Category Archives: Livin on Tulsa Time

Some days I wish for good aim

I do try to be honest with you guys. As much as I’d like to say I have I have it all together, I don’t always. Yesterday was such a day. Yesterday, I wanted to yell and scream and throw things. I didn’t. But I wanted to.

And yet I know, His mercies are new each morning. Praying for a better today.

Have you ever had one of those days when you wished “good aim” was a fruit of the spirit?

fruit of the spirit - aim

Family First


It does not matter how carefully we plan and dream, life is full of left turns and surprises.

I had my summer all planned out.

A book to write.

Classes to finish.

Blogs to write.

Parties to go to.

Gigs that made me thrilled with excitement.

And then life happened and I had to choose.

Six weeks ago I received a call that a family member was in the hospital and they were never coming home.

I caught the next flight out and canceled everything on my calendar to be with them.

I’d do it again in a heart beat.

Now the good news is, they ARE coming home very soon.  And for that I’m thrilled.

The past six weeks were full of twists and turns and white knuckle dives as we watched this family member come to the brink of death and back again.

They are a fighter.

So if you’ve wondered where I’ve been. I’ve been at the bedside of someone near and dear to me.

It was the right choice.

I hope you understand.

Oklahoma Floods, The Cove at Rock Creek

For those who’ve asked, we are fine thank you. Just a little soggy. Clean up will take a while once they finish letting the dam out.

crc main road
THIS is supposed to be the main road. It’s closed at the moment. We had to take the back roads in today.


crc canoe
Canoe and small boat are the only way around the Cove right now.
crc swing two
If you can presently catfish off your front porch, you might live in Oklahoma. No, that is not a house-boat. Our neighbor is well and yes that is his carport underwater there. He had to move his truck to higher ground.
crc boat
It is not all that unusual to find random boats tied to our trees during floods for safe keeping.
crc dock
The red arrow shows our floating dock. It’s almost as high as the trees.

1,000 down, 9,000 to go.

10466988_478268605641043_5459460116154158805_o“To become a chess grand-master also seems to take about ten years. (Only the legendary Bobby Fischer got to that elite level in less than that amount of time: it took him nine years.) And what’s ten years? Well, it’s roughly how long it takes to put in ten thousand hours of hard practice. Ten thousand hours is the magic number of greatness.” Malcolm Gladwell

I’ve been practicing banjo for roughly 1,000 hours, give or take, according to my practice log anyway. According to Malcom Gladwell, I only 9,000 more hours to go before mastering this.

Granted that does not count the 5 minutes here and there when I do a grab and go throughout the day or evening for that matter.

Mathematically speaking, I’m behind on the ten year thing and you know what, I’m okay with that. I’m getting better, I’m having fun and that’s all that matters. I did temporarily allow the fact that I travel too much to commit to lessons to send me into a bit of a funk, and I got over it. I had to if I wanted to play well. And I do want to play well.

I practice during the day when no one is home, or late at night when I can’t sleep. It all counts.

Lack of live lessons is no longer an excuse in today’s world. We have Youtube! Can’t join in on a live jam, find videos you like and play along. I’m practicing back up right now and videos are perfect for that. I choose songs I already know the chord structure to, grab my banjo, fire up my computer and play along. It’s really that simple and the upside, if I screw up and have to start over again — nobody knows. I might be developing a bad habit with that (can’t start over in live jams, you just keep playing), and for now that is okay. The other upside to this approach is I can play a small section over and over again until I’m happy with it.

I even found a way to get around the travel excuse, I bought a second hand banjo and shipped it ahead. I’ll take it out at night sometimes and sit on the back porch and quietly practice my chords formations and rolls.

Where there is a will, there is a way.

Find yours.

Friday Funny: Guess who was at the Funny Bone This week… ME!

photo (23) So here I am in New York, minding my own business when what to my wondering eyes should appear? A comedy Dojo workshop in my little town, led by none other than Chili Challis at the Syracuse Funny Bone.

Chili was one of the judges for a comedy contest way back when. He’d seen me once, maybe twice on stage and I am fairly certain I stunk both times.

Most of you guys remember that story. Little old still struggling with stage fright, had only played open mics at bars up until this point ME,drove her shaking butt 15 hours to Indiana to put it all out there in front of the pros. If you guys recall, that was the show where I was told to never EVER do comedy again. Give it up, find something else – go do movies or something. And that was just my first night. I had to do TWO more sets after that. Good Golly Miss Molly.

That was also the time when my car got stolen upon returning home and learned if you are a comic, no one including the local police will ever believe your car was actually stolen and not repossessed.

Saving Grace to that whole week was one lone comic from NY who called bullshit on my entire set. I’d bought into this “I’m nobody special” lie and it really came through on stage. He saw it. He also saw a funny, beautiful woman behind the fear as well as potential and told me to go home, reevaluate not only my set, but my belief system. And I did.

I spent 14 months with a broken leg and took my entire set and beliefs about myself back to the studs and started over.

I remembered Chili from  the contest. One because he looks like Jerry Garcia and is funny as heck and two his words were far more kind and I took them to heart.

“We all have bad nights, do this as long as you want to, whether you go pro or wind up with a really cool story for your grand-kids, it doesn’t matter. This is one of the scariest jobs on the planet. The fact that you got up there, says a lot.”

I’m back performing in Tulsa between trips to NY and my new voice feels more right than ever. When the notice for a dojo led by Chili came across my Facebook feed, I jumped on it. Tuesday night close to a dozen want to be comics met at the Funny Bone, we shared parts of our sets, worked out kinks, gave each other advice and got to know each other.

On Wednesday night we ALL came back for a show case, including three people who’d never done a live show before. Their courage fueled mine. Chili hosted the night and Thaddeus Challis headlined. They were hilarious and they made it fun for us, which translated to us having fun on stage and made an enjoyable evening for the crowd.

That’s how it’s supposed to work, and most of the time it does.

While it’s true the world is full of egos, there are those who reach out, reach back, and give a hand up. Comics are some of the most generous people you will meet. They are generous with praise, encouragement, and laughter.

You don’t have to be a comic to be generous and kind, you can do that in your every day life.

What dreams do you have?

They don’t have to be something as scary as public speaking, they can be anything. Why not try. You may succeed, or you may wind up with a really cool story to tell your grand kids.

Either way is a win.

You got this, now go for it!


FW: Tulsa: Mark Lowry coming April 11

My girlfriend and I are going to see Mark Lowry this weekend at First Baptist Church in downtown Tulsa. There are still tickets available and if you want to come, click on the photo below for more information. Hope to see you guys there! And yes, for those who know my history with Mark Lowry concerts, I am stopping off at the hairdresser BEFORE I go to the concert. No more senior citizen fliers for this chic.

Click on the photograph for concert information

FCC DISCLAIMER: No goods or services have been given in exchange for this endorsement. A lot of my readers are fans and I wanted to share concert information. I am not associated with Mr. Lowry in any way, shape or form.