Do You Believe In Inspiration?


 

joyI’m not done writing.  Frankly, I hope I’m never done with it.  Over the last few years, I’ve been thinking about writing, thinking about where to write, what to write about, how to turn this into more of a hobby…maybe.  I guess I’ve been looking for inspiration.

When I started this blog in 2013 it was a way to get beyond the grief and loss I was still feeling a year after our grandkids moved back to Arizona with their mom.  I’d read or heard that if I came from a place of gratitude I would find my way through the grief: I did.  I committed to writing every day for a year.   Although I stopped the daily routine of writing, I did not stop the daily thank you.

Recently, I’ve been using Audible to listen to books while I drive around for work or to run errands.  It was purely accidental, an email offer in my inbox for a free trial and the book highlighted was:  The Book of Joy, Lasting Happiness in a Changing World.  I have been inspired and believe me, I was just as surprised as you might be.  So inspired in fact that I needed to get a hard copy of the book and I ordered one after I finished listening the first time.  I find myself now replaying the chapters on Forgiveness and Pillar 8: Generosity.  The lessons to learn and relearn…believe me, so much inspiration to be found here, so you can expect more from me!

 

So Far, So Good


In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “State of Your Year.”

I must admit that, thankfully, there have been no tremendous upheavals or catastrophic events in my world.  I may be tempting fate, but, at this moment I’m willing to throw caution to the wind.

I’ve not been writing nearly as much as I used to and find I’m missing it.  I’ve filled the time I used to spend tapping on the keyboard, reading.  I bought myself a Kindle Fire for Christmas and have read roughly one book every ten days or so.  Nothing to be impressed about, certainly, I’m reading for the pure enjoyment of it; escaping into the chick-lit genre I’ve enjoyed for many years now.

Today’s prompt did get me thinking about something I am optimistic about for this year.  I’ve been working with a coach to develop plans for my coaching and consulting business.  I feel like, maybe, it’s time to be more in control of my daily work life and working for myself just might be the ticket.  I’m still in the beginning stages; making connections, designing website, making sure there is money in the bank.

While I don’t have clients yet and am not actively seeking any, I did have my new business cards designed.  One of my friends suggested that I use moo.com, they have interesting designs and square business cards.  I just read my email and found out they were delivered to my house today…I’m very excited to see how they came out.  Today’s thank you is to my friend Jen, for suggesting moo.com.

Tell me what you think of my design…

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Post from Day Six: AmeriCorps


iheartamericorps_460x460This was my post from day 6 when I started this project.  I heard from so many of the AmeriCorps members appearing in the picture at the bottom of the post.  They have all gone on to be successful teachers, social workers, business professionals, managers, parents.  They also continue to provide leadership in their respective communities… AmeriCorps Rocks!!

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My newest HBO obsession is the Aaron Sorkin show The Newsroom.  We’ve just started watching it, waiting patiently for the discs to arrive in the mail, trying not to watch an entire disc in one night so we can savor the joy that is an Aaron Sorkin show.

In any event, last night we watched an episode from Season 1, “5/1”.  The coverage by the fictional news station ACN, highlights President Obama’s announcement that Osama Bin Laden had been killed by US Special Forces.  The show goes on to let us in on how the United Airlines crew and the officers of the NYPD are told about the announcement.  It was quite moving and brought back so many memories for me.

On 9/11 I was working as the director of an AmeriCorps project in Providence.  For those of you unfamiliar with AmeriCorps it is often called the domestic Peace Corps.  In my case it was 35 people ranging in age, that year,  from19 to 42 years old.  They were: men and women, high school educated, college educated, Columbian, Guatemalan, Cape Verdean, Liberian, Cambodian, American, black, white, Asian, physically challenged, able-bodied, mothers, fathers, children, funny, smart, willing and committed, to the year of service that they each signed up to complete.

Only two weeks into their year of service 9/11 happened.  Everyone remembers where they were when they first heard, so there’s no need to revisit that here.  What does merit revisiting is the courage and strength and commitment this group of 35 exhibited, not just that day or the few days following.  They were steadfast in exceeding the terms of their service with more hours served, more community service projects completed, and finally, in their support to each other.

AmeriCorps members, at least the ones I’ve been privileged to know, and in particular the year of 9/11; show a commitment and determination to bettering their communities and to serving those who are most in need.

Kelly's Americorps1

AmeriCorps Bloggers, check these out!

 

Wordle of the Day, What It Says About My Blog


I thought it might be fun, as I close in on the last couple of weeks of my year of daily thank-you’s, to use the Wordle site to create a picture of what I’ve blogged about over the last year.  I was pleasantly surprised to find this after I put my site’s address into the “create” section of the site.

What I love about it is the biggest words: Perspective, Challenge, Weekly, Daily, Time.  It’s curious to me because I didn’t know when I started to thank someone every day, how it might change me (if it would at all).  I think it did!

blog wordle

Words from other bloggers:

 

 

20 Days and Counting


It’s been a great way to mark time; to blog every day for a year.  I have 20 days to go before the year is up.  As I get ready for the next phase I was reading about the Blogging University’s “Writing 201 Finding Your Story.”  I’m on the fence about signing up for it, but I’ll figure that out in the next couple of days.

The premise of the class is to learn how to become your own best editor.  You can get feedback or comments on writing that you’re currently doing, or you can go back to a post and use it to practice self editing skills.  Since I have 20 days to go I thought it would be a good idea to look back at my 20th post. Here it is, let me know what you think:

“Fitness Together” Helped Me Find A Job (originally posted 9-1-2013)

Fitness%20Together

When you’re unemployed the wherewithal to get out of bed every day to search for a job or simply face the world, can be like climbing Mt. Everest. In 2009 and a few months into 2010 I was unemployed. During one of the most difficult economic times in the country to be sure, but even more difficult in the state with the second highest unemployment rate in the entire country, finding a job was a full-time job in and of itself.

ftPrior to being laid off I’d been working out with a personal trainer. My husband turned me on to it when he was part of a business networking group. I’d already prepaid for 25 sessions so I had to use them. And I did–three days a week I was at Fitness Together in East Greenwich. I’d work with either Loryssa or Fermin, and occasionally with the owner, Robin, or with Heather. All of them were amazing; supportive, motivating, consistent; they each knew when to push me and when I didn’t want to be pushed, and respected it. Regardless of how well I did or didn’t do with my eating plan, I always exercised.

It took ten months before I found a job, which as it turns out is the best place ever for me. If anyone reading this is also unemployed and trying to figure out what steps to take next, I would recommend you create a routine for yourself and stick to it. If it includes exercise, great, that will probably keep you sane and the benefits go so far beyond the physical. If you have the chance to work with a trainer, someone solely focused on you and your goals, even better. I’m not sure I would have been as able to go on interviews, stick to my routine or ultimately get that new job, were it not for Robin, Loryssa, Fermin and Heather! Thank you all!

 

Punctuation, Perfectly Positioned, Promotes Productive Prose


semi colonWe all have strange relationships with punctuation — do you overuse exclamation marks? Do you avoid semicolons like the plague? What type of punctuation could you never live without? Tell us all about your punctuation quirks!

I am semi-colon happy; I admit it, freely.  I used to be comma happy but I learned my lesson.  After constantly getting papers back in college  and grant applications and reports back from my boss, my comma using days fell by the wayside.

Thankfully, I’ve had many good editors of my work.  Two come to mind instantly and deserve my thanks today.

The first, a college professor, my freshman English class.  I was lucky enough to not have to take the traditional English Comp class because I’d done that in high school.  Instead, I was invited to be part of a six-credit class that met every day; and every week we completed one speech and one essay. The professor loved the way I spoke so I got an “A” on each speech.  My writing skill on the other hand, she was not so impress by; so there was always a “C” at the top of each assignment when it was returned.  I ended up with an overall grade of  “B” for the course but what I learned was invaluable.

My second extraordinary editor is my friend Jennifer.  We worked together for roughly seven years.  The best thing about her style was that she explained why she was recommending the changes noted in red pen.  Instead of rewriting something in her own style, she was able to give me feedback that enhanced mine.  I believe I am a better writer as a result of her editorial guidance.

Jennifer and Dr. Stagg, thank you for making me a better writer!

Persistent Punctuation Problems

The Most Feared Punctuation on Earth

Daily prompt – Exclamation marks!!!!!

Punctuation Saves Lives!

Daily Prompt: By the dots – what dots?

Daily Prompt: Being Punctuated!

Do you overuse them…???!!!

Who do we thank for TGIF?


TGIF picSo, it’s Friday and I find myself again at the end of a busy week not sure where to start writing.  I’m not one of those writers/bloggers who does much about outlining thoughts for the week or planning ahead.  In fact, I have less than 50 days left of my 365-day journey that is this blog, and haven’t thought about what’s next yet.

I thought it might be fun today to really thank someone I don’t know, but who definitely impacts my life, and everyone else I know.  It’s the person who coined the term:  T.G.I.F.

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According to answers.Yahoo.com, the term was originated by the Akron, Ohio disk jockey Jerry Healy on radio station WAKR in the early 1970s. The phrase was further popularised by the 1978 movie starring Donna Summer, Thank God It’s Friday.  Which, by the way, I remember going to see in the theater with a bunch of friends!

So there it is, the next time you say TGIF, you (and everyone else) can thank Jerry Healy!  Have a great weekend!

TGIF’s