Darling Blind Pug, a Therapy Dog, Featured in New Children’s Book

In childhood, I spent hours drawing. I drew while glued to a wooden bench, waiting for my mother to finish her last cigarette, her last beer, her last conversation with the people straddled on the tall stools beside her. Sometimes I waited all day and late into the night.

Those all day beer marathons gave me the opportunity to create trees and animals with a pencil and whatever blank paper I could find.

God gave me the ability to draw and the grace to totally forgive my mother and to demonstrate His unconditional, steadfast love to her. She’s no longer here and I sincerely miss her.

Now more than 30 years later, I’ve picked up my pencils again to create a book that I believe can help young children. Here’s one of the first sketches for Xander the Wonder Pug, a children’s book featuring Xander, a therapy dog who lives and works in Klamath Falls, Oregon.

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Next steps…begin painting with Prismacolors.

Prismacolors! Yikes.

My number one challenge so far is learning how to use Prismacolors. Prismacolors are wax based pencils with a high color saturation, meaning they are blendable and the colors are rich.

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The video tutorials that I’ve watched make it look easy peasy. So far, I’ve watched several of the pros whip out realistic paintings like it’s a walk in the park. Per their instructions, I’ve followed along and quickly learned that painting with pencils is not without challenges. Trust me, my practice color pencil drawings (also called paintings) barely resemble the ones in the “How to” videos.

Failure is a part of learning. I’m discovering what works for me and what doesn’t work for Prismacolors. They chip, I learned. And smear. And they have no idea of the concept of grace. There’s no forgiveness. One wrongly applied color can ruin twenty hours of work.

Speaking from experience, failures have been a big part of making progress with my drawings and paintings. I’ll share a failure along with the painting that I completely redid as an example in my next post.

Why don’t you follow along? I’ll share the project in various stages and maybe my process will inspire you to launch into your own creativity.

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Sketch #1 of Xander and a little girl he visited in the hospital who is now well.

Don’t Fall into the Disappointment Trap

I had just learned the news and I let out a little moan. My friends lost their entire investment, money that was supposed to be for their retirement years. Their hearts were flooded with a whirlwind of emotions, deep disappointment was chief among them.

Have you ever known someone who held onto bitterness, or anger for years? Most likely their negative attitude and mood is linked to something in their lives that didn’t go as they had hoped it would. Their disappointment might’ve begun with a broken relationship, a broken promise, a failed opportunity, or prayers that weren’t answered as expected.

People who hold onto disappointment are allowing the past to decide their present and shape their future. Most, of course, have no idea that this is what’s going on. I have good news. God has provided a way to move forward and a way to stay out of the disappointment trap.

We’ve all experienced the let down that happens when plans don’t turn out as hoped.
Many have been deeply disappointed through broken relationships and broken dreams.

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Video: How to Stay Out of the Disappointment Trap

In this video, I talk about how to not let disappointing circumstances shape your future and I share with you a principle for personal breakthrough that I’ve applied to my own life, a principle that my friends (the ones who lost their investment) have walked in for years. 

Several years have passed since my friends lost their retirement money and, in that time, their lives have been dressed in wonderful opportunities that’ve brought them satisfaction and joy.

How did they go from total loss to enjoying God’s blessings?

They stayed out of the disappointment trap and they responded in a way that helped them move forward into the purpose for their lives.

There’s a way to respond when your plans don’t go as planned that will empower you to see what God has brought into your life, so that you don’t miss the blessings that He has for you. See Jeremiah 29:11.

God has only the best in His heart for you. It will take some effort on your part to live in the fullness of all that He has. It’s my prayer and confident belief that this video message will be a blessing to you and to those you love.

You are dearly loved,

Pamela Koefoed

You can Live Fearless…Two Tools that Really Work

You don’t have to live with fear. On this video, Living Fearless, I share two practical tools that really work to free yourself of fear’s subtle and more obvious influences. I’ve put these tools to use and have had such great results that I’m sharing them with whoever is listening…hopefully, that’s you.

I had fun sharing on Facebook’s livestream. I’m still learning to use my equipment, so forgive the 30 second blooper at the beginning. I’ve received good feedback from folks who have put the tips that I share on this video to use.

They had the same good results that I had. The stress or anxiety that they felt went down from something like a 5 to a zero within minutes. These tips that I share really work and that’s why I’m so excited to share this video with you, blooper and all. I hope you enjoy it.

 

Catastrophic Parenting: Daddy Shopping & Auntie Mame’s House

ImagePamela Koefoed’s irresponsible mother Joy Curran had her own ideas about parenting. Children should be allowed to go to bars with their parents, they can be left alone at home for weeks, they should be spoken to as adults, and they should always have good manners.

Joy was a charismatic, free-spirited, single parent whose unconventional parenting created drama and chaos. She pursued two dreams, finding Pamela and Robin a new daddy and having an “Auntie Mame house”—a reference to a 1955 New York Time’s best selling novel about an orphaned boy and his eccentric Aunt Mame and her house of fun.

Later when Joy remarries, someone makes several attempts to destroy the home she and her new husband Max have made for Pamela and Robin, and they flee for their lives. When they divorce, Joy’s escalating drinking and neglect causes Pamela and her sister to depend on each other for emotional support. To survive, the girls are forced to find food and keep to themselves the family secrets.

Pamela tells her story without bitterness and depicts a perspective of her mother as seen through the innocent eyes of childhood. What surprises us all about Pamela and Robin is their spunkiness and resiliency. They draw on the love they have for each other and rise above the flaws in their circumstances to show us all the way to a richer and more meaningful life.

Filled with intrigue and deeply moving, Pamela’s memoir reveals the undying bond that a child has for her mother, the loyalty between sisters, and a love which defies understanding. JoyRide is action packed, rich in detail, and full of hope.

 Readers who enjoyed The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls will love JoyRide: Life, Death and Forgiveness.

I feel I have witnessed the victorious power of love, and the overcoming resilience of the human spirit. This story of triumph over unimaginable difficulty is made all the more poignant by the awareness that it is true.

—Lewis Crownover, musician and founder, Sound of the Harvest

You will not want to put this book down until you have finished it. You will come away with the knowledge that you are never alone no matter how big the trial is that you are going through. An exciting read.

—RitaAnne Poorman, minister and author of Prayers from the Proverbs

 JoyRide, Life, Death and Forgiveness is 317 pages and includes bonus material at the end of the book, an interview with the author and discussion questions. Purchase at www.joyridebook.com

A Shocking Discovery

A Shocking Discovery

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Image courtesy of Sira Anamwong / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

One evening in early summer around dinnertime, I sat on my knees on a dining room chair and played on the kitchen table with my Aunt Cindy’s childhood doll, Baby. A radio beside me was tuned to the news and Mother listened to the weather forecast while stirring a pan of sizzling hamburger and onions seasoned with garlic salt and pepper. The delicious aroma filled the house.

Robin entered the kitchen. “Where’d you get that?” she said, marching over to me.

I danced the doll across the table. “Somewhere.”

She grabbed for it. “You got it from my room. Can I have it?”

I whisked Baby away and clutched her against my chest.

“No, I’m playing with her.”

“But you took her from my room and you’re supposed to ask. Let me have her back,” she said.

Mother came over to the table, the stainless steel spatula glistening with grease in one hand. “Girls, that’s enough of that.” She turned up the radio’s volume. “I’m trying to hear the news.”

The local radio station featured weather forecasts, sports updates, traffic reports, and regional information. Just then, the dramatic voice of a reporter came over the airwaves. “During this evening’s rush hour commute, Keith McKern of Sacramento was involved in a near fatal, head-on, collision.”

The spatula slipped from Mother’s fingers and fell to the floor. She gasped and shuddered. “Oh, no!” The color drained from her face. “Girls, that’s your father!”

We hadn’t seen or heard from him in four years, not since he left when I was a few months old, and Mother had never mentioned his name or her marriage to him. “My father?” I said in shock and confusion. “Who’s my father?”

“Shh! Pam, not now.”

I hadn’t even known that I had a father. “Mommy, who’s my father?”

“I said be quiet.”

The news reporter continued speaking. “He was rushed by ambulance to UC Davis Medical Center and is in critical condition.”

From JoyRide: Life, Death and Forgiveness pages 28-29

To learn more about JoyRide, visit http://www.joyridebook.com where you will find excerpts and my interview on Focus Today. 

Thank you for taking the time to read this excerpt and to visit my blog.

Copyright © 2013 by Pamela Koefoed. All rights reserved.

A Writer’s Life

My publicist, Mr. NewImageman, is getting things in order for a radio tour to introduce my memoir, JoyRide: Life, Death and Forgiveness to America–wow. I’m feeling a little mixed about it. I’m excited, but I’m also apprehensive. I suppose these kinds of feelings are normal.

Looking forward to blogging my experiences from this new leg of the journey.