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  • Writer's pictureCJ Murphy

It's Five O'clock Somewhere

I had an entirely different blog planned for this week's PCT's-Positive CJ Thoughts. I even wrote it completely out and saved in draft form online. When I tried to find the positive message in it, I couldn't. My plan with this blog has always been to try each and every time to find a positive note. To uplift, bolster, and give a message of light for someone that might take five to eight minutes to read my Scrabble game of thoughts.

The more time I spend on social media and watch the news, the dimmer my words became. So, in typical Murphy's Law form, I hit re-do.

I live in vacationland. Mountains full of lakes and streams, ski areas and beautiful hiking vistas. I have abundant wildlife, natural beauty, and all outdoor activities you could ever want just outside my doorstep. All I need to do is step to the window to see it.

In fifteen minutes from my home, I could be in a kayak or an inner tube floating down the mighty Cheat river.

In that same fifteen minutes, I could wander through West Virginia's largest old-growth forest and walk among the only stand of virgin hemlock trees remaining in my one hundred and fifty-five-year old state of West Virginia.

In twenty minutes, I can be in a small area that currently boasts two incredible microbreweries and soon, a third, that serve the finest beer I've ever tasted. I can enjoy a slice of the best pizza, the only guacamole dip I will ever eat, and a food truck that buys produce from my family's farming operation. All in a small town.

In a glorious fifteen seconds, I can walk out onto my porch and watch as ten deer frolic in my yard while a 'rafter' of turkey scratch in the dirt for insects.

My morning commute, out my 1.7 mile long 'driveway', is a wildlife safari. At least a dozen squirrels or chipmunks, play chicken with me every trip. On my return trip, a red tail hawk will frequently fly down my driveway and lead me home. More than once, I've stopped for a black bear to run across my path and a beautiful red fox making its way back to its den. {Yes, I know picture number three isn't a fox. :) }

A few weeks ago, a bobcat slipped over the bank and out of sight. Night time trips give me glimpses of the great owls that come out to hunt for the field mice that forage beneath the oak trees. I'm grateful the ecosystem around them is still vibrant enough for all of them to thrive.

Even with all the angst in the country and around the world, I can escape to my own little piece of heaven on earth.

So, when you have all that beauty around you, what do you do for vacation? Well, go to the beach, of course. That is exactly what the wife and I plan to do next week.

For four days and three glorious nights, we plan to put our toes in the sand and breath in a little salt air.

I've been assured by a friend living in the area, where we are staying is in good shape. Plans to meet for dinner are ongoing. Because it's always five o'clock somewhere, I want Bailey's in my morning coffee, beer with my lunch and a glass of wine or an awesome margarita with my seafood dinner. Maybe I'll have a tumbler of spirits on my balcony as I watch the ocean. Yeah…all of that.

Lately, I've been feeling completely overwhelmed with the political insanity that resides in the 'Divided States of America'. It's now a 'party first' society and the rights of women are eroded daily. We can't be in charge of our own reproductive systems, we aren't allotted the healthcare to care for our bodies, we can't stand up and admit to being sexually harassed or worse…sexually assaulted, without a president to mocks us, a congress that will ignore us, and a country that wants us to be June Cleaver. I've witnessed long time friends belittle survivors and tell me the time for political correctness is past. I try to remind them it's not political correctness but human decency that's apparently out of style.

So, I'm going to the beach to recharge and spend some time with my wife. My second novel 'The Bucket List' is moving along. I got my publishers revisions today and approved them whole heartily.

Next it's onto the proofers to find any typos that drive readers crazy and soon after, my paper proof copy will be in the works. I can still remember opening the package for that paper proof of 'frame by frame' . I never thought I'd be an author of one published novel. Two? Unfathomable. Number three is in the pipeline with the rough draft nearly complete. For all I have to bitch about, I have much to be grateful for.

Tomorrow, I'll board a school bus and spend six hours coming and going, with my nine-year-old nephew who participated in a summer reading program. We'll be seeing a play from one of my favorite childhood books, Charlotte's Web. He's been staying with us all week while his grandmother was needed to care for his cousins and his grandfather works nights. The other evening, we sat in the recliner to write a spooky Halloween story with his spelling words. Earlier, he read out loud to Darla in her recliner. I think we are about to need to move to the couch. He's getting bigger all the time.

We worked through the sentences for the story together. When it was done, he smiled. He loves to write stories with me. Picking him up, feeding him dinner, doing his homework, and tucking him in each night are all sweet reminders of how thankful I am to have him in my life. I won't lie, it makes me wonder about my choices not to have kids. Hard to say what kind of parent I'd have been, given my own childhood. At this point, I feel like I'm living my own version of "Secondhand Lions". I'll take that. I probably make a much better aunt than I'd ever been as a mother.

My point is this, with all that is screwed up around me and all I see as an injustice, I am grateful for the good things in my life. I need to remember to look around me see all that truly is good. It doesn’t mean that I'm not touched by, or failing to be indignant at, the injustice I see. It means that I have to do a little self-care and remember that I can make a difference in November by voting and encouraging others to do the same.

I can speak out against the things I see as wrong. I also have to realize I don't have to drown into the swill. I hope you all do the same and take time to care for yourself.

Yesterday, I received notification that a fellow firefighter in another department committed suicide. His brother and sister firefighters are reeling. It's time to reboot.

I recently told a good friend, who has about a hundred irons in the fire, that you have to put ink in the well to be able to write, that's what I'm going to go do, add a little 'saltborne' ink into my well.

Until 'The Bucket List" is available, my first novel, 'frame by frame' is still available at all your favorite online retail outlets.

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Reviews for 'frame by frame'

Absolutely Fantastic 

 I was right there in the story. It has strong characters and the individual personalities are remarkable. I love the deep family bond and Ree is someone I absolutely adore. I really am impressed with this debut novel. An outstanding and exciting romance. Read it and I’m sure you won’t regret it.- Goodreads 11/30/17



If there were 10 stars, I would choose 12

This is a happy ever after story, one we would all use, especially now. This is a debut novel for this writer and all I can say is I CAN HARDLY WAIT FOR MORE. If these were 10 stars, I would choose 12.



Beautiful Story

This is the first book I have read from this author and I loved it. I really loved taking the adventure with to strong women that both were dealing with a past.... I definitely recommend this book.



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Purchase  CJ Murphy's novel   'frame by frame'     at the following retail sites:




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