Remember my basement?  The Hellmouth?  Well, maybe I cannot accomplish miracles in one month, but give me two or three and all matters of accomplishment can happen as my photos will attest.

Before:                                               After:




I’ve had one friend contact me on Facebook wondering if I was still blogging.  Glad to know Jennifer G. cares.  The answer is yes.  And no.  I’ve had a falling out with this blog and after some deliberation, I’ll share it with you.

The idea behind 12 Resolutions was simple: make one goal per month and be accountable via public humiliation, a.k.a. this blog.  I was off to a momentous start and had great responses to my month of ADD attack, but soon thereafter, I hit a slump.  Either I was asking myself to do things that just couldn’t be completed in a month and thereby setting myself up for failure, or I wasn’t fully invested in the goals.  Maybe both.  The Huz recently shared with me some wisdom from the blog Zen Habits:  goals set us up for failure.  Here’s the link to the entry: http://zenhabits.net/no-goal/.  It’s a fascinating idea.  No goals.  Not sure I can live quite that freely as I am a consummate control freak.  That said, my goals this past year were definitely setting me up for failure.

So, now what?

The Huz and I are both on a path of change.  We both got sick of things not working in our lives and thankfully, we both want to change the same things at the same time.  For me that will mean a change in my blogging.  I will probably check in from time to time on this blog, but I’m devising a new one for the near-future.  I most likely will abandon Word Press as it doesn’t suit all of my social networking needs.  I here Weebly is a good option.  My future blogging will either concern living with ADD and parenting or will be a real-deal author page with links to my handful of clips, perhaps both.  I will be meeting regularly with a friend and new acquaintance to discuss writing and blogging and expect these meetings to give me succor for the future project.

Thanks for reading my ruminations and cheering my successes.  This feels freeing.  I’m trying to do more in-the-moment actions rather than a planned outline of to-dos.  I’ve been much happier adopting this approach and I have accomplished things that have piled up on the to-do list for months!  I cleaned my car, got laundry under control, cleaned the house and decluttered the ground floor, etc. etc.  It’s a cycle and won’t stay organized and clean for long, but I don’t feel like a victim to my house, my car, my kids, my dog.  Next up, not feeling like a victim to my health and my finances.

It’s a process, one that probably will take longer than a month.

Gardening update

Finally bought and planted the Limelight Hydrangea and am so psyched at the pretty.  See for yourself!  When I started working on the garden last March, I cleared all of the weeds from this small area and divided and transplanted the hostas.  The Limelight Hydie was the crowning touch.  Thank you Labor Day gardening sales!

The once derelict plot

Up close and pretty

Okay, got it.  I’m going to turn the hell mouth that is my basement into a pleasant, creative, fun, happy space for my kids on a budget of zero $.  Currently it’s a disaster zone of toys, art kits and supplies, trains and stuff.  The Huz moved the kid items out of the “art” room in the basement to create a Man Cave.  Said items do not have a home and look sad laying around in piles.  I will organize them and make pretty.  Huz hung art work, for which I’m grateful, but it’s still awfully bare down there.  Here’s some photos to view the BEFORE scene.  Clearly something must be done, stat!

The Hell Mouth

The “art” area
The art on the walls barely disguises the chaos. Barely.
My kids transform most places into “beds”

Well hello there.  It’s been a while.  Remember that whole meditation resolution?  Let’s call that a blog fail and move on.  I was entirely too busy with back-to-school, kid illnesses, my own illness, and loss of electricity during a freak storm to pay much attention to the blog or to the concept of meditation (although, I probably could have used it).  I did attend a workshop on women & stress and we discussed meditation, so does that count a little?  Thought not.

It’s probably time for me to address one of my creativity resolutions, but I’ll need to ponder this to see what is do-able.  What I really want to tackle is learning to sew.  I collect flyers from Jo Ann Fabrics and circle the sewing classes, but none of that gets me closer to buying a sewing machine.  Much like the bike, it’s an investment that I’m not sure I’m ready to take without knowing how to use it yet.  I wish they had loners on hand.

In other news: I published a personal essay in Skirt! Magazine and am pretty happy about that.  Here’s the link:


It just came out at midnight and I have had 380-some-odd views and my sweet friends have liked it on Facebook.  Hooray for me!

I promise not to tally long, but this month promises to be almost as busy as last: just launched a fundraiser for my daughter’s school, pitched an article for a new newspaper and need to get crackin’ on the interviews (one has cancelled twice – I was sick, then her husband was injured), and way too many PTA activities in one month!

Back soon . . .

Here’s an interesting article about ADD/ADHD vs. feeling “overloaded” with technology.



I will say, being pretty much unplugged for 10 days in Italy did me worlds of good.  I was more focused than usual.  Seems obvious, but I easily fall into checking email/Facebook/NPR all day long.

I’ll be honest, I know nothing about meditation.  In fact, it doesn’t really interest me.  But the truth is I have no Zen (according to the Huz) and anxiety is always beating down my door.  Last year, one of my doctors gave me the card for her “meditation guru”.  I just sent her an email about meeting her.  Why did it take me a year?  Because I am not a peaceful person and this feels weird, that’s why!

My only goal in trying this is to see if it helps reduce stress and boosts my concentration, you know, the ADD thing.

There’s also a workshop this weekend I may attend about women and stress management.

Oddly, I’m less stressed than usual, but I have been creatively blocked so filtering out the useless crap in my head seems like a good idea.

Chalk this one up in the Spirituality category.

And . . . back


Well, I returned from Italy on Friday night but jetlag has pursued me like a hungry hound.  I’m finally feeling right in the head today so I thought I’d follow up on the goodbye post.

Spannocchia: courtyard view

I had a great time!  My home-sickness was bad in Rome, the first four days of the trip, and that was with constant phone calls and Skype, but then something happened.  I had a great workshop of my two pieces, we left for Tuscany, and I shared more of my work in public readings.  Wallflower no more!  Actually, I was still pretty quiet on the trip, but during workshop I felt comfortable to share my thoughts and in smaller group settings, I was perfectly happy.

The estate where we stayed in Tuscany, Spannocchia, had so much to do with my feelings of ease.  We had time to get to know one another, communal meals, wonderful open-mic-style readings every night,

and dorm life.  Plus, most of us went to the pool after dinner to slough off the heat = more community-building.  Can you sense a theme?  For a program that is low-residency, meaning we don’t see one another for a year and do most of the work on our own at home, feeling part of a community is important (well, at least it is for me).

Community meals with bottomless wine

So, many new friends later, I am home where the heat index is far worse than it was in the middle of the Forum in Rome.  I’m thrilled to spend a month with my kids before school starts, happy to see the Huz when I’m not passed out from exhaustion, and sneaking moments at the computer to start my first writing packet for the semester.

This month is a little, well a lot, different than previous months, so my resolution will reflect this difference.  Today I leave for a 10-day trip to Italy with my MFA program.  My only resolutions are to be open to experiences, vocal when I need to be and receptive at the right times too, and to be comfortable being myself.  My last residency I fell back into a familiar wallflower pose, but I am going to be conscious of this side of my personality and nurture it when I need to but push it as much as possible.  The biggest part of this resolution is the live in the moment.  I have already started missing my husband and children before packing my bags.  Normal, right.  But, I need to attempt a healthy balance of home-sickness and excitement.  The trick is that I will probably have less contact with the family this go-round because I’m just not sure how much reception my phone will have or if WiFi is even a possibility for Skyping.  I will make contact when I can and try to focus on being a writer in Italy.  Ten days isn’t that long.


Parli inglese?

Well, it’s the end of the month, I leave in 3 days, and I can barely speak any Italian.  Summer months are hard for a blogging mom.  The kids are home, we went to Florida for a week, there’s no schedule.  Suffice to say, I haven’t done well with this resolution.  Good thing I have my Italian tutor app installed on the phone for quick help when I need it.  Dov’e il bangno, per favore?  That’s really all I need, right.