It is the small things

MontBlanc Meisterstück at the top and the Platinum #3776 Century at the bottom/Photography AdS

There really is no good reason for temperatures in the 80s and 90s but who listens to me, right? After suffering through that sweaty mess for the past few days we were rewarded with several rounds of severe weather that kept you up at night in a sea of blazing lights and roaring thunder. Now that those storms are gone, we are enjoying low seventies with a nice breeze.

I went into the yard this morning. I knew that the storm had taken a toll on our trees. I heard some cracks but stayed inside. It wasn’t as bad as I had feared. One tree in the front yard took all the hits. I sawed off the branches that were partly ripped from the trunk. What is left of the tree now looks like a swizzle stick. I hope it will recover but the damage could have been worse. Nobody got hurt and the house is fine.

One thing that I wanted to do for a long time is to switch the cartridges from my fountain pens. My MontBlanc Meisterstück has been Royal Blue since I got it years ago. I love the blue colour but after almost 16 years, it is time to spruce things up. My Platinum #3776 Century has been light brown since I bought it about two years ago. The colour is too light. I like the Sepia caramel brown from Kaweco better.

So, encouraged by the upper arm exercise of sawing off tree branches I set out to switch cartridges. I got a little over enthusiastic and now have a blue ink stain on the wall behind my desk. It is not a big stain. You can only see it when you get close to the socket, but yeah, score for Alice.

But after getting my hands stained with Sepia ink that got transferred to my glasses, I now have Sepia caramel brown in my Meisterstück and Pigment blue in my Platinum.

I really should not do chores before I had my third cup of coffee.

Enjoy the weekend!

Weekend Update

Photo by Markus Winkler on

Yesterday, I was trying to plan this week and nothing fit in the schedule. No wonder, I was trying to get things into the wrong week. In my defense, we did lose an hour thanks to daylight saving time and, after three pandemic years I sincerely thought that we were at the end of March. But, I fixed it and this morning, we were on time and on target.

Megan Cutler has a great post in which she explores the advice that to be a writer, you need to write daily. Well, I am a writer but frankly, life often gets in the way and you have to make choices as there are only so many hours in the day.

I like her advice to try to write every day. This can be for your work in progress, a draft for a blog post, or even a few lines just for you in your journal. I think that too many people still feel obligated to sit behind a desk 24/7 because if they do not, they are not real writers. However, real writers know that writing requires research, exploring, drafting, sorting, mapping out storylines, visiting special places, and a lot more.

Rachel Thompson‘s post seamlessly ties in with this as she tells us about the importance of writing things down. Our brains get kicked into gear by the writing process of your hand picking up a pen and putting words to paper. Your eyes follow your writing and it stimulates your memory retention skills. After I map out my week, using pen and paper, I often know it by heart.

One of the organizational things that has really helped me, is a tracker. It is a piece of simple grid paper. On the left, I write all the tasks. At the top of the paper, I put the month and the days in the month. Here’s an example.

Photography Alice de Sturler

It is easy to set up, can be done with any kind of paper and pen(cil) and, requires no spending. It is the check mark that keeps me going. After a week, I can see where I let things slip, what needs catching up, and if that persists, it is an indication that my schedule might need tweaking. For example, I found last year that I read a lot however, I did not read enough for me. I read my professional journals but it had been ages since I picked up Calvin and Hobbes. Not good!

Last, did you all get the email with the WordPress prompt ‘Bridge’ for the month of March? If you are doing this challenge, let me know. Is monthly prompts the follow-up to bloganuary?

Have a great week and try to write!

Weekend Update

Photograph AdS

I have been pondering my 2022 content calendar. Yeah, I don’t just write about it, I actually have one. Well, I have to put it together because I decided that for 2022, I am going to use my Circa.

Circa is the Levenger organizational system. You can make it as simple or as elaborate as you want. It is basically paper with a bunch of discs. I bought a softfolio (cover) on sale and it came with a lot of useful items. Then, I found that I already had some discs, tabs, and paper in my stationery stash. So, I stole my husband’s perforator and have been putting my 2022 set together.

One thing that I need to do better in 2022, is pay attention to coupons. I often get them, dump them on a pile, and only when it is time to put the recycling bin out, do I check that pile. To my dismay, I didn’t use a few good ones worth about $10 each! So from now on, I have my coupons in a plastic pouch in the front of my planner. I got about $30 on CVS receipts. Not the percentage off a purchase, but the bucks.

I also found drafts of posts that I was going to write about blogging while making computer backups. They are old and for some reason, they were never finished. I am going to check them, rewrite or update, and post them here. That will be another thing to go on my content calendar.

I am ridiculously excited for my new Lord of the Rings merch to arrive. Found a pin of Eowyn’s helmet!

How was your weekend?

Weekend Update

Photo by Markus Winkler on

This morning, while washing and cleaning I dropped a ring in the sink. It had to be man-handled e.g. hubby opened the drain to retrieve it.

Then, when we came downstairs, the espresso maker decided that not only did it needed its water tank refilled, it needed a deep cleaning. Fine.

Hubby saw that a tossed wine bottle had spilled in the trash can. So while I was deep cleaning in one part of the kitchen, he was cleaning in another part.

After that, I really needed some tea. I washed my hands and put some hand lotion on. I put on the kettle, grabbed the honey jar to drop a nice dollop in my tea cup, and just like in the cartoons, it launched out of my creamed hands and landed on the floor. Clean up on aisle 1, please!

So, how was your day?

Weekend Update

Photo by Markus Winkler on

I have started writing for NaNoWriMo and currently have around 11’570 words. I definitely have issues keeping up with 1667 daily word count. Some days, life just takes over. I get the bare minimum on work done and at the end of the day I just wonder where my time went. But, I am going to try to get to 50’000 words. We’ll see what happens.

Now that the elections are over, I hope that some calms returns. The number of spam calls, text messages, giant leaflets in the mail, and emails was distracting, not to mention the rhetoric in the news. At times, I really wonder whether as a nation, we have lost some IQ points. Maybe we have even swept common decency under the rug. Let’s hope that we find it again coming spring cleaning or better, when we scan the house for Christmas ornaments.

On that note, the coming weeks will be all about preparing for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the New Year. I need to dust, plan the dinners, and figure out exactly what presents will arrive in time or, make creative giftcards. The tree will need to be set up and I am pretty sure our lights need replacing.

But for now, it is a sunny Sunday afternoon here with a temperature of 60F. We just got our booster shot. So far, nothing noticeable as to side-effects. I anticipate a stiff arm as always when I get a shot. If it gets worse, I have a perfect excuse to slip in my PJs, have a lazy Monday, and maybe get some writing done.

Have a great Sunday!