Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprint

Happy “National Dive Bar Day” or, if you prefer something a little more specific, how about “National Gin and Tonic Day”.  I’m not much of a drinker, but I’ve always like the sound of a G&T.  I remember a series of mysteries I read when I was much, much younger, where the characters always seemed to be sitting on the porch sipping G&T’s, which sounded both relaxing and refreshing. 

Now that I think about it, they probably should have been off solving mysteries, but who knows.

These days I’m more likely to be sipping a cold-brew coffee while working away on the computer, which sounds far less relaxing or refreshing.  Ah well, it’s apparently also “National Almond Cookie Day”, so maybe I’ll put down my coffee, step away from the computer, and whip up a batch.  That sounds like a delicious alternative.

For now, since it’s my Friday off, I’m going to be focusing on a bit of relaxation for at least part of the day.  There are still those pesky backyard sprinklers that need to be repaired, but I think I’ll need to build up to that much activity by reading a book (or two?).  Somewhere between the almond cookies and the backyard sprinklers I plan to grab my favorite notebook and give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprint

Happy Friday.  Congratulations if you made it through April 1st (April Fool’s Day) without being taken in.  I will admit to falling for a post from a local city.  To be fair, the council there has voted in some pretty strange regulations, so their April 1st post wasn’t outside of the realm of possibility.

Today, (if you’re reading this on the 2nd) is Good Friday for those who celebrate.  For those who don’t there are a variety of other things to celebrate, including “National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day” and “World Autism Awareness Day.”

“April 2 is World Autism Awareness Day. Did you know that CDC statistics revealed that autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is 4.3 times more prevalent in boys than it is in girls? This is because girls “often go undiagnosed because they don’t fit autism stereotypes and they mask symptoms better than boys do,” according to the Child Mind Institute. There is no better way to celebrate this day than by becoming aware of the characteristics of people with this condition and how all of us can do better to increase our own understanding and promote kindness..”

Whatever you’re celebrating, “increasing understanding” and “promoting kindness” seem like good all-around choices.

I’m off work today and am quite likely to celebrate “Doing Nothing but Reading Day”, though who knows.  The beautiful weather may motivate me to leave the house and do something a bit more energetic.  I guess we’ll have to wait and see.  Somewhere along the line I plan to grab my favorite notebook and give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

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Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprint

Happy “Solitude Day” (if you’re reading this on the 26th).   Though frankly, after a year of the pandemic, I’m pretty sure many of us have had our fill of solitude.

It’s also “National Nougat Day”

This holiday offers an opportunity to become a nougat aficionado. Or perhaps try learning the nuances of nougat. No matter how you spend the day, be sure to get a sample or two. Whether it’s a big bite or small, enjoy some nougats. Be sure to share a piece, too! Use #NationalNougatDay to post on social media.

Since I’m not much of a nougat fan, I’ll be celebrating “Organize the Garage Day” on my Friday-day-off instead.  There is a whole stack of things in the garage waiting to go the local charity shop, as well as another stack waiting to go the recycling facility.  My plan is to get rid of everything that doesn’t belong in the garage so that I can make a little exercise area.  I had a spot in the living room, but it’s time for a change.

Of course I may just wind up spending the day reading.  Who can tell?  As long as I take a break from the day job, it will be a day well spent.

Somewhere along the line I plan to grab my favorite notebook and give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

Care to join me? Continue reading

Elizabeth: A New Leaf

We seem to be in a changing-seasons mood here on the blog. Michaeline welcomed the equinox on Saturday, Jilly got us dreaming about travelling on Sunday, and Jeanne shared her visual spring fever just yesterday.

For me, the appearance of spring means giving the house a deep-clean and the garden some sprucing up while waiting for my lilac bushes to bloom. In this part of the country they only bloom for a few weeks–generally sometime between mid-March and Easter–and the recent rainy/sunny/windy weather seems to have them a little confused. Fortunately, today I saw that there are little leaves budding away and signs that the flowers aren’t too far behind, so my personal start-of-spring is almost here.

I can’t wait.

Though obviously, I’ll have to.

In the meantime, I’ve been looking for a little distraction to keep me entertained. I have a pile of unread books that could fit the bill, but none of them seem to be calling to me right now. I did interrupt my comfort re-reading the other day to finally read Beth O’Leary’s The Switch, and enjoyed it, but I didn’t really feel like picking up anything else.

Fortunately, the internet came to the rescue. Continue reading

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprint

Happy “Swallows Return to San Juan Capistrano Day” (if you’re reading this on the 19th). 

“The miracle of the “Swallows” of Capistrano takes place each year at Mission San Juan Capistrano, on March 19th, St. Joseph’s Day. Swallows migrate 6,000 miles from Goya, Argentina to San Juan Capistrano in large groups.  The town of San Juan Capistrano welcomes visitors from all parts of the world to witness the return of the swallows, a tradition that has been celebrated since the early 1930s.”

This holiday has always tickled me.  I picture the swallows with little calendars, checking off the days until it’s time to leave Argentina and fly north.   There may not be crowds celebrating this year’s arrival in San Juan Capistrano, but I hope the swallows arrive nonetheless.

Closer to home, I had plans to celebrate “National Relaxing with a Book Day,” since I have the day off work.  Instead, I’ll be taking the car into the shop for “Check Engine Light Day.”  Apparently the car isn’t happy that it has spent so much time just sitting in the driveway during the past 369 days of pandemic-stay-at-home.  On the bright side, the light came on when I was just taking a short trip to the grocery store and have a day off to deal with it, rather than when I was on the highway.  Still, not what I was planning to do.

Here’s hoping the problem is quickly resolved and I am able to follow through with the rest of my weekend plans.  After all, I have a pile of unread books awaiting my attention.

While I’m waiting for the car to be repaired I think I’ll grab my favorite notebook and give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

Care to join me? Continue reading

Elizabeth: All Shall Be Well

Quote from Julian of Norwich

Happy Wednesday to all.

I was just watching the news and, despite the roll-out of multiple vaccines and the decreasing infection/death rates, the pandemic is far from over.  That is certainly a disappointing as we pass the 1-year mark since the “shelter in place” first began.  Also disappointing are the pictures I’m seeing of Florida beaches full of crowds of mask-less people–that does not inspire confidence that “normal” is just around the corner.  Other news stories of the increased violence against Asian-Americans clearly show that our country is infected with more than just Covid.

To combat all of that, the quote above seems like a timely boost of positivity.  I’d very much like to believe in that force of love and that the arc of the universe bends towards justice.

In the meantime, the New York Times reported today that “Print book sales had their best year in a decade” in 2020. That makes sense;  what better time to escape into a book than when you’re sheltering at home during a pandemic or trying to block out political upheaval for just a while.  Physical books, eBooks, and audio-book purchases all saw an upsurge in 2020, which my home library and Kindle can confirm.

For now, I think I’ll turn off the news and go escape into a book where I know good will prevail and happily-ever-after exists.

Hoping all is well with you and yours.

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprint

Happy “National Working Mom’s Day” (if you’re reading this on the 12th). Wait – isn’t that everyday?  It’s also “National Girl Scout Day.”

“As part of Girl Scout Week, National Girl Scout Day on March 12th honors the history and legacy of Girl Scouting in America each year. The motto of the organization, which was originally named the Girl Guides of America, is Be Prepared and their slogan is Do a Good Turn Daily.”

All I remember from my (fairly brief) time in Girl Scouts was making chocolate chip cookies, learning to play Heart & Soul on a battered old piano, and a disastrous camping trip.

Here in California, it has been alternatingly rainy and sunny, with crazy winds thrown in for good measure.  The flowers and shrubs I put in the ground last week are thrilled by the rain, but it did make my evening walks a little chilly.  Having emerged unscathed from last week’s “Still Digging in the Yard but now with Dangerous Tools” day, I’ll be moving on to “Finally Refinishing those Kitchen Cupboards Day.”  I’m guessing that may be more of a month-long celebration, but at least Friday is a day off work for me, so I should be able to make a good start.

Perhaps I should just read a book instead.  

Before I start on the cabinets I think I’ll grab my favorite notebook and give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

Care to join me? Continue reading

Elizabeth: Procrasti-humor

Happy Wednesday to all.  The day job is still keeping me busy and severely cramping my writing style, not to mention interrupting my sleep-patterns.  One of the hazards of attending virtual conferences that originate overseas is that a reasonable time “over there” is a very unreasonable time over here.  Ah well, such is the price of learning and information sharing.  Here’s hoping we’ll all be the better for it.

The image above popped up in my Facebook-memories feed today and it gave me a chuckle.  I may not be currently residing in Procrasti-nation, but I have traveled extensively to Napland and Surfside in the recent past.  I’m hoping to take a day-trip to Isle get it done later this week.  We’ll see how that goes.

In the meantime, I hope your March has been good so far and is continuing to look bright.

Happy Writing! (or napping)

Elizabeth: Friday Writing Sprint

Happy “National Multiple Personality Day” (if you’re reading this on the 5th).   With all of the characters writers keep playing around in their heads, this holiday seems custom made.

“Some people look at National Multiple Personality Day as a day to look at yourself and connect with who you are.  Exploring your own  personality traits and examining the roots of those traits.  Each one of us shows a different side of our personalities at different times and in different places.  Sometimes our personalities appear to be altered, depending on whom we are with and what we are doing.   With these things in mind, National Multiple Personality Day is a day to focus your thoughts, on yourself and your own personality.”

If you’re hungry instead, we’re also in the middle of  “British Pie Week,” which is right up my alley.  There is a Pie Shoppe not too far away that makes great hand pies.  I had their Corn-ish Pastry for lunch just yesterday and it was delicious.  The make a mean apple-pecan crumble too.  The shop–The Petaluma Pie Company–is running a Piku contest:

Pi Day is coming 3-14 ! It is time for our annual piku contest!  Write a haiku about pi, the number, pie, the food or both. The format is three lines. 5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables.  The deadline to enter is noon on Sunday March 14th. We will announce winners on Monday March 15th on Instagram, Facebook, and twitter and contact you directly if you are a winner. You could win prizes ranging from gift cards to t-shirts to coffee cups. 

Here in “it’s rainy, no wait, it’s sunny” California, I’ll be celebrating “Still Digging in the Yard but now with Dangerous Tools” day.  When attempting to plant a lavender bushes last week, I encountered a mass of roots in the ground that kept me from digging a proper-sized hole.  After watching random guys on YouTube, it seemed that a reciprocating saw was the answer.  We’ll see.  I’ll either get my lavender successfully planted or end up in the emergency room. 

Perhaps I should just read a book instead.  

Before I get started in the yard I think I’ll grab my favorite notebook and give today’s writing prompt and random words a try.

Care to join me? Continue reading

Elizabeth: Brief bit of Humor

Happy Wednesday to all.  Having been working 12-hour days recently, I’m at a bit of a loss for deep writing thoughts to share, but there’s always time for a bit of humor.  I found this image in my Facebook feed the other day and it gave me a chuckle.  Honesty compels me to admit that I had to read the “proofreaders” bit multiple times before I got it.

I hope March is off to a wonderful start for you, with good health and lots of words on the page.