Getting a Clear Head — and Table.

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My husband Steve trained as a scientist before becoming a high-level consultant for biotech companies. Yes, about 180 degrees from my professional world, but that’s the spice of life 🙂

But when God gave us two children and our already-cluttered lives took on an even greater load of messes and piles, and when the girls are eager to start a craft or a board game on the already-loaded kitchen table, Steve says: “We need to do a line clearance.”

And of course I roll my eyes — here’s the scientist lingo entering our lives again. But I also love how he applies his complicated field to everyday life.

A term used in manufacturing and lab work, Line Clearance means a segregation and cleaning of different processing and work areas to avoid cross-contamination.

Translation?

Clean up one project/mess before you start another one.

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A Be-Bold Birthday Blog

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My birthday is tomorrow. A friend of mine often says you should boldly ask for things on your birthday. That there’s power on your birthday — in the stars, perhaps? In the alignment of things in the universe, or something? Or perhaps that’s what I am supposed to tell myself to unleash a confidence I don’t normally allow myself to display on other days?

What’s interesting is that if/when I do buy into this birthday idea, as I have in some years past, I do find that I’m bolder in asking for things. Why should I suddenly feel entitled, though? There is nothing that should keep me from being that way the other 364 days of the year. Great actions will eventually yield great results, no matter what day on the calendar that they occur.

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So should my birthday be the only day I:

-exercise and recommit to losing the weight?

-tell my husband my hopes and dreams for the two of us this year?

-query that editor or producer I’ve been reluctant to approach?

-finally write down ‘that story’ that’s been eating at me?

-pamper myself with that ‘treat’ that feels like too much of a splurge?

-give thanks for our girls and family and tell them all how much I love them?

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Done with Year One!

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This week is the first anniversary of my blog, Musings from a Writer, Director & Encourager.

Like with most meaningful things in life, I can’t believe it went so fast and yet it seemed like forever ago when I started. Perhaps that’s because I learned so much, grew so much and found my view of the writing life expanded so much – just when I thought I had it down.

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Lessons from a Great City

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We were in San Francisco for meetings and a speaking engagement this weekend. Then my husband and I took an extra day to just relax, something long overdue for us (thanks to some angel babysitting by my folks). It was a breath of fresh air and a much-needed break during a pretty stressful time.  A little Valentine’s Day dinner, a little sleeping in, a little walking and exploring. Heaven.

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But seeing the city I love — perhaps as much as my own hometown, since San Francisco was also home for me at one time — did two things for me this weekend.

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Tomorrow, Tomorrow…

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Like most pre-teen girls across the nation, my girls are obsessed with the Sony Pictures  remake of “Annie” right now. A fine and creatively updated production, by the way. (Yes, they’ve seen the original and like the new one better; next is the stage version — we’ll see what they think of the real thing).

The girls love all the songs, but of course my 1980’s childhood is back in full swing with their obsession with “Tomorrow.”  Probably five million girls will sing “Tomorrow” for talent shows around the country this year, or sing along with the soundtrack in their rooms bouncing on their bed the next few months. (I’m more of a “Maybe” and “I Don’t Need Anything But You” gal, now, myself).

But of course, “Tomorrow” has quite a different meaning for an adult than it does for a kid.  It doesn’t always mean a new hope — it more often means we have to finally deal with all the stuff we’ve put off. The stack of unopened mail, the bills waiting to be paid, the dirty dishes, or unwashed/unfolded laundry.
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To the End of the Age…A Final Post for 2014

“And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” — Matthew 28:20b, NLT

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As Christmas and 2014 come to a close, my younger daughter Mari had a cry for the ages last night – one that seems a fitting final post for the first calendar year of my blog about writing and life.

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Surfing, Writing and Life: What My Daughter’s First Lesson Taught Me

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Yesterday, I took our oldest daughter to a friend’s birthday party – a surfing birthday party. Okay, okay, it’s a SoCal thing.

 

Helped by professional instructors, the girls got wetsuits, boards and surfing lessons, many for the first time (like for ours). The girls studied posture and technique on the sand, then spent the rest of party going out into the water with the instructors, rotating constantly after three waves each, trying to stand up on the board and ride their first wave.

 

For two hours, basically, I stood on the sand watching and taking pictures of my girl falling. Falling. Over and over. Trying to get up but falling over, and over. Wipeout. Same with many of the other girls, though it seemed (for this typically oversensitive parent) that it was happening more to my daughter.

 

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Again and again, the patient instructor took her out, even farther out, into the water, got her positioned, and they tried again. And again.

 

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After what seemed like a long time — BAM! She was able to get up, WOO HOO!

 

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But she fell off after not even a second or two.

 

And then more and more of this. Over and over. Getting up and falling, up and falling. So many near misses are on my camera, where I anticipated a great moment or shot, only to capture one of her falling either right before or right after she got her footing. I didn’t want to show my feeling to her, but I wondered: how could this possibly be fun for her?

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