Is this why our government is where it is now?

In a world of government shutdowns, wall building, and climate change debates I’ve wondered how this world came to be.

Robert J. Emery or R.J. Eastwood shows how our current environment could have been formed. Who would have thought that sci-fi novel could tell the future? This all happened because of someone that looks like a 12-year-old boy, I’m not talking about our current president, or was this all our own undoing?

This quick read gives incite into our world, which is probably why it was Book Talk Radio named it the Book of the Year for 2018.

Check out Emery’s interview on Book Talk Radio here to learn more about how this man’s mind works in order to create an amazing read for all to enjoy.

Not Your Average Joe

Is this what corporate America is like?! I thought social work with teenagers was a lot of drama, but really it is high tech corporate America that is filled with excitement. The author did not spare the reader the darker side of that world, and I for one am sticking with nonprofits!

Joe is not your average Joe.  He was a boxer, and that personality comes through in the way he deals with his coworkers and what he does when coworkers start being murdered.

This is a quick paced read. It was great to read a book that showed that my work drama is nothing compared to what Joe had to work with. Having the story set in Austin also helps to add more intrigue and realism to the book, especially since I’ve been to the Austin hot spots mentioned in the book.

Buy this book for the mystery, read it for the drama.

32 Years Later

 

 

For some reason 32 years ago my parents thought that getting married would be a good idea. Somehow it all worked out. They are still grossly in love with each other. Any night they are apart from each other they will call to make sure that their voice is the last one the other one hears before they go to sleep.

In those 32 years they:

  • Built 2 different homes
  • Lived in 6 different places
  • Created and raised 2 adequate adults
  • Raised a cat to almost 19 years old
  • Adopted 3 dogs
  • Fostered 44 dogs
  • Felt the loss of a mother
  • Owned 11 different cars (including the clunkers that the children drove)
  • Felt the loss of the family dog twice
  • Held each other up during times of sickness
  • Retired from the daily grind jobs to pursue and flourish in their passion projects
  • Put up with 13 years of the daughter in Girl Scouts
  • Attended countless Track and Cross Country meets where they spent more time watching the woods, for the children to come out running or hoping that their kids didn’t turn right on the track, than anything else
  • Had countless arguments, mostly about their children
  • Fell in love daily
  • Best of all taught their two offspring that it is better to help the world than it is to do nothing

A vet & a sheriff walk into a barn…

I have to admit I was a virgin when it came to gay male romance, but Sionnach popped my cherry. Many people say they regret their first time, but I do not regret reading this gay male romance novel at all!

This historical fiction is set in East Texas — to start off I’m just trying to figure out how Sionnach is getting away with gay men in East Texas. Sionnach does a great job at throwing these two men together in all sorts of positions (pun intended) that bring them closer together.

For any of my LGBTQIA+ family members out there needing a good steamy read, I urge you to stop here and read this book…you will enjoy it!

It is funny that it took my roommate (aka my mom) to give this book to me for me to read my first gay male romance…I have a weird and fantastic relationship with her.

Mastering My Time!

For someone that is employed full-time and attending grad school full-time then adding in my rental agreement responsibilities; one could assume I have my life together and organized.

They would be very wrong! My millennial generation (in all its glory) is the FOMO generation. I over schedule myself and under organize it. But no more! I’m going to be mastering my time and conquering my clutter.

It’s a quick read, but it is packed with so many usefully skills that I can easily integrate into my life. When I finished reading the book instead of throwing it on my nightstand I placed it on my dusty bookshelf…that will be the perfect place to start my life organization journey. Ask me next week if there is still dust on my bookshelf.

What a Gay Night!

When I came out to my mom almost 8 years ago, I only dreamed about being with my family at a PRIDE parade. Never did I think that at 26 years old I would be able to get my whole family at pride (brother drove down from DeSoto for this) nor did I think I could get them to wear matching shirts. It was a night I will never forget! I owe my family so much for their support and love of me and the LGBTQIA+ community.

 

Aaron S Gallagher

A prostitute and a private eye walk into a bar. No punchline can fully grasp how that story ends.

This book is a thinker, not a stinker; which means you have to sit with that book, pay attention to the book, and ignore your phone during the book. There is so much detail with the twists and turns in this book that if you look away for a second, you will miss why the book ended in the cliffhanger. You don’t need to read the first two books to follow the story, but after reading the third one, I don’t know why you wouldn’t read the other ones.

Mobsters, priests, pimps, hookers, and it all starts in a club with a prostitute and a private eye.

#rememberingneenee

Elizabeth Ann Devine Kinney

August 3rd, 1937 – October 23rd, 2016

She was my comedic rival. She was my bright light in a tunnel of darkness. She was my NeeNee.

I was privileged to grow up for the first 24 years of my life with all four of my grandparents. As they watched me grow up and grow older, I did the same. I went from seeing my NeeNee out in the backyard, kicking the soccer ball around with us to her watching us from their porch while we played in the yard.

One thing that never changed with her age was her humor. She loved to laugh, and we loved it when she laughed. Her laugh was infectious; it never mattered if you understood the joke. If NeeNee understood it, she would get everyone else laughing.

Above all, she was the easiest person to shop for gifts. Anything frog; I mean anything! You could make her a foam craft frog, and she would still have it on her frog bookshelf decades later. Everyone knew that frogs were NeeNee’s “thing.” She never went overboard with the frogabilia, but she cherished everyone she got. My favorite frog piece of hers was the stained glassed lamp that sat in the front room of their house for years and years. It was beautiful and colorful and perfect. When I went up to New Jersey in 2016 for her funeral and Poppop told everyone to take their favorite piece of NeeNee’s frogabilia home with us, I wanted to have the lamp. Unfortunately, it didn’t fit in my bag, it was old, and I didn’t trust the postal workers to transport it down to Texas safely. That’s when I knew I wanted a tattoo based on the lamp. I took photos of it from all different angles to capture its beauty.

You may think, ‘It’s 2018, and you just got it tattooed. Obviously, you didn’t care that much.’ That’s where you are wrong. I cared deeply about it. I researched various tattoo techniques, compared black and white work to colorwork, thought long and hard about placement and size. After a year of research, I still hadn’t found the perfect artist, but I knew how I wanted it. The tough part was telling my parents who were none too happy to know that their precious princess is going to be marked for life (disregarding the countless scars she has on her body). I found the courage and told my parents separately, and it went better than I thought it would, they accepted it and were content on the amount of effort I put in into finding the perfect tattoo. The only thing missing was the tattoo artist. It was coming down to crunch time. I had contacted a couple of artists that had flaked on me already had August 3rd booked up. Then I found Daniel O’Driscoll. His geometric linework is phenomenal, and the way he can inlay the color into is work to add to the geometric work instead of covering it up; I knew he was the man to create the masterpiece of my first tattoo.

He was patient, kind, and saw my vision better than I ever did. He is a dedicated artist, is passionate about his craft, and is ever growing. Check out his work.

You may even see a piece that you recognize. If you are in Austin, Texas and need a tattoo…go to him.

Turning 26

My 26th year alive was one of those years that you look back on and say “I survived.”
It was a massive roller coaster that I grew exponentially from, but I would never want to do again.

It started off with me in massive debt that my roommates were terrific at supporting me through and understanding even when I pushed them away. A month into my 26th year, I was “involuntarily separated” from a job where I loved working with my clients, and they enjoyed working with me. Where I had a supervisor that saw my energy and client commitment as a hindrance to my work performance and instead of working with me, she got rid of me. I was devastated, if you had asked any of my clients about my work with them, they would sing my praises. Many parents of my clients attempted to reach out to me after my departure, but due to my social work licensing and ethical boundaries of my profession I could not communicate with them. No being able to say goodbye to people I had spent the last year and a half in their life attempting to improve it no matter what it costs, was heart-wrenching.

After that, I took a leap. I looked into an amazing non-profit organization in Austin that was well known for their continual innovations in their social services. Less than a month after being “involuntarily separated” I was hired as a part-time employee at this amazing non-profit at their youth homeless shelter. Granted I was apprehensive; I have worked direct care with teenagers before and that turned into a hot mess. This place was different! I left my work at work and my home at home. This place was perfect for my personality. They let me use my energy to improve the workplace not just for the clients, but for the staff. Less than 3 months into employment I was awarded the company-wide “Gratitude Award” something that very few part-time employees ever see. I felt at “home” at the company. When they saw my flaws in the workplace they worked with me to improve myself, they didn’t throw me aside, they made me feel like a part of a team and a part of a family all in one.

While applying for this job I also applied for graduate school. I got accepted into SUNY-Cortland’s online Recreation Therapy Certificate program. It won’t end in a masters, but it will end in me being a qualified Recreation Therapist to be able to work in Texas. Classes started in January, and I instantly fell in love with the field.

The ending of my 26th year of life isn’t so happy. Just days before I went on vacation for my birthday, I hit a pothole with my car. I popped one tire and got a bubble in one. Both tires were replaced. My driver side seat belt also locked up and would not expand or retract; the dealership told me that I was in an accident so they would not replace the seat belt for free. I wasn’t in an accident; my car fell off the jack while I was changing my tire. They didn’t care; I took the car to the mechanic by the house and had it completely replaced. My roommates went above and beyond again. For me, my vacation started on the day my car was taken to the local mechanic. I ended up being hundreds of miles away when my roommate took my car from the mechanic to the tire shop to get my tires aligned. That’s where he found that 3 of my rims were no longer circular, but ovals. He took it upon himself to go back to the place where I had gotten my tires and reamed them for their shoddy workmanship. When I returned from my 4-day vacation, I found a new driver side seat belt and four new matte black rims on my car.

In conclusion, my past year was only survivable by the sheer love and patience that my roommates showed me. They will forever be my favorite roommates.