Daisy Dukes Versus Cargo Shorts

Posted by & filed under Exercise/Nutrition/Health, Humor, Rants.

In preparation for a camping trip, I went shopping for some shorts. In both sports stores, I walked down the dividing aisle between men’s and women’s clothing. To the left, there were rugged, cargo shorts in every earth tone and print. To the right, low-rise, butt-cheek-skimming daisy dukes in garish colors. Apparently, men require comfort and practicality when camping or engaging in sports activities and women do not. I was frothing at the mouth by the time I made my way to the end of my department, with nothing suitable for camping in hand. In the end, I bought myself…

Rethinking Games from My Youth

Posted by & filed under Growth/Inspiration, Slice of Life.

When you’re a kid learning how to play games from adults, you latch on to certain things, depending on your personality and perspective. For me, in Scrabble, it was “Oooooo…7-letter word. Aaah…triple-word score.” I was a nerdy, dictionary-reading kid, so as part of my strategy, I also memorized the “q” words that could be spelled without a “u.” In my circle of family and friends, I was a very good Scrabble player. Fast forward about 30 years. I started playing Words with Friends online, and one of my pals was whipping my butt. The worst part? He was doing it…

Recipe: Farina Muffins

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These are my son’s favorite muffins. Boy, did he deserve a batch after the week we’ve had. I whipped them up today in a half hour, and that included making Earl Grey tea and setting the table. Let me know what you think. Makes 12 muffins Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wet Ingredients: 3 eggs 1 stick unsalted butter, melted 1 cup milk (I used 1%) 1 tsp. vanilla Dry Ingredients: 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour ¾ cup farina (I used Cream of Wheat) ½ cup sugar 1 Tb. baking powder ½ tsp. salt Topping: Cinnamon and sugar Let’s Do…

I’m Alive…and 49 Pages Closer to “The End”

Posted by & filed under Exercise/Nutrition/Health, Growth/Inspiration, Humor, Slice of Life, Travel, Writing.

Another heavenly week has come and gone. This was year 2 of my Virginia Beach writing retreat with the Doll Babies. If that’s conjuring up images of sweet, little ladies popping bon bons as they write, well, the bon bons are not far off course, but sweet…nah. If you saw us coming, you might think we were a gang. We’ve got the thriller-writing motorcycle mama, and the tattoo-covered fantasy writer. Then there’s the one that sounds like My Cousin Vinny. Ahem. Throw in a former investigative journalist, a nuclear plant engineer, and a flamenco-dancing biologist. Don’t let the two southern…

7 x 7 Link Award

Posted by & filed under Blogging, Growth/Inspiration, Humor, Rants, Recipes, Reviews, Slice of Life, Travel, Writing.

My pal over at Celluloid Zombie passed along this award, which led me to revisit some old blog posts. The rules to the 7 x 7 Link Award are simple: Tell everyone something about yourself that nobody else knows. Link to a post I think fits the following categories: Most Beautiful Piece, Most Helpful Piece, Most Popular Piece, Most Controversial Piece, Most Surprisingly Successful Piece, Most Underrated Piece, Most Pride Worthy Piece. Pass this on to 7 fellow bloggers. And we’re off. Tell everyone something about yourself that nobody else knows If not one person knew some deep, dark secret of…

Winter Status Update in Bullet Points

Posted by & filed under Exercise/Nutrition/Health, Growth/Inspiration, Rants, Slice of Life.

January and February are not my favorite months. I go into hibernation mode. I run less. I stretch less. My hamstrings tighten up. I eat comfy foods more. My love handles bulk up. My belly looks like Baby Roo has taken up residence. My back aches. The number on the scale increases. I don’t walk as much. I don’t get as much fresh air. I don’t get as much sunlight. My mind is not as sharp. I am reduced to writing in bullet points. My emotions are not as stable. I make the scary discovery that the state of my…

Recipe: Wacky Rice and Beans

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I’ve named this recipe Wacky Rice and Beans because of my haphazard way of cooking. Unlike my popular Migliaccio (Italian Farina Custard) recipe where I give you exact measurements for all ingredients, this dish is a bit different. It’s virtually impossible to screw it up. It’s something you can throw together with whatever you have lying around, including leftovers, and it’s so comfy on a cold, winter’s night. Best of all, one pot makes for easy clean-up. If you’re a cook who never follows a recipe, this one will make perfect sense to you. If you’re very structured in your…

From Intention to Action: Turning resolutions into reality

Posted by & filed under Exercise/Nutrition/Health, Growth/Inspiration, Writing.

It’s that time of year again. You’re either rolled up in fetal position on the floor or writing a list of New Year’s resolutions. Some of you writing resolutions might prefer to be rolled up in fetal position, and those of you on the floor wouldn’t change places with the resolution writers for a million dollars. What is this compulsion that drives us every January 1st? How predictable are we that gyms do much of their advertising in January and then again a few months later when our bright, shiny beginnings have tarnished and crusted over and there is empty…

On Writing: When Outlines Attack

Posted by & filed under Growth/Inspiration, Humor, Writing.

Back in my early days of novel writing, I was addicted to reading how-to books. I raced through one after another with barely a breath between them, let alone time to apply what I’d just read. Eventually, I became disgusted with my lack of progress after eight years of working on the same novel and decided to read a book and actually do the exercises in it. That book was The Weekend Novelist by Robert J. Ray: “A dynamic 52-week program to help you produce a finished novel…one weekend at a time.” I can already hear the groans of the…