Monday, October 26, 2015

To Whom It May Concern

Dear NaNoWriMo,
November is almost here and so are you. National Novel Writing Month. Writing a novel in one month. I attempted you last year, but after the first half of the month my energy and motivation dwindled to zero and I completely abandoned you. Time to redeem myself this year.

Of course I worry about adding one more plate to the lineup of plates I already have spinning. I’m a single mom with 2 kids, a full-time job, a boyfriend I want to spend time with, a need to exercise daily, a passion for the guitar that requires practice, and all the other unexpected life surprises that pop up, like flat tires and lingering sinus infections.

But I can’t sit here and make excuses for failing before I even start trying. It all boils down to creating time where I thought time didn’t exist, asking for help and accepting that some things just won’t get done. Restricting my social media check-ins throughout the day, taking my boyfriend up on his offers to cook and being okay with a messier than usual house will all create pockets of time for me to write. My schedule might need a little rearranging, but the time is there and waiting for me to use it wisely.

Plus, I’m kind of cheating. The novel I’m working on this year was already started last year, and I’ve noodled with it here and there since then. So technically I have a 3-chapter head start, which feels like a much smoother jump off than a completely blank page.

So please be kind to me, NaNoWriMo. You are both my muse and my nemesis. You gave me the gift of the beginning of my novel, but you also slapped me with the bitterness of failure. Let’s be friends this year.

See you in 6 days,
A Writer Hoping to Call Herself a Novelist

Dear Sinus Infection,
Please. Go. Away. And. Never. Come. Back. You are killing my productivity, and I have no time for you. (See above.)

My Eye Sockets

Dear Residents of My Apartment Complex,
You know that movie “Good Luck Chuck,” where Dane Cook becomes a relationship good luck charm because every time he breaks up with a woman she then meets the love of her life? Well, it seems I am the Good Luck Chuck of real estate. Over the weekend I helped with the move of my fourth friend to leave my apartment complex after finding a cool house. I will miss my across-the-hall neighbor and girls’ night out wine gal pal, and Gunner will miss his canine play dates.

So if you’re in search of your dream home just start hanging out with me, and I’ll be helping you move out in no time!

Good Luck Heather

Dear Halloween,
I’ve never claimed you as my favorite holiday, and I’m not one of those adults who goes crazy decorating my house or dressing up in anything more elaborate than a witch’s hat with black hair attached to it. But as I watch my kids grow up in the blink of eye, I realize that your special magic that I get to experience through the eyes of my children won’t last must longer. 

My 11-year-old son may be dressing up for you this year, but he refused to participate in the pumpkin carving, I practically have to chase him and hold him down to snap a picture of him, and worst of all, he had no desire to join in the annual viewing of “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.” It’s only a matter of time until he announces he’d rather stay home while I take his little sister out trick-or-treating.

Thankfully I have several more years of entertainment with my 8-year-old daughter. And she never fails to entertain. The same girl who wanted to change her name to Cannonball in preschool decided she wanted nothing to do with princesses or anything else that might be construed as remotely girly. Nope, this year Cannonball is dressing up as Captain America.

Happy Halloween!

Halloweeney Sweeney

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Middle School 2.0: 7 Tween Anxieties that Don't Age

Last month my son started middle school. I thought I'd be hyperventilating the first day he ventured out into the world of tweens, but I was surprisingly calm.  It wasn't until I went through a mock school day at the back-to-school night last week that everything I hated and feared about middle school the first time around came back to haunt me the second time around.

Check out my list of those fears in my latest over at the Huffington Post:

Middle School 2.0: 7 Tween Anxieties that Don't Age

Sunday, August 16, 2015

How a Divorce Bucket List Helped Me Move On

Do you have a bucket list of things you've always wanted to do?  Most of us do. Well, after my divorce, I got tired of talking about my bucket list and started checking things off. 

Head over to my latest at the Huffington Post and read about my bucket list.

How a Divorce Bucket List Helped Me Move On

(Yes, that's me skydiving. It was fabulous.)

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