Panera x2

Today was a NaNoWriMo Write-in at a local Panera Bread. Write-ins seem like a cool idea to me — get to meet other people who are trying to write a novel this month plus actually get writing done.

Panera had sent me an offer to get a free bagel every day of November.

Apparently, Panera had sent me this offer for the month of October, but I forgot about it and didn’t use it even once. So they re-sent me the offer for November. Thank you, Panera. I guess I haven’t been in one for a while, so they started throwing bagels at me to get my attention.

It finally worked today. I figured it was the perfect combination of reasons to go to Panera this morning — get writing done and collect a free bagel.

The NaNoWriMo thing started at 6:30, but this morning I decided I just had to clean part of the kitchen before I left. A bowl of fruit and garlic had been sitting around for way too long and the bowl was becoming a catch-all. It had crumbs on the bottom and some splatters. Plus I don’t think I ever meant the fruit and garlic to live together in the first place. It was supposed to be a fruit bowl. Time for it to go. So it did. Now there’s a tiny clean spot.

Then I needed a shower — there’s only so much that can be done with dry shampoo, and I rode on a hayride yesterday. It always seems like a good idea to bathe after one of those, and I was too tired last night.

Then I needed to give one of the cats his morning medicine.

I finally arrived at the Panera within the 6:30-8:30 timeframe, but distinctly late.

The free bagel could be any flavor. I got an Everything bagel with cream cheese.

It turns out that one little 2-oz-mini tub of cream cheese is about $1.40, and the free bagel doesn’t come with it. So it was a grand total of about $3.50 for my free breakfast (cream cheese + coffee+free bagel), but it was yummy and hit the spot. When I asked about the cost, the cashier told me that the bagels cost about $1 and that the butter is free. She said I could change my order. But my taste buds were primed for cream cheese.

Not knowing how the NaNoWriMo thing was supposed to work. I just picked a table and wrote. I got a few hundred words written and then headed in to work.

It was a busy day.

At about 5:30 my phone chimed with a schedule reminder — NaNoWriMo at Panera at 6:30 to 8:30 PM. Yes, PM not AM. Writing just seemed like more of a morning thing to me, so I hadn’t double-checked the time. I saved the event directly from the website into my calendar, so it was correct there just not in my bagel-filled head.

After work I stopped at the Panera again. I’d already used my free-bagel option for the day, but after ordering soup I found out that now they were giving me a free coffee or soda. Well, that worked out well.

There was a small NaNoWriMo area sign on a large table. I got to meet a few other writers (Josslyn?, Jannet, and Greg) and a random man who came there for NaNoWriMo, but didn’t actually come to do any writing. That was awkward for those of us writing. He just sat at the table and looked around. I think he was expecting a Meet & Greet not a Write-In. But I’m not even sure why he came to a Meet & Greet because he said he wasn’t even trying to participate in NaNoWriMo.

But we all seemed to get some writing done (except for the random guy).

So NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo I wrote words for both of you, YAY!

 

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Another Awesome Day and Cats

I have over 500 words for NaNoWriMo so far today (only about another 1,500 and it will meet a daily goal except that I’m behind on my total goals). It’s early, so I have another chunk of writing time planned for later.

Plus this post counts for NaBloPoMo Day 6 which probably seems silly except that this way it’s done. That’s better than not done. (And actually I wrote more than I thought I would. So I may post again later today or not …)

I’m trying to squeeze a lot into this beautiful day. I’m planning to get several things done at home then maybe visit a farmer’s market. Then maybe take my daughter to Cox Farms to enjoy some Pumpkin Madness (a day of pumpkin smashing and fall activities). There’s a market there too though so maybe I’ll just skip the farmer’s market beforehand.

Our cats are completely battling it out in the kitchen as I type this. I can hear them squealing and thumping on the floor and on each other. Glad they still have some spunk. They finished the old-man gruel that we like to call “cat food,” and now they’re just full of it (piss & vinegar along with the food).

We have old kitties, so we mix their food with lots of extra water and some added clear fiber (like Benefiber only generic).

Dave recently purchased a mini-blender for the sole purpose of mixing up the cat food. The cats gobble this stuff down, and then they don’t know what to do with their extra time.

They feel like they should be eating for longer, so they pester us and each other in the time they would have used for eating. It used to take them about a half hour to an hour to finish their food because we’d have to add more water and give a little stir. They’d leave and come back a couple of times.The blender has changed that. 

Plus, our cat Mojo doesn’t like to drink water the same way most cats do. He likes to stick his paw in the water, splash it a while, then lick the water off. Sometimes he’ll even leave his paw in the water as he sucks on it, almost like a straw. It makes a mess. When he’s done, there’s  water on the floor and a path of wet paw prints.

Our other cat, Fletcher, usually looks at us as if to say, “Do you see what I have to put up with?” He doesn’t like drinking the water after Mojo’s had his paws in it. Today, Mojo was especially splashy with the water. So we took the water away for a few minutes. That’s when the cat fight started.

They’ve calmed down now and will probably take their old-man naps in a few minutes.

Maybe they can sun on the balcony for a bit while it’s still warm out. Kind of what I’d like to do.

NaBloPoMo November 2016

November is NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo

So aside from meaning that Halloween has passed,  Thanksgiving is on a fast track, and Christmas & winter holiday items are flooding retail stores, November is NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo.

What are these strange words that start with “Na,” end with “Mo,” and have extra capital letters in the middle?

NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month. Read more about it here. Write a novel in a month. It doesn’t have to be great or finished publication quality — just written versus not written. 

NaBloPoMo is National Blog Posting Month. Read more about it here. Post to a blog every single day of November. 

I participated in NaBloPoMo before  and posted almost every day. 

I very loosely tried NaNoWriMo too, but I don’t think it’s fair to say I actually participated in NaNoWriMo. 

It was more like I had a fantasy, and I called it NaNoWriMo. Some days I nursed the fantasy and wrote stuff, but lots of days I didn’t. Kind of like I might name a plant “BuTterCup” and then not water Buttercup for most of the month. Then by the end of the month it’s cold out and buttercup would have probably died soon anyway (but maybe not), but it died faster because I forgot to water it.  By “forgot,” I mean sometimes I actually remembered, but I ran out of time because I had to get to work, drive my daughter to dance, buy food, cook food, eat food, sleep, pick up daughter from after school activities, take cat(s) to and from the vet, do laundry, and much more.

But I am going to try to write more this month. I’ll attempt NaNoBloMo even if it means some of my posts will be wee little things with lots typos.

I might try more work on the novel, but I can practically guarantee that I won’t write enough total words for it to count as a novel. I can still try. Maybe I can beat last year’s “attempt.” I shall name it ButterCup II. 

So without further ado, this completes, NaBloPoMo Day 1. Thank you for reading my post. 🙂

Please enjoy this photo of local fall colors and visit again soon.

Tra for Tuesday: Bananas

One of these days I’m gonna post exactly what what goes down the first time around without fixing the many typos that proliferate from typing in WordPress on my phone’s tiny keypad. 

As it is now, each time I type I feel I have a one-in-three chance of hitting the letter I wanted. 

I’ll bet you’d never guess but this is actually supposed to be a post about tea (and on Tuesday) — Tea for Tuesday. But I made one typo then another and another and, combined with autocorrect, pretty soon the topic completely changed. 

It’s like 100 monkeys in a room with 100 typewriters. Something’s bound to happen but not what I planned. My fingers are the money’s, wait, see … My fingers are the m-o-n-k-e-y-s, monkeys.

Somebody needs to give my them a bandana, no a banana. No, that wouldn’t help either. 

Wait, I know what I want.

Perhaps you’ve seen spikes or horns? Some people have objects surgically implanted under their skin. (Do they find tattoos and piercings too blasé or mainstream?) Either way, useless fluff!

I want a stylus tip implanted in my finger! If that goes well, maybe I’ll do all ten. (Actually, maybe three or four would be good — thumbs and index finger. See, I’ve put some thought into this.)

Release the monkeys!

(I’ll drink more tea and write about it again soon, maybe even on a Tuesday.)

In Other News – Three Things

Two Three things of note happened:

That’s right. It’s an empty washer and dryer at the same time!

I didn’t even realize until I opened the washer to put clothes in the dryer, and it was empty. This is a rare thing.

Also, I finally painted my fingernails (which I’ve been wanting to do since July). I know that seems trivial. But I thought it worth mentioning since, well yeah.

I also reached 100 Followers here on WordPress which is even cooler than the washer and dryer being empty at the same time. (Empty didn’t last long anyway.) More

Notes from the Middle

Here I am having just crossed over the center line of November which is also mid-NaBloPoMo or NaNoWriMo if you’re cranking out words for either of those.

What I’ve learned so far is that I can wedge more writing into my schedule than I might think I can … but not always. And sometimes maybe it’s better not to squeeze so much in. It’s good to push to do more, but I need to be careful not to drop too many balls in the process. More

NaBloPoMo – Whereby I try to write every day in November and other people do too

I’m going to try NaBloPoMo (National Blogging Po Month?). I’ll have to find out what “Po” stands for. I’m pretty sure it has nothing to do with Teletubbies.

So this is my first post here on November 1, 2015. It’s not a fancy post. I have more things coming for November, though I’m sure some days will be harder than others. Writing everyday is not the worst goal in the word. I already have it has a basic goal whether it involves posting on my blog or not. (Hmm, does “Po” stand for “Posting?” I’ll have to find out.)

I have other goals too. I’d like to participate in NaNoWriMo which is the National Novel Writing Month (aka November). But while I’m going to work on stories I’m not very likely to be able to write enough words per day to complete an entire novel in November alone. I mean, HELLO, November — that’s the month before Christmas and the one that contains Thanksgiving. There’s other stuff to do like cleaning our home and getting rid of stuff. And that whole food and eating and feeding my family thing. Bathing (hopefully). Laundry. Always with the laundry. And more other general getting caught up on stuff that I need to get caught up on. That list is too long.

As a start NaBloPoMo, I’m putting some handy links here because I have a feeling I’m gonna need ’em. I have a tendency to misplace things. I may update this has I find more stuff. Anybody else out there doing this? Yes, I know the answer is “yes,” so “hello and good luck!. May the force be with you!”

DailyPost WordPress: Making It Through NaBloPoMo.

Blogher’s page on NaBloPoMo.

 

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One Possible Future, With Trees

Here I am — already one week into this thing called “the future” that our Day-20 assignment, from WordPress Writing 101, asked us to look toward. I’m a veritable time traveler. Look out world! Bam!

I still have more posts both to finish and to start. Some from Blogging U. and some that I just want to do. I expect this to be the case for a while longer. Possibly a long long time.

First there are ideas. Then starting to write. And then finishing a post or story…

All that life stuff keeps happening too — feeding the foundation, pumping fluids, circulating air.

It’s a cycle kind of shaped like a Christmas tree for me – lots of ideas form the wide bottom, somewhere in the middle I have all the stuff I’ve started. At the top are the those I’ve finished — this section is a little sparse. But if I plant enough trees and help them grow, hopefully I can keep some alive and some might thrive and maybe I’ll even manage to put a shiny star on top once in a while. (Then I’ll just have to manage to take it down before February, right? Oh, wait.)

I’m happy when I manage to finish a blog post and even happier when I finish a story. So going forward that’s what I’ll continue to aim for. More of both with special emphasis on stories. I’m even working on a schedule for myself.

Along the way, I look forward to gatherings of friends and family, old and new.

Way in the future, perhaps I can look back at my little Christmas tree farm and remember each one with fondness — even the ones that twisted and turned unexpectedly. And hopefully I’ll manage it all well enough that the laundry still gets done, some of the fish survive (gotta pick your battles), and the cats and humans in our family are happy and fed.

The cats do love to play with Christmas trees. The humans like them too (just not quite so much February to September … Or maybe October.)

Summer’s Tail – Kicking and Screaming

It’s still hot like summer, but in many places kids have already gone back to school. Some as early as August 1. Summer is over for them. It’s the tail end for us, and I want to grab on to these last few weeks kicking and screaming as I lick the last bit of salt off my fingers before summer goes away again. My daughter can’t wait for school to start back up. She’s excited to experience her new classes and see more of her friends. I still have unfinished plans and goals and more tomatoes to grow!

We did some fun things this summer. We took a trip to Pittsburgh where I participated in Pinburgh, a pinball tournament. Pinburgh has been around a few years, but this year it was held at a huge new classic video game festival called Replay FX. I brought my daughter because, hello, video games and pinball! And they had other kids’ activities like a velcro wall, giant inflatable obstacle course, and slides. For a video game festival my daughter actually got a lot of exercise!

While Pittsburgh may not bring to mind the typical image of summer vacation paradise, there was much fun and our hotel room had extra niceties that kept us saying, “wow, cool!” This made for a fairly complete vacationy experience.

Our room had a motion sensor foot light (like a night light at the floor that turned on when we stepped out of bed), pull-down individual book lights on each headboard, and in the evening, when we returned exhausted from a full day of game play and activities, the hotel supplied milk and cookies (free of charge for kids 12 and under). It was great!

We had another very mini vacation this past Friday night when we slept over at the National Museum of American History as a Smithsonian Sleepover. Last summer we did this at the Natural History Museum and loved it. There are scads of activities and crafts centered around various exhibitions in the museum. Then folks get to roll out their sleeping bags and camp out under a whale or antique machinery as museum lights are dimmed. Continental breakfast is served in the morning. And it is all so way cool!

Next year my daughter will be too old to do either of these sleepovers (there’s an age limit), and we’re super glad to have done them. I’ve always loved the Natural History Museum with animals and minerals, but I forgot how much fun the American History Museum can be. I feel like we made the kind of memories that can last a lifetime, and I think (I hope) my daughter feels that way too.

Earlier this summer my daughter had camp, so most weeks I had to drop her off in the morning and then run out on my lunch hour to pick her up and drop her off either at home or somewhere else like another camp (from which I’d have to pick her up again later). Most of the camps have been wonderful! She’s learned more music and dance and even cooking.

For me, one or two days of driving at lunchtime isn’t a problem, but week after week gets tiring. Exhausting even. I need some down time, or I start to shut down. On top of it, I fell and injured my knee last March (for crying out loud) and it has been slowly healing. At the beginning of summer it was much better but still painful on a regular basis. Pain is exhausting. (I have much more empathy for folks who live with chronic pain.) I’ve been trying to fit physical therapy exercises into my daily schedule to help my knee heal. Here at the end of summer I finally feel like I can squat to take care of our balcony plants without groaning in pain at the same time.  Long and short of it, instead of writing and blogging more this summer I remained rather unproductive.

These last few morsels of summer I have no plans of driving anywhere at lunchtime — at least nothing major. I may still run occasional shopping errands or drop my daughter off at a friends house and such. But mainly I plan to eat lunch.  I plan to write.

I’ve set goals for myself.  I want more summer fun. Maybe a quick trip to the beach! Maybe tubing. Definitely more swimming. I want more tomatoes to grow! More peppers! I want to write regularly and am setting daily and weekly goals. Really, I want more summer!

Now That I Started

I’ve started half a dozen blog posts since the end of the school year — even more of you count the ones I started in my head. There’s a lot going on — gay marriage is legal, the flag has come down, photos of former planet, former non-planet, now dwarf planet Pluto are streaming in — and I’ve managed to publish exactly zero of the blog posts I started. I can make a lot of excuses as to why. Many of them are legitimate excuses… But I still think I should have been able to manage to publish some with just a wee bit better time management or focus or something

It’s not for lack if topics!  Along with all that stuff in the news, we have a small balcony garden again. Yay! And my daughter has been having fun in Strings camp (kind of like band camp only it’s a day camp for orchestra). Zomagad, I even found Zote laundry soap in flake form instead of bars. 

That whole 10-minutes-of-writing-per-day thing worked well for a while. But I seem to have misplaced my 10 minutes (maybe under a tomato plant).

The one blog entry that I might actually manage to publish is about how I’m not blogging. This one. Which makes exactly zeros cents. I seem to best be able to blog about how I’m not blogging. I need to work on my priorities!

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