The Soldier and the Squirrel introduces children to the Purple Heart

through a loving story of a friendship between a newly wounded soldier

and Rocky the squirrel with his backyard friends. This story began as a

blog during my first year in bed after my incident. With much

encouragement, it is now a book and has been placed in the

Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum. Please watch the video

on the About page to learn for the Soldier & Rocky are changing children's






Glorious Rejoice Dots Glitter





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The Silver Lining of Rice Crispies

There are Rice Crispies in my neck. At least that's what it sounds like when I wake up and turn my head.   It's an issue in my spine not made of metal, super-glued together, or leveled with a nail file. I lay on my pillow and turn my head to the right. Whoop! There it eeaz. Just at the base of the skull. Like pop rocks when you drop them into Ginger Ale.

The silver lining. It is a beautiful thing. We all need one when the sky looms with an unfamiliar cloud. I watched a movie last week called The Girl With A Pearl Earring.  The girl was a servant. She worked for the painter of "the Dutch Mona Lisa", Johannes Vermeer. He saw the world with colors she did not see. Until one day, he told her to look at the sky and tell him what colors the clouds were. She told him they were grey. He said to look again. She did. And she saw what he hoped she would. The clouds were filled with variant hues of yellows and blues and grey.  She couldn't believe her eyes. And from then on she saw the world differently. Like a painter finding color in the most every day things.

So that is what I am trying to do. Find my cloud with colors. Not just silver inside. I look for rainbow prisms dancing on the edge of one after a rainy day. I embrace the site of pink and orange cotton candy clouds floating above a setting sun, a sign the day will end, and I can rest.

I never thought I would be laying in bed so much, facing a sky though a wooden frame. But it has taught me to remember, that the troubles I may have, are not all that there is to see. That the wooden frame I look through is also surrounded by God in the trees, the grass, the wind, the sky, and yes the clouds.  I imagine I too am a cloud I used to think was white. But I simply hadn't slowed to see how many colors there really are inside.

I am not the darkness or greys of pain.  It is instead a canvas to stroke with colors I would not have seen unless an artist made me look - at colors you can only see by being slowed.  And they are beautiful.

Rice Crispies are one color. I don't have a pearl earring. So I will imagine the colors. And the pearl earring. And shade them in my mind.  In a way the world could never imagine, unless it is slowed.

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