Lifestyle, Parenting, Relationships, Travel, Uncategorized

6 Things A Writer Is More Than Likely To Have With Them At All Times

Note Pad / Journal and Pen: As a writer, I can attest to the fact that sometimes thoughts will hit you while standing in the crowded line at the neighborhood grocery store, while purchasing Broccoli for the evening, to cook along with fried corn and steak. Your inspiration can come from anything as small as seeing a toddler crying in the store, a customer dispute with the store manager, to the smell and aroma that’s chasing you down from the deli, all the way to the car that almost hit you, as you were leaving the store. People always ask me, where does my inspiration and ideas come from.

It’s really this simple: I am already inspired to write, I remain in a constant state of being inspired to write, because I love the art of expression. The only way that I know how to do that, is through writing. My ideas come from anywhere and from anything. Every day, there’s a story to be written. I keep my note pad ready for those moments. I jot down ideas as they come and even if they don’t make the final cut, I don’t throw them away. I save them, and often find myself back on that page, building from that thought when and if have a momentary block. I have been known to pull off the road, just to write an idea down or to complete notes and bullet points I want to cover once I begin to write about it.

Camera: They say pictures are worth a thousand words. I think they meant to say, photos can be worth a million bucks. Because sometimes that “money shot” is real! Aside from being in the right place at the right time and having the once or twice in a lifetime opportunity to be the author behind that money shot, having a camera allows you to capture moments that you will never be able to reproduce. That may be your child swinging on the swing, taking a leap into mid-air and landing on his feet. It could be your child taking on the monkey bars, backwards or making rocks jump across the lake. It could be spare of the moment, candid photos that will last a lifetime, in which you can share with readers, who are then able to see the event that you attended, as something worth attending for themselves next year.

It may be at an outing, where you’re having the time of your life and you want to share it the next day, but words could never describe the fabulous time that you had, whereas a photo, nails it. Candid photos also make great talking points and writing prompts. You can present a photo and ask readers to give you their rendition or version of events of what transpired that evening. In this, comes inspiration, because everyone’s answer may be different, and it may spark an entirely different article or blog post for you. Plus, it increases engagement.

A Snack: Because we all like a little protein snack while we are on the go. Truth is, while we are fed very well at events, sometimes we find ourselves talking the entire time and forget to eat. Between events, especially when you get to the point that you schedule yourself for 2-3 different appearances or editorial assignment, which are happening back to back, you don’t have time to stop for food. The lines are too long at the drive thru’, the traffic is too thick to get off the freeway and chance being late or even a no show, so you need to have something in your purse that will carry you from point A to point B.

Plus, it’s an excellent idea anyway to have an extra pick me up to rejuvenate yourself, refresh and hit the reset button before arriving at the next event. As a writer, you may end up at the park a little longer than planned because you found something inspiring to write about, after meeting a mommy of 6, who’s recently widowed or divorced, who just made a move to the city. And because you don’t want to interrupt that stream of thought, behind your belly rumbling, you will tank yourself that you had something right there to snack on. People always ask about writer’s block, and while I have only experienced it once or twice in the last 10 years, I can say that the reason I don’t deal with it now is because I never stop writing. My thoughts lead me. If something says write, right now, I don’t put it off.

Calendar/ Planner: Keeping a calendar and planner keeps you on point. It prevents you from double booking yourself at an event, or for any programs, tours, conferences or workshops that you have a desire to attend and take part in. If you have reached out to tourism bureaus and PR companies about events, it’s an innovative idea to write it down immediately, upon approval to attend, so that; Number 1. You don’t forget, and number 2. You don’t end up somewhere else, when you should have been at the event you obligated yourself to. A calendar and planner keeps you organized and if writing/ blogging is what you want to do, organization is a must when it comes to attending events or taking on press trips and Editorial assignments.

Plus, it puts things into perspective to where you’re able to see deadlines, to make good on your promise to companies to provide them with reviews and or ratings of their product and or services. It helps you plan accordingly, not to take on too much. You do not want to tarnish your rep, by forgetting or not delivering in a timely or promise, because the competition is thick. There are other writers out there waiting in the wing for an opportunity like that. Don’t mess it up, by not having logged it from the jump. Forgetting does not send the message that you take their brand serious or that you’re responsible enough to handle an assignment.

Cell Phone /Recorder: This is because sometimes it is not as convenient to pull off the road and jot things down. You may also be in a position where it’s better to record your own thoughts and ideas, versus writing them down for later review and consideration of a topic to write about. You can use a recorder as a sounding board Listening to yourself helps to break even with what deserves a title and what goes on the back-burner for a later date.

As a writer, there’s also many opportunities that may arise where you have either planned to interview someone or the impromptu opportunity arises, and you always want to be prepared! Cell phones also offer the option of easy posting. If you have something that is worth sharing in the moment, whether it’s in conclusive with an all-out article / post or the picture that’s worth a thousand words to let your audience to #StayTuned, A cell phone with wi-fi capabilities will help you achieve this.

Tablet/Laptop: There comes a time when you spend countless hours at your local coffee shop or lounge, conveniently located at the entrance of your subdivision; where all the notes that you’ve kept on your recorder or the notes that you’ve jotted down all week, in your journal will need to be transferred or transcribed into a post.

Everything you have done all week to accumulate thoughts and ideas, will not be front and center, ready for a place on your writing list. Is it a book, a chapter a book, an outline, a post, a blog, an article, a thought that will inspire an outline for a story? Whatever it is, you now are face to face with your tablet or laptop and it’s time to get to writing. What are you waiting for?

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Lifestyle, Parenting, Relationships, Uncategorized

Morning Minute MOM Blog Challenge

In a previous article, I revealed a 20-year old inside joke, that had until then, remained between myself and a great friend. In the post, I detailed a set of rules…well, he typed a portion of the rules that he calls “The Niedria Compliant rules.”

However, we thought of one more that was left off the list. The first thing listed here, would also fall under that “What it means to be Niedria compliant” I hate when people eat on the phone with me: Besides the fact that it’s considered rules of etiquette, it comes as a surprise to some people, because when I mention it, they feel some type of way about it. IT’S RUDE and it still, remains a fact about me and something that is included in being Niedria Compliant.

know the rules

And now, on to 10 More Insane Facts That You Probably Did Not Know About Me:

1. I rinse my ice, before use: My ice absolutely must be washed before use. I cannot drink water from a cup that has ice in it, which hasn’t been rinsed off prior to pouring a drink over it. That goes for any drink such as: water, alcohol, juice, soda, or wine.

2. I do not like milk: I have never been one to drink or like milk. It’s amazing how much ice-cream that I eat, considering that. If you pour a cold cup to go along with my breakfast, I can almost promise you that I will get sick from just looking at it.

3. I eat my cereal dry: This is where it may get weird. I love to eat a bowl of dry cereal and my favorites are Brand Raisin, Granola, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, and Fruit Loops. However, and while I hate milk, I have also been known to add a scoop of ice-cream to a bowl of Special K Coconut Cranberry Almond

cereal

4. I don’t care for people who project: This is something that I don’t think I stand alone on. Projecting one’s problems on another is terribly annoying and it is something that gets me turned around. I like when people take ownership for who they are, versus placing their feelings on other people.

5. I don’t iron– and will at all cost avoid: When I can help it, I will use anyone who will agree, to iron my clothes for me. I have had ex’s do it, my dad, and friends in the past. When push comes to shove, I use the steam fresh, sanitize and iron setting on my dryer to do the trick.

iron

6. I Love a good lesson in fairness: Occasionally, I will go the extra mile for the point to be driven home. Meaning, if someone is having a hard time understanding and ‘seeing’ the depth of what they are doing is wrong- I will give them a mirror into the situation, by mimicking it, and doing it to them, so that they can “feel” what they did was wrong.

7. Clinical Psychology turned Law and Real Estate: While I set out in hot pursuit of a degree in Clinical Psychology, as well as a Doctoral degree in Psychiatry; I obtained other degrees and credentials instead, and ended up working in Property Management and Real Estate.

8. I’m a night Owl– always have been. I do my best work and thinking after midnight. The bad part is, I don’t know anyone else who stays up as late. So, I constantly text my mother at random hours throughout the early morning hours- until I finally fall asleep around 6:00 A.M.

wine

9. I drink red wine and Grey Goose: Not together of course. I must pick one or the other in a night, and remain loyal to it for the night. I don’t mix alcohols, and I don’t mix wine with hard liquor. – Merlot is my red wine of choice

10. I have a Wall: What is a wall? Not a wall as in, I put a wall up to protect me from something that I see, perceive, or imagine as a real threat or something that may hurt me. Even though in some cases that could apply. The wall that I am referring to is a physical place to go to. It’s a safe place to think, meditate, pray, cry, and focus and whatever you’d like to do to get things off your chest- and let it dissipate into the atmosphere. It allows you to lay your burdens down, send up prayers and to speak aloud, without interference, so that you can sort through your thoughts and file them accordingly. It’s a place where I go when I have a writer’s block, or when I am faced with a difficult decision, situation, or circumstance. My wall, is on the beach and it was my safe place long before it got its name as “the wall” in the movie, “The Secret Life of Bees.”

Get to know your Fellow MOM Blogger by sharing insane facts about yourself throughout the month of April.

Lifestyle, Parenting, Relationships

RAISING AN HONEST CHILD

I venture to say, you need to first be an honest parent, before you can truly raise an honest kid. If you do not practice a system of truth, where honesty is rewarded and lies are neither condoned nor rewarded; in and out of the home, where your child living, it may be the reason he/she entertains fabricated stories and habitual lies.

Children do most of which they learn, and are taught; whether taught indirectly or directly. They are a sponge. Not to sound cliché, but they soak in all of the things that is in their surrounding. That includes the things that you say, the things that you do, your attitude toward things, how you act and how you generally handle things. As they grow older, they adopt these measures of behavior, as ways of their own. Some may learn early in life what they need to stop doing. Whereas, others who are subjected to it longer or more consistently, they began to inadvertently implement it into their core character.

I believe in both cases, children keep what they need or want out of the ordeal, when they feel that it produces positive results for them. Such as, learning to lie about certain things and associating the lie with reward. They can tell a lie about a certain thing and be treated a lot differently than from telling the truth. So they begin to think that it is ok to tell a lie. They begin to see a benefit in telling a lie over the truth. They are not taught about an honest policy and the only example they have is broken system of morals to learn from.

For example:

A child is truthful about something he/she did in school, which reflected in poor behavior and resulted in a punishment, by which he was reprimanded for what he did at school. He begins to believe it’s because he told the truth. He does not want to get in trouble, and so he thinks that maybe he shouldn’t have told the truth. Not so much, meaning that the act of truth – telling is why he’s punished, but because of what the truth was, and the guilty plea.

Next time: A child lies about something he/she does at school. He/She is asked about it, and responds with a lie. Nothing happens, because the lie he told exonerates him from punishment. If the adult finds out that it was a lie/or maybe knew all along that it was a lie, the child is not reprimanded in any way.

The lie is accepted by the adult in the situation, and even when the truth comes out, there is nothing to clearly define for the child, what the benefit would be in telling the truth next time. He/she has not experimented and found that the lie will save his bottom.

The children of the world are not shown where the rewards are higher for telling the truth, because if they told the truth, they received a harsh punishment.

Telling the truth shouldn’t excuse bad behavior and by no means, am I suggesting that it should. But what it does is help you raise an honest child. You decide the punishments, but beware of what you are teaching when he/she is trying to tell you the truth about something.

Children also watch their parents and closest people to them, and study how they act in situations of truth vs. lies and how that will play out. Some kids are even encouraged to lie when they have bickering parents, who more than often permits a child to lie about something they don’t want the other parent to find out about. This is the biggest no-no in the game of raising honest children, in that you are “giving permission” to your child to lie and teaching them that its ok to do so, when you do this. Even when you tell them it’s a “little white lie” and it’s ok or when you lead them to believe that he/she can only lie about this certain thing.

Children are not processing all the logic you may have behind the lie. All they hear and walk away from the situation learning, is that it may not be ok to lie all the time, but it’s ok if you do. How is that not confusing? “Don’t tell mommy this” or “don’t tell daddy that”, or “If mommy ask this- tell her xyz”…All those things are absorbed by that child. “Don’t tell mom what you did over the summer,” is lying by teaching your child to omit things. “Don’t tell the whole truth about this”…is also teaching your child to lie by omission. “If mommy asks if you missed school today, tell her no, even though you did”… is another LIE!

A child will sometimes ask why? Especially as he/she grows older and began to understand that he/she is being told to lie. They don’t have to know the details behind the adult lies, but they will ask why, until it starts to make sense. Which most of the time it won’t. Because nothing will help a growing child understand that it is ok to lie to their parents, except another lie. Such as: “If you tell mommy you did xyz, you will get in trouble.” At this point, you are pumping fear into a child, which will manifest into a motive and soon, a reason for him to continue to keep your lies.

It’s just a subject that we need to be careful with as parents, because we’re all guilty of telling at least one “little white lie” in life. And while the example above is more on the extreme side, there are actually some people out there who have done it and even more who can tell you all about their experience with parents who still do it. We have all told our kids that they don’t have to tell the truth about certain things and probably never thought about how we are teaching them to do something that in general, they should not do.

I would never ask my child to lie for me or to be dishonest about something where we are concerned. I teach him about the importance of telling the truth and I make sure I reward him or show him the benefits in telling the truth. When he does tell me a lie, as he’s a 6-years old, growing and still learning, as well as doing a temperature check on what he can get away with; I have the conversation with him that he has to always tell me the truth. I always give him the second chance to tell me, in the same breath, by reminding him that telling me the truth means that I will be better educated/informed about what is going on and will have a more accurate understanding of what I need to do to help him. When my child knows that its all about the “TEAM,” through me reminding him that he can’t lie to the captain, he’s assured that his best bet is to tell the truth.

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