The man in plaid

Figure-in-church-doorway (1)

A few months ago …..

I slowly woke up and tried to focus on the clock that was across the room, the clock read 2:13am. Instead of laying in bed I figured since I was up I would get a glass of water and use the bathroom but instead of using the master bathroom (so I wouldn’t wake my husband or the furkids) I decided to use the guest bathroom which was in the living room. As I made my way to the bedroom door  (which was only opened a crack to allow the dogs to go in and out as they pleased) I grabbed the knob and proceeded to walk through the doorway ….. I froze because standing right in front of me was a tall fairly built man in a red/black plaid flannel shirt. In those brief seconds I felt no fear, I was just startled because the last thing I expected to see standing in my doorway was a figure of a man.  You would think I would yell, scream, pee my pants …something…..but all that came out of my mouth was a whispered “oh my gosh, don’t do that”  and then he was gone.

Now, don’t get me wrong  if I walked out of my room and almost ran into a man who was peeking in my doorway I would have screamed my bloody head off. In this case, I knew he was a spirit …… as I walked to the bathroom my heart was still racing but I tried so hard to replay what had just happened.  Part of me hoped that I didn’t offend the man in plaid and wondered if he was as startled as I was? Who was this guy……someone just passing by, a deceased relative, a guide? then I grew frustrated…why did I have to look so startled?

I never did tell my husband about our visitor because he doesn’t believe in ghosts and to tell him that I almost ran into one in our home would just start a debate that I really would rather not go into with him.  Granted I did tell him about a couple of incidents that involve my deceased grandfather but honestly I don’t think he paid much attention to the stories…’s just something that isn’t discussed, his beliefs are his and mine are mine.  It makes me wonder if I ever told him the story about the ghost I saw up in the Canyon in California, probably not….haha.

The man in plaid has never showed himself to me again but I still wonder from time to time who he was.

Staying true to myself


Last night I slept, I slept better than I had in days…maybe weeks. I woke up around one in the morning recalling a dream that I just had, “I fell asleep” …I closed my eyes, snuggled up closer to the hubby and without hassle I fell back to sleep. I woke up refreshed … no sign of a headache, I was ready to tackle my day.

It had seemed as though writing about what was troubling me helped tremendously, but why was I so surprised this time?  Writing has always been therapeutic to me, writing is what I know …… sharing or venting to a friend has helped at times but when I write I feel as though I can express myself more clearly without interruption. It’s my feelings, my truth, my hopes, my life… in black and white.

I made a decision when I started Valley Girl Gone Country not to hold back, or to allow someone to dictate what was deemed appropriate…that type of restraint left me feeling bogged down and trapped, yes there are times that I have had to change a name just to protect the person that I am speaking of, there have been moments that I sat in front of my computer screen ready to hit publish but had second thoughts because maybe it was too raw…too personal…too me, but you know what?  I had to get pass that. Throwing myself under the bus or sharing idiotic situations will happen, because well…….sometimes life brings you idiot moments..right?

When I am blogging about my life here in the country or sharing experiences of my past….there are times that to some it may come across very personal, for example “Love Doesn’t Leave Bruises” It’s my attempt to reach them (them meaning friends/family) and I have exhausted my efforts every other way, I’ve talked to them until I was blue in the face, I’ve dumbed it down for them, I’ve pulled the emotion out of it, emailed…but I know they read this blog, I also know they read your comments. I know in time something has to click.

I watched the first episode of Blood, Sweat and Heels this past weekend and honestly I wasn’t too impressed, but one of the cast members is a blogger, Demetria Lucas and boy oh boy did she get some of those girlies panties in a bunch just by writing her truth, her observation from a brunch she attended. She wasn’t going to let them bully her into silence, she was going to write what she knew…..not even a calculated dinner to bamboozle her and tear apart her posts broke her. She stayed classy. She remained true to herself.

All in all I will remain true to myself and Valley Girl Gone Country. I’ve shut down one too many blogs and went into blogging hibernation because of other peoples opinions but I can’t do that anymore.

* You have the choice to read or not to read. I am not forcing that hand*

and when I say that I am staying true to myself this has nothing to do with me refusing to accept becoming forty  in a couple of days…..I will be 39 again and again and again. 

Please help…..and explain Tumblr to me


Please explain the purpose of this new addition to social media, is it mainly to post pictures? quotes? is it a different form of blogging? I’m so confused……maybe there is a “Tumblr for Dummies” out there. Yeah I know I can probably Google my way around finding out what exactly tumblr is and how it will benefit me…..but what fun is that when I can ask you.

I did create a Tumblr account to see what all the hoopla is all about ….. but as of right now, I’m not feeling it.

Daily Prompt : Regrets ….I’ve had a few

Todays Daily Prompt asks What’s your biggest regret? How would your life have been different if you’d made another decision?


I have often thought about how my life would have been like if I never met Mr.Crazy. Life would still be a struggle, this I know  but I wouldn’t have had the extra chaos that being with him brought on. I believe my relationship with my oldest daughter would have never seen the obstacles that it did when I decided to date and then marry this man. Being with this man caused a lot of turmoil between my daughter and I and my first husband seeing this only fueled the fire by his nasty words and constant manipulation of the situation. I knew she only wanted the best for me and rushing into a relationship especially with him was just setting me up for failure. My kids never truly liked him ….. they thought he was a bit “odd”. My oldest daughter just wanted me to focus on my faith and take sometime being ALONE then being with a man.

I would like to believe that my relationship with my ex and his family would still be  tolerable and not what it is today………….it was my ex-husband that introduced me to Mr.Crazy, never thinking we I would settle and end up marrying the guy. My ex wasn’t too thrilled with the progression of the relationship and he made it such an issue. Mr.Crazy once said “it’s like he is still hung up on you and doesn’t want me to be with you”. Sure seemed like that for awhile……once I moved in with MC everything around me started to fall apart. My relationships with my girls and my ex just started to unravel. Chaos thrived in this household… sucked the life out of everything positive….and if I am being honest with you…there wasn’t much.

I would have never been introduced to his rage and that “look”….which I only saw when he unleashed his monstrous rage. I wouldn’t have to see the negative side of a mommas boy and be fooled by his family. I would have never been prescribed Prozac for my  anxiety and end up gaining 40 pounds because of it. I would have never faked early menopause just so he wouldn’t touch me.


In the end, when I was at the crossroads of my life and if I knew what I know now……I would have never gone down that road that was full of turmoil, lies, secrets , depression, dysfunction and mental illness…..I should have listened to my children when they said  “WHY HIM?? really mom??” , I should have listened to my girlfriend who said “why are you lowering yourself, you two don’t even look right together”….I should have listened to the many who said “you can do so much better” but I had my super powered rose-colored glasses on and hands over my ears.  I was going to do what I was going to do…….no one was going to tell me otherwise.

and if you all are wondering …yes I did hear a lot of “I told you so’s” ….. yes I had to admit my mistake and yes I have had to work hard on restoring my relationship with my oldest daughter …it’s still not where I want it to be, but I feel in order for that to happen she needs to remove her rose-colored glasses and see her father for who he is…..but like I, it took me time to remove mine and face reality. My relationship with my middle child Ann is better than ever and my  son….he hates to be in the middle of family issues so he has learned to step away or just keep it to himself and focus on school and football.

Want to be my Guest Blogger ?




Thank you to those of you who submitted a post….I loved them and can’t wait to share your creativity with everyone!!

It’s not too late to submit a post though ………. I know sometimes a subject is totally off limits to post on your own blog, so you are more than welcomed to submit it to me and I will post it here!!

You can write about anything (within reason)……you know that I am a “pretty much say what’s on my mind” kinda gal.  I want to make Thursday the day I share the work of a Guest Blogger, so if you are interested send me your post to

Hope to hear from you soon!!


Want to be a Guest Blogger?


You can write about anything (within reason)……you know that I am a “pretty much say what’s on my mind” kinda gal.  I want to make Thursday the day I share the work of a Guest Blogger, so if you are interested send me your post to

Hope to hear from you soon!!


Daily Prompt : Mirror, Mirror on the wall


My blog is a direct reflection of my life and how I have transitioned from living in Southern California to a small country town in Arkansas. I use this platform as a way to share my story…..the good, the bad and the unpredictable. Most of the time when I sit down to write I imagine that I am talking to you face to face, maybe over a glass of wine or hot chocolate. All I have ever wanted was to make those who visit this blog feel welcomed.

When I look back at the posts that I have published it is an assortment of things that happen or happened in my life; from silly moments, strange country critters that I am still getting accustomed to, my two failed marriages, my children who aren’t children anymore, being a newlywed for the third time, friendships and even yesterday I wrote about my heavenly vanilla latte. This blog is an honest depiction of my life. If it wasn’t for this release I think I would have shelves lined with journals depicting my life….talk about writers cramp!!

I only have changed my theme a few times since I started this blog in May, although I have that itch to change it up a bit and add a few special things but I just don’t have a thousand dollars laying around to pay someone tweak it ….I only wish I had the knowledge and patience to do it on my own.

To read others Daily Post click here: Mirror Mirror on the wall

Ohhh guess what, your son was at Mr.Crazys house this past weekend……….WHAT???

This post was a long time coming. I debated, pondered, deleted and then I was made aware of something that happened over the weekend that really ticked me off.

A few months ago I noticed that my children were Facebook “friends” with Mr.Crazy (my second husband) …….why in the world would my kids accept his request knowing full well the crap he put me through?  I remember my son telling me “mom he’s changed” yeah ok whatever ….men like him don’t change, they can snap at any moment……my son of all people knew of all that occurred under that mans roof and the many times he would warn me before entering the house not to set Mr.Crazy off.  My son would stay in his room just to avoid him….he couldn’t stand his monstrous rages or his stupidity. It wasn’t until I noticed that Ann accepted his friendship that I began to wonder what the heck was going on, did she forget that  it was him that lifted his hand to her, that it was him that she struggled with in the hallway of our home….I couldn’t understand this.  “Mom, he is still paying for my phone …. I just feel obligated to friend him”. I told Ann that the only reason he has kept her on his plan was to track her calls, to find my new number and plus he wanted to somehow look like a good guy to my ex-husband (his idol, my first husband). I also advised her that once the contract ends that he will most likely cancel the service and that it really was time for her to get on her own plan and stop relying on a man who should NOT be in her life.

Knowing that all three kids are “friends” with this man makes my skin crawl. If only they knew the horrible things he had said behind their back…..I remember him calling my son horrible, hateful names, making fun of my oldest daughters religion and weight and then calling Ann a lazy,fat pig and this was to her face. They all witnessed his horrible anger that was unleashed unto us, they all witnessed his scowl, they all witnessed how he treated me through out our short-lived marriage and how after I left him he continuously created havoc in my life. They all knew the fear I had of him……but still that seems not to matter to my kids.

I recently was told that my son spent some time this past weekend over at Mr.Crazys home…..he was playing a board game with Mr.Crazys little minions but still it was the thought that my son who at one time was all about protecting me was over at the house of the man who had unleashed such beastly anger towards me and my children a couple of years back. I don’t know who he is fooling……Ann mentioned to me several times that his Facebook page is full of “feel sorry for me” posts and silly affirmations about life.

Do I think Mr.Crazy has a handle on his anger…….hell no!! I still can remember the time he “butt dialed” me and in the background I heard him yell and threaten his youngest boy. I remember being in one of our counseling appointments (the therapist happened to be his anger management counselor as well) and he started to become belligerent and unruly with the man who was trying to help him get control of his anger. This man can go from calm to crazy in no time flat, shit if you stare at him wrong all hell could break loose……it’s even worse if he’s off his meds.

The last contact I had with Mr.Crazy was when he called me at three in the morning and told me that he knew my apartment complex had no security cameras and then he started to unravel at the seams…..the following day I went to the courthouse to get a restraining order put against him to protect me and my son (my girls live in another state). My ex (1st husband) was livid at me for doing this and thought that I provoked Mr.Crazys call…..and then my son called me and told me that Mr.Crazy would never hurt him……well, that’s what I thought to but that didn’t stop him from laying his hands on my daughter,Lily (my furkid) and myself.

I guess in a way for them to friend him or decide to hang with Mr.Crazy shows me that they condone his behavior, the past and the present. If it was me,  I would never continue a friendship with someone who has no regard for my family ….. who would lay a finger on my children ….. who would threaten or stalk them. He fooled me plenty of times and he continues to fool others……it’s just sad that my sons father is oblivious to Mr. Crazys antics. This man needs to get a life, this man needs to stay out of every part of mine…….he makes me sick, it makes me sick just thinking that my son was in THAT house again.


Side note :  Yes, I understand that my kids are old enough to do what they want and be “friends” with whomever, crazy neurotic people included……I just needed to vent and get this off my chest……, it’s time to enjoy today.

Happy Fourth Everyone!! 

I want to have a book hangover….suggestions welcomed!


I spent hours on the Barnes and Nobles website yesterday trying to find a book that will suit my fancy. I came across a few that seemed interesting until I downloaded the sample on my Nook and realized quite quickly that it bored me. I like a book that will grab my attention right off the bat…..yes, I understand that I should give it sometime and maybe by chapter two things will get better, but I hate waiting for the hook…..I like to be knee-deep in a good story, one that I can’t stop thinking about during the day and one that I will read until my eyes become to weary to even focus on a word.

So I am asking you my fellow blogger friends for some assistance…………Can you PLEASE suggest some of your all time favorite books!!

What are you currently reading???

ohhhh and I enjoy all types…..well maybe not ALL types I really don’t get into Westerns.

Thank You!!!

True friends tell it like it is ….Please stop this nonsense!!


Yesterday, I was speaking with my friend Marie who was distraught over a very recent break-up. I didn’t quite understand why she was upset because she had been trying to find a way to end things with him for months and sorta/kinda moved on with another man but yet she was stating that she screwed up badly and sabotaged the best thing that she ever had. Well “The best thing she ever had” never had time for her, put together a spreadsheet showing when he could fit her into his schedule, disrespected her in front of others, flirted with other woman in front of her, they brought the worse out of each other such as insecurity, jealousy, anger, bruises and to top it off he didn’t like her dog!!!  Her vision of “The best she ever had” was totally off kilter.

“Jolene, he’s a hot commodity here….all the women want him. It felt good to be with him when we were out on the town, just knowing others envied me made me feel good…plus when I was talking to my mom  she mentioned that I needed to stay with the corporate types because they make money”……ok, I was glad she admitted it…… “Marie, remember when Katie Holmes started dating Tom Cruise? She was in awe of him, she loved what he was about; money…glitz ….glamour….for heavens sake he was  her childhood crush and now she was in the spot light being envied by other woman, but after awhile his full crazy showed…….and now look at them”   why I brought up Crazy Cruise is beyond me but she saw my point.

“Marie, you have a man in your life (the new guy) who is giving you all that you ever wished “Corp” would. He’s romantic, thoughtful, giving, he is wonderful with your children and he is drama and chaos free, who cares if he doesn’t wear a suit and tie and makes bookoo bucks, this man adores you. He’s not some bipolar pizza delivery driver (no offense to delivery drivers I was trying to make a point) with no direction, he has his own business and gives back to the community…… some ways he reminds me of Terry…..and you tossed him aside because your mom said he couldn’t provide for you the way you deserved….now here’s your chance to be with a man who is all about balance but for some reason you think you deserve chaos. You need to stop listening to your mother… SHE happy in her marriage? No. Would you be happy with Corp knowing full well that you are just a spot on his spreadsheet?? No….Will you grow to be ok with his anger and flirtatious ways or will it just feed your increasing insecurity? Is this the makings of a long and lasting love???? Uhmmmm NO”

I know I was being somewhat harsh, but sometimes tough love is needed. I remember those times when my Best Friend Jenny would give me those core shaking talks, but it was her honesty and hard cold truth that made me see the light and I love her for that!!

“You’re right” is all she said. I could hear the frustration in her voice. I know she’s conflicted……I just wish that she could see beyond the glitz and glamour that she so wants to be a part of. I feel bad for this new guy who has been waiting patiently for her while she has been playing ring around the rosy with her feelings for Corp……..but  because of certain actions on Maries part Corp won’t speak with her. “Marie, just remember how you felt when you and Joe were ending things and Corp was the “other” guy….it was hard for you to let Joe go to, but you did… need to realize that love may not come in a suit and tie, maybe it’s time for you to see how love without  jealousy and doubt feels like, maybe it’s time for your daughters to see their mom happy, maybe it’s time for a good male role model to be part of their life unlike Corp who never fit them into his”

Our conversation was cut short…..but I hope she heard me …REALLY heard me. I just wish she would stop listening to her mother and those high society “it’s all about money” friends……because this is reality not some Real Housewives of “Santa Barbara”.  I just want what’s best for my friend and that’s not Corp, she deserves a real genuine man.