An amazing afternoon with Probus

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I have to share with you, my readers about an awesome afternoon I had yesterday. Last November at my book signing event at the Coles Bookstore  in Brantford for my book ‘A Hairdresser’s Diary’ I was approached by a customer who suggested she would be contacting a friend of hers who might be interested in me being a guest speaker at a local womans club. To say the least I was flattered. It was only a few days when I received an invitation from Lucinda asking me if I would like to do that very thing (be their guest speaker) the date chosen was May 8th, yesterday in fact. I am ashamed to say I knew nothing about this group that Lucinda talked about so I Googled it. The group is called Probus http://www.probus.org/worigins.htm.

I am a woman who loves to talk and am far from being shy. I love to share my stories and that is one reason I wrote my book but speaking in public to a group is something I have never done nor expected to do. I was not smart enough to ask Lucinda through our several e mails passed between us how many members I should expect to talk to. When I arrived I was directed to a room that was indeed a full house. Lucinda greeted me and I expressed my surprise at the crowd. I said, “how many ladies are there?” Lucinda without missing a beat said,”oh about four hundred.” Seeing the shock on my face she laughed. “I think about a hundred or so today.” I was still in shock. I thought I would be lucky to be in the company of about twenty or twenty-five at the most. I was not sure how many members would be interested in and inexperienced first time author.

I was not two steps into the room and I could feel the acceptance, warmth and friendliness of these amazing women. Each and everyone met me with their smiles and others greeted me verbally. I was shocked to have one of my Facebook friends Wendy there and introduce me to the group.

Shaking like a leaf I started to speak. It was not long before this amazing group of woman made me feel so comfortable that I was sharing my stories as if I was talking one on one. There was no background chattering or disruptive noises and I did not have to shout to be heard. The reception was incredible. They made me feel like I was one of their cosy family members.  It was suggested I take some of my books for the members to purchase and I sold every copy I took. I met someone who I taught make up to when we both sold a cosmetics line at the same time, and to my total astonishment a woman who took the same modeling course that I did at the same school in London a few years after me. It is truly a small world.

My daughter and I were both invited to join this lovely group for lunch and we accepted. We are both on a waiting list to join these lovely ladies in what they do.

I cannot thank them each and every one for making yesterday a most enjoyable day. They also taught me a very valuable lesson, I loved talking in this forum. I would also like to thank you for the beautiful handmade Thank You card that was presented to me made by one of your talented members.

Thank you all so very much the ladies of PROBUS group Brantford.

 

My granddaughter Shandra

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Anyone that has read my book “A Hairdresser’s Diary” knows how much styling long hair meant to me and my career. My granddaughter Shandra is getting married this July . My dream has always been to be the one hairdresser of choice for all the brides in our family including in laws. Well I have been blessed as I have had that chance. What you are seeing in this picture is my granddaughter. This is the dry run before her wedding. You might ask why this would be necessary? well as most of you know I am just getting over another surgery this time on my left knee. Being the kind and considerate granddaughter that Shandra is, she has been concerned that I might cause myself pain either with my back or my knees on her wedding day and not be able to attend or enjoy her special day so she asked me to do her hair and take pictures now. This way I will have the pictures  of my loving work  for my ‘grandmothers album’ I am making for her. She looks like a Greek Goddess and I am proud to say she was in love with her hair. 

If you look hard enough you can see fine braided woven throughout her hair. This was one of my signatures that made my styles set apart from other stylists. Remember this was over 50 years ago and are no longer a rare embellishment. I enjoyed every second of this special day.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Hairdressers-Diary-looking-reflection-ourselves/dp/1475164289/ref=zg_bsnr_220855011_12

http://www.ahairdressersdiary.com/

 

Aspiring Writers anthology

I am pleased and proud to be one of the authors in the new book. There are many gifted authors who are being showcased. Please take time to check it out.

 

Aspiring Writers anthology is up on Amazon

https://www.createspace.com/4237782

 

Posted in Books, This and that, Writing. Comments Off on Aspiring Writers anthology

That which does not kill me makes me stronger.

Well here I am back in business and on the ball again. It has been a very long and painful five weeks. Just minutes before my radio interview with Sherri http://www.blogtalkradio.com/rithebard/2013/02/26/chatting-with-sherri  I felt a pain in my left knee. I mentioned to Sherri and she wanted to know if I wanted to cancel the show.”Hell no! ” was my response. Once the interview was over I tried to stand up from my sitting position and my knee popped and snapped. From that moment until now I have been hospitalized, bedridden, had surgery and now am on the mend. I was so scared as I was unable to walk or stand. I went through so many physical, emotional and mental transformations. Once again thanks to prayers from my friends and family God has decided I should be here to annoy you all for while still.

If you have a moment please listen to my interview and any comments are welcomed.

A chat with Sherri

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As an author, especially a first time author, I am excited when given the opportunity to share my story. It is awesome when a reader e mails or calls me with a wonderful testimonial or  when I get five-star comments on Amazon or any other media site. I have been honoured with many wonderful interviews through the posts of many amazing people, some being authors themselves. So on Feb 26th at 10:30 PST I will be privileged to do a radio interview with Sherri Rabinowitz and a chance to get the word out about my book A Hairdresser’s Diary and the sequel I am now writing. If you have a moment on that day, please tune in at the link below.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/rithebard/2013/02/26/chatting-with-sherri

http://www.ahairdressersdiary.com/

http://www.amazon.com/Hairdressers-Diary-looking-reflection-ourselves/dp/1475164289/ref=zg_bsnr_220855011_12

http://www.amazon.ca/A-Hairdressers-Diary-ebook/dp/B007V3CTO4/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1360763470&sr=1-1

Back to the real world

Well I told myself this morning I should get myself out of this winter rut and back into the real world. As everyone else in this great world we have had our share of illness and death in the short few months. I think we are all finally feeling better and on the right track to get on with the day.

I want to share with you my friends that I have 14 chapters written for my new book ( the sequel to ) A Hairdresser’s Diary. I am wracking my brain on what to use as a title but I know one day when I least expect it, it  will come to me.

I would like to take this opportunity to share a chapter from this book with you. I hope you will find it interesting.

 

This is part of Chapter Seven.

Within eighteen months we took a newly built house with only dirt and mud for landscaping and transformed it into a showpiece with a golf course looking lawn with lovely trees and flowers. People would stop as they passed just to feel our grass. One couple asked if they could take their shoes off and walk on it. They could not believe it was real. Ron always cut the grass in both directions so it would be perfectly manicured. Now it was our turn to have others ask us for our advice on landscaping. This pleased Ron and it showed. It was during one of those lawn manicuring sessions that Ron’s life changed and changed forever. At the young age of thirty-five, he suffered severe chest pain. Shadows of his father’s death hung over him. Before the day was over, Ron had been diagnosed with coronary artery disease. Fear and uncertainty ruled his thoughts while he waited for hospital arrangements. He still recalls the day when we were all playing and laughing during his fearful wait and he was thinking to himself, “How can they play and laugh when I might die?”

My burning question was, “How could this strong, young man have heart problems?” As we had been with every other challenge that came our way, we were determined to beat this demon and to do it as a family. Our families and many of our friends offered their support. As a family we shed many tears and it was obvious we were all so terrified. The kids had no idea what was in store for their dad all we knew was this was a life threatening and risky disease. Ron and I tried to hide the worst from the kids but we could not protect them from what the future was to bring. Ron always felt his father was too secretive when it came to his health so he was adamant that his kids be fully informed. But we found they were amazingly strong and did whatever they could to make a terrible situation easier on us. We had no time for anyone or anything. Everything else in our lives were put on the back burner as we needed our strength and focus to deal with this ugly monster – heart disease. I must be honest the question that permeated my minds several times during this time was,” Had we gotten too cocky, comfortable or seem to be ungrateful now that things had been going smoothly for us? We had a perfectly manicured lawn but our lived were all but that. Had we as a family forgot how to share or give to others? I did not think so but was this a reminder to rethink? Was there a cost to being happy that I was not aware of? I was envious of those who’s lives seemed to run seamlessly smooth and who had no idea what pain either physical or mental was all about. I felt ashamed that I had these thoughts. I needed to shake off these feelings and get back to reality. I thanked God for giving me the strength to do what needed to be done and asked him to make me less selfish.

Second Place Winning Story

 I was pleasantly surprised this morning when I went to check on my LinkedIn messages and found that I had won second prize in this contest. I wanted to share it with you all this morning. I know Christmas is over but what is one last memory. Thank you all especially Ronnie Dauber who is the founder of this amazing group.

Second Place Winning Story – Why Christmas is Special to Me – by Chris Hannon  / contest run by Ronnie Dauber, author

When my children were growing up we did not have much, but no mater how little we had we taught our children to share. So one Christmas when our oldest was only five, we had an idea, one that evolved into a tradition. I will explain, first of all we never hid the gifts from our kids. As soon as we bought them, they were wrapped and then put under the tree. We would pack them tightly so far under the tree that it was almost impossible for anyone to see how many there really were. Snooping was a no-no and would be a sure fired way of making all those Christmas gifts disappear. An artificial tree made it simple to hide the presents, as I could pull the branches lower to the ground to cover them. What we didn’t do was put names on the ones from Santa until Christmas Eve while the children were asleep. I marked each with a symbol for identification purposes. It was not unheard of that I would get them confused. One year the kids got several of the wrong gifts. It was funny but the kids reminded me every year after.

Two days before Christmas, we would sit with our children in front of the tree and pointed out which gifts were for them. We asked them to please choose one of their already wrapped gifts to give to another child. This would be given anonymously and be for someone who had less than they did. Without hesitation, they unselfishly chose and proudly delivered their choices to one of the many places desperately needing gifts. Not once in all the years that we carried on this tradition, did our kids question what was in those presents they gave away.

Our children are now grown and married and have their own children. While visiting yesterday my seven-year-old grandson ran up to me all excited. Chattering he said,” Papa, Grammies I just spent my Tooth Fairy money and my allowance on two presents for other kids who need presents too. Grammies, some kids don’t have mommies and daddies like me. I need to help right Grammies, right Papa?”
I gave him the biggest hug I could without squishing him. “Right, Ronnie.” I was so very proud of this sweet little boy.

He then looked at me and said,” Grammies this is my tramdition.”
Smiling I dare not correct him and tell him the word was tradition. I just said. “Do you know that Daddy, Uncle Terry and Aunty Chris used to have a tradition to give gifts too?”

“I know Grammies that is how daddy taught me to be for sharing.”
I looked at my son who was beaming with pride. He said, “Mom, this is the third year that Ronnie has used his own money. It is usually his birthday money and allowance. We stopped paying when he started being paid to help do chores. Not only does he pay he picks the presents out himself. The first year we had to put in a bit but now he can read the prices.” Giving his son a hug he continued, “We still have to watch for sales but he is good at that too.”

“Ronnie, are you going to teach your kids to carry on this tradition like daddy taught you?” Papa asked.

“Oh Papa, you are so silly I don’t have any kids I am only a little boy!” With that, he marched off shaking his head leaving us grown ups laughing and feeling ever so proud. This is why Christmas is so special to me.

The Next Big Thing

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The Next Big Thing is a series of blog posts where authors talk about their work using the same ten questions. At the end of the blog we tag other authors who will do the same thing a week later. So not only do you get to find out more about my book but you also will discover some other interesting writers. The wonderful and amazing Sharla (catnipoflife) tagged me. Not only have I enjoyed her amazing work I have enjoyed her friendship. This lady has a heart of gold and shares it with everyone she possibly can. Her writing is inspirational and grabs your heart.

Thank you, Sharla, for giving me the opportunity to introduce my latest book, which is currently in the writing stages but hopefully will be finished and ready for the public eye Mid June this year.

1. What is the working title of your next book?
I have a couple of titles in mind but have not come to a final conclusion yet. Seeing as it is a sequel to my first book ‘A Hairdresser’s Diary’ I think it may have to have part of that title in it.

2. Where did the idea come from for the book?:
This is a sequel for the first. It picks up after the drunk driver took away my careers. God offered me new and interesting ways to continue my life and sharing with others. I am so pleased that I have been approached by so many people in my life that want to be included in this new book. I am not pleased I am honoured.

3. What genre does your book fall under?

Memoirs / inspirational

4. What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
I had thought of this as a movie or TV series but had not thought of any actors. I think I would be pleased if it was someone everyone had respect for was cast. No one who is considered a garbage mouth actor or actress would br acceptable.

5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

The desperate need to trade scissors for other God-given talents just to survive.

6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

This book like my first one will be self published.

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

I would venture to say from the time the first outline was drafted for The Sequel to A Hairdresser’s Diary to its final manuscript would be approximately a year . Don’t hold me to that explicitly! I like other writers get a jet fueled start and then a light fizzle and then a spirt again so I am not sure. I am luck though I do not have to make things up they are all buried right here in this little old mind of mine. I just have to make sure they are in proper order.

8. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I am sorry but i do not have any books in mind that are the same.

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

My son-in-law inspired me to write the first one and my readers inspired this one.
10. What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?

This is a quote from the Director of Children’s Mental Health which puts a whole new spin on my writing.

Chris Hannon’s A Hairdresser’s Diary – This fascinating book written by the spouse of our very own Ron has proven to be a hit within the Agency, especially with our female clients who are relating to the story with enthusiasm. Groups are in the works to discuss the book and Chris has generously agreed to come in, sign the books and meet with the clients, which promises to be very rewarding for many of these kids.

Bill Sanderson, Executive Director St Leonard’s Community Services

St. Leonard’s Community Services is recognized as a leader in the field of community justice, employment, youth and family and addictions and mental health services.

Here is another author that deserves your attention please visit her.

Ronnie Dauber

 

Thank you Sharla I am so honoured you chose me and I hope I do you proud. Blessings

What better gift than my books

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Yesterday a customer called to order four of my book A Hairdresser’s Diary to give as Christmas gifts. I am so honoured that she wants to share my work with so many others. So I am begging your patience as I take a few moments to advertise my books in hopes for a few last-minute holiday sales. We as authors or at least this author finds it awkward at times to do this. I am proud of my books so why does this seem like I am walking across thin ice to hand a drowning person a helping hand. On one hand I feel good I have something exciting to share and on the other I have to be careful doing it.

We should sing from the rooftops about our accomplishments and yet sometimes we hold back afraid of offending someone or in some cases with family and friends afraid they think us braggarts. So risking this I am posting the links to my books just in case there is someone on your list who might enjoy reading one or both of these books. Thank you all.

http://www.amazon.com/Hairdressers-Diary-looking-reflection-ourselves/dp/1475164289/ref=zg_bsnr_220855011_12

http://www.amazon.com/Versify-Poems-Christine-Hannon-1/dp/162220011X/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1346070150&sr=1-4&keywords=versify

http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/sassychannon

catnipoflife

Today’s posting at catnipoflife is a tribute in memory of Sandra McLeod Humphrey. I feel very honored to have known Sandra even if for only a short period of time. I encourage you to visit her website Dare to Dream Big! If you did not know Sandy, there would be no better way to celebrate her life than to acquaint yourself with her writing by visiting her blog @ http://www.kidscandoit.com/blog/. Then, I encourage all, whether you knew her or not, to order one of her books as a Christmas gift for a friend, loved one or family member. What a great tribute that would be for Sandy!

Here is a brief account of the tragic death of Sandra and her husband, as well as a little insight into her remarkable writing.

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 “Tragedy has taken the life of award-winning children’s book author Sandra McLeod Humphrey and her husband, Brian Humphrey.  Both were killed in…

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