Monday, January 30, 2012

Creating New Ideas: Brainstorming.

I spent this weekend with my 11-year-old twins, Abby and Josh (Friday and Saturday at least). My husband and younger son, Daniel were away camping.
The kids didn’t have school on Friday, so we went to Disneyland for the whole day, a perk of living in Southern California! We then spent all Saturday relaxing-believe me-we needed it! Abby’s basketball game was cancelled so we actually had the whole day to hang out. We had no plans. They called a couple of friends, who were busy, so it was just the three of us. We did some homework (aawh, Mom) and went to some stores, one of them Toy-R-Us, and then went out to dinner. It actually felt a little strange not having our usual hundreds of things to do.
At dinner we talked a lot, especially Abby and I, because Josh was completely engrossed in a book (Artemis Fowl: The Eternity Code by Eoin Colfer-he tells me the series is awesome. Guess what books I’m reading next!).
We talked about my new story idea and we began to brainstorm-
I love to brainstorm. 
Abby started to remember more details of one of my bedtime stories. That’s where this new book idea was first born about six months ago. Then the ball started rolling and the ideas started flowing, what fun!
New ideas, new plans, so exciting to create with my kids!
Josh actually put his book down and got involved in the brainstorming. We thought up with some intricate and fantastic ideas. A trilogy was discovered. We uncovered new plots and problems. It was incredible.
So, now I sit and write, armed with the napkin full of ideas in Abby’s beautifully neat printing, with enriched energy to write, and the knowledge that my kids love what I am doing.
My “Mom pride” is overflowing and I know in my heart that my writing is not only helping me follow my dreams and create; it’s also showing the kids, and their friends, that no matter how hard, you must work, carry on, and even fail at first, in order to fulfill a goal.
I hope it’s also allowing their individual creativity to be nurtured and grow.

It is better to have enough ideas for some of them to be wrong, than to be always right by having no ideas at all. 
Edward de Bono

Happy Monday! Have a wonderful week.
Enjoy creating, brainstorming, and being with the people you love,


Saturday, January 21, 2012

African Fireside Chats

I went to Africa BK- Before Kids.
I shared this incredible experience with my friends, Darren and Ruby, and of course, my husband David.
First, David and I went to Zimbabwe, where we saw the beautiful Victoria Falls, as well as our first watering hole with actual African animals; zebras, elephants, and some giraffes. We were amazed.
We left Zimbabwe and flew to Botswana on a puddle jumper little airplane, landing on a dirt runway in the middle of the African bush. Well, I can talk about our African trip for hours and bore anyone with thousands of pictures, but today’s blog isn’t about the animals, the delicious food, or the permanent tents with bathrooms and showers in them.
This blog isn’t even about the hot water bottles left for us at night to warm our bed, or the coffee, tea, or hot chocolate brought to us in the morning . . .
What an unbelievable trip. (aah, reflection)

This blog is about our fireside chats.
Every night, after our evening photo safari and sundowner, (snacks with wine) and dinner, we sat around the fire with the nightly changing, interesting, eclectic people at the different campsites. One of us, usually Darren, came up with fun things to talk about. One night we decided to tell these people we had different random jobs. Ruby was a horse jockey, Darren was her trainer, David was an owner of a minor league baseball team, and I, of course, was a foot model. Makes sense, right? Why not?
But that also isn’t what this blog is about-so many fun tangents-Finally, here is what this blog is about . . .

One night, we came up with an interesting question.
What kind of person are you?

An anticipator.
Liver in the Present.
A reflector.

An anticipator is a person who loves to plan an event; excited for the adventure, thinking of all the different ways that they are going to love what is about to happen. The planner.
Liver in the present is a person that lives for the moment. They love being present and taking in everything that moment has to offer.
A Reflector is the person that loves to look back, re-living the moments and feeling the emotions of what had happened in the past.
Me? I’m a combination of two. I enjoy living in the present and reflecting on the past. The anticipation stresses me out, plus I'm sometimes a procrastinator, so the planning doesn’t always get done early enough.
I love the present. Sometimes I take a breath, look around, and really feel what is going on around me.
I also love to think back at a special time. Memories are so strong; happy, sad, sweet, or whatever the actual event made me feel. I hold on tightly to those memories.

So, what kind of person are you?
Are you an anticipator, liver of the present, or a reflector?
I’d love to hear from you.

Have a wonderful day and enjoy your planning, living and reflecting,

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Beginning of the Good

I actually had the most unbelievable news today.
After more than a month of constant worrying about my dad, I get to report that after his biopsy on Monday . . . Drum roll . . .
He does not have cancer!!
How can that be?
Why did the PET Scan light up like a Christmas tree?
What were those strange lymph nodes???
My family has been so worried. My mom has been a crying mess.
I have been so upset that I was having such a hard time trying to be creative enough to write.
And here we are, no cancer.
So, I decided that this is officially the beginning of the good.
Life is good.
Everyday is a beautiful gift.
I am so happy.
(I need to have a huge cry and get out all of these mixed-up emotions. 
I still am afraid to believe it fully. I feel tentative.)
Should I wait for the next shoe to drop?
My answer this time is a loud and passionate N-O!!

So, here I sit, in front of my computer and happy to be writing. 
I often think how one moment can change the rest of a person’s life.
One chance meeting.
One wrong word.
One doctors visit.
One kind gesture.
That’s all it takes.

Lately, I have noticed how crazy and inconsiderate people are acting. Not many drivers seem to care about pedestrians, stop signs, or even common courtesy. I make an extra effort to do things like slow down in parking lots, take turns, open the door for people, and give an extra smile or two. When I do those things, something very special happens. That person smiles back. The pedestrian thanks me. The person I opened the door for then later helps an elderly with a heavy bag.

I guess with the great news I just received, I am feeling sentimental. But I do believe that niceness is infectious. (But then again, so is meanness.)
I got news for you- niceness is better.

The beginning of the good.
I feel such relief. I can’t wait for the good to continue.

Have a Good and Nice-filled day,