Sunday, April 17, 2011

Spring Cleaning

It's the same story it's always been.... I haven't written a blog in awhile... I've been busy... blahblahblah.

I have lots of ideas stewing in my head at the moment, and am working on getting a little traction going on them. It's a slow and frustrating process, but I keep reminding myself that it is a process, and therefore, certain steps have to be followed.

So here's a little update on each of the different pieces:

1) The losing weight/excercising/running a 5K thing.

I haven't lost a pound in a couple of months, but I'm actually ok with that. I'm still adjusting to the way I look right now, and honestly, it sucks to not be able to fully socialize with people because I'm on a stringent diet. I needed a break from it. I'm maintaining what I've lost by sticking to reasonable portion sizes and am ok with that for the moment. However, I have noticed that whenever I eat wheat I feel general sluggishness and achy joints. So I'm trying to limit how much wheat I eat. Tom and I are leaving on our cruise on Thursday and while I plan to enjoy myself, I am (mostly) going to stick to the Spa Carnival menu (I will eat those divine fruit soups and no one's going to stop me. :-P) because while not losing weight is one thing, gaining it back is another.

I'm planning to use the cruise to really create some momentum on the running front. I have dramatically improved my ability to run outside in the last month--going from just a couple of yards, to slightly less than a mile, to a mile and a half. But that is far short of the 3K I'm going to need to be able to run come June 4th. I've observed that 1) the first mile is the killer. Like Kira says, after you get the first mile out, your body basically surrenders and says, "Oh. Fine. I guess we're really doing this." 2) Once I've broken through a barrier on the treadmill, my body quickly adaps itself to doing that distance outside--even though it hurts like a you-know-what.

I'm probably the worst candidate for running that there ever was. Bad knees and lower back and an unhappy pelvis from childbirth (nothing a chiropractor can't fix though--and thank God Tom got me those awesome prepaid visits for Christmas), my body is not exactly digging all that impact. But that's why I'm doing it. To prove that I can. And running is so totally against my nature, that every day I'm able to do any distance at all shocks and amazes me.

My plan for the cruise is to run first thing in the morning, and again before our late seating dinner at 8:15pm. I want to be able to run 2 miles a day at least by the time we leave the cruise ship on the 28th. If I can run more than that, even better.

2) The writing thing.

I'm still working in fits and starts on my novel. My kitchen calendar is covered with dialogue that has been popping into my head, and I've had a few sleepless nights where my characters kept me awake dicussing plot points with each other. I recently got myself an interesting book to read for research purposes: Authorized to Heal: Gender, Class, and the Transformation of Medicine in Appalachia, 1880-1930 by Sandra Barney. It was really helpful in understanding some of the dynamics I'm trying to write about. I was happy to see that some of those things I understood innately and was already writing about. And for those things that hadn't occurred to me, the book was invaluable in piecing together some plot points and characters that were hanging loose.

Besides the book, I've decided to kick my short story and poetry writing into higher gear, and start submitting my writing to more journals, anthologies, etc. Unfortunately, while I can write these sorts of things, I am very slow to find inspiration for them. So to that end, I've started checking out a daily photo prompt of the day and a random quote generator for some fresh ideas. I haven't written anything yet, but I am making notes, and letting the ideas percolate. Then when I have some time to fiddle around with my writing, I'll have something that I can go back to.

Lately, I've also been toying with the idea of becoming a writing tutor or teaching a creative writing class (or playwriting) through the local community continuing ed offerings. I'm still not sure how I could do that until the boys are both in school full-time, but the thought is there anyway.

3. Dollmaking

I'm frustrated that I have absolutely no income coming in. One of my friends suggested I start selling my dolls (or embroidery) on etsy. Of course, in order to do this, I'd have to make some dolls (or embroidery). I'm mulling about doing that too. Embroidery is time-consuming, but doll-making isn't so bad. I found a doll pattern to practice on and am in the process of making one. Like most things in my life, I always optimistically underestimate how easy it'll be to accomplish something. I haven't found time to cut all the pieces out yet, so this doesn't bode well. But we'll see how things go today. Hope always springs eternal.

It's doubtful I'll write another blog until we return from our cruise, but when I come home, I'll have a ton of new adventures to tell you all about.

I'm looking forward to that!


  1. I think the doll making sounds like a great idea. There are lots of WAHM also selling on facebook, that could be another option to etsy as well. The dolls range from about $40 to $80.

  2. Anonymous12:58 PM

    Hello! I am glad to have found your blog. I love the sound of that book about medicine in Appalachia. i may have to get a copy of that one as I live in appalachia and have physicians in the family. I will be back!

  3. Have fun on your cruise Brittany! I can't wait to hear all about it.


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