Category Archives: If We Were Having Coffee…

If We Were Having Coffee… Geeks, Religion, Community and Chaos.

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!

If we were having coffee I’d invite you to join me at the table I’ve been claiming as “my space” at the Oregon Convention Center.  The Unitarian Universalist General Assembly (GA) has been happening this week and I’ve been visiting old friends and enjoying the atmosphere.  I can’t afford to actually attend, so have just been getting the moments I can.

I was raised a UU, and it is still the religion I claim (when I feel like i need to claim one), but there are a lot of things that I encounter in the religion that I struggle with — things that downright frustrate me.  There have been times in the past days that I’ve wanted to shake people and try to make them realize just how much their actions go against the very principles they claim to embrace….

But I don’t want to dwell on that all, not right now.  I have done a little venting on twitter, and I did a brief vent on my personal facebook page but to say much more I need to sort my thoughts more. Instead I want to focus on the good things that have come out of my “infiltration” of GA.  It’s been fun to be get to spend some time with old friends, and to see the energy and excitement of the attendees.  I have a lot of things to think about, and a good amount of reflection has been done, with a lot more to come.

If we were having coffee I’d want to take advantage of having your ear to talk a bit more about Passionate Geeks.  I’m excited about all the buzz, enjoying how many people are sharing with me some of the things they are passionate about.  But it is taking some time for writing to happen, so I’d probably give a little push — I can write about my own geekdom’s but I really would love to have other voices…. I know have a July (Yay! Thanks!) but would love to start getting some posts so I can have this scheduled out ahead of time. 🙂

If we were taking a moment to have coffee today I’d confide that I really pushed myself this week and things feel kind of chaotic — I”m kind of scattered today.

In my writing I’ve hit this scene that is a pretty emotionally intense one —  a very important one for the characters so, even though it’s just a second draft, I want to at least get the structure of it right.  Good bones so that I have something good to work with.  I’m hoping to get a little time this weekend to make progress on that…

I’d tell you that I’m working on my response to the second #LazyLambs Book Club post!  Hannah and Diana will have their posts going up today, and then we’ll be opening the conversation for people to share their questions, and their answers, about Christopher Moore’s A Dirty Job.   I’m really enjoying this book club – it’s been fun to see other people joining in!

How about you?  Have you been reading anything interesting lately?  What has been going on in your life?


If We Were Having Coffee… Figuring out Summer

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!

If we were having coffee I’d probably prefer to take a stroll with our coffee.  I’d tell you that I spent most of the week sick, then, as I was coming out of being sick, I managed to pinch my sciatic nerve.  I’ve dealt with my share of back pain — muscle cramps and thrown-out backs — and a good deal of ankle pain, but this is a new experience entirely.  My office chair is pretty good, and seems to keep the pain at bay, and walking and moving seems to be fine — but when I sit on the bus, or at my home desk (I am now discovering) or try to lay down… ouch.  Pain echoes through the back of my legs, and in my lower back.  I can keep it pretty under control with Ibuprofen at this point but what a pain.

I’d tell you that I’m starting to try to figure out my new schedule.  I’ve taken on some Sunday morning commitments, which means I’m working my 8-5 job during the week, and then have a 8-12 job on many Sundays (and a standing Sunday night social commitment).  My weekends have become severely limited, and so I’m trying to figure out juggling all that, social plans, and still getting writing done.  I know I’ll figure it out but I’m just coming out of the cloud of a busy work week and then being sick so everything seems a bit overwhelming right now.

I have been able to do some reading over the past two weeks.  While I don’t hold much hope for completing the Lousia May Alcott Reading Challenge, I did get a good ways into A Long Fatal Love Chase last weekend, it’s everything I expected to be, and pretty fun to read.  Though I’m pretty sure I’m laughing at the wrong places.

I finished A Dirty Job, by Christopher Moore, for the Lazy Lambs Book Club — and am looking forward to our discussion about it starting on the 27th!  I also started and fished Rick Riordan’s The Blood of Olympus, which was a great read – much fun!

How have you been this week?  Read anything good?  Have any exciting summer plans?

If We Were Having Coffee… Reading and Blog Award!

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!

If we were having coffee I would tell you that I’m pretty exhausted.  The week went well,  but it was busy and wore me out.  Thankfully, this isn’t my first run at a week like this so I knew that I’d be worn out.  I was prepared!

I got a lot of awesome writing work done last weekend, and told myself that I don’t have to write any more until Monday — I gave myself the week (and this weekend) off!  I did do some re-reading of the first half of the novel I’m working on, making notes of things that need to be adjusted, cut, expanded or explained.  But mostly I read A Dirty Job (For the Lazy Lambs Book Club) and listened to music, and zoned out (and complained a bit on twitter about the ridiculously long commutes.. not sure what was up with traffic and the transit system this week but, wow).

This weekend I’m going to read more!  I have a wine-tasting outing Saturday morning, and then it’s going to be time for my to run my last-minute readathon 🙂  Not sure if anyone will be reading with me — being so last minute and all — but I’ll be reading and rambling away even if it’s just me!  I’m looking forward to putting my book-nook to use again this weekend!

My weekend reading plans... I know I wont get through ALL of them but... I'm gonna try!
My weekend reading plans… I know I won’t get through ALL of them but… I’m gonna try!

If we were having coffee I’d tell you that I was really pleased with how Passionate Geeks is going!  I had my first guest poster this month, and am really pleased with the growing interest in the series.

I’d also tell you I’m excited for the upcoming Taliana event: A garden party in July!

If we were having coffee I’d tell you that Lori MacLaughlin, of Writing, Reading and the Pursuit of Dreams nominated me for the Creative Blogger award!


Thanks Lori!!

The rules for this award:

  1.  Thank and post the link of the person who nominated you.
  2. Share 5 facts about yourself to your readers.
  3. Nominate 15-20 blogs and notify them.
  4. Pass on the rules.

I tend to not nominate people, so if you want, consider yourself nominated!  I really enjoyed the answers that people shared for my last blog award!

If we were having coffee I would share five facts….

  1. One of my favorite pieces of artwork is a silly coloring page a friend drew for the kids we worked with, colored by another friend.
  2. I recently rediscovered Rock Paper Cynics “A Defense of Teddy Bears” which now hangs on the wall behind my desk… I find such truth in it.
  3. I have a lamp named Pie, a space heater named Turtle, and once had a refrigerator named Roberto[Edited ’cause someone with a better memory than me corrected me 🙂  ]
  4. I have an extremely hard time describing people, it’s a huge challenge in my writing.
  5. The only time I have ever ridden on a snowmobile was during a blizzard.

What are five


If We Were Having Coffee… Melting and Writing

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!

If we were having coffee I would offer it to you iced.  With apologies that I haven’t had the chance to make my coffee-ice-cubes yet.  This 90 degree weather is throwing me for a loop – I am not a fan of the heat. It makes me melt.

I’m hoping to be pretty productive this weekend, using the heat as an excuse to just sit at my computer and write all day.  If I don’t end up sleeping most of the weekend… that’s a distinct possibility as well — I’ve been so tired lately and the next week at work is one of our busy ones, so I need to be well rested going into it.

I’d tell you that I am excited about the start of Passionate Geeks this week!  I’ve had a lot of people express interest in contributing to it and I’m looking forward to seeing what everyone has to say!

I’m looking forward to the summer (assuming the weather stays in control).  While my work schedule really doesn’t really change, I like to pretend that things are a little slower… and I am taking some time off here and there for various visits, which will be nice.

If we were having coffee I’d tell you that I’m continuing on the novel… slow but steady progress.  I just signed up to participate in Camp NaNoWriMo in July.  My goal is to have the compiled draft of the novel done by the end of June, so that I can spend July editing the entire story — making final determinations on some of the things that are still noted as “need a name” or “I probably should figure out the government structure,” clean up language, deal with character inconsistencies, figure out some messy point-of-view issues, and other such things.  The goal is to send it to its very first reader (a very dear, trusted friend who will be honest, but kind… and perhaps a little snarky/silly) before the summer is up.  I’m both excited and nervous at the idea of putting this story out there, hoping that it is good enough.  Good enough for people to want to read.  Good enough to capture the attention of an agent.  Good enough to be published.

You know, I’d settle even with “good enough for people to want to read.”  I know I have a long road ahead of me still, but it is starting to feel amazing and daunting.  Real.

What have you been up to?

If We Were Having Coffee… Sleep Studies and Projects

If we were having coffee I would invite you to join me in my FINALLY organized space.  We’ll have to pretend it’s bigger though, because it really is just one small room… I have a little sitting space, but it’s more a reading nook that a space for more than one person to sit  –I am playing with ways to change this layout, I’d love to be able to actually have people over for coffee, but for now hanging out at my place would kind of like hanging out in a friends dorm-room back in college days.  But, I have coffee!

After showing off the organization (look, see how all my books are about to be organized?  And I have two desks, one for the computer and one to spread out on!) I’d want to tell you all about how tired I am.

Seriously, I think last night was one of my worst nights for sleeping in a very long time.  I was doing an at-home sleep-study, so had this machine strapped to myself, with cords and wires all over the place.  Have you ever done a sleep study?  It was so hard to get comfortable with that thing on – and I kept waking up because something was on my face (reassured myself it was simply the things that were supposed to be there and was able to go back to sleep).  When I finally woke up around 5:30 and saw that the machine (theoretically) had gathered all the information it needed, I took it off and settled in for a few more hours of dozing.  But tired, so tired.

Despite the one night inconvenience (and the ridiculous co-pay) I’m really excited about this.  I’ve been struggling with some serious energy issues for almost a decade now.  I don’t talk about it much here, and I have managed it pretty well, but it is hard to have to so carefully watch everything I do, to plan ahead so much for the week so I can do all my cooking on the weekend, things like that.  I’ve managed it, and found some things that help a lot (like not eating wheat, that’s a huge help), but without insurance for most of those 10 years I haven’t been able to do a LOT of work to figure out what’s wrong, and what I was able to do cost me an awful lot of money.

So it’s exciting to have insurance. To be working with a doctor who is helping to explore all sorts of possibilities.  Ruling out (or in) sleep apnea is the step we’re on now and it’s really neat to imagine that perhaps I’ll be able to wake up not feeling exhausted.  I have a pretty strong feeling that, if I do have sleep apnea it isn’t going to solve all the problems, but, just like stopping eating wheat made a large difference, it does an amazing amount of good to be able to chip even a little bit away from the problem.

Thanks for letting me vent and ramble a bit about that – it’s been one of the things looming in my life lately, and certainly shaping how today is (because, damn, that machine is uncomfortable to sleep in!  Ugh, if I need a CPAP I know I’ll adjust to it but…. Ugh…).

It’s been a slow week for writing – though I am making some progress on projects!  I’m looking forward to the first guest-post for Passionate Geeks, which will hopefully be going up the second Wednesday in June!  Depending on things that first post may have to be mine, with the guest post in July, but we’re hoping it’s going to be ready to go up for June!  I have loved the conversations I’ve had with people around this project, and how many of you are excited about it!  Even if only half of those who have expressed interest end up writing posts, it is going to be Legendary! (Yes… I just started re-watching How I Met Your Mother, if you want to put the proper enunciation on that…).

And I feel like I’ve been talking forever… I’ll have more updates later, about the novel, about work, about life, but for now it’s your turn.  If we were having coffee, what would you want to share?

Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend. A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in!

If We We’re Having Coffee… Long Weekend!

If we were having coffee I would be tired. So tired. You see it’s been a long week, with lots going on. Friday was a LOOONG day… and I plan to spend the weekend recovering, resting and writing.
I’d invite you to join me in the ongoing saga of “Allison’s Adventures in Coffee.”  This week I bought a new toy from my favorite coffee cart (Ole Latte!).  I feel like my ability to make (and appreciate) coffee has grown in the past years.  I got a single-cup coffee maker ages ago and it served me decently well for a long time, but this Christmas I got to up the ante with home-brewed coffee when I received an espresso machine as a present.  It works great for weekend coffee, or when I am making my coffee for my morning commute.  But, there was still this issue of finishing my coffee before I got to work and it only being 8 am.  Clearly, I needed more coffee.

And so… I present you the newest attempt at solving this problem!

20150523_094414 - Copy

Drip-Drop! Which, yes, is now it’s name.  I brought it home for the weekend so I can learn how to make it work best, but the plan is that Drip-Drop (Drippy, for short) will live at work.  Along with a small tea-pot (have to figure out which one still, I think something may have to be purchased), thus increasing my ability for a mid-morning coffee without having to go down to the cart to buy one pre-made.  They’ll still provide the coffee grounds, of course, but hopefully this will help in my plans of cutting back my coffee-spending!

That’s my news this week… I am very excited about Drippy, and the possibility of fresh-brewed coffee RIGHT AT MY DESK!

I would probably also mention how excited I am about Passionate Geeks.  I registered a hashtag for it and everything (#PassionateGeeks)!  So far I’ve had a lot of people express interest in writing for it, and am hoping that the interest does translate into actual writing.  It’s so nice to have found something that other people seem to be as excited about as I am!

And, now that I’ve got some of this coffee in me and am starting to wake up, I’d tell you I’ve been reading for the #LazyLambs Book Club.  We’re reading “A Dirty Job” by Christopher Moore this round (plan is to be done by June 27th if anyone wants to join in!) It’s a fun read and I’m really enjoying some of the characters so far.

I’d also tell you that I’m making good progress on Bria Lana – my novel.  It’s really rough still, and I’m having to do a fair amount of writing in this revision.  It’s part of an ongoing process of learning about my own writing style, what works, what doesn’t.  It’s pretty cool to be figuring it out!

How about you?  How are you doing?  How has your week been?


Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend! A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in time.

If We Were Having Coffee – Party Day!

Our Breakfast view. Mom had fun watching the young geese running around the hill being herded by the adults.

If we were having coffee, it would probably actually be coffee or wine, this evening.  That’s because my morning was taken over by other activities.  As I mentioned in my Celebrate Post, this weekend is my Mom’s birthday.   Since she has to spend her ACTUAL birthday in a work meeting, I took her out this morning.  We had breakfast at her favorite place, then over to coffee at one of my favorite places, then Mani-Pedis.   We live in the same house, but it’s rare that we actually get to spend a lot of time just hanging out and visiting.  It was such a lovely time!

Over tea and coffee we were able to watch another body of water. The Heron was having fun fishing and flying about.


No sooner had I gotten home than my Dad called and invited me to join him and my step-mom for a wine tasting.  Of course, I had to take them up on that!  So, now I’m home and ready to write!

The view from the vineyard. I love the cloud-skies that we’ve been having lately.


If we were having drinks, I’d tell you that I’m making some decisions with my writing.  Realizing some things about how I write means I have to alter what I’m doing if I actually want to be productive.  I haven’t completely committed to them yet, though I can’t quite figure out what is holding me back from doing so.  Actually, that’s not true, I do have an idea on that… Just still haven’t worked myself through it completely.  I”ll get there.

I’d tell you that I’m a bit nervous about the upcoming weeks at work.  We have a few special things going on, and then it is Finals Week, which is always a crazy time.  But then… then we have summer!  I still work, but the work-load is a bit lighter, and I’m able to take a little time off.  And this year I have out of town guests coming!  One of my cousin’s is visiting with her family, and then I have a friend coming out for a little while too.  I’m also planning some outings and hoping to coordinate a camping trip too.  It will be good, and I hope I’m able to take a few days to simply write. So much writing….

I’d also tell you how very excited I am about the Passionate Geeks project I’m doing.  I hope that the earlier response will translate into actual participation and activity!

How are you doing?  What’s going on in your head these days?


Today’s post is a part of the Weekend Coffee Share, graciously hosted by Part Time Monster every weekend! A time for us to come together, share a cup of coffee (or our beverage of choice) to share some of what is going on in our lives.  It’s a lovely check-in time.