Podcast Blog 

05/19/2020 

Tumbleweed 

Round and round and round we go. Where this new norm lands God only knows! Do you feel that way too? Some days I just get dizzy from all the updates and information flying at us from all directions. 

Tommy and I should be excitedly packing and making final preparations for our June 2020 UK tour and rolling down the road like the gypsies we were meant to be. But, of course, life has changed for all of us. Now I feel more like spinning tumbleweed. 

I remember the first time I saw tumbleweed. It was fascinating and exotic to me. 

We were on our way from El Paso, TX to Albuquerque, NM to perform at Solid Grounds Concert Series. There was a spring storm brewing and the blowing sand made visibility and driving nearly impossible. Tommy was just about to pull off the highway, when suddenly a big spiny ball appeared, bouncing across the road, up on the hood of our rental car and ricocheted off the windshield. I watched it disappear into the blinding sand, swallowed by the vast desert. That was tumbleweed. 

And that’s how I feel right now, unattached, without roots. Just bouncing and spinning my way into the vast unknown, dizzy from the daily changes. Especially, the whole ‘live internet- concert technology-working the bugs out, new norm too. I’ll leave that job to Tommy. He’s the tech head in this show. LOL 

No, I’d prefer to hole up in my writing room and let my creativity drift into my next children’s book or maybe a song. I dunno. It doesn’t matter. I’m tumbleweed now, light and free with nothing holding me down. Look, there’s an interesting little ghost town just ahead. Maybe I’ll even find something I thought I’d lost? Like an old dream? 

Perhaps this is the perfect time to clean out those closets, throw away the old limitations and let that forgotten dream roll me forward into the exciting unknown. See how adventurous and daring I can be. Bounce. Bounce. Bounce. I’m traveling tumbleweed. 

In fact, I just printed out a wonderful, motivational piece written by successful author, Andrea Jarrell who encourages “it’s never too late to pursue your dream.” Her first publishing deal didn’t happen until she was 55! 

She advises 1) Bring yourself to the page and write, write, write. 

This week, as we spin and bounce into the new norm, perhaps this will encourage you too? 

Let’s pull up our socks (and those old nasty roots) and just roll with it, into the brave, new unknown. 

Bring yourself to the first empty page of your new story and write, write, write. 

Nope! Travel restrictions can’t hold us down. 

After all, we’re like tumbleweed. Bouncing, bouncing, and bouncing across the Kansas Plain toward the Land of Enchantment or maybe Devon, England? However, we roll. This is our story.

Pilot Of Change 

05/05/2020 


05/05/2020 

Pilot of Change 

Happy Cinco de Mayo! Mmmmm. The delicious aroma of Tommy’s tacos is in the air! 

This past weekend I taught one of the most delightful songwriting sessions. 

In keeping with the COVID-19 distancing measures, my student sat on one end of my open air front porch and I on the other. She strummed her ukulele and I joined in on my baby Taylor. We watched the birds in the feeder. Neighbors strolling by waved and smiled. It was a chilly but sunny morning but she and I were inspired, sharing the gift of music. For a moment, we forgot why our lesson was being held outdoors. It just seemed natural. 

As teachers know, our students often teach us and this was no exception. I was enlightened and even lifted by the way this young woman was embracing her new norm. My student shared with me how she has been coping with online high school courses, her ideas for broadening her community outreach through art and the internet, and even her thoughts on the future. “Scary.” 

About 20 minutes into our songwriting lesson, we both smiled and said, “This is kinda cool. Sitting outside and being a creative force with nature.” 

A reminder, that if embraced, change doesn’t have to be frightening. In fact, it’s inevitable. We’re meant for change. It can be the fuel for creative inspiration. 

This brings me to this week’s subject matter for our second podcast episode of 

Hope you're enjoying Episode 2: Pilot Of Change.  

We are so excited that Dr. Ann and Dr. Cathy could enjoy a virtual cuppa and piece of pie with us and share their professional advice on how to keep our pets calm during Covid-19

‘Jake’s Place: Songs’n’Tails. 

I’ve entitled Episode Two: Pilot of Change based on the song Tommy and I wrote with the same title.

The song was inspired by a stunning painting, ‘Raven,’ by Shelly Niro. Shelly is a Mohawk filmmaker and visual artist from New York and Ontario. 

Some days I do feel as if I’m sitting all alone in the middle of a cornfield looking up at the stars, begging for an answer, anything. All I want is a constellation or sign to show me where these changes are leading. What will the face of live music and touring look like after all this? How do we carve out a new norm? After all, I think it’s safe to say we’re flying into uncharted territory these days. 

And as much as I’m trying to stay positive and productive, it’s easy to fall into the self-pity trap. 

My daily bout of nervous energy is freaking out the dogs and cat. The other day, much to my shame I had a ‘tiff’ with my mom on the phone and blurted out, “These days we don’t have the luxury of being difficult.” Gasp. I knew right then and there I needed to get a grip. Isolation was getting the best of me. 

Of course, Mother’s Day is coming up. Thank God for our beautiful Mothers and their understanding ways. Once again, my mom offered me her patient and loving heart and forgave me for my outburst. She assured me I’m not alone. Everyone is trying their best. Some days are harder than others. 

That made me think of a social media post I saw recently. It was the picture of a boat in a storm. The message, “We may not be in the same boat, but we are going through the same storm together.” I guess we are all mucking through these extraordinary times in our own way and that’s ok. 

Come and take me in your arms 

Dancin’ in our own backyard 

Underneath the moon and stars 

Tell me baby how can you refuse? 

A little somethin’ when you got nothin’ to lose. 

So this week, as I strap on my aviator goggles and become my own pilot of change, I promise to work on being kinder and more patient with others and myself. Walk the dogs more often. Try not to freak out Dottie Lynne, our cat. Tell my mom how much I love her. 

And no matter what changes may occur, remind myself to look closer. 

There are miracles in the cracks in the sidewalk.
 

 

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