Thursday, June 14, 2018

Collateral UK and Midnight Queen

Today I want to talk about my friend Angelo Tristan and his incredible band Collateral UK. I first met Angelo about five years ago on Twitter. I don't remember who's tweet we were responding to or what the subject was but we began liking each other's tweets and soon we were having an entire conversation on someone else's Twitter feed. We finally went to pms and after about 2 1/2 hours I was so impressed with this young man that we exchanged email addresses and FB info. He sent me several copies of his EP which my kids quickly snatched and a friendship was born.

The fact that he lives in Britain and I live in the USA has caused a few issues. He asked me to be his manager but I told him there was no way I could even begin to manage him from such a long distance but I was more than happy to be his friend and mentor from here. When he created his own record label I became his liaison and talent scout here in America. I have watched him fight and scrap and struggle to create his music, gather people together to make a band, and gain a following that just gets stronger every year. He is never still and is always pushing forward, focused on the goal and never looking back. His tenacity and perseverance have paid off with his band Collateral UK being signed to a record deal with Roulette Media. His next goal is to come to America and tour California, singing in any venue I can find him that will let him play. On May 11th they released their first video "Midnight Queen" and it is incredible! The record went to number one in Australia and I cannot wait to see where these guys go next. So I'm sharing their video here and hope you all enjoy it. feel free to share it with your friends also!

Sunday, March 25, 2018

2011-2018....... Time Flies

I completely forgot I had this blog account. I was invited to join the romance writers at Everybody Needs A Little Romance sometimes and moved there for the past few years. Since the blog moved to Facebook, however, I have not been very active on it. My life has gone in many different directions over the past few years and there is no way to really write about it all. So I will hit on some highlights and move on from there...

First and foremost--my divorce was finalized in August 2017. My ex and I have remained friends--our divorce was extremely amicable and more about just moving on with our lives in different directions than what we started from together. We live across the street from each other and the girls live with him since I met a new man and we live together in our old house. Michael  and I met in the summer of 2016 after I filed for divorce. Our relationship grew as we spoke and texted daily to the point that he decided he needed to be with me and in October of 2016 I flew out to Pennsylvania to meet him, help him pack, and we drove across the country back to California. Since then he has found a great job with a lot of room for growth and is moving up in the company at an accelerated rate. I see a management position in his near future and I am incredibly proud of him! He is a good man and he loves me madly for some reason--I am a lucky girl for sure!

My girls are grown up and working on their own lives. Sierra met a young lady in college who she befriended. This young woman got pregnant and ended up homeless right after having the baby. Sierra and I drove down south to San Bernadino and picked her and the baby up (Sierra was present for her birth) and brought them to live with us. Circumstances being what they were Sierra ended up filing for custody of the little girl and was awarded permanent custody of her in March 2016. Adrielle is the joy of all our lives--she is funny, sassy, sweet, loving , and has way more personality than any one child should have! I thank God every day for allowing us to love her and raise her and enjoy her! Jordan continues to be the rock for her sister and "brothers" by stepping us and doing child care for her sister and being the best auntie in the world to her nephews and nieces! Always ready to lend a helping hand, J has a true servant's heart and we would all be lost without her! Her dad and she were able to go on a Caribbean cruise with family friends at the beginning of March 2018. She had an absolute blast! He bought her her dream car and she is so happy driving around in her little red Bug convertible! Sierra works at a school for children with autism and absolutely loves it. She is still pursuing her dream to be a NICU nurse, but between working full time, raising Dri, and regular life it is a bit of a challenge. She purchased a brand new SUV this past year all by herself--pretty proud of her! J continues to work in child care for her church and is quite happy there.

Plenty more life to live and talk about but like I said, no way to cram seven years into one blog post! I will be bringing some music news into this blog--I have met an incredible guy named Angelo Tristan from the UK who has an amazing group called Collateral--they are making pretty big waves in Britain and hope to be coming to the US soon for a tour! Watch for some video trailers for their new music video "Midnight Queen" to be showing up here soon!!! 

Oh---and a very important piece of news is the fact that after 20 years of driving transit I have moved on to a new career opportunity and am now employed as a charter bus driver! I absolutely love it! Just got back from a multi-day trip to LA and am looking forward to a trip next month to Oregon! I love getting paid to travel! 

Ok off to do some adulating--being gone for several days means there are plenty of home things to get done such as laundry, housework, cooking, etc to get done before going back to work tomorrow! Enjoy your Sunday!

Sunday, June 05, 2011

A Year...

Wow--and entire year has gone by and I haven't blogged once! That is crazy! Too busy playing games on FaceBook I guess to worry about blogging...

SO much has happened--couldn't even begin to list it all. Lost both my biological mother and my adopted dad this past year. Karin passed away in July and Dad finally passed in February. It was a blessing for both--they had suffered a lot in the past couple of years...

Sierra got her license and we have been trying to buy her a car since October! And as of the third of June I now have TWO high school graduates!! Yep--Sierra walked on Friday! She has been on cloud 9 for the past week--just SO excited about graduating! Her sister went to Disneyland last week with Eddie and got her a flashing lanyard that says "Class of 2011" with a little graduation cap on the end and it lit up in LED colors! Sierra LOVED it and wore it proudly as she walked and all through the ceremony! Had to laugh!

Sierra and Eddie have broken up for good it seems. There has been so much drama over the past four years with their relationship and since he came home from basic she has not been sure about how she feels about him or whether she really wanted to get married so young. She has decided to be single for now and he was devastated at her decision. Not sure what will happen in the long run so just have to let God work in their lives and of course He will see them both through this also..

Eddie has been chosen to be on a special detail through the National Guard and is now on personal security detail (PSD) for high-ranking officials in the Guard and elsewhere in the state. He also just received the Governor's Outstanding Soldier award this weekend, so he is doing well there. Since Sierra and he broke up, however, her sister Jordan and he have become bosom buddies. Jordan's best friend Emilee is dating Eddie's best friend Josh so they are always all hanging out together. It has been good for Jordan to have these guy friends in her life, because just the other day I realized that she has NEVER had guy friends before! Wow! I can't even imagine that myself! Last week Eddie and Jordan took a spontaneous trip to Disneyland--she paid for gas and he paid for their tickets! They had a BLAST!!!

Jordan has been growing up a lot in the past year. She has two years of MJC behind her and after she gets in her 50 hours of internship at a preschool she can be certified as a preschool teacher. She has decided that she likes her hair very blonde and this last time we added pink to the under layer--too cute! She is such a cute girl I can't believe some lucky guy hasn't snatched her up already! She has a servant's heart and is always ready to step in and fill the gap and serve where needed, quietly and without need of recognition.

We have a grandbaby that fills our lives with love and laughter now--Raven was born February 7, 2010 and she is the light of our lives! She loves her Aunty Jordan best--J has been the one who has taken care of her since day one. Practically moved in with Raven's parents for the first 2 months after she was born to help out. Raven is here 3-4 days a week and she prefers J over all of the rest of us! Well, she loves her Aunty Sierra too--I'm Nana and I'm ok but she wants the girls over me any day!! :)

I gave up my Tahoe a few months ago--had to file bankruptcy to try and get out debt under control. Sierra is heading off to college in the fall and I am hoping that I will be able to have the money she needs to do it... She wants to go to CSU East Bay and has been accepted into the pre-nursing program there, but after reading her financial aid package I am beginning to wonder if her housing was included in her grants and stuff. I am afraid it isn't so now not sure how she can go there... *sigh* I hate money--it is always the reason I have troubles. Lack of it, actually, is the problem! I need to hit the Super Lotto or whatever so my girls won't ever have to worry about money and can do what they want and achieve their dreams without any issues...

Anyway. Pretty much it for now--can't go into all the stuff cuz who would care? And this blog is mainly for myself anyway so I know what happened and I don't need to write it ALL down now do I?! ;)

Monday, May 31, 2010

I Remember...

I remember the lists that would run on the evening news, listing the names of the casualties and MIA's during the Viet Nam war. We would watch, praying that there wouldn't be a name we knew in that list. I remember standing on the four square court the day that President Nixon declared the end of the war. I was in 6th grade, and I remember thinking, as I stood under a blue sky in the shade of a large almond tree, "So this is what peace feels like" and savoring it, the knowledge that there wouldn't be any more lists of names of young men who had lost their lives for a cause none of us really understood.

I remember the day I told my youngest daughter that the young man she considers her big brother had shipped out to Iraq. I remember her sobs and how helpless I felt as I watched her succomb to her fears of losing her brother to a war she didn't understand, and I remembered...

Today is a day to remember. I still have a daughter in the Air Force and a future son-in-law in the National Guard. I am incredibly proud of them and their service to our country, but I pray that they will never be called on to defend us again in a war that doesn't make sense. Because I remember...

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Random Thursday...

I am cooking a pot of beans for dinner. We had ham for Easter and I had the bone in the freezer and it sounded good, so I scrabbled everything together and threw it all in the crock pot to simmer for the rest of the day.
As I was feeding the dogs the fat and rind scraps from the left-over ham that I added to the pot, I couldn't help but feel at peace. Each dog sat so politely, waiting for their handout, and I was over come with a great sense of well-being. What is it about having pets that makes one feel so good? I don't know, but I have plenty to keep me happy, that's for sure!

My husband says we have way too many pets. If I am forced to look at it from a practical angle I have to admit he is right. Who in their right mind has SIX dogs, as well as three cats, a couple of rabbits, birds, and a tortoise to boot? Well, um, that would be me, but really each one of my critters has their place in the family and there would be a hole if I was to lose one.

I have been home now for almost four months. I haven't had that much time off at one time since my last daughter was born almost 17 years ago! It's going to be hard to go back to work full-time next month, and the dogs are going to have to readjust to not having Mom home with them all day. I think it will be hardest on my littlest dog Jaz. She is my baby in more ways than one. If I am sitting down she is usually in my lap. When I get up she follows me throughout the house, and when I go to bed she is right there next to me. If she thinks I am leaving for any reason she is trying to leap into my arms and begs to go with me! Yep, it will be hard for all of us...

Besides spending quality time with the dogs I have been re-discovering the joys of cooking. Since having the gastric bypass surgery last month I am limited on what I can eat, but that doesn't mean my family has to suffer! So I have been poring over recipe books looking for things I can cook for them that I, too, can eat. It has been a challenge! My crock pot has been getting used a lot because meat that is cooked in liquid becomes very moist and is easy to eat--very important to a gastric bypass patient!! The great thing is that I can still cook nutritious and satisfying meals for my family without feeling the need to indulge myself in what I am cooking. This not being hungry thing works for me, let me tell you!! And since I am now much more conscious of what is in the food that I cook I am really cutting back on my family's carbs and sugars, which means we ALL benefit from my surgery!

I am home by myself today--well, that is, I am home with the dogs by myself--and I have to admit I love the quiet! No kids, no husband, no TV blaring in the family room. When I am home alone I don't even listen to the radio. I just savor the silence. I clean a little, find a new recipe to try out on the family, read a book, play on the computer, and just enjoy the peace... When I go back to work I won't get these days any more, and truthfully I need time to myself. No one really gets that because everyone in my family are people-persons! My youngest refuses to stay home by herself, my oldest gets bored, and my husband--well, he just hates being alone period. Me, I love it--always have since the first time my folks let me stay home by myself while they took a little over-night trip when I was around 16. Truth be told, I never saw myself getting married--thought I would live near a beach with a dog or two and be a writer. Thirty years later I have two kids, a mortgage, a husband, and chaos around me pretty much all the time! Life is good--unexpected, maybe, but good. Just not quiet! And still working on the writing thing. Lots of ideas, even some good stuff, just nothing published...

At least I still have my dogs... :~)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Catching Up

Wow--so much has happened since I blogged last! So how do I catch it all up in a few paragraphs? Let's see...

Jordan is now in her second semester at MJC. She had to take some random courses her first semester, which is pretty normal I guess, but her second semester she actually got some good core courses that will transfer to a four year college. She goes to classes 3 days a week (M-W) so that she can keep her Thursdays free to help my sister with her grand babies. She hasn't had to pay for ANY of her classes yet--I'm not really sure why other than she may have gotten a Board of Governor's Waiver. I was told she could get it her first semester, but both? I'm not gonna look a gift horse in the mouth!

Sierra joined cheer leading this year at RCHS. Well, actually, let's back that up. I stepped up and volunteered to be the coach because there was no cheer leading team at all at the school. Sierra and several girls signed up last year but when she asked about it this year she was told since there wasn't a coach they couldn't have a team. I called the athletic director and scheduled an appointment, for which he was 20 minutes late. I had to practically argue for the chance to do this and then he said we could only have a cheer "club" since I wasn't a qualified coach. Ok, whatever. The first day of practice 13 girls showed up, and it turned out that one of the girls' mom was a former professional cheerleader. She offered to help and the next thing I know the AD is fawning all over her and offering to PAY for HER to take classes and be the coach. Hello? Why wasn't this offered to ME? I was offended, but let it go. I settled for assistant coach and did what I could to help. She made her daughter, a freshman AND new to the school, a captain which didn't sit well with most of the girls. Supposedly they "voted" but when the girls were asked about it later only one of them had voted for this girl to be captain. Hmmm. Granted, she has experience, but when the girls asked for a vote for new captains when basketball season started they were told "no". It was when they decided to add dance/stunts into their routines that trouble really started.

Sierra has had almost ten years of dance. She got frustrated by the way the coach tried to count out the dance steps and voiced her frustration out loud in front of the team. The rest of the girls would then agree that it was confusing or whatever, and the coach would then do it the way Sierra said it should be done. By then many of the girls didn't much care for the coach and her attitude--she definitely had favorites and treated them as if they did no wrong but either put the other girls down or just ignored them. She didn't have a clue how to deal with my daughter and chose to suspend her for being "disruptive", etc.

What pissed ME off was that at no time was I informed of this decision--I didn't get a phone call, a letter, a face-to-face --nothing. I gave it a week, and when Sierra went back to practice I made sure I was there also. The coach benched her and two other girls for being a few minutes late and then completely and utterly IGNORED me. I mean, back-to-me, never made eye contact, ignored me. I decided that it was time to beard the lion in its den and asked for a meeting, especially when I found out the coach had suspended Sierra AGAIN for a another week. When confronted with all of the facts, the coach really didn't have much to say in her defense. Sierra looked her in the eye and fronted her on everything. It was the coach who backed down finally, not Sierra. Sierra wanted to quit but we persuaded her to try one more time. When she went to practice that Monday all the coach did was have a couple of the girls teach her the new cheers. She didn't offer to make room for her in the new stunt routine nor did she say she was glad to see her. Sierra quit the next day. There were only two more weeks of games left, but she couldn't handle being around the coach another minute.

Out of the 11 girls left on the squad, at least 8 of them won't cheer next year if she is the coach. They all want me, but I have to get my coaching certificate first and then I don't know if the AD would even let me. I did have a long talk with him about what I saw going on this season and how I felt the coach could have done a much better job of handling issues with the girls. Her way was to ignore the problems or just go over it like there wasn't a problem. There were no fun days where the girls just got together and bonded as a team over a pizza, no team meetings about how they wanted things to go or cheers they thought would work well for the team, nothing. Her daughter taught all the stunts and dances--she merely observed. Hell, I can do that!! LOL! I guess we will just have to wait and see what next year brings.

Anyway. What else. I got swine flu in October--on my way with a friend to pick up some heifers in Payette, ID. Yeah, that sucked. Then right before Christmas I fell off the second to the bottom step in my MIL's basement and fractured/sprained my right ankle. Since then I have been off work sitting around the house waiting for my ankle to heal. And now I am on my way to pick up the letter from my primary physician to get my gastric bypass surgery final approval from my insurance company. Yay! I have been pursuing this for over a year now and I am SO ready for this! So now I am putting in for a 6-8 week leave of absence since I used up almost 8 weeks of my FMLA already and I want to save some for when I go back to work in case I need to take time off for what my friend calls "gastric bypass days". Not sure if I will need them but I want to have them just in case.

Wow--this doesn't cover everything but good grief! I've written quite the novel here already! Time to go get stuff done. Ta ta until next time...

Saturday, June 13, 2009


Well, it finally happened--I am now the proud parent of a high school graduate! Woo-hoo! Hard to believe I am old enough to have a daughter who is almost 18--I am still convinced that I am only 30 something myself! LOL!

What is really neat is that Jordan graduated exactly 29 years to the day from the same school that I received my high school diploma! She even had a couple of the same teachers. Of course, they had stories to tell her about me--oh gee, thanks for bursting THAT particular little bubble for me! And here I thought I would be able to maintain my innocence--I was such an exemplary student!! LOL!

It was a proud moment for me and her dad and the rest of her family as we watched her walk down that aisle in her cap and gown with this huge grin on her face! We looked each other in the eye and then we had to look away or we would have both been bawling. Yeah, yeah, like mother like daughter--it was a Hallmark moment! I got misty several times over the past couple of weeks, but I managed to get through the entire ceremony without breaking down. Come on, folks--I still cry on the girls' first day of school every year! And they are in HIGH SCHOOL!

She spent that evening with all of her classmates at a huge Sober Grad party and then the next couple of days partying with different friends, including her own party on Tuesday.

The best part was when I got her report card on Friday. FIVE "A's"!! Wow! And her sister got solid B's with a couple of A's sprinkled in, including two on her final exams. Can you tell I am proud of my girls?!

So now we are moving into a new phase in our lives. Jordan will be starting at the junior college in the fall to get her pre-req's out of the way before she transfers to a 4 year college to complete her special ed major. Sierra will be going into her junior year at RC. It will be the first time that the girls haven't gone to school together. Ever. Not sure how they feel about it, but it will be very strange for me--still working on getting my mind around it...

I am looking forward to having Jordan spread her wings a little more. Watching her explore her new world, test her independence. She is very much a home-body so she never ventures far from mom, but now that she has her license and a car I have noticed that she is out and about quite a bit. It is so awesome seeing how much she enjoys this new phase in her life! These should be some of the best times of her life and I hope she enjoys every minute of them!

So--one down, one to go! Onward and upward....