A strange pact forged in anger bound
Son of the tree, son of the ground.
Nine walkers made the choice that day,
A journey planned and then... away!
To carry war's diplomacy.
O'er barren lands to goblin mines.
Trolls, goblins, threats his bow would find -
Fell victims of his accuracy.
Through dark and danger, fire and flame,
The Demon's whip and burning mane.
At last escaping at great cost -
Their guide, their friend, the Wizard lost.
Despairing in their misery,
Still pressing on o'er glade they ran,
Into the trees - enchanted land -
In golden woods to find release:
A time to mourn, a time of peace,
Until the fateful prophecy...
A boat ride South with seven friends,
Where waters fall, the River ends;
As did the Fellowship that day.
Two halflings gone; two swept away
By Necromancer's progeny.
There one strong man succumbed at last,
Then lost his life while standing fast
Against goblins' foul piracy.
To horse lands fast on foot they flew
To find their friends, their bonds renew.
Into the living woods they dared -
A meeting caught them unprepared:
The White Wizard's conspiracy.
Dark days grew darker as they tread
Where none would go - Paths of the Dead.
There a Ranger cast off his doubts;
His power drove the dead to rout
To usher in his legacy.
By Great River the dead host sailed
Vows were fulfilled -- the host prevailed.
Yet in triumph on battle's field,
The Elf-son knew his doom was sealed
While gulls called o'er the war's frenzy.
As one lord spurned the Wizard's plea,
Snared by his own complicity.
Faithful companions journeyed on.
The company looked for the dawn
While battle raged on endlessly,
Fighting the fell and monstrous beasts.
They bravely suffered selflessly
Until the reign of terror ceased,
The ring destroyed, the lands released;
The King was crowned; the world knew peace.
For Elven-son - dichotomy...
Such wonders have I known and seen,
Such friends I've had, such victories,
Such joy I've felt beneath the leaves...
No more for me... no more to be...
No more at rest under the tree,
My home become a fallacy.
Gulls on the shore call out to me;
The tides rise in supremacy.
A yearning born from dormancy
Waking me from complacency.
My heart cries out for clemency,
For succor from the thing it seeks --
The doom proclaimed in prophecy.
Will my heart never more run free?
Until at last it finds release
Beside the sea... beyond the sea...
-- Both poems previously published in Silver Leaves: The Journal of the White Tree Fund  and on AC/YCN (11-9-2008)

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Have a Happy Father’s Day 2014! Poems, articles & more about dads

Happy Father’s Day!

Here is an assortment of poems, articles and more about dads for Father's Day 2014/

Honoring Our Fathers on Father's Day

Our fathers
do so much for us besides helping to bring us into the world. Most
fathers have a hand in providing for their children, and helping to
raise them. Fathers provide a role model for boys and girls and
much-needed guidance.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Memorial Day Celebrations in Nashville, Tennessee: Honoring the Fallen - Yahoo

Memorial Day Celebrations in Nashville, Tennessee: Honoring the Fallen

Family Celebrations and Weekend Festivals for Memorial Day in Nashville, Tennessee

 Having lived for five years in Washington, D.C., Memorial Day celebrations in Nashville
are somewhat limited compared to many other U.S. cities. However, there
are quite a few ways to celebrate Memorial Day in Nashville, so let's
take a look at some of the ways Nashvillians will be celebrating
Memorial Day this year.

Continued: Memorial Day Celebrations in Nashville, Tennessee: Honoring the Fallen - Yahoo

Happy Memorial Day!

Happy Memorial Day!

Memorial Day History, Traditions, Poems & More!

Memorial Day
is a federal holiday observed on the last Monday of May every year in
the United States. It is one of America's numerous patriotic holidays,

Memorial Day originated as Decoration Day after the American Civil War.

This page will look at the history of Memorial Day as well as Memorial Day traditions and more.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Rumors Still Surround Michael Jackson After Death

Michael Jackson died June 25, 2009 from an apparent heart attack, but rumors continued to surround him after his death. This is a reprint of a 2009 article in honor of the 5th anniversary of the death of Michael Jackson.

75_619742.jpg Michael Jackson, superstar and the king of pop, was known around the world for his music and his scandals. Jackson died June 25 from an apparent heart attack (see Michael Jackson King of Pop Dead at 50), but rumors continue to surround his death. Michael Jackson was found unconscious at his home in Los Angeles and was rushed by an ambulance to the UCLA Medical Centre. Jackson was not breathing when paramedics arrived at his home.

How Sick was Michael Jackson Before His Death?

Michael Jackson had been scheduled to play 50 sell-out shows at London's O2 Arena starting in July but Jackson had already had to postpone the first few nights of the tour. Jackson had apparently been ill up until his death. There is speculation now that Jackson's ill health caused the London show cancellations, although some associated with is upcoming tour claim he appeared to be in good shape. Rumors have Jackson suffering from any number of illnesses and on any number of drugs. A doctor was staying in Michael Jackson's house, but rumors are circulating about his qualifications as a physician and about what drugs he may or may not have given Jackson during the hours before his death. Michael's nurse and entourage were also being questioned.

What Will Happen To Michael Jackson's Children?
Other rumors and news stories are flying about who will get custody of Michael Jackson's children, Prince Michael, Paris-Michael and Prince Michael II. People whose names have appeared as candidates for custody of Michael Jackson's children seem to include: Debra Rowe - biological mother to Prince (I) and Paris; Katherine Jackson - Michael Jackson's mother; an unnamed surrogate mother - biological mother to Prince (II); Michael's sister - singer Janet Jackson and other Jackson siblings; the children's godfather; and singer Diana Ross. Although Jackson expressed his wishes that his mother become the children's guardian if he should die before her, the California courts will have the last say on who gets custody.

Did Michael Jackson Become a Christian Right Before He Died?
The latest rumors circulating about Michael Jackson concern comments made by Andraé and Sandra Crouch about some prayers and witnessing that occurred a few weeks before the singer passed away. Rumors began circulating about Michael Jackson's bedside conversion, and several websites posted the rumors as fact. But are the rumors true? While it is true Michael Jackson and gospel artist Andraé Crouch had a close relationship (see Michael Jackson's Gospel Music Ties), there is some doubt about the bedside conversion story. For more information, read Did Michael Jackson Become a Christian Right Before He Died?

Thank you for reading and sharing the link to this article. This article is NOT available for copying to websites, blogs, discussion boards, Facebook, or anywhere else.


Thursday, May 22, 2014

Top Ten Old Testament Bible Verses for Father's Day & Birthdays - Yahoo

Top Ten Old Testament Bible Verses for Father's Day & Dad's Birthday

If you have ever wondered what a Divine perspective on fathers and Father's Day
would be, the Old Testament is full of Bible verses about fathers and
children that are well worth reading, no matter your religious
background. These scripture references are full of wisdom and common sense about fathers and their relationship to their children.

Read more:  Top Ten Old Testament Bible Verses for Father's Day & Dad's Birthday - Yahoo

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Tina Pappas and Mark Sorrells captivate at Crumb de la Crumb Jazz Brunch - Nashville Community Examiner


 Tina Pappas and Mark Sorrells captivate at Crumb de la Crumb Jazz Brunch

I got to see my good (notice I didn't say "old" friends) friends Mark Sorrells and Tina Pappas perform at Crumb de la Crumb in Bellevue at lunch yesterday.  Our friendship goes back to the 1980s where they were both part of the Nashville music scene and both attended Belmont Church with me.

Crumb de la Crumb hosted their weekly Jazz Brunch with pianist and vocalist Mark Sorrells
Saturday, May 17th from 11:45 a.m. - 2:15 p.m. The bright, airy
Bellevue restaurant was full of patrons enjoying dishes from Crab Cakes
to the Hippie Sandwich, and the soft jazz piano provided a nice ambiance where guests could easily converse and listen to old favorite.

Read more: Tina Pappas and Mark Sorrells captivate at Crumb de la Crumb Jazz Brunch - Nashville Community Examiner

Friday, May 9, 2014

Picking the Perfect Mother's Day Gift - Yahoo

Picking the Perfect Mother's Day Gift

Mother's Day is right around the corner. Do you know what you are going
to give your mother this year? As someone who has worked in retail for
many years, I have had the opportunity to help many people buy just the
right gift for their mothers. Here are some tips to help you pick out
the perfect Mother's Day gift.

 Continued: Picking the Perfect Mother's Day Gift - Yahoo

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Signature Lawn Care (Larry Steele), You're FIRED!

Jungle in my yard courtesy of Signature Lawn Care

Why You Don't Want to Use Signature Lawn Care in Nashville 

I have been a customer of Signature Lawn Care for many years with the understanding Larry Steel would contact me each spring to mow my yard. For almost a month, I have tried to reach Signature Lawn Care, but no one has bothered to return my calls.

Larry has always been bad about returning calls, especially for the first appointment each spring. Every fall I made sure he had me on his list for the following year and would call me when lawn mowing season started. Each year I had to call him over and over to get him to come out. Sometimes I had to call him multiple times through out the summer to keep him on schedule. He wasn't good about returning calls, and he wasn't always good about showing up.

However, 2014 has been the WORST year in Signature Lawn Care's abysmal history of lack of communication. Starting the 2nd week of April through the first week of May, I have called Larry Steele repeatedly, first asking when he would be out and then pleading with him to please come out and cut my yard because the weeds were getting so deep.

Steel never replied. He left no messages. His number never showed up on caller ID. His answering machine still said "Signature Lawn Care" each time I called, but Steels never had the professionalism to reply.

Almost a month went by before I made the hard decision to stop being a loyal customer. During this time, my yard grew out of hand, and when I talked to other services about cutting my yard, they said they would have to charge more to cut it the first time because Larry Steel and Signature Lawn Care left me with a terribly overgrown yard while I waited for them to come out.

Signature Lawn Care had me in a no-win situation: continue to be a loyal, long-term customer and keep waiting for Larry to call me back while the weeds got taller; pay someone else more to tackle my over-grown yard; or wait for Metro codes to come knocking on my door.

Since Signature Lawn Care is not returning calls, I don't know if there has been illness in the family, mechanical problems, extended vacation, or if the business closed but the answering machine message wasn't changed -- I don't know WHAT is going on.

What I do know is the telephone is clearly not working as a method of communication, and I don't have an email address for him. So, Larry Steele and Signature Lawn Care, if you ever check your name on Google, here's a message for you:

Today I found someone less expensive--and hopefully much more reliable--to cut my yard. You're fired.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Faith-based movies gaining attention of Hollywood, exceeding ticket expectations - Nashville Gospel Music & Entertainment Examiner


Faith-based movies gaining attention of Hollywood, exceeding ticket expectations

With recent mainstream movies like "NOAH" and "Heaven Is for Real," it is obvious Hollywood has been paying attention to the enormous audience out there for faith-based films. Unfortunately, the "Noah" movie was handled with such laughable clumsiness and deviousness that it turned into an epic #fail, losing its faith-based audience at the ticket counter.

Continued: Faith-based
movies gaining attention of Hollywood, exceeding ticket expectations -
Nashville Gospel Music & Entertainmen Examiner

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Easter 2014: Poems, History, Movies, Activities & More

 Easter History

  • Have a Happy Easter!

    Have a Happy Easter!

    According to Wikipedia, Easter is
    considered "the most important annual religious feast in the Christian
    liturgical year" because it establishes Jesus Christ as...
Easter Movies

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Easter Activites in Bellevue, Cheekwood: egg hunts, magic, crafts and more - Nashville community Examiner

Easter is coming to Bellevue and Cheekwood. Do you have your basket ready?