December 2013

Just Write {116}

December 30, 2013

In a bookstore, I looked over the shelves, smelled the smell of all that paper all smashed together and couldn’t help witnessing what happened right next to me. A girl, maybe in her early twenties…(I guess this makes her a lady or a young woman, but I’m going with girl), she has long brown hair and a pretty face. She beams at the sight of her brother, another brown haired looker, coming toward her. He has a basked and it has about eight books in it. He smiles back and he says, with a silly voice, “Look at me! I’m a book bum.” She looks down at the basket and she rolls her eyes and then says, “You’re adorable.” I think he’s a teenager. He says, “It’s one hundred eighty three dollars worth…where’s mom?” They grin at each other and she points across some shelves where their brown-haired mother is looking at jigsaw […]


    The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman You guys. I cannot stop thinking about this book. Simply telling my husband about the plot had me choked up and had him riveted. This story of right and wrong will have you changing your mind about whose side you’re on over and over and over, which isn’t an easy feat to accomplish in story-telling. We think we know. Right is right, right? Well, read this book and tell me what you think!     Abide With Me by Elizabeth Strout Here’s another story of right and wrong that will pull you through its pages with poetic prose and a longing for one man’s happiness. Can one keep faith through life’s hardest challenges? What does it mean to love and lose or never love at all? What does love really look like? A pastor fights for his happiness amidst much gossip and confusion. Peace […]


Hey Mamas, Holiday vacation. Such joy and such strife, all at once! All the hours strung together like the lights, with bickering and whining and impatience and over-tired and over-sugared kids. Oh but then there’s the joy in their faces! At the mention of all the days off of school or a play date or another gift to open or treat to eat. Bliss. And the cozy under-the-blankets time together, the lack of the need for setting an alarm….Oh, and long mornings and afternoons in your pajamas while all the fighting and “I’m boreds” are going on. Such a mix of fun and not-fun. (I really hope those of you who work outside the home are getting some days at home, some days off, of that work.) (And those of you who stay at home with littles who aren’t in school outside of home, this is totally for you as well!) Vacations from […]


say what you need to say

December 19, 2013

People are changing their profile pictures to either support or oppose Phil from Duck Dynasty. Let’s maybe pause a moment to think that over…. You know I love the Internet….but wow, I hate the Internet. Anyway. I think we can agree: Freedom of speech is da bomb diggity. (What? So I use phrases from the nineties. That’s how I roll, yo.) Today I’ve been thinking, what with all of this Dynasty of Ducks kerfluffle, that maybe what matters most is where these freely spoken thoughts and feelings come from. What’s the point in speaking them? The intention? The core? The things buried deep down in Self that are outing themselves? Do we stop to ask that? Really honestly? About ourselves? Openly…really? This is what confuses me. I so rarely see Love in the voicing of the views. If it is missing, this Love, then how are we standing up for it? And if it […]


Just Write {115}

December 17, 2013

Its leaves were an orange I’ve never seen, changing late for autumn. Procrastinator. It was gorgeous, this orange from the tippy top to about halfway down the tree. I looked in the rear view mirror and saw that not one leaf had changed on the other side of the three. Sneaky. If a person didn’t think to look, they’d never know, coming from the other way. The boys were quiet, on this drive to school. That pretty much never happens. But they loved the song on the radio and listened intently to lyrics. Lyrics being lyrical and all, have a tendency to confuse these young boys. Everything is still so literal to them. Poetic rhymes and illogical metaphors just make no sense to them at all. Sometimes I wish it were that simple for me, to just take the orange side as the only one. Never wandering around in curiosity, making sense of […]


I really didn’t think I could move on. I mean, once your smart phone has been an iPhone, what more do you need, right? I had an iPhone for a long time and I didn’t know much about the Moto X until I was at BlogHer Pro and met some people who make them. Friends, this is a great phone. (Full disclosure: Yes, the nice people gave me a Moto X. But, they did not require or even bring up my telling you about said phone on the Internet. So you can be sure, I’m just telling you because of the warm fuzzy feelings I have for this phone.) Why, you ask? For starters. You get to pick your own color, for the front and the back. Nextly. To get the phone ready to take a photo, like at the very last second…you twist it back and forth. No really…I mean, like…you flick […]


Sometimes I quickly jam out some ramblings about being a mom on The Extraordinary Ordinary facebook page and then people say OH I love it when you say this stuff. Because I still don’t have much of a filter and I love honesty like a best friend. Then I remembered that I used to write whole entire blog posts like that when I had more time to write whole entire blog posts like that. What are you doing with your time, Heather? Good question… This school year, life has been so different than the past eight years. Okay, Heather, but that doesn’t really answer the question… SEE? This is how it goes with my thoughts, my writing, my life…and apparently, answering questions I pose to myself to pretend to be you, on a blog. And I’m typing really fast because I have a lot of Other Things. Good Things. They gots to gets […]


{My eBay Collections were curated as part of my collaboration with eBay}   As I drove home from dropping off the boys at school this morning, Silver Bells started playing on the radio and I sang along and pictured it all just like that. All that happiness. I love this season. There really is magic in the air. One of my boys still believes. In Santa and in the Elf that flies around the house at night. It must be so great, so inspiring and exciting, to believe! And can you remember? The joy of opening gifts that you thought Santa had carried right to you, just exactly what you wanted? And MORE? Not all of us were so spoiled, and I hope that means we’re helping each other bring that magic to those who can’t afford it. Donating toys is a beautiful way to feel the Silver Bells Feeling of the Season. The Salvation […]


Just Write {114}

December 9, 2013

I was moving fast, around the kitchen, trying to get ahead, knowing that if I don’t, I’ll be even more behind than I can predict. It just always seems to go that way. But I felt calm, peaceful even, in the midst of the dinner clean up and getting lunches ready for the next day while the kids threw a small plastic ball around the living room and laughed hysterically. I was cleaning up after all of us as I went, trying to stay ahead of the mess too. I wondered, while the loudness of my kids overcame me, how I could be less anxious than ever. It’s certainly not always like that, but it is more and more. I don’t really have an answer, but I’ll take what I can get, that’s for sure. At 6:30 I told them, when I was done with all the things, that we should go upstairs […]


  ARTIFACT UPRISING // inspired by the disappearing beauty of the tangible / bettered by a community of inspired storytellers / driven by the belief everyone has a story to tell. Tell On. — from the Artifact Uprising website   Hello friends, we both know there are loads of places you can purchase gifts for your loved ones like personalized calendars, soft and hardcover photo books and other photo gifts. But have you heard of Artifact Uprising? I love a company that isn’t just another company doing the same things as other companies are doing with one simple goal: to make money. Artifact Uprising is truly unique, connected to its community of supporters and is simply a company built on GOOD. All of the AU products are made in Colorado out of “the disappearing beauty of the tangible”, and this means that the interior pages of all of their books are made from […]


Ready? Set….WRITE ALL THE THINGS! Erma Bombeck’s annual contest opens January 4th, so get your wheels turning and start writing your personal humor or human interest essay! The winner receives $500 and admission to the annual Erma Bombeck writer’s workshop! __________   Writer’s Digest – you can submit anything from poetry to fiction to horror to memoir and MORE. Writer’s Digest is also rich with information for writers, a forum, blog, and writing prompts. __________   Creative Non-Fiction, True Stories, Well Told offers online classes as well as contests and submissions. “Essays must be vivid and dramatic; they should combine a strong and compelling narrative with a significant element of research or information, and reach for some universal or deeper meaning in personal experiences. We’re looking for well-written prose, rich with detail and a distinctive voice.” ____________ The Sub It Club does a monthly roundup of all the contests to enter that month. […]


Where I Lived Wednesday

December 4, 2013

{I’m sharing stories of places past with Ann today.} When I peek out from behind one of the big oak trees in our front yard, I can watch my neighbor across the small pond in front of our house and she’s dancing to We Built This City in her driveway. It makes me smile and so I come out from behind the tree and watch from the swing. I swing a lot by myself and I think and think and think. Sometimes I go over to her and ask her to play and we go inside and play Barbies. We have lived in this house since I was three. My Dad built the house and to this day it stands there with my parents in it, empty nested. There are woods all around the house and it has a long driveway. Sometimes that driveway floods and we have to take a different path […]


Just Write {113}

December 2, 2013

I’ve never lived a December with 70 degree weather in it, but I am. I went to open the window in my office, to let the warm breeze in and a fly was freed from between the pane and the screen. Now it wants to land on my coffee mug, to bug. The boys play outside and play outside some more. They can’t stop. Elsie sometimes goes right out the front door, following them, giving me fits. I hear the soft click as she sneaks out and I run just in case she’s going to go out in the street. Her brothers are always on the other side, Stay right there, Elsie…you can’t come out without Mommy. Enforcers. It is no different here when it comes to decorating for the season. Lights are appearing along roof lines and up in the trees. Twinkling deer and angels and manger scenes are being set out […]


If they can build it, the boys will come… that’s what we say about our boys over here. We also say that they become crazy little guys when allowed to play Super Mario Bros on the wii because they love it so much. Now, the love of building and the Mario craze have been brought together with K’NEX y’all! My boys are in heaven with the SUPER MARIO 3D LAND BOWSER’S CASTLE BUILDING SET:   What I love about this is that it gets the boys off the screens and imagining and playing. They love Super Mario so much and I love it when they act it out or create in response to that passion. My 8 year old explained that in the directions, instead of one step at a time, it shows how to do multiple steps on one page, which is harder, according to my boys. That said, it’s probably best […]