"Keep scribbling! Something will happen." Frank McCourt

Monday, May 22, 2017

When things happen

A pic of Millie, the Mal-Shi...
 just because.
For a while, I will mostly be posting at the neglected Ruralhood blog. I started The Ruralhood to tell my thoughts and stories of rural living as a young person. I share memories there so that they won’t (or might not) be lost.
Like everyone else, when bad things happen, we struggle. Our current struggle comes from the loss of a family member and missing him. My dad passed away in a hurry, March 13, 2017 (more about that later, at The Ruralhood). He was buried on March 17, St. Patrick's Day, which made me smile as if he ordered up the date. We're Irish-ish. Dad's family (of origin)  had mostly red hair--and temper. Therefore, road rage comes easy for me. We are sad about his absence, but what can a person do when something like this happens? It's either stop living or move forward. He ALWAYS moved forward. None of this, I'll sit down and let life's happenings crush me. He was forward thinking.
Random thoughts because...that is who I am:
  • A cousin told me at my dad’s viewing that he had read some of my posts at The Ruralhood. Who doesn't like when people read what you write (and tell you so)? Flattering, and yet, I felt exposed? So funny.
  • My mom has been reading my dad’s blog posts since his death. It’s been a way to connect. She feels so lost without him. I reread his blog, too, but while he was hospitalized. Mom hears Dad's voice through his writing. Keep that in your mind while you write. Our voice shows up in our writing. So.very.cool.
  • In the three years, since Millie bullied her way in came home with me, she has been a bit standoffish to other people, except for my daughter who "may" hold and "may" pet her. When my other family members visit, I can tell Millie wants to join in especially with the grandkids, but she doesn't. Not long after my dad’s passing, my family was at my house. Millie walked to my mom, put her front feet up on my mom’s lap and wiggled her butt like she does when she wants help up. Millie requests. I tend to serve. Not only did she sit there, Millie let Mom pet her and for a long time. Millie is a therapy dog in her heart. Who knew? 
At The Ruralhood, I'm talking about sewing in the 1970s part 2, if you want to read it. The final post on it is next week, I promise.

Saturday, May 06, 2017

Millie and Selfies and The Ruralhood

I need to spend some time at The Ruralhood, reminiscing. If I'm not here, then I'll be...there for a while.

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

IWSG: Writing Time

It’s IWSG time, where writers across the world gather to share their writing experience and/or insecurities. (See below for more info on the Insecure Writer's Support Group.) The IWSG million dollar question this month is: How do you find the time to write in your busy day?

Making time to write has always been an easy task for me. I’ve written first thing in the morning for years, while my brain is fresh. For me, I must write daily or I would go crazy. Setting a time to write is a must. The routine is there. The flow is there. I write between five and seven each morning and again from eight to nine in the evening, IF I'm not mentally tired. But...

Something happened this last summer, something terrible. After a million years of writing with or without a routine, I stopped. 

It all started in June when I decided to have some tiling done, a lot of tiling actually. This job would consume the center of the house (dining), plus three baths for six days. My kitchen was shut down. My home life and household kind of stood still, waiting for the job to be completed. During those days, I either had to leave the house early or hide out in a bedroom with a restless pup. Either way, it was disruptive and exhausting. 
I may have shown you this already. This is my dining room, tiled. I have a prettier clock now--windmill like.
I stopped writing.

I couldn’t think about writing. 

My characters stopped talking to me. I thought they’d died and not told me about it. When I opened my computer, I would stare at the screen. Sometimes I would try to write something, but it was really nothing. Then I would close my computer and do something else. 

Over the next two months, I pretended, but wrote very little or none. It was horrible. I’ve been writing since the age of twelve. At times, I may have been busy and wrote less, but never did I quit writing. 

One day, I think in August, I was cleaning and I moved a  stack of yellow legal pads. One seemed to be calling my name. I found a pen and began to write--for hours. Okay not for hours but a couple of hours.

What a relief! If I couldn’t write I would be in a big mess emotionally, mentally and spiritually. And what would I do with all of the character voices in my head? Check into a hospital? Yes, there is that, but I'd rather write from 5 a.m. to 7 a.m, thank you very much-- and maybe 8 to 9 p.m, depending.

The IWSG was created by Alex Cavanaugh and assisted by awesome helpers. The Insecure Writer's Support Group website supports writers with writers and helpful information. Check out the sign up list here.

Sunday, September 04, 2016

Sunday Reflection: The Masterpiece and the Meaning

I know a young lady who is a teacher, who was not rehired at her school. Her passion for teaching is evident. Her employer district did not give her the usual notice so that she could apply elsewhere--early. She felt she was a popular teacher, with her parents and students, therefore was blindsided. There were those indiviuals who didn't want her at the school any longer. There are always "those" people.

I told her, “You cannot let others determine your worth." But we’ve all done that from time to time, believe we are what others say we are.

“Stop trusting in man, who has but breath in his nostrils. Of what account is he? Isaiah 2:22 (NIV)

Positions for classroom teachers were mostly filled, but she continued to apply within the radius of her home. She was mostly met with, "Yes, we’ll interview you", and then, "We’ve filled the position from within". Understandably, she was sad and cried a lot, but continued to interview.

I've found that sometimes the answer to our efforts, where God is concerned, is no or not now because He has the better plan. I know it’s easier to stand outside someone else’s storm and tell them to have faith in God, but I’ve lived a long time, and I told her just that. 

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1 (NIV) 

She enrolled her kids in our district because that’s where her house resides, and two things happened. 

When her mind cleared of the hurt and disappointment, she was free to listen to our heart-speaking, mighty God. She saw the path that she was supposed to take, one where she would pursue a lifelong dream of furthering her education in a specialized field. After that revelation, she was offered a job in the school where her youngest attends.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

We are always free to choose the lesser version of life, where God isn't invited, where we sell ourselves short, let fears chase us in the wrong direction and unfounded worry drive our reactions. If we could only pre-see God’s completed plan of our life, before we rearrange it, we would see the masterpiece and a truer meaning to our life. 

“…being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6