Motherhood: The Hardest Thing I’ve Ever Done

20161119_162849

Harder than carrying a child for 9 months, giving birth in the most intense pain I’ve ever felt, keeping them safe for 18 years by guiding them, holding their hands, and telling them what to avoid–is watching them struggle in their 20s to survive in this world with all its hidden traps.  I pray for my sons and daughters as the sunset falls, wondering why no one warned me how my heart would be torn out of my chest by seeing them hurt as time goes by.  I remember their perfect skin, their tiny fingers, their dark eyes yet unfilled.  Jesus, help them.  Help me to stand here for them as long as I can, walking outside my desert home in the light of the moon.  Touch them; pull them out of darkness; fill them with your resurrection power, your Light of the World–this Christmas.

20161119_162801

IMG_20170802_123141_042

Can you see the angel in the clouds?

Advertisements

Jewish, Christian, and a little bit Turkish

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I am part Jewish.  I call myself a Messianic Jew AND a Christian.  The 2 seemingly contradictive terms CAN go together.  Jesus was Jewish.  The first Christians were Jewish, like Paul who traveled through Turkey to Rome and planted churches along the way.  John, who wrote the Apocalypse, penned letters to the 7 Churches–all found in Turkey. He was exiled on a Mediterranean island not far from Antalya.  My American life has joined with that Mediterranean country that connects the continents of Asia with Europe–at Istanbul.  Once called Constantinople, that city rises above 7 hills adorned with ancient castles, Christian cathedrals, and Muslim mosques.  Contradictions are part of daily life.  Viva la difference!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

menorah

Beautiful Fool

Fire Cover

I am a beautiful fool

eyes as aquamarine against faded gold

like the ring my daughter gave me

living in my own dream world

Galadriel of the forest

giving to Arwen

pink flowers in moonlight

standing, frail, against the doom of a sorcerer

waiting for a miracle

Jesus

Moon Cover

Please buy my books, just $2.99 each, so that my dreamlife may continue in practical, unpoetic, expensive California.  Thank you, this Day after Thanksgiving, Year of our Lord 2017.

Selah Cover

Fantasy and Technology

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

My last blog, written 3 months ago, was set in my Happy Place–the Big Bear Renaissance Faire.  Since those Merry Days ended, I realize more than ever that I was born out of time.  I should have lived when women wore capes and could be Queen, accompanied by a faithful, silver-armored soldier.  After reading my daily news and Technology Update (outdated the moment it’s published), my aching, spinning head longs to shrug its Technology Trauma and wear a simple, golden mesh “snood” that blends with my emerald flounces.  I don’t need to know about Killer Robots, camera-equipped drones, Bitcoin, or the newest smartphone.  I want to walk in red forest dust, beneath boughs of evergreen branches, beside breeze-dancing edges of graceful tents.  Mountain summits, still with snow, hover above me; knights, ladies, priests, and dancers surround me; and we all yell together,

“Long live the Queen!  May she reign forever!”

as we follow the purple-trimmed Spanish Queen of Misfits who allows anyone to join her bountiful land and escape the terrible Inquisitions.

So I updated my “Selah of the Summit” fantasy cover with a photo of me at that Renaissance Faire this summer.  Do you like it?  I sadly replaced the cover with my daughter Jessica looking like Arwen from “Lord of the Rings” because its resolution was so low (when I added it to the cover format).  Did you like that one, too, in its original state, below?  Which is better?  Email me your preference, please:  selahtrilogy@yahoo.com

Also download my Selah fantasy novel as a Kindle eBook (just $2.99) or paperback ($10).

Thank you and Happy Olden Days!

Lonna Lisa Williams

Selah Cover

 

Big Bear Renaissance Faire

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

My Turkish husband “Jack” first saw a Renaissance Faire with me in the foresty mountains of Big Bear, California in 2015.  I went to the 2014 Big Bear Renaissance Faire alone.  In 2016, Jack and I were having such a difficult time just trying to find a home that we did not attend.  Now, in August of 2017, the last weekend of the faire calls to us.  We hope to stroll again among the knights and ladies, fairy children, castle gates. Join us in this colorful world where you will be amazed at what you may see.

If you like my photos, slideshow, and video, please check out my books.  I wrote a fantasy novel about Selah who escaped an evil tower in the desert and followed Micah up the mountains where she felt her first rainfall and touched her first trees. I wrote a science fiction novel about Miranda who cared for the earth’s last tree and traveled back in time to meet her great, great-grandmother Gabrielle, who saved tree seeds for the future.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Continue reading

Comic Con Pheonix

I accidentally ended up at Comic Con in Phoenix as I was driving from Texas back to California last year.  Without paying a dime, I managed to slip into the amazing world of super heroes, star travelers, and fantasy creatures–many of whom I had read about or watched in movies. Some had inspired me to write my fantasy novel Selah of the Summit and my sci-fi novel Like a Tree Planted.

So enjoy my favorite photos as you get ready to attend Comic Con 2017 in San Diego.

20160604_143546

20160604_144355

20160604_150822

20160604_150930

Continue reading

Secrets of Los Angeles–from an Uber Driver

20170325_184210

I never used to like Los Angeles.  After exploring it day and night as an Uber driver, I find it beautiful.  Beverly Hills has silver-painted fire hydrants on very clean street corners.  Dark green leaves of Banyan trees arch across wide roads, shading the line of secretive mansions set back behind ivy-covered walls.  Some of these multi-million-dollar homes are brave enough to show sun-spattered entrances to their lofty doors and windows.  On other streets, along canyons, Pink-flowered trees line roads for pastel-colored homes with white picket fences and rose gardens.

I used to live in the San Bernardino Mountains–before traveling overseas to teach English for 5 years.  When I came home summers to sell my books at a posh Big Bear coffee shop, most LA people (up for the weekend) would walk past me as if I were invisible.  I asked, “Would you like to buy a book?”  They would not answer.  Wearing their gold and diamond jewelry with name-brand clothes, they would breeze by in their Personal Trainer-sculpted bodies crowned by salon-crafted hair.  They would examine kitchen gadgets or wooden wall signs:  “My Kitchen, My Rules.”  Sometimes they held a small designer dog instead of leaving it in their new Range Rover, BMW, or Tesla parked under a pine tree.  That’s what I thought of them:  materialistic, shallow, not inclined to read books.  But now I see their world closer, and I understand a little how the wealthy seek to preserve their wealth.

I left the mountain because I could not find a good teaching job or sell enough of my books online.  I started driving for Uber Eats.  This new division of the personal car taxi service features ordering food online from many LA restaurants.  A driver like me will get an offer on the Uber smart phone app, navigate to the restaurant via Google Maps, pick up the food, and deliver the trendy taste experience to customers.

20170326_125037

Most of my customers are middle-class workers with cute LA homes downtown.  A few reside in those Beverly Hills or Hollywood mansions.   Continue reading

The Liberal and the Immigrant

20170307_170400

It’s easy to say, “Let all immigrants come to America.”  It’s harder living with one.  I have been living with my Armenian/Turkish husband “Jack” for 5 years and 3 months.  We survived Turkey and then China and are now attempting America.  Because of language, cultural, and belief differences, our marriage has been difficult.  He can’t drive a car in the U.S., and a Green Card costs about $2000 plus proof of bank savings, home, job, etc.  We haven’t been able to afford one yet, especially since we used up all our savings when my Mazda 5 minivan was totaled in Houston, and I ended up in Texas Medical Center ICU with a subdural hematoma (bleeding in my brain from slamming into metal, no airbag deployed, seat belt bruising my ribs and pushing the air out of me).  Texas sheriffs blamed me for the accident, though I was the one hit by a speeding Houston driver.

We went back to California after that, in an American car with a high-interest loan, high payments, and increased driving insurance.  We slept in that car in the desert, then headed back toward the mountains where I lived before jumping overseas.  Jack got 3 manual labor jobs in a small town.  He quit one and was fired from the other 2, though his English now is pretty good.  After 5 years of teaching English and Journalism for universities, high schools, and private language schools in Russia, Turkey, and China, I have not been able to find a good job in America.  Nobody really needs an older, experienced English teacher in a country where the first language is English.

I found a job driving delivery for Uber Eats in Los Angeles, but with the one-hour commute from the truck stop where we live in the Inland Valley, I make no profits after gas and bill-paying (and my husband’s share, of course).  Uber pays drivers too little, though we wear out our cars, pay auto insurance, and risk our lives on steep, dark roads in the rain.

Turks love to talk, yell, fight.  Centuries of this aggression genetically infuse my husband.  My American friends don’t understand how much of a cultural difference this is and simply don’t like Jack for yelling too much.  Or maybe they question the high rate of abuse to women that Turkey records each year.

Then we lived with a Liberal couple in our small mountain town about 2.5 hours’ drive from Los Angeles. Continue reading

Terrorist Attack in San Bernardino

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Jennifer Thalasinos is comforted by her pastor, Kathleen Dowell of Shiloh Messianic Congregation

Today the world’s news focused on new U.S. President Donald Trump’s immigration restrictions concerning 7 highly volatile, Islamist countries.  Money poured in from liberal sources like George Soros and CAIR (Committee for American-Islamic Relations, a group with ties to terrorist organizations like Hamas) to fund many of the people who protested at airports and government offices across America and across the world.

The “Los Angeles Times” covered anti-Trump protests at LAX airport in a completely biased manner and even asked readers to submit their “Immigrant Story.”

Well, here is my Minority Report immigration story.  Let me clarify that not all Muslims are Islamists, a term that indicates an embracement of the extreme, violent, jihadist beliefs of Islam and Sharia Law. My Muslim Turkish mother-in-law, for example, would sooner give a stranger tea and homemade soup than assemble bomb parts, and she longs for world peace. Continue reading

Big Churches & Big Bucks

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Not many people can say that they’ve visited the biggest church in America and the biggest church in the world.  I went to both of these, not as a welcomed speaker or acclaimed, best-selling author, but as a traveler needing a place to sleep.

I came upon America’s biggest church quite by accident.  I had just arrived in Houston, Texas at the turn of the New Year, 2016.  A winter storm with strong gusts and torrents that blinded my driving pushed my car off the downtown freeway to Lakewood Church one night.  I thought it was odd that the name “Joel Osteen” was lit up in lights next to the church’s name.  The building was a former convention/sports stadium that had been turned into a mega-church.  It boasted several levels, below-ground parking, and an arena that could seat hundreds of thousands.

I parked in the lower-level parking area and found my way inside the church which was hosting many events for children and adults on a Friday night.  I walked past the cafe and bookstore and took an elevator to Level 4 where people gathered for a Celebrate Recovery meeting.  While my husband, still shy about America, waited in the car, I listened to a woman give her testimony of being free from an abusive relationship.  She also played the guitar and sang.  I stayed for the free soup after and asked a woman with a badge if anyone could help me and my husband, new in town and with little money, to find a motel for the night.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

“Oh, you have to come back on Monday when the office is open,” the badged woman informed me.  I thanked her for the soup and mentioned, as I walked away, “I need gas and food, and that’s 3 days away.  I’ve tried all the public welfare agencies.”

A black man handed me $20.  “I don’t know if you are telling the truth or not, but Jesus loves you,” he assured me.

He walked quickly away, before I could thank him.  I found my way back down to the parked car.  We drove to an old auto repair shop not far away to spend the night in our Mazda 5 minivan.  Since we blended in with other parked cars, no police or neighbors bothered us.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Monday morning I returned.  The church looked more ominous in the daylight.  I walked up its steep entrance ramp, through one of many glass doorways, past a uniformed guard, to the long security desk. Continue reading