Weekend Coffee Share, Lounging Around

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, Spring break edition! It’s a beautiful Spring day, my porch foor is wide open, and birds are regaling me with their song. My dog even slept late today! I must confess, my Spring Break has been more Emily Dickinson-like than Kerouac inspired.

Allergies have kept me indoors for much of the week. Being off work has allowed me a lot of time to nap, thank goodness. Being an educator, I am pretty careful and got a COVID test Tuesday. The results were negative, so of course, I am just having an allergic reaction to the exuberance and re-birth of nature. It is getting better, otherwise my porch door would not be open. Still, I’m sort of regretful that I could not get out and enjoy nature much. I won’t let it weigh on me too heavily. I’ve had coffee with honey several days this week, knowing that it would not overtake my lethargy, and I was right!

Yesterday, I sat out in my yard, half in the sun, half in the garage, with my loyal dog at my side. He loves to sniff the smells of nature, and today, he is listening to the birds on alert mode. Maybe he can interpret their song?

I did do some reading this week for a book club I participate in; the book was Of Mice and Men, a re-read for me. It’s fairly short, a plus for someone whose focus is challenged like mine is; it’s rough when I’m juggling the teaching requirements, and it’s rough when my sinuses are affecting my brain. At any rate, I love Steinbeck’s descriptions of the countryside, and it is interesting how a dream and a goal could keep an easily agitated man (Lennie) focused. This book could be interpreted so many ways, and I recall how the ending bothered me when I read it as a teen. Steinbeck threw quite a punch; he is an excellent writer.

It has been about a week since I worked on the Ellie novel. You can imagine how unfocused I have felt all week. Still, I am not out of sorts. All things must take their time: allergic rhinitis, writing a novel, pollination of our naturescape. I have a photographer friend who takes marvelous photos of bees, flowers, and landscapes, so I’ve been enjoying those sights from afar. I did write a short poem mid-week in response to the #RDP word prompt: Pursuit. I chose a minimalist approach. You can view the poem here: https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2021/03/08/in-pursuit-of/

Upon feeling a little better yesterday, I made an appointment and will get my COVID vaccine shot today; I just have to drive a little further. My voice is still raspy, but I do not feel feverish, congested, and lethargic like I did days ago. Hopefully, the after-effects won’t be so bad, but I am sure more rest will be in order.

Once I am fully vaccinated, I plan to participate more actively in the world around me, which seems to be in full swing here in Florida. For now, I am drinking juice and getting my rest so I can be back to work next week with a voice that commands respect, authority, and, yes, understanding.

Weekend Coffee Share, Getting in the Spirit

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali. Pull up a chair and your favorite beverage!

It has been a long week, but I survived it and this weekend, I know there’s no need to set an alarm Monday! My grading is done, and I already have some ideas for my lessons in January. It is a good feeling to finally be caught up!

Things got pretty intense this last week. My boyfriend had sinus symptoms ten days ago, and Saturday he called to tell me he tested positive for COVID. I freaked! I was supposed to drive up to meet my brother in S.C. to get my mom and bring her back home…but not in the midst of COVID cases exploding around me! My son also had a cold. After two days, he said, “Nah, I’m getting better. I don’t need a test.” I thought he was being way too headstrong and stubborn, but he kept sounding better day after day. I was, ironically, lucky my boyfriend did not see me the weekend before last since he went to see his dad in Georgia. Therefore, I was outside of that rule “Have you been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 in the last two weeks?” Otherwise, I’d have to quarantine away from work for two weeks.

My significant other and me, circa 2018. He’s not a vegeratian! 🙂

Things are much better. My son’s cold is almost 100% gone, and my boyfriend tested negative for COVID yesterday. So, I’m going to pick up my mom Weds. I’m not too keen on driving in South Carolina during holiday traffic, sometimes I get panicky due to a car accident in 2016, so I’ve asked a friend to drive up with me. She said yes, thank God!

All week at school, the kids were a bit more excitable than usual. Friday, my plan was quite simple: discuss if you would choose either a pause or a reset button on life; explain why, creatively. Then, design/color an ugly (or wonderful) sweater on paper. The standard? “We can co-exist harmoniously.” I challenge anyone to prove to me that is not a legitimate standard in this day and age. I mean, they had to share crayons. The discussion in some of my classes was GREAT!

It was ugly Christmas sweater day, but I don’t have one. So, my Christmas dog mask had to suffice. 🙂 I was tired, but I’ve been tired almost daily for the last few weeks. Those kids kept me awake, though. I have to admit, the students I teach are pretty great. Sometimes, full of too much energy, but they’re good kids. Friday was fun, but it went by just fine. I was given a few nice gifts from the kids that included gift cards to places I love. At the end of the day, one of my female students surprised me and hugged me. She said she was sorry about COVID changing everything and hoped I had a nice Christmas. We don’t hug these days; I was surprised. But I did not shoo her away. There is such a delicate balance between human connection and COVID safety that makes these times hard. I’m not worrying about it, but I worry for those who really need that human connection.

Christmas 2020!

Yesterday (Saturday), I acted as adult chaperone for kids in National Junior Honor Society as we rang the bell for Salvation Army collections. It’s the first actual holiday event I’ve joined in, being so cautious and having slight COVID anxiety. This is always a fun event, as the kids are great and very civic-minded. Several of the students were in my class last year, and some I had taught two years ago, so it was nice to catch up. I was still a little tired, though, so I left when my shift was over at 2 p.m. and at home, got the first nap of my Winter Break!

Some relaxation is certainly in order! Stay well, everyone, and feel free to visit Allison’s blog and join in the Coffee Share today or in future weekend shares, https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/2020/12/18/weekendcoffeeshare-relaxation-life/

Peace!

Weekend Coffee Share, Surviving Sequestration

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali.  I only had half-caff today, but it really invigorated me, maybe because I finally got at least six hours of sleep last night!

I have made it through week 1 of online teaching! Our school district was told there would be no return to school until April 15th, but I suspect it will be longer than that.  I worry about our world, I worry about strangers I pass by in the store, and I worry about how much worse this might get. But I am really happy that I am able to connect with my students again and have some sort of influence on their lives and how they view their world.  I’ve seen students helping each other while online when I can’t reply to their questions right away, and they seem so grateful to be able to chat with me on our educational platform, too!  For a brief while, I forget what is happening outside.  I try to focus on the positives and tell them some jokes.

Sent from a student in the Microsoft Teams chat after being told to start on The Giver or read a book they already have at a set time daily:
“Can’t wait for reading I have a good book to read!” Another messages at 1:50- ‘Yay! Reading time!’**

They warm my heart! Do they know how such things keep me going?  I’ve tried really hard to distract their minds from world news and fill their heads with imagination and art. A number of parents e-mailed me thanking me for being so positive in my educational videos, stating that my videos make the student feel part of a classroom again, somewhat back to normal. Though I admit, I did not teach anything new yet except for how to navigate a new learning platform and turn in assignments, and that is likely the way it should be.  

The above shows my go-to hairstyle these days.  I have canceled hairdresser appointments two weeks in a row.  I am afraid to be around people in that close capacity right now.  My mom is 78 and I don’t want to bring a virus back to her!  I re-scheduled for two weeks from now.  We’ll see.  Meantime, I am growing my hair and putting it up.  I am trying to take at least two yoga or pilates classes online per week and to do ab exercises along with my arm/shoulder workout every other day.  I’ve found many helpful online exercise videos, too.  So, my health is holding

After watching my church’s service online, I went to the grocery store this morning, and guess what: no toilet paper.  I have some on order from Amazon, and a friend ordered extra through some other shopping app.  They told me at the checkout that I could not get more than two of any particular canned food item.  I wish they had started that with toilet paper before this whole fiasco first happened! Sadly, I had 8 cans of Chef Boyardee since I wanted to donate some of them to a Food Bank.  The cashier apologized and said they were just being really strict about that.  

If you are interested in a dystopian/apocalyptic story, you can download my free short story here at https://bookhip.com/HPNJFT  It is called “They Shall Inherit the Earth. I also started on a love story, set in these times of Coronavirus.  It is a little more hopeful and should be available next week or so, and will also be free!

Take care my friends!  Stay healthy and stay sequestered.  We can do this!

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

20190622_114945_00008085040792563781219.png

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. This Little Bird’s Gonna Fly…I Hope.

20190622_114945_00005011597603925219656.png

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Antoinette Truglio Martin. Can I just say, thank God for weekends!

I was in such bliss waking up at 7 this morning knowing I didn’t have to put my brain in overdrive getting ready to be somewhere at a specified time or thinking about what I’d do first or what morning meeting I’d have at school. I looked forward to breakfast and coffee, and everyone else at home was asleep. It was silent in my home, silent in my neighborhood, and I managed 7 hours of sleep last night, a miracle, lately. I do a lot of stretching in the morning, exercises at home, and yoga now and then, which I will start more as physical therapy is winding down. It all makes for a peaceful morning that I can stretch out with writing on the laptop and sometimes, yes, tying up less ends for work and making progress on my class for Teaching Gifted students. Right now is a busy time, and I have still been in the process of working on me.

On that note, on Martin Luther King day I invited a new co-worker, a very young woman, to bring her dog to the dog park to play with my Bixby. It went so well, we are going to do it again! She is my son’s age, but why should that stop me? I am so glad I did that. It’s about breaking out of usual limits we put on ourselves.

Of course, Bixby loved it too!

I saw my doctor this last week and we discussed many things: sleeplessness, menopause, my progress with my shoulder and physical therapy. He’s offering a prescription for the sleep, and I’m going to think about it first. I think I’ve made good progress with the physical therapy and will likely write about that on my blog as well. As this process went on, I’ve been educating myself and researching about the brain and pain, anxiety and its effects on our thinking. I am emerging from physical therapy much stronger, so let me just tell you, it works. However, I not only needed help with my body and strength, but also with my mindset. I received that as well in the most subtle of ways. As a result, I am a firm believer in physical therapy as a method for dealing with or recovering from pain. As I said, I plan to write about this and some of the things I learned about myself through this process. I have one more appt, and then I will be the baby bird nudged out of the nest. I am ready to go on to the next thing, or just to discover what is the next way I can keep myself on the path to getting stronger and believing in myself. My doctor says an MRI is not necessary now, which works for me, as I like avoiding visits to the hospital! My goal is to continue doing intentional things to keep my upper body strong and not allow it to go back to the pain cycle; may any pain that comes now simply be growing pain. I am already keeping up with lower body stretches and will continue, perhaps challenging myself with barre class or cardio yoga.

Just for fun, here is what I’ve been researching about the mind:

-Is counting a form of OCD

-Other side effects of menopause

-How safe is Ambien? (because I’m not sure I want that prescription)

-Anxiety and memory loss

-physical therapy stories

-pain and trauma

-pain and the brain

-CBT

Yes, sometimes I am heavy handed with my over-thinking. But don’t worry, this little bird is gonna fly. As you should know, if you have ever met me or read my writing or blog posts, I am very capable in the area of imagination and fantasy, and half of the battle is believing that you can!

Photo via Pixabay.

Stay light, my friends. Have a great week!

Weekend Coffee Share, Of Pain and Growth

20190622_114945_00008085040792563781219.png

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Antoinette.  https://antoinettetrugliomartin.com/2020/01/10/winter-on-hilton-head-island/                Pull up a chair and drink whatever you like!

If we were having coffee today, I’d be drinking a half-caff hazelnut.  Half seems to work best for me these days, I am trying to work on maintaining a calmer spirit. I might be brief today, as I have a hair appointment that mainly serves the purpose of making my hair easier to maintain.

I feel like I am growing as a person, and physical therapy is making me feel stronger.  I’m realizing that, for a long time, I have stuffed negative emotions down in areas of my body, currently, the lower back and shoulder.  But I’ve made progress and have been able to complete every pose in Zen yoga for the last two visits, and that makes me proud.  My job stresses me out all the time, as there are certain things I want to do right, yet I am pushed to ‘get them done’ in small amounts of time.  Yet, most of my students delight me.  I love watching them grow.  One of them still makes origami animals for me, and I enjoy it so much; I started giving him candy when he brings me something awesome.  I feel it is right to reward someone who wants to share their talent to make me smile.  I am working on an end of the year poem to give to all of them.  I know, it’s way ahead of that, but I am still sleeping at a shortened amount of time so my brain must do something, and I will not let it constantly worry.  There is so much beauty in this world!

Hendriximg_20160613_183504

In stressful times, I decided to use a go-to scenario involving Jimi Hendrix singing for me.  He is my latest obsession which is much better than obsessing about my health.  Anyway, he sings, and I have turned into a butterfly; I am limitless and indomitable, feeling no fear.  That’s for when I need to relax, because sometimes I am still very tense, though I am working on that.  I suppose this tensing is a defense mechanism that actually, overall, hurts me in the long run.

In the writing area, I have finished Malachi and have sent it off to the editor.  I have gotten the book cover done and there will be a cover reveal soon!   It is at about 170 pages.  My negative inner voice tells me that isn’t enough.  My other voice tells me his story is completed; Ellie is entering the picture now and wants the spotlight.  There is a lot between those two, so it will be in the book after that.  I need to have faith in myself.  I haven’t worked on fiction in about two weeks; I’m writing a lot about my growth process, dealing with anxiety and trying to grow through the arthritis pain.  Who knew dealing with physical pain had so much to do with mental health? I published a short poem to my son about some of this, as he has had many struggles already in his short life.  You can find it here:  https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2020/01/09/for-my-son-poetry/

That is all for today.  It is beautiful outside here in the Southeast!  I’m going to exercise a little before the hair appointment, and hopefully, have a carefree day.  How are things in your corner of the world?

Weekend Coffee Share, Being Understood. 12/20

20190622_114945_00008085040792563781219.png

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Antoinette at https://antoinettetrugliomartin.com/category/weekend-coffee-share/   I am having a half-calf, which seems to fuel me just fine these days.  However, I must admit, I am waking up, on a good night, somewhere between 4:30 and 5 a.m.  It doesn’t bother me as much as it did at first.  I don’t know if it’s the time change or the new exercises I have added daily as a result of PT, but I am getting used to it.  I wonder if this will change once the clocks move forward in the Spring?  I know I have a busy mind and wonder if it will ever slow down.   It’s okay if it doesn’t. 🙂

As far as the physical therapy, it seems to be going well.  My lower back is not as locked up as it used to be.  I do still suffer from sciatic issues, but I’m learning some exercises for that and realizing I need to have more hot baths and less time in the computer chair.  Maybe I’ll just record my writer’s thoughts and stories straight to audio? I don’t know, we’ll see what happens.  I am not worried!  While editing/revising the Malachi manuscript, I found a wonderful modification that works for me.  I e-mailed the rough draft to myself and I’ve been opening it on my phone for a read-through.  This read-through can be done laying on the couch, exercising on the Gazelle (small, elliptical type exerciser), or even in bed.  I can be on my side or back, etc. according to my comfort needs. When I find an error, I write it down for when I will edit it on my laptop.  Then, I am going to send it to the professional editor.  There is no way I will stop writing, so I just need to change my process.

As far as the busy mind goes, I had an interesting talk with a student yesterday who rarely talks in class.  Yes, it was the day before Winter Break, I was casual, friendly, and joking a lot, a relaxed atmosphere for sure.  I presented them with our reading theme for next quarter: “Fear, is it a hindrance or a help?”  The first time this student started talking to me was when I had a lesson on conflict and explained internal conflict and how the struggle is strong for someone who suffers from depression or anxiety.  I told them of my anxiety when driving over a bridge.  I recently have added hospitals to my list.  (I have too many thoughts of experimentation when I see a whole floor taken up by only one office, and construction does not help either).  Recently, I’ve also realized that the holidays are a little triggering.

Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised that she actually wanted to have a conversation with me.  I also was pleasantly surprised by the Christmas holiday kindness shared by the students yesterday, and one student’s note in her card almost had me in tears of joy:

Dear Ms. Canepa, Thank you for your hard-working ethics and passion for teaching. I love how you have the inspiration to get up and drive to work every day, not knowing will the day go by good or bad. You made a great impact on my life so far and I’m looking forward for you to continue.

It was a hard week with lots of grading, a Code Red drill, a fire drill, a handful of parent meetings, some holiday events, and amped up kids. But seeing such empathy, appreciation, and the right choice of words warmed my heart. Someone noticed how hard I work and took the time to verbalize that to me.  Maybe they are taking it to heart.  That is the best gift ever!

coffeechristmas-1895053_1280

May you all enjoy the spirit of Christmas and the holiday season, and may you reach calm when you seek it!  I am definitely planning on some relaxation myself.

Peace!

Pamela

Weekend Coffee Share, Unwind.

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at http://eclecticali.wordpress.com and observed by bloggers all over the world! My dog is my source of stress relief today. School has been terribly busy this week, and the pre-holiday ants-in-the-pants syndrome is widespread in middle schoolers. I was running on a large cup of hazelnut coffee and Advil yesterday.

Today, I’m really taking it slow. I need that, sometimes. Mind you, I love my job, because I am teaching a novel I love, by Walter Dean Myers. I’ve made connections with my students by discussing things I have in common with Myers, things that go beneath the surface.

I’ve also been sharing about things that I have written, like this book, From Bedlam to Ben, something I have been proofing before I get it into paperback, even though it was published for Kindle 3 years ago.

As I’ve probably already mentioned, Undercurrents in Time is now in audio, and it seems to be doing well!

I almost have no energy to deal with writerly things today, though.

I’m writing this on my phone while I’m couching it with my dog. He sort of accompanied me as I exercised on the porch this morning.

He also was glad to sit outside with me for 15 minutes in the sunshine on this 78 degree day. You’ve gotta love the Southeast! I really needed some lazy time with my dog! Now, I think I’ll go read a book.

Yes, it just may be a tearjerker, and I really don’t mind.

Have a great weekend, my friends!

Weekend Coffee Share, I Can Do This!

20190622_114945_00009123844884956045375.png

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

I am parceled out in thirty minute increments this morning, that is, if I want to get in  my thirty minute exercise. I’ve got to get to Physical therapy for my shoulder.  After which, I have time to get to the salon and get a hair trim.  Then, there is a lunch date with an old friend who used to teach with me.  I’ll give myself more time for that, because there are no appointments afterward. I am hoping my afternoon will just stretch out before me, and I won’t have to hurry anymore.  So many things to go and see this time of year though!

20191115_2237521483189596020562155.jpg

Last night, I took part in an induction ceremony for the National Junior Honor Society new members.  This is a club honoring excellence in its middle school members which has high standards for GPA, conduct, and community service.  It is a pleasure to honor such students and to work with them throughout the year!  This is a worthwhile use of my time after the teaching day, and I get to help these kids find community service projects while I benefit from renewed hope for our future.

On the author front, I am pleased to announce that Undercurrents in Time is now available in audio!  If you have read Detours in Time and might like to listen to the sequel and drop an honest review, try this US code: 72T6RQW85286E to download at https://audible.com/acx-promo or this UK code: 3GCCE5TS9MPQH to download at https://audible.co.uk/acx-promo

I know I have only shared one code each, so it is first come first serve.  I also will share codes in the Facebook group Audio Book Boom tomorrow if you’d like to listen and review but have found that the codes are already used.  Happy listening!

20191026_133638_00001035900339109106841.png It’s now live!

Now, I must take a break to go to physical therapy!

*******

Okay, I’m back.  PT was frustrating.  The physical therapist was lovely, a nice, sweet guy, but he said the order was for PT for my back, yet I feel that chiropractic keeps that in check and that I need more help for my shoulder and arm.  Ugh.  They were nice about it, printed out the whole order, and they can fit me in early next week if I get the order for my shoulder.  So, I read all the paperwork.  It mentions concerns about my anxiety exacerbating my back pain.  It also mentions my shoulder “ridiculopathy.” You’ve got to love these technical terms, and looking back, I think I’ve had some sort of anxiety since childhood.  I do feel more yoga will treat my back AND my anxiety, but nothing is helping my shoulder, and it actually keeps me from doing certain yoga poses.  Therefore,  I’ll call Monday to straighten out the PT and just why I am going.  Le *sigh*.

 

fb_img_15518364789175458011365442213066.jpg A flashback photo with my son…

Despite this morning’s frustration,  I had lunch with a good friend after that made it all better; she’s a retired teacher, and I took my 23 year old son who suffers from a psychological disorder and is, overall, pretty anti-social.  My friend, Judi, was fine with me taking him and asked him questions to get him talking.  Don’t get me wrong, he is very healthy, on the right meds, and employed in a job where he can move up.  He just does not have a social circle and is quite introverted. She is very funny and friendly.  We went to get coffee afterward because she is so easy to talk to, and well, we had the time, so why not?  She is so encouraging of my dreams and interested in my hobbies; she also gets the stress teachers go through.  By the way, you know my next goal is to do Improv Comedy, right?  Truth be told, anxiety will not stop me from anything, I just need to learn how to keep it from settling into my body, causing me to clench my teeth or get tense.  I am going to keep pushing my limits!

I remain ever hopeful!  That’s it in a nutshell.  How have your week and your Saturday  been treating you?

Weekend Coffee Share, Of Holiday Celebrations and Cryptozoology

20190622_114945_00009123844884956045375.png

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali. It has been a crazy hectic week, I survived it, and I have added even more dreams to my life bucket list! Pull up a chair and your favorite beverage while I sip a V8 and we talk about surviving work, reaching for goals, and the things we want to do one day!

Seriously, I’ve been grading essays at breakfast and multi-tasking every part of my life this week. It’s nuts! The essays aren’t done. I’ve survived Halloween (and a surprise visit by school admins that involved 90% of my students participating and doing just WHAT THEY SHOULD IN CLASS, HOW PLEASANT!) I  also volunteered at a middle school dance, just for a while. I let some of the girls paint a spider on my hand at the face-painting station. It looked sort of awesome! I didn’t have to work too hard at the dance, but there are always the few kids who want to run around or go piggy back while I chide them sternly to go and dance, envisioning someone hitting their head on that hard floor. We’d like to avoid that… I’ve also been trying to help coordinate some volunteer events for students in the NJHS club, which takes planning, for sure! So, I’m ready to have a weekend where I do fun things for myself with the people I love and enjoy spending time with. Essays will have to wait until Sunday, today I will start with ME.

Did you know there is a Cryptozoology & Paranormal Museum in Littleton, NC? It’s an 8 mile drive for me. I was searching fun Bigfoot sites this morning. No essay grading today! I came across mention of this museum. Having visited a Fan film Star Trek stage a few weeks ago, I want to do more of the same! I can’t bungee jump and don’t have time to plan visits to Europe. A girl’s gotta have something. Geek life it is! I want to be around people who are so enthusiastic about something, either paranormal or historical. (My other choice is the Joan of Arc Society and parade in New Orleans on her birthday, happening every year, January 6th). That, and I want to take some Improv classes. Seriously! “Baby…didn’t want parades just passing by her…” (Thank you, Melissa Manchester)! When will I do all this?   Well, I have summers off and two weeks for Winter Break…

But for this weekend, I have my writing dream going. Undercurrents in Time in audiobook is in final quality assurance stage. The narrator said she “loves this book” and enjoyed reading it. I feel in love with it again as I listened to her narration. It is a dreamy narrative, as it is sci-fi, but focuses a lot on the character and motivations of Tabitha and her need to escape. Hmm, haven’t we all been there? Imagine hanging out with your great niece when she is grown, something you’d never live to see, or learning the future of your troubled brother.

Regrettably, I’ve been so busy and worn down that I haven’t written much fiction on this blog lately.  Maybe I’ll have time with the upcoming holidays.  Here is a link to the last one I wrote, if you just discovered my blog or haven’t seen this one yet (it promises a good dose of ‘weird’: Maverick-Light and Shadow. 

Well, it has pleasant chatting with you here on my front stoop in the rare 60 degree weather in Jacksonville, Fl.  Maybe I got a little sun on my face!  How was your week?  I appreciate you stopping by!