Names of GOD

July 22, 2015

  • El Shaddai (Lord God Almighty)
  • El Elyon (The Most High God)
  • Adonai (Lord, Master)
  • Yahweh (Lord, Jehovah)
  • Jehovah Nissi (The Lord My Banner)
  • Jehovah-Raah (The Lord My Shepherd)
  • Jehovah Rapha (The Lord That Heals)
  • Jehovah Shammah (The Lord Is There)
  • Jehovah Tsidkenu (The Lord Our Righteousness)
  • Jehovah Mekoddishkem (The Lord Who Sanctifies You)
  • El Olam (The Everlasting God)
  • Elohim (God)
  • Qanna (Jealous)
  • Jehovah Jireh (The Lord Will Provide)
  • Jehovah Shalom (The Lord Is Peace)
  • Jehovah Sabaoth (The Lord of Hosts)Insight from


Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament El Shaddai occurs 7 times. El Shaddaiis first used in Gen 17:1.

Variant spellings: None

TWOT Reference: 2333

Strong’s Reference: H7706

El Shaddai in the Septuagint: theou saddai – God Shaddai; pantokratôr (for Shaddai) – the Almighty

Meaning and Derivation: El is another name that is translated as “God” and can be used in conjunction with other words to designate various aspects of God’s character. Another word much like Shaddai, and from which many believe it derived, is shad meaning “breast” in Hebrew (some other scholars believe that the name is derived from an Akkadian word Šadu, meaning “mountain,” suggesting strength and power). This refers to God completely nourishing, satisfying, and supplying His people with all their needs as a mother would her child. Connected with the word for God, El, this denotes a God who freely gives nourishment and blessing, He is our sustainer.

Further references of the name El Shaddai in the Old Testament: Gen 17:1;Gen 28:3; Gen 35:11; Gen 43:14; Gen 48:3

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament El Elyon occurs 28 times. It occurs 19 times in Psalms. El Elyon is first used in Gen 14:18.

Variant spellings: None

TWOT Reference: 1624g, 1624h

Strong’s Reference: H5945

El Elyon in the Septuagint: ho theos ho hupsistos – the God most high

Meaning and Derivation: El is another name that is translated as “God” and can be used in conjunction with other words to designate various aspects of God’s character. Elyon literally means “Most High” and is used both adjectivally and substantivally throughout the Old Testament. It expresses the extreme sovereignty and majesty of God and His highest preeminence. When the two words are combined – El Elyon – it can be translated as “the most exalted God.”(Psa 57:2)

Further references of the name El Elyon in the Old Testament: Gen 14:18;Gen 14:19; Gen 14:20; Gen 14:22; Psa 57:2; Psa 78:35

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Adonai occurs 434 times. There are heavy uses of Adonai in Isaiah (e.g., Adonai Jehovah). It occurs 200 times in Ezekiel alone and appears 11 times in Daniel Chapter 9. Adonai is first used inGen 15:2.

Variant spellings: None

TWOT Reference: 27b

Strong’s Reference: H136

Adonai in the Septuagint: kurios – Lord, Master

Meaning and Derivation: Adonai is the verbal parallel to Yahweh andJehovah. Adonai is plural; the singular is adon. In reference to God the pluralAdonai is used. When the singular adon is used, it usually refers to a human lord. Adon is used 215 times to refer to men. Occasionally in Scripture and predominantly in the Psalms, the singular adon is used to refer to God as well (cf. Exd 34:23). To avoid contravening the commandment “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain” (Exd 20:7), sometimes Adonai was used as a substitute for Yahweh (YHWH). Adonai can be translated literally as, “my lords’ ” (both plural and possessive).

Further references of the name Adonai in the Old Testament: Complete list available here.

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Yahweh occurs 6,519 times. This name is used more than any other name of God. Yahweh is first used in Gen 2:4.

Variant spellings: YHWH, Jehovah

TWOT Reference: 484a

Strong’s Reference: H3068

Yahwehin the Septuagint: kurios – Lord, Master
despotês – Lord, Master, denoting the omnipotence of God (TDNT), despot, absolute ruler

Meaning and Derivation: Yahweh is the promised name of God. This name of God which (by Jewish tradition) is too holy to voice, is actually spelled “YHWH” without vowels. YHWH is referred to as the Tetragrammaton (which simply means “the four letters”). YHWH comes from the Hebrew letters: Yud, Hay, Vav, Hay. While YHWH is first used in Genesis 2, God did not reveal Himself asYHWH until Exodus 3. The modern spelling as “Yahweh” includes vowels to assist in pronunciation. Many pronounce YHWH as “Yahweh” or “Jehovah.” We no longer know for certain the exact pronunciation. During the third century A.D., the Jewish people stopped saying this name in fear of contravening the commandment “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain” (Exd 20:7). As a result of this, Adonai is occasionally a substitute for YHWH. The following compound names which start with “YHWH” have been shown using “Jehovah.” This is due to the common usage of “Jehovah” in the English of these compound names in the early English translations of the Bible (e.g., the Geneva Bible, the King James Version, etc.).

Further references of the name Yahweh in the Old Testament: Complete list available here.

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Jehovah-Nissi occurs only once inExd 17:15.

Variant spellings: Jehovah Nisi; Jehovahnissi

TWOT Reference: None

Strong’s Reference: H3071

Jehovah Nissi in the Septuagint: kurios kataphugê mou – the Lord is my refuge

Meaning and Derivation: Jehovah is translated as “The Existing One” or “Lord.” The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havahmeaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly. Nes(nês), from which Nissi derived, means “banner” in Hebrew. In Exd 17:15, Moses, recognizing that the Lord was Israel’s banner under which they defeated the Amalekites, builds an altar named Jehovah-Nissi (the Lord our Banner). Nes is sometimes translated as a pole with an insignia attached. In battle opposing nations would fly their own flag on a pole at each of their respective front lines. This was to give their soldiers a feeling of hope and a focal point. This is what God is to us: a banner of encouragement to give us hope and a focal point.

Further references of the name Jehovah Nissi in the Old Testament:Exd 17:15

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Jehovah-Raah (The Lord my Shepherd) is used in Psalm 23.

Variant spellings: Jehovah Rohi; Jehovah Ro’eh

TWOT Reference: 2185, 2186

Strong’s Reference: H7462

Jehovah-Raah in the Septuagint: kurios poimainei me – the Lord shepherds me

Meaning and Derivation: Jehovah is translated as “The Existing One” or “Lord.” The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havahmeaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly. Rô’ehfrom which Raah derived, means “shepherd” in Hebrew. A shepherd is one who feeds or leads his flock to pasture (Eze 34:11-15). An extend translation of this word, rea’, is “friend” or “companion.” This indicates the intimacy God desires between Himself and His people. When the two words are combined – Jehovah Raah – it can be translated as “The Lord my Friend.”

Further references of the name Jehovah-Raah in the Old Testament:Gen 48:15; Gen 49:24; Psa 23:1; Psa 80:1

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Jehovah-Rapha (The Lord that Heals) is used in Exd 15:26.

Variant spellings: Jehovah-Rophe; Jehovah Rophecha; Jehovah Raphah

TWOT Reference: 2196

Strong’s Reference: H7495

Jehovah Rapha in the Septuagint: kurios ho iômenos se – the Lord your healer

Meaning and Derivation: Jehovah is translated as “The Existing One” or “Lord.” The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havahmeaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly. Rapha(râpâ’) means “to restore”, “to heal” or “to make healthful” in Hebrew. When the two words are combined – Jehovah Rapha – it can be translated as “Jehovah Who Heals.” (cf. Jer 30:17; Jer 3:22; Isa 30:26; Isa 61:1; Psa 103:3). Jehovah is the Great Physician who heals the physical and emotional needs of His people.

Further references of the name Jehovah Rapha in the Old Testament:Exd 15:26

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Jehovah Shammah occurs only once inEzekiel 48:35.

Variant spellings: Jehovah Samma

TWOT Reference: None

Strong’s Reference: H3074

Jehovah Shammah in the Septuagint: estai to onoma autês – the name thereof

Meaning and Derivation: Jehovah is translated as “The Existing One” or “Lord.” The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havahmeaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly.Shammah is derived from the Hebrew word sham, which can be translated as “there.” Jehovah Shammah is a symbolic name for the earthly Jerusalem. The name indicates that God has not abandoned Jerusalem, leaving it in ruins, but that there will be a restoration.

Further references of the name Jehovah Shammah in the Old Testament:Eze 48:35

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Jehovah Tsidkenu occurs 2 times.Jehovah Tsidkenu is first used in Jer 23:6.

Variant spellings: Jehovah Tzidkaynu; Jehovah Tsidqenuw

TWOT Reference: None

Strong’s Reference: H3072

Jehovah Tsidkenu in the Septuagint: kuriou tou theou hêmôn elalêsen pros hêmas – the Lord our God spoke to us

Meaning and Derivation: Jehovah is translated as “The Existing One” or “Lord.” The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havahmeaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly. Tsedek(tseh’-dek), from which Tsidkenu derived, means “to be stiff,” “to be straight,” or “righteous” in Hebrew. When the two words are combined – Jehovah Tsidkenu – it can be translated as “The Lord Who is our Righteousness.”

Further references of the name Jehovah Tsidkenu in the Old Testament:Jer 23:6; Jer 33:16

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Jehovah Mekoddishkem occurs 2 times. Jehovah Mekoddishkem is first used in Exd 31:13.

Variant spellings: Jehovah M’kaddesh

TWOT Reference: 1990

Strong’s Reference: H6942

Jehovah Mekoddishkem in the Septuagint: kurios ho hagiazôn humas – the Lord that sanctifies you

Meaning and Derivation: Jehovah is translated as “The Existing One” or “Lord.” The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havahmeaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly.Mekoddishkem derives from the Hebrew word qâdash meaning “sanctify,” “holy,” or “dedicate.” Sanctification is the separation of an object or person to the dedication of the Holy. When the two words are combined – Jehovah Mekoddishkem – it can be translated as “The Lord who sets you apart.”

Further references of the name Jehovah Mekoddishkem in the Old Testament: Exd 31:13; Lev 20:8

Use in the Bible: El Olam is first used in Gen 21:33.

Variant spellings: None

TWOT Reference: 1631a

Strong’s Reference: H5769

El Olamin the Septuagint: [ho] theos [ho] aiônios – the everlasting God

Meaning and Derivation: El is another name that is translated as “God” and can be used in conjunction with other words to designate various aspects of God’s character. Olam derives from the root word ‘lm (which means “eternity”).Olam literally means “forever,” “eternity,” or “everlasting”. When the two words are combined – El Olam – it can be translated as “The Eternal God.”

Further references of the name El Olam in the Old Testament: Gen 21:33;Jer 10:10; Isa 26:4

Use in the Bible: : In the Old Testament Elohim occurs over 2000 times.Elohim is first used in Gen 1:1.

Variant spellings: None

TWOT Reference: 93c

Strong’s Reference: H430

Elohim in the Septuagint: theos – the standard Greek word for god, “a transcendent being who exercises extraordinary control in human affairs or is responsible for bestowal of unusual benefits” (BDAG). It specifically refers to the monotheistic God of Israel.

Meaning and Derivation: Elohim is translated as “God.” The derivation of the name Elohim is debatable to most scholars. Some believe it derived from ‘êlwhich, in turn, originates from the root word, ‘wl (which means “strong”). Others think that Elohim is derived from another two roots: ‘lh (which means “god”) in conjunction with ‘elôah (which means “fear”). And still others presume that both‘êl and Elohim come from ‘eloah.

Further references of the name Elohim in the Old Testament: Complete list available here.

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Qanna occurs 6 times. Qanna is first used in Exd 20:5.

Variant spellings: Kanna

TWOT Reference: 2038b

Strong’s Reference: H7067

Qanna in the Septuagint: zêlôtês – jealous

Meaning and Derivation: Qanna is translated as “jealous,” “zealous,” or “envy.” The fundamental meaning relates to a marriage relationship. God is depicted as Israel’s husband; He is a jealous God, wanting all our praise for Himself and no one else. (cf. Exd 34:14)

Further references of the name Qanna in the Old Testament: Exd 20:5;Exd 34:14; Deu 4:24; Deu 5:9; Deu 6:15

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Jehovah-Jireh occurs only once inGen 22:14.

Variant spellings: None

TWOT Reference: None

Strong’s Reference: H3070

Jehovah Jireh in the Septuagint: kurios eiden – the Lord has seen

Meaning and Derivation: Jehovah is translated as “The Existing One” or “Lord.” The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havahmeaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly.Jehovah-Jireh is a symbolic name given to Mount Moriah by Abraham to memorialize the intercession of God in the sacrifice of Isaac by providing a substitute for the imminent sacrifice of his son.

Further references of the name Jehovah Jireh in the Old Testament:Gen 22:14

Use in the Bible: In the Old Testament Jehovah-Shalom occurs only once inJdg 6:24.

Variant spellings: None

TWOT Reference: None

Strong’s Reference: H3073

Jehovah-Shalom in the Septuagint: eirênê kuriou – peace of the Lord

Meaning and Derivation: Meaning and Derivation: Jehovah is translated as “The Existing One” or “Lord.” The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havah meaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly. Shalom is a derivative of shâlêm (which means “be complete” or “sound”) Shalom is translated as “peace” or “absence from strife.” Jehovah-Shalom is the name of an altar built by Gideon in Ophrah.

Further references of the name Jehovah-Shalom in the Old Testament:Jdg 6:24

Use in the Bible: Jehovah and Elohim occur with Sabaoth over 285 times. It is most frequently used in Jeremiah and Isaiah. Jehovah Sabaoth is first used in1Sa 1:3.

Variant spellings: None

TWOT Reference: 1865a, 1865b

Strong’s Reference: H6635

Jehovah Sabaoth in the Septuagint: kurios sabaôth – the Lord of hosts (sabaôth: Gr. transliteration of Heb. “hosts”)

Meaning and Derivation: Jehovah is translated as “The Existing One” or “Lord.” The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havahmeaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly.Sabaoth (se bâ’ôt) means “armies” or “hosts.” Jehovah Sabaoth can be translated as “The Lord of Armies” (1Sa 1:3). This name denotes His universal sovereignty over every army, both spiritual and earthly. The Lord of Hosts is the king of all heaven and earth. (Psa 24:9-10; Psa 84:3; Isa 6:5).

Proverbs 31 Verse 8 | Flash Fan Fiction

Open thy mouth for the dumb in the cause of all such as are appointed to destruction.

Flash Fiction:

King Lemuel saw to the care of both the woman of the city and her father possessed of unclean spirits; the King pitied the man, and enjoyed the pleasant sight of the young woman.

Staying at court as well, the mother of the King allowed the prophecy to be told slowly; her son thought it prudent, allowing keen wisdom to be absorbed slowing, ascertaining sound doctrine within subtle and lasting increments.

After breakfast one day, when the servants were clearing the banquet hall, the mother of King Lemuel was asked to utter forth the next portion of her prophecy: “Open thy mouth for the dumb in cause of all such are appointed to destruction.”

This sensible instruction weighed upon the king, who- sitting upon his throne- could still see the lovely woman of his city and her ill father: struggling on the other side of the royal feast chamber, ushered away by the King’s physicians and prayer warriors, the sick man was taken from the window ledge of which he was currently trying to throw himself. The wise King observed the woman’s composure; she was lovely, without hysteria, and entirely refined.

She rose smoothly from her place at the table, kindly thanking the doctors and servants assisting her father, and when she moved to leave the chambers of the palace- with full intention of maintaining her duties and obligations within the city- a disheveled manservant burst through the door and was thrown nearly at her feet.

The woman of the city let a quick gasp escape her. “Oh, Holy God, have mercy!“ she said unto herself a bit louder than intended. “This man! He is of my father’s household, and he is also possessed!”

The captain of the guard and his men were laughing together. “Your highness,” the captain announced, making a low bow and rising again, ignoring the words of the woman. “We found this trespasser. He is quite the nuisance. What shall you have us do with him?”

King Lemuel, fully aware of the state of this wretched man, called for his royal doctors, and commanded the guards return to their duties. Meanwhile, the woman bowed her head in submissive appreciation, and quietly slipped from the palace: the King bid three servants discretely follow her and report directly to him of her daily business affairs.

Proverbs 31 Verse 9 | Flash Fan Fiction

Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy.

Flash Fiction:

Returning to the castle at the end of a long day, the three servants came from their royal errand of following the woman of the city. King Lemuel saw their entrance into his throne room; yet before he would hear of what they had witnessed, he bid his mother to tell him the next portion of the prophecy.

His mother spoke stoutly, “Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy.” She folded her arms across her chest and watched the expression on her regal son’s face.

Within the ornate chamber of the King’s palace, many officials and dignitaries met to speak with the King. Fully away of protocol, the reigning patriarch took certain measure to attend business matters before speaking with his stealthy servants; he listened to the merchants complaints about taxation; he instructed the tax collectors more leniency towards the merchants; he turned his nose up at a noble from a distant land who had brought his daughter for marriage unto the King; the young noblewoman was haughty, proud, and loud: the very sound of her voice was scathing to the Kind’s ears.

At long last, when all matters of the court were finished, the three servants came forward, looking as eager and as full of anticipation as King Lemuel felt. “Tell me: what did you observe of the woman?”

The chief servant announced, “My Lord, no such woman of faith and strength resides in all of your city! We saw her today attending to the sick, those also ridden with unclean spirits; visiting some of the worst slums of the city, she ministered to the pour souls who cannot take care of themselves, often praying over them and calling on the One True God. Not once,” he continued, “Not once today did we see her eat more than a morsel of bread, of which she shared with some beggar children.”

When the servants had told of the woman’s affairs, the court began to assemble for dinner; the woman of the city slipped quietly into her usual seat at the far end of the chamber, reserved for the lowliest of the court.

“Bid her to come here,” the King said to a nearby attendant, pointing towards the woman and watching as she was summoned; at first, she looked startled, but rose swiftly, approaching the King boldly, and making a low and humble bow before his throne. “Tell me of your day, my lady.” King Lemuel inquired, intrigued to hear of her day from her own perspective.

With full modesty and in such dignified brevity, she spoke, “Just my usual tasks, my Lord. Nothing extraordinary, nor worthy of the King’s ear.”

The King asked, with straightforward concern, “How many are there? How many possessed are within my city?”

The woman stood upright, and met the King’s eye with fierce composure. “More than I can number, my Lord.”

“Why do you think this is so?”

For the first time since they had met, the woman of the city looked mortified; she thought heavily on her own words before speaking. “Oh, good King, I know of your faith in the One True God, and yet, the priests within the city are…” she paused, weighing carefully what she intended to say, “lax, and frankly, they are lazy. They take of the offering for themselves, and do not minister to the sick or give to the poor. They seem to scorn those of unclean spirits and keep to the wealthy and healthy members of their congregation, those who are pleasing to the eye and of sound mind.

“Furthermore,” she continued, “the occult of the city run ramped; they summon dark spirits they cannot control, and then the dark forces are let loose upon those already of weak minds. I know not what to do, but pray and attend to them daily.”

With his hand upon his beard, King Lemuel was perturbed by this information; he felt that this lacking by the priests was upon his own shoulders, and knew something must be done to aid the sick in spirit. “Come, sit here by my mother and I, and tell us what you would have done.”

The woman of the city bowed again, and took her place of honor near the King’s throne.

Proverbs 31 Verse 11 | Flash Fan Fiction

The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
Flash Fiction:

In the days to follow the wedding and during the month of King Lemuel’s honeymoon with his wife, he noticed a new peace wash over him, as if his inner man was attributed with another half: his wife was the perfect complement to his knowledge-hungry life; they spent as much time embracing marital bliss in the royal bedchamber as they did in King Lemuel’s extensive library. The pair of reigning monarchs was secure in studying the scriptures, the writings of Kings and Queens gone by, and the wisdom of generations was ascertained in the unity of mutual respect and fondness. King Lemuel felt that GOD had blessed his providence with a wise woman, one fit to assist in leading the land, governing the women and servants of his household, and rearing children that would one day uphold his throne.

The new Queen bid the King’s mother to stay much longer at court; for the prophecy included instructions for a life as a good wife in the eyes of their shared GOD. It was of the Queen’s utmost aspiration to serve King Lemuel and their people with a pristine heart, one with understanding and fortitude of righteousness.

“Tell us more, mother,” the Queen bid to her elder.

The mother of King Lemuel- with joy in her heart, at last a woman whose son was introduced to the joys of marriage- cleared her throat with temperance, and continued where she left off. “The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.”

King Lemuel looked to his wife, and with a shrewd idea, offered a test unto his new bride. “My dear Queen of all my lands, and partner in all of my estate: I’ll have you know that my vaults below are heavily guarded, day and night, for I have the most esteemed treasures within all the land. If I were to allow you full access and disposal of my riches, what would you have done, in the name of our reign?”

The new Queen pondered deeply for a few minutes; the court was a bustle of mirthful noises of glee and anticipation, to hear what deed she would have done.

“My Lord,” the good woman began, “it is my belief in our GOD that I will serve you so that you may be confident in my decisions; I hope to make you secure in my ideas, and bold in support of that which I shall do.” She smiled, the beauty of love upon her face. “Therefore, I would do nothing to your riches, and allow the best governor of our finance, which is you, my lord, to be handled directly.” The crowd within the throne-room burst into hushed whispers and deep murmurs. “That said, I would hope you allow me to achieve other tasks, to complete duties to further our income opposed to depleting our wealth. Once a surplus is added to our vaults, I would hope- together, you and I- would offer assistance to the poor and the needy, the fatherless and the widows, providing ourselves as benefactors to them, and enriching the lives of the less fortunate.”

The King found his trust in his new wife to grow greater and more valuable in the days and weeks to follow.

Alley Kittens to Ally Cats| Katzen World Submission | Cat Photography

When the boys were just five weeks old- still in need of milk formula and bottle feeding- we rescued them from the alley life. While the two, palm-sized baby boys were exactly the same age, miraculously, they were not from the same litter; my husband and I had seen their two separate clans- the tabbies long-bodied and golden, and the oreos squat and broad- wandering around our historic neighborhood, behind shops and within alleys.


Mother’s Day 2013 ©Miranda Innaimo

I became a nurturing kitty mama. As I worked from home as an Independent Author I was able to monitor their growth full time.

Their names- solely decided at first by me- were Nikotemo (the golden one) and Ennio (the B&W), but those names didn’t stick. So my husband and I decided together…

6 weeks

6 weeks ©Miranda Innaimo

Rico (front) and Charlie (back).

These two boys were brought into our lives after prayers and hopes had been put forth for months and months, waiting for just the right pair. We had always wanted two boy kittens so we could raise them together. My husband and I firmly believe all animals need a companion, else they suffer during their isolated lifetime. So our boys became our family, and we were blessed.

Snuggle 2

Snuggle 1 ©Miranda Innaimo


Snuggle 2 ©Miranda Innaimo

Baby Charlie

Baby Charlie ©Miranda Innaimo

Baby Rico

Baby Rico ©Miranda Innaimo

Baby Rico 2

Baby Rico 2 ©Miranda Innaimo

Growth Sleep

Growth Sleep ©Miranda Innaimo

Watching our Rico and Charlie grow up has been a wonderful journey. Since the very beginning, those two have cared for each other as true brothers.

Rico Windowsill

©Miranda Innaimo

Charlie Coffee Table

©Miranda Innaimo

Three Sleepers

Three Sleepers ©Miranda Innaimo

Beautifully Flaw3d | Charlotte

We ladies of Beautifully Flawed are coming together, taking glamour shots, and telling the story of our personal battles with self-image in a society which would call us flawed by its standards.

A book will be published as the end result.

This crowdfunded event is something I think may intrigue you.

Livid Expression by LaKeshia Stigall is both project developer and photographer.

I believe sincerely you would benefit from this project greatly. Allow us to tell our stories, feel lovely, and let all those pains from the past have a beautiful purpose that could potentially inspire others.

A project to support positive and healthy body image and mind.

A project to help other realize their own value and beauty.

Love in the Dark | Music Interview

First, allow me to introduce the lineup of outstanding musicians:
Lead Guitar: Rob Bugos
Vocals/Rhythm Guitar: Mitch McLaughlin
Bass Guitar: Chris Kenney
Drums: Otto Gomora
Piano/Keyboard: Massimo Onesto
Saxophone: Cathy Gende
Trombone: Keegan Bramlet

I was fortunate enough to snag an interview with the bandmates of Love in the Dark. Here’s what they had to say:

When you did you start developing your musical talent?

Rob Bugos: I began to play the music with the saxophone in 5th grade band and continued that through the end of senior year. However, I had always really wanted to be able to play guitar so I began learning the instrument when I was In 8th grade and have been just playing since.

Mitch McLaughlin: My mom and dad surrounded me with music, whether it was Guns n Roses or Joni Mitchell; both were drama and choir kids growing up. I’ve been in musical theatre/plays since I was 5, and joined choir in 5th grade, guitar in 7th, and put it all together freshman year when I started writing songs for a folk project I wanted to create. Everything sprouted from there.
Chris Kenney: I started developing my musical talent when I picked up the guitar at 9. I wanted a guitar for christmas; my parents said I had to learn a song first before they would buy me one. So I had one of my brother’s friends teach me “Smoke on the Water,” and as result, I earned my first guitar!

Otto Gomora: I began playing drums when I was about 8.
Massimo Onesto: I began developing my musical talent when I was 10. It started by playing guitar.
Cathy Gende: I started playing 8 years ago in 4th grade, and started actually excelling my 7th and 8th grade years at competitions.
Keegan Bramlet: I started playing the trombone in fourth grade, yet I never really took it seriously. In fact, I wasn’t even going to continue on through high school.

When did talent become passion?

Rob Bugos: I really found a passion in music once the band starting sounding half way decent and I realized how much I love to write and perform. I also began to understand just how much there is to know within music and as a guitar player; I’d say much of my time up till this point has been a quest for knowledge and chops.

Mitch McLaughlin: It has always been a passion. I remember watching American Idol when I was super young and just getting pissed I couldn’t audition the next year. Hahah. Yet the last four years have been a progression of passion, where everyday I wake up wondering how we- as a band- could outdo ourselves as well as the musical community, pushing us to strive harder. Like competition in the best way, only to motivate and not get lazy within our own scene.
Chris Kenney: I really started developing a passion for music when I started playing with other people. It was over time, yet playing with others and making your own music firsthand showed that music was a way to bring people together: I loved that and I still do. For me, bringing people together turned the hobby into my passion.

Otto Gomora: I didn’t really get way into playing the drums until I joined my first band near the beginning of high school.
Massimo Onesto: That talent transformed to passion around my Freshman year of highschool as I became a more advanced musician: able to play songs of greater complexity.

Cathy Gende: My talent became a passion when I was placed in my school’s top ensemble Sophomore year. That’s when you could say I became more “musically intelligent”.
Keegan Bramlet: On step-up day for the band program, I was introduced to amazing musicians. Music changed for me, and since then I have always strived to become a better musician like those I have seen passionately proceed me.

Do you see yourself pursuing a life-long musical career?

Rob Bugos: I do see myself pursuing music all of my life. I don’t necessarily plan to make being a musician or performer my career, but I am going to college to major in music business and minor in music; so I am hoping to at least work within the industry. Playing, however, will always be a cherished hobby for me.

Mitch McLaughlin: I certainly do. Hell if I know what album or song or concept will do it, but I know I can’t walk away from music. I’ll be going to Nashville in the fall to major in songwriting, and minor in music business. So its for sure a career path.

Chris Kenney: I do see myself pursuing a lifelong career in music. Majoring in percussion performance at NIU starting Fall 2015, I enjoy the idea of opening my own percussion studio in order to give lessons to those wanting to begin their own musical journey of sorts. Playing and performing into old age is also a hope of mine.
Otto Gomora: I feel like I will at least always play my instrument with others

Massimo Onesto: I do not see myself having a career in music; however, music is still an important part of my life and will always stay with me.

Cathy Gende: I’ve always seen myself majoring in music but that might change.

Keegan Bramlet: I do not foresee myself with a career in music, yet the passion will always be there. My dream is to open a restaurant (with live music of course). Whether or not Love in the Dark someday plays there, love for music will always be a part of my life.

What is your favorite aspect of performing?

Rob Bugos:When you look out at the crowd and know they’re loving it. That means your music has gone beyond just you and has really communicated with other people. I enjoy knowing there are those appreciating the noise we make.

Mitch McLaughlin: Easily, my favorite aspect is convincing the crowd to enjoy themselves. People our age seem a bit weary about going to concerts as usually they’ve only seen famous acts who have a giant team to make then sounds perfect, look beautiful, and act correctly. So when our first chord strikes and I’m dancing, I know people think it’s silly, but I’m having so much fun; within minutes I can tell mostly everyone has forgotten about the venue: it suddenly becomes the perfect environment for listening and enjoying.

Chris Kenney: Performing is cool because you really get a chance to give others something great. And also, you get to put to the test all you’ve learned since you started your journey. Whats better than that?

Otto Gomora: At last playing the music for an audience and hearing the interaction that goes on between our band and them.

Massimo Onesto: Entertaining crowds of people alongside some of my best friends.

Cathy Gende: Definitely NOT soloing; the rest of the band will assure you of that. Shaping the lines of music appropriately and blending with the band to make an awesome sound: this is my favorite part. I also enjoy seeing people who get into the music.

Keegan Bramlet: I don’t have one aspect of performing that I like the most because I love every bit of it. If I had to narrow it down though, I would have to say I love soloing. I love playing loud and making the crowd get into the music. However, it’s an amazing feeling when you are jamming along on stage and you get into what musicians call, “the pocket”, when every instrument is like a little puzzle piece and it all just fits in together to make one perfect, complete sound. That beats soloing every time. I love seeing people’s first impression of our band, because at each venue there are at least two people who say “Wait, there are horns in this band?”. One of them is usually Chris.

If you wanted your fans to know one thing important about your role or view of the band, what would it be?

Rob Bugos: I’d say that I would want people to know that I recorded our first album myself and it was the first real set of recordings I had ever done. Anything else I did was for fun and usually didn’t involve more than capturing just a guitar or two: there was definitely a learning curve involved during the process.

Mitch McLaughlin: I want everyone to know that without our guitarist, Rob “Bobby B” Bugos, our songs would not exist: flat out, no arguments, never would have happened. He’s one in a million. And without Otto supplying his basement, we’d never have the “following” we have today. Both are honestly the best parts of this band, and I say this while still acknowledging the incredible talent of each band member. Those two are specifically standout players for me personally. Yet I love this group as a whole: we’re like a 2 -dimensional triangle, in a 3 –dimensional world. Together, we just manage.

Chris Kenney: Everyone has their role and must work together to form something greater than the sum of its parts. I am just the bassist. There are six other human beings that make up Love in the Dark, and each of them bring their unique personalities to the plate which is what makes the music. Its all a collaborative effort. Without rob, our songs wouldn’t be nearly as well put together as they are: he masterminds everything. Without Otto, we wouldn’t pay nearly as much attention to what’s going on around us musically, because he really stresses that.

Without Cathy, wed be missing a great improviser (although she claims she doesn’t like to haha) that also blends perfectly into a song, no questions asked. Keegan gives us sheer power, and really knows how to push a song to make it sooo exciting. Massimo offers a full, complete sound, just by adding the keys. And finally, without Mitch we wouldn’t have any idea the direction to take our music. None. Zip. Nada.

My message is to not get into the feeling one person is ever more important than another because that just ain’t true. While everyone has their own specialized jobs, your band is completely changed with the alteration of just one member. Understand that.
Otto Gomora: I think I just want them to know they’re welcome to dance and groove with me during the shows.

Massimo Onesto: We have a unique sound by a good variety of instruments, making us a memorable band.

Cathy Gende: That I came into this project rather late and pretty much just play what I’m told (unless I’m improvising) which is fine by me.

Keegan Bramlet: I think each person has their role, but we are a band. Our job is to take our role and and make it work with everything else. There is a lot of compromisation, as well as collaboration. Having said that, I want our fans to know that we are more than a band, we are brothers… and a sister. We may not be related through blood, but we are family through our collective love for music: and I think that’s just as strong.

Out to Pasture | Soundcloud


The horse of metal had only begun to settle within the parameters of the pasture, when he glistened in reflection upon the chapter of his life spent at the palace gate. He did not hesitate to rattle in wit and vanity about his experience guarding the entrance to the royal family home, protecting the king’s body and the queen’s bone. He had known perseverance; he had acquired a metallic temperance to deal with the idle situation, and although restless at times, the nature of retirement was he hardly more inclined.

The horse of water chatted fluidly while moving lusciously about the prairie knoll. As she strolled flowingly about, spilling tales of her days in the cavalry, trotting along carrying an army scout. She told of the adventures in spontaneity. She mentioned the homecoming parades of gaiety. She shed a tear for the changeability of her riders, she often a survivor of what they could not overcome.

The horse of fire, extremely volatile, engulfed the pasture; she burst back, forth, and all about the fenced-in land while exhibiting her fiery need for freedom. Exuding hyperactivity, hating everything about captivity, she desired the dangerous sort of occupation. She had been a traveling horse, one burning hot in speed, one brazenly equipped with the stamina required for exploration. Her vigor carried her riders abroad and about the nation, to vast lands and far off destinations; and now she felt barely as gray embers within these sequestered and sheltered spaces.

The horse of earth was practical, had been a horse of the stable, and spent his dusty days perfectly able to work hard, fully capable of exhausting sensible limits. Grounded in dependable efforts, he was shrewd and prudent, and did not boast in himself like the others. He smothered his pride in the compost of experience; the gravel of laborious hours, the muck of toiling in sun and showers, the red clay of his blood spilled without powers to control his own desires. Here in the pasture, he sensed rapture at his hooves and chuckled in the sweet serenity that was, at last, part of his elderly identity.

The horse of wood could not contain her gentle glee, as a horse of the clouds she considered herself to be. Meandering outside the pasture parameters- not enclosed, not contained- her mane was stiff from a life spent drifting about without either regard or fame. Her mood was elevated and whimsical; her mind was acute to all things imaginable. She was sociable in tendency, and very much influential in propensity. She was committed to a life of innovative promiscuity; she flaunted her coarse coat and sauntered on sturdy limbs, consistently creative towards her own independency.

The horse of metal- having embraced the rusting caused by winds of change and waters of time- grinded the mechanics inside of his mind. Although he had longed for the shining brilliance of youthful regard for duty, he found himself annealing, softening in age, melting for idealistic beauty. Where once he had been impetuously hard about opportunity, he morphed slowly; yet recently became golden through the process of alchemy; he now took pleasure in the aesthetics of personal unity, composed no more by a variety of ore; he swore himself solid: venerably enthusiastic about the future, he felt reassuringly, his past had been fantastic enough for him to clink about the community in total confidence of personal history.

The horse of water gallivanted spiritedly, splashing in the sea of her recallable memory. She felt a sudden ease wash over her, pleased as she was regarding all that had been accomplished. Astonished at her own fluidity during time spent working for the military, she bathed in appreciation for her own life: having been keen to perceive peril and strife, she stayed afloat, head above the tide, because she was as changeable as the currents that ride along the shore. She did explore as much as she could, and yet to go back, she never would; a subtle assertion revealed: she found her situation of shallow exertion to be a pool of perfect splendor and exactly right for her older inclination.

The horse of fire, confined as a flame burning upon a wick, was not quick to acclimate to the boundaries of the pasture. It took much persuasion of self to look inside and find dignity within what had been her responsibility; she approved her retired role only as a soul fulfilled through much travel. She had seen every place her hooves could race towards; she had moved through time and space at such an accelerated rate, there was nothing left out to search. She, who was esteemed as genius, had never dropped a rider through convenience. She was all business, and although tempestuous at times, she had sense enough to enjoy her line of work. Now, fully aged, she had reverence towards her experience, and comfortably accepted that fact that her blaze would soon extinguish.

The horse of earth, for what it was worth, felt no discomfort towards his new situation. It was gratification to roam at his leisure, pounding the ground at his pleasure. His rocky frame had eroded over time, yet in his mind, shrewdness still resided. Patience and innovation were the soil of his person, and from it bloomed the blossoms of elation: nutrients that were his past brought forth the fragrance of a pleasant odor, one that made the older workhorse inhale his aroma of continual dedication. A life in servitude had been perpetually grueling, but at last, at rest, he was placatory, perfectly at ease in his life’s story. There was nothing left but to enjoy his disintegration.

The horse of wood saw to the ease of the other four, those within the borders of the royal prairie. She too reflected on her life, time spent in solidary merriment, and suddenly found her lack of accomplishment as a source of anxiety. What did she have to show for never working a day? What pride could she take in living astray? Head in the clouds, she gave her life away. And now, in age, who would protect her frame? Her timbers were routed, her limbs were shrouded in gloom. Soon she would fall, crash, and become a tree without roots. She was withered and she shivered as the sun set afar, and left sight of the great pasture for evermore.

miranda hourse

An Open Postscript to Katie Cross and Clan

Yes, the Bipolar has been quite a conundrum in MI Life for about seven+ years now, but fortunately for me, I have at long last discovered who I am, and how I must live, in order to maintain a healthy balance. This is a blessing, and yet, a blessed curse, to bear the weight of my Savior’s cross via my own “thorn in the brain,” if we shall quote Paul in mine own way.

I appreciate your empathy, your sympathy, and in a noble way, your apathy: in that, you judge not, despise not, loathe not, and cannot hate me because of mine illness; the mental health can be so delicate, and must be reverenced beyond respect, and feared beyond fear; and with the gratitude gained only through wisdom attained via love unconditionally given by mercy; I appreciate what I can not have, and in that, am content with the plethora of prowess and fortitude in which I have been blessed by our Almighty to bestow upon my small, meek, and humble-hearted self- with noble grace and valiant mercy, I therefore do stand in the days of the evil one, one day at a time, moment by moment, in the smallest of stepping stones as humanely, spiritual, and monumentally possible.

Please share my utmost sincere regards to your {brethren}: the healing process of either manic episodes or depressive seasons can be a tremendous burden: on the self- [to forgive, to forget if so scathing the thoughts haunt; and to reclaim what has been given, let go of what must go, be gone, destroyed, and abated, and to understand the ramifications and consequences of the choices made during the past trial period, for that indeed- the suffering mentally through mania or depression- is most certainly of the highest: a trying of our faith, which yes, must! worketh patience, and patience, please GOD: hope, and hope, praise Him! makes us not ashamed (for all things DO work for the GLORY of GOD, the ALMIGHTY, Most High GOD) as I will vouch that in mania or depression, all actions, all choices (bad or good) and all motives of understanding SEEM pure, seem righteous, seem good and very good: and in that, we must proceed claiming Christ, claiming Jesus, claiming the Prince of Peace and the peace of our LORD of Lords and KING of Kings; always and in all ways, and forever. Amen.]; on the family [the redeemed of whom once was “the lost,” to forgive the loved, to honor the loving, and to know the LOVE source of all sources, which is the powerful One who made us to be in His image, and therefore, loved, in mercy, in grace, by faith and charity: loved, entirely and unconditionally]; and by the world we have chosen to roam free within by the sanctimony of the Word which was what formed the worlds, brought the light out of the darkness, and gave us this earth as our inheritance: [for in our tremendous periods of times, do we ill forget the power of the world; and claim for ourselves: immortality, by Christ’s bloodshed, we are yet so redeemed that we must know the caliber of our spirits].

As a woman, I understand the tragedy of love, and the nobility of loving, of losing, of reclaiming Jehovah Nissi as my war banner; I know the certainty of loss: the promised redemptions- for all things we trade for our crown of glory do we have more the more the more certainly, in power, and in truth by the valiancy of our merits gained by the talents bestowed upon us through Christ Jesus: the full armour of GOD enables my everyday actions: of no merit of myself shall I endure; by no understanding of my own am I considered wise; by nothing but the blood of the lamb which was slain before the foundations of the worlds shall I tribute mine life unto glory. For that, I say hallelujah, and praise be the ONE TRUE GOD, YHWH, Yaaaaaaaaahwaaaaaaaay. Amen.

beautiful people free-writing prose

There are some truly beautiful people in this world. I could, sit here, tagging all of you, but instead, allow me a moment lacking brevity: there are some, so rich in spirit, they confess their heart openly; they pour out rich timbers that heal the soul, and caress the mind with thoughts tender enough to remove scathing memories, like the scars of legions we call the past; there are some so good to one another, race, creed, or color are only significant in sociological understanding; there is no contempt, nor are they disquieted by our pain, for that is what it is: “our pain,” as when one friend endures the trials of their faith, another friend is there to comfort the pangs of enduring; while they may assess the situation, they judge not the caliber in which the struggle was ascertained; nay, they count their blessings, just the same as some count stars- in a glance, for a pondered moment, or within a lifetime spent, occasionally, turning eyes towards the Heavens and praising the source of existence for the miracle of light and life beyond understanding- and they move, night and day, onwards with hope attained. My joy today is a wish that you all count yourselves as beautiful, because in my eyes, you truly are such as that. Thank you.