Monday, January 27, 2014

You are beautiful

A few months ago I was at the library because of course I was.  We won't discuss how the security guard knows me by sight or that the kind woman who stacks the dvd's on the shelves lets me look through the piles of movies on her cart before anyone else. Suffice it to say I'm there quite often. But that's not what this post is about.

As I was looking through a book I was going to borrow, a piece of paper that I first mistook for a note or receipt slipped out and fell on the floor. It was a small, pink square kind of like a post-it with scribble on it. This is that note:

I apologize for the blurriness of it. If you can't read it, it says: Stop! You are BEAUTIFUL. Okay, keep reading.

I paused for a moment and smiled. I thought about keeping this little note and maybe putting it some place where I can look at it when I need to smile. But then I took another book and placed the note inside so that someone else might find it and be reminded that they are beautiful, too. 

Sometimes compliments come at an unexpected moment, perhaps when you need them most. And sometimes you find a sweet note penned by a complete stranger in a library.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Self Promotion at its shameless best

I'm shamelessly promoting some stuff I recently made that you can buy in my store.  Go ahead and click on them to check 'em out.

This address book with an interesting title

For jelly bean hoarders

These I made a while ago and figured they were worth a mention:

A coffee mug to keep people from talking to you first thing in the morning (Pic is of Fifi, may she rest in peace)

Risque t-shirt for a good cause  (Yes, that is my finger. And my blood drop.)

Monday, January 20, 2014

My feel-good movies

You ever get to feeling a little down and you watch that one movie that lifts your spirits? Or maybe you're home on a Saturday night and everyone else in the house is otherwise occupied so you turn to that  one movie that's like a faithful, old friend?

For me, such movies make me smile and take me to a happy place not unlike sitting in a comfy easy chair, sipping a cup of something hot in my favorite coffee house. Or, sipping booze in a cheap, paper cup on my couch in the dark. Whatever.

The following are my go-to movies for an instant smile:

Sixteen Candles - Classic 80s movie. It's got crude humor, romance, and a character named Long Duck Dong. Need I say more?
The Holiday - Oh, to be able to switch houses with someone (and not worry about being robbed) and fall in love with someone handsome like Jude Law or funny like Jack Black.
Legally Blonde - Like, so much fun! And slightly motivational, too. 
Ocean's 11 (the re-make) - One-liners, gags, and in the end everyone goes home a happy millionaire. Except me. I live here. And I'm broke.
Coneheads - Pure funny.
Back To The Future (any of the 3) - Marty McFly, the Doc, and a DeLorean time machine.
Grease - Great music, attitude, and guys in leather driving cool cars. 
When Harry Met Sally - You'll laugh. You'll cry. You'll laugh again.

What's your feel-good movie?

Friday, January 17, 2014

Be Fearless

Too often we let fear dictate our lives. I know I'm guilty of this. Fear of failure. Fear of the unknown. Fear is a the great de-motivator. It makes us feel complacent with where we are, daring not to risk going further lest we upset some great cosmic balance. It's a lie. The sooner this is realized the better. Overcoming whatever monster stands in your way can be freeing. It's less about being brave and more about taking charge.

I re-named my blog The Fearless Scribe with the intention to write without fear. Sure there may be fluff posts, and humor among the serious but every post I write is real. It is my truth written without fear.

So if you're contemplating some big decision, or major change, or encountering a scary situation look it in the eyes and don't back down because on the other side of fear lies Freedom. I'll even hold your hand and we can be fearless together.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Greetings readers from around the world

So for the pure hell of it and because I like to cause myself more confusion than should be allowed I poked around and checked my blog stats. Numbers and such and blah blah blah. And I came upon this and thought I would extend a personal "Hello!" to those reading from other countries. This is the number of page views from around the world for this past week. Or maybe it's just some elaborate hack from someone sitting in a basement in Podunk, Idaho who is re-routing my page views to make me "Think"  that I'm being read in Malaysia. Pretty crafty there my techie-genius friend.

*The (translated) hellos in blue are from me.

Page views by Countries

Graph of most popular countries among blog viewers
 Entry                         Page views

United States                 97 Hello fellow countrymen!
France                           45 Bon Jour readers!
Malaysia                       10 Hai Malaysian Peeps!
Netherlands                    5 Hallo all!
Brazil                               3 Ola to you!
Germany                         3 Guten Tag mein readers!
Italy                                 2 Ciao dudes!
Poland                             2 Czesc!
United Arab Emirates       1 Ahlan!
Canada                            1 Hello, eh! Or, Bon Jour, eh!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

How Charlotte's Web and a Wimpy Kid got my son to read more

I love to read. I think I might have mentioned it here a few (thousand) times. My son, not so much. In fact, I might have blogged about that once, too. But that was then.

These days Chris reads. Not as much as I do but still, he reads. And his reading skills at school have improved a lot. This makes me so happy. Like, throwing flowers in the air and singing happy. Okay, maybe more like, Dude, High-five happy.

How did this happen? Well, at first I tried the traditional way of getting him into reading by choosing books based on what he was interested in. He liked Ninjago and Super Heroes so I got books about these characters. Here's how that turned out: The pictures were a big hit, but the books themselves were a Fail.

So then I started taking out some Classic Children's books from the library. Stories like Charlotte's Web, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Every night at bedtime I  would set aside 20 minutes to read to him which amounted to either a chapter or a few pages. Sometimes he would read to me but mostly I read to him. And something magical happened. He loved them. We're talking, full-on attention, "What do you think will happen next?" and "One more chapter, please?"

I also noticed that his book choices from the school's library changed drastically as well, from easy-to-read with lots of pictures to actual books. Then came the day he brought home Diary Of A Wimpy Kid.  This was a real game changer because not only did he like the books but he looked forward to each one in the series AND he sat down by himself to read. While we waited for each new Wimpy Kid book to come out I googled books that were similar and found the Big Nate series by Lincoln Peirce. This too became a favorite because like Wimpy Kid, it featured a young boy about my son's age who loved baseball and playing with his friends and wasn't a fan of school and homework. Finally! A merging of things he could relate to in a book!

We both look forward to this night-time ritual and spending time together. I even do different voices of each character because I'm a goofball mom like that. Chris loves when I do that. In fact, one night when I wasn't feeling well, Bill stepped in for me and assumed the role of reader. Chris later said that while he appreciated the effort it just wasn't the same: As he put it, "Dad did it wrong."  No, I did not sit there with a self-satisfied look when he said that. Yes, I am lying.

Of course, reading still loses out to video games and Minecraft. And I only read on school nights. But, I'm grateful that he has begun a love for books. And most importantly that I get to be there to share in that love.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Silly signs

I was bored, and online, which in itself is a bad combo, yeah well. So I decided to google 'Silly signs' because they amuse me. I'll share a few worthy ones with ya.

Because spelling out BANANA was much too difficult...

They say when selling a house certain disclosures are required. Um, this might be too much...

This explains why I'm not a die-hard coffee drinker...

Five minutes later, edited to add: Bottle of rocks also missing, just yell.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Yet another reason why diabetes sucks

You've never really experienced true helplessness until you have looked into the eyes of a frightened Type 1 diabetic child with an unexplained and scarily high blood glucose reading.

But you have to be the Mom, the strong one. You have to hold his hand and reassure him that "No, you're not going to die" and "Everything will be fine" and that "You didn't do anything wrong; it's not your fault" when what you really want to do is cry and scream and curse at The Powers That Be, The Fates, God, and Whoever Else is in Charge. Because it's not fair. It's not fair that someone so young and so innocent must bear such a burden.

I may appear strong for my son, but he is far braver than I ever could be.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Welcome 2014!

Another new year is upon us. What's that Oprah saying that everyone's quoting? Another year to get it right? Well, I'm gonna try.

I read in a few places that some people have a word for the year, like Happy or Motivate and then they try to live the year out according to that word. I tried to find a word but it's hard. Just one word that sums up how I want to honor my life during the year? Can't be done. As a reader and writer I love many words. And then there's the matter of me liking that one word enough. I mean, what if by March I get bored. Or what if life has taken a few detours and it doesn't align with that word I chose? Do I get to change it? Well I started out the year feeling all Inspirational but here it is, Spring, and I'm still a sarcastic-glass-half-empty Schmuck. I'm changing my word to Meh. See what I mean?

I thought about what I wanted to achieve during this year. I would like to walk with more Grace. Be more Mindful. Inspire and Create. Live fully. Love completely. Embrace good health. Be at Peace with myself.

So my search for one word for the year has yielded eight. That's a tall order especially for someone like me with a short attention span who easily gets frustrated. I can only hope for the best.

During the holiday season a friend spoke of an incident in which she encountered an angry woman, who she reasoned had lost all hope. (This is the Reader's Digest version because the actual story is a bit more involved.) My friend's words of wisdom hit me like a mental brick. And that's when I knew my word for 2014 would be Hope.

Renewed hope. Hope for the future. Hope to achieve the goals of those eight words. Without hope, all else is lost. So here's to a happy, healthy New Year. And to Hope.