Saturday, September 28, 2013

Belton's First Birthday (and art)

We recently went to Dallas to celebrate the first birthday of Belton, the baby of my sweet friend Laura and her husband Matt. We had so much fun visiting with our friends and celebrating their sweet boy!

The big guy!

I also gave Laura some art I had recently worked on for her and Matt. The first is the "You are my sunshine" song for Belton's nursery. The second refers to Matt and Laura's anniversary.


Friday, September 27, 2013

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

I interviewed Jeff Kinney, author of "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" series, because he was coming into town to do a fundraiser for those affected by the May tornadoes. During the interview I told Jeff that my 11-year-old writing student was a big fan but wouldn't be able to attend the fundraiser. I asked Jeff what kind of advice he would give to a young aspiring author. He answered, saying to practice writing in the style of favorite authors. And then the kicker: He offered to talk to Miles on the phone. I was shocked but so excited!

I emailed Jeff and Miles' mom, Amy, later to set up the phone interview. And then during our next class we practiced how the interview would go and what types of questions he'd ask Jeff.

From what Miles told me, the interview went really well! Amy texted me a picture of Miles after the interview:

A little excited!

So excited he got to talk to such a great author! Jeff is a humble, great guy. The kicker is...he still even has a day job!


Tuesday, September 24, 2013


Writing class today with Miles, I had to lecture him because he isn't doing his homework or really putting in the sufficient energy to improve. All this after having several discussions about how creative endeavors take a lot of hard work and elbow grease. He did change one detail in his story. So in the middle of being lovingly chastised he exclaimed "Every good story has to have a space bazooka!"


Miles was working on writing his chapter story, and we were discussing different elements of a story. The week before, we had discussed what a cliffhanger means. At the end of one of his chapters, Miles' character had fallen off of a cliff.

I laughed when I read the ending.

To which Miles said:

"I told you it was a cliffhanger — more like a cliff-faller!"


During class we frequently use my iPhone to ask Siri questions, like how to spell a word or where something is.

At one point Miles asked if he could ask Siri something. I handed him my phone.

Miles: "From now on call me 'Big Mama,'"
Siri: "From now on I'll call you 'Big Mama,' okay?"
Miles: "Yes!"


I made a dollar bet with Miles during one class about a fact he needed to check. The next class he showed up with this:

A dollar in quarters.


Friday, September 20, 2013

The Chop

It's no secret that I change my hair. A lot. The only thing I hadn't tried was a pixie cut. So I figured — what the heck. Why not give it a try?

Before and after.

I went in with several photos of Michelle William's pixie cut, a la...

I really loved it at first. And then I felt totally neutral about it. Figured I'd probably get bored of this just as quickly as anything else. Then I started noticing the bad parts of the actual cut and was really upset — there were some parts of the cut that weren't executed very well. My friend, Kathleen, fixed the cut for me while she was in town and then I loved it again. By the time I had it redone — by a different stylist at a different salon — I totally loved it again. Plus I upped up the blonde factor, and that was just fun!

After I had it redone.

What I love most about a pixie cut is it challenges ideas of female beauty standards. I also love it because you can't hide behind your hair when you have very little of just have to own yourself and be confident! Both things I'm all about! I'm not sure if I'll keep it in the long-run, as it will be pricey to maintain the cut and color, but I do LOVE it!

What do you think about short cuts on women?


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Angel Lady

As a part of my interviews for my story on the creepy and bizarre for the October N-town I interviewed the "angel lady" Leslie Draper. Leslie claims to be a "mystic" and to be able to see and communicate with angels. We spoke for a while about her talents, how they developed, what she does with them and some of the difficulties of being a mystic. We probably spoke for nearly two hours — it was definitely interesting. She even "realigned my energy." Can't say I felt any different afterwards, but hey — can't hurt. There's a first time for everything.


Monday, September 16, 2013

My friend the clairvoyant

I wrote a story for the October N-town about the spooky and bizarre in Norman. I interviewed an "intuitive" or a "clairvoyant" for the piece, Lauren Kelly. She offered to read my "chakra," so I figured why not? It was definitely interesting to hear what she had to say...the very rough manuscript is below, for anybody who wants to read:

Friday, September 13, 2013

September N-town

This one had a lot of last minute changes and was a little stressful to get out...but as always, we made it happen. Read it here.


Saturday, September 7, 2013

Girls' Night Art Night

I had the girls over tonight for some snacks and art. We had a blast visiting and being creative.

Here's what I came up with:

Detail shot

I wanted something that reminded me of how I felt shortly after my miscarriage in February. I chose the word "peace" to remind me of the scripture D&C 6:23 that sustained me through that time: "Did I not speak peace to your mind concerning the matter? What greater witness can you have then from God?" I liked the laurel wreath as a symbol of victory and triumph — over death, over sorrow — but also as a reminder to "not rest on my laurels." Or not let my faith rest on one experience. 

The other girls did various phrases, some with color, some without. I should have taken photos!


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

(UN)Professional Bullying

I recently had an experience where a source of mine blamed me for something that was not my fault. He then tried to guilt-trip me into doing my job the way it would most benefit him, disregarding how it might effect my professional time. When that didn't work, a colleague of his attempted to bribe me (yes, with money!) to do as he saw fit. I still refused. I was completely disgusted and embarrassed about his behavior. It was condescending, demeaning, selfish, unprofessional and incredibly rude.

I am appalled to realize this type of behavior happens beyond the playground. It is bullying, by every definition.


Sunday, September 1, 2013

OU football

My parents came to town for a University of Oklahoma football game. The game was boring, the weather was insufferably hot — but at least the company was great!

With my mama before the game!


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