Dreams - What's Your Recurring Theme?

This week, the subject is dreaming, and the lady to talk about that is none other than the author of the Amazon Bestselling novel, THE DREAM JUMPER'S PROMISE, Kim Hornsby. Take it away, Kim...

Everyone dreams. Whether you remember your dreams or not, you're doing it while you sleep.

So what do dreams mean and where in heck do they come from? Are dreams messages sent to us from a higher power, or are they your hindbrain's inability to settle down when the body needs to check out?

Dream experts lean towards the latter but don't dispel the former. At least the more open-minded ones.
Dreams are scientifically explained as part of your brain still feeding information and images to the front brain while you sleep, like that kid at the sleepover who tries to keep everyone up all night with her incessant talking. Dreams are like that - "Hey, don't go to sleep, I want to tell stories!"

I'm particularly fascinated with dreams, seeing I remember my last dream every morning when the alarm clock goes off. If you want to see what I'm dreaming go to #strangedreams on twitter. I think I'm the only person who posts there. Lately I've been dreaming a lot about having a relationship with a really cool guy, about 30-40 years old, in a position of power, handsome, loves me like crazy but I'm still insecure about whether it's going to last. This probably sounds like a romance novel and I'm thinking my dreams lean this way right now because today I launched my second book in a novel series called Dream Jumper and the hero, Jamey, fits this description. I think I'm taking the body of Tina, the heroine, which is good because she has way more fun than the dog or the best friend on Maui. She gets to share dreams with Jamey and be loved like the world is coming to an end.

Dreams can be helpful if you order yourself the right kind of dream. Yes, you heard me. You can actually order yourself a specific dream. I haven't gotten to that part in my book on dreaming yet, but I know it can be done.
When you think that we're lying in this prone state for 6-9 hours a day, re-charging, doesn't it make sense to dream smartly? Dream of something useful? I haven't figured out how yet but I have successfully ordered a dream. And successfully ordered what I do not want to dream about.


My recurring theme in dreams is a large house, with many rooms, doors, mazes, traps. Often the top floor is haunted and I don't want to go up there. The emotion I feel about the top floor is so scary, so deep a feeling that I can't really duplicate it in real life. Have you ever dreamed of something or someone and felt so strong, you wondered how to achieve the emotion in your waking self? 

Dreams can be highly entertaining but also set the tone for your day ahead. Have you ever woken after a disturbing dream and felt that heavy dread all day because of the dream? Or felt that in loveness after a particularly wonderful romantic dream?
That's where I am today- my dream last night was wonderful, even though I couldn't seem to do anything right in my boyfriend's business and his employees resented me, he loved me so much!

I like to analyze dreams and it was with this interest I wrote my third book - The Dream Jumper's Promise - which dealt with dreaming, dream sharing, lucid dreams, false awakenings, and went on to become an Amazon Bestseller. When I speak at Book Clubs we almost always end up talking about dream interpretation.

Today I published my second book in the Dream Jumper Series - The Dream Jumper's Secret. In this storyline, Jamey Dunn is able to enter dreams, sometimes unwillingly, and now, the woman he loves is doing it. Figuring out the strangeness and intricacies of dream jumping leads them into dangerous territory.
In both books, I talk about lucid dreaming, which is when you are able to say "Hey, this is only a dream." Have you ever done that? My first lucid dream was at 5 years old when I told my kindergarten teacher she could throw me down the stairs because it was only a dream. Then there's wake induced lucid dreaming, the holy grail of dreaming, sometimes known as WILD. That's when you go from being awake to being in a dream of your choice and are able to do anything you want like fly. Or date Channing Tatum.

There are fun books out there about dream interpretation. For example, if you dream of losing your teeth the experts say that you are anxious about a transition. The haunted house dream means unfinished emotional familial problems. Supposedly if you dream of an attic, it symbolizes your brain. So my brain has family problems, I guess.

The experts say when you wake, write down the key parts of the dream or you may lose it fast.

The book I'm reading about enhancing your dream life is called Dream Like a Boss, by Ryan Hurd. It's been really enlightening and is written in a funny, hip style.
Pick it up if you're dreamer http://amzn.com/B00HKN3ZW0
Of should I say, if you're interested in your dreams.

Do you have a recurring theme in your dreams? Do tell...


Gardening Finally Returns!

Today, we have author and editor Christine M. Fairchild to share some fun, sun and perspectives from her Northwest garden to remind us it's spring!
Building a garden is a lot like writing a book. But it usually takes much longer!

You can plan all you want, but there will always be detours (like the hidden concrete and apple tree roots we had to dig out), unexpected twists and turns (like tearing up my ankle in May last year and ending my gardening season before it got started), and wonderful surprises (like the “volunteers” poppies and currants that pop up though you never planted them).

A garden, like a good story, triggers your senses with lots of color, texture, fragrance, and visual structure. Sometimes, it's even functional, such as the veggies and fruits I planted this week. Let's hope they pay off!

In my books, I like to create real and active settings, like they are characters. In my garden, I like to create a setting that feels like it’s been there for a 100 years, like my 1909 Craftsman house. They are both works in progress—the house and the garden. Okay, the book, too.

You also need to create soft and serious spots in the garden, as in books, for moments of contemplation. My husband has his lounge chair for sitting, reading, and enjoying his morning coffee on weekends.

Me? No chair yet, and that's fine. I always opt for sitting on the stairs, mostly because I get up constantly to pull a weed or move a pot or throw the ball for the dog. Plus, I'm still shopping for me new outdoor dining set for dining al fresco in the summer :)

Which leads me to the next point: you can always use a good companion in the garden.

Tucker, our two-year-old chocolate lab, likes to lay on the cedar chips and sun himself. Or dig into the gravel on a hot day and cool himself. Either way, he always looks like he needs a beer.

That is, when he’s not pretending to chase the birds and running over my newly planted veggies. Mostly he’s good for keeping the crows out of my crops so they don't eat the seedlings.
Guarding our gravel “pit” (we used to call it the swimming pool—took me two years to dig it out by hand), where we barbeque and cool off in the shade, are some very serious stone lions that were salvaged from a neighbor’s house. 

When Tucker was a puppy, he thought the lions were real and used to run from them. Now he pees on them. That shows them who’s boss!

You have to have some humorous elements too. 

My small frog statues are hidden throughout the garden and keep things light and fun. They like to watch me as I do ALL the work. Maybe they come alive at night to catch bugs and eat snails. I could only hope!

My husband placed a door stopper that looks like the Wicked Witch's legs (from Wizard of Oz) under a stone block in my retaining wall.  Every time I see those feet sticking out, I laugh. So do my guests!

Magic is another necessary element in gardening and storytelling. 

Right now our 100-year-old cherry tree is releasing its flower petals, which looks like snow in spring!

The neighbors have family in town and they got out their camera just to take a picture of the tree and the petals flying everywhere, like a snow globe.

Unfortunately, that tree will need to come down soon, as its trunk is rotting and a giant limb is about to come down on our roof.

Guess that's a lot like the editing part of a book: you have to remove your darlings or they might spoil the rest of the story.

But that's why I also love gardening. It's a never-ending story, and usually the garden's telling ME how things are going to be, not the other way around. Which is just fine by me. As an author, I love to be told a good story!


Christine M. Fairchild, aka the Editor Devil, is a former journalist with 25 years' experience as a writer and editor--from technical to marketing to exec communications to entertainment.

When she's not in the garden, she's finalizing book II of The Goliath Conspiracy Trilogy, a follow-up to her popular debut romantic suspense, An Eye For Danger. You can email her for updates on her next book: christinefairchild AT yahoo.com. Or check out her Pinterest page for "visual ideas" about this series: http://pinterest.com/pin/517280707169827464/

Making the Most of Life...No Regrets!

Today, our very own Lori Leger shares her thoughts on living life to its fullest...

During lunch with friends this past Friday, I heard some awful news. ‘My’ Marine’s best friend lost his life. I won’t get into the details, but it was a tragic twist that no one saw coming. It got me to thinking about life, and how you can never tell what’s waiting for you just around the corner. Here is this young man, Benjamin, who served in the U.S. Marines for four years, made two tours in Afghanistan and managed to survive without losing any of his best buddies over there. He comes back, and a year and a half later, loses a dear friend. A young man of 24, someone he’s grown up with, someone whom I’m sure he planned to have serve in his wedding one day, or maybe be a Godfather to his child, or at the very least an honorary Uncle. Such a loss, and if you come from a small town, as Ben and I do, you know how hard something like that hits.

It got me to thinking about life, and how you can never tell what’s waiting for you just around the corner. You think you have all this time to do what needs to be done, to cross things off that bucket list, and to get around to doing that one thing you’ve always told yourself you’d do one day. When it comes down to it, we just never know how long we have, do we?

So write that first novel, or a book of poetry. Jot down the words to the song that’s been bouncing around in your head. Learn to play the piano, or the guitar. Stand up and sing Karaoke in front of a crowd, take that trip to Hawaii you’ve been dreaming about. Go to Paris and stand under the Arc de Triomphe, or Rome, to view Michelangelo’s greatest masterpiece on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

Of course, not everyone has the funds for that, but if you do, go for it. Maybe your bucket list includes something as simple as getting your ears pierced or being daring enough to get a tattoo. Maybe you want to learn to ride a motorcycle so it’ll give you an excuse to buy that Harley you’ve been drooling over.

Or maybe your dream is as life-altering as quitting your J.O.B. to start a business of your own—even if that business is to write full time, for less than your old salary.

I know what that’s like because I did it—and it’s terrifying. I was lucky because I had my husband’s support, but believe me when I say we’ve made financial sacrifices for the sake of my craft/hobby turned career. Even though, I have not regretted a single minute of it.

It’s given me something more precious than diamonds or gold. It’s given me time. Time for doing what I love—writing, reading, spending time with my grandchildren, cooking Sunday dinners for my family to give my kids an afternoon off, and making sure my husband knows how much I appreciate him. Simple things, really, but things like that are what make life worth living, aren’t they? What can you buy with money that is better than a child wrapping his chubby arms around your neck? Nothing—absolutely nothing compares to them exclaiming, in that adorable toddler language, “I luz you, Maw Maw!”

I’m not finished with my bucket list by a long shot. After all, I haven’t made the New York Times Best Seller List yet—or maybe I am finished and I just don’t know it, yet. Maybe I won’t wake up tomorrow. Heck, maybe none of us will.

One thing I know for sure is if that happens, my friends and family know that they mattered to me. They mattered enough for me to give up something precious—my time. Even if it’s just a text or a phone call to tell someone I’m thinking of them. It’s something I know I’ll never regret doing.

And that’s the key, isn’t it? The sign of living a full life, no matter how long or short a time you’re on this earth—to leave with no regrets?

Just my opinion.
Have a good day, week, life...

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