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Every Life is a Story
    A place to share my own family stories

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Halloween Spirit

A friend once described the way I decorate for Halloween.  She said, “Julie decorates for Halloween the way most people decorate for Christmas.  And she decorates for Christmas the way nobody does.”  I love to transform my entire house into a Halloween haven.  Every room gets some treatment, even down to the hand soap in the guest bathroom.  Now that it’s just a few days until October, however, I find myself reluctant to open up those boxes.  I’m not ready to decorate.  

I think the biggest reason for this reluctance is that it’s 85 degrees outside.  This is summer weather.  It has been a beautiful September, and no, I am not complaining about the temperature at all, but it doesn’t FEEL like fall.  When I mentioned this to my husband, he reminded me that this is Utah.  It will be summer weather until there is a sudden cool down.  We will have fall for two weeks, and then it will be winter.  I don’t want winter.  If the weather wants to stay in the 80s through October, then I will not complain.  It just doesn’t feel like the time to decorate.  

Another reason is that it’s been a busy September!  We’ve had events and activities every week.  It has not been the settling down into a school routine that I expected it to be.  We just finished up a fun and frenzied weekend at Salt Lake Comic Con, and the idea of starting my month of spooky ghost story events in just a few short days seems very abrupt.  

Not to fear.  This morning as I drove to work I noticed there were trees who had leaves falling, even in the hot temperatures.  I made sure to crunch through them as I went walking with my friend this afternoon.  I’m going to put on my spooky music, and carefully open one or two of the many boxes of Halloween decor.  It’s still a few days away, but if I put up something here, and something there, I’ll be ready.  

It will be delightful.  

Saturday, September 19, 2015

International Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Good day to ye, Maties!  It be International Talk Like a Pirate Day!

This is one of my favorite not a real holidays to celebrate because it's so much fun!  I'm bummed it's on a Saturday this year, because I work at a high school, and always dress up like a pirate.  I'll simply have to dress like a pirate for cleaning my house, I guess.

There are many stories of ghost ships, and phantom sailors, but my favorite ghost pirate is the pirate Jean Lafitte who sailed around the New Olreans area.  His stories take two different forms.  Some say that he still sails with his pirate fleet after he and his eight ships vanished.  Some say his fleet can be seen when the coast of Louisiana is in danger, and that his ships were sighted right before Hurricane Katrina.

Other stories talk about his hoard of pirate treasure.  The treasure is cursed, and haunted by Jean Lafitte's ghost who is not allowed to move to the beyond because of his treachery and greed.  It is usually a sad tale of warning to those who put gold above all else.

Remember Jean Lafitte as you talk like a pirate today!

Friday, September 11, 2015

Story Crossroads

The Story Crossroads has featured me recently in their blog, celebrating stories.  It's exciting and an honor to be a part of it!

Utah is one of the biggest supporters of storytelling as an art form in the nation.  It has the largest storytelling festival in the nation with the Timpanogos Storytelling festival, and it supports numerous local festivals all over the state. There are programs to teach storytelling in the schools, and guilds to support those who love stories and wish to learn more.

With so much support, it's exciting to see The Story Crossroads come to the Salt Lake area.  This storytelling festival is set to premiere in 2016, and the focus is on story as a way of bringing people and cultures together.  Check out the post, and plan on supporting this exciting event!


Saturday, September 5, 2015

Coming Soon: Beyond the Wail

Coming out in early October is the paranormal Anthology Beyond the Wail!

I am one of twelve authors (one of them is my husband!)  My story is a ghost story:

Margaret Murphy is a young musician who loses her boyfriend in a tragic motorcycle accident.  Mourning his death, she makes the chilling discovery that other people are dying on that same road in exactly the same location of her boyfriend’s death.  Suspecting something of supernatural origin, Maggie draws on some old family stories and an ancient gift to stop others from being lured to their deaths.  Alone at night on a remote mountain road, Maggie must overcome her own doubts, face the killer, and let go of her own feelings of grief and loss.  

As an added bonus, here's a video of the upcoming book!

Getting Ready

*blows the dust off of this blog*

It has been a long time since I've posted!  I've had many adventures since then, too many to catch up on in one small blog.

In truth, it's time to change the blog completely!  The whole website needs to be changed!  I'm waiting on some artwork to help me do it, and then there will be a remodel.  Some new paint, new pictures, maybe a couch or two....you won't recognize the place.

I have always been a storyteller.  I am so lucky to perform and share stories to so many people.  I am excited to embark on my newest adventure and write my own stories!  Next month, I will be publishing my first short story in a paranormal anthology with Xchyler publishing.  It is something I never thought I would do.  I'm surprised to be here.  It's a great feeling.

Because of that, I'm changing the blog.  I'm going to start posting about my book, about things that are coming up with Xchyler, because they are a small publishing house run by wonderful people who deserve to have people discover their books!  But most importantly, I'm going to start sharing the stories that I love the most.  I love ghost stories.  It's why my first actual attempt at writing was a ghost story.  Ghost stories are the stories I most love to tell.  They have a place and a purpose in our culture, and I am happy to do my part to keep them alive.

So look for changes, starting later today when I share the title and cover of my new book.  The rest of the cosmetic remodeling will follow.

"To be a person
is to have a story to tell."

- Isak Dinesen  

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