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Showing posts from October, 2011

Day 31: What I've Learned

What have I learned from writing every day? Let's see....I like it.Sometimes it's hard.I CAN do it!Some people actually like what I write!(That's encouraging. I need encouragement.)I need the discipline of daily writing, even if I don't publish it daily.It's okay not to publish everything I write.It's also okay to turn off the internal editor.Which is hard!!!Facebook is a huge distraction from actual writing. Listening to God is harder with distractions.Being open to inspiration is important. (I credit inspiration as divine, because really, I have nothing without God. And my writing is His.)I am proud of myself for accomplishing this October 31 Days of Writing. And I don't mean that in a prideful way, either. I stuck with it and accomplished a goal. That's a big deal!Thanks to The Nester for hosting all the 31 Days blogs. To read all my blogs for the month of writing, click here.

Day 30: A month of writing.

I've written something every day this month.
Wow.
I am really happy I fulfilled this portion of my end-of-the-year push toward achieving some goals.
On the minus side, listing 5 things I'm grateful for every day has been a bust. This past week kicked.my.butt. And I allowed the circumstances of this week to get in the way of my attitude of eucharisteo. So I failed at giving the hard thanks.
Some part of me thinks this is the stuff that keeps me humble.
(Some days it feels like it's the stuff that keeps me downtrodden.)
Mostly, though, I know that the Lord keeps me in His hand. And the sun will come up tomorrow (maybe not out, but it will rise).
I will keep writing. Because it's in my heart and my hands and my soul.

Day 29: Paper

I have a love/hate relationship with paper. It piles up. It's hard to get rid of. It's a comfort and the bane of my existence. It's heavy. It's portable. It's shreddable and scannable and pretty.
And that's about all I have to say right now. This week I'll be re-organizing my filing cabinets and shredding things we no longer need.

Day 28: Regular Blogging

It's been interesting blogging regularly this month. For a few years, I regularly posted on this blog, both personal posts and book reviews, and it was a nice quiet blog with a small following. Then I went through a really rough patch with a friend about three years ago, and I felt it was no longer safe to blog because her other friends were "reporting" back to her what I wrote, and it was feeding into the drama.
So, I got scared. And I got quiet.
And then, God started giving me a yearly theme. (I've written about them here and here. Oh, and here too.) Those themes have kept me more focused on Him instead of growing a blog. With actual followers and stuff.
Then I ended up accepting a position with Wives of Faith as the blog editor, and the bulk of my writing went toward that ministry. That's not necessarily bad, but neither is it as much of my own personal writing.
So to write every day this month has been good for me. It proved to me again that yes, daily practice …

Day 27: Lost and Found

I had a really rough night on Sunday night. I had a stack of student papers I thought I would start grading, and when I went to get them, I couldn't find them.
Anywhere.
I don't know about you, but I can't stand making mistakes. At all. Losing my students' papers was a big mistake.
I also cannot abide when something is lost. Drives me nuts.
I went through the office, the house, and found nothing.
I went through my car, my tote bags, my filing cabinets. Nothing.
I went to bed. I didn't sleep well at all.
The next morning, I did the same thing as I'd done the night before: looked, looked again, and looked high and low. No papers.
I emailed the dance studio. They looked. Nothing.
I had a hearing test on Monday in town, and afterwards I turned on the GPS and found I was only 2 miles from the studio. I went by. I looked. No papers.
Last night, the students were pretty much united in two things: the belief that the papers would turn up, and the deep and abiding desire to know …

Dear Students (Day 26)

To my first college class in Alaska:
I was scared to death to fail, but I was even more scared not to try. So much you would never know was on the line: my self-esteem, my confidence in latent abilities I was afraid I'd lost forever (or at least for a while), my earning potential, my husband's view of me. In my mind, all were riding on how well I did as a teacher.
How well would I teach you how to write about literature? Could I teach a classroom of military professionals and self-professed nonfiction readers how to appreciate poetry, short stories, and Shakespearean tragedy? I may not have succeeded with every one of you - a couple of you were really tough nuts - but I think I won over a few others of you - the ones who laughed at my jokes, who teased me a little bit, who liked that I cared.
Thank you for sticking with me, for showing me that yes, I've still got it - the teaching part of me I gave up five years ago to follow my husband and where I was not able to find a t…

Days 24 and 25

Yesterday's writing was not for public consumption--it was for my class! I finished writing their final exam. Today's writing is here, and to be honest, I'm not yet ready to make today's information public. I found out that something in our lives that was a possibility is now a big certainty. And it's not a fun thing, either! I hate being vague, but I'm not ready to make it public on an open forum, so "vague-blogging" will be the order of the day.
In other things...moving on...I have just had a cruddy week. I have a friend, a very dear friend, who is really big right now on choices. We have a choice in our attitude, in how we handle things. It's a hard thing, this choice. And sometimes, to borrow a toddler's expression, I don't wanna! I don't wanna be a grown up. I don't wanna deal with the hard things in life. I don't wanna choose the higher road, or the mature way. But there it is: Choice. Free will. The ability to choose how…

Day 23: Sunday, Sunday

So for Day 22, I wrote this book review as well as this one. So while I didn't write a post for "31 Days of Writing," I did write. :D
Today is Sunday. It's a day I'd normally try to rest, but that was imposed upon me yesterday instead, having gotten sick. So today, back to work to finish the final exam for my class, as well as grade sheets for the students' essays, which also need graded by Wednesday night.
I hope to get it all finished, and still have time for the family. It's a busy, busy week ahead, with medical appointments, parent-teacher conferences, and the wrapping up of the fall term.

Baby, It's Cold Outside

Welcome to the Lit Fuse blog tour for Susan May Warren's latest, Baby, It's Cold Outside!

About the Novel:Hope finds the hopeless when a storm hits.

It's Christmas weekend 1949, and despite the threat of a storm, the townspeople of Frost are determined to continue their holiday traditions, if only as a means to forget the war that they had all just suffered through. But the suffering hasn't ended for Dottie Morgan who lost her only son in the war. She's preparing to wallow in her isolation for the weekend, when Violet, nearly a spinster at age 29, dares to make a request that will force Dottie to publicly revive the memory of her dead son.

When a storm traps the two women at home with a strange young man who has an unbelievable confession and a neighbor with more to do with Violet's past than she would like, no one can predict how this Christmas will give them all a second chance.Read an excerpt here and find out the story behind the novel.
Pattie's Review:I kn…

Married Mom Solo Parent

Welcome to the Lit Fuse blog tour for Carla Coroy's new book Married Mom, Solo Parent.About the book:For married women who feel like single parents.

Bookstore shelves are full of parenting resources for moms who are newly divorced or widowed. But where do moms turn if they feel like a single parent--but they’re not? Whether he is away on business, deployed in the military, or obsessing over a computer game, Dad may not be available for a variety of reasons. Moms who parent in this situation still need help and don’t necessarily relate to the advice given in divorce recovery or single parenting resources.

Married Mom, Solo Parent is a common-sense, down-to-earth look at the struggles wives and mothers face when their husband is not actively involved in family life. Writing from her own experience as a married single mom, Carla Anne Coroy will help wives and mothers sort through their questions, such as: Can I do this alone? How do I raise kids to honor their father? How do I give my …

Day 21: It's Friday!

I'm so glad it's Friday.Even as a work-from-home Mom, Friday still feels like a fun day, like a day when I get out early from school, or take off early from work. I ordered a couple of books online that I think will help me come up with some more original material for my composition classes. (Let's hope, right?)
Today as I made my own spreadsheet-thing (pictured to the right) to figure out which elements of fiction I really wanted to teach, I realized what I really needed to do was overhaul the whole dang syllabus (I borrowed heavily from the English professor at my college, because I had to get my syllabus turned in a few days after I learned I had been hired; consequently, it has a lot of Dr. W and not a whole lot of Pattie).
So what started as a few minor tweaks has turned into a major project that remains unfinished. I sure hope the dean's administrative assistant doesn't dock my pay for not getting the final syllabus in on time!
Thankfully, as I have to stop now …

Day 20: Exercise Part Three

In case you missed them: Part One and Part Two
In the fall of 2009, we found out we were leaving North Dakota, which meant I was going to have to leave my job. I gave my notice in the spring and left at the end of April. I had been taking a class at the local community college, so I planned to leave my job the week before my final portfolio and paper was due. It worked out well. I continued my workouts until we moved, and said a reluctant goodbye to the friends I'd made there over the past 3 1/2 years.
Curves headquarters is in Waco, Texas, and I had it in my head that the Texas clubs would be hard-core into sales. Because we were fairly certain we'd only be in Texas for a year, I didn't pursue employment. Instead, we used the gym on base (convenient because I drove the girls to school there each day), where I could take yoga classes. I bought a punch-card, which lasted me all year, and I took yoga at the base gym.
Now there's been a lot of talk about yoga in the Christia…

Day 19: I'm too sore to write!

I'll finish the exercise post tomorrow. I'm tired tonight!I exercised today and my hips and arms are sore.
I spent all the rest of the day preparing for class, and still feel like I did a mediocre job with the poetry. Ugh. I need to seriously overhaul my lessons for next term...which starts in 3 weeks! It is hard to plan for 2 classes next term while still teaching this term AND writing a final exam from scratch.
So there is my little rant for tonight. I'm tired. It's been a very long day. I'm going to go to bed and work tomorrow. And write. I promise.
PS: My students have noticed they've improved in their writing. So it's not just me :)

Wonderland Creek

This week, theChristian Fiction Blog Allianceis introducingWonderland CreekBethany House (October 1, 2011)byLynn Austin



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



For many years, Lynn Austin nurtured a desire to write but frequent travels and the demands of her growing family postponed her career. When her husband's work took Lynn to Bogota, Colombia, for two years, she used the B.A. she'd earned at Southern Connecticut State University to become a teacher. After returning to the U.S., the Austins moved to Anderson, Indiana, Thunder Bay, Ontario, and later to Winnipeg, Manitoba.

It was during the long Canadian winters at home with her children that Lynn made progress on her dream to write, carving out a few hours of writing time each day while her children napped. Lynn credits her early experience of learning to write amid the chaos of family life for her ability to be a productive writer while making sure her family remains her top priority.

Extended family is also very important to Austin, and it was a …

Day 18: Exercise, Part Two

So there I was, winter in North Dakota, and I was feeling fat and sluggish. I already deal with thyroid issues, so it was like adding insult to injury (without a literal injury).
After taking my daughter to dance class one January evening (the studio was in the "older" mall in town, in part of what apparently used to be Sears), I noticed some sort of fair or something going on in the center of the mall. I wandered over to the people and the chatter, and I discovered it was the annual health fair. I walked around, gathering a few free pencils and picking up brochures from the Y and the health club next door to the gymnastics studio where my youngest was taking classes.
Then, I saw the Curves table. I'd tried a free session at a Curves a few years ago, and while I thought it was nice, the hours weren't compatible with my teaching job at the time (for which I commuted 30 miles one way). Then when I left teaching, it wasn't compatible with our budget. My good friend …

Guest Post: Emotions of the Married Single Mom

Please welcome guest blogger Carla Coroy to Fresh-Brewed Writer today!Emotions of the Married, Single Mom
A recent survey done by TheBump.com and ForbesWoman.com reveals that between 25% and 65% of both working and stay-at-home moms sometimes feel like married single moms. Reading the responses to this report and comments on blogs, it is quite clear that emotions run high. The deeply felt emotions these women deal with may have been birthed in an unequal distribution of chores, however as time goes on these emotions reveal there is something more significant going on. It’s no longer just about the chores. The emotions reveal cracks in fabric of the relationship. These emotions – loneliness, anger, jealousy, grief, etc – can have a profound impact on a married single mom and her marriage.

No girl grows up dreaming of a marriage where she feels abandoned by her man. Perhaps his job pulls him away from home for days, weeks or months at a time. Maybe he is gaming his time away, or drinking …

Day 17: Exercise Part One

I have a love/hate relationship with exercise. By that I mean, hate/hate. Because I hate it. I hate everything about exercising--sweat, accelerated heart rate and breathing, sore muscles, sore feet . . . all of it.
I've tried many, many things: walking, running (shin splints--ow!), a traditional gym, tae-bo, yoga, Zumba, Curves, and Jazzercise. Oh, and Wii Fit.
As anyone will tell you, finding something you enjoy doing is the key to a successful fitness program.
The sad fact is, however, I dislike it all.

It wasn't until I lived in North Dakota in the winter that I needed to exercise for my mental as well as physical health. Nothing like hibernating and packing on pounds to wake a girl up!
**part two tomorrow**

Guest Post at Kathi Lipp's Book Club

The other day, speaker and author Kathi Lipp graciously asked me to contribute to the countdown to her military book club for the Husband Project on her blog...here is that post.
I have to tell you, God gave me that acronym and I'm so grateful He did! I pray it helps many women to pray for their military husbands, on the homefront or on the front lines.

Day 16: Practice Makes Better

This summer, I was able to reconnect with my former cubicle-mate and birthday-buddy, Liz. We taught together at CMSU one year, and we have remained friends ever since. It's been awesome to watch how God's worked in her life.
We got together one day this summer, and we chatted about teaching college students. I was so glad she reminded me of daily writing (or in this case, weekly--I see my students only one night a week).
The freewriting at the beginning of class has become a great warm-up and a good way to see how my students have each improved in their formal writing--especially heartening since the freewriting portion of class is most definitely not formal, nor do I grade the grammar, spelling, punctuation, syntax, or diction.
I think the past two weeks of accountability in writing here at my blog, which had gone neglected other than book reviews for months, has helped me as a writer. In a way, it's proving my own theories that I've seen played out in others.
What do yo…

Day 15: Learning New Stuff

As my friends and regular readers know, our family experienced two cross-country moves (one is actually cross-continent!) in 15 months. That's a whole lot of change right there. Add in some job changes and challenges, a couple of new computers, and new cell phones, and a new exercise program (Jazzercise, which is a huge challenge to someone as uncoordinated as I am) and my brain is just about full!
Is it any wonder that we feel stressed out in our 21st century culture? New technologies, new gadgets, new jobs, news in general. That's why some of my last 100 days goals had to do with taking moments to reflect (write 5 things I'm thankful for at the end of each day; journaling a page a day/this blog), moments to relax (reading what I enjoy and finishing books that taunt me with their bookmarks halfway through), and moments to spiritually recharge (still reading through the Bible, and still seem stuck in Ezekiel, quite probably one of the saddest books in the Scriptures).Today …

Day 14: Push it, push it to the limit, limit

I'm tired. And I don't want to write. I don't want to do anything, actually, but I did. I cleaned all the tile and laminate floors tonight.
I finished a book tonight that was about friendship, and it was sad. And it made me melancholy. Put that together with being tired, and my hubby working late, and I'm ready for bed.
So with that, I'll close and write more hopefully tomorrow.

Guest Post: Martyr Mom or Servant Model?

Please welcome guest blogger Carla Coroy to Fresh-Brewed Writer today.

Martyr Mom or Servant Model?
Do you know a martyr mom? She does her teens’ laundry and makes their lunches. She cleans the house from top to bottom—all by herself. She stays up late, day in and day out, doing all of the unfinished work.

She’s the mom who ‘sacrificially’ gives up a family outing—even though they were her kids' chores she stayed home to do. She recites her arm-length to-do list after telling you about how she agreed to help her kids with their various projects.

You likely know a martyr mom. But have you ever wondered if you might be one?
We started serving our families out of love. We loved them as we did their laundry. We served them as we packed lunches, cleaned bathrooms, drove carpools, and fixed bicycles . . . And then somewhere along the line, our serving morphed into martyrdom.

Is doing everything for everyone really loving? How can we protect ourselves from becoming martyr moms?

What would Jesus…

Day 13: Stuff

A hodgepodge of stuff completed today.Random around the house.Didn't even make a list.Have to leave soon, too.Hope you had a good day!I'll have guest posts coming up.And a link to a writing opportunity I had today, that won't be published till next week.It's a very cool opportunity that I was given.
I hope you will like it!I'm sure you will. Who am I kidding? Only a handful of my friends even come here, and each one of you is completely supportive of me.Off to get ready to take the younger girl to dance!

Day 12: A Dance Mom, but not like the show.

Sometimes when there's a full moon, I get insomnia. That's sort of where I am right now: I taught class tonight, and now I'm kind of wound up.
What also doesn't help is watching "Dance Moms" on Lifetime.
I actually told two of my close friends that they have permission to slap me upside the head if I ever act all crazy like these moms do. Yes, this is "reality tv" and it's not in any way real; it's very staged and the editors are airing all the crazy moments.
My girls are good dancers and they love dancing.
But if I EVER push my girls that hard, or act that crazy in public, someone better come alongside me and give me an ever-lovin' reality check.

Day 11: At last, my moose has come along...

Last night I was up late reading, as usual, and around 10 p.m. I started getting really sleepy. I placed my bookmark in my book, turned out the reading lamp, and put the reclining footrest back in its place. When I stood up, I noticed extra light outside the front window, so I moved closer toward the window to investigate. There was a car parked in the middle of the street with its lights on. Weird, I thought.

So I opened the sheers and saw movement. In just a moment I knew what it was--a moose was crossing the street! I began to smile and yes, jump up and down a bit.

The moose had ambled (yes, moose amble) over and was on the curb. The car with its lights on was waiting for any other moose that might be along for a 10 p.m. stroll, I suppose (the smart thing to do) before it finally slowly drove past our house. So the moose stood in the neighbor's yard for a while, a dark 3D outline against the white house, with its only illumination from the street lamp. Then the moose ambled off i…

Day 10: Second Person

I think I'll briefly pontificate upon something that drives me nuts: using the second person in essay writing.
I don't like being lectured. Never have. And that's exactly how I feel when someone uses the second person "you" (or worse, you "understood").
You know what I mean, right? When you're reading along and suddenly out of the blue, the writer says "When you read Hawthorne, you know he will use obvious symbols" or something like that. Then you can feel your hackles start to rise and you grab that pen of some other color than red, and you circle every occurrence of "you." You emphatically write in the margin, "Avoid using second person in formal writing."
(See what I did? I used it. As an illustration only, mind you...)
So imagine my surprise when I turn to the story I'm teaching this week (which is on the syllabus I borrowed in large part from our resident professor and have fallen behind in re-planning) and it'…

Day 9: Working

One of the great debates of the 21st century among women is the debate of "at home" vs. "working outside the home." I do not really want to engage in that fight, because I've been on both sides. I've been an at-home mom and a full-time (and part-time) work-outside-the-home mom, and in my experience there are pros and cons to both places. My "sweet spot" is wherever I feel that God has led me, doing what I believe in my heart the work He has for me to do.
I'm a firm believer in seasons in life. During the season I taught full-time outside our home, my husband worked either from church or from home (and at that church, his office was literally four steps across the yard) and was able to keep the baby with him. The next teaching job I had following that one was half-time. When our children needed care during the day, we were blessed with women within our churches who had in-home daycare, where the girls were cared for in love and by familiar faces…

Day 8: Musings on Reading

Day 7 was a book review, even though I didn't label it as Day 7.
For my 8th day of writing, I wasn't sure what to write about. I don't want to rehash the things about today that made it less than a good day. I am sore because I began a new exercise program that is not only working me hard, but is frustrating and sometimes difficult as all new exercise programs are for someone as uncoordinated as I tend to be--so that is not a great topic either.
So, a positive topic: reading. I love reading. I love reading fiction because I can, for a while, get lost in a world or a place different from my own. In a way it's escapist, but more often than not it's just an enjoyable pastime. I enjoy nonfiction because I love voices--written voices. I am not as fond of instructional nonfiction as I am personal narrative, particularly creative essays. I took a look at my bookshelves a few minutes ago while looking for inspiration for today's blog entry--and while I do have quite a …

2007 Fall Into Reading

Fall Into ReadingGet Ready, Get Set, Let's READ!!!

Katrina at Callapidder Days has a Mr. Linky ready to go if you're interested in signing up for this reading challenge! Click on the adorable graphic to the left for "the rules," and clickhere to sign up.AND...there are going to be prizes! I will consider it a fall cleaning of sorts...cleaning out the TBR pile that threatens to take over my living room. Plus, finishing books helps clear the mind clutter. Enjoy the crisp fall weather, because especially here in North Dakota, it won't be long before fall turns into a snowy, below-freezing winter.The Friday Night Knitting Club - Kate Jacobs (been in the TBR pile for a while, and I think I'll save it for the plane ride going to Roma's wedding. Also, did you know Julia Roberts optioned the film rights for this book?)
Knitting Under the Influence - Claire LeZebnik (finish - Reading at the same time as Roma)
Get Out of That Pit - Beth Moore (finish)
The Begotten and …

2008 Spring Reading Thing

Found this on my Xanga. Funny!
Spring Reading ThingSpring Reading Thing - the reading challenge that, for me, started it all, last year....
March 20-June 19, 2008



Info here. To sign up on Mr. Linky, click here.

I have a lot of unread books, and several other challenges I'm working on. However, these are a few I think I'll try to finish during this Spring challenge time (since more often than not, I don't finish my challenges on time!).

*Sweet Caroline by Rachel Hauck
*The Secret of Us by Roxanne Henke
*Hollywood Nobody by Lisa Samson

*Blue Heart Blessed by Susan Meissner
*Get Out of That Pit by Beth Moore (finish - ironically, from last year...heh)
*Generation NeXt Marriage by Tricia Goyer (for an upcoming blog tour)

alternates:
*Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie (had to return to the library, so who knows if I'll be able to get through it!)
*The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards
*The Tenth Circle by Jodi Picoult

Book Review: Addison Blakely, Confessions of a PK

Book Review of Addison Blakely: Confessions of a PK
What it's about:
Addison Blakely has never had much trouble pleasing her widowed, overprotective father. After all, he’s a pastor, and she knows her reputation is closely linked to his. But when the bad boy next door, the cute but arrogant quarterback, and a charming new guy all vie for Addison’s attention, she begins to doubt her resolve. To make matters worse, Addison’s best friend suddenly seems to hate her, a talent show has the entire school at odds, and an exotic exchange student from Germany is shaking everyone up. Addison attempts to separate love from lust, faith from facts, and keep her head above water in her murky, fishbowl existence.
What I thought: As a minister's wife and self-professed "good girl" I have to say I was very curious--and a bit apprehensive--about a book with "Confessions of a PK" as part of the title. I didn't know if the author was herself a former "PK" (preacher…

Day 6: Why Fresh-Brewed Writer?

When I first started this blog six and a half years ago, it was meant to be my writing blog. I had an "everyday" blog on Xanga at the time, with my own small following--but I wanted a place to vent and whine about my attempts at--and lack of--a writing career.
I chose the title because of Nicole Johnson's first book Fresh-Brewed Life. It was one of those books that I devoured the first time I read it, and then I went back through it with my journal in hand and savored it. It is a book I've read over and over, referred to, recommended, led book clubs through, and given as a gift. I even got the mug and coffee set one year for myself for my birthday (that's the photo you see). I volunteered at Nicole's book table two years running at Women of Faith in Kansas City back in the early 2000s, and I had an absolute ball with her mom and stepdad behind the table.
You can imagine my immense joy to see that the book is now updated (Guess where some of my birthday money is…

Day 5: Accumulation

Just some random thoughts on accumulation.
I tend to accumulate things. Papers. Books. eBooks. Pencils and Pens.
And when my desk or living area gets cluttered, I get frustrated. But it's my own fault in most cases.
So I spend a lot more time than I should, clearing out the cluttered paper and books and pens that don't work.
Moving twice in just over a year has helped me with everything but the paper monster. But the monster's tamed into one filing basket on top of my filing cabinets which have room thanks to the big paper purge of the 2010-11 winter months in Texas.
Nothing profound today, just some thoughts to say I wrote something today.
Hey, I never promised GOOD writing every day--just SOME writing ;)

Day 4: Moose: The Other White Meat?

Fair warning: This story involves a dead animal and its inevitable demise to become food for someone. Don't read if you don't want to know what I saw today.
Today was one of those days when I had a lot of driving in town: drive the girls to the orthodontist, then take them back to school. Because they could fit my oldest in for the impressions and diagnostic things right after her appointment, I drove on the same stretch of road several times within an hour. This is why I saw the steps involved, as described below. (Again, if you're of tender stomach, don't read. I mean it.)
So, on our way to the orthodontist, we have to slow down and pull over for an ambulance, siren wailing and lights flashing. After getting back on the road, we turned the bend and saw why there was an ambulance: a pick-up truck with its front end dented and windshield shattered within its protective covering, and a dead moose.
You may remember just a couple days ago I lamented not having seen any moos…

Loving My Husband

You've probably noticed the button on the right, the super-cute one that says laughing is a given...well, that's from my friend Sara Horn's new book, My So-Called Life as a Proverbs 31 Wife. It's an excellent book, one of my favorite one-year memoirs, made even more special to my heart because I remember talking to Sara about some of the things that made it into the book. Kind of like "It's Shake-n-Bake...and I hayelped!" but not. OK, not at all. But still!
Anyway, this week's challenge is to show love to our husbands. I have to say, I know how I try to show love to my husband, and I know how he receives love from me, and they are NOT the same thing. Our love languages are, shall we say, not always in sync. But that's okay. What will make this a bit easier this week is that his birthday is on Thursday. While our middle week days are quite crazy (Tuesdays and Thursdays are dance nights, and Wednesdays involve the chapel's religious education pr…

Day 3: Teaching

For most of my childhood, I wanted to be a teacher. I dreamed of helping others learn, of being in charge of lessons, of grading with a juicy red pen, and imparting knowledge.
Fast forward to my senior year of high school. My school didn't have a formal Future Teachers of America club, but they did have a program where those who wanted to be teachers could sign up to be a student teacher of sorts. I spent one semester with my French V teacher in a French II class, and one semester with my former English teacher in her English 9 class. Both of these ladies poured themselves into me and allowed me to do things they probably shouldn't have: grade papers, tutor students, supervise make-up tests, and teach actual lessons.
When I got to college, I knew I wanted to teach English and French. Sadly, my college lost their French professor, and the teaching minor in French disappeared. So I chose Speech and Theatre as my second teaching field. (Years later, when the grades 7-9 "junior…

Day 2: Moose? I don't think they exist.

When I found out we were moving to Alaska, I was so excited to see moose in the wild. My friend Cheryl used to live up here and has a moose collection, and the stuff was so darn cute I imagined I'd be able to do the same thing.
Imagine my surprise when I have yet to see a moose. We've lived here two months now. TWO MONTHS. And no moose.
A couple weeks ago I was talking to my class (many of whom are my age, so they "get" my cultural references for the most part), and I was saying something about "these mythical creatures called moose." They were all warning me about them--they walk into the road and stand, the mama moose are super-crazy around their babies, that sort of thing.
I got a lot of laughs when I said, "Moose are like ROUSes. I don't think they exist."
(If you didn't catch The Princess Bride reference there, then I have nothing more to say to you today.)

31 Days: Day 1

Last night after I logged off my computer, I figured I'd have plenty to write about this morning (no scheduling posts early for me this month, oh no; if the point is to write something every day, by golly, it will be written every day!). Now as I sit here with the blank window, my mind also is blank.
I have many things in my head and on my heart, and while I am probably nicer than most and more diplomatic than others might be, I do have pretty strong opinions on a plethora of topics. Perhaps now I should explore those things. And keep a list of ideas alongside my computer for the blank-mind mornings.
I don't remember if I ever published my "2011 theme" post [note: It was a draft, never published, but it's published now!], and if I did, it's been too long since I read it. I wrote it in the beginning of January and posted it, then have had a crazy year since! When I felt the Lord giving me the grace theme, I had no idea how it would manifest in "real life.&q…