Tag Archives: Life

Music and Lyrics

Have I ever told you that I am a musician? Probably not. But I love music. It soothes my soul, and allows me to express things in a way the releases pent up emotions, and lets me to tell a story ( which feeds the writer in me as well). Also, it’s basically in the blood. I grew up in a family that LOVES music. Mom sings, and dad sings and plays guitar. They were music ministers, and in my humble opinion, they were great at it.

 

I write lyrics, I sing, and I play the guitar.

 

 
I wanted nothing to do with playing music as a child. Sure I took piano for years (didn’t learn a darn thing), and I started playing guitar at thirteen. Way more into guitar. I’m a stringed instrument girl, but performing on a stage? That was my parents thing – not mine.

 

 
Right after collage I started writing music ( don’t worry this article is not my declaration that I am now going to leave all I know behind and become a rock star). I have always been a writer, but somehow never thought about writing lyrics until I was older.

 
When I first started writing songs I told no one. You know, coming from a musically inclined family makes you a bit more, shall we say – cautious.

 
Don’t get me wrong, I never feared my parents rejection or criticism of my work. What I didn’t want was the obligatory parental ” that was just great honey”.

 
Thank goodness that’s not what happened.

 
My parents hopped right in and started helping me with transitions, and lets me bounce ideas off them.

 
I still hate to perform. You will never find me on a stage unless I am being blackmailed. I lack the charisma, talent, and drive of a true performer.

 
I don’t suck, but you know, I’m just ok.

 
But music calms my heart, quiets my mind, and sweeps away the clutter that seems to gather throughout the week. This is how I meditate.

 
I do spend a lot of time in the Word, but I find that if I start with music, I am able to hear the word of God more clearly.

 
In this crazy world I would encourage all who read this to find something that lessens the weekly burdens. Something that is simple, joyful, and perhaps a bit fun.

 
Heck, maybe someday I will record something and post it here, and I’ll let you be the judge.

 
We shall see.

 
Have a happy week folks. Now on to new adventures, and a week on new experiences.

Summers End

Summer is almost to an end. We are about to head in to Fall. Winter will be upon us soon, and I am just not prepared. Time is slipping through my fingers so fast. My mind is reeling, and all I can think is STOP, hold up, wait I’ve not finished certain things, I need more time, can we just push pause on summer ( even though it’s my least favorite time of year. The curse of the pale who burn even with spf 55), or what about just stopping time altogether?

 

What do ya think?

 
Maybe?

 
Hopefully?

 
Nope.

 
No matter how much I plead or bargain fall is coming ( about September 23rd to be specific), and with it the realization the year is coming to an end.

 
Lots to do, and very little time.

 
I am a bit like a rudderless ship right now. I know I can’t stay where I am, but I have no idea which direction to go in. With my personality type this journey becomes a pathetic attempt to do everything, and that unfortunately leaves some things unfinished.
So, I am cleaning house ( literally and figuratively). Throwing away the clutter in my house and my mind. It is the only thing I can think to do right now. I want to be exited for Fall and Winter. I think I need a bit of a fresh start.

 
I have upped my game plan. I am getting out and doing things ( as an artist and writer it lends to being a cave dweller), planning for adventures, and moving forward on this road-less-traveled that God seems to want me on right now.
Instead of Spring cleaning, I am freshening up for Fall.

 
So how are you doing? Ready for fall? Or are you, like me, wanting to push pause to catch up?

 
Well, we can’t catch up, but at the very least we can try to move forward, finish things, and declutter our lives ( which surprisingly enough does help to make life less stressful).

 
The holiday season is coming, start prepping early and enjoy.

 
When baking season comes around, I am diving head in and enjoying every second of it.

surrender

Surrender

I hate the word surrender. Maybe it’s the American rebel in me that never was, but that word just rubs me the wrong way. As a Christian I am called to surrender myself to the lord, but unfortunately, with my limited understanding as a human, all I see are white flags and weakness in surrender. I am just now finding that yes, there is weakness in surrender, but not the bad kind that stems from fear. It’s the kind of weakness that allows divine provenance to move you where you need to be, and draws you nearer to Jesus.

 
I have limited control, and I struggle with that. The more I try to control every little thing in my life, the harder it gets. But when I try to surrender that control, this overwhelming fear takes over. Doubt starts eating away because I don’t see the next step ( and the Good Lord knows how much I love to outline steps). It’s my comfort zone to research something to death. To plan every step to its daily endeavors ( no, I have not resorted to creating a minuet by minuet list yet.)

 
Right now I am going through a Refining fire ( at least I hope that’s what it is). Just like a forest or field needs to burn away the old grass, or destroy an invasive species that will destroy its foundation, my old thoughts and actions are being replaced with new ones. I do not have a clear direction ( that’s probably the way God intends it, and for good reason. You know, the insatiable list thing ), and I still tend to cringe at the word surrender, but I look back on all the dark moments of my life and see His grace in all of them.

 
That grace is what reminds me I have no need to fear or dislike surrendering to God. He is not of this world, and has no sin in him. He only wants the best for me, and I am not walking through the trials I face now alone. He will never lead me astray ( I’m great at doing that all by myself though), or let me face something I cannot handle.

 
I am learning to surrender my plans for my future ( those dreams are a tempting mistress), and I would never claim that it is easy or without bouts of tears. However, I am finding there IS freedom in surrender. Not shackles or shattered dreams, but true freedom and liberty.
At this point in my life I just want to be where He wants me, and hopefully in that place I can find my tribe.

 
Do you feel that you are walking through the fire right now?
I know millions of people are, and I think sometimes we hold so tight to what we dreamed about, that we do not listen to that still small voice saying “Follow me, I have better things to come for you”.

 
Create quite space and listen. I know what you’re thinking “pot, meet kettle”, but I am trying too. Who knows, maybe we will hear the call of clarity at the same time. Isn’t that a nice thought.

 

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. … “
John 15:1-7 ESV

 
Gosh I love metaphors, but till the day the vine bears fruit, here’s a song from my high school days that I am just now coming to understand.

Grateful

Grateful

I consider my childhood pretty magical ( not just because I was practically raised at Disneyland) because when I remember back, all my memories include my parents; And for me, I associate them with security and unconditional love.

 
Every good memory I have includes them, and I don’t remember a lot from my childhood. I just remember them being there.

 
I am well aware that not every child has what I was given – two parents who wanted to be around me ( and still do surprisingly. I have not driven them away yet).

 
I look back at picture of extravagant birthday parties my mom put on, and I have no memory of them. I see pictures of kids that I knew as a child, and for the life of me I cannot remember a single instance I was in their company ( except for you Betsy Boo and Elizabeth too).

 
Don’t get me wrong, every action on their part contributed to the bond my parents created with me. Even though I do not remember all the great things they did for me, those moments added up. Creating a foundation of mutual respect and love.

 
No, that does not mean we always see eye to eye, or that my beliefs are identical to theirs ( but frankly, we are not that far apart).

 
To this day, if you blindfolded me in a large room and lined the walls with parents, I know I could pick mine out just by their scent.

 
They are engrained in every comforting memory I have.

 
They believed in me even when I lacked faith in myself.

 
They allowed me to fall ( never gracefully, I am not capable of falling gracefully literally or metaphorically ) and pick myself up again.

 
Indulged my crazy dreams that didn’t always turn out as planned.

 
They taught me how to fight well,

 
Love well,

 
How to apologize,

 
And to appreciate the time we have with the people we love.

 
I was reminded, yet again, this weekend how fragile life is, and how important it is to spend as much time as you can with the people you love.

 
I am still trying to find my tribe, but what I do know is that any tribe I am a part of will include, what I lovingly refer to as, my bad ass back up army ( you know who you are) which includes my mom and dad.

 
I need to make some big decisions soon, and I am truly grateful to Lord above to have them as a sounding board and for their wise counsel.

 

I go before The Wise Counselor and  my family to ask for direction and clarity – where do you go?

Love Is a Choice

There was a picture from someone’s mom circulating around the internet a little while back. It said:

“You’re going to fall in love so many times before you find the one you’ll be with forever. So think of it this way; you’re one heartbreak closer to happy ever after”.

What a bunch of crap – right! So, being the shrinking violet that I am – I left a comment.

” Or perhaps you should not give your heart so easily, and then you will have less heartache and scars effecting the relationship with the one you are meant to be with”.

Well that got a reaction. The women who responded to my comment was not pleased with my perspective – hence sarcasm ensued ( which I have to admit I loved. It totally cracked me up) she said:

“Why didn’t I think of this” before ” Of COURSE I should know better than to fall in love. because giving your heart to someone is always an intentional, willful choice!”

I think she missed the point of what I said ( or maybe she didn’t, and chose to respond like that – whatever floats your boat). That is why I am choosing to clarify here.

I am explicitly saying LOVE IS A CHOICE.Da da daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa ( nod to The Croods). The truth is we choose to love people who complement us, or people who add drama to our lives. We have free will, and if you believe we don’t choose to love people then you are in essence saying we have no free will ( and wouldn’t that just suck). I mean come on, you choose to love that annoying friend that can’t be trusted, and the ass who keeps breaking your heart. We allow people to come into our lives who we know are not good for us ( not just in dating relationships ), and for whatever reason ( I can fix then, their not that bad, I see the good in them deep deep deep down, they just need someone to love them… ect. ect.ect.) we allow them to stay in our sphere.By saying that you have no choice in falling in love, you are saying I have no choice in who I allow to influence my life. That is the idea of a child not an adult.
I like the verse Proverbs 4:23 especially the New Living Translation
“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life” there is only one man who was every worthy of determining the course of my life, and he died on a cross for me ( and you) a while back and arose again after three day ( He’s alive, He’s alive, thank God he’s alive). There is always a choice. Don’t give up your God given freedom because you simply don’t want to make a choice, and please for your sake ( and your poor bedraggled best friends out there) choose wisely. Don’t fall for the I’ll be better shtick. If ( and that’s a big if) he (or she, this applies to you too guys) can get better with you then he can get better without you, and if he can’t get better without you then he is not a whole person and has some soul searching and growing up to do.

Do you believe there is no choice in love? Or do you believe as I do, that love is a choice we make? Sometimes we choose well, and other times – not so much.

The Consummate Amateur

I am a consummate amateur. Good at many things and master of few. I can paint and sculpted, but I’m no Michelangelo. I draw and cook, but I am no Mary Blair or Michael Simon. I’m a lyricist, but I’m not Bob Dylan ( a little side note here, Dylan is a GREAT song writer, but he is no singer. Go ahead and crucify me now folks, but he can’t sing.[ Another side not: my dad disagrees with me.] ). I can sing, but I not a performer ( I am a bit better than Dylan though. Even my dad agrees with that). What’s a girl ( or boy for that matter) to do when they are good at many things, but never the best?

 
I don’t know. I was hoping you had the answer. You don’t! Emoji sad face 🙁

 
I recently sat down with my mom and read some of my future blog posts to her. She thought I was being too hard on myself. I know what you’re thinking, I’m her precious little snowflake, but if you knew my mom you would know that is not the case. The conversation did make me evaluate my articles though, and here’s the conclusion I came to:
Most of us are consummate amateurs.

 
Admittedly, I am an odd mix of right and left brain which makes defining myself ( in work and life ) a bit hard. I am excellent at reading a room, and have the ability to smell BS from a mile away. A great communicator and conceptualizer who can interpret almost anything in a visual way. Also, I have the ability to taste something and figure out the recipe ( it probably helps that I am the daughter of a chocolatier). I hem and haw a bit ( at least in my mind), but I attempt to overcome my fears (except for spiders, there is no way I will make peace with spiders – they all must die). These are just a few of the things that make me who I am; a pessimistic optimist with a vivid imagination. The problem with this dichotomy of abilities is finding my place in this world.

 
I was thinking about talents lately, and if I write all mine down they look like an equation without an answer. Maybe all this mediocre greatness adds up to something that hasn’t been invented yet, or maybe I’ll build a-better-mouse-trap. Who knows? I sure don’t. But I want to encourage all the consummate amateurs to keep this in mind; even if you are not the best, smartest, or most educated person in the room, no one will have the same perspective as you do, and a different perspective can lead to greatness. Just don’t let the hang-ups you have stop you from trying something new. Learn as much as you can, then act. Don’t let one (or 10) rejections get you down. Walt Disney was rejected by roughly 302 banker before he received the funding for Disneyland. It takes time and effort to build something of value.

Well, are you a consummate amateur too?

 
If so, welcome to this tribe of misfit toys! We have cookies.

 
P.S. Here’s a quick shout out to the consummate armatures and the people who love them. I will never be the best at everything ( which is completely annoying), but I have the best support system in the world – my parents. They challenge me to be better, and love me even when I’m not.

Hello My Name IS…

Hi my name is Hannah. I’m a 28 year old, single girl part of the late 20-somthings that have no idea where life is taking them. Every time I’m asked ” what do you do?” I feel like a deer in the headlights. I babble out something about being a freelance content writer and artist ( which I am), but still the question make me think “I HAVE NO IDEA what I do, a little bit of this, a little bit of that”. I have the questionable luck of being good at many things, but master of few. And even better, I’m great at managing money, but I still have not figured out how to make much.

Let me further introduce myself:

I live at home, work freelance, I am paying off a student loan ( for a degree in something I will never use. Yep, I was one of those stupid people), I love dogs ( but currently don’t have one which makes me sad), single ( I really do need to get a dog), slightly goofy ( or weird, we might as well not beat around the bush), a foodie ( I love cooking, and I’m good at it), slightly confused and confusing, a libertarian ( you live your life, I’ll live mine, and we be good), and lastly, but most importantly, the only thing that gets me through the rest of the crap…… I’m a Christian.

Let me make myself clear, all ages, beliefs, ethnicity, blaw, blaw, blaw, and blaw are welcome here. In fact, it’s ok if no one sees this blog because now that I thinking about it, it might be better if people don’t know what I’m really thinking. But alas, I need to vent somewhere, and a blog seems to be the best place to do it.

I will be writing on many topics here. Really, whatever catches my fancy. I will give my opinions, and please feel free to give yours. I’ll post videos from my YouTube account, and hopefully entertain you while simultaneously figuring out my own life. So, here’s to living life with full measure folks.

In conclusion, hi my name is Hannah Marie Smith, and I live in California. I am currently under construction. You are welcome to watch the building process ( or train wreck, whatever the case may be).

Cheers Folks!