Oh, the Blog.

Y’know, I never thought I’d feel this way. I read others who wrote about leaving blogdom for one reason or another and thought, “Why?” Why leave when you have followers, a creative outlet, and interesting posts from all your friends?

Now I know: life.

Granted, my life has not been interesting before this point. I haven’t had much to do. Further, I had no one to talk to about it. I can’t say the same is true anymore -which is, actually, a very healthy thing. No longer alone in a large house with only my dishes and children; I now have a smaller house, a job, at least one friend to whom I can say anything, a good marriage, and waaaaay too many things to do all day. Oh, and I still have the children.

…In terms of organization, this post is getting ahead of itself. Let’s start with an updated list:

  1. I’m still pregnant. As far as I know, the baby is doing swimmingly. Perhaps he’s doing kickingly.
    Thanks to my delivery history, I will schedule a C-Section. We’re looking at November 2. This date draws ever nearer each day.
  2. We’ve moved house and sold our other. I don’t talk about where I live, specifically, much. I’d like for angry mobs to not be able to find us. It is very important to tell you all that our new digs are much less finished or updated than our last, however. In fact, our last house was BRAND NEW and this one is more along the lines of Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House, pre-remodel.
  3. I still work as a lunchlady assistant but will be retiring soon due to being due.
  4. I have even less time for blogging than I’ve ever had before.

In light of these facts but despite what I said at the beginning of this post, I will not be running away.

Repeat: I’m staying.

Out of necessity, I will be changing my writing schedule. This, sadly, includes not running a poetry contest. I feel the greatest loss at this conclusion, since I love encouraging poetry and love all the excellent writings you have shared.

And for you, Carol: fajita, frijole; hickory (in my defense, you and your followers named every food that has ‘k’ in it); galia (melon), scallion; edamame, jambu, mamey; tinda, ortanique, pignoli, uni; (and for this week) mahonia (berries), roe, and acorn….

©1948 RKO Radio Pictures

©2021 Chel Owens

Ah, Man. It’s an Update.

If you’re a better blog friend than I, you knew this was coming. I have not been around much. I haven’t had time for anything except a paltry effort at feeding the children and ensuring they’ve showered semi-regularly.

So, all official-like, I am taking my annual summer sabbatical from The Blog.

Welllllllll, soon.

I’ll write now and then, visit everybody, wrap up the current A Mused Poetry Contest; then take off around June 27th. I’ll not disappear entirely because I am writing a monthly poetry post over at Carrot Ranch called Anyone Can Poem.

(By the way, you should check it out!)

In other announcements:

  1. We found out we’re having Boy #6.
  2. We’re moving house.
  3. We’ve cured cancer.

Now, you get to decide which two are the truths and which is the lie….

Wouldn’t it be neat if this was how my summer went?
Photo by Asad Photo Maldives on Pexels.com

©2021 Chelsea Owens

Really Big News of a Non-Writing Kind …Again

I haven’t been around much lately. I’ve been blaming the toddler of two year’s ago’s pregnancy. You know, him and his four older brothers…

I’ve a new excuse, however: we are expecting once again.

I’m twelve weeks along, slightly ill all day, and keep taking an impromptu nap on the couch or floor around 4 p.m. most days.

Just know that I still love you all and visit your blog when I can. I write when I can. I’ll be more consistent once November comes. 🙂

©2021 Chel Owens

Hey! It’s a Blog (and Life) Update

After crawling through pregnancy and limping through the newborn stage, I have emerged to be a whole, new Chelsea! This model is …a bit more overweight, a lot more tired, and barely has time to read and write.

She’s also taken up employment.

I work in a cafeteria. I applied for a cashier job and was hired at my son’s school. I don’t do much cashiering currently because every child gets free school lunch in America. The job has many perks: free food, free exercise, limited exposure to people, and unlimited latex-free work gloves.

I’ve taken the time I normally laid around the house; irresponsibly folding clothes, washing dishes, getting the baby out of the potted plants, finding shoes, reprimanding children, getting the baby out of the cleaning cupboard, picking up towels, washing pans, getting the baby off of the stairs, planning meals, balancing the budget, getting things out of the baby’s mouth, helping in the dice store, and cleaning cleaning cleaning- and put it to good use doing similar things in a more commercial environment that doesn’t have a baby crawling around.

After paying for day care, I bring home about $10 each day. I haven’t even learned what portion of that Uncle Sam will take; I don’t get my first paycheck till Thanksgiving. Maybe.

But, if you’re still reading, I doubt you clicked on this to learn about the intricacies of folding a towel after lunchlady work while using your foot to push the baby away from the stove dials as a timer goes off and dinner burns. The blog update part of this is that I need to cut back on posting. Frankly, I’ve gotten burned out by the dead-end that writing is for me anyway.

I’ve mentioned this before, I know. I need writing and I NEED this community. I also need sleep.

Here are the blog changes I will implement:

  1. The weekly A Mused Poetry Contest will take place once a month.
  2. I will occasionally answer prompts like Deb’s 42-word story, Girlieontheedge’s Six Sentence story, Carrot Ranch‘s 99-word flash, Colleen Chesebro‘s Tanka Tuesday, Esther Chilton‘s limericks, and maybe a Blog Battle or d’Verse.
    I recommend you check them out and enter, too!
  3. I’ll post COVID-19/Coronavirus updates if you’re interested. We’re now on a statewide mask mandate and all extracurricular school activities are cancelled for two weeks.
  4. Most importantly, I will read my friends’ posts whenever I get a chance.
  5. Even more most importantly, please know that I always mean the very best when I comment or write. I do not look to offend.
  6. I support President Donald J. Trump as I have our other elected leaders, and I dislike people saying offensive things about him (or any other political figure). Be civil.

If you’re still around after those announcements, here’s some cake:

Photo by Marta Dzedyshko on Pexels.com

©2020 Chel Owens

Another Update -Woohoo

Look at that: only two days in, and I’m already boring you. But, wait -it’s important.

  • I will be adding book reviews to the blog. I definitely want to read and review ones by people I know, so drop me a line if you’d like me to read, review, and interview.
  • I will be starting the new and improved terrible poetry contest tomorrow Saturday!!! Problem is, I can’t think of a catchy-enough name. “Funny Poetry” and “Humorous Poetry” strike me as too ho-hum for an event that will be anything but! Drop me another line with a name idea for our new contest.
  • I will be answering people’s prompts and doing a few of my own. I can’t participate every week/day/hour, but can pop in once a month or so. Drop me a third line with whatever prompt you do and when.
  • I will now be leaving to pick up children from school. Drop me a line about how your Coronalife is going.
Photo by Ekrulila on Pexels.com

©2020 Chel Owens

One of Those Boring Blog Update Things

Hey, everyone!

I’ve been having a great holiday, only worrying about considering the possibility of thinking I ought to plan on pondering the idea of envisioning a speculative schedule involving writing on the blog(s).

I promised this was a boring update, so here are the specifics:

  1. WordPress’ editor still sucks.
  2. I sold my arm and part of a leg for a new cell phone and can therefore read (and comment on!) people’s posts again. The new phone ought to streamline that process going forward, instead of gunking it up to a hopeless quagmire like it did in the past.
  3. I’m changing the Weekly Hilarity Contest to poetry again, but intend to definitely bend toward humor and not to the sarcasm and ridicule of terrible poeming.
  4. My #1 priority will be me and my family. Number two will, invariably, be dishes and laundry -okay, really, ’twill be catching blog posts written by my favorite people (you!). After those, I will post some of my own works (see #5, just below).
  5. My blogging schedule will be liposuctioned to something manageable and …less personal. Maybe.
  6. I will write and publish a book. I will write under a modified name, since I’ve never liked my obviously-born-in-a-certain-decade-or-near-there identifier.
  7. If there is any time left after that, I’ll sleep well, eat right, and exercise. I will also cure pandemics.

woman wearing blue shawl lapel suit jacket

I will totally look like this person, all year. (Photo by Moose Photos on Pexels.com)

-Chel Owens (©2020)

Boring News Stuff Regarding This Olde Blog

Last year, my life situation looked a little different. Well, because of COVID-19, it coincidentally looked much the same. I’d not been feeling well last Aprilish. After suddenly craving a specific Mexican food item on a Sunday evening, I thought, Oh no; it can’t be THAT. Several insistent phone calls the next day led to a positive pregnancy test reading and ultrasound.

…and to a subsequent order of bedrest once an intrauterine blood clot kept whining.

All last summer; I balanced being pregnant, running two blogs, occasionally writing for another, reading others’ posts, and trying to keep my living dependents -well- alive. It. was. awful.

“Next summer,” I vowed from the bathroom floor, “I’m taking a break like _[insert several bloggers’ names here]_!”

Long story long, that’s what I’m gonna do. Take a break, I mean.

I’ll finish up “Going Postal” and a few writing prompts and awards I promised I would respond to. Then, I’m unplugging for a while. I need the free babysitting of public school and the better-sleeping of an older baby to add ‘blogging’ to the top of my tippy pile of demands.

After a week or two, I’ll not see you again till September. Thanks for the understanding and support, and best of luck with your own summers/winters.

woman in red and white floral dress wearing brown sun hat

I have never looked like this in my life, but you can picture my being like this if it makes you feel better.

 

©2020 Chelsea Owens

Photo Credit: Photo by Antonio Conte on Pexels.com

This and That and a Blogging Schedule

My thoughts have been all over the place. Efforts to unite them into a powerful subject that can conquer the evil antagonist prove fruitless. So, faithful readers, you’ve a mismatched mess of pottage from which to sup after your travels through the desert:

First, I’m inclined to mention the elephant in the world, Coronavirus. I’ve been home for about 2,365 days. People ask me how it’s going, by way of polite conversation. They don’t ask in person, of course, unless you count our shouts from porch to sidewalk or car window to front yard.

Many areas Out There are stranger. Yet, inside our house is just the same as usual for me. It’s one of the perks of being a stay-at-home mother with internet. I’m also realizing how a tailbone injury, surgery, impregnation, bedrest order, and C-Section delivery have all prepared me for The Long Dark of Coronia.

Hey; I’m looking on the bright side of things.

~

I’m exercising again, too. Yes, I count if I did so today and yesterday. Many stars need to align for exercise to happen, so I may not be consistent. I’d like to align my stars (aka children) to either go with me or stay asleep around 6:30 a.m. so that I might try this exercise thing outside our four walls.

~

The Kickstarter for our online dice store wrapped up nicely. If you contributed, thank you!! If you’d like gaming candles, dice, dice sets, figurines, or some of the music dice from the kickstarter; go to Game Master Dice or shoot me a message.

Speaking of, Coronaphant has been running amok of our supply chain. Downside? Shortages and closures. Upside? We’re still open and shipping while others are not. Washing your hands and working from home helps, people. -We just can’t get some of the regular products in at the moment.

~

I’d like to try gaming with friends. I understand that many games are available as apps. We have Ticket to Ride and know something like chess would be easy. Have any of you tried games online with friends? What works well? Are they freeeee?

~

Despite deciding I need a plan for this ol’ blog, such a plan is still not forthcoming. I’ve grabbed bits of idea-fluff here and there but not a substantial soup. Here’s a rough idea so far:

Monday – Quote. I have them scheduled till July, anyway.
Tuesday – Currently, it’s poor Ron the postman. Once he’s finished, I’ll do poetry.
Wednesday – My IRL observations with a weekly review.
Thursday – An Open Day for poems, shares, an interview, or book review. Ooh! Maybe I’ll have guest posts.
Friday – Terrible Poetry Winner.
Saturday – Announcement of the next prompt for terrible poetry. As fun as being terrible is, I anticipate this evolving into a different prompt soon.
Sunday – Carrot Ranch’s 99-word prompt answer.

I know we’re all busy holing up, but let me know if you’d like to contribute a story or interview. Let me know if you think my schedule’s potty as well; can’t no one ever say Chelsea’s not open to new ideas.

Pottage

Look at that pottage. I’d rate it a birthright or two.

—————-

For slightly more organization, here’s last week’s stuff:
Wednesday, April 8: Instead of going political, I shared a photo of my fifth son.

And, shared Pam Webb’s virtual book launch of Someday We Will!

Thursday, April 9: An update on life at home.

Friday, April 10: Winner of the Weekly Terribly Poetry Contest. Congratulations to Joem18b and Bruce!

Saturday, April 11: Announced the Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest. The theme is a parody of a popular song, Coronavirus edition. PLEASE ENTER!

Sunday, April 12: Re-blogged Stuart’s post from Storyshucker, “Hand on the Plow.”

Anarchists and Aliens,” in response to Carrot Ranch’s prompt.

Monday, April 13: An inspirational quote by Anne Copeland.

Tuesday, April 14: An update on a day in the life of COVID-19 from the day before.

And, “Going Postal, V.” Poor Stan.

Thursday, April 16: Today.

I also posted on ye olde motherhood site. I wrote a limerick, “Mother of Three.”

 

Photo Credit: Pottage stolen from Brand New Vegan‘s recipe site.

 

©2020 Chelsea Owens

Old Year, New Year – Old Me, New Me

As we come to the end of my self-induced sabbatical, I’ve had time to reflect. I’d love to say I’ve had time to read -but that’s been hit-or-miss. What I’ve actually filled my days with are the following:

  • Stumbling ‘twixt bed and bathroom, mumbling incoherent threats to the piles I stumble around.
  • Thinking of a great story idea during 2 a.m. feeding, only to lament my motivation to write it during 3 a.m. still-awake-and-burping and curse my lack of hands during 4 a.m. walking-the-still-fussing-child.
  • Candy Crush. A lot of Candy Crush.
  • Catching the odd post from a friend about The New Year and a Word for the Year, determining to write my own, and ending up with ideas like ‘Sleep’ or ‘Chocolate.’
  • Becoming horribly depressed when I don’t sleep, then wondering what that was all about when I do.
  • Simultaneously resolving change to better my situation, and resolving sadness and sugar at the pointlessness of my situation.

But recovery is going well, for both of us. The baby is probably up a pound or two from birth weight. He’s a serious child who has not yet mastered his neck muscles or his roving vision. People tell me this is normal, and I’ve nicknamed the situation ‘crazy turtle eyes.’

I’m down a pound or two from birth weight. I’m a serious mother who has not yet mastered my abdominal muscles or roving parenting. People tell me this is normal as well, and I’ve nicknamed my situation ‘hunchbacked snail.’

In the between-times of cursing laundry and children, I notice my ageing body and failing memory more. “I’m old, Peter -ever so much more than twenty.” “I feel [fat], sort of stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread.” …which is better than during the pregnancy, at the end of which I kept thinking, “No, Sam. I can’t recall the taste of food… nor the sound of water… nor the touch of grass.”

Clearly, when tired, I revert to movie quotes. I think my children are accustomed to the habit. If not, I at least make for a confusing conversational partner.

I’m not in the habit of declaring resolutions at the start. I’m the sort to resolve and break and depress cyclically throughout the year. I do know I’ve a few things I wish to accomplish overall:

  • Lose at least 20 pounds. Ideally, 40.
  • Figure out this hating homelife thing.
  • Read a book on parenting.
  • Read a book a month. Realistically, read a book a year.
  • Go to Europe.
  • Pay for the baby, the water heater, the Europe, the boys’ savings accounts, and our house-painting plans. This may involve robbing a bank, or blackmailing the boys’ orthodontist.
  • Finish my children’s picture book idea with my friend.

If you made it this far, I love you. (“Welcome to Costco. I love you.”) I would also appreciate if you’d do me a little favor: answer a question.

If you could pick one or two books you’d recommend to anyone, what would they be?

My recommendations come with a caveat and depend on the tastes of the person asking. I need a list, though, and trust the high opinions of those who got this far.

—–

Gifs courtesy of GIPHY

©2020 Chelsea Owens