The Adventure Continues

My mind trails back to May of 2014. We had packed up a trailer leaving all our furniture and accumulations of “stuff” in our Alberta rural retreat, then we loaded our four dogs into the van and headed south. With hardly a glance, we left behind banks of stubborn snow which refused to melt even though the calendar pages had drifted to May. We were headed to new phase in our lives in Phoenix Arizona. I was long past ready to shed the bitter cold and deep snows of the winter that had just past. I longed for the warmth of a bright sun. When we arrived two and a half days later I was already complaining about the heat of the 27° C (80° F). My naivety hit, like running into a brick wall, in July when the thermometer soared to 46 ° C (115° F). The 2,700 miles were traveled as easy as any road trip with four dogs can. The adjustment to the landscapes and temperatures of southern Arizona were a different journey all together.

Now here we are and it is January 2018. We have embarked on another adventure this time in Ogden Utah.  Why you ask? I guess because we can and to be honest I miss having seasons. I miss the promise in the first warm days of spring. I miss the joy at seeing the splash of bright colors tulips bring to a bleak landscape, the joy of shedding shoes and socks for flip-flops for a few months, the comfort of being wrapped in a heavy sweater when frost nips at your nose and the diamonds of sunlight that dance across a snow covered field. The Salt Lake City area offered us these experiences with a promise that the the winters wouldn’t be as harsh and battering as those in Alberta.  This transition was a shorter drive, made quicker by the fact that over the last three years we have lost three of our dogs. They are still with me. Their memories are packed up tight in my mind and travel with me where ever I go.

And so we bid adieu to Arizona, and headed north with a small moving van loaded with “stuff” accumulated over 3 1/2 years and our van carrying the precious cargo of our one remaining dog, Moe. We arrived a 1 1/2 days later tired from the exertions of packing up a house and the long drive to be greeted with what should’ve been a welcomed sight –  our new home. Instead were were met with a driveway full of snow. And here we were Canadians and not a single snow shovel in sight.

Cold Greeting in Ogden

Our dilemma was  solved by a quick trip to a local Walmart and an hour of back breaking work to the refrain of “be careful what you ask for” taunting me.

We have settled into our new home. I’ve adjusted to the lower temperatures even driving with my windows cracked open when on a bright sunny day the day time high hit 11° C (52° F).

There is one more thing that attracted us to the Ogden UT area – the mountains. After living in Reno NV surrounded by the Sierra Nevada Mountains, I have missed those views. Now we have great mountains views from our new home. Here’s to happy new year and new adventures!

Front View 1Front View 2Back View 3



Maybe One Day I’ll Laugh – FF Nov 29th

Welcome to my Friday Fictioneers 100 word Story. Thank you Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting this challenge. Please click her name to get all the rules.

I was running ideas for stories through my mind when it hit me. I didn’t have to make up a story. The prompt reminded me of a trauma from my past which I am stilling dealing with. As the title says maybe one day I’ll laugh – just not yet.

Thank you to “he who remains nameless” for the interesting photo prompt.

FF Nov 29th

Word Count – 104

Maybe One Day I’ll Laugh

Sunlight danced through crimson leaves and dappled the pathway before my husband and I.

Four hours into our four-day backpacking trip in my heart soared when I spotted the ramshackle building. A chance to relieve myself away from inquisitive eyes, big and small. I pried opened the door hanging on rusty hinges. No wasps, no furry critters greeted me. I dropped my trousers and lowered myself onto rough tree limbs that spanned a dark hole.


My perch gave way. I thrust my arms against opposing walls arresting my fall.

“Help!” I gasped. My arms began to shake. “Help!”

Was that a camera flash?

Thanks for reading. Please click HERE to read other creative takes on the prompt.




FF Challenge Nov 10th – Driven

Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, thank you once again for hosting this challenge. Please click her name for all the rules. Thank you Marie Gail Stratford for the wonderful photo.

FF Nov 10
PHOTO PROMPT © Marie Gail Stratford

Here’s my 99 word story – Driven

Penny dragged her possessions behind her.  A horn blasted. A taxi brushed her as it passed. The crowded sidewalks threatened to swallow her whole. As always when her determination faltered memories of her twelve-year-old brother condemned to a wheelchair tore at her. Her mind constantly replayed the accident. The horrifying screech of metal hitting metal accompanied her everywhere. Was it the fact that she was driving that pushed her on?  The Illinois Institute of Technology could hold the key to Toby walking again. Their Biomedical Engineering program would lead her to the key that would release her and Toby.

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed the story. Please click HERE to read more stories for this participants in this challenge.



Scrivener’s Forge 11 – POV

Here we go. Another writing exercise hosted by Neil MacDonald. Please click his name for more information. I have found these exercises have really given me some tips to watch for writing. Thanks Neil for continuing to post these challenge. Here in Neil’s own words was the challenge –


Write a short scene with two characters in which your main character encounters a strange or difficult situation involving another character. Use what you know about your main character’s desires and fears to show how they respond to the other character. Now repeat the exercise, this time using the other character as your main character. Notice how this change of point-of-view alters the story.

Now onto my scenes –


Kate’s Perspective

There is no way to avoid it, no way to sugar coat it. Meeting the other woman, the one that had lured my husband from our cozy family life was going to be awkward. How do you make small talk with the woman who willfully and spitefully slept with Kevin, your husband of twenty years? I forced a smile and smoothed some wrinkles from my dress. I could do this. For my son on his graduation day, I would do it.

I watched Rebecca hang on my husband’s arm as they entered. Her makeup was a little too thick, the dress too tight, the smile rang as fake as the breasts. Jason tensed beside me, a reminder that he had been as hurt by his father’s betrayal as I had been. The couple approached us. With each step the weight of my forty years increased. My breasts sagged more, the crow’s feet around my eyes deepened. I cursed myself for not getting my hair colored. Surely all my grey hairs where accented by the gym’s florescent lights.

“Kate, good to see you.” Kevin brushed a kiss against my cheek before giving Jason a bear-hug. “This is Rebecca. Rebecca, this is Katherine.”

Good manners took over, I thrust my hand forward for the obligatory handshake. I didn’t expect the trembling in her hand. I didn’t expect the fear I saw Rebecca’s eyes.

Rebecca’s Perspective

My hand shook as I applied my eyeliner resulting in a crooked line. I took a deep breath and tried again sighing at the resulting line that said nightclub not afternoon high school graduation. I’d have to live with it. Tugging on the hem of my dress I cursed the extra pounds I’ve been accumulating. The one thing I had always been able to count on, especially since the surgery, was a knockout body that men loved. It let me avoid conversations that highlighted my limited education. I’ll start a diet next week. Damn it. I don’t want to do this. I’m not into happy family events like graduations especially when it’s not my family.  Christ, I had managed to avoid meeting the ex -wife for almost a year. I didn’t want to meet the cold woman that had held Kevin in her clutches for so many years.

What do you say to the woman that had treated someone you loved so shabbily, a woman so self-centered that she hadn’t realized her marriage was dead long before you came on the scene. It was dead, wasn’t it? Sometimes the way Kevin talked about Kate made me wonder if he still held onto some fantasy about his marriage. My heart broke when I found him lost in thought, a wistful look etched on his face. Did he regret leaving her for me? Was I a midlife crisis that would be discarded when he regained his senses?

Oh god, everyone is looking at me. I clutch Kevin’s arm for support. Oh no, there she is. Damn it, why did she have to look so put together, so confident? Why did he have to kiss her? Kate thrust out her hand. When she clasped mine, our eyes met. I didn’t expect the flash of intelligence. I didn’t expect such grace. It shook me. I can’t compete with that.

Thanks for reading. Please click HERE to read other submissions. If you can please leave a comment. I would love to here what you thought of my two scenes.



FF Challenge Oct 27th – God’s Grace

Hey there, thanks for dropping by and reading my submission to the weekly Friday Fictioneers Challenge to write a 100 word story based on a photo prompt. I would like to thank Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for continuing to host this challenge. Please click her name to get all the details.

This weeks beautiful photo was provided by Roger Blutot. Please remember that he retains all rights to his photo.

FF-Oct 27 Sunset
PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

Now my 100 words – God’s Grace

The blood. It mocks me. I can’t stop seeing it spattered across my uniform and my soul.

“It was a clean kill. You’re lucky to be alive.” Captain Rafferty said. “The whole city thanks you for taking out that murderous slime.”

Bathed by the setting sun, babbling waters and calls of red-winged blackbirds calm my ravished nerves. I hear God whispering through the trees assuring me I’ll be okay. Comforted, I let the bottle of pills slip from my grasp into the long grass.

The clouds, now bleeding red, mock me.

Frantic, I rake my trembling fingers through the grass.

Thanks for reading. Please take a moment and click HERE to read a wide range of stories based on the photo. It’s always interesting to see where the picture takes our motley crew of writers. Hey, take the plunge and join us. I promise it won’t hurt a bit.




Scrivener’s Forge 10 – Point of View

Welcome to my story for this month’s Scrivener’s writing exercise. Thank you to Neil MacDonald for continuing to host these exercises. This month’s really set my imagination free. Please click Here to get all the information on the monthly writing tasks.

Briefly and in Neil’s words here was the task –


Rewrite a well-known fairy tale or legend from the viewpoint of the bad guy. Remember, bad guys rarely believe they’re bad guys and have their own reasons for behaving as they do. Make your point-of-view character believable.

Now for my story –

The Wolf and Little Red Riding Hood

Approaching the pack meant death. Aisha hunched down deep into the thickets. Her fall from alpha female to banished one had happened in the blink of an eye. Her injured leg had made her an ineffective hunter, a burden on the pack, an easy mark. Her fate was sealed when alpha male Mateji turned his back as Sekai approached hackles raised teeth bared. Sekai was younger and quick to attack. Her first lunge, ripped fur from her throat. Rather than fight the stronger she-wolf, risking injury to a strong provider for the pack and her own death, Aisha had dropped her head, lowered her tail and limped away. For weeks she had listened to her packs nightly calls organizing their hunt. Instinct drove her to follow them as they traveled across miles. The distance between the swift moving pack and Aisha increased until their calls where faint and distant.

She gave up her pursuit and slunk into an abandoned burrow where at one time she had given birth to four cubs. It had been days since she had stumbled upon a wounded rabbit. Her stomach rumbled with hunger. Her leg no longer sent waves of pain through her body but wouldn’t support her weight, making it impossible to spring on any prey. Weak and trembling, the once proud wolf huddled in the rocky shelter. Days and nights lost to the darkness. A soft melodic noise floated through the air. Fear coursed through her veins when she recognized it – a human. Aisha lay still knowing that humans had little sense of smell. She waited for the human’s sound to flow into the distance. Instead it became louder increasing her fear. Soon it was accompanied by the rustling of leaves and thumps of footsteps. The footsteps achingly close.

Curiosity and hunger forced her to investigate. Slowly she edged her head into the forest punctured with shafts of daylight. Alarms were ringing in the recesses of her mind. Daylight, not a time to hunt. Ignoring the warning, the nervous wolf edged out further. A clattering of branches to her left implored her to look. Her body tensed ready to fight, her injury making fleeing impossible. Her sharp mind quickly absorbed the details of her foe. A she-cub was bent over an array of brightly colored flowers. The cub clutched a handful of flowers in one paw, a large brown object in the other. It was mewing as it plucked more flowers.

“Run!” Aisha’s mind screamed.

“She’s alone and a mere cub.” Her stomach counseled.

Heartbeats passed. Aisha torn with indecision followed the cub as it scampered through the forest. Stealthily she closed the distance. The growl of her hunger overtaking the caution of her mind. The light shifted abruptly. The forest and its protective cover was thinning.

“Now, pounce now,” her stomach urged.

Aisha tensed her muscles in preparation to spring. Her injured leg collapsed. She tumbled face first into the dirt. By the time she regained her feet all she could she was a flash of red as the cub left the forest and sprinted across a meadow. Aisha crept to the edge of the meadow and watched her prey. Her stomach roared at the loss. Her mind was still fixed on the she-cub as it reached a den. The squeals from the old one and the jumping with joy from the cub reminded Aisha of the games she had once played with her cubs. Her babies were now miles and miles away. Her heartbreak at the loss of her pups and her pack coursed through her making it hard to breath.

A series of short barks from the humans drew her from her dark thoughts. Aisha, shook her head and turned away from them. She would not steel this cub from its elder.

Thanks for reading. I hope you enjoyed my version of this classic story. Please click HERE to read other responses to Scrivener’s Forge – POV.



FF Challenge Oct 13th – It Was My Choice

Can you believe it? Really, can you believe that it is almost mid-Oct.? My, my time slips by.

Before we get to my story I want to take care of some important business. First a big thank you to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for continuing to host this challenge. Please click her name to review all the rules of the game. Next thank you to Douglas M MacIlroy for the thought provoking photo which is to be used for Friday Fictioneer stories only.

Now for my 100 words –

FF Oct 13
PHOTO PROMPT © Douglas M. MacIlroy

It Was My Choice

Teeth gnashed, claws tore the air. The crashing sounds alerted me. I opened the door. A ginger blur brushed by.

Cursing, I reached to straighten the overturned boxes and recoiled my injured hand. Squatting, I sought my foe. The quaking form plunged my heart to my feet. Cooing softly, I scooped up the trembling bird. Its heart quivered against my hand. I was a god. Life or death, it was my choice. I tighten my grip as the little bird struggled.

From the crook of the tree where I had placed it, the little guy thanked me with a shriek.

Thanks for reading. Please click HERE to read other creative stories. Oh, one more thing. Please take a moment to leave a comment and help me improve my writing.