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Rusty Can Be a Beautiful Thing

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So the words went here originally and I pressed all the right buttons but somehow I had a tagline that I didn’t like and Poof, the words were gone.

That’s alright though.  I can look at this picture and tell you that rust accompanies beautiful objects in the desert.  Turquoise and rust seem to go together everywhere I look when I’m in the southwest.  I yearn to touch the rust and walk past the artistic structures that oxidize on purpose all over town.  I yearn to dwell in the desert.

On this vacation though, I yearned to be home.  I was ready to be back on the airplane, sleep in our apartment, decorate for Christmas, see my girls, hike my trails and bake some cookies.  It took 14 years to call this part of the South my home.  But I finally did.

There’s lots of green here.  Lots of trees and some big hills and waterfalls and trails that I love and places that I know I’ll hike soon and I’ll love those hills too….  And my girls are here – all 3 of them – and that’s why they say Home is where the Heart is…

But I still love rust and turquoise … and creosote, cactus, sky islands, lizards, and the sun …

 

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Silence is silver

the silver medal

I’m not sure where my voice has gone but I’m hoping it comes back. I hope that writing today when there is chaos in the house will help my focus.

I HOPE for a lot of things
*like for the child at the table to stop burping (usually that’s funny)
*or for the Banagram game to quiet down to a tolerable level
*or for the snow to hurry up and start so at least I can SEE for myself why everyone is home while the roads are still dry

Lately my silence on paper has been deafening though so that is why I have stopped all the fiddling around with art supplies in order to focus on my voice – which is essentially my writing. Last time it only had one volume – out loud, really loud – or when on paper and blog it was strong and forthcoming and somewhat rewarding.

The phrase “silence is golden” came to mind this day when I pulled out the keyboard, but that sounds like a winning opportunity – like years ago when all my children were taking naps simultaneously.

Right now, silence, in reference to writing, seems 2nd place … like a silver medal, not a gold. There’s nothing wrong with silver in the Olympics, but to some, it’s just not gold.

Silence on my keyboard is like a silver medal and I need to bring that back into my world because …

Silver:  It’s just not as significant as the big win.

So today I will write and as I begin, the noise and chaos of the house will fade …

I guess I’m on a bit of a wayward streak around here and that’s ok, but the fact that I seem to be stuck there is a big deal. And it’s not all just about writing, it’s about life.

Lately I’m catching a breath of fresh air – or catching a break – only to forget where it came from.

Sometimes I forget that for a brief moment in time I felt free from pain or free from the chaos that my life has become.

Today I will write because

I love it

I need it

It replenishes me…

 
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Posted by on March 18, 2014 in Life, in general, Writing

 

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Five Minute Friday ~ See

See

~If only I could make you see~

If I only had a week to show you love

through God’s eyes ~ I’d show you kindness

To a stranger, the downcast, the poor and the hungry …

If I only had a day to show you love

through God’s eyes ~ I’d show you compassion

For your close friends and co-workers …

If I only had an hour to show you love ~ I’d show you forgiveness.

For your family and for yourself …

If I only had a minute to show you love ~ I’d show you salvation.

~I’d introduce you to the breathe of life~

that beckons your heart

to turn toward Him.

For you to reflect His light, to heal your soul, to change your world

Come SEE with me

***

Colossians 3:12

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.

*****

On Fridays… we “shhhh” the inner critic and run freely with our words.  Allowing to exercise our free-flowing words with a word prompt from our fearless community leader Lisa Jo Baker.  Then we join together and encourage each other – kind of like a Flashmob for Writers.

www.lisajobaker.com

 

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Blog Rest? Nope!

Heart Tree

I have to say that I truly need a rest from writing in my blog.  There just never seems to be enough hours in the day to type, edit, and publish.

Unfortunately that idea doesn’t seem to connect with any other part of my brain.  It’s on overload most mornings when I wake up – just raring to go!

On a regular basis now I literally grab my phone on the nightstand beside the bed to type notes.  It’s sometimes too early when I wake up and have thoughts roar through my head that I can’t be trusted to remember them by the time I get to the kitchen table with coffee, pen and paper.  Once my brain has started the download I have to be ready to write down things that I pondered in my dreams or while simply lying awake at 4:30 a.m.

Anxiety usually favors the early hours to startle me awake physically and it usually gets me thinking about stuff I don’t care to think about, so writing helps.  But it’s a chore and a joy and sometimes something wonderful comes out of it.

I clearly heard his alarm, but I tried to roll over and go back to sleep.  Just maybe I could…. but no.

My thoughts were heading down hopeless paths of regret, guilt and sadness simultaneously so I wrote him a letter.  It helped me and later he read it and I think he was good with it too.

I ask a lot from the people I love.  Forgiveness, support, understanding, compassion, and on and on the list goes.

He gives it, unconditionally.

He loves me deeply and never out of pity or obligation.

He understands my pains and my messiness.

He understands my need for a lifting of the burdens from my shoulders.

He reaches into my space – invading whatever emotion I’m holding there – and loves me.

It’s not easy.  I’m feeling unlovable quite often lately.

Some days I feel so distant and weak that I simply can’t lift my hand to reach out to him.

It comes in waves, regardless of my declaration that “today will be better.”

I convey to him that I need to hear …

“We can make it.”  “I love you.”  “I know you’re struggling.”  “I know you’re trying.”

Lately I apologize as often as I tell him I love him and I rely on him to hold me together when it’s easier to fall apart.

We won’t give up.

That’s our LOVE song…we won’t give up.

I’m so thankful for this man that I met at age 15 – That was 32 years ago but it was like yesterday…

I heard a song the other day that said –

“When does a scar become a tattoo?”

“When does the sky turn back to blue?”

“When does this broken heart that I’m holding beat on it’s own?”

I imagine those scars are healing, whether I can see it happening or not.

And I know the sky is blue, even when the days are cloudy and grey.

And that broken heart?

Well, he holds me and loves me and his heart beats for two.

 
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Posted by on December 16, 2013 in Life, in general

 

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Five Minute Friday ~Write~

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It’s been a couple of weeks since I last wrote-anything.

I didn’t have anything, or so I thought, for this week’s prompt “write.”

So, maybe my Five Minute Friday should be about “not writing.”

…Yes, that works… AND it gets me writing

I just haven’t had the energy to write.  I’ve been spending a huge amount of time talking, explaining, apologizing … praying.

And a great deal of my time lately has been spent watching the sun set each evening from my Adirondack chair.

Tonight, I’m writing though… in the dark, on my notepad, from my chair – outdoors.  Not a lot of talking needed tonight – more like contemplation.

About Life and Decisions and Directions … Big stuff.  Earth-shattering and life-altering big stuff.

Which is always good to contemplate … and then it gets you back to writing.

To write … perhaps the best way up and out of the muck and mire and back into the daylight… and of course, back in my little community of writers…

I’ve been missing you ladies…

blog keep calm

*Curious about Five Minute Friday?  It’s like a Flashmob for writers.*

A bunch of us, with a one-word prompt, write fearlessly for FIVE minutes and link up together. Join us!

http://lisajobaker.com

 

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Five Minute Friday – Red

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God:  “Where have you been?”

Me:  “In the desert, wandering.”

God:  “How did you get there?”

Me:  “Apparently I wandered there all on my own.”

God:  “Did you learn anything while you wandered?”

Me.:  “Yes, and you know that because you never left me.”

God:  “Of course I didn’t leave you, you keep me in your heart wherever you go.”

Me:  “I learned many lessons from you while I wandered.”

God:  “Yes, I saw you scribbling and typing.”

Me:  “I understand better how thirsty and dry I was for your Spirit.”

God:  “Feel better now?”

Me:  “Yes I do, and thank you.”

God:  “You’re welcome.”

Me:  “Thank you for the protection, the lessons, the guidance, and the forgiveness.”

God:  “You are dearly loved.”

I’ve been gone a while, been home a while, and I’ve been trying to gather my, um, my thoughts and my courage to sit at the keyboard again…and I had already started typing my conversation in “RED.”  So, I’m throwing it into the Five Minute Friday pile because, well, God says “Go.”

I figured out a whole bunch of stuff while I wandered, especially on this one hike I took in June.  It had the greatest tour guide.  The Almighty himself showed up and He was sort of loud that day…

I’m going to take that day of messages and share with you what I learned and experienced.  But, I won’t be able to do it all at once.  I know you’ve got laundry to finish, or a diaper to change… or maybe you’re headed out to the bus stop to fetch your kids or run your weekend errands or… possibly you’re reading as many Five Minute Friday blogs as you can today and trying to catch up.

My desert wanderings start with this blog: https://theunfinishedchild.wordpress.com/2013/06/30/shes-gone-missing/

“The Hike Full of Messages” will soon follow and will cover my lessons that God gave me on that particular day in June.  It was awesome, and I can’t wait to share them with you.  Come thirsty… OK?

 

*Curious about Five Minute Friday?  It’s like a Flashmob for writers.*

A bunch of us, with a one-word prompt, write fearlessly for FIVE minutes and link up together. Join us!

http://lisajobaker.com

 

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Five Minute Friday – Jump

sunset

Going…

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Going…

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Gone

*sigh*

Well, let’s just jump right into this week’s Five Minute Friday by saying… I’m at my desk writing already this morning and my fingers can’t keep up with my thoughts.

I was just visiting Arizona and came home and had to jump back in where life left off.  Laundry hampers full, fridge sort of half full, pantry in decent shape, and WHEW, am I tired!

Plugging along at the everyday work here at the house kept me from taking a 3 day nap – because I was exhausted from travel and hiking and talking and watching sunsets and walking at high altitude on Mt. Lemmon and eating.  {Boy, I had the best piece of pie at a restaurant up there}

But I’m done jumping around here trying to catch up, and it’s time to download all that has happened in that 5 day trip.  I finally have a clear schedule, and maybe a clear mind to type and reflect.  And I’m excited.

 Although… I’m wanting one more day … to bask in the sun, amongst the blooming desert, hiking Sabino Canyon, and laughing with old friends …

And another day living without the laundry, the threat of severe weather, or those pesky allergies …

Reality, then vacation, then reality …

Memories…into words…words on to paper…etched forever…

Jump up for more coffee and a shower and some food and more writing that needs to be done today!

Have an excellent Friday everyone!

*******

Curious about Five Minute Friday?  It’s like a Flashmob for writers.

A bunch of us, with a one-word prompt, write fearlessly for FIVE minutes and link up together. Join us!

http://lisajobaker.com/

 

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The Woods, the Hike and the Writer

writing rock

Hiking in the woods.

It’s something I do.

It’s something I love.

It might be hard-wired into my DNA because walking in the woods, or just being outside, has always been a constant in my life as both a child and as an adult.  It’s kind of like food – my body needs it or I get weak without it.

Recently, I had a great day hiking – well, truthfully, I’ve never had a bad day hiking – but a few weeks ago I had to force myself to get out and go to our local mountain so it was GOOD that I did it.

I chose a path that I’ve used many times, so I could just think and breathe and relax and not have to worry about the color of the paint markers on the trees.  Heaven knows I was not in the mood for a barely blazed trail with only its plastic flags, and a leaf-covered and barely-trodden path.  I really needed a no-brainer day to clear my cluttered mind because it was in chaos.

I had my ipod along for some music – that day the mood was James Taylor, Carole King, and some Carly Simon.  I knew when I got down the path to my favorite area, there would be a rock edge to sit on and time to write down some thoughts – and that’s what I was really in the mood for that day.  Sitting on a rock and writing.

The wind blew cold and pretty strong, but thankfully the sun was out because I was in need of its rays.  I was bundled up, with a scarf and gloves and I looked in the back of the truck and realized I left my rugged hiking boots at home.  No big deal –  I knew the path was well-worn and pretty smooth in most places – so I used the hiking shoes.  It wasn’t like I was going to turn around and go home, ya know?

By the time I got to the bluff I couldn’t write down fast enough all the things I noticed on my way in.

1st – Someone closed the bathrooms … Re-direct to a different parking area

2nd – I had to trek along the blue trail to get to my white trail

3rd – This meant, I would be going the opposite direction on the white trail

4th – Hey, wow, the paint on this side of the trees is REALLY bright

5th – Hey, it gets really muddy up here in spots!

6th – How about those secondary paths around the mud?  That’s convenient!

Re-directed, over and over…that’s what the day felt like.  Even when I had started the drive, I was reminded that I would have to take a kid to the University in order to use the car.  And at the base of the mountain, I realized I forgot to drop by the church to leave some papers there.

It was just one of those days …

Redirection is like change.  It can be irritating, or it can make you notice aspects of the trail that you would normally tune out.  It can make you more aware of what you normally do not see.

This day of hiking and re-direction was not lost on me.  I spend too much time lost in the everyday stuff which can get mundane.  It causes me to lose focus or my ability to notice wonderful things.

Two days later I was enjoying a really warm day that stood in stark contrast to the day I went hiking.  It finally reached 70 degrees.  I was again, very aware of what I normally do not see… It’s been a long winter!  I welcomed the warmth!

 
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Posted by on April 2, 2013 in Life, in general

 

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Why and Where do I write?

I ventured into an actual bookstore this week for some inspiration on how to write.  I was just looking for a few titles in the non-fiction section – maybe journaling exercises or anything that might create sparks to help me reach a little deeper, or come across a little better.  What I found, and purchased, was a “how-to” book by a fiction author that I have enjoyed reading in the past.  The book is “Escaping Into the Open” by Elizabeth Berg.  There were a few others there as well but I curtailed my enthusiasm (and drooling) to just one book.  Later, I confess, I purchased some of those books online, but I’ll discuss them later because they are hilarious and “outside the box” for writing.

So, I thought I’d take the homework from the first chapter and write it out.  It’s a self-discovery chapter with questions about why you write and where you write, even whether or not you have a special place to write.  Beginnings are always a good place to start and maybe this will be enlightening to someone who has the “itch” to write.  This chapter made it easy to bridge from the “itch” to the “scratch” if you need a good place to get rolling in your own writing.

The homework began with “lie down, close your eyes, and clear your mind” … I did a little daydreaming and here’s where it went…

I hated writing as a child.  It was always homework and I despised it.  Even when we were doing something creative like an imaginative story, and not an essay, I would not be able to do it.  Writer’s block came to my 4th grade mind – I knew it well!  I remember one poem I wrote and liked, but considering it was Haiku and it had built-in boundaries, I know it came pretty easily.  I’m good at following rules, not free expression.  I could handle rhyming too, but to this day that Haiku poem is forever etched in my brain.

Me, myself, and I (5)

Went for a wonderful ride (7)

Up to the canyon (5)

In my mind, it is still a brilliant poem!   ; )

For the most part, I use journaling and blogging as my chosen form of writing…perhaps with a message to help others where I have stumbled.  Humor, anecdotes, or scriptural discussion are the ideas that take up the corners of my mind and fill the pages if I have a chance to write them down.  Sometimes my best ideas come when my hands are in the dishwater so my journal, pen, glasses and a free space are all I need to throw down some stuff before it escapes my mind.  Later I can go back and expound on it if necessary.  Sometimes, it’s months till I work out an idea into something that feels complete.

My need to write comes usually from good reading material or a life-changing event that needs resolution.  It all seems to culminate into something I think can benefit others as well as myself.  Reading something really good that changes me in some way can always be useful to others and I feel compelled to share it, even if it isn’t the answer for another person’s problems or circumstances … it’s kind of an opportunity to help someone see hope in our common struggles in life.  Some things I write are because I feel a need to say them, but maybe just to myself.  Truthfully, some of the really cruddy or emotionally overloaded things I write, get ripped out and tossed away so I can “let go” some piece of ugliness inside of me that I know doesn’t do me or God any good.  I will admit freely too that I write to keep from babbling to myself out loud…. and for this I think my family is thankful!

One of my favorite discoveries about the desire to write, is that I love jotting down quotes, lyrics, books to read and general ideas.  I believe it could be a bit genetic as I used to find lists everywhere that belonged to my mom.  She usually had a list, just inside the desk cupboard, with book titles on it for future trips to the library.  I always knew about her lists – they weren’t hidden by any means – but their presence amuses me now when I realize how similar my lists are to hers.  Some days it saddens me greatly that she’s gone and I can’t share my lists with her.  She’d love the comment I made about writing to keep from talking to myself out loud, as that was one of her favorite jokes.  She promised that “you’re okay as long as you don’t answer yourself back.”

Well, that bring to a close my first homework assignment from what promises to be a great instructional guide to writing.  At least it gives me some direction…and hopefully encouragement to someone else.

Romans 15:5,6

May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

 
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Posted by on November 1, 2012 in Writing

 

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Five Minute Friday – Voice

“Five Minute Friday” writing assignment as part of a Flashmob of writers.  Unscripted.  Unedited.  Real.

Today’s word is Voice

My voice is loud.  Apparently it’s obnoxious at times and tends to run along at a very fast pace.  Blame it on the Northerner in me I guess, but this girl now resides in the South so I’ve slowed it down a bit…

I’ve got a lot to say, and I feel like most people don’t have a lot of time to listen so, I tend to spit out all I have to say fast because who knows when I’ll see them again to finish telling them whatever it is that is SOOOO important…  I have to laugh at myself… like I’m so important that you MUST listen to me Ha!

So, I’m learning to slow it down a bit and learning to be a better listener.  Good idea too, because my prayer life was too full of my voice and not enough of my ears were involved.  I came across the verse Psalm 66:19 that says …but God has surely listened and heard my voice in prayer.  Yes, He hears me … the loud, the soft and the tearful, desperate voice that quite often comes in sobs.  He hears my Voice and yours…

My voice is important to Him, if to none other.

 
 

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