30 Words Thursday

As I was outside on this lovely day, I of course had to check out our gardens. The flowers have been so spectacular this year. So colourful and lovely.

They called for a poem and so I wrote this for 30 Words Thursday – the fun word/photo challenge at Treasures Found.


Splashes of colour

Dotting the gardens

From reds to pinks

Yellows to purples

Fuschsia for Mom


Coneflower for mother-in-law


Stargazer lily for me


 Hibiscus as well


Summer’s glory

Bring joy!

Slice of Life Tuesday



Today at “Two Writing Teachers”, it is time to share your slice of life.


I have been retired from teaching for a year now. And, I am still trying to establish routines – for writing, and for creating art 

I have accomplished a fair bit this year – from volunteering with “Strong Start”, tutoring 4 months, writing 4 picture books and working on several novels, taking several art classes and working on art challenges, as well as taking 3 writing courses.

But, it is the day to day routines that I have yet to adhere to consistently.  I have great intentions. I make my lists and have several ongoing projects and a great desire to write – but …..

The best advice from established writers is of course, to write and write daily. I do write, but not regularly.

My problem lately is that I cannot turn it off at night and have trouble falling asleep. It is usually after midnight, even 1 or 2 before I am tired enough to fall asleep. Then in the mornings, when I arise to see my hubby off to work at 7, I have been returning to bed for a few more hours of rest. Then the day has started off kilter.

Today it was 11 before I finally got up.I awoke with a headache and knew I needed more sleep – just not that much! Now I am playing catch up.

The usual distractions play in as well – visiting blogs, twitter, reading. Once my hubby returns from work at 5, I do less work as well.

I must first get my sleep cycle sorted out. It was much better when I was tutoring as my day started at 7 and I only had so many hours for me.

Well, holidays are over. September has always been the start of a new year for me and even though I am not teaching, it still seems like a new, clean slate. I have a number of projects to work on, both writing and art. I need to plan my days so that I am more productive. But also need to insert some fun as well. 

Row 80 – Sunday Check-In


This past week I was able to work on a number of goals:

*finished 2 chapters on “Fired” romance novel

*wrote article for Chicken Soup for the Soup Christmas edition

*worked on lessons for pacing to Wow course

*completed a number of posts

*read number of picture books and MG novels, as well as writing articles

 *wrote several days although still not consistently every day

This week’s goals:

*Continue to read more picture books, especially non-fiction ones.

*Work on my “Pacing to Wow” course – final week. Must catch up and work on using pacing tools to enhance at least one of my stories.

*spend longer blocks of time writing!

*edit article I wrote last week for “Chicken Soup for the Soul Christmas” and send in

*continue to write at least 2 chapters this week on my romance novel “Fired” – working on having it ready for SYTYCW Harlequin contest


30 Words Thursday – Bus Ride


Today I spent a couple of hours on our local buses (not like the one above) to visit my daughter. Having grown up in Toronto, i am used to taking public transportation and I look at the time on the bus as a time to read,. Today, I actually wrote another chapter for my romance novel. Bonus! And I had a lovely visit with my daughter – declicious lunch and a walk about as well.

I took the time to write for 30 Words Thursday – inspired by the sounds especially that I heard.


Bus Ride

Two hours total

$3 and a transfer needed

Bumping, Stopping

Young, old

Couples, friends, singles

On, off


Most with phones




Assault the senses

Today I write

Slice of Life Tuesday



Every Tuesday, “Two Writing Teachers” host the fun writing challenge “Slice of Life”.

I haven’t participated for a week as we were away on holiday. I had our ipad but I purposely did not do any blogging. A rest from technology was necessary. I was finding I was spending too much time online – I was becoming a twitter addict! Tweeting about politics was addictive. So a week away was needed.

Now that I am back, I am trying really hard to limit my time at the computer. I am also trying to get more physical activity throughout the day. I also needed to spend more time writing. Before we left,  my writing and art routines were terrible. I felt as if my creativity had gone on vacation! Getting away has helped. My hubby and I walked a lot; I took lots of photos and we just had fun together. We both needed that.

Now I am ready to get back on track, get back to writing, blogging, and creating art. I plan to work on my writing courses and read more as well. There are lots of over things I have on my to-do list and I want to accomplish more – around the house and getting together with friends. 

This is the second September I will not be getting a classroom ready and I do miss it. But September is also a new start for me – and has been all my life. I feel recharged and have lots of story ideas and a novel to work on! Looking forward to being productive in the weeks and months ahead.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

Mon Reading Button PB to YA



Holidays offer a wonderful chance to read,  and read I did over the past few weeks – from picture books to MG, YA and adult books. 

Here are a few of my favourites:

Squirrel’s New Year’s Resolution: and “Substitute Groundhog” – by Pat Miller













Pat was at the retreat I attended and I loved her workshop as well as her writing. Both stories are well written and fun. Great additions to a classroom as well for special holidays. I wish I had had them when I was teaching!


An Egg is Quiet” by Dianna Aston



Dianna was at the retreat as well and her words and writing sparkled. loved this book.


The Quiet Book” and “The Loud Book” – Deborah Underwood

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What fun books – simple concept but so well done.


The Tiger Rising” by Kate DiCamillo


This was a quick, but engrossing read. I was drawn into the story and the lives of Rob and Sistine. Enjoyed it  – so poignant – like all of Kate’s books I’ve read. 


Four” – Veronica Roth


I enjoyed the Divergent series, so wanted to read more about Four. Kept my interest.


Check here for other great books, at Teach Mentor Texts, that fun meme hosted by Jen.


Sunday ROW80 Check-in




My 2 weeks of holidays are finished and I am slowly returning to my regular routines. I thoroughly enjoyed our trip to the Lake George area (see here for some photos).

I did not do much writing although I did bring (and read) some of the articles for the two courses I am working on right now.

I brought my writer’s notebook and as ideas and thoughts came to me over the 2 weeks, I jotted them down. Tomorrow I will return to a dedicated time to write. I have a number of new contests/projects to work on, so that will keep me busy. I also have my “pacing to Wow” writing course to catch up on. So it will be a busy week.

I submitted my horse NF pix book script to three agents before I went away but have heard nothing yet. The great waiting game!

Wishing everyone all the best in their writing this week.