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Mickey at Ground Zero!

August 15, 2017

“Bad Choices in Dark Places”

Excerpt #3:  Chapter 32

Mickey at Ground Zero!

Enrique made a decision.  He was going to find Somebody to jump-start Mickey’s manly passions … which had been dormant long enough! And Enrique didn’t really care if his cousin wanted to or not.  It was time! Enrique had grown weary of Mickey’s monastic lifestyle. As far as he was concerned, Mickey’s behavior was unnatural, and worse yet, un-Cool.

Enrique had kept silent when Mickey made trips back and forth to New York, trying to sell Lisa on the idea of moving the family to California. In the absence of details that Mickey didn’t care to share, Enrique assumed that Lisa no longer loved his cousin.

Mickey had a ton of options where women were concerned, but he seemed oblivious to them all. Enrique decided to point out the possibilities and draw Mickey in proximity to every one of them. Even though Mickey had put the read more …

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Pizza in the Coffin

August 6, 2017

“Bad Choices in Dark Places”

Excerpt from:  Chapter 33

Pizza in the Coffin of Robert Morgan Binga

The local mortuary gave her exactly what she insisted on:  A dull ash-gray coffin with questionable silver and chrome handlebars.  The box was perfectly suited for a “2-for-1” Sale. Vashti Elizabeth Preston Binga deliberately chose a bargain basement coffin for her dead former-husband.  She knew he would have wanted a high-end, showpiece Casket for his last remains. But also against his wishes, Vashti chose to lay out Robert’s body in a dink chapel at the rear of a modest funeral facility.

Had he been alive, Morgan’s Daddy would have objected vehemently to each of his former wife’s choices. But Vashti was determined to get the last lick in the final round of the fiasco that Robert had made of their marriage. He had shamelessly robbed her of self-respect and exposed her to public humiliation. It read more …

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The House of Possibilities

August 3, 2017

“Bad Choices in Dark Places”

Excerpt from: Chapter 28

Zeke and The House of Possibilities

Zeke and Manny were standing outside Black Madonna Temple when a rail-thin young man with a jittery stride walked toward them. His shoulders were hunched and his hands shoved deep in his pants pockets. Sean was once a gifted artist whose work was finally being recognized and celebrated. Unfortunately, his talent could not save him from the poor choices that led to his drug addiction and homelessness.

Sean saw Zeke and quickened his pace, hoping to pass unnoticed. Zeke ignored him until he was within arm’s reach. Then Zeke grabbed the young man and whispered in his ear, “When you’re ready to get out of Hell, come see me!”

Sean snatched his body from Zeke’s grasp and hurried away. read more …

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Independence Day … Let’s Celebrate!

July 4, 2017

“GOD BLESS AMERICA!”

Let this be our “Collective” Mantra

One Voice … Diversity Strong!

Let Us Celebrate Our Independence

With One Voice … Diversity Strong!

“GOD BLESS AMERICA!”

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Happy Birthday to Me!

June 1, 2017

HAPPY B’DAY TO ME!

Yep, it’s official.  Today, I am a “Woman of a Certain Age!”  Some of you have a rich & personal understanding of what that means. 🙂  If so perhaps you too no longer feel the need to “Speak of Age” in chronological terms.  Perhaps like me … you now REVEL in whatever Age you are – Unapologetically & Unabashedly! 

By the above, I simply mean I’m Alive and Well and Grateful to feel the “Purpose Vibe” still percolating in my Spirit.  That’s what’s really important to me now!  I find all other commentary to be Self-indulgent, Gratuitous and without Merit!  Who needs to hear more of that?!!

What I will share with you … since you took the time to stop by on my B’DAY … is my Declaration for the next 70+ years.  Oops, did I let the Cat out of the Bag?  No problem!  She was chomping at the bit to GET OUT anyway.  🙂  read more …

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Summer Break – Make It Count! Part 2

June 19, 2016

“The Parental Grapevine!”

A Cluster of Transformational Parenting Practices

  Malbec Grapes

Summer Break – Make It Count!  (Part 2)

As most of you know, the underlying theme of this blog and everything we do at Parenting Your Teen for Life … is rooted in our belief that the quality of Parent-Teen relationships impacts virtually every area of a teenager’s life.  As a result we are always trying to create or uncover and share effective ways of improving the Bond between parents and their teen-children.

I am aware that some parents don’t feel they have a strong Bond with their teenager.  Some might even say the Connection to their teen is ambiguous, at best.  More often than not, these parents are eager to find ways to pull their son or daughter close … to protect and nurture their Parent-Teen relationship.

Throughout the school year, our teenagers are heavily involved with academics, extra-curricular activities and their friends.  Parents have limited access to their teens.  And when we have them within earshot, we’re often barking orders or “laying down the law” about something our teen did or didn’t do … which created Consequences that had to be dealt with.  These and similar situations chip away at the Bond we would otherwise have with our sons and daughters. read more …

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Teens Need Values – Family Values!

May 17, 2016

“The Parental Grapevine!”

A Cluster of Transformational Parenting Practices

Malbec Grapes

Teens Need Values – Family Values!

There was a time not long ago when the term “Family Values” commanded immediate respect.  A certain level of “Good” was associated with the term and people were eager to be identified with it.  Sadly, however, the term “Family Values” has taken a beating because of the often unscrupulous antics of those who occupy the Core of that philosophy.  In some ways, “Family Values” has been commandeered by a fringe of the “ultra-Conservative” who are bent on imposing their self-styled Demagoguery on everyone.

If the truth be told, however, I believe we would discover that “Family Values” are equally important to a great many people from every socio-economic, ethnic, religious, cultural and political background.  To think otherwise is to “own up to” personal biases that tear at our humanity and snip away at the Good Will we would otherwise hold for one another.

What is a Family?     

Here in the 21 Century, we all recognize that the traditional definition of Family no longer meets the reality of our sense of Connectedness.  Today, the definition of Family has expanded the ranks of traditional “kinfolk” to include:  single-parent families, blended families, adoptive families, foster families and those headed by individuals of the same gender.

Let me offer a definition of “Family” that I think is broad enough to embrace all those who wish to be grafted in.

I believe a Family is any group of people who choose to deeply identify with each other, cooperate, care for and support each other, promote mutual safety and wellbeing and who would love each other unconditionally.  These individuals may not live together or even in proximity of each other … but distance has no appreciable effect on the quality of their relationship. read more …

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I Wish You “Emmanuel” Blessings this Christmas!

December 24, 2015

“The Parental Grapevine!”

A Cluster of Transformational Parenting Practices

  Malbec Grapes

 I Wish You “Emmanuel” Blessings this Christmas!

I Wish You “Emmanuel” Blessings this Christmas! “Emmanuel” Blessings is a term not used very often during the Christmas season. More frequently we hear “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays” or “Seasons Greetings” — all of which have general acceptance in a country as diverse as America. This is a good thing because it allows everyone to feel “Included” as opposed to feeling “Excluded” or simply ignored.

Being made to feel “excluded” or “invisible” or that you simply do not matter … is hurtful and damaging because it creates a direct and negative strike against our self-worth … even our Humanity. I believe this is repugnant to GOD who sees each of us as worthy of His Breath of Life … for a time. read more …

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Teen Turbulence – Let’s Break It Down!

December 4, 2015

“The Parental Grapevine!”

A Cluster of Transformational Parenting Practices

  Malbec Grapes

Teen Turbulence – Let’s Break It Down!

Teen Turbulence is all the crappy “Stuff” that naturally erupts in the lives of our sons and daughters. It’s the “Stuff” that we parents cannot control … because it’s completely under the control of our teenagers. If you are living with a teenager, Turbulence is either happening now or about to bubble up and splatter all over you.  BUT there’s hope!

Remember Your Teen Years!

Do you recall your teen years? I hope so because it’s important that you feel “Empathy” toward your teenager. That would be the proof that you have not forgotten what it feels like to be trapped in the body and brain of a teenager. read more …

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Consequences of Sexting!

December 1, 2015

“The Parental Grapevine!”

A Cluster of Transformational Parenting Practices

  Malbec Grapes

The Consequences of Sexting!

Most teenagers are clueless about the long-term consequences of having a nude or sexually explicit picture or video of themselves on the Internet. Those images go viral and circulate like wildfire at school, in their neighborhood and potentially throughout Cyberspace. Anyone with Internet access can easily come across these pictures. Once released, the pictures can never fully be retrieved.

Aside from the name-calling that teens endure short-term (Slut! Pervert!), the long-term negative impact on their reputation could influence college admission, future employment, and their social standing for many years to come.

The potential for lifelong condemnation is a fact no one wants to experience. Sadly, however, a number of teens have committed suicide as a result of the humiliation, taunts and bullying they received after nude or semi-nude pictures of them were circulated throughout their school and on the Internet. read more …

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