Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2018, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Parenting, Round One, slices of life, The 12 Week Year, The 12 Week Year 2018, The 12 Week Year Two, Writers' Resources, writing, Writing in Freedom

Steppin’ Out: #ROW80 /#12WeekYear MidWeek 8

Hi there, ROWers and friends!

On Sunday, I wrote about the growth after a stumble– when  adversity brings new insights and inspirations born of the stirring-up.

Today, I’m going to talk about some growth that’s been happening beneath the surface of my life, largely unseen, but very important. Because, during Jim’s illness, and in the aftermath of his death, there have indeed been other things happening in my nascent professional life.

I’ll be posting more about these and other developments in the next week or two, in a long-delayed Weekend Coffee Share post, but the cumulative summary here is both exciting and a bit daunting. Jim used to say it would be great if I could make money from my writing. While there have been small amounts here and there, I’ve never before had a real concept of how to get from here to there. While I wish Jim was here to share in it with me, there is a sense of joy and potential that’s helping me to move forward even with the empty place beside me.

Thanks so much for letting me share my feels with you!

What personal developments are you celebrating?

Blue with Overstrike: Goal Completed.

Green:  In Progress.

Black: Still Waiting.

Black with Overstrike: 86ed.

Red: Goal Change

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Doing:

Complete lists of homeschool activities/ update attendance for November homeschool reports and submit. Due Week 11.

  • Progress: 0%.

Facilitate Miah’s driving practice; four times weekly. Weeks 8-12.

  • Local driving. For the first time, he stopped because he was feeling drowsy. 1/4
  • Progress: 25%.

Move bedroom furniture to better accommodate nurse visits; deep clean as I go; ask for help from kids as needed.  Week 1.

Use one-on-one time to touch base with both kids. Weeks 8-12.

  • Touched base with Lise about upcoming plans with her best friend, and with both kids about some home improvement plans.
  • Progress: 100%

Set aside a few minutes five days weekly to arrange facilitation of needs. Weeks 8 -12.

  • Hometending; social opportunities; helped Lise bake cookies; personal enrichment; cooking/provisioning; paid cremation expenses. 3/3 for session.
  • Progress: 100%.

Being:

Focus on at least ten minutes with some combination of family members in common spaces daily. Weeks 812.

  • 3/3 for session.
  • Progress: 100%.

Gather and consider how to make our home a sweeter place. Weeks 8-12.

  • Discussed division of home labor and potential skylights/renovations.
  • Progress: 100%

Professional/Financial:

Doing:

Inventory sauces; get count on what/how many labels needed: Due Week 3.

  • Progress: 90%

Go through checking account and insurance policy info; make list of monthly/quarterly bills and due dates: Due Week 4.

  • Progress: 85%

Pay Jim’s back sales taxes; find out how to dissolve business. Due Week 6.

  • Progress: 35%.

Do (or delegate) our taxes: Due Week 10.

  • Progress: 25%.

Create a base family budget for the kids and I: Due Week 12.

  • More consideration of our budgetary needs.
  • Progress: 55%

Focus on learning via the courses I already have in progress: Weeks 8-12.

  • Progress: 60%.

Work on beta projects I’ve agreed to as opportunity arises. Weeks 812.

  • Highlighted 9, Sc.1 for future comments.
  • Progress: 100%.

Keep in touch with other writers –  reading blogs; commenting; participating in sprints and blog hops as I am able: Weeks 812.

  • Responded to blog comments and visited/commented in return.
  • Progress: 50%.

Being:

Make lists of things we could use help with, as we think of them. Weeks 812.

  • Progress: 50%

Ask both kids for ideas at least weekly. Weeks 812.

  • Talked with both.
  • Progress: 100%

Pair lists with those willing to help at least weekly. Weeks 812.

  • Progress: 0%

Seek out someone(s) with good organizational skills who can coordinate as/when needed. Weeks 8-12.

  • Progress: 0%

When someone offers general assistance, be ready with ideas. Weeks 812.

  • Progress: 100%

Body, Mind, and Soul:

Doing:

Watch Star Trek: Enterprise whenever possible; join in Twitter live chat at #AllStarTrek. Weeks 8-12

  • Sunday/Monday -check.
  • Progress: 100%

Resume taking pictures, beautifying our home, drawing, coloring, singing, and other activities that I enjoy, as opportunities arise. Weeks 8-12.

  • Home and Garden TV; decluttering/organizing/hometending; writing group; photos; singing.
  • Progress: 100%

Experiment with Instant Pot weekly. Weeks 812.

  • Used pot to saute aromatics and simmer pasta and sauce.
  • Progress: 100%.

Keep eyes open for likely recipes. Weeks 812.

  • Progress: 0%

Use Ninja for food prep once weekly. Weeks 7-12.

  • Progress: 0%

Alternate days of restful focus with more active days. Weeks 8-12.

  • Relaxed Sunday and Tuesday bracketing a very active Monday.
  • Progress: 100%.

Listen to my body, mind, and soul, and follow their leads to adjust accordingly.  Weeks 812.

  • Checking in with myself more regularly; reminding myself to put well-being ahead of the to-do lists.
  • Progress: 100%

Being:

Follow a morning routine when possible. Weeks 812.

  • Progress: 0%.

Use quiet moments as they present themselves. Weeks 8-12.

  • This continues to be an area of strength.
  • Progress: 100%.

Make a practice of being present- right here, right now. Weeks 812.

  • Considering ways to embrace presence more fully.
  • Progress: 100%.

Prioritize time and connection with my beloveds over busy-ness. Weeks 812.

  • Yes! It went a long way toward a more centered session.
  • Progress: 100%

ROW80 –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have A Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!

We’re On Facebook, Too!

Yesterday would have been Jim’s 54th birthday , and was the 21st anniversary of the day we met. When I asked Lise what/if we should commemorate the day, she said, “We should go out for dinner and eat dessert first. That was Jim’s motto, so that’s what we did! (Photo shared with permission of Miah and Lise Burton).
Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2018, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Round One, slices of life, The 12 Week Year 2017, The 12 Week Year Two, Writers' Resources, writing

Forward After the Fall: #ROW80 /#12WeekYear EOW 7

 

Hi there, ROWers and friends!

On Wednesday, I wrote about stumbling– those times when it all seems to be falling apart, and my goals seem out of reach.

Something I tend to forget, in the falling-down time, is that it’s possible to pick myself up after I stumble – to brush myself off and assess the damage, then get back to the business at hand.

And that the damage usually isn’t as bas as I thought it might be, in the heart of the fray.

It’s true this time. That stretch of uncomfortable and tempestuous days has led to growth, inspiration, epiphany, energy, and accomplishment. That discomfort was like the growing pains I used to get when I was a kid.

I’ve been simmering ideas most of the session – but not just simmering. Miah and I finally got the bulk of my L-shaped Command Center completed (still need to finish the door and two drawers, but it’s functional). I’ve spent a good deal of time and attention setting it up and tweaking, and that led to the realization that I could reset the rear corner of my room, which was cluttered and mostly unusable. I spent most of Saturday doing that; it was a pleasant challenge both physically and mentally, and I’m delighted with the results.

I’ve got a bit left to do before I’ve eliminated all the clutter piles, but I’m feeling much more centered and peaceful – if I have order in my personal spaces, I feel as though I can expand that into other parts of our home, and my own personal, family, and professional life.

So, although I’m thrilled by the return of calm and productivity, I also value the tempest that birthed them.

How was your week?

Blue with Overstrike: Goal Completed.

Green:  In Progress.

Black: Still Waiting.

Black with Overstrike: 86ed.

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Doing:

Complete lists of homeschool activities/ update attendance for November. Due Week 2.

  • Progress: 10%.

Facilitate Miah’s driving practice; four times weekly. Weeks 712.

  • Wednesday – Friday, all locally, in a mix of weather and purposes. 5/4.
  • Progress: 100%.

Move bedroom furniture to better accommodate nurse visits; deep clean as I go; ask for help from kids as needed. Week 1.

  • Much more this session, as I re-imagined my personal spaces.
  • Progress: 100%.

Use one-on-one time to touch base with both kids. Weeks 712.

  • Solid success.
  • Progress: 100%

Set aside a few minutes five days weekly to arrange facilitation of needs. Weeks 712.

  • Hometending; administration; provisioning; personal enrichment. 7/5.
  • Progress: 100%.

Being:

Focus on at least ten minutes with some combination of family members in common spaces daily. Weeks 712.

  • 7/7.
  • Progress: 100%.

Gather and consider how to make our home a sweeter place. Weeks 7-12.

  • More discussion on help/ overwhelm, and nurtured myself by devoting considerable time to my bedroom reset in addition to regular hometending.
  • Progress: 100%

Professional/Financial:

Doing:

Inventory sauces; get count on what/how many labels needed: Due Week 3.

  • Progress: 90%

Go through checking account and insurance policy info; make list of monthly/quarterly bills and due dates: Due Week 4.

  • Progress: 85%

Pay Jim’s back sales taxes; find out how to dissolve business. Due Week 6.

  • Progress: 35%.

Do (or delegate) our taxes: Due Week 10.

  • Progress: 25%.

Create a base family budget for the kids and I: Due Week 12.

  • More consideration of our budgetary needs.
  • Progress: 50%

Focus on learning via the courses I already have in progress: Weeks 7-12.

  • Worked on 5 Story Middle revisions; completed 2/5. Completed ending for 1/5; submitted to themed small press anthology.
  • Progress: 100%.

Work on beta projects I’ve agreed to as opportunity arises. Weeks 712.

  • Progress: 50%.

Keep in touch with other writers –  reading blogs; commenting; participating in sprints and blog hops as I am able: Weeks 7-12.

  • Sprinted Thursday.
  • Progress: 60%.

Being:

 Make lists of things we could use help with, as we think of them. Weeks 712.

  • Progress: 50%

Ask both kids for ideas at least weekly. Weeks 7-12.

  • Talked with both; brainstormed a bit.
  • Progress: 100%

Pair lists with those willing to help at least weekly. Weeks 712.

  • Informally, yes.
  • Progress: 100%

Seek out someone(s) with good organizational skills who can coordinate as/when needed. Weeks 712.

  • Progress: 100%

When someone offers general assistance, be ready with ideas. Weeks 7-12.

  • Progress: 100%

Body, Mind, and Soul:

Doing:

Watch Star Trek: Enterprise whenever possible; join in Twitter live chat at #AllStarTrek. Weeks 7-12.

  • Every night this session. We’ve begun again. =D
  • Progress: 100%

Resume taking pictures, beautifying our home, drawing, coloring, singing, and other activities that I enjoy, as opportunities arise. Weeks 7-12.

  • More Home and Garden TV; decluttering/organizing/hometending/setting up Command Center/resetting bedroom; singing; and fan fiction reading.
  • Progress: 100%

Experiment with Instant Pot weekly. Weeks 7-12.

  • Progress: 0%.

Keep eyes open for likely recipes. Weeks 712.

  • Progress: 0%

Use Ninja for food prep once weekly. Weeks 7-12.

  • Progress: 0%

Alternate days of restful focus with more active days. Weeks 7-12.

  • Still doing well with this one.
  • Progress: 100%.

Listen to my body, mind, and soul, and follow their leads to adjust accordingly.  Weeks 712.

  • After a stumble earlier in the week, I resumed listening; and things are getting better in many ways…there’s a lesson in there!
  • Progress: 100%

Being:

Follow a morning routine when possible. Weeks 712.

  • Progress: 0%.

Use quiet moments as they present themselves. Weeks 7-12.

  • Lots of renewal/planning/execution time.
  • Progress: 100%.

Make a practice of being present- right here, right now. Weeks 712.

  • I picked myself up and remembered. =D
  • Progress: 100%.

Prioritize time and connection with my beloveds over busy-ness. Weeks 712.

  • Much better, but still room for improvement this session.
  • Progress: 95%

ROW80 –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have A Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!

We’re On Facebook, Too!

A #nofilter view of my Command Center in progress, from my bed. #NoFilter

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2018, Blogfest Entries, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Round One, slices of life, The 12 Week Year, The 12 Week Year 2018, The 12 Week Year Two, Writers' Resources, writing

Trip, Stumble,and Fall? #ROW80 /#12WeekYear MidWeek 7

Hi there, ROWers and friends!

On Sunday, I wrote about giant strides – stepping off into another element.

Here’s the thing:

Like any other form of growth, it’s not always a smooth and graceful transition.

This week has been filled with tripping and stumbling, but, thus far, no serioous falls.  Just like a baby has to fall sometimes to master the controlled falling that is walking, I apparently need to bang my shins and skin my knees a little as I learn the steps to this new dance.

I think I’m stumbling over my metaphors, too…

What’s tripping you up, lately?

Blue with Overstrike: Goal Completed.

Green:  In Progress.

Black: Still Waiting.

Black with Overstrike: 86ed.

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Doing:

Complete lists of homeschool activities/ update attendance for November. Due Week 2.

  • Progress: 10%.

Facilitate Miah’s driving practice; four times weekly. Weeks 712.

  • Tuesday – locally, some with computer monitors in the cargo area, and two patio gliders lashed to the roof! Also, effectively used Google Maps to navigate. 1/4.
  • Progress: 25%.

Move bedroom furniture to better accommodate nurse visits; deep clean as I go; ask for help from kids as needed.  Week 1.

Use one-on-one time to touch base with both kids. Weeks 7-12.

  • Though I made this goal, there’s been some friction this week – I think it’s due to passing the one-month mark, pursuing some difficult goals, and a degree of overwhelm and fatigue that are likely hormonal.
  • Considering ways to alleviate the stressors.
  • Progress: 100%

Set aside a few minutes five days weekly to arrange facilitation of needs. Weeks 712.

  • Shopping, including yard sale site pickups and monitors for our desktops, arriving next week. Some hometending; administration; personal enrichment. 3/5.
  • Progress: 70%.

Being:

Focus on at least ten minutes with some combination of family members in common spaces daily. Weeks 7-12.

  • Yes, each day this session. 3/3.
  • Progress: 100%.

Gather and consider how to make our home a sweeter place. Weeks 7-12.

  • More discussion/brainstorming for short/mid/long term; and enacting them.
  • Progress: 100%

Professional/Financial:

Doing:

Inventory sauces; get count on what/how many labels needed: Due Week 3.

  • Progress: 85%

Go through checking account and insurance policy info; make list of monthly/quarterly bills and due dates: Due Week 4.

  • Progress: 85%

Pay Jim’s back sales taxes; find out how to dissolve business. Due Week 6.

  • Progress: 35%.

Do (or delegate) our taxes: Due Week 10.

  • Progress: 25% 

Create a base family budget for the kids and I: Due Week 12.

  • More consideration of our budgetary needs.
  • Progress: 50%

Focus on learning via the courses I already have in progress: Weeks 7-12.

  • Completed Story Start 10/10; rough draft and first revision of Story Middle 1/5.
  • Progress: 50%.

Work on beta projects I’ve agreed to as opportunity arises. Weeks 712.

  • Completed Chapter 8, Scene 1
  • Progress: 100%.

Keep in touch with other writers –  reading blogs; commenting; participating in sprints and blog hops as I am able: Weeks 712.

  • Monday sprint and conversation with my Twitter and local NaNoWriMo group, including a visit with a writing friend.
  • Progress: 100%.

Being:

Make lists of things we could use help with, as we think of them. Weeks 712.

  • Progress: 50%

Ask both kids for ideas at least weekly. Weeks 7-12.

  • Lise wants her friend to accompany us to an unschooling conference we’ll be attending this summer; began arrangements.
  • Progress: 50%

Pair lists with those willing to help at least weekly. Weeks 712.

  • Lunch/coffee dates in the not-distant future.
  • Will be speaking at the conference this summer; asked for help from a friend who has spoken at previous conferences.
  • Progress: 100%

Seek out someone(s) with good organizational skills who can coordinate as/when needed. Weeks 712.

  • I’ve got a couple of very organizationally oriented friends helping me out here and there – it’s good for now.
  • Progress: 100%

When someone offers general assistance, be ready with ideas. Weeks 7-12.

  • When offered a scholarship to the conference, I offered to speak instead – because I feel I need the chance to help others more.
  • Progress: 100%.

Body, Mind, and Soul:

Doing:

Watch Star Trek: Enterprise whenever possible; join in Twitter live chat at #AllStarTrek. Weeks 7-12.

  • Every night this session. We’ve come to the unofficial end of the series (the actual end is a poorly-written travesty I won’t be watching). I’ve also reread a fan fiction project in progress, in preparation for returning to it.
  • Progress: 100%

Resume taking pictures, beautifying our home, drawing, coloring, singing, and other activities that I enjoy, as opportunities arise. Weeks 7-12.

  • More Home and Garden TV; decluttering/organizing/hometending; assisting Miah with assembling my L-shaped work station; singing; and fan fiction reading.
  • Progress: 100%

Experiment with Instant Pot weekly. Weeks 7-12.

  • Progress: 0%.

Keep eyes open for likely recipes. Weeks 712.

  • Progress: 0%

Use Ninja for food prep once weekly. Weeks 7-12.

  • Progress: 0%

Alternate days of restful focus with more active days. Weeks 7-12.

  • Still doing well with this one.
  • Progress: 100%.

Listen to my body, mind, and soul, and follow their leads to adjust accordingly.  Weeks 712.

  • Stumbled a bit on this one.
  • Progress: 60%

Being:

Follow a morning routine when possible. Weeks 712.

  • Progress: 0%.

Use quiet moments as they present themselves. Weeks 7-12.

  • Lots of renewal/planning/execution time.
  • Progress: 100%.

Make a practice of being present- right here, right now. Weeks 712.

  • Fell down on this one, too, as I pushed myself to overwhelm territory.
  • Progress: 30%.

Prioritize time and connection with my beloveds over busy-ness. Weeks 712.

  • Another weak area as busy-ness took precedence.
  • Progress: 85%

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 2018, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Round One, slices of life, The 12 Week Year, The 12 Week Year 2018, The 12 Week Year Two, Writers' Resources, writing

A Giant Stride: #ROW80 /#12WeekYear EOW 6

Hi there, ROWers and friends!

At my last update, I wrote about taking a stride on my own.

There’s an old saying that goes:

 

For me, that stride has led to others – a cascade effect of new actions that have cumulatively helped me to reach another point – the point of a giant stride forward.

In scuba diving, a “giant stride” is the technique for stepping off a boat and into the water – into another element, and another world…

It feels like I’m gearing up and checking my equipment, stepping carefully onto the dive deck…almost ready to plunge into the unknown…

Have you taken any giant strides lately?

 Blue with Overstrike: Goal Completed.

Green:  In Progress.

Black: Still Waiting.

Black with Overstrike: 86ed.

 Relationships, Family, and Home:

Doing:

Complete lists of homeschool activities/ update attendance for November. Due Week 2.

  • Progress: 10%.

Facilitate Miah’s driving practice; four times weekly. Weeks 612.

  • Friday –local rush hour. 2/4.
  • Discussed timing for his prelicensing course.
  • Progress: 55%.

Move bedroom furniture to better accommodate nurse visits; deep clean as I go; ask for help from kids as needed.  Week 1.

Use one-on-one time to touch base with both kids. Weeks 612.

  • Connection with both; chatting about matters casual and deep, as well as plans for future travels/home improvements.
  • Progress: 100%

Set aside a few minutes five days weekly to arrange facilitation of needs. Weeks 612.

  • Shopping; summer and future purchase plans; hometending; administration; personal enrichment. 7/5.
  • Progress: 100%.

Being:

Focus on at least ten minutes with some combination of family members in common spaces daily. Weeks 612.

  • Not quite 10 minutes Friday; none of us spent much time in common spaces. 5/7.
  • Progress: 70%.

Gather and consider how to make our home a sweeter place. Weeks 6-12.

  • More discussion/brainstorming for short/mid/long term.
  • Progress: 100%

Professional/Financial:

Doing:

Inventory sauces; get count on what/how many labels needed: Due Week 3.

  • Dining room organization nearly to point I can complete inventory/organization process.
  • Had another idea for disposition.
  • Progress: 85%

Go through checking account and insurance policy info; make list of monthly/quarterly bills and due dates: Due Week 4.

  • Received both life insurance claim paperwork and January credit union statement; completed 5/6 sections of claim form.
  • Progress: 85%

Pay Jim’s back sales taxes; find out how to dissolve business. Due Week 6.

  • Read over sales tax form to get the lay of the land.
  • Progress: 35%.

Do (or delegate) our taxes: Due Week 10.

  • More gathering of material.
  • Progress: 25%.

Create a base family budget for the kids and I: Due Week 12.

  • Working out some details of the basic plan.
  • Progress: 50%

Focus on learning via the courses I already have in progress: Weeks 6-12.

  • Completed Story Start 9/10; rough draft and first revision of Story Start 10/10.
  • Progress: 100%.

Work on beta projects I’ve agreed to as opportunity arises. Weeks 612.

  • Completed Chapter 7; sent to author. Highighted Chapter 8 for comments.
  • Progress: 100%.

Keep in touch with other writers –  reading blogs; commenting; participating in sprints and blog hops as I am able: Weeks 6-12.

Being:

Make lists of things we could use help with, as we think of them. Weeks 612.

  • Progress: 50%

Ask both kids for ideas at least weekly. Weeks 6-12.

  • Happening organically, and with intention.
  • Progress: 100%

Pair lists with those willing to help at least weekly. Weeks 612.

  • Also giving this more thought. Working toward a couple of lunch/coffee dates in the not-distant future. Taking care of me takes care of the kids, too.
  • Progress: 100%

Seek out someone(s) with good organizational skills who can coordinate as/when needed. Weeks 6-12.

  • I’ve got a couple of very organizationally oriented friends helping me out here and there – it’s good for now.
  • Progress: 100%

When someone offers general assistance, be ready with ideas. Weeks 6-12.

  • I have accepted chances to get some adult time.
  • Progress: 100%

Body, Mind, and Soul:

Doing:

Watch Star Trek: Enterprise whenever possible; join in Twitter live chat at #AllStarTrek. Weeks 6-12.

  • Every night this session. Getting to the extremely emotional end of the series, which is stirring my desire to read/revise/create fan fiction.
  • Progress: 100%

Resume taking pictures, beautifying our home, drawing, coloring, singing, and other activities that I enjoy, as opportunities arise. Weeks 6-12.

  • More Home and Garden TV; decluttering/organizing/hometending/for challenge otherwise; singing; photography, and reading.
  • Progress: 100%

Experiment with Instant Pot weekly. Weeks 612.

  • I made another, slightly smaller faux-rotisserie chicken. It was easier this time.
  • Progress:100%.

Keep eyes open for likely recipes. Weeks 6-12.

  • I found two chicken and wild rice soup recipes – one broth, and one cream – and a fish chowder recipe.
  • Progress: 100%

Use Ninja for food prep once weekly. Weeks 6-12.

  • Progress: 0%

Alternate days of restful focus with more active days. Weeks 6-12.

  • Going with my natural rhythms accomplishes this very well.
  • Progress: 100%.

Listen to my body, mind, and soul, and follow their leads to adjust accordingly.  Weeks 612.

  • Even when I feel guilty for dozing, napping, or sleeping in.
  • Progress: 100%

Being:

Follow a morning routine when possible. Weeks 612.

  • Fell off routine this session; I needed sleeping in/early activity, and went with it.
  • Progress: 80%.

Use quiet moments as they present themselves. Weeks 6-12.

  • Lots of renewal/planning/execution time.
  • Progress: 100%.

Make a practice of being present- right here, right now. Weeks 612.

  • More and more.
  • Progress: 100%.

Prioritize time and connection with my beloveds over busy-ness. Weeks 612.

  • Productivity back up some; with it came a bit of overwhelm I’m dealing with.
  • Progress: 85%

ROW80 –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have A Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!

We’re On Facebook, Too!

In case you need to take a giant stride anytime soon!

 

 

Posted in Life Writing, Parenting, Short Stories, Stream of Consciousness Saturday, Weekly Features, writing, writing prompts, Writing Sample

Fairy Tales for #SoCS, February 10, 2018

“Hey, you little maniac! Stop biting the dog’s tail and get your ass over here!”

My throat is paying me back for all the screaming I’ve done tonight, but Finlay doesn’t even seem to hear me. Or, if she does, she’s flat-out ignoring me.

I wonder for a second whether wishing the dog was less good-natured about being chewed on makes me a terrible mother. But I don’t have time to follow through -we’re already fifteen minutes late for the baby’s doctor’s appointment, and his cough sounds croupy.

I shake Fin’s at her, but she keeps on chewing on Rascal’s tail as though I don’t even exist.

She’s going to make me come after her.

I take one step, trip over her shoe, and fall flat on my face. I open my eyes and I see a book – Fairy Tales for Little Princesses.

**

This post is serving double duty – something I’m doing as often as I can in these days where I am both navigating a path forward for my two teens and I, while at the same time negotiating  the reams of administrative details that go along with Jim’s illness and death.

As for this little passage, it’s both my entry into this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday, where the prompt is tale/tail; and the rough draft of a story start for Holly Lisle’s Writing Flash Fiction That Doesn’t Suck workshop. I’ll be revising this bit and eventually expand it into a complete tiny story of about 500 words…

But, for now, this is all there is to it, and, since that can soon be said of today, as well, I’m going to wrap this post up before Saturday shows me its tail, and I end up telling you all a tale of woe tomorrow.

Until next week, may you be well, and all your tales be happy ones that – well, set your tail to wagging!*

*#sorrynotsorry!


Gently down the Stream of Consciousness….

 

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2018, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Round One, slices of life, The 12 Week Year, The 12 Week Year 2018, The 12 Week Year Two, Writers' Resources, writing

Daring To Stride: #ROW80 /#12WeekYear MidWeek 6

Hi there, ROWers and friends! 

At my last update, I wrote about finding my pace.

That was a good and important step, but this week, I’ve gone beyond that – I’m daring to stride forward, to step beyond what we knew as a family of four, and what I knew as part of a married team.

Months ago, we were looking for a sectional large enough for us and two growing teens. We set a budget, but didn’t find anything we truly loved before Jim was too sick to look anymore.

Today, I raised the budget, checked in with the kids – and decided, on my own, to buy something I truly love. It might sound small, but it’s kind of a big deal in my mind. I’d been tied to the previous budget, and had to give myself permission to change it by about $200 – something that might have been difficult for Jim to do.

A small step – but a huge one, too.

Have you dared to stride, lately?

Blue with Overstrike: Goal Completed.

Green:  In Progress.

Black: Still Waiting.

Black with Overstrike: 86ed.

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Doing:

Complete lists of homeschool activities/ update attendance for November. Due Week 2.

  • Asked both kids to update what they’ve been doing and learning privately.
  • Progress: 10%.

Facilitate Miah’s driving practice; four times weekly. Weeks 612.

  • Driving Sunday – local errands. 1/4.
  • Discussed timing for his prelicensing course,
  • Progress: 25%.

Move bedroom furniture to better accommodate nurse visits; deep clean as I go; ask for help from kids as needed.  Week 1.

Use one-on-one time to touch base with both kids. Weeks 612.

  • Connection with both; chatting about matters casual and deep,
  • Progress: 100%

Set aside a few minutes five days weekly to arrange facilitation of needs. Weeks 6-12.

  • Shopping; summer plans; finances; future purchases; hometending. 3/3 for this session.
  • Progress: 100%.

Being:

Focus on at least ten minutes with some combination of family members in common spaces daily. Weeks 612.

  • Not quite 10 minutes for Sunday; kids didn’t spend much time in common spaces. 2/3 for this session
  • Progress: 30%.

Gather and consider how to make our home a sweeter place. Weeks 6-12.

  • More discussion/brainstorming for short/mid/long term.
  • Progress: 100%


Professional/Financial:

Doing:

Inventory sauces; get count on what/how many labels needed: Due Week 3.

  • Currently working on rearranging the dining room so I can complete inventory process.
  • Progress: 77%

Go through checking account and insurance policy info; make list of monthly/quarterly bills and due dates: Due Week 4.

  • Began listing bills/due dates.
  • Progress: 82%

Pay Jim’s back sales taxes; find out how to dissolve business. Due Week 6.

  • Progress: 30%.

Do (or delegate) our taxes: Due Week 10.

  • Progress: 20%.

Create a base family budget for the kids and I: Due Week 12.

  • Progress: 50%

Focus on learning via the courses I already have in progress: Weeks 6-12.

  • Completed final revision for Story Starts 6-8/10.
  • Progress: 45%.

Work on beta projects I’ve agreed to as opportunity arises. Weeks 612.

  • All Spellfire’s Kiss completed chapters sent to author; through Chapter 8.
  • Began comments for Chapter 7, Scene 1.
  • Progress: 100%.

Keep in touch with other writers –  reading blogs; commenting; participating in sprints and blog hops as I am able: Weeks 6-12.

  • Sprinted online with members of my local NNWM group; weather kept us home tonight.
  • Posted to #SOCS; here’s my entry.
  • Read and commented on all linked #ROW80 blogs; answered a few comments.
  • Progress: 100%.

Being:

Make lists of things we could use help with, as we think of them. Weeks 612.

  • Made a list of things I can tend to. Not exactly the intent of the goal – but theres no reason I shouldn’t help us out, right?
  • Progress: 50%

Ask both kids for ideas at least weekly. Weeks 6-12.

  • Happening both organically, and with intention.
  • Progress: 100%

Pair lists with those willing to help at least weekly. Weeks 612.

  • Also giving this more thought. Working toward accepting a couple of lunch/coffee dates in the not-distant future. Taking care of me takes care of the kids, too.
  • Progress: 100%

Seek out someone(s) with good organizational skills who can coordinate as/when needed. Weeks 612.

  • I’ve got a couple of very organizationally oriented friends helping me out here and there – it’s good for now.
  • Progress: 100%

When someone offers general assistance, be ready with ideas. Weeks 6-12.

  • I still have ideas, and have accepted/arranged some tentative coffee/lunch dates – chances for me to get some adult time.
  • Progress: 100%

Body, Mind, and Soul:

Doing:

Watch Star Trek: Enterprise whenever possible; join in Twitter live chat at #AllStarTrek. Weeks 6-12.

  • Every night this session. Getting to the extremely emotional end of the series, which is stirring my desire to read/revise/create fan fiction.
  • Progress: 100%

Resume taking pictures, beautifying our home, drawing, coloring, singing, and other activities that I enjoy, as opportunities arise. Weeks 6-12.

  • More Home and Garden TV; decluttering/organizing/hometending/for challenge otherwise; singing; and reading.
  • Progress: 100%

Experiment with Instant Pot weekly. Weeks 612.

  • I made another, slightly smaller faux-rotisserie chicken. It was faster and easier this time.
  • Progress: 100%.

Keep eyes open for likely recipes. Weeks 6-12.

  • Progress: 0%

Use Ninja for food prep once weekly. Weeks 6-12.

  • Progress: 0%

Alternate days of restful focus with more active days. Weeks 6-12.

  • Going with my natural rhythms accomplishes this very well.
  • Progress: 100%.

Listen to my body, mind, and soul, and follow their leads to adjust accordingly.  Weeks 612.

  • Even when I feel guilty for dozing, napping, or sleeping in.
  • Progress: 100%

Being:

Follow a morning routine when possible. Weeks 612.

  • Either connecting with Lise, or meditation and journaling each morning this session.
  • Progress: 100%.

Use quiet moments as they present themselves. Weeks 6-12.

  • Lots of renewal/planning/execution time.
  • Progress: 100%.

Make a practice of being present- right here, right now. Weeks 612.

  • More and more.
  • Progress: 100%.

Prioritize time and connection with my beloveds over busy-ness. Weeks 6-12.

  • Productivity has decreased; but being-ness and connection are thriving, which is what we need right now.
  • Progress: 100%

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 2018, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Round One, slices of life, The 12 Week Year, The 12 Week Year 2018, The 12 Week Year Two, Writers' Resources, writing, Writing in Freedom

Finding My Pace:  #ROW80 /#12WeekYear EOW 5

Hi there, ROWers and friends! 

January is over, which means I’ve entered my first full month of being a widow – a word I’m still having some trouble attaching to myself or my situation, no matter how accurate it is.

Some things are easier now. I’ve made headway on the administrative tasks, for instance, and gained confidence along the way. The kids and I are settling into a new rhythm, learning as we go, and doing our best to be patient with one another.

Other things, though, stymie me. The odd moments when I’m compelled to run something by Jim the way I used to. The quiet spaces that his sense of humor and his laughter would fill so well. The place in our bed that doesn’t hold his warm solid presence anymore.

It was predawn when I wrote this, and the wind was blowing hard against the house. It’s a time I would have snuggled against Jim, and felt safer. Now, several hours later, I’m sipping coffee and settling into the rhythm of a new day. I’m watching Property Brothers to add voices – Jim and I used to have coffee and conversation together.

I’m finding my pace, but I still miss the man who walked beside me for over 20 years.

Know what I mean?

But now, on to the update…

Blue with Overstrike: Goal Completed.

Green:  In Progress. 

Black: Still Waiting.

Black with Overstrike: 86ed.

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Doing:

Complete lists of homeschool activities/ update attendance for November. Due Week 2.

  • Progress: 0%.

Facilitate Miah’s driving practice; four times weekly. Weeks 5-12.

  • 3/4 –local driving.
  • Progress: 75%.

Move bedroom furniture to better accommodate nurse visits; deep clean as I go; ask for help from kids as needed.  Week 1.

Use one-on-one time to touch base with all family members. Weeks 5-12.

  • Connection with both kids; contacted one of Jim’s sisters.
  • Progress: 100%

Set aside a few minutes five days weekly to arrange facilitation of needs. Weeks 5-12.

  • Planned 3 weeks of Plated orders; picked up reclining loveseat for kids’ game room; plans for updated personal/common spaces/wardrobes: groceries and kindling-wood.
  • 7/7 for this session.
  • Progress: 100%.

Being:

Focus on at least ten minutes with some combination of family members in common spaces daily. Weeks 5-12.

  • While hometending; making food; moving furniture; and just chatting.
  • 7/7 for this session.
  • Progress: 100%.

Gather and consider how to make our home a sweeter place. Weeks 5-12.

  • Lots more discussion/brainstorming, and planning.
  • Progress: 100 %


Professional/Financial:

Doing:

Inventory sauces; get count on what/how many labels needed: Due Week 3.

  • Actual progress! Went through 26 cases; sorted by flavor and whether labeled.
  • Progress: 75%

Go through checking account and insurance policy info; make list of monthly/quarterly bills and due dates: Due Week 4.

  • Progress: 80%

Pay Jim’s back sales taxes; find out how to dissolve business. Due Week 6.

  • Progress: 30%.

Do (or delegate) our taxes: Due Week 10.

  • Progress: 20%.

Create a base family budget for the kids and I: Due Week 12.

  • Progress: 50%

Focus on learning via the courses I already have in progress: Weeks 5-12.

  • Completed final revision for Story Start 5/11; draft and revision 1 for Story Start 6/11.
  • Progress: 30%.

Work on beta projects I’ve agreed to as opportunity arises. Weeks 512.

  • Stained Blood Chapter 6/24. Commented and returned to author.
  • Progress: 100%.

Keep in touch with other writers –  reading blogs; commenting; participating in sprints and blog hops as I am able: Weeks 512.

  • Sprinted Wednesday; skipped Thursday and Friday; 3/5. Read a couple of blogs and commented.
  • Progress: 40%.

Being:

Make lists of things we could use help with, as we think of them. Weeks 512.

  • Progress: 25%

Ask both kids for ideas at least weekly. Weeks 5-12.

  • Happening organically.
  • Progress: 100%

Pair lists with those willing to help at least weekly. Weeks 512.

  • This is tapering off some, as we find or footing and others focus on their own lives.
  • Progress: 45%

Seek out someone(s) with good organizational skills who can coordinate as/when needed. Weeks 5-12.

  • I think I am going to become that person myself, with prompting and help from others who enjoy helping.
  • Progress: 50%

When someone offers general assistance, be ready with ideas. Weeks 5-12.

  • Progress: 100%

Body, Mind, and Soul:

Doing:

Watch Star Trek: Enterprise whenever possible; join in Twitter live chat at #AllStarTrek. Weeks 5-12.

  • Every night this session.
  • Progress: 100%

Resume taking pictures, beautifying our home, drawing, coloring, singing, and other activities that I enjoy, as opportunities arise. Weeks 5-12.

  • More Home and Garden TV; decluttering/organizing/hometending/for challenge and otherwise; singing; and reading.
  • Progress: 100%

Experiment with Instant Pot weekly. Weeks 5-12.

  • Progress: 0%.

Keep eyes open for likely recipes. Weeks 5-12.

  • Progress: 100%

Use Ninja for food prep once weekly. Weeks 5-12.

  • Progress: 0%

Alternate days of restful focus with more active days. Weeks 5-12.

  • My body and mind seem determined to be sure I meet this goal consistently.
  • Progress: 100%.

Listen to my body, mind, and soul, and follow their leads to adjust accordingly.  Weeks 512.

  • Progress: 100%

Being:

Follow a morning routine when possible. Weeks 512.

  • My morning routine has shifted to focus on connecting with Lise, then seemingly away from that.
  • Progress: 75%.

Use quiet moments as they present themselves. Weeks 5-12.

  • I use these as my renewal/planning time.
  • Progress: 100%.

Make a practice of being present- right here, right now. Weeks 5-12.

  • I continue to focus on this.
  • Progress: 100%.

Prioritize time and connection with my beloveds over busy-ness. Weeks 512.

  • Spent time with both kids, just being, as well as tending to their needs.
  • Progress: 100%

ROW80

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have A Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!

We’re On Facebook, Too!

I know this isn’t exactly on topic for this post, but it’s light and fun, and you can walk to it!