LITTLE REMINDERS

LITTLE REMINDERS

I’m driving home from a weekend in the Eastern Sierra Mountains. A place that has always brought me peace; except for recently, the peace has been replaced with the deepest sadness and despair.

Am I crying as I drive through the winding hills and valleys? I must be, although I don’t seem to notice much anymore, considering this an everyday occurrence.

Hopelessness washes over me as I fiddle with the iPod left behind, but has somehow become my security blanket into her mind.

Randomly the song changes from the Eagles to Blink 182, one of her favorite bands. It’s a song I have not heard, called Not Now. I intently listen to the lyrics… instantly mesmerized by them.

The song calls out to me…”God has a plan for you”
“I will be waiting”
“I wish I could give you one last kiss”

As the tears stream down my face, I look up to the mountains, covered with powdery, white snow and see a cross. As clear as day… a cross in the mountain formed from the melting snow.

At that moment a sense of comfort washes over me…she is always here with me and waiting for the day I will see her again.

Written By: Ask Ms Mandi
Photograph By: Ask Ms Mandi
Copyright March 30, 2017

 

Two Girls & A Ranch

We found the perfect piece of land in Temecula.  It’s a corner lot and it is twenty-two acres of usable land.  What is usable land you may ask?  It is land that is flat enough to grade (level off) into buildable land for us to build our horse stables and teen center.

We are so excited to buy it; the serenity and tranquility of the fresh air and peace.  But some questions come up that we aren’t so sure about the answers.  Where does the water come from?  A well they say.  What is a well?  We’re really not that blonde, but almost.  Do we get a bucket to pull water up out of the well, so that we can heat it up on our stove and  take a warm bath?

This isn’t too far from the truth.  We do not have water, nor electricity, nor a sewer line, which means, we do not have a workable bathroom.  What does this mean, you may ask?  Trust me…I had the some questions.

A well means that we need to hire someone to come out and dig a well, about four-hundred feet deep into the earth, install a pump, and a bladder.  What is a pump and a bladder?  A pump will pump our water into our lines once it is installed into our homes and barn and a bladder is a holding tank of water that doesn’t need to be pumped because it has already been pumped from the well and into the bladder.  Who the hell knew all this stuff?  Not us.  Trust me, this is last time I take my running water, out of my faucet for granted.

Now I ask…what is a sewer line?

october-2016-207

 

Written By:  Ask Ms Mandi

Photography By:  Ask Ms Mandi

Copyright:  May 19, 2019

TWO CITY GIRLS & A RANCH

Let’s start our adventure.

Our first task, seeking out some potential land for sale.  Let me tell you, Temecula and Hemet have a lot of land for sale, but is it usable…that is the question.  Mandi and I decide to spend a day looking at a few locations.  Easy enough, right?  Not really when there isn’t anything on the land as you drive by, such as a house, but thank goodness for modern day conveniences, like Google Maps.  I honestly don’t know how people found their way around back in the day before cell phones existed.  Yes I know, it was called a Thomas Guide, but then again that wouldn’t have helped because undeveloped land doesn’t have a physical address.  Perhaps relying on directions from the realtor.  Anyway…it was a challenge and this was even with modern day necessities.

However, the biggest challenge is when you’re driving a Ford Fusion and discover the map wants you to drive up this narrow, steep dirt road, that drops off hundreds of feet off the edge on both sides of you.  Some of you may laugh, but for two city girls, this is quite a dilemma.  First note to ourselves, we must buy a 4×4 truck!

Needless to say our adventures were short lived.  We made it to one of the properties on our list, but the other three just caused too much anxiety.  Besides, our rationale was, if we can’t drive up our own driveway, then how in the heck will we expect our clients to do the same:)

When all else fails…find a place to eat, relax, and have a beer!

BLOG 05.17.2018 IMG_6549

Some days may seem impossible, but all we can do is take one step at a time.

 

TWO CITY GIRLS AND A RANCH

When I was growing up, I never imagined I would be in the process of organizing and building a horse ranch in Temecula.  My childhood dreams were about being a model and living in the big city, perhaps San Francisco or New York City; living in penthouse, wearing glamorous dresses, and dining with the most distinguished guests.

However, life sometimes has different plans for your dreams.  Two City Girls and a Ranch, is a story about two girls following their exciting journey, as they navigate through this new life, exploring new options and challenges as they build this new dream, called a horse ranch.

October 2016 194

Written By:  Ask Ms Mandi

Photography By:  Ask Ms Mandi

EXCERPT – HER SCARS

Hello!  I thought it was time to get back to my website, Ask Ms Mandi.  My latest baby is my book called HER SCARS.  Enjoy the excerpt below:

JOURNAL ENTRY – August 7 

I’m not sure when I became so brave, but it is as if nothing scares me anymore.  The night of August 6th had taken away my innocence, I am no longer a vulnerable fourteen-year old child.  A part of me died that night, with him taking my purity from me.

I’d always seen the world and people through rose-colored lenses, subsequently, this is no longer the case.  I know most people are bad, but I’ve always refused to believe that they are all bad.

Walking up to the park benches at ten at night, by myself and to a group of stranger boys, my mind is screaming, what is wrong with you.  I am normally the introverted, anti-social girl.

“Hey!”  I shout out.

“Are you talking to us?”  One of the guys asks.

I’m wondering if they are gang-affiliated, by their appearance, with their hats on backwards, long shorts with white Adidas socks to their knees and their black Vans.

The one guy sitting on the right side, edge of the table, catches my eye.  He has a mystic about him.  I am intrigued. He seems quieter than the rest of his friends and it crosses my mind that he may be studying me, as I am him.

I know my presence baffles them, certainly, what are the odds of a young girl dropping by so late at night, to a park with a reputation for being gang affiliated, being in the rougher part of town.  It is rumored that the hard-core gangs, such as, the South Corona Gang, often hang out here; although, this isn’t their territory, but it is said they occasionally drop by.

The tall, heavy-built Mexican stands up, he isn’t fat or anything, just stocky and not so pretty, with a deep scar running from his right ear to the corner of his mouth.

Skeptically, he approaches, obviously trying to intimidate me, but as I walk closer into their scene, his stare falters, realizing I’m not afraid of him.

Cautiously, he looks me up and down from my flip flops to the top of my head.  Thinking his words out carefully, he continues.

“Aren’t you a little out of your element?  How old are you, sixteen?”

“I’m fourteen.”  I state proudly.

“Fourteen?  Damn girl, what the hell are you doing out and around these parts of the hood by yourself?”

“I need a favor.”  I say, looking him squarely in the eyes.

I’m not sure if it is my imagination, but his eyes seem to soften a bit.

“A favor?  What sort of favor?”

The other three guys laugh, except the quiet one, who just shifts his gaze to the ground, almost as if saying he wants nothing to do with any of this.

“I need you to beat the living shit out of this guy for me.”

“And why would you want us to do that?”

I bite down on my lip, too hard, tasting my blood.

“He hurt me, and I want him to pay for what he did!”  I stare back, expressionless.

He gestures for me to come over to their table, offering me a beer, which I gladly accept.  Don’t judge me.  I may only be fourteen years old, but I’ve lived through enough shit to last me a lifetime.

I guzzle my beer, letting out a loud burp, proceeding into the rhythm of my story, starting from the beginning.  I tell them everything, holding nothing back.

Copyright:  Jayne Wilkinson February 10, 2019

SNOW

SNOW

How long will Jack make me endure this suffering?  He knows that I hate it when he ignores me.  I sit here, holding our baby in my arms, wondering when he will come home and forgive me.  I know I should feel blessed with this life beside me, but all I can do is long for the days we use to have, when he loved me.  Why does love have to end?

True love is forever, they say, but they are wrong.  What is true love?  Why does it always seem as if love is lopsided.  You either love him or he loves you, it is never compatible, perhaps in the movies, but not in real life.

Happiness is so overrated.  All I long for is a little bit of peace.  What is happiness?  We think happiness is something that we all achieve and it will last forever; subsequently, it is only a mere glimpse of something that will be temporary.  Temporary, until it is gone and once again our hearts’ ache for its return.

Written By:  AskMsMandi

Copyright:  August 10, 2018

Manuscript – SNOW

SNOW

Sitting on the park bench, feeling the wind blowing through my hair, I am stuck somewhere in my mind, between my surroundings and another time.  It now seems like a lifetime ago, and it even tricks me into believing it had never been my life at all.

There are days when my life seems as if it isn’t real, but as if I am a character, in a movie and I am watching it over and over again.  I don’t want to continue this madness, but what choice do I have, but to proceed with the events that are impossible to delay.

The memories will always come, I can’t deny them, for they were my life at one time.  I have lived them and they aren’t going away, no matter how much I wish them to, they are a part of me and I must find a way to embrace them.

Written By:  Ask Ms Mandi

Photograph By:  Ask Ms Mandi

Copyright:  April 30, 2018