Life in progress


Ugly Very Smoke

My illegal following of the A to Z Challenge went off the rails yesterday when I missed the letter “U.” May as well handcuff me and drag me off to blogger jail, because I’m back with “U” and “V” combined today. And I’m a bit of a grumpy camper, so make sure those cuffs are good and tight.

And could we PLEEAASE make blogger jail my room? Where my bed is? ‘Coz I’m sleep-deprived.

You see, last night at (hang on, what does it say on my Fitbit?) 1:29am, my eldest son came into my room and told me I had to get up. Confused, I dragged myself down the stairs trying to make sense of why he was saying he wanted to call 911. Turns out he’d preheated the oven not realizing that he’d spilled butter in it the last time he used it.

There was smoke. There was so much smoke that even with three windows and a door open in the kitchen, my eyes were still watering and my throat still hurt. The oven was off but smoke still billowed out of the vent while it cooled down.

According to my trusty Fitbit, I didn’t get back to bed until 2:11. Where I lay and contemplated the fact that my son woke me up, not my fire alarm.

My best friend, John, came over this morning and changed the batteries in the three (count ’em–THREE) alarms that didn’t work last night, but I haven’t started up the oven to check and see if they’re any better at detecting smoke …

My throat hasn’t recovered yet.

I should probably do that tomorrow. When I HOPE the word of the day won’t be “water.”



I’m supposed to be writing a post today.

But the truth is, I’ve run out of things to say.

My eyeballs are popping out of my head.

Or they would be if my eyelids weren’t made of lead.

I didn’t mean to write a rhyme

but today is running out of time.

So I guess this is what I’m stuck with.


Because nothing rhymes with “stuck with,” either.

I’m going to bed.

Before this lame post gets any lamer.

(And no, that’s not a passive/aggressive cry for validation. It’s lame. Say it’s lame. C’mon, altogether now …)

Good night. 😉


129. Scenes from the Second Seat on the Right

Sunday, January 7th, 3:00pm
Christine and Teddy


Teddy: Mom?

Christine: Yeah, honey?

Teddy: Why is it so cold out?

Christine: ‘Coz it’s winter.

Teddy: Why is it winter?

Christine: ‘Coz that’s just what time of year it is.

Teddy: Don’t bears go to sleep in the winter?

Christine: Yes they do.

Teddy: Why don’t we go to sleep in the winter?

Christine: Because we don’t need to.

Teddy: Do bears need to?

Christine: Yes.

Teddy: Do you need to?

Christine: Only at night.

Teddy: Why do you have to sleep at night?

Christine: Same reason you do.

Teddy: But sometimes I don’t sleep at night.

Christine: I’m painfully aware of that.

Teddy: Does it hurt?

Christine: Not really.

Teddy: Then why do you keep telling me to go to sleep?

Christine: Because you need sleep.

Teddy: Is that why you called me Teddy?

Christine: (regards him) Yes.


Next stop: Monday, January 8th, 7:00pm

Click here to learn all about this series, how it works, and where to find your favourite characters.


Just Jot It Jan 22 – (dis)contempt

I made up a new word!

1. the state of having a lack of contempt for anything.
2. the feeling you have when you’ve eaten too much for your birthday dinner. Oh wait, that’s indigestion. Never mind.

And that’s it for me today. My excuse; it’s my birthday, and I’ll sleep if I want to. Ni’night, all. 😀


Huge thanks to Judy, for hosting today – you can find her here:

And thanks very much to Rosemary for our prompt today, which I mucked up completely. Here’s where you can find her blog:

And here’s the prompt post – please join in!


One-Liner Wednesday – This Is Irony

The definition of irony:

Finally getting the puppy to go to sleep so I can sleep, only to wake him up with my snoring.



Anyone who would like to try it out, feel free to use the “One-Liner Wednesday” title in your post, and if you do, you can ping back here to help your blog get more exposure. To execute a ping back, just copy the URL in the address bar on this post and paste it somewhere in the body of your post. Your link will show up in the comments below. Please ensure that the One-Liner Wednesday you’re pinging back to is this week’s! Otherwise, no one will likely see it but me.

As with Stream of Consciousness Saturday (SoCS), if you see a ping back from someone else in my comment section, click and have a read. It’s bound to be short and sweet.

Unlike SoCS, this is not a prompt so there’s no need to stick to the same “theme.”

The rules that I’ve made for myself (but don’t always follow) for “One-Liner Wednesday” are:

1. Make it one sentence.

2. Make it either funny or inspirational.

3. Use our unique tag #1linerWeds.

4. Have fun!


Who Needs Glue When You Can Sniff Fruit Flies?

I’m completely and utterly discouraged tonight.

I had a weekend off but had very little sleep, but that’s not why I’m discouraged.

I got barely any work done on my novels, but that’s not why either.

I have a sink full of dishes that I haven’t the energy to do, but that’s not entirely what’s got me down.

I killed a fruit fly this afternoon by breathing it forcefully (by accident) up my nose and blowing it back out into a kleenex – that was actually the highlight of my day.

I want to go to bed but I have to wait for kids to go to sleep, but that’s not what’s really killing me.

I have so much to do that I don’t know where to start, but that’s not the worst of it.

What really has me discouraged? It’s all of the above combined. Except the fruit fly thing. That’s just funny.

How was your weekend? Please tell me it was better than mine.



Every once in a while I find something that changes me. Often it’s a thought, an idea that will niggle its way into my consciousness and take root. Often it doesn’t last; I’m relatively sure this won’t either.

This particular change in me was brought on by my vacation. I woke up this morning at 5:40 and I decided to get up. Just me, on my own. I was tempted to go back to sleep: sleep is a rare commodity for me. But today I felt like I needed the solitude that followed me around for eleven days in Japan.

It was strange, being alone with so very many people around. An experience unique for all of its sameness – because really, aren’t we all alone? When I consider the fact that at any given moment, I am the only one who observes what I am observing from my perspective I have a profound sense of being alone in the world. When, in Japan, I took that thought one step further to realize that all the people around me have grown up and experienced the world in a foreign setting, with few of the same cultural experiences, I am taken to a new awareness altogether. I don’t believe I really lived until I had this feeling – and it’s one I truly revel in, as long as I feel safe. From what I’ve seen and how I felt, Japan has one of the safest societies on earth.

And so one of my most treasured experiences while I was there was walking countless times across the street in Shibuya, Tokyo, amidst hundreds of people crossing in every direction.


panoramic view of Shibuya crossing

Ah, the humanity.

Life-changing. For me.

And yet for so many it is simply life. Routine. They come out of the Hachiko exit where the famous statue resides on the DSC00343entirely indescribable side of the train station (there are two “south” entrances on different sides of the building) and they go to work, or meet a friend, or… or… whatever. I was simply wandering around this vast part of a vast world, all alone. No one I knew knew exactly where I was at that particular moment in time.

Just like when I’m having a coffee at 5:45am, all by myself in my living room.

I love it.



Nano Poblano – Day 28: Have You Ever?

Have you ever been so tired you jus…. *snore*


*mumble mumble* Mr. Mark


and *drool* MuPuPuBloooooo



How Do You Do Tired?

Now that I’ve finally caught up on my comments I’m allowing myself to post. Except… I can’t think of anything to write. Add the fact that I’m so tired that if tired was an animal, my tired would be an elephant. And it would be sitting on my lap. Do you have any idea what it’s like trying to type with an elephant on your lap? Ugh. He just farted.

This is how my family can tell when I’m exhausted. I either go hairy and bounce off the walls until someone placates me with either a cup of coffee or a glass of wine (depending on what time of the day it is… though if I’m honest I’ll take the wine any time) or I get creatively silly.

How ’bout you? Do you scream everyone around you into complete jelly-bowls of submission when you’re tired? Do you giggle until your insides hurt and your bloodshot eyes are ready to walk up the stairs to bed without you? How do your loved-ones know you’re tired?


Wanted: Sleeping Companion

As many of you may remember, I fell while delivering papers last December during an ice storm (I’m stupidly dedicated to my job) and received a concussion when I hit my head on a concrete step. (That was a fun post: you should read it.) When I went down that fateful day, I also landed with a concrete step across my shoulders. Since then, I have suffered with shoulder pain.

You might be wondering by now what the title of this post is all about.

I have a hard time sleeping because of my right shoulder. If I lay on it, it hurts. Same thing when I lay on my back – and that’s not a comfortable position for me anyway. If I lay on my left side, I have to try to keep my right shoulder straight. If I leave my arm resting on my body, it falls off. If I prop my side up with my hand on the mattress, my wrist hurts, and if I put my arms together with my elbows touching, my shoulder still isn’t straight enough.

I finally figured out the solution this morning. A sleeping companion!

No, not a man. Get yer minds out of the gutter.

What I need is, a teddy bear. One big enough that if I keep it close to my chest it will keep my shoulders straight. Seems the perfect solution! So today I’m going to go through the boxes from my failed garage sale of a few weeks back and dig out an old stuffed animal. I have an appointment with the doctor on Monday. Hopefully a more permanent fix is somewhere in my future. I’ll let you know how it goes.