Category Archives: Awards

Blackjack Twenty-One

Photo source: Caltiva Creatividad

Photo source: Caltiva Creatividad

Deep breath… cold sweat.  You have a 9 facing up, and a 7 facing down… What to do, what to do?! Experience dictates that you should always hold at 16.  Always hold at 16.  Statistically speaking, your hand will bust if you take another card.

Feeling lucky… 

Hit me,” you say as you swipe your fingers across the green felt-covered table, taking a chance.

Not sure if you’re making the right decision… Kenny Rogers’ song lyrics “you gotta know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em… know when to walk away… know when to run” plays like a record in your mind.


The dealer pulls a card, flips and lays it face-up for all to see.  With great anticipation, you watch as he lays a five.  A five!  Yup!

Twenty-one, Blackjack,” you say excitedly, exposing all your cards and sharing the great news with everyone at your table.

Twenty one.

Twenty one!

Twenty-One…Two words that clearly articulate that you just beat the dealer. And, beating the dealer feels really good!



Twenty-one years ago, my then fiance and I made a bet on life as we walked down the aisle to publicly say “I DO.”  Looking back, we were just kids. We didn’t really know the rules of the game. Heck, we were barely past the legal drinking age!

Twenty-two and saying "I do!"

Twenty-two and saying “I do!”

Celebrating our 21st anniversary has been a huge milestone. Over the past 21 years, we’ve overcome fertility issues, earned a college degree, bought and sold a few houses, held multiple careers, brought two children into the world, experienced the death of a parent, lived through the separation from an entire side of a family, experienced financial struggles, overcame gay bullying issues, embraced a free-spirited daughter, and questioned our faith.

We’ve learned the importance of honesty…

…even when the truth hurts.

We’ve learned about not spending more than we earn…

…both in terms of money and calories.

We’ve learned that while we are great together…

…we have to stand strong independently.

We’ve listened to our own truth…

…even when those around us thought we were making crazy decisions.

I guess it’s kind of like holding a 9 and a 7 when playing Blackjack… everyone tells you to hold. Every once in a while you decide to take the risk – and it pays off.


As we enter our 22nd year, we are feeling pretty good about our hand. We have a set of Kings. We have faith in each other, and we know we’ve got this thang!

With love, experience, trust, and proven tenacity, we know we’ll make it!  Side-by-side, holding hands, we decide to double down – betting the house, and telling the dealer to “hit us good” for the next 21.

What bets have you made in life that have paid off richly?!

Take time to celebrate your wins today!


© 2013, The Musing Maven, all rights reserved.

Interesting Blog Award

Special thanks to Jane Johann for nominating me for the “Interesting Blog Award”!


I’m new to this whole “blogging thang,” and I appreciate the kudos.

Cheers to all writers driven to share their truth… and, a heartfelt thanks to all readers who travel with us on the journey of the written word!

This award requires that I share Five Random Facts About Myself:

  1. I can still do a back flip off a diving board. I consider this my “Stupid Human Trick” if you saw it, you’d understand why.
  2. My favorite summer pass-time is sprinkler hunting (Just find an open space with sprinklers… then run, at mach speed, through them!)
  3. I look at life through a marketing lens.
  4. My favorite winter pass-time is sledding. It’s always best when the cops DON’T have to be involved…
  5. My two favorite radio stations, while driving, are NPR and the local Comedy Channel.

Jane asked that I also answer these five questions…

1. How do you handle transitions in life?
I usually climb the stairs as I approach the ride. Step in. Secure all valuables (like the kids and hubby). Click the life-saving belt. And hold on for dear life! If it’s a biggie, I also reach for the stars and scream like a little girl, until the ride comes to a complete stop. As I run from the ride, I leap in the air and add a notch to my belt for surviving!

2. Do you ever want to retreat into your own world?
Yeah, sure. I usually meditate and write… sort things out… and then I’m ready to jump back in to the world where everyone else lives.

3. What is your favorite color and why?
In terms of apparel, I’m drawn to natural colors, like green, rust, and brown. However, I love all the colors of the rainbow!

4. What is the funniest thing that has ever happened to you?
I was applying “Just For Men” into my hubby’s salt-and-pepper doo… and I forgot to wear gloves. We had to leave in 20 minutes. My palms were dyed very dark brown. We laughed so hard I literally peed myself. Not a proud moment… but you asked the question and I cannot tell a lie.  Brown palms. Still makes me fall on the floor laughing!

5. How do you see us ending the horrible suffering in this world?
“What the world needs now… Is love, sweet love…” It’s really in the simple things.

To share the wealth, and inspire my readers to check out where I get some of my inspiration… I am nominating these 5 blogs for the “Interesting Blog Award.”  Enjoy!

My 5 Nominations Are:

*Marina Volandes RunningIntoTheNight
Marina is an adult survivor of a harsh childhood in New York’s foster care system. She not only shares her story, she speaks for millions of children who have no voice. Flash-backs allow you to journey with an innocent child, through some very dark places. Yet, in spite of her pain, there is a warm presence of light that will envelope you as you read her blog.

* Nina TooHottieForThatBody
Nina authentically shares details of her successful weight-loss journey in a whimsical, and very authentic way. You’ll find delicious recipes, and healthy tid-bits, as well as hilarious stories of her day-to-day life. If you have a sense of humor, are into health (mental, physical) and weight-loss, you need look no further than TooHottieForThatBody!  I should also mention that Nina was recently ranked 44th out of the 100 Best Weight-Loss Blogs!

* Stephanie Raffelock  SoManyBlogsSoLittleTime
Stephanie is always true to her tagline, “Bumping and Grinding Thru Life’s Sorrow and Humor.” She’s a beautiful and inspirational writer sharing life (and light) through her prose.

* Aprill Brandon Broke Wife Big City
You can always count on full-belly laughter when reading Aprill’s blog. She often incorporates stick-figure cartoons to help bring her words to life. She’s witty and spunky. Her’s is a must-read with every post.

Eyoälha JumpForJoy
Eyoälha’s blog is an amazing journey, depicting people from around the world, jumping for joy. You can’t help but smile as you scroll through wonderful posts of people, young and old, jumping for joy on every continent — all united through the universal language of the jump! Woo Hoo!

Thanks again, Jane, for nominating me for this award. And, thanks to my readers who make my blog worth writing!


© 2013, The Musing Maven, all rights reserved.