Music Makes My Elliptical Go Around

I have a love/hate relationship with my elliptical.  It wasn’t even that I’d paid a king’s ransom to purchase one.  My sister and her boyfriend carted it about 200 miles in the back of their SUV — FREE!

I was so excited at first… Then I realized I preferred walking outside to being inside on a machine, but I live in the frosty North which translates into “I either workout indoors or I get fatter over the winter.”  My dilemma was simple.  I’m a wimp and it was too easy to get off the elliptical when I got tired. When I’m walking I can be four miles from home, and I don’t have a choice but walk back.

I’d made great strides in my training over the summer and I didn’t want to regress.  I paced back and forth by the dusty gift contemplating whether I could succeed where I was unsuccessful for (Wait for it!) years.  Yes, it isn’t a typo.  YEARS!!

I’d tried several times over the years but after I exercised on the elliptical ten to fifteen minutes I’d stop stating that it was too hard.  Which is a crock of expletive.  I was in the Army.  I was a brown belt in Tae Kwon Do.  True, that was years ago, but I’d done the tough stuff.  I would walk for two to three hours in the heat until I was so tired I could barely put one foot in front of the other.

I wasn’t going to let a big, old, gray instrument of torture get the best of me.  I armed myself with my water bottle and my secret weapon — a music playlist.  I also prepared to go all drill instructor on myself if I tried to wimp out again.  My goal was to remain on the thing for thirty minutes.  Double my longest time.  I hit play on my phone put the earbuds in and preceded to conquer the gray devil.

I listen to many artists and different genres.  It’s music that makes me move, helps me to write and relax.  Here’s a sample of a few songs I listened to this morning.  I’m also happy to say I tamed that gray beast and I exercise for over 60 minutes at a time.  And yes, I did have to go all drill instructor on myself that first time.  It was ugly…

One Million Project’s Short Story Anthology is Available for Pre-Order!!

This project is near and dear to my heart.  My short story — Not Mama’s Little Girl — is in the Fiction anthology in case you want to check it out!

I am so proud to be associated with such a generous and talented group of individuals.  I’m pre-ordering my copies now at a special price on Amazon.com.  Follow the links in the blog to get your copies, too.

Over a year ago, UK author Jason Greenfield decided to enlist his writer friends to join him in a literary effort to raise money for charity through the publication of a collection of short stories. Over the months since that initial internet message to his fellow writers, a thirty-member cadre of writers from a variety […]

via Short Stories for Charity from Around the Globe — One Million Project — theonemillionproject

Cold Days and Sneezy Nights!

I like winter.  I know, I know, a lot of people hate winter, the sub-zero weather, and snow etc. accompanying the season, but I enjoy many aspects of the season. Wood burning in the fireplace, hot cocoa, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and frost covered trees are all reasons I love this time of year.  Except for one thing–it tends to be the cold and flu season, too.

I’m a nurse who isn’t a stranger to nursing sick individuals back to health.  I’m also a big, ol’ whiny baby when I’m not feeling well.  I hate wearing hats even on the worst days and last week I headed out the door on a fairly nice day for this time of year without hat or scarf and proceeded to go on a long walk.  Five plus miles later, I returned home feeling energized, but by bedtime, I was starting to feel cranky.

Sneezy, stuff;y, scratchy throat and all the other joyful symptoms of a cold descended during the night.  I croaked out my good mornings, took a boatload of analgesics and searched for cold medicine.  Nope.  None to be found.  I could have walked to the grocers but I remembered suddenly that I’m a whiny ol’ baby and I was SICK!!  Instead, I sent a text to my hubby and put in my order for orange juice, nighttime “coughing, sneezing prevention so you can rest” medicine and something quick for supper.

My man provided.  Thank God!  Now, three days later and I’m on the road to recovery.  I’m ready to go out and shovel the walks without a hat and scarf or snowshoe (if only it would snow a little bit more…)  Yeah, I know.  I’m crazy, but I guess that’s why I love winter!

Natalie Parker’s Views on Loving — excerpt from Not Mama’s Little Girl, Anymore!

The following excerpt is from one of my WIP (Works in Progress) — Not Mama’s Little Girl, Anymore! The main character, Natalie, is describing how she approaches love.


The easiest way to describe my point of view about love is that I’m the human version of a Labrador Retriever. I love to eat, play hard, and have a need to get down and dirty in the mud. When I love someone, I live for the time when I’ll see them again, when I’ll hear their voice, and when I can cuddle up beside them–or better yet—sit on their lap. My big soulful eyes reflect your pain or sparkle with your happiness. My heart belongs to only one.

I’m different than the French poodle type of gal. She primps and postures for the masses looking for her next trophy. She’s all curly hair and pink bows but her facade is only window dressing and a bit of mud will destroy the illusion.

(This is not a put-down of poodles of any kind or the French. I love them both, but an analogy of how different women can be from their counterparts.)

Falling in Love, Again!

I head upstairs for a rendezvous.  The rapid pitter-patter of my heart mixed with the excitement of something new withIMG_6223 promises of a wonderful future together.  It’s love!  I have only to reach out and grab it. My hands tremble as I caress the strong frame before me.  So capable and so able-bodied, oh my! I know my prayers have been answered.

Oh, wait!  I just read what I wrote and I don’t want you to get the wrong idea.  LOL!  I’m not talking about a man.  Heavens, no!  I’m talking about my new commercial grade floor machine.  It cleans, scrubs, buffs, waxes, and polishes all manner of flooring surfaces and I have spent a sweaty afternoon with this beast.

D4619DD6-F8EF-4254-BD28-41510A607589I’m an odd woman.  I’ve been known to fall in love with appliances, power tools, and kitchen faucets. My friends couldn’t believe I wanted a sander or a Dremel.  My husband drew a line when I asked for an axe.  I’m not sure why.

Anyway, I’m happiest when I’m busy and IMG_6222working up a sweat in the house or the yard.  So once again, I’m in love with this perfect piece of machinery.  Sigh…

How One Man’s Cause Became Global

How did the One Million Project come about?  Learn more about the brain child of UK author Jason Greenfield and his motivations for initiating what has become a world-wide cause for almost two hundred writers, artists, musicians and media persons across the globe.

OMP author Seb Jenkins’ article

The Joy of Text — One Million Project blog by John Nedwill

There is something so comforting about putting a pen to paper and allowing the words to spill out onto the page.  I’m reminded of a scene in the movie, Becoming Jane, about Jane Austen.  In one scene, Jane is feverishly writing and scratching out her latest literary creation with ink-stained fingers.  You could feel her passion for her work flowing from her fingertips onto the page.

John Nedwill writes in his blog about his process of writing. Hope you enjoy!

via Blog Posts

How to Get Over a Broken Heart

The title of this blog is misleading in the sense that everyone deals with heartbreak in different ways.  In my blog post yesterday, I wrote about my protagonist, Clare Thibodeaux’s efforts to move on with her life after dealing with the anguish caused by her husband’s absence.  She used training for the Birkebeiner cross-country ski race to focus her energies and emotions.

I used work in the past to distract me, but retired from nursing now, I deal with my emotional distress by exercising and cleaning the house.  Unfortunately, when I feel overwhelmed by something in my life, I also suffer from writer’s block.  Not helpful when you are writing a book.

People will tell you, “Time heals all ills,” and I believe with time the pain of heartbreak is muted, but it doesn’t disappear.  The heartbreak and the way you deal with it are a part of who you become in the aftermath.  Some people will be wary of romance while others will throw themselves into relationship after relationship in an attempt to forget.

It is important to not let someone else’s choice define you.  Negativity about yourself will only bring issues into any future relationships.  It can result in self-destructive behaviors — substance abuse, overeating and other actions which only increase self-deprecation and depression.

I find if I can focus on the goals I have for my life and re-invest myself in the efforts to achieve them, I begin to take control of my future.  Don’t let heartbreak define who you are or who you will become.  Yes, it is a piece of your overall psyche, but it’s only a small part of the whole.

Find yourself, love yourself, allow yourself to grieve, and then, move on to the adventure that is your life.

Stories that thrill with a kiss and chill with the promise of danger

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