Tuesday, April 30, 2013

LETTER OF INTRODUCTION from (me!) sandra, tvgp, slash, PLEASANTON POET LAUREATE 2013-2015

i'm going to start by explaining what that means:  sandra, tvgp.   i've been using it for years..   stands for: Tri Valley Gypsy Poet.  used to be, ttgp:  the traveling gypsy poet; but really, i do very little traveling, so adapted it accordingly.  how did that get started?  well, i hope rob campbell doesn't mind me using his business card as an example..  crossed paths with him, and his wife lisa (amador high school PTA president) recently at wente vineyard in livermore,   they treated our group to a bottle of wine..  "thank you!"  -only, my point is this:  upon reading his business card, you will find many letters:  Robert D Campbell, M.S., C.E.G, R.E.A. II, Q.S.D.   -for real.  he is a "Principal Geologist" for GeoSolve, Inc. here in Pleasanton -and therefore, i have no idea what all those letters stand for, but it is exactly business cards like his that i've received or found over the years that inspired my  sandra, tvgp.  -because..  well, that's what i am. that's what i do. and that's where you'll find me 90% of the time; somewhere here in tri valley, california.

i've been very recently appointed pleasanton's 8th poet laureate, and thank quickly: charlotte severin for the nudge call, connie post (livermore's 1st poet laureate) & deborah grossman (pleasanton's 6th poet laureate)and charlotte again for letters of recommendation; everyone on the selection committee, the civic arts commission  -and in advance; pleasanton city council.  -also, each of you fellow poets who have emailed me a letter or quick note of congratulations & encouragement.

i'm in the process now of planning events, workshops, readings, shows, etc. and welcome your suggestions, ideas, wishes, dreams, which you can email to me at: writeousmom@comcast.net

one of my goals (besides making poetry front page news) is just to shine the spotlight a little brighter, and a little longer, on all the great poets, and poetry events taking place write now in our community:  let me start with these three:

1. "CONGRATULATIONS!" to marilyn slade!  (we performed together when deborah grossman created/hosted the laugh out loud poetry event at the century house several years ago... love her!)  anyway..  marilyn's poem has been selected for inclusion in las positas' upcoming annual anthology.  -wonderful honor! and..  it is the same poem she read at pleasanton's 4th of July celebration after winning a themed contest about the civil war created/hosted by cynthia bryant.   -likely i'll be following in cynthia's footsteps, creating another contest, and our mariyn slade is write here officially recruited to judge.  (read it first in the patch...)

2.  artist/poet, claudette mcdermott, is non-stop with wonderful opportunities/gatherings/readings for local poets of all ages and skill levels:  she founded the, pleasanton poetry league, which gathers on the 1st and 3rd wednesday evenings at the corner bakery cafe at the new gateway plaza.  you are invited! to learn more contact claudette at:  poetryoncanvas@mac.com

3. DEADLINE MAY 22ND, 2013 for poetry enteries at the alameda county fair.  ca$h prize$.

and pleasanton is blessed to have two beautiful, talented teen poet laureates, who you
may already, or really should know.

want/need the spotlight on your poetry related event?  let me know:  writeousmom@comcast.net

good luck! and remember...  you are always, at all times; write where you belong.

love, sandra, tvgp

pleasanton poet laureates:  1999-2001: charlene villella.  2001-2003:  jim ott.  2003-2005: kirk ridgeway
2005-2007: cynthia bryant.  2007-2009: martha meltzer.  2009-2011:  deborah grossman.   2011-2013: cynthia bryant.  2013-2015:  (me!). 

PERFECT VISION, by (me!), sandra, ttgp originally posted 10/18/06

my contribution to cynthia bryant's "gift of words" collection of poetry for the iraqi people.

perfect vision
fellow humans,

it is crucial we look
with both eyes wide open
at the cruelty humans can inflict
on one another

to see the pain
experience the suffering
be angered into action

it is crucial we know
with heart, mind and both arms wide open
the compassion humans can extend
to one another

to see the offering
receive the love
be united by its power

it is crucial we starve hate
-to death!
and feed respect everyday
~in abundance
the diverse nutrients it requires
-to live!

it is crucial, now and always
we close our eyes
for even one moment each day

to see -with perfect vision-
all humans

all humans in harmony
as we rotate together
on this miracle planet


PLEASANTON POETS & POETRY REVIEW original post date: 05/27/2007

in this great shot, are four of my favorite poets:

left to right: kirk ridgeway 3rd poet laureate of pleasanton, cynthia bryant, current poet laureate, al young, california poet laureate, jim ott, 2nd poet laureate/pleasanton

i've had the honor of meeting al young, twice, and the other three: kirk, cynthia, and jim, i've seen several times over the years at a variety of literary events and consider friends.

quality people.

sometime last year, i put together my first collection of poetry. my idea is to self publish. but before biting that bullet, i wanted to have my work evaluated and reviewed by the current and past poet laureate's of pleasanton. -this is no easy thing to do; very scary.

you are at the height of vulnerability when you share your entry level work with experienced professionals

my goal was to have two male poets and two female poets review my work. tossed a coin, and male poets were first.

and i must thank, thank, thank in such a big way, kirk ridgeway. here is a man i could listen to for hours and days at a time and still hunger for more. incredibly knowledgable, spiritual, wise and passionate about art and poetry. on the night before we met over coffee to conversate about life, art, and his reaction to my work, i prayed a long prayer

please dear Lord.. let me be open to suggestions and constructive criticism; let me listen, heed and grow from his knowledge and feedback

because, truth is... the rebel and non-conformist impulses in me often cross the finish line before good advice can be learned and applied

and i am happy to report my prayer was answered, because as he provided his feedback, and i looked at his penciled in notes on my pages.. and i read in my head, how the poems would sound if i incorporated his suggestions.. it turned out, that 80% of the time, his suggestions improved my work.. and the other 20% i chose to keep as is, still made me re-look and re-evaluate my thought process and defend, to my own satisfaction, my desired effect and poetic purpose.

but in addition to my gratitude for kirk ridgeway's time and feedback, i'm deeply grateful for the articles and poetry he shared with me, and hold quite dear one of his personal theories he was kind enough to share. it is this: his trapdoor phenomena

it is to recognize that the trapdoor swings both ways.

if a person does serious, intentional and wholehearted inward work; they will become aware and connected to all that is outside themselves.

conversly, if a person looks outward with equal intensity and openness, they will eventually fall into compassionate gratitude for their own life with all its inherent joys, horrors, and impermanence.

i find this circle, this trapdoor phenomena, beautifully accurate.

and i tossed and turned on whether i should post his review regarding my poetry. i'm not planning on publishing until september. but just in case i die before september comes; he wrote this:

Poetry is ultimately about telling a story. Sandra Kay tells her stories through an imaginative gypsy dance of emotion and words that threaten to seduce or con the writer and reader. In form and content her artful word dance is at times smooth, sensuous, lovely and then brash, naughty, jarring. Grief, humor, hope and despair constantly enter and exit the bustling stage of the non-ordinary structure of her poems. These juxtapostions will resonate with the reader as they mirror the dramatic dance of every human relationship. -Kirk Ridgeway 4/25/07

of course i cried.

felt a little ... awkward.. uneasy... reading the word "con" -it has such a negative connotation. but i am always grateful for true thoughts and experiences whether or not they rest easy with me.

thank you kirk! God shine!

THAT'S NOT HOW I MEANT IT! By (me!) Sandra, tvgp

I wouldnt suggest it's great to be wrong, but isn't it nice when you are wrong.. If somebody tells you. If at least, you know... Well there is an otherwise distinguished looking woman out there somewhere who is walking around in ignorance... If fact! Worse! Walking around ignorant of her own ignorance! And it's my fault because I was in a grand hurry and didn't bother to correct her. But what are blogs for, write: so, dear ignorant of your ignorance woman -this is what happened: your shopping companion asked, "is it okay for me to put my coat n' hat here while I shop?" I said, "of course." about 3 minutes later the store owner was concerned that a customer had accidentally left their coat n' hat behind. I said to owner, "not left behind, she is still shopping in the store write now.." k, so it's all good so far. But now it's time for me to leave quickly to arrive at my next part time job on time.. I need to pass on information to my co-worker just arriving. My co-worker is near the back of the store standing next to you.. Miss ignorance of your ignorance, and your shopping companion when I pass on the information, which includes, "the coat n' hat in the front of the store belongs to her.." -which! I said so MY COWORKER WOULD NOT! AS THE OWNER DID...THINK SOMEONE HAD ACCIDENTALLY LEFT IT BEHIND. and NOT, because, as you verbalized and are still thinking, "would be good for him to know so doesn't think we're stealing.". K. -and it makes me wonder... Just how many uncorrected/uncorrectable, misinterpretations in conversation take place each day between how many people. I'm not curious enough to do anything about it beyond briefly wonder...but I'm going to take some limited responsibility for the coat n hat one... Because I looked at you.. Realized how much time and effort it would take to explain.. And decided to just let that one go...

Monday, April 29, 2013

HOW I MET LEONARD STEGMANN by (me!) sandra, ttgp

ORIGINAL POST 06/03/2008:
always a reward for cleaning against my will: /look what i found


this is how i met leonard stegmann. i'd come up with such a trend-setting, novel, utterly fantastic idea: mag time frames! the world's first handmade magnetic home decor frames! and then my brother, he planted the idea in me for a "create-your-own" kit..

i worked long and hard on that one.. experimenting for incalcuable hours with every possible foundation, metal weight, magnet strength/flexibility, every opportunity for instant display until i landed the perfect combination of raw materials, tested, tested, tested, wrote up simplified instructions, revised, revised, revised and then set to work on the packaging

and if you think coming up with a novel, fantastic idea/product and new trend is exciting, fun or rewarding, i assure you it is not. introducing a new concept and product to the consumer marketplace, no matter how wonderful and full of potential it is, is.. is..

well it's hell actually. terribly expensive. a great big pain in the ass really. -there is a much longer story to be told here.. about patents, attorneys, gargantuan trade shows where you pay big bucks for the priviledge of being ignored by buyers but seduced by thieves and liars

but i'm saving that longer story for another time. one of the upshots (and in my estimation God's greater plans) was that i learned the really-super-expensive-chapter 13-divorce-hard-way, that i needed to demonstrate my product; it did not sell itself.

no demonstration. no sales.
quick personal demonstration. good sales.

but with small children, a less than enthusiastic husband, growing debt, very limited time.. it was becoming harder and harder to get out there and demonstrate. the trade show.. where all the buyers come to you -yeah, write.


i tried instead, as many businesses/entrepreneurs do: a commercial! -some way of communicating to a larger audience without having to physically travel place to place, small crowd to small crowd

and here i learned a 30 sec spot -no sales.

so.. no demonstration/no sales.
30 sec commercial demonstration/no sales.

personal demonstration/good sales.

and so i am very curious how my 14 minute segment on robin fahr's show conversations will fair. -certainly my passion remains, and the new ideas keep coming..

BUT -and much, much more importantly.. had i not innovated mag time frames.. had i not listened to my brother and packaged the "create~your~own" mag time frame kit.. had my product sold without demonstrations... had i not been frustrated into experimenting with a local commercial

i would have never met LEONARD STEGMANN! MY squidmann! because he showed up with another camera man to film my mag time frame commercial in my then home's living room.

and just click on my commercial. isn't it packed with hope, creative inspiration and home town charm. (and in only 30 seconds!)


so anyway.. at some point i learn leonard is a writer (like me!), and when passing his desk in the comcast building, i see he has books for sale -like, write there- and i am very supportive of fellow writers, so of course, - i bought one-

and i enjoyed it so much. appreciated his authenticity and got his humor immediately.

wrote a thank you note w/my compliments, and that was that.

leonard quit comcast. i filed a chapter 13. -we went our very separate ways. it was 2003 i believe.

skip ahead a year or two.. yes, it was two: june 2005.

and i get an email announcement with a link to leonard stegmann's blog.

i don't think at the time i even knew the word or meaning of a blog. -but i clicked, and i am very supportive of fellow writers, so of course.. i read. and once again, and write away, i appreciated his authenticity and got his humor immediately. -and-

AND! -this ability to leave a comment.. to me.. the most utterly fantastic interactive fun any writer/reader could ever, ever, ask for. read AND comment. write then. write there. read, respond. -just like that!? who do i personally thank?! for this brilliant idea!

-and as you will read here on page 276 of his newest book (3rd book): a year on planet mercury, on the acknowledgements page:

...from my first posting in june 2005 up until and including last night's article, sandy has been there to read nearly every one of the hundreds of entries, and has written comments on most of them...

it's true! -and it is true that leonard stegmann saved my life. i want the whole wide world to know it. and he doesn't believe in God, but i do, and i know God put us together for good reason.

and he saved my life by just being himself and doing what he does: write.

and that extra step: sharing.

every morning during some of the most difficult times in my adult life, when one might be tempted to take drugs, drink large quantities of alcohol AND take drugs, when one might consider going numb, slicing a wrist or jumping off a bridge..

every morning, instead of going numb or feeling..

sorry for myself. i managed to get up and out of bed because i had leonard stegmann's authenticity and humor waiting for me. and there was something so very uplifting for me -a writer too- in that ability to comment. -to respond. -on the spot.

and then.. every time i responded, leonard would ACKNOWLEDGE my response.

and there was something so uplifting, and life-saving really, about this one person.. this one person, making me smile every morning and acknowledging my existence. it was fun! fun and life affirming.

i am here to testify that fun and friendship, and some opportunity to do what you love -read and write, for example, -even if only for a few moments each day,

this is much better for transforming and transcending and fixing your life than any of the other alternatives we might impulsively reach for

by august 2005, i had created my own blog too, thanks again to leonard stegmann. i started out awkward, like most.. unsure. uneasy. but willing.. wanting. started out by just posting favorite book passages -because your blog can be anything you want it to

little taste of that freedom woke up all my dormant creativity & spark.. and now i'm near 500 posts, with each year more of my own creative writing filling the menu

i'm quite sure that practice and healthy habit of reading/responding to leonard's blog every day for three years now, plus my own reading/writing on my blog, plus the other blog friends i've added along the way.. well, i can feel that it has my writing craft in top form.

and somewhere.. can't remember when.. somewhere along the line, my neighbor nancy handed me the book 84 charing cross road. i couldn't put it down. all that wonderful correspondence between helene hanff and frank doel. twenty years worth! -and how precious it was to watch their friendship evolve through letter's only. not phone calls or personal visits

i like to think of leonard and i as the 21st century version of 84 charing cross road. and we don't have 20 years of correspondence,

but because leonard is the world's first blogumnist -writing 7, then 5 days a week with great discipline and consistency; and because i've read/responded to nearly every one

i'm sure -when it comes to quantity- we've exceeded their letter count. -and because we are in the 21st century, with the internet and blogs.. this ability to communicate so rapidly

while they communicated across continents by snail mail only..

we compare and don't compare, really. certainly the correspondence, the playfulness, the friendship..

but it makes me laugh when i take it further, because frank doel.. such a proper englishman.

leonard stegmann; -well frank loved books. antiquarian bookseller. married. london/england. -but i got the feeling he would blush if you cussed in front of him.. and would be quite shocked to see all that can be found on the internet today.

leonard stegmann; -well, -proper is not the first word that comes to mind. porn surfaces near the top though... and book store, yes, but with the word "adult" in front of it.

when i think about it, really the only two things they have in common, leonard stegmann and frank doel is this: male. married.

and actually, i don't have so much in common with helene hanff either. female. single. writers. and i do love peppered salami too! -and share some of her need for dental work

but i LOVE to think about what their relationship would be like if it took place today.

helene hanff and frank doel in the 21st century with emails and blogs vs. letters. -with the internet vs. post office.

how much flirtier and daring i imagine helene. -she had that side; left so unexploited.

and frank.. proper, proper, careful, cautious, gentlemanly, frank..

i picture leonard pulling him to the side for a few minutes.. dusting off those old books, turning a few new pages in his life; corrupting his good nature; just enough to wake him up

(which ilom did for me/thanks ilom).

anyway.. helene never met frank in person. never met his wife. by the time she left new york to visit england, frank had already passed on. -their friendship grew exclusively through written correspondence, and this is the thing that makes me think leonard and i are the 21 century version

i did meet leonard in person.. long ago, when i made that charming 30 second commercial for my mag time frames

but haven't seen him since 2003. never talk on the phone, or anything like that.

it is a friendship growing exclusively by way of written correspondence: blogs.

and it is magical. -miraculous, really. and remains, to this day, my inspiration for getting out of bed every morning, when i'm so often tempted to quit and hide.

thanks leonard squidmann! and congratulations on book #3!

-now write back to it!

love, ~s.c

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

THERE HAS NEVER NOT BEEN SPACE as contemplated/realized by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

K, so I'm watching nova on PBS.. Hunting the elements.. Awesome program, no doubt about it.. But in the midst of it, it hits (me!). -in order for ANY thing, element or life or non life form to exist in any form... There must first exist a space in which it can manifest. And from a humans perspective.. You realize.. Well then, there has never not been space. There has never not been an Empty space in which things and people and elements can exist in the first place -write. that's the closest humans are going to come to understanding/processing -infinity. Something that has no beginning or end, but just is; always. Very tricky to wrap your brain around.. But very useful for understanding God. Oh! To contemplate the origins of empty space in which things can one day exist... Nothing draws the line more clearly in the sands... Of time; for humans.

BREAKING NEWS!? About (me!) Sandra, tvgp

"thank you!" here to ren man. AKA: Poet Laureate II. -I have mixed feelings, as you know... Like, what have I gotten myself into this time?! And.. But why isn't this front page news /laughing smiley face here.

GOD'S CREATIVE CHOREOGRAPHY as experienced by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

I apologize in advance for the squishy words and lack of spacing/paragraph breaks, but let us forge ahead: first: if I gave you a couple lines of lyrics... You would be able to change them up in such a way to make them sound.. Country, or rock n' roll or rap or jazz or gospel, etc. -write. The exact same lyrics can be provided a tone/sound/melody, And by changing the delivery.. Pace, etc. You can identify different genres of music. same with scripts.. Same words, delivered in different tones/paces can be made to sound either dramatic or funny, or nervous or confident, etc. There are moods and tones... And identifiable interpretations. In this way... The same thing can be said about life experiences. The exact same life experience can be described with a secular, or faith-full tone, melody; interpretation. My mind these days defaults to a Christian interpretation of all my life experiences, but at all times, with effort, I can see things also from the secular... And the longer I live.. And The more bible I study, church I attend, church I watch on tv, -the less and less the secular interpretations make sense. So, while what I'm about to share can be interpreted in a variety of ways.. I will present it as, well... God is just showing off; that's all there is to it. And if you're ever looking for a great example of dissonance: here you go: an unfortunate matter put me in a position to decide whether or not I would drive to San leandro. (from very recent prior blog, we know my brain tells me to stay the F away from San leandro to avoid a debilitating depression which I know will set in). Let me pause a moment here also: often times we know in advance the result a certain experience will have on us... If I opt to see a scary movie.. I know in advance the result will be that I'll be more jumpy for a while.. If I walk in a bakery.. I know in advance that my cravings for sweets will be stronger.. On and on, etc., etc. Knowing can help prepare; but not prevent. Follow? So, I've known in advance I would have to battle depression if i went for any length of time to San leandro. But I went. -for an unfortunate reason. I thought to myself... Why? On God's green earth am I here for this crap... But I haven't been here to see my mom? -dissonance at its peak- if my understanding of that word is correct. Because now, I can't rest until I go see my mom... "if I'm going to San leandro for any reason at all... Let's make it a positive, life affirming one...". -for those who don't know... All my visits since my mom moved to San leandro, have taken place in my neighborhood/city, not hers. k. So I go... Me, my kids, and we have a wonderful visit! Let me throw in some Christian, God at work interpretations: the unfortunate thing had to have taken place 1st in order to get me to San leandro at all. Once there.. Dissonance kicked in, then, in an unusual break from a very long pattern of regular out of town visits.. My mom will be home instead of out of town, which even allows for my visit... And my kids, on the one day I go, are also unusually available to join me, AND! Despite my very unpredictable work schedule I have the day off... This is a great example also of that saying, "..all the planets aligned..." the initial trip to San leandro, which resulted in the dissonance required to inspire a trip to see my mom, my mom at home/available, me available, my kids available: green light, green light, green light; go! Now! Wonderful visit, no doubt about it. A breakthrough, let's say... But remember what I said earlier... Knowing in advance helps prepare, but not prevent. The battle began pretty immediately. I'm fascinated by how this whole depression thing takes place.. To capture it, I must describe myself as I was for days, and weeks, and months, and years before my visit to my mom: namely.. I had what I'll describe as a strong life force.. /very hard earned by the way... But an example might be, MUSIC! DANCING! ALWAYS MOVING TO MUSIC! So, one of the most pronounced ways my life force is consistently demonstrated is in how I consistently listen to music, dance to music while I'm driving from here to there.. Moving happy and free to my favorite songs... and even on the drive back home... My brain rejected music. Rejected. Did not want to hear, could not tolerate the sound of... Even my most favorite dance songs... The exact same songs, that only hours prior brought me great joy and energy. So, depression it steals that life force... And the other thing that happened.. Is that the 2nd most important thing after air to breathe, became my need to be alone. Here's where the planets align again, because... Handsome prince's place had family... The house where I rent a room had family visiting from out of town, -two places that ruined my chances of being alone.. My sisters place had family... But! My exhusband's home was... The only place I could be alone. He was out of town with the kids.. And was kind enough to provide what escalated to a mandatory retreat... It seemed so important to be alone. Mostly to avoid the requirement of conversation with people.. depression sucks out energy like an industrial vacuum. Small talk becomes incredibly taxing... So, my rejected my favorite music, and I had zero energy to give to others. And I was terribly sad.. Cried randomly. Felt nauseaus but never threw up.. Stared at the tv without actually watching or hearing.. Ate food but didn't enjoy textures or flavor.. Screamed to no one, to everyone, "This is exactly why I didn't want to go! No one can hear me! No one understands!" ... Cried some more. Fought ugly memories. Prayed. Every once in a while I would take my temperature, so to speak.. Nope. Brain still rejecting my favorite song. And that somehow became my measuring stick... Like, once my brain enjoys that song again... I'll know everything will be okay. My sister and kids came to visit.. I forced my way through polite, necessary conversation.. I returned a few text messages and calls. Nothing from an internal place of genuine care; everything out of obligation. ..and my life force, I'm happy to report, was returned to me within FOUR! Days... I would never have believed it! Not on day 1... Not on day 2... Not on day 3... Not even on day 4. Only when I found myself turning on the radio again... And turning up the volume... And moving to the music on day 5 did I realize... And I just smiled toward the heavens.. And have already made Plans to return to my moms in San leandro.. Knowing to prepare for battle, but delighted in how short that battle will be... Not years, or months or weeks... DAYS! And how often it feels like whatever the day is like, it will be that way forever... But everything passes.. And so, I realize, even though not too long ago i was fine with and determined never to return... God has liberated me from yet ANOTHER form of bondage... That list is sure getting impressive. -and I'd like to close, with this.. Which in the moment seemed stupid and ridiculous, but write now, just seems like a sweet scene.. If viewed from the proper angle: when I saw my handsome prince again.. And it was just the two of us, and it was late at night... From a place inside me I know but don't understand.. Well, suddenly, out of somewhere but nowhere.. The next most important thing in the whole wide world seemed to be that I get a new pink toothbrush.. -write now. And he tried to sell me on the idea of a toothbrush that had been opened but never actually used.. But, no. It just seemed I could not live into the next day without a bran new, in the package, my very own.. Pink toothbrush. And despite the late night hour, his own justifiable exhaustion from his long day and the unjustifiable request I was making.. He went to the grocery store and got me my very own, bran new, in the package, pink (and came with a blue one too) beautiful toothbrush. And that is only one of many, many reasons he's my handsome prince. "thank you Jesus!" -amen.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

theHEARTseen.... at Centerpointe Presbyterian! by (us!) sandra/taryn

   oh!  i love this one too!  spotted it at my church, centerpointe, specifically, the pre-school, write in front of my sister's office.    -and, don't you know, i cried out, "..but i don't have my camera!"   -so, my daughter whipped out her phone.  -click.   -and here it is.  "thank you!"    -more encouragement from heaven...

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

GOD'S CREATIVE CHOREOGRAPHY as experienced by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

And it's a great story! ...now I just need a day off from work to write it....

Monday, April 08, 2013



Hello Friends
 – We are in the final countdown
 to the theatrical release of our feature film,
 Not Today, on Friday, April 12.
Not Today
will be in three theaters here locally,
as well as 20 cities across the United States.
You also know that this is about more than just a movie
 – this is about a movement to bring freedom
 to the 250 million Dalits in India
 and the 27 million people
human trafficking
 in our world today.

As I mentioned in our Easter services,
YOU are our marketing force!
There is no better way to promote Not Today
than by a word of mouth recommendation
from someone you know.
That is why YOU
are so crucial to the success of Not Today.
Would you consider doing two things to help right now?
1) Call, email or post about the theatrical release
 of Not Today on Friday, April 12.
Remember, we are opening in 20 cities across the US,
not just here in Orange County.
You can find more information
about theaters and ticket purchasing information
2) Use the tools available
 by clicking
 in your email signature, as your Facebook cover photo, etc. People need to see or hear about something several different ways
 before it sinks in.
Thanks for being a part of this story
– for being such a generous church.
The “land of gracious living” is reaching around the world
to the Dalit people.
Our church has been changed as a result.
 Let’s share what God is doing
and help do our part to see
 freedom and hope
spread across the world.
God bless and THANK YOU for your help!
Matthew Cork Lead Pastor - Friends Church


the movie linked above is not the same movie as the one referenced below.  the movie linked above is funded, directed and produced by my cousin's church in southern california  -friends church-

it is not currently playing close enough to pleasanton, california for me to see it in a local theatre, but i support the cause. it is set in india, but we all know this evil is not geographically restricted to any one area.  i'm also very aware slavery has not been abolished; it thrives under a new name: human trafficking.  as a three time kidnap/rape survivor, i am highly sensitive to the terror/violence/suffering of these victims...   and infuriated by the widespread evil.   this is how we do God's work:  bring the evil into the light; rescue/love the victims into healing; capture and remove the evil predators from society.  i do not currently have the energy to speak more about predators write now.  i thank all God's warriors...  in Jesus name!   amen



Things I wish I'd said ..departing Seattle. By none other than (me!) Sandra, tvgp

Diehard fans only... Disconnected stories and thoughts from a place of the most beautifully overwhelmed: /and know in advance how pissed off I am this thing won't space my thoughts the way I want... But what the hell, They're all squished together this time around anyway. PARAGRAPH SPACE HERE: you know how you are supposed to put earplugs in or read a book or open a laptop on the airplane if you don't want to get stuck next to some person that just won't shut up. How that's just about the politess way to say thanks but no thanks to a conversation with a stranger on a plane... Well, that old let me take my kindle out trick sure didn't work for John from England sitting in 8C on Alaska airlines this morning... I'm not sure what they put in my coffee at the Seattle airport but no kindle in the amazon world could stop me from makin' friends with my airplane seat neighbor. -John from England... Transplanted to Washington... And you know me by now... I'm no good at small talk but great with the BIG QUESTIONS... we talked God.. And/or the lack thereof... And about photography.. Traveling.. World violence... Childhoods... Marriage.. And I had to whip out my camera and do a little show and tell about my upcoming website: TheHeartSeen.com. ... Here's where I can blog again and say the things I'd wished I'd said in the actual moment.. 'cuz I was showin' John from England a heart I-spied here, and a heart I-spied there... Here a heart... There a heart... Everywhere a heart, etc. And when I got to the one I found in the bubbles in my coffee from Petes in Pleasanton... He said,"you're looking for them". -now, I have to break down the tone in that comment for you... The indication was... I was forcing it. Do you know what I mean? What he meant? -I do see hearts everywhere I go... But other people... Well, anyway.. It does happen sometimes.. Sometimes those hearts in my environment are so obvious and conspicuous and perfectly shaped even a blind man could point to it... And sometimes... There's a little work and imagination involved. A specific angle and distance... And perspective... And timing... And receptiveness... So, when John from England said, "you're looking". I knew what he meant... The subtext... And it is much more gratifying to find.. To notice... To reveal Vs. To project... But as I thought about that more... You know what I wish I would have said? I wish I woulda said, "well, haven't you ever looked too hard for love before?" PARAGRAPH BREAK HERE: I'm in the process of...processing. A most surprising, amazing, awesome family visit with my handsome prince to see my dad and family in Seattle... thank you Jesus for pictures!! We packed a lot in in a short time... I'm genuinely overwhelmed and I'm not writing just for pleasure write now... I'm writing so I don't crack.. PARAGRAPH BREAK HERE: in all my life... In all my schooling, in all my tv, interview, biography watching and reading... Never have I cried when President Lincoln died. Until yesterday... When I saw Lincoln... At the Lincoln... And I just don't know how anyone can watch that movie and not replace the word slavery with trafficking... And in fact, I saw a poster on the wall for a movie about human trafficking coming out soon... And when I saw that poster -for this upcoming movie I know nothing -nothing!- about... I sure did wonder to myself... Is this a genuine documentary which is intended to help victims.. Help STOP the crime... Or is this a secretly veiled how-to movie length video... Sexual assault and suicide fall in the same category here... There is a real art to covering the subject matter without exploiting... Without increasing the crimes you wish to prevent. Mass media Attention is both mandatory to prevent and necessary to spread... You must be very careful... And then I had to wonder... Cuz that seems like all I can sometimes do... Can the exact same movie do both? Prevent the crime/spread the crime... Is the result with the viewer? The moviemaker? And if you knew how much I've experienced and have on my mind vs. What will leak out here on my blog you would hand deliver me some sleeping aids... PARAGRAPH BREAK HERE: Oh, my feelings got hurt recently... And I keep trying to remember EXACTLY the words Dave meyers said back to his wife when she was so hurtful and mean to him... It was something about how.. Something like, " good thing I don't let you determine my self worth for me". And I think one of the most important lessons of my entire life to date has been that: to know my self worth according to God and Jesus... Not man. And when I say not man... I mean that sooo literally. It's taken a hundred years it feels like to build up a half of cup's worth of self esteem and even longer than that to unhate the male species... And just when I think maybe I graduated... I'm back fillin out applications for a campus that will have me... PARAGRAPH BREAK HERE: I will never stop reading the bible or going to church... But outside of those truths, here's another one... You know how there are physical laws... Laws of physics, etc. Well, I want to guarantee you this: -all you atheists and agnostics and -Doubters and seekers and those with unrooted faith... There are spiritual laws equal to and in fact superior to physical laws... More tried and true.. More consistent... As undisbutable... But infinite! Among these spiritual laws is this : God is love. Many of the spiritual laws -I'm sorry... ALL of the spiritual laws are true for HUMANITY -not just given religions... That is in fact what makes a spiritual LAW, -law. All spiritual laws are applicable to all of humanity. There is no segregation, preference, superior, inferior anybody or any religion... LOVE for example... Love is the greatest example.. Must you be a Christian? Muslim? College graduate? Wealthy person? Dying? Noble? ... Put anything here... LOVE is applicable for all of humanity. Now, I know from my own spiritual meditations and lessons and studies... Well, I know where I'm at... Only another follower/student will understand ... But if you could see a spiritual school the way we can see elementary - middle school - high school through college, etc. -and what lessons you need as a pre-requisite in order to get to the next level... Well I'm currently studying this: perfect love casts out all fears. I will be on this lesson for some unknown amount of time... But I cannot proceed without a deep, deeply rooted understanding of this truth; this SPIRITUAL LAW. I love you! And close with a huge "thank you!" to my family in Seattle... And my handsome prince... I will have to capture those awesome memories in photographs... Amen! posted by she @ 8:24 PM

Sunday, April 07, 2013

theHEARTseen..... at my favorite gas station! by (me!) sandra, tvgp

the historic, and beautiful, coast gas station. pleasanton, california.  sunday april 7th, 2013.

10 CENTS A BAG?!? PART IIIII II by (me!) sandra, tvgp

and you know for sure, if i'm not willing to fork over 10 cents for a paper bag   -ain't no way i'm going to pay the punishment fee they charge for their own reusable bags,   -you will not be profiting from my forgetfulness, thank you.   so now i don't walk in unless i'm armed with my, live your best life Oprah bag
  -which was gifted to me for   -free!  from carol.   and my lancome bag,  -gifted to me for  -free!  from my mom.   God bless and thank you all.    /and with the change i've saved, i'll take that nestle crunch bar and a pack of gum....

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

WILD TURKEY CROSSING as seen by (me!) Sandra, tvgp