figured something out????

When I first started this blog, I had no idea what to do or where to go with it.  All I knew was that I felt better when I wrote shit down.

Here we are roughly 6 months later….

  1. I have taken blogging101
  2. writing101 came next
  3. then Photo101
  4. then Life got in the way

I became obsessive over completing Blogging101.  See my history and you might understand why.  I learned so much from this course.  I was wicked new to blogging and I was learning stuff that a woman of my age should know.   widgets, image widgets, feature, Know your audience, INSPIRATION…. COMMUNITY!!!!

I did not expect or have any clue that starting a blog came with such a fantastic community.  I am very grateful I was led to WordPress.  Yes Lily Pup you are to blame for that.

After Blogging101 came Writing101.  I am proud to say I did well with this class.  The obsession I had during Blogging101 was not present.  Damnitall.  I read a blog post recently where the writer talks about swearing, I’ve been swearing ever since.  It is part of my Distinct Voice, which I also learned about in writing101. I learned so much more than I could have ever anticipated.

Writing 101 is where I received my first bit of criticism.  Maybe it was Blogging 101? It truly does not matter now.  The assignment was to write about your home.  I requested constructive criticism and I got it.  It basically said, “show me, Don’t tell me.”  Funny how one of the very next assignments was “Show me, Don’t tell me.” 

Russell J. Fellows on April 8, 2015 at 8:56 am said:

What a peaceful sounding place. I think I’ve told many people the same thing, but I want to tell you also: be more immersive in this writing. You have a lot of good description to work with, but I want to experience it through your eyes, not just through you telling me what is what. Instead of “The entrance to where I am is like a dirt road that leads you through a tunnel…” say “A road of dirt and rock leads you through a tunnel of beeches and oaks to a clearing…” or something like that. Does that make sense?

Then came Photo 101. Another great WordPress offering. I have yet to finish this course, but I have many great excuses. Life stuff took over for a while and I was unable to keep focused on learning about photography.  I still have hopes to finish this class, but will do so in my own time.

I have also been unable to keep up with my weekly feature OTT.  I have decided none of this matters.  What matters is that Today, I am doing every thing in my power to be okay.  My goal today and every day is to beat depression.  When my head tells me I am better off staying in my pajamas, I get in my clothes and do something.  When it tells me, “you don’t need a shower today”, I go out, get extra dirty, have fun doing it, and have no choice but to shower.  When someone who counts asks me How I am, I tell them the truth.  I have chosen to take the word “FINE” out of my vocabulary.

When my therapist suggested I leave little notes around my house that simply say “BREATHE”, I listened.  Now my house has little notes everywhere reminding me to breathe.  Breathing is such a simple thing to do, yet so very difficult when I need it most.  I have also learned along the way that deep breathing helps with so much more than just anxiety.  Provided I remember to do it.  The more I do it the easier it is to remember.  Everything takes practice.

So, take a minute. Stop. Just breathe. and don’t forget your blog

Duh. I almost forgot to mention what it was I may have figured out?  If blogging has rules, I do not think I can follow them. I am okay with suggestions, but I don’t believe I have any hope with rules. It has been 6 months and I still do not know what this thing is about.  I am okay with that.

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99 followers on the wall….

You are following this blog, along with 99 other amazing people.

Cool 1 more human and I hit a true 100.  Who’daThunkIt ?  I was happy with my husband and friends reading this.

Much has changed since I started this blog in February 2015.  It says my first post was in January, but that is a lie. That was my last post for writing 101. It is kind of long, but that was part of the assignment. For some reason it got posted for January instead of May. It didn’t take me too long to find it as I am a proud graduate of Blogging 101 and have learned so much about blogs.

The winter was horrible.  I will write about how horrible it was soon.  I spent much of the winter expecting my very old beagle to cross.  Once spring truly arrived, he stopped acting like such an old man.  He still sleeps a lot, but is walking better and his cough has subsided.  I even caught him playing with a tennis ball.

It’s been roughly 4 months since I really started writing.  I had not planned on writing this much when I started.  I also have been writing about things I did not expect to be writing about.  I blame blogging 101 and writing 101 for this.  I highly recommend both these classes and look forward to my next one.  I am totally serious when I say I learned a lot about blogging and writing.  I’ve met some incredible people and been exposed to some fabulous writing as well.

On the home front, things have not changed too much.  I do have a new TV and camera.  Speaking of cameras, I am slowly trying out Photo Challenges.  Its rare that I don’t have something to say. If it does happen, I have these challenges to keep my blog busy and fun. It also opens up a whole new bunch of folk to meet.  Plus I love taking pictures.

One major change I should make note of.  I am better at trusting my gut when making tough decisions.  The only way I have gotten better at this is by practice.  Lots and lots of practice.  I am learning to listen to me.

So here’s to 99 WordPress followers !!!!  Thank you for hitting that button.

Day 20 – I treasure Awareness, and Family, and dogs, and the ability to pee by myself, etc.

I might or might not know what happened.confused-on-the-computer

I may have accidently hit publish when I 1st started writing this story way back when. That may explain why it says it was published on January 20th, when I published today. It became my First post???? Not my last of writing 101.

With a lot of work I was able to get it to fit with the last assignment.  All I know is that I finished it today. and published it today.

life as seen by me

Day Twenty: The Things We Treasure Today’s Prompt: Tell us the story of your most-prized possession. Today’s twist: We extolled the virtues of brevity back on day five, but now, let’s jump to the other side of the spectrum and turn to longform writing. Let’s celebrate the drawn-out, slowly cooked, wide-shot narrative. Good luck to all who read the whole thing and I promise never to write this much again!!!! 4189 words

It all started innocently enough.  I first noticed I couldn’t feel my fingers. As things progressed and I told my story over and over again I realized it actually started weeks before.

I couldn’t feel the cigarette smoke go into my lungs.  I remember telling Jax, “I can’t suck. I suck at sucking.”  I was also eating a lot of Tootsie rolls.  Every time I generated some Tootsie roll flavored saliva I would cough, sputter, choke almost.  I blamed these…

View original post 3,854 more words

A different Kind of O.T.T.

wickedcoolNow i’m having more ideas about my feature.  The quick original answer to the assignment in blogging 101 was vent once a week.  Then it went to Random Obsessive Thought Tuesday.  Which morphed into Obsessive Thought Thursday (O.T.T.). Now I have a new idea. How My Mind Works Wednesday? Yup I think that is what I am going to end up with.  At least until I come up with the next wicked cool idea. 

suggest to WordPress a possible change in blogging 101 assignment Day Fifteen: Create a New Posting Feature. Mention the feature assignment in the beginning days of the class, but do not make it an assignment until the end.  people have more time to think about it.

Unless they planned on me changing my feature every 7-14 days???? 🙂

Today is a special day.  It was Christmas in my house this week and we all got toys. I got a new camera.  I was playing with that and PicMonkey.  This is what happened to my living room when I put those 2 things together.OTTbeagleversion1

  1. baby gate in screen door. It will not stop a beagle who smells a critter but it makes us feel better
  2. dog bed with matching LL Bean dog blanket (the blanket came from beagle Nanny. ) 🙂
  3. pillow that beagle just can’t seem to let stay on the loveseat
  4. former ottoman cushion that is now the beagles first step to the loveseat. The rest of the ottoman is being used in the bedroom so he has steps to his other bed.
  5. former ottoman being used as 2nd beagle step.  Please note this is a reclining loveseat.  It does not need ottoman.
  6. phone in case beagle gets a call while sleeping
  7. prince Mattie the beagle
  8. very old, destuffed toy. I think it was a lamb.
DSC00112

Beagle Breakfast in Bed

 

as blogging101 ends for some, it continues for me.

I am still obsessively working on blogging 101 assignments.  I am working on the last week day assignment as I simultaneously try the weekend ones.. Hmmmmmmmm a blogging feature that my followers could look forward to each week/month???? I need something simpler than venting. Proper Venting sometimes requires Time.  Obsessive Thought Tuesday would take no time.

Random Obsessive Thought Tuesday.  It would fit with my blogs goal of making people smile and helping me vent.  Some of my thoughts are a bit on the unusual side and writing them down has always helped me get rid of them.  Sometimes action is required to lessen these thoughts.

brook1

Don’t get too close to the Brook, It is closer than you think!!!!

Yesterdays thoughts remained in my brain for 2 days.  We took action today and went down to the brook to take some pictures and relieve me of the following thoughts.

“I so need a camera.  The Brook looks so pretty today I wish I knew where the camera was.  Do I even own a camera? Damn I am gonna have to ask Jax when he gets home to use his phone.  Yup we will have to use his phone.  That is what we will have to do. The Brook looks so pretty today.”

Seeing as though it is not Tuesday and it is an extra special day for me, I am going to make you suffer with today’s obsessive song as well.  It is Ed Sheeran’s, Thinking Out Loud  I can’t make songs a weekly feature as I usually obsess over them for much longer than a week. Take a minute or 2 and listen, it really is a great song. I only obsess over the great ones. 

So what do you think of how I did do with the last assignment of Blogging 101?  Do I deserve the A+ I expected?

Great, now that this Obsessive, Brook picture taking thought is going to go away I already have a new obsessive thought. What do I call Tuesday?  Random and obsessive or just obsessive?  I’ll let you know on Tuesday.

Create a Feature/mental health or bad day?‏

My first thought when I saw todays Blogging101 assignment was “Nope, not going to do it.”  The assignment was to develop a regular feature for your blog. I still don’t know what my blog is going to be about, how do I come up with a regular feature? I instantly saw the point to creating a regular feature your followers could look forward to, but I had no idea what mine could be.  So instead of trying to do the assignment, I decided to sit down and just write. Little did I know, but as I wrote I realized I was coming up with my very own feature.  I do not do many things well, but one thing I do execute well is venting about life.  So, maybe once a week, or every other week, or every month I will vent about life in an appropriate way. Not only will this fit nicely with the goal I sort of have for this blog, but it will mean I completed todays assignment as well.

I was trying to describe how I felt.  I do not like the expression “It is just a bad day”, but if I did use that expression, yesterday would have been the day. Nothing unusual happened to make it a bad day. It just didn’t feel like a good one.

The day started by my waking up rather early.  6:40 a.m. to be exact.  Hubby was still home and getting ready for his day.  Although waking too early might be the start of a bad day for some folk, it was actually the start of what I thought would be a good day for me.  I got a kiss goodbye from hubby.  I never get them as I am usually still asleep when he leaves for work.  So waking up too early was a not such a bad start to the day. Getting an extra kiss from the one that I love changed that around for me.

The day went on like any other day.  I took care of my daily living type of stuff (coffee, tooth brushing, dressing, etc.). I even remembered to eat and take my fish oil.  I am always forgetting to eat. Therefore forgetting the supplements that go with it.  My beagle was good.  Resting comfortably, and waking only when he needed to pee or eat.  Such a great beagle he is.

A very long time ago I made the decision to limit my caffeine intake.  I don’t remember why I did this, I just know that I drink 2 glasses of iced coffee every morning then switch to water.  Today having woken much earlier than usual, I had ample time to drink more.  And drink more I did . This was a mistake.

I had only 1 real responsibility this day and that was my therapy appointment.  The rest of the days obligations were regular every day ones. Nothing too special.  Today felt different.  My thoughts were racing and obsessive.  I had so much I wanted to do and I wanted to do it all RIGHT NOW!!!!  Feeling like this is not unusual for me.  It is actually pretty normal. I haven’t felt like this in a few weeks or more.  I haven’t felt like this since the Doctor put my OCD medication back up to where it never should have left.

On the drive to therapy, I did one of my new favorite things.  I turned on my heated leather seat, opened the sunroof, and cranked the radio.  I do this to distract myself from any meddlesome, unrelenting thoughts I may be having.  And Oh Boy, today I was having them. None of my newest favorite songs came on the radio, but an older one did.  I found myself singing along to City Of Angels by…. haha it is not City of Angels although those songs and movie are nice.  It was Under The Bridge by Red Hot Chili Peppers. I am a horrible singer, one of the worst, but when you are in your car alone, it does not matter if you can sing or not.  You just sing!!!!  The singing, cold air, and loud music helped.  It did its job. The bothersome thoughts went away long enough for me to figure out what it was I was actually feeling.  I was feeling “CROOKED”.  It was the only way I could think to describe what it was I felt.  I did not know what crooked meant, but that was okay.  I was on my way to therapy.  The perfect place to figure everything out.

I ended up learning one thing in therapy this day. It was a lesson I have learned so many times before.  Remember earlier when I mentioned my 2 glasses of iced coffee.  In therapy I became aware AGAIN of why I limited it to 2.  Any more than that and I become wired.  Totally out of control. Manic even. Racing, continuous, intrusive thoughts.  The cool thing is that years ago, before I “woke up” from my latest bout of depression, feeling like this would have been horrifying to me.  I would have thought, “Oh my Goddess? What the heck is wrong with me?  Do I need a medication change, more therapy, possible hospital Timeout? This is never going to change.  No one can help me. I will always feel this way.”

Not Today!!!!  Today I used skills I have gained.  Some skills have been taught to me by parents, friends, teachers, television, strangers on the street, etc., while others I figured out on my own.  Today I used the experience of distracting myself from the obsessive, chronic, never ending thoughts that I was able to figure out that I am okay!!!!  I took a step back and looked at what was really going on with me. I simply drank too much coffee. The let down I will eventually feel after the coffee wears off will go away.  I will not become overwhelmingly sucked into the deep depths of depression like I have in the past. I will not become all consumed with these incessant, perpetual thoughts.  I will be OKAY!!!!

If I experience a bad day, maybe it is just that, simply A Bad Day.  I just have to do what I can to make sure that 1 bad day does not turn into 2.  Today I can do that by 1) only having 2 glasses of iced coffee 2) using the know-how I have gathered from living life and 3) by venting about my bad day.  One of the very first things I learned in blogging 101 was what a text widget was and how to use it.  I wrote “I love to laugh and I love to vent. I use both of these things when dealing with life. I guess, maybe I will try to put laughter and venting together and see what happens.”  I do believe I did well with the venting part today, not too sure about the humor though.  What do you think?

Try (Another) Blogging Event

Day 13 and I find myself writing again.  Since I started blogging 101 I have not written anything I had planned to write.  Taking this class has changed me.  Todays assignment only proves that more.  The event I picked was The Best of Me: an ode to the past.  I am not sure what exactly I am suppose to do for this “event” but I am just going to do it.  I seem to be saying “Just Do It” a lot lately.Just Do It I feel like an advertisement for Nike.

I picked this event because even though I just started my blogging adventure, I already want to write about where I have been. Last month is the past so I guess I do actually technically qualify for this event. It all started with the first blog I ever read.  This woman and her writing helped inspire me to write my own life crap down.  At the same time my therapist suggested that writing might help me figure some stuff out.  I didn’t want to “just write”, I wanted TO WRITE!!!!

I have always, well not always, but on a fairly regular basis written things down.  I have journals, notebooks, and slips of paper scattered throughout my house.  Now I have a place for all my new stuff.  I have a place to do something with my writing. I am still not sure what my ultimate goal is with this blog, but right now if asked I would say, “I want to educate about life using humor to do it.”  The first thing I published on this blog was an About Me.  I wonder if my goal in that is the same as today.  I highly doubt it.  I don’t even recall having a goal when I wrote that. I just wrote.

Enter Blogging 101.  The first assignment was pretty easy.  An Introduction of some sort.  I cheated by simply answering the questions asked in the assignment. This is where I first learned that blogging was not just about writing. This is where I was first asked to come up with a goal?  I was asked who I wanted my audience to be? What topics I might cover? What do you hope to accomplish?  It has been less than a month and I feel like I have come a very long way.

I think what I really want this post to be about is Blogging 101.  I want to talk about how I am learning so much more than I anticipated.  Yes I am learning how to use this WordPress blog system.  I kind of expected and hoped that would be part of it.  I am learning about links, widgets, titles, and taglines, etc. I am also learning about community, inspiration, prompts, and now events.

Some things have not changed in the past month.  I still want to connect with other human beings.  All, but 1 of my followers are human, but all are welcome here. I still want to use humor whenever I can.  If I make someone smirk, smile, or laugh I will  be happy.alien3 If someone learns something by reading what I write, that is okay too.  A while back I was asked what my job was?  My answer was “retired, but looking for something fun to do.”  I think I found my something fun.

Today I will try using a very simple, yet so difficult life skill.  I will keep it simple and end my post here.

a post based on my own, personalized take on a blogging prompt.

Take this (terrible) prompt: Two plus two equals four: yes or no?

I do not think that is such a terrible prompt.  I believe I could easily write at least 832 words about the number 4.  Remember, 4 is one of my magical numbers.  But I will leave that OCD story for another day. Todays prompt is Places Beach, mountain, forest, or somewhere else entirely?

My first thought when I read this was wow, I have lived in, or near, or on all these places. I can write about this. I grew up in a neighborhood that was cleaved out of a forest. One day it was dense forest.  A few weeks later it was a large neighborhood full of brand new houses.  I am guessing on the time frame as I was 1 and have no recollection of this time.  All I know is as a I grew I absolutely loved trees. The woods were my adventure land.  There were old train tracks that went through these woods that left the perfect trail that led to downtown. Walking to town via this trail was so much more fun than using a simple road.  I remember crab apple fights with other neighborhood kids. Top of the hill versus kids from the bottom of the hill.  Even in a tiny town environment, where you lived was very important. It was one neighborhood yet we were still somewhat divided. I lived in the middle of the hill so I got to choose my place in the neighborhood. Although I chose the top, if I think about who I would call if I just needed someone to talk to who would just listen, that would be my friend who lived at the bottom. We couldn’t be best friends growing up as she lived at the bottom of the hill, but when I think about who was the one person who stood by me during all my turbulent times, it would be her.  We haven’t spoken in a very long time as we are separated by distance and the fact that she refuses to use Facebook and I hate the phone.  The last time we talked, she didn’t even have to tell me why she was calling, I just knew.  That is the kind of friendship we have.  I bet if I called her right now, we would pick up exactly where we left off.  Maybe I will go look for my address book.

I have written around 380 words and I haven’t even touched upon beach or mountain.  So beach.  Beach was a vacation spot.  Beach was a day trip.  Although we lived in the middle of the state and were far from an ocean, we had so many choices. There was Hampton Beach if you wanted a very lively, active place to spend some time.  Rhode Island offered killer waves that my Nana taught us to love.  Then there was the Cape.  The Cape is the Cape to any who have ever truly loved it.  It is Cape Cod to the rest of the world.  When I grew up, I moved to the big city.  There was an ocean a few miles away.  But one night when I absolutely needed the beach and the ocean, I drove 3 hours to the Cape.  It wasn’t until I was on my way home the same night that I realized I could have easily driven a few miles to the beach.  It would not have been the same.  I was also in the middle of another bout of depression and wasn’t thinking my best.

When my Dad passed away, we decided to make a move.  We decided to leave the city and move closer to my Mom.  A lot of odd things were happening in our life and it all made this move possible.  We ended up buying a log cabin on the side of a mountain.  The first things we bought after our first night there were nightlights.  Boy does it ever get dark when there are only stars, no street lights .  Stars are so much better than streetlights.  Our dogs were in beagle heaven.  The neighbors didn’t call the cops when the boys acted like beagles.  There were no neighbors.  The toughest thing about living here was that the mountain was very hard on car brakes.  Anything and everything you need is at the bottom of the hill.

We have now settled in the forest by a brook.  The beagles can still be beagles here.  If we need the mountain, it is a twenty minute drive.  If we need the beach we go visit my sister.  This is the only house that does not flood and is the only house where flood insurance is mandatory.  One thing I have noticed about forests today is that I can’t find any climbable trees.  Growing up I lived in the trees.   Now that I think about it, maybe the trees are still climbable.  Maybe because I am seeing the world through the eyes of a somewhat older woman, I can’t see them like a kid can?

So there you have my latest blogging 101 assignment.  I used a prompt to vent about life. In what I hope was a somewhat humorous way.  I am so getting an A in this class.

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