Showing posts from November, 2011

Yoga & Love: Why I Practice Yoga!

Recently, I posted the following on Writers on the Move as my workout "status" for the day:

Yoga felt really great this morning!! Really great!! My focus was on target, and I even felt some negativity I didn't even know I was holding inside drain away.... And I thought I'd already dealt with those hurt feelings!! Wow!!
I really didn't think much about it until Jackie Dishner, one of the other membersof the group, commented:

I've not experienced that kind of power yet. But I'd like to.
I responded:

You will, Jackie! This isn't my first experience with it. My first experience with it is kind of hard to put into words. It was incredibly powerful and changed my life or at least my perspective on life because it changed the way I viewed myself and also those around me. BUT, and this is important, it can't be forced. That power comes when you need it and you're ready for it and not a minute before. Just be patient with yourself and with your yoga practi…

Gratitude & Thanksgiving

It's that time of year when people's thoughts turn to gratitude or as many are currently putting it thankfulness. It's nice that Thanksgiving gives people a reason, or perhaps an excuse, to turn their thoughts to gratitude. I find myself wondering why it takes a holiday to get people to appreciate the good things in their lives, but I wonder this every year. I still haven't found a satisfactory answer.

At the beginning of 2011, well technically the end of 2010, I decided to spend a whole year focused on gratitude. I've blogged about this a couple of times before, but it feels like it's time to say a few words about it again. Maybe because Thanksgiving is today, and I'm having a harder time feeling thankful than I have all year. I know why and a part of me feels like it's completely understandable, but I don't like feeling like this. I prefer my state of gratitude. I really do.

This year has had some strange ups and downs. My life has encountered som…

Albany Citizens Police Academy - Final Thoughts

I signed up for the Albany Citizens Police Academy to enhance the crime scenes and the investigations in my novels. I realized even before class started that the purpose of the class was to build better relations between the community and the police department, so I knew my needs wouldn't be the focus of the academy. I resigned myself to this and decided to garner what I could from the class because every insight, every new bit of knowledge helps, every observation can lead to something.

When I started the class, I also hoped to make a new friend or two. But then again, I go into every situation hoping to make a new friend or two. I'm of the mindset that one can never have enough friends. Well, I can say I made a few acquaintances, so it's a start!

As a writer, I also hoped to make some contacts within the department. That I'm fairly sure I accomplished. I have business cards of several members of the department, and Chief Boyd sought me out after my talk on the last n…

Albany Citizens Police Academy - Graduation!

The Albany Citizens Police Academy graduation took place last night.

The evening started with dinner catered by Izzy's Pizza. Mayor Sharon Konopa sat at the table where I was sitting while we ate. She chatted everyone at the table easily.

After dinner, Chief Boyd spoke briefly about the importance of the Albany Citizens Police Academy and its role in bridging the gap between the community and the department thanking the class for participating in the Academy. Lieutentant Casey Dorland then spoke briefly about how much the department appreciates those who participate in the class. Mayor Konopa spoke for a few minutes about how valued the police department is and the importance of the Citizens Academy. She encouraged class participants to spread what we learned from participating in the class.

Then it was my turn to speak. I'd spent some time reviewing the blogs I've written over the duration of the Albany Citizens Police Academy and making some notes. As I sat there, notes…

Love in Silhouette: Poems is Now Available on

Love in Silhouette: Poems is now available on in paperback. Kindle version coming soon!
Read, enjoy, review!!

Love. We long for it. We feel the sting of love’s loss. We give love in hopes of receiving love. We withhold love out of fear it won’t be returned. Love connects us. Love disappoints us. Love distinguishes us. Love extinguishes us. Love abandons us. Love disappoints us. Love creates expectations. Love fulfills lives. Love is always a risk worth exploring even when it fails. Love is poetry… Poetry is love… Love becomes a silhouette.

Lessons in Memories of War Now Available

New poem, Lessons in Memories of War, now available for your reading pleasure. This poem is based on an inteview I did with my Grandpa Stamm for my American History Class in high school.

Standing in the Moment

We stand in this moment. Then we'll stand in the next moment. Then the next. Then... Well, you get picture.

As we stand in each moment we choose how to act and how to react. We can stand in love. We can stand in anger. We can stand in resentment. We can stand in sadness. We can stand in happiness. We can stand in disappointment. We can stand in satisfaction. We can stand in ectasy. We can stand in gratitude. We can stand in isolation. We can stand in togetherness. We can stand in openness. We can stand in closedoff-ness.

Often it feels like we don't have a choice of what we stand in due to outside circumstances. The words someone says to us hurt our feelings. Someone's attitude towards us cuts deeply. Someone denies us something to which we feel entitled. Someone makes us do something we don't want to do. (Yeah, yeah, we all say no one can make us do anything we don't want to do, but if that was true there would be no victims in this world. There would also likely …

Albany Citizens Police Academy - Week 10 - Computer Forensics and Narcotics

As per usual, class started with a few words from Community Education Specialist, Carmen Westfall. She asked for volunteers to speak at next week's graduation. I felt my hand go up before I even realized it, so I guess I'm speaking at graduation.  Oh, boy, maybe I can use these blogs to pull together something interesting... Oh, well, at least I enjoy public speaking.

Then we posed for the class picture... Okay, think high schoool, the whole class stands together in a group and snap, snap, snap. Now there's a pictire of you with a bunch of people you may never see again, some of whom you likely won't remember, truth be told. Only in this instance, there are some people in the class I've not exchanged more than two words with. And, yet, we've spent our Tuesday evenings together and two Saturdays together over the past ten weeks. Oh, well! Apparently, we each get a copy, so I'll share once I've got it in my possession!

Next, Detective Dawn Hietala explain…

The "Proofs" of Love in Silhouette

Last week, I shared the cover of Love in Silhouette with you. This week, the proof! Two typos have delayed the release date I'd hoped for! It should still be available for your reading pleasure by the end of next week! In the meantime, here are photos of the proof - both the front and back cover!!


Albany Citizens Police Academy - Week 9 - Detectives and Major Cases

I was late for class tonight, so I missed the information/introduction. Oh, well, sometimes life works that way...

Captain Eric Carter (remember him from way back - our first class) talked about the detectives unit including who the detectives are, the structure of the department, and the role detectives play in the Albany Police Department. Detectives in the Albany Policy Department work on a rotation. They apply for 2, 4, or 6 year terms. At the end of the term, they return to patrol duty. Patrol officers and Detectives are lateral on the heirarchy at the Albany Police Department. Many patrol officers have or will have detective experience, so they are equipped to handle cases. The small size of the Albany Police Department dictates that all police officers be able to help out on major cases.

Captain Carter also talked about evidence collection. He explained that it's important to have a wide perimeter around the crime scene to make sure all the evidence is uncontaminated. Every…

Your Feelings and Mine Hold Equal Importance, Really They Do

Today I read a statement that stopped me cold - just an innocuous little statement in the middle of several others. Johanna Garth is doing something she calls The Fulfillment Project to make her already good life a little better or something to that effect. Today, on her blog, Losing Sanity, she's talking about a reward system of marbles she set up for her children. She lists a few of the things for which they can earn marbles. One of those things is what made me pause and think. She included "put someone else's feelings before your own" as a behavior that earns a marble. In theory, I don't disagree, but alarm bells started going off in my head. When we teach children to put others feelings before their own, we have to be careful to not teach them that their feelings aren't important.

It's one thing to value someone else's feelings, but it should never come at the expense of one's own feelings. I learned this the hard way. In many ways, as a lot w…