Weekend Coffee Share, 2/15/20. Prioritizing…

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali.

I am still hard at work with teaching, taking an online Endorsement class for teaching Gifted students, and completing physical therapy exercises every other day independently; these are the things I have to do right now in life.  I feel like that is going well.  I track my designated shoulder/arm days on my calendar. I have not been to yoga or pilates again, but I do get in a little cardio a few days a week.  A friend and I are planning to go to pilates together next Saturday, and then I should be able to go to pilates and yoga more regularly.  Today, I have a hair appt.  No way to fit those in during the week.  So, my coffee is going to be quickly inhaled, and after a while, I hop on the Gazelle for a twenty minute stride before the appointment.  If you don’t know, the Gazelle is like an elliptical but is not electronic.  Mine is on the screened-in porch.  I often read from my Kindle while I’m out there.  It works for me!

In my research on chronic pain and the brain, I have also found information about chronic stress and how it affects pain.  Facebook is targeting me again, and I have signed up for the Worldwide Tapping summit.  Tapping seems to be a program and strategy to help people cope in a stressful world and with negative feelings.  I am still learning about it.  See https://www.thetappingsolution.com/   My research, or successful social media targeting of me, has taken me to Binaural beats on Youtube, which I listen to if I need to relax before bed or get in a relaxed frame of mind to deal with middle schoolers that bounce off the walls on any given day.  I think it is good background for my coursework, as well.  Check it out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kag0aJqQsGo

I am relieved to say that I think I did sleep 8 hours last night, quite a rarity these days.  I know it helped that I didn’t have to get up and work today or think ahead about what needed to be done at school.  My boyfriend had to work overtime today, so our Valentine’s Day dinner will happen tonight.  The motorcycle ride has not happened yet due to his work schedule and may be a little delayed.  I am still planning to do this, though!  It might be next weekend, if weather cooperates.

The novelist in me is a little frustrated.  The Malachi manuscript is back from the editor, and I have no time at all to give him the attention he needs in order to be presentable to the public.  He will have to wait until this class is over.  We have a date for the first week in March.  I need to peruse the pages though, so he will not seem like a stranger.  Is that even possible? I created him, right?

My creative side just won’t stop, though.  I wrote a poem this week for the Ragtag Daily Prompt challenge, called “Mighty Maelstrom.”  I have been fighting a few things lately in life, so I decided to consider myself strong rather than the sum of hard times.  Read my poem here: https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2020/02/12/mighty-maelstrom-rdp/

Monday is President’s Day, and my work friend and I plan to take our dogs to the Dog Park again.  Yay!  I have a dentist appointment that afternoon.  It is just something that cannot be avoided.  So, I think a morning surrounded by dogs is totally called for!

Have a great weekend, and thanks for stopping by for my coffee chat!

 

 

Weekend Coffee Share. Dogs and R and R.

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at eclecticali.wordpress.com

Here we enjoy our favorite java, tea, or smoothie, and chat about whatever comes to mind and what is going on lately.

I’ve been blessed with a week off. Did I do any writing, you may wonder? Well, yes I did! My current WIP is around 35,000 words and is based on a side character from my book, Detours in Time. I already have the ending in mind, which means now I need to meander through it again and show a little bit more about the characters. It seems to be a more pared down manuscript when I start with the end in mind. It has been almost three years since I published my first work of fiction, and I started out as a pantser. Now, thought I write with the end in mind, I still am really pantsing it through the rest of the manuscript. I sort of leave it to stew until the muse hits me.  What do you all think? Does too much planning kill the details? Sometimes they just have to come to me at the right time. My next work break is this summer. I am making a date with my manuscript for several weeks at that time! It’s been great having a week for w-riting and relaxing!

Other than that, I grew tired of sitting at the computer for too long. I do a lot of that while I am working, plus adding in certification endorsement classes to my schedule. So, I did a little loafing this week. I saw friends for dinner one night, and I went to see Glass with the boyfriend last night. I enjoyed it. It was not as tense as Split, but it was definitely a psychological thriller with satisfying twists! The characterization is amazing, and it helps to have seen the two previous movies involving these characters. I am a fan of M. Night Shyamalan, overall, and certainly a raving fan of James McAvoy. His face goes from glee, to penitence, to murderous terrorizing in seconds, perfectly. At home, I’ve watched a little Netflix, and I even got slightly hooked on Shameless. The acting is great, but there is a lot of inappropriate material. It is drama/comedy centered around the family of a “shameless” drunk. It is actually pretty sad at times. Like a train wreck….which actually is a plot point in the movie, Glass.

I plan to take my little canine to the dog park later. We have had several walks this week and morning coffee on the front porch days. He loves it, because he is off the leash on the front porch. Why not?? It’s his property, and he is a little more well-trained now. What he hates is when I walk him on a leash and we pass by a dog watering their own lawn, off-leash. Such dogs are well-trained and don’t leave their own lawn. I am trying to get Bixby to that point, and it seems to be going well. If he needs to do any serious potty time, though, he will give the begging eyes so I will leash him and walk him a bit further. Works out for me as well!

Would you believe, I haven’t gotten up before 8:30 a.m. at all this week! I was fighting a sinus/allergy issue, so that may be part of it. I went to yoga yesterday for the first time in two weeks, and my shoulders are sore. I have to get back into it. Things happen: work meetings, sickness, etc., but I did use a stretching app at home. No, it’s not the same, but it’s something. Back to the grind this coming Monday.

I hope you all have a great week! Thanks for stopping by to share a cup with me!

Weekend Coffee Share. “What a Long, Great Trip it’s Been!”

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Alli every Saturday morning! I love this coffee photo from Pixabay, as it is very reminiscent of Kerouac, although now I can add Ginsburg to that thought; I’m making my way through Allen Ginsburg’s poetry book, “Television Crawled Like a Baby toward that Death Chamber,” and what an appropriate title! I read maybe two poems a week, as I don’t want to speed through it. I also have another book on the side, I must confess. Poetry books work better for me when I keep a certain poem with me for a week. I’m going to perhaps surprise you and exude total positivity today. 🙂 Maybe I feel like I have my job and work well under control, or I just feel I can focus on me this weekend? At any rate, I’m celebrating a few things today.

I received this notice yesterday from WordPress about my third anniversary with WP blogging. It has been the best experience and has fueled my writing and my author platform! I’ve also become part of a community of bloggers from Africa, Ireland, Britain, Dubai, and many other far away places who share unique perspectives and yet, have a lot in common with me. I had blogged with Google Blogspot for about 5-6 years and never got the feel of community as much as I do now. Besides discussing the writing journey or creating short fiction here, some of my posts have been very personal and based on some struggles I had in my family in the last 4-5 years; all I have received is supportive responses, and I never regretted sharing. I’m truly thankful I started that first post, which was either about seeing NIkki Giovanni speak in 2015 or a cool fact I’d learned about our galaxy while at home sick. I may re-post it soon in memory!

Thank you, WordPress!

Really, it’s fun to think back on the things I have discovered. I’ve also discovered authors I would not have otherwise and read books I might not have heard of had I not read my WordPress post feed, books like “Echo” (dystopian sci-fi) or “Damp Dogs and Rabbit Wee,” a humorous memoir written by a dog-walker in Scotland. I truly hope their writing keeps flourishing. I’ve found a way to tell others about my writing as well, and I’m thankful to those who have read about my book(s) and got their own copy to read and some who left a review for it! Now for the next celebratory item:

Bixby and me.

Sorry for the tired eyes. It was a cold Friday night, end of work-week unwind.

This dog of mine is the best friend a girl could ask for. He loves my whole family. We’ve had him for four years now, after adopting him from the shelter.  Wed finally decided to spend the money and time on a dog-training course. Let me tell you, it does pay off! Half of the goal is training us humans to be consistent in our requests and rewarding behaviors and not to be negative in our responses to behavior. He will now sit for a treat, wait for a treat, leave it when asked, and lie down for a treat when asked. He is getting better at walking on a leash with us as well. My mom and I are his main walkers, and we can’t have an over-enthusiastic dog yanking our arms our pulling a shoulder out of socket. He has gotten so much better, what a canine angel! Today was class six, and he graduated. Hooray for Bixby!

Anything for a treat, but the hat only stayed on for a few seconds! 🙂

Thank you for having coffee with me and listening to my wonderful news!  Thanks also to those of you who stop by even on the weekends when I am feeling overwhelmed and sharing when you can empathize.  Have a great week, everyone!

Weekend Coffee Share….Belated

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Welcome to my belated Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Eclectic Ali!  Had I posted this on time, well, it wouldn’t have sounded very different.

I’m experiencing allergy issues and/or laryngitis.  Briefly, I suspected strep throat, though I don’t think I could have held out this long if that were the case.  So, my weekend consisted of Mucinex, salt-water gargling, Netflix watching, a little bit of reading, and a little bit of writing.  That, and posting photos of my dog on Instagram.  It’s a new hobby or escape of mine, the world of #dogstagram.  Check it out.  You can find my canine angel at Bixby_Fluffikins!  He cheers me in any mood, and all the other dogs at #dogstagram are a joy as well!

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At any rate, the annual St. Patrick’s Day tradition pretty much always finds me recovering or nursing an allergy related malady, so I barely even participate, despite finding out from Ancestry DNA that I am 2% Irish.  At least this year I didn’t get a stomach bug!  (Those are probably related to my public school teaching job).  That’s a story in itself.  Enough belly-aching. Pun not intended….

I’ve been working on revising my WIP, a sequel to Detours in Time!  Yes, I think I’ll have it all done by this summer, and I am due to send it off to an editor, today or tomorrow.  So, I have been neglecting the blog a little.  I’ve overloaded myself on Netflix, and the new obsession is Travelers, a mysterious sci-fi series about people from the future coming back to set certain things right.  I’ve been reading how to write a screenplay, started another installment in the Irish Lottery series by Gerald Hansen, and I also started reading The Shack for a book club. Why did I start two books?  One is on Kindle and the other paperback, so it depends on mood and how long it takes the phone battery run out of juice.  That, and, I have to be in the right mood for how to write a screenplay.  Though, it all looks familiar, but I am taking notes and bookmarking.

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Speaking of Book clubs, my church’s book club decided to read my book, Detours in Time, and we met to discuss it this last Thursday.  I, with my hoarse-y voice, was not going to miss it for the world.  I was asked to prepare discussion questions.  So I did!  It was interesting and was quite an honor! If you have a book club and would like to read a sci-fi book that focuses most on characters and moral dilemmas, consider this one.  Let me know, and I will supply discussion questions!

#WeekendCoffeeShare, Feels Like Summer!

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Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Emily at nerdinthebrain.com. If we were having coffee today on July 1st, I’d tell you that:

*I still drink hot coffee, despite how warm it is outside, and that warmth seems to glide through the windows.  Heaven help me though, I cannot thrive in a blacked-out room.  There are some days I’ll put an ice cube or two in my coffee, though.  How about you?

*It’s been another week of book promotion and finding people who will review my book, which means contact numerous book bloggers.  You know, I did a LibraryThing giveaway, and I keep wondering when those reviews will trickle in?  I should not be so hasty, though.  This book is at least twice the length of the books I have published in the Made for Me series.  I just don’t know what to expect, and I felt like I started ahead of time as needed.  Oh well, start sooner next time!  Got it.

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I’ve been doing more visual promo graphics for Detours in Time with Canva, and I posted a few here:  https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2017/06/28/detours-in-time-visual-book-promo-fun-with-canva/  I plan to make a visual book post once a week here.

Here is one that sets some character background:

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Find a few more here: https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2017/06/28/detours-in-time-visual-book-promo-fun-with-canva/

*I have not been writing much because of all the promo attempts and writing author interviews.  Okay, that is writing.  I haven’t been doing the fiction writing that I love. I did, however, write a short story for the Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers prompt.  Check it out:  https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2017/06/26/fffaw-the-search-ends-at-daylight/

I also wrote an eerie short story last night.  I am not sure when I will drop it on the world, but I had to get the thoughts in writing, and I feel better for doing so.

*Other than that, there has been a lot of family time.  My mother and my son currently don’t drive, but I think things are coming together.  At any rate, I get to spend a lot of time with them and our dog this summer.  I also had a little getaway with my boyfriend for his birthday weekend.  I wrote a short post on these happy glimpses of summer as well:  https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2017/06/29/summer-glimpses-beyond-book-stuff/  This includes my goal of yoga two times or more a week, which I’m proud to say I am doing!

*I spent an hour yesterday visiting an elderly lady from my church.  I volunteered to do this; I do a few volunteer things through my church.  I was nervous when I first started visiting two years ago, but she is so kind.  She has memory problems, but she is in a really nice Assisted Living community.  When I got there yesterday, one of the directors had been urging a few of the wheelchair bound patients to move down the halls in their chairs.  She had been doing that too, so I continued to wheel her around.  She loved it.  Movement is so good for anyone’s mind.  Then, we sat out back in the shade, just a short while.  She seemed so much happier than usual.  I am glad she has some good days, but I can even tell on not-so-good days that she is so appreciative of my visit, and she offers help to any others there; though I don’t think she could get up and fetch a glass of water, by gosh, she would try.  That’s part of memory, forgetting  certain things you can no longer do.  I learn so much about attitude from her.  I learn a lot about the mind, as I have learned from the nervous breakdown of one of my family members.  I am not an expert on the brain, but I am learning that some things can spark a healthier brain, and I am learning to listen, even when things don’t make sense.

So, there’s my week in a nutshell!  That kind of fits, whith my hazelnut coffee!  How was your week?  Leave me a comment, and go and check out other coffee shares at http://www.nerdinthebrain.com/weekendcoffeeshare-the-one-with-a-big-ol-announcement/

Perhaps you will share your own?  Click on the link up button and follow the steps.

Have a great week!

Echoes of My Neighborhood, Sept. Entry

Sept. 9th in Jacksonville, Fl, at a lovely 91 degrees!  It was a lovely day to be outdoors in my simple, yet beautiful neighborhood.img_0186-2

Maybe the only thing that tells me Fall is coming is the drop in humidity lately.  For sure, the sun was still quite hot on this September day.  Yet I found the drier air to be a relief.  It seems a little more bearable, now that the storms and rainy aftermath of Hermine have left us.  It felt quite comfortable sitting outside today, for about 15 minutes, anyway!  This picture shows off some of our lovely flora and fauna in my neighborhood, as well as my neighbor’s lovely, lush green grass.  Looks just like summer, but the air is much lighter today!

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Even Bixby enjoyed sitting out in the lovely air!  This photo showcases our crepe myrtle tree, still in bloom!  The grass was freshly mowed, hence the grass cuttings still sitting on top of our lawn.  It accentuates the contrast with our neighbor’s yard.  They have the best on the street!  By the way, our lawn hasn’t won any awards yet.  🙂  Now, if only this picture could fully illustrate Bixby’s sniffer going wild, as it does every time we are sitting outside….

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Not a very good representation of my neighborhood, but here is where I’ll end my photo illustration of this day in my neighborhood.  My dog, Bixby, ended up on alert after seeing some neighbors walk by with their dogs.  You can see his ears perked up, as he sits on edge ready to strike in the spirit of protecting me from these wild dogs and their unknown owners.  (That’s in his point of view).  You’ve got to love their protective instincts!  At any rate, it grew pretty warm and I sat in the shade for the last few minutes, then decided we should go inside since my dog simply would not come next to me to relax in the shade.  Always on guard!

“Echoes of My Neighborhood” is a weekly blog challenge started by Jacqueline Obyikocha at her blog, A Cooking Pot and Twisted Tales.  Her most recent entry can be found at http://acookingpotandtwistedtales.com/category/travel-2/dubai/echos-of-my-neighbourhood/ and illustrates her life in Dubai quite well!  Go and give it a look!

Having participated regularly over the summer in this blog challenge, I may perhaps join in every few weeks or monthly now that I’m back at work.  I am hoping my brief entry here showcases what life is like here in Florida!  That, and there’s the lovely profile of my favorite dog. 🙂

-Pamela