Wednesday, December 31, 2008

First Submission

I have to share. I actually, really, actually, submitted poetry for publication for the first time since eleventh grade. And eleventh grade was quite awhile back, folks, so rusty doesn't even begin to describe the way I felt about all this yesterday as I got started.

I hemmed, I hawed. I decided against it. I talked myself into it. I put it off until the last, last, possible moment. I harassed friends and family on extremely short notice for opinions and editing advice. I literally forced myself to do this.

Why? I asked myself this as I groaned through my seventh revision in twenty-four hours. As I stared at the computer screen, toggling between fonts, I tried a tactic my mother taught me. I muttered "What's the worst possible thing that could happen if I hit the send button?" My husband replied "We could all blow up." Hmmm. Well, that brought me back down to earth.

I may have shared this before, but there is a solid steel block on my desk that my mom sent me a few years back which has this engraved into it:

What would you attempt if you knew you could not fail?

This makes me pause on a regular basis and think about whether or not I have the courage to do something that feels hard. Today, I decided that even possibly not failing, was a good enough reason to try. How will my children learn courage if they never see me try hard at something that scares the living wits out of me?

I'm not expecting to win this contest, but I am expecting it to be the first submission of many. After all my hysteria (and if you know me you know I love a good dose of hysteria in my projects), right now I just feel happy. And relieved. And accomplished. You know those writing goals I started out with after the retreat in October? I am actually making progress! How cool is that?

Thursday, December 25, 2008


We arrived home from our delicious and delightful trip to Connecticut at about 5:30 this morning. It was an amazing and magical adventure (even if Continental airlines has made a permanent enemy out of me) and I can't imagine not going back east much sooner than the six years we waited this time! It will take me awhile to sort it all out and share it, but it really, really was wonderful and the time we spent with my sister-in-law and her husband was priceless.

We're holding off for the big Christmas "moment" until after nap time--partially since my husband is still asleep--but as he'll be home for the next week, we have lots planned, such as:

+Cookie, truffle, and rice krispie treat making, gingerbread village making (thanks Allie)
+Getting into the rhythm of snow-cocoa-snow-cocoa (the outdoor time will come in short spurts since all our snow clothes are currently vacationing in some top secret Continental airlines location)
+Sending the rest of the Christmas cards (once the luggage with them in it arrives)
+Hors D'oeuvres and sparkling cider galore (standard fare here from Christmas to New Years)
+Writing time for me since my husband is home to adore the children--will I submit poetry by the end of the year or won't I . . .

Anyway, you get the picture. It's a happy picture for me! And don't worry, photos (and details of the enmity between me and Continental) will be forthcoming :) Wishing you all a lovely day today and hoping you a fab week of festivities as we celebrate the mountain of December and January holidays!