Black Friday and Shameless Plug Day

Ode to Black Friday

I do not like Black Friday, sir
I do not like the brrr, grrr, whirrr
I do not like to fight over socks,
I do not like to get crammed in a box
store, you will not see me at the Mall
I do not like it, no, not at all.
The crazy, scrambling, hunter’s race
doesn’t fit my ambling, gatherer’s pace
I like to feel, I like to sniff
I like to take my time and if
I take more time than Sally and Sam
it’s the way I shop, and it works for me, ma’am.
So you will not find me camped outside the store
You will not find me standing at dawn at the door
You will not find me wedged in the mall’s lot
or crammed in traffic, with wares newly-bought.
For I do not like Black Friday, friend.
Well, except online shopping maybe – they’ll send.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell (from A Poem Lives on My Windowsill)

Today is Karen’s shameless plug day. Yeah. I know. Stop cheering.

So here’s what we’ve got to plug right now (and all of these books can be found on Amazon, as well as ordered through other book stores like Barnes and Noble, etc.) –

Some of you may be familiar with my “Madcap Christian Scientist” series.

The first book in the Madcap series (published in August 2005) was Blessings: Adventures of the Madcap Christian Scientist. As I explain in the Introduction, I wrote this book “to introduce you to one Christian Scientist so that if you ever hear someone talking fearfully and ignorantly (feargnorantly?)  about Christian Scientists you’ll be in a position to say,  ‘I have a friend who’s a Christian Scientist, and, although it’s true she’s a bit of a nut, she’s also … ‘  and you can go on and talk about how your friend has used her study of Christian Science to try to make the world a happier place.”

I wrote the second book in the series, The Madcap Christian Scientist’s Middle Book, as I was nearing the end of an experience with a massive depression. As I write in the Introduction: “My son and I recently talked about my previous book, Blessings: Adventures of a Madcap Christian Scientist. I told him that book was true for the person I was then, and I’m glad I wrote it, but I couldn’t write the same book now. Andrew told me I should write another book then, for this time in my life. I told him that my recent life experience has been kind of dark. He said I should write about that then, and he started talking about trilogies – how almost every life story has three parts – the first book is usually happy and innocent, the second one is dark and challenging, and the last book is the triumph book. Andrew said it was time for me to write ‘the middle book.’ He assures me the book about the golden years will come, but he says that book can’t come until the middle book gets written. So what you see here is me sucking it up and writing The Middle Book.”

I wrote The Madcap Christian Scientist: All Things New, the third book in the series, to celebrate the re-birth I found on the other side of the depression.  I wrote: “Two years ago I would never have been able to guess where I’d be today, what I’d be doing, and what new people I would be calling my friends and colleagues. Two years ago my youngest son was close to graduating from high school, my 20-year career as a public school teacher was winding down, and I was looking for a new job and a new purpose to fill my days. Two years ago I was starting over. It was scary. It was exhilarating. It was absolutely awesome!”

There’s a fourth book with “Madcap Christian Scientist” in the title, and that’s The Madcap Christian Scientist’s Christmas Book, which is about… well… Christmas.

I’ve also published two books of poetry, A Poem Lives on My Windowsill (where you can find the poem featured on the top of this post), and The Brush of Angel Wings – published as I was working my way through the passing of my mother.  There’s also a book I wrote about the lessons I learned from Mom and Dad in the year before Dad’s 98th birthday, Finding the Rainbows: Lessons from Dad and Mom.

Dad’s autobiography, Memoirs of a Dinosaur Mountaineer, is on the market, too. Dad has had an amazing life – he’s climbed some of the highest mountains in the world, traveled on six of the seven continents, and hobnobbed with some of the planet’s most interesting humans.

BookCoverPreview - Memoirs of a Dinosaur Mountaineer

And my son, Xander, also has a book for sale right now, Dream Voyage – which sells for $5.99 as an Amazon print book, and 99 cents on Kindle. I believe I shall close this shameless plug with one of Xander’s poems:

Where Happiness Lives

Golden lights
and the deepest shadows.
Smiling faces illuminated by life.
A commodity where I come from.
An inherent condition here.
Where joy runs rampant
like that one naked man who,
in the presence of a police officer,
streaked across the town in the wake
of the city-wide party,
the officer laughing in mutual enjoyment
before calling the man by his first name,
as a friend and a neighbor,
to get his shit together.
– Xander Terrell, Dream Voyage

xanders-book-cover-dream-voyage

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First Review for Brush of Angel Wings

I got my first review for The Brush of Angel Wingsand it totally made my day:

“The author of The Brush of Angel Wings never fails to disappoint me. The poetry in her latest book causes a wide range of emotions in the reader, from joy to sadness, happiness to grief, humor to acceptance. Every poem is unique, yet the author’s distinct style can be found in each one. I enjoyed seeing glimpses of the author’s life through her poetry. I can’t wait for her next book to be released. -MM”

The_Brush_of_Angel_W_Cover_for_Kindle

That One’s Mine

I stopped by Fred Meyer’s to pick up a copy of Mother Earth News for Dad – I wanted to show him my photo in there. I went back to the magazine racks and a woman was stocking them. I asked her if Fred Meyer carries Mother Earth News and she said yes – they sold those right at the check-stands. I told her – because I’m so incredibly humble and self-effacing and stuff – that my photo was in there. And she grinned, all excited, and told me she’d take me right to the magazine. So she walked with me to the front of the store and showed me where Mother Earth News was and I showed her my photo (in the very back). She recognized the area where I took the picture and we talked about Bow and Skagit County, trumpeter swans and snow geese, and just had a lovely chat. I love meeting my neighbors. 

And if you find an April/May 2017 issue of Mother Earth News you will see a picture of a red barn and Mount Baker and trumpeter swans on, like, the last page – and yup, that one’s mine. 🙂

 

Little by Little

“Old age” comes little by little, I think –
little surrenders of who we are
to the experts and authorities,
to convenience and comfort –
someone tells us we need to stay out
of the sun, to eat only certain foods,
to travel only at the right times
and to the right places,
and to wash our hands after every
handshake and human touch –
and we listen and obey.

And so we spend our days in “preventative”
exams – counting the pills into our trays –
hoping to increase the number of our days.
And little by little we relinquish
the small pleasures that make life
meaningful –  the joy of adventure,
noon-time lunch  with our faces turned
towards the sun,  whipped cream on
our cocoa, shaking hands  with new friends,
and listening to our own hearts to create lives
worth living.

And we lose our lives in a fear of death.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell

Shameless Merchandising (because, you know, it’s Christmas and stuff)

The Good You Seek

I want to take a break, I said.
Can I step out of life for a moment,
or maybe stay in bed?
Can things go on without me?
Can you just pretend I’m not here?
For life is a messy business
and I’m tired and I’m weary
I’ve made too many mistakes to count today
And I’d like to not make anymore, not any.

And the still small voice reached into my thought
– gentle, peaceable benediction –
“All the good you seek and all that you’ve sought
you can claim right now – and that’s no fiction –
for Love is yours to express, to feel, and to be
– you are wealthy beyond description.
Nothing else matters, there’s no other power
no warring opinions, no need to cower
You are loved and you’re loving
and that’s all there is to it
Love’s loving child, and there’s nothing else
but loving, simply nothing.”
– Karen Molenaar Terrell, from
A Poem Lives on My Windowsill <-purchase it here

Teardrop

A tear welled within my eye.
I held my breath and kept very still,
and for that few seconds,
the world was much clearer
through the lens of the tear.
– Xander Terrell, from
Dream Voyage <-purchase it here

Review for Finding the Rainbows: Lessons from Mom and Dad
“I read this book cover to cover with a smile on my face the whole time. The author’s engaging conversational style takes the reader along on her journey to resettle her parents from farm to assisted living and the love, gratitude, and simple joys of life she experiences during the transition. I highly recommend this book and it would make a great gift.”

Review for The Madcap Christian Scientist’s Christmas Book:
“Charming and endearing to read. You sit with a grin on your face while reading.”

Review for Blessings: Adventures of a Madcap Christian Scientist:
“Karen has touched my soul with her heartwarming and hilarious rendition of the road less traveled. Everyone I know has had to listen to me go on and on about how great a read this is! Whether you want to laugh, cry, or just smile about life again, read this!!!”

Review for The Madcap Christian Scientist’s Middle Book:
“I think Karen has reached into my heart,and planted the seeds of love. This book gives inspiration and hope to all that read with open hearts and love.”

Review for The Madcap Christian Scientist: All Things New:
“How inspirational, fun, and enlightening! As with the author’s two other Madcap Christian Scientists’ books, I thoroughly enjoyed this one for its honesty, spirit of adventure and enlightenment. It uplifted me without being preachy. The author graciously gives us a peek inside her life and mind and reader beware!!! She dares go there and everywhere! A great, fun read that I will recommend to others as I have with her other two. My only complaint was I truly wished she had written more and that’s just me being greedy!!”

Karen’s author page.
Xander’s author page

book covers 2016

xanders-book-cover-dream-voyage

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Not Giving Up

So there’s this site called singsnap that’s a karaoke site – let’s you record yourself singing songs to the site’s backup music. My friend, Kathi, introduced me to this site back in 2013, and I made some recordings on there over that summer and then pretty much forgot about it and moved on to other diversions. 🙂 But this morning I was thinking about a Jason Mraz song, I won’t Give Up, and went back to my recording of it on singsnap. It was the first song I recorded on there and I didn’t really know what I was doing – this is not a professional recording or anything. But I feel impelled to share it today. It’s a song for my country and my world. Here’s the link to it: Karen’s recording of I Won’t Give Up. 

I won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up, I’m still looking up.
– Jason Mraz