Dear Local News Stations

When I am getting ready for work I usually spend most of that time listening to and/or watching some of the local news.  In the past year or two I have noticed a trend that I do not like nor do I understand, and I am just glad somebody has finally asked me to give my opinion on it. HA!

On a couple of our local news stations the traffic reporters are not only commenting on the news as it is being delivered, but sometimes they are even anchoring for the first 30-60 minutes every morning!  I am all for seeing people move up the ladder but this just seems sloppy, and completely ridiculous!  When I turn on the television and I see the traffic reporter anchoring I am irritated enough to turn to PBS.

Let me just be honest now and tell you all that I think I just hate the traffic reporters.  It bothered me when I watched one go out on a medical leave, and then return with double D’s.  I used to be able to tolerate that one until she had returned with her new physique.  She was different, and I watched as she transformed into someone else on my television.  Her dresses are now painted on, and her posture makes her look desperate.  She used to do a great job delivering the important information, and now she chimes in with her opinion on everything!  I wish she would just shut up!  Perhaps I should just switch over to PBS.

Day 12: Writing 101

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Day 1: Exiting my time machine

If you’re not a full-time writer, or if your day is so full of other tasks that you have little time to write, consider these alternative questions: if you could step into a machine that gave you more time, how would you structure your day? What would you write with this extra time?

I woke today feeling refreshed.  The only thought I am holding in my mind is in regards to the temperature of my room.  It’s perfect. The sunlight barely peaking over the horizon transforms the second floor loft with a soft tangerine glow.  I tip toe to the refrigerator where I find a full bottle of peppermint mocha coffee creamer, and by the time I return to my room the coffee has finished brewing.  I pour myself a cup, turn on the television, and I catch a few minutes of the morning news while I am cradling and sipping from my warm, sweet beverage.  The boys are both still sound asleep, and my husband is sitting up in bed beside me reading the newspaper.  This is perfect.  I begin to carefully observe the thoughts swimming around inside of my brain, and I am fishing for a story.  It’s a carousel of card cataloged ideas, and thoughts.  The people who have touched my life.  The things that have happened to me.  It is now that I begin to outline my story.  I reach to open the top drawer of my nightstand where I find my spiral notebook and my favorite black gel ink pen.  Words flow freely from my hand to paper.  I move effortlessly and before I realize it I am done.  My story is written.  I get up from the bed for my second cup of coffee, and when I return I begin my editing.  This is perfect!

Day 9: Writing 101

A letter never sent

My parents never should have married one another.  Looking back from the start of their relationship I can say they both were probably aware all along how wrong they were for one another.  Mom always tried to force it and make it work out, and I know that we were the reason that she stayed with him, until the day he finally decided to leave her.  It always seemed like Dad was pushing her because he too was also afraid of leaving.  Neither one of them wanted to be blamed for a broken family.  I understand, and I still do.  I only wish that Mom would have had the courage to leave him sooner.

I can’t ever remember Mom being happy. She was always tight-lipped with limbs pulled in close, and crouched upon a kitchen chair in the corner.  If you looked closely enough you could sometimes see the tears she had been hiding from us all.  I never even knew my Mom until years after my Dad had left her.  It seemed like such a waste of her life.  All of that time she gave to him.  I was raised knowing that you could have the rug pulled out from underneath you at any time by the one person that promised to love you forever.  After 22 years of marriage Dad left Mom for her best friend.

I wish I could go back sometimes to 1988.  Back to the day before his accident, the day that changed all of our lives forever.  I wish I could have warned them both, that they needed to end their marriage before they permanently damaged one another, and their children.  That sometimes it’s okay to be selfish and make choices for your own happiness, and that somehow we would all end up alright.

Guilt was the reason that she stayed with Dad even after his accident.  If she had left him then I know we would have all understood, but I don’t know if she could have lived with herself.  I wish that I could forgive you both for the permanent damage you caused to one another, and I wish you could each find a way to just be happy in your new lives.  

Day 8: Writing 101

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*That’s me in the red pants, with my siblings.

I wonder what Daryl’s up to?

I retweeted this back on October 28th, and I hate to admit it, but I am still there!   At the end of the Thank You episode I was crying harder than any television has ever made me cry before.  Even after having suffered through the loss of Hannibal on NBC, and I am still not over that.

I am new to The Walking Dead, and while I do not read the comic books I love me a really good spoiler!  I love The Spoiling Dead Fans sites, and reading message boards of the comic enthusiasts.  I wish I had more time.  I wish I could read all of the comic books!

I just started watching The Walking Dead last Spring, and I have been busy binge watching to catch up before season six aired.  What did I learn from doing that?  Binge watching is freaking AWESOME, and I am seriously hating having to wait.  I also got hooked on The Talking Dead, but I feel like I have shown up to the party late there.  But what I have also learned is a lot about myself, my family, and what life hacking skills we possess and are lacking.

It really is a magnificent show!  When I would leave my house, following a good binge watching session, I noticed that I looked at the world with a different set of eyes.  I observe freeways in a new way: Wonder if this would be a good spot to avoid Walkers?  I began making emergency exit plans at my job, at home, for my family.  The best one was a lone motorcycle that I always spotted near a construction site on my commute.  Every time I saw that bike I would actually say out lout to myself “I wonder what Daryl’s up to?”  I began talking about cast members like they were my friends, and when I was finished binge watching season 5 I felt sad, but I wanted more!

Please don’t get me wrong…..I am not completely insane.  I am aware of my own reality.  I just honestly enjoy a show that can take me out of my own head in this way.

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Day 7: Writing 101

Busy at Work

For those of you that don’t already know me:  I am married (13 years), and we have 2 boys (ages 10 & 4). I work a full time job where today I am celebrating my 10 year anniversary.  I also have a 25+ mile commute where I mostly spend my time listening to the Stern show on Sirius.  In August my family combined households with my husband’s parents, and we now share a big home together.  To say that my life can be crazy at times is a complete understatement!  I am stressed.  Most of the time I have trouble being happy, and staying happy.  I just always feel like I am juggling my free time and how to best spend it, and every day I wake up with guilt for the choices that I made.  Someone or something is always suffering!

It is never easy for me to find time to write.  I have been so creatively backed up that it actually hurts!  So where and how do I find the time to blog?  Well, it’s pretty tricky, but I write most of my first drafts while I am at work.  I only do this AFTER I have completed all of my real work, of course.  I also only use my breaks and lunch hours, but honestly, I have a phenomenal boss, and a good job. With my busy season at work quickly approaching I thought I must have been losing my mind for signing up for this class when I did.  Writing while at work can not only be tricky, but it can also be down right dangerous!  I am constantly paranoid of being found out by others, and 2 minutes ago I had to rush to the printer when I heard someone say out loud “Who writes this shit?!”  It was a colleague referring to a research article.  Whew!  I feel like I can breathe again.  I had thought for a brief moment I had accidentally hit PRINT on my current draft. 

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When I am not at work I am always carrying around with me a blue tote that contains:

  • one spiral notebook
  • one white 3-ring binder (w/365 writing prompts in print)
  • an assortment of pens
  • one copy of  Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamott

The binder serves as inspiration for the times that I want to write, but I don’t know where to begin, and the book I treat more like a reference tool than an actual book.  I began this practice of carrying my tote after having spent far too many hours in the waiting rooms at doctors offices where I sat still writing stories in my head.  I also never have any way of knowing when I will be inspired or when I will find the time to write.  When the urge to get a story out hits me I need to be prepared like this or that spark will fade away so quickly.

Something that I need for my creative space is chaos and some good tunes.  As long as I have some dim lighting and a pair of earbuds I can tune out the rest of the world around me.  I really dig Neil Young when I am writing, and the sounds of a thunder and rain storm.  Youtube is fantastic for providing me with hours of uninterrupted and endless selections of both!

I really don’t think that I have any writing habits, and if I do they are not good ones.  I want to be more disciplined with my writing, but how?

Do you have any suggestions or great ideas?  Do you know how I get rid of that pesky Html under my contact page?  😉  I figured that out!!!!  Yeah!!!

Please visit my contact page and thanks for stopping by! 

Day 6: Writing 101

We need to get out more

You’re a kid, your whole life is awesome. It’s awesome, right? You had no money, no ID, no cell phone, no nothing, no keys to the house. You just ran outside into the woods. You weren’t scared of nothing. I challenge you to do that as an adult. All your IDs, all your credit cards — just run out of the house with no phone, turn the corner where you can’t see your house, and not have a full on panic attack.  -Bill Burr

Comedian Bill Burr has a direct line to my funny bone, but there is a lot of truth in this quote from one of his stand up show’s.  I can’t remember the last time I left my house without a full face of make up, let alone without a laundry list of what I believe to be essential items.  So how did we turn into this?

I grew up in a small town, and in the summer my parents would literally lock us out of the house!  In the morning Mom would hand us each $1.25, and if you were careful you could make this last all day long.  It was enough to pay for one days admission to the public swimming pool, 1-2 items from the vending machines AND a small vanilla cone.  Life really was great!

But there were also a lot of scary things that came along with this freedom I had as a child.  Like the pervy older boys who felt me up me under the water, being chased by stray dogs on the walk home, and getting beat up.  Not to mention the fact that I never had swim lessons.  One day at the pool I had a close call when a so-called-friend thought it was funny to push me into the deep end.  I just remember how bad my lungs hurt and I was trying not to puke.  The lifeguard had to pull me from the water, and I was so humiliated.  Mom never knew about any of these things, and it was alright because we could take care of ourselves.

Now that I have children of my own I wonder what sort of childhood they have in comparison to my own.  They are so sheltered, but at least they are safe.  When I got home form work yesterday my oldest told me with so much pride how he did something amazing.  He left the house on his own and checked the mail.  He’s 10 years old, and my mailbox is literally just 3 houses down on a really safe street!  I really think we need to get out more.  😉

Day 5: Writing 101

Clay

photo-1422246358533-95dcd3d48961What happened to us?  This morning when I woke I noticed that we have become strangers in each other’s lives.  Did you notice that too?  Have you fallen out of love with me?  I know the answer inside of my heart is still true, and that all of those promises that we made to one another still hold meaning to me.  Do you think we could ever go back?  Back to that love we had before our lives became so complicated?

This morning I caressed the skin across your back before planting soft kisses on your face to wake you.  Could you still feel my touch?  I can never tell.  I can remember sketching your back once at midnight.  You were lying in this same position, and your body is still just as beautiful to me.  I want so badly to just rest my face on you skin to listen to your heart beating….to feel your body moving with each breathe.  Do you still desire me?

Our love was formed out of clay in our pottery class.  I loved to watch you create with your hands and fine tuning your natural talents.  It was at the end of the semester on our ride back home when you finally confessed your love to me.  I was so terrified and for a moment I couldn’t accept that I might be worthy.   We were two broken hearts and lost souls when we decided to shut out the rest of the world.  You were all that I ever needed.

Do you know that my heart still aches for you when we are apart, and your touch can still take my breathe away?  Could you believe my words to be true?  Even after I have aged and turned bitter?  I never mean any of those horrible things that I say, and it’s true that we know how to cut the deepest with our words.  Could you ever forgive me?  Do you think we can take this clay that has now hardened and form into something recognizable?  Could we try to start again?

Day 4: Writing101