Category Archives: Random Stuff

My Writing Process Blog Tour

April 21, 2014

Today I’m participating in a writing process blog tour.  It’s kinda like Tour de France except I’m not in a bike race, or riding a bike, nor am I in France.  Really the only similarity is that they both have the word “tour” in the name.

A writing tour is when you get invited by another blogger to describe your writing style.  My bloggy friend, Brandi Barnett, asked me to participate in the writing tour.  She is a lovely Oklahoma woman who blogs about life and writing plus she was a Listen To Your Mother cast member in 2013, so you know she is legit.

On to why we’re here:

What are you working on? This.  This blog is what I’m working on.  I have all these stories in my head that I need to tell.  I need to continue the story of how we created our 2nd son via IVF, and I have a great story of the time I went to England with my grandmother.  There are all these real life stories swimming around in my head that want to be told.  Actually taking the time to put them down can be a problem.

How does my work differ from others in it’s genre?  I’ve never really thought about which category I fall into.  At first glance you could say that I’m a mommy blogger but I don’t just write about being a mommy.  Lifestyle blogger would be a better choice for what I’m doing here.  I’m resistant to being called a mommy blogger because I write about more than just parenting.  My life experiences play a large role in what I write about.  That being said my personal experience is what makes me different than other lifestyle bloggers.  I’m the only one who could tell my story because I’m the only one who has experienced it fully.  That is what makes mommy bloggers and lifestyle bloggers all unique.  We all have a unique story to tell.

Why do I write what I do?  See above.  My life is what I know best.  I’ve always thought it would be wonderful to write fiction since I love reading it but to be honest I don’t think I could.  When I think about what it would be like to write someone else’s story, describe circumstances and experiences that I don’t have first hand experience in…I can’t really wrap my head around it.  I am in awe of authors who can create complex characters, settings, worlds, languages and emotions out of nothing.  

How does your writing process work?  Most of the time I just sit down and start typing.  I just imagine that I’m telling myself a story or something funny.  You know those times when you have full conversations in the mirror with the person you wish you told off or could be brutally honest with but never would?  Or told a hilarious antidote to or practiced what you would say if you were a guest on Ellen?  (I hope I’m not the only person who does that.)  Sometimes writing is like that.  I get to have all those conversations but instead of the mirror it is right here on my blog.

There are times when I actually have to write something, not because I want to but because I’ve promised someone I would.  Those are often the hardest times to say exactly what I mean.  If I have to write about something but can’t exactly find my voice I find it easiest if I just start typing.  Eventually what needs to be said finds it’s way here.  

If I have an idea I better get some of it into the computer or I will quickly loose it.  Unfortunately, lightbulbs go off over my head when I’m away from the computer; in the shower, walking the dog, etc.  If I don’t either make a note about it or start a draft then it will get shuffled to the bottom of my to-do list.  PTA meetings, dinner, activities, family life will take precedence and soon I’ll forget all about it.  I’m pretty sure I’ve lost some brilliant posts to my own procrastination and “oh well” attitude.

This last bit wasn’t part of the blog tour interview, just my own two cents.  I find it funny that someone would think of me as a writer.  I was a average student in high school and college.  I wasn’t the dumbest kid in the class but I certainly wasn’t vying for the position of Valedictorian.  I didn’t even get to sit up at the front of the graduation line with the top 10% of the class.  I just had to sit back in alphabetical order with all the other yahoos.  Writing a book always sounded appealing but there was always someone way smarter than me and people who wrote books were smart.  I didn’t see myself as that kind of smart.  It’s amusing that this blog has evolved into something that can at times, be considered “writing”.  It just goes to show that you should always give yourself more credit than you think you deserve.

Color Me Rad Discount and Giveaway

April 18, 2014

Color Me Rad Discount

(source)

Color Me Rad will be back in Oklahoma City on May 10th!  Better yet, I’m back with another Color Me Rad discount and giveaway!

If you don’t know about Color Me Rad by now you have been a couch potato.  These running geeks have been taking the country by storm and leaving us all in a cloud of purple dust.  What is it like to run in Color Me Rad?  It’s like the Easter Bunny ate a huge jelly bean burrito and then let out an enormous fart.  What better way to show your mom you love her by signing her up for the OKC race and running through an Easter Bunny fart with her on May 10th?

You know what is even more awesome than an Easter Bunny fart?  A 20% discount.

Here is your OKC Color Me Rad Discount: HUGSKISSESSNOT20

Here’s what you need to know about this discount:

  • This discount is only good for the Oklahoma City run on May 10th
  • You must register on the Color Me Rad website.  Use the discount HUGSKISSESSNOT20 when checking out.
  • Be prepared for your teeth to turn pink (don’t worry, it will come off when you brush)
  • Prepare to be awesome.

And now for a giveaway

I have two (2) free race entries to give to you, dear reader/runner.  These freebies are for the Oklahoma City race only.  To enter leave a comment below telling me what you love best about the Color Me Rad race.  The giveaway will be open until midnight (Central Standard Time) Friday.  The winner will be announced Saturday, April 26th.

Good luck and God speed.

Color Me Rad Discount

Medieval Fair 2014

April 9, 2014

It’s that time of year again!  Medieval Fair!  If you read last year’s Medieval Fair post you will know that this fair is a highlight of my year.  The turkey legs, the crazy costumes, the corsets, the mermaids.  The fairy wings!  For the love, the fairy wings.   It’s all incredible.

This year the boys and I set off with BFF and another good friend and her kids to see what insanity the fair had in store for us.  It did not disappoint.  I went with the goal of finding the most crazy costumes and corset cleavage and boy, oh boy did I find some gems.  This year was boobalicious.  

We started the afternoon off at the food vendors.  I had a brisket baked potato as big as my plate with a big gulp worthy lemonade to wash it down.  Once I had that rock in my stomach I was ready to hit the archery tent and then ye olde tilt-a-whirl.

medieval fair

medieval fair

Since we had a little girl among our numbers we had to stop at every fairy wing and princess headband tent.  I didn’t mind that one bit because one of the tents had dragon wings.  This smart lady knew there would be moms of little boys out there who would love to put some sort of mythical wing on their kid.  When I saw these dragon wings I made a bee line to show Harry.  He was all over them.  

Medieval fair

medieval fair

Best purchase of the day.

This year Addison announced that he was going to do the “big trampoline thingy”.  We didn’t do it last year and I think he has been planning this day ever since.  I paid the $8 then handed my first born over to a lady with several missing teeth to fit him for a harness.  These are carnies, folks.  No sugar coating it.  If you make a living by traveling around the state setting up and taking down a rickety thrill ride, live in a camper and operate on a cash only basis; you’re a carnie.  

So, I allowed a troupe of fair travelers to attached my child to several rubber bands and then fling him 50 feet in the air.  

His excitement was palatable.  He couldn’t stand still as he watched the kids in front of him bounce to heights that only someone with a death wish could dream of.  Red Bull should get in on this.

Beaming, super excited

Medieval fair

Still really excited.

medieval fair

It only took one unintentional flip for the happiness to turn to terror.

medieval fair

 Not so much fun any more. 

medieval fair

Terrified

Medieval fair

 Really ready to get off.

I was really proud of him.  He was clearly terrified but he kept it together throughout the whole experience.  Upon exiting the trampoline he let me know that he was about to pee his pants so we power walked it over to the port-a-potties.

Okay, now that we have dispensed with the family fun let’s move on to what we are really here for.  

Bring on the crazy.

Oh, hello Gandalf.  I’ll go with Middle Earth as an acceptable Medieval Fair fodder.

medieval fair

 Medieval fair chick holding a turkey leg.  Every nerd’s dream.

medieval fair

 Who needs an entire costume when you have a hat with 3 foot antelope horns?

medieval fair

You know what I love?  This woman’s confidence.  You go girl.

medieval fair

Now THAT’s what I’m talking about.

medieval fair 

Somebody let this guy know that he’s missing most of his armor.  The jousting tourney is not going to go well for him.

Medieval fair

 I think this girl was lost.  She obviously thought she was attending Comic Con but somehow found herself in the middle of a Renaissance festival in mid America.

Medieval fair

Oooooooo a Medieval angel.  Please turn around, please turn around, please turn around…

Medieval fair

 Oh, it’s a dude.  Even better.

medieval fair

The prize for most amazing fur trimmed bra goes to this gal.  I apologize for not having a better picture of this lovely lady.  I tried and tried to get a good shot of this magnificent costume, but it proved difficult.   Take my word for it when I say she was worthy of a call back for casting in Game of Thrones.

medieval fair

Don’t knock the child leash until you’ve had to keep track of a speedy toddler in a crowded place.  I’ve been there and I’ve used one.  There’s no shame here.  I just wish I had the Scottish outfit to complete the look.

medieval fair

   Two words:  Boob.  Shelf.

medieval fair

 

The family that geeks out together…well, you get the idea.

medieval fair 

The Medieval Fair wouldn’t be complete with out a visit to the mermaids.

medieval fair 

Here’s case of someone really wanting to dress up for the fair but not having access to a corset and billowy skirts.  Last year’s Halloween costume will do in a pinch.

medieval fair

 Punk festival, Medieval Fair.  Whatever.  Same difference.

medieval fair

 

And the Medieval Fair award goes to….

medieval fair

 

Holy Lanisters!  This couple was in it to win it.  Their Medieval motto is; go big or go home.  If that guy didn’t poke someone’s eye out before the weekend was over then I’m amazed.  

Until next year, keep your corsets laced up and your mead at room temp.

Grow Your Circles in Google Plus

March 26, 2014

If you’re a blogger then you know you need to be on Google Plus.  

But I don’t understand it…I don’t want to have to learn a new thing…I’m used to used to Facebook.

I feel ya.  Seriously, I do.  But Facebook is making up the rules as they go along and they are really crappy rules.  Have you noticed that your blog page reach just isn’t what it used to be?  You may have 500 FB followers but only 30 people see a post.  There’s a reason for that.  FB is pushing more and more for businesses, bloggers, whoever has a page to pay to promote their posts.  It’s annoying, stupid, unfair, infuriating.  But it is what it is.  FB is a huge machine and small bloggers who can’t afford to pay to promote their pages don’t matter to the machine.  

This Time article does a pretty good job explaining how FB cares more about their bottom line than providing a platform for bloggers and businesses to share their product with their audience.  Check it out here.

So what do you do now?  Wrap your head around Google Plus, that’s what.  

Now it’s time to grow your Google Plus circles, improve your SEO and increase website exposure. Continue reading

Courage = Vulnerability = Courage Brene Brown Ted Talk

February 28, 2014

Brene Brown Ted talk

 

Today I was introduced to Brene’ Brown.  Well, not literally introduced to her in person.  I new friend turned me on to her wisdom.  I watched her TED Talk video about vulnerability. Twice.  As she was talking about human connection she defined courage as telling your story with your whole heart.  Whoa.  It hit me and I scrambled for my scratch pad and a pencil.

If courage means telling your story using your whole heart then that means being vulnerable.  Nobody really likes being vulnerable because we associate it with weakness.  Allowing others to see us for who we really are is scary.  But in order to make connections, discover who we are, do something new, take a chance, we have to put ourselves out there; showing vulnerability.  That takes courage.  

So in order to have courage  to do something really hard (like tell someone how we really feel about them, go back to school, starting a new career) we must show some vulnerability.  Because doing something really hard exposes us to the prospect of failure and facing our fears takes a lot of courage.  It’s a cycle of courage, vulnerability, courage that me need to experience each time we want to authentically tell our story and live wholehearted.

There is so much more in this Brene Brown Ted Talk than just defining courage.  She deconstructs vulnerability, why we fear it and how we mask it.  Good stuff here, people.  Take 20 minutes, you won’t regret it.

 

So this happened; Listen To Your Mother

February 26, 2014

listen to your mother cast

About a year ago I heard about this thing called Listen To Your Mother.  It’s a show where women from all walks of life read their story on stage.  In front of real people.  Anything about moms, mothering, being a mother, having a mother, grandmothers, etc.  There are shows all over the country and last year was the first year Oklahoma City had a show.  In order to participate in the show you need to audition.  I thought about it last year and then realized that the weekend of the show I would be on a trip…with my own mother.  Ah, the irony.  So I forgot about it.  Until a couple of months ago.

I saw on the FB that submissions for the Oklahoma City show were being accepted.  I wrote something, at midnight, and submitted it.  Dear Husband and an English major friend of mine were the only people who saw my submission, so they could edit it.  I didn’t tell anybody about it because I was pretty certain I wouldn’t get chosen to audition.

Then a funny thing happened.  I was asked to do a live audition of my piece.  I convinced myself that only 3 people submitted and they were desperate so that’s why they asked me.  

So I did my live read, via FaceTime (it’s a long story).  Dear Husband and I were hanging with some friends in a posh hotel when all of this happened.  As the day was winding down and we were drinking wine another funny thing happened.  I got a call that I was part of the cast.  What?  For reals?  The wine and fancy hotel combined with the acceptance phone call and I started to feel like a celeb.  I started to watch my phone for a call from David Letterman’s office.  Or GMA at the very least.  I’m expecting a call from Ellen.  Any.  Minute.  Now.   

listen to your mother

So, on May 4th, I’m going to read my essay along with 14 other women in front of a audience.  If you are in Oklahoma city I would love, love, love, love, love for you to be there with me.  Details on tickets as we get closer to the date.

Google + Link Party

February 19, 2014
I’m back this Wednesday co-hosting the Mommy Is Coocoo Google Plus link party.  I’ve been participating in this blog hop/link party since before December and already have grown my G+ exposure by leaps and bounds.  Over 300 people have me in their circles and I have over 400 people in my circles.  All thanks to this link party.
 
When it comes to G+ there is definitely a learning curve.  I’m still figuring things out but every week it gets a little more clear.  One of my biggest stumbling blocks is what is the difference between Facebook and Google+?  This post by Mommy Mentionables does a great job of breaking down Facebook vs. Google+.
 
 
So, if you’re a blogger please join me on Google+ today.  Here’s how it works:

Is one of your 2014 blog goals to grow your presence (circles) on google+?  I hope you’ll join us every other Wednesday for the google+ link party. Google+ is the place to be for better SEO and increased website exposure. Welcome to the mommy is coocoo Google+ Link Party HOP!
 
google+ link party http://www.mommyiscoocoo.com/
 

Grow Your Circles Google Plus Link Party

January 29, 2014
I’m back this Wednesday co-hosting the Mommy Is Coocoo Google Plus link party.  I’ve been participating in this blog hop/link party since before December and already have grown my G+ exposure by leaps and bounds.  Over 300 people have me in their circles and I have over 400 people in my circles.  All thanks to this link party.
When it comes to G+ there is definitely a learning curve.  I’m still figuring things out but every week it gets a little more clear.  One of my biggest stumbling blocks is what is the difference between Facebook and Google+?  This post by Mommy Mentionables does a great job of breaking down Facebook vs. Google+.

Mini Ice Storm

December 28, 2013

The rest of the country gets blanketed in fluffy white snow.  Oklahoma gets an ice storm.  Thankfully this one was pretty mild.  Minimal tree damage compared to a few years ago and all the roads were completely clear.  When the sun came out it looked like everything was covered in diamonds.   We drove around and ooohhhhed and ahhhhhhhhed at nature’s light show.  It was absolutely beautiful.  It lasted about 3 days and then during the day of Christmas Eve the temps rose to about 40 and it was all gone in an afternoon.

ice stormBack gate

ice storm
Japanese Maple tree

ice storm
Fig tree

ice storm

ice storm

ice storm
Rose bush

ice storm

ice storm

Oklahoma ice storm

ice storm

ice storm

 

Snow Day and Thanksgiving Recap

December 6, 2013

It’s a snow day!  Even though we live in a state that regularly gets freezing weather, snow and ice you would think the school district officials are from Hawaii.  They call a snow day even before any sort of precipitation has fallen from the sky.  Oh well, I don’t mind the occasional snow day.  It gives us all a chance to be reallllllly lazy and watch Elf.  ”I love smiling.  Smiling’s my favorite”.  That movie never gets old.

I have another awesome Justin Roberts song for you.  The perfect snow day song.

I made the boys wait until 10:00 to go outside to play.  Mamma needs coffee before I can bundle them up Christmas Story style.

snow day

 

snow day

 

About 30 seconds after this was taken Harry can running crying.  Addison positioned him right under the roof and scrapped a bunch of snow on him that rent down his coat.  Nothin’ worse than snow down the back of your neck.

snow day

 

Oooooo the Amaro filter makes everything look even colder than it already is.  Believe it or not Conan is really happy with the snow.  By the way, I have found Conan’s voice. You can follow him via my Instagram using #conanthedog

Now for the Thanksgiving recap.

pumpkin pie

We went to visit my parents.  My mom made the turkey, cranberry sauce and dressing.  Regular and oyster.  I made the potatoes, pumpkin pie and brussels sprouts.  Side note regarding brussels sprouts.  Fry some bacon then saute the sprouts in the bacon grease.  De-lish.

Thanksgiving

 

Thanksgiving