I live outside Harrisburg, Pennsylvania in a small country town called Dauphin. I was born in Clearwater, Florida but relocated here with my parents who were both in the military. We moved here to be closer to family. I ended up moving closer to where things were "busier" in my late teenage years, but realized how much the quietness and feelings of community support meant to me as i got a little older. Here, I can see the stars. Here, I can sit by the bonfire with friends, explore nature just by walking out of my front door and most importantly feel more a part of my community. I have a "domestic partner" as most internet surveys put it whom I have been with for 12 years now. Was not always easy, but we seem to always get through! We have 2 wonderful children together. We have an 8 year old daughter and a 1 1/2 year old daughter (Yes, 2 girls :/). After I had my first child, I wanted to make sure I could provide the best life I could for my family, so I enrolled in a local University. After a few years of balancing motherhood and nightclasses I finally graduated with my Associates Degree in General Studies and a focus in Anthropology. After I graduated my daughter started school, I decided to get back in the workplace. Well, after only working for a few months, I found out I was having another child. My pregnancy was difficult which resulted in me having to put my career on hold. After a long (seemed like a lifetime) pregnancy and the birth of our second child, I once again attempted to return to work. Now I understand more why so many mothers stay home. The cost of daycare will leave you feeling so unaccomplished at the end of the day. I felt like I was working for nothing. I was spending all of this time away from my children. I would come home to a frantic schedule of Getting the kids off the bus,quick get dinner started,help do homework, make sure everyone ate dinner, bath, bedtime, clean up the house, dishes and THEN i could rest (Kind of). It was so much more stress on me and I was only coming out with an extra $50-$100 every 2 weeks after paying for daycare.
I have decided to stay at home but continue to bring some enlightenment to others. I will provide reviews of products, amazing ways to save money, how to make extra cash and write about my experiences with Kids, Life, Travel, Money etc.
If you have not yet had the chance to catch a live performance by The Steeldrivers, I highly recommend you do!
This iconic group of musicians was awarded a Grammy in 2015 for their album “The Muscle Shoals Recordings”, which was named Best Bluegrass Album Of The Year! In my honest opinion, I think we will be seeing their success and popularity grow to new levels in the coming years that will lead to more Grammy wins!
I have heard a lot of buzz around the fact that Chris Stapelton, who is now best known for his hit song “Tennessee Whiskey”, and his choice to leave the place as front-man with The Steeldrivers. Stapelton was no doubt a kick-ass front man but make no mistake, the new front man Kelvin Damrell is a force to be reckoned with.
Although younger than other members of the band, his musical talent shows to be as seasoned and polished as his band-mates!
If you are looking for a show that keeps you dancing and singing along, make sure you go check out when they will be near you next!
#mountainridebluegrass giving yet again another #wicked #performance at #appalachainbrewingcompany #harrisburg #pennsylvania. This is a #mustsee #band that will be in #Cumberland #maryland on #memorialdayweekend at #delfest! #bluegrass #weride #bluegrassfestival #bluegrassmusic #banjo #mandolin #fiddle #standupbass #guitar #music #musicjournalism #musicjournalism #musicblog #blogger #enlightenedlife
This afternoon I had the pleasure of speaking with Ronnie McCoury who is the singer/mandolin player for The Travelin’ McCourys. (I would just like to mention how down to earth he is. We both grew up in the same area so it was really cool to talk a little about our hometowns)
Ronnie plays alongside his brother Rob McCoury who plays the banjo as well as Alan Bartram on bass, Jason Carter on fiddle and Cody Kilby on guitar.
Ronnie and Rob are the sons of Del McCoury from the Del McCoury Band.
Eleven years ago Del and his family got together and decided they wanted to organize a festival. Their search for a location to anchor this festival ended when Del McCoury went to check out the Allegany County Fairgrounds! They knew that was the perfect location to begin developing what is now one of the most popular music festivals along the east coast! DelFest has a rich family-oriented atmosphere which is made evident by seeing the whole McCoury family sharing the stage! There are a variety of workshops going on all around the festival grounds and impressive lists of activities for the kid of all ages!
Throughout the week leading up to DelFest, the McCourys hold what is called DelFest Academy. This runs Sunday, May 20th, 2018 through Wednesday, May 23rd. The all-ages academy teaches students guitar, banjo, fiddle, mandolin, bass, and Dobro. It is a great opportunity to obtain quality lessons from instructors that include Ronnie McCoury along with some other great musicians.
With activities like the favorite “bluegrass karaoke”, and a chance to play on the Grandstage Thursday night, this is a must-try event! When I spoke with Ronnie, he mentioned there are currently a few spots still available so make sure you head over to their website and reserve your spot before it is full!
The line up for 2018 DelFest is nothing short of sublime with bands that include;
THE DEL MCCOURY BAND, THE TRAVELIN’ MCCOURYS, THE BLUEGRASS CONGRESS, DAVID GRISMAN, RICKY SKAGGS, SAM BUSH, JERRY DOUGLAS, BRYAN SUTTON, STAUART DUNCAN, OLD CROW MEDICINE SHOW, GREENSKY BLUEGRASS, MOUNTAIN RIDE, RICKY SKAGGS & KENTUCKY THUNDER, THE DAWG TRIO WITH DAVID GRISMAN, DANNY BARNES, SAM GRISMAN, SAM BUSH, RICHARD THOMPSON, THE JERRY DOUGLASS BAND, THE INFAMOUS STRINGDUSTERS, THE WOOD BROTHERS, RHIANNON GIDDEN, MANDOLIN ORANGE, FRUITON, SIERRA HULL, THE GIBSON BROTHERS, RISING APPALACHIA, BRYAN SUTTON BAND, BILLY STRINGS, THE CALIFORNIA HONEYDROPS, THE KRUGER BROTHERS, JOE CRAVEN & THE SOMETIMERS, HORSESHOES & HANDGRENADES, REVERENED PEYTON’S BIG DAMN BAND, NEW ORLEANS SUSPECTS, BIRDS OF CHICAGO, JOHN STICKLEY TRIO, THE BROOMESTIX, THE GRASS IS DEAD, TWISTED PINE, DRE & THE GOSPEL COLLECTIVE, JUSTIN MOSES & CODY KILBY AND THE GRAND OLE DITCH
For more information on the festival and where to get your tickets visit:
Alright, so I know that I have not been posting as much as I would like to lately but I do want to say that I have been working on a bunch of different projects that are all going to be posted very soon! I am so excited to share all of the new artwork I have been doing (which is all for sale in my Etsy store – EnlightenedLifeStore)!
I have also been traveling a little and photographing and interviewing a number of different bands! Some of these bands include The Steeldrivers, The Devil Makes Three, Mountain Ride, Billy Strings and more! I will also soon be releasing interviews, photos and more of other great musicians so be sure to keep your eyes peeled for my upcoming posts!
These are a few of the new items added to EnlightenedLifeStore on Etsy (you can also find me on Shopify as well)
Be sure to like and follow me on Facebook and Instagram as well!