Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Life Writing, OctPoWriMo Challenge, Round 4 2017, slices of life, The 12 Week Year #1, The 12 Week Year 2017, Writers' Resources, writing, Writing in Freedom

Reshaping My Foundations: #12WeekYear/#ROW80 Week 3 Final Update

Hey there! 

It’s time again for my 12 Week Year 1 End of Week 3//ROW80 Round 4 Update. It’s been a productive week, but, one-quarter of the way into my first “year”, I can see that what I suspected at the outset is true – I have too many goals.

Not as many too many as I’ve often had in the past, but my reach is just slightly too far ahead of my grasp. I’m focused, but I seem to be falling a bit short each week, which is a clear sign that I need to dial things back a bit for Year Two.

Of course, that’s still 9 weeks away. So, I’m going to take this week to go through my Year One goals, and lighten them up a little. The point, after all, is to learn to set goals that are a challenge, but are also attainable. If I can’t make the goal with genuine focused effort…the goal needs to shift a bit.

The beauty is that there will be another “year” after this one – and then another, and another, and another. I can grow incrementally, and, even if it’s not as fast as I might prefer, I am doing better than I was when my goals extended over a 52 Week Year rather than a 12 Week Year, which gives me a lot more opportunity to adjust things.

I’ve decided I’m going to do this every quarter-“year.” That way, I won’t start floundering, and lose my momentum because my goals are just a bit too much. And, if I’ve set my bar too low, I can add a bit.

Do you  adjust your goals periodically, or stay the course once you’ve set them?

Week 3 Action Plan Final:

  • Blue, with overstrike: COMPLETED!

  • Green: In Progress.

  • Black: Not Yet Begun

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Complete three chapters Spellfire; one Stained. Weeks: 34.

  • Spellfire: Chapter Eight; 3/3; page 16/24 in progress.
  • Stained: No progress.
  • Week 3 progress: About 70%.

Complete five hometending rounds on porch; three in study; and one in bedroom: Week 3.

  • 5/5 porch; 3/3 study.
  • Week 3 action COMPLETED!

Facilitate Jeremiah’s driving practice twice weekly: Week-3.

  • Replaced my lost license, so I can legally take him out; and discussed with him.
  • Night driving early Friday morning and late evening; 2/2 complete.
  • Week 3 action COMPLETED!

Professional/Financial:

DIY-MFA Pixels to Platform:

Complete Modules One and Two; watch first video for Module Three: Week 3.

  • Module One: reread transcript for Video Two; completed Play Sheet 1/3.  Read through Sheets 2 and 3; they will be done over time.
  • Week 3 progress: about 30%

Slaying SEO:

Begin class: Week 3.

  • Course began Saturday; read first offerings on group page; simmering.
  • Week 3 action COMPLETED!

How To Revise Your Novel:

Complete three hours of lessons, using “On Any Tuesday Night.Weeks 3-12.

  • 3/3 hours completed. Lesson 6/22 Character Sharpening: All materials read and printed; early progress: p 1/82, line 10-11 in progress.
  • Week 3 action COMPLETED!

New Writing:

Solemates:

Complete The Story Toolkit Planning elements through Supporting Characters (Step 7/22): Week 3.

  • Section 2/22 (Worldbuilding) completed. Detouring into Main Character Development from The Writers’ Coloring Book before going back to these; completed 5 Personality Worksheets.
  • Week 3 progress: about 30%

OctPoWriMo 2017:

Complete poems 15-21. Week 3. 

  • 21/31 completed.
  • Week 3 action COMPLETED!

Chef Bluebeard: 

Maintain/adapt media schedule: Week 3-12.

  • Spent about 2 hours on website development.
  • Off target; did nothing for this Tues, Wed, Fri, or Saturday. Still adjusting to new schedule; it’s not habit yet.
  • Week 3 progress: about 45%

Contact three venues and three stores for sales. Week 3.

  • Emailed 1/3 stores and 1/3 venues; heard back from venue contact; will speak again after January 1. She’s an event coordinator, and might really help to fill out our 2018 schedule.
  • Week 3 progress: About 33%

Health, Fitness, and Spirituality:

Samsung Health:

Complete 5K Week 10: Week 37

  • 32 min. Makeup workout from Monday, October 16: 5 min. warmup; 4 min jogging at 4.66mph; 1 min walking at 3.1 mph; 8 jogging; 4 walking; 4 jogging; 1 walking; 5 min. cooldown. Jogged 100% first interval; about 50% of intervals 2 and 3. First time with these intervals.
  • 31 min. Makeup workout from Wednesday, October 18: 5 min. warmup; 8 min jogging at 4.7mph; 2 min walking at 3.1 mph; 8 jogging; 2 walking; 5 min. cooldown. Jogged 100% first interval; about 66% of interval. Longest continuous interval to date.
  • Still 1 workout behind schedule (will be caught up after Sunday‘s run; doing 2 days on, 1 off till caught up.
  • Week 3 action COMPLETED!

Tai chi, yoga, reiki:

Tai chi: Attend class twice weekly; either Monday evening, or Tuesday and/or Thursday afternoons: Weeks 1-12.

  • Took Thursday off due to fatigue from catching up workouts, and needing to take care of some personal business.
  • Week 3 progress: 0%

Cook and eat vegetable based meals.

Cook two vegetable based meals; Wednesday/Friday: Weeks 3-5.

  • Week 3 progress: 0%

Personal Expression:

Purchase three new bras.

Send back Torrid bra; research through HerRoom/Cacique; order 1: Week 3.

New bras are here. Not thrilled with the Just My Size (fits, but very low quality; you get what you pay for). LOVE the Goddess sports bra…LOVE! Supportive, comfortable, and even pretty-ish! That’s a lot for a large-size working bra!

  • I’ll close out this goal as soon as I’ve sent the Torrid bra back from whence it came.
  • Week 3 progress: 90%

Assess jewelry; purchase new pieces as they speak to me.

Go through rest of the jewelry I already have; save and/or discard as I choose: Week 1- 3.

  • Week 3 progress: 0%

Evaluate  wardrobe as the season changes.

Research snow and driving gloves online: Week 2-4.

  • Week 3 progress: 50%

 

 

 

Posted in Blog Hops and Fests, Enterprise fan fiction, Fan fiction, Just for Fun!, Star Trek: Enterprise, Weekly Features, WIPpet Wednesday, writing, Writing in Freedom, Writing Sample

“Before We Launch” 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.We’re led by the capable fingers and nimble mind of Emily Wrayburn.


Hello there, fellow WIPpeteers – and, to those just along for the ride – welcome! Hop in, get comfy…but don’t leave popcorn in the center seat!

I didn’t post here last week, for good reason. Chef Bluebeard and I had our first romantic getaway, just the two of us. The kids, 16 and 13, were excited to stay home alone while we went to Maine. Although there were a couple of complications, they did very well. They were happy to see us come home, but both said they’re okay with us going away again.

They’re growing up, and becoming adults, and it’s reassuring to see that all the things they’ve been learning are there for them to count on when they need them.

But now, on to the WIPpeting!

It’s time for another installment of my TnT fan fiction story, adapted from Humanity’s Enterprise https://www.fanfiction.net/u/3623108/. It’s a patchwork of stories, written in different styles, at different times, and for different projects. I’m slowly figuring out how to pull them all together into a coherent whole that explores just how and why T’Pol was the one Vulcan chosen to accompany Enterprise NX-01 on her maiden voyage.

I’ve decided to use this story, once revision gets to a point I’m comfortable with, as my intiation into Wattpad. So please don’t hesitate to let me know if something’s not working for you – it will make a better story in the long run!

Recap

Trip’s poor treatment of the new Vulcan Science Officer has been noticed by Communications Officer Hoshi Sato – and she’s not happy with him. More, she’s willing to do something about it.

Here’s the standard disclaimer. I don’t own them; I don’t make money from them; I just love them, and I tell the stories they give me as well as I can.

WIPpet Math:

  • Today is October 18, 2017.
  • I have 3 paragraphs for you today. Why three? I added the digits of the date (1+8=9); then took the square root of the sum, which is 3.

“Before We Launch”

“That could wreck my entire career, Hoshi. You’d do that to me, just because I wasn’t nice to her? A Vulcan?”

“Yes, sir. I would. You’re a senior officer; you’ve had training in dealing with crewmates from other cultures. You’re supposed to know how to behave, Commander Tucker. If you don’t, Starfleet Command should know about it – before we launch.” Hoshi’s face said that she meant every single word she was saying. Trip wasn’t going to talk her into being okay with the way he’d treated the Vulcan Surprise Package, no matter how infuriating she was. And, now that he thought about it, she was completely right. He should be reprimanded. Maybe Jon should, too, but Hoshi hadn’t seen that bit.  And he wasn’t going to tell her; Jon was his best friend.

“Hang on a minute.” He was already turning around by the time he got to the end of the sentence. He marched himself right back up the step and around the corner to the Science Station. Was it his imagination, or did Miss I’m Turning My Back On You And Your Handshake look more than a little stressed and confused? Had it upset her, the way he talked to her? If so, why? What logical reason could there be for her to care?

What does Trip intend to do?

Will Hoshi do as she’s threatened?

Is T’Pol stressed and upset?

If so, why?

Any guesses?

If you enjoyed this snippet, and want something more before next Wednesday, you can pop over to my fanfiction.net page.

And, as always, clicking the little blue froggy above will carry you on to other WIPpet offerings from our talented and diverse group of writerly folks. You can even add your own date-related excerpt if you’re so inclined!

 

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Challenges and Contests, Commentary, Current Events, Life Writing, Parenting, Round 4 2017, Sexuality and Erotica, slices of life, Social Consciousness, Writers' Resources, writing, Writing in Freedom

Shaky Foundations: #12WeekYear/#ROW80 Week 3 Midweek Update

  

This week, I’m pondering my foundations – in writing goals, and in life.

#MeToo  has been extremely active this week. Women around the world are speaking out about their of sexual subjugation by men –unwanted advances, harassment, inequality, presumption, drugging, abuse, assault, rape…it’s different in each case, but it comes down to this:

Our society, our culture, and all too often the men in our lives, treat women as existing more for men’s pleasure and purposes than anything else. Most women are groomed from childhood to do the pleasing and serve the purposes men set forth for us.

We’ve learned the lesson well. Most women are adept at tending to the needs of others. As for our own needs, hopes, and dreams – often, they’re subverted in the process. Think of the Invisible But Indispensible Mother – “women’s work’ tends to be the thankless and endless tasks that add grace notes to life that are often taken for granted.

I’ve got #metoo stories. The more I step into my own strength and my own life, the more little flashes I have of times men have used me for their own purposes without regard for the fact that I have purposes of my own, beyond them. I’m not bitter about this – I really like men, and guys are often built on a shaky foundation that allowed them to see this behavior as natural, not domineering.

I need to tend to those cracks and bows, so I can build a life that will stand strong.

 And I’m not sure how to do that.

 Do you feel a shakiness in your foundation?

 How will you address it?

I want better for this girl – and for women everywhere. Lise Burton, self-portrait at almost 13, early July, 2017. Photo by Annalise S. Burton

Week 3 Action Plan Progress:

  • Blue with Overstrike: COMPLETED!

  • Green: In Progress.

  • Black: Not Yet Begun

  • Note: I’m not posting my final September update. It was a decent month, but life has moved on, and so will I. =)

 

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Beta Reading: Complete three chapters Spellfire; one Stained. Weeks: 3-4

  • Spellfire: Highlighted Chapter Six for comments – it’s 30 pages, so will likely take a while; page 16/30 in progress.
  • Stained: No progress.
  • Week 3 progress: About 25%.

Complete five hometending rounds on porch; three in study; and one in bedroom: Week 3.

  • 4/5 porch rounds; 1/1 bedroom.
  • Week 3 progress: About 75%

Facilitate Jeremiah’s driving practice twice weekly: Weeks 1-3.

  • Week 3 progress: 0%

Professional/Financial:

DIY-MFA Pixels to Platform:

Complete Modules One and Two; watch first video for Module Three: Week 3.

  • Week 3 progress: 0%

Slaying SEO Class:

Begin course: Week 3.

  • Course begins on Saturday.
  • Week 3 progress: 0%

How To Revise Your Novel:

Complete three hours of lessons, using “On Any Tuesday Night.” Weeks 3-12.

  • 1 hour; 45 min/3 hours,and Lesson 5/22 completed!
  • Week 3 progress: about 60%

New Writing:

Solemates:

Complete Planning elements through Supporting Characters (Step 7/22): Week 3.

  • Section 2/22 (Worldbuilding) in progress – finishing up Where, with lots of ideas simmering. Who and What left to address.
  • Week 3 progress: about 15%

OctPoWriMo 2017:

Complete poems 15-21. Week 3.

  • 17/31 completed.
  • Week 3 progress: about 45%

Chef Bluebeard:

Maintain/adapt media schedule: Week 3-12.

  • Sunday: all but one task completed; evaluating that one. May need to adapt.
  • Monday: addressed all; expanded one; a bit short on posting.
  • Tuesday: Day Off (need to add to the schedule that every week will have one; I am quite a slave driver of myself!).
  • Week 3 progress: about 33%

Contact three venues and three stores for sales. Week 3.

  • Emailed 1/3 stores for the week.
  • Drafted email for 1/3 venues.
  • Week 3 progress: About 25%

 

Health, Fitness, and Spirituality:

Samsung Health:

Complete 5K Week 10: Week 37

  • Makeup for Wednesday, October 11: Did much better with jogging portions (4 min; 6 min; 6 min, with 2 minute walking intervals between) than last session.
  • Makeup for Friday, October 13: Did all jogging intervals except one incline, and a point where a propane truck needed to back into the driveway I was abreast of . Can’t say it was exactly easy – but it clearly wasn’t impossible, either!
  • Still 2 workouts behind schedule (will be caught up after Sunday‘s run; doing 2 days on, 1 off till caught up.
  • Week 3 progress: 50%

Tai chi, yoga, reiki:

Tai chi: Attend class twice weekly; either Monday evening, or Tuesday and/or Thursday afternoons: Weeks 1-12.

  • With the extra workouts, and only 3.5 hours sleep due to looking for some fan fiction stories I knew I wrote but couldn’t find (until I did a little after 7am), I wasn’t up to a trip away from home. I’m learning to listen to my body a little better, so I stayed home except for my 5k training run
  • Week 3 progress: 0%

Cook and eat vegetable based meals.

Cook two vegetable based meals; Wednesday/Friday: Weeks 3-5.

  • Not scheduled for this session.
  • Week 3 progress: 0%

 

Personal Expression:

Purchase three new bras.

Send back Torrid bra; research through HerRoom/Cacique; order 1: Week 3.

  • Went to HerRoom.com, and found they made it EASY to know what I’m getting! No more underwire booby traps (pun absolutely intended)! I ordered a daily use and a sports bra (YES! I didn’t think they even made those in my side, and now I’ll have one for running and workouts!). 3/3 purchased, a bit early!
  • I’ll close out this goal as soon as I’ve sent the Torrid bra back from whence it came.
  • Week 3 progress: 75%

Assess jewelry; purchase new pieces as they speak to me.

Go through rest of the jewelry I already have; save and/or discard as I choose: Week 1- 3.

  • Week 3 progress: 0%

Evaluate wardrobe as the season changes.

Research snow and driving gloves online: Weeks 3-4.

  • No need to research driving gloves; I found my existing pair in the dryer. Bought them last winter, and forgot about them. But they worked very well, and are still in excellent condition.
  • Week 3 progress: 50%

Kait Nolan’s  ROW80

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!

We’re on Facebook, too!

Even in this ad acknowledging Invisible Moms – the focus is on selling us something to make our hair look good – not some way to help us find our own strength and purpose!

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Business Startup, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Nature and Outdoors, OctPoWriMo Challenge, Philodosia, Round 4 2017, slices of life, The 12 Week Year, The 12 Week Year #1, The 12 Week Year 2017, Travel, writing

Spontaneous Building: 12 Week Year/#ROW80 Week 2 Final Update

Hey there!

As I noted in my midweek update, which I didn’t get posted until Friday, the week began with a fall festival and a dinner for two, and quickly moved on to a rather stressful drive to Rochester, New Hampshire, where I discovered I’d left my computer bag sitting on the family room table – 4 hours away – an occurrence which meant that I did no work on any of my goals from then until early Friday morning.

That was compounded by the fact that, although we’d had this trip planned for months, I somehow forgot to take that fact into consideration while planning my very first 12 Week Year, so the workload was unrealistic even if I had taken the laptop and decided to work (not something I do well when I travel, under the best of circumstances).

And then…

Last night, I happened across a local friend’s Facebook picture. He and his wife were waiting in a very long line for the annual Candlelight Tour of the General Philip Schuyler House – an event I planned to attend, but somehow thought was scheduled for Monday night, even though that really doesn’t make much sense.

So, I decided to feed my Hamilton passion (Schuyler was Alexander Hamilton’s father-in-law); a way for me to partake in my rich local history (the Battles of Saratoga were fought in my hometown); and indulge in some writing research (parts of my Philodosia story occur in this house, by night).

I waited about 2 hours in line. Chatted with the folks in front of me, and, after a while, volunteers and rangers (the Schuyler House became part of Saratoga National Historical Park in 1950) moved along the line sharing information and stories, and taking questions.

We only toured the downstairs rooms: main hall with surveying office at the end (this was a working country house, not a mansion); parlor, dining room, and the kitchen where only slaves and servants generally entered. In the kitchen (maybe my favorite room), I joined the Old Saratoga Historical Association, and volunteered for training on giving the tour, which would be #awesomewow!

Needless to say, my Week Two doesn’t look stellar – but progress toward goals isn’t all that matters in life, and it was a full-rich week, in other ways.

How do you handle it when life offers treasures that weren’t in your game plan?

Useful Links:

Schuyler House by Day, September, 2016. Photo by Shan Jeniah Burton.

Week 2 Action Plan Progress:

  • Blue: Completed.

  • Green: In Progress.

  • Black: Not Yet Begun

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Complete beta reading for two chapters Spellfire; one Stained. Weeks: 1-5

  • No progress on Spellfire this week.

  • Chapter Four of Stained completed (but not readable by author, so I need to resent the file); Chapter Five highlighted for future comments.

  • About 33% progress for Week 2.

Complete five hometending rounds on porch; three in study; and one in bedroom: Weeks 1-3.

  • All rooms addressed and quotas met (although I’m a little shocked I managed it).

  • Goal COMPLETED for Week 2.

Facilitate Jeremiah’s driving practice twice weekly: Weeks 1-3.

  • No progress this week, by mutual decision.

Professional/Financial:

DIY-MFA Pixels to Platform Course:

Complete Module One: Week 2.

  • No progress this week.

Holly Lisle’s How To Revise Your Novel Course:

Complete three hours of lessons, using “On Any Tuesday Night.” Weeks 1-12.

  • No progress this week.

Solemates:

Complete Planning elements: Weeks 1-2.

  • No progress this week.

OctPoWriMo 2017:

Complete 31 poems. Week 15.

  • 14/31 poems completed.

  • Goal COMPLETED for Week 2.

Chef Bluebeard:

Create social media schedule: Week 2.

  • Prototype schedule created; I’ll use it for this year, then assess it in Year 2.

  • Goal COMPLETED.

Contact three venues and three stores for sales. Weeks 1-3.

  • About 15% of goal completed for Week 2.

Health, Fitness, and Spirituality:

Samsung Health:

Complete 5K Week 10: Week 2-7

  • Runs from Friday, October 6, and Monday, October 9 completed; still 2 behind.

  • About 50% of goal completed for Week 2.

Tai chi, yoga, reiki:

Tai chi: Attend class twice weekly; either Monday evening, or Tuesday and/or Thursday afternoons: Weeks 1-12.

  • I was away on all available class days.

  • No progress this week.

Cook a vegetable based meal.

Cook a vegetable based meal on Wednesday: Weeks 1-2.

  • Helped prepare a veggie-rich Wednesday meal.

  • 50% of goal completed for Week 2.

Personal Expression:

Assess jewelry; purchase new pieces as they speak to me.

Go through the jewelry I already have; save and/or discard as I choose: Week 2 3.

  • Went through heart-shaped trinket box which holds most of my jewelry.

  • Goal COMPLETED for Week 2.

Evaluate wardrobe as the season changes.

Purchase snow and driving gloves: Week 2-4.

  • No progress this week.

Kait Nolan’s ROW80 –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!

We’re on Facebook, too!

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Business Startup, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Round 4 2017, slices of life, The 12 Week Year, The 12 Week Year #1, The 12 Week Year 2017

When Building Blocks Tumble: 12 Week Year/#ROW80 Week 2 Midweek Update

So, ROW80 is the writing challenge that knows I have a life, and that’s good, because, this week, life was definitely happening in my world.

Saturday and Sunday, I worked events for Chef Bluebeard’s Flavor Enhancement Sauces. Saturday was the Goat Brothers Swap Meet and Motorcycle Show; and Sunday was the Second Annual Schuylerville Fall Festival.

Both were productive – we sold 24 bottles in those two days – our highest weekly sales to date.

Then, on Monday, Chef Bluebeard and I (call me Mrs. Bluebeard!) headed out on our first romantic getaway since we became parents a little over sixteen years ago. We made sure the kids were well provisioned with all their favorite foods, an emergency fund, and a trusted family friend to be their adult contact, which came in handy when our water pump malfunctioned, and they needed water to hold them over until the pump repairman could finish his work and restore our system to operational status.

Also, we were getting settled into our inn in Rochester, NH on Monday night, a good four hours from home, when I realized that I’d left my computer bag on the family room table – with my laptop; meditation and journaling supplies; and the charger head for our phones all inside.

That was a bit of an adjustment for me, since I sleep less than Jim does, on average, and had been planning to get some work done during those hours.

Instead, I actually relaxed. I didn’t write for four days. We visited with my friend Lauren and her boyfriend (and their two really sweet dogs, too). We ate out and cooked over an open fire and explored tide pools and a little bit of Acadia National Park in Maine, as well as the Bar Harbor area.

And Jim and I reconnected. Some things that needed to be aired were, in the nature of a long-term partnership. We cocooned in a lovely little cabin with a mountain view. We started to see a glimmer of what life will be like when the children are grown and we’re free to go as we will, without the preparation this trip required.

When we came home, we found two teens happy to see us, but confirming that they were fine despite the problem with the water pump, and that they’d be happy for us to go again.

They are growing up, and becoming independent. It’s good to know they could handle this “trial run” at adulthood, in a supported way. It bodes well for their futures, and says we’re preparing them well.

All that said, I didn’t accomplish very much toward my weekly goals – maybe not much of a surprise, since I’m only getting to this midweek update on Friday – and I’m adapting my original goals for this week to accommodate reality, since I forgot to take the trip into account.

Enough about me…what’s happening in your world this week?

Week 2 Action Plan Progress:

  • Blue: Completed.

  • Green: In Progress.

  • Black: Not Yet Begun

  • Note: My final September update will be posted on Sunday, October 8 (well, probably more like Sunday, October 15).

Relationships, Family, and Home:

The focus this travel week was on connecting with my family and friends. While I would love to accomplish the actions listed below, reality suggests that doing everything is unlikely and would lead to a great deal of stress, so I will be happy with any progress, or none.

  • Complete two chapters Spellfire; one Stained. Weeks: 15

  • Complete five hometending rounds on porch; three in study; and one in bedroom: Weeks 1-3.

  • Facilitate Jeremiah’s driving practice twice weekly: Weeks 1-3.

Professional/Financial:

This area suffered while I was in Maine. We had spotty internet access at best, and my goal was to recharge and renew, so any progress made on Friday and Saturday will be to the good, this week.

DIY-MFA:

  • Complete Module One: Week 2.

HTRYN:

  • Complete three hours of lessons, using “On Any Tuesday Night.” Weeks 1-12.

Solemates:

  • Complete Planning elements: Weeks 1-2.

OctPoWriMo 2017:

Complete 31 poems. Week 15.

Chef Bluebeard: We worked a Sunday market this week.

  • Create social media schedule: Week 2.

Contact three venues and three stores for sales. Weeks 1-3.

  • On Sunday, I got brave and made initial contact with the owner of Amigo’s Cantina, where Chef Bluebeard’s sauces gestated. I suggested two sauces that would be a very good fit for the restaurant, and got an invitation to talk further next week. 1/3 stores.

Health, Fitness, and Spirituality:

Another area where any focus is a good thing.

Samsung Health:

  • Complete 5K Week 10: Week 1-7

Tai chi, yoga, reiki: On hold for Week 2, due to travel.

  • Tai chi: Attend class twice weekly; either Monday evening, or Tuesday and/or Thursday afternoons: Weeks 1-12.

Cook a vegetable based meal.

Cook a vegetable based meal on Wednesday: Weeks 1-2.

  • Didn’t really cook a veggie-based meal, but our lobster and steak feast included spinach salad, sweet potato, and broccoli…might cook something today or tomorrow, but calling this “in progress” for now.

Personal Expression:

Assess jewelry; purchase new pieces as they speak to me.

  • Go through the jewelry I already have; save and/or discard as I choose: Week 1- 3.

  • Bought 4 necklaces at an antique store for $25, and a small glazed clay pendant from the Maine Crafts shop (needs a thong for hanging).

Evaluate wardrobe as the season changes.

  • Purchase snow and driving gloves: Week 2-4.

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Business Startup, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Round 4 2017, slices of life, The 12 Week Year, The 12 Week Year #1, The 12 Week Year 2017, writing

12 Week Year Week One Final; #ROW80 October 8, 2017

I’m sitting at our booth at the Schuylerville Fall Festival, listening to the drum riffs provided by Rural Soul. It’s a lovely day, cooler when the breeze blows, which is a relief, since the forecast was for record-breaking heat.

We’ve had a good day here – 10 bottles so far, which ties us for the best weekend sales we’ve had. Things have slowed down a bit, but there are still people around, so we might even break the record in the last half hour.

Once we’re done, we’re going out to dinner at Amigo’s Cantina. That will be a bit of a full-circle; Jim was the exectutive chef there when they opened 10 years ago, and he created all the recipes they used until he was released a year ago in July, launching us on this current adventure into entrepreneurship.

I have a confession to make. I finished the paragraph above on Friday afternoon, five days after I began it. I didn’t want to mention it until it was all said and done, but Jim and I had our first romantic getaway without the children Monday- Thursday. I’d planned to take my laptop and have time to work along the way, but I left it sitting on the family room table instead, so now I’m scrambling to catch up…

Thankfully, ROW80 is the writing challenge that knows I have a life, so…

Are we ready for a final end of Week One/ 12 Week Year/ROW80 Update?

Week 1 Action Plan Progress:

  • Blue: Completed.

  • Green: In Progress.

  • Black: Not Yet Begun

  • Note: My final September update will be posted on Sunday, October 8 (well, probably more like Sunday, October 15).

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Complete two chapters Spellfire; one Stained. Weeks: 1-5

  • Spellfire: Chapters Four /Five: 2 /2 complete and returned to author.

  • Stained: Chapter Three: 1/1 complete and returned to author; Chapter Four highlighted for next week’s comments.

  • Goal COMPLETE for Week 1.

Complete five hometending rounds on porch; three in study; and one in bedroom. Weeks 1-3.

  • Study main work surface mostly cleared/organized; 3/3 rounds. Clutter policing; organizing on porch; 5/5.

  • Goal COMPLETED for Week 1.

Facilitate Jeremiah’s driving practice twice weekly. Weeks 1-3.

  • Started night driving practice, at his suggestion. Second time in small town traffic. He did very well. 2 /2 .

  • Goal COMPLETED for Week 1.

Professional/Financial:

DIY-MFA Pixels to Platform:

Complete Modules One/Two. Week 1.

  • I completed Module One/Video One worksheets, watched Video Two, and downloaded worksheets and related materials.

  • Progress to goal: About 30%. I clearly could use a better plan/schedule here.

SEO Course:

Get idea of dates for this course/set base schedule. Week 1

HTRYN:

Complete three hours of How to Revise Your Novel lessons, using “On Any Tuesday Night.” Weeks 1-12.

  • 3/3 hours completed; Lesson 5/22 in progress; Conflict Worksheet; Scene 4/21 in progress.

  • Week One Goal COMPLETED!

Solemates:

Complete Planning elements.Weeks 1-2.

  • The Story Toolkit: Worksheet 1/22 in progress: MC #1/5 Fears completed.
  • About 5% to goal. Better planning needed.

OctPoWriMo 2017:

Complete 7/31 poems. Week 1.

  • 7/7 poems completed for Week 1.

  • Goal COMPLETED for Week 1.

Chef Bluebeard:

Format UPC code labels; experiment with sticker paper: Week 1.

  • Created UPC label 2/5 (Fresno); sticker paper experiment a success.

  • About 60% to goal; could use improvement.

Create discount program and signage: Week 1.

  • Worked out a discount program on Thursday; signage late Friday; discount used twice on Saturday.

  • Goal COMPLETED!

Respond to L.S. and order more books. Week 1.

  • Contacted editor; placed order; paid.

  • Goal COMPLETED!

Create event calendar to avoid overbooking. Week 1.

  • Google Calendar created, all current events added.

  • Goal COMPLETED!

Work events as needed. Weeks 1-12.

  • Worked Saturday swap meet/bike show.

  • Goal COMPLETED for Week 1!

Contact three venues and three stores for sales. Weeks 1-3.

  • Contacted 6/3 venues; one checkback (we’re scheduled; check has cleared) an email to a new market that runs Wednesday afternoons until Dec. 20, and 3 feelers for events in November/December.

  • Made list of some likely stores; chose 2, and did initial research.

  • About 75% to goal; more focus on stores needed.

Health, Fitness, and Spirituality:

Samsung Health:

Catch up 5K Week 3/Complete Week 4: Week 1

  • 2/3 workouts completed (Monday’s, on Wednesday;Wednesday’s, on Thursday). Too tired for Friday’s, though, so still one workout behind.

  • About 80% to goal; not bad!

Tai chi, yoga, reiki:

Tai chi: Attend class twice weekly; either Monday evening, or Tuesday and/or Thursday afternoons: Weeks 1-12 (skipping week 2).

  • Tai chi 2 /2 completed Thursday.

  • Goal COMPLETED!

Cook a vegetable based meal/snack. Weeks 1-2.

  • Baked a sweet potato on Wednesday, had with butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon.

  • Goal COMPLETED for Week 1.

Personal Expression:

Purchase three new bras.

Buy bra at Lane Bryant/order 1 at ThirdLove (Torrid). Week 1.

  • 2/3: T-Shirt bra ordered from Torrid; ThirdLove doesn’t yet carry my rather generous size (seriously, there’s a huge blank spot in market for large sizes; Torrid seems to understand that where several other companies don’t).

  • Received bra; will have to send back. It didn’t specify it was an underwire, and they dig.

  • Goal COMPLETED for Week 1.

Assess jewelry; purchase new pieces as they speak to me.

  • Go through the jewelry I already have; save and/or discard as I choose. Week 1- 3.

Evaluate wardrobe as the season changes.

Purchase jeans at Lane Bryant, and running socks. Week 1.

  • Goal COMPLETED!

Kait Nolan’s  ROW80

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Posted in Business Startup, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, SoCS, Stream of Consciousness Saturday, Weekly Features

I Think It’s Safe to Say….#SoCS

I think it’s safe to say that we have a successful small business.

Okay, it’s still not bringing in enough cash to meet our expenses, but it’s growing, and building a reputation, and we’re gradually expanding, while at the same time trying to save ourselves the headaches of goig ino debt to finance the business.

But Chef Bluebeard’s hot sauces are a going concern.

That’s a little dizzying to me, considering that we launched our sales in late June, and, at the time, we had one battered car we sweated taking the 5 miles to the one local farmer’s market we worked each week.

It’s now just over 3 months later, and I’m typing this post from our county fairgrounds, where we’re working a swap meet and bike show that’s attracting clubs from all over the state. We’ve made back our booth rental, and we’ve got three hours left to go for this event. We tend to do a bit better as the day goes on, and this event includes alcohol which can be carried throughout the venue. It’s also cool and overcast, with showers – good weather to think about warming up your taste buds!

I actually stopped for a while in the middle of the last sentence. Met a very nice couple, and sold them two bottles of sauce. And stopped again after that sentence to sell another. That makes our count a respectable 8 for the day, so far, and still a bit over 2 hours to go.

So, as I said, we’re finding our pace, and hitting our stride. The next adventure is going to be contacting a woman I ran into outsidea craft store yesterday; by some coincidence, we struck up a conversation, and she organizes craft shows and associated events. So we may have more opportunities in 2018 than we can handle. =)

Also on the agenda – getting the sauce into stores. I finally have a better label solution – since we began, I’ve been printing the labels on regular paper, two to a page, and Jim has been cutting them out and taping them to the bottles. I found sticker sheets, though, and they print fine. It’s still an interim solution – the job is getting to be a bit much for my aging printer, and it’s one of those things I’d happily delegate to a local small business – but, until I have the time and energy to find a printer willing to take on some custom work, sticker sheets should yield 3 labels per page, and, now that we have UPC codes, we are ready to start querying local independent stores. We’re especially looking for those who deal in specialty or related items – and there are quite a few in the area, many of which cater to tourists in the summer season.

We’re still at the beginning of things, still feeling our way along…but gaining confidence as we go, and learning all the time.

P.S. We got to 11 bottles, by the time the event wrapped up – and rumor has it that it was a very slow year. Tomorrow, we’re off to a craft fair….and more sales. =D

What can you safely say today?

This has been a stream-of-consciousness post to Joey’s prompt: “save/safe” for Linda G.Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday. Find the rules here, or visit more posters here.