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Long time gone… But I’m back!

April 16, 2018 - Author: Jennifer Mylod

Been 8 months since I’ve posted. Idk where the time goes.  I’ve been immersed in music & the 3 bands keep me busy for sure. Then add fiddle lessons into the mix, and the plain old hecticness of life, and there ya go!  But I’m contentedly distancing myself from the frequently consuming social media & electronic gadgets which in so many negative ways – can be isolating & consuming -at the same time.  So limiting those elements… has left me in a position to truly enjoy living a real life.

Been savoring my time outdoors… whether it’s simple hikes with the dogs, kayaking, camping or gardening… but even putting up wood in the woodshed for seasoning is great.  I just enjoy the physical activity & how it all so pleasantly fills the ‘spare time’ I have now  remaining – between working 3 part time ‘jobs’.

Hah… I put ‘jobs’ in parentheses… because I enjoy these ‘jobs’ so much… & so it doesn’t seem like work… but rather a pleasure – which is a gift.   Teaching fiddle – as always is the most rewarding experience and I enjoy it the most;  gigs are always fun with the band – and I’m grateful to now be in our 12th year, playing weekly on Tuesday nights at the Green… 12 years!!!!  It’s more a home away from home, and the staff & patrons are like family.   Thirdly, I enjoy putting on my ‘tech’  hat… and log in billing / time slips… which for me,  is the most non-creative task – that… dare I say… is rather refreshing from my non-stop… 24/7 – creative mind, which often prevents me from even sleeping at night – because I’ve got so many great thoughts and ideas rattling around in my head.

So to catch up these last 8 months in a paragraph, I’ll hit the fun highlights.   I found a small kitten… or rather, he found me.  Did NOT want another kitty… but despite protests from Phil – I brought it home.   The vet weighed the little waif in – at barely 10 ounces… and in retrospect… I realize now most of that weight,  was worms…  EW.   But he’s doing well now.  Philip came up with the name “Kombucha”…  since he said it seemed to fit him, and me.  So little “Bucha”  has been a nice, somewhat naughty, but always loving addition to the family… and he is happily thriving now.

Bucha  truly believes he “owns” our dog Boone…a Border Collie.  “He’s chocolate, and has delicious legs”  Bucha is the Boss!!!

Then we spent 2 amazing weeks – at a beautiful, stone cottage in Dingle, Ireland, and met some of the most wonderful people.  Our hostess – Philamena – is a beautiful heart, and I felt like I’d known her forever and a day.   A more kindred spirit – one would be hard pressed to find.  She’s a gem, with a kind & joyful heart.

Arrived at the cottage, to find warm, home made scones & fresh bread on the counter, and a blazing, cheerful, peat fire in the fireplace… courtesy of Philamena.  The view from the cottage… at every glance, was breath taking!   The days were beautiful and  I can not WAIT to go back.

We took advantage of the amazing & endless trails & hiked 3-4 hours every day – taking in the earthy rolling hills of moss and heather.  We rambled up & along the glorious trails & frequented the foot path of the “Dingle Way”… which was my favorite.

 

We traveled with one of my fiddle students, and friend – Teri,   for the first 5 days. (she’s the photo-bomber in the pics!  hahah)   The 3 of us rambled around & played music every night in the local pubs.  Then we met up with 2 other friends from home – Terry & Pam,  & the fun continued on!   Ahh!

I was thrilled on our first night in town, to run into Nuireann Nic Amhlaoibh – from Danu… at Tommy O’Sullivan’s pub… and she asked me to sing, which was an awesome way to start the trip!

Took horses up into the mountains… which was just breath taking for views & the horses of course… I loved.   Every day was unbelievably better than the next!

Came home to find the holidays were upon us… and as we began to immerse in all the jolly fun… a bad turn brought Philip down fast.  He was home – recovering for over 12+ weeks from a WAY too near death experience.  It was one of the most frightening things I’ve known… but thank God, and many fine doctors – he’s ok now.

2018 moved in & brought the sad loss of not one – but two dear friends.  One friend I corresponded with in Canada, a sweet & feisty Irishman… sweet Ray… who was terribly ill for so long -and fought bravely for years.  I miss him & the poetry, songs,  thoughts and friendship we shared for years.  Then the terrible loss of a very dear friend, & long time fiddle student, Lynn.  She worked so hard to get back from her stroke. Together, she & I worked to get her playing fiddle again.  She had come so far with moving home and living on her own… so her sudden passing was a shock.  Oddly… she passed on the date of our first lesson years earlier…  & at what would have been our weekly fiddle lesson…  both which I found strangely & oddly coincidental.  She was an amazing, strong woman and I shall miss her greatly.

My son… (Pictured below with my mom) is now a Jr in HS…  holding a 3.75  GPA  & standing at  6 foot & 7.5 inches tall…  is endlessly talking of college, basketball teams,  and all the places he wants to go… ah  I know he will be flying from the nest soon… and that… quite frankly – leaves me feeling a mixture of sadness…  & profound pride.   I’m proudly watching him make choices in his life… choices about his future… and I am seeing – quite clearly – what an honorable, diligent, insightful and respectable man he is so quickly becoming.

So… this leads me thinking of the inevitable empty nest…

I am by nature – never bored… and always find things to do that are needing to be done, fun, creative or constructive.  And how many tunes can I possibly keep learning???  haha!  But I always take time to learn new tunes but the potential time that is opening up ahead of me… leads me to thoughts I’ve had for years now… a dream actually… and well…  I just decided to finally – go for it!!!    I found a local farmer & had him build me a custom coop.   I researched as much as I could, and went & bought baby chicks… and I’m keeping chickens!    I’ll love having fresh eggs each day, and the additional manure to compost for my ever expanding gardens… so it’s win-win & will be a wonderful addition!  I did a LOT of research actually, before I undertook any of this… 2 years of reading and searching and finally bought 6 of the kid friendliest, cold & heat hearty, best laying breeds of chickens… and have started my own little flock.

So here’s my coop… and yes, that’s a little battery candle in the window.   But this is not your every day, run of the mill coop… it’s what I’m affectionately calling – “Cluckingham Palace”…  aka  “Coop-de-Ville”.  I had it custom built for the easiest, most convenient, efficient  cleaning,   and… being married to a man who’d once been a fine detailed, carpenter… Philip very cheerfully outfitted the interior with beautiful wainscoating & moldings that are charming, pretty… and heck,  he put the FUN… in functional!!!  When the weather clears up… we will install all the predator proofing – including underground, welded fabric wire.

I’ve fallen in love with the chicks… and named them all.  I’m surprised that they each have distinct personalities and are actually – surprisingly affectionate!

 

This has also given me the incentive (do I really NEED more incentive?)  to add another garden.  While Philip was customizing the coop for me, I had fun digging a large, 12′ x 5′  kidney shaped herb bed that is conveniently placed – next to the path to the coop.   I can pick fresh herbs on my way back & whip up some good, wholesome breakfasts in the morning.  Herbs are a marvelous wealth of preventatives, & healthy supplements  that contain bountiful healing properties for people & chicks.  The chicks are being spoiled with warm, herb mash on cold mornings… and even an occasional herbed scrambled egg.  I’ve also been delving for quite a while now – into herbal benefits, wild foraging & have been doing online research & courses – on holistic & medicinal herbs.  Fascinating course of study!  Definitely compliments my kitchen witchery!!!  haha!

So if all goes as planned… the chicks will move out to Cluckingham Palace in May sometime… and I’m estimating I’ll be gathering beautiful, brown eggs by late August.  Research claims – I’ll gather 26 eggs a week… from 6 chicks…  but we shall see.   But for right now, I’m enjoying having them in the house…  sheltered in the sunroom, safe – in a super huge guinnea pig cage…  & away from the VERY curious border collie & 2 cats… who sit avidly at the french doors, staring through the now nose print covered glass, thinking what I can only interpret – as unkind thoughts… it’s never boring… that’s fur sure!

So… there’s just not enough time in the day to do everything I love or want to do!  Life is good!  Follow your passions!

Tunefully,  Jennifer

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Fly away… without the baggage…

August 12, 2017 - Author: Jennifer Mylod

It’s been a while since I’ve written…  having been immersed in this glorious summer… and the every day business of life… but then my thoughts began exploding,  and I was drawn – back again -to write.   I have to laugh though… because my mind’s constantly popping with new ideas, projects & ever so many things I want to do & try… and I swear, there’s just not enough time in the day to do everything I want!

I’ve begun compiling ideas for a new cd, which leads me to thinking even more.  But I know I need to move past a few apprehensions… and reservations I’ve been holding, as they’ve become tedious.  So time to sweep those out of the corners and be rid of them.  In that area… of moving past fears, I think kayaking served as a huge turning point for me.   Since childhood, I’ve been afraid of dark waters…  but I really wanted to kayak… so I forced myself to overcome the fears, and happily so!   BIG lesson – learned.

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So… within the last few weeks… I thought I saw an old ghost from the past, come into the Pub when I was performing one night with the band.  Not a really welcome ghost… just someone I don’t care to reconnect with…  I began thinking, what would I say? What would I do?  How would I handle that situation?   Thankfully,  I was mistaken, but the likeness of this stranger -was so similar – that even Philip thought he recognized the old ghost.

Then… I also had an interesting, intelligent, talented musician cross my path.  My gut reaction made me want to hold back…   listening to the ‘what if,    what if,    what if’  – echoing in my head.    I do listen to my inner voice & trust my intuition…  but this time… I don’t think it was intuition… I think it was fear.   So I’ve thrown the “what ifs’ – into the wind… and know this will certainly be an interesting adventure… and I’m trusting he was put in my path for a very good reason.

So besides those minor, thought provoking disturbances…  it’s been an amazing summer… and I’ve been savoring every day that’s dawned – seeing it like a golden gift… waiting to be opened…  glistening in the beautiful, quite sunrise.   I embrace the salty sea breeze,  the calling of seagulls, and the gentle licking of the small waves, against the hulls of the boats…  ahh… and that first, hot sip… of strong, freshly made coffee…

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Each day – I joyfully look forward to embracing creativity as it flows over me in warm waves of enlightenment & inspiration.    One of my greatest joys is teaching fiddle…  & witnessing that instant – something musical  -sparkles- into someones awareness.   I love playing music with friends;  and expressing myself through various mediums of art… splashing colors and shades, and creating what ever I wish;   gardening the flowers, fragrant herbs & veggies that grow and ripen…. still warm from the sun – as it touches my lips.    And this summer, I taught myself how to make kombucha… and then tried my hand at the second fermenting of it.

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I revel in it’s healthful, wholesome deliciousness… (Mojito Mint -is my favorite – but whew… Kombucha is a WHOLE other topic… so I’m not gonna get side tracked onto that!)   But we even named our new, foundling kitten “Kombucha” -or- “Bucha” for short… haha).  ‘Boucha’ loves the music too, having no problem sleeping on my lap when I fiddle!

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And looking at the joyful parts of life each day, there’s not a day that goes by, when I don’t realize that I’m more than blessed with my husband Philip…  & we play wonderful music together.    He is endlessly patient & kind with me, and lovingly encourages me to explore all the avenues of intellectual, creative, spiritual and emotional paths that I can find… as I ramble around in my searches towards personal development.

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So… what’s the reason for this blog?  How does all these little pieces tie in?  (I do tend to ramble like a tangled, climbing vine)     Well, I was repainting the flowers on the bumper of my little camper not long ago,  and the words “Fly Away” were there… scrawled in and amongst the vining flowers… which got me thinking…  ghosts,  past stuff,  faded flowers,  old feelings… and so forth…

I’ve never had one of those lives – like some… who seem to be walking on rose petal covered paths, and their life is perfect.  (yet, to read my blatherings above, you’d THINK I have!)… but instead, I have a gift 0f viewing -the beautiful things in life… and overlooking the not so beautiful.   I guess you could say –   I feed the good wolf within…. and pass over the bad wolf.

I wrote a song about flying away – on my last album… It’s probably one of my favorites… (here’s the free youtube link if you’d like to listen to it)

I strive to be free of old burdens… and to be able to fly… but I realized… it’s mighty hard to get off the ground when you’re loaded down with old ‘baggage’.   So, I made the conscious choice – to let it go… & give up the ‘stuff’  that held me back….  ousting the internal junk, even from my recall… and vanquishing the repeating, internal dialogs that would sometimes run in loop form – inside my head…  causing me to have self doubt.   Sure, all that is still part of me, & it’s shaped who I am…  but it doesn’t have to control me any longer.   So I weeded out the ugly – and held onto the good things that hold positive meanings.

I can say now, that I KNOW – without a shadow of hesitation or doubt – that I’m on the right path… because I have absolutely NO interest, or even remote desire – to EVER look back again.

And, thank you God…  it feels wonderful.field - 1

It’s sad… I know people who are looping & wallowing within their own baggage & issues… repeating them, blaming others, leaning on them, feeding on the bitterness within it all… and it’s sad, and really unhealthy.   Get free.. let it go.  It’s so much more fulfilling to embrace joy, love, & gratitude, as there’s so many joys that surround you, if you look ahead.  Don’t hold onto the dark, bitter, & angry things inside from before… let it go & just enjoy the day, breathe deep, live… and fly free.

Peace… Jennifer!

 

 

 

 

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“Slow Dancing with Ghosts”

April 3, 2017 - Author: Jennifer Mylod

I finally completed my second video – off my new CD  “Shadow of a Crow”….  Here is:   “Slow Dancing with Ghosts” – one of my own,  original songs and music…  put into a creative, somewhat haunting video under the skilled, creative genius – of Tom DeAngelis – from – The Production House.

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This song – was written from the perspective that… everyone has their own issues, obstacles and challenges that they face from the past… that we have to shoulder.    But I view – HOW we deal with these things… as a choice.   You can keep a ledger in your head, and document all the grudges and bad things that ever happened to you… or were ever said… then feed on this, & relive it and let it ruin things…  OR…  you can put it behind you & move forward… let it teach you, and build your character in a positive way – grow & learn from it… but don’t let it define you.   Don’t dance with those ghosts… just let them shift away – and refocus your energy on the beauty, and the joys that are all around, instead… and let the bad stuff go…  idk… that’s what I do…  most of the time…

So… Here’s the Youtube link:  (click this —>    “Slow Dancing with Ghosts”

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Glancing back at 2016…

December 29, 2016 - Author: Jennifer Mylod

It irks me… to hear so many people bemoaning the terrible year of 2016…  and how 2016 “killed” so many people and did SO many bad things…  HEY People!!!  2016’s  just – A YEAR.   It does not hold the power to kill anyone, strike anyone down, or cast evil spells… yet 2016 is talked about – like it’s some kind of sinister monster… but hey… if the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse show up… then I’ll start paying attention.  Till then… let’s count some blessings!

Looking back at 2016… I don’t seem to recall a more busy, feverishly noisy year EVER…  and certainly not a year where I accomplished MORE things than ever – in less time.

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I got my cd “Shadow of a Crow” finished… and the sales are going amazingly well, and I’m surprised at how great the digital sales are!   I finished 1 video – Low Willow – from my cd –   and have 2 more in the works with Tom, at The Production House.

So with all this positive flow going on… I am finding, that I’m writing… but not just writing… I’m brimming to overflowing with wild inspirations – and seeing things – everywhere I look… and I’ve already got 12 new songs written – on top of the 40 or 50 songs, already in the file… that just need music…  so I”m hoping soon, for the time to sit and come up with the music.  But all in good time!

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My lyrical muse – has been doing double-overtime, in inspiration and thoughts… so I’m just going along with that wave – right now.

But one, very unexpected thing came out of all my music this year…  because I ended up landing a wonderful, new job – doing ‘voice overs’  for advertisements – which came as a bit of a pleasant surprise.   The awesome thing is,  I am able to work from my studio, at home…  and then transfer the projects – using the marvels of technology & internet.   I’ve found I really love doing the voice overs, as it’s interesting and a lot of fun, not to mention I’ve met some wonderful folks in the process!   I’m hoping eventually… to do audio books…. (hopefully children’s books)  but that’s my hopeful goal – for 2017!

On the harder side of 2016… I struggled my way through 2 rather frightening heart surgeries… both within the span of less than 6 weeks…  and no matter how healthy I’ve eaten over the course of my life, or how much I’ve stayed fit & exercised… nothing over rides hereditary issues…  but thank God I’m ok now.  I did learn that my Mio Go – Fuse – heart rate monitor, that I’d originally gotten for keeping track of calories & heart rate while cycling & other work outs… does actually match  ‘beat to beat’  with the  EKG machines & monitors at the hospital!  So between some pretty awesome Cardiac surgeons… and my Mio-go… they kinda saved my life… which is pretty cool…   So… I’d give an  A+   and a  5 star rating to MioGo.

I got back into growing an organic, veggie garden this year… and with the amazing help and support – of 2 strong Phils… I had the pleasure of growing a garden I enjoyed planning,  planting and tending…  And the many beautiful nights, when we built a bonfire out by the garden… was wonderful…

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The fact that this lovely garden was devoured – one night, by a herd of ravenous deer… is a whole other story…  but they must have been REALLY REALLY hungry…     All that said & done…  I did enjoy planting it, and watching it grow.  My perennial flower & herb beds were never better though… and I did get a full 2 seasons of using the fresh herbs in my cooking each night…  and I really enjoyed the flowers for pretty bouquets!   And now, in winter… I’m enjoying the dried herb branches… I tied & bundled into fragrant bunches… and use as kindling – for the wood stove.   Benefits of my garden… still lingers beautifully in the air with the starting of each fire!  <3

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I’ve also had – what I can only call…  an amazing gift of rediscovering a very dear friend… who I’ve known for a long time… but it was this year, that I’ve had the gift – of spending a lot of time with…  and I feel truly grateful for being given the opportunity to find a deeper level of friendship – that comes with sharing, talking and lots of wonderful times together…   We were camping, hiking, cooking, cycling, lunching & kayaking…

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I’ve also ridden through some troubles together,  with a dearest heart & bff… and though we use to ride our horses and talk for endless hours… now we hold on through the temporarily storms in the troubled sea of things that have abounded… that are – we acknowledge – beyond our control… and remind ourselves… that it’s ALL fixable… and will undoubtedly – seem a bit more approachable… if we get to talk, and laugh… over a salad & a nice glass of wine!  She’s always there for me… and I’m always there for her… xoxoxo

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And in 2016,  I’ve watched one of my fiddlers – recover almost fully – from a devastating stroke… and I’ve stayed by her side… and now – we once again,  have a joyful time playing fiddle tunes together!

In 2016, I have gotten to do more traveling than I’ve ever done in 1 year – before…  and I’m loving the vast & interesting adventures that have come my way!   I ran into an old friend from Illinois, and went to a Rutgers vs Illini football game… which was really fun!  Though I know absolutely nothing about football…  I had fun sitting in the stadium, watching the cheer leaders, drinking pepsi and eating a hot dog and wearing my Illinois hat and jumping up and yelling… when ever Illinois got a home run.

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and as I look back, realize I attended MORE sports events – than I’ve EVER dreamed I would do – in one year… and still – have NO idea what the games were about!  haha!   But it was fun!

I also went on an amazing cruise with my Mom to Bermuda for 7 glorious days… where we just relaxed, sat in the shade, listened to music and had tall, dark, handsome men – bring us pretty fruity drinks with umbrellas in!  It was wonderful to just rest & be pampered!  Momma took me away… after the 2 heart surgeries…  and it was an absolutely glorious way to recuperate.

Cruise to Bermuda with Momma

Cruise to Bermuda with Momma

With not feeling so well… I found taking long walks was a pleasant exercise… so I did probably hundreds of miles of hikes -with my darling Border Collie – “Boone”…    And wow –  he sure loved that!   He’s such an awesome pup…  and I love him soooooo much…

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So it’s been a beautiful – though – slightly rough year… and I’m deeply thankful for all that I’ve been blessed with… and despite the bumps in the road this year…  my blessings have been many.  The experiences have been vastly interesting, exquisite, fascinating, and many times… deeply thought provoking, which I believe – is what gives me the fodder to write my music.  And as is in my nature in approaching everything I do…  I do it all – with passion – and a good dose of gratitude…  & I keep a curious eye – towards everything.   I appreciate the simple things, and never forget to give thanks…  One thing I can say is… it’s never boring!   so, I approach things with passion, or I don’t bother doing them at all…   heck…  it’s lots more fun that way!

Well… anyway…. happy new year, and wishes for a beautiful, new year ahead!  xoxo Jennifer!

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Shadow of a Crow – video filming, begins tomorrow!

November 1, 2016 - Author: Jennifer Mylod

It’s with a lot of excitement… and – admittedly… a touch of nerves…  that I’m gearing up to head out to the location for the filming of my 2nd music video – for my new CD!

We’re going to video the title track for – “Shadow of a Crow” – which is…  (dun dun dun)  “Shadow of a Crow”.   I was so happy working with Tom & his crew – from “The Production House, LLC”  during the first video – “Low Willow“…  so – tomorrow, we’ll be heading out, at the crack of dawn… & hitting great weather, at the height of the colorful, Autumn leaves to record.

Amazing – to learn how all this falls into place under the skillful direction of Tom’s keen eye & insight… Looking forward to a full, long, fun and creative day tomorrow!

But HEY!   Here’s a link for a clip of that song – available for digital download, or CD purchase through CD Baby, Amazon & all those music-y  online stores…  & here’s a Youtube – link… to the title track to “Shadow of a Crow”...     🙂

Here’s the FULL CD…  if you’d like to listen to the whole thing:

Play the entire CD! Shadow of a Crow!

jennifermylod

 

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