Tuesday, October 1, 2019

#TeachWritetober19 Day 1: My Goals

The idea for #TeachWritetober came to me last year. A group of friends and I were all participating in November's NaNoWriMo. We were chugging along, writing every day -- until NCTE hit in the middle of the month, only to be quickly followed by Thanksgiving and thinking about the upcoming holidays.

Needless to say, I didn't write a word after the 14th of November.

November is a really hard month to commit to writing a great number of words. (NaNoWriMo has a 50,000-word goal.) There are so many days I'm away from home that I was doomed to fail before I even began.

Hence, the idea to move a daily writing challenge to the month of October.

October is a good month -- no holidays, no conference travel, still not burned out from a crazy school year.

And judging by the response, it looks like a lot of educators agreed with me.

#TeachWritetober -- 
Your choice to write whatever you want, for however long you want, every day of the month.

#TeachWritetober is for you, teacher-writer, to nurture your writing habit by doing something related to writing every day.

You choose the writing outcome.
You choose the amount of time.
You choose -- just write.

This morning I read a post by Benjamin Woodcock where he shared his plans for #TeachWritetober19. He made his goals public and plans a weekly accountability post to share his progress. I thought that was brilliant so I'm going to do the same.

Here are my plans for #TeachWritetober:

  • Send at least 3 emails each week to the participants to cheer them on, offer inspiration and ideas, and to check-in. (Accountability and support are HUGE when it comes to challenges.)

  • Write daily in my journal. This could be either Morning (Anytime) Pages or a recap of the day. I'm going to be flexible here because the writing is more important than what I'm writing about.

  • Write a weekly recap post where I publicly share how it's going -- the good, the bad, the celebrations, and the struggles. All of it.

Any kind of writing that I do above and beyond these goals is icing on the cake. I want to set myself up for success by making this challenge manageable, yet habit-forming. 

I want to set you up for success too!

What are your goals for #TeachWritetober? 

Leave a comment and share or even better -- write a blog post about it and either share the link in the comments or share it on social media and include #TeachWritetober in your post.

Write away, friends!

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

The Un-Nesting {SOL 8.21.18}

Both of my kids left for college on Sunday. This is the third time I've gone through the experience of moving my kids from one home to another for a year away at school.

The first year, it was my son who left. When your firstborn leaves the nest, it is a sad day, a day you never imagined would arrive as quickly as it did.

Last year, my daughter joined him in flight, leaving our nest completely empty except for our two dogs. Having BOTH kids gone was an adjustment I was dreading.

This year, as the kids packed up to leave, I was sad, but not as sad as I've been in years past. Having made this extreme adjustment before -- from a house of four to a house of two -- I knew I would get through it. Afterall, I had survived this adjustment twice already.
My first day without the kids living here I spent the day cleaning: washing the carpets, vacuuming, cleaning bathrooms, dusting, and gathering up old clothes to take to Goodwill. Getting the house back into order brought me comfort for some strange reason. It reminded me that last year when both the kids left, I found my way into a new life, a life that included the house only getting as messy as I made it, date nights with the hubby, and not having to share the hot water, the car, or the washing machine.

A life that I kinda....liked.

I guess my massive cleaning efforts yesterday were my way of ushering out one way of life for another.

And you know what? It was okay. I was okay. My kids were okay. And we will all be okay again this time.

Monday, June 18, 2018

#DWHabit: DEEP {6.18.18}

A poem.

On the surface,
just words.

But go deeper
and find a message
among the letters.

Something that begs to be said
without saying it.

A hint
a whisper
a revelation
an inkling
a story

All revealed through
a few very carefully chosen words
of a poem.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

#DWHabit: EMBRACE {6.17.18}

Light breaks the night,

The darkness fades to dawn
taking with it
and all its

First the pink,
then the orange,
the yellow.

The birds awaken
and ride the sky,
of joy.

They understand.

A new start,
A new chance,
A new day.

I embrace the moment
and await the new stories
of today.

Friday, June 15, 2018

#DWHabit: BRING {6.15.18}


Packing for vacation
is not fun.

I'm not done
until the suitcase
is stuffed so full
I have to sit on it
to get it zippered.


I know I bring too much.

I know I will be made fun of.

I know I will not use half of what I bring.

But you never know
when you'll need that one thing
you chose to leave behind
even though there was extra room
in the suitcase.

So I bring it all.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

#DWHabit: POWERLESS {6.14.18}


We prepared the soil
churned it up
raked it out
pulled the weeds
with a merciless tug.

we dug the holes
placed the seeds
tucked them in
with a gentle pat.

We watered.

We waited.

Watered some more.

Still nothing.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

#DWHabit: EPHEMERAL {6.13.18}

ephemeral = short-lived

a thought
   (why did I come in this room?)
a laugh
   (she said what?)
a scene
   (seven cardinals at the feeder)
a scent
   (lilacs in bloom under the bedroom window)
a sight
    (the sun dipping low in the evening sky)
a sound
   (soft whimpers escaping the dog's dream)
an action
   (a secret smile when he saw her)
a moment
   (walking out the door for the last time)

the ephemeral
and makes it

permanent = forever.