Last week, the very talented Edward Hotspur handed me an award, via his side blog Lyrical Anarchy. (Click that second link to see the other deserving nominees!)
It is with pride that I accept the Dragon’s Loyalty Award, for being completely loyal to my dragon. Right?
Anyway, a huge thank you to Edward, who continues to pump confidence into my writing with his kind words on almost every post I leave here. It is because of comments like his that I continue to do what I do. You are awesome, Edward. Please, friends, go check out his writings. You’ll be strangely thankful for the information overload that his blog provides.
And now I must leave you with seven random facts about myself, as well as seven more blogging nominees. I find each and every one of these people inspiring in some way.
Okay, first, seven things about me. I just love talkin’ about myself.
1) I ran my first marathon on May 5, 2013 and am currently training for a second, March 30, 2014.
2) Most of my poetry is a reflection of personal self-esteem issues, and I am hopeful that I can somehow help others through these writings, even if they provide only a morsel of solace.
3) My husband and I are 15 years apart, but constantly forget there is any age difference at all. We are always learning from each other, and love each other unconditionally.
4) I have been baby crazy lately. I am hoping 2014 brings a beautiful new life into our home.
5) We have two crazy, howling hound dogs and one cat who is obsessed with water.
6) The day we were married, I wore black.
7) I took up running as a confidence builder, and while I may not yet be completely accepting of myself, running has become something I don’t think I could ever live without.
And the rules: If you are nominated and accept it, you must link back to the blog who nominated you, share seven things about yourself and nominate seven bloggers of your own including ones that you find interesting and inspiring.
So THIS is the Hotspur the humans speak of. We must uncover his secret hair flip formula!
Eddie HAWTspur began the day as if it was any other day; except today was his birthday. So he wiggled out of his unicorn pajama bottoms and unfolded his freshest pair of GAP cargo pants and threw on the nearest white tee-shirt with the least noticeable hot chocolate stain and barreled down the stairs like a highly confident guy , expecting to find that his beautiful wife had prepared him a platter of scrambled eggs and bacon lube! But instead poor Eddie was greeted by an empty house.
“Where is everyone?” he wondered, clawing through the fridge for that bacon lube.
“I guess I’ll just have to make breakfast myself.” Sigh.
Breakfast made and finished and dishes left in the sink because fuck it, it’s his birthday, Mr. Haughtspur got ready for work, lathering layer after layer of his secret flip potion into every beautiful strand of hair.
If you assholes even knew how much work goes into looking this good.
And so hewent on his way, the scenes from his morning drive filling his dazzling hazel eyes as he spoke out loud of his awesomeness and admired the driving skills of the others on the highway, when –
CRASH! BAM! BOOM! GRINDING METAL! BLACK SABBATH! LOUDFUCKINGSOUNDS!!
When Snotspur opened his beautiful eyeballs, a glorious white light surrounded him.
“Jesus?” he called out. “Shit, I thought for sure I was headed the other way!”
Just as he began to celebrate a voice, soft and foreign, spoke to him.
“Hotssss-purr,” it said, his name drawn out, long and snake-like.
“Who – who’s there? God? Please tell me you guys have WiFi here. If you don’t, you can just send me down -”
Eddie shut his mouth.
“We’ve been watching you for quite some time, Hotsss-purr.”
“That’s right!” added another voice, one Eddie thought for sure he recognized.
“Why does she sound so familiar?” he thought. Then he thought some more. OF COURSE! He remembered a particular Romantic Monday, when Nicole Marie revealed her voice for the first time; like a choir of angels, the falling rain, Mozart’s orchestra, butter at room temperature, it was not to be forgotten.
“Nicole? My only pretend daughter, how could you do this to me? What’s going on?”
“Muahahahahahahaha – get me another beer, alien man,” was her only response.
Naughtspur struggled to adjust his eyes in the blinding light, but could only make out a faint figure looming overhead, large glass-like eyes that look like those weird round security cameras in department stores staring deep into his. He started to get nervous.
“What do you want from me?” He secretly scolded himself for not coming up with a more epic horror movie line.
A hand – or something like it – brushed his forehead, his hair flip.
“That flip,” the voice whispered.
“No!” Eddie yelled, tossing his head from side to side. “You’ll never break me!”
“Oh, we have our waysssss,” the voice said. “Time to turn over, Mr. Hawts-purrrrrr.”
Here’s a picture of a happy family lounging on the grass! This is not my family. Where’s the beer?
After a weekend of nothing but heartbreaking news flooding our networks, our Twitter accounts, our Facebook, our everything….this Romantic Monday I’m posting about those nearest and dearest to me. Because let’s face it – we are damn lucky to be surrounded by those we love. Just another horrid reminder of how precious life is.
As I drifted in and out of sleep this morning, a choir of children sang Amazing Grace on some early morning news show while the faces of every child who lost their lives on Friday flashed across the screen. Blegh.
Oh, my mother and I sent sympathy cards to the elementary school yesterday. It may be a minuscule offering, but it’s something. So if you’d like to do the same, here is all of the information you’ll need:
Sandy Hook Elementary School
12 Dickenson Drive
Sandy Hook, CT 06482
They suggest sympathy cards, postcards, or letters of support. I could barely find words to scribble inside my tiny card. I only let whoever would be reading it that there are thousands standing behind their community.
And now, onto those people who yet another tragedy reminded me I am so lucky to have in my life.
1.) My Joseph/Charlie
This man treats me like a princess. There isn’t too much I can say, since I’ve already dedicated an entire Romantic Monday post to him. He is my rock. He would do anything for me. And I’ve never, ever doubted that. And now we get to share a home for the rest of our lives. He has so much faith in me and he has given me wings. I love this man. I am so lucky to have someone who thinks I am capable of anything. (Except making pancakes. I really suck at that for some reason.)
2.) My mother, Kelly
Oh, you know, just the woman who gave me life. The woman who raised me right. The woman who calmed me down during a series of panic attacks during the darkest time of my life. The one who scratched my head until I fell asleep at night. Who would kick someone’s ass to protect me. (Not joking here people.) Who likes all of the same things as me and is SO easy to Christmas shop for. Who is so much like me, we sometimes butt heads but we get over it. My mommy. I’m lucky to have been raised by such an amazing woman.
3.) The most bad-ass Italian around, my father, Nick
He used to hold me down and tickle me to death, even though I hated it. (But really, who enjoys that?) To me he is strong, he is invincible, the smell of cold and Polo Cologne is strictly a “dad” scent, he falls asleep on the couch with his hands folded in prayer position, he always has his hair slicked back and always wears high white socks in the summer time, leaving that tan line I make fun of. If you accidentally “ding” a glass, he’ll go into boxing stance. And an unspoken rule: if he looks at me, I have to look away and back again, only for him to turn away. This could go on for minutes at a time until I giggle and beg him to knock it off. I am lucky to have a father who was always more like a best friend.
4.) Nikki V.
My Wino Soul-mate. She knows what I’m thinking. I know what she’s thinking. Sometimes we’ll say those things at the same time, in the same way, the same mannerisms, the same laugh when we both realize how silly we sound. If I think something is awesome I know she’ll feel exactly the same. This post sums up our love for each other. I am so lucky to have this girl, who wants to know how I’m doing every day because she really cares, and she knows I feel the same. If she needed me at 3AM, I’d be driving to her place in my pajamas. She is my family.
5. Phylis & Joseph, the future in-laws (hopefully very soon, if we ever get things going on this damn wedding planning)
Phylis, the woman who hand-makes everything and makes the best Thanksgiving stuffing and Christmas cookies ever, who, when Joe or I answer the phone, greets us with a huge, “IT’S ME!!!!!”. She is truly a hilarious, loving, straight-from-the-heart character. And I am so grateful to call her family. The silly bickering between her and Joseph is so reminiscent of my Joe and I, I always say he is an image of his father. I like to think I’ve found a spot in my future father-in-law’s heart as well. I can only thank the both of them: Phylis for raising a son who knows how to respect women, and Joseph, for teaching his son how to be a man. I love you both.
6.) Sarah, Whomz, Bubby
This woman is the original founder of my heart. The one who knows some of my darkest secrets. The one who no matter the distance, no matter the amount of time that has passed, we’d be there for one another in seconds. Late night, aimless driving, our first parties, the worst times, the best times; we’ve broken each other’s hearts and just as quickly mended them. Our relationship is filled with ups and downs and scars and that’s what makes us so special, because through it all, we love each other just the same. And while I may not see her as much anymore, it’s all of these tests, the trials followed by amazing memories, that prove we were meant to be somehow connected. Forever. And I am so lucky to have her, no matter what the circumstances. (And on a side note, this little lady gave birth almost a year ago to the most precious, handsome little man in the world. Also named Joseph!)
7. Michele, bee-dee-bong (don’t ask).
Who else shares my love for High School Musical? Yeah, that’s right….no one. Whatever! Thank you for always making me laugh, always supporting me, listening to me, talking in strange nasally voices with me, being so very happy for me, and being one of those I can always rely on when it comes to grownup things. You work your behind off, and you still find time to share mimosas and stories with me and bring me wonderful goodies. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Another one I am so lucky to have in my life. ❤
There are several more people who I am so grateful to have, whether their roles in my life be large or small. It all counts. It all matters to me. I love you all.
And I am so, so very lucky. Counting my blessings.
India Arie is on repeat on our computer right now. The image of myself, something I have always, always struggled with; what do others think of me? What do they see when they look at me? What do I think of myself? How do I look in those skinny jeans? Some days I’m thin. Most days I’m fat. Every day it’s on my mind. Am I beautiful? Inside? Outside? What are my goals? I accomplished this, I didn’t accomplish that. I lost a pound. I gained a pound. I ran. I didn’t run. I wrote. I watched television instead. I ate that piece of cake.
So here’s a stream of consciousness post, very true to what races through my mind each and every day, a sort of pep talk mixed with a few I-can’t-help-it downers. My thought process in all its vulnerable glory.
I hate how I look in the morning I love how I look in the morning, fresh faced with blemishes and eyeliner streaking down one cheek am I gaining weight? My face looks puffy but that’s just the sleepiness doing its thing, you won’t think the same way later, stop poking at yourself in the mirror. I’m in the shower do I look thinner today? You haven’t eaten breakfast yet it’s all empty I almost don’t want to but the hunger, the hunger is stronger than the thought of giving in to some disorder, he tells you you’re crazy every time you say it but does he really feel that way? You’ve come such a long way, a long, long way don’t do this now, she tells you, he tells you, what is there to be but happy. Either way I cannot win, too thin you’re disease, too fat he doesn’t want you, you can’t fit in, to clothes or crowds or friendships and you’re pregnant, they’ve whispered it so often you may as well be, I’m afraid they’re all thinking it. It’s the one way to stab at me to pull the tears out to force it all to the surface. Forcing off the layers I can’t even look I turn the mirror as I move and bend I closed the door I lock it so he doesn’t see but he has seen, he’s touched, he’s kissed, but mostly with the lights low a bulge here or there it lessens my value, my arguments can’t hold up my opinions do not matter I fade into the majority next to others, firm and uninhibited and strong and standing straight I am pathetic, I am lessened, I don’t know my way around it all, what good am I? You’re well-spoken, you are a graduate, you are valued, you are loved, you are looked at, really, really looked at when you catch him staring at you even in your pajamas, no bra on, no lipstick, stubs of eyelashes poking out from above those green eyes, sorry nothing on for show today, am I still me? Something else? But you like how those collarbones show themselves, I’m afraid they’ll disappear tomorrow, but do your pants still fit? They aren’t snug yet, stop paying attention to the number, how do you feel? I am broken, I am fixed, my mind is in shambles, my mind is piecing back together, you are not the only one. Never, ever alone. Don’t believe everything you think, repeat it back, go through the motions, feel everything around you, don’t waste a single second. Swallow the air and dance in the kitchen and kiss him on the mouth and force his hand around your waist at night and don’t worry about those layers of blankets in between it doesn’t matter, you are here, he is here, they are here, you’ve come such a long way, keep going, push, keep fighting, you are your own guide, you are your own destiny, you have the will, you look so good in that red lipstick.
So I’ve been a little MIA from my blogging duties this past week. Not that I’m a post-every-single-day kinda gal anyway, but I’ve been especially neglectful lately. But in my defense, a whole lot has been happening! Aside from me trying to make that moo-lah with lame 5 AM shifts and long weekend shifts (leaving no time for anything except a glass of wine or two…maybe three… before bed!), Joe and I make settlement on our home this Wednesday! So I’ve been tossing everything I own neatly packing my belongings into boxes andtotally breaking the tape gun knowing exactly what I’m doing while I tape each one shut. (I also just tried to be cool with the strike-through and can’t figure out how to turn the font black like the rest of my post. *Le sigh*)
Meanwhile, Joe is stressing and drinking way too much coffee and buying plastic bins because his books are too good for cardboard boxes (kidding, the plastic bins are convenient) and I feel like I have no idea what’s going on and I’m supposed to be moving everything I own into our new place on Wednesday. My stomach is in knots. Like those crazy boating knots. So in a few weeks time my future in-laws are visiting from Florida for the holidays, and our belongings must be packed neatly away so Joe we (there I go again) can hang Christmas lights! Hooray! Totally stoked about having my own little writing getaway as well.
On another exciting note, after weeks of whoring around my short story, “Sirens Underwater”, it has been accepted for publication by Philadelphia’s Apiary Magazine!!!! The issue will be released December 7th, and will be available in bookstores in the Philadelphia area. I’m hoping it will also appear online, so I can link it up all over the place. This is my first publishing gig and I’m stoked. I’ve also been invited to the issue’s release party on December 7th. Time to plan my sophisticated writer outfit.
With all this (happy) stress I’ve been neglecting my love for running! But today, the best friend and I went for a great 4 mile run. I can’t wait to have a space to hang all of my running bibs, too!
But, as busy as life gets, I could never ever neglect the most important part of every Monday: Romantic Monday, that is, hosted by the suave Edward Hotspur. I’ll be posting mine shortly. I encourage everyone to participate, and read some of the other fantastic posts that have been popping up over the last few weeks. So, blog yours and link it up at Edward’s page!
After reading hilarious posts about comment spam from my blogging friends Edward Hotspur (my left index finger keeps wanting to spell your last name “Hotsput”), and Curly Carly, I’ve decided to share the very few – but pretty funny – spam I received on this lovely Thursday morning (afternoon?).
1.) Hello Web Admin, I noticed that your On-Page SEO is is missing a few factors, for one you do not use all three H tags in your post, also I notice that you are not using bold or italics properly in your SEO optimization. On-Page SEO means more now than ever since the new Google update: Panda. No longer are backlinks and simply pinging or sending out a RSS feed the key to getting Google PageRank or Alexa Rankings, You now NEED On-Page SEO. So what is good On-Page SEO?First your keyword must appear in the title.Then it must appear in the URL.You have to optimize your keyword and make sure that it has a nice keyword density of 3-5% in your article with relevant LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing). Then you should spread all H1,H2,H3 tags in your article.Your Keyword should appear in your first paragraph and in the last sentence of the page. You should have relevant usage of Bold and italics of your keyword.There should be one internal link to a page on your blog and you should have one image with an alt tag that has your keyword….wait there’s even more Now what if i told you there was a simple WordPress plugin that does all the On-Page SEO, and automatically for you? That’s right AUTOMATICALLY, just watch this 4minute video for more information at. WordPress Seo Plugin
Thank you so much for bringing this to my attention. But, I was never very good at math; how is my keyword density doing? It might be around 6%. Is that too much? Too many rules.
But wait…THERE’S EVEN MORE!
I just confused you with all of this useless information…BUT HERE’S A PLUGIN THAT WILL DO ALL OF THIS FOR YOU!
2.) Another great site about this niche you can find over here sexdating!!! Let me know what you think about this site and i’ll subscribe to your blog!
Maybe I should check out this whole sexdating thing…I could use more subscribers…
3.) This website is realy nice! I just wanna say thank you for sharing this kind of sex-dating information with us.
You’re welcome! I know what I’m talkin’ about.
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