Questions Without Answers


Dear Reality Check,

Trying to be mindful and remember that when we question ourself it is because something needs to be set straight in our mind, heart & our soul.  Yet 10 months and I am still questioning and wishing I knew why.

Uncertainty can be ambiguous

Certainty can be clarification

But what about today when there is no answer?

What about now?

I just wish I knew.

i can't tell if it's“>http://

Music is….

Music is…..


Music is possibly a part of the air I breath. (without it my spirit withers and the rhythm of my heart stalls.)
It is without question such an integral part of who I am that if and when it’s not present in my life a significant part of who I am is missing. My relationship with music is as telling as is my relationship with my faith. As much as I know there is a force far more powerful than anything I am or that I understand, I also know the sonic impact music has on my spirit and my human physiologically. 
I now know today after having experienced a time when music was missing from my life that without music I had no idea where to let my feelings rest, I had no backdrop for deciphering them.
 (Allow me to say that for me music is not just a therapy, but without its cathartic benefits I would be a certain broken hot mess.)
Today I am more aware of this. Today I own it.
Today I am giving music the respect of an honorable place in my life  that it always should have held. It is not a dramatic statement when I write there was a time when I was so numb music was the only thing that could break through and touch something meaningful inside me. There were times when certain songs were the only things that could cut me enough to make me bleed… feelings.
There came a times when music was my lifeline, music is was what kept me from becoming the island alone I often felt myself drifting towards. 
And yet….
Once upon a time I gave up nearly all music in my life for someone else’s comfort, never understanding at the time I was putting my own emotional and spiritual well-being at jeopardy. Today I take two significant things away in hindsight; my relationship with music, and my relationship with people. 
It became painfully obvious to me to have to admit that my sans music period was ME willingly letting go of something that touches me more deeply than anything else. That something though I apparently didn’t value enough. Not then. 
It was not stolen away from me, I gave it up. I gave it up little by little, over time, trying to minimize someone else’s discomfort. Never understanding that it wasn’t even ever about simple discomfort, but instead it was about an ever growing resentment. A resentment over music being the only thing that touches particular feelings inside me.
Quietly and covertly that became seen and felt as a threat. 
As a young child who loved music I had the good fortune of belonging to a family who made music part of daily life. In some way, some form, music was the soundtrack to growing up in my family. Singing with my family and friends was my first stage and my first audience. I loved the Saturday Night Jams, which seemed like every weekend. I was young, maybe four, so how trustworthy my memory is for accuracy will be made up for in sentimentality. As a child I never knew anything different than understanding that making music was important as the listening to music is. I may not have understood beyond the surface why this is, but as much as I trusted a measurement of time I also trusted this to be true. 
Figuratively and literally, (my play on words are intentional) when music and it’s time signatures are missing from my life I lose place of myself. I catch myself smiling at the associations that make so much sense today. I didn’t know for the longest time that for me there is a deeper value to every note played out in my life. 
First years of knowing the score, then long empty years when I began to shift the importance of everything that I had learned. I’d stopped honoring the significance of lyrics and instrumentation and I began to lose a major part of myself. I had let music in any format cease to be part of my life. I had adopted an attitude that if I couldn’t participate in music like I always had, and how I wanted to, I just wouldn’t.
“That’ll show them!” 
 Little by little the major discord from participating in music came to be my truth and my resolution was that it wasn’t worth the waves it caused.
Except….music is powerfully ever reaching.
 In the final analysis, there was NOT a single thing that this resolved. Not for anyone. 
Amazingly though music’s powerful reach touched me again and again. It kept touching the vulnerable parts of who I am, Ironically for me it was a beautiful Cello solo suite with a deep mourning being played across the strings that suddenly woke me up very early one morning. I recognized my personal association with the empty shadows that the cello was filling. Piano chords picked up gently the melody the cello was weeping softly, and my soul finally understood. 
I had been foolish. 
Life and it’s uncertainties that surround us can be a tough nut to crack. Feelings are often the toughest nuts with some of the hardest shells to crack. Finding the right tools for the right job my dad always said was a sign of a true craftsman. Consequently I do believe in finding the right tools to navigate life and to crack the nuts it drops at my feet, 

Music is…….  a tool, a therapy, a study, a science, a philosophy, and a practice. I dare say even it’s a prescription.  

 I trust losing myself in the rhythm and cadence of music will dim the significance of anything else and let me find my way to be honestly in touch with my emotions.
Experience has taught me that music is how I first let go, give myself emotional space, and then find a way to come back to navigate life’s stresses and problems.
Yes, admittedly letting go maybe only for a few moments, but those few minutes of music are a form of therapy that I can repeat as often as needed. Those few minutes, or even hours, escaping into music gives me the emotional space between action and reaction that serves me well. 
But it’s only been in recent years have I recognized that it was music that was the missing element, it was music that was the void I couldn’t fill any other way.
Music had been an important part of my life. I should have known it made perfect sense as I grew older that music should remain a significant part of my life. Music is a significant form of communication for me and letting go of music was in effect me no longer communicating. 
As a child at first singing was something that I did because I was heard. I knew it pleased my parents and won the approval of the family & friends.
As I grew older I recognized too that I loved to sing because it made me feel comfortable in my skin, and more at peace. (though at that age those were not words I had to express my meaning.)
 As time passed and I went into the tumultuous teens songs that spoke to me became my way of dealing with life’s joy and pain, with life’s problems and emotions. 
 Music, whether listening to or singing was a therapy for me.
  I love the way I feel when I am listening to, or singing a favorite tune. I love the way my imagination moves easily from one visual to another. I depend especially on the way the tempos fill my mind and move through my spirit until I am only feeling only the music.
It’s a healthy kind of time-out that I allow myself to simply feel whatever emotion the music is expressing in a visceral, but objective way. In that objective way I can let go of my own emotions, making it possible to feel only the expression of the music, it leaves an emotional space that’s both liberating and cathartic. 
Once I let myself fall into the rhythm of music I quickly feel a closer connection with the independent me, my strong self, the mysterious and even childish me. 
Music gives way to my imagination and how I wish to see myself, the way I want to be. 
Music is what gives me the freedom to be whoever I want to be, to say whatever I want to say, and to go wherever I want to go. 
Music is how I deal with what’s so painful on it’s too raw it’s difficult to cope. 
Music softens the worries of my everyday life. 
Music gives me the emotional space to fosters a deep analysis of the day. Good or bad. 
Music tugs at my heartstrings when I miss someone. Music fills my heart.
Music fills voids and heals wounds
Prescription 101- 
Tune out the world. Turn on the music. Turn it up loud, 
Lose myself in the music until my mood becomes adjusted accordingly. 
Repeat as necessary. 
Music will always remain my personal therapy. At this point in my life I am adamant that I will never relinquish it again. Should I feel it being threatened in any fashion an alarm will signal  (possibly a Cow Bell) and this time I will listen. This time I won’t let music go. Kowing this time that for me to expect to remain emotionally and spiritually whole music is part of the air I am required to breathe. 

Music is……. 

Image result for music is my therapy

King King is my current #1 form of escape ~“>

Getting Out Alive When You Absorb ~

empath body

Getting out alive when it comes to the impact that others can have when you’re an ‘absorbent person’ isn’t easy.

Learning to live amongst the chaos that an Empath is surrounded by takes practice. It’s not a done deal as long as your heart is kept isolated to trying again, I know, I tried. Going through the emotions of getting caught out I have had so many questions. If I let others in my world and give in to the power of another’s pain/mood impacting mine can I hold on to all the serenity I have created for myself?  Why the hell do I feel the need to let my self absorb like this? Nothing should shatter my resolve to live with a simple balance, yet for instance when I allow my feet to walk in soneone else’s discontent my balance is tipped.


“They” call it being an “Empath”.

An Empath is born, not created, it’s a genetic trait, inherent in our DNA, and often is passed from generation to generation, meaning it’s not a thing we can learn how to be, either you are, or you are not. It’s also not some pagan belief, despite some that claim that it’s “the work of the devil” which I find absurd.

Exactly what Empath means:.

According to the dictionary Empathy  is described as one’s ability to recognize, perceive, and feel directly the emotions of another. The word itself, is derived from the Greek words “empatheia” meaning “passion” and “pathein” meaning to experience or suffer.

All of us have empathy, to a degree, it’s part of the human make up. Most of us  “understand” how another feels, but to be an Empath, is quite another matter. For the natural born Empath understands holistically because they cannot help but feel those feelings, as if they were our own. It goes far deeper than just relating to another’s feelings, as it goes into the realm of literal physiological, instinctual and visceral sharing of those emotions. Empathy… it’s not (as is commonly believed) the same as sympathy. Sympathy is how we react to someone who is suffering. We feel sorry they are suffering, which is our own emotional state. An Empath instead  is someone who finds themselves standing in the others shoes and feels their joy, and their pain. My experience; literally,

But what makes it even more difficult than what we feel is to still not understand why. Absorbing isn’t an option, creating boundaries is, and I am learning finally that is the only effective way to live empathetically without getting caught. To try to completely disconnect from the flow of empathic energies is having to completely isolate, a consequence of which numbs down all aspects of my life. I wasn’t sure though if this was going to be something I was willing to give up. That would mean isolating my heart and soul, and as a chronic empathetic person I don’t think that is a viable choice. Yet 24 years later of this awareness there’s still no clearer understanding.

Having done the work to get to a place of serenity while still being absorbent fooled me. That I was in a mindset that I was in full control of my feelings was misleading. Neither could have been any farther from my truth. I am surprised by what it is that can knock me off balance. I realized that simply trying to deny what my heart and soul was screaming wasn’t working either.

Unspoken feelings are no less feelings, nor no less true.

Around our physical body there is a layer of energy, it’s electric, it’s often referred to as an “aura”  If this a new way of thinking for you perhaps think of it as your Aura being devoted to your interface with your environment. Our aura’s shape and condition what is indicative of our relationship to our world.

People who are Empaths  are often thought of as having a “thin skin” in relation to absorbing their world. Creating boundaries, or a “thick skin”  to help insulate our spirits is crucial, yet holes will still develop, no matter how vigilant we are. Empaths are more easily influenced by the environment.

I am an Empath with many years to my credit banked, and finding ways to navigate the onslaught of emotions that flood my spirit has been one of the longest studies of my life. My spirit and heart had to discover the need to create a visual of an ‘energy shield ‘around my physical body as my saving grace. I use imagery to see it as radiant and a complete me, I even see different emotions as different colors now.

Once boundaries are drawn, “energy armor in place, I again use imagery to see there is a spark in the center of my being that is the pure essence of my spirit. With my attention focused on that  spark I become keenly aware of the sensations and emotions that continuously flood my spirit, my thoughts bring me far more clarity. I first tried this practice when alone, and then, after a time I began to practice it around others. Soon my hope is that I will be adept at switching my awareness from my environment to myself, and back again, all the while noticing the difference between the two.

  • Don’t Take On Responsibilities That Aren’t Yours-

I need to be reminded. As an Empath I learned that I was used to care taking, even to the point at one time that I felt as though I was supposed to do it.  I am not. You are not.

My agenda became finding a balance between being as compassionate as possible without going beyond the limits of what I need to do to maintain my health, serenity, and my sanity. That balance meant understanding that I am  responsible up to that line, and not beyond it.

As Empaths we are often seen outwardly as kind and caring, we are often misunderstood. We typically have the benefit of everyone thinking that we are almost saintly.  but it’s not a comfortable thing to get attached to being the “nice guy.

” However, and it is a big however, it is not easy dealing with people’s negative emotions and reactions, but know that the caretaking of others will not in the end serve you, or even serve them for that matter. It doesn’t even help to protect them from their feelings, instead it will keep them from growing. People who had became accustomed to your caretaking may get angry or sad at you, or with you, when you don’t do what they want you to do, or that they expect. It is important to remember that their feelings are not your feelings, and your well-being is not dependent on their well being. Stay mindful of your own reality.

As a fellow Empath expressed my sentiments perfectly- *Nick said;  “As empaths, we can’t cut ourselves off of ALL emotion from others. We need it. I had my empathy go away temporarily a few months back and it HURT. It was like talking to a brick wall whenever I would talk to someone.”

As I continue to move forward in my life I close my eyes. I imagine myself being covered by a pink bubble of light, because pink is the color of love. With my mind I make the bubble flexible enough that it won’t be shattered when things hit it, and  I imagine it thick enough to be resilient. I make it solid first, and then let it develop very small holes in it, so that I’m able to  absorb what I do need.

Taking a deep cleansing breath,  I realize immediately that I’m going to be Okay.



Moving On Without Regret


Moving On ~ Without Regrets

By Tj Taylor  2015

Without regrets.

When you’re living in the midst of destruction.

When you’re living broken.

When you’re an island.


Ongoing questions – the ambiguity.

Roller coaster of decisions – the ambivalence.

Decided convictions – the animosity.


Is there a more perfect time to build resentments and regrets?

When do I acknowledge the cracks in the foundation will just continue to break?

With fewer resentments…can there be less lasting regrets?

Perhaps disengaging when blame is such a part of the game and is so alluring could make it a possibility to split with less collateral damage.

“Be Switzerland”  suggests my dear friend Rebecca. I loved those two words.

Time’s passed.

I moved on…..

Approaching the milestone of the three-year mark of when I first began to close the book on the longest chapter of my life to date, the demise of  my marriage – one that had been my life since the age of 16.

What a long strange trip it’s been.

I understood that the emotions and reactions would be happening while in a high state of ambiguity. I had tried to remain mindful that feelings were/are temporary, that given time feelings would change.

For the first time in my life I was being brutally honest and true to myself.
Yet I had failed to acknowledge that getting through one of the most life-changing events with little to no regret was unrealistic – especially when stress was insurmountable and emotions were running rampant….swinging from high… to low.

A roller coaster of emotions that would leave me day in, day out, vacillating. Definitely not a state of mind to be in when animosity is your best friend.

Admittedly I was constantly fighting the temptation to communicate with vengeance to the ‘insignificant other’;

“Well Mister, you done lost your good thing now….that way that I use to love you?….it’s how I’m going to hate you now.”
Although the words might have felt momentarily good when initially expressed, they’d do little to support getting out alive. Getting out with little to no regret.

Animosity was the hangover from all the destruction. The white knuckling experienced while deciding to separate is unlike anything else it can be compared to. For me, 42 years, it was a lifetime. Being confused, overwhelmed by untruths, facing truths, feeling fears, pain, grief… and that knowing that desperate feeling of failure.

Regret soon knocked on the door. Reminding myself again and again that it was all just feelings, I tried to stay mindful that these feelings too would pass in time.

Slowly…. they began to ease up from my shoulders.

Heavy feelings easing up,  a weight I recognized. this time. I say this time because it was the very same weight that I had ignored before; ignored it by remaining in denial that something had long gone wrong.

There were ambivalent days and nights; days that turned into the long nights spent vacillating between “leave” and “stay”.
Then finally…..Something just clicked.

Finally, I had gotten beyond the sick reasoning with myself. No longer was I telling myself that even though I was miserable I was at least financially comfortable and secure. Trying to convince myself that should be enough.

My crossroad.

Then…. Finally….A long time it took to get me to finally, but finally was here. Or I was there.

I admitted to myself finally that I could no longer endure what had become an unhappy, unsettling personal relationship disguised by a legal matrimonial contract.

I had been lying to myself…for a very long time. I had been lying to my spouse even longer.

I don’t even know when I began lying to family and friends, I was ashamed to admit that my life wasn’t what it seemed to be to the outside world, I was convinced by what my emotional and my spiritual intelligence knew to be true, but I was diametrically confused by what my heart didn’t trust…it couldn’t trust.

Telling myself lies, reasoning, justifying, qualifying… I should stay for financial sake, for the kids sake, even for his sake. Yet,  how I could forsake myself?

Bargaining with myself… because… well….because I was frightened. I didn’t know any of the answers to even one of my questions. I doubted myself. I was afraid to stay. I was afraid to leap, I knew not where I’d land.
How I wish I’d known then was what hindsight has brought me today. Then… with my self-esteem shattered, and looking for validation…I just wish I had known.

It wasn’t easy; the deciding to split up.  The “moving on” wasn’t any easier,

But I couldn’t deny any longer that if I didn’t move on I was soon to become just another miserable casualty with a broken down soul.When you live day in, day out, with someone who to save their life cannot have a positive outlook on a cup of sugar it can become highly contagious.  Knowing and applying that I had no control over my spouse’s behavior were entirely two different things though. When you have lived with broken for so long that some things become a norm it becomes difficult to apply the knowledge. I wish I had know sooner that they should not be anyone’s norm.

The behaviors and actions I dealt with didn’t involve serious offenses, no threatening harm, no cleaning out savings account, no racking up debt on a joint credit card. (If yours does absolutely take proactive action.)

My experiences were annoyances that didn’t endanger me, but they sure angered me. Not being mindful that my spouse was trying to make my life as miserable as he possibly could would only cost me, resulting in a long, drawn-out, expensive, soul-sucking divorce—If I let it.

Instead, whatever the issue or event I vigilantly tried to see it as simply as I could. Leaving emotion out of the equation. Relying on logic as much as I could muster from my NOT logical based nature. It became crucial that although I couldn’t control his behavior that I could choose how I reacted. My choice to take the high road despite how someone else acts is entirely up to me.

Like most things during the split, the actions of splitting is easier said than done.

Even before physically leaving the marital home I had made a definitive decision that I had to move on with my life, separately. Emotionally I had already started to move on even before I “split.”

I had even started to heal.

I began connecting with others who had walked a similar path. Reading that last sentence still fills me with an immense sense of relief that others were navigating moving on as well. Almost everyone who shared did so with similar thoughts and feelings regarding splitting from a significant relationship. I can’t say how many times I heard ” If only I had known sooner what I know now.”

Though I would prefer not to, I must admit that there were times of despair, even some self-pity. The “my life was not supposed to be like this”  and  the ” I feel ashamed of failing.” were all part of it..…..I wish I’d known then that this is all part of the grieving process, that learning how to balance it all is also part of the process.

Accepting that my circumstances changed, learning how to navigate those changes, learning how to heal, and how to move on; they were all hard lessons for me. I did however learn rather quickly that I am not a prisoner to those circumstances, and that I have the power to come out of this life chapter stronger, and whole.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing for looking forward.

In hindsight I see there were a few things that should have stood right out from the beginning, but for me I had to almost be hit over the head. Some of those things are what I wish I had known sooner.

First and foremost I would make a conscientious choice not to perpetuate the false “I am Fine” statements to myself, and to those closest who honestly cared to ask how I was doing. I wish I’d seen immediately the need for, and the validity in a support system with good friends who are able listen while being non-judgmental. They are priceless.
Two notable objectives I also wish I had known to attain immediately.

1.To create a safe place to vent.

  1. Help find constructive and healthy ways to navigate through a separation and/or divorce.

To recognize the need to resist any temptation for making decisions based on emotion. Instead basing decisions on logic would better serve for making constructive choices. Having an understanding that separation/divorce is a business transaction-splitting years of material things and income would be of great help. The logical side of me understands this, yet my emotional side that feels; could easily inspire months of right-fighting over things that have nothing to do with business at all.

During the legal process I would force myself to choose my battles wisely, choosing to serve my well-being wasn’t something I had much experience with.

To say that once the decision was made that I just simply moved on would not be accurate. Though it was my choice to end the relationship there were days I felt like I was emotionally getting sprayed and tossed about by an industrial fire hose. I felt the emotional beat down.

The number of “to-do’s” – “should-do’s” – “have-to’s” regarding emotions, finances, legal issues, and the logistics of living came with varying urgency, and with varying importance. There were days and nights I was absolutely overwhelmed and felt paralyzed by my emotions and fears. I now understand splitting-up is a process, and as with any process there are things that need to be dealt with as they happen. Things that need to be addressed immediately: income, lodging, safety. Things to be addressed later: legal issues, finding an emotional support system. And things that would be addressed long-term: a legal separation agreement and divorce.

With the benefit of hindsight I would try to remain mindful that a divorce is like a marathon and it requires patience and persistence. I’d  recognize that there is some brilliance in accepting that not everything has to be done right now. That one thought alone might have saved me some stress.

Three years… and I am still healing,

I am grateful that I had the foresight to not attach myself to anyone in those three years, to know to not fill in what was different, simply because I had confused being alone as a void. I appreciate today that my foresight included knowing that to attach myself to anything, or to anyone might have distracted me from any real chance to heal, and to become whole.

I recognized early on that I needed to learn when to fight for the things that are rightfully mine, but I also learned how important it is to know when to let other things go. Yet I still had to learn that nobody wins in a divorce.

After all was said and done I couldn’t reconcile with finding myself robbed of years of a new life just because of right-fighting in court. It made no sense to spend more dollars on legal fees that could instead be better put to use in post-divorce lives.

Finally, I could see that I had a choice to look at this split as a trauma from which I would not get over. I could choose to be guided by the anger and fears.

Or I could move on without regret.

Finally, after some difficult consequences I could see the common sense instead in choosing the path of discovery of self-worth. I would ask for help when needed. I would choose to educate myself, to find whatever the support was needed for any given circumstance. Acknowledging that admitting to a need for help is an awe-inspiring strength.

I began finally to understand that I had the power to get through it all. I finally understood that I was not alone in these struggles, never had been. That whatever I might need was possible. Always was.

I had come this far; I owed it to myself to NOT allow any of what I felt in these moments as discomfort to make me bitter, nor will I allow it to drive me into isolating and insulating my heart.

I made those choices too.

I moved on.




Reminder ~ Another Time

Spring of 2013 I wrote an open letter to someone very important in my life, it was an open letter because at the time it was the only way I could communicate. The person that I am addressing sent me a copy of the same letter today, over two years later. In respect for privacy I will refer to this person as my friend.

It’s important to me that I share again and add yet another update. Thank you for indulging a more personal share from me than is my typical style.  ~ BB
*Please see the included 2015 update in the footnote.

March 17, 2013

My Dear Loved One;

Please forgive this open letter, I did not know how else to reach you, and although this is a selfish act on my part I do hope and pray that just my few words and the song I include speaks to your spirit that I know is still searching.

My hope is you will understand that this which you are going through will all be worth the pain and the struggle someday when you look back. I pray that you will come out the other side someone you like enough to know you deserve to be loved in a healthy, loving, and kind way. Though I am unable to be there for you for what ever reasons, your choice, or mine, please know that I am trusting there is a great chance you will read this.

As the song will tell you;  it’s Time To Go Inward.”>

I am not denying the incredible hard work on your part it is going to take. If you do, although a journey, I think you are going to like the you that you are going to find there. I hope & pray you have the nerve.

Our healing, yours and mine will begin once you are well.

This song I believe will speak to your heart in ways I cannot because of who I am to you. That is why we process and assimilate through music, is it not? My tone may sound reserved, it is. I do not trust my emotion here and it certainly is not the platform for it anyway.

For tonight, for today, let it be enough that you know I love you, that this will never change. It could not. Know that you are in my prayers and my positive thoughts continuously. You know how much faith I have in this belief.

I have just as much faith in you.

(Added March 29, 2013)

To you My Loved One: you reaching out tells me the one thing I needed to know now from you, That you are in a better place today than you have been in a very long time. Today is all that matters for now. It may be all that ever matters. You have always my unconditional love always, sometimes that means having to love from a far. But it never diminishes the love held. Thank you for doing what you are doing. This too shall pass, and things will once again shine more brilliantly for you than you ever thought would happen again. Trust me.. but more importantly trust something more powerful than either of us.
I love you. I am so proud of you.
~ Your personal cheering squad

*Footnote July 1, 2015

These past two years my friend has been working extremely hard at excavating her life and soul with tremendous passion and commitment to honesty.
She has worked with great finesse and a beautiful grace to make real amends to those who matter in her life, and to gain back the respect and trust in her life she had at one point given up on.
It makes me proud when I see her walking the talk, working back in her chosen and trained profession, something that she always saw as a passionate challenge, she is once again embracing that.

This friend, she sent me this reminder of where both she and I were two years ago as a significant point to where we both are today.
That is one point I wanted to make.
The other two points for this updated repost are, One to say how incredibly proud of my friend I am- she is my hero….
….and two; to share with anyone who might be struggling with anything that they may think is or could be their “undoing.”
My friend is a shining example of what getting brutally honest with yourself, with those who matter, and doing the massive self evaluating of that “undoing” can help to change things. Know that the “undoing” need not be your forever.



Took A Leap



Feeling quite pleased with myself I am.

Yep, I’m writing a very self-serving post tonight to brag a bit that I accomplished a 3rd NANOWRIMO challenge with NANO April 2015 Camp.

With a committed word count goal of 30,000 in the month of April to write a short story, it happened I am delighted to say. Especially since I’d had no intention of participating, let alone did I have even a project in mind…. until what was almost the 13th hour.

I took a leap into a month of Creative Lunacy.

Although I have written most of all my life, writing a short romance story was something I’d never done as an adult. There were many as a teenager I remember, but once married and raising a family my writing took a complete different direction.

This NANO experience was completely different from jump street. My other two had a game plan at least a few weeks before beginning since the prior two projects had been brewing for some time in my mind. I also am doing a weekly radio show that I wasn’t committed to the other two times. I’d decided right away that I would publish the short story as web-fiction, building its own web site and post in a series of chapters.

This time…. was so different.

Almost out of the blue this story came to me.

I listen to a lot of music, and I write by having music in the background. I have had music inspire me for many…many years, but I had never had music inspire a story.  It just so happens that is what happened with Mesmerized. I heard an original track of music from a friend, an instrumental. I was inspired by a question asked,  What visuals did the music create? The first two paragraphs of the story were born within 5 minutes in answer. I then a few days later decided to run with those two paragraphs and a premise.

quote_image_maybe some women

It’s completely fiction although based on a belief that I think many women can personally associate with. It was a fun story to write, to flesh out. I had the greatest time being the director of my character’s lives. It’s one of the wonderful joys I find in writing fiction, and as I get older there is even more delight in being able to live vicariously through the characters and events I design.

Through fiction a writer can freely say out loud what they might not feel comfortable saying openly.

Always thankful for the alter ego of my stories. I learn a lot about life through writing, and I learn a lot about myself. The past month was no different. Some of those lessons came to the writer within, some came to the woman within.

Bravery in words is a wondrous magical thing.



Dear Words


Dear Words,

Hello my Lover. You have always been the one for me.

You remain the one I can bare my soul too.  Without you my spirit would be a hollow shell of who I am.

Words, you have a way about you that I take great solace in.

Beautiful Words, with you I find the answers to the questions that keep me on a quest as I wander through this life.  My love affair with you has never left me feeling betrayed or abandoned. You are there when the sun rises, and when the sun sets.

Dear Words, together we have seen pain, we have seen peace. With you I can shed my armor and scream out loud, with you I find meaning in what otherwise leaves me baffled.  You give me the illusion of control when I write, giving me a place to rest my vivid and often wicked imagination.

Dear Words, we make a great team, we have a unique love story that is ours for eternity. Writing can feel like an isolating, individual act—yet with you, my computer or pad of paper it really is a social way for me to respond to people and the world around me.

Dear Words, when I connect with you I do so because I want or need to create a platform to receive my thoughts and ideas. A place where I can reflect and archive.

Dear Words, you surely know me well enough by now to know that this process of putting ideas into words and then arranging them so someone else might see, create, and explore new connections to life has become not only my creative outlet, but it’s become my way of life. You have become my catharsis.

Dear Words, I write because it reveals my personal choice’s and habit’s of my mind, my ability to connect and mold ideas.

Dear Words, you, me,  I write because I cannot.



copyright_editttaylor 2015




13th Hour Commitment & Fear


Committing to what I choose to call the Creative Lunacy” of NANOWRMO I decided to pack up and join Camp this year, last-minute. I had no intentions to do so this Spring……….. until about 24 hours ago now.

Funny in an odd kind of way where inspiration and motivation can come from, funny also in a very cool kind of way. I have a head start as I have been outlining and character building since hearing a music composition by a friend about 2 weeks ago.  A visual presented itself, inspired by the instrumental, a few paragraphs later a romance story was born. At the 13th hour I decided to commit to Camp NANOWRIMO.  And then I gulped.

30,000 words in 30 days.

It started out from a brief innocent question which I’m paraphrasing – ” have a listen to this song and see what visuals it might create?” Those who know me know that – one – I write to music,  two – that I love a good writing challenge. A fast free writing paragraph literally flowed out my fingers into a new draft. The working title is “Mesmerized” and takes place in a dense forest in the Pacific Northwest.

Today as I took the day to prep myself physically and mentally I had the gift of being involved in a discussion about fears that brought home to me that I know this feeling, fear. I have felt it before, and I know it will pass too. It reminded me of a post I wrote back in August called “Redefining Fear”

It seems apropos tonight as I prepare for Camp. And there’s another serendipitous connection made that I love.

My wish is that whatever may be causing someone fear in their life that they might find a way to redefine it.

If you’re going to be at Camp this year I wish EACH of my sister and brother campers  a happy month of creative lunacy!

Write on Campers. ~

copyright_editttaylor 2015

Reflections of a Golden Year

self reflection

In hindsight.

I should be sleeping, it’s after 3 am on the 8th morning of this brand new year, maybe it’s the hour and lack of sleep that is inspiring these random thoughts, I keep thinking about 2014, reflections of this past year.
The last month of 2014 I spent listening to and cleaning up a year’s worth of music I had collected during the year. It might sound like work but that is not how i see it. Nothing makes me feel my memories more intensely than songs I associate the memories with. I think you know what I mean. Certain songs can take me back to being 13, 16, 21…..and to 2014.

So much navigating life and the rollercoaster of emotions I processed through this music. Listening to some Beth Hart is always a catalyst for me, and as I went about musing over 2014 in hindsight a thought crossed my consciousness;  I’ve no clue where it came from, or the connection if any to my music menu tonight, but it interested me. Like many cultures I grew up with the folklore that said the year you turn the age that is the same as your birthdate is your “Golden Birthday. Some call it the “Champagne Birthday”  So me? I was born on the 14th, hence my 14th birthday was my Golden Birthday.

Following that folklore in my random thoughts it occurred to me that since it had been 2014 and that I was born on the 14th day 2014 was to be my Golden Birth Year!

Looking back to January 4th 2012- The date I began my life all over again…….

………Two years ago I opened the door to a tiny new sanctuary where there was only a hint to the many significant changes that would soon create what I have chosen to refer to as my “Second Season.” During these past two years I grew, mentally, spiritually, and physically stronger.

By 2014’s end I felt whole again.


I thought a lot about the year 2014,and that my birth date is the 14th, I thought about every person, every event, every lesson, each that 2014 brought to my life,

And the changes, changes that don’t resemble anything I knew my life to be prior.
Right up to the end of 2014 I had the benefit of even more change.

self reflection

2014 brought to me the lesson of what being alone single means in all it’s singularity. I found after first fearing the worst- the holiday’s alone- means that being alone has nothing to do with feeling alone. I have to admit that with all my bravado of declaring that I no longer will attend holiday functions out of a sense of obligation or old traditions that I soon was feeling fear. Fear as those dates got nearer that I’d find myself lonesome, AND miserable.

I’d not ever been alone on Christmas Eve in my life.

There were times in my life I craved being alone, snippets of alone time as any sibling and/or parent knows is a rare commodity. Rarely do I remember alone time that I was mindful of at the moment though, or even what it felt like to be alone.
I do remember being alone had nothing to do with me ever feeling lonely. I never connected being alone in the context of loneliness.
Today that context is often referred to by others because I live alone, I am predominately a solitary person. I find myself feeling compelled to negate the assumption made that because I live alone means I’m also lonesome. (Yes there are rare times) I’m fueled with rationalization that I want to explain.
But I don’t.

Living alone for someone who’s neither an introvert, nor an extrovert; but both, comes with mixed feelings AND mixed messages.
I’m fascinated by how many of us are navigating life as a single, and intrigued by the “tricks of the trade”of living life singularly.

I think embracing living a single life comes easier if a person has prior acceptance that being alone is not only just okay, but also emotionally intelligent. Time alone that doesn’t come with the sense of need to fill all the empty-space up, to not fill the silence in, this is a precious commodity of time that I find especially valuable for checking in with myself. To do a self-inventory of my life and who I am today.

who you are

One of the most precious lesson’s I’ve discovered during 2014 has been how vital my serenity is to my life. Literally. I realize immediately today when that serenity is being threatened to be jeopardized. I don’t question when my radar goes off alerting me to chaos that is approaching the fine balance I try to maintain. There was a time in my life when I didn’t trust that radar because there was so much outside interference, too much static.

2014 was the year I began to recognize how important to me living single is to my serenity. I’m not sure it will remain to be true for the future, what I do know is my expectations of what is needed for me to maintain the peaceful authenticity that makes life worth greeting each sunrise.

I’m not ready to give that up.



Pre-New Year’s Eve Party on Barefoot Rock n Blues >>>>>>This Sunday (12.28.2014)

Let us begin training together for the biggest party of the year.

Join Barefoot Rock n Blues this Sunday evening to help get in shape for ringing out 2014, and for singing in the New Year.

Looking forward to y’all joining the fun…. with bells on!

promo_sunday_edit_follow the footprints

A Christmas Gift ~ Live Performance of “The Angel’s Gift” by Siberian Solstice



{posted originally on Barefoot Music Group}

Barefoot Music wishes you all a very Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and Happy 2015 with this very generous gift of Siberian Solstice’s performance of The Angel’s Gift –performed at the Defiance Christian Church, Ohio USA – recorded and produced by Ken Richer.

Feel welcome to share with your family & friends.





Band Members:

Dave Coonrod – Bass

Dave deal – Keyboard

Tom Spraque – Main Vocals

Steve Parker – Percussion

Marie Moore – Keyboard

Jeff Montgomery  -Guitar

For more information about the band and their shows: http://


The Wonder of Being Winter Struck


I love the snow

Its pristine sparkling dust that dances through the air

Softly it falls,  a soft down on the ground

Seeming to soften the hard edges of a cold winter’s night

All of God’s critters seeking shelter, each of us snowbound

It’s as quiet as a forest,  to my wonder and my delight


I love the snow.

Each flake like a diamond from the sky

Here inside, tucked in by warmth, and with little sound

I’m mindful of the wonder that has struck with such spectra

It fills the room with an aura of romance and  nostalgia


I love the snow

And listening as the wind begins its lonesome song.

As each snowflake lights up my sight

They feel like candle light

I’ve never seen the snow so bright

As on this winter’s night


Random thoughts & photo inspired by a cold evening during Winter’s fierce first storm ~ Oregon’s High Desert  USA * November 19 2014

(photo-shop enhanced)



Traditions, Changes & Honesty

I’m doing things different this year.

My self-imposed challenge this Holiday season is to create new traditions for myself that are no longer dependent on other’s expectations, or a sense of obligation to anyone, or anyone to me.
Not knowing exactly what direction these new traditions are going to be has been a bit bewildering…..

Making a choice to not abide by the past traditions that Christmas always held for me has been mind-baffling and emotionally tugging, yet I’m excited about the possibilities of creating new traditions that speak to me and for the life I live today. This isn’t to say I won’t be connecting with my family & friends. What it does mean is for the first time…ever…. I am not going to participate in something merely out of a sense of obligation and expectations to past traditions. I want to create new one’s, ones of my choosing,  ones for all the right reasons in this second season of my life.

But I had no idea where to really begin beyond the desire……..
…..then while pondering thoughts ran through my brain THIS  meme below appeared in my FB feed today, December 5th, 2014.

christmas to do list

I love how the universe works.

Deeply breathing in the “Reason for the Season” without any sense of reluctance is absolutely the new tradition I am looking for. Right at this moment though I can’t even imagine how this will feel.

 I now have a “To Do” list that speaks to me and what I want to be mindful of this Christmas; and how to get there.
Giving myself permission to put my energy and focus exactly where it serves my spirit for the first time in my life is so  exhilarating I’d go as far to say it’s intoxicating. With that being said I don’t expect everyone in my world to understand or “get it”.  I hope though that for those who I matter to in their lives they won’t judge my attitude and actions. Or lack of actions as the case may be.

 No one has been privy to living in my head and my heart;  and only a few know that I had been living a state of mind, heart, and spirit that was literally watching my life slip away.  I thought all my passions…all my fire… had been extinguished.

How wrong I was.

I had merely let my passions become stifled. I had given up on hope & dreams. It matters none today why I had,  as long I know that I have the choice to grab everything about life that feeds every aspect of who I am.

No more stuffing that which serves my mind, my heart, and my spirit.

No more swallowing my feelings, my anger, my needs, my disappointments, and the biggie…. drum roll please…..NO MORE loneliness despite being in a room full of people.

This for me is another step to an authentic independence from other’s to make me or my world happy and complete. Having been on both ends of that spectrum looking to other’s for my happiness/contentment; AND being someone who others’ had looked to for theirs.  It  is a bittersweet realization to find that I had buried so much of myself to fit the idea of who other’s wanted me to be.  I take complete ownership for teaching others that I was okay with this.

It’s really self-sabotage, yet we all do it. Especially we women do it. We all have been conditioned by society to believe it’s the righteous way to live life by being a full-time martyr……then to follow-up with feelings of resentments and complaints  afterwards. I know I did.

That is until I found comfort in my self.

I’m retiring from the “Martyr Membership” that I belonged to all my life away.

I’m putting the “Merry” back into my Christmas. 

keep calm reason for season

I wish you and yours a Merry Christmas hat truly feeds your own Reason For this Season.





ttaylor 2014



A Promise To Dance In The Rain

Found in my Reader yesterday ~

Happy Anniversary!

Barefoot Rock n Blues Special Encore w/ Trevor Sewell


trevor sewell_face to face album art_edit-8.29


This Friday, August 29th, 2014. 7pm GMT – 1pm EDT
Hear Trevor Sewell’s newest album release in it’s entirety in this special encore presentation.
“Face To Face” is a beautiful acoustic compilation of Trevor’s signature style and sound an independent (and spontaneous) project recorded at Capital Records Studio in L.A.
I personally fancy the music of just a musician & their instrument, no bells, no whistle’s. Just the pure music.
Hope y’all will be joining Barefoot Rock n Blues on Mixstream Radio on


In Trevor’s words:

This album is very different to my usual electric offerings as I just wanted to see what the songs were like when they were completely stripped back to just one guitar and one voice – it was completely unplanned and there was no set list. I was in Capitol Records in Hollywood to record tracks for my new electric album which will be released later in the year and the engineer set up my acoustic and a microphone and as I liked the sound through the headphones I just said ‘ Can I make an acoustic album while I’m in position’ – Joe the engineer just smiled and said ‘why not?’, so that’s what happened and less than 3 hours later the Face To Face album was in the can – we could have easily gone back and added lots of other instruments but that would have defeated the purpose so the only rules were no overdubs just one guitar, like I say there was no set list so I just played songs that happened to pop into my head at the time and Joe let me know when we had ten tracks. To sum up, although this was recorded in a studio it is in every way a Live album, so if anyone comes to my solo shows this is a good representation of what it sounds like. Capitol is a great place to record in and I managed to get started on my new electric album later that afternoon but with the bonus of an unexpected extra album already recorded, so all in all I think it was possibly one of the most productive days I’ve had in any studio – If Carlsberg made studios … thank you Capitol. ”  

~ Trevor Sewell  

That’s Friday August 29th @ 7pm GMT-1pm eastern


Barefoot Baroness Juke Joint by the TrueVulgarians

You might know I began a radio show called Barefoot Rock n Blues in June, what you might not know is that the community of independent music maker’s and listener’s at Mixstream Radio on is a close community of friends. The support by everyone involved has continually impressed me. They all welcomed me with warmth that touches my heart, I am in awe by the music and joy they bring to my world.

(Noteworthy for me is that this post is my 550th Barefoot Baroness post)

I’m sharing a proud event in my life, my radio show. I am also with this post sharing a proud and humbling gift I received. I am still truly blown away as well as honored by this song The TrueVulgarians wrote, performed, and recorded for me. What I thought was going to be a 30-40 second promo spot is actually an amazing & awesome song by these talented people.

My deepest gratitude & thanks to Bill & Jackie- The amazing TrueVulgarians. I became a fan immediately the first time I heard their music. *See links below for more music and information about this fantastic brother-sister duo.

For now I just can’t resist the impulse to share here, despite it being pretty self-serving on my part. So I hope y’all will forgive me on that aspect and just enjoy the music, because that is after all what this is all about anyway….. The Music.


promo_juke joint_barefoot1

Barefoot Baroness Juke Joint

by The TrueVulgarians


             ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

For more on the TrueVulgarians


Tune in Sunday evenings @ 8pm eastern to Barefoot Rock n Blues for the very best of independent music.


promo barefoot in jeans_mixstream




Redefining Fear

Family members hurt us. Friends betray us. And life keeps us moving forward with the pain in our hearts and scars on our souls.

And we are also the other part of that same dichotomy for others in our own lives.

Most people don’t set out to cause hurt and pain to others, and maybe this is why we embrace forgiveness for ourselves and other in these situations. Maybe so we can heal the wounds, and maybe leave a less noticeable scar on our hearts.

I hope.

Treading on other people’s joy and expectations by making an unpopular and frightening choices is something I found difficult to do, and because so, well… it fed into my fear of making the drastic life changes I needed.

So I could gain back some serenity in my spirit I leapt off a cliff with no idea what my landing would be like.

Today I am grateful that I embraced the fear anyway.
That fear…it had been screaming at my own spirit that something was terribly wrong in my life….for some time.
Part of the fear was about having to admit I had been living a life that was not what it seemed to be to those close to me….
…. admitting that what seemed to be…really just wasn’t the truth… was difficult & frightening.

That fear though was maybe in the end more of a motivator than I realized.
I have tried to spend my life as authentic and as genuine as I can; and here I was living a bold face lie in my personal life.
I found that I was using my fear as an excuse to not change that about myself that was not genuine, and causing chaos for my spirit., and my day-to-day life.
Pretending to be happy when the truth is that the very air space I was in had become intolerable and a far cry from living any kind of serenity. The hypocrisy and chaos alone that it created was in the end what I just couldn’t reconcile with.

Thankful today I am for that fear, for it is what told me something serious was going on that I no longer could ignore.

Grateful for that fear helped me redefine my life, my life,  ……and where I wanted to take it.

Humbled that the fear itself was not my hindrance, but instead it was my liberation.


Life’s Desire’s

If life is just all about surviving, getting by, and keeping things the way they are, then how can we explain imagination?
If it is just about sacrifice, selflessness, and altruism, then how will we explain desire?

I also wonder; if it is only just about thinking, reflection, and spirituality, then how can we explain the physical world?
I think the answers are in the big picture, I like to think it can be all-inclusive, and that wanting it all, that desire, that’s what helps mold and shape who we are, and our interactions with our world.

What do you think?


Good… Good… Good Vibrations

Vibrations.  The good kind… there has been an energy field filled with such Good Vibrations that I can’t help but celebrate.
Good vibrations from those around me, from the events happening in my life, and those I love. Good vibrations seeming to spark one to another.
It’s a contagious thing. 
Some might even call it the great secret of life.
I don’t think it’s a secret. it’s simply something that needs to be applied. Practiced if you will. 
In our physical world there are different rates of vibrations, these all can have vastly different results and effects. In the physical world both negative and positive are a must for each other to create the machinations sought out by living. Vibrations of our physical world are vastly different from the vibrations on a spiritual plane. Having an awareness of the difference is important. Realizing this and applying it can create the difference between productive energy for the soul….or energy that which feeds no one, nor anything.  And depletes everything good.
While in the spiritual dimension negative energy is a considered a lower vibration because it’s a heavier and more dense energy, while positive energy is a higher vibration, it’s lighter and far more subtle. My sense about negative energy is it weighs me down, it almost makes me feel claustrophobic, if that makes any sense to you.
Whereas I find with positive energy a feeling of lightness lift from my shoulders. I feel liberated. The difference between negative & positive in my mind can be like the difference between pain and joy. I tend to feel negative energy as an emotional hardship and what  it can cost me and those I care about can be rather expensive.
For me negative energy is confining  While ppositive is liberating.
Learning early on that spiritual energy attracts more energy is a fundamental key to one’s own serenity. With personal experiences I trust that the energy I project is exactly what the energy I will receive in return. I  embrace all those good vibrations surrounding my life. I can choose at any given moment, any given circumstance or scenario   just which polar side I am going to hitch my wagon to,,,,,, and because positive attracts more positive… as does negative attract negative… I choose to circle my wagon around the Camp of Positivity. 
After watching patterns develop around me these last 24 months an awareness came to me that  there is an absolute connection to the spiritual energy plane that corresponds with circumstances on a physical energy plane. These patterns have helped reinforce for me that with every positive thought and action I create its tenfold,…. the more positives I apply the more positive goodness results.
It’s a magnetic force that I cannot ignore.
It’s magic, yet it’s not. The polar side of that is just as true and I choose NOT to draw or pull the negatives into my life. 
This is where and how my making choices in how I think and where I let my emotions take me is so symbiotic. No thought exists without there also being an emotion tied to it, even when we may not be aware, our subconscious is aware. Becoming keenly aware of how my thinking affects my emotions… and  in turn how my emotions affect my thinking is liberating.
It’s empowering.
It’s imperative that the self chatter I create be in the positive habit. 
It matters a whole lot what we’re telling ourselves when we think no one else is listening. 
This basic understanding I want to point out is simply, in my humble opinion, part of my emotional intelligence. An emotional intelligence that continues to grow and foster in my life. I find great serenity in that today.
I am convinced that with continued awareness and walking with an open heart and mind that this belief enables ordinary people like me to effectively take charge of my way of thinking, and thus the quality of my life. 
The feeling (emotional) function of our physiology is our internal monitor detecting at any given moment how we feel we’re doing in the given circumstance;  and because the human spirit is so tremendously complex we experience a vast spectrum of emotions, from pain to joy, sadness to happiness, frustration to satisfaction….and throughout these emotions we’re critiquing how we’re feeling. Most often berating ourselves… negatively. 
There’s enough negativity out there in the world that is not even directed to each of us personally, yet we can be affected. I see no benefit by adding to the vibrations any negatives from my camp.
My thoughts and my feelings are wrapped around this mindset:
”  I don’t want what I think and feel, (whether it be out loud or merely if I internalize) to be of the negative and dis-empowering kind.  I am choosing to allow no room for negatives.”
Choosing as often as I can only those ” Good, Good Vibrations.”
In living my life being mindful of how my words and internal chatter impact others and myself I have witnessed just how one good vibration sparks another.. and another…..
I learned a new word the other day. “Orenda”

 [aw-ren-duh, oh-ren]

noun  ~ a supernatural force believed by the iroquois Indians to be present, in varying degrees, in all objects or persons, and to be the spiritual force by which human accomplishment is attained or accounted for.
Maybe it’s another word for Good  Good Vibrations”
 I have zero doubt that what is taking place in my life and others around me in nothing less than “Orendu.”



Reposting Words….that ring true still today

** For transparency sake you might like to know this post was written almost a year ago. I continue to have reasons to be filled with enormous gratitude, and my own words below still ring true within myself.  So albeit cheating really I thank you for indulging me. I think this repost is a timely one.

I believe this is a case of practice what I preach.


Above all else it is about leaving a mark that I existed. I was here. I was hungry. I was defeated. I was happy. I was sad. I was in love. I was afraid. I was hopeful. I had an idea and I had a great purpose and that is why I make works of art.”~ Felix Gonzalez-Torres

Today I know how that life itself is a work of art. one in which we all have a great purpose in. We create art in our life on a daily basis.

WE are our own masterpiece.

I have been conscientious of late for the need to try to remain simply mindful of today, of the “now” in my life. It is not a new belief or concept for me, but it requires patience and focus. My patience was being tested lately.

This has made me forgetful,  and  it also helped me to lose my focus on just the here and now, and to enjoy just what I am living right now.

I am realizing that to also be grateful for the things I don’t think about as often would go a long ways to remaining in the moment. I need to remain in the now.  Not get caught up in the problems of yesterday, the worries of tomorrow. Instead being mindful of all things significant in my life….

 So, I ask myself what about the little things?  The things in my life that I take for granted?

There  are things I tended to take for granted if my life, and when I was suddenly in another world many of those things I took for granted were gone, so my priorities changed. For the better.

I am a grateful person usually by nature. I believe in gratitude and expressing thanks. I am easily aware of feeling grateful for the obvious gifts in my life. Gifts like my Faith, my Hopes, my Dreams, on being loving, on being loved, on peacefulness and contentment. These are the things happiness can be built on and I am thankful each morning and night for these gifts. And for those in my life who are my gifts.

Yet there are those small, seemingly unimportant things in my life I would not want to be without; like the flowers I am able to grow each spring and summer. In the grand scheme of my life, important? Probably not. Yet my world would be flat without. There are a few others in my life that I’d like to be more aware of how significant they are to me. In a more mindful way.

Making a point of being grateful for the “small things” and not taking advantage of them, or assuming they will always be there is important to me. So much so I try to make gratitude part of my daily self-inventory.  Or aka “self-observation.”

Seneca, the Roman Stoic philosopher, statesman and dramatist, suggested the idea of “self observation” by making a daily self-inventory of ourselves, by asking as we bring our day and evening to a close the questions of ourself.

His suggested questions work for me. What bad habit have you changed today?  What fault have you resisted?  In what respect are you better?

And I add: Who and what am I grateful for today?

This ritual of asking and answering for the day’s behavior & actions helps me to be reminded of the times when I am not living as graciously as I could be. I am able to sort out the day’s events and process any feelings. Often through music and journaling.

I know that you can not create happiness out of nothing at all. I know that it takes a “Whole Lotta Love” and everyday significance. I know that I have been remiss of being mindful to appreciative the many seemingly small things in my world which really do hold great significance.

 I hope to now have created gentle reminders that will prompt me to stop, take a few deep breaths, and realize where I am at this moment in time.

I know this; I am able to touch happiness because of these many “small things” in my life that are very significant…at least to me.

They help create my own masterpiece.  What’s creating yours?




Signature 2013





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First times for everything usually create a lasting memory.
I’m happy to say that even though I’ve lived a lifetime I’m still experiencing Firsts.
My journey of this last two years has been filled with a lot of Firsts, and most recently I had the great joy of doing my first live, on the air, radio show.

Barefoot Rock n Blues has been such a long chased dream that when I ran my first test show it felt surreal. Yet I found the nervous energy I felt funneling right into the very music I love, this very music I will now have the privilege of spinning for other listeners – now as a DJ.

There’s a bit of technical work and learning curve that goes into creating a live radio broadcast, and I’m not someone who is technically inclined.
Setting up the broadcast software would not have been possible without the help of the Mixposure Team.
The team is just one of the reasons I’m delighted to be invited to DJ for Mixposure Radio, I am proud to be joining the team. I have been a listener and member of the Mixposure community for about a year, it feeds my passion for independent music.
A radio station that devotes 100% of its air time to Independent Music is where I wanted to hang my hat, and with Mixposure’s long history with independent music & artists; and that it is owned and operated by independent musicians & artists I feel like I found a home.

Because Mixposure has confidence that I have something worthwhile to bring to their mix (pun fully intended) and that I have the support and guidance from the other six DJ’s I even am feeling a bit of confidence too now. I have had two test shows which reaffirmed to me that doing something that you love is never work. Everything worked like a classic textbook case for the broadcast software, my set-up and microphone checks were tweaked with the help of an amazing technical engineer whose handle is Daddy Rabbit. He left his rabbit tracks permanently imprinted on my heart.

A big shout out to Mixposure’s Dazed and JimE for their confidence in me. And to my friend and mentor DJ Doug Dickens. They have all been the strongest of supporters whose warm welcomes were what allowed me to “Just Breath.”

I’d like to say thank you to Doug Dickens for he’s become my mentor (even when he might not have wanted the job) I look to him often for guidance. He & his beautiful wife have both become dear friends.

Also I want to thank Brick Fields Music from my heart and soul for the use of their song “Barefoot Woman” as my theme song. There is a bit of a serendipitous back story to how this came to be that I will share another day, but suffice it to say that since I fell in love with Brick Fields music & especially their song Barefoot Woman amazing things have happened. I am convinced that there is a much more powerful force at work in all our lives.

Thank you Rachel Fields & Larry Brick.  I love you Brick Fields!

I’m including the song here for some added enjoyment to listen to as you finish the post.

Both tests, while having three definite listeners who could give me live for feedback was priceless. I felt sincerely like I was simply sitting with a group of good friends listening to fantastic music while we chatted about the music.  That there was a microphone in front of me became a moot point.

Yet..firsts sometimes come with blunders, while in the moment of the first test, I was so caught up in the music and making sure I was following directions that I forgot to turn the mic ON. OOPS!

Testing my stream, my microphone, and my first time jitters was empowering for me to say the least, giving voice to my desire to share music with as many people as I can is such an enormous feeling of satisfaction. I’m actually quite blown away. I keep repeatong lately that this is a dream that I have been chasing for a very long time. Since being a young child I have had an affinity for radio and the music it brings to my world. Albeit there had been a time I became disillusioned with what commercial radio had become. Even the once Avant Guard of the late 60’s radio with FM frequency and stations playing whole albums and longer tracks has changed drastically today. Because of my distaste for what commercial radio had become prior to the internet I had remained in a time warp musically, I wasn’t hearing new artists to my ears very often. I listened to NPR- National Public Radio & our local college stations.

The internet changed all that for me. And Mixposure Radio.

Today I am an avid fan of internet radio streaming and my passion for independent music fell right into place. Now I am proud to be one of those music messengers’ who help promote independent artist’s and their music. The perfect extension to my artist management agency. I am so enamored with how this universe works its magic in our lives I’m in awe once again.

Believe in something strong enough, and never lose sight of hope for the things in your life that moves your heart & touches your soul, and dreams really do come true.

Am I excited?

Oh yeah!

Barefoot Rock n Blues debuts June 22 @ 8pm eastern on (Click on radio & Listen now)

I hope you’ll be listening in, and if so I would love your feedback.


Found: Empathy & Compassion

Empathy and compassion are the paths that point to finding the road to living a life with great serenity.
Not everyone knows this experience.

image empathy is

My small world is filled family and Friends whose empathy and compassion often not the socks off my bare feet.
I want them to know this 13th day of May 2014 just how much I cherish their caring thoughts, prayers, actions, and genuine feelings for me. I’m one very blessed lady and I never wish to take that for granted.

I was prepared mentally,  physically, and spiritually to have a surgical procedure called a Cholecystectony, the fancy word for Laparoscopic removal of my Gallbladder. I wasn’t prepared for deep sense of love and care I have been shown by family and friends. I don’t mean to suggest that their empathy and compassion are new to me.
Not at all.
I am feeling their care in a new way, it’s me whose feeling the loving care as incredibly blessed gifts. I think for sometime I wasn’t the person who was in touch and mindful of that feeling beyond an awareness that it was there.
I hope I wasn’t actually taking it for granted before,  I think I simply was not giving the compassion from those in my life the reverence it deserves. They deserve.
Empathy is not something everyone gets to experience,  yet it is needed to be able to embrace a sense of compassion.

There are people in my life, close family, and friends who became family by choice that I best describe them as ‘Empaths’. They know what I’m living. They, because of their gifts of empathy and compassion feel deeply what I feel.

image empathy is about standing

They’ve been beside me and privy to my journey of becoming a strong and independent woman, witnessing my  many “first times in life” experiences through the last two years, and they never judge, only support me with their unconditional love and acceptance of who I am.
I’m so blessed.

Self serving post this is, it is All About Me.
It’s important to me that those people in my life hear me say that I am touched in ways again today that leave me completely humbled by your friendship.
And your compassionate loving caring ways. You might think it’s nothing to take a few minutes to phone to just see how I am, I on the other hand think it’s priceless.

I especially need to give a ‘Mama Shout Out’ to my daughter Janis, she has been my personal nurse, confidante, chef, medical insurance specialist, and my heath advocate. As my daughter and best friend she reminds me daily just how imperative it is to be genuine with those in your circle of love, and the reasons behind the joy I find living an authentic life. I love you Cupcake & Thank YOU. ♡

My family/framily = my bros & niece’s, my two ‘sis-out-laws’, my two best gal-pals they know who they are, and last but certainly not the least my artists/clients-partners in music, all of them deserve big love from me for their most amazing support.

I’m deeply overwhelmed with emotions that y’all inspire within my heart and soul. I just needed to express it out loud.
I love you all to the Moon and Back.





Sitting with a close friend whose no longer conscious, his body quietly shutting down as he is in the final stages of terminal cancer came with great heartache. As I sat talking to my friend about everything, and about nothing, my mind went to an abstract thought about listening. I think being good at listening is one of the ways we can humble ourselves with others, and with our world.
  Quite possibly l was avoiding what my heart was feeling, but that’s another post, for another time. This is about listening.  
As I tend to do when something catches my attention I began thinking about it. Listening; observing how I listen, and later I began reading about it.
We crave the sound of another’s voice. Our human voice’s triggers laughter, tears, anticipation, urgency, often time love, and even comfort. Our ears are the complex instrument that for most of us we use to identify, perceive, and decipher speech and sound.
Our internal receiver & amplifier if you will. I’ve heard in the past, and just recently again I read that hearing is one of the last senses to leave us as we die.
Listening as an art isn’t something everyone does on the same level, and for a variety of reasons. But even in the worst case of environmental conditions for listening for most of us our brains act like a fine piece of software and reconstruct words, allowing us to decipher the gist of what is being said.
Cognitively we have learned how to pick up on clues and isolate them out, and sounds yes, but just as important to ‘listen ‘to are the lip movements, smiles, frowns, pauses, stammers. Our brain’s stitches them together in a commonsense of order which we use to communicate. 
I’m curious how often I miss something important being said because I heard only the gist of it. 
I was listening, I received most of it. Right?
The majority of what we think we hear is a product of our imaginations. Apparently without being conscious of it we tend to fill in missing gaps in other people’s verbal narratives. We often correct grammar, interpret accents, add punctuation. and even substitute words all the time our brain’s word processor is creating what we hear as the other person speaks. 
How many times have you known what someone is going to say before they have even finished?
Nothing about listening is passive. I had no idea there is an actual name given to this phenomenal effect, let alone that there is literature written on the topic.
It’s a process called ‘Phonetic Restoration’– Briefly, it’s a survival skill we all make use of that allows us to decipher communications, for instance when the captain of the ship is trying to communicate to frightened passengers over a public address system in a full-on roaring wind storm. The passengers get the gist of the warning.
Let Wikipedia have a go at it, a better explanation:
For reference compliments of Wikipedia: – Phonemic restoration effect is a perceptual phenomenon where under certain conditions, sounds actually missing from a speech signal can be hallucinated by the brain and clearly heard. The effect occurs when missing phonemes in an auditory signal are replaced with white noise, resulting in the brain filling in absent phonemes. The effect can be so strong that listeners do not even know that there are phonemes missing. This effect is commonly observed in a conversation with heavy background noise, making it difficult to properly hear every phoneme being spoken. Different factors can change the strength of the effect, including age and gender.
This effect is more important to humans than what was initially thought. Linguists have pointed out that at least the English language is full of false starts and extraneous sounds. The phonemic restoration effect is the brain’s way of resolving those imperfections in our speech. Without this effect interfering with our language processing, there would be a greater need for much more accurate speech signals and human speech could require much more precision. For experiments, white noise is necessary because it takes the place of these imperfections in speech. One of the most important factors in language is continuity and in turn intelligibility
I find I’m being more mindful now when listening. Intentionally I sit back, relax, and just listen with every sense. Being aware of how much concentration it takes to follow and absorb every word of a verbal exchange is daunting, but an amazing experiment.
Talking isn’t necessarily a requirement to be a participant in communication.
We also convey what we mean with our glances, how we tilt our head, smiles & facial expressions, these all become part of the exchange. Silently we can orchestrate the arrangement of a conversation, influencing its course, and its outcome.


Writing about listening needs to include a word on words. Words are a key element to communication, an obvious component of listening. 

Apparently our brains create about 500 hundred words per minute (wpm) when in a quiet environment. Our brain’s have a tremendous large appetite for auditory stimulation. Most of us speak about 150 words per minute, that is assuming we are using full sentences when conveying a desired message. This leaves a lag of about 350 words. (using the 500 wpm theory) We make use of this lag to listen to our intuition and perceptions. We engage, we listen with our eyes as much as with our ears.

It’s said that a good listener is also a good spectator by following a discussion along while also scrutinizing facial expressions and body language.

Yet even with adopting these listening practices we might not come away from a discussion with the ability to repeat what was said verbatim, or to remember things such as dates or names. But we will have absorbed the entire concept creating our own perception’s of what was said.


I don’t think we need to beat ourselves up when we come away without complete recall of important details such as dates and names. According to one major university study intellectual content only accounts for about 7% of all verbal communication.

Surprise you? Did me.

What we share between a speaker and listener’s is more than sharing mere words. We feel vibrations in speech, even though it’s not always audible. Some tones trigger auditory responses, some affect our moods, and some create unexpected thoughts or memories.

What we don’t hear in words we register with our other senses. Being good at listening ultimately means to use our entire being, all of our senses as a sounding board for what other people are communicating.

I intend to pay closer attention

. .


A Note From The Author

Originally posted on Mesmerized ~ A Love Story:

Book with pages forming heart shape

Though I have been writing since a young child. (I couldn’t wait to learn how to write and pestered my older brother to teach me) I have been writing so long that words and I have an arrangement; I will honor them, and they will not desert me.

I have touched on more subjects in writing non-fiction and prose than I can possibly keep track of, including what I call a docudrama under my belt, and another one in the works. Both have some autobiographical elements albeit very subtle.

Until “Mesmerized” I had never written any fiction before, and definitely nothing remotely in the romance department. I would like to make a point here and share with readers,  my family, and my friends that this story is purely fictional. If anyone should find any resemblance to their life it is purely coincidental, not  at all intentional.

The concept of “Mesmerized” was…

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Mesmerized Chapter Two

Barefoot Baroness:

Chapter Two- Mesmerized.
A Web fiction Love Story. (my first)

Originally posted on Mesmerized ~ A Love Story:

short story_mesmerized_cover
By Tj Taylor
Chapter Two
Music and technology were the paths for Silver and Manny to begin a friendship. If this had been another time, in another place, the beginning might have been love letters, or secret notes, or tiny exchanges of meaningful gifts. But for Manny and Silver, it was the age and time where they were able to share the technology and music worlds.
 They worked in the same circles of the music industry, so it wasn’t long before their paths crossed again, and again. Silver and Manny had been aware of one another professionally, but they didn’t know anything else about one another.
The Universe often works in strange ways and with an odd sense of timing sometimes. Something can be right in front of a person and because their perception is so narrowly focused they could risk missing out on maybe one of the most significant events or persons…

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Barefoot Rock n Blues ft Slide Guitar

Barefoot Baroness:

Tonight, Slide guitar baby!!

Originally posted on Barefoot Rock n Blues :


If you know me, Barefoot, or have tuned into my radio show much you know I love Slide Guitar.  Whether it be electric, acoustic, resonator, or Steel there’s only one sound that trumps Slide Guitar in my world- a baby’s giggle.

The catalog of music at our sister site which supports the music we spin on Mixstream Radio, home to 100% Indie Musicians, has a plethora of amazing slide work by a vast assortment of accomplished guitarists. I’ll be sharing some of the striking slide chops throughout the show along all guitar infused tracks

Hope to have you tune in and I invite you to join us in our chat room zoo during my show.

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Barefoot Rock n Blues ft. R & B Artist BillyD – This Sunday!!

Originally posted on Barefoot Rock n Blues :

barefoot in a field_billyd

” In a world where most mainstream music is all processed and sugar-coated, there are still musicians who manage to bring real heart and soul to the table. BillyD is a 30-year-old R&B/Soul artistproducer born and raised in Washington D.C., USA. Raised around different styles of music and cultures, BillyD has a well-rounded understanding of many types of music. He instilled this into his own music as he developed his own personal unique style as a singer/songwriter/producer. With no former vocal/musical training, BillyD set out to make the music he was meant to make.

Sunday, August  9th  Barefoot  Rock  n  Blues @ 8pm eastern; proudly featuring the outstanding soulful music of R & B artist BillyD throughout this Sunday’s show.

” In 2011, he released the inspirational debut album, “The Impossible” which included songs about surviving childhood abuse & becoming the successful man he was meant to be. Songs like “When Will I?”, “Starting…

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Mesmerized – Chapter One

Barefoot Baroness:

Welcome to the first chapter of “Mesmerized”- my first romance fiction compliments of 30 days of Creative Lunacy during Camp NANO April 2015.
Publishing also for the first time a web fiction I’m hoping to capture an audience.

Originally posted on Mesmerized ~ A Love Story:

short story_mesmerized_cover
by Tj Taylor
 Chapter One
The forest floor crunched under Silver’s bare footsteps as she trekked the path to Manny’s A-Frame cabin, where like almost every Friday evening he would be there waiting for her.
He’d have a roaring hot fire built to ward off the approaching dampness that Fall always brought to the green lush forest near Fossil Oregon, where Manny called home.
Through the dense fog she could smell the fire, one of her favorite spots in the cabin was what Manny called the “main hub”- the custom circular fireplace he’d built. Manny added another log, wanting to make sure the cabin was warm and inviting, a bottle of red wine sat on the table breathing. He sat down at the keyboard to jam a bit; his pride and joy, the vintage 1960’s Hammond B3 organ, with its Leslie speaker package.The Leslie’s effect being incredible sound projection…

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