The Path We All Follow

When life tells you to take a walk, do it.

The other day I took a long walk on a trail that I wasn’t familiar with and learned some things along the way.

The path I was taking by myself reminded me of the path we all take when we journey towards our dreams.

Sometimes the road ahead is clear and straight.

Other times, you don’t know what’s around the next bend.

You have to keep walking and see where a trail leads even though you are tired and don’t know what’s around the corner.

Even though you’re nervous and don’t know what’s coming, you still have to keep moving.
You never know what you will find. You may find exactly what your are looking for.

You never know until you take the leap and try.

Sometimes along the path you will find bumps

 

Other times you will find beauty.

  

Then there may be a few bridges you are afraid to walk over because you’re afraid of heights and the dangers that lie below.

 

But do it anyway. You will feel better once you get to the other side and look back at that bridge and realize it was easier to traverse than you thought.


You may even find unexpected friends along the way.

It’s about the path more than the destination.

The path is where you grow and where you learn about yourself and what you can really do and what you truly want from your life.

The destination is not the prize, it’s the journey that got you there.

Never give up on yourself. Your are your most prized possession.

Caroline

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Bad days…We all have them. It doesn’t have to last all day long. 

 

Here are some things you can try:

1. Figure out a way to find the humor in the situation

I know it’s not going to be easy, but do it anyway. I once had a day that went like this and I survived it by making myself laugh at the it.  I even wrote a post about it.

Hey, it made for a great story I could retell. If you can’t laugh at the absurd, then what’s the point?

When all else fails, get online and read blogs like this and this.

Some days being silly and ridiculous is just what the doctor ordered.

 

2. Make an, “At Least I’m Not” list

When a bad day is upon you, this is the perfect time to make a mental list of places and situations you are happy you’re not in.

For example, you may say, “at least I’m not in a Turkish prison” (unless your bad day is the result of being in a Turkish prison), or “at least I’m not marooned on a deserted island and a wild boar is eyeing me suspiciously right now.”

Keep adding to this list. You’ll soon feel better!

(actually, the deserted beach doesn’t look so bad–ignore the boat and the fact that this is actually a photo of Hawaii)

3) Make a “Things I’m Thankful For” list

I know Oprah told you to do this, but so am I.

Do this in your head. Chances are if you’re having a bad day, you can’t find your pen.

I sometimes wake up in a terrible mood and my only saving grace is making a list of everything I’m thankful for. By the time I’ve made it to the train station, I’m a different person with a much better outlook.

Remember, nothing is too small to put on this list. Start from the bigger things and work your way down to the small stuff. You’ll be amazed at how well this will turn your mood around.

Your perception will change and you’ll draw positive things to you. Our bad moods often trigger bad days.

Change your mood.

 

Life is a bowl of chocolate covered cherries!

Be Happy!!!–at least you’re not being chased through the woods by a bear and your only method of escape is jumping into a lake filled with piranhas ….

Did you have a bad day today? What happened?

Caroline :)

 

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The Opportunist

1) You meet for one drink. The bartender puts the bill in front of your date and he slides it over to you. The bill is really small. He tells you he only has 20 bucks and doesn’t want to spend it. Congratulations! In one swift move you have gone from first date to potential meal ticket. Be sure that if you don’t run like hell now, that date #2 and so on you will be paying as well. If you still for whatever reason want a date #2, just rename yourself ATM and make it easier for him. Woman, you‘re better off alone spending your cash on yourself. Move on.

 

The Video Rental Incident

2) The guy from #1 walks you to your car (you would’ve fled on your own but it’s not a safe time of night and you have to pick your battles) and he asks you to stop with him at Blockbuster video. (it still existed in this scenario)He picks out a movie that he wants to watch alone (not with you) the next day. You walk over to the counter and he asks you to pay for it. You are officially sugar mama. Punch him in the face and run. Better to take your chances alone with the wierdos on the street than spend another minute with this guy.

 

The Green Card Seeker

3) A friend sets you up on a blind date and tells you that “for some odd reason many girls think he is just looking for a wife so he can stay in the country.”  You go on the date and in the first ½ hour of meeting you he is already asking you, “So how long do you need to know someone before you get married?”

You stare at him in shock and begrudgingly tell him you need at least a year. (because who can really answer that question?) He gets upset and says that’s too long. He’s on a deadline baby. Go slap your “friend” the next time you see her. She needs to wake up.

 

The Guy Who Thinks This is the Year 1842

4) Within 38 seconds of meeting you, he is already talking about marrying you and how you will tell your grandchildren you met on a blind date. He thinks he’s being charming but it’s making you want to run away screaming with your hands flailing. In what universe is this considered okay? Sure, if it was the 1800’s when people got engaged after knowing each other for a brief time–I get it. But now people live longer and can take our time and choose the right person. This is not a Jane Austen novel.

 

Tardy to the Party

5) He shows up one hour late picking you up. Honestly that’s like showing up late to a job interview. If you can’t be on time for that interview then what are you going to be like if you start working there? Interviews and first dates are the same. Make no mistake about it–you pretend you are a great person at both.

 

The Classic Mama’s Boy

6) He tells you that he is currently looking to get married because his mother and his grandmother have told him that he should. Run like hell my friend. You got yourself a man who can’t think for himself and lets his Mommy and Meemaw do all of his thinking for him. Run!!! You can’t compete with Meemaw! She will come to your house, move your knick knacks around, pick out his pyjamas, cook his meals and sleep in between the two of you. Your personal hell will be watching him rub ointment on her bunions every day.

 

The Dream Crusher

7) You tell this new guy about your hopes and dreams and he tells you that your dreams won’t happen because you don’t know anything since you are a girl and too young to understand. (you are both the same age) Dear God, imagine what it would be to live with this fool. I shudder…I shudder.

 

Too Many Cooks in the Kitchen

8 ) You quickly realize on the first date that not only are you on a date with him but also on a date with: His parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, extended relatives, next door neighbor, mailman, accountant and goldfish. They aren’t there literally, but you already feel their influence in your life.

His family is incredibly domineering and just by sharing a meal with him, they are already taking over your life too. They own you now. It’s worse than the mafia. One date with him and his family is planning your nuptials and telling you where you will live and how to cut your hair. Leave before it’s too late.

 

The Brother From Another Mother

9) They try to hold your hand and you realize you feel absolutely no chemistry. It feels like holding your brother’s hand–if you had a brother that is. Poor guy, do him a favor and let this be your last date. Even if he’s “good on paper”, remember you can’t force chemistry. You won’t suddenly be attracted to him on the 2nd date. The first impression is always the most accurate. Let him find someone else who feels a sizzle when he’s near.

 

The Granny Defense

10) They tell you up front that it bothers them that you are so much older than they are. (There is a 9 month age difference and suddenly you are Meemaw looking for your teeth and filling up your Depends underpants while waiting for Matlock to come on) Go rinse out your dentures and use your walker to get out of there.

 

Jealous Magellous

11) They tell you that they don’t like the fact that you make more money than they do. They of course assume you do. They don’t know what you actually make. Honestly it doesn’t matter what your tax returns say. This guy is insecure and doesn’t like himself.

No matter what you do, it will make them feel inadequate. If you walk and chew gum at the same time, you will intimidate them with your multitasking abilities. They have a, “So what? You think you’re better than me?” mentality. You can’t win.

I Wish You Were a Group Of People Instead

12) You are at dinner with him and you see a group of girls having a girls night out and wish you were hanging out with them instead. You start feeling nostalgic and missing your buddies and it brings a tear to your eye–even though you just saw them yesterday. If you really liked the guy, you wouldn’t be thinking about your friends. They would be the last thing on your mind.

 

 

Date Envy

13) You are at dinner and suddenly have “date envy” where you wish you could be on the date two tables to your left instead of with the jerk you are with. No, you can’t go over there. Sit down, eat your food then go home.

 

This Pain Is Nothing Compared to You

14) Your date is so insulting and annoying that you realize your fists have been unconsciously balled up in anger under the table and now your nails have actually put little semi-circle cuts in your palms.

You now need a band-aid. You need several band-aids. Miraculously, the pain in your palms is still a welcome joy compared to the pain of sitting across from Mr. Wonderful.

 

The Bathroom Escape

15) You go to the bathroom, not because you need to, but just to get a break from the guy. You see the bathroom attendant and want to bare your soul to them about how bad your date is going and even inquire if there is a window in the bathroom that you could shimmy out of and start to bargain with yourself that the drop from the window won’t be that bad. You tell yourself you can handle a three story fall if you can angle your dive to land on that cushy awning below.

This is not the movies. Don’t jump. It will end badly.

 

The Good Old Controlling SOB

16) You meet for brunch and after 3 hours of hanging out you tell him you have to go because you promised your sister you would spend time with your niece and nephews. He gets angry that the date is ending and tells you that you are “ruining things by leaving”.

You calmly explain that you haven’ t seen them in weeks. (not that you owe him an explanation) He tells you that you haven’t seen him in 2 months!! (2 months ago you met him for the first time at a bar and this is your first date.) This is a potential stalker. Run my friend. Cut your hair, dye it, weave it, extension it. Do whatever you have to do to look different. And keep running. Then run some more. How dare you ruin things?! He was perfection!!!

 

The Fantasy

17) You are in the middle of the date and you begin fantasizing about all of the other places you would rather be at that moment. The list is long and it includes, getting a root canal, visiting your gynecologist, taking an organic chemistry exam, listening to a dental materials lecture about the properties of alginate and what makes it thixotropic from that professor who hated you and was always so smug, being on a date with that professor who hated you and you hated him and was always so smug, going shopping with an indecisive person who wants to try on 38 pairs of khaki pants that all look the same to you, sitting in a crowded subway car with no A/C and 100 degree temp with a strangers armpit shoved in your face and a roving hand grabbing your behind, watching the movie The English Patient over and over again until you want to stab yourself with blunt object, going to 5 different baby showers in one day and playing that God forsaken baby food game at each one until your tummy is filled with creamed spinach and custard to the point of nausea, going to a night club on disco night, going to a lecture where a person in a monotone voice mumbles the entire P volume of an encyclopedia….

 

The “Did It Fall When You Fell From Heaven?”Guy

18) When the guy feeds you a bunch of really terrible lines and is incredibly cheesy the entire night. He points out the night sky and dramatically declares to you, “Look at it! Just look at the moon, the stars, and you. Such beauty!!” You hold in your laughter and ask him if he does this with every girl and he answers, “No! No! No!…..Not all the time.” Sigh…

 

The Frat Boy and That House..Dear God, That House

19) Your date calls you to ask you to pick him up instead of meeting him at the restaurant. This is his way of telling you he doesn’t have a car. You show up at his house and you discover he is a 28 year old guy still living like a frat boy. You walk through the front door and you find the house full of people who like to “stop by” all the time. One guy is writing music on a keyboard just ‘workin on his music’ remincent of Ross Gellar from friends, one guy is cooking food on all four burners like there’s no tomorrow, two women are making out on the couch and trying to take each other’s clothes off in front of everyone, another couple is just sitting on another couch not saying a word and staring at you and then there‘s the odd guy who was fixing his skateboard in the living room and not paying any attention to the two lesbians on the couch directly next to him. The place is an absolute mess. You can barely see the carpet. Your date leaves you in the middle of this scene alone while he “finishes getting ready.” The word, “awkward” was created for this exact moment in time. The only people that will have a good night in this scenario are the two girls on that couch. No one else.

 

The Language Issue

20) You run into his friends while out at a bar. Your first date forgets that you speak his native foreign language (even though he knows you are from the same country) and in front of you tells them what a great piece of ass you are in that native language. You casually thank him in that language and watch all of their faces fall. Go home girl. Go home and watch grass grow and paint dry or something. You will have more fun.

 

The Clean Hands Defense

21) You leave your date at the bar to use the ladies room. You use the large stall that has the sink inside the stall. As you use the sink, you marvel at the convenience. You walk out of the stall and head towards the door to the outrage of two disgusted girls who think you are leaving without washing your hands. You sigh and think to yourself you don’t need to explain anything to them and it doesn’t matter since you will never see them again.

You find your date and a few minutes later the same two girls approach you. It turns out one is your date’s brand new ex-girlfriend who still harbors feelings for him and anger towards you and the other one is her best friend. This is their favorite hang out. Your date knew this. They stare you down with looks that could kill–especially that best friend. Worse than that, they think you don’t wash your hands. You should scare them by trying to touch them.

 

“I Mean Really, Who Throws a Shoe?”–Austen Powers

22) He tells you he wants to go for hiking on a trail on your first date and when you show up in sneakers, he criticizes you for not wearing high heels. No I’m serious, he really expected you to wear heels. His rationale is that you had on heels the night he met you, he liked you in heels and that’s how he wants to keep things.

My love, you wore the perfect footwear for this occasion. Now you can use your sneakers to flee the scene and still get a great workout in the process. Multitasking!! To quote the cashier at DSW Shoe Warehouse when I asked him if the heels I was buying were too high and pointy, “Think of it this way. If any man bothers you, one click with your heel in the groin and he’s down for the count.” Best advice I ever got in a shoe store. (not that I’ve ever done that of course)

 

He Thinks it’s 1952

23) He wants to take a drive to a second location and you are standing in front of your car. It’s a 15 minute walk to his car. You offer to drive and he literally gets upset because he refuses to let a woman drive him. He insists it’s morally wrong and his father would never let his mother drive. You begrudgingly let him drive and discover he is literally the worst driver you’ve encountered.

A drunk person who was trying to do his taxes while driving would have more control over the car than he does. My advice, wait for a red light, jump out of the car and flee.

 

  • None of this happened to me of course. These are just potential things I want to warn you about. Thank God none of these specific scenarios ever happened to me!! Yup…not me..not me..My dating history has always been perfect. Just spotless!! All of this happened to..um..a friend of mine…

 

Oh all right!!

 

  • I hope my list helps you on your journey in some small way. Think of it this way, every bad date makes for a great story later on. Your friends will love your stories. They will ask you to regale them yet again about what happened that time with the Blockbuster video guy. “I’m having a bad day. Tell me again about that guy who made you buy him that video that wasn’t even meant for you to watch!”

 

  • It makes people feel good. Much like watching reality TV or Jerry Springer to make you feel better about your life. You watch a minute of it and you think to yourself, “My life is awesome!”

 

  • For the record, my life is awesome too. It’s just peppered with a few of these stories that I will keep in my heart for a good laugh when I need it. Yes, I can laugh about it now.

 

  • A friend of mine years ago once asked me why there are so many bad dates. My answer was so we can appreciate the good ones when they come along that much more! ;)

And yes, there are good ones out there…

Caroline

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  • Ever had a day where you just wanted some quiet and got anything but? You start off your day with good intentions but then everything goes wrong?

 

  • Today I was off and designated this to be a writing day. Since I became a writer I have learned that no one. Literally no one respects the writing day–not even the writer. I often try to sabotage my own writing day with trips to the mall and inane phone calls. But not today. Not…..Today…..

 

  • I told a few people that this is a, “don’t bother Caroline unless your house is on fire or aliens have crash landed into our town and you want to warn me to put on a helmet or something” kind of day.

 

  • This did little to stop the barrage of texts, calls and “can you call this patient back even though we can technically take care of it for you?” phone calls this morning.

 

  • So I bravely put my phone away this morning and pretended it didn’t exist. In my world, that’s as insane as announcing that I’m going to chuck it all and finally become that ventriloquist I was meant to be.

 

  • My phone is like my child. I generally like to keep it near. I miss it when it’s far away. It needs me.

 

  • When people regale me of stories of how they “left their phone at home” or just “forgot to carry it.” I stare at them in shock and horror as if they just told me they locked their kid in a hot car and went for ice cream alone.

 

  • I decided to take a deep breath and calm myself. I went to the couches on the outside patio of my apartment building. There I found an impossible magical oasis where there were umbrellas and 12 couches completely devoid of humans and only the occasional singing of the birds to keep me company.

 

  • I rubbed my eyes and stared at it for a moment. Could this be real? I walked over and touched one of the couches. Nope, not a mirage. I really had the place to myself.

 

  • Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I don’t like people. I do. I work with people all day long. For some reason I’m a people person. I don’t know how it happened. It wasn’t part of the plan. Even babies love me. They giggle and coo when they see me. One time a stranger’s baby tried to jump into my arms. My patients love me. They actually think I’m sweet and a great listener–and they want to come back and see me again and again. I don’t know how that happened either.

However….

  • When I want to have a writing day, I’m someone else entirely. I become “the other me.“ I don’t like human contact of any kind when I want to write. I’m a different creature. Anything another person does, whether it’s talking, standing, sitting, chewing gum or even just existing in this dimension is a major distraction and completely annoying. Many writers will tell you the same thing.

 

  • Writers like to hide from the world while writing. Then when they have written enough for that day, they rub their eyes blinded by the sunlight, and emerge into the world and want to rejoin society again. Once again they are friendly, cordial and want to be around others. The urge to stab someone with their pen for distracting them is gone. Not that we would ever do that of course. But we may fantasize about it a little.

 

  • Back to the couches…I paused and marveled at how beautiful this umbrella laden comfortable couch scene was. It was a perfect weather kind of day. It was a writing day and the prospect of no interruptions and actual real life peace and quiet made me want to call people just to tell them what a miraculous place I found. But then calls would defeat the purpose. Besides, who would want to be on the other end of that call?

Me: “I found a couch with no people!!!”

Them: “Umm that’s great Caroline…(awkward pause and silence) Yeah, I’m going to go now.”

 

I’d be sure to hear from them again…

  • For about 5 wonderful minutes, I enjoyed the peace and was able to hear myself again without the barrage of noise and distractions that permeate my mind every minute of every day. I began writing.

 

  • My heaven did not last long.

 

  • Today was the day the building wanted the grounds mowed, edged, gardened and leaf blown–even though there were no leaves. I don’t know what they were leaf blowing. I think they were there just to blow my thoughts and last shred of sanity away so I couldn’t write.

 

  • Soon the man on the mower began happily driving it and passing me going the left, then right, then left, then right, then left, then right, then in front of me, then behind me, then in front of me…you get my drift. (and by “drift” I mean, “aghhhhhhhh!!“) As he slowly and patiently made his tracks in the grass, I tried not to let it distract me. I really tried.

 

  • Then I pretended the mowing was just the sound of kittens meowing or the sound of the ocean. That didn’t work.

 

  • I even began praying to God to make him stop. You know you’re at the end of your rope when you begin praying to a higher power to make a mower stop working.

 

  • As soon as I prayed, the mowing stopped. I thanked God. Then the mowing started again 10 seconds later. God has a great sense of humor. He did get him to stop, I just didn’t specify for how long.

 

  • Soon I began fantasizing about the mower malfunctioning, I even envisioned myself slashing its tires. Not that I would actually do that of course. But a girl can dream. (Who have I become?!!)

 

  • Then the mowing symphony was accompanied by those electric edgers, edging the near walls and creating an awful sound that would make ponies cry.

 

  • Then the mower got even closer as if he was mocking me. I began to think crazy thoughts that perhaps the mower was doing this to me on purpose. He somehow knew it was a writing day.

 

  • Let’s forget the fact that I’m allergic to freshly cut grass. I tried to ignore that fact as the allergen particles filled the air and landed all over my face, hair and body. I continued to avoid the fact as water filled my eyes and my nose began to itch. I ignored it so hard that the allergy symptoms actually went away. Mind over matter works people! Except not when you want to ignore noise.

 

  • Suddenly, I heard a loud banging. When I say “loud”, I mean it was earsplitting. It sounded like someone was dropping a large boulder plucked from a mountain right on top of a car–repeatedly and 2 feet away from me. The ground was actually shaking. I felt my soul disconnect momentarily from my body and then change its mind and return again.

 

  • I don’t know where it was coming from. Perhaps from behind the trees there was construction. Perhaps it was just the sound of my own sanity meeting its final breaking point.

 

  • Finally the banging stopped. Then soon after, the mowing stopped. It really stopped. The edgers stopped too.

I breathed a sigh of relief. I thanked the heavens.

Then the leaf blowers began…..

  • The side eye look I gave the leaf blower man who WALKED RIGHT UP TO ME WITH THE BLOWER ON (ok he was just doing his job) made him back away from me slowly. There weren’t any leaves anyway. I think I scared him. I wonder what it’s like to be at the other end of my stare? Too frightening a concept. When someone is disturbing my peace, I think I own a stare that would make a rabid angry dog run and hide. I shiver at the thought.

 

  • Then a lady sat down at one of the couches far away from me and began speaking in what I think was Russian. She was far, but I could still hear her. I don’t know what she said, but I can tell it was gossip– and gossip is an international language. I could tell she was imitating another woman and making fun of that woman‘s laughter.

I somehow managed to keep writing.

 

  • Then a spider fell from above and landed in my hair. It began moving quickly through my strands looking for prime real estate. I brushed it off and kept writing.

 

  • A minute later, a bug landed on my hand, I tried to swat it away but it was too fat and slow and I ended up just murdering it right there on the back of my hand. It left a trail of blood on my hand.

 

  • I left the blood there as a gentle reminder of our mortality and kept writing.

 

  • Then a man came outside and began smoking again. This was his second cigarette in an hour. He had a cough. I said aloud to myself, “if he quits, maybe he will stop coughing.“ I even contemplated telling him this.

 

  • At this point, I realize the fact that I even know this about him, means I’m too distracted. That’s when I began to give up and decide to change venue.

 

  • Allergen provoking mowing, edging and leaf blowing and a gossiping lady is one thing. But trying to murder me with second hand smoke when I’m trying to write is enough to send me fleeing. The disdainful look I gave the smoker was enough to make him back away slowly and go back into the building tossing away a half smoked cigarette. I must have had a pretty frightening look.

 

  • Then I was finally at peace. However, that lady was still on the phone. It had been two hours and she was STILL ON THE PHONE. Who has so much to say for two hours straight? Literally no one. Even the most interesting person will stop being interesting after 45 minutes of non-stop talking.

But it was a writing day…sniffle sniffle….

Why don’t I just write at home you wonder? Too many inanimate distractions there. Which is actually worse…

My quest continues…..

Maybe I can buy my own island…but then a coconut may fall off a tree knocking me in the head, rendering me unconscious–and that’s too embarrassing to explain to my family.

Caroline

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Live Your Life-and Mean It

  • Yesterday a friend of mine passed away. She fought a long and painful battle with cancer. She was the bravest and strongest person I’ve ever known. I miss her. Although the news is still fresh and I’m still numb to the fact that she’s gone, (I still think I’m going to see her at work or walking down the street), her passing has made me realize even more how precious life is.
  • We have to live our dreams. We have to live our lives to the fullest.
  • Honestly, it’s just stupid not to.
  • If you aren’t doing what you want to do, then change it.
  • If you want to try something, then try it.
  • If you want to go somewhere, then go there.
  • If you want to get rid of someone from your life, then do it.
  • If you have something to say, then say it.
  • If you want to do so something ridiculous like wear a tuxedo or big poofy dress to the grocery store or even just around the house, then do it–and take pictures.
  • If you want to buy the irresponsible and frivolous car, or whatever everyone is telling you not to buy, if you have the money, go buy it.
  • If you want to do a random act of kindness for another person for no reason at all, why not?
  • The point is, make good use of the time you have here because you are never guaranteed tomorrow–so make sure the crazy ride that is your life is just that–crazy, fun and full of, “I can’t believe I just did that!” moments.
Because, why not?
Caroline
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Queen of Procrastination

  • March snow is always interesting. I remember the March blizzard of 1993. I had an exam due in high school. I studied hard for it and I was less than thrilled about the snow. Not taking the exam meant I had to keep studying for it to keep the information fresh in my mind.

 

  • We were out for almost a week of school. By the time I took the exam I could’ve taught a course on the material.

 

  • That’s what this storm reminds me of. Studying over and over again for a subject I can’t even remember right now.

 

  • Today I realized my apartment is a grand source of distraction. Every time I sat down to write, the demons of procrastination would beckon me to the refrigerator, laundry, TV, internet or just tell me to stare out the window for no reason at all.

 

  • That’s when I moved the whole operation downstairs in my apartment building in front of the fire where college kids are studying for exams, adults are reading, and one guy was signing his life away to buy a house.

 

  • The downstairs noise involved a cacophony of college student page turning, the business as usual sounds of the teleworking government employees, the random 4-year-old singing “It’s a Small World” (don’t ask), neighbors greeting each other over coffee and complaining about their kids, and the home buyer arguing the terms of the contract and loudly announcing things such as, “I’m not signing this part if it’s going to make your life easier. I’ll only sign if it’ll make my life easier. This is about me!” All of this still was not enough to throw off my concentration.

 

  • The noise was all child’s play compared to the loud clamor in my head that usually keeps me running toward the TV, fridge and whatever chore in my apartment.

 

  • I’m grateful that I have a place to escape to when I need to run from my own dawdling.

 

  • I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. We all need a place where we can escape our distractions and the voice in our head that gets us to be lazy and watch the movie, “Notting Hill“ for the millionth time even though we already know that (spoiler alert) Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant will get married in the end. Sorry, did I ruin it?  I did say “spoiler alert” and it’s been 15 years–you should’ve seen it by now…and the movie Chernobyl Diaries is about a group of people whose concept of vacation is highly skewed. They for some insane reason actually pay a tour guide to drive them to a radioactive site where people once ran away from, then the mutants come out and they all die at the end. Oh, and at the end of Titanic, the boat sinks, and an incredibly selfish girl doesn’t share a life raft with her so-called true love. Then he dies. There, I saw these movies for you. Now you can go live your life.

 

  • If you have a dream. Work on meeting your goals. Be productive and try not to procrastinate =)

Caroline

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The Ticking Clock

 

 

  • Time is a gentle friend who whispers, “Tick tock tick tock” in your ear when you’re busy doing other things. You try to ignore it but you can’t.

 

 

  • Instead you have to face time head on. The need to become who you are meant to be is too great to ignore.

 

  • Life waits for no one. Time waits for no one.

 

  • Each passing day is reminder that you need to get moving.

 

  • If you are not where you need to be, then why not? What can you do to change it? When can you start?

Right now

 

  • Don’t let the ticking of the clock pass you by. Live your life now.

 

Caroline

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The Life of a Writer

Writing is a crazy, bumpy road where you’re not sure where it’s going to take you, but you enjoy the ride anyway.

  • Sometimes I think the writer’s lot in life is a tough one. What we do is often misunderstood. Too many times people ask me, “So when are you going to hurry up and finish your book so I can read it!” Or my personal favorite, “What’s taking so long?” And “So you started your book last week? When is it going to be in book form? Next month?“

 

  • Unless you’re a writer or in the business of writing and publishing you won’t understand that writing is a process. The road to publishing can be lengthy.

 

  • You can write a book that can take you years to finish and another manuscript, which can take you only a few months to complete.

 

  • Your manuscript becomes a baby you gave birth to, nurtured, fed, and spent many hours of your life creating. You ignored phone calls, hid in coffee shops, bookstores, libraries or in the corner of your house working diligently.

 

  • You had your crazy rituals you abided by in order to finish your precious manuscript. (I often liked to have Christmas lights on in my house when I wrote and my surroundings had to be spotless otherwise my mind would be too cluttered to write. I would also meditate before writing)

 

  • You fought back those tough days when the voice in the back of your head whispered lies that you’re not a writer and won’t amount to anything in this business.

 

  • You persevered and drank massive amounts of coffee and tea. Caffeine became your unlikely ally.
  • You miraculously found quiet time to write in your otherwise busy schedule. You had to find creative ways to “invent” time that didn’t exist in your life.

 

  • All of that effort comes down to one finished manuscript that’s edited, labored over, finalized and ready to publish.

 

  • Is all of that work worth it? Absolutely. Because there is nothing like that feeling of finishing something and putting it out in the universe for all to see. The result is both frightening and exhilarating at the same time and well worth it. You send your baby out into the wild and hope it doesn’t get eaten by lions, tigers or bears, and comes home to you in one piece.

As writers are we slightly out of our minds for spending so much time with one manuscript after another, and not knowing what will happen to it? Maybe, but that’s the fun part…..

Caroline

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How to Still Believe in Fairy Tales

  • Today I went to see the movie Frozen with my nephew.

 

  • In the early part of the movie the princess gets engaged to a prince that she just met because they instantly fell “in love.”

 

  • This was when I turned to my nephew and said incredulously, “Engaged?! They just met!!” His answer was simple, “This is a fairy tale.”

 

  • Then I realized I was applying the real world to a fairy tale. I was using my experience in the real world of failed relationships, divorces all around me, and unhappy marriages as my basis.

 

  • When I was a kid I wouldn’t have questioned this plot point in the movie. In kid world, all things are possible.

 

  • When we become adults our worlds become less fairy tale and more stark reality.

 

  • Is this always a good thing? Sometimes it’s good to keep a little bit of hope against hope and believe in the unbelievable in our workaday adult lives.

 

  • It doesn’t hurt to sprinkle a little fairy dust here and there.

 

 

Caroline

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2013: The Year You Changed Your Life

 

How did 2013 treat you?  

  • I look back on 2013 and first judged it to be a tough year. Then I realized I was too harsh on 2013. It was actually a great year. Great because it was necessary to take me to the next step.

 

  • Some years may seem harder than others because they are what I like to call “The Set-Up” year.

 

  • The Set-Up Year moves around the puzzle pieces in your life to prepare you and make room for the changes that will come later.

 

  • This disruption is never easy, but it’s necessary to get you to the next phase of your life.

 

  • It can make it seem like you were having a hard year, but it was just a intense year with lots of changes that you needed to go through.

 

  • Remember, not every year is going to be a “woo hoo” year. It won’t always feel like roses and sunshine.

 

  • Sometimes it’s a year of organization and change that will get you to the next years of your life when you will reap the benefits of last year’s hard work.

(Remember, changing your life is always brave.)

  • Your courage to make changes in your life doesn’t go unnoticed by the universe. It jiggles loose all the rewards that your dedication and faith brings.

Have faith, be happy and happy new year!

Caroline

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