Monday, December 31, 2012

A Fool and a Cigarette

image by R.A.D. Stainforth

"I tell you the past is a bucket of ashes."
 ~Carl Sandburg, "Prairie," Complete Poems, 1950

When we are 16 we smoke all our tomorrows
like cheap cigarettes and strawberry hill wine
at an endless hangout at the corner store...

yet when we are old we smoke all our yesterdays
like one fine cigar and rare expensive wine
at a place we wish we had gone and can no longer afford.

"Life can only be understood backward, but it must be lived forward." ~Soren Kierkegaard

Wishing Tess and everyone at The Mag a wonderful and Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Merry Christmas To All

"There are no strangers on Christmas Eve."
  ~Mildred Cram and Adele Comandini

To all my friends in bloggerland I want to simply say:
"Merry Christmas!"

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Of Snow and Ice

The color of springtime is in the flowers; the color of winter is in the imagination.
  ~Terri Guillemets

Winter's paradox is a dazzling dame in chiffon so white
with supple lips of silence and sparkling yet peircing eyes.
Her graceful beauty is a fascination for all who long to see
yet when the cold winds blow she is as harsh as she can be.

Her hair flows like a flurry her skin soft like sheets of snow.
She has a polished elegance that we all wish we could know.
Her graceful beauty is a fascination for all who long to see
yet when the cold winds blow she is as harsh as she can be.

She glides like dancing snowflakes and has tenure where she lay.
Her awe becomes beguiling when we hope that she might stay,
for her graceful beauty is a fascination for all who long to see
yet when the cold winds blow she is as harsh as she can be.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Like a Lightning Crash

Photo by Andy Magee

Respecting the rain is not an observation that one does automatically like waving to a passerby or holding the door for another.  It is an appreciation one acquires when experience has led them to a knowledge that before did not exist.  This true regard does not come slowly like guitar lessons nor learning to love martinis, it is a split second shift of knowing.  Fast like a lightning crash it happens, the moment that the wheels and the road no longer have the right connection.  Looking back in slow motion, it is almost like a dance; a glide to the left and then maybe another swift move to the right, but when it happens, it is NO dance!  One finds them self screaming and holding the wheel as if it were the ledge of a building they were about to fall off of.  And it is like a fall, a horrible fall.  Once the movement has stopped, depending on what the object of destination is.  It could be a road sign, a ditch or another car even, but it all happens too fast for complete recall. You just know when it is over you had no control of the outcome.  No control at all!  From that moment forward you never take driving in the rain lightly.  You have a new found respect for the relationship between a wet road and your car. 

There are moments in life
that change the way
we see the road ahead.
A briliant light of knowing
that peirces through
our blindness
like headlights
in the night
it is a hearkening
that is birthed
not from words
but deeds
life's way where
the thud of a fall
can knock the sense
into a soul faster
than any words
could ever prove
the truth.

Monday, December 17, 2012

There Are No Words

"Sorrow makes us all children again - destroys all differences of intellect.  The wisest know nothing."  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

In respect of the traumatic events on Friday, I simply have no words.  The only words I have to offer are prayers coming from my heart for all the families in grief.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Farewell Again Autumn

"Besides the autumn poets sing,
A few prosaic days
A little this side of the snow
And that side of the haze."
~Emily Dickinson

Dearest Autumn my love so fair
how I wish you would never leave.

Your colors a bounty beyond compare
in your arms I long to cleave.

Our time together too short once more
a twirling dance I don't want to end.

But like a fickle kiss you will ignore
and leave me alone over and over again.

So with these words I take one last gaze
to your mystery and all your charms.

For my heart you always swiftly take
as I await you with open arms.

I know that autumn is long since gone, but it is my favorite season, and when the words came I went with it like the wind.

What is your favorite season?

Friday, December 14, 2012

Journal Junkie

My name is Carrie and I am a journaloholic. Yes, these are ALL my journals, and frankly, there are more somewhere lost in my apartment. I do not remember when it all began.  Maybe it was when I kept note pads all over the place and would wake up in the middle of the night scrambling to find something to write down an idea with.  I am not really sure it just crept up on me and the next thing I knew I was loaded with them.  Now that I am aware of my problem, I try to resist the temptation to purchase again one more for my collection.  It is hard but I think I can do it, with the help of my fellow bloggers, and the fact that my check book stands strong with a firm no!

I also have a bit of a pen, pencil, and writing paraphernalia fetish, but that is an entirely different story....or should I say "horse of another color". :-)
Do you have writing tools that you must have?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Home Made

Linking with Poetry Jam go there if you are hungry for more. :-)

"For the spirit of Christmas fulfils the greatest hunger of mankind."
 ~Loring A. Schuler

That is where all things big and small are made.  This place we call home.  It is a little different for us all, like an assortment of cookies for a Holiday party at Christmas Eve.  For some it is a wonderful mix in a bowl and others it is a burned and crumbly mess, but it is what it is.  All our integrity, hopes, cares, sense of what matters are born and bred here, like the mixing of the oatmeal, the sugar, and the butterscotch chips.  We become a batch stirred and baked for all to see when we leave those kitchen walls. 
In the kitchen I grew up in, my father was the nurturer and cook.  He was the one that tucked us in bed, wiped on the vicks vapor rub when we were sick, checked to make sure we were covered up at night, and baked us cookies and fruit cake to give our teachers at Christmas time.  It was a wonderful ritual that we had every year to make a batch of butterscotch cookies to enjoy and share with others during the Holiday season.  My father being an aeronautics engineer was a true perfectionist.  Things were always in their place and measured perfectly, so you can imagine that baking cookies was quite the endeavor.  It was an experience that I consider to be a beautiful gift of time with my Dad.  We made more than butterscotch cookies all those Christmas's ago, we made wonderful memories that are a little morsel of the person I am today.
My Dad and I Christmas 1982.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Drifting Apart

"We sail within a vast sphere, ever drifting in uncertainty,
driven from end to end."
~Blaise Pascal

We were two different countries
 within the same continent you and I.

Your ways were not my own,
although we stood there side by side.

My gravel roads led to your winding highways
that seemed to never end,

and I knew where you were going
just as you understood where I had been.

Yet somewhere between the new frontier
and old roads in need of repair,

an ocean grew amidst this continent
like the shifting plates of hearts and cares.

I have married twice and both times it has been a process much like shifting plates of the earth crust.  The ground has shifted beneath my feet, and I have been unable to remain in the place that I once stood.  I guess I could look at it as a loss or an utter failure, but I choose not to.  I have learned more from these 2 different and both difficult men than they will have ever truly learned from me.  I have come to understand that there is no perfect person and we are all products of our past and the places we come from.  We do not get to have a road map of the human heart.  I only know that  I love them both and always will.  Yes that sounds crazy, but I have always believed that if you truly love someone, and I am not talking about romantic love, I am speaking of the love that one has for a fellow human being in this life, then that love never ends nor stops.  You cannot turn love off like water in a faucet, nor should you even try, but you can learn from relationships good or bad and you can hope to make better decisions moving forward in the future.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Life Lessons

Object to be Destroyed by Man Ray

The Mag #146

In our living room we had a beautiful piano with a metronome that my mother made my brother use when he learned to play.  Of course, he really did not choose to take piano lessons, this was a dream of my mother's.  She played beautifully by ear, and wanted him to master the piano by the book, correctly note by note.  Although he became quite good, I think he resented the tedious practice he invested in a dream that was not his own.  Sadly, my mother passed away when my brother was merely 15 years old, and though he had already given up the lessons a year or two earlier, he would never touch that piano again after her death.  It always seemed like such a shame to me, that such talent would be wasted, but it was not my decision to make.  He had endured the many hours of practice, not for his own dreams, but for our mother's longing to pass down a legacy of musical craftsmanship. 

Many years have passed now, and both my brother and mother have been gone for over 10 years.  I have raised children of my own, followed my own dreams, and dealt with my own misguided hardships along the way.  It is in those experiences that I have learned that nothing is ever insignificant, meaningless nor wasted time.  Each moment and everything that happens has a bigger purpose at its core.  Sometimes we learn things in the empty spaces, the cracks in the china that cannot be seen,the notes that were never played, and the piano lessons that were never completed.  My brother may not have appreciated the gift he had been given, but its blessings have expanded outward like ripples in a pond.  What he experienced, and how he dealt with it, influenced my reaction to many things in my life as well.  Whenever I have been faced with a difficult situation or a chore I did not want to deal with, I have indirectly responded to many of the struggles remembering the loss he sustained.  All the drudgery of practice and pushing the keys of a dream that he never truly held within his heart and hands seemed aimless, but it was not.  It taught me a great lesson about life, beauty, and the significance of everything.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Between Hurt and Forgiveness

"He who cannot forgive breaks the bridge over which he himself must pass."
~George Herbert

Linking with Poets United Wonder Wednesday #11 Bridge

It is a precarious cliff
 in the middle of suffering's bitter ache.
No railing to brace the fall
 nor smooth trail to truly take.
 Desolation is one's comrad,
in this place of shifting ground.
Where blame wanders on all sides
 and grace cannot be found.
There is only one path
 that leads to a true retreat.
It is the bridge of forgiveness
 that sets hurt soldiers free.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

One Beautiful Thing

Tess's wonderful prompt site: The Mag #145

"Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid."
 ~Frederick Buechner

I used to view the world around me from a card table chair that I could fold up at any time,
when I did not want to face what stood before me.
And in that place all the debris and wreckage seemed greater than even one beautiful thing.
So my gratitude walked away empty like an abandoned room.
Real life does not have "high definition" big screen television.
The big picture can be fuzzy,
and all the details can be hard to detect.
Hope can fall down unnoticed, like a penny beneath a chair cushion,
and everything one sees can be distorted and hard to view.
For clarity can be held close and then lost like an abducted child,
leaving a soul to feel forsaken and lost in the rubble.
I know that feeling.  I have held it within my soiled hands,
and cradled it like a forlorn orphan, unable to let it go or see past the pain.
Vision is a tricky thing...what we see, and what truly lies in front of us
sometimes are simply not the same thing.
There is growth in adversity, like seeds sent astray in a harsh wind,
greenery will sprout all around in time, but until then,
all you may see is clutter and chaos.
Hope is a beautiful velvet chair that sits in the midst of troubles.
You may not see it now, but it is there just the same.
Let your heart find it, and then plop like a child into it's fold
of open velveteen wings, and then choose to see the sunlight
within the open window ahead.

Also linking with lovely Emily at Imperfect Prose


Monday, November 19, 2012

The Force of Change,

Squall, 1986, by Andrew Wyeth

"The wind shows us how close to the edge we are." ~Joan Didion

We are a mere tug boat
 in an ocean of waves.
and like a stern father
winds force pushes us on our way.
We venture onward
far from the touch of land.
Seeking freedom's paddle
within our hands.
We do not settle
nor take down roots.
Nature has a way
of making us move.
For one cannot remain still
in the midst of sea's storm,
as the waters ever changing
 provide their own scorn.
We must ride each wave
brave like a sailor true.
You see that's just what
all good sailors do.


Friday, November 16, 2012

The Battle Scars of Inconvenience

Verdum, 1917, by Felix Vallotton

If you break your neck, if you have nothing to eat, if your house is on fire, then you got a problem.  Everything else is inconvenience. 
 ~Robert Fulghum

Life is full of paper cuts that sting but leave no mark.
A thousand aggravations that attack us in the dark.

So we hide in a bunker trying to avoid every trap.
Dodging annoyances like bullets we lay low on our path.

Craving no resistance we march forward with closed eyes.
Soldiers on a mission to find oblivian at any price.

The battle for a perfect life is a stuggle that will never cease.
for this life is a journey of imperfections that simply serve to teach.


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Loneliness Is The Longest of Seasons

"The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco."
~Mark Twain

Linking with Poetry Jam

Spring is like a lover
 that kisses you on the lips.
While summer is a brother
 that hits you with a fist.
Then autumn is a sister
you want to remain close.
Yet lonely's name is winter
that come to leave you all alone.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Geology of a Broken Heart

Charis, Lake Ediza, California, 1937, by Edward Weston

Also linking with Imaginary Gardens open link Monday.

"God can heal a broken heart, but He has to have all the pieces". ~Author Unknown

We cautiously excavate our  life like a young geologist
unsure of what to let lay and what to keep.

Digging through each hurt like rubble
and dusting off the loss for all to see.

We examine all the evidence of life
hypothesizing the source of pain

looking for some reason
hoping for proof or someone to blame.

We leave ourselves wide open
when we search with eyes closed tight.

Trudging further in the mud instead
of digging deeper down inside.

We take on the heavy burden
to somehow carry on the journey home.

Never understanding these worn artifacts
were not meant for us to bear alone.

I believe that the process of recovery and the lesson of letting go is an ongoing journey we never stop re-learning.  Life is full of adversity that we must face everyday, and like choosing salad verses french fries, it is a constant choice. With every problem that arises (and trust me, they will show up, like an unwanted bill in the mail), we have the power to give it to God, and seek His guidance, or to hold on to the situation ourselves, and lean on our own strength and will.  I choose the lighter option. :-)

Thursday, November 1, 2012

A Legion of Ghosts

"True love is like ghosts, which everyone talks about and few have seen."
~Francois de la Rochefoucauld

All my regrests haunt me like a great legion of ghosts.
They lurk waiting to appear in the places I miss most.
One sits at the piano that I never learned to play.
Another echoes in the voice of the words I never say.
Some linger on the road side of the places I never went.
Others roam to distant places in the letters never sent.
There is one that resides under glass upon a higher shelf.
While another stands in a stranger's shoes reminding me of myself.
Each one follows where I go like a lover still in a love thats new.
For I embrace them close and hard and thats just what lovers do.

Linking with Imaginary Gardens With Real Toads

I do believe in ghosts...I know people that have seen them....and I believe it to be true.  Of course my poem is not really about real ghosts, but I do believe that there are many things in our lives that can haunt us just like an apparition or ghost.  The only difference is, we have the power to let these things go, or we can choose to continue holding on.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


"When witches go riding,
and black cats are seen,
the moon laughs and whispers,
‘tis near Halloween."
~Author Unknown

Hope everyone in the blogospere has a wonderful Halloween with thier family!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Kiss Life On The Lips

Life is a lover one must kiss on the lips if you want to feel its warm embrace.
You cannot merely touch its hand, or peck its soft sweet face.
Wrap your arms around it and hold it forever near.
Caress its naked truth and strip away your threads of fear.
Crawl into its cushioned bed and lie next to its reward of bliss.
For to live life to its fullest you must kiss it right on the lips.

This is a re-post of an older poem, but I felt it worked too perfectly for the prompt to pass it up.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

A Gossamer of Souls

Photo courtesy wonderful Ella at Ella's Edge

Linking with Poet's United Wonder Wednesday #6 Web

Like veins that lead to the heart,
we are all connected
by a web that the eyes cannot see.

From oceans to continents
and languages to cultures
we branch out like a redwood tree.

With differences as grand as deserts
and kinship greater
 than the ocean wide,

we span a vast horizon
like many different species
yet one strong seagull on the inside.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Expensive Lessons Have a Lifetime Guarentee

"Do you know the difference between education and experience?  Education is when you read the fine print; experience is what you get when you don't. " ~Pete Seeger

I have spent many a tattered dollar learning the hard way.  Sometimes it seems I could hold seminars on what not to do, with my life as an example.  It could be called "Learning The Hard Way For Dummies",  I guess if it were popular and filled the empty seats of the colosseum maybe I would become rich with a million dollars in the bank or maybe if I had listened to my Grandfather I would have a lot more dollars in my pocket now.  There is no way to know for sure, but I am certain that empty pocketed or not, I am much wiser now than when I started.

The Stumbling Blocks of Man,

Our grandfathers built a foundation
upon the truths they came to know
so that we might know them to.

Yet we have cracked the masonry
and created stumbling blocks
that our grandchildren will have to move.


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Autumn Speaks

It whispers of the journey home...
It converses with the wind...
It articulates the way with every step we take...
Its auburn lips only tell of wonders....
It has a silence that speaks of peace...
My heart sits and waits to hear it speak every October.

What does Autumn speak to you?

Friday, October 19, 2012

First Cousins Once Removed

"In faith there is enough light for those who want to believe and enough shadows to blind those who don't."  ~Blaise Pascal

They touch just at
the fringe of brilliance
and the edge of the obscure
as their descent
both rises and falls
from the same force
where one's exhale
is vapor for the other
a lineage that spans
beyond our vision
above our own design
they are relatives
in a world
where oracles
can only be found
by blind faith
light and shadow
both accentuate
the other
each one
showing contrast
serving a purpose
to decide
what is
and what is not
consider this
a test
that no other
can answer for you
you must see it for yourself.

linking with Poetry Jam This week's theme is "Shadows".

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

An Ode To Chocolate Cake

Midnight Snack, 1984, by Curtis Wilson Cost

"Worries go down better with soup."  ~Jewish Proverb
"or chocolate cake..." ~Carrie :-)

So many nights I wake up pondering
on all the whys and worries of my life.
I toss and turn with wrestling regrets
 that punch and know how to win a fight.

Soon I am up and wandering
towards my side by side frigidaire
hoping for some chocolate cake
to knock out my worries and cares.

When all the crumbs are scooped up
with a fork or tongue to plate
I head back to my empty bedroom
and rest peacefully until daybreak.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Giving Taking and Letting Go

Sick Woman, 1665, by Jan Steen

In order to change we must be sick and tired of being sick and tired.  ~Author Unknown

Of all the comforts that I have been given
and every prescriptions I have taken
the medicine of simply letting go
has been the truest remedy of them all.

Also linking with dVerse Open Link

Monday, October 8, 2012

Somewhere In A Forrest

Photo by George Grall
The Amazon Horned Toad
for info on this amazing Amazon creature click here.

for Transforming Friday.

"To me a lush carpet of pine needles or spongy grass is more welcome than the most luxurious Persian rug."  ~Helen Keller

Deep inside the forrest is like an ocean of unusual fish
there are creatures of every variety that we never knew we'de miss.

They lurk in obscure places from den trees to lilly pads
and fight for their survival like we struggle to earn our cash.

We live our lives oblivious to our fellow creatures beyond the brush
yet our actions affect their ecology and we never heed or hush.

For deep inside the forrest is like an ocean of amazing fish
there are creatures of every variety that we never knew we'de miss.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

It Was A Beautiful Sloppy Mess

It Must Be Time For Lunch Now, 1979, by Francesca Woodman

"Truth isn't always beauty, but the hunger for it is."  ~Nadine Gordimer

When I was a child
 I spooned life in
like banana pudding
never caring how much
spilled on my hands and face.

I took in all the answers
like a hungry lover
longing for her love's
next embrace.

My quest for truth and meaning
was enduring
yet clumsy
 with an awkward flair

I chewed up all my questions
with my mouth wide open
and crumbs wild in my hair.

Yet somewhere between
life's wonderful lunches
 and disappointment's feast

I lost my unkept hunger
and grew fat on complacency
learning to be discreet.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Heart of Hercules

Summer Night, 1913, by Albert Bloch

"There is no ghost so difficult to lay as the ghost of an injury."
~Alexander Smith

My heart is a collector
 of many burdensome heirlooms
 too heavy to truly hold
each loss is like a boulder
every hurt is asphalt
that could cover a boulevard
and scrape a thousand knees
I carry them all mightily
with the strength of hercules
the burdens of a thousand grievances
weigh down like titanic in the sea
and all the ghosts of abandoned longings
are still waiting to be freed
for all the force one endures
 to hold them internally
is frail compared to the might
it takes to give them liberty.

Also linking with lovely Emily at Imperfect Prose

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Dear Sir

"There must be millions of people all over the world who never get any love letters... I could be their leader. " ~Charlie Brown

Linking with Poetry Jam

The art of writing a letter
surely is a dying craft.
Who needs a pen and paper
when a computer is in your lap.
E-mails have replaced our need of stamps
and facebook the envelopes.
Now the mail man only delivers bills
and stationary companies are going broke.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Light Weight Like Paper Heavy Like Words

Big Room, 1948, by Andrew Wyeth

"There's a certain slant of light,
On winter afternoons,
That oppresses, like the weight
Of cathedral tunes." 
~Emily Dickinson

Some memories pierce through my mind
 like winter's morning light
 through a window pane
 moves through a big room
then like weary guests
 from a long journey
 others sit at my table
with the weight of old regrets  
together we relive the past
walk the halls
of torn down houses
remembering the laughter
trying to forget the loss.

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Some people embrace love with the fervor of a missionary
holding it close like a book of scriptures to the heart
while others just cup it softly and awkward like a nestling
that has somehow fallen from where it once was
the love I hold has wandered through both paths
like a lost fawn searching for comfort in the dark
once my heart found it
I grasped hold with the strength of a thousand men
never wanting to let go
yet too weak to try
now I tenderly keep it within my palm
knowing it is too fragile
to withstand another fall.

Linking with Imaginary Gardens With Real Toads Fireblossom Friday #10
....and yes I am late very late as usual. :-)

Tuesday, July 31, 2012


image by Zelko Nedic

"All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on." ~Havelock Ellis

We hold on to life
like a leash on a prized black lab
not wanting to lose a grip
on what we have and do not have
so we precede in our places 
pulling tighter as we move fast
trying to train the future
to be better than the past
we want to breed a champion
a great legacy to be viewed
yet the harder we hold on
the more freedom we do lose
for the handler of the show
and the true holder of the leash
is gracefully trying to guide us
if we will follow where He leads.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Writer's Block

artwork by Jack Vettriano

"Ink and paper are sometimes passionate lovers, oftentimes brother and sister, and occasionally mortal enemies."  ~Terri Guillemets

I hope for a muse like a lady in waiting
peering through sheer curtains
at a world that seems so far away
words that once lingered with me
like a lover in love
now are nowhere
to be seen
I wait in silence
looking to the distance
hoping for a grand return
but I will not give up
true love never does.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Beautiful Free Bird

"He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has."  ~Epictetus

Linking with lovely Emily at Imperfect Prose.

Life with all its struggles and frustrations has a way of weighing us down, like mud from a landslide knocking us to the ground motionless in a stagnant place.  Then it becomes difficult to see ahead or even move forward from there.  I have found myself wallowing in this condition more times than I care to admit.

A while back I was there once again, stuck in a mound of self pity, facing another situation uncertain what direction to go next.  As I wondered why life always seems to be so hard, out of the blue something amazing happened.

Being an avid blogger, I occasionally receive random e-mails from people that I do not know.  Usually, commenting on my blog, or asking questions, but on this day it was something different.  I opened an e-mail from a young lady with a story that could move any heart from complacency to inspiration.

Her name is Rubi, and during her junior year in High School, she was in a devastating car accident.  The vehicle she was riding in hit a guardrail, flipped 3 times, and she was ejected out the window.  Both her back and shoulders were fractured, and her neck broken.  Now she is paralyzed from the chest down.  Her trunk control is very weak, and using her hands is difficult.  She can barely make a fist.  All the things that we do and take for granted everyday are a struggle for Rubi, yet like a beautiful free bird that always sees the horizon, she never looses site of hope.  She has been improving with therapy, but it is her artistic jewelry making that has strengthened her hands and her beautiful heart. 
She creates a lovely array of leather beaded wrap bracelets, and they are amazing.  Making the jewelry is a wonderful outlet for her to express herself.  You can take a look at her Etsy site for yourself.  You will not be dissapointed, I know I was not. 

Yes, life with all its struggles and hardships can weigh us down, like a heavy shroud we can barely see through, yet there are glimmers of inspiration that can penetrate the barriers that we undertake in our lives.  People like Rubi whose life is a message of inspiration and hope, like a carrier pigeon in flight.  I hear her beautiful message loud and clear, and I want to share it with the world.  We can choose to be defeated in our adversity or we can rise above it and defy the odds and statistics of this world.  We all have problems to deal with in our daily lives, some are more massive than others, yes, but we also each have hope that can carry us through.  Just ask Rubi, she knows this hope and holds it close with all the strength in her heart.

Meet Rubi and her beloved dog Koco.

These are my favorites!

Rubi site is called Beautiful Free Bird.