Fiction · Flash Back Friday · writing

Flash Back Friday

Hello people!

For today’s Flashback Friday, I didn’t go too far back. Only as far as Feb of last year. I thought I would dust it off and display it once more. It’s still one of my personal favorites as far as stories go. Hope you enjoy it!

I wrote this story as part of WordPress’ Weekly Writing Challenge. We were to write a 1000 word story based on a picture. This is the picture my story is based on.

Source: Cheri Lucas Rowlands
Source: Cheri Lucas Rowlands

Juanita’s Joy


Juanita trudged up another hill, carrying her paints and brushes in sack over her back. No one seemed to know Juanita’s exact age, not even Juanita herself. She had been orphaned at a very early age, left to fend for herself in a hard climate, sparsely populated.

Today her gray hair was swept back in a ponytail, her clothes ragged but clean. Her face lined by the harsh sun until you couldn’t distinguish one line from another. Her toothless mouth wide in a smile of pure joy. She loved her life, hard as it was. She knew nothing else, so was content with what  she had.

She taught herself to paint  early in life after she found a few used brushes and paints behind a small shop. Years passed and she became better and better at her chosen work. She sold a few paintings to the frequent tourists to provide food, clothing and her precious paints and brushes.

One day she saw an old abandoned building, sitting alone and forgotten. In her mind, she saw a blank canvas, a beginning of something beautiful. So she started her painting. She loved her old town, the people in it as they had been kind to her all her life. She wanted to give something back and all she had were her paints and her imagination.

She wanted to give the old building life again. With her vivid blues, reds, yellows, greens and purples she painted from sunrise to sunset. Soon the townspeople began to come and watch her paint. They would drop off pitchers of water and baskets of food.

They watched her paint and sometimes heard her sing softly to herself as she painted life into something that was left for dead. That building even got a new person to live in it, as Juanita painted a man in the window content with his work.

When someone saw she had run out of a certain color, a new jar or tube would show up on the doorstep the next morning when she trudged up that hill to the building. Juanita would just smile, and continue with her work.  Her painting was the talk of the town and they would ask the other, “Have you seen what old Juanita is doing to that old building? It is a work of beauty!”

Juanita painted what she knew about life, what she enjoyed. Her neighbors plowing their fields in the hot sun. Ribbons the color of the rainbow gently swaying in the wind. Oxen and cactus and the rare flowers of the desert. She painted them all in a mural that was a beacon to everyone who came through her town.

The townspeople began calling the building “Juanita’s  Joy.”

One day someone noticed Juanita did not show up to paint on her building. They got some friends together and went looking for the old woman. They found her in her old ramshackle hut. The town doctor said she died peacefully in her sleep. The always joyous heart, giving out as she slept.

They gave her a fine funeral, buried her under a large tree near her beloved painted building. The whole town mourned a quiet woman who always looked at life with eyes full of color. The owner of the old building donated it to the town in Juanita’s name. They put her paintings inside for all to see and it was run as a gallery for young and old artists.

One day a beautiful sign showed up on the building.

Juanita’s Joy

A place for all to enjoy beauty in all its glorious colors


Cee's Share Your World

Sharing is Caring ~~ 2014 Week 31

Hello people! I’ve been gone for a while, but I thought it was time I jumped out of my pity pool and joined the land of the living. Even if it is virtual.

The reason for the pity pool party is the beginning of July I sprained a ligament in my right knee and it was some of the most intense pain I have ever felt and I’ve felt some bad pain in my life.

It was all the time, 24/7 pain. I now have a deep and sympathetic understanding of people who live with chronic pain. I would not wish that on anyone. It took all my concentration just to get through the day. And the nights? The most hellish times I have ever gone through. No sleep for days on end, even taking sleeping pills. For a while there I thought I would lose my mind.

After a little over a month of this, I’m still not completely healed, but the pain at least has diminished enough that I can do something other than blubber my way through the day. I can think again. I’m still only sleeping a few hours at a time, but that too is an improvement.

I tried to visit some of your blogs, but if you haven’t seen me around, that is the reason.

Now onto the Share Your World post courtesy of Cee over at Cee’s Photography. Thanks Cee for some great questions this week and I hope you are enjoying your qigong retreat.

If you had your own talk show, who would your first three guests be? (guest can be dead, alive, famous or someone you just know)

The set for the show would be something comfortable and low-key. Like someone’s nice comfortable living room, with comfy couches and sunshine coming through the a big picture window. I would invite;

Charlotte Bronte (because my favorite book is Jane Eyre, and I would love to pick her brains on how she came up with characters and stories)

My father’s mother, my grandmother, Martha. She died when I was 10, but I remember her as I tall, thin, caring woman. I would love to sit her down and ask her questions of her youth and her home country Germany. I have no stories of my grandparents when they were younger, no family history and I would love to have been able to talk to her about our history. (Actually I wish I could sit both grandmothers down and talk to them of family)

Painter Bob Ross. Yes, you know the one, the one with the big hair and the soft gentle hypnotizing voice. I used to watch his tv program Joy of Painting every week. I would love to sit him down and have him show me a few painting tricks. How to make happy trees, mountains and clouds. Plus I loved his soft voice. He just seemed like a really nice man too.


What can you always be found with?

Usually a cup of coffee. (Hey I couldn’t do a post without mentioning coffee!) Or my dog Sam, or a book. Sometimes all 3!

What is the most fun thing you did in school?

Wow, asking a difficult question here. I hated school. Well, correction, I didn’t really hate school, I just hated going to school. The schools I went to were some of the worst in the state of Wisconsin. Terrible schools, dangerous schools.

I can remember though, one teacher took the class to see a classical orchestra play. It was even at night. I think I was in like 8th grade. I’m not even sure what class I was taking as I know it wasn’t music, as I never took music class. It might have been English. Anyway, we went to this wonderful music theatre and listened to a couple of hours of classical music. I loved it! It was beautiful.

What’s something you know you do differently than most people?

Cook. I never taste my cooking as I do it. Most people do. Well makes sense, right? You taste your food as you cook so you know you added enough seasoning or whatever. I never do. I just do it by smell and looks. I don’t know why I rarely taste as I cook. But I don’t. I very rarely ever have anything turn out bad or under seasoned. I never think about it most times except when someone asks me why I never taste food as I cook (which a few people have asked me in the past).



Mi Vida Loca · nonfiction · postaday · Uncategorized

The Whimsy Paintings of TJ Lubrano

I received a much awaited package in the mail yesterday. All the way from the Netherlands! It was just a small package, but filled with such beauty and wonderful whimsy.

In it was a small original painting by artist TJ Lubrano. She is one awesome painter and a beautiful young lady, inside and out. Just chatting with her on the internet whether on Facebook or on her blog makes you smile. She’s full of life and love and lots of talent.

I fell in love with her paintings from the moment I saw one. I coveted one as my own and now I finally have one!

(c) TJ Lubrano
(c) TJ Lubrano


Go give her blog a look and tell her Jackie sent you! You will be impressed with her talent, then you will be bowled over by her bubbly personality. She herself is a work of art.

Thank you TJ, I hope to acquire many more of your wonderful works of art. Much love to you!