A Writer Writes

Hello Thursday Mornings memeIn my world, everyone is a writer. Or so it seems. My life before writing…hmm, I’m not sure I remember that.

A writer’s life can easily become consumed by writing. Real-life beckons. I raise my bloodshot eyes from the computer screen as my child wails about something.

“No milk for your cereal? Sorry, mommy has a deadline. Eat it dry.”

“What? Charlie’s mom cooks breakfast every morning?” For a moment, I hesitate, my fingers poised above the keyboard. “Ah, that would make a great addition to this story–a supermom character who becomes the victim of a serial killer. Thanks, love. Now, eat your dry cereal.”

I’m being silly, but if you’re a writer, you may recognize this scene. We do tend to get lost in our stories, whether we’re writing true life or making stuff up. Life is what happens all around us and those experiences end up in our prose. We hope our readers will love it. If they don’t, oh well. Can’t stop writing!

I don’t have children at home anymore, so I’m not ignoring anyone as I write. I’m following the muse in my head and trying to stay somewhere close to my original plot. My little interruptions tend to be the dryer buzzer or the oven timer or a bird hitting the window (that one happens more often than I’d like).

flower-2989995_1280These days, sunshine streaming through the window teases me until I give it my total attention and wander out into the beautiful day. You have to experience it because summer ends, the flowers fade and winter descends. All too soon.

Outside, birds sing a jubilant song. That warm summer breeze plays with a tendril of my hair, inviting me to remember the long summer days of my childhood. Days spent on adventures, discovering creeks filled with pollywogs and crawdad holes, and salamanders.

These fleeting memories add color to my story world but they also make me wonder. What would it be like to live a life free of creating stories? No more typing for hours, or laboring over proper word use or straightening out crooked storylines.

I toy with the idea for a moment. And then I chuckle because I know that a writer must write. Stories must be told. sunflower-field-blooms

Keep your face to the sunshine and you will never see the shadows. – Helen Keller

What to Do About Fall Back Blues

Hello, Thursday Morning friends!

coffee, cup, laptop, memeI heard lots of complaining this year when the clocks rolled back an hour. Most complaints came from those who work forty hours a week (or more). They go to work in the dark and return home in the dark. The few precious hours of sunlight we get is lost to their internment in offices and cubicles.

SAD. Yes, it is sad, but not how you may be thinking. SAD is the technical term. Seasonal Anxiety Disorder (SAD). And it does often make people feel sad. It’s a proven fact, we need sunshine.

My mother-in-law has feared the sun for years. When she goes outside, she’s completely covered up. What she actually fears is the silent killer–melanoma. Not that she’s ever had it, but she did have breast cancer at one time. After that, she became  very fearful.

These days, she spends most of her time indoors. So, in the winter, she often suffers from depression. I’ve tried to urge her to get out in the sunshine, for just fifteen minutes a day. Soak it up. Leave your hat indoors. She can’t. The fear is too strong. So she suffers depression on her own.

Apparently, we have no say in the time-change debacle. It springs forward in the spring, and falls back in the fall. We murmur and complain. But what can you do about SAD?  Here are a few good steps to take.

  1. Sunshine–even when it’s overcast outside, you can still soak up rays, but if the cold keeps you inside, find a sunny spot. Sit or stand near a sunny window.
  2. Exercise–nothing beats a little sweat to get your heart pumping, which also releases serotonin in the brain. You feel better, that is if you don’t overdo. Two birds with one stone: take a walk in the daylight hours.
  3. Spend time with others–friends, family, grocery store, coffee shop, church. Get out of the house. Go for that walk, smile and greet the neighbors. Important note: Social media is a poor substitute for actual human interaction, but as a last resort, you can use it. If you’re bedridden, or have to stay off your feet for a while, it’s a decent solution. Just be careful who you talk to!
  4. Music–obvious, but it works. I love to listen to praise and worship music–it lifts me up every time. But you can listen to your personal favorite, whether it’s R&B, country, or classical–even opera! Hey, whatever warms your heart and puts a smile on your face.
  5. Prayer and/or meditation–scientifically proven to bring peace to a troubled heart.
  6. Pet a pet–yes, this a great way to warm up a cold, anxious moment. A cat or dog curled up next to you, or on your lap is really good medicine.
  7. Watch a favorite show or movie. Ah, the cliche movie and pint of rocky road ice cream. But don’t knock it. Sometimes, it’s just the ticket to get you over the blues.
  8. Read a good book–yes, I went there. There are so many good books these days. Visit a bookstore or library. Download new books online. Check with your social media friends for recommendations.

Important Disclaimer: these are my suggestions only, based on reading and research. If you are suffering from depression, please see your doctor to rule out any physical ailments, which can also cause depression and anxiety. And if you are clinically depressed, I realize the above steps may do little to alleviate your pain and anxiety.

But for those who suffer from seasonal discomfort due to a lack of activity and/or sunshine and light, these suggestions really do help.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go clean my house. That’s another thing that really helps me feel better. I guess you could put it under point #2, Exercise. I put on some praise and worship music, turn it up loud, and go to work. It gets my happy going.

Click to tweet: It’s #SAD! What to do about fall-back #blues. Hello! Thursday Morning’s topic this week.

Up the Down Side

Happy Fourth of July!

Fireworks! Yay!

Fireworks. Yawn. Every night for a week before and after the fourth. Diminished sleep. Dogs freaking out. Are those mortar rounds? Really?

Have you ever noticed? There’s a down side to everything.

Yes, it’s summer. I love summer. Downside? Hot. Humid.

Upside? Take a look–

Homemade stuff. Yum!

Downside…yeah, well, they have a purpose, too. As long as they stay on their side of the screen, I’m okay.

We’ve had a mild summer so far, but I know the heat and humidity are…

Just around the corner…

It’s not really that bad in Kentucky. Some days it’s more like a swamp (without the alligators). Air so thick, you can slice it with a knife. Monsoon-like rain, coming up from the Gulf of Mexico. Tropical storms. Hurricane remnants.

Upside? Oh, yes. →




I don’t know, looks like to me, the upside far outweighs the downside. Bright, sunshine-filled days. Birds singing. Squirrels frolicking in the yard.

Yeah, well, that could pretty much happen any time of year here in Kentucky.

Here’s just a few of my favorite summery things:

  • Summer festivals
  • picnics!
  • produce stands
  • swimming holes
  • long hikes through the woods
  • walking the ped-bridge over the Ohio River

I think maybe, just maybe, the way to go is not to look for a downside at all. Maybe just look up. Enjoy the view. Live like it’s summer all the time. OK, maybe that would be hard if you live in Minnesota or Wisconsin. But you can find an upside to every downside if you try.

My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord;
In the morning I will direct it to You,
And I will look up.–Psalm 5:3 NKJV

What’s your favorite thing about summer? What makes your heart sing on a brilliant sunny day?