#WeekendCoffeeShare : Back from the 80s!

Join us for some coffee time!Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)!
Grab a cup of coffee and share with us! What’s been going on in your life? What are your weekend plans? Is there a topic you’ve just been ruminating on that you want to talk about?
All are welcome! Just add your link to the Linky-List, and be sure to visit others and join in their conversations! The link will be open from Friday October 19th at 7am (Pacific Time) until Monday October 22nd at 7pm (Pacific Time) to give us a good range of “weekend”!

If you are unable to post your site into the link-up for any reason feel free to drop it into the comments and I will do my best to add you to the linkup!

If we were having coffee….

I’d apologize for being a little late in posting – the week ran away from me and I’m finishing up this post before work starts on Friday!

I’d first want to tell you all about the Murder Mystery Party I went to last weekend! It was SO much fun, I really can’t think of another time I’ve had such a fun time at an event with a bunch of people I don’t know! I think this was because of the nature of the event, but also because it was such a lovely group of kind and fun people. There was none of that bunching up in corners and excluding someone kind of activity that sometimes happens (often unintentionally but still…)

The party was a set ordered online from one of the apparently many companies that creates such things. We were all assigned roles, given tasks to help drive us in conversation and help us try to figure out the mystery.

It was an 80s Prom setting, which meant AWESOME costume opportunities!

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Sadly angled to make me look the widest possible – but the dress and outfit in entirety.

 

I got “voted” prom queen (the pick was decided by the script)! And was neither murdered, nor the murderer. Prom Queen and King!

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Crowned Prom Queen!!

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A murder most foul occurred – the star of the football team went down! (I think it was the football team… some sorts of sports-ball!)

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A murder!

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It was a really fun time! Ultimately none of us figured out who the murderer was, and they totally got away with it. But that didn’t matter because we all had so much fun, including lots of dancing!

This weekend is going to be much quieter. I’ll be participating in Dewey’s 24 hour readathon once again, and trying to rest up a bit. It’s been a really long week and I just need some R&R.

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#WeekendCoffeeShare : Return to the 80s!

Join us for some coffee time!Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)!
Grab a cup of coffee and share with us! What’s been going on in your life? What are your weekend plans? Is there a topic you’ve just been ruminating on that you want to talk about?
All are welcome! Just add your link to the Linky-List, and be sure to visit others and join in their conversations! The link will be open from Friday October 12th at 7am (Pacific Time) until Monday October 15th at 7pm (Pacific Time) to give us a good range of “weekend”!


If you are unable to post your site into the link-up for any reason feel free to drop it into the comments and I will do my best to add you to the linkup!

If we were having coffee I’d ask how you were doing this week? I’m doing okay – actually pretty excited about my weekend plans. There’s this part on Saturday night that has been on my schedule for… I think a few months now, actually! It’s a friend’s birthday party, and it’s an 80’s prom murder mystery party! I’ve wanted to do a Murder Mystery party for quite some time now, so I’m excited about that! And the 80’s prom theme is just a fun addition to it all.

Last weekend I went to Goodwill and found a PERFECT dress for the event. Well, except for the fact that it was about 10 sizes too small… but that’s where some creative sewing comes into play. Hopefully I won’t be spending Friday night putting the finishing touches on it, but it certainly wouldn’t be the first (nor the last) time that last minute costume-work is happening so close to the wire. If I’m being completely honest, the only reason I’ll not be finishing it up day-of (hopefully) is because I have something else going on that morning!

My other thing this weekend, Saturday morning, is a meet-up with my local Buy Nothing group. This is a spectacular group – I highly recommend trying to connect with one in your area! The meet up we’re having is a “junk in your trunk” gathering. There’ll be a potluck element (which I keep forgetting about…. MUST. REMEMBER. FOOD.) but I’m most looking forward to the chance to get to know some of the other people in my Buy Nothing group, and possibly hand off some of those things I don’t use anymore in order to someone who can put them to use!

With so much happening on Saturday I’m going to be laying low on Sunday in order to recoup. I have a feeling that I’ll need it!

What do you have coming up?

#WeekendCoffeeShare : Time for a rest

Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)!
Grab a cup of coffee and share with us! What’s been going on in your life? What are your weekend plans? Is there a topic you’ve just been ruminating on that you want to talk about?
All are welcome! Just add your link to the Linky-List, and be sure to visit others and join in their conversations! The link will be open from Friday October 5th at 7am (Pacific Time) until Monday October 8th at 7pm (Pacific Time) to give us a good range of “weekend”!

If you are unable to post your site into the link-up for any reason feel free to drop it into the comments and I will do my best to add you to the linkup!

Welcome to coffee!
How are you doing this week? What have you been up to? Is the season starting to change where you are? I think most of you are in the shift to fall, but maybe a few are moving to spring…. I’ve always been kind of intrigued by the difference in the seasons in different geographic locations. Like, the idea of it being summer for Christmas is just baffling!
This week has been okay, we’re doing some training at work which has been a nice change of pace for me. Outside of work, though, I haven’t been up to a whole lot. I have to admit, much of my down-time has been sunk into playing silly games on my phone (I may have gotten into Township a bit… it reminds me a little of the things I used to love about old-school Sim City).
Last Friday I had my Friday Food Fun Night with a little crew of my friends (the same ones I went camping with this summer), we ended up hitting up just three different restaurants, all walking distance downtown. I didn’t actually get mole  at any of them, I left that to the friends who are in search of the flavor they really like. Instead I tried a little variety of things. The first place I arrived at a bit before everyone else, so ordered a frozen margarita, some queso (to enjoy while I waited) and a quesadilla. Because I can’t eat wheat, and most places make their quesadillas out of flour tortillas (corn is kinda hard to work with when you’re dealing with a larger size), I haven’t had a quesadilla I didn’t have to make myself in ages – it was very exciting. Next we stopped at an Italian place, where we got some yummy desserts, then on to another Mexican place where I got some fundito!
That’s been largely the highlight of my week -this coming weekend I’m hoping to just rest up. And it’s coming on to time to rest, so I’m going to leave this here…. What are you up to?

Insecure Writer’s Support Group: Life Events

wp-1462383471325.jpgThis is my monthly post as part of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, a great group of supportive writers, helping one another through our writing ups-and-downs.

There is also a great Facebook Community for more daily connection!  More posts from the group are tagged on Twitter at #IWSG, and be sure to check out the Twitter account and the new Instagram as well!

IWSG Day Question: How do major life events affect your writing? Has writing ever helped you through something?

I really appreciate this month’s question, it causes me to do some reflection on my writing in the past and some of those things that have been getting in the way of my writing in the present.

When I look back at when I started writing my stories down (because I let them play through my mind for many years before I started to put them on the page) I can easily identify how it was actually in reaction to something that was going on in my life. It was right near the start of High School. We had two sets of cousins visiting us, and I wasn’t really connecting with any of them very well. But my younger sister was.  She was having fun learning the Macarena from them, hanging out at the mall, and generally doing all sorts of things that I thought were silly and wasn’t particularly into at the time.

It was the first time I can remember when my sister and I didn’t get along. It wasn’t that we weren’t getting along, really, just that I didn’t feel like I had anything in common with her. Being the only two girls in a family with five children we’d always been “in it together.”

I’d had a built in friend my whole life, and suddenly I felt like I didn’t have anyone. So I turned to the stories. I wrote myself into worlds of my own creation as a method of escape. And it certainly wasn’t the last time in my life that writing helped me through something. Sometimes the stories would take a form of glorified journaling – a little escapism in moments when I was needing to sort things out. Sometimes they would be completely unrelated themes, but a way for me to find a space of calm in chaos.

But life events aren’t always so helpful in my writing. Sometimes they serve to pull me away from my writing. Lately I feel like that’s the state I’ve been in – I’ve let things that are happening in my life serve as excuses to not write. As can be seen if you read through my past year or so of IWSG posts, I keep setting these goals to write, and then setting more of them. Since I finished my novel-draft a few years ago I haven’t been terribly productive with my writing. There are a variety of reasons behind this, that I’m slowly picking apart and making sense of (or at least figuring out how to work with). Hopefully I’m actually making progress and will start seeing more writing again soon… at the very least I plan to participate in National Novel Writing Month again this year, and that generally helps me get some story-work done; even if I don’t end up doing anything with that work, my goal right now is to just get writing again — I don’t care if it’s something that will ever see the light of day. I just need to start getting stories flowing again. 

#WeekendCoffeeShare: Wait… Friday?

Join us for some coffee time!Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)!
Grab a cup of coffee and share with us! What’s been going on in your life? What are your weekend plans? Is there a topic you’ve just been ruminating on that you want to talk about?
All are welcome! Just add your link to the Linky-List, and be sure to visit others and join in their conversations! The link will be open from Friday September 28th at 7am (Pacific Time) until Monday October 1st at 7pm (Pacific Time) to give us a good range of “weekend”!

If you are unable to post your site into the link-up for any reason feel free to drop it into the comments and I will do my best to add you to the linkup!

Where did this week go? Seriously. Is it hiding somewhere? I mean, I know I need to clean my room but I don’t think an entire WEEK could actually hide in it….

For a blur of a week, not a whole lot has happened on a personal level. I’ve been trying to keep up with Banned Book’s Week posts (and here, and now, I once again resolve to be far more ahead of the game for next Banned Book’s Week. They release the list in April, I should be able to get a few decent blog posts done between then and September. I really should).

This weekend I’m going to do a lot of laying low, more cleaning, grocery shopping, laundry… But first, Friday night.

Friday night a crew of friends and I are continuing our Friday Food Fun Night adventures. Sometimes we go out, sometimes we stay in (and conduct food experiments, in the name of SCIENCE!) This week we are going out – one of my friends loves mole, and hasn’t been able to find a good place locally. So we’re going to try remedying that for her by exploring some local mole places.

I am realizing that I haven’t actually had much mole – I tried a little of hers once when we were out but that’s it, so I’m going to be trying some and deciding if I’ll participate in the mole-adventure or if I’ll pick my own menu item to explore… we’ll find out Friday, and pictures will be shared on my Instagram.

#BannedBooksWeek: The Kite Runner


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It’s been quite a while since I read The Kite Runner, but was intrigued when I saw it on this years top ten list. According to the ALA Field Report there were some challenges that resulted in the book remaining on  the school reading lists, but there were some where the book was removed from the list (and not even offered as an alternate reading). 

This is not the first year that The Kite Runner has made the list. The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund put together a good article about the decision to pull this book this year — and it is noted in the ALA field report that “Students spoke up about the censorship and as a result, the administration shut down the high school newspaper.”

One of the things that is highlighted about this is the process that is used in deciding if a book is going to be pulled from curriculum or from the library shelves. As noted in the CBLDF article, sometimes it comes down to an individual to make the call (such as the superintendent), which allows for a lot of individual bias to come into play.  Especially when you look at the numbers of who is bringing these challenges.

Initiates

Library patrons and Parents are the largest groups of challengers, but 14% of challenges are brought by Boards or administrations.  That’s more than Librarians, teachers, political and religious groups, elected officials and students COMBINED.

While we’re looking at the numbers… the vast majority (over half) of all Challenges take place within public libraries.  These also seem to be the ones that we hear a lot less about, perhaps because there isn’t the same level of reaction that we see when a book is challenged in a school.

Institution

I can’t help but reflect on how strong the voices of students have been in the past year (and before) when it comes to standing up for their rights, and against things that are wrong in our world… and it makes me wonder if the fact that we hear about so many of the challenges within schools is tied to this phenomenon. Students are raising their voices. Speaking out when they see injustice – I hope we continue to foster this in our younger generations.

(My apologies if this is a bit of an all-over-the-place post. That’s what you get when I end up writing before my morning coffee!)

Are you going to be writing about Banned Books this week? Feel free to share your posts on this Linky-List!

 

#BannedBooksWeek: This One Summer

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This book had been on my “To Read” list for a while, since it appeared on a Banned Books List a few years ago. But it took me until this year to actually pick it up and read it. I’ll admit, I wasn’t wowwed. It was good, but I had a hard time really connecting with the characters. Maybe it’s because I haven’t read a lot of Graphic Novels – it’s generally not a medium that I connect to as well (when it comes to more serious matters. I love it for light and fun reading). It was a good enough book, but not one I really found myself drawn to. But, just because I didn’t particularly enjoy it doesn’t mean it wasn’t a great book for some, and certainly doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be made available! Intended for ages 12+ it seemed a perfectly reasonable book for that age group.

Every summer, Rose goes with her mom and dad to a lake house in Awago Beach. It’s their getaway, their refuge. Rosie’s friend Windy is always there, too, like the little sister she never had. But this summer is different. Rose’s mom and dad won’t stop fighting, and when Rose and Windy seek a distraction from the drama, they find themselves with a whole new set of problems. It’s a summer of secrets and sorrow and growing up, and it’s a good thing Rose and Windy have each other.  – summary from Goodreads

This One Summer was on the top 10 banned list for 2016.  The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund has a good article about the challenges to this book, making note that the fact it received a Caldocott Award may have contributed to some of the negative attention it recieved, “A few people, believing the book is aimed at younger readers because it is a Caldecott Honor Book, have been shocked to find that the award winning graphic novel is intended for audiences age 12 and up. Instead of acknowledging their responsibility for knowing the content of a book before purchasing it, some of these people have instead attacked the book, calling for its removal.”

Check out the Office of Intellectual Freedom write-up about This One Summer, and the challenges to it.

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Are you going to be writing about Banned Books this week? Feel free to share your posts on this Linky-List!

A bit of this, a bit of that, the meandering thoughts of a dreamer.

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