Red Dirt Rocker

Red Dirt Rocker
Y/A novel by Jody French--Inspired by the adventures of musician- Forrest French

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The movie, "Courageous"

My husband and I are going with the youth from our Sunday School class at First Baptist Church to see the movie, "Courageous", this weekend.  Forrest is going for the second time.  He came in the other night after seeing it and said he had a frog in his throat from trying not to cry for at least an hour after the movie.  I can't wait.  I'll be sure to give a movie review afterwards.

ps  My husband Monty and I took our daughter Skylar, Eddie Jett and Forrest to see, "The Muppet Movie", Thanksgiving day after we delivered meals here in town.  It was really cute.   I was afraid Skylar, who is 22 years old, and Forrest, who is 18, were going to think it was corny.  On the contrary...they laughed the loudest.   Eddie Jett, who is 3 1/2, kept looking at them like, "what's so funny guys?"  The Muppetts...closing the generation gap in the French family! My favorite characters are, The Swedish Chef, Beaker, and the Old Guys.
Gotta love geriatric humor!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday shopping madness

I've already done much of my Christmas shopping before this weekend.  I think I'm going to finish it all at Arrowhead Mall in Muskogee, OK.  It's the same distance as Tulsa from here.  I can park in the first few parking spots smack dab in front of Dillards, and open my arms wide apart and spin around in the stores it's so "uncrowded".  Plus the fish tank there is really cool!  I totally think it'll be worth the $20.75 I would have  saved by getting out in the madness today...Honk-honk.  Enjoy the traffic people!

All my children are official, "Okies from Muskogee"...born in the hospital there.  Small cities rule!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Delivering Thanksgiving meals in my teenager's pickup truck

Wishing everyone who reads this a very Happy and blessed Thanksgiving!  I am beyond blessed.  Watched my   grandbaby, Eddie Jett until 2:00 a.m. for Skylar while she was at work...then got up bright and early to go to our church and help with the community Thanksgiving meal.  Popped in Forrest's room, where it was dark and cozy, and whispered, "Do you wanna get up now and go to the church with me to help?"  Well, without fail, he rolled over, just as he's done every year and said, "Sure."

Now, anyone with a teenager knows how they value their holiday breaks from school, and the sleeping time it affords.  I am beyond blessed to have a son that has had the advantage to travel the world as a cheered-for rock star, that still wants to help others in the way that he does.  He's never let the position that God has blessed him with affect his humble nature to do good unto others.

My daughters always helped in years past as well, but now they have babies that they have to keep up with.  I am pretty sure, as their children get older, more mobile, and independent, that they will come back to the tradition of delivering Thanksgiving meals with us as a family.

Even if it's just opening the door for someone when you're doing your Holiday shopping, or smiling at someone who looks like they may need one, I can bet you will be just as blessed as the receiver of your small act of kindness.

This Thanksgiving I am thankful for, "everything that is good and just"...and thankful most of all, for my God that will always help me deal with the things in this life that are not~~

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

"Gone With the Wind"~~

Cuddled up on the comfy couch with a buttery soft, snugly afghan, some toasted coconut yogurt, and "Gone With the Wind" on AMC..."Frankly my dear"...what a wonderful break before the cooking madness begins!

"Red Dirt Rocker" excerpts!

Another teaser!  I am going to start posting excerpts from my book right after Thanksgiving, as  the grocery shopping, cooking, eating, family visiting stuff lets up.  Gobble, gobble!!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Taking a walk~

I am going to get outside and take a walk today.  It's's good for you, I should do it more often.  I admire my neighbors, the Chances.  They walk all the time.  I usually see them from my kitchen window as I'm eating something over the sink.

Let's get out there people!

Pumpkin bread and Zac Brown's "Colder Weather"

It is a beeeaaauutiful morning here in Cowtown, Oklahoma...aka Coweta.  The autumn sun is dancing through the branches of the pin oak tree outside my bedroom window, reflecting shadows in motion on my mini blinds. Forrest is up and around getting ready for school.  He has the heart warming song, "Colder Weather", by the Zac Brown Band playing.  I can't believe that kid is a morning person...he got it from his Dad btw, not me. When he toured he always found it ironic that he and his band mates would have to get up at 6:30 or 7:00 in the morning at times to play live and do morning radio station interviews.  "Not rocker friendly hours", he would say.  I was always glad he wasn't difficult to get up and drag off the tour bus for quick shower in the hotel. He could always milk cows, or work at a doughnut shop if the music thing doesn't work out.  Both, wee hours of the morning jobs.

Speaking of morning people, which I'm not, I'm still laying in bed with my lap top propped up in front of my weary eyes.  It's too warm and snugly to bail out hastily.  I have to run several baskets of home baked goods to the high school this morning for Forrest's Senior class Project Graduation chili dinner and pie auction tomorrow.  I love small towns and their pie auctions!  Yes, I live in Mayberry... I felt like Aunt Bea yesterday as I was baking up a storm in the brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg scented kitchen.
Speaking of cinnamon.  I was making homemade cinnamon rolls last week while my precious little toddler munchkin, Grandson Landon, was standing on a chair "helping" me. (Which in Grandma baking terms, meant he was spreading sugar and flour all over my floor.)  Well, the poor little guy slipped on the chair and fell.  He cried, I almost cried, and I rocked him to sleep quickly and went back to my rolls.  After all day of letting the dough rise, punching it down, letting it rise again, rolling it out, and cutting them, I finally got them baking.  I thought a certain scent was missing as they baked. I was correct.  Between the commotion of Landon falling off the chair and the rocking to sleep stuff, I had completely forgotten to put the CINNAMON in the melted butter  and brown sugar for the filling!  I decided not to cry over un-spiced dough and poured cinnamon and sugar all over the top of the cream cheese icing.  My family said they were the best cinnamon rolls they had ever eaten.  Lesson learned... don't cry over spilled Grand babies...make them SIT at the table while they cover your kitchen with flour while your baking~~

Back to Forrest, I still cannot believe my son is a Senior.  He's the baby of the family.  Five years separates he and his younger sister Skylar.  My daughter Jessica is six years older than him.  They were always so good to him, never treating him as the annoying little brother as they grew up.  They call him Bub.  I think any sister that calls their brother Bub, has to be close.  It's a term of endearment for sure.    I'm proud to say, I haven't had to call him "Forrest Courtland French," too many times through the years.  (That would be the, throw the middle name in there because he's in trouble, way to address him.)  He's a good kid.  He's eighteen years old and he's still my "kid"...he'll always be my baby.

I'm waiting for my contract from my publisher to come through any day now.  I'm anxious and so proud to start the process of getting it printed and ready for sale to the public.  In the meantime, "Aunt Bea" is going to run her pumpkin bread to the high school for the bake sale today, and help her daughter and Grandson move out onto some acreage with peach trees and a large, gorgeous, fish-stocked pond, this weekend. Our little Eddie Jett will have more room to grow~

Have a good day y'all!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Zac Brown Band~~One of Forrest's favorite concerts yet

Forrest and his best girl Katelynn, went to see the Zac Brown Band at the BOK Center in Tulsa last night.

Forrest had to wake up early this morning to get ready to work for his "coach hero,  Coach Clemments," at his lawn care business this morning.  Monty and I just got up with him to pack his lunch,  (as  any over-doting parent, whose son is about to graduate, and you take every opportunity to spoil them before they fly out of the nest, would do.)   I know, weird that it took two of us to pack a lunch.  Monty got the ice chest---I was on sandwich duty.  We're both still worn out from watching our little buddy, Eddie Jett while Sky was at work last night till midnight so it took two tired brains to do it!

Anyhow, Forrest was so pumped about the concert, he could not stop talking about it.
He played us footage from his I-Phone and went on and on about how it was probably the best show he had ever been to...and he's been to many.  Not only did each band member of the Zac Brown Band, play virtually all the instruments, but they also sang either back up or lead vocals as well at one point.  The light show, everything was just incredible he said.

Now...the best part.  Forrest said that Zac stopped the show for a bit and spoke to the huge crowd about the issue of special needs children.  Forrest thought, if he heard him correctly, that Zac has a special needs nephew, as does Forrest.  Zac gave everyone information on a camp that he and his band are responsible for building with proceeds from their concerts and music sales. It's called, Camp Southern Ground.  They even had a booth set up at the show, so that concert goers could sign up their loved ones with special needs to receive more information about the amazing camp.  Forrest was just blown away by their musical prowess and generous giving spirit.

All I can say is, that's what being famous is all about...I know of some Southern Mama's that have got to be proud of their musically talented, Southern musician sons.  Zac Brown Band, my family salutes you!

Rock on~~

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Yeah Taylor Swift!

The CMT Awards were so wonderful!!   The Glen Campbell tribute was so heartwarming.  I sure remember my Mama listening to all his songs back in the day.  I loved "Rhinestone Cowboy."

And way to go Taylor Swift!!  So thrilled that she received Entertainer of the Year again this year.  She is such an incredible role model for young people.  Check out my pic of her and Forrest together on my facebook page, (Jody French), at the Pole Star Awards at the Kodak Theater in L.A. back in 2009 I believe.  They look like they could be brother and sister...she has about a foot on Forrest's height!  She is such a tall beauty.

And a tear jerker for me, was Martina McBride's, "Love You Through It".  My little sister has battled breast cancer this year and has one more surgery on the 17th of this month.  She will have her very last treatment and be able to put it all behind her at the first of the year in 2012.  We sure loved her through it.  She is my hero.  Thank you Martina and most of all, thank you for inspiring me daily Shannon.  I love you!!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Coming soon!! "Red Dirt Rocker" excerpts~~

Well, I made it official today.  I have committed to a publisher for my original manuscript, "Red Dirt Rocker".  I am waiting on their contract as I type this!!

Anyone who has ever taken more than a year to commit to writing from your heart day in and day out, backspacing and staring off into space until the "just right" word hits you in the brain, made your family suffer from lack of meals cooked, saw their house pile up with dirty laundry and dishes, or been in such a trance in front of your computer screen that your spouse could come walking in naked and dancing in front of you bearing a golden platter of  your favorite cupcakes on their head and you would never even notice, can relate to my life for the past two years.  I have been in a, "I've gotta get these words out of my head and onto paper" mode for over twenty four months, and now my dream of seeing my baby in print is going to actually come to fruition.  I feel beyond blessed, and my family will be so glad to have me back in the world of the non-writing-living.

I know there is still much work ahead, but to me, it is going to be the fun stuff.  No one has ever mistaken me for someone who cannot talk their leg off or listen to till them talk about interesting subjects till the cows come home.  I think PR for my book will come very naturally, especially since my book is for middle school and young adult favorite genera of people!  I love to visit and relate with young people, and hope they find, "Red Dirt Rocker", to be a fun, exciting and inspirational read.

I will have my release date given to me after the holidays.  In the meantime, I am going to begin posting excerpts from my book here on my blog.  I truly hope you enjoy.  If you are following my blog, please let the teens in your life know when I post entries from my book, as I think they will enjoy the subject matter.

Thank you all for your support and God bless! earthquakes today so far!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Earthquakes in Oklahoma...What?

Back in 2009 Forrest was still touring with his band.  Monty and I both flew out with him for his  video shoot in L.A., and were placed on separate flights back to Oklahoma.  While sitting in the Salt Lake City, Utah airport on a layover, I looked up at the television monitors to see CNN doing a live update on an earthquake that had just stuck the Los Angeles area!  It totally freaked me out, and like any mom I frantically dug my cell phone out to make sure Forrest and Monty were ok.  They were just fine.  Forrest thought it was the coolest thing ever, and Monty felt it bounce his plane on the tarmac as they were waiting to taxi out.  Monty was freaking out as well.  I don't think either one of us wanted to leave out baby boy out there with the earth rumbling under his feet!

In Oklahoma we are used to tornadoes.  When the weather gets unpredictable and the warnings are sounded we head for my sister Shannon's fraidy hole, aka underground storm cellar.  We are not, however, accustomed to earthquakes. For the past two nights now, we have experienced earthquakes in Coweta, Oklahoma!  I'm talking 5.6 on the richter scale, earthquakes.  Both nights, our bed has shook and our window panes have rattled.  The one last night reverberated for at least half a minute, which seemed like an eternity. My entire family was still hanging out at our house, and after the rumbling we filtered out onto the sidewalk and yelled back and forth to the neighbors about the crazy act of nature.  Our Facebook pages lit up with reports of the quake.  My favorite was one of Forrest's buds who posted a pic of a lawn chair that had tipped over.  The caption above it read:  "Oklahoma earthquake of 2011...I will never forget it!"  

Oklahoma earthquakes...really?  Makes me thankful for my one level ranch style home here on the range.  

Thursday, November 3, 2011

No sub for the sub~~

Had to run to the doctor yesterday because my allergies are finally getting the best of me.  I'm not sure of I've mentioned I'm allergic to Fall.  I got an anti-biotic and a flu shot.  I woke up this morning feeling like a truck had run over me.  I was scheduled to sub today for the middle school by my house, so I sucked it up and went on in.  Half a box of tissue, two tylenol, a serving of my Z-Pac, and an allergy tablet later, I've got half of the day whipped.  

As bad as I feel, the 6th graders at IGC have still brightened my day.  They make me smile, and even the ornery ones were sweet enough to tell me they hope I feel better.  I also read the kids more sample chapters from my book, Red Dirt Rocker, and they were thrilled.  They are so anxious for it to be in print.  One young lady even brought her Kindle to class and said she cannot wait to order it.  It will be such an unbelievable honor to have my book in their young hands!

I'm finishing up lunch and have to go back for two hours.  Can't wait to get more hugs from the kids and then get back to my warm, cozy, comfy bed, put some Vicks on my nose, put a good movie on and crash out for the night!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Eddie Jett and I made a trip to town yesterday, and at our last busy stop at Drug Warehouse I bought him a big bag of Puffy Cheetos.  I buckled him in the back car seat, loaded my sacks in the back hatch, gave him one Cheeto for the road and proceeded to head home.  I had the bag of Cheetos in the front seat with me and I glanced back to see he had already eaten the cheesy puff and was ready for another one.  I grabbed a puff out of the bag as I concentrated on the road, and said, "say pleeease".  I sang out, "say pleeease", two more times waiting for a verbal response, but there was just silence. I turned to look back at him.  He was covered in bright orange cheddar powder, shaking his head back and forth in his car seat, and was frantically rubbing his tiny fist up and down vertically over his size 24 month, cute as a button, red  Elmo sweatshirt over and over...this is sign language for PLEASE.  Sometimes I forget that he is a little guy of very few words, and phrases and is learning to  sign to us most all of his needs and wants.  I quickly surrendered the Cheeto!  I wanted to give him the entire bag all at once.  I felt like such a heel <3  It was a lesson in slow down, shut up and listen for sure.

Take a minute to truly listen to someone you love today~