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A Different Kind of Christmas

My son nickel and dimes me to death. Video games, in-app purchases, toys, soda, chips…. It seems like every day there’s a new thing that he needs me to buy for him. Sometimes I say yes, but I often say no. He’s a pretty good kid, and there are never any fits or tears over my not wanting to be a walking wallet.

               A few nights ago, that changed. Not about things though. He misses doing things with me. Simple things like playing 2 square, crafts and playing with his Legos. Little trips going to places we love. “We never do anything fun anymore!” He cried. Not for things, but for me.

               I was a little confused, as we had just been up to Sacramento for a fun filled weekend. Back in September, we went to Monterey, and on the way back stopped at Pea Soup Andersons. We might not do fun things every weekend—but I don’t have him all the time. He spends Saturday afternoon to Sunday morning with his dad.

               We had the conversation. I needed to know before the Black Friday deals disappeared. “Do you want things, or do you want me to buy tickets for us to do stuff through out the year?”

               “I want to do stuff with you,” he told me.

               “Ok. That means you’re not going to be able to be with your dad every weekend.”

               “I miss you, Mom.” Way to break a Mommy’s heart, kiddo. I miss you too, but I wanted you to have that opportunity to build a relationship with your dad. Now, though… Well. Mommy’s back in the driver’s seat and we’re going to do this!

               I still surfed the ads bought him a few things for under the tree (thank you wifi!). But I also started my evil plan.

               Boomers:  This weekend, the year pass is only $39.99 It doesn’t cover the arcade or food, but it is something he loved doing with his dad. It’s also something that I can just as easily take him to, let him go Go Kart racing, climb a wall, all sorts of fun stuff. The pass also works for the remainder of this year. Hmmm…. To give early or not?

               The Exploratorium He loves science and tinkering and there is no better place than the Exploratorium. I’m still debating between a yearly family membership and just buying one time tickets. We travel a lot with my sister and her son, so they would be on the pass as well. One huge thing in favor of the pass is that I don’t have to drive there. We’ve taken Amtrak down to Pier 39 before: it’s an economical, fun way for us to get into the city and back home again. In 2 visits, the pass would be paid for. I almost did it last year and regretted passing.

               The Winchester Mystery House: My son is 11 years old and has been asking to visit “Sara’s House” for at least a year. He’s fascinated by why she would build the way she did, all the little oddities. I’d like for him to experience it in real life, instead of via YouTube.

               In addition to the above, I’m looking at both science and art kits for us to do together. There are a ton of them out there, including some that come as a monthly subscription. I like that more for the science than the art. For art projects (which we’ll start on Sunday when he comes home), I can go to any number of local stores. There are plans for experiments on the Exploratorium website, and I could probably find kits online and just buy one or two. I have time to figure it out, though.

               The sad part about the list above is that coupled with what I snagged online for him, I’m not going to spend a whole lot more money on Christmas by doing this. There will be a lot less Christmas clutter, and I’m going to have to get creative on how to wrap and present these gifts.

               But before that, we’re going to go out back and play 2 square together.

               In the end, I’m giving him the gift he wants. The gift of time. With me. 

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Busy Brain

I’m happy tonight. Bouncing around, music in my head that no one else can hear happy. Busy brain is starting to kick in.

Busy Brain is an anomaly. I don’t tend to like doing a lot of things. After work, I like coming home, getting comfy and being DONE for the day. But there are, unfortunately, only so many books to read or shows to watch before your ass gets covered in moss. I know! It’s so unfair!

I don’t know if I talked about my busy brain idea on here before or not. But… here goes. Way back when I was in college, even doing my Masters Degree full time, working a full time job and a couple of part time ones… I was happy. Bad days, good days, of course. But fundamentally happy.

If you’re happy and you know it….

So. After going through a mild depression, I decided to join Partylite to get myself out of the house and start the busy brain phenomenon rolling. Then, the Princeling and I went on a trip (woohoo! loved it!). A brief pause while I had the stomach flu and then…

I signed up for an online writing class. And am debating taking a certificate program modelled on MFA programs. I want it for the writing, not the degree (already have an MA). So I did my writing assignment, gave feedback to others, posted my assignment and am now busily plotting my weekend.

Which includes laser tag and a Ren fair. WOOHOO!

Work is going well. I’m working on putting up a blog for my job, which is interesting. I’m writing, both fiction and here. I have a few Partylite things going on. I have a busy brain and that brain is happy.

Smiles…

I even did a garbage version of bullet journals for my son and I. I say garbage because I am not into the big expensive leather bound journals. Instead, I made one out of graph comp books. I didn’t do anything too fancy schmancy and we’ll see how that goes. I’ll keep you posted 🙂

I hope you had a great, music in your head bouncing around happy kind of day and are looking forward to a fantastic weekend.

Travelling

Today, the princeling and I are going on a trip, in our favorite rocket ship…. it’s time for us to go out and about. On our own. Well, sort of. We’re going to go visit family, but twill just be he and I in the car.

My son can’t remember the times we used to go travelling on our own. Admittedly, it’s only been twice, but still. My child thinks his mommy can’t travel on her own. Which if you knew my travel history is hilarious.

I love travelling with Linda. She’s one of the best friends I’ve ever had. Somewhere along the way, I’ve allowed myself to rely a bit too much on her. Yes, there are situations where I am uncomfortable. But something she said to me on the firstish trip (she ended up meeting me and a friend and ray in monterey) has been ringing in my head. “Why did you bring Her? You’re fine, you don’t need help with the princeling. You’re a good mom and you’ve got it handled”. 

And then I promptly let her handle the travel. Don’t get me wrong, I love travelling with her and T. It’s fun, and we get to talk answer laugh and share heart to heart moments. 

But my son sees me as weak. I write about kick ass women who save themselves and my son sees me as weak. It’s time to write a different story, one that includes travelling with Linda, but also some solo adventures with the princeling. 

It’s al,osteoporosis time for us to cut loose. Stay well my lovelies! 

I’m good at what I do

I have a day job. It’s not an industry that I ever thought I’d get into, but I like it. I’m good at what I do– sales with a lot of customer service. I talk on the phone all day, and I connect with people.

Yes. I connect with people. Which is something I enjoy doing.

And I’m very good at it.

That’s not to say that I’m the best, the highest performing or what ever. But I like my customers, and care about them. Not just what they need. I know that it comes through in the way I deal with them.

I have customers dealing with cancer, and it breaks my heart. I have one who just had a new baby and she is the cutest thing ever. Others I chit chat with, catch up on the news about both our kids, and enjoy talking and working with them. I’m good at it— in a weird way it’s being a friend. I’ve never met them, but I care about them. And it has little to do with money.

I’m really good at what I do. Not everyone can appreciate it, or accept it. My last boss didn’t. My current boss does. Which is wonderful, because even if I started writing and selling full time, I don’t think I could just stay at home and write. I’m not that type of writer.

I’m not that type of worker either. I started out working at home– and while there were parts that I loved, for the most part it just isn’t for me. I enjoy the hustle of the office: phones ringing, orders going in and out. Interaction with my co-workers and customers.

I really like what I do during the day. If you have a day job, I hope you’re blessed with a great job too.

 

Hey you

Hey you. Yes, you. I see you there. I know you’re scared, and I don’t want to tell you not to be afraid…

And yet…

Here I am. Telling you it’s OK to be scared, but you still have to go on. Maybe it’s something you’ve wanted for a long time, something positive even, but it’s such a huge change that you’re scared to death. 

It’s OK. Let’s breath through it. We will make it to the other side, and you might even wonder after all is said and done why you were so scared. You might even feel a bit silly, but that’s OK too. I’ve been there.  You’ve been there too, so remember to just breath. And maybe giggle a little. 

It releases tension.

Truly. 

And even if it’s not ok, I’ll sit with you on the darkest night and light a candle for you. Call me and I’ll just breath on the other end letting you know I’m there. Maybe it won’t be ok again today, or tomorrow….

But things will be ok again. And after they’re ok again, you’ll be able to search for the good days. The awesome days. 

You’re not quite ready to believe in them, but they’re out there. So I will hold the dream for the both of us.

Mentorship

Most writers are great about paying it forward. We gather together, read each others work, give tips and tricks and help when we can. We give (hopefully) each other presents at the same time— a darn good read. I have worked with some really great authors who have both helped me, and whom I’ve been able to help just a wee bit.

There have also been those other ones, and you know who they are. They’re the ones the rest of us slide away from, regardless of their success.

This week I’ve been thinking a lot about mentorship. The Partylite group has a great set up for new consultants. And I’ve been to 2 meetings since signing up a little more than a week ago. It’s great to have someone there to walk you through it, to show you what’s going on and darn it, it’s WONDERFUL to have others literally cheer and clap for you.

It’s pretty awesome.

So is being able to watch someone who has rose high in the ranks as she led part of a party. You can’t pay for that kind of mentorship, and quite frankly I’m feeling kind of blessed to have landed where I have.

But it’s made me think hard. Wouldn’t it be great if we could pop into other author’s heads and see just how they tweaked that little sentence so it rang throughout the text? We already do so much mentoring within our ranks, but it isn’t organized. We can find Webinars, either by digging through YouTube, or Facebook videos, or ending up paying for them…

There’s also the perks. The adds to your kit. Can you imagine what they’d be for a Writer? Sold your Story? Here’s an add…. well, I can’t even imagine what that add would be. Can You?

What would you have as a writers perk?

 

It’s 6 am

It’s six am and there’s just a few things…

My son is sleeping after a late night playing with his friends on the xbox. He’ll go back to his dad’s later, but for now I’m enjoying his presence in the house.

It wasn’t originally in the plan, but I’m loosening up on that.

Originally, I wasn’t going to have him. Then, I was going to pick him up and drop him off yesterday. But the princeling wanted to come home for the night. He filled the space up with his stories and my heart filled with his laughter.

This week is supposed to be hot. As in over 105 most of the week, starting today. I’m debating precooking. Cook up stuff this morning, maybe later today, so I don’t have to worry about it during the week. Dad is on his way home, and I’m sad that I may have to give up my thermostat settings. 75 rocks.

But mostly, I’m thinking of my stories, and going in and firing up the laptop and writing. I’ll let the priceling sleep a little more. And defrost some meat. 

And hit the keyboard, dreaming of cooler weather.