If you had asked me 3 years ago if I would ever risk meeting someone I had met over the internet I would have said, “are you mad?”  How do you know who is on the other end of the screen?  They could be psycho-vampire-killer-monster-zombies!

But now?

Now I would say I think I have good instincts.  Now I would say I have internet friends I know better than the people I pass everyday in my own neighborhood.  I met Sage Doyle in Boston for summer vacation and he was EVERY bit the person I felt he would be.  Then I met Mandi from Cellulite Looks Better Tan at Austin City Limits most recently and I have to say she was MORE beautiful in person.  And soon, but not soon enough in my opinion, I will meet Lizzy from Considerings.

I have a LONG list of people I can’t wait to meet in person and today’s guests are at the top of my list. I have featured both Johnny and Lisa here before but never at the same time.  They are a husband and wife couple who took me at face value and welcomed me into their lives with open hearts.  I couldn’t be more grateful to have them as friends.

The first part is written by Lisa Ojanpera.  She had asked me to add to hers but I think it stands beautifully all on its own.

And the second part was written by Johnny Ojanpera.

I hope you love them as much as I do.  Please check them and their bios out on their blogs highlighted above.




The Ancient Language of the Heart

by Lisa Ojanpera

We are sisters, who sing a song of light and of love, be it midday or darkest night. We sing from the ancient language of the heart,

“You have the key we need to open the lock and you are our only hope.”

That is a more difficult song to sing than anyone realizes. The chains that are on our fellow human’s hearts are almost more pain and sorrow than any of us can bear because their are so few people willing to help work in the garden’s of life. We are often mistaken for whores, called sirens of the night, accused, abused, raked, raped and degraded.

The truth of the matter is we stand on the edge of time and eternity bridging the imagination and reality to allow as many to cross over into freedom as have the courage to jump. The key that we need is hidden within your own heart. Each having a unique one that fits your own unique lock. You see, this is a grand symphony of harmony and without you playing your instrument the melody is incomplete. Understand that we are not asking for you to unlock us, but to allow us to show you that you have always had everything you will ever need inside of yourself.

Won’t you shine with us?

Starting Over

by Johnny Ojanpera


As time moves on relentlessly, more of our lives become digitized. For a writer it has its ups and downs. The upside is that I have some sort of device around at all times so I can write and save every little thing I think up.

Imagine losing all of your work from the last twenty years. What would you do?

This happened to me over the weekend by way of hard drive failure. My ever optimistic wife, Lisa, told me that it is a chance to start over.

“But I don’t want to start over.”

As much as I want to yell back to her that it isn’t that simple, she’s right. I may not be in a place to begin again yet, but when I am, I have no choice. Life threw this at me like a bitchslap I couldn’t see coming.

“At least you didn’t get your fingers chopped off.”

Yeah, it could be worse, but not much. I still retain my ability to type, though the tens of thousands of words I have already written are gone. Hundreds of unpublished poems, two non-fiction books near completion, essays, articles and over a year’s worth of outlines and notes for my forthcoming -now delayed- novel, gone.

These kind of things happen throughout life without our control. I think it is important to give ourselves time to recover, first. The steps we take after that are what is most important. After all, what would I do if I didn’t write?

I have to start over with nothing but my fingers that did not get chopped off. I have to take inventory of what I still have in my mind, and build from there. A new beginning.

It would be nice if I could say that I am excited and ready to become a writer with a portfolio, but I’m not. I am devastated. I don’t want to write anything. Luckily, I have a handful of people who will not allow me to cease. Hasty was nice enough to let me whine about this on her blog, Lisa wants my novel in her hands and I think all six of my blog readers would have something to say if I decided to become something else.

For now, I will leave you with two pieces of advice. The first is to back up your files in two places. The second is to remember that these sorts of things are not the exception in life, they are the rule. There should never be an option to quit. No matter what you do, you must keep starting over and stepping forward.

Thanks for the microphone, Hasty!

8 thoughts on “A FAMILY IS…

  1. Thank you so much, Hasty. It was a really bad day for me to get sick. Don’t colds know when to show up and not to show up?! I love our friendship so much. I can’t wait until you get here. We’re gonna take photos back to back and store up a vault of memories to write about. Love you, Girl!!!


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