Thursday, December 20, 2012
When I first heard of the school shooting last Friday, it hit me hard just like everyone. So little. So innocent. So excited about their day just beginning at school! Along with everyone, I’ve been grief stricken ever since. Everyone has been hurting since the news. Even family members all the way in Australia have called to see that everyone was okay here in America. They saw it on the news. They were saddened and worried too.
Life. Death. It comes to us all. But when it does, none of us knows. So we live our lives to the fullest and hold on tight to those we love, as we never know when it will be time to say good-bye. And no matter when we have to do so, it hurts. We cry. We ask why? And it’s okay to ask why. Even more okay to not like any answers you hear…
But what do we do after the sobbing subsides and our hearts start to wonder? Wonder what more can we do to help those that are in the worst pain imaginable - those who’ve lost a child. We are there with them in their grief as much as we can be. We think of them. Pray for them. Hold them close. But what more can we do?
Last night, I felt the need to do something for those little lives lost up in Connecticut. But what? I already know I can’t go back in time to fix the unexpected. The unexplainable. The unimaginable…
I told my children last night that we’d do something as a family to help remember. And it helped them feel some control. Some relief. They’ve practiced “lock down” drills at school this week and have heard varied reports from classmates on what happened at that school in Connecticut. They’re scared and worried too. Although, I COULD NOT bribe them with anything the Monday after to keep them home. They wanted to go to school. See their friends. See their teachers. So I let them go. And cried buckets after they were inside, as I’m sure so many others were.
Nothing like this will ever make sense. Nothing we can do will ever be able to undo it. Nothing can take away the pain from the loss their families and friends feel.
But there is something that we can do. I had an idea last night and was excited to be able to do something in remembrance of those little lives and the adults who died trying to save them. But the more I thought about it, I didn’t want to keep it to myself. What if others want to do something to help too?
So I wrote a poem that I’ll post soon. I hope that by doing this – 20 Little Luminaries – it’ll help ease some of our grief and aid in the remembrance of those who were lost.
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Do you know what I was doing for the past fifteen minutes? I was reading through old posts that I could pass as new posts. You know how it’s done (if you’re a half-ass blogger like me). You just change the publication date and boom! You have a new post (that you honestly wrote 3 years ago, but who’s asking?...)
I don’t know how it happened…no, scratch that. I do know how it happened. I started getting too intense with my novel. Don’t get me wrong – that’s good, even great! Seeing that I’d like to publish it and move on to my next project at some point in my life (soon), setting aside time for serious writing is important. Necessary!
But what about the blog? The blog that I set up and posted to with such love and determination? What happened to needing to “write every day” so that I could work on my craft of writing?
Well…maybe… it did just that. Maybe it did for my writing what I set it out to do: it gave me a medium to write daily and work on my craft.
Of course, writing a blog is totally different than writing a novel. The same type of writing style doesn’t work for both. However, just the act of writing is exactly what you need to practice to be a good writer, no matter what medium you’re after.
So, what do I do about my half-assedness now?... Do I ditch my blog? …ouch, that hurts. I don’t want to ditch it. I actually love looking back and seeing how my writing has progressed (regressed) and progressed again. I love the posts I’ve written. Some readers have even enjoyed reading them, which is a huge boost to a closet writer.
Readers. Writing. Blogging. Novels. I do paint (have owned and operated a decorative painting business at one time)… And dance (was on my way to Broadway a while back)… and cook (although, don’t listen to what the fire department says about that)…
How they flow on a page – or a screen. Now that’s the life for me. Heck, my favorite pal is a Thesaurus!
So I guess that answers my question. I’ll just have to continue on blogging. Even if only in a limited capacity since, I’m still trying like the dickens to get my novel edited! I have my first 25 pages solidified, so that’s one step in the right way. Have to rewrite my ending, so that’s two steps back… but all in good time.
Nothing worthwhile is ever quick, easy, or to the point.
Monday, May 28, 2012
The other day, I ended up in my Aunt and Uncle's neighborhood with my children. The reason? To take pictures of my daughter on her birthday. It was a Tuesday, and around here, all parks with their pretty water views and wooded scenes are closed. Seems we ever only want to go to a park on a Tuesday.
As I was taking photos of my daughter with her yellow flowing dress and pretty tiara, I got a call on my cell phone. "Is that you?" my aunt wanted to know. "Yep, we'll be right over."
And, to our delight, my aunt was cleaning out her art room and library. Boxes and boxes of art supplies and varying titled books ready to leave the premises.
Translation? Jack pot!
My daughter, who has dearly and undeniably been nicknamed "Crafty", was in art-heaven. Along with getting to skip a day of school to enjoy her birthday doing whatever she chose (after I got the pics I wanted), got to also bring home boxes and boxes of crafty booty.
As for me, well, I got a treat myself. Five different books, all from genres I rarely, if ever, read. Why? I guess I get bored if there's no 'lesson' for life or 'love' to live through. I'm not a mystery, fantasy, law-suit, contemporary fiction lover. I'm a lover. Just love. That's all there is to me ;)
But, as the saying goes, one must venture off into unknown territory to learn all aspect of their craft.
Translation, please? Read everything.
So, I passed up the familiar fiction and found some gems, one of them being Breakfast with Buddha.
I started off reading and being bored from the start. But I didn't put it down. This was a test. A lesson I set up for myself. So read on, I did. Chapter one. Bored. Chapter two. Bored. Chapter three. Bored.
Then I hit, thankfully, chapter four. Not entirely entertaining, it started to show glimpses of chapters to come. And so on and so forth the rythym continued, picking up speed, enthusiasm, until, finally I came to chapter after chapter of wonderful reading. I couldn't put it down. Had to finish it. Gobble it up.
And gobble I did.
What a wonderful book. Full of passion and love and life lessons. Yay! A book that will be cherished and placed on my bookshelf for time to come.
And one important lesson.
Craft lesson #1: Chapter One. Chapter Two. Chapter Three. Make them interesting, useful, and not suck.
Chapter One. Chapter Two. Chapter Three. The 3 most important chapters of any book. Had I not been on a mission, I would have not pushed through any of these in Breakfast with Buddha. They were boring. They reeked of nothingness. No point to them other than for the main character (aka, the author) to hear himself think. Ugh...
IMHO, the book should have been started at Chapter four. The author tells so much about his self absorbed life - spoiler: he's a New Yorker - in the first three chapters, that I was swimming in a sea of blah blah blah uselessness. SHOW your main character's self-absorption (which IS shown throughout the book very well). Don't TELL the reader (as is done in ch1, ch2, ch3)....because the reader will get bored and stop reading (unless assigned not to).
This lesson reminds me so much of my own book. And is why I've worked and reworked and deleted and rewrote and deleted and rewrote and reworked it to, what I hope, is okay. Okay enough to no suck, be useful, relevant to the rest of the book, storyline, plot and subplots, so that no reader will be left in the blahs of boredom...and stop reading.
The rest of the book was fantastic and a great read - I'd recommend it to anyone and everyone!
Saturday, March 31, 2012
Why, you ask?
The links on your page that link to other websites. Know this: They should ALWAYS open in their own browser window/tab. Why? So your page, your website, never disappears from your visitors browser! Once they click away from your website, chances are they won't come back. The internet is an ADD's playground. We're working with very short attention spans here.
So, how to fix the problemo...
When you create a link to anywhere, be in within your own blog/website, or a link outside of your own little space on the web, there are two options. Stay or go. If the link is INTERNAL, staying inside your very own web presence, then popping open a link in the same browser window is a-okay.
When you want to have your visitors check out cool information elsewhere, you don't want them to leave your website doing it, right?! Right. You want them to still stay and hang out. So...here's the trick:
If you're using wordpress or blogger or some other content management system, when you create a link, there is a drop-down option for that link to 'Open in New Window'. Make sure you pick it.
This is the super easy way :)
If you want to go geek...and I'm all for that, btw... go into the code and do this:
change this link code:
to read like this code (add what's in blue below):
a href="http://www..." target="_new"
This will keep your website open in the browser window/tab it originally appeared while allowing your visitor to open the external link in a new window/tab.
Key to remember...
You have a great website with great info...Don't loose your visitors!!
Friday, February 10, 2012
Here are some examples of my favorite writing from my novel Waiting for Paint to Dry. Everyone's writing is different. We all have our own voice. And I love that. I love my writing voice.
If you haven't found your voice yet, start writing. No rules. No critics. No barriers. Just write from the heat of the moment, let it all pour out. I found my voice shortly after reading Stephen King's "On Writing" in which he states, and I'm paraphrasing here, but it's perfect:
"This isn't Church. This is writing....Tell the truth."
Oh, and share. I love to share my writing, hence I do some freelance, this blog other blogs, song writing, poems and my novel. My baby. And I'm making it a priority this year to go big with my creativity, my voice, so hopefully soon I'll be done with this one and onto the next! ;)
In no particular order (no spoiler alert needed), here are some swatches from Waiting for Paint to Dry...
As the evening sun sinks behind the ocean, warm indoor lights illuminate the room and slow songs echo in from outside. Yet, party on everyone does. I try to excuse myself a handful of times to get some breathing room, grab a plate of food or two to go with my wine. Only El won’t let me out of her sight. She strong arms me, however elegantly, to meet more and more people. Soon, the introductions start to mount on the side of excessive and I start to feel like an expensive piece of jewelry she just has to show off to everyone she knows.....
I was careful to not get any paint on the floor thanks to the left behind paint cloth, but as for myself, I’m decorated head to toe in all hues of turquoise and beige.
The sound of the door slamming behind me doesn’t quite hit the right note, the right amount of force, loudness, deafening roar I need to hear. I want to crash. To out run this insanity. I almost trip on the leg of a pair of jeans dangling from my arms. I take two seconds to repack, re-stuff, and then I’m off. Down the steps. Toward the beach.
Anywhere but here.
Thursday, February 2, 2012
The cover art is what caught my eye at first. Burgundy wineglass stains over the photo of two friends, as though you left your glass on the book after reading it last night...
Then I saw Iris Rainer Dart, author of "Beaches" was quoted on the cover also. That got me excited that "Cheap Cab" would be a good read, yet it also made me wary. Would "Cheap Cabernet" be a wonderfully, painful story too? But Cathie Beck didn't write a fictional novel. She wrote a memoir. Was I willing to read a wonderfully, painful TRUE LIFE story?
Although I'm a la la land purist by nature - I only go for sweet, happy endings - I decided to give "Cheap Cab" a try. An engrossing, page turning read, I'm glad I did.
Cheap Cabernet opens up with the placement of an newspaper advertisement for WOW - Women On the Way. Cathie Beck's unique idea to find friendship fast. I can't believe she had the thought/guts to do something so out of the ordinary, but thankfully, for Denise - her soon to be best friend - Cathie did.
What has stayed with me the most about this memoir wasn't so much Beck's history, past struggles, life. Although an insight into the woman Cathie became and just as interesting as any of our own journey's, what made "Cheap Cabernet" so powerful was the way in which the two women came into each others lives and how their friendship took hold at just the right moment. I agree with Beck when she writes, had it been at any other time in either of their lives, what they needed from each other - the magic - wouldn't have been there.
And what was needed was instinctual. Cathie needed a friend, someone she could hang out and cut loose with. Denise needed a friend, someone who didn't want to do anything but. Denise knew her expiration date was soon approaching. And instead of sitting around wasting away, she wanted to live it up as best she could while she still could. Cathie came along at just the right time.
Everyone deserves someone they can count on, especially in the thick dirt of life. Not everyone finds that someone.
For those lesser reviews that gave "Cheap Cabernet" one or two stars because, and I quote..."the characters weren't believable"... This is a Memoir, not a fictional story of two people in a fairy tale land. This is real life. Was. Is. However you want to look at it. This book is about two real women and their brief lives together. What makes Denise and Cathie seem "unbelievable" was that they lived it up to the limit at times when lesser people would have been much more practical and passed up the opportunity.
If you wonder what Cuba, hot tubs, and blenders have to do with living it up Denise and Cathie style, grab a copy and a glass of wine. A $6 Cabernet preferably.
Saturday, January 28, 2012
We all do!
Hence, we go out dancing, zumba style...
And you know the deal. You go out dancing and you've got your hair all gorgeous and your outfit is kickin' from head to toe and your makeup is perfect.
Men stop in their tracks to look at you. Random people snap pics of you with them. Your friend who lives in Alaska texts you that you've just been tagged in this photo he found on his cousin Jeffery's roomate's brother's bestfriend's co-worker's facebook page who was in town last night...and you looked great!
Let's face it. You're slammin'.
Then you hit the dance floor. The Zumba floor. Where you go to 'move fast and have fun'. You dance. You sweat. You fall in love. Where else in the world can you go to feel the music get inside you and move you? Where else can you feel this free?
An hour goes by. But you wouldn't know it. You've been dancing. You've got sweat dripping down your face. Your legs. Your back. It's like someone's dropped a bucket of water down on you. Maybe they have, but you totally didn't notice. You're carefree. Moving to the beat. All the stress in the world is just pouring down to the floor and you're loving it.
Then the music stops, you hit the little girl's room, and you look in a mirror.
Now, here is where the dance party might take a turn for the not-so-good. We can all live with a soaked through outfit and hair plastered to our face. It' part of the scene. But runny makeup? Mascara streaming down your face? Or, worse yet, no makeup at all? Where did it go?! It's all gone with the sweat, leaving behind a face that looks just like the one that looks back at you in the mirror the morning after.
Oh, the horror. Oh, no. Not now. You don't want to look like that now!!!
Enter Mally Beauty.
Not only is this stuff bulletproof, it's ZUMBAproof!! I had no idea what bulletproof meant until I did my zumba class last night. My hair was all done up. I had on my zumba gear. And my makeup was perfect. I used some of this makeup I won the other day - whether it was a consolation prize or a bonus prize is yet to be discovered - yet I won a tube of mascara, a lipstick and this eyeshadow that rolls on. Cool stuff, right? Still, I had no idea why the stuff is marketed as bulletproof until after my zumba class last night.
The music moved me. I sweat through my zumba clothes. My hair fell out of my ponytail, making it look like I was wearing a sweat ladened crown of tendrils. But my face? My makeup?! Holy cow, would you know it? It hadn't changed a bit!
I had sweat pouring down my face, arms, leg, back, you name it. I was done. Toast! That zumba class kicked my butt! But my makeup. Or rather Mally's makeup. You would have never known I moved a muscle by looking at my face. It was still picture perfect!
Seems I fell in love twice last night. First with the music. Then with this new makeup.
It's gone now. It all washed off in the shower with just the usual soap and water, so I have no clue how this stuff works - stays - so well, but I don't care. I just care that it DOES stay, no matter what.
How life changing is that, anyway? Not to ever have to worry about your makeup? You can just do it once and done. Go about your day. Never worry if it's worn off or running. Never stop to touch-up again.
Would that make it not only bulletproof, zumbaproof...but LIFEproof?
Saturday, January 14, 2012
Craft lesson #1: come up with a KILLER idea!
And yes, PUN INTENDED :)
Okay, spoilers aside...this novel idea was excellent! I don't usually delve into YA (I couldn't get past page 2 of the first Twilight book, let alone attempt another...) I LOVE a book that brings to life a whole new way of looking at things. At life. And, with an odd slant that I find sad, the way things are in the world of The Hunger Games is basically how life is as we know it. Only we don't know it. Those who we unintentionally and unknowingly step on to have the kind of lifestyle we have, have the lifestyle akin to those in The Hunger Games. IMO...
However, as a craft lesson, the point is simple: come up with something catching, brilliant, exciting, and different from the whole gamut of what's out there already. And a whole new world to boot! I kept wanting their world to be more like our world, where cruelty of that kind wouldn't be tolerated and would, eventually, be overturned. But...Maybe that's the point of the series...I hope!
Craft Lesson #2: Don't misplace backstory...
This is the ONLY lesson I took from this book that came from something I felt the author/editors should have caught and fixed. The entire book aside from two spots of misplaced backstory was without flaw, so bravo! Not many books become so polished and, therefore, so wonderful to read. I mean, how else can one submerge themselves into a whole new world if they have to keep sidestepping crappy writing style and choppy flow (again, Twilight, gag me with a spoon)...
The backstory in The Hunger Games was vital, and plentiful. Hence, some spilled over the top. There were two spots where the backstory that would have been relevant and, therefore, better suited for somewhere in the beginning of the book, were placed so far inside the action at the back that it actually takes the reader (aka, me) OUT of the action.
I think there's a lesson to be learned from this for sure: know when to cut off your backstory and CUT IT OFF. Don't feel the reader needs to know something that isn't really all that crucial all the way near the end of the book that takes 2 pages to read through, thus circumventing the action that's taking place.
Or move it.
Either way, don't put backstory at the end of the book in the thick of things!
As a side note, if you can email me with the two misplaced backstory spots, you win a free copy of The Hunger Games!
The Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins is truly brilliant. Awesome. I loved her book! (yes, I am drinking a glass of wine while blogging...why do you ask? ;) I had to dedicate - read, HAD to - dedicated a whole weekend to ignoring housework and the kids to finish this novel. And, aside from a few pouty face moments, it was well worth it. Every minute of it.
A wonderful read!
I can't wait for the next!!
But...oye...first, I must fix my own chapter 18...where or where did that research I was sure I did go??!? Oh, the dread of redoing research in the thick of editing (hence, ceasing the action!)
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Yet...does lightning ever ask?
Or does it just strike?
Good people, bad people. It strikes us all. It's simply a part of life, like it or not.
And we could willy-nilly go on accepting that lightning will strike us and those we know at random times during our life. For the most part, I think we all do just accept it and move on. Except when the big ones hit. Then we want to know why. Demand to know why. To what end did this happen? How does something bad happening to someone good fit in the grand scheme of things?
Because, honestly, humanly, horrible things happening to anyone doesn't seem to make any sense...
Only, once we start down the worn road of questioning the Universe, this Great Mystery we call life, it's easy to get bogged down in the wondering and the why'ing. How on Earth are we to think positively - or better yet, find a way to accept and move on - from the lightning that strikes in our lives and in the lives of those we know and love?
This is the main ingredient I've been chewing on lately. Do we just dwell in the darkness of the why's? Because that's easy to do. Forget life. Forget God. Forget ever breaking back into the light. I know. I've been there. Seen many people I know and love get stuck.
Yet, and this might be a stretch for some, but....there's something to having the unthinkable happen to you. Forget all the, "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger/weirder," sayings. What I'm talking about it is much greater. And can help you live through and move on along your healing journey.
You just have to do One. Hard. Impossible. Thing.
Give in to the possibility that it - everything - is meant to be. Meant to happen.
I've always believed everything happens for a reason. That belief came after a few big booming lightning strikes took me out of the game for a few years (aka, a decade). To bounce back from them, there was one sure fire way to get back into living and loving life.
BY GIVING IN.
Give in to the possibility that what happened, happened for a purpose...
This can be a hard concept to accept. Why? Because to do so, you have to do one more impossibly hard thing.
Let go of your own concept of what life is.
Let go of who you think is in charge.
Let go of the could-have-been's in your life.
There comes a time - and sometimes, many times - in our lives that we are presented with a notion, a thought, an arbitrary line of thinking, that maybe, just maybe, things could have been different. Life - its ups and down, its challenges, its crosses to bear - could have been different. Would have been.
If only I had made that one choice differently...things would have turned out, different.
Let go of the past. Let go of the could have been... Let go.
Give in to the notion that something great can and will come of this.
I know. This took me years to accept, discover. Sometimes, it's insanely hard to fathom something good coming out of something bad.
The only way to find light in darkness - no matter the saturation- is to let go of the darkness. Let go of the wondering, the why'ing. Why me? Why now? Why? Why? Why? If you don't let go, then questions and worry will be all you ever have. All that will ever be brought to you.
What you put out into the Universe, the Universe sends back to you.
If you let go and give in, something extraordinary will happen. It can happen right away...or it can happen years from now. And that's what may be the hardest thing about letting go: the unknown. You don't know what's going to come of this. Or when. Or how.
But you can do it. Let go...
Of your frustrations.
Of your worry.
Of your hope.
Yes, that too. If you're always looking down a path, straining to see the light, hoping you won't miss it, you might not see something glistening off to the side.
So, let go.
And give in.
Give in to any and all possibility. The answer you want, crave, need, may not ever come in the form you desire. That's the importance of letting go; let go of ALL your expectations.
We don't know why bad things happen to us. To anyone. But they are a part of life. By being giving in and letting go, we can help facilitate the healing that is all important to our life and well being.
So, that's your homework. Two really simple impossible things to do...that I know you can do:
1. Let Go.
2. Give in.
Peace be with you, now and always,
Wednesday, November 9, 2011
And a big ol'goofy grin it was. I have so so missed writing. Anything! It was so relaxing, better than a spa relaxing, to get the draft going, run some research, edit, edit and edit again.
And, what do you know? It's NANOMO again!!! :) That's right - National Novel Writing Month. I've participated the last three years and it's been exhilarating, crazy making fun. This year I'm concentrating on getting back into the grove, though. Not over doing it. That's why I was so thankful that cape-wearing Angela Shelton gave me a ring...eh, email ;). Something simple to get the fingers moving again.
Although, body memories are anything but simple.
Check out the article on The Survivor Manual if you get a chance. Pass it along to anyone out there that may benefit from such a great resource.
Friday, October 14, 2011
no, really, a friend of mine actually thought of making t-shirts ;)
So, a few days later, here I was, driving around after the storm blew over and the waters receded, and I saw a sign posted in Annapolis - prim and proper Annapolis of all places! - that asked the simple, yet obvious question:
What's next, zombies?!
Hilarious. And as someone who is just coo-coo for some zombies - The Walking Dead this Sunday!! - I couldn't help the giggles.
But, you know? It's a perfectly logical question. And life....doesn't life just seem like that sometimes? Like when things start falling apart, blowing up, one thing after another after another after another...all we can think is, what more could possibly happen?!
Zombies, I tell you. It's the only possible answer!
No, really, there's no such thing as zombies. And that's the point I'd like to make in this blissfully beguiling Friday blog post. Don't sweat it. You have no idea what's to come. Just be prepared by staying sane (and keeping a healthy pantry) and all will be good. No matter what life throws at you - oh, please no fast moving zombies, please! - don't waste your now worrying about what may or may not come.
And what's the deal with fast moving zombies anyway? What moron thought up that one?! Totally takes the fun out of trying to survive, IMHO (in my humble opinion).
And that's the point too. Don't just survive. Have fun. Enjoy life! Be present in your here and now. We all have something(s) going on with us and/or around us. Some of us may be at a lull, some of us may be battling oncoming traffic on a regular basis. But dwelling on the thing or things that's piling up on us won't make life any fun. It'll make it miserable.
And do you think God put you here to be miserable?
Think about that one. Did He? She? It? However you see God, what do you think? Are you supposed to dwell in misery or do your best at blissfully beguiling in everyday life? And if you picked the latter - which is the correct answer, by the way - who's responsibility is it to ensure you enjoy yourself, your life, to the fullest?
Your spouse? Your parent? Your friends? Your doctor? God?...You?
Not a trick question.
Being prepared, living life to your own view of its fullest, being PRESENT in what's going on with you here and now - not past or future, but now - is totally all you.
Not your boss. Not your kids. Not your imaginary friend. You.
Great, huh? One more thing to deal with... No No NO! Why so glum?! This is the fun part of life! Doing what you want to do, love to do, set out to do. DO IT! Have fun with it! And if it doesn't work out, remember...you had fun trying!!! AND (drum roll please) you'll be in the company of those who were also brave enough to do what they love and wanted to do, whatever that may be.
Even if that means, for some, running away from zombies ;)
And don't sweat the small and not so small stuff. We are all there. We are all in this together - just some of us disguise our troubles and problems better than others. But worrying about and dwelling on the junk we all have to endure just makes things worse.
Don't agree? Here, listen to what my doctor told me yesterday (and tell me if this makes sense...)
"So you have ____ (you fill in the blank: An illness. Problem in-laws. A crazy person clawing at your door. Whatever). So you have this," my doc says to me. "That's like 2+2=4. It's normal. But, you if you have ____(again, fill in your blank) and you add getting worried or stressed over it, it'll be like 2+2+2=11. Meaning, you'll make yourself bananas!"
So, in other words...or in the words of my doctor...don't go bananas! Take worry and stress out of the equation, get back to reality - life, it's a roller coaster, get used to it - and just keep going. "Enjoy your life!" Again, more words from the banana doctor.
Do what you love in addition to dealing with life in general.
You don't want to get to the end of your life and think, "well, gee...I never really did do what I always wanted/loved/dreamed of doing. Huh...."
That's not what you want, is it?
Wouldn't it be more fun to think, "well, gee...I tried, I failed, I succeeded. Damn, that was fun. I loved my life. Yep. I sure did..."
Friday, October 7, 2011
So long I've been gone, no?
Lots to talk about, lots of lost time. I stopped writing - blogging, noveling, everything - back in May because, well, let's face it. The ol'brain just wasn't workin' right ;) And I winky-smile after saying that because, well, let's face it. If you can't smile, what's the point?
So, what's new... Well, I've got the house almost to myself right now, and it's silent! Two in school, three taking a nap. The hubby wanted me to brine a whole chicken over night and roast it for dinner, so that's about to get going into the oven. Who ever heard of brining a chicken for 24 hours, I don't know...but I guess I left the TV on the Food Network channel and when Mr. Hubby turned it on to watch football over the weekend...well, let's just say his tummy was inspired.
How many times can I say, "well, let's just say" in a blog post? ;)
I'll stop with the repetition with that one, but not the winky-winks. I'm a winker. A flirt. Got to wink. Got to be comical. Got to be sweet. That's me ;)
Back in High School - in southern Italy, no less - I was called just that. "The Flirt"...as if there weren't any others out there sashaying it up in the halls (well, hall. The school was so small, we only had one hall. 25 people in my graduating class! We were like family...still are! :)
And I'm back...tangents and all.
So, I was "The Flirt" and I loved all the attention that I got from just being me. I know I had no intention on being a flirt, I just love life! I love hanging out with people, no matter who - guys, girls, geeks, greeks - and I think that's where the nickname conjured up from. I didn't live in a clique. I cliqued with everyone :) I did hang out predominantly with one particular clique - "The Ho's" - but that's an entirely different blog post all together! LOL...oh, my...funny funny.
And don't think for a second that they minded at all that they were called the, you know what's. They picked the name themselves! My first day of school, I remember walking down our hall and into a group of happy, pretty smiles. And the biggest smile of them all - a dear friend of mine still to this day - asked with all her wonderful exuberance, "Hey, you're new. You want to be friends with us? We're the Ho's!" And thus a grand gift of friendships was born.
And maybe that's where the nickname came from also. I hung out with my friends who were quite chummy with the guys - our guys, visiting school guys, GI's (our school was on a military base), and so I guess it was assumed that I was equally as chummy. But I had no clue back then what a ho even was. Honestly, I really was that naive and yes, this blonde. Before I moved to Italy, I was back in Colorado climbing mountains and climbing trees. I was a very young 14 when I moved to Italy and had no clue. But I had fun despite it!
Yep. Life as a blonde really is better ;)
Oh, but I learned my lesson eventually, as I'm sure we all do. And a lesson I did learn... Stopped my flirtatiousness for the better of eh, let's say, twenty years. Hurtful people can kill a part of you... Thankfully God was looking out for me all that time, or I'd never have met the brined chicken lover who is the perfect fit to my puzzle.
God - The Universe - always looking out for us. We just have no clue how this puzzle will ever fit together until we see the whole picture.
Which brings me to a fantastic tangent. After quitting all that I love back in May to focus on just trying to live (and I mean it. LIVE. Been pretty unlucky as of late. But don't think that'll hold me down for long. I insist on living, and living WELL. Testa dura...that's me!) I was going to blog about it, but I'd rather focus on the positive - making this shit go away and/or living better with it. No more complaining about it.
Because I'm so blessed, I got to spend a good portion of July out in San Diego visiting my lovely sister-in-law. Oh, and of course my brother :) And would you know it? I felt PERFECT!!! Check out what POTS is all about and at home I have it all - including the hypovolemia.
BUT!! OMG. Out in San Diego?!?!? I was 90% better!!!
So, of course, when I had to leave and fly back to the east coast - where all my POTS symptoms returned in 10 minutes - I told hubby, "We're moving. I can't live like this anymore." I'm young, I have young children, and I refuse to live handicap, ESPECIALLY if I don't have to!!!
Being the practical, factual, logical thinker he is, although he was happy that I could live POTS free, we needed to do some research, make sure it wasn't just seasonal. That I'd feel fine there all year long. It is a pretty big thing to pick up and move cross country with no where to live or work with two kids...
After a bit of a battle of hearts and heads, I simmered down and started to try to see it his way. Okay. I need to know for sure this wasn't just a fluke (ha! as if feeling 90% better instantly is something to second guess...) So, how to get out to Cali at different times of the year to test out my theory.
Think, Lia. Think...
While thinking, I got bored, started surfing the web and updating my facebook page. Had to "Like" San Diego because, hello! It "Likes" me! ;) And while I was on San Diego's facebook page, I saw they were hosting a "200K Likes Contest" with a prize..."Like us, then Like the Hilton at Torey Pines, and you'll be entered to win a 5 night stay at the Hilton!"
Well, gee! That's easy...
So I "Liked" San Diego and "Liked" the Hilton too. And kind of whispered to God that, if this move should happen, that it really is the only thing that I can do to feel - live- better, it would be really stellar to win this contest so I could bring Hubby along and Mr. Practical-Logical can see for himself.
AND GUESS WHAT?
OMG. Or, rather. OTYG - Oh Thank You God! ;)
So, come Spring Break, Hubby and I are flying out to live it up in San Diego. Just the two of us. Like a date! Wow, I'm so excited! He's, of course, dreading seeing the light, therefore he'll have to figure out the move. "Why so practical?!" I say. "Just have fun. We'll land on our feet."
I always do ;)
And I'm planning a quick trip by myself to So Cal this winter, so that takes care of summer, winter and spring. If I feel great all those seasons, I think it's safe to say I'll feel fantastic all year round. Seeing I only get, at tops, a month here (a few weeks in spring plus a few weeks in fall) that I feel good here, I'd say this is a NO BRAINER.
But, yes. I married a cautious man, so I will give him two years of dealing with this on the east coast so we have time to figure things out. I can do it. Have been for a while now. That way we're not just jumping blindfolded...although, if you ask me, that's way more fun! ;)
So, yep. I'm excited! ;) Someone asked what would we possibly do - by ourselves - for 5 nights in sunny southern California...
LOL... I love it when people give me a reason to smile, laugh.
So, that's a taste of what's been up. The weather's getting cooler, the humidity is feigning away - Go away! And there's a really hot pair of leopard print pumps in my future. Standing up in a wedding in a few weeks. At a pumpkin festival! The dress is super sweet. Just hope it doesn't snow. The dress is sleeveless and to the knees! However, I look great in it, and the shoes are so awesome, I bet I'll be feeling too hot to care ;)
Oh, and before I know it, Thanksgiving will be here. And I declared last Thanksgiving that the next one, I'd like to host. So, I'm hosting! :) Can't wait.
Hope everyone's doing well out there!
Glad to be back.