Friday, February 22, 2013

I ♥ Young Chamorro Talent. Who are these Amazing girls!?

"I think music in itself is healing. It's an explosive expression of humanity. It's something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we're from, everyone loves music."--Billy Joel

The lovely voices of these Chamorritas have grabbed me via Facebook and a friend from Guam who shared (Thanks, Bea!). These talented girls go by taotaotanu on Youtube and it looks like they are from Tinian. I listened to their first song for their dad and connected instantly, having lost my father almost six years ago. I love their harmonies, lyrics and the fact that they sing in Chamorro in the end.

I wish these lovely ladies the best of luck. "Jo and Jana" (I had to fish the comments for their names). I would totally buy their album!

Biba Chamorro talent!

Esta Later!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Music, Mraz, Muse for Moving My Writing

Many writers will tell you that music fuels the writing process. That is no different for me. As I put the finishing touches on my romantic comedy novel, Secret Shopper, I find that setting the musical mood is very important, even if I’m merely editing.

When I did my first draft, I was so engrossed with Jason Mraz. Two of his beautiful ballads drove the love story I was creating. Beautiful Mess and If It Kills Me. His gorgeous lyrics seemed custom fitted for my main characters, Phoenix and Thomas. That was 2010.


IF IT KILLS ME-Jason Mraz-Lyric Video

Three years later, as these characters evolved and the redrafting of their story occurs, I find myself editing to many songs, but I am once again pulled to lovely Jason Mraz. His new song with Christina Perri, Distance perfectly describes my character, Phoenix. She puts up walls, creates distance even if LOVE is staring her right in the face. Why do we do this?

DISTANCE-Christina Perri & Jason Mraz

Also love ARMS by Perri.

*So, thank you Mr. Mraz for being a constant in my book’s evolution.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

100 and 2,000 Make Me Smile

My Guam Goddess in Training Blog Facebook page reached 100 LIKES today and Guam Books and Beads reached 2,000. Nice milestones for this Chamorrita.

As a thank you to my 100 (101) supporters, I'm giving you a tidbit from Chapter 1 of my upcoming romantic comedy novel, *Secret Shopper* (out March 2013). The main character is Phoenix Lizama Farmer.

"I never wanted to move to California from Guam. I didn’t like shifts in my universe. I didn’t want to change my Facebook status from married to single. I had convinced myself that I could take Bradley back even after he cheated on me. Jem, short for Jemima, was an agent in his real estate office who doubled as his part-time lover. Nix, short for Phoenix, was the gullible wife who thought that dropping thirty pounds was the way to save the marriage. Phoenix is my name."

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Celebrating Valentine's....

Hoping your Valentine's is wonderful. Celebrating with my family in our own little way that doesn't require roses or chocolates, just some quality time, food made with love and special thoughts for those we miss.

*Garlic, egg fried rice, Sriracha heart and bacon.

Ed Sheeran's song, Give Me Love.

Esta Later!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day...

"There is no greater feeling than doing something you love with someone you love." --Nikki Reed

This blogpost has been brewing for some time in my overactive brain. I wanted to speak of the love story of Nikki Reed (Rosalie of Twilight fame) and her husband, Paul McDonald (The guy from American Idol). Why? Well, I am a fan of Twilight in general, books more so than the movies, although the movies did bring Robert Pattinson (my muse) to the forefront, but I digress. I am a fan of American Idol, and I recall watching Paul McDonald whose voice is a throwback of Rod Stewart/Bob Dylan stylings and folksy rock yumminess in general. I remember watching him in his various stand out suits thinking, I really hope this guy makes it far. My friends agreed that he had great vocals and a killer smile. He didn’t get the AI crown, but he did find his wife, Nikki via the show.

I remember when the contestants attended the Red Riding Hood movie premiere. Paul met Nikki. She gushed over his talent. He was surprised and in awe of how beautiful she was/is. He tells the camera he has no idea who she is exactly. I thought that was awesome. At 0.54 they meet....

By the end of the season, she was in the audience as his supportive girlfriend. Fast forward, they are doing duets for the final Twilight movie, Breaking Dawn 2, as husband and wife. Beautiful.

Nikki indicated that she had always loved to sing, but until she met Paul, she never had the courage to pursue it. I think her voice is gorgeous and they duet beautifully together.

My point is, in your life, whomever you meet—boyfriend/girlfriend, spouse, child, sister, friend, co-worker, should bring out the shine in you. I feel blessed with the many valentines in my life and I feel like their presence in my journey makes me want to be the best I can be.

Best wishes to Nikki and Paul. May they continue to make beautiful music together.

Happy Hearts Day everyone.

Nikki’s blog here.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Tragedy on Guam

The tragic irony of the event on Guam has me pondering. The suspect's actions are not a reflection of one group of friends, one family, one school or one island--it is a reflection of the entire world. I believe in ripple effects and we need to be kind to each other. I still ♥ Guam.

The above was my simple Facebook status update regarding the tragedy on Guam. The suspect’s name was immediately sifted out of the drama and comments exploded on Facebook.

Article links, pictures and hate spewed. The article's headline says it all, Tumon stabbings: 14 injured after crash, knife attack outside Outrigger.

I’m one to watch, wait, research. I saw the suspect's face. I saw his name being slung around. I visited the Youtube video he was involved with and much of the same hatred was in the comments.

One might say that since I left Guam in 2004, that I have no say in these events, but Guam is still my home-island. I have family and friends I still love dearly there. I taught at JFKHS. I frequented that very spot in Tumon where the tragedy happened. I’ve been in that ABC Store and the surrounding businesses.

I’m not speaking on specific legislation or punishment for this suspect, because I don’t know the facts. I do know that people have lost their lives. I do know that some victims were tourists. I do know that the government is scrambling on how to spin this so Guam doesn’t lose its livelihood.

Is anyone really safe? Is the best reaction violence? Is this suspect’s family and friends going to be targeted? I would hope not.

I can only pray that the island can learn and evolve from this. Not degrade into more evil.

Guam PDN links here.

Link here.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

CHE'LU's 4th Annual Chamorro Cultural Fest March 2013

Hafa Adai! Guam Goddess in Training here just sharing the official flier for CHE'LU's 4th Annual Chamorro Cultural Fest! Chamorro Hands in Education Links Unity or CHE'LU is a non-profit organization based in San Diego. They put their hearts and souls into this wonderful celebration of the Chamorro culture. The Board consists of dedicated volunteers who work hard to put on the only Chamorro festival of its kind in San Diego.

Please support them by simply attending, enjoying music, culture and mungi (delicious) food. March 23, 2013, Saturday, 10-6PM (Market Creek Plaza 310 Euclid Ave. San Diego 92114) with an evening concert by Hafa Adai Entertainment at 8PM.

I regret that this will be my first time not attending, but something about being a Navy wife and transferring to the chilly PacNorWest came into play.

Like Chelu Sd on Facebook here.

Visit their website here.

Si Yu'os Ma'ase!/Thank you.

And, feel free to follow my blog by subscribing with your email below and/or LIKE me on Facebook here.

Esta Later!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

CHAMAOLE' PINO is the Place to Be for Family and Food....

“Without culture, and the relative freedom it implies, society, even when perfect, is but a jungle. This is why any authentic creation is a gift to the future.”-Albert Camus

Dining at CHAMAOLE’ PINO was like a slice of home.

Owners, Chris and Melody welcomed us into their wonderful Chamorro Filipino restaurant. We are fortunate that they are just one city south of where we live. The food was excellent. My family and I enjoyed the friendly service, the openness of the lay out and the flavors of our dishes. We had fried rice, chicken kelaguen, kelaguen wraps, lumpia, shrimp patties and a trio of barbecue (feel free to grab a napkin to wipe your drool now).

The gracious owner took the time to speak to us, and naturally as all Chamorros do, we rattled off names of people who may connect us and we found many. We ordered latiya for dessert and it was scrumptious, but my daughter was most excited about the titiyas and butter (she did a chant, danced in her seat and held the titiyas in the air like it was Simba of the Lion King).

We spent two hours there, dining, conversing and connecting. Chamaole’Pino has embodied the Chamorro Filipino spirit that other restaurants aspire to.

I also met with a fellow Chamorro author, Stephen Tenorio (author of Ocean in a Cup). We were middle school classmates (dear god, about 27 years ago) and it was great reconnecting face to face.

Anyone, Chamorro/Filipino or not who loves Guam should check out Chamaole’Pino (607 SE Everett Mall Way, Everett, WA). And I appeal to anyone who wants to experience a taste of Guam and the Philippines, this is the place to do that.

Si Yu’os Ma’ase, Chris and Melody! We will be definitely back for more of your mungi fixings!

Support Chamorro! Follow them on Facebook here!

“Preservation of one's own culture does not require contempt or disrespect for other cultures.”--Cesar Chavez


A Story of a Stolen Mermaid--(and the Infringement of an Artist)

Fact: I wrote Sirena: A Mermaid Legend from Guam in 2010. Fact: My brother, Sonny Chargualaf is the talented artist behind the imagery. ...