A Visit to Jax. Beaches… Echoes of My Neighborhood #photos

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This morning I enjoyed a beach walk with my son. It is much too crowded on the weekends, so now is the time! The dunes are beautiful at our beach. There are signs telling people to ” stay off.” For good reason, I am sure.

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Walking the beach is something we both like to do. He is quiet comp, but as we walk, I feel any stress melting away. I imagine that’s why he likes it so much. We broke my heat survival rule: must hit the beach before 9 a.m., but optimise of iced coffee got me through!

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After walking, we stopped by Breezy Coffee Shop Cafe on 8th St. so I could get my iced coffee.  It is a small, cozy cafe in a quaint two story house, located next to a surf/ clothing shop with this beautiful mural on one side. I love the Arts in Jacksonville!

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Speaking of the Arts in Jacksonville, I got my copy of Folio Weekly at the coffee shop which features an article on a woman who has opened several businesses that support the Arts in Jacksonville. I included this photo because it says a lot about my town. The Folio reflects our town quite well every week, in fact!

I apologize for not taking a photo of my coffee. My phone was acting up in the coffee shop. The iced coffee was great, though, and an excellent reward after the walk. At least there is a breeze on the beach when you walk! It was nice to get out and away from the computer. I’ll have to do this next week, as well.

*Echoes of My Neighborhood is a weekly blog theme established by fellow blogger Jackie at acookingpotandtwistedtales.com.  She has been somewhat of a blogging guru to me since I started on WordPress a little over a year ago. I recommend you visit her blog and her Echoes of My Neighborhood at https://acookingpotandtwistedtales.com/2017/07/20/hibernating-in-the-malls-echoes-of-my-neighbourhood/ !

#WeekendCoffeeShare. Of Yoga, Food, and Family.

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Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Diana at parttimemonsterblog.com.  Of course, we’ll make mine iced, as pictured above, unless you can stand my a/c being set at 72 degrees.  Woo, it’s scorching outside.  If we were having coffee today, on 7/15, I’d tell you:

*It has felt like a busy week, what with Monday and Tuesday being taken up by teacher training on dealing with tough or troubled kids.  It was a serious topic, but the fun was in role-playing that they gave us, the fact that I took this training with two good friends, and the opportunity to go somewhere for an hour lunch with my teacher friends.  (Teachers get 30 minutes for lunch during the school day, but when walking your kids to lunch, something always delays it).  So, I turned to comfort food to make the heavy topics in training more bearable.  We ate at Stan’s one day, and at Olive Tree Mediterranean the next.  I love their gyros!  Since I promised last week that I’d talk about food, here you go.  🙂

gyro-1194724__340  I’m pretty sure I promised last week to throw in some talk about food, so this is the perfect week for it!  I had fries with lunch both days.  Most likely, I’ve gained a few pounds, though I don’t weigh myself.  I noticed gain in the way my clothes fit.  Oh well, summer is a time to relax, so I’m relaxing my diet.  🙂  Then, Weds. night, Mom brought home ribs for dinner!  What could I do but appreciate her offering of dinner.  🙂  Ah, summer is great, but my stomach is delicate, and she is traveling by plane next week, another cause for unhealthy eating, so she and I have a little pact.

*Wow, we’re on the family topic already!  Mom’s been complaining about her back lately, and she broke her arm in late May so she’s not working and not as active.  Anyway, our pact is to eat salad as much as we can until she leaves on her flight to MN next week.  We’ll start with the Loop tomorrow; they have a Gorgonzola Walnut salad that is to-die-for!  I could use more salad, myself.  French-fry-girl is not an identity that I want to keep.  I have to be proud of my mom, though, as she still goes to exercise class at the senior center 2-3 times weekly.  On the subject of family, my son started a new job Weds., and hooray!  It is close enough that I don’t have to drive him.  He seems to like it, too.  It may or may not be long-term, but he is enjoying it right now.

*Family and yoga sometimes go together!  I went to chair yoga with my mom Thursday morning at her senior center.  It was enjoyable and gentle.  I’d just gone to yoga at my usual studio Weds. night which was relaxing and focused on hip-openers.  Chair yoga is just as it sounds, but I could feel the stretch in my legs.  You also don’t have the issue of balance that some of us suffer.  It wasn’t painful at all, and I’m sure you can modify according to your abilities.  I do that in regular yoga all the time.  The class is given by a lovely woman named Jeannie who has a blog at yogafromanatural.com, and she said she reads my blog, so I’m giving a shout out to a fellow blogger and yoga lover!  That’s the only yoga I did this week, so far, but it fits in with my twice or more a week goal.  I suppose I’ll take the dog on a long walk today and get a little cardio, perhaps.

Of course, the book marketing is still going on.   This week I wrote a post about my main characters in Detours in Time.  See it at    https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2017/07/13/detours-in-time-main-character-intro/  I am now listed at circleofbooks.com, and they are tweeting about my book.  Sales have tapered down, but it is vacation time, so who knows?  I do have 5 reviews now!  They altogether average four stars. 🙂  I’m learning book marketing.  In a webinar, one author says to find out which books are selling and write that type of book.  That’s not my creative process.   This is art, and I write what comes out of my mind.  My book is lightweight sci-fi that is not graphic, with a little humor, moral questions, what-ifs, and future curiosities.  Love it or leave it.  I love what I do.  ❤  There is a link to my book on this book graphic and also in the closing signature to this post, if you are interested.

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This graphic is also on the postcards that I ordered, which I take with me to various places like Starbucks and the bank; they make it easy for me to mention my book and my “authorhood.”  🙂  Sometimes it’s fun, and it makes me talk to people!

So, how was your week?  Feel free to share with me, and visit Diana’s coffee share at https://parttimemonsterblog.com/2017/07/08/weekendcoffeeshare-in-which-i-am-back-again/  You can add your own blog coffee share to her Inlinkz button (the blue froggy).  Have a great weekend!

 

Summer Glimpses, Beyond Book Talk

I am getting a little time for rest, relaxation, fun, and self-improvement this summer. That’s what summer is for! And while I’m working like mad to promote my book and have decided I’ll teach a Creative Writing class in addition to 6th grade English this year, I’m working on my sanity, as I should!

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I’m spending time with my son and our dog at the park, before noon. Note the wonderful trees! (I promised my son relative web anonymity). Family time is good for the soul.

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Speaking of family time, I’ve already mentioned the mom time, since she is on the mend. We’ve enjoyed a lot of Rom/Com.s together. My favorite: Kate and Leopold. (A time travel rom.com. Of course I love it)!

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There’s nothing like a beach getaway. My significant other had a birthday, and we’re starting to make the birthday beach getaway a tradition. This is the guy who sings Bohemian Rhapsody with me.  Not in public (not yet). 🙂 Getting away is great for my sanity. We had great food, relaxation on the beach, pool and Jacuzzi time, and we’re pictured here after some sunning, enjoying lunch in an open air restaurant called Oasis.

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Bringing new meaning to “down dog.” I’m hitting the yoga studio 2-3 times weekly, and trying trying to work the yoga and program in between. I won’t get it done if I let my dog in the room though!

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My brother’s wife is visiting, and we had dinner on the Riverside of town last night. It’s kind of an artsy area but seems to be getting gentrified. Still, the Wall Street lounge has been there for ages. We didn’t go in, but I was quite taken by this mural. It’s a slice of our town’s history.

I hope you all are having a great summer.  Thanks for stopping by!

10 Reasons the 1990’s Were Not so Bad…

In honor of my new sci-fi novel that was just released last week, Detours in Time, I’d like to talk about the 1990s.  My main characters live in 1997, and they travel fifity years to the future.  I loved thinking about all the technology I lived without in the 90s, and used that as I imagined what my characters would run into in 2047.  It was easy to set them in the 90s, as it was so pivotal for me.  I sort of grew up and stepped into my own shoes in that decade (see #7).  So, this post is in honor of the 1990s, and everything that was great about it:

  1.  This song by Chumbawamba!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2H5uWRjFsGc&list=RD2H5uWRjFsGc
  2. Seinfeld was on the air for most of the decade!  seinfeldMr-Bookman Photo: Bing Creative Commons
  3. Jeans were very forgiving on the days we happened to be bloated; they hid our muffin top…On the other hand, they did use a LOT of material, not so great for those of us living in Florida.  jeansbelts-1583217__340
  4. Everything was relaxed, or short, short hair was back in, or long, but if it was long, it was casual.  It was almost a re-birth of 60’s fashion, and that was great.  Of course, Grunge took it and ran, but that’s their perogative.  grungeteenager-755835__340
  5. On the subject of music, we had Karma Police, Creep, …. Again, it felt a lot like a revivial of the sixties, except for Nirvana.  They were unlike most of the others.  Then, we also had the “gourd” bands.  Smashing Pumpkins, Blind Melon, did I miss any?  It didn’t matter.  They were fresh, and unique.  Headbangers still had their fun, too.  See the aforementioned Nirvana, and there were a few others that were still kicking in the 90s, though the headbanger bands are not my expertise.  Then, there was Beck.  That man was, is, a dynamo.  Come to think of it, 90s music rocked!
  6. Most of us did NOT have cell phones.  We called each other or went over to a friend’s house, sometimes unannounced.  When we got together, we looked at each other while conversing.  I kind of miss that…
  7. There was Titanic, there was Val Kilmer looking great in several movies, there was Nicholas Cage in a movie every time you turned around, and the Lion King warmed our hearts.  Movies were a big hobby for me, as I wasn’t going to concerts or getting out much as the 90s moved on, so thank goodness we had cable.  In that decade, I: graduated from college, met a man who I married, bought a house with him, had a son, potty-trained that son of mine, worked full-time, got divorced, continued raising my son.  The 1990s were such an important time, and I was seriously busy.  I’d unwind at night watching the NASA channel with a slushy margarita.  Really!  AustenBabyAndMe.96.16841_1312867349399_3054698_n
  8. If you were in college, you went to the book store to buy your books.  Well, even if you weren’t in college, you went to buy books at the store.  In the library, you used a physical “card” catalog.  By the way, did Amazon even exist back then?
  9. Most of us did NOT have a home computer, and no one had ever heard of tablets.   This was great, because you know, Y2K was just around the corner.  I’ll address that in the sequel to Detours in Time.  🙂
  10. computeripad-820272_1280  We had Bill Clinton for a president.  I don’t know if that was economically bad for us, though some would say it was good, and his brother could play a mean saxophone!  Through it all, SNL was there to poke fun at him.  Well, they do that every decade, for every president in office, and I still appreciate it!

**Photos courtesy of Pixabay.com unless otherwise stated.

Please look for my sci-fi book, Detours in Time, on Amazon for purchase or preview.  It is available in Kindle format, Kindle Unlimited, and paperback.  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0711ZW6XF

Blurb:

On a whim, feisty Tabatha takes a trip to the future with Milt, an awkward science professor. The fun trip turns intense when they make discoveries about their future selves and learn that while their actions may save one life, they could destroy another. Amid the turmoil, the two must decide if their actions have drastically altered the lives of the people they have met.  Can Milt and Tabatha agree on a course of action?

 

 

If Yoga Were a Guy… (My Exercise Evolution cont’d)

 

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It’s been over a month.  I don’t know why, but I let stressful times keep me away when there are crises in my family and stress at work.  Then my shoulders get all these knots.  I really shouldn’t stay away.  Yet, coming back is a sweet homecoming.  The music and the essential oils beckon me and make me feel welcome.  Despite my tense body, I never feel guilt.  So I imagine yoga is this sweet guy with a Barry White voice, telling me, “Hey babe, the door’s always open.  So glad you’re here.  You’ll be glad you came back.”

Let me honest, I have no idea what he’d look like, except that he’d be fit and his hair would be out of his eyes.  He’d be wearing a light colored short-sleeved t-shirt, and yoga pants.  Okay, maybe not yoga pants, but those long, lightweight pants that yogis wear.  If yoga were a guy, he would:

*Not notice the few pounds I’ve  gained

*Not state the obvious, that my muscles would not be so tense if I just made sure to show up even during the taxing times, and I would not have gotten sick if I used the yoga to help me destress and stay healthy

*Play a lot of Dave Matthews, you know, for atmosphere.  That, and whatever else he seems to play that relaxes me so.

*Keep those candles lit and the lights dim.  Let’s not make it obvious how off-balance I am. Instead, he’d:

*Lend me a hand for balance when I need it.  Bring me an extra block without saying anything or pointing me out

*Let me linger a little while after savanas.  That’s right.  He wouldn’t kick me out, because he’d understand that I don’t just come here to whip my butt into shape, I come here to escape the outside.

*Invite me to come back in a few days or say something that makes me want to be more of a regular, not because I feel guilty, but because it feels SO good being here.

Truth be told, most of my instructors are female.  However, yoga is neither male nor female.  So I can imagine it any way I want.  What’s most important is that I keep going back.  🙂

While we’re using our imaginations here, I think it would be fitting if he gave me a half hour massage after each class.  I don’t live far from the studio, so I could just cruise home and drift into bed afterward.  What completes the fantasy better than a full night’s peaceful sleep?

Silent? #poetry

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(c) 2017, Pamela Schloesser Canepa

I am only silent

since I think before I speak. 

I am only silent   

because I’m not ready.  Don’t rush me. 

I’m silent because I think things through,

because there is so much, 

Not because I’m less than you. 

I’m silent not because there’s nothing there, 

but because there’s so much there

beyond this moment.

When all is shuffled and well-placed,

I shall no more be silent.

 

 

#WeekendCoffeeShare: Out of Chaos…

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Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Happy Saturday, fellow bloggers.  What a much needed Saturday it is!  Work has been hectic lately, life has been hectic, even my writing has felt hectic.  Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share!  If we were having coffee today, on the 13th of May, I’d tell you:

Somedays work is really a challenge as we move closer to the end of the year.  However, I did something with my students to end out the week:  Collaborative Discussion.  I am pleased to say that I enjoyed it!  Yes, they’re still antsy because of Spring and the impending end of the school year, yes, I had to remind some of them to stop being silly, but they even made me laugh at some points.  I got to see that some of them have really grown in their thinking about our texts and in their self-expression.  That was priceless.

Life is, well, life.  I miss the A to Z Blogging Challenge, but I wouldn’t have time to blog every day anyhow.  I’ve had a hard time with my son turning 21.  I had to set some rules in writing for the household, which took some thought.  Still, I’m glad I did it.  It’s not easy seeing your child make mistakes or bad choices, and it’s also not easy standing back to see them fall flat on their face just to learn their lesson.  I had many years to teach those lessons, but he had two different households and two totally different parents influencing him.  I’ll go no further so as not to make this a venting session about my ex.  🙂

Writing.  I said it was hectic.  I regret not having time to enter the short story challenges here on WordPress.  It’s easy to meet other inspired writers that way, and it’s so rewarding to create a little world within 100-250 worlds.  I guess I miss that, too.  I’ll have to miss it because I’m working on editing my full-length time travel novel in the hopes of publishing it this summer.  It’ll be self-published, of course, because that is the way I do things right now.  Over the last month or two, I’ve read two books about self-publishing and promotion, one by Derek Murphy, which was very helpful and packed with ideas.  I recommend it.  The title is Guerrilla Publishing.

In the Writing/Author world, I have published a short story on Smashwords about a stray dog’s life until meeting his forever home called From Lost to Loved, A Stray Dog’s Tale for free download.  I have two freebie programs going on in the effort to get my name out there a little further.  One is a limited time Instafreebie where people can get my first novella, Made for Me, in digital form free when they sign up for my newsletter.  See it and sign up at https://instafreebie.com/free/UsMtE . The other is an Amazon giveaway of the e-book, Seeing Through Sampson’s Eyes, the darker, more dangerous progeny of Made for Me.  It only runs until about 9 p.m. tonight (May 13th), EST. This giveaway is aimed at getting more Amazon followers.  Plus, two more people will be reading my sci-fi, coming of age tale of a young woman whose dad wasn’t fully human.  Before tonight, you can enter at https://giveaway.amazon.com/p/35b50ae59e6ba24d

Why all of this at once?  I started the Amazon giveaway last night when I just had no energy for editing.  The brain must be in the right place, you know, and I was tired. When I am ready to release my full-length novel, I won’t have time for the rest of this.  These freebies can only help to get my name and my work out there.  I’ve had 74 entries for the Amazon giveaway since last night!  When I do the novel release, I may have to invest in a Twitter service for my other novels.  Plus, who knows if I may be editing and getting these last minute ideas for the novel right up until publishing?  I’ve never done so many stages of a novel for publication.  Some tell me this is how it’s really done.  I’m learning, though.  Now, I should stop talking about editing, and go back to actually editing!  I hope everyone has a great week!

The Weekend Coffee Share is hosted by Emily at nerdinthebrain.com.  I urge you to write your own #weekendcoffeeshare.  Be sure to use the hashtag in your post, then visit Emily’s latest at http://www.nerdinthebrain.com/weekendcoffeeshare-the-one-where-im-off-exploring-wacky-stuff/  and add your own to her link-up.

*If you’re wondering about my “chaotic” title, it’s just something jumping around in my brain that hasn’t found a place to land.  I couldn’t hold it in, though.  It sort of needs to take root before becoming a full idea.  I hope it didn’t cause confusion or leave you disappointed in the details of my week.  🙂  Hectic/ Chaotic.  All different shades of meaning.