A Half-dozen Things Aspiring Writers Say to Themselves

…and Why It Isn’t True

She gazed into the creamy coffee in her cup. For a fraction of a second the steam scalded her lip and the powerful woodsy scent filled her nose. Sighing, refreshed, she began to arrange the day’s notes. One by one, they covered the top of the old desk, hiding the polished grain where countless books and students’ hands had brushed it smooth. The beams of the setting sun that filtered through the red oak leaves outside her window wove between her typing fingers as she started an evening’s work.

That’s how writing happens, right?

That’s my writing fantasy. Actually, I’m sitting in my “garden level” bedroom. That means the basement. I can hear my daughter arguing about the likelihood of falling off the bed if she continues roughhousing on it. There is laundry on the floor. On my desk there is an empty fast food cola cup and a chipped coffee mug. I’ll fill the mug again with coffee after my daughter is gone to bed because I want to write, but it will not be as good as sex, as the excerpt above would imply. I don’t have a day’s worth of brilliant ideas doodled onto pretty scraps that I carry around with me.

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{JEI} Angels with #thezeliegroup

It’s another week of the JEI Link-Up. JEI stands for Just Enough Info. Every week we answer three questions and you are welcome to join in, either in the comments or by posting your answers on your blog and linking up. You can find recent JEIs at Sweeping Up Joy.

This week our topic is angels. Since returning to the Catholic church I’ve been a bit standoffish about angels. Catholics believe in angels. The mass mentions angels, but I haven’t had much other instruction concerning angels. Oddly, when I think of angels I don’t think of Christianity. I think of all the New Age angel books and devotions. So, this topic has been really interesting for me because I don’t know much at all about angels.

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What’s in the name Fishbowl Fortune?

The name Fishbowl Fortune seemed right to me because it brings together a lot of ideas that I have about family and life into one metaphor. A fishbowl is a very common and ordinary thing, but it is so much more than just a fishbowl.

The first part of the metaphor comes from our family history. When I met my husband he was a marine biologist. He maintained an aquarium for the university. He’s also a Chinese-Canadian, and when I think of Chinese motifs I think koi (goldfish) and fortune cookies. Our family is the best fortune cookie I’ve ever gotten. Koi are a symbol of good luck, especially success in school.

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{30 Days of Gratitude} Projects and Work with #30bbdaysofgratitude

I have so many projects! This could be a long post…

I’m grateful for my huge, life-changing project of homeschooling our daughter. It keeps me constantly occupied with researching courses, selecting materials, evaluating progress and adding in her latest interests. It brought me back to God. It opened my eyes to information that I ignored and it showed me that raising a family is a vocation for God. It allows me to have confidence that my daughter is getting the best out of her early years. I’m thankful that I have all the resources for homeschooling from the online community and so much support from my family and church.

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A Redeemed Christian’s Road Trip Reflections

Every year we pack up our little two-door and drive the six hours to spend a week with Grandma and Grandpa. I spend the week before packing. You know what it’s like with a six year old. She can’t go a week without her curly bear, Leopold. She needs to bring her own no-tears shampoo. It’s the only time that she is likely to need her beachwear. And what if it rains? Also, I don’t want to come home to a dirty house, so I have to clean.

This is the fourth time we’ve made this trip and every year before this I was annoyed and exhausted by the time we left. Deep down I wondered if it was really worth it. Maybe we should be spending the summer vacation at home. It would be less work for me and my husband might get more rest, too. I’m almost 40 and at this point I’ve seen enough to know that you should make the most of what you have while you have it. The opportunity for my daughter, Juniper, to spend time with her grandparents will pass, and certainly the wonder of childhood passes, too. So, I kept on making the trip, but my own understanding wasn’t enough to make me happy about it.

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