Taking Off the Top of My Head

June 14, 2008

***The title of this post, by the way, refers to an activity I used to use when I taught: Every so often, I would set up the overhead projector and simply write in front of my students. That way they’d see what changes I made as I wrote and understand how I developed ideas. I wanted them to realize that, even for those of us who use writing to earn their bread, it’s a process…***

I write because…

Some days the plot bunnies won’t let me sleep. There really should be a twelve step program. I’ll wake up in the night with ideas jostling for position, and the only way to exorcise them is to get them out of my head and into a Word document. Read the rest of this entry »


Nutmeg…It’s Not Just for Cooking Anymore!

September 23, 2007

Charles and I are proud to present the newest addition to our family…



The Thirteenth Constellation

July 3, 2007

night sky

 As you might guess from the header and title of my blog, the night sky has always held a strange fascination for me.  Perhaps this is because they are so orderly.  No wonder man has seen pictures in the sky almost since the advent of written language.  Oh, and incidentally the person who comments and correctly identifies the constellation in the image above gets treated by me to the Starbucks poison of thier choice, minus the astronomy lecture  :).  I’ll give you five seconds (Jeopardy theme plays ominously in the background).  Finished?  Okay then…is that your final answer?

Billions of points of light, rearranging themselves, fluctuating in intensity.  Some are intimidated by the sheer vastness of the universe; I am calmed.  My belated study of astronomy began when Mircat visited this past weekend.  Charles, Miriam and I drove to nearby Shultz pass and spent a good hour gazing up at the sky, contemplating the meaning of life (Miriam and I are agreed about the supremacy of chocolate, while Charles argues for tacos).  The next night, we made the trek to Lowell Observatory.  The last time I visited Lowell, I was a gawky eighth grader in town for a band competition  (yes, I do play flute and yes, there was an incident one summer at band camp 😀 ).  Impressively, we were able to see the rings of Saturn.  Chilled from our nighttime endeavors, the three of us proceeded to Outback where we warmed ourselves with good food and good conversations. 

 Phillipians 2:14-15 is a reminder to:

14 Do everything without complaining or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe.

I am grateful that, like the stars which often are born in interconnected pairs, I am privileged to walk side by side with friends who sharpen me and challenge me to shine more brightly than I’d sometimes like.  Instead of deifying the stars and planets, as the ancient Greeks did, I notice the fingerprints of the Creator scattered across the heavens.  They still speak, if only we bend our ears to the stillness and our eyes to the points of light that make the darkness bearable. 



May 1, 2007

Is anybody there?  What is it about little things like moving and changing jobs that leave one feeling disconnected?  Unless my hit counter lies, you’re out there :).  It’d be nice to know you, faceless audience.  With that, I throw words into the void; I wonder what I’ll catch ;). 

I agree with Ms. O’Hara of Gone With the Wind fame-  “Tomorrow is another day.”  Or, to quote Macbeth, “Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow creeps in its petty pace from day to day.”  Perhaps I should stop reading Prufrock :D.


Unfortunate Greetings from the Frozen North

April 22, 2007

What first appeared impossible is now Mission:Accomplished.  My amazing, wonderful husband and I have, for all intents and purposes, completed moving.  I actually trudged through *snow* yesterday on my way to work.  The adage states that April showers bring May flowers, but what about April snowfall?  I am gainfully employed at Barnes and Noble (30% off of books guarantees that I’ll at least bring home part of my paycheck 🙂 ). 

Besides fighting the battle of the boxes (so far the boxes are winning) as part of setting up our new nest, how has this English major filled the leisure hours allocated to her?  By meeting famous authors, of course!

Lemony Snicket

 for all the news that’s fit to print, check out the ironically named Arizona Daily Sun:



A Moving Experience…

April 2, 2007

I told her we weren’t moving for another two weeks, but guess who wanted to make sure she wasn’t left behind :D. 

The Aristotelian Form of Cuteness


Say It With Petunias: or, Too Early for April Showers

March 2, 2007

Mood:  rosy

Song: “Everything’s Coming Up Roses”

*Warning: This Post is Slightly Belated*

white roses by modotti

Since my darling husband and I both worked on Valentine’s Day (a.k.a. “Singles Awareness Day”), we made the prudent decision to celebrate the day beforehand.  I had no idea what he intended, but I was quite content to go along for the ride.  We ended up at the Boyce-Thompson Arboretum for a romantic morning spent tiptoeing through the tulips and rambling among the roses.  I was also treated to a history lesson thanks to a display covering the long-forgotten language of the flowers.

That’s right; even this English major acknowledges that there are ways of speaking without words.  Some sources believe that the practice of assigning meaning to particular flowers originated in Persia and the near east.  Perhaps King Charles of Sweden, who visited Turkey in the 1700’s, brought the tradition back with him; possibly Crusaders carried the secret significance of flowers back with them to the courts of Europe.  

The language of flowers spanned many cultures, each contributing meanings to local blooms; in fact, though modern minds may think it strange, great expense was poured out to obtain just the right flower to signify a desired meaning.  In certain instances the order of flowers was set by a long ribbon so that the message would be read properly and in order.  During Victorian times the Medieval tradition was revived, allowing young lovers to communicate despite strict cultural mores.  While sceptics (both Victorian and contemporary) will scoff at the idea that flowers can bear meanings, be assured that the language is still alive today; what clearer token of romantic love can sweethearts exchange than a deep red rose?

Read the rest of this entry »