Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Maxine's Key-- why is it important

In The Key to Her Heart there is an old key hung on a chain that originally belonged to Anna's grandmother, Maxine.  There literally is a full written back story for Maxine that a few years ago I seriously considered publishing but then in the last book of The Heart of a Family SeriesThe Lattimier Curse it pretty much is the foundation that story is built on. So I have digressed...

The key is a symbol of safety... Or rather of being able to bring safety.  In Maxine's story she is abused by her step father as a young girl.  Finally at 12 with no one to protect her anymore, she steals all the inside door keys and hides them.  The only one she keeps is the one to her bedroom door. Which she uses to lock her room when she leaves and when she is inside it.  The key hangs around her neck so by no foul can anyone find it or trap her away from help. 

Would this work in real life to stop a vile abuser?  I shrug.  I don't know for sure but it seems plausible.  In my own story of abuse it was even less that stopped the abuser. My dad suspecting something was wrong simply asked me if I wanted to go to the man's house. I was seven and this was a family member. No one believed my dad's concerns. It just did not seem possible. So he asked me that one simple question. I told him I did not want to go there and from that point on I was never alone with my abuser. Maxine made it so she wasn't alone with her abuser by hiding her key on her person.

The key becomes the symbol of Maxine's ability to protect her physical person and in a greater sense her heart and soul.  There is one young man as a teen and a young woman that she does trust. He knows the reason for her key and is there to help her and inspire love. But problems arise and she must make choices after her step father's death. 
One night she is fighting the past and present and finds herself in a position that makes her hated by everyone in her community.  She runs away, leaving her home,  leaving the only person that knows her secrets, the only person in the world she loves and trusts, and ultimately moves to another continent marries a man, has a child, and then returns to her hometown in her widowhood.  By this time even her child does not know the story of the key she wears.  Her mother's family is still angry with her for the events of her youth and who is that man that she trusts and loves? Is he there still?  Has he gone on with his life?  Do they get to know each other once more? Those questions actually have some answers within the story The Key to Her Heart

 The bulk of Maxine's story I tell in The Lattimier Curse which is the last book in the series and helps to tie up all the different stories but I am still writing it.  If you would like to understand about the key and the final answers in Maxine's life then you might want to read The Key to Her Heart and in the process learn more about Maxine's granddaughter, Anna, too. I will leave the link below. In the meantime Patrick's Rose is being edited and I am working on Her Hidden Thorn which continues the story of the Lattimier family and the Rueschel family. Hopefully I will have these two finished soon.

Here is the link for The Key to Her Heart :

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Things I want to do to change my life.

Lately I have been running around like the proverbial chicken with its head cut off.  You know the feeling, you are running doing this and that but it feels more like you are going in circles than making any headway. Yep that's me lately.

This month two of my daughters are getting married (the younger just did and the middle daughter is about to.) My son is busy getting in trouble and we are expected to attend court with him.  We are beginning a gluten free baked goods business, and I am homeschooling my youngest daughter.  On top of that my health hasn't been the best of late.  That is only the big things.  The little stuff is too numerous to mention.

So my daughter and I spent some time making lists of things we could do to change our life because her life is going through radical unplanned changes and it is not fun.  It feels a little (totally understated) out of control.  What do I really have control of?  How can I change my life?  That is what my list was about...  Well one of my lists.  Another list was of blog topics.  And yes this one was on that list.  I like lists.  They help me sort my ideas into doable things that I can check off.  As my whole family will tell you, I love to check things off.  So lists work.  This is why I am sharing my list, because then maybe as I accomplish things on it I can share with you that I have done something and the results. (shrug) I don't know if this is going to work, but I have to do something so this is where I begin.

Soooo...  My list of things I can do to change my life:

Number 1 is always about God with me because he is everything to me.
1-- Go to morning Mass at least a couple times a week.  2 years ago I went to morning Mass almost every day, and it really helped the right focus in my life, but lately I haven't and this is the first
thing I need to change.

2-- Begin blogging regularly. This one is hard because I avoid drama as much as possible but a few of my posts really caused a stir.  That is not what I post for, and so the last several months I have been a little word shy.  Last night I decided  I do not live in fear.  I am just me and if someone does not like it they do not have to read what I post. So right now is my start on this goal.  My hope is to post once a week.  We will see if I can do it.

3-- Work on writing daily.  This goal is similar to blogging, but I am talking about working on the third book. I cannot control when the second book is edited.  It was suppose to be ready in August, which it definitely was not.  I can control what I do. So that is my goal--to do what I can do.

4-- Schedule the time I need.  None of the above gets done if I don't do this.  So maybe this should be number one, but it is here where my priorities are.  If I can make sure I have the time, then I will be able to do the things I have planned.

5-- Helping Tory to read well & swim well.  My six year old has been struggling to learn to read.  Teaching reading has been harder than either she or I expected but she is back to reading sentences.  I say back to reading sentences because we started reading lessons when she was four years old, but she has Celiacs.  Soon after she read her first story another little girl gave her an Oreo and she had her first gluten reaction. It was not pretty and in the recovery after she lost the ability to sound out words, she couldn't even remember her shapes until three months later.  It took her another three months to begin reading practice and she was left with some sensory processing issues that were not there before.  We began again at 5 and got to the point she was reading stories but I noticed her turning her head slightly when she was trying to read.  That caused me to take her to her pediatric ophthalmologist and have her eyes checked. Sure enough she needed glasses. As she got accustomed to the glasses once more we had to take a break because this is when one of the processing issues began. We realized she wasn't tracking, and so that caused us to stop for another six months. Now she has matured more and seems to be able to track by using her finger to follow the words.  Lately she hasn't complained of the words weaving across the page as she did back in February and we are making slow but steady progress.  She has begun reading sentences again.  We only do reading three days a week or so, because more than that seems to overwhelm her, but she is really understanding what she is doing so much better this time.  In all of this I discovered Tory loves swimming, and more than anything she loves when I work with her on learning to swim. She says "Please Mom, teach more swimming!  I will practice hard at it."  And she does.  It is so important to her but she has no clue I don't know to much swimming technique.  I just know the basics enough that I can get her started.  So I want to begin swimming classes at the college here in town that offers them during the winter for children.

6.-- Daily want to do something for our gluten free baked good business even if it is small.  My daughter Hope and I are working hard trying to build up enough business to build up to a bakery, but right now we sell at a farmer's market.  It takes a lot of effort from both of us, but we are building up a customer base.  I would like to see if a few restaurants would begin to carry some of our baked goods, and ultimately some stores...

7-- Have time to laugh.  I have been so busy I get tense and I forget to look for the funny side of life.  On the way back from Aurora after my daughter's wedding, my mom, Meg, and I got laughing.  All of the sudden I realized how little I laugh.  Those merriment moments relieved all the pressure I was feeling and even my stomach ache went away.  I suddenly realized what scripture means when it says 'laughter does good like a medicine' and realized also I have to make time for laughter and enough relaxation that I will be able to laugh.

These are seven of my goals for the next few months, and maybe if I put the effort in I will feel more in control and watch life resolve itself in me... I don't know but I am planning to try.  How about you?  Are you struggling?  Maybe make a list of things for yourself then keep in touch.  I will tell you how my efforts are going and you can tell me what is working for you.

Anyway I guess that is it for right now.  This is Cat out.