Friday, February 23, 2018

Feeling Fear

Fear is an essential part of our lives. Far too often, it controls us. I know that it has controlled me for a long time. This year I'm making some serious changes to shed the fear. 

One of those changes is asking WHY I'm afraid. I've been meditating lately, and my favorite guided meditations reminds me to ask the fear why it has shown its face. It's been life changing. 

And I've learned how much that fear has affected my child. 

Bean lets her fear of, well everything, control her. She's afraid of trying new foods. She's afraid to try new things. She's afraid of not getting into a good college. She's 9. 

We're working on this as a family, but it's tough when fear is your primary emotion. I'm working through my own fears and sharing those with her, hoping that she'll work through hers as well. We're getting there slowly. Very slowly. But we're moving forward and that's what matters for both of us. 

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

The Writing Wall

There's a lot to be said about Writer's Block. I prefer to call it a Wall. Why? Because there are ways around the wall.




So here are a few tricks when the Wall slams down in front of me.

1. Climb it - How? By something uplifting, even if it has nothing to do with your current WIP. Even if it's just for yourself. Write a short story or a personal essay that makes the world seem like a positive place. It will turn your mind around and, when you go back to your WIP, you'll see it in a different light. 



2. Go around it - If you're a linear writer like I am, this will be hard. Skip ahead to a section that you're excited to write. You'll be able to go back to the troubled spot in no time. 

3. Go through! - Yeah, this is the hardest of all. Press on and go through that wall. It's a bitch, but you'll feel great on the other side. Just punch through and keep writing. 



The bottom line is that it's up to you to break through The Writing Wall. Before you know it, you'll look back and wonder when you actual had this happen. It'll be a rare occurrence. 

What do you do when the Wall stops you?

Monday, February 19, 2018

Winter Blues

February is always a tough month for me. It snowed Saturday morning. I love snow, but it wasn't long before the snow turned to rain and the winter wonderland was nothing more than mud and dead grass. 




As much as I love winter, by February, I'm ready for spring. Unfortunately we get hints of spring. It was over 70 degrees Friday. Saturday morning, it snowed. And today, back into the 70s. The weather changes faster than a Super G race. 





It's tough every year, even when I know it's coming. This year, I'm focusing on revisions of my upcoming novel (details soon to come) and on planning hikes for warmer weather. As much as I want to hit the trails, my daughter is not going to go when it's cold. We're going to work on that.

Breaking the winter blues cycle is hard. Every day I focus on something positive, like hitting the trails, getting outside, and publishing my latest novel. 


What do you do when the season gets you down?





Sunday, February 18, 2018

Meditation and Me

In January, I accepted a 7 day meditation commitment. 

Today is day 40. 



I was skeptical that it would help me, but I had always wanted to try meditation on a serious basis. So I opened an app I had already downloaded in December, and I started my first day with a quick 5 minute morning guided meditation. 

After a few days, I could tell the difference in my attitude. I tend to focus on the negative and not the positive, which is something I'm working really hard on this year. 

I'm more upbeat than I have been in a long time. Instead of seeing obstacles, I see possibilities. I'm reframing my mind and how it thinks. Instead of all the hate and anger dominating my mind, I'm hopeful and more patient. It's been life changing. 

I added a longer evening meditation to my practice. Now I meditate twice a day. My morning meditations are usually 5-10 minutes, and my evening meditations are 20-30. I use Insight Timer and utilize the guided meditations. There are so many to choose from and no shortage of topics. 

Meditation is amazing. Anyone can do it. But, like with anything in life, you have to be open to trying. You'll be surprised at your results. 


Friday, February 16, 2018

We Mourn

We witnessed another mass shooting Wednesday. 

Another. 

Why? 

Why does this keep happening? 

Our current administration prefers to blame it on mental health rather than access to guns. Regardless of which side of the issue you fall, NOTHING has been done to improve mental health and NOTHING has been done to prevent gun sales to individuals with mental health issues. 

Bottom line: our government HAS DONE NOTHING. 

And I am so tired of hearing 'Guns don't kill people, people kill people." Like the 2nd amendment, it needs to be amended. 'Guns don't kill people, people WITH ACCESS to guns kill people.'

Our forefathers did not foresee this. They wrote the 2nd amendment to protect our new country from invaders because we had no real military. Our forefathers owned slaves, they denied women the basic right to vote. 

1776 was a long time ago. It was a different way of life. They did not have semi-automatic rifles or bump stocks. They did not have schools of 3000 students. 

We, as a nation, have fought for equal rights. We, as a nation, have fought to free enslaved peoples. We, as a nation, have fought to stop tyranny. 
But we, as a nation, do nothing to protect our children.
We, as a nation, have failed ourselves. 


Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Happy Fat Tuesday

Mardi Gras, for me at least, is over. Saturday's parade was freezing, but so much fun. You can see all the action here.

And fun it was. I gave grief to a guy who had the balls to wear a Blackhawks sweater. Then I told a guy decked out in Blues gear to go kick the guy in the Blackhawks sweater's ass. Let's go, Blues. 

I also danced with a cop and a few event organizers. My daughter thinks I'm a rockstar for chatting up her favorite local meteorologist. 


Our krewe even got Honorable Mention! It's the first time since I've been part of it that we've gotten any recognition at all. It's pretty cool. 




So enjoy your last day of debauchery before Lent. 
Drop me a comment and let me know what you're giving up this year. 


Thursday, February 8, 2018

Throwback Thursday: Mardi Gras

Two more days. Here are some photos of past Mardi Gras parades. 

Superheroes vs. Super Villians
We went as Bluntman & Chronic

Tailgating

Circus (I was a lion tamer. Rawr.)


Parade Crowd


Our float was BIG BALLS.  What better way to show off big balls than with big paddle Balls? 

If you're in the St. Louis area, come down to Soulard and have some fun!

Feeling Fear

Fear is an essential part of our lives. Far too often, it controls us. I know that it has controlled me for a long time. This year I'm m...