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Theses are my thoughts and ramblings as I forge my way through this thing they call life.
These are my thoughts and ramblings as I forge my way through this thing they call Life.

I blog with these groups:
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January 12, 2018 at 8:26pm
January 12, 2018 at 8:26pm
Blog City - Day 1487

Maybe it's just the lack of sunlight, the weather itself but I've been in a dark place emotionally. What about you? Does the weather impact your moods?

January is my birthday month.... that usually impacts my mood in a not so happy way. Don't get me wrong, I love seeing my friends and family, I just don't want to be the center of attention. Once the birthday thing is off the plate, so to speak, I can get on with enjoying their company.
As for the weather... it is a Canadian winter. Cold and brutal one day, raining and 'where's the snow' the next... the freezing rain is a real joy.... NOT. I would prefer the snow and a bit milder temperatures or at least no bloody wind chill that drags the temperatures down to -30 degrees Celsius! And where is the sun! Even a sunny, blistery cold day beats a freezing rain bog any day, hands down.

Don't get me wrong. I LOVE Canada and being Canadian. I also know I am a wimp, because I live in southern Ontario and not the Prairies or Maritimes. But still, winter is a crap shoot!

When I came downstairs to begin this blog it was freezing rain and +2 degress Celsius, within half an hour I went up to find it white out snowing and -2 degrees Celsius. So now we have freezing rain covered by a layer of snow.... and I have to go out and get a few things.... I have a feeling my birthday dinner out is going to be postponed.

I did have to chuckle at one girl walking home bundled up in her snowsuit carrying her umbrella and swinging it around happily. somebody's parents paid attention to the weather forecast.

I do find my mood moves with the weather patterns. I feel happier when it is sunnier and gloomy when it is overcast or raining. I also appreciate the longer days over the shorter, winter ones.
January 2, 2018 at 10:42pm
January 2, 2018 at 10:42pm
Blog City - Day 1477

Prompt: “True productivity is not about the volume of work. It is about doing what matters on demand, without the pressure of external deadlines or forces.”
Nicholas Erik, from The Writer’s Productivity Crash Course
What does productivity mean to you--in writing, in personal life, or in general?

Productivity should be all about the process, not the final product. You can be all about the product and bang out a high volume, but unless it really matters to you and you have put all you had into it, it is not going to be a great product.

Productivity to me is showing up and doing what is required as each task presents itself in the process. It means doing the work, but also reflecting on how the work is going and making adjustments to make the product more than it could be.... this is true whether it is in terms of writing or teaching or any other form of productivity you are working on that gives you a sense of purpose and fulfillment.

Having a productive day could be just meeting the goals you set out for yourself that day.... the day could be relaxed and easy or busy and chaotic - it is whatever you determine it. Some days you just gotta mellow out and go with the flow. If that is the goal for the day, then you met that goal.

I think it is also important to set your own goals and not compare yourself to someone else. You are not them and they are not you, what you do and how you work needs to be by your own process not theirs. Trying to follow someone else's process towards productivity is only going to leave you feeling out of sorts. Comparing you miss all the good you could be accomplishing by following your own way and doing it your way.

You need to figure out what works for you and follow that way.... but you also need to stay flexible in knowing that sometimes you may need to tweak things to accommodate changes in your external environment or your internal levels of energy. You can't control all the variables in life.

Never beat yourself up for not hitting the mark, take a moment to reflect and change gears if necessary. Mindless pressing forward does not work for everyone and it is certainly not the way to stay at a project. Everyone needs time to recharge and reflect.... build that into your productivity.

It all comes down to attitude and mindset. Believing you are growing and changing will make for a great future... in your writing, your personal life or just in general.
December 28, 2017 at 11:05pm
December 28, 2017 at 11:05pm
Blog City - Day 1471

Prompt: What do you hope happens in 2018?
World peace.

But for my own part, what do I expect to happen in my own life in 2018? I am not overly sure, right now. I currently have a cold that is making any potential plans dim and unfocused.

Right now I am just hoping to have the basement vacuumed and tidied before the new year starts. Get a few things in order.
I also need to have an oil change down on my car and my tire sensor reset.

I would like to lose more weight. With this cold, I have managed to lose a little and keep some of my overindulgences down to a minimum. I have been trying to drink a bit more water and even get out for a few walks - even with the weather bitterly cold. Perhaps I will add swimming to my exercise options. I need to add a few more healthier eating options to my diet in the new year.... try to cook more and eat out less. My waistline and my wallet will be grateful.

I want to focus on my writing and get my computer C: drive cleaned up and backed up so that I can start a few creative writing online courses I have signed up for.... I have 4 of them I want to do.

I have been feeling a little lost and unanchored as of late... need to reconnect with others both online and out in the community. There are groups in Guelph and Waterloo that get together at regular times.... I want to meet up and make those connections.

I also have to plan and get ready for another LTO List interview. I can't help feeling this is another stress-filled failure in the making.... I should stay positive, but after so many years of trying... I sometimes feel defeated before I even get in there.
November 20, 2017 at 9:46pm
November 20, 2017 at 9:46pm
Blog City - Day 1344

Marge Piercy said: "“I want to do something very important. Like fly into the past and make it come out right.”
Have you ever thought about this? Do you use the idea in your writing?

I don't know if I would say I want it to come out right... but I want to change the details to my liking. To create a story from the drama and make it come out a bit more focused and black and white. The real thing can always seem so hazy. Each side has a story to tell; I just want to focus on one side or the other. There is also something to be said for giving a real event time... say, ten years... so that it can settle and you can get some new perspective and distance - particularly if the event was emotionally charged. Delving in, you can still touch the emotional impact, but you have space to move without the pain being fresh. Fresh pain distorts. Fresh pain leads to an idealized vision... that can also paint the characters into polarizing places - victim and angel. Characters can become caricatures of what they really are... and that is not good story telling.

October 20, 2017 at 3:31pm
October 20, 2017 at 3:31pm
Blog City - Day 1314

Seven wonders
Khalil Gibran once said that people will never understand one another unless language is reduced to seven words. What would your seven words be?

What would my seven words be? A good question. One must always remember body language first and foremost.... I believe a smile is universal in being welcoming and friendly and that is where we all must start if we ever what to understand one another.
I also have an image of breaking bread and sharing a meal... much can be said of sharing and food as feeding and sustaining the development of connections.
Being Canadian I am also thinking politeness comes into play - please, thank you, excuse me, sorry.... and that is 6 words right there. The last one.... try. Being open to others and trying to experience a little bit of shared community goes a long way to connecting and understanding each other. The rest can be done with gestures that include others in your group and making them feel welcome and accepted.
I am curious what others would have to say about this topic.
October 9, 2017 at 3:13pm
October 9, 2017 at 3:13pm
Blog City - Day 1303

Prompt: What do you think about ESP, in general? Do you know someone who has it? If you are the one with the ESP, do you sense things that happen either before they happen or after when you had no inkling about them happening? If you do or did, is this a regular occurrence or a random event?

I am not so sure about ESP. I think some people may be more open to the 'frequency' of that kind of knowing, while other are totally oblivious. Some of us may be open to moments, particularly those with intuition. Intuition can guide you if you listen. That gut reaction is trying to tell you something. It may be that still small voice of God guiding you through life. If you tune in and take the time to listen and follow that guidance you might be able to steer clear of huge drama... if you don't listen, bad things could happen. I have found it is better to sit still and listen for that guidance. Slowing down and taking the time to make a purposeful decision on the next step of your life is probably a good thing anyway. Jumping head first into the jumbled mess that is the world is not something I prefer to do.

I have been known to go through periods when Déjà vu. They have sprung up on occasion. That is the weirdest experience, going through the world like you have been there before, thinking the same thoughts and doing the same things again. I am not sure what triggers these events.

Either way I see this sense as a gift. One given, but one that must be activated with awareness. Anyone can do it if they can still themselves long enough to listen... and do what they are told.
October 6, 2017 at 7:30pm
October 6, 2017 at 7:30pm
Blog City - Day 1300.!!

Create a list of 13 favorite things in your life in honor Blog City's 1300th day. What makes them special and why?

Cosy woollens and chilly evenings.
Writing & WDC
Teaching and learning from students
Long nature walks
Walks in the neighbourhood when the night has fallen and you can see and hear what's going on in other people's houses.
Coffee shops and cafés to wire and read
Having a roof over my head and food in my belly
Family gatherings
Time to sleep in
September 27, 2017 at 11:13pm
September 27, 2017 at 11:13pm
Blog City – Day 1289 - yesterday's prompt.

Prompt: “A screaming song is good to know in case you need to scream.” -- Maurice Sendak
What do you do when you feel like screaming? What kind of things make you want to scream?

This was yesterday's prompt and I really liked it so I started the blog, but did not get a chance to finish it. So I will try again today. I decided to take this in as a form or theme... a theme that when challenged rises the hairs of my body and rumbles my soul. The theme is for woman to stand up for themselves... to fight against oppression and battle whatever tries to hold them back. Staying silent makes me want to scream... to scream for them... but I think these songs can do a much better job.

The first song I chose has to do with fighting cancer, but I also find it is a way of taking back a life that has been 'dis-eased' by letting others have power over you... stepping up and taking charge of your own life takes courage and this song speaks to that.

This is my fight song -

Song is by Rachel Platten
Lyrics - only some of the lyrics are posted here.

Like a small boat
On the ocean
Sending big waves
Into motion
Like how a single word
Can make a heart open
I might only have one match
But I can make an explosion

And all those things I didn't say
Wrecking balls inside my brain
I will scream them loud tonight
Can you hear my voice this time?

This is my fight song
Take back my life song
Prove I'm alright song
My power's turned on
Starting right now I'll be strong
I'll play my fight song
And I don't really care if nobody else believes
'Cause I've still got a lot of fight left in me

Brave by Sara Bareilles

The theme is be who you are and stop letting others take your power. Don't give it away. Embrace it and scream if you need to.... you deserve to be heard. You are enough, just as you are. Be brave!
September 4, 2017 at 4:05pm
September 4, 2017 at 4:05pm
Blog City - Day 1267

Prompt: What is beauty to you? How would you describe beauty?

Beauty runs deep.
It is not just surface, which can blind others to true depths
Looks, even lovely looks, can bind
Hold one back
And even deceive.
True beauty defies time and flows from the heart
It is goodness and compassion
It is loving and acceptance
It is unbiased and does not even realize the beauty it holds
It just is.
Like a mountain; it can stand the test of time
Like a lake; it can refresh and revitalize
Like a meadow; it can bring peace and calmness
Beauty is a well lived life
It is life lived in the present
Heartfelt and alive
But it is also beyond the here and now
Enduring and lasting
Beauty Just Is.
August 13, 2017 at 11:17am
August 13, 2017 at 11:17am

Blogging Challenge - Day 13 - Argentina

August 13th
Lyn had us up early this morning. We were off to a full day tour to Mundo Marino - a theme park. There is little time to grab much breakfast, but I manage a small bit and a coffee. I even managed to get a coffee to go. Some of the group managed to snooze on the way and I will admit I do nod off for a little while.

Mundo Marino is one of the most important entertainment complexes in Argentina, It is the first Theme Park installed in the country and it is also the largest Oceanarium in South America. It is located in San Clemente del Tuyú, Partido de la Costa. It hosts wonders of nature and skills performed by dolphins, sea lions and orca, as much as penguins, birds and fishes, all located in areas that recreate their natural habitat.

With my coffee in hand we manage to meet up with your guide in downtown area of Buenos Aires. The trip is three and a half hours. The scenery is magnificent.

There was so much to see. Our guide took us inside the park and we were able to explore the sea world, where many attractions are available:

- Sea Refuge : An Orca and Dolphins performance where caregivers will show us the world of cetaceans and the work of the Mundo Marino Foundation.
- The Sea Lions Island : A performance of Sea lions along with sea elephants, trying to save the island from an evil business woman who wants to build a hotel complex in their habitat.
- Penguins shelter: A breeding Penguin Colony inside a recreation of their natural habitat.
- Sea lions bay: In this representation of natural their environment, between rocks and waterfalls, we can feed and watch sea lions.
- Submarine encounter: Enjoy a cetaceans watching through a panoramic window of a sink of a diameter of 30 meters. This pool hosts dolphin pups born each year in Mundo Marino.
- Terrestrial Safari: guided expedition into the wild natural world to discover how animals, plants and the environment are related to conform a rustic habitat.
- Paradise Lake: magical lake and waterfall hosting colorful birds, flamingos, fish and flowers.

There were also different kinds of food available within the park. There were even places to shop.
After hours of fun and animal discovery, we met up again with your guide to get on the bus and return to Buenos Aires by the same route.
It was early evening when we arrived back at our same starting point.

Lyn left the evening as yours to rest up and get ourselves organized before heading off in the morning to Uruguay and the capital city of Montevideo. Apparently it revolves around Plaza Independencia - which was once home to a Spanish citadel. It leads to Ciudad Vieja (Old City), with art deco buildings, colonial homes and Mercado del Puerto, an old port market with many steakhouses. La Rambla, a waterfront promenade, passes fish stalls, piers, and parks.

In real time, I am off to Scotland tonight so I don't know if I will be able to keep up with the virtual trip. Have fun everyone!

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