Happy Birthday to Me

It is that time, once again, where I celebrate the glorious occasion of my birth.  It is also the first day of the spring semester and I am teaching today as well as taking a class.  It stands to reason, then, that I haven’t been able to sleep and the birthday butterscotch creme brulee has killed my insides.  For those who don’t remember/are new, I’m allergic to eggs and that’s basically what creme brulee is: baked eggs with crunchy sugar on top.  I realize I shouldn’t have eaten it, but we were at a nice restaurant and our server brought me a complimentary dessert and that was what she brought.  It was delicious, but I am paying dearly for it now.

I am 38 today.  Some things really make that hit home.  My oldest son is already angling for his first car and he won’t even be 16 until August.  My high school class is planning our 20th reunion.  Whenever I think about the things I used to enjoy in my 20s, I instantly feel the need to take a nap.  Oh, and there’s my stockpile of hair color.

Last year, for my birthday, I was deathly ill with flu and I had lost a dear friend of mine to a lengthy respiratory illness.  It was shaping up to be another sad birthday for me when weather prevented me from seeing my youngest son this weekend.  But, you know?  It hasn’t been that bad at.  It’s actually been pretty good.

I spent the weekend with my oldest son, just the two of us.  We went to see The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies yesterday and it was great.  When I got home, I had a present waiting for me.

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A friend wanted to make my day suck less.  It worked.  My guy took me to a really nice restaurant where I had fettuccine with shrimp and lobster in a spicy diavolo sauce and my butterscotch death brulee.  Came home and watched a few episodes of Game of Thrones.  Yes, I’m behind, but I’m in the 4th season now so cut me some slack.  After that, I came into my office to do some work but saw a contest and decided to enter a chapbook of poetry instead.  If all of this wasn’t quite enough, I’ve had birthday wishes coming in from Facebook and in my email, and I’ll be meeting up with friends after class tonight to eat noms, drink beverages, and spend time together.

It’s cold.  The roads tend to be awful.  I didn’t get to see my small man.  Nothing is perfect, though, and so I’ll spend my day being grateful for all the wonderful people I have in my life.  I fully expect lots of birthday hugs and lots of laughs.  Here’s to another trip around the sun.

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Car Shopping Makes Me Sad on the Inside

For the last two months or so, I have been without a vehicle.  With the start of a new semester fast approaching, this won’t work out well for me, so I’ve been combing the interwebs for a new car.  To say the experience has been soul crushing is putting a positive spin on things.  Everything is either almost as old as I am (and I have a birthday soon :/), over 150,000 miles, or gets horrendous gas mileage.  I drive over 1200 miles per month, so that’s just not going to work for me.  Side note: if you are wondering why I’m not writing, chances are I’m driving somewhere.  It feels like I live in my car sometimes.  Except I have no car.

My goal is to have something to drive by this time next weekend.  The hunt continues!

Happy New Year

Hopefully, everyone had a great night last night and no one is too hung over today.  My own evening was spent deep cleaning and getting pinned under the deep freezer.  We were moving it out of the basement and into the front garage, but moving it around the landing and up the stairs was somewhat…problematic.  I was at the top of the stairs and I ended up pinned underneath the thing.  It went something like:

Him: Go up the stairs.

Me: I’m pinned.

Him: You have to get up the stairs.

Me: I can’t.  I’m pinned.

Him: You’ve got to move!

Me: What part of “pinned” was unclear?!

Needless to say, I became unpinned once he rolled the freezer over the top of me.  My leg is still a little sore from where it rolled, but there’s no bruising so I don’t think there’s any major damage.

If you saw my year end post the other day, you will know about the wonderful writing spreadsheet my lovely guest Jamie Raintree created and shared.  I had last year’s spreadsheet and that was pretty cool.  The changes she made to this year’s spreadsheet are amazing.  Now, you can track more projects and there’s a new section for tracking your editing progress.  I spent some time setting up my projects and I’m excited to get tracking.

If you’re anything like me, you don’t feel like you do any writing at all if it’s not on your primary project.  The fact is, we’re constantly writing things.  My goal for this year (I refuse to call it a resolution) is to track all of the different forms of writing I do every day and see what I’m actually producing.  With the extra project space, I can do that more thoroughly.  Of course, one of the very first projects is for Enraptured, and I’ve actually been working on it today so I may finish it at some point.  You know you have something special when you go back over your manuscript to see what you’ve done and you impress yourself:

“Church shouldn’t be comfortable.  You’re here to work, and work should be hot and sweaty.”

“But shouldn’t the Church also provide comfort?”

“The people of the Church provide comfort.  The building does not.”

–Enraptured, Chapter 2

I have a project set up to track blog postings, so that should help keep things a bit more regular around here.  I’m in my final semester (!) of graduate school, which means another writing workshop and my fiction thesis project.  This time, it’s creative nonfiction.  This isn’t my favorite thing to write, but “Fruits of Labor” was published last summer and “Don’t Be Sorry” was included in a collection of grad student essays, so there’s that.  My thesis project is already written, so I get to play with the edit tracking feature.  I do need to add 2-7 pages through editing but that isn’t a problem.  I’m having more of a problem writing the damn thesis proposal (which I will do!).  I added a project to track my poetry writing and then a final one to track whatever writing exercises I do.  I have a couple more spaces left, so I have room to work on something else if I want to, but I really think this is enough for now.

What goals have you set for yourselves this year?