Personal Demons – YA Novel by Lisa Desrochers

Bailey here again –

I’ve been totally wrapped up in my latest read, Personal Demons, by Lisa Desrochers. While the main character, Frannie Cavanaugh,
deals with actual demons from Hell and angels from Heaven, her own personal demons are of another kind. But no spoilers here.

As for the demons and angels, Luc, an actual demon from Hell – and a sexy one to boot – is sent to tag Frannie’s soul for Hell. And let me tell you, Luc is hard to resist. But Heaven has its own plans and sends sexy angel Gabe to thwart Luc’s plans and tag Frannie for Heaven. Gabe is also impossible to resist. Caught between two hot guys, and not knowing exactly what they are, is where Frannie’s fun begins.

You’ll have to read the book to find out why Frannie is SO important to both Heaven and Hell. And you’ll never be able to guess it.

I won’t spoil the story for you, but there are so many twists, turns and surprises in this book. I didn’t see most of them coming, which makes for a great read.

I can’t wait to dive into the sequel, Original Sin, and then the third installment, Last Rite, to be released in May 2012!

Check out more about Personal Demons and Lisa Desrochers at http://www.lisadwrites.com

Adam Beach – Native Actor

Bailey here again –

Adam Beach is a prolific Native actor you’ve likely seen on TV, at the movies, or both. He most recently co-starred with Harrison Ford in the movie, Cowboys & Aliens.

Adam was born in Manitoba, Canada and grew up with his two brothers on the Dog Creek First Nations Reserve. He was eight years old when his mother was killed by a drunk driver. Eight weeks later, his father drowned. Adam doesn’t like to recall his childhood very often because it was so painful. He and his two brothers eventually were taken to Winnipeg to live with an aunt and uncle (his father’s brother), who he refers to as “dad.”

Adam made a name for himself as Victor Joseph in the award-winning film, Smoke Signals. He played opposite Nicolas Cage in Windtalkers, the story of the World War II Navajo code talkers, and received acclaim for his powerful starring role as Ira Hayes in Flags of Our Fathers, directed by Clint Eastwood and produced by Steven Spielberg.

He has also received a Golden Globe Award nomination for his portrayal as Charles Eastman in the film Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. He’s also worked extensively in television, appearing on HBO’s fourth season of Big Love as the manager of the Indian casino; as a series regular on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, playing the role of Ice-T’s partner, Chester Lake; and in the CBS miniseries Comanche Moon. Adam currently has a recurring role on ABC’s new series Combat Hospital (2011).

Adam brings a unique and diverse perspective to his work as he is strongly rooted in his Native heritage. He received the Best Actor Award from the American Indian Film Festival for his role of Frank Fencepost in the film Dance Me Outside.

Adam’s commitment to his spiritual development through traditional grass dancing enhances his work. He spends his spare time playing hockey and generously donating his voice and enthusiasm in support of Native youth.

Adam’s film and television involvement is so extensive I can’t list it all here. But you can check him out on his IMDB page at: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0063440/

Jeeping in Silverton, Colorado

Hey there, Bailey, here –

I was gone for almost the entire month of July on a jeeping/camping trip with the parents. I know, the parents. But it was way cool! I swear the Rocky Mountains are the most beautiful place on earth. Now I know what John Denver was singing about all those years. Yes, I grew up listening to John Denver. All of the pictures posted here are ones I took on our trip. Click on any of pics if you want to see a larger version of it.

We started out with six 4-wheel drive vehicles. They weren’t all Jeeps. We had also had a Bronco, a Land Cruiser and a Ford truck. My parents have the white Jeep Cherokee. The Bronco had a bit of trouble every time we drove above 11,000 feet. Something to do with the carburetors vapor locking. Those of us with fuel injection didn’t have those issues. But as you can see, with a bit of manpower, we got them turned around and back toward 10,000 feet so the Bronco would start again.

We jeeped around Silverton, Colorado for the first part of the trip. Silverton is an endearing little mining town at the elevation of 9318 feet. Beautiful, jagged peaks surround the town and my gorgeous Animas River rushes on the other side of the railroad tracks for the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. It rained there almost every day for an hour or so in the afternoon. I loved it!

The Silverton district opened to miners in 1874, following the Brunot Treaty with my Ute Indians. About 2000 men moved into the region that year from around the U.S., Europe and even China. They had to deal with the severe Rocky Mountain winters and dangerous mining conditions, all in hopes that they’d find gold, silver or whatever other minerals that could make them rich.

We saw a ton of the old mines, mining ghost towns and unbelievable pulley contraptions that were built so long ago. How they built such laborate things without modern technology, reliable vehicles or heavy equipment, I just don’t know. I mean, we drove over rough roads, peaking at above 12,000 feet, just to get to the other side where these ghost towns were. People are amazing.

But not everyone who settled in Silverton were miners. By 1875 the 100 “sturdy souls” who lived in Silverton worked in the post office, sawmills, blacksmith shop, mercantile, newspaper, liquor stores, smelters, or the assay office – an institution that tested the purity of precious metals. The town’s population grew to about 500 by 1876. Life wasn’t easy for any of them. The winters are long, cold and harsh.

Today, many people still live in Silverton year-round. Their school houses about 60 kids, from kindergarten through high school. They even have a preschool. Although most of the cute shops close during the winter, they are open during the few summer months where tourism is at its highest.

And if you’re ever in Silverton around the 4th of July, we were told that their fireworks show is ranked in the top ten of the nation. I hear about 20,000 people bombard the town every July 4th, just to watch the fireworks. I loved Silverton!

Next time I’ll show you Ouray, Colorado! Did lots of jeeping around there, too.

The Hunger Games – Amazing Book

SPOILER ALERT – MAY GIVE AWAY THE HUNGER GAMES STORYLINES

Bailey here again –

I’m reading this amazing book and just had to write about it. The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins, is the first book in The Hunger Games dystopian trilogy. Catching Fire is book #2 and Mockingjay is book #3.

  • Dystopian fiction  –  a futuristic society that has degraded into a repressive and controlled state. Has underlying cautionary tones, warning society that if we continue to live how we are, this will be the consequence. A dystopian society is often characterized by widespread poverty and brutal political controls such as a large military-like police.

I just started The Hunger Games, but I already love Katniss – the main character. She’s strong, resourceful and courageous. And her story is heartbreaking. I pride myself on being a strong teenage girl, but Katniss blows me out of the water.

Katniss lost her beloved dad when she was eleven years old. Then her mom went into a severe, debilitating depression. It fell to Katniss to feed and take care of her younger sister, Prim, as well as herself and her mother. Not an easy task in a town where almost everyone is starving and desperate for food.

The grief of losing her father still slams Katniss in her quiet moments. And her anger at her mother for abandoning Prim and herself when they needed her the most seethes just below the surface.

But Katniss loves Prim more than anything in the world. More than herself. She absolutely adores Prim and will do anything to protect, feed and clothe her. Even if it’s illegal in the unforgiving, dictatorship society in which she lives. Even if it means putting her life in immediate and brutal danger.

What I don’t understand is how Katniss AND Peeta are going to make it out of the Hunger Games alive. If there’s a Team Peeta and a Team Gale, then Peeta must survive, right?

My heart aches for Katniss.

Read more about The Hunger Games Trilogy on Suzanne Collins’ website: http://www.suzannecollinsbooks.com

60’s Series Ford Mustangs – My Favorites!

Bailey here –

My favorite car in the whole world is the Ford Mustang. And the older the better. The 1960’s series Mustangs are the coolest, with their beautiful lines and throaty voices. There’s flat out no other car that looks – or sounds – that good. Yes, I’m a girl, but my heart thumps when I see one of these beauties driving down the road.

Ford released the first Mustang at the World’s Fair on April 17, 1964. That first Mustang is lovingly known as the 1964 1/2. What followed was the most successful car launch in history – 22,000 Mustangs sold in the first week, and over a million Mustangs sold in the first two years. As far as I’m concerned, the best-looking Mustangs were made from 1964 through 1969. They come in a coupe, convertible, or a fastback. I can’t make up my mind which I love most.

The first car I ever drove was a gorgeous ’67 coupe with a custom maroon paint job. It had dual black racing stripes that ran down the hood, around and along the doors, and up and over the trunk. Oh, it was something. I wish I had a picture to share, but I don’t. I don’t even know where that car is now, but I hope she has a good home.

I don’t own a Mustang – YET. So I go around taking pictures of them whenever I see them. It’s a sickness, I know, but it’s fun and doesn’t cost anything. The pictures I share with you here were all taken by me. Now tell me they aren’t gorgeous!

The new Mustangs are cool, too, but I want an old one. My dad says I can’t have an old one because they need lots of maintenance. And they didn’t come with air conditioners, power steering, or air bags – some didn’t even have seat belts. What’s a young girl to do? What I’d really like is for Ford to make a new Mustang that is *really retro.* Then I could buy one in a few years.

I mean, Dodge did it with the Challenger. Look at those cool retro lines. Gorgeous. Come on, Ford! Step up to the plate and give us a new *retro* Mustang. They would sell. Oh, yes, they would sell!

Rick Mora – Gorgeous Native

Bailey here again –

It’s been a while since I’ve written about a Native hunk, so here we go. Ever heard of Rick Mora? Hmmmm. He’s nice. VERY nice. And apparently, he’s a very busy guy. Rick is an actor, model, photographer and producer. He’s also a speaker and has done radio broadcasting.

Rick, an Apache / Yaqui Native, holds a Bachelors Degree in Communication from Cal State, Northridge. He started acting and modeling soon after graduating and was discovered by male super model agent, Omar Alberto, who envisioned the Native man in entertainment. (Thank you, Omar!)

Rick played Warrior #1 in the movie Twilight in the flashback scene when Jacob explains to Bella about the history of his Tribe with the Cold Ones. (I remember that scene!) He’s also had starring roles in The Dead and the Damned, the VILA Chronicles and Operation Repo. He is the voice of Young Turok in the animated feature Turok: Son of Stone, based on the video game, also starring Native actors, Adam Beach and Graham Greene.

As a model, Rick has 4 posters (oh yeah!) being distributed by photographer Carlos Reynosa (http://carlosreynosa.com/). As a photographer, Rick has 9 commissioned pieces to date. He specializes in landscapes, but also shoots headshots, portfolios, children and weddings. (I think I need a headshot!) As a music lover, Rick discovers, develops and produces musicians and bands in the brutal music business. (Darn, I have no musical talent whatsoever. )

Rick also supports the fight against domestic and sexual abuse against Native women. A noble endeavor for a very serious problem.
 

“I am a dreamer committed to bringing my dreams to reality.” – Rick Mora

http://www.rickmora.com

Southern Ute Cultural Information

Bailey here – 

I got a little busy last week because of some tough classes and lots of homework, but I’m back. I promised to tell you about the Ute Cultural Center, the Casino – and the Southern Ute Drum, and I always keep my promises. 

Southern Ute Cultural Center and Museum 

The Southern Ute Cultural Center and Museum is a culmination of more than 24 years of planning and development by the Southern Ute people – many of whom participated by sharing their stories, Ute artifacts, photos, clothing and beading. This beautiful architectural masterpiece will be a focus for Southern Ute cultural preservation, education and community activities for people of all ages. 

As you can see in the photo, the Museum’s central Welcome Gallery represents the shape and texture of the traditional wickiup. Each panel in the Gallery is unique – with its own shape and curve – so that only with computer aided design was this structure made possible. The two wings of the building look raised and ready for flight – symbolizing of the wings of the sacred eagle. 

Seen from within the Welcome Gallery – at the top of the wickuip – is the Circle of Life Window. It represents the four sacred directions, and the four stages of human life. East is infancy, South is youth, West is adult, and North is the elderly stage of life. 

This amazing Museum is not yet open, but is almost ready to take flight. 

The Circle of Life Worldwide Welcome at the Museum takes place on May 21-22, 2011. The Museum is scheduled to be open to the public in June 2011. 

Check out the Southern Ute Cultural Center and Museum at http://www.succm.org/ 

Sky Ute Casino 

The Sky Ute Casino – next door to the Cultural Center and Museum – is a luxury hotel and casino. Slot machines, craps, roulette, bingo, blackjack and poker await those who are ‘of age.’ Of course I can’t gamble yet – not old enough – but they have an indoor swimming pool with a sun deck, a bowling alley, miniature golf and a state-of-the-art arcade. And the casino boasts five different restaurants. Yum! 

Check out the Sky Ute Casino at http://www.skyutecasino.com

Southern Ute Drum  – Tribal Newspaper 

The Southern Ute Drum newspaper – which won four 2010 Native American Journalist Association Awards – is the Tribe’s bi-weekly newspaper. Within its pages you can find cultural news, coverage of cultural events, and pictures of the beautiful Ute people. There are also sections on hunting, sports, education, the Tribal government, business and health. 

Check out the Southern Ute Drum at http://www.southern-ute.nsn.us/DRUM/Default.htm.

Southern Ute Tribe

http://www.southern-ute.nsn.us/

The Southern Ute Indians

Bailey here – 

So you know I live in Durango, Colorado, but I bet you didn’t know that the Southern Ute Indians are the oldest continuous residents of Colorado and the Durango area. Long ago, the Southern Utes were hunter/gatherers and exceptional artists.

They made gorgeous pipe bags and horse bags beaded with beautiful sacred symbols. And they shaved amazing pictures into animal hides to decorate personal and ceremonial dwellings. The Southern Ute headquarters is now located in Ignacio, Colorado – about 25 miles from Durango – on the Southern Ute Reservation. 

One of the things I love about the Southern Ute Tribe is that they still hold traditional ceremonies and festivals – like the Bear Dance, the Sun Dance, and the Pow Wow. And I hope they always do. I love watching the Native dancers, and hearing the drums and the singers. I love the old ways, the old language and the traditions. They’re so beautiful. 

The thing I love about different cultures is, well, they’re different. I don’t want everybody to be the same. How boring. For instance, I for one would love it if all Native guys still wore their hair the traditional way – long. Come on, girls love that. So, Native guys, grow your hair! Wear it flowing over your shoulders, back in a band, or in traditional braids – I’m not picky. I just love long, dark hair. 

For me, Durango wouldn’t be the same without the Native influences. Nor would it have its rich and colorful history. Next time I’ll talk about the Southern Ute Bear Dance, Sun Dance and the Pow Wow.

In the mean time, feel free to check out the outstanding Southern Ute website at: http://www.southern-ute.nsn.us/

Taylor Swift

Bailey here again –

I’m all over the map when it comes to music. But there’s so much great stuff out there – why would I limit myself? I don’t care what anyone else thinks. No matter who it is, or what type of music it is, I listen to whatever I like. And I love Taylor Swift.

Yes, she’s young, and some people think it isn’t cool to like her anymore. But I think she’s an incredibly talented singer/songwriter. This always amazes me. I can understand being able to sing. And I can understand being able to write lyrics. But to be able to do both – well – always astounds me. AND Taylor plays the guitar, while she’s singing the lyrics she wrote. What an amazing amount of talent for one person to possess.

At age 14, Taylor was the youngest staff songwriter of the Sony/ATV Tree Publishing House. And at age 15, she was signed by Big Machine Records. Taylor’s albums are:

  • Taylor Swift (2006)
  • Fearless (2008)
  • Speak Now (2010)

One of my favorite Taylor songs is Breathe from the album, Fearless. Have you ever felt this way before?

  • And we know it’s never simple, never easy
  • Never a clean break, no one there to save me
  • You’re the only thing I know like the back of my hand
  • And I can’t breathe
  • Without you, but I have to
  • Breathe
  • Without you, but I have to 

So agonizing. So true when you’ve lost someone you love – or maybe when you don’t know where they are. Ugh. Gut wrenching.

Taylor says on her website, “. . . love is unpredictable and it’s frustrating and it’s tragic and it’s beautiful. And even though there’s no way to feel like I’m an expert at it, it’s worth writing songs about — more than anything else I’ve ever experienced in my life.” 

Taylor’s moving – and sometimes heartbreaking – lyrics are inspired by her life. She says listening to her songs is like reading her diary. Her songs are so relatable because we’ve all had good and bad relationships, tough breakups, or that elusive love who doesn’t know we exist. What’s different about Taylor is she’ll go and write a song about it – even using names – and put it out on public radio. So boys, beware. If you cross Taylor Swift, you WILL end up in a song.

Read more about Taylor Swift at http://www.taylorswift.com.

Nickelback is Awesome!

Bailey here – 

While we’re on the subject of rock bands, I also love Nickelback. They’re a Canadian band with a totally unique sound. Chad Kroeger, the lead singer, has a husky, sultry voice that I absolutely love. And he’s pretty hot, too. Heck, they’re all hot!

Legend has it that the band’s name originates from the nickel in change that bass player, Mike Kroeger (Chad’s brother) gave customers at his job at Starbucks. He’d frequently say, “Here’s your nickel back.” I love it! Cool name and way cool story. 

Nickelback is one of the most commercially successful Canadian groups and have sold over 30 million records worldwide. My favorite album is Dark Horse. I especially love the songs Never Gonna to be Alone, If Today Was Your Last Day, Gotta Be Somebody, and I’d Come for You. 

The words in I’d Come for You are amazing: 

  • I’d come for you
  • No one but you
  • Yes I’d come for you
  • But only if you told me to
  • I’d fight for you
  • I’d lie it’s true
  • Give my life for you
  • You know I’ll always come for you 

I love those words! How wonderful it’d be to be loved like that someday. Hmmm. Someday.

See the cool video for the I’d Come for You at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RtTFP2TNcM. And check out Nickelback at http://nickelback.com.

Do you love Nickelback, too?

Previous Older Entries