Good Morning Universe, How are ya!

Around 5pm this afternoon, I will have circled the sun 56 times. Maybe that’s why I’ve always been fond of suppertime ! And evening is my favorite time of the day. It all adds up in my mind for sure.

This is an interesting season for sure. Naturally whatever stage we are in we have never been in it before. As with most things we can only truly understand things from experience. This season has brought heaviness. It has brought mortality into very sharp focus. What once was a blurry concept now sits at the door waiting its turn in our lives. I have 2 dogs circling for home. A parent going through tough challenges. Friends parents passing, friends themselves. You hear the stories all the time. We take youth and the assumptions that tomorrow is going to be there for us with way too much liberty. The worst part is that it effects how we treat today. The present.

With all of that circling around my head, it makes me much more aware of the moment. Of the breath. Of the heart. Of thankfulness of which there is so much of.

Circles begin and close everyday. The tides pull and the moon is affected. We are all connected to everything. So, here on this cold day in Tennessee, I will pray thankfulness for the cold, the rain and the perfect imperfection of the universe. I am happy to be here, to learn, to forgive, to be forgiven, to build more bridges and tear down walls in my world.

So Creator, when you see the smoke of my Cedar and Sage rise this morning, know it is me. Know my humble heart beneath my ego. Know my love for this earth I stand on. And know that I do try to be, what I say I want to be.

I write this thinking of my Father. Of a friend that lost her Mother unexpectedly last year. I write it with Glen Frey on my heart. Of Merle Haggard and how much music is attached to our souls. We all must pass, and it is my only way of understanding is that there is something after. And while pearly gates and streets of gold don’t connect with me, I know the soul never dies, and there is a home on the other side of our reality here. But today I say” Good Morning Universe, How are Ya !” I’m glad to be here !

Be good to yourselves and to those around you.

Aho and Amen !

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Shine A Light: Garth Brooks

There was an old Elvis album titled “50,000, 000 fans can’t be wrong”. Garth Brooks immense popularity is that way as well. There is something about the accumulative aspects of Garth that made his popularity absolutely explode. In the early to mid 90’s it seemed that almost everybody had at least one Garth Brooks CD, even the folks you didn’t expect to.

There’s a lot that can be said about Garth Brooks. One of the best selling artist of all time, #1’s, CMA/ACM awards enough to fill a room. Ego galore. Sometimes overly emotional. Entertainer extraordinaire. Loving father. I’m sure you can find some ugly stories about him. Folks that rise to that level don’t do so without it. I have met him a few times and speaking from only those experiences, he was wonderful. Sincere, conversational, like talking to an old school friend.

I’ve not listened to his music in years, but it happened that I was at his Nashville flood relief concert this past week. It was the “first” concert Garth has done in about 10 years. It was undeniably great. A consummate entertainer and appeared to be having a wonderful time, but who wouldn’t enjoy 20,000 people screaming for you !! Everything aside, even if you don’t like his genre of music, the songs, every last one of them are solid as a rock. Add that with his personality and stage persona and well, you have all the makings of, well, Garth Brooks….

If you’ve not listened to Garth lately, go dig out a few tunes. Some of the arrangements are a little outdated, but hopefully the nostalgia will take over. He defined that space of time musically. For us raised in a world of country music, he was an artist that brought the world to country. For the most part it has been the other way around where country acts having always courted the rock/pop world. There is no shame in being country or liking a music that speaks to you and your life. Garth made it cool.

Oh, by the way, thanks to Garth for this series of shows..all sold out. Everything, ticket sales and merchandise, goes to the flood relief of Nashville. Way to step up.

Postcards From The South: Chattanooga TN

Most folks outside the Southern United States would be hard pressed to tell you where in the state of Tennessee, Chattanooga is ! Well, for the record it is snuggled quietly into the southeastern corner of the state, just a little over an hour north of Atlanta. We were moving our daughter into University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. I took a couple of shots that I found interesting and will take more scenic shots on future trips.

The Curl up and Dye Salon was an interesting little spot. I guess it should come as no surprise that they take “walk in’s” !! We were thinking that salons are right up there at the top of the list of always having “creative” names. I use the term “creative” very loosely ! but I thought this one was pretty funny or maybe it was just early and I hadn’t had enough coffee.

If you are ever in Chattanooga and hungry for Barb-Q, give Sugars a try, it was awesome !

I’m thinking if I ever need a wardrobe redo, I’m head to “Funktastic” ! Why not, it seems to be the place for hip threads. But they are in the process of changing locations (big surprise).

Anyone that grew up in the south has forever seen the signs “See Ruby Falls” ! Those signs are engrained in our minds. The famous Lookout Mountain is where you can see 7 states. It’s a cool little town and area to visit. So grab ya some new clothes at Funktastic, some ribs at Sugars, maybe get your “do” a little touch up and the Curl up and Dye, then truck on up to Lookout Mtn !!!