Vote TODAY – Everybody

On Tuesday June 5, 2018, I will be working as a Sacramento County Polling Clerk at one of the new voting centers. I’ll be in Orangevale so if you’re in my neck of the woods you might see me.

We are now in fire season here in Northern California. No big fires yet, but they’ll be here soon enough.

I was going to wax and wane poetically about fires that burn in our hearts with desire for love and freedom and dreams that others would take away. Think about how many times a child says she wants to be an artist or writer or doctor or historian or anything and someone says “that is too hard” or “you’ll fail.” How many times have people come up against all odds and had success. Think about that when you vote tomorrow. And you WILL vote (or I will lose all respect for you if you’re an American citizen.)

Anyway, a lot of people, including ALL women had someone before them fighting for that vote. But I won’t go on. The fires burn for education and knowledge. The fires burn for freedom to love. Vote for the fires that burn for the love of your children. Vote for the environment and water issues. Just vote for common sense.

Today you need to VOTE because all of the above. In other parts of the world (not my part of the world) people risk their lives for the right to vote. They die for it. People died for it here too.  So remember them and VOTE.

Plus remember… if you don’t vote you can’t complain about the results.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

vote

 

Ask Juliette: Boyfriend vs Kids, Dogs vs Cats, Hairy Palms, and Dreams

Ask Juliette (Ask a Vampire – Advice for Everyone) is a regular feature on Vampiremaman.com

The questions come from vampiremaman.com readers. If you have a questions about parenting, Vampires, relationships, dogs, cats, life in general, or anything, just ask and I will do my best to answer. Send your questions of juliettevampiremom @ gmail.com

Vampire Teen

Dear Juliette,

I’m a widow with two great kids ages twelve and fourteen. I have a job I like, own my own home, and I also have a wonderful boyfriend. My boyfriend is wealthy, good-looking, and likes my children. My boyfriend said he would marry me and pay for my children’s college education if I agree to send the children to a prestigious boarding school. He said we deserve our alone time. The school he can get them into is full of alumni who have attended Ivy League colleges, and has high scores for everything. The problem is that my children don’t want to leave me. The eldest, my daughter, has threatened to run away and live with my sister in another state. What should I do?

Dump the boyfriend. You can’t put a price on your children. No boyfriend, girlfriend, or potential spouse is worth trading for time with your kids.

When you choose to have and raise a child (and it is ALWAYS a choice) you sign an unwritten contract to love, provide for, guide, and be there for that child for eighteen years.

Sure you can sell yourself like a whore for money or the love of a man but at what price? Is it worth the price of the love and respect of your children? Is it worth a piece of ass? Is it worth an expensive diamond? Is it worth a guy who doesn’t respect your role as a parent? Is losing your children worth your “alone time”?

I never understand why some people insist on getting involved with people who either don’t like their kids, or have kids they don’t like. If you don’t want to be around someone’s children then don’t date them. And DON’T for God’s sake marry them.

Sure I’m being harsh and hard lined but these are children we’re talking about. CHILDREN.

Your children are only children for a short time. Treasure that time. You will never have it again. Once they are grown that is it. I’m not saying that you can’t have your own life and interests, but just don’t do it at the expense of the most precious and valuable thing you will ever have – your relationship with your children.

This is Oscar. He is my cat. He is really cute.

This is Oscar. He is my cat. He is really cute.

 

Dear Juliette,

Which do you like better, dogs or cats? What do Vampires like the best.

I’m more of a cat person but I adore them both. I have two cats and a dog. Oh my heart goes flutter when I think of them, even when they are doing bad and annoying things. I love both. I can’t imagine life without them.

As for Vampires…we’re just like regular people in that we each have our own preferences. For the most part Vampires like both dogs and cats. I mean, who wouldn’t? Right?

 

vswirl2

 

Dear Juliette,

My boyfriend has hair on the palms of his hands.

Well crap. That isn’t good.

 

vswirl2

 

Dear Juliette,

Is it ever too late to follow your dreams?

Absolutely not. Unless you’re following my dreams. But seriously, it is never too late to follow your dreams, get an education, write a book, fall in love, or do anything you think you’ll enjoy or be good at. Don’t take NO for an answer, even if the world tells you NO. Eventually you’ll get a YES, even if it is just from a cranky old opinionated Vampire like me.

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

crowonstone

 

 

 

Vampire Maman’s Guide to Dream Interpretation

At the end of my street is a woodland that ends in bluffs overlooking a lake. On one end one can see the towers of Folsom Prison. If you walk a bit down the trail you can see the Mormon Temple. At night it looks like the Eifel Tower in Paris.

Most Vampires avoid both prisons and churches (I use that term for all places of worship.)

If we go in a church we’re usually drawn in by the music, hiding out or drawn in by someone of strong will.

I had a dream that my friend Amelia and I were inside of the Mormon Temple exploring on our own. I’ve been there so I have a visual, but I wasn’t exploring the first time – the real-time. I was on a tour, as a guest, when the building first opened (another story for another time.)

It was lovely and a bit confusing. I have to admit that I like exploring old Catholic churches full of statues of saints the best. Of course the ultimate is getting into the hidden areas of the Vatican. Oh have I got stories for you about that. Dan Brown – give me a call if you’re reading this. Yes, Vampires love the Vatican.

Amelia has always been the explorer – more than most Vampires. Granted we go in and out of buildings and places as we more or less please, but Amelia is the master. Name a place and she has been there, unseen. No, really, name a restricted place. Amelia has been there. Ask her about the Knights Templars. I dare you.

But my adventure was just a dream, however real it seemed.

For some reason, when schedules change, I dream vivid dreams. I can’t sleep either.

My brother Max came this morning at 3:00 a.m. and picked up my kids for a trip to the coast. Just the weekend, but I couldn’t sleep, except to have strange dreams. Granted my sleep schedule is already messed up. You know, people think being a Vampire is easy but it isn’t. Not at all.

So that got me to thinking about the meaning of dreams. And that led to a list.

Vampire Maman’s Guide to Dream Interpretation

What you dream about and what it means (in italics.)

Cats: Something good is about to happen.

Blood: Either you’re thirsty or somebody is in big trouble.

Church outside: You are utterly alone.

Church inside: Feeling caution.

Cake: Cake.

Driving: Trying to resolve childhood issues.

Driving fast: Trying to resolve adult issues.

Vanishing road: You are afraid of everything and feeling out of control.

Airplanes: Black crows or grackles. 

Rockets: Toothpaste.

Wolves: Sex with someone you don’t really like but are attracted to.

Sex: Unresolved issues with the artistic side of your brain.

Sex with a stranger: Unresolved issues with disappointment.

Red: A color.

Blue: Another color.

Orange: A longing for Halloween.

Political conversations: You’re truly sick and need help.

Wine: Wine.

Broken glass: Broken dreams and self loathing.

Birds: Birds.

Bats: Feeling of being both cute and ugly at the same time.

Trains: Change.

Train travel: Sex.

Childhood: The need for cake. Maybe pie. Cookies will do in a pinch.

School: Fear.

Militant Vegans: Small barking dogs.

Roses: Beauty and pain.

Beer: Fear of hot weather.

Witches: You are being watched.

 

To be perfectly honest with you, I don’t believe in dream interpretation but please, go ahead and study my list. I’m concerned for the well-being of all and want everyone to feel good. Yes, look into my eyes. See the hazel waves of the ocean lulling you into relaxation. You’re in your happy spot. You feel calm. You feel the cool ocean breeze surround you in love. You want my teeth on your neck. Relax, close your eyes, sleep and when you wake… I will be gone.

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

 

 

 

 

Bad Dogs

A few nights ago…

I was camping in the Arizona desert with a few friends under the dark sky with stars unlike what we see at home.

Sleep, as always, was somewhere else. I always figure Sleep is hanging out at a bar somewhere flirting with a beautiful blonde and not thinking of me. He doesn’t care.

But, that said, for a few fleeting moments I fell into a slumber. I dreamed of two men with long brooms sweeping in a world made of blue light. Then the blue changed to black and white, like a vintage cartoon, and I watched a small naked man climb on rocks. He turned from a cave man type character to a Japanese man, then he morphed into a wolf.

I woke and went outside under the stars. In the distance someone was setting off bottle rockets of green and red. If I’d been at home I would have been in fear of fire but not here.

Walking away from the tents I stood listening to the sounds of the night. I could hear trains in the distance and the sound of the wind in the trees.

Four figures approached me from out of almost nowhere.

Oh crap. Werewolves.

Half human, half wolf, they circled me with low growls, showing huge teeth.

“Hey, guys, what’s up?” I said that to them trying to be cool and defuse any potential trouble.

“Vampire you are not wanted here,” growled one of the Werewolves. The voice was hardly human.

“You will be our feast tonight,” said another.

“Really? Stop the dramatics. You have to know Vampires are not worth the effort. If you kill me there is a 80% chance I’ll turn to dust. If I don’t turn to dust I won’t taste good. I haven’t fed on prey in a couple of days so I’m going to be kind of dry. Plus I’m tired and cranky which will add a bitter taste to my flesh like you can’t even imagine.”

The largest wolf man, obviously the leader growled out a response. “We will eat you alive. First we will eat your limbs, then rip open your belly and eat all but your heart, then we will eat off your face. And last we will eat your beating heart before it turns to dust.”

“Right now my heart isn’t beating much… but listen guys, my friends at home raise their own sheep. They have freezers full of good stuff for those night time cravings. There is no reason for this kind of behavior. I mean, can’t you go find some rattlesnakes or something?”

They didn’t back down. I showed them my fangs. The group backed off. I was no longer a woman in jeans, a tank top and flip flops, but a powerful force to be reckoned with. You know, I was just being myself.

And I don’t know why, but I yelled, “BAD DOG.”

All the sudden them all stopped and put back their ears. Their tails tucked. They whimpered and backed off.

“BAD DOG,” I yelled again. Pulling together all of my energy I put feelings of guilt into their canine filled heads. I channeled my own dog (the best dog in the world.) My dog is the Queen of Guild. We never dare say “bad dog” to her.

The Werewolves, uprighted themselves and morphed before my eyes back into humans. Yes, it is an ugly disgusting process. If you ever have to make the choice between becoming a Werewolf or a Vampire, pick the Vampire.

They stood like guilty children. Then they walked away, naked, into the night.

Well, that was exceptionally weird.

Now I’m home. Home sweet home. I’m still recovering from some road born bad blood illness. Exhausted from 24/7 activity and driving. Popular culture is wrong – Vampires DO get tired.

I hear my teenage children moving upstairs. They sleep so much. And I think of future posts for this blog. And drink coffee. Lots of coffee.

I’ll have to call my friend Adam the Werewolf and see what he thinks of my desert friends.

Oh well.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

Ghost of Creativity

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about creativity. I am an artist and writer. By using both I am a story-teller using both words and pictures – sometimes together and sometimes not.

I am fortunate to know so many other creative beings who are writers, artists and musicians and even actors. Anyway, being one of those kinds of people is never easy. The risks of even admitting one is creative is great. You’re scorned if it is your passion or if try to make a living of it. You are celebrated if you succeed. There seems to be no in-between. And nobody understands, or so it seems. Mentors are few and far between. Paths are unclear and filled with holes.

Then again it can be wonderful and rewarding and magical. When I’m creating I’m happy. When I’m creating and making money that really makes me happy.

This morning I’m working on some drawings and writing, as well as some business…

I’d just fixed coffee in my red French press and looked out the window to see the red shoulder hawk sitting in an oak tree and turkeys walking below (just setting the scene.) Anyway, my brain was starting to go blank and doubt was setting in and my attention span was well, I have no attention span what so ever.

I looked up from my computer to see a pale face surrounded by a mass of shaggy dark hair. It was Nigel, THE GHOST, my ghost, sitting across from me with a fuck-you-Juliette look on his face.

“What are you trying to do today Vampire?” He was in one of his usual fresh out of the grave moods.

“I was just thinking about all of my insanely creative friends.”

“You have friends?”

“Don’t be rude. So tell me Nigel, you were a successful artist. How did you manage it?”

He leaned back in the chair and then loosened his tie.

“Well, Juliette, my dear dear dear Juliette, I learned the business. I was sort of an asshole. I never took no for an answer. I believed in my art. But most of all I had a lot of support. Nobody every expected me to do anything but succeed. Good thing my family didn’t want anything to do with me or I would have never done anything. But my friends and my foster family were my real family. They believed. They made me believe. I probably would have killed myself before I ever made it out of high school if I’d stayed with my biological family. I was my art. My art was me. There was no separation. I worked smart too, learned from my mistakes and… connections were a big thing. I went to the right school. Right away I started to network and find the right people. I’ve never been shy. I was driven. I didn’t listen to anyone who wanted me to be nice or follow the norms or get a real job. Most of all I was good. I was great. People still buy my art. They still love it. Can you imagine if I’d lived? Can you imagine all of the people with real talent who are alive right now but so beaten down by all of the crap that they’ve heard all of their lives about how art doesn’t matter? At least their art doesn’t matter because… It was easy for me because I didn’t have to please anyone but myself and I was damn great at both art and pleasing myself. Everything is easy if you go throughout life as sort of a prick.”

I listened and thought a bit then poured more coffee.

I looked up and Nigel’s handsome almost transparent face was next to mine. “And you want to know what else Juliette? Tenacity. A lot of tenacity. A whole lot of tenacity.”

“It is easy when you’re young to dream,” I said, thinking of the teens I know, and of my own youth.

He gave a laugh, but it wasn’t mean. It was happy. “But when you’re old you have the life experience. You can do anything.”

“It isn’t that easy,” I said.

“Nothing is that easy, especially bringing back that passion but it can be done.”

“Anything else?”

“Don’t be a ghost before you’re dead,” said Nigel and he vanished in a whisp of blue smoke.

I’ve had doors slammed in my face. So I go to a side door or through a window. Or I find a better door. Or I kick the door down. Or I sit outside and yell. But as I go through my own front door, into the home I love knowing that my creativity bought this house I know that nothing can get me down at this point. It can’t. I won’t let it.

As I embark on new creative endeavours, new journeys so to speak, I will try not to bring any old ghosts with me. Well, with one exception. I will bring Nigel along with me, even if he is a pain in the ass sometimes. But when I go it alone I know he’ll be there, along with so many others cheering me on.

And in turn, I will be on the sidelines cheering on my creative friends. Better than that I’ll march in the parade beside them.

Never give up your art. Never give up your creative spirit. Never give up. Never. Like Nigel said – don’t be a ghost before you’re dead.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

red shoulder hawk

My hawk who visits outside my window.

 

Phantom Thoughts and Rogue Memories.

My brother Max is having not dreams, but memories of places and events that aren’t his.

At the same time he can feel others thinking about him. He is a receiver. So am I.

It is one of those odd things that we don’t tell anyone else about.

The memories are a mystery. We’ve compared notes and we can’t figure it out. Who sends us memories from places we’ve never been or memories of things we’ve never done.

The other types of thoughts are straight from a known source.

Max and I stood out on the deck the other night looking into the fog. “She is thinking about me right now. I haven’t seen her in years but she has been thinking about me a lot lately.”

I didn’t tell him to call her or drop by her house. It wasn’t the right time. It wasn’t his call to make. But when she thinks of him he knows it. He never wonders if she loves him or really even cares. It just is what it is. He is flattered and charmed if nothing else. That is it.

I told him about the bridge again. It was a large bridge that fell during rush hour 50 years ago. I wasn’t there but I remember it from the eyes of a young man who was in a blue car. He was in the water. A woman helped him out. His wife was frantically calling on the phone to see if anyone knew where he was. That is all I remember. I thought it might have been from a book or a movie, but the memory was like my own.

Max dreams of maps and lying as still as death on the bottom of the ocean. I dream of cars falling off of narrow mountain roads and big ugly fish.

We don’t talk much to others about our dreams and phantom thoughts and rogue memories.

I’m sure you have things like that too – another life built on fog and emotion and strange things that fly by like ghost ships or long forgotten songs.

No matter what it is always good to have someone to talk to, who doesn’t think you’re nuts.

Max left this morning before the sun came up. I will miss him, but he’ll know when I’m thinking about him.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

Time travel makes me dizzy.