Friday, July 19, 2013

Feature Friday - Jessicca The Best

I like to brag about my friends. Who doesn’t? Most people think they have the best friends in the world. I want to say you’re wrong, but truth is, when you find that group of people that click with you, whose heart beats at a similar rhythm, then you cannot be wrong. You have found the best friends you can find.

This week’s feature goes to my best friend, and manager, Jessicca.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Tip-Off Thursday - Keeping Your Wallet Cool Through The Summer

Summertime brings more than just sun and warmth, it brings fun activities with friends and family, vacations, barbecues, festivals, and concerts!

All these incredimazing things can really dry out our wallets fast, if we’re not careful. So how can we still make the most of summer and stay on our budget track?

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Topic Tuesday - Take Up The Holiday Offer

It’s 6:30am. Your alarm goes off. You grudgingly hit snooze. You fall back asleep for a precious 9 minutes and dream of the weekend, when you can sleep the day away...of course, some of you have kids, so that’s really just a dream. You find it harder and harder to get up. You fill your time with hours and hours of work to meet your deadlines and maybe get that promotion you’re hoping for. You come home exhausted and dig into last night’s pizza, not even caring to warm it up. You can’t remember the last book you read. Reading seems like such a chore. You surf the web aimlessly while Friends or Seinfeld chirp in the background. You need a vacation. Seriously.

What I love about vacation is that it breaks the norm. You could be just as busy doing sight seeing, or swimming, but you’ve stepped away from your normal worries and routines and allowed yourself, and your brain to hit reset. You experience new things, get out of the automated grumpy mode, and allow your spirit and soul to find that much needed selah. Even if it’s just for the weekend, breaking your routine to do something that takes you away from your regular challenges is well worth it.

I could probably quote all of the articles I’ve read on all of the studies about how this is positive, but let’s face it, I don’t want to take the time to do that. Why? Because I’m getting ready to go on vacation. I’d rather spend my extra minutes researching what to bring camping, or what book I get to read while I escape from technology for a blissful few days of sunshine, cooking over a fire, and laughing my butt off with my friends. All I know is that every time I take the time to get out of town and do something besides the daily grind, I’m inspired to come home and take it all on with a renewed passion and slightly different perspectives. I’m able to actually take an inventory of my life and see how well it’s going, rather than turn on autopilot and hope all my challenges work themselves out.

One of my favorite vacation times was driving across the US a few years ago with my best friend, Jessicca. It was so much fun! We started in WA and ended In NC. Of the many memorable moments, such as chasing a thunderstorm in New Mexico and witnessing the gorgeous landscape it had to offer, was the great oil spill in Texas. We had been driving for nearly 12 hours and forgot to take into account the time changes we would cross throughout the day. It was a long day of driving and a good part of it was in some pretty extreme heat and altitude changes. We were both exhausted and as exhausted bff’s do, we found ourselves in some ridiculous squabble. We got to the hotel we had booked around midnight. We had a very small window of time to sleep before hitting the road the next day, and a number of valuables in the car, so we decided not to leave anything inside. We opened the back of the pick up to see that the oil we had purchased as a precaution was no longer in it’s container. It had somehow overflowed through while standing up and saturated the back of the pick up, ruining a few of our things...mostly Jessicca’s. Irritation had turned to furry and I did the only thing I could think of. I started laughing. I suddenly realized how funny this whole situation, plus the squabble from before was. We had no choice but to check in and clean up what we could of the oil spill, and salvage what we could of our belongings. It was truly no laughing matter, but it kind of was at the same time. We didn’t get much sleep that night and had a 14 hour day ahead of us the next day, which made it that much more challenging, but we survived and laugh pretty hard at it now. I still have oil in the back of my truck. It reminds me that I have amazing friends who love to go on adventures and meet the various elements that life throws at us with arms wide open. I never have to go it alone, and I’ll always have someone to clean up the messy stuff with.

So, what I really want to know then, is what are some of your favorite vacation spots, and what you do you while you’re gone? What are some of your favorite stories, or experiences from the times you’ve snuck away from the real world and gave your lungs the freedom to breath a bit?

Tell a good story and I would love to feature it on an upcoming blog!

Until next time,

Take care of your hearts & ears

~Listen With Your Heart~

Monday, July 15, 2013

Music Monday - Summer Camping Music

Your tent is pitched, your fire started, food cooking, it’s quiet, peaceful, and you’ve got Usher’s You Got It Bad stuck in your heard. What’s worse? Oh yeah. You forgot to pack your guitar or ukulele for campfire song time. You can try to accapella it out or you can bust out your iPod and portable speaker set that you remembered to pack.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Feature Friday - Yacolt Mayor Jeff Carothers

I’m sure many of you who are not familiar with the southwest Washington area are wondering where this place called Yacolt is, and why have I talked so much about it recently? Well, it’s a small town just north of where I live and I keep talking about it because of their Mayor. Mayor Jeff Carothers and I got in touch a little over a year ago. He had heard about me through a mutual friend and had recommended I go and check out a local winery that just opened called, Moulton Falls Winery. He said that he had talked to the owners about me and that I should consider looking them up as a venue to play at. This was following his invitation for me to play at Yacolt’s 4th of July celebration in 2012. Since then, I’ve been able to partner with Moulton Falls many times, and was honored to have been asked back to headline this year’s 4th of July celebration in Yacolt - all because of Mayor Carothers.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Tip-Off Thursday - Grill That Shizz!

Step outside on a beautiful summer evening and it’s quite possible that your senses will be flooded with the delicious fragrance of charcoal, wood, and smoked goodness. There’s a sweet and tangy decadence that follows and suddenly your stomach starts demanding you find out where it’s coming from and make friends with such delectable scents. Knowing full well how strange it would be to actually do that, you opt to jump in your car, grab a few things from your local market, and then message your friends to meet you at a specific time and place to partake in the summer fun.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Topic Tuesday - Why I Love The U.S.

With everything that has been going on in this country lately, I thought it would be best to declare what I love about it, rather than engage in the complaints about our current shortcomings.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Music Monday - The Patriots Song

The longer I am a songwriter, the more I come to understand the reality that there is no one method to songwriting. Some of it is inspired by an experience, some of it comes from a wishing for something not yet found, and sometimes you’re simply frustrated and stumble upon something that in the moment might feel forced, but in the long run it becomes one of your greatest pieces of work.