Alastairs Photo Fiction – Simple is and simple does!

Each Sunday my good friend Alastair offers up one of his excellent photographs as a prompt for writing a short fictional piece. Be sure to check out this fun activity, click here for more information.


Photo Credit: Copyright © Alastair Forbes, 2013

Simple is as Simple does.

“I just want to leave, daddy!” the little girl said. “I’m not having any fun!”

“But honey, you’ve hardly ridden any of the rides.” The dad was concerned to see the unhappy look on his daughter’s face. He had been so sure, when he picked her up at her mother’s house for his “weekend time”, that she’d love to go to the carnival. Didn’t kids like these things any more?

“I don’t care. I just want to leave and go some other place. It’s noisy and all the rides are scary with people screaming. They’re rude and they keep bumping into us on the ground.” His daughter’s small hand held tightly onto his while tugging him in the direction of the exit.

“Well, wait a minute,” Her dad tried again. “Let’s go by the food stands, they have yummy treats to eat there. That’s always fun at carnivals.” He patted his substantial stomach while deciding there was always room for one more corn dog!

“No daddy, my tummy still hurts from the last ride and we can buy treats everywhere. I just want to go.”

The dad looked and felt very frustrated as they slowly maneuvered their way through the noisy throng of indifferent people who, now that he noticed it, all seemed to be running around in hyper mode; looking for the next great thrilling ride, or fat engorged snack or cheap plastic prize to be awarded for winning a “fixed” game.

When they reached the exit the dad turned to his daughter and impatiently asked “So where do you want to go?”

The little girl answered quietly. “Could we go to the park, just the two of us, walk around, feed the squirrels and maybe you could push me on the swing. Doesn’t that sound like fun, Daddy?”


Is there a loss of pleasure in “simple things” today? Are we perhaps so inundated with the never ending media of thriller type videos, movies, TV shows, books and of course real life activities, it has become difficult to go to a simple and happier place!

Be at rest



Be at rest

Be at peace

My child in slumber

Be at rest.

be unencumbered

my child in slumber,

All is well.


The unknown

will always be.

But you’re protected

you have me.

Be at rest

My child in slumber,

You are safe

I promise thee.

~ Penny L Howe, 2013


~ Penny


Perception – A misleading thing!

Our society is so quickly judgmental today that we immediately assume things, based on an exterior appearance, and look no further.

I’m guessing your initial reaction to this photograph is that of a beautiful model within a choreographed setting. This is not the case. Because of her looks people have mistakenly presumed to judge her as nothing more.

Allow me to introduce to you Jack and Emma’s big sister Jordan. This beautiful young lady is 18 years old. That is her bed in her bedroom; she had actually been awake for only a short time and was temporarily babysitting a stray kitten that had wandered into our neighborhood until Jordan could find it a good home. Which she did two days later.

I had gone into her room to make sure she was awake (she had asked me to check in and make sure she was up, as she had an appointment to keep that morning, and like many teenagers is up late at night!) I was struck by the black and white of most everything except her hair (She’s a teenager, her hair changes as frequently as her mood. :D)

On a more serious note two years ago when the children suddenly lost their father in a senseless accident caused by a meth-using driver, Jordan (just like her mom) went into extreme shock.

Her dad had been her buddy, her pal. He and her mom taught her to believe in God (she is an active member in her church youth group), to love life, music and that beauty comes from the inside out. With her youth group she has travelled twice to Mexico – called A Labor of Love, to help construct homes for the homeless.

And her dad also taught her to drive and to love the river. The last two years have been very hard for her. They had spent every summer on the water. One of the first things to go (financial needs) was the ski boat. (Interjecting a quick note here. I live with this family now and I am a close relative, I help as I can since the accident, the focus here is on their journey after a tragic event in their lives).

For Jordan her loss of her father turned to anger and depression. It was a struggle for her to overcome. She’s moving on now – in a good way, but it was a very hard loss for a young impressionable teenager just at the beginning of her awareness of all that life can offer.

The musical notes you see in the background of  two of the photos are all over the walls of her room. Her dad had lovingly done this a few years previous. (taking weeks, in his spare time to complete a score from her favorite song “butterfly kisses”– he was like that with his whole family. All those little extras bits of love!)

So this is Jordan today. She was always kind, loving and giving; now she is also wiser and more reflective.

She is also amazing when it comes to repairing the engines of vehicles. Her male friends call her for advice (Yup, totally true – luckily her boyfriend isn’t the jealous type, in fact he asks her for advice in that area also).

She is also an excellent photographer, a photo journalist although her special knack in this area is cinematography. I am hoping this becomes her chosen career.

So there you have it. Jordan, As beautiful on in the inside as she is on the outside and the third of the four members left in this amazing family of loss and courage.

I have two more to write about in the near future. These children’s brave/persevering mom and of course their dad/her husband Duane. Who we all miss so very dearly!

And after that I shall introduce the other most important people in my life  – My son and his wonderful family!