Posted in #8Sunday, Challenges and Contests, Coffee and Conversation, Enterprise fan fiction, JuNoWriMo, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Mindful Monday, Novel Excerpts, Parenting, Second Serving Sunday, Sexuality and Erotica, Story a Day May Challenge, Stream of Consciousness Saturday, WIPpet Wednesday

The Sowing Seeds Edition: Second Serving Sunday

A weekly peek backwards and a look ahead, from my little corner of the blogosphere…are you ready?

It’s been an interesting week,for me, in ways that might seem commonplace, on the surface, but which are filled with depth and breadth and possibilities.

Maybe I should try to explain?

Last week, my daughter, who is almost eleven, was having a Very Hard Time with this whole Growing Up Thing. Hormones were surging in whole new ways she’s not yet used to, and she grew significantly, and everything seemed Not Right. At All!

But, after the storms, come the rainbows, or at least a time of quiet…

It’s still not easy for her, this Growing Up Thing. But, while helping her learn to navigate her emotional rapids, seeds of connection and deeper bonding have taken root. We’ve been going for walks, and chatting, late at night when we two are the only ones awake. The content of our conversations is perhaps less important than the fact of them, even though we’ve covered a lot of ground in them.

More on that in future posts…the point is, it’s been a week of sowing seeds, strengthening roots, new possibilities….

Life Stuff:

Last Week’s Edition: Digging Deep Big Thing and Small Things lead to deepening roots – and interruptions.

  • Click the link for my recent posting history!

Last week’s features:

ROW80: The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have A Life.

  • Growing Pains:  Deep growth is seldom painless or without stresses…and still I write.
  • Quiet Growth:  After the intensity of growth, comes the quiet time…

#8sunday:

  • “What Kind of Home…?”  In the aftermath of global tragedy with personal implications, Trip struggles to find reason – or even a place to belong.

Mindful Monday:

  • The #onegoodcup Project: I undertake a new ‘non’-activity; a cup of coffee without technological distractions, and with presence.

WIPpet Wednesday:

Coffee and Conversation:

SoCS (Stream of Consciousness Saturday):

  • Almost Too Much: A little ring, a major digestive issue, and small gestures lead to jealous conclusions…

Story a Day May:

  • Something Completely Different…(as yet untitled and incomplete story for May 22)….coming along slowly, but coming along!
  • Letters Unsent: In the wake of a huge shift in their relationship, Trip and T’Pol are at the center of a communications breakdown.
  • “She’s A Natural”: Trip watches T’Pol with their daughter, and reflects upon her maternal instincts.
  • Born of Us Both:  A private interlude for a new family…shhh, they’re nesting…
  • “A Sweet Wild Dream”: Sometimes, dwelling in illusion trumps an impossible reality.
  • Interspecies Medical Exchange:  Doctor Phlox observes and contemplates interspecies interaction in his Sickbay.
  • Not Jealousy: Confronted with too much evidence of a relationship he doesn’t want to accept, Captain Archer chooses denial…
  • Artistry in the Aftermath: In the wake of tragedy, Trip learns that T’Pol has a previously-undiscovered artistic side.

What’s Next:

May Focuses:

June Focuses:

This week, on the blog:

  • For WIPpet Wednesday: New stuff for April – July. I’ll be sharing whatever I’m writing, when I get to Wednesday. This week….one last snippet from The IDIC Romance.…because I can’t resist!
  • For Mindful Monday: A new feature! This week, we explore parenting with intention .
  • #8sunday: Ten final sentences from my WIPpet Wednesday story, “Pillow Talk? a little further on…
  • ROW80 Updates: My progress on my current and/or long term goals for A Round of Words in 80 Days, posted on or near Sunday and Wednesday. This week, I transition from May to June goals, and update my Round Two progress.

In the Wilds of Internet-Land:

And that’s my week, in a blogpost. How about yours? Was it full of sunshine, shadows, or a lovely blend? Did you plant any seeds, or spot any sprouts?

Yes, I’m a little nosy. Writer thing. So, if you want to satisfy my perhaps inappropriate curiosity, drop me a line or a few in the box below!

Posted in #8Sunday, Blogfest Entries, Challenges and Contests, Enterprise fan fiction, Flash Fiction Pieces, Just for Fun!, Novel Excerpts, Story a Day May Challenge, Write 1 Sub 1 Monthly Challenge, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

“I Want to Help”: The IDIC Romance for #WeWriWa #8Sunday

Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors’ Eight Sentence Sunday! 

It’s the weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Sign up below with your name, blog and email and share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Your post needs to be live between 12:00 noon on Saturday 05/30/15 and 9:00 AM on Sunday 05/31/15. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their #8sunday posts.

It’s a second chance to share a small snippet of my current writing. Most weeks, I tie them back to my WIPpet Wednesday post, so reading both can give a deeper peek…

Disclaimers:

  • Trip, T’Pol, and Star Trek: Enterprise belong to Paramount, even if Paramount has forgotten all about them. They insist they have more stories, and that I tell them…
  • This is an extrapolated “missing scene” story, detailing some of what might have happened during the months’ long and scarcely shown return to Earth in S2E26 “The Expanse”. Spoilers for that episode.

This snippet follows several paragraphs after last week’s WIPpet Wednesday post, Broken As I Once Was. Attempting to deal with her own pain and guilt, T’Pol is confronted by an inebriated Chief Engineer whose need for solace is even greater than her own.

I’m offering ten sentences today, because the new rules let me! =D 

“You wanna help me?” The pain, and the hope, tangling together. Such a human response. So very like him to feel so much, so fully. 

I kneel in the puddle of his vomit, but I don’t allow it to affect me. I am unable to exercise the same control over my hand – it hovers above his shoulder, fingers trembling with the need to touch him.

Yes, Trip. I want to help.” I need to help. If he will only allow it.

Will Trip allow it? Will T’Pol resist the urge to touch? Why is she resisting it, to begin with? Can she find a way to help him?

For those who don’t want to wait for the next installment, here’s the currentStuck in Space” arc:

Want more #8Sunday? The icon is your portal!

Posted in Challenges and Contests, Enterprise fan fiction, Just for Fun!, Novel Excerpts, Parenting, Story a Day May Challenge, Stream of Consciousness Saturday, Writing in Freedom

Almost Too Much: The IDIC Romance for SoCS and #STaD

Rowing down the Enterprise Stream of Consciousness! Badge by Doobster@ Mindful Digressions.

This post is part of Linda G.Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday meme – an unedited stream of consciousness piece that ties into the weekly prompt: the word “almost”.  I used the word several times, in this passage.

Since it’s also International Short Story Month,  and I’m actively participating in Story a Day May,  I combined this prompt with the May 29 “Back to Front” prompt -writing a story that begins at the end, and ends at the beginning. 

Today, I bring you – a starship captain denying his emotions, as he sees the relationship between his second and third in command evolving in a way that excludes him…oh, and there’s also a very sick Vulcan. 

But, before that – I want to share a few sentences I wrote earlier in the month, because I like what they say, and, well, they fit the prompt almost perfectly, even though they predate it.

Almost. Filthiest word of ‘em all, almost. All. Most.

Nope, no context, but you can find the story here if you’re so inclined….

Disclaimers:

  • Jonathan Archer, Trip Tucker, Doctor Phlox, T’Pol, and all the rest of Star Trek: Enterprise belong to Paramount. I play with them strictly for my own amusement – and perhaps yours, too. And because T’Pol tells me to – and she’s rather formidable! =)

  • This is an extrapolated story, occurring after the events in S4E20: “Demons” and S4E21; “Terra Prime”. Spoilers for those episodes; also for S4E17: “Bound”.

Almost Too Much

“Thank you, Captain.” T’Pol’s voice was almost gone, a thready, raw whisper.

“Don’t try to talk, pepperpot. You just sit tight, and stay still, and let me handle this. Cap’n, please don’t make her talk. Damn, I didn’t know so much could come out of someone so slender. She can’t take much more of this. I’m sorry, pepperpot – so damned sorry you have to go through this.”

“At ease, Doctor Tucker. T’Pol, I just wanted to check up on you. If it hurts when you talk, or makes you feel sick, don’t. I don’t want to make it worse -”

He broke off as T’Pol gagged. “Awww, hell!” Trip exclaimed, grabbing the basin on the table, and getting it under T’Pol’s chin just as she started to heave weakly. Trip’s fingers stroked through the sweat-crusted fringe of bangs; Jon watched them, trying to avoid the implications of that small intimacy; of Trip still being here several hours after he brought her.

When T’Pol finished vomiting what looked like nothing but bile, Trip put the bowl aside, and picked up a soft damp cloth. T’Pol leaned into his shoulder as he wrapped an arm around her, gently. Jon almost said something, ordered him out and back to work, but then T’Pol’s head dropped to Trip’s shoulder, and Trip whispered harshly, “Aww, hell, pepperpot. I hate this for you. It’ s so not fair.”

“Trip, don’t.” Barely even a whisper, now. Jon had never seen the Vulcan looking so weak and defenseless. But one trembling hand lifted, made its way to Trip’s hand, and her fingers tangled with his as she sighed.

“Kaiidth,” she breathed, or something like that.

“What’d she say?” Jon asked.

“Means ‘what is, is’ – or almost that, or close to that, anyway. Doesn’t mean I have to like it, pepperpot, or that I can’t be sorry that this is so damned unfair to you – “

“Captain? I didn’t hear you come in.” The end of whatever Trip was saying as he looked into T’Pol’s face got drowned out by Phlox’s entry from his office area. Jon could almost think that was intentional, to give Trip and T’Pol their privacy – their privacy? – why the hell did they need privacy?

The little gold claddaugh ring with its jade heart peeked out from between Trip’s strong and capable engineer’s fingers. It said things that Jon didn’t want to think about, and couldn’t seem to stop.

He forced himself to turn to the doctor. It really wasn’t his business, whatever was going on with his First Officer and his Chief Engineer. He couldn’t cheat either of them out of any solace they found with each other. Not while T’Pol was wearing Trip’s dead sister’s ring, and had been ever since the baby they’d given the same name had died. The baby created from their stolen genetic material – stolen from his two best friends on his ship.

Almost under my nose, and Phlox’s. How the hell could we have let that happen to them – ?

He couldn’t go down that road now, not while he could still hear the sound of Trip murmuring to her, hear T’Pol’s thready and infrequent responses – and then the sounds of retching, and she was vomiting, again –

“Phlox? Have you learned anything about what’s causing this? Is she in danger?” Jon swallowed hard; the stink of bile and the sounds of the attack were almost enough to make him vomit, too.

What’s making T’Pol so sick? Will Captain Archer face his jealousy? Is there a reason for him to be jealous? What has Phlox learned?

If you’d like to know, read the full version of Not Jealousy.

Have you tried stream-of consciousness writing? Come join in – there’s just a few simple rules.

Get more SoCS right here!

Click here for more SOCS!

Posted in Coffee and Conversation, Just for Fun!, Life Writing

Have I Gotten A Round Tuit Yet?: A Coffee and Conversation Post

When I was six, my family was driving on a highway late at night. Streaks of headlights and taillights painted the dark. For the first time, I realized that each car held people living lives as important to them as mine was to me.

I wanted to know what those lives were, and to share my own.

Last August, while pondering all the things I keep wanting to do and the way I don’t ever seem to get around to it, I conceived the ideas of 33 Round Tuits. 33 is an arbitrary number I just happen to love, and it seemed like it could give me a lot of variety without being hugely overwhelming.

I didn’t put an timeframe on the list; it’s just meant to be there, in the back of my mind, so that those things don’t just get forgotten. I updated it once, in December…

And today, I want to look again, as spring morphs into summer, and see where I am on the Round Tuit 33…are you ready?

OK, then, off we go!

I “got a round tuit”:

  • Delete files from old computer (Sweet L’il Lenovo), reset to factory default, and give to Declan, a young friend looking for an XP machine for gaming.

  • Write a blogpost about my long-lost friend, Barbara Leonard, whom I would LOVE to reconnect with.

  • Contact Kristen Lamb and collect my WANACon Social Media Prize.

  • Return embarrassingly overdue library books.

  • Buy a new pair of workout sneakers.

Public domain image; courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

 

I’m “getting a round tuit”:

  • Scan all old photos, organize files, and begin sharing them digitally. I’ve done some scanning, some organizing, some editing that wasn’t part of the goal, and some sharing.
  • Reread and organize all my old story notebooks. I did some organizing and some reading in the winter.
  • Read all nine books currently in my bedroom To Be Read stack. Oops! Shifted stacks, and lost track. Three books in my room, but I’m sure there used to be more.
  • Complete all the items in my Play Jar. Did a couple, then forgot again.
  • Finish resetting the family room, playroom, and kitchen. Progressing, sometimes upstream, and not consistently, but progressing.
  • Rehome wandering game pieces. As I find them, I’m moving them to containment on the games shelves.
  • Update my bio and my blog sidebar – it’s outdated and jumbled. Sllooowwwllyyyy…..
  • Finish organizing my study. Progressing, in fits and starts.
  • Buy a wheeled storage footstool. I looked; but might not choose to do this; I’ve got another idea.
  • Buy a set of Corelle dishes. Not yet. Haven’t seen ones I love.
  • Read all old writing practice notebooks and mine for usable materials. Some; not remotely all.
  • Begin submitting Trek fan fiction to a fan fiction site (this will require a bit of experimentation to find the right “home”. Moving through revisions for “Slow Jazz Awakening”, the first story.
  • Complete rough drafts of all novels in the Trueborn series (I think there are between 3-5 waiting to be developed and drafted. Preparing to draft 2 this year, the first in July.
  • Complete the first revision pass of Chameleon’s Dish. A bit stalled, but returning in August.
  • Reclaim the flower beds, and begin growing cutting flowers, herbs and vegetables. In progress, now that spring is well underway.
  • Complete revisions of 3 short stories: “Morning Coffee”, “A Splash of Red”, and “Peach Liqueur Love”; submit to L.S. Englers World Unknown Review. Two completed and submitted, one published! Third currently in revision.
  • Write 31 new poems for OctPoWriMo; revise the ones written in 2012. All new poems written; no real progress on revisions…planning to deal with that in the late summer/early fall.
  • Watch all of Star Trek in chronological order. In Season 2 of Enterprise, the first (and my favorite) series, chronologically speaking.
Fragmentarry Progress….Photo by Shan Jeniah Burton.

I haven’t “gotten a round tuit” yet:

  • Blog about The Star Trek Chronology Project.
  • Go get a professional massage.
  • Buy an Irish cloak.
  • Learn how to thread my sewing machine.
  • Buy wireless television headphones.
  • Create a visual timeline for my Trueborn series.

Wow. That’s actually more progress than I thought I’d made!

How about you? Are there things you’ve been meaning to do, “when you get a round tuit”, too? Inspired to make a list? What would you put on it?

Join in the conversation, and I’ll get you a fresh beverage while I listen!

And onward we go…Willamette Valley Sunset from Rt. 1-5….Photo by Shan Jeniah Burton.
Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, Challenges and Contests, Enterprise fan fiction, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Parenting, Round Two 2015, ROW80 2015, Story a Day May Challenge

Quiet Growth: May 27, 2015

ROWin’ to the end of May, and looking for June!

Sometimes growth is a rampant, busting out at the seams affair – and other times, it slips in quiet and deep and still….

Know what I mean?

After the tumult of last week, when my daughter’s hormones were running wild and sending her into a growing-up tailspin, things have calmed down. It’s gone from being cool to hot again. The kids had a lovely Sunday with their cousins, with lots of swimming. I had my writing group Sunday, and t’ai chi Tuesday…

And some deep thoughts, some deep connection, some deep creativity.

It’s not flashy, and not so obvious, by looking at my update…but it’s here, within me. It’ll build into progress, although it may not take a form that I’m expecting right now.

Life and growth are like that.

Like the spontaneous walk I just went on with my daughter (it’s 10:30pm Tuesday as I write this). She told me it was beautiful and calming out, and she was right – moon and clouds and breeze again…and the first fireflies of the season – and a tiny, few-inches long snake that I fortunately stepped over, not on, because I didn’t see it on the road until she pointed it out and we watched it slither away.

Sometimes, a few minutes of living, of opening, can offer up so much beauty and wonder…and connection, her growing hand in mine, her thoughts shared…

Sometimes, the best parts aren’t on any goals list, but held in our souls and our memories.=)

Have you had any of those moments lately?

My most recent Story a Day tales:

  • Something Completely Different…(as yet untitled and incomplete story for May 22)….coming along slowly, but coming along!
  • Letters Unsent:  In the wake of a huge shift in their relationship, Trip and T’Pol are at the center of a communications breakdown.
  • She’s A Natural”: Trip watches T’Pol with their daughter, and reflects upon her maternal instincts.
  • Born of Us Both:  A private interlude for a new family…shhh, they’re nesting…in a blanket fort!

The Big Scoop on what I’ve been up to this week is at Second Serving Sunday! 

The past week was both lovely and chaotic….Zentangle art and photo by Shan Jeniah Burton.

My updated Round 2 goals, and 2015 goals. 

Color-coding key:

  • Goal attained (for the session, or the round) = blue with overstrike.

  • Goal in progress (for the session or the round) = green.

  • Goal-in-waiting (for the round) = red.

Writing:

Continue Kifo Island Chronicles Series:

  • Sea Changes: (KIC#3): Complete all planning and plotting; ready to go for JuNoWriMo. This is a secondary goal for the rest of the month…not happening yet. New goal: Have it ready by the time I finish Generations (KIC#2). Next up: Complete Rock Your Plot Premise Testing Exercises; set plot/pinch points for all.

Draft 31 Story a Day MayTrip and T’Pol stories. Use prompts.

  • 25/31 stories drafted, and over 79,0000K new words since the beginning of May. Still a little behind, right now – the May 22 story is finally moving (second midpoint pending); May 24th was nearly 6K. 25Th and 26th complete; and 27th percolating. Next up, drafting remaining 6 daily stories; completing notes and transcription/development for remaining 16 ideas.

Editing:

  • Complete revisions for “Slow Jazz Awakening” and submit. Rereading scenes and notes, compiling revision planning notes; nothing new this session: 2/16 scenes complete. Organic adaptations to general to-do list for next revision pass. Next up: Continue rereading scenes and notes; create revision pass plan.

Blogging:

  • Complete all sponsor visits on time; visit 3 other blog hop and challenge participants each day, on average. Yes!
  • Clean up/update blog sidebar. Nothing new. Next up: Play with some widgets! =D
  • Beginning May 1, a post for each day’s #StaD story. Post stories,snippets, story sparks; or related essays on progress or process. 25/31. Mostly stories and snippets. Next up: Continue, and develop some update posts…like for Mindful Monday.

Hometending:

  • Continue with hometending. At least 5 days weekly; include decluttering and yard projects minimum of 3 days. 2/5 days; 1/3 yard/declutter. Mellow to moderate activity level here, indoor stuff. Next up: Continue this trend, paying attention to my own needs for activity and rest.

Lifetending:

  • Continue one-on-one time with all beloveds; online and in-person writerly socialization; time with friends; social media. Blogs and comments; a bit of Facebook; write-in; hangout time with each of my beloveds. Much, much time with a growing-up-is-HARD girl. Next up: More of this and more patience and calmness when I state my needs and feelings. Touched-out is touched-out, but I can be kinder about needing a few minutes’ respite, too, and remember how much I would have loved that, when I was a growing-up girl.
  • Expand and extend in ways that feel natural and challenging without forcing. Try two new things each week. Next up….something new (maybe more pansies – thanks, cold nights! =(

Selftending:

  • Continue physical activity and exercise – 3 times/week at minimum. 2/3: Hometending; t’ai chi. Next up: More moving; more tending; more exercise; more t’ai chi.
  • Attend t’ai chi weekly. One at-home practice move per week. This week’s move: Cloud Hands. Next up: Possibly attend Thursday class. Practice. Because practice makes better.
  • Meditate/Intentions journal twice weekly. 1 /2: Breathing meditation, t’ai chi with standing meditation; 2 /2: Intentions Journal exploration and writing. Next up: Cementing Intentions journal habit.

Click the icon to enter the blog hop and ROW away!

Annalise in February, at the Oregon Coast. She’s grown a lot since then! Photo by Shan Jeniah Burton.

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Posted in Blogfest Entries, Challenges and Contests, Enterprise fan fiction, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Novel Excerpts, Story a Day May Challenge, WIPpet Wednesday

Broken As I Once Was: The IDIC Romance for WIPpet Wednesday

Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday, a weekly blog hop which encourages writers to move WIPs (works-in-progress) to publication by posting excerpts related to the date. It’s hosted by the lovely K.L. Schwengel, maven of bad boys, stock dogs, and flying monkeys! She may be less physically present for a bit, but she’s still our fearless shepherd…or something like that, anyway.

I‘ve got another snippet from The IDIC Romance  stories; as part of my Story a Day May challenge. This excerpt comes from “My Flame, My Nectar” the companion story to Sticking Point, told from T’Pol’s POV.

These stories are Star Trek: Enterprise  fan fiction, dealing with the inter-species relationship between T’Pol, a Vulcan scientist, and Trip Tucker, the extremely human Chief Engineer…

You can explore any or all of this year’s The IDIC Romance stories, in rough draft form.

Disclaimers:

  • Trip, T’Pol, and Star Trek: Enterprise belong to Paramount, even if Paramount has forgotten all about them…I only want to allow them the chance to live the lives they keep insisting on living…
  • This is an extrapolated “missing scene” story, detailing some of what might have happened during the months’ long and scarcely shown return to Earth in S2E26 “The Expanse”. Spoilers for that episode; and for S2E7: “The Seventh”.

We last saw Trip drunk in his room,  unable to deal with what the attack on Earth might mean, and how far away from his home and family he is. Now, we move to the Mess Hall, where T’Pol was sipping chamomile tea and watching the stars streak by as she dealt with her own unrest. She was interrupted by an extremely intoxicated Chief Engineer who fell through the door and promptly vomited on her boots. Now, she attempts to address the problem, but she’s not sure the stubborn human will allow her to help him.

WIPpet Math:

  • Today is May 27, 2015.
  • 27 sentences, plain and simple. 

“If the Captain becomes aware of your – self-medication – he won’t consider my recommendation that you be returned to duty.” It is only now that I know that I will attempt to convince the Captain, even if it’s necessary to personally supervise Commander Tucker to be certain that he doesn’t revert to his former compulsion to increase the engine’s maximum velocity at any cost. 

“Returned to – what? Why would you – ?” 

Because you will destroy yourself, if we take away your purpose. Because I can’t bear to see you in this condition, without hope, broken as I once was –

I’m Vulcan. I don’t say those words. Instead, I focus on practical matters. Logically, he can’t remain here. “Commander, do you feel you can stand, if I assist?”

“You asked that already.” He’s frowning, and confused. Lost, perhaps, in his intoxication, and his pain. “Too close. Danm, T’Pol, it was too close.”

I hear the jagged wound of his grief, his fear, his anguish – yes, there are human words for what he feels, and what I felt, when I killed Jossen. Killed a man who might not have been armed – no, T’Pol. It is illogical, and unhelpful, to dwell on your own pain, when the man to whom you are Awakened is in need of tending. I gather my intentions, create purpose.

 “I have asked. You haven’t answered.”

 His head sinks down on his forearm, and he moans and mutters,“Forgot the question. Brain’s numb – stuck at one-tenth impulse. Slow goin’ – take us months to get home -” 

So much pain. Is there anything I can offer him, against such hurt, such uncertainty?

Will Trip let T’Pol help? Does T’Pol have anything to offer that will ease his suffering? Who is Jossen, and why would T’Pol have killed him if he wasn’t armed? Will helping Trip help her to deal with that event?

What will happen next? What form will T’Pol’s “comfort” take?

Well, of course I’m not just going to come out and tell you! You can come back on Sunday, though, and learn a little more…or wait till next week, when we explore the next segment in this story arc – or you can read the original stories in their entirety:

Looking for more WIPpet Snippets? Something less angsty, perhaps? Well, hop along with the little blue froggy; assorted genres, styles, and lengths of WIPpetty lily-pads to choose from, and writers eager to hear from you! =D

Posted in Blogfest Entries, Life Writing, Mindful Monday, Writing in Freedom

The #onegoodcup Project: Mindful Monday

I’ve just come inside from enjoying a cup of coffee outside, in my front yard. It was about 20 minutes after 8, and dark has settled in. The wind was whispering and sighing through the big pines at the end of the property, and a half moon played peekaboo with the scudding clouds. Crickets and nightbirds. My neighbor talking to his television. Flags billowing at two houses across the quiet country road – the same road where I grew up. Off in the distance, an occasional car, and the sound of a train in the distance, out on Coons Crossing and Usher’s Road, where I know the tree frogs and bullfrogs are sounding off.

I’m intimately connected to this place, to its sights and sounds and smells and textures – to its life. I sent countless hours outside after dark, when I was a girl. We played tag and statues, hide and seek and kick the can, my siblings and I. We laid in the freshly mown grass, breathing in green.

I’d forgotten, in some ways, what the evening breezes feel like against my face.

How often, I wonder, is that true? How much of our simple childhood joys have we forgotten, in our oh-so-busy adult lives?

How much can we be renewed, by remembering?

I owe this returning awareness to Amy Kennedy, and the fact that she shared the realization she made during her staycation, when she discovered herself not able to even settle long enough to enjoy a single cup of coffee, and realized that there was something wrong with that…

She decided to do something about it, and to blog about it, and the #onegoodcup project  was born.

The idea, like many wonderful concepts, is simple. Each day, enjoy a cup of coffee or tea – without devices, without to-do lists (which I wrote about last week).

I think it’s was a beautiful idea. Just reading about it was a fresh breeze in my mind, and my soul. I decided that I would begin that afternoon, and that, when I can, I’ll have not only a morning cup this way, but also an evening one- bracketing my day with the opportunity for mindfulness.

I’ve made it a priority for the last several mornings, and I’ve missed only one afternoon. I took my Intentions Journal outside for that first cuppa, and, while randomly jotting what came to mind, I remembered that I bought two themed journals during our Oregon vacation in February, simply because I liked the covers, they would support local causes, and – well, they were …small enough to fit in my carry-on luggage, since we weren’t checking any bags, and I have a long and abiding passion for paper, books, and journals.

After I finished that first cup, I went looking in my study, and there they were, tumbled into a basket, forgotten no more – waiting for me, and my words and thoughts.

Here’s a bit from my first morning writing session, with a cup of coffee and my first journal…

“This feels a little uncomfortable, maybe even unnatural, but that’s okay. Often, growth feels that way.

Quote of the Day – “Who looks outside dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.” – Carl Jung (I got the quote from further into the journal; it’s got some yoga-centric quotes and art, and I happen to like Jung).

I like this quote, because I’ve always been inward-focused in an outward-focused world.

So much of what happens in my life in internal, often invisible from the outside. It’s not a sparkling clean house and yard, a put-together look, a fancy car and kids with lots of trophies and awards.

It’s a rich internal vein, growth and change beneath the surface, small or enormous inner shiftings that make me….

What?

More myself? More real? More human?

Happier, and more centered, for sure. Better at being me, and allowing others the space to be who and as they are…”

That was just the thought that was at the top of my mind, then, but it wouldn’t have been there, if I hadn’t given it the space and time to be born…

And that speaks to me about mindfulness. We can’t be as mindful if we’re rushing around, never slowing or stopping, never giving ourselves time or space to – well, just to be. To think, to ponder, to feel.

So much of popular culture in ‘first-world’ nature is about doing, accomplishing, having something to show for our time and life.

But there’s so much more to life. There’s what’s beneath the surface, hidden.

And that’s us, too, as much as all the stuff other people notice.

I’m becoming a bit more aware of that, with every good cup I enjoy….

How about you? Do you have times when you allow yourself to simply be? To think and feel as you do, without any goal? Do you find something compelling in #onegoodcup? Will you join us, and discover yourself?

You can find more Mindful Monday posts by visiting Silver Threading...this link, and the image, will take you there!