Trends in Writing, The Arts, Regional Events, and High Desert Living

Posts in category Phelan

“Forever Wild Sanctuary” Unscathed from Blue Cut Wild Land Fire

From Out of the Ashes

If you sat spellbound watching the news as the devastating wildfire raced into the High Desert, you were most likely wondering how any thing could survive.

The good news is that many homes and ranches in the Oak Hills and Phelan areas were spared. And where fire encroached deeper into the neighborhoods, fire fighting units deployed men and equipment to stand fast against the blast furnace-like flames. One critical non-profit business that I wondered about was Forever Wild Exotic Animal Sanctuary  — their close proximity to the fire and ash.

Defending the Sanctuary

Ready to Defend, a unit of fire equipment is stationed in the neighborhood.



Today is Sunday. Most Sundays you might find grumbling that work is the next day but not this Sunday. This is a Sunday filled with joy and happiness and reminders that joy is a gift that is given to us freely and we ought to enjoy it. As of late I’ve seen grumbling before me and I’m reminded of the saying my mother says still today, “Get glad in the same pants you got mad in.” In other words no one really cares what you are mad about.

Today was a day full of peace in my high desert world. I got to spend time with great people. I got to spend time with my mother and sister. I got to enjoy another beautiful blue skied day in the desert. Fluffy white clouds dotted the horizon and made the sky look like an inviting pillow. There was a calm over the desert. Even though the weather is hot, it’s not as hot as it was yesterday or the day before.

What more can a person ask for, blue skies, good people to mingle with and an assurance of the Sunday Joy that surrounds the day. Tomorrow is a work day, but if I look around I will find joy in that day too. No one, no one person in this world can take joy from our hearts. Joy is a feeling and even in the midst of a crises, joy can be found.

Thank you for a great ending to a fourth of July weekend. Thank you for joy in our hearts.


We tell stories.  Stories in poetry, stories at the water cooler.  Yeah, we tell stories.  I like to tell stories in poems.  I’m always encouraging children to write a poem because through poetry we can get our feelings out, words to heal ourselves.  Some of my favorite poetry tells stories, like the Highwayman, or The Raven.  I admire those who can tell a story.

Have you told yourself a story lately?  Have you bore your deepest feelings, your heart pumps and after you read it a few times you can rest.  That is what it’s like for me when I write a poem, a story or a speech.  I wake up in the night and words come in my head and run down to my fingers.  I find that the desert is great inspiration, especially in the morning, quiet a few sounds around me.  I’m not the only one who writes poetry stories.  Here’s one by a local girl who already graduated.

“First day jitters”

By: Stephanie Stever

Its 4am wake up! What should I wear? Stumbled out of bed, “Oh lord look at my hair.”

Its 6am catching the bus, off to high school would I fit in? Would I be cool? Or dull.

Its 7am and the bell has rang. It all of a sudden hit me like a big bang.

My nerves rattled and I shook. Time to sit in class and hit the book.

Entering this new world of peers. Had me questioning myself as I look in the mirror.

Am I good enough? Will I seize the day? Or will I crumble under pressure and lose my way.

Much more work to be done here. Unlike middle school where the fear felt less near. As the day went on my thoughts became afar. I had become relaxed and less jarred.

Its 2 pm time to go home back to my roots where I know I could roam.

The first day was rough but I was tough

All I know is I survived Serrano high.


Tomorrow is Father’s Day.  That’s the day we honor those father’s and all that they do for us.  Yep, they are amazing.  Hey, contrary to what the news tells us everyday, the economy is still not flourishing.  I listen to those words everyday as I travel the three hours one way to work and I wonder who has money, extra money?

We can still give our fathers a great day.  Here are ten very reasonably priced presents we can give him:

1.  Breakfast in bed.  (Cost, price of breakfast, the same price you would spend anyways.  A little pampering is appreciated.)

2.  Before breakfast, bring in a pan of hot water and a washcloth.  Give his face a wakeup washing, gently now, he’s not all the way awake.

(Cost, a small amount of water, an item added to the regular washing.  Loving gesture appreciated).

3.  After he eats his breakfast, lead him to his favorite chair and hand him his newspaper.  Make sure he has thirty minutes at least uninterrupted

with his reading.  (Cost:  Quiet time cannot be measured especially if his children are toddler age.)

4.  When you look over and see that daddy has fallen back asleep, let him.  He’s done reading the paper, gets up every day at four to go to work

almost never gets a nap.  (Cost: Zero.  Benefit:  A less cranky dad.)

5.  Get out the lotion and see if he wants a back rub.  Yes, use the lotion because we want it to feel good.  (Cost:  A handful of lotion.)

6.  Make him his favorite peanut butter sandwich.  Don’t forget the jelly.  Present it on a paper plate, he hates dirty dishes. (Cost:  You’re mom

already bought the ingredients.)

7.  Let him watch, what he wants to watch on TV.  No nagging about yard work, housework or daddy work.  Even if you detest golf, or any other

sport, he likes it.  (Cost:  A little extra electricity.)

8.  Make him his favorite dinner.  Yes, his favorite dinner, not what you think he enjoys, what you know he enjoys.  (Cost:  Arbitrary, what you

have already incorporated in the grocery price this week).

9.  Give your dad a hug, pretend to hear the interesting story he has to tell you.  (Cost:  A little ear wax.)  Remember don’t turn up your Ipod to

drown out his words.

10.  Keep a smile on your face all day. No whining, no complaining, no yelling, no hitting your brother or sister, no tattling, and no crying. (Cost:

peace of mind for your father.)


These are some tips that can make a better day for your dad.  He works hard to make sure that we are clothed, that we are properly nourished

and that we have all that we need.  Most of all a simple I Love You can go a long way!

Trendy Vintage Art for the Kitchen and Valentine’s Day

Popular kitchen trends for 2013 are popping up in shades of white and bright colors. The retro red and aqua look that was trendy from 2012 isn’t going away either. Shades of white blended with a touch of these lively colors cheer up the kitchen. A High Desert kitchen with large windows overlooking a backyard of sand, cacti, and maybe a Joshua tree or two can use a bit of cheery colors. But go for what you like best.

Who determines the kitchen color trends anyway? Let the kitchen-color trend setters choose any colors they like.  They don’t live in your kitchen. Choose colors that invite you into your kitchen, make you want to sit down at the table and drink a cup of hot tea or coffee and eat a big fat pink cupcake like in Fran King’s Diamond Cupcake art. Now that’s an idea. If you like shades of white or gray in your kitchen, spruce it up with pink and black art.

Fran King Art








Another beauty of Fran’s is her ice cream cone art, another piece of pink and black art for the kitchen.

Ice Cream Cone

Ice Cream Cone, Fran King Art, Signed

Speaking of cheery colors, Fran comes up with fun ideas for 3D art for the kitchen like “The Bad Apple” below:

Bad Apple, Fran King art, signed








Fran makes other types of art, too, like this vase perfect for a Valentine gift:

Ace Dice Vase, Fran King Art








If you prefer the bright colors in style that include red, red and aqua, red and white, red and gray, you must see Fran’s red 3D art over at Smoketree Junction in Phelan. Fabulous! You’ll enjoy browsing through all of the vendors’ booths. Don’t miss Haggle and Flea Market Days coming up this Friday and Saturday, February 1st and 2nd. You’re bound to find just the right gift for your Valentine!

Who Sets Your Course?

Another election has come and gone in the United States, and many people are convinced their next four years will be determined by the outcome.

But you and I both know that’s not really the case.

The reality is that good things and bad things happen  to all of us, but we make our own decisions. We make the decisions that ultimately determine our fate.


Choose Your Path!

Imagine having a mind that is “programmed” to make the right decisions. Imagine instinctively moving through each area of your life on the best path to success and prosperity.

That’s what NLP training does for you– it gives you the mental programming to change the way you think.  It puts you in control. Your life changes as you automatically follow the best path.

  • Marti and John Browne are both certified as a NLP Master Practitioners and Time Empowerment Master Practitioners, trained by Dr. Matt James and Empowerment Partnerships.
  • They use NLP techniques along with Time Empowerment Techniques to help clients make massive shifts in any area of their lives including business, relationships and career. These are successful techniques also used to overcome and release self limiting beliefs, anger, sadness, fear, hurt, guilt and grief in just a few sessions.
  • They are both also certified as a Reiki Masters/Teachers and are certified Master Hypnotherapists and EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) Practitioners and are able to use all of these additional tools in a personal breakthrough session designed specifically for you.

For more information and to book an appointment with Marti and/or John:
Call Now: 760-868-1434 or 760-265-1055
Browne Hypnosis Center
(Located in Phelan, CA in the High Desert)

Help in the High Desert for Cancer Victims and Survivors

Did you know that this fruit has amazing properties in it that can help prevent and can help cure cancer?


I purchased this very sweet tasting fruit in the late summer and early fall at the Wrightwood farmers market.


To find out more about this amazing fruit and other nutrition and healing modalities that can help prevent and help cure cancer CLICK:

Pomegranates Grow Well in the High Desert

Pomegranates Galore!

It’s time to harvest our this year’s crop of pomegranates!

We have more than ever before on our Pomegranate tree.








Perfect for Pomegranate Juice

I’ve been wanting to know how to get the seeds out easily and make my own organic pomegranate juice.

I just got an email this morning from Ronnie and Minh who are raw foodists.

Ronnie just posted a video on Youtube today about making pomegranate juice.  How’s that for a serendipitous moment!

If you would like to learn how to get the seeds out of a pomegranate easily and make your own raw pomegranate juice click on Marti Muses and Marvels.

Happy Juicing!

High Desert Hand-spun Yarn Fall Sale

One-of-a-Kind Hand-spun YarnFor all you who enjoy knitting, crochet, weaving, felting and creating beautiful things with beautiful yarn… Hurry while supplies last!
One-of-a-Kind Hand-spun Yarn by Marti is on a Super Fall Yarn Sale for a short while.
Available in La Tea Da Designs Etsy shop

You can go to the section called: SUPER YARN SALE and find amazing yarn at 50% off and more. Gift yourself or gift a friend at these super bargain prices.

While you are shopping, be sure to take a look at all the other fibers and things available to make amazing crafts with.

Want to learn how to spin with a drop spindle?
There are beautiful hand made beginner Drop Spindle Kits with detailed directions in each kit.

Makes a great Birthday gift and the Holidays are coming up soon!


I leave every morning around 4:00 a.m. for work.  It’s a long ride to Torrance from the High Desert, but these mornings I have received special gifts. Monsoon weather brings joy to the commuter.  On Tuesday I received a spectacular gift.  Let me see if I can paint a picture for you.

I began my travel up through Phelan in an effort to reach the 138 highway.  Now it’s much closer to travel the 395 highway to the fifteen but being human I get bored with the same-O, same-O and I like to shake it up.  So I set out to travel the 138.  You’re probably thinking, so, so what the 138 is a well traveled road.  It is well traveled but this particular morning I seemed to be alone with the sky.

I looked in my rear view mirror and I got a gift.  The sun was just coming up over the horizon, fiery orange that morning, but leading into a still darkened sky of the western front.  Black clouds moving up to open the way for the sun that would later prove to sear the land.  My window was slightly open as to feel the real air of the morning, not the artificial air of my auto. A certain freedom brushed against my cheeks.

The monsoon weather produces unusual cloud formations and I could feel the darkness letting go, surrendering to the orange glow that creeped from the eastern morning.  I could feel the air, and the sky and the gifts that I was receiving at 4:00 a.m.

I went to work with a smile on my face and people asked me all day why I was so happy.  I merely responded it was because of my gift.  They looked at me as if I should have been a patient instead of a worker.  Oh well some gifts are special and need no words of explanation.  I hope that you too will think about a gift you’ve received, a gift that can not be purchased.

The High Desert provides many, they are all around us, and can’t be purchased with MasterCard.

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