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I am a big believer in “Happy Holidays”, as opposed to Merry Christmas… I just feel it’s more inclusive of everyone, no matter what their beliefs.  And there are so many different holidays around this time of year!  But I do like Christmas carols, so that’s what this Thursday Thirteen is all about.

1.  O Holy Night

2.  Mary’s Boy Child

3.  Little Toy Trains

4.  This Old White Doorway

5.  The First Noel

6. Do You Hear What I Hear?

7.  Mummers Song

8.  The Seven Joys of Mary

9.  Fairytale of New York

10.  Appalachian Snowfall

11.  We Three Kings

12.  Feliz Navidad

13.  Bells of St. Mary

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!  The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

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1. One of my favorite things about December is the anticipation of Christmas.

2. I love ornament(s)!

3. This is what I’m hoping for today/tonight: a good clicker training session with the folks from the SPCA.

4. What’s that noise?

5. Ooh, a bird.  (Channeling Dannan here!  LOL!)

6. The phone is ringing!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to a good night`s sleep, tomorrow my plans include lots and lots of research and Sunday, I want to see old friends and new at the SPCA volunteer appreciation event!

 

 

Check out the Friday Fill-ins website here!

For years, I have been thinking about writing a series of articles about animal welfare and training issues.  I’ve finally started working on them, so that’s what today’s Thursday Thirteen is all about.

Thirteen Animal Welfare Issues I will write about

1.  Pets as gifts

2.  How to choose an animal trainer

3.  Effects of punishment

4.  Pet overpopulation

5.  Rabbit overpopulation and feral rabbits

6.  Exotic animals

7.  Circuses, rodeos and travelling exhibitions

8.  Farm animal transport and welfare

9.  Wildlife – Predator control

10.  The link between violence against animals and family violence

11.  Pets in rental housing

12.  Animals in research and testing

13.  Animals in recreation/sport/entertainment, film and tv, and fashion/art/clothing.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!  The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

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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.

 

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

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

Shunryu Suzuki

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“The less routine the more life.”

Amos Bronson Alcott

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

Mike Murdock

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

Henry Van Dyke

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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!

1. As you can see I am here.

2. See you soon!

3. I love to buy books.

4. I have many gift(s).

5. What’s up with my dog coming down with kennel cough?

6. The world is at my fingertips.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to going to bed, tomorrow my plans include voting in the municipal election and Sunday, I want to learn about rally obedience!

Check out the Friday Fill-ins website here!

 

”thursday-13″

Thirteen Nicknames for My Dog (a rather silly theme, but it`s easy and I`ve been away for a long time!  🙂

1. Woogie

2. Mr. Woogle

3. Boo-bear

4. Puppy Boy

5. Mr. Mu

6. Precious Boy

7. The Woog

8. Mister Bister

9. Snoogy

10. Handsome Fellow

11. The Potentate

12. The Little Brown Dog

13. Snickerdoodle-doggy

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Well, it has been a seriously LONG time since I posted here.  Life gets away from me, I start a new blog to cover different subject matter, I lose the impetus that drives me to write.  Et cetera, ad nauseum.

 

But it’s time to revive The Muse Asylum!  I need to get back in the habit of writing regularly, so why not do it here?

 

Life has progressed since my last post, natch.  Ups and downs, backs and forths, all those good things.  Perhaps I will write about some of the events in the past year and a half (give or take), perhaps I won’t… but I will be trying to write something.

 

I have forgotten how the formatting works here in WordPress, so this post might look strange.  I’m going to publish just to see…

Today’s prompt:  For today’s prompt, I want you to write a poem about either a specific routine or routines in general. Maybe something related to taking out the trash each week or washing the dishes every night–or something more bizarre (yet still a routine).

Bah.  I need a break, but I’m committed to this challenge.  It feels like I’m just putting up dreck at this point, rather than good poetry.  It doesn’t seem right, to keep posting unfinished and completely unpolished words.  Maybe a good night’s sleep will help?

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The Morning Routine

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The bed shifts and

a soft wet tongue licks my elbow.

I ignore, and there is a thoughtful pause.

The bed shifts again

so a cold nose can poke my cheek.

I grunt something about “too early”,

which is rejected by my bed-mate.

A front paw lands on my bladder:

bounce-bounce-bounce.

I crack one eye open

to peer at the alarm clock.

It is exactly the time that

we did this yesterday.

There must be a timepiece

inside my dog.

My mood is rather low today, after a low-ish kind of day yesterday, too. I’m hoping that there is some external that is causing it, because I don’t want to think that the honeymoon with my new med is over. And my head hurts. I am feeling exceptionally whiny and sorry for myself.

I’ve lost all motivation to do anything today. And I’ve got a list. It seems like as soon as I start a list (which I need because my memory is long gone due to my illness and the meds), I get overwhelmed and get bogged down.

I used to get some pleasure out of one of the major things I need to do (it’s not even ON the list). Now it’s just a chore. One that I keep avoiding.

Also, I can’t seem to be able to accept that my capacity for doing is so limited. My list consists of:
– a thank you email to my cousin, who has sent two lovely cards to me lately to let me know she’s thinking of me;
– an email to two of my very good friends, most of which I am planning to cut and paste from another email that I wrote a couple of weeks ago;
– an email to a colleague who has offered to help me with whatever I need in preparing for the SPCA AGM at the end of the month. There’s not a lot he can do, but I surely appreciate his offer. And I have been procrastinating all week about sending him a thank you. A friggin’ thirty-second email.
– a reminder that I need to work on my ongoing list of highlights from the past year at the SPCA for my report;
– three things that I’ve done and already crossed off the list; and
– not actually on the list but in my mind, the need to go around to the blogs of all of Dannan’s blog followers, which I haven’t done since before Christmas. They are all such supportive and kind people. I used to really enjoy reading these blogs and commenting. Now, it seems like so much work that I can’t even bring myself to start. There are about 100 blogs by people that follow Dannan’s blog, and I have tried to chip away at the list. But because people update their blogs fairly regularly, as soon as I take ten off my list (as in, I’ve commented recently on them), they update and I believe I have to put them back on the list. It seems like I never make any progress. And none of these blogs include the ones that I follow that don’t have anything to do with dogs. Like the readers I have (or at least used to have) here. I don’t get to them, either, even though I want to. Just trying to put up a post now and then seems beyond me, most days.

So, with the exception of the guilt I feel around the whole blog thing (which isn’t even actually ON my to-do list), my list isn’t objectively overwhelming. It would take hardly any time at all to do the three emails. I just can’t get myself to do it. Case in point: this post; I had no intention of posting today, let alone a whining, poor-me post. But I decided to do it anyway, instead of what’s on the list.

But back to the point about my capacity for doing. I am still at the point where I refuse to accept that maybe having three simple emails to do is too much for me. I mean, seriously. How pathetic is that? Have I really become a person who can’t have anything to do? A person who can’t function with any tasks or responsibilities? I cannot accept that. I have spent my whole life doing. And doing a hell of a lot, a lot of it at the same time. And now I’m crying. Hell.

If this is a part of my True Self, I’m in trouble. I don’t know that I will ever accept and make peace with this. I’m going to go cry for a while. Dammit.

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