wishes / dreams

Does being almost mid-40s make you automatically think about the road less traveled? I read a writing prompt on Twitter today to choose a career you’ve always wanted and write about a character who’s actually working in that field. Well, it’s late, and I didn’t sleep last night, and as long as I have the computer on, the LilyBelle won’t go to sleep, and I’ll be in here forever….so, I’m just going to write about my dream jobs…

I’m not sure it’s a secret that teaching wasn’t my first career choice. Well, let me think…in high school, I was accepted to UNC-Greensboro in the Teaching Fellows program. I wanted to work with kids who had behavior-emotional problems (I knew I could fix them, you see!). Life happened, and I didn’t go — Oh, stupidity…why do you affect the young so?? Anyway, working with kids seemed to be the best fit for me, so I ended up studying psychology; flirted with chucking it my junior year and getting a teaching degree, but that would require an additional year of school, and at the time, I wasn’t willing to do that.

So…here are some dream jobs I’ve had since I was little — in sort of chronological order as I recall them:

Steph’s 13 Dream Jobs

1) astronaut — life dream since 3rd grade at least. I used to love looking at the sky and wondering about the clouds and what was above them and what space travel was like…and, you get to pee your pants and no one says ANYTHING!!! But about sixth or seventh grade, I figured out that math was involved, and, well, math and me…we’ve never gotten along.

2) lawyer — this may have been like a middle school ideal. I like to argue, but not listen, so I figured out quickly that I would suck at lawyering. (Umm…this could have been because I was way into a tv show at the time called the “Paper Chase” — wasn’t that about law students at Harvard? But I also wanted to right the wrongs of the world (probably for selfish childhood reasons).

3) CIA agent — I still haven’t given this one up. It was definitely high school when this idea came to me. I was into reading about the government and gathering intelligence and being undercover. I seriously want to be Kinsey Bly on NCIS Las Angeles! She is so freaking tough!

4) travel writer/photographer — because every day would be an adventure. I especially wanted to travel to Italy and Greece and follow Odysseus’s trail — I loved mythology.

5) radio announcer — because I was in love with the son of a local radio station owner, and he’d call to flirt with me and put me on the air and make me do stupid voices and then he’d show up unexpectedly at my high school job to do “remote” broadcasts…I figured if I wasn’t shy on the radio, he’d overlook our seven year age difference. Apparently, he was more worried about how it would look for a 23 y/o dude to be “dating” a 16 y/o girl than I was! haha…

6) cemetery historian — I came up with this one a few years ago in a graduate English class when the professor had this as a creepy outside hobby. I haven’t given it up, but I think she’d get pissed if I stole her idea. But it’s sooooo me!!!

7) archeologist — well, this one sort of combines with an underwater treasure hunter because I’d love to be able follow clues and unlock mysteries of different ancient cultures. Or go diving and find some cool undiscovered pirate ship. This one has been a dream job since I was probably twelvish, but got worse when I lived in Vegas and attended a training on The Jason Project. I learned about the age of the mountains out west and that if the earth plates had moved like a quarter inch, Vegas would have been a rainforest rather than a desert. Cool, huh?

8) Greyhound bus researcher — I just found this one out….I saw an interview with a dude a few months back who had literally ridden the bus cross-country several times, interviewed fellow passengers to find out their stories, wrote them down, published it, and now he’s a gazillionaire. Why can’t I think of something stupid like that??

9) Heiress — I just want to learn that my long lost great-grandmama, who had been searching for me since the tragic death of my real parents, had finally found me. The shock was so great that she keeled over dead with a heart attack, but not before leaving me her gazillions and English title of Duchess!! (I’m not giving this one up either; it could happen!)

10) traveling fair/circus performer — Have you read Water for Elephants??? If so, you’d understand; if not, get thee to a bookstore immediately!

11) independent bookstore owner — I tried to get the Kevman to start a bookstore/coffee shop for me a few years back, but he’s not brave enough. He likes that I have a steady paycheck. “YOU’RE HOLDING ME BACK, SUCKA!”

12) Senate aide — I know government jobs probably aren’t very popular, but I’ve always thought that Washington would be a glamourous place to work. And the way the Representatives and Senators are, there could be “perks” — haha….(geez, I’m glad no one’s going to read this post tonight!! haha)

13) investigative reporter — Can I bring down the bad guy? I think this goes back to my wanting to be a CIA agent…I need a world of good guys and bad guys. Who am I supposed to believe? Who’s lying? And, most importantly, WHY???

I like collecting dream jobs…you never know when you might get the opportunity to do something different, so you have to be ready. But now that I’m finished with my list, I think I might really want to write about a character with one of these jobs….I can wonder what it would be like to live that life rather than the one I have. Wonder if I’d miss this one??

What dream jobs do you have?

p.s….I left off Krispy Kreme employee…but that’s probably for the best!

p.s.s Thought, if you’re still reading, you’d like to hear the poem my post reminds me of…



I’m stuck at home for another summer. The economy stinks, Jake’s tuition has depleted any “extra” money we may have, and we’re still reeling from saving the dog’s life last year. Added to this, I’m going to start another year with no raise at work, but increased insurance rates and no other money for supplies. I am more than a little miffed when I think of this.

To make matters worse I happen upon this girl’s website who claims to be a “Bookaholic” (I really should have TM-ed that term a long time ago! haha)…she’s a teacher (of course) who “reads” and “travels” and has 750 people “following” her….Then, I read on Twitter about all these really cool teacher workshops that people are going to that I can’t attend. At first, I just kept getting mad and let my jealousy bug get the best of me. Then, I decided to make a video

Here it is:

13 Places I’d Love to See (some, again)….



3 — Savannah

4 — hiking in perfection

5 — RVing to: Colorado

6 — Big Sur

7 — Mount Rushmore

8 —  Grand Canyon

9 — Plane to: Key West

10 —  Belize

11 –Venice, Italy

12 –Rome, Italy

13 –Charleston

I hope you enjoyed my movie…I feel much better now!


Warning: Do NOT read this if you don’t have like an hour!!

Okay,well, I’m sitting around watching The Office on DVR, crying about it being Michael’s last show (and I can’t seriously figure out whether I’m going to like Will Ferrell’s role, yet….), and I’m in a totally rotten mood….so why not make a new life plan??? Seems as good a time as any, right? Who knows….maybe I’ll write myself into a better mood. (Okay, probably totally not!)

There are two major things I need to do with my life this year (umm….sure, I know it’s freaking May, and I should have probably made this public in January. Try not judge).

So, here’s my major plan: I gotta               & I gotta     (this one means the “E” word, btw..). I figured if I used pics rather than words, it might psych my brain out a little bit.

Why am I trying to change my life at this point? I mean…why change at “only” a “young” “29”? First reason: Meg Cabot just had a book published titled Abandon — a brilliant retelling of the Persephone myth (the Greek myth about why the seasons change). Here’s the trailer for the book (I’m almost half finished reading!)…..

The reason this is an issue is my book that I haven’t finished is practically like that— not the Persephone myth, per se, but still sort of like that (has to do with evil and past lives and all that). And she wrote it, and I didn’t. I didn’t because I keep expecting a brilliant story/novel to just pop out of my head, a living, breathing, ready-to-be-published best-seller. A couple of problems with that: (1) writing doesn’t really happen like that; (2) it really won’t happen like that IF I DON’T WRITE!!!!

The other problem is there’s no reason for me to not be my best physically. It’s not okay anymore for  me to pretend that “it’s okay” and nothing bad will happen if I don’t take control of my body. I want to enjoy life, not keep being all hunched over and cringe when I see myself in store windows and videos. I want to take pictures with my family and not have the first thought go through my mind be: Damn…I’m so freaking fat! Is that too much to ask?

Anyway, if anyone reads this crappy blog, I hope that you don’t get too lost with my schizophrenic sort of postings. I have a couple of ideas for my change and figured if I make them public (even though no one reads this) that I would think that I have something held over my head–a reason to really do something different.

The plan so far for this….. is to follow Sparkpeople’s Spring Into Summer Bootcamp and Walk Away the Pound’s May walk schedule.

The plan so far for this…. is to work with the book, Discovering the Writer Within by Barry Lane — a book that has forty daily exercises to get your creative writing juices flowing (okay, it can also help with non-fiction writing, too, I suppose).

So…wish me luck. I start tomorrow, May 1st (Good luck, Steph.  Why thank you, Steph!!) I’ll update the “E” word and use the blog to practice the “W” word. The theme for National Blog Posting Month is “Maybe” — so…maybe I’ll stick to this.

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined. – Henry David Thoreau

Yes….I think I will.

I found this poem in my email this morning…”A Book Said Dream and I Do”  by Barbara Ras……When I read it, I knew that the poet was speaking directly to me. Opening the door to show me why I love reading. And, sadly, raising the window of why I can’t seem to write fiction of my own…..(Don’t cry for me, Argentina!!!)

Here’s the poem:

A Book Said Dream and I Do

  by Barbara Ras

There were feathers and the light that passed through feathers.

There were birds that made the feathers and the sun that made the light.

The feathers of the birds made the air soft, softer

than the quiet in a cocoon waiting for wings,

stiller than the stare of a hooded falcon.

But no falcons in this green made by the passage of parents.

No, not parents, parrots flying through slow sleep

casting green rays to light the long dream.

If skin, dew would have drenched it, but dust

hung in space like the stoppage of

time itself, which, after dancing with parrots,

had said, Thank you. I’ll rest now.

It’s not too late to say the parrot light was thick

enough to part with a hand, and the feathers softening

the path, fallen after so much touching of cheeks,

were red, hibiscus red split by veins of flight

now at the end of flying.

Despite the halt of time, the feathers trusted red

and believed indolence would fill the long dream,

until the book shut and time began again to hurt.

Good grief, there are so many other things I need to be doing…like the laundry, or vegging out with the Law & Order: Criminal Intent marathon, or sweeping/mopping & getting rid of the clutter that is my house (this actually might be important since the Kevman’s parents are on the way in a few days), or lesson plans for the week…See, there’s so many OTHER things I need to be doing rather than taking the time to write today.

I finished a YA lit book, The Tension of Opposites by Kristina McBride….It’s a book that I know most of my girls will like. A book about friendship, love, and choices. The main character, Tessa, lost her best friend, Noelle, two years ago to a kidnapping. Tessa has succeeded in cutting herself off from the world, too, in homage to her friend; however, she has also succeeded in becoming a great photographer–maybe because she lives in the past so much? Don’t pictures capture moments we want to hold on to? Anyway, Tessa meets the new boy at school, Max. who starts to help her wake up from her self-imposed exile. And just when Tessa starts believing she can have her own world again, Noelle miraculously finds her way back home. And, well…the rest of the book is about how the two girls make their way back to each other.

It was a good read that took me too long, most likely because so many other books have called me out. Books like Tension, though, are the books I need to be writing. I think I’ve made it okay to NOT write because I’m reading the sci-fi/dystopia/fantasy genres–books I like to read, but don’t feel a calling to write on my own. Tension, however, is a different story. While I read it, I kept marking places where I see the author’s deliberate movement toward tension, back-story, and  background noise (I’m not sure how else to describe it when those background noises we deal with every day are brought out into the open). These are specific techniques I need to remember while I’m revising my NaNoWriMo story. The one I’m attached to, yet don’t feel capable of finishing. A psyhologist from Psychology Today tells me that my procrastination is an outgrowth of perfectionism (Break a Perfectionism). Is it really, or just another way for me to pretend that there’s not a story in my head that other people would like to read? Maybe a little of both.

At the moment, though, I’m hoping I can use some of the alone time I have today to care enough about my own writing to actually do a little of it. Send positive thoughts my way! 😉

I’m laying beside the LilyBell tonight, listening to her snore (stuffy nose), wishing for more TIME! I think that I never really notice the time change in the spring until a week or so after the change–and today, it has hit me! What happened to my hour, and what could I do with it if I had it back?? Hmm…let’s ponder:

13 Things I Could Do With an Extra Hour

* Finish reading The Forest of Hands & Teeth (sorry to have kept your book hostage, Lindsey!).

* Taken a long bubble bath– with a glass of wine, surrounded by candles –rather than a quick shower while the dogs were outside.

* Checked the last batch of  my students’ reading logs.

* Written my lesson plans for the week (Okay, well, maybe I’d at least written down what I’m going to do on Monday!)

* Sat around another hour wishing the Jakester loved me & missed me enough to text/call/respond to my texts.

* Read LilyBell one more book.

* Read and commented on all my students’ blog posts– I think most of them blogged all weekend long! I’ve gotten emails all weekend from the blog program! Yea!!

* Watched the tivo-ed episode of American Idol to see who was voted off (Kevo already spoiled it, but he knew I wouldn’t take time to watch it!)

* Gone to Staples to get: glue sticks, a tape dispenser, and sentence strips.

* Exercised (Okay, probably not…but I probably would have watched a P-90X infomercial and wished I had “time” to exercise like that! Ha!)

* Washed and ironed my clothes for the week.

* Made out with the Kev-man (then used the other 45 minutes to nap…hahahahahahahahahahahaahaha….)

* Written a better post! haha…

P.S. Here is the web address for the Dali picture above (Modern Time Myth)

P.S.S…This is probably one of my favorite songs of all time…It usually makes me cry…

Today’s a Poetry Friday poem…Tomorrow night, the moon is suppose to be closer to the earth, so it’s going to be HUGE!! (Here’s the CNN story: Weekend Full Moon). I love the moon–I love noticing it in different phases and learning different names for full moons. I’m pretty sure that I’ve passed this not-obsession of the moon to Jakeypoo and Lilybell. They both go through periods where they call my attention to the sky if I haven’t said something to them first (Okay, well, Jakeypoo hasn’t said anything about the moon in a while. Aren’t all 18 year-olds too “cool” to notice things with their mommy??).  Anyway, I remember that even as a little girl, I was always amazed that the moon “followed” me no matter where in the world I was. And tonight, I’m four hours away from home, with the suckiest Internet service in the world, making a wish on the moon outside my window…It makes me nostalgic and sad and hopeful. Here’s what it looks like tonight (I can’t wait until tomorrow night!!!)

And, I found the most amazing poem by one of my favorite poets….Just what I needed: another story idea for a novel I probably won’t write (but because I thought about it, SOMEONE will write it–at least that’s the way my friend Somer and I think of it!! haha..). Enjoy the poem:

who knows if the moon’s…

e.e.  cummings

who knows if the moon’s
a balloon,coming out of a keen city
in the sky–filled with pretty people?
(and if you and i should

get into it,if they
should take me and take you into their balloon,
why then
we’d go up higher with all the pretty people

than houses and steeples and clouds:
go sailing
away and away sailing into a keen
city which nobody’s ever visited,where

Spring)and everyone’s
in love and flowers pick themselves

Next Page »