Best of the Year, December 2018 Blog Challenge. #2018BOTY

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Online graphic is from Beaton’s blog, Becoming the Muse.

Thank you to Beaton at becomingthemuse.wordpress.com for making me aware of this blog challenge! Since I have arrived late to this party, I will have to do this my own way. I am no good at posting daily these days. I have missed the first days, and some of these require me to really ponder my answer. So, I will try to present a few of my entries 2 to 3 times a week. I hope this does not disturb the universe. Yes, I totally stole that one from T.S. Eliot’s poetry, and I have a few others I like to say at random times. 🙂 At any rate, here are my Best from numbers 1 to 5:

  1. Movie- Rental: Arrival. This one ‘arrived” on the scene in 2016 and came to me via Netflix DVD, because I have a really hard time getting out to see new movies, what with writing and the like. It is sci-fi, but it is a thinking movie. There is a mystery to solve; you have to pay attention. It also can be quite touching and powerful. Amy Adams’ performance was moving and emotional. Loved it!                                    Movie seen in the theater: BlackkKlansman. The acting was awesome, the plot intense, and the subject matter, heavy. I saw it with my young adult son, and we both loved it and appreciated the message it gave. It was wrought with irony, and sometimes we laughed. At times, I cried. We walked out of that theater, the two of us and everyone else, in silence. The ending was so disturbing in drawing a comparison between 70s/80s Klan activity and racial attitudes to what has gone on this year. Kudos to the director for his raw honesty.
  1. TV Show season- Season 2 of “Travellers,” available on Netflix. Superb acting and great writing, despite just a few plotholes. This was a total time travel indulgence for me that had me binge-watching for days. It got me through a sinus infection, and I probably laid around more than necessary, but hey, I was entertained and definitely hooked!

3. Fiction book- The Watchmage of New York, by C.A. Sanders.

The Watchmage of Old New York by C.A. Sanders

It’s magical and has a little of a Neil Gaiman feel to it. It’s the turn of the century, there’s a detective solving crimes, and not every character you encounter is human. Absolutely loved it and highly recommend it!

4. Nonfiction book- Untamed, the Wildest Woman in America and the Fight for Cumberland Island by Will Harlan

Untamed by Will Harlan

I found this woman to be quite an inspiration. She was totally unlike me, but thank God there are people like her. She fought hunters and poachers on the island to protect birds, sea turtles, etc. She would raise a gun to them and defend the island to the death. She was no quitter, and I found that really admirable, as well as finding her strange habits interesting, if not to my taste. (Roadkill just doesn’t appeal to me) 🙂 There were also many chapters that included far out scientific facts about sea turtles and other secrets of nature.

5. Song- Man on Fire, by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes. I love this band and have for a few years. They are so natural, free, and loving. In the videos, they look like a bunch of hippies who have gathered in a park to have fun and sing some tunes. Love seems to flow through the smiles of the lead singers. What’s not to like? That, and Man on Fire is downright inspiring. It gets me going when I feel tired in the morning, making me want to go out and use what talent I have to inspire and to love others. I just discovered it this past year. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08WeoqWilRQ

Thanks for reading! My plan is, in a few days, to post my Dec. 6-11 Best of the Year.  How about yours?

#weekendcoffeeshare. November’s Over, and Now….

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Welcome to the weekend coffee share, hosted by parttimemonsterblog.com.  I so enjoy being a part of this blogging community!  If we were having coffee, you’d get to know a bit of who I am.  I’d tell you-

Now that November’s over, I am giving myself a writing break until the Christmas holiday.  November was such a writing crunch!  There was not enough time for reading.  So, the start of December is giving me time to continue reading a novel, The Step, about a woman who was part of the Apollo space program, and to watch my favorite new Netflix show called “Glitch.”  It’s mysterious and weird, and involves a lot of the history of a town come back to haunt them (almost literally); that’s why I love it.  There are sure to be many plot holes, but it does get me to thinking.  Considering, I am an avid fan of The X-Files and The Twilight Zone.  🙂

With an inspired thought process, I’ve had some wild dreams lately.  Maybe these are story ideas in a disguised form, and I should take heed.  I’m still mulling it over.  But I know it arose from a picture a student drew yesterday of birds with dead fish laying at their feet.  She left it under the desk.  Another child found it later and said it was very dark, but I said, “Well, birds eat fish.  I guess you could say that’s just life and survival.  I suppose survival could be considered dark.”  I honestly wasn’t grossed out by it.  Maybe my answer wasn’t the best; I didn’t bring up survival of the fittest because I really prefer to promote peace in the classroom!  I also don’t mind kids being creative in their down time.  Nonetheless, I believe this innocent drawing inspired my survival dream of the Jurassic Park variety.  Survival of the fittest, indeed!

Anyway, I’ll take inspiration anywhere I can get it.  I finished out November with 45,000 words written of a new novel, but I still need to finish it.  Yes, it’s just below the goal, but I still feel I have come away a champion.  This is more than I’ve written in one month, ever!  For more reflections on my NANOWRIMO process and experience, click here: https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2016/12/02/a-november-to-remember-on-losing-graciously-yet-victoriously-in-nanowrimo-amwriting/

Work has been full of testing.  There are mid-year tests in a few of the subjects, and I am a teacher who would prefer to teach and read with my students, but we have made it through the first week and it wasn’t all that difficult.

That’s my week in a nutshell.  I tried not to overwhelm you with talk about my writing, as I know I’ve talked about it so much all month!  Yet, it is still a big part of this post.  I am remembering myself two years ago, wondering when I’d actually live out my dream of being a writer, if I’d have to wait until retirement, cursing myself anytime I’d forget to write down a story idea.  Then again, my son was so much more of my responsibility back then, and he’s much more grown up now, though I still need to help him find another car…

How was your week?  What has inspired you?  I appreciate you stopping by and letting me share about my week!  I encourage you to visit our host of the Weekend Coffee share at parttimemonsterblog.com!

 

Who am I? In Timeline Format. Blog Challenge. “Eyeliner is my friend.”-17 year-old Pam.

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1991.  The Royal Gorge, Colorado.  Young me, age 22.

Who am I?  I took this challenge because it was posted on the blog, “The Quiet Girl Blogger.”   She reminds me of the young me, except that blogs didn’t yet exist back then. 🙂 See her link below my entry!

My entry:

Age 4– I am amazed at this huge world around me, maybe a little scared.  We moved to this cold place and it’s huge, but the snow is neat, my mom spends lots of time with me, and Dad goes to work every day.  I am living a good life and learning so much.

Age 11-I am awkward and my body doesn’t look the way I want it to.  I am missing my dad and I feel sad for my mom, who is going through her own issues.  She went back to work again (said she had to), and she is skinny as a stick now.  I am lucky to have a few close friends.  I am sure God loves me, but I am not sure why I’m here in this world.

Age 17– I am going to look good and willing to suffer for it.  I am lightening my hair again.  No matter what I do or how little I eat, I never look good enough, but eyeliner is my friend.  I am fixated on this guy who treats me like dirt, so I likely won’t go to the prom.  Just not ready.  I’m working a steady part-time job and driving.  I have a few close friends.  I am unsure where I fit in the social totem pole at school.  I am amazed by classic Literature that makes my heart cry and my spirit soar all at once.  I am writing poems that I may never show to anyone.

Age 23– I am a college graduate.  Who knew?  I am still quiet, but I can function in social settings.  I am amazed at this new guy and how he’s so afraid someone else will steal my heart.  I am ignoring the fact that he is possessive.  I work a steady job and may have a chance to use my degree later.  I am sure the Bible says we should love each other.  I am in love.  (I think).

Age 28–  I am a mom!  I’m amazed at this little gift I’ve been given.  This experience is the most meaningful that I’ve ever had in my life!  What love could match this?  But I’m so scared I’ll drop him or do something wrong.  I’m so tired from work and still needing time with my son.  I’m unsure how to balance it all.  And I still have to live up to someone else’s expectations of a wife?

Age 30– I am tired.  I am a beautiful person under all of this.  It is all hidden with feelings of inadequacy.  I am grateful for a friend at work who makes me laugh.  I’m aware my husband will see this as a betrayal to him.  But why can’t I just have a friend?  Why am I not living life as I see fit and why do I feel like I’m caged?  I am trying to raise my son and be a professional.   We need that, but yet he resents that.   I am not going to be a cleaning, cooking housewife.   What did he just call me? I am not letting him talk to me like this one more time.  I am tired of this nonsense.  I am out of here, and taking my son with me.  I am sure God didn’t put me here for this.  I am going to be free to live my own life, with my son and whomever I choose to trust.

Age 40:  I am living my own life!  I’m too young to stop having fun.  Dad didn’t slow down until age 44.  I’m sure some things I do aren’t good for my health, but I’m still young, right?  By the way, now that he’s 11, my son sure got sassy.  Boy, they do change.  I love to travel, and this year was great!  I should do it all before I’m old.  I’m still attractive, many don’t know my age.  I like to have fun with that.  Life is for the taking.  Relationships are for those wanting to slow down.  So why am I so worried about *Steven?  He’s a drinker.  I knew that.  I really need to focus on myself.

Age 48:  I am a teacher, mother, daughter, friend, mentor, writer, a nut**, a dog lover, an avid reader, and health-obsessed.    I am sure God, and Jesus, accepts me just as I am.   I am capable of doing anything I want.  This pain in my hand and my shoulder won’t stop me.  I love my job, but I won’t let it keep me from doing the other things I love.  I love my family and friends.  I have a kind man who cares for me, and I care for him.   Society does not define us.  Making a positive difference for others fits in with my job, my main hobby, and my personal beliefs.   I want to do it all and won’t let anyone stop me.  It doesn’t matter if I only have 10 minutes or 5 hours.  I know I can do this, so I am going to try!

Who am I?  I am all of these things, and more.  I chose a timeline to sum up and show changes I have undergone.   I think they all represent who I am quite well.  Life is truly a growth experience.  I asked my mom to throw out some random ages, for me to think about who I was at that time and what lessons I was learning.  This was fun and emotional.  What about you?  Are you up to the challenge?  Who are you?  More than your job, student status, ethnicity, or where you live.  Who are you?

*Name changed because he doesn’t deserve a mention. 🙂

**(nut) By which I mean, I make up silly songs about the taco-truck, my dog, getting ready for work, etc.  Most of my family will ignore them, but not my boyfriend, Kenny.  He joins in! 🙂

Visit The Quiet Girl Blogger at http://thequietgirlblogger.wordpress.com/2016/08/13/who-am-i/ for her Who am I entry.  While there, you may decide to give her a follow!

A Little Ways Down U.S. 1, #echoes of my neighborhood 2

 

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A little ways down US 1, I found another sunrise to add to my bucket list goal!   A few months back, I added a bucket list item: to witness the sunrise in 50 cities!  I am counting my own city, and I recall leaving Las Vegas at sunrise in a taxi headed to the airport eight years ago, because no one really sleeps there anyway.  Now, I can  add this past weekend, watching the sun come up in St. Augustine Beach.  That makes three cities now!  Technically, it is a separate city, so I’ll count it.  I am also hoping to witness a sunrise in Georgia this summer.  Because this “other city” is so close, I will also consider it part of my neighborhood.  Isn’t the term “neighborhood” as small or as large as we consider it?   Well, I’m hoping so, as this is my entry in response to Jacqueline Obyikocha’s blog challenge, “Echoes of My Neighborhood.”  Check out her blog and entry at http://acookingpotandtwistedtales.com/2016/06/30/night-scenes-of-a-sleepless-city-echoes-of-my-neighbourhood-25/#like-10365

Maybe it’s a stretch to call this a part of my neighborhood, maybe it’s not.  Getting there is a forty minute car ride down U.S. 1, when there’s no rush hour traffic, that is.  St. Augustine is a nearby gem full of history, beautiful views, and a wonderful beach.  It’s an awesome place for a getaway, and the restaurants were not at all crowded this time.  I started off with a mini-spa day, then waited and did some writing at a coffee shop, until my significant other could get there to meet me for dinner at an Italian restaurant. Did I mention, the beach was not crowded at all either?  It’s far different than our visit to Panama City Beach, Fl last year.  I am fortunate to live where I do, with a wonderful city that has a growing arts (and sports) program, and nearby access to beaches and historical sites.  I certainly should get to these places more often.  I never regret going, and it is worth the small drive.  Next time, I plan to share some downtown photos that represent our arts program.  Things are fine in my neighborhood!

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