Sunday, December 4, 2011


Would you prefer to fit in? Would you prefer to stand out? These are questions that one must ponder on a daily basis. Anyone (most everyone) who interacts socially or even in a professional setting, must make a decision regarding the position they want to place themselves in. Each direction will offer possibilities of positive outcomes, as well as possible drawbacks. This is something I often feel conflicted about. My first inclination would be to stand out, because I simply repel the idea of being a carbon copy of anyone else. I have never liked the idea of mimicking someone, borrowing their style, doing what someone else does, etc... I've never been one to follow something or someone just because it was what everyone else was doing. I have never had a problem with peer pressure, because once I am decided about something, I cannot be swayed. So naturally, I would consider myself a person who stands out as unique, singular and steadfast. However, from my perspective there are two problems with the "standing out" scenario. Firstly, don't really like being in the spotlight. I don't like 'all eyes on me'. {The only exception, is with regards to my writing. Writers are said to have big egos, so I suppose I go into transformer mode when I put my writer's hat on!} The second problem with standing out, is that you may quite literally be left standing OUT. It can be quite a solitary experience at times. Luckily for me, at least 80% of the time, I don't mind being a loner. I'd even consider myself somewhat of a hermit at times. (Hermitage of course, being immensely difficult when you are also the mother of three children, so this is rare.) Fitting in could be so much easier, I'd imagine. Fitting in, you'd probably have a thrilling social life. You'd probably be surrounded by many people who share similar interests. You'd probably be 'snug as a bug in a rug'. I cannot speak from the perspective of a person who has ever fit into anything, with one exception. The niches I have found, have always been with my fellow poets and writers. We speak a language, come from a place full of misfits, vagabonds, rebels, loners, fire-starters, trail-blazers, optimists and dreamers -all of which I relate to.
It is a personal choice. It is a decision that must be made. Fit in or stand out. Find your comfy place. And be all that you can be when you do. And as I always say, "Be the best version of yourself."


Friday, August 26, 2011


How many times has this fragment of a thought run through your head? We have all been there. We do many things. Our lives are consumed by this and that. Women who are highly motivated (in whatever they do) and selfless often think first, of completing tasks and taking care of others. A woman like this puts herself, her desires and her dreams on the back burner a lot of the times. However, even though the basement gets filled with these dreams, we still think about them. (Yes, I am one of these women too, even though I don‘t actually have a basement.) There has to come a time when we can elaborate on this statement. “There is this thing I have been wanting to do and that thing is…”. The statement must be completed. Not only that, it must be accompanied by a plan to execute and reach the goal, do that thing you have been wanting to do. Even though I am a busy mother, wife, volunteer and writer, I still make time to do the things that I WANT to do, big or small. Why? Because these are things that feed my soul. These are things that give me personal satisfaction and make me feel successful. Just as an example, I once stepped into a craft store. I strolled by the jewelry section and it was so glittery and shimmery full of beads and fun things to make jewelry. In that moment, with not skill set applicable to creating any piece of jewelry, I decided that it was something that I wanted to do. I bought a little kit, came home and made a few pair of earrings and a couple of necklaces! I wanted to do it, and I did it. It made me feel good. I enjoyed the time I spent making them and was proud of my pieces. As a person who loves to be creative, this was just right for me. It fed my soul. For you, it might be getting a new pair of sneakers because you want to start to jog. It might even be something so simple as a looking up a recipe for biscuits because you want to make your own instead of those that come out of the can. The point here is, you (everyone) must take time to do the thing that they WANT to do. We are responsible, singularly, for our own happiness. When we are blessed enough to share our lives with someone else, we should choose people who can enhance our lives. This is true in intimate relationships as well as in friendships. What you should never do, though, is place the responsibility for your happiness on someone else’s shoulders. It is alright to have a little “you/me” time every now and then. There is nothing wrong with doing the things that make you feel good, mentally and emotionally. So go ahead, make a list or be spontaneous. Just do the things you want to do! Life has not guarantee of time so make it worth your while and live every day to the fullest!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Jot, doodle & scribble your stress away!

I have always been an advocate of keeping a journal. One of the first responses I get when I suggest this to someone is "but I don't write". It is not necessary to be a writer in any expert or professional capacity to keep a journal. In fact, one of the best things about a journal is that it does not need to adhere to any specific form. In my own journal, I often just doodle and scribble in addition to writing entries. I find that it helps me to bring clarity when I am anxious, frustrated, confused or overwhelmed (*These afflictions often affect a military spouse.) You can choose to free write. What that basically means is that you pick up a writing utensil and begin writing anything, and I mean ANYTHING! You can begin with your shopping list, how you tripped over your pet, which load of laundry you need to do next...anything at all! The main goal is to just keep writing freely (usually for a set time, between 5-30 minutes, or really, as long as you like). What eventually happens is that through this writing, you touch upon something, something leaks out, something reveals itself or you purge yourself. You also become distracted from whatever stress is weighing you down at the time. Similarly, doodling or jotting down words or phrases can help reveal and release things that are on your mind. I love to doodle randomly (see picture) and as I go along, I see that each little doodle is connected to some thought or feeling, so that means something to me too. A LOT of emphasis is placed on physical health in this day and age, but equally important is your mental health. There are avenues for release, and journaling can be quite therapeutic. I have many different journals, but today, for fun, I created a collage on the front of my next journal (a simple, $1 composition notebook and clippings from mags). It makes it feel personalized and like it will house thoughts and doodles that are unique and private to me. Find a journal, make a journal. I dare say that everyone (really, of any age) can benefit from keeping a journal full of jottings, doodles, scribbles and words.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Kids Take over the Summer!

My children are 12, 10 and 7. This is the first Summer that I have been really challenged. At this age, they are HIGH maintenance! It takes a whole lot more to keep them entertained. The very first day that they had break, they were "bored". What I realized quickly was that I cannot fault them for this. They are used to having a full schedule so naturally, idleness would be incredibly BORING! Here's what I have found so far. Their capacity for entertainment is endless. Meaning, there is NO such thing as too much fun. So, first I tried jam packing a day with tons of activities. They could have kept going, I was completely exhausted. I pondered a way to make this work better for all of us. We can have one main event per day, not necessarily every day of the week. Also, in order to do said fun activities, they will need to pay the piper (that would be me) by reading a certain amount of time per day. They still have their bored moments, but my go-to is "if you are bored, read a book!" Either way, most of what I personally am interested in doing is on the back burner for my children, at least for the Summer. These are the sacrifices we make, and I wouldn't have it any other way! :-)

Friday, June 3, 2011

About Perfection

PERFECTION: (As per Merriam Webster Dictionary)
1) :the quality or state of being perfect: as
a: freedom from fault or defect : flawlessness b : maturity
c : the quality or state of being saintly
2)a : an exemplification of supreme excellence
b : an unsurpassable degree of accuracy or excellence

Perfection is not a state than any Earthly being can attain. Perfect being without flaw and supreme excellence, it would stand to reason that the only valid source of perfection would be found in that which we worship, or God(s), regardless of religious or spiritual preference. Yet, day after day, people insist on trying to achieve some level of perfection. Trying to achieve your personal best in things like sports of your jobe are healthy. But excessive mutilation of your body (plastice surgery overdrive) is not healthy. Also, idolizing others as opposed to respecting or admiring them for their achievements, is unhealthy. Really simply, it goes back to that saying, "No one is perfect." Don't follow others; make your own way, lead and strive to be the best version of yourself. Save the devotion to perfection for the One(s) that deserve worship.


Friday, April 1, 2011

NaPoWriMo! & Day 1

APRIL! A great month because it's my birthday month and secondly because it's National Poetry Writers Month! Woo-hoo! I'm taking the 30-day challenge~ A poem each day in April! Without delay, here is the first challenge and my piece! _*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*

Day 1: Write a poem where each line starts with a letter from your first name (an acrostic). It can be about anything, but it should not be about you or your name.


Morning comes, offering renewal
Another chance to be your best self
Reflect on all that you have learned
And be thankful for life and good health
Let today be the day
Invite love and joy to walk with you
Surely, a smile will follow


Wednesday, February 9, 2011


If there is one thing in this world that I am fairly certain of, it is that nothing at all stays the same! With that thought in mind then, why should WE? It's heard all the time in relationships: "you're not the same as you were in the beginning." OF COURSE NOT! With regard to relationships, the beginning is the wooing period. But aside from that, people grow, evolve, change! It's a fact. It would be total shame if they didn't. Every experience, bad or good, is a learning opportunity. From that, you approach the next thing a little differently. Simple example: If you walk down the street and trip on a crack in the side walk, next time you are likely to be more careful and avoid that crack. Some people keep tripping, and it takes a little longer for them to register, "AVOID THE CRACK!" The point is, experiences change you.
However, aside from experience, we also posess a power. That power is free will. My daughter woke up cranky one morning. I told her that as the day passed she'd feel better and she said it wouldn't. It was then that I told her (and reminded myself in the process) that when you wake up each morning, you have the power to change your mind in any way that you'd like. Even if you wake up feeling uptight, you can DECIDE that you will shake that mood and have a great day! So we stood in front of the mirror and smiled and blew kisses at our own reflection and she started laughing, and just like that, her mood was chipper! You can decide who, what and how you want to be.
So why stay the same, when you can adjust to be your best self? Re-Inventing!!! Make a list of the things you would like to do/be. Make a list of the things you'd like to change about yourself. Then work on one of those at a time. I'd like to be more fit. So, I am making a promise to myself to exercise at least 4 times a week. No excuses, just do it! I do not like my eating habits in regards to sweets. (I have a SERIOUS weakness for cake. One slice is never enough!) So I am not depriving myself, I am treating myself, to one serving of a yummy sweet treat a day! I am re-inventing myself. I am making changes and adjustments that will make me feel good about myself. So needless to say, tomorrow, I will not be the same as I am today. I'm climbing UP the ladder, not down! So should you!!


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Great way to start the new year!

I didn't really make a resolution this year. I just decided to resolve to focus on self-development. Part of that is committing to doing the things that make ME feel good. What I have nailed down: being a good wife, being a good mom, volunteering in my community. What I DON'T have nailed down: doing the things that nourish my soul and make me feel great, inside and out. I feel guilty, plain and simple, to do things that solely benefit me. However...when I think about it a little more in depth, if I feel better and happier, won't that benefit everyone around me as well? I just need to work on reminding myself of that. My home and family will not fall apart if I take a little bit of time for myself. I forget this. Every now and then I get a little reminder, a nudge. I did. I haven't written in a while, wholly consumed by the duties of a domestic goddess and super mom. However, a few days ago, I got an email, a congratulatory email, stating that a piece that I had written and submitted has been accepted for submission in an upcoming Anthology! I also have a different piece being published in a different Anthology in March of this year! I read this good news email and then the words morphed into: "See girl, what is the matter with you? Your words matter, you have a skill, a gift. You need to stop complaining about not having the time, and MAKE the time. Writing is your thing, and you are being very neglectful! Get back to it, woman!" Or something like that... So it's a good start to 2011. A little more me time is in order, and I think that everything will still be okay in the home! (chanting, "abandon the feelings of guilt and be your best selllllllllf....")


Monday, January 3, 2011

*New Year, New Challenges*

Another year of life! Fantastic, thanks God!! What will this year bring? I don't know that anymore than I knew ahead of time last year that I'd be moving to Texas, that my mini-van would break down in the middle of TN, that my husband will need major knee surgery, just NEVER know. What I DO know is that I have the power to choose what I want to challenge myself with this year! I love a good challenge. I have come to learn that all, great and small, can empower me and/or enhance my life in some way. A fun challenge I am starting this year is taking a photo everyday for a whole year, 365 days of snapshots! (I found a page on FB called SNAP 365 and it sounded like fun!) I am also challenging myself to use my voice more this year. We often think that as one person, we can't do much. But if each ONE did, it would have an effect. I believe that my ability to write is a gift. What am I to do with this precious gift that was given to me? I intend to find out this year! What is your natural gift? What do YOU plan to do with it this year?? Find challenges for yourself, great and small! Commit to being a better version of yourself this year. That's my plan!