Tuesday, November 30, 2010

list it tuesday: numbers

On the side of my monitor remains the Post-it list of photos I uploaded for my blog the other day about our hike on the Noland Trail.

Notice how I start the list at about halfway through, then return to the beginning?  I also apparently changed my mind from 11 to 12.

I seem incapable of doing anything in a less than cockeyed manner.  Then again, I wouldn't be me if I did otherwise, right?

Go check out aimee's post in artsyville to see more lists from around the interwebz. It's fun, and some people are much more artistically adventurous with their lists than I am.

Monday, November 29, 2010

weekword: pyrophoric

I am hosting the Weekword Challenge this week and hope you'll join in on the fun.  Weekword is a creative challenge that gets passed around the internet and each week a new blogger is asked to host and chooses a new word to inspire others to share their response. You can do anything: from poetry to photography to pottery to pensive ramblings. Whatever happens is good as long as it prompts you to do, to make, to create and then to share.


I flipped open my old red Merriam-Webster, and found this week's word.  I like it.  It's sparkly. In fact the official meaning from Dictionary.com is

py·ro·phor·ic   /ˌpaɪrəˈfɔrɪk, -ˈfɒr-/ [pahy-ruh-fawr-ik, -for-]
–adjective Chemistry .
capable of igniting spontaneously in air.
1830–40; < Gk pyrophór ( os ) fire-bearing ( see pyro-, -phorous) + -ic
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2010.

World English Dictionary

pyrophoric (ˌpaɪrəʊˈfɒrɪk)
— adj
1. (of a chemical) igniting spontaneously on contact with air
2. (of an alloy) producing sparks when struck or scraped: lighter flints are made of pyrophoric alloy
[C19: from New Latin pyrophorus, from Greek purophoros fire-bearing, from pur fire + pherein to bear]

I hope it sparks something in you!  (I couldn't resist.)  Please add a comment here to indicate if you are participating and I will post a link to your blog on Friday to share with others. 

Have Fun!

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Here are some sights along our route on the Noland Trail in Newport News on Saturday. It turned out to be quite an ambitious afternoon hike. Five miles total,  4.75 of which Toots wanted to be carried, as we set out at her naptime.  Because that's the way we roll.

Ducks.  They looked cold.  We saw a great blue heron, too, but he was too far for a good pic with my little zoom.

This is the first of officially 14 bridges we crossed.  There were many more little foot bridges, too, across dips in the path for watery days.  Toots counted all the bridges.

Captain Comic and Mr. Cynic were more focussed on the mile and half-mile markers, as they completely did not want to go on the Noland Trail that day, and had little to no knowledge of what it entailed ahead of time.  Heheheh.

A lovely jogger took a shot of us all together.  Very sweet of her to do.

There must be elves and fairies, etc. in this section of ivy covered forest.   At least that's what I drew a lot of when I was Mr. Cynic's age and was reading a LOT of sci-fi fantasy.

Sparkly!  It was a gorgeous, if slightly chill autumn day for a walk around and crisscrossing a big lake.

Rounding the bend ahead of me is the rest of the family.  I believe I was struggling with Lucy at this point, as well as trying to take a picture.  There were many dogs to meet along the path, and Captain Comic HAD to meet all of them. And Lucy had to read all their pee-mail.

We found a bit of a cove with some still and reflective water.  I love the blue.
 Another bridge, somewhere before the halfway mark. Exhausted Captain Comic, glaring Mr. Cynic. Lucy is still excited about the hike, but trepidatious about the bridges.
The Noland Trail runs through a system of parks around the Mariners' Museum.  This one is called Lion Park.  The big stone lions look over the James River and wear wreaths around their necks at this time of year.

Toots did not want Honey to put her down at all, not even to stand in this hole in the tree where she would have looked like a cute like elf.  By the way, that red corduroy coat was mine when I was little.  My mother saved everything.  This is one of the few items that is still wearable, 42 years later.

All in all, a lovely afternoon with some chill fingers and some gripey boys who had their fill before we found the 2.5 mile marker.  Honey and I really enjoyed it, even if our knees, hips and backs had enough long before 4.5 mile marker.  And Toots was a real trooper for a napless tot. Of course, Honey's arms were numb by the end.  He was a real trooper, too.  We all were, come to think of it!

Friday, November 26, 2010

weekword: lacuna

Carmen of Tails of a Biomouse chose a very interesting word this week for the Weekword Challenge.

la·cu·na   /ləˈkyunə/

[luh-kyoo-nuh] –noun, plural -nae  /-ni/ [-nee], -nas.

1. a gap or missing part, as in a manuscript, series, or logical argument; hiatus.
2. Anatomy. one of the numerous minute cavities in the substance of bone, supposed to contain nucleate cells.
3. Botany . an air space in the cellular tissue of plants.

The way Carmen talked about it earlier this week made me consider patterns that holes can create.  Probably because of the celluar references.

The photo is of a piece of saguaro cactus that Honey picked up in his travels in the Southwest many years before I knew him.  The shell I have had since I was a kid. I can't even recall if I picked it up on my family's travels to a various beaches along the east coast every summer of my childhood or if it was a gift, but I have always loved it.

Anyway, it made me think of holes in our lives that keep us from fullfilling our true potential, the things that hold us back, and what we can do to examine what our part in that is. 

So while we gathered for Thanksgiving with family, and cooked our butts off making pies, potatoes etc. for the past few days, this was my undercurrent process.  And it occurred to me that I have self-esteem issues that seem to crop up and prevent me from completing editing my original manuscript, for example.  My most obvious holding back, hole in my life.  If I just finish the edits, then I can move on to the next phase and seek agents and publication.

Without going into the whys of it all, I definitely feel the impetus to knit myself back together whole, and complete what I started.

Thanks, Carmen.

I am next week's weekword person, so come back on Monday to see what I come up with!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

list it tuesday: nothing fancy

I'm sure there's more and this isn't very original or stylized or particularly creative.  I'll keep considering what else I am grateful for because it's That Week.  You know, the one of Gratitude. The one where regardless of what else is going on in our lives to create mayhem, the week to pause, reflect and be thankful for your life, your ability to love in the face of it all and to count your blessings.

At least that's what I'm doing.  Have a good Thanksgiving, y'all.

Monday, November 22, 2010

shifting back into focus

Nano is obviously a bust for me, again, this year.

It's okay though, because I got the start of something that just needs a better catalyst.  I ruminate, I go elsewhere in my writing, and eventually it may return with the catalyst.  It's time to let go for the time being at least, if not for good.  I do still like my characters a lot.  If they don't live in this book, they may show up elsewhere.  I really like the main character's best friend, and the dynamic between them. 

So I return to the original manuscript -  the one I've been avoiding editing the last thirty pages of since well before Nano.  Sure, I have plenty going on in my life to 'distract from the writing' as we say, but the fact remains, I want to sell this book.  I believe in it.  My trouble is I need to believe in myself.

While it has taken me years to write it, I always believed in it, but now I am at the point where I just need to finish prepping it for the real world.  For those other people to read it - the professionals. This is where it gets tricky, because I really don't handle rejection well.  Rejection cuts like a knife.  And it has very little to do with writing.  This is something I've dealt with in pretty much all areas of life.

But I'm a smart girl.  I can reason it out and move forward.  I can do what I need to, and right now, that is edit.

Friday, November 19, 2010

for those about to rock: weekword

Maria of  Simply Cool Stuff is hosting Weekword this week and has selected ROCK for the prompt. 

So many ways to think about this.  I am an Earth sign, Capricorn.  I am a mountain goat who loves to collect rocks, mostly water worn.

My messy desk with stones that I collected from some waterway or another, Pemaquid Point in Maine, maybe York River Beach. Lava someone brought me from Iceland, and plenty of dust.  I keep the lava rocks on my desk to fuel the creative fire.  I keep the waterstones for my words to flow.

River rocks that Honey and I had as table decor for centerpieces on our wedding guest tables.  They now reside on my windowsill, with plenty of dust, and there is a vase of them on top of my bookshelf.

Funny this came up as the weekword.  Just last week, Honey said, "I don't get the rocks all over the house." 

I just reminded him the rocks and shells and driftwood were all over my place when we met.  He married me anyway, and therefore married them, too. 

I think rather than go into rocknroll, or rock the boat or foundation of life or musings on the earth, I'll just keep it simple this week.  I love rocks and that is all. 

Thursday, November 18, 2010

opera girl


I have at various points in my life been a fashionista.  Not a generally known fact and not one I am prepared to admit readily.

If it's brought up, I usually prefer to mention my past as a thrift store junkie peacepunk cross between Deadhead, punk, and vaguely Audrey Heburn styling moments. In my clubbing days I had an awesome green with gold brocade jacket that would have fit Prince. Literally and figuratively.  Oh, and there was that one antique black lace over red satin 50s type number that usually ended up being used at Halloween for a flamenco dancer...

Not so much these days.  But last night I went to the Opera.  My current wardrobe consists of worn out jeans and go to stretched out comfy t-shirts covered in stains of 15 years' worth of parenting.

And then I remembered I picked up one Calvin Klein black dress several months ago at Ross.  Serious rack dig moment.  I am not a good shopper.  I am very picky, it's tough to find anything that fits me, and I can always find fault with whatever I try on, so I walk out empty handed if I walk into a store at all.  Mirrors and I have a difficult relationship at best. Especially since I still, on some level, expect to see a 95lb stick staring back out at me.  But I have had three kids and a lot of life since those days. Women's bodies change.  I like the curves I have now, but they aren't always exactly where I think they should be. The good part is a lifetime of chipmunk cheeks has finally left town.

I put on make up, wow!  I got dressed, including textured tights and heels I couldn't walk in.  I had Mr. Cynic take the pic above for proof.  Hence, the shoes are cut out, but that's okay.  The necklace and earrings are by Kelly Warren of Happy Shack Designs.  Go to her blog, she has the best attitude.  Then go to her Etsy shops, because her jewelry is gorgeous and fun and her photos are as bright and layered as she is.  Go ahead, I'll wait. 

Good, now go start dropping holiday hints to spouses, etc.

And back to me.  Bottom line:  I cleaned up quite nicely, and besides the shoes, it felt good to spruce up for a change.  Every woman, mother, etc, needs to feel pretty now and then.  I suggest it  periodically even if you don't have an event to go to.  It just feels good.  Now remind me I said this a few months down the line when I have a sucky winterized attitude.


I had the opportunity to go see the Virgina Opera perform Mozart's Comedy Cosi Fan Tutti at Harrison Opera House in Norfolk, with Honey's young cousin because no one else in the family wanted to go!  I leapt on it.  Live Mozart?!  Are you kidding?!  Pick me!

It was also her 19th birthday, and it was sweet to spend with her and talk about how things are different now than when I was 19 (ie drinking age changes, etc).  She also just got her motorcycle license the same day!  So she was excited about that, too.  But the cutest was when we finally arrived at the opera house - after a comical circuitous route which involved counting stoplights a la The Count of Sesame Street fame - we found ourselves in the balcony elevator with obvious lifer opera fans and she threw out that this was her first opera.  The sweet elderly couple told her what fun this one was and that she would likely enjoy it a lot.  And she did! 

And so did I.  The sets were gorgeous and simple, although there was a funny malfunction of a venetian blind.  The voices were beautiful, as were the costumes which had another malfunction. 

Mozart's treatment of the rather silly libretto is stunningly gorgeous, and though what they were singing at times was rather bawdy, in Italian, it might as well have been singing to the divine.  Mozart couldn't write a bad note if he tried.  It would still be fun.

So, if you haven't ever tried it, I highly recommend going to an opera.  I hadn't been in years, and loved it even more than I remembered!  Life is about the experiences we share, and sometimes going out to a live performance takes us out of ourselves for a couple of hours, and reminds us to laugh and love in community. Because that's the best kind.  Art is good! 

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

some days are just like that

Many years ago, I used to doodle a lot - to cope, to meditate, to blow off steam, to sort my head, just 'cause.  Apparently I have started again.  I need better tools, though.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

list it tuesday

I really should have been nanoing instead.  last week I had practically no progress in my word count. Busy Busy Busy week. I am not made for nano in the way that I live and write, edit, write, edit, thinkthinkthink, need a Pooh spot, have Captain Comic and Toots and dog and cat and Mr. Cynic, and everyone and thing else to distract me which is also why it's good that I am attempting nanowrimo, just so when I CAN sit my butt in the chair and type and think and have quiet, and inspiration all at once.....I will actually write.

Still more than I am doing in my original manuscript edits....

btw, List it Tuesday is a prompt from Aimee at artsyville.  It's fun, please join!

Monday, November 15, 2010

blue beard

phot cred: honey
 Apparently, I am the mother of a pirate.

Friday, November 12, 2010

a few for fri. including weekword

Weekword: November

Carola Bartz chose this week's Weekword. For many more responses and where to go to see them, please click on her name.  I am trying to remember (i am terrible at it) to seek out the next week's prompter, and so far this will be my second week in a row participating.  I think I managed about that much at some point during the summer, too. Of course, I remembered this morning!  So here's some bright morning sun through my office window, and some Virginia tree color beyond.

I like the shadow lines extending from the window framing.  Well, I took a small moment to consider the beauty this had to offer, even if I didn't capture it so well.  I love the morning light of late autumn.  It seems rebellious. If the night must be long, the sun wakes up to take charge of the day. 



I haven't done much Nanowrimo, speaking of November. The week has been full.  Toots has had a very stuffy nose, I am still coughing, Captain Comic is starting the stuffy, funny enough, while we were at his wellness appointment yesterday....This weekend will not be giving rest to the weary, either.  Too many things going on. 

Asperger's Central

Speaking of Captain Comic, holy moley.  It's a good thing I love him so much and a good thing he is so funny.  Wednesday, I received a call from his guidance counselor in which she cheerfully requested that I come in right away.  When I asked what it was about she singsonged loudly, "Oh great, then I will see you shortly and we can talk about it then, Okay? Bye-bye!" click.

This was not going to be good.  My imagination ran wild on the ride over, but did not run to what occurred.

I walked in, and the first words out of her mouth were, "First, I have to bless you, because you obviously work very hard!"

Okay, I felt validated. This means, she gets it - and it must have been extreme, because whatever happens, Captain Comic does it in the extreme.

In the meeting, she explained to me that she had already discussed with him some examples of his announcement in his English class that I beat him.  She had notes to refer to.  Her favorite was the description of how I duct taped dynamite to him and lit the fuse.  There were others, for instance I tasered him, and he demonstrated to her how he spastically fell to the ground and shook with electric shock. 

She recapped that a lot of what he said was so funny, they were both laughing, but he really dug his heels in about the 'truth' of these cartoon episodes of abuse.  She assured me that she understood something else was going on that upset him, and he was trying to deal with it the best way he knows how, but that legally she had to address the allegations.  "Don't worry, I won't be calling Child Services." What a relief.

She met with him again after our meeting and explained about how you may think your mom is mean, but she's just setting boundaries to keep you safe. She used a Hoberman ball:

to demonstrate the idea that when he was a baby, I protected him by keeping him close to me and his area of freedom was this small - closed position on right.  Then she pulled it open all the way to show him, "when you are an adult, you will have this much freedom.  But right now, you are here." and she squished it back down to a halfway point.

It was a brilliant way to let him know that even if he didn't like the rules I set and enforce, that they were in place for a good reason.  Visual aid was a bonanza hit for his Asperger's Syndrome style of understanding.  She talked with him about how, when and where it is appropriate to express his frustration with me. And how, when and where it isn't and just how serious that is. 

I talked with him again when he came home.  He showed me how he understood what he did was wrong, and that he was sorry he lied about my beating him. 

Baby steps, people.  It takes baby steps.  He gave me a big hug, too.  But first he had to walk the dog before he was ready to apologize. 

Everyday, he is showing how he can make better choices now, and that he is still learning as he goes.  He's come such a long way in his twelve years.  It's tough much of the time, but he also makes everyone he comes in contact with laugh everyday, with him.  He has so much love and heart, that all the rest is forgivable and dealable.  I'm a lucky mom.  How many twelve year old boys still hug their moms with the affection and intensity of a three year old?  I believe I am in very exclusive company.  And it's very good company to keep.


Girl's night out

Speaking of good company to keep: a good friend, Ms. Bubbly who recently moved up to my old Boston, called as I was getting in the van to take Captain Comic to the pediatrician, to say she was half an hour out of town...here and she wanted to get together.  Our other good friend, Amilicious - we typically had girl's night out about every other week last summer - was due to head out of town for a retreat.  Anyway, Ms. Bubbly showed up at our chorUUs rehearsal to say hello, and then she and I were going to grab a drink, but we stopped by Amilicious & G-man's house to drop off a book, even if we couldn't see Amilicious.  Poor G-man,  he was stunned that his doorbell rang.  He had just dozed off with their three year old during bedtime cuddles. He invited us in, poured us a glass of wine, hugs all around. Then he announced Amilicious and her friend who had just flown in from NY were out stocking up on groceries for their retreat and should be home any second.  Woo-hoo!

Well, it turns out, when they walked in the door, that the NY friend and I hit it off beautifully, as she did with Ms. Bubbly, too.  And the wonderful thing I realized is we all headed straight into uproarious laughter while also discussing very real stuff going on in our lives, etc.  It was a true blessing to be in the company of these women and the G-man, too.  I pointed out that most people do not generally talk like this.  There was literally no small talk, and plenty of gabbing going around.  I must have called a Cinderella moment umpteen times, until finally, Ms. Bubbly called Cinderella time for consideration of the friends she was actually staying with.

I haven't had that much easy fun in a while.  It was hard to leave, even after G-man headed off to bed because he had to get up and go to work.

Life is good, wear a sweater.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

nano stats, again

So at one point yesterday, I clipped this little tidbit from my nano profile:

Today's Stats

Words Written Today 509
Words to Write until 1667 1158
Suggested Daily Word Count 1667
Cumulative Word Count 4101Total

Current Day 9
Suggested Cumulative Word Count 15000
Average Words per Day 456
At This Rate You Will Finish On Feb 18
Days Remaining 21
Words to Write Until 15000 10899
Total Words Remaining 45899
Words per Day to Finish on Time 2186
I could let the little mathematical factoids and the 'you have this far to go, and maybe you'll make your word count sometime next year', etc really discourage me very easily.  But this year I won't.
This year I find it quite comical.  It's a good thing, too. 
I am having fun writing this little book on a whim and a wing and a prayer, and I'm seeing some nice stuff come of it, but I just don't have the general thrust and motivation of it yet.  I want to.  I really really want to, but I just haven't yet.  But I am happy with the characters the general direction, etc...somehow I have to find the main character's real motivation to do what she's about to do and make it about more than just her annoying younger brother.  He really isn't as annoying as she makes him out to be.
I think her best friend is a good jumping point.  That's a smart cookie, and she's nice.  Her violin and art teachers have said some motivating and make her think things to her too.  I like them.  I really like the two girls' moms, too.  they are very different, but both pretty realistic and good mothers in their unique ways.
And I'm pretty pleased with approximately 500 words a day.  That's progress in my book....and in my mayhem....considering I still have about thirty pages of my original completed manuscript edits to go and I  am astutely avoiding those by writing Nano instead.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

list it tuesday

For those who don't know, this is a listmaker's artistic prompt.  Aimee of artsyville got me considering it as well as reminded me I had something perfect for it in the post I made after a hairpulling moment I had last night. So here is a repeat:

10 minutes before dinner

1 phone call from an old Massachusetts friend to discuss latest episode in a continuing saga
1 screaming toddler
2 fighting brothers
2 banishments to their rooms
1 barking dog
1 rescue of toddler from spazzing dog who wants to play
1 way to find out she was running around screaming because she needed to pee
1 result of peeing on my hip.
0 toilet paper left in the downstairs bathroom
1 spouse late coming home from work

Believe me, I only captured about half of the mayhem....maybe I should doodle it instead?  Nah...something will erupt if I try, i just know it!

Monday, November 8, 2010

10 minutes before dinner

1 phone call from an old Massachusetts friend to discuss latest episode in a continuing saga

1 screaming toddler

2 fighting brothers

2 banishments to their rooms

1 barking dog

1 rescue of toddler from spazzing dog who wants to play

1 way to find out she was running around screaming because she needed to pee

1 result of peeing on my hip.

0 toilet paper left in the downstairs bathroom

1 spouse late coming home from work

Now you know why this blog is titled the way it is.  As if it wasn't clear previously...

Calgon, take me away...

Sunday, November 7, 2010

my nano stats

At this rate you will finish on March 23rd

Kinda says it all, doesn't it?

I got busy. 

I got sick. 

Mr. Cynic took over the computer and I've rarely had a chance since.  I believe he was on for 10 -possibly more- solid hours yesterday.

At 10:30 last night:

Mom: Get off the computer!  You've been on all day!
Mr. Cynic:  But I need a thousand more words to make it to today's goal!

I've created a monster. 

Today I gave him the laptop and told him not to go online in his room.

Maybe I can thwart his progress a little by taking him out for a driving lesson. 

Oh wait, that'll thwart mine, too.

Does this make me a bad mother?

My ears are burning.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

see this kid?

Yea, this is his costume for the event he attended on Halloween while the rest of us were tricking and treating.  What's the costume you ask?  He's a punk rocker. 

Now, I went through a great deal of messing his hair about with loads of hairspray, etc. for more of a Sid Vicious sort of look, and loaded him with black eyeliner.  But he schmooshed it all back down and rubbed it off.

How is this different from his usual appearance you may be wondering?
That's a GUITAR on his back.  Not the usual bass.

Anyway, this punk kid decided to start Nanowrimo (click linkipoo in sidebar if you are curious) TODAY and has already bypassed my word count.

Love him.  Really I do. 

Tomorrow you will not hear from me because I will be hoarding the computer to myself -with only my Word Doc open - for the better part of the day in order to beat him.  Beat him at wordplay. Nano-nano!


Mr. Cynic has his learner's permit as of yesterday, after we moved into The Department of Motor Vehicle for the afternoon. 

Today, my writing group was held up in Williamsburg.  The drive up and back was reminiscent of New England, drizzily November rain and lots of drifting colorful leaves, roadside forests swathed by paintbrushes, in wooly sweater colors of gold, forest green, maroons and burnt sienna. Subtler, but still.  a nice taste of autumn along the roads.  I feel nostalgic.

We mostly critiqued today, and it was good.  I have really enjoyed the two manuscripts by others we're currently reading in sections.  I'm excited to read more of them. 

But I was itching to edit my manuscript or work on nanowrimo.  We never did settle down to write, but that's fine.  We enjoyed the company of fellow writers and talked conferences and politics.

I retrieved my car at another writer's house - we typically carpool - then as I drove by the high school, I saw this lonely skinny kid in a black hoodie, slouching through the rain...slowly it dawned on me that that was my spawn, Mr. Cynic, so i pulled over and drove him home in the rain. 

"Were you coming to pick me up after writing club, or did you just happen to be driving by?"

If only I were so focussed as to perfectly time my passing the school as his writing club was letting out, returning from my own.  That would be a feat.  I didn't even remember that his was meeting today.

So, not a fruitful writing day.  but eh, I'll do it later.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

nano nano - not so much

Every little bit helps, right?

I got about 50 more words in this am.  Not really sure where to go plotwise, then remembered today is a full one.   I need to write my critiques for two manuscripts before writing group meets tomorrow morning, grocery shop, and then some, and.......

I am taking Mr. Cynic to DMV for his Learner's Permit. 

Lordy, help us all.

Then I tutor, and pick up some giveaway items that are no longer useful to a friend, but will be useful to Toots.

and I have to prep Captain Comic for some district testing.  He just loves that.  *eye roll*

So Nanowrimo is a bit of a bust today.  but I am doing what I can. I added 50 words, which is more than nothing, right?

Addendum: slowly my word count is creeping up, as i am startingto have ideas now that i say i'm going to focus on something else...

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

nanowrimo day 2

I wrote 800 words yesterday.  Then I spent an inordinate amount of time trying to update my nano page until I realized the website was crashed.

Today is Election day. The kids, all three, have the day off from school.  Maybe at naptime, I can write with minimal *cough* interruption.

Highly doubtful unless Captain Comic finds the leash and walks the dog for more than five minutes.

Last night Mr. Cynic decided to do nanowrimo, too.  but he's not signing up for it, just doing it on his own.

I foresee computer time fights between us.

The one thing of many I see actually accomplishing today is I will vote.  Then I may go to the mall...

Monday, November 1, 2010

weekword: abundance, reaper madness, and crazy


Christine E-E is hosting this week's Weekword, and while I've been out for a while, I am back in for this week.  So many ways to go with Abundance, but I went here:


Little witch is barely bigger
than orange pumpkin bucket
she carries.
Halfway around neighborhood,
still enthused, still yells
Trick or Treeeeeat!
She grips it tightly
trying to walk,
begins to look more
like a drunken sailor
listing to one side,
falling over.
She only hands it over
when she can no longer
lift the candy hoard.

Second:  I made these:

We had fun trick or treating.  Captain Comic is already wistful, dreaming costume options for next year when he can't trick or treat anymore. Toots was hilarious, refused to let herself wear out, and loved going door to door.  Mostly, they both loved meeting everyone's dogs.

Third: Nanowrimo starts today.  I am supposed to write 1,667 words.  I will add a box to my sidebar later for my word count to progress thoughout the month. 

Fourth:  I need to write up critiques of the two writing group manuscripts I am holding.  I am excited about both of my friends' books.  these are good.  We will see them on the children's market.  I did make a few nitpicky notes, though.  Heck, I do that for books that are published. 

Fifth:  My manuscript, you ask? .........