Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Just Not Forever (Poem For Daddy)

Warning: I was feeling quite melancholy tonight, I wrote this poem for my Daddy. Oh, I did it to myself. That's one of my gifts, heavy emotion, making myself all sad... but it's o.k., I don't mind. I would rather feel, and go through pain, and come out the other side shining than never to have loved, or felt, or been so loved at all. If you knew my family, and my friends you would sure know how lucky I am.

That being said, and if you have dared to go this far, then read on.


"Just Not Forever"
(For Daddy - 8/29/27 - 1/14/09)

I know what they say is true

How things appear to be
but all I really want
is for you to come home
sit across the table
have a cup of coffee
we'll share a laugh or two
maybe we'll even argue
but you'll be there
and things will be
right again
This world is really messed up
without you here
to talk to,
to tell my jokes to
and to laugh with
oh, without your shoulder
to cry on when I'm sad
when things go sliding
from good down to bad,
or reversed, yeah.
Even though I know
I can still talk to you
they tell me you can hear
but I don't hear you,
not like I want
so I can't just
lean on you now
because you're not here
to listen, laugh or
tell me that
everything will be o.k.
You always said it would;
but it's hard sometimes
to believe it
though I never doubted it
No, I never doubted you
not even for a second.
You and Mama have
always been
the only real thing
that's right with
the world
and these days,
these dark and lonely days
nothing feels right
and I know she cries-
yeah, I know it brings you pain
but what can I do?
I feel so helpless
I feel alone too.
She keeps trying, I guess
wakes up one more day...
She deserved all of
them to be good days,
but now we're all just
sitting here
with holes in our hearts
where you used to
sit across the table
have a cup of coffee
share a laugh or two
sometimes even argue
but you were there
and things were right
then, yes they were,
just not forever
like we dreamt,
like we dreamt,
not like we dreamt at all.

That one is for Mom and Dad... The ultimate teachers on how to love, how to live and what a family should feel like.

Daddy we can't help it, but we miss you so much, and I just had to write this out tonight...

Please keep on watching over all of us and send a little strength our way, we really need it.

I know that your warm smile is part of the sky's light that shows our way, and that we'll all be together again one of these days.

That's my Mama and my Daddy... my heroes.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Needle And The Damage Done

Jewel was on Howard Stern's Show (on Sirius) this week and she sang the following song, The Needle And The Damage Done (Neil Young). It was pretty haunting, sad and I've had it stuck in my head ever since.



So I take a moment to think about all of the people who have loved, and lost anybody they loved to a horrible addiction or disease.

No matter when, why or how, it hurts just the same, and leaves a hole in our hearts forever. Even though we know that they're safe, loved and still living on in our hearts and right by our side, watching and hearing every word, and every tear, we miss them terribly.

Here's to needed hope for the ones not yet too far gone.

Sending out healing, love and strength to everyone... Love, Aunt Jackie

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sunday Burn

Geezuz it was hotter than High Noon in Death Valley today!

Still trying to get things finished up for my contributions to Meggy's FABA (For Artists By Artists) event this weekend. With my procrastinating nature, and lack of time I am struggling but I will prevail, miraculously at the last moments. :)

The weekend passed off way too fast. I did get some motorcycle riding in, and visited my Mom. We watched a few movies, to include "The Slammin Salmon" (a comedy, I recommend it, pretty funny). Then for our Sunday supper, we made Vegetable Chili with Mexican Cornbread (it was a Mr. J and AJ combined effort, Kudos to Mr. J on doing the Chili!). Nice when you can work together and enjoy doing things.

A busy week coming up, so hopefully I'll get through unscathed.

As far as updates or any new interesting events, I don't have anything to report right this moment, but I am working and things are all a-brew... Will of course blog anytime something exciting happens and as my friend Kim says, "You never know what a day might bring." It's true, and we have to put a little effort on our own part for opportunity and to get things done, because it's not just going to fall into our laps, we have to work towards our goals, and take advantage of the things we have and chances we're given. Where that came from, I don't know... I just blab what comes into my silly head. Don't shoot the messenger.

Ok, well that about wraps up my loco Sunday update, I just thought I would pop in and babble for a few and I have done that.

I'll now leave you with an interesting photo to ponder...

Stupidity?? Or Genius?
(I vote stupidity for the person who's car it is and genius for the one who comes along and locks the brainiac inside it Muuhaha!)

Question Time with AJ.

Q: If you were to publish a book about yourself, what will you title it?
A. That's a toughy... "Barefoot In The Grass" or maybe "Valleys and Peaks", I dunno... I do want to write one sometime though. I'm going to.

If you would like to "Ask AJ Anything", then either e-mail her at auntiejac@gmail.com

or hit me up at http://www.formspring.me/jcquewood.

Have a great week!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Friday, My B.F.F. & Shootout

This morning when I Facebooked about Friday in my status message about 'Friday being in the house', one of my favorite blog pals, Angie (No More Empty Fortune Cookies) said that Friday was her B.F.F., and it got me to thinking, ME TOO!! For those of us who are corporate 'slaves to the man', workin the 8 or 9 - 5 all week long, Friday feels that way. No better day of the week (well, once you actually get off work that is). This is the time that all of you independent people, who've broken away from the time clock can insert a gloating remark such as "Friday means nothing to me, I am on my own schedule." Well, good for you. Revel in the fact that we're all jealous of you.

Also, I realize that there are others who are not as fortunate as us MF'rs (Monday - Friday'ers, what were YOU thinking?!). Yes we too can feel as though others only aspire to our cubicle-hell greatness... these would be restaurant workers, retail workers, truckers or just any other profession that doesn't end at 5 O'Clock Friday. We understand, and feel your pain. Hey, I've been there too.

My proclamation is, of course that I would like to eventually sustain myself financially with the skills and talents that I really love, which would be my artistic and creative endeavors. I'm working on that... I'm gonna get it all together, I've been feeling urged to get moving. After all, there's no special season to apply yourself and improve your life, you're the only one who can make those changes and do something with yourself. No excuse in the world merits saying, "Oh, I am going to but have to wait until {fill in the blank}"... nothing! So I am about to go global... I'll keep you posted ;)

Till then Friday is still Angie's B.F.F. and mine and probably yours too.

Also, please see Help Rebuild Nashville link from Angie's page.

Nashville Will Thank you!

I thought about tweeting the following news item, but since my blog is hooked up in such a way that it 'auto-tweets' my posts-Geez, social networking has taken over my life hasn't it? wtf! I don't have to worry.

This tidbit was shared with me by my V.B.B.F.F. (Very Best Best Friend Forever, had to make that distinction so Friday would understand), Tamra. If you've been reading me for a while, you should be familiar with Tamra, she's my blond bombshell partner in crime.

Anyroad, it appears that Yesterday(West Memphis, AR 5/20/2010) there was this big Shootout in West Memphis that killed two police officers and wounded two more. At this point they did not know all of the details, or were not sharing certain details, but the article linked above was able to provide more today.

Here are a few of the details:
  • Initial police broadcasts identified the van the two men responsible were traveling in as belonging to a church in southern Ohio. The news 'On Your Side' investigators learned the church had a controversial history including ties to white supremacy. (Well, there you go... two negative marks against them already.)

  • That white minivan now sits rammed and riddled with bullets.The two men inside were shot and killed during a gun battle with police. (Good news, eh?)

  • Today's new details reveal that the two people in the white van have been identified as Jerry Kane, 45, of Ohio and his 16-year-old son, Joseph. (Good Job Dad!!! You're another reason that I promote sterilization to stupid people so you don't breed and make useless carbon copies of those like yourself.)
Like I said, you can read it all at the link above, but it's just another impressive waste of human flesh causing otherwise innocent bystanders and their families unwanted tragedy. Don't you just get sick of idiots and all the bad news? It's just sad... If these people were the "True Christians" that they claim to be, and were really following the supposed examples of "Love, Peace and Understanding" of their brethren, they would do us all a favor and just turn the guns on themselves before leaving the house to 'do their Christian duty'. Then they could just stamp out the stupidity and be done for the day.

Now I don't want to spend the rest of my Friday in a bad mood, so I must try and reverse the negativity of something senseless and horrible like that. Hmmm, how could this be accomplished?? It's gonna take something really strong, really big... I know!! MIDGETS! Not just any midgets, this is gonna require Midgets dressed up like the band KISS, singing "Rock and Roll All Night". Yes, an all-midget KISS Tribute band called "Mini Kiss". You can thank me later.



Mini Kiss singing on Jimmy Kimmel Rock It Boys!

If you'll notice at the end, Kimmel thanks his guests, and one of them is John Stamos, who is (as reported by Howard Stern) deathly afraid of Midgets. With that knowledge, I had to laugh. I bet the Kiss Midgets scared the crap out of him.

Until next time, this is AJ wishing you a Rockin Little Weekend!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Ten Ten Ten

Well would you look at that, I made a mid-week post! I'm doing a little better. I'm still staying quite the busy bee, and trying to better organize myself in other areas, work, personal, creative, and I have a lot of things coming my way and things I want to accomplish! So just sharing.

The last couple days, I've been working on a few of these "lists of 10", no meme or anything, just something I jotted down as a post idea, and finally decided to throw it in. Why 10? Just because really... I just felt like 10. It could make for a bit more "AJ Enlightenment" for ya. So how about we start with...

My 10 favorite works of art.

Now, just a note that I made this a list of 10, but I have so many favorite works of art, I just narrowed it down for the sake of this shorter list. Each one I love for a different reason. Don't feel like explaining why now, just know it's a reflection of something in my soul.
  1. "Gala Contemplating the Mediterranean Sea which at Twenty Metres Becomes the Portrait of Abraham Lincoln" 1976 by Salvador Dali View
  2. "Nighthawks" 1942 by Edward Hopper View
  3. "The Old Guitarist" 1903 by Pablo Picasso View
  4. "The Walk, Woman with a Parasol" 1875 by Claude Monet View
  5. "The Thinker" Bronze, 1902 by Auguste Rodin View
  6. "Luncheon of the Boating Party" 1881 by Pierre Auguste Renoir View
  7. "Kiss V" 1964 by Roy Lichtenstein View
  8. "Le RĂªve" 1932 by Pablo Picasso View
  9. "Jane Avril" (Poster) 1893 by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec View
  10. "Migrant Mother" 1936 by Dorthea Lange View

10 unforgettable moments in my life:
  1. Daddy taking me shopping for a bean bag when I was really small

  2. Being potty trained (yes I vaguely remember this)

  3. Eating Honeysuckle and catching fireflies as a child

  4. The Deaths of all of my animal loved ones

  5. Learning to drive

  6. The death of my sister's youngest daughter (just 20), it changed us all forever

  7. My first Kiss

  8. Losing my heart to Z

  9. Finding my heart again when falling for my husband

  10. The Death of my Father

Write a 10 line poem. (Really? Am I that quick?)
Ok, let's wing it:

"On the wings of the wind I hear your song
keeping me peaceful at night, and all along
on the lips of the wind I hear your voice
whispering why you left, that you'd made your choice
I feel the fingers of the wind brush the hair from my face
You know I always hated it to be out of place
In the eyes of the sun, I see your smile
Brightening our paths to go another mile
Then in the shadow of dreams I hold my pillow to me
and hear you whisper "All in time, one day you too will be free..."


and finally...
My 10 favorite sounds:
  1. My husband's laughter
  2. Thunderstorms / Rain
  3. My favorite music
  4. Voices of my Loved Ones
  5. All the frogs at night
  6. Crickets too (evening sounds)
  7. Songs of Birds
  8. Wind in the trees
  9. Noises horses make
  10. Complete Silence
I don't wanna ruin this stuff with too many more words, but I hope you enjoyed my little self-meme list of tens... Just something to do, and I enjoy lists.

Hope you're all doing well, and I'll pop in when I can. If you leave me a comment and say hello, I would appreciate it and you would help me remember who to pop in and visit. It's so hard to keep up with everyone. If you're reading this, leave a note even if you're anonymous. Just to let me know you were here. Love to you! -AJ (a.k.a. Jaxxx, a.k.a. Jackie)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Tenacious Dio (R.I.P)

After Mother's Day, the week really slid by me. Workload for me has not let up very much, but Friday wasn't too bad. I just still didn't get any chance to post. Now the weekend has been a little different story. Laziness was all that prevented my posting. Despite the storms around the areas, and the flooding in Millington, and of course Nashville the rain has been persistent off and on through the week, and it's back again this afternoon. More thunder, lightening and all of that.

Not that I mind as long as it isn't flooding or more damage for the people who've already suffered issues because of it. If anyone was wondering (since I did get a few emails and so forth asking if we were o.k. here), there were flooded parts of our area, but nothing like Nashville, or the area above Memphis, Millington. So far so good here. Anyways, that's about it on the rain front.

I know my blog time has been severely less lately, and my posts have not been much which I don't like because I do enjoy blogging and intend to keep going. I just haven't had enough time to think of anything good and time to post it...

Hopefully I'll do better in the days to come.

Now then, what prompted me to blog is about another Celebrity death, Ronnie James Dio, Heavy Metal god in his own right and also once lead singer of Black Sabbath after Ozzy. I've never been the hugest fan of Dio's vocals, but he is extremely revered in the Metal Community. I respect him for his legend and his music itself even though I wasn't that much into it. So evidently, Dio had been battling Stomach Cancer for a while, and lost the battle.

Well, another sad moment in Rock, and the hearts of his millions of fans. I know he is out there in the Cosmos throwing us all his infamous "Goat Sign" and would if he could tell us that everything is gonna be alright.

Rock on Dio, and I know you will. Read Full Article On Dio's Death

Here's a little tribute to Dio, if you have ever seen "Tenacious D" (Jack Black & Kyle Gass) you'll know what these are about. If not, you should look them up and check out "Tenacious D" for sure... it's been around a while, but they're hilarious.

I give you Tenacious D playing "Heaven & Hell"



And Tenacious D singing their own "Dio"



R.I.P.D = Rock In Peace Dio!

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Always An Angel

My mother is a poem
I'll never be able to write,
though everything I write
is a poem to my mother.
~Sharon Doubiago


Sometimes I have trouble finding my muse... then I think of Mama, and I am miraculously able to move forward. Sometimes I feel down on my luck, or wonder how to go on... and then I think of what my Mom has endured in her own life, and all of the gifts I have because of her and I feel stupid not to put one more foot forward. Mom is an endless inspiration to me, an endless song of love. She's been the greatest teacher, the best friend, the warmest heart and the most comfort in times when she probably felt low on those things herself. There is nothing I hold higher than that precious soul on Earth that I call "Mom".

Although I feel that I have let her down many times in my life, and that I can never repay her fully for everything she has given to me, I try. I do the best I can, which I always feel pales in comparison to her. My guilt sometimes asphyxiates me and I don't know what to do. I wish I could spend every hour, every day and every moment helping her and loving her as she has me. I must resolve myself to the fact that I can't reach the heights that I want to, the heights that SHE deserves.

So I can only offer this, my undying love and devotion and the promise to her that no matter where I am, even if I am unable to be by her side at that given moment that my life, my heart and all of my love are a song, dedicated to her, one which would never have been played or sung if it were not for her existence, her decision to be here and give me her creation.

This woman, living proof of angels, who has endured so much, who has given all of herself to sustain and protect her children, and asked so very little in return, deserves the universe. My prayer is only that she realizes that it is already hers and that she is loved far, far more than she could ever be told with any words, by us all.

So, Mom, I Love You With Every Part Of My Soul. You are never far from thought and always close to heart. Your life has been a lesson in love; Because all of the love you share and the caring things you do, have taught us to reach out and help, to fix what is broken.

With love alone you have changed my life and for that I'm truly grateful. Happy Mothers Day!

Friday, May 07, 2010

Leaning On Reality

Stand by for what you might deduce as psychotic ramblings by AJ ;)

Reality is a funny thing. That needn't be some hugely astounding, Nobel-prize winning statement of the century, it's just a string of characters, a few short words. What are words anyway if not all-too-commonly misused gifts of our language?

Photo caption: "Reality is merely an illusion,
albeit a very persistent one." ~Einstein

Just throw your Ego out the window for a moment and examine the phrase. "Reality is a funny thing." (Now I'm not talking about Reality Television, which is indeed its own animal, and not much of one at that-can you taste my disdain?)

Oh yes, this might leave you thinking, "Oh how can you say that? Reality is very serious indeed. Reality is dire to our existence and everyone needs to wake up and smell the coffee! We all need to be slapped in the face by this Reality, people need to grow up and learn the seriousness of how things really are in this life!!"

Oh, come on... relax a little!

Wikipedia says that 'Reality is the state of things as they actually exist, rather than as they may appear or may be thought to be.' I'm inclined to disagree since they used the word "actually", indicating that there is one solid truth to be found.

Well, I'll be the first one to tell you (and maybe one of the few human beings to admit) that I, Aunt Jackie, do not know everything. However, I am quite confident of one thing, "REALITY" is relative to the one perceiving it. There is no set rules of truth. In fact, it's extremely unlikely for any two souls to see this in the same way.

So all the teaching, preaching and fighting in the world isn't going to solve anything, and to force someone to share your beliefs, or to push your 'medicine' on another living creature is just not right. Feel free to crucify me if you'd like, but the truth is that we are all brought up by people with personalities and beliefs as vast as the universe itself, and its up to us to find our own personal truths. Someone once said, "Physical reality springs from the imagination, which follows the path of your beliefs." Believe what you will, which you will though... I am not a preacher who commands myself be followed! :)

Life is what you make it, I believe that. Depending on the paths that we take and the lessons that we learn in our own individual experiences, Reality can change quite frequently. As long as we are open to learning, and growing as souls and human beings (which we all should be, but not everyone is), then what we once held to be true in life can suddenly be a whole different ball game.

Think about it, even on a linear scale, which might be more comfortable for you: You were single, you met the 'love of your life' and got married. Your life changes. You were one person, you had a child. Reality as you know it is transformed and your life changes completely! You lose a loved one and your world is never the same again. Ok, even on a smaller scale-you lose a tooth... every cellular change counts. Sometimes you might not even notice.

Maybe you think I'm nuts, in fact I hope you do. I'll take that as a compliment! Besides, we should ALL frequently tell ourselves that we will only react to constructive suggestions, as it would provide some protection against our own negative thoughts and those of others. I'm a work in progress, as we all are.

So is "Reality".

"I leaned against reality and it gave." ~Jane Roberts




Remember "The Big Lebowski"? Well, a cool blog pal of mine, and great writer, Nothingman popped by one day to inform me that a post I had called "Mark It Zero" still pulled up top image results when that phrase was searched in Google. Ha-ha isn't that interesting the way search results work sometimes.

Read Mark It Zero (if you feel like it).

The Big Lebowski is one of my favorite movies of all times, basically because it is funny as hell, and just great. I don't know what it is about the movie. It's usually one of those "guy favorites", but I tend to like most silly comedies and other things guys like, video games, goofy humor and all. A lot of people might think that is 'stupid' or 'immature', but it doesn't make any difference to me. There's enough propaganda and overly-serious crap running around out there. Too many murders and disasters on the news, I don't need to watch movies about that, and what people believe is going to happen in this universe. As I have indicated above, I will decide what I believe on all that myself.

In other words, don't offer me any of your B.S., I already have a plate full on my own. When I receive these paranoid, scare-tactics in chain mail and all of the heinous things that are going around out there for the thousandth time, I usually roll my eyes and hit the delete button. Whenever you send me negative thoughts, or extraneous things that are "junk" in my mind they get marked as such, or once again I 'roll my eyes and hit delete'.

I don't have time to battle extra negativity. I have a hard enough time just existing, just being Me. If you don't like what I have to say, then by all means, feel free to Mark It Zero! :)