This past weekend, friends and family gathered from across the country – literally – to celebrate my daughter’s marriage to her best friend, Alex. Throughout the years, I’ve seen Hannah happy. I’ve seen my wife, Kim, happy, and I’ve seen my daughter, Emily, happy. If it is possible, I don’t think I’ve ever seen them as happy as they were this past weekend. I don’t think I’ve stopped smiling. In fact, it was such a joyous wedding weekend, I couldn’t sleep Saturday night as I played the day through from beginning to end on continuous repeat.
I can only describe Alex’s and Hannah’s wedding day as magical. A true celebration of two families coming together in joy and laughter to support two young hearts deeply in love. A Cherished Moment, to be sure!
Hannah and Alex spent months, days, and hours planning it. Postponed one year because of Covid, they had it on the same Saturday as originally planned only one year later. The ceremony took place outdoors on the steps of an Inn, and the reception took place in the back in two tented pavilions. It was chilly, so they had portable heaters. No one seemed to care about the chill.
Speeches were perfect. A nice blend of funny and poignant and nostalgia, much like Alex’s and Hannah’s vows. I sang Paul Stookey’s Wedding Song and almost made it through without choking up. Knowing I was vulnerable, I kept my eyes glued on the sheet music in my folder. The last line of the song is, “And there is love” preceded by four or five bars of instrumental. I made the mistake of glancing up at Alex and Hannah, and saw them weeping. Aw hell! I ended up with my heart in my throat and I think I choked out the last line in nearly a whisper. I couldn’t help it.
Hannah picked a Zak Brown song, The Man Who Loved You Most, for the father-daughter dance. She and I both broke down, and I truly cherished that moment. Later that evening, during the dance after the dinner, she and I laughed as we danced a polka, spinning and twirling.
Life gives us many cherished moments. The birth of a child. A graduation. Watching a sunset or sunrise. A first kiss. A first date. A proposal. Certainly, a wedding.
In today’s fast-paced, rush-to-the-finish world, we don’t always take the time to slow down, much less stop, to a cherish moment. And there are some moments that we should take the time to spend on them. Sadly, there are some moments that will never again appear. A “Goodbye” an “I Love You” or a “Thank You” before life passes.
Please don’t wait! Don’t plan on “the next time.” The next time might never happen, and it might be too late. Please don’t wait. Something to think about . . .
Live Your Life, and Make A Difference!
To My Readers:
I am pleased to announce that my book, Stolen Lives, Book One of the Lives Trilogy, has been named a Crime Thriller finalist in the 2021 Best Thriller Book Awards! That is the second award Stolen Lives has won. Previously, it received a Literary Titan Gold Book Award. I’m happy, as well as humbled, that there has been success with Stolen Lives.
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Amazon at: www.amazon.com/Joseph-Lewis/e/B01FWB9AOI /
Blaze In, Blaze Out, is now available for preorder. Use the promo code: PREORDER2021 and order it at the publisher’s website at: https://www.blackrosewriting.com/mystery/blazeinblazeout
Eiselmann and O’Connor thought the conviction of Dmitry Andruko meant the end. They forgot that revenge knows no boundaries, vindictiveness knows no restraints, and ruthlessness never worries about collateral damage. A target is a target, and in the end, the target will die.
Betrayed: A PenCraft 1st Place Winner for Thriller-Fiction! A Maxy Award Runner-Up for Mystery/Suspense! A Literary Titan Silver Book Award Winner! A Reader’s Ready Recommended Read Award Winner! A Reader’s Favorite Honorable Mention Award Winner for Fiction-Crime-Mystery!
Betrayed is Now Available in Audio Book, Kindle and Paperback! https://amzn.to/3AfUUpS
late-night phone call, a missing kid, a murdered family, but no one is talking.
A promise is made and kept, but it could mean the death of a fifteen-year-old
boy. Seeing is not believing. No one can be trusted, and the hunters become the
Spiral Into Darkness: Named a Recommended Read in the Author Shout Reader Awards!
He blends in. He is successful, intelligent, and methodical. He has a list and has murdered eight on it so far. There is no discernible pattern. There are no clues. There are no leads. The only thing the FBI and local police have to go on is the method of death: two bullets to the face- gruesome and meant to send a message. But it’s difficult to understand any message coming from a dark and damaged mind. Two adopted boys, struggling in their own world, do not know they are the next targets. Neither does their family. And neither does local law enforcement. https://amzn.to/2RBWvTm
Caught in a Web: A PenCraft Literary Award Winner! Named “One of the Best Thrillers of 2018!” by BestThrillers.com
Caught in a Web is also Available in Audio Book, Kindle and Paperback! http://bit.ly/2WO3kka
found the bodies of high school and middle school kids dead from an overdose of
heroin and fentanyl. MS-13, a violent gang originating from El Salvador,
controls the drug trade along the I-94 and I-43 corridors. They send Ricardo
Fuentes to find out who is cutting in on their business, shut it down and teach
them a lesson. But he has an ulterior motive: find and kill a fifteen-year-old
boy, George Tokay, who had killed his cousin the previous summer. Detectives
Jamie Graff, Pat O’Connor and Paul Eiselmann race to find the source of the
drugs, shut down the ring, and find Fuentes before he kills anyone else,
especially George or members of his family. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CKF7696
The Lives Trilogy Prequel, Taking Lives:
FBI Agent Pete Kelliher and his partner search for the clues behind the bodies of six boys left in various and remote parts of the country. Even though they live in separate parts of the country, the lives of Kelliher, 11-year-old Brett McGovern, and 11-year-old George Tokay are separate pieces of a puzzle. The two boys become interwoven with the same thread Kelliher holds in his hand. The three of them are on a collision course and when that happens, their futures grow dark as each search for a way out. https://amzn.to/34nXBH5
Book One, Stolen Lives: Editor’s Pick by BestThrillers! Literary Titan Gold Book Award Winner!
Two thirteen-year-old boys are abducted off a safe suburban street. Kelliher and his team of FBI agents have 24 hours to find them or they will end up like the other kids they found- dead! They have no leads, no clues, and nothing to go on. To make the investigation that much tougher, Kelliher suspects that one of his team members might be involved. https://amzn.to/3oMo4qZ
Book Two of the Lives Trilogy, Shattered Lives:
The boys are home, but now they have to fit back in with their families and friends. Their parents and the FBI thought the boys were safe. They were until people began dying. Now the hunt is on for six dangerous and desperate men who vow revenge. With no leads and nothing to go on, the FBI can only sit back and wait. A dangerous game that threatens not only the boys, but their families. https://amzn.to/2RAYIk2
Book Three of the Lives Trilogy, Splintered Lives:
Three dangerous men with nothing to lose offer a handsome reward to anyone willing to kill fourteen-year-old Brett McGovern. He does not know that he, his younger brother, and a friend are targets. More than anyone, these three men vow to kill George, whom they blame for forcing them to run and hide. A fun vacation turns into a nightmare and ends where it started, back on the Navajo Nation Reservation, high on a mesa held sacred by George and his grandfather. Outnumbered and outgunned, George will make the ultimate sacrifice to protect his adoptive father and his adoptive brothers- but can he? Without knowing who these men are? Or where they are? Without knowing whom to trust? Is he prepared for betrayal that leads to his heartbreak and death? http://bit.ly/SplinteredLives
Photo courtesy of Linda Arney of Linda Arney Photography.