January 2013

Update: We have decided to not move forward with The 26Valentines Project. While this well-intentioned effort will be no more, we know we’ll all continue to honor these adults and children in our own ways.  Starting on February 1st and lasting 26 days, a chain of words will begin in an effort to tell stories. Each of the writers in the spaces along this chain will write one post each, to give the 26 victims of the Sandy Hook tragedy 26 more places to be remembered. This is a simple act of telling, to share a little more about each person, in an attempt to help those of us reading along to remember. It began with a conversation between myself and my friend Ellen of Love That Max—Can we do something, share some words…something?-— and that became this project, shared among many bloggers from many places, all across the web. We haven’t forgotten and […]


Just Write {70}

January 28, 2013

Saturday, in a coffee shop, I worked hard. Sending emails and writing posts and writing other things. I got a lot done, there in the caffeinated room, high ceilings, chill in the air from the door opening and closing. My friend Rhonda sat nearby doing her work. She has two daughters and a full-time job and a part-time job–the one she was working on today. We sat apart to stay focused but took breaks together. She loves her coffee strong and so do I but I can’t drink it in the afternoon like she can or I don’t sleep. I called Ryan to check-in and he said he was out with the kids looking at a book store for a new puzzle because we’re almost done with the last one. We do many puzzles in the winter, it started after I quit drinking. Puzzles were a way for me to distract my brain […]



January 28, 2013

Most of us don’t want to be viewed as fragile, but here we are. Show me the human spirit that hasn’t been broken in some way. How do parts of us break if not fragile? Be fragile. It’s fine. We were all born fragile. You know, that floppy head attached to a weak little neck, a wide open space in our skulls, vulnerable to poking toddler sibling fingers. There are people who don’t break down easily. The ones we commend for appearing to be made of steel; so strong, so positive, just carrying on. Part of me used to strive for that because I guess it seemed like it went along with wisdom and strength, valor and heroism or something. No more. I’m fragile and I know it. Without this fragility, I’m not as empathetic as I’d like to be and no matter how much it hurts to hurt so often, I’d rather […]


Just Write {69}

January 22, 2013

Elsie Jane, my baby turned little girl, just walked by. She’s drag-pulling behind her a wooden wheeled dog on a string, upside down. That little brown toy puppy looks a little distraught over his fate, wood back scraping the wood floor, wheels in the air. Oh look, I told her. It’s upside down. You guys’ll move along a little easier if you turn it over.  Elsie stopped abruptly and turned around with a big dramatic gasp, looking down at her puppy. Daddy came up behind her just then and leaned down to help. He turned the toy pup over on its wheels and off they went. Forward. :::: This post was freely written in response to yesterday’s Three Years Sober The words here are a metaphor sort of thing for yesterday’s post. :::: This is the 69th installment of Just Write, an exercise in free writing your ordinary and extraordinary moments. {Please see the details here.} I […]


three years sober

January 21, 2013

{just write will be up tomorrow morning, Tuesday} {this post was written yesterday} Our dog is the color of copper, maybe a bit lighter, almost orange. Tia Maria. She has a stripe of white like a cowl around her neck, and more white like sweat socks on her legs. About half of her tail is white, too. It changes from copper to white at the point in which her tail was once broken by an over-zealous preschooler who yanked a wild hello. After that, her tail has always had a bump and a strange bend to it, but it wags just fine. Quite violently, actually. Her happiness is vicious. Thwap slap thwap slap. She is sleeping on the floor beside me, Tia Maria, with that tail laying over one of her back legs. She is softly snoring. I love her more lately. Many mothers admit that their love for their pets dwindles with […]


7 QTs

January 18, 2013

7 Quick Takes 1. I shaved my legs recently. It’s winter! 2. It’s going to be almost FORTY degrees today. Minnesota balm-y. This means I’m going to bring a bunch of stuff to Goodwill and the recycling center and go get groceries and go the post office and clean the chicken coop and roll around naked in the snow. 3. Okay, I’m totally not going to roll around naked in the snow. It may be forty degrees, but the snow is not. Also. Naked. No. I prefer layers and layers. I especially wore layers while out hanging signs for submissions for Listen To Your Mother. (By the way, the deadline is now Feb. 15th, and if you’re in the Twin Cities area-ish, we’d LOVE to hear your story!) 4. Miles had the stomach flu this week. So far the rest of us have not. It’s a flu season miracle, if you ask me, […]


Power Down begins!

January 16, 2013

 Power Down Team! The SITS girls, Tiff and Fran and Amy Whitley of Never-True Tales ::::: The podcast I told you about recently is available for your listening ears on SITSgirls or on iTunes if you’d like to hear it. (Please hear it?!) You’ll hear some tips on managing time. You’ll hear my accent. You’ll hear Tiffany Romero’s sexy voice. You’ll hear Amy try to keep me on track! You’ll hear me admit I’m not that good at powering down, but I’m trying. You are so lucky! ;) Head on over to SITS to click the links to the podcast. Love, Your podcaster friend Heather (with the Minnesotan accent–you can make fun of it, I ooohhhhwn this accent, yaaah, yoouu betcha!)   COMMENTS ARE CLOSED

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Just Write {68}

January 14, 2013

There are lines in the wood on the bedside table. Just one small area with slight scratches in a circle, from the bottom of my tea cup. There’s another deeper and lighter scratch from Elsie pulling my mug across the tabletop right as I said oooh, don’t touch. These lines are familiar now, a place to set my tea cup every night when I climb under the covers to read. I notice that bigger and deeper scratch on the table sometimes. I think of Elsie. The way she climbs and pulls everything off of things and is so fearless and yes, defiant. I smile, even though it’s not easy sometimes, these days with a toddler so fierce. This girl is mighty and she will let you know with her roar. Then she’ll come close and put her head on your lap while softly saying aaahhhh. This is the only way she has to […]


beware the loudest songs

January 14, 2013

  (image credit) Asher is enthralled with song lyrics. Trouble is, he quite often hears the singer belting out something other than what they’re actually saying. He’s only five, so of course this makes sense. And who among us has never mis-heard song lyrics? You know the song Voices Carry? From the 80’s? When I was a kid, I thought Til Tuesday was singing a soft, ominous, This is scaaary. Yesterday Asher questioned some of the lyrics only he heard. WHY is he saying that? He’s not, Sweetie. Yes. He says, (whatever he thought Adam Levine was singing but wasn’t, I can’t remember) !!! No, honey. He’s not saying that. It just kind of sounds like that.  Yes, he is.  Well of course he thinks so. That’s how he heard it, from his five-year-old perspective, the way it would make the most sense to him. This made me think of how we all […]


Power Down

January 10, 2013

  If powering down means a detachment from technology, the Internet, social media…. what would that look like for you? Does it make your skin crawl and a shiver run up your spine? Do you start itching all over? Do you get the shakes? Kidding, of course, but seriously friends, we’re addicted whether we think so or not. When something becomes such an ordinary part of every day, so habitual and second nature, *cough*facebook*cough*twitter*cough*facebook*cough*pinterest… it’s most likely taking up a whole lot of our time. And we’re all so busy and I thought about this a lot when I always caught myself saying that I don’t have time to write or clean or get anything done ever (I like to dramatize). Many moons ago I was reading an article by Anne Lamott that reminded writers that we have time to write, “if we get off Twitter.” Then my insides flip flopped because even […]


Just Write {67}

January 7, 2013

{That’s right, after a two week vacation, Just Write is back. Please free write the details of your moments along with me and link up at the end of this post.} I parked and walked Miles into school this morning. Instead of dropping him at the curb, I skipped that line and parked and crossed across the parking lot with him. As we walked I jokingly asked him if he wanted a pretend hug or a real hug, in front of everyone. He stifled a laugh and and drew out his response. Mooooom. He can’t be caught hugging me, or laughing at my hilarious jokes. No way. Okay, I’m going to go now, I said. I tried to push away that feeling that always hits me when he walks toward the school without me. On the drive home I thought about how I know the way so well. There are so many potholes, […]


Literary Mama

January 7, 2013

I shared some words about the struggle, over at Literary Mama today. Maybe you can relate. “One of them is talking about life and she said, You struggle and you struggle and you struggle and you make some mistakes and then you’re okay. I have to tell myself that. It might not be true, but I have to tell myself that…” It would be really cool of you to go on over there and read my guest post, if you’d like. Literary Mama is a place soaked with words for the mothering heart. Especially for those that have a mad passionate love affair with reading and/or writing. Happy Monday! (I’ll be back with Just Write this week! I’m so glad!)