Today is the National Day on Writing–an initiative supported by NCTE and the National Writing Project. Because writing is such a powerful experience, I thought I’d share some of its side effects.

The Side Effects of Writing

Less Knitting:  I don’t get as much knitting done but my lap is open for my kitten.

Stashing Mechanical Pencils: I’ve become picky about writing implements – soft lead mechanical pencils with big erasers are my favorite.  I tend to buy them whenever I see them.

Recycle bin Next to Chair:  Along this vein is my preference for 6″x8″ spiral notebooks.  I like lines and being able to tear out all the drafts I don’t want to look at any more.

Well Fed Birds and Fat Squirrels:  When I’m in the mood to write, I keep the bird feeders well stocked because they are in my line of sight and I like to watch these creatures while I’m thinking.

Possible Over Exposure: Sharing my writing is a commitment to being vulnerable.  I have to be willing to accept the consequences of feeling like I’m walking around in my underwear. Other art forms like painting, music, and dance seem to allow for ambiguous interpretation.  But words can go straight to the heart of an experience and bare one’s soul.

Questions from Family: Sometimes family members read my writing and wonder about the thoughts going on in my head.

A Wider World View:  The consequences of writing – especially on a blog – are amazing; people appreciate voice given to human experience and they reach out to me.

These are just a few of the side effects. If you are a writer, I’m sure you have plenty to add to this list!








Weekly Photo Challenge: #whyiwrite — Thinking Through My Lens

I’m passing this post on from a blog I follow – hope my writing friends will take part….

Next week, on October 20th, we have the opportunity to celebrate the beauty and power of writing through the National Day on Writing–an initiative supported by NCTE and the National Writing Project. For me, writing and photography have much in common. They are ways to compose my understanding of the world. Sometimes it is all […]

via Weekly Photo Challenge: #whyiwrite — Thinking Through My Lens

one weekend

It rained hard yesterday.  I think it was the wettest day we’ve had so far this fall.  After coffee and a stretch, I was feeling cooped up.  I put on my favorite jeans, best waterproof coat and a hat and went out into it.  Down the block to Home Depot, (I love walking in smelling all that new wood.)  On the way down the block I was wishing I’d brought my camera with me so I headed back home and grabbed it.  Back out into the wet again and snapped some shots.

Today it was a perfect fall day. Cooler and those dark gray clouds but no rain, so Mike and I went for a walk in Whatcom Falls Park.

(It is more fun to sift through photos than listen to the debate playing in the background….)


Lost Boys

imageLast year the stories of my preschool class often revolved around one particular boy – I called him my Pirate – because he and I were often on a gang plank together, holding safe space for each other in that precipice between the ship, (our classroom) and a vast ocean, (the world out there.)

This year, my pirate’s little brother is in my class.  In fact, I have a lot of little brothers in my class and the Wendy in me is realizing this ship is occupied by Lost Boys this year; boys who need a captain, a Peter or a Wendy, but mostly, a mom.  One thing they don’t need is Never Never Land.

Of course I sometimes wish there was a Crocodile loose on this ship, might help me tame the natives.  It is enough to have his ticking clock constantly at my side. I have about 500 hours to be with these Boys and help them learn to stay in their prams. Going for a walk in a pram is way better than getting lost and finding yourself in a place with no future.

did you know…

Did you know that October is apparently spina bifida awareness month? Did you know that the chances of bearing a child with spina bifida is about 1 in 1500, or 1 in 25 if you already have a child/family member with the condition? Did you know that around 64% of spina bifida pregnancies end in […]

via October awareness — Harriett Hendry

what is in my hold


I put in my hands
what my hands can hold
and then grip tight
and hold with might.

I put in my mind
what my mind can hold
and let my sleep
tend to the deep.

But I put in my heart
more than it can hold
knowing time and grace
will create more space.





yeah, like that…

bike-sweater-picI wore my bike sweater today. It is the only purchase I’ve ever made after clicking an ad on my screen and I ordered it only because it was cheap and I figured if I didn’t like it or it didn’t fit I would just give it away.

But it fits and it’s pretty cute and every time I wear it, someone says something.  Today it was the kindergarten teacher who stopped me in the hall and said, “I love bikes!  I ride my big balloon tire bike up and down the street and all the neighbor kids come out to see me.”

I told her I love to bike too – but don’t do it much anymore – but I told about the poem I wrote and offered to send it to her.  She told me not to be surprised if she puts it on her wall.  Well that would be a real complement.  I shared it on my blog a long time ago as part of my entry titled “wing bumps” but here it is again:

I never want to forget
the joy and triumph
I felt as a child
to be a girl in the world
pedaling beyond the lip of my driveway
feeling independent and free
to explore
the side streets of life