#WeekendCoffeeShare. Full Cup, Please!

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Welcome to my 9/15 entry for the #WeekendCoffeeShare, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali.  Please  bring the beverage of your choice, or enjoy a Gevalia Keureg coffee like I am having.  I know I am not the best hostess, but you’re here for the conversation, right?  😉

Thank God it’s Saturday!  It has been a busy week, with full cups of coffee daily!  Monday, I went to the chiropractor after my day of teaching, which is something I’ve been doing weekly for about a month. I went to a chiropractor before, but it has been three years. My only thought is, why did I put this off for so long? I always feel so much better after leaving there, except for my neck, which I have to hold steady and face it straight ahead for a few hours. The neck always seems to need adjustment and is much better the next day. So that is something for my health that I added to my schedule. Tuesday, I went to work in a skirt and sleeveless blouse for a morning meeting, then after work, I stayed and had a small dinner on-site so that I would be ready for Open House that night. This meant I was on-site at school for 12 hours that day, which is a little too much for me.  The rest of the week, I didn’t do much outside of the work schedule, partly because grades were due Friday.  I probably brought a little more paperwork home than usual. Ugh.  My wrists have bothered me for for a little over a week, and I really feel that today. I think it’s arthritis and/or my body is reminding me how old it is getting. Thanks, bod! However, I am making adjustments today so that I can write!

I have decided to bring out my Dragon headset again. This was a gift from my mom about four years ago and it lets me speak my thoughts into the microphone, and then edit later. I haven’t used it in a while, probably because of the misunderstandings it seems to have when I speak. Trust me, they are minor, and I have my hands crossed comfortably while this post is actually getting written. Perhaps Dragon will help me get a lot of writing done without much pain to my wrists. Believe me, I had really put off writing for a while due to the discomfort I had felt starting probably four or five years ago. However, when I look back to that time, I also realize there was probably a little bit of depression going on with me, and that can really paralyze one’s dreams and goals. I just kept thinking, this will only get worse with age; there’s no way I can keep working.  How can I write that book I want to publish?

At any rate, today I am thankful that I pushed past those feelings.  I think I hurt just as much now, but not as much inwardly.  My inner voice tells me, “Crap, it hurts, but I’ve got to get up and do as much as I can today, there are lots of people worse off than I am!”   Whereas, that voice used to say, “Why do I have to hurt so much? I can’t do this, I can’t do that….”  Well, now I’m doing it anyway.  Mind over matter.  I have heard that as we get older, we get more stubborn, and I think pain is all relative.  🙂  However, I realize I do seem to get cranky more towards others, or maybe I have less patience due to chemical/hormonal changes.  Well, it’s natural, and I do try to think before speaking.  Don’t get me wrong, I think I am pretty patient with my middle-schoolers; after all, they are middle-schoolers!

So, I didn’t get much writing done this week, but I got a student newsletter finalized for my Journalism class!  I am so proud of them and their work.  I got some beta reader notes for my short prequel story starring Milt and Tabitha from Detours in Time, so I hope to be working on that in just a few minutes.  I am working to make this statement come true:  “If you dream it, you can do it.”  I have so many writing ideas for the next few years!

On that note, I am off to editing land.  I hope you all have a great weekend and a great week, and thanks for stopping by!  Visit other Weekend Coffee Shares from the blogging community at Eclectic Ali.  Namaste and God bless!

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Weekend Coffee Share. BE YOU!

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at eclecticali.wordpress.com.  It has been a good week, but I am going to be somber for a moment.  I want to share my sorrow and respect for those killed and/or wounded in Jacksonville, Florida at the shooting last weekend.  A place I have frequented for art shows, music concerts, or just river gazing was shot up and turned into a danger zone.  It is a sad day and age when a sick individual can ruin a fun day over a video game tournament.  That others had to lose their lives or run in fear to safety saddens and maddens me.  It also fuels me as an educator.  Trainers and Admin. have been reinforcing that we need to establish relationship with students, and it has never been more important than in this day and age.  Just asking if they are okay when you sense something is off could make a difference.  I truly believe this, and I am trying to infuse it into my daily practice.  It starts young.  I can understand a child’s belief that society sucks, especially when hearing of such news events, but I never want a kid to think that there is no one at all who cares. It is a scary world we live in, and that means, even more, that we need to be a light in this dark world for others.

Dancegiphy You are beautiful.  Be you.

I do not intend for this focus of this week’s coffee share to be a shooting, or the village’s responsibility for an individual child, including our lone wolves.   I’ve previously written on this subject due to my experience with the lone wolf in my family whom I am still trying to encourage to be an active member of society and to develop bonds with those other than myself.  I am seeing hope there, though.  🙂  I want to say that “Lone wolf” does not mean a sick mind.  It could mean so many other things, besides the autistic or MI spectrums.  We are all individuals, and everyone deserves respect.  They also need love, whether they show it or not.

Having said all that, let’s come up for air.  I attended our middle school’s dance last night and was amazed and inspired by the diversity of attendees and the smiles on their faces.  Little sixth grade girls with pretty dresses, eighth grade girls with army fatigue pants or skinny jeans, dyed hair, braided or plated hair, hair brushed perfectly straight, kinky hair, me with 5 o’clock tired hair,  hoppers, dancers, chasers, and observors.  Booty-shakers and twisty dancers.  It was wonderful, because everyone that was there belonged there.

I look back to my youth and remember that I did not attend a single school dance in high school, though I wanted to.  Something kept me from going; I thought I didn’t belong.  I think I was depressed.  I also wanted to try out for cheerleading, baton, and something else, but I never did.  Somehow, I talked myself out of it just as I did with applying for jobs until one day I took a terrifying drive (that I almost talked myself out of) to my first job interview for my first job.  Things were hard for me at times.  I don’t know if I just needed to kick myself more often or if I needed a voice, a mentor, to guide me and push me, tell me I could do it, and if I didn’t make the team or squad, I could try for something else.  I joined a Pep Club and didn’t really speak up or participate much.  I just know what it is like to be growing up and to feel so terribly awkward.  I wrote poetry, which helped, but I hid it away from everyone.

I have also had a rough time in the last 5 years, dealing with family events.  Until one day, something wonderful happened and I got to see my favorite poet of twenty-five years speak in front of a group.  I felt special.  I thought, “Why did this happen?  Will I win the lottery now, win a trip to Italy?”  Was it a sudden stroke of luck?  No, it was God speaking to me right in the most special corner of my heart, where my love for Literature resides.  I was inspired to write, to produce, to enter contests, and ultimately to self-publish.  This was my route to feeling better about life, in addition to a lifelong reading obsession.  If I lost a contest, I kept writing and entered others or found another way to share my writing.  God gave me this, and sometimes the only reason I do it is to keep my mind and my heart whole, as the use of my imagination is the greatest high-on-life experience ever, but I can do a lot better for the world when I am in that state of mind.  My hope and prayer today is that those out there feeling lost will find that one thing that erases all of the negativity and embrace it.

Thank you for reading this far!  If you want to know more about my writing, please visit My Published Books which also contains a link to my Amazon author site.  You may also want to join the Weekend Coffee Share or see other shares: Coffee Share at Eclectic Ali , 9/01

 

 

 

 

Weekend Coffee Share, Back to School for Teachers

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at eclecticali.wordpress.com!  Teachers are back at work, so that has been my life this week.  I crashed early every night, sometimes on the couch.  I even skipped yoga Weds. night, but at least I got in 20 minutes on the Gazelle last night.

In addition to teaching English Language Arts this school year, I will teach one elective class of 7th and 8th grade Journalism.  It will be an introductory class.  I have a few ideas, such as showing clips of newscasts and having students detect any bias in the reporter, as well as, overtime, having them produce a newsletter.  Most students did not get this class by choice, so it will be my challenge to keep them interested, I suppose.  I will be teaching more Gifted students in my Language Arts classes as well, and I think that will be interesting.  In fact, I will likely take another course on teaching Gifted students this fall.

Along with what I am teaching, there are the extra things they want us to do.  A blogger wrote about this phenomenon at jaxkidsmatter.blogspot.com.  He urges teachers to not work beyond contract time (4:25 each day).  Others responded to him that our CAST (teacher performance rubric) actually consists of all the extra things that one has to work beyond contract time to fulfill.  Being a member of a professional learning community, committees, etc. are some of the ways a teacher works beyond their “teaching” day.  Staying within contract time for some means bringing more work home.  It also means not participating in some of these committees or extracurricular activities.  I have volunteered for one or two things so far and am being asked to do more.  I’ve said “I don’t think I can,” or simply “No.”  I have to really think before taking on anymore.  Taking on nothing can mean a lower teacher eval score, which means, when that test score (VAM) number for the last 3 years comes from the state, it could even lower my teacher evaluation more.    This VAM number consists of a mysterious high level formula that I don’t think many of our brightest Math teachers even understand.

I love inspiring young people, but I hate the politics of this job.  This is why I stay in the Union.  Case in point: this one week of teacher planning is sooooo overwhelming, I have not even written a thing this week.  This is the first writing I have done.  I imagine it will be like this for a few weeks, though I’ll try to participate in a flash fiction challenge.  So, in some way, a teacher’s right to say no to taking on one more club, committee, or responsibility needs to be protected by SOMEONE!  I constantly seek balance. I’ve already said yes to a few things, and I’m making it a point to reach out to new teachers and make their transition smoother.

I have received some devotions books from fellow blogger, Rick Christensen at https://discoveringandsharinggrace.com/, and they are delightful!  They are all about Gentle Witnessing, which is something I am trying to do more.  Not just keeping to myself, I want to share my strengths with those it may help.  Right now, my strength is that I have taught for 18 years under 6 different principals with 5 different schedule cofigurations.  I can be of help to a brand new teacher.  Two years ago, an emotional storm in my life and family made me what I feel to be the weakest link in my school for a period of months.  I still did my job, but I was a shell of what I actually could be.  I plan to do much better this year, but again, I need to balance it and rest while at home, write when I am moved, give time to my family and faith community, and have fun with friends and the boyfriend.  Sunday I plan to go to church and afterward, see a movie with my son, since he is off.  Balance.  I will try!

Please visit https://discoveringandsharinggrace.com/ and read a little of it.  If the message resonates with you, follow his blog and/or check out his devotionals!

Bloggers, feel free to join and share in the Weekend Coffee Share conversation at Weekend Coffee Share 8/10/18

 

 

 

 

 

Exclusive Interview on Tabitha from the Detours in Time Series

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I have a guest post today on the RLF blog!  I’ll be giving some background on Tabitha, a main character in the Detours in Time books.  It’s a little different, actually.  I’ll answer questions about her, and she’ll answer questions about me.  (Why does she think I created her? Just one example).  It was a lot of fun to do!  Please visit the link below, like it, share it, etc.

Tabitha’s Character Background

The website rlfblog.com stands for Romance Lives Forever blog.  While I don’t classify Detours in Time as romance, there is a sweet romance involved when two friends learn things about each other during time travel, a unique bonding experience.  Detours in Time is classified as Sci-fi, time travel that comments on where society may be headed, but in the process, comments on love and the importance of family.  Detours in Time and its sequel, Undercurrents in Time are both available at Amazon.com.

Thank you for visiting my blog and the rlfblog.  I think you’ll enjoy what you see.

#WeekendCoffeeShare, Recouping from Vacation

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Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Alli

Coffee is a must today!  I’ve been quite sluggish for the last week.  You see, my son and I traveled to Rhode Island for five days in mid-July to see my dad.  It was beautiful there!  I’ll be honest, my dad is no dottering old man.  He works full-time at age 74, attends many community functions, and holds a position of leadership in his church.  He also lives a very healthy, active lifestyle despite having had three heart attacks.

Dad’s active lifestyle was witnessed firsthand by my son and me.  I mean, Dad had things planned for almost every day we were there.  He rents an apartment very near the beach in R.I.  We walked from there to the beach many times.  The weather was heavenly.  Even on days he called humid, I was pretty comfortable, as it always seemed to be at least 10 degrees lower than it would be in Florida.  Our activities ranged from walking to the “Clam Shack” for clam chowder, to the beach, walking on the famous and gorgeous “Cliff Walk” that was about 4 miles one afternoon, and walking to the town of Newport the next day.  He took us on a ferry to tour lighthouses on the bay and took us sailing with his friend who owns a sailboat.

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This is where I got to see his stubborn spirit that has likely been around since youth.  He has had to be self-reliant all his life, as his family grew up poor.  Having many siblings meant his parents had to send him to a farm to work in the summers.  He entered the Navy in his twenties, and I guess his love for the sea never left him. His friend also sails several times a week, and they are quite the pair, fearless old men with sea legs.  🙂  We went way out beyond the bay and toward the sea.  My son went down to the cabin, but one of the guys said that would make a person feel more queasy.  After a while, I went there too, just to feel I had something to grab. (There was a table attached to the floor).  I felt shaky, weak, and ready to be sick.  None of us did, though.  Soon, we were heading back from the sea and into the calmer waters again.  We were out there for hours.  I could safely say that I enjoyed 80% of our sailing excursion.  Overall, it was a good experience.  My discomfort was a minor thing; I didn’t ask them to head back, though I am sure at one point I asked “when” we’d head back.  The calmer waters allowed for some beautiful views.  At the end, I had to admit the old man was tougher than I was.

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It was a really enjoyable trip, though, especially the Lighthouse ferry boat, and I attended church with my dad at a Center for Spiritual Living. It was great, and all of his friends there were quite lovely.  He took my son kayaking one day, and I walked to the beach to enjoy the lovely weather.  All in all, it was nice spending time with my father, and I even got some bonding time with my son.  He learned a little bit more about who we are.  When it was time to head home, I was probably good and tired.  The airline flight and getting home at 1 a.m. didn’t help.  The next day, I got new car tires.  The day after, I woke up with a cold, and it grew more harrowing day after day, but I just stayed in, rested, and took the Mucinex.  A week later, and I’m still awfully sluggish in the morning.  At least the big excitement of this summer is over.  All that is left is my mom’s birthday next week.  July is, in a big way, about family this year.  August 6th, I head back to work teaching.  There will be lots of changes this year, but today it is still summer break, so I need to honor that.

Thanks for stopping by for my Weekend Coffee Share!  Have a great weekend.  How was your week?  Are you looking forward to summer’s end?

 

 

 

Weekend Coffee Share. Feels Like Summer!

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Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at eclecticali.wordpress.com!  I’ve been relaxing, creating book graphics, and planning content for the Detours in Time Facebook page.  The blog tour for Undercurrents in Time is in full swing again this week!  Todays excerpt is at https://musingsfromanaddictedreader.wordpress.com/2018/07/09/book-tour-undercurrents-in-time-by-pamela-schloesser-canepa/  Visit, read the excerpt and enter the Rafflecopter for a giftcard!  By the way, you won’t believe what Tabitha gets herself into…  On the book topic, I now have a series page for Detours in Time, since they are now a twosome!  You can see it here on Amazon:  Detours in Time series . Tomorrow, I’ll be visiting my local independent bookstore, The Book Nook, and dropping off some of my new books for sale!  I love visiting the store as a reader and an author!

This week, I wrote an autobiographical piece that came out of a fleeting memory, of a first job I didn’t know how to handle:   https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2018/07/09/stupid-s-i-did-when-i-was-young-the-80s/

Honestly, it was more of a learning experience, and those are important.  I also wrote a flash fiction piece focusing on the perspective of a teen boy: Magical Afternoon

By the way, yesterday, I spent hours making reading progress on two books, and Saturday night I enjoyed watching Netflix.  It is general laziness, but my mind was enjoying it!

Later this week, my son and I will be getting on a plane to go and visit my father in Rhode Island.  I haven’t flown in 5 years!  It’s okay, I am bringing lots of reading material, the best drug there is.  “Feed your head,” she said, in that famous White Rabbit song…  At any rate, we have been to RI before and found it quite beautiful.  I can’t wait to take lots of pictures and share them!  I don’t se my dad enough, and he and my son are not very close, but I think the sights will be a relaxing thing for my son and myself.  I can talk to a wall, that is no issue, and my son doesn’t talk much anyhow, but I want them to get along.

RIcrag.RocksBeauty34220_1369823214626_93248_n  As shown here in RI in 2010, my son did enjoy the nature!  He just grew tired of posing for pictures… 🙂 We will be doing a lot of walking, and that’s healthy.  I love the look of the water there, as well.  I look forward to it and just hope the flight won’t be too uncomfortable!

Thanks to Allison for hosting the coffee shares! I am getting later with my entries, as I seem to forget what day it is during the summer-time.  Have a great week, everyone!

Weekend Coffee Share. It’s not the ’80s Anymore…

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at EclecticAli. Almost every day but one has been a full-cup-of-coffee day this week, what with all of the celebrating and the book release. I think the event for my Undercurrents in Time release went well and was a whole lot of fun. I did a few live videos to save myself from all the typing, trying to share background and info in my FB event. Here is one of the live videos I did, discussing why I chose to be an indie author and why I choose to write sci-fi books: Facebook Live Author’s video Please go and check it out! Disclaimer: No, I am not 23 years old; it is a joke!

I was also celebrating my boyfriend’s birthday with himthis week. We went to the Pixies’ concert Sunday night and then to the beach on Monday, not too early, of course. The Pixies were playing at The Florida Theatre, a very nice venue, however, it was steaming hot even inside as we waited in line for a drink. I think it’s because there were so many people there. They haven’t played in Jacksonville, Florida since the 1990s, so I’ve been told. People were all very friendly and looked to be about our age. So I didn’t feel old for being there…haha. I kept asking my boyfriend, Kenny, “Where are all the mohawks?” To be fair, the band is more of a surfer-punk type band, but you would have seen mohawks back in the day, I’m sure. I have a curiosity for counter-culture. Sadly, we didn’t see any.

Pixabay photo.  Where have all the mohawks gone? 

Here was Kenny’s answer, by the way: “Honey, everyone’s got a job now. We’re all at least in our fifties now.” Hmmm.

I laughed. “Yeah, no one could get these tickets if they didn’t have a job!” I guess all the artists with mohawks hang out somewhere else? I’m telling you, it is a really nice venue. I had never seen them in concert before, and this was a real treat. So, yeah, it’s not the 1980’s anymore, but the band sounded awesome! They played “Here Comes Your Man,” a sort of rock-a-billy, danceworthy song and most of the tracks from my favorite album. “Wave of Mutilation” seemed slowed down to me but still sounded killer! Sorry, my eighties’ lingo is creeping in. I heard from a friend who got a really good seat so he could see, because he can’t stand for long, and he had people standing in front of him who would not move. The ushers acted like they had very little power to help, but then they had to hurry to the lower area where, I am told, a fight had ensued. Ah, some people never grow up…

So we enjoyed the concert immensely. Monday morning I caved in and got a Starbuck’s espresso drink, salted caramel to be exact. It sure hit the spot. I think I did have one half -cup- of- coffee day this week; it certainly wasn’t on book release day! I have made it to yoga twice this week, so I am on the way to balancing my health with summer fun, which is the goal. I am not writing much, but that can be expected since I just dropped a new book on the world! Actually, I’m writing copy for Facebook ads and creating Canva quote and image teasers to market my book. It seems to never end. I also created a Facebook page for Detours in Time series; I think you can find it just by typing that name. Wake up-Hug dog-Hustle is the motto on my new favorite t-shirt, and it certainly applies to me! After all, my son is up and out the door for work around 7:30 almost every day except for his day off. I’m left with my dog, my books, and my social media, until I schedule a lunch with a friend.  I had one of those this last week.  My son and I have taken in some movies, Jurassic World being the most recent. I really enjoyed it; lots of thrills and chills and the never-ending debate of “Just because science allows us to do so doesn’t mean we should…” Jeff Goldblum looked very appealing as he made this argument….

I am enjoying summer, as I slept in until 9 a.m. today. My son and I spend time together on his Thursdays off, beside me taking him to appointments. So far it has been movies, but we may hit the beach early one day. I do need to work on waking up early again….It also feels like to have the book published! You may preview and or download Undercurrents in Time, which is the sequel to Detours in Time here: Undercurrents in Time

I hope you all have had a great week and certainly have a great weekend!