Welcome to my space where I share my poetry, short memoirs, and anything else that comes to mind. My husband and I have been married for thirty-three years, and not only do we still love each other, but we still like each other too. We have two adult children and I'm grateful that we're still a close family. Our furry family member is Copper, our 80-lb chocolate lab mix, and he sheds and drools a lot, but we love him just the same.
I have published two collections of poetry: New Day, New Dreams and Finding a Balance. And my latest book that was published in September of 2021 is a memoir in verse and prose.
When you visit, my wish is that you find something to take with you, but that you also find something enticing enough to keep bringing you back. I truly appreciate your visit.
Finding a Balance is Laurens second book of poetry, following New Day, New Dreams published in 2013. This compilation speaks often of her emotions and spirit after finding out about a life threatening disease two years ago in one of her family members. There is no devastating ending in the near future but many unanswered questions that will plague her family indefinitely.
In contrast to this sadness, Lauren has always possessed a romantic soul and is blessed to have celebrated twenty six happy years of marriage to her husband and best friend. So from darkness to finding the light again through faith and adding a touch of romance, she finds strength to move forward. This book takes the reader on a roller coaster ride of different emotions evoked from life and love but regardless of what is thrown in her path, hope will always prevail.
An icy gust shadows him around the corner grazing his earlobe, cold chills ripple down his spine. But his Italian wool threads not only portray prosperity, but they also combat the frosty temperature while he slides onto black leather behind the wheel. Success sits in his suit pocket, having propelled him to the top rung of the corporate ladder.He accelerates in the Night Blue Porsche. A satisfied smile forms because he knows his arrival is highly anticipated. Down the street, she walks in her own bubble, and it’s as though she controls that gust, tamping it down to a gentle breeze. Her silver heels click on the sidewalk as she moves effortlessly. With cell on speaker, passersby become privileged to thrilling updates, and then she adds, “Have you heard the latest?” But gentle breeze be gone, she buttons upher long,wine-red coat, tightening the belt as the roaring wind wraps around her like a python. When the hailed driver meets the curb, she smugly skims over the back seat, phone chat undisturbed.
And across the way, huddled against a weathered building, he daydreams of warmth, the wind chill forcing its way through his tattered jacket – he fantasizes about lying beneath layers of fleece and wool, comfort permeating from his shaggy long brown hair to his olive-green socks full of holes. But no complaints slip through his chattering teeth. Homelessness may be his current address; however, sadness will never be his default emotion. Instead, his eyes watch as his mind formulates hope.
Hardbacks, paperbacks, they sit on the shelves, waiting patiently for their pages to be turned, the simple, blissful touch, but some rest with elation knowing their stories and poetic thoughts have been liberated, pages dog-eared for another reading, the words having touched a chord. Seams of the bookcase stretch like stitches in too-tight jeans. The bookcase itself bulges like a belly satisfied from a hearty meal. I feel excitement of a child wandering through a toy store when I peruse new for the shelves… Is it fair to own so many captivating adventures and poetic musings? Quiet moments await for me to immerse into those other worlds…
It was that time again to stock up the pantry and fridge, so I meandered through the grocery store, strolling up one aisle and down the next until everything on my list was checked off. When I was standing in line with a full cart for just a few minutes, I noticed the man behind me holding only two items in his hands. “Would you like to go ahead of me?” I offered.
“Oh, no thank you. I’m fine.” He replied.
“No, really. I don’t mind waiting.” I insisted, so he humbly accepted. While he paid for his items, I read a new text from my husband that just pinged. When I looked up, the man was finishing the transaction.
“Thanks again for your kindness,” he said to me, while gently tossing a $50 bill that I watched float through the air as in slow motion, landing on my loaf of bread! “Oh, my gosh! I can’t accept that!” I was shocked to see the money in the first place, but then realizing it was a $50 bill had me flabbergasted!
“Please, take it. Your kindness has renewed my faith in humanity.” He gently enforced and literally sprinted out of the store, vanishing in seconds. I stood there with Darlene, the checker staring back at me, the biggest smile brightening her face, both of us amazed at the man’s equaled kindness and generosity. She told me to accept the gift, so my first thought was to pass it onto her. Darlene was friendly and so kind, making each customer feel like the most important person in the world, exuding true customer service. And yet, she was not allowed to accept cash gifts. So, I reluctantly slipped the fifty into my purse, waves of shock still rippling through me as I exited the store.
There is no barometer in measuring the value of kindness, but it is apparent that kindness comes in all forms, and I can’t wait to pay it forward to reaffirm this generous man’s faith in humanity.
The holiday break has been wonderful spending time with family, and I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, as well. As we’re about to ring in and clink to a new year, I’m sharing some wisdom from an older post…thoughts to ponder as we decide what changes to make for the next twelve months. Are we going to do things the same way and expect different, better outcomes? Or are we going to make necessary changes so that the outcomes reveal the hopes we hold?
I haven’t made resolutions, but I am in the middle of working on a new poetry collection that will be released in the spring. And a few more book ideas simmer on the horizon, too. There’s nothing like creative projects to keep our minds busy in that feel-good mode. So, I will welcome 2023 with open arms, excited for new possibilities. Below is that wisdom I mentioned…it’s all about finding and keeping a balance…
BALANCE SHEET OF LIFE:
The most destructive habit………Worry
The greatest joy………………..Giving
The greatest loss….Loss of self-respect
The most satisfying work…..Helping Others
The ugliest personality trait…..Selfishness
The greatest “shot in the arm”…….Encouragement
The greatest problem to overcome……Fear
The most effective sleeping pill……..Peace of Mind
The most crippling failure disease……..Excuses
The most powerful force in life……….Love
The most dangerous act…..Gossip
The world’s most incredible computer….The Brain
The worst thing to be without…………Hope
The deadliest weapon………………………..The Tongue
The two most power-filled words………I Can!
The greatest asset………………….Faith
The most worthless emotion……….Self-pity
The most beautiful attire……………Smile
The most prized possession………………Integrity
The most powerful channel of communication…..Prayer
The most contagious spirit…………..Enthusiasm
LIFE ends when you stop DREAMING.
HOPE ends when you stop BELIEVING.
LOVE ends when you stop CARING.
“You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.” ~ C.S. Lewis
Wishing you all a safe and fun celebration and a very Happy New Year!
Comments are closed, but I look forward to seeing you all in 2023! I’ll return some time in January.
Christmas time is not only a season of Love, Giving, and Hope, it is a season of remembering…our minds return to the days when loved ones who have passed celebrated with us. And when I came across this old photo of our children from 1997, I couldn’t help the feeling of warm and fuzzy in my heart.
A season of noble fir fragrance, festive decorationsthat bring joy…
and cozy evenings with a flickering fire or dancing candlelight.
A season of traditional baking while adding a new sinfully, delicious recipe…
1 c. salted butter, 1/2 c. sugar, 2 c. flour, 1/2 c. chopped pecans or walnuts (optional), 1/2 c. toffee chips
Directions: soften butter and mix with sugar and flour. Add toffee chips and nuts. Pat into a 9×13 ungreased pan. Be sure edges are straight. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. While hot, use a pastry brush to spread the glaze on: 1 c. powdered sugar, 3 T. milk, 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
Let cool and cut into squares. Enjoy!
And the king of the house (Copper) will not be forgotten, sporting his new holiday hoodie to keep warm in his older years, while he wonders what Santa will bring him this year…
many merry shapes frosted and sprinkled with love from my heart to yours
❤️ ❤️ ❤️
This is my last post for the year, and I’ll be on Christmas break as of tomorrow. So I wish you all a holiday season filled with lots of love and sweetness! Thank you for your wonderful visits to read my thoughts in verse and prose. See you in the New Year! 🎄🎉🎉🎉🎄
As this year nears the end, I thought sharing this poem again (though slightly revised) would be timely as we slowly glide into a new beginning…
I view life like a package wrapped in celebratory paper. The matching ribbons fascinate in their delicate, entwined camaraderie, so fingers gently unravel, heartbeat increases from excitement of what will be found. We lift the lid, peek inside, our inner child moves to the forefront of our minds.
But we must remember that unlike recyclable paper, the gift of life cannot be tossed back into the universe. There is no spare awaiting on the sidelines, and we should be mindful that the contents require tenderness with a set of instructions solely for the recipient, each one of us individually, as visible as a red rose in a garden of white daisies…
because we are beautifully unique.
Then once we have absorbed the guidelines, following them with gratitude and tenacity, the purpose of our gift will reveal itself as naturally as moonlight on a night darker than the deepest sea.
Sometimes wonderful surprises occur when we least expect them, and that’s what happened to me yesterday morning. It was Monday, the start of my work week and not my favorite day, but one I’m thankful for just the same because even Monday’s are a gift. Besides waking up and enjoying that first sip of coffee, I woke my laptop and Marie’s comment greeted me like the brightest and most welcoming smile. She wrote a touching and beautiful review for More than Coffee that I can’t let slip by without sharing. What’s even more surprising is that my book has been out for a little over a year now, but these wonderful reviews are still coming in. My heart is filled with gratitude. And here is Marie’s review:
“I am not that good at saying why I love books. That’s why I rarely share about my favorite reads!
But today I’ll make an exception.
Cause the one I just finished was just a gem that I wanted to share about it. In my own way!
I met Lauren when wandering from blog to blog and from the day I started reading her, I can say I fell in love with her writing.
She is a poet and you can feel her spirit blooming in every word she is sharing with us.
More than coffee is really more than coffee. I don’t drink coffee, I just love the smell of it, so I sat down with Lauren and a warm tea. It felt like being with a friend and chatting about life, its ups and downs and how to keep the bright side and sight alive.
I only know Lauren online and just for a couple of months but her kindness and generosity are real, you can feel it in her lines and stories.
I really enjoyed the way she took me by the hand right into her world, with vivid descriptions of the place she lives in, the sites she visited, her relationships, the loss, the grief and what we make of it.
What we decided to make of it.
I ended the book knowing I would scroll through it again, for wisdom or just a gentle reminder of life’s blessings.
I want to thank Lauren for giving me the chance to read her and to get to know her better, while reflecting about some of my life outstanding questions and overwhelming feelings!
I know Marie spoke about my kindness and generosity, but I can say the same about her. Her touching words are nothing less than kind and generous. I hope you’ll visit hersite where she shares her deepest feelings beautifully in poetic form and stories. She writes from the heart, thoughts that are genuine and raw, and the emotions she wants to stir flow freely after reading her thought-provoking posts.
So, another Big Thank You to Marie, and I apologize for repeating, but thank you to all who have read More than Coffee and who have written reviews. And I am beyond grateful for this fabulous blogging community!