Obstacle Course

Coco crabbing down the mountain in the Pecos Wilderness.

What’s been the biggest obstacle in your life so far?

When you’re standing on top of a giant pile of rocks, the worst thing you can do is over-think your descent.

One foot in front of the other, slide down without lifting your posterior off the ground more than an inch at a time.

It’s so obvious from the mountaintop. Why isn’t it when I’m at my keyboard? Or planning dinner for friends? Or worrying about my kids’ college fund?

If the only thing to fear is fear itself, then why am I stalling?

Like many Type As, I obsess.

Instead of getting on with it, I choreograph each move, visualize the outcomes, tweak the angle, adjust the frame …

The biggest obstacle in my life is my own irrational fear.

What’s yours?


Ready or Not

Whew! It’s been a while. I’m still here. Living. Writing. Laughing when I can. I’ve thought about blogging twenty times a day since the last post ten months ago. I have snaps on my phone that make no sense now, but at the time, I connected them to an idea. Something to share here.

I wasn’t ready.

Hence, the graphic ↑.

Last week, Cherry cleaned her room. If you know a normal sixteen-year-old, then you understand the magnitude of the event.

“Mom, I don’t want this.” She handed me a clear acrylic cube of printed cards.

“What are they?”

“Conversation starters. The white elephant gift from the swim team Christmas party.”

It’s been parked on my desk since. This morning, I opened the box and withdrew the first card.

How do you measure success and who do would you consider a successful person?

Taylor Swift. Barack Obama. J. K. Rowling. Elisabeth Crisp.

Success isn’t talent, money, power, or accolades. It’s knowing at the end of the day, I’ve done my job. It’s a line of sequential X’s on the calendar, representing the days I put a pen to paper, fed my family, bound a wound, or made another person laugh. Success is measured in quantity time.

Quantity. Not quality.

Time. Not dollars.

Are you ready to start?

How much are you willing to give?

Plots From the Spam Filter

Tips for Texting a Girl wrote:

Just walk into your local book store or grocery store and see how many romance novels are on the shelves. Some girls will not want you to know that they are finding it tough after a break up and will put on a brave facade to not let you know how much they are hurting. She may even contact you before you get in touch with her.

Honest to gosh, I copied and pasted the words above directly from Akismet. Unlike most of my spam, it’s almost coherent. It’s punctuated. It uses verb tenses correctly. And that last line, “She may even contact you before you get in touch with her,” shows empathy. It’s conspiratorial. Winking.

I see him in the bookstore, hiding like a creep in the stacks of Romance, spying on the lovelorn ingénue, waiting for his big chance to offer her a personal-sized pack of Kleenex. “Can I buy you a cup of coffee? Do you read Nora Roberts? Here’s my number. Call me, maybe?”


He stalks her in Fantasy and Science Fiction. At the precise moment she turns a corner, he blocks her path. Hulk green and drooling. “Do you wanna dance, Baby?” Spittle litters the napless carpet. She runs away, cowering between the blank books and the greeting cards.FullSizeRender


She sees him in Children’s, legs folded criss-cross applesauce, reading Winnie-the-Pooh aloud to no one in particular. She sighs. “He’s the Piglet to my Pooh.”

It’s love at first sight.

Time Out



How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. —Annie Dillard, The Writing Life

I’ve blogged 72 days in a row. Since February 1, I’ve hovered over my keyboard asking God for something important or whimsical or, at least, new to say. He’s answered my prayers for the most part.

This week, I’m taking a break. I hope you’ll come back next Tuesday to see if He’s whispered anything else in my ear.

Until then, Happy Spring!