Hello! Thanks for your interest in my writing!

I created this combination blog and website to make my life easier so I can focus on adventuring, writing, and wellness. 

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Adventure or Misadventure? Feeling/getting lost in thought about big things.

Here's the situation. Spent all day in the world's largest cancer ward, blood tests and three CT exams, late lunch and dinner to go, now tired but wired in my hotel room. I'm not sad or writing this to elicit hug emojis. I get the results tomorrow and am confident there won't be surprises. The chemo pills are keeping my assassin cells at bay. But with imaging chemicals flowing through my body, I'm not in a productive way. I watched the movie American Fiction (loved it) followed by the Seinfeld "Spongeworthy" episode (loved it again) and then John Oliver's show about Chuck E Cheese (loved it).

Suffice it to say my mind is a bit scrambled. But also stimulated. And my take-aways from all this?

Play full out with Gumby flexibility

Create what moves you and don't waste a second second-guessing what the market wants from you. 

Time brooding about the not-knowing is wasted. Delve to learn not impress.

I like being weird. I'm almost 60. Invisibility=freedom. It's time to play.

Sunday, February 25, 2024

How to Say NO...to YOURSELF!

I bet many of you suffer from the same weakness I do, which is continually starting and getting into TOO MANY PROJECTS. Here I am, retired due to 18 million health issues, and I'm way too busy, not slowing down, and focusing on some of the wrong things. Or maybe the more correct way to say it is: focusing on too many correct things if time were unlimited. It's not, of course, so it's too many wrong things.

Here, Lisa - are you listening? - are your priorities:

Health: Be as strong and active as you can be and eat as well as possible. Optimizing health is your job #1 because it enables everything else. This is also about sport - biking, hiking, walking, exploring. Bill and I want to spend more time having fun outdoors.

Gardening: This is a priority because I'm interested and we have nearly 175 plants. Because I love plants.

Creative work: Writing, mostly, but also some house craft projects.

Volunteering: As time permits. This area is outsized right now. I feel like I have four part-time volunteer gigs and that they are pushing the other stuff off the "done" list. Especially health and creative endeavors.

I'm nearly 60. Am I too old to learn new tricks? I hope not.

Ways to say NO to Myself:

Identify I have an issue that needs to be solved. Not just casually over a cocktail with a pal like complaining about too many streaming services. THIS is a problem like a boil oozing puss on my foot. I can't walk until this boil is treated. It's keeping me from living my best life.

Do some scenario planning. Visualize what life looks and feels like when I'm living in alignment with my priorities. Notice I'm not focusing on an end point because life IS the process. Reflect on if/then scenarios that help me get clear about where a new "no" is warranted. No, not right now, not in this way, not as much, or I can't but have a solution are all NOs.

Explore if there are win-win solutions that might free myself up. This is harder to do. I get stuck because I don't want to impose on others. And I value follow through. But I can't value diddly from inside an ash urn or when Bill turns my ashes into stones (see previous post).

Fall on my sword. Sometimes the best thing to say is "I screwed up. I thought I could do this but I can't and I'm breaking the promise I made to myself to focus on my health. Doing this well requires more time than I'm giving it."

Those are a few ideas I will reflect upon and put into action - fingers crossed - very soon. Do you suffer from YES, YES, YES, syndrome too? Let me know what works for you. 

Monday, February 12, 2024

Writing Humor - One Layer at a Time (a.k.a. eat your broccoli)

The process of writing something funny happens differently for every creator. Here's how it goes for me:

I get an idea. There are funny bits or at least one weird slant or detail that propels me. I decide to write a story/book/post.

The idea flutters about in my mind. Perhaps a few more funny bits emerge. I should've started writing some of this down but I don't.

I resist the drafting stage. Why? 

The rough drafts that flow from my head through my fingers and onto the screen are not funny. 

They form the foundation of the humorous thing to come, but do not look or read like the idea in my mind. I liken it to having to eat my broccoli before I can have dessert.  Rough drafts are like steamed broccoli.

The idea swirls through my head at 4 a.m. in the morning. More funny bits emerge although I've forgotten some of the funny bits I'd previously thought of. Nothing is written at this point. 

I add an appointment in my calendar to begin writing the first broccoli because relying on my "love of writing" is not working. 

It's the day and time to write the broccoli draft. I make a pot of milk oolong tea and settle into my ergonomic desk chair.

I review my Todoist to-do list and see that I haven't written a blog post for a while. I open Blogger and begin writing about writing. I assure myself this is a warm up exercise for the drafting work to be done.

I post on my blog and then share the post on Facebook. I look around for another thing to do.


OK, I say to myself, I'll start drafting this story. 

Once I get the boring broccoli out of my head, I begin layering funny bits and weird details. Some are the same as those I've envisioned for days/weeks, but most are different because I failed to write the initial funny bits down.

Note to self: figure out how to write more funny bits down when they occur to me.

And that's how I write humor. One layer at a time and after dozens of self-imposed delay tactics designed to avoid the broccoli.

Thursday, February 1, 2024

I love saving sad plants!

Bill and I went to our favorite nursery (Jericho) today and got a few cool tolerant veggie plants. They also had some flowers and I was looking at them when a staff person pointed at some that were marked down to $2 for a six pack. She said their next stop was the compost pile. So why not?

I've planted these hopefuls in a raised bed with lots of mulch. Six bucks worth of flowers and a big win if even one or two thrive. 

And if they don't, or some don't, that's ok. They will continue to do good by becoming nutritious compost and will feed the next generation of flowers. 

Cycle of life keeps turning.

I don't have strong maternal instincts - I never had children - but somehow sad plants with a wee bit of potential tug on my life-giving strings. 

I love plants and gardening! Fingers crossed my new plants will be happy and prosperous. 

Look at those cute purple flowers. 

The nursery staff person told me the pansies were hardy. Hehehe.

AND! Right after I snapped these pictures, a bee came and checked out the flowers. Now I'm doubly pleased with my six dollar experiment. February is a tough month to be a hungry bee.