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Playing on My Guitar

playing guitar

Guest post written by Pete Shilling

I've played guitar for as long as I can remember. When I was 7, my mom signed me up for lessons with this guy in town, and I have to say, that was one of the best things she could have done for me. Why? Well, she gave me the opportunity to cultivate a hobby I now love and appreciate so much! This time of year I get particularly good use from it. I'm able to play with other musicians in town for the holiday parade, which seems to bring everyone such cheer!

I love it so much, I've even been shopping around domain names to see if I can start up my own music site. I'd love to give lessons on the side, so setting up that business may be something I have to just do in 2011. I could give lessons, just like that guy did for me, so maybe I can help inspire a ton of other local kids. I just think those are the things you have to share -- the passions that really are worth living for.

MI was compensated by my friends at for this guest post.

Journaling Knives

A personal journal should reflect personal interests and style. I have a great friend, Larry, who loves to hunt, fish and collect knives. He is one of those people that just can't get enough of it all. That's a great thing when it rolls around to be his birthday because no one can go wrong as long as they don't duplicate a previous gift which was inevitably a knife.

He has every kind of knife imaginable such as a:

1) pocket knife

2) tactical knife

3) survival knife

I've heard his wife, Ruth, say many times that if there was anyone she could depend on if she were lost in the forest, it would have to be her husband. Not only can he live off the land, but he enjoys doing it. She has created an awesome journal of all his weekend jaunts with tons of pictures recording the size of the fish he caught or where he camped on the side of a mountain.

His friends and family alike often enjoy the fruits of his labors, so looking for a new knife for him is a pleasure. It also couldn't be easier than going online and visiting Knife Depot where they offer a broad selection, low prices, great quality merchandise all backed with a money-back guarantee. That is definitely a win-win situation. Every time we give Larry a new knife, there is the obligatory picture with him and the knife to be put in his journal. We've all just gotten used to it now.

Keeping a journal interesting is not such a big task if you break it down into smaller bites and neither is buying a knife if you just click to the awesome website called Knife Depot. Enjoy the journey - yep, that's what it is all about and hopefully we all have Larry and his knives with us when we get lost in the mountains.

The Redhead Riter

My opinions are valued and I was compensated by my friends at Knife Depot for this post.

Journal Learning

personal journal

Let's pretend that you are convinced that keeping a daily journal is important and you know what kind of information to include within the pages. Do you think that writing a journal can change your life?

As you write about your hopes, dreams, goals, successes and failures, the deeper meaning of who you are becomes evident. It is easier to appreciate your uniqueness and purpose on this planet. A journal allows plenty of space and time to contemplate the mysteries of life, but more specifically, your own life. As we privately reflect on our path, our guard goes down and we become less defensive. With an open, clear mind, the ability to become honest with ourselves is much easier and that helps us put change into motion.

Blank pages can be intimidating unless we view journaling as an opportunity to release our thoughts and emotions as well as record our journey. Self-exploration will assist in planning the steps towards successful accomplishment of our goals. Each day provides the means to reflect on what we have already completed and how we need to proceed in order to stay on the right path.

Find a place to record your thoughts whether it be in a bound journal or on the computer and be dedicated to writing each day. Once it becomes habit, you'll begin to look forward to the relaxing time spent writing. Make sure to include all the things you learned during the day whether it was positive or negative. Dissect the situations - your reactions, other people's reactions, and the things that happened. After it is written, go back and read the passage. Write about how it makes you feel and anything learned from your own writing. This process is empowering and will help to bring about changes to you and your life.

A journal allows us to see ourselves from a stranger's point of view. It tells us all the things that other people just can't tell us for fear of hurting our feelings. If you read your journal and don't like yourself, use the knowledge gleaned and change. Plan your path to change in the journal and set goals along the way to help them become reality. Keeping a journal is a positive force for change and improvement in one's life. Take advantage the opportunity to do so.

As Helen Keller, who was both blind and deaf, once said, “I don’t want to live in a hand-me-down world of others’ experiences. I want to write about me, my discoveries, my fears, my feelings, about me.”

The Redhead Riter

Black Friday Mentality

Thanks for the post, Nora Howe

Have you ever seen a normally mild mannered pleasant woman turn into a screeching devil on Black Friday? I went to Toys R Us with my friend Sheila to pick up some toys for my granddaughter for Christmas. I will never forget this as long as I live. The woman went armed with her credit card and her cell phone in case we got separated. As it happened, I heard her southern accented voice all over the store as I was choosing dolls for my granddaughter. Raggedy Ann dolls were on sale for eight dollars each instead of regularly priced eighteen and I grabbed two of them. Barbie dolls were on sale for six dollars apiece down from seventeen dollars. Four of them went into my bag.

I heard Sheila across the store in tricycles yelling for a salesperson to help her carry a riding toy. I heard Sheila expounding on the price of a Fisher Price plastic climbing set for indoors. I heard Sheila yelling for ya'll to clear the way so she could carry all this stuuuff. Then I heard her shouting that Ah'm at the checkout and for me to meet her there.

She got half price on her toys. Safely back home and watching Satellite TV offers, we wrapped our toys and her voice changed back to the sweet woman I know.

Raggedy Ann

The Redhead Riter

My opinions are valued and I was compensated by my friends at for this post.

Green Stripes Grill Cover

Green Stripes Grill Cover

When writing a journal entry, what is an acceptable subject? Personally, I don't think anything is off limits. If your journal is online and public, I do think there should be limitations as to the private information shared, but otherwise go for it.

So when you write about an event, you try to help the person who will some day read your journal to feel connected and a part of the activity.

I will give you an example...

    "Today was so much fun! We have been planning to get that really fancy grill so that we could spend more time with each outside in a more festive spirit. We also wanted to have meals that Dad could cook without me hovering over him and grilled food in the winter is so very delicious especially if I don't have to cook it.

    After buying the grill, I went online and found the best grill covers that look classy and won't detract from the landscaping in the back yard. I was so thrilled to find that the barbeque grill covers came in several sizes so that I wouldn't have to worry about it looking all baggy and distorted.

    Just when I had decided to buy the Bird of Paradise design, Dad came in and peeked over my shoulder.

    "Don't you just love the Green Stripes?" he asked totally oblivious to my choice.

    "Oh yes, it is very nice. Is that your favorite?"

    "Yeah, I love it," he said as he walked away.

    So I ordered the Green Stripes. I love your Dad and he does so much for the family. It was just something I could do to let him know that I care what he thinks and I love him. He will be so surprised."

With a journal entry like that, you are able to teach without sounding like you are preaching. It gives an example of real life experience and the choices you made which will ring truer to your posterity than just words.

You were able to draw them into the experience and think about the whole family dynamic surrounding a fun purchase. It may seem boring stuff to write, but wouldn't you want to know about the dynamics and day-to-day life activities of your great-great-grandmother?

The Redhead Riter

***I was compensated by 1001 for reviewing their site and writing this post. However, my opinions are always honest and I really do love their sundials. Thanks 1001 for the opportunity to brag about you!

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