Unexpected Start Ups

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So, I started 2016 as one sick puppy. I think I even scared Pippin. He stayed right with me though, loving little thing that he is. He was my little heater, my cuddle buddy, and if I could have just kept him off of my stomach, I would have been perfectly happy with him. But he was worried and didn’t like me being in the bed all day and all the other stuff that went along with it. Now, he’s dozing behind my back in the chair as I type this.

Being sick wasn’t my first choice of ways to kick off the new year. I had big plans to work on a project I want to put out there early in the year. I was super motivated about it too. I think this could be a big year for me in terms of writing. But, alas, I was stuck in bed unable to even really sit up for more than a moment or two at a time. Focusing on a computer screen just wasn’t happening.  That being said, I’m pretty happy that I’m feeling better. Now I can get on with doing the work that matters instead of just what I have to do.

love-yourself-quoteI have all sorts of ideas for 2016. I’m trying to not make resolutions this year. I think that it is important to just focus on being the best I can be on any given day.

Yes, I need to lose weight, get more water, exercise, and do all of those normal things that people resolve to do. But, the reality is this; I need to do those things more than just this year. It has to be about lifestyle changes. Changes that I can sustain and still find a happy balance in the simple joys in life. That’s not something you can do on the first of January. You need to do them gradually so that they stick with you. It’s becoming more about changing how I look at my day and what I focus on. So, yep, I am taking a different approach this year and asking myself a question every day. Do you love yourself? Then I have to answer that with a very emphatic “YES!”

So, I’m putting more effort into writing and platform building this year than I have in 2015. Let’s face reality there was a lot of transition going on in 2015. I mean some big things happened. New jobs, social experiments (for me), and just trying to find my stride. I think that I have made progress at least in the area of stability. But, what self-respecting writer wants to spend six days a week indefinitely toiling away in the consumer finance world instead of their fiction and writing as a career? So, yes, there will be a new book this year. There are also a couple of other projects in the works that you’ll just have to wait for details on. My focus is back on writing for a change and that’s a good thing. I need that part of my life to be more substantial than it was in 2015. I think the lack of writing time was a big part of my discontent with the year in general. And who knows. A lot can really change in a year. Maybe, by some miracle of Divine intervention, I’ll finally see enough income from it to ramp up production and do that full time. ChangeYourLife

You know, I gave dating a chance last year and found it t be utterly disappointing really. So now that I have sated that curiosity I feel like I can get back to what I know I am good at and can do well. I’ll just keep being me and let the chips fall where they will.  I’ve determined that I am better off alone than dealing with the drama and inconsistency that comes with dating in the modern era. I’m just not cut out for it. I know that now. I could muse more on this later but suffice it to say that I think people today have a vastly different view of what a relationship is and means than I do. It is hard to say whether I’m old-fashioned or just too forward thinking for them. Monogamy is apparently looked upon with a certain amount of disgust these days. And Love? Well, I don’t think it means what people today think it means. So, I’m in a position to stop worrying about it and start really cultivating my life into something that I adore.  That’s a pretty liberating feeling. I don’t know why I didn’t see it that way before.

I hope that you’re all having a wonderful start to the New Year. I know mine has been busy but it seems that it will start to take on a little more normal pace tomorrow. So, I’m excited that routine can be established again and that I can be doing more of what I love. What are all of you doing in 2016 that you haven’t been able to before?

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Another Year Older…

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The Christmas holiday is past. I managed some awesome gifts including a new wrap that I absolutely adore. It’s just perfect for the writer at her desk in the winter time. Not that our weather has been all that cold yet. This has been the craziest I’ve seen things here in Texas since I came here back in 2000. That being said, for now, I’m not ravaged by tornado damage or dealing with flooding at home. Getting to the day job may prove problematic in the morning but, I’m going to see how that goes. There are a ton of roads closed due to flooding right now. We’ll just have to see if I can make it to the office in the morning.

tumblr_inline_n4uz3g1W4q1qiagjgOnce the rush of Christmas is over there is my birthday. Yes, I turned 37 this year. Seems crazy to me that I am that old. Time flies by at a much faster pace than it did when I was a kid. I’d place bets on that. I worked on my birthday and almost ended up having to stay late. And when I got home, I was surprised when my Dad came home with two dozen beautiful roses, a card, and a little birthday cake and ice cream. Totally didn’t have to. We have a ton of left over cake from the Christmas party with the novelty cake we made. I appreciate the gesture though. So often the Christmas festivities are on my birthday and it just gets overlooked. December kids will relate to that. I know my sister-in-law does as well. Hers is on the 28th.

I am looking back at the past year this week. Trying to delve into what my new year’s resolutions should be and what I would like to accomplish in my 37th year. I’ve accepted that family life is pretty much out of the question for me. There won’t be kiddos for this author. Well, maybe another fur baby down the road. It’s just kids of the human variety don’t seem to be in God’s plan for me. Accepting that has really taken the pressure off of me to couple up with someone new. 36 was a year of realizations and acceptance for me. It really was a recurring theme throughout the year. Now the fun part of deciding what my life as a single and childless woman is going to be like begins.

Amazing-Change-quotes-photoI’ve talked about wanting  more elegant lifestyle here. I’ve talked about wanting to get healthier and find my happy spot in the world. And those things are at the forefront of my mind as I plunge into 37. There are a great many things that I can do to transform my life. I have a good job, supportive family, friends, and the desire to do something specific. 37 is going to be about bringing in that elegance, organizing, and writing more. Embracing the literary life is the key for me. Finding ways to be healthier, explore more opportunities, and be more content are paramount to the life that I want.

I realize that this is a rather lonely road that I am on. I’m sure that the loneliness will rear its head at some point. I may be tempted to dip my toes back into the dating pool. I hope that when that happens someone will remind me that it isn’t a good idea. I don’t attract the right sort of guys. Better yet, I hope that they start talking about a great movie or book they’ve read so that I can get excited about it too and be distracted from that feeling. It always seems to get me into trouble and cause me a ton of stress. I’d like to avoid that sort of stress this year. And frankly, I don’t think there is a man out there that can live up to my expectations of a relationship anyway.

So, I’ve made another trip around the sun. There are certainly many things to look forward to in this year. I get to take a real vacation this year for the first time in… I don’t know how long really. I have time off that I can take and I am considering a writer’s retreat as part of that. There is a new book to put out, other projects to work on, and sewing projects to finish. There are healthier days ahead with classier moments and memories to record. There are hopefully new people to meet, new journeys to take, and plenty of coffee and tea waiting for me to enjoy.

This may be my last post of the year. Somehow I think that I’ll be pretty busy with work this week and won’t get to post again until New Years. There are plenty of things to come in 2016 including a video series featuring me talking about various things. Book news, other exciting projects and even a giveaway or two are on the horizon. So stick with me.

I hope that you all have a great New Year’s Eve. Stay safe. Drink responsibly if you do. Stay optimistic and post your own goals for 2016. Then, drop a link in my comments section so that I can check them all out and leave a comment for you too. Community may be my catch word for the new year after all. 🙂

Cheers! To you, your health, your happiness, and to a very prosperous New Year.

Runaway Christmas Train…

I am managing to get in two posts in December and I am pretty impressed with myself for that. There is much to be said for this accomplishment considering all that I’ve had going on. But, we’ve finished most of the holiday baking, created a new tradition for me in the process, and gotten the majority of the Christmas shopping and wrapping done. I still have a few last minute gifts to pick up though but can’t do that until payday. So, unfortunately I will be one of those many people at Walmart on Christmas Eve trying to snatch up the last of the gifting items. But between work and doctors and so forth its been a very hectic month or two.

So, let’s start with the fun stuff!

12391301_1194608713901178_7801183348944272988_nOur house has all these incredible smells this time of year. My momma and I are baking fools. I think I mentioned having given her the stand mixer as an early Christmas present in the last post and showed off our Thanksgiving creation. Well, we also spent four days working on this beauty. And we really had a blast doing it.  We also made about eight dozen cookies and spent loads of time decorating sugar cookies and gingerbread cookies.

The picture is a bit misleading about the size of that house though. It ended up being about 11 inches tall and is sitting on a 16 by 16 inch board. Yes, it was all edible with few exceptions. wrappers on a couple of the candies and then the little figurines were originally ring pops that we snipped the ring off of but left them on the pedestals to attach to the board.

12366218_1197306083631441_6516582748245617370_nAll the cookies we’ve made have been going into gifts and I’ve been taking to the office as a holiday treat for my customers. I’m just nice like that I guess. But then we also made a new tradition with the gingerbread house. After some thought we decided to donate the house and these cupcakes to a special needs children care center here locally.  They had their Christmas party yesterday and we were able to take them on Friday when I was going to the follow up on the hospital stay last month. I hope that the kids enjoyed them.  I know that eyes were lighting up when we brought it in to drop it off. So it was a good thing.

This year has brought about some tough realizations for me. Primarily that I won’t have kids to pass on these fun traditions to. Anyone who knows me personally knows how much I love kids in general. So, I’ve decided to make it a tradition of making a cake or gingerbread house or something like it to donate to the center each year or some other children-related nonprofit. Its both a lot of work and a ton of fun. And since I can’t have kids of my own, doing something with children to give back seems to me to be a great idea.

The follow up went well and that means that there are a number of things that are going to happen in year thirty seven for me. The whole experience was a wake up call about my health. Being in the hospital and nearly having to be shocked to get my heart back in rhythm was pretty scary. So my Christmas gift to myself is getting back into a gym. And as a result getting back to feeling better about myself.

This year has been about embracing my own self-worth and learning to set boundaries.  Sometimes those boundaries change things. Sometimes they make things better and then there are times when they complicate things.  In the end it is about respecting yourself and the person that you are. For a long time I have tried to make everyone else comfortable and happy. So much so that I neglected myself in the process. There are times when old habits die hard but, it is time to stop putting everyone ahead of my own goals and happiness.

All that being said, those are reflections for another post. I think I can manage another one before we finally see the end of 2015. Until then, I leave you with a sweet tooth from all the goodies. And wish you all a very Merry Christmas just in case I don’t post again before the big day. Hope you get everything on your wishlist and realize the true meaning of the season as well.

Full Swing…

December arrived before I even knew that November was over. I’m quite serious about this. The time seems to fly by now. The holiday season is all a blur to me anymore. Its one major preparation after another. There is decorating to do, things to bake, crafts to make, and no, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

This year I’m just thankful that I’m surrounded by family this year. I was on my own last year for Christmas and I sat here watching sappy movies and crying when I wasn’t working. I was also working a retail job that left me with little money to buy gifts. I was barely scraping by. This year, while, I’m still not able to go decadent with my gifting, I am able to do some for the special people in my life and that feels really good.

20151126_222931[1]Thanksgiving went well, I think. I spent two days working with my mother and making the cake pictured here. I do enjoy it for the special occasions in the family. I’m not entirely sure it is something that I would want to do full time for profit though. I could see myself doing it for family and friends if they asked now and then. I think I’ll leave the bakery opening to my niece though. She’s very excited about it and trying to learn. So I am looking forward to her help with our Christmas cake.

It is always funny to me how quickly things change though. It seems that only yesterday all the nieces and nephews were just babies. Now they’re all so grown up that it just makes me feel every bit my age.  Of course, that feeling could have to do with the week or so before when I was in the hospital.  Just suffice it to say that a full “state of the fluff” wellness post is on its way. There are going to be some big changes for me in the next few months. As soon as I iron out some details and get clearance from the doctor, my butt is getting back to the gym.

I am also going to need to recommit to finishing projects. I let way too much slide for the sake of being social the past six months. Balance is key and I’ve got to figure out a way to do that. So, yes, there are rants, thoughts etc coming but they won’t be here tonight.

0d7b10dc01eeac1a5ec433122dbf2681For now, I’m going to just enjoy the peace and the weight being lifted from knowing that it hasn’t all been in my head. I’m not a hypochondriac. There are legitimate issues going on. There is also a slew of things that I should have listened to my gut about and cut things out earlier but, I didn’t and that’s okay. Things will shape up sooner than I think. I know that. Change is good. Acceptance is good. And learning to be in the moment and focused on things that matter to me, is definitely very good. I don’t have to make excuses or feel guilty. I’ve realized that it is not up to me to make sure everyone else is happy all the time. I need to find my own happiness where I can. If that means alone time with a manuscript or my pup then that’s what it will be. The holidays are a time to recharge my sense of well being. Its a time for me to reflect and understand where I’ve been, what I’ve learned, and to start the next year with a clean slate and a game plan for the year being better than the last one.

I’ll clear all of this up with other posts this weekend but, for now, I just wanted to stop in and let everyone know that I’m alive, I’m better than I was, and that I have a lot to share as time permits through the holidays.

So get in gear! Be jolly and find your bliss. Put on a smile and sing a song because we all know that : The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!

If you’d like me to sing a favorite carol to kick off my youtube channel; leave me a comment and suggest a tune. You may be surprised what you find here in the next few weeks.

Things That Fill The Fluff

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It would seem a trend of my posting once a month has developed in recent months. I have no true excuse for my lack of riveting content lately. Life has been busy, things have been happening, but mostly it has been the usual humdrum routine that isn’t exactly all that exciting. I think you’d rather not be bored to tears with talk about the day job, my lack of writing time, or the changes in the weather here in East Texas. So, I’ve held off in my posts for a while.
Quotation-Suzanne-Collins-yourself-Meetville-Quotes-47970In the time that I would have been composing posts for your reading pleasure, I’ve spent time doing a lot of personal journaling and soul searching. It is, perhaps, no surprise that writing is how I sort through pretty much everything in my life. It is how I dream, how I sort out my budget, how I plan my days, and how I come to some big decisions. Lately it has been more about realizing a few things. At the risk of getting too personal, I feel compelled to share a few of those things with my audience here. Who knows, maybe someone out there needs to read this to know they aren’t the only ones going through it.
In December I edge another year closer to 40. I suppose it is fitting that I am thinking about life and what it has become for me. The reality is that I had a pretty good idea of how I wanted my life to turn out when I was a teenager and in college. I figured that by now, I would be living my own version of an American Dream. A house, a husband, a kid or two, and a dog. I figured it might be somewhere in Florida at the time. I never dreamed that I would somehow come to land in Texas. But, here I am. I also thought I would have a couple of books published and maybe be working on some sort of after school program inspiring kids to do the same. Yes, I’ve published but, little else of that dream has come to pass. Or rather, it started to and fell apart.
4135I have only myself to blame for the way things turned out. I made poor choices for a long time trying to build that dream life. Poor choice of a partner on that adventure. Poor choices in allowing for the abuse that I endured. I had such high hopes. Now, it is hard for me to build them up. It was all such a huge let down. In a way, I’m still devastated. Not because I lost the husband, mind you. That was one of the best decisions that I have been able to make for myself. But I lost the dream in the process.
At 37 I feel like I’ve missed my window for that life. There comes a time when you have to face facts. The fact is, I’m not going to be a mother. I just don’t think it is in God’s plan for me anymore. I think I missed the window where that was possible. Now, I’m not saying that biologically I’m unable to have kids. I know it is never an impossible thing. I just no longer feel like it is something I should aspire to be. I don’t want to get my hopes up and let them be crushed anymore. Now, I have to find a way to let that dream die and grieve for the life I wanted and can’t have.
My real problem isn’t the realization that I can’t have that life. It is that I don’t know how to grieve for it. I’ve been in denial for years. I kept telling myself it was possible and that all it was going to take is finding the right person. I’ve done my share of bargaining with God to help me make it possible. But at every turn, I’ve been shown more proof in all the little things, that I shouldn’t be a mother. I’ve had influence in many kids lives but I will never be Mom. I had a hard time accepting that before but, I do now.
I’ve always been the sort to just pull myself together and keep going. Move on to the next thing, interest, or person. That isn’t working this time though. I’m not sure why. It just isn’t. I’m sad and lack the usual empathy I have for other’s. I’m not all that depressed about it. At least, not yet. I may be getting there with that. The truth is, I don’t know what a life without family looks like for me. And in a way, this is me having to face one of my worst fears.
Pulling myself together isn’t easy at all. The vast majority of my friends have families. Even if they aren’t the traditional nuclear family, they have kids and are busy with school functions, drama, and raising kids. I don’t gravitate towards the usual singles scenes. I’m not going to be hanging out with a bunch of twenty-somethings trying to find myself. I think I’m well past that stage of life. But, I do need to figure out what life is going to look like for me now.
Am I going to be the crazy pet owner who throws her dog a birthday party? I am likely going to turn into the weird Aunt who brings a friend to family functions. The bottom line is that I really don’t know what comes next for me. For once, I’m just sort of flying by the seat of my pants and praying for the best. This time of year is going to be especially difficult but, hopefully, not nearly as hard as it was for me last year.
I may post more about this at another time but for now, I’ll leave it as simply a “this is what I am going through at the moment” post.

A Little Change Can Do You Good….

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Earlier this week I realized something pretty important. It’s been a full year since the divorce was finalized. Granted, the whole separation thing has been since 2012. However, the whole legally binding part of it was finally over a year ago. Somehow, none of it seemed “over” until those papers were in my hands. And then, I felt like I could really start the healing process.

ChangeYourLifeThat process has been about major changes in attitude, in social status, in spirit, and about life. The majority of the healing that needed to happen was spiritual. It has taken a great deal of time in prayer and reflecting on where I have been to realize where I want things to go in my life. And still, I’m searching to find a definitive answer on where God would have me be. I think that’s a hard one to really put your finger on. He doesn’t always communicate in concrete terms after all. This time, when I ask, it seems that He is talking in riddles. Interpreting them is definitely a challenge.

change-your-lifeWhen I started this blog it was supposed to be about healthy changes. Healthy meaning more about the physical health of the body. My motivation on that took a back seat as I started trying to figure myself out from the inside. I believe that this part of it was important and that the healthy body will come along in time as I try to change a few things about how I see myself. The process for me has been less about working out and recipes and more about how to love myself as I am. There are still things that I struggle with and likely always will. The truth is, I have come a long way on this journey

You may have noticed a change in the look of the blog. I think it is important that it reflect more of where I am in life and my goals. When it started I needed a reminder of my free spirit. I needed to pull myself out of a very dark place and find happiness again. I needed the bold colors and fun patterns because they reflected a more modern lifestyle and something blissfully normal. They made me feel like I was, even if only a little bit,… just like everyone else. And my little mind trick worked.

To a point.

But, I’m at another turning point in life. One that allows me to reflect on where I’ve been and decide where I am going. I’ve decided that it is time to embrace the things about me that are unique. The things I want are not the same as everyone else. The way I see the world is not the same as anyone else.

stash-1-506b67e6df37bI want a life that is both creative and refined. I’ve focused my efforts on these things. I’m writing more. I’m delving back into more visual arts and painting. I’m even sewing more. In the past year I’ve taken up quilting, gotten back to embroidery, and now I’m embarking on a journey into making clothing.  More specifically, Victorian clothing.

You see, I’m planning to attend this Steampunk Event in November with an escort who has a fabulous ensemble. So, my wearing jeans for this is just not going to suit the event. So, I’m planning to put together something to complement his. Yes, I am very much looking forward to it. I haven’t done a real costume event in ages. So this is going to be a ton of fun for me.

Life is starting to come together for me finally. I have a job that pays well and I don’t mind going to every day. I am able to travel more and explore my surroundings. I took a trip a couple of weekends ago that was inspiring not only in the scenery but in the company I had showing me around. It was an insightful trip and one that I really enjoyed. It made me realize how much I’d missed taking road trips and how inspiring company can be when there is an exchange of ideas.

I’m adopting more of the refined things in life. Simple things like creating a space I enjoy and is functional. There will be remodeling happening soon. I’ve begun a little ritual of afternoon tea when I’m at work. I’m ordering clothes that I really enjoy and that compliment my style and shape. I am keeping a hand written journal for the first time since I was a teenager.

I admit that I am always a work in progress. Who isn’t? But, I think in two years I’ve found more direction than I did in the six that came before. I feel like I’ve come into my own and I would like to reflect this new me in various aspects of my life.  Besides, a little change can do everyone good. Think of it as an upgrade. Something a bit more refined and elegant that will help inspire the next phase of my life.

Until next time…

Nanowrimo is still months away but…

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A writer is never really all that stationary in life. We’re always dreaming and concocting new characters, plots, and other details. It is part of what allows us to effectively create the escapes from reality that so many enjoy. It is never a surprise to me when new ideas come up. It is always perplexing how to work from one to the next though.

The current project is a fairly heavy one. It is taking a great deal more time to complete than I anticipated. It has very strong spiritual elements in it that often get me into trouble with various circles. This particular series is a calling. I feel like it is something that I must write. So, I am relying on God to supply the words and the direction that the plot will take. He hasn’t failed me yet. I just need to have more hours in the day to work on it.

inspirationWhat is funny about this is that, just as I am working on that manuscript, I have an epiphany for another series.  It is a good idea to. Something very classic and not what I’m used to working with. So now, I’m toiling away with pen and a notebook with characters and plots and settings. This is going to require some research and that is something that I need time to accomplish. Starting early is a good way to stay on top and maximize my chances of winning the challenge this year.

Sometimes inspiration can strike at the most awkward moments. I’ve had epiphanies in the middle of a task at work when I can’t stop to write it down. I have also experienced the 3:00 AM wake up out of a dead sleep to write things down so I don’t forget them. I don’t think that you can call yourself a writer until you’ve lost sleep over a story idea.

So what do I do? I continue working on the manuscript that is heavy when I’m at the writing desk. During the day, with my trusty notebook and colored pens, I’m making notes and starting the process for a new project.

Over the weekend I did something out of the norm for me. I got up early and went over to Tyler to meet a friend for lunch. For once I didn’t spend my entire day off at the writing desk. I went over to Barnes and Noble, had coffee, bought a book for research purposes, and then had a fantastic lunch with my friend Greg. We came back to my place and spent the evening playing cards and being social. I had a good time and look forward to doing it again.

enhanced-buzz-4788-1371545788-1In fact, with the change in pace I’ve come to realize how important it is to be social. I admit that I have a tendency to find excuses to be a hermit. I blame it on the book, on being tired, on being at work so much, and on finances.  Most of the time I’m happy to be at my laptop. I know it keeps me from meeting people whether for simple social interaction or even to help further my career. However, it is comfortable for me. With my social track record I guess, I can’t blame myself for being a little shy about getting back out there. I’ve never been the social butterfly but I did once have a social life. Right now, my weekends look mostly like the picture of Ms. Sexton here. Only my desk is messier, I think.

The bottom line for me is that I know getting out into the world needs to happen more often. Having a support network is important. Finding a peer group is a challenge here. I think that I have a different vision for a writers group than what is available to me locally. What’s worse is that my current work schedule doesn’t allow me to attend meetings of the ones already established. So, what’s a writer to do? Start one, of course. That’s the obvious answer. In the meantime, I’ve decided to take Saturdays and establish a personal routine of a coffee house. I’m on a mission to find one with the right atmosphere. Even if that means I have to drive into Tyler every week to do it. As I’ve been telling myself lately, I am worth the effort. Doing these things that I enjoy is an act of self-love. So taking myself on a weekly date is something I need to start doing whether it involves writing or not.

I enjoyed the company and conversation. I had a great time just sitting around and playing cards. I would like to do that more often. Just like I would like to have an adventure or two before the holidays roll around. I’ll have to explore options in another post.

 

The Life of a Madwoman

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Yes, I know that Tyler Perry has beat me to the sentiment. Still it seems like I am always rambling on here. So much so that I’m starting to wonder if that isn’t the point of having the blog to begin with. You see, my passions in life are many. I am never working on just one creative project. My life has always been filled with changes. Some have been big (I’m thinking of my divorce, all the moving around, and jobs here) others have been minute and unnoticed by many. All of the change sometimes feels like I am going mad and so, this blog feels like the musings of a madwoman at times.

No-matter-where-you-go-orWhat I do know with a great deal of certainty is this: Life is nothing more than a complicated period of growth from beginning to end. Some people thrive while others find it difficult and riddled with anxiety. I, however, seem to be somewhere in the middle of that spectrum. Some days, I’m content and able to “not sweat the small stuff”. Then there are the times that I feel completely inadequate and socially awkward. I think that this is something a great many writers experience in their lives. We are used to our little bubbles and the characters we create. At some point though, we are forced out of the world of our creation and into the reality that is around us.

In my 36 years I never thought of making friends as something that you had to work at or even make a priority. It wasn’t something that I found difficult in my youth. But, since my relationship with my ex-husband, I do find that I have a great deal of social anxiety and it is harder to make friends. Why? I could give any number of reasons. I could even blame him for isolating me but the truth is, I allowed myself to be in that situation and now, I have to find my way out of it.

It was pointed out to me that I am weird. I write about a lifestyle that… (now how did they put it?) “doesn’t exist for normal people”. I guess I have champagne tastes and live in the heart of beer country. I want the lifestyles that I’ve written about in those pieces this individual read. I don’t like beer. Never have, and really don’t think that I ever will. In the same coin, I don’t like caviar either.

I had high expectations of adulthood. I expected to have a closer circle of friends that I could entertain with my husband. I figured that I would have a kid or two by the time I was this age and that I’d be taking family vacations to see family in Florida and hit Disney World with the kids. I expected evenings of conversation, dinner parties, and games. I expected to have some evenings out at lectures or talks about various topics. I also figured that I would have events to launch a book. And I mistakenly thought that, once I had books out there, the marketing of the writing would get easier. The reality is that it hasn’t gotten easier and I wish I could just afford to hire someone to book things and put it on my schedule. Then maybe I wouldn’t stress about it so much.

But, here I am. I’m working at a day job and on a writing career. I’m considering a return to school to get my degree. Perhaps I’ll go on an get my MFA. Who knows? But those higher expectations are not something I’m willing to concede at this point. I still want my adult life to have something resembling what I dreamed. Oh, nothings is perfect. I know that. But, I would still like that close circle of friends and those evenings of dinner parties and games. I’d like to have those people to celebrate the accomplishments that are coming with and share the bumps along the road. I still want my vacations and my writing time. And yes, part of me still wants that family life though, I’m listening to a clock tick away here and know that it likely won’t be in the cards for me.

traditional-home-officeSo what is a writer to do?

You keep going one day at a time. You work the job. You keep writing the next piece. You keep trying to make connections and friends. You get up, you move along, and sometimes, you just have to hide away in that world of your own creation when it all gets too overwhelming.

So this weekend, I will try to get out. I will write. And I will try to form a plan for transforming the space I have into something that is uniquely me and inspiring. If I focus on what I can control, then maybe I can keep from making myself mad in this phase of my life. It could be possible that I’ll figure out some pearl of wisdom while I’m at it. I suppose you’ll have to stick around and read to find out.

Where In The World Has The Fluff Been?

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Did you miss me readers? I know I am long overdue a post of some substance. I’m also in need of some organization and a plan for what to present to all of you. I don’t know that there was ever a very solid idea behind the State of the Fluff other than to chronicle the life I live. Like everyone else in the world, life just gets the better of me sometimes. During those times, everything seems so mundane that I feel like I have nothing of substance to  share. I mean there is only so much you can find interesting about a day at the keyboard.

eyes-office-women-purple-iconA few awesome things have happened though. I was finally given my own store at the day job. So, I’m in a low-key store on my own working with little supervision so that means that I have lots of time to read, think, and jot notes etc. This is a good thing. I am really excited about that. It is a big stepping stone for me.

I was on my own for a few weeks. Taking care of things around the house and the pups. We’ve added a new member of the family. Leo is a big boy, even at four and a half months old. We jokingly say he is going to be a really good dog if he doesn’t kill us with love before he grows out of the puppy stage. He’s a good dog regardless. He’s just full of energy and has no concept of how big and strong he is.

After the family returned I took my mom to a pretty amazing theater experience. Just before they left, I found out that Les Miserables was going to be at a local theater. So, finding that they would be back close to the last show, I bought tickets for my mom and I. We went and I don’t think that we could have had a better experience. Front row at a very interactive show meant we were right in the middle of the battle scenes. I will do a major post about the experience later. Let me just say that if you have a chance to see anything at the Tyler Civic Theater I highly recommend it.

I enjoy the theater. In fact, seeing the show made me realize how much I do miss it. I’ve even considered going for an audition there. It is a community theater. But I think that would be stretching myself thin. One thing that I have learned in the last few weeks is that I need to really think about my priorities.

hard_workSince I took the current bill-paying job, my writing has been a bit more shelved. Of course, there had to be a trade off of some sort. Learning a new industry has taken time. There was a good deal of chaos with my boss leaving, promotions looming, and training someone else for the office I just left. But, my fiction has always been my passion. I spend my limited time off with my laptop tapping away on the latest work-in-progress. Some days I get in only a couple hundred words and then sometimes I get in a couple thousand. What I need to find is some consistency in that production schedule.

It isn’t that I don’t enjoy it.  In fact, writing never feels like work. I love the imagination and the escape that it provides. I like that I can get in my own little zone and the cares of the day just sort of melt away. I need to make writing time a priority every day. Just like I also need to make time to find some local friends and get a social life. That’s a topic for another time too though.

I suppose I’ve accomplished my goal for this post. This is where I’ve been and the majority of what has been going on. I suppose I’ll have to update on other things next post. I’ll also have to get back to being regular with the posts. Maybe that will help.

 

Sometimes, you need to…

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Quotation-Suzanne-Collins-yourself-Meetville-Quotes-47970Unplug.

Yes, I needed to do just that. My lack of social media presence, including here on the blog,  has been somewhat intentional. It seemed to me that everything that I was trying to accomplish was going nowhere. Words weren’t coming out right. The posts that I penned were riddled with negative self-talk that I don’t want to put out there. Even the book seemed to be falling flat. I needed to just unplug a bit. Take some time to find my writing mojo again. This happens when you recognize that everything you’re putting on the page is complete crappola.

I also unplugged myself from social media today for the most part. Why? Well, Mother’s Day isn’t exactly the best holiday in the world for those of us who can’t or don’t have children through no choice of our own. Yes, I took my mom out and I did nice things, including a French inspired brunch with crepes. Saturday, we went out and did dinner at one of her favorite restaurants and a movie that she wanted to see. And she did post a sweet message from Pippin as a Mother’s Day wish for me.

Honestly, I try not to let it bother me. I can’t really help it that it does. I wanted a family. I wanted to know the joys and pains of motherhood. It is increasingly clear that while it is a natural part of life for most women, it is just not meant to be for me. Pippin is about as close to motherhood as I will get. So today was just packed full of reminders of something I will never have in my life that I’ve desperately wanted. Unplugging was my only option.

16384ladiessewingdaycatWork has been keeping me hopping with a lot of drive time the last couple weeks. I’m taking some time away from the book for fear of ruining it. Occasionally, I find that it really is helpful to just shift gears. So I’ve taken up the needle again. The sewing needle that is. A change of medium is often a fantastic distraction. Sewing has always been a good way for me to de-stress and just think. Often I work out problems with plot or scenes by doing something else. Writing involves much more thinking about the story than actually writing it.

Usually, I do embroidery. I have a lot of pictures of various projects that I’ve done. From simple bags and tapestry like pieces, to pillows, and cases I’ve worked on many things. For a while now, I’ve been wanting to put my embroidery to use in a new way. I have also wanted to learn a new skill in hand quilting. I’ve done a little bit with some projects in the past but I’ve never really tried my hand at a full quilt. My office isn’t far from a little shop that specializes in quilting. So, I stopped in and decided to get some things to start a new project to learn the technique with. Now, I’m working on a patchwork quilt to go on my own bed.

It may seem like an old-fashioned hobby. I guess it is. I’m not entirely all that happy being super modern anyway. I often feel like I was born in the wrong era. Maybe it is just that I’m feeling all domestic lately. All I know is that it has been a welcome distraction from all the nonsense going through my head lately. Things that do not help me move forward. So, whatever I can do to keep that from sinking into my head is a good thing.

Hopefully, the coming weeks will find me feeling more refreshed, inspired, and creative. Social media is something that I’ve never been very good at. But, I’m aiming to get better at it. So, you’ll be seeing me around more often.