You are currently browsing the monthly archive for November 2011.

Play along here!

They say:  I think…

  1. Program :: Show
  2. Business :: Card
  3. Nerve :: Ending
  4. Pipes :: Smoke
  5. Man :: Woman
  6. System :: Down
  7. Roses :: Petals
  8. Gong :: Show
  9. Heartfelt :: Love
  10. Strolling :: Strollers

Can The Bulldog Be Saved? is a thought-provoking article about the future and fate of the bulldog as a breed.  There are also other breeds that are in a similar state.  I think that there are a number of breeds that have been bred beyond the point where they can be healthy (either in the sense of physical health, or the sense of behavioural health, or both).  By our design, we have created dogs that have trouble breathing, overheat too easily, have hereditary diseases, and can’t mate or give birth, among other problems.  And temperamentally, there are many breeds that are known to be genetically fearful.  I hope that the bulldog, and the other dog breeds that we have designed into disaster, can be saved.

Well, it’s Thanksgiving in the United States (we celebrated Thanksgiving in October here in Canada), but I thought that today was a good day to think about gratitude.


Thirteen Things I am Grateful For

1. That my health is good — physically, I am healthy, and mentally/emotionally, I am also well, and have been for over a year.

2. My wonderful family, especially my mother

3. My dear friends — I am especially blessed to have so many wonderful people in my life — I love you all!

4. My little brown dog

5. The relaxation that a cup of tea brings me

6. That I can give back to my community — it’s tremendously important to me

7. My writing — I love to write, and I am grateful that I have been writing again lately

8. The support that my loved ones give me every day

9. Chocolate

10. My new tablet — I’m loving it!

11. That I have such a good doctor

12. To be able to use the telephone after a long period of phobic avoidance

13. That there is no snow on the ground.


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Yet another post in the Fluff category!  Again, I’m going to describe a colour with one word… wonder if anyone will be able to tell which colour I’m thinking of?

The word:  Joyful.

Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.

–Pablo Picasso

I love this quote from Pablo Picasso.  On the one hand, it gives me hope — if only I am diligent about practicing my writing, inspiration will find me.

On the other hand, it encapsulates what I am coming to believe about writing.  It is important to work at your craft, regardless of whether the Muse has graced you with her presence.  Daily (or otherwise regular) practice of writing will lead to creativity;  it will find you if only you are working.

Now I just need to carve out a little more time to write, and inspiration will track me down!

Another post in the Fluff category!  Again, I’m going to describe a colour with one word… wonder if anyone will be able to tell which colour I’m thinking of?

The word:  Inscrutable.

A blog prompt I found somewhere on the Internet last night (sorry, I don’t remember which site I found it on) challenges writers to describe a colour in one word — without using the colour’s name.

I’m going to give it a try.  I’ve been thinking about this one all day;  see if you can guess which colour.

The word:  Voracious.

Play along here!

They say:  I think…

  1. Crushed :: Orange
  2. Thanks :: Welcome
  3. Steam :: Bath
  4. Bulletin :: Board
  5. Budget :: Buster
  6. Value :: Village
  7. Aquarium :: Fish
  8. Logo :: Language
  9. Information :: Kiosk
  10. Lend :: Library

Is there anything more frustrating than going out determined to spend money, and when you get there, whatever you want to buy is sold out?

I was all prepared to buy a netbook today.  I don’t really have the money;  I was pilfering from my Clicker Expo fund to do it, but it seemed like such a good deal, I couldn’t resist.

So I got up to the store, having gone through all the agonizing of “Should I?  No, I probably shouldn’t.  But it’s such a good deal.  Yes, I think I will, even though I probably shouldn’t.”  And the netbook was all sold out.

(It turns out that the price that I thought was a sale price is actually the everyday price, so it likely wasn’t as good a deal as I thought it was.  And the salesperson said more would be coming in next week, and since it was an everyday price, she couldn’t give me a rain check.)

So there I was, all ready to spend (what is for me) serious money, with nothing to buy.  I kind of went into a buying-withdrawal frenzy at that point.  I wanted to buy something, dammit!

I went to another store nearby and looked at a tablet.  The big roadblock — it’s refurbished.  Now, I’ve bought several refurbished products from this store, and they’ve all been fine.  But several people have commented lately that they’ve tried this store, and ended up buying things that don’t work.

I just wanted to buy one SO BADLY, I could hardly stand it.  Kind of scary, how badly I wanted to buy one.  But I kept it all together and got out of the store before I gave in to the almost irresistible urge to buy.

Now, I’m sitting in a coffee shop, writing this post out by hand on paper instead of typing it on my brand new netbook or tablet.  And I’m slowly starting to feel better for having withstood the craving.  Maybe next week.

“Zen is not some kind of excitement, but concentration on our usual everyday routine.”

Shunryu Suzuki


“The less routine the more life.”

Amos Bronson Alcott


“The secret of your life is hidden in your daily routine.”

Mike Murdock


“As long as habit and routine dictate the pattern of living, new dimensions of the soul will not emerge.”

Henry Van Dyke


I am a creature of routine.  I adore my routine.  I like to get up in the morning, have a cup of tea, read the paper, eat breakfast.  Take the dog for a walk, come home, have another cup of tea, check my email.  Then I can shower, get dressed, and start my day.

If this routine is disrupted, I feel off.  I get cranky.  I like things to go as they are supposed to go.  I like to go to bed at the same (insanely early) time every night.  I like to watch murder documentaries while I fall asleep.  I like my days to be predictable and for things to happen when they always happen.

Of course, in between my morning routine and my evening routine, I kind of like to have a varied bunch of things to do throughout the day.  So, I have to wonder, am I really a creature of habit, or some sort of hybrid?  And is it a bad thing to be bound by routine?

As you can see by the quotes above, there are lots of opinions on this question.  I kind of like the zen quote… but, being someone who likes routine, of course I would.  I dislike the quote about routine preventing new dimensions of the soul from emerging, naturally.  So is it a good thing to have a routine, or am I hampering my creative process by sticking to the same day-in, day-out?

I can adapt, don’t get me wrong.  I can deal with it when my routine doesn’t happen.  Like I said, I get grumpy sometimes.  But I can do it.  And I don’t spend the entire day stuck into a lock-step pattern, either.

As I’m typing, I am thinking this through.  I think that actually, routine can be a help to the creative.  For myself, I know that I have to write regularly, or I don’t write at all.  If I wait for inspiration to strike, I will generally wait a long time.  A lot of the reading I have done on being a writer states that an aspiring writer should sit down on a regular basis and just write, whatever flows out the fingers.  And I know from my own experience that I write more and write better when I do just that.

So I think that rather than blocking my creativity, routine might actually be the secret that sets it free.  I am trying to set aside a certain amount of time on a regular basis to just write.  Part of that is the revival of this blog — I can come here and just do it, consciously leaving my perfectionism aside for the duration.  (Not an easy thing to do!)  I think I will experiment with this idea, and see if devoting regular time to write makes the difference that I suspect it will.  Now I just have to follow through, another not-easy thing to do!

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