Tuesday, January 23, 2007

A Coventry Christmas

I just finished reading a wonderful book. (thanks Becky, I was up all night reading , had to finish it.)

Coventry, Texas—a place where the locals are friendly and snow has been known to fall in December. And this year, Christmas in Coventry promises the most wonderful and magical gift of all—love!

Keelie Cannon is in danger of becoming a Scrooge. Her job at a Houston bookstore is hardly inspiring Christmas cheer—more like a need for double vodka martinis. Her surrogate mom, the rock of holiday predictability, is suddenly spending Christmas in Hawaii. So, why not grab her friends, get away from it all, and spend a nice quiet Christmas together in Coventry? It sure beats repeats of How the Grinch Stole Christmas...

Between a fractured ankle, a bawdy grandmother, and Hamlet (Keelie's suddenly under-the-weather hamster), she and the gang are in for a Christmas that is as unpredictable as it is merry.

And when Coventry's veterinarian starts making house calls to check on Hamlet, Keelie wonders if this Christmas might bring her what she's always wanted: true love...

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

I live in a small town.

I live in a small town. Surrounded by small farm towns. When you only have 3000 or 3500 hundred people in and out of town, everyone seems to know everyone, or you know someone who knows someone.
This is what has happened. My son is good friends with other teenagers from the next town over (six miles). One of them is the daughter of a woman who was just murdered at the local burger king.
He and a group of their friends went and hung out and tried to comfort this poor girl Saturday night. The wake is tomorrow and furneral to follow Tuesday. All leads so far have failed to produce a motive or suspect.

The thing that I find hard to grasp is how this person made his escape so quickly. The police deptarment is less than one mile from the Burger King. In fact it is on the other side of the river. You can almost see one building to the other. There is a road around the Burgerking/gas station and a wide rushing river on the other. Three directions to go. How long does it take to rush from the police department to the crime scene? he was still there while she called and fought. He had to be still close when the police arrived.

The clerk in the gas station, which is connected to the burgerking didnt hear anything.

A sad day for all.

Restaurant slayings have community on edge
Chicago Tribune

By Jeff Long

January 15, 2007

And cost the lives of two good people.
Surrounded by farmland and nestled along the banks of the Kankakee River, the tiny town of Momence began coming to grips Sunday with its first robbery-murder since 1952.
Police had not arrested anyone in Saturday's predawn double slaying of a Burger King manager and a longtime employee. An autopsy Sunday morning revealed that the two were stabbed multiple times.

Residents here say their community is on edge.

'Nobody knows what to think,' said Crystal Kirschner, 29, who grew up in the town of about 3,500. 'Everyone's baffled.'

Paul 'P.J.' Jones, 50, of Donovan, the restaurant's manager, was stabbed several times in the back, Kankakee County Coroner Robert Gessner said.

Still alive when police arrived shortly after 5 a.m. Saturday, Jones was found lying in the back doorway, Momence Police Chief Steve Cromwell said. He died before saying anything and before paramedics arrived, Cromwell added.

Pam Branka, 46, of Momence was stabbed several times in the chest, Gessner said. She died before police arrived, Cromwell said.

Although police did not have any suspects in the case, Cromwell said the crime appears to be isolated.

'A robbery attempt that went bad,' he said. 'And cost the lives of two good people.'

He said Branka, who apparently dialed 911 screaming, may have seen Jones stabbed and was attacked herself. Since no money was taken from the restaurant, Cromwell said, it's possible the killer or killers fled, knowing police had been called. No weapon has been recovered.

Such a crime is so rare for this community that it had Cromwell thinking about the robbery-murder that happened more than half a century ago in his parents' tavern.

'My mother and father were there when it happened,' he said. 'And so was I, in a way. My mother was pregnant with me at the time.'

Cromwell grew up on the family lore surrounding the murder at the TNT Restaurant and Bar, which used to stand on property next to the scene of Saturday's slayings. A police officer for 32 years in Momence and chief for the last 11, he also played a role in closing the book on it.

According to a Tribune story from Sept. 2, 1952, three armed men entered the barroom through the kitchen just after closing and announced a holdup.

'Someone said something to one of them, and he turned around with a shotgun and killed him,' Cromwell said. 'I think the customer knew him, and [the gunman] didn't want him to say his name out loud.'

According to the 1952 story, the robbers took about $400 from the cash register and robbed Cromwell's father, William, of a silver money clip and about $4.

Cromwell recalled the story of one woman who slipped a diamond ring into her mouth, and it escaped the notice of the robbers.

It wasn't until the 1980s, when Cromwell was a police officer, that he took a call from the FBI in Indianapolis saying an elderly man on his deathbed in a veterans home had confessed to the shooting. Police couldn't locate the old paperwork, though.

'It was a moot point,' Cromwell said. 'He was old and dying of cancer. He died a short time later.'

Now the head of a small force that has eight full-time and five part-time officers, Cromwell said he is getting help from Illinois State Police and investigators around the Kankakee County. He hopes to solve Saturday's slaying more quickly than the slaying at his parents' tavern.

'We're going to try and get some more men on this and just swamp it,' he said.

For some, news of an arrest can't come fast enough.

'I heard so many different stories about it,' said Geena Anselmo, 16, who spent much of Saturday night worrying about her safety as she worked at a sandwich shop in town. 'I didn't even know what was the truth. We were just paranoid.'

A sophomore at the high school in the neighboring town of Grant Park, Anselmo said the area always seemed safe. Now she knows that can change quickly.

'You can't really be too sure anymore,' Anselmo said. 'It can happen anywhere.'

In the convenience store next to the Burger King, clerk Chuck Quarles, 32, said the slaying also made him nervous.

'I moved away from the city to get away from stuff like this,' said Quarles, who lived in Chicago Heights before moving to Grant Park. 'Which just shows me that anything can happen.'

About 50 miles south of Chicago, Momence is a town where the Lions Club sign reminds residents and visitors that 'It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice.' On the town's main drag, the walls of the Dixie Barbershop have pictures of Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy and Deputy Barney Fife from 'The Andy Griffith Show.'

'We're not Mayberry,' Cromwell cautioned. 'We have burglaries. We have drugs. We have assaults.'

Momence also has a dance for teens every Friday night, at the banquet hall across the street from the barbershop.

Tony Esparza, owner of America's Family Restaurant and Banquet Hall, said he told teens when he began the weekly dances last month, 'I don't want you smoking in the place. I don't want you hanging around outside.'

'The first week we had about 10 kids,' Esparza said. 'This past week, we had 115 kids. The kids, they love to come.'

The slayings have slowed business, he said. He estimates that about half the usual crowd showed up Saturday night at a bar he owns.

'When things like this happen, it makes people afraid to come this way,' he said.

Stuffed toys, candles and posters saying 'I Love You' were outside the Burger King's front door, which was closed with police tape. A purple, floppy-eared dog was wedged in the door handles, just below the tape.

Lauren Hammann, a spokeswoman for Burger King, declined to comment specifically on the slayings.

'We take these matters very seriously,' Hammann said. 'We are working very closely with local authorities, but other than that, we can't comment further as this is an ongoing investigation.'

Cromwell said police are interviewing employees and former employees of the restaurant, where Jones was promoted to manager last month from a Burger King in Gilman.

'It's not that they're suspects at this time,' Cromwell said. 'We just want to talk to everyone.'

Esparza knew Branka and her daughter as customers of his restaurant.

'She was a really nice lady,' he said. 'People liked her a lot. People used to go to the Burger King just to see her when she was working.'

2012 and the shift

I know I'm getting a bit of a jump on this, but I thought I'd share.

2012 and The Shift
by Owen Waters

Will the world end in 2012? Not at all. It will, however, mark
the dawn of a new era in human progress and development.

Like the dawning of a new day, this transition to a new era
will seem gradual, not sudden, to those passing through it.
However, when future generations look back, 2012 will be seen
to have been a pivot point around which humanity turned and
headed in a different direction.

Many prophecies have indicated a period of chaos and confusion
in the years leading up to the Winter Solstice of 2012. This is
understandable as the agendas of the old order rush for
completion and resolution before the old cycles end. Old
issues, suppressed for years, will bubble up to the surface
demanding attention and resolution.

Once the cycles of the ancient Mayan Calendars reset to zero,
the old patterns will end and the way will be clear for new
patterns to be established with the energy of the new cycles.

In the meantime, the best way to handle difficult times is to
be centered and resist the temptation to be drawn into dramas
and conflicts, most of which are due to other people working
through their "stuff." Being in the now and focusing on what is
- not what could be, or shouldn't be, or what might be
fear-inducing - provides the key to sanity in a world full of
increasing stress.

The grand 5,125-year cycle of the Mayan calendars consists of
five interwoven cycles. The first cycle breaks the 5,125 years
up into 13 parts. Then, there are 20 parts within each of the
13. Then, another 20-part division occurs to produce Mayan
'years,' each of which consist of 18 'months' of 20 days each.

On December 21st, 2012, all five of these cycles reset to
zero, for the first time in 5,125 calendar years, as the Mayan

The Maya understood and tracked even more cycles than these
five - 17 different calendar cycles in all, some of which
spanned more than 10 million years. One is the precession of
the equinoxes cycle of 25,920 years, which is caused by the
slow wobbling of the earth on its axis. This cycle, which was
also identified by Plato, is divided into the twelve
astrological ages.

December 21st, 2012, coincidentally, also marks the exact
transition into the 2,160-year Age of Aquarius. Yet another
cycle, that of four times the 25,920-year cycle, also resets on
that date.

The Shift to heart-centered consciousness is a global event
which is playing out today. Every year that goes by, more and
more people come to understand the new consciousness and shift
into that heart-space which is the backbone of the New Reality.

The new consciousness will flower in the Age of Aquarius, but
it started before that age is due to fully dawn. The new
consciousness will expand and spread much more quickly after
the Winter Solstice of 2012, but it has already been developing
in earnest since the pioneering days of the mid 1960s.

So, the timing of The Shift is not strictly cycle-related. It
is happening today regardless of any cycles. It is happening
because people have reached critical mass in their spiritual
evolution and because now is the time for humanity to graduate
from the old school of life.

The Shift is the spiritual and creative awakening of humanity.
This New Reality consciousness opens the door to new vistas of
awareness and new levels of creativity. In the dawning New
Reality, people follow their hearts to express their inner joy
through making their own meaningful contributions towards a
better world.

We are in the midst of the biggest cultural shift of all
times. The Shift to the New Reality is happening today and it
is unstoppable. The start of new cosmic time cycles on December
21st, 2012 will be the dawn of a new era where humanity will
accelerate towards heart-centered consciousness on a global

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Hello all

Thank you all for your concern and comments.
I'm doing well. I get the stitches out next week. And the numbness is going away.
The spot with the bruised bone hurts worse than the puncture hole most of the time.
But I can't put any pressure on my arm yet.

But I am doing good, wanted to pop in and say Hello.


Saturday, January 06, 2007

A ghost girl

Tonight I drove into town, (about two miles) to pick up my son at a party.
I came up to the stop sign, stopped and started to turn.
Now, I've made this stop and turn a million times since living out here and never once, NOT once have I ever sensed anything or seen anything...Until tonight.
I almost slammed on the breaks, there running right in front of my car was a girl. A spirit teenage girl. She had on a dress down to her knees and had what appeared to be blood or something dark on her face and was sorta wild looking. She lasted all of half a second.

It was creepy. She was running from right to left and looking back towards the right. There is nothing there now but houses. But not so many years ago it was all fields and just fifty feet behind these homes it still is farm land.

She seemed to look towards me, but I don't think she really saw me, just a sweeping motion. I believe I drove into a memory loop of sorts.
Something that keeps occurring because it is ingrained on that spot. I have no idea who she is, or what happened to her. She looked out of time, out of place. 1800's maybe. Or older, who knows. I'm sure there were settlers and I know there were Indians and farmers all around here. So, who can tell what happened to her.

But it creeped me out. Which things like that usually don't. I grabbed my cell phone as soon as she was good and gone, and I called my daughter. I needed to know where she was. She was safe and just down the street from home.
Picked up the son, and came home. Nothing was there at that stop. Didn't even feel creepy. Strange. But when isn't it strange around here?? LOL.

Dragon dream again.

Last night, or early morning actually, I woke up after having another dragon/lizard/dinosaur dream. What ever he is, he's persistent, gotta give him that.

This time he wasn't swimming in my bathtub or sleeping in my bed. He seemed to be watching and waiting.
He doesn't have claws or wings like a dragon. He's only about the size of a large housecat or smallish dog. But he is the color of an old army blanket.

In the dream I could hear different languages being spoken about him. Seems people all over the world are waiting for him. Hmm.
The voices were a combination of different parts of the world. I could here what I thought was Japanese, and the word KODO kept being said. Kodo dragon? kodo lizard? I'm not sure. But in the dream the little guy seemed to be laying between two mounds. He could see over the one to his left, which was slightly higher than the other side, but in the middle where he lay, it looked like a giant backbone, or a road of eggs. Big dinosaur kind of eggs. Large and oval, all laying side by side making the center of the two mounds.

The Kodo, seems very gentle, and immensely wise.

I know this dream like the other has meaning, symbols all throughout, but I wish he would just tell me already.

A great power coming? A world waiting for him? World terrain? Laying on top of a great backbone?
There are dozens of comparisons to our own country I suppose. But who or what is the gentle, wise creature coming to help us?

I did research dragons and dinosaurs and there is one picture that I found that is very similar to my guy, but mine is more cartoon shaped and his feet all face forward. Let me see if I can get it load here.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


Here is a Meme that I BORROWED from my good friend. My wonderful and supportive friend. A man who is above and beyond. A blogger like no other. TIGER YOGI!

(and he borrowed it from another wonderful man, Chris.)

1. The phone rings. Who are you hoping it is? Jodie

2. When shopping at the grocery store, do you return your cart? Most of the time.

3. In a social setting, are you more of a talker or a listener? Depends

4. If abandoned alone in the wilderness, would you survive? Probably not.

5. Do you like to ride horses? Only ridden once when I was a kid. No I didn't enjoy it.

6. Did you ever go to camp as a kid? No

7. What was your favorite board game as a kid? Trouble

8. If a sexy person was pursuing you, but you knew he/she was taken what would you do? No.

9. Are you judgmental? Sometimes.

10. Would you date someone with different religious beliefs? I married one!

11. Are you continuing your education? Sort of.

12. Do you know how to shoot a gun? Yes. And I'm not bad with a crossbow either.

13. If your house was on fire, whatÂ’s the first thing youÂ’d grab? My kids.

14. How often do you read books? All the time.

15. Do you think more about the past, present or future? Recently, the past.

16. What is your favorite childrenÂ’s book? The first book I remember reading and really liking was CONRAD, or Erich von Daniken's "Chariots of the Gods?" I was I think 13.

17. How tall are you? 5'3

18. Where is your ideal house located? Haven't found it yet.

19. Last person you talked to? Patrick.

21. When was the last time you were at Olive Garden? Last week.

22. What are your keys on your key chains for? House, car.

23. What did you do last night? Worked.

24. Where is your current pain at? Lower back. Feels like a kidney stone again.

25. Do you like mustard? I guess.

26. Do you like your mom or dad? I loved my mom.

27. How long does it take you in the shower? 10-15 minutes.

28. What movie do you want to see right now? My super ex girlfriend.

29. Do you put lotion on your dog or cats? ???

30. What did you do for New YearÂ’s? Stayed in and watcTVd tv.

31. Do you think The Grudge was scary? Didn't see it.

32. Do you own a camera phone? Yes, but just figured out how to use it.

33. WhatÂ’s the last letter of your middle name? N. Kathleen.

34. Who did you vote for on American Idol? I didn't even watch it last year.