Uncategorized

Back and Ready to Blog

Well, I’ve certainly said that before on this blog. Here and here and here just to link to a few. So, I am surely saying that with a bit of doubt in the back of my mind. But, I think I have figured out a few things and reading What to Expect from KEF this morning clarified a few of them for me as well. I hope to follow along with her own return to her blog with my return to my blog. I’m going to go through and choose the things I really loved to do on this blog and leave the rest behind. I’m not going to be focused on “monetizing” the blog as everyone seems so focused on telling me to do on the web. If I don’t make any money on it, it still gives me a space to write and hopefully commune with others who have similar interests, challenges and lives. I’m not going to be focused so much on finding all the right things to write about, but instead am just going to be focused on writing. Hopefully, I can find some things worth saying without having to worry about what those things are. I love going back and reading the past posts (and will be cleaning up my categories and tags to make it easier for others to do that as well) and I know that every once in a while, writing here has given me something that I needed.

So, just to give everyone an update on my life. It is summer. I am teaching a summer session that has one more week. I still struggle with lesson planning, grading (I’m behind in this right now) and managing all the classes I teach. But, I love it. Teaching is definitely my jam and always will be. So, I’m working this summer on simplifying my classes and assignments and making it all easier to manage, while also meaningful to both my students and me. My theme for next year is “Teach less. Better.” I am really trying to apply to that to all of my life. “Live with less. Better.” I am still a Girl Scout leader and excited to go into my second year of Juniors with my troop. Unfortunately, I think that I may lose my co-leader from the last two years who was awesome. She is moving. But, I trust that someone else will come along if she decides not to commute in from 20-25 minutes away twice a month for meetings. We shall see. My 10 year old is still going strong. We will celebrate the 10th anniversary of her receiving her heart transplant in exactly two weeks. I’m trying to figure out the best way to mark that monumental date. We shall see. But, shortly after we are going to see Hamilton (her favorite musical) in San Francisco and that will be a great gift to both of us! I will be teaching at both my four-year University and 2-year Community College and coaching the Speech and Debate team at the University. My daughter is also going into her second year of 4-H. Last year, we barely dipped our toes in with that, but this year, I hope she gets more active and involved in those activities.

So, bottom line is, I’m living a busy life. Too busy at times. And although I would like to simplify large portions of it, I don’t want to give up the fun things we do and all of the benefits of my two jobs. So, I have to work on simplifying what I can, managing what I can’t/don’t want to get rid of and finally being a more present person to my daughter, my husband and myself.

Hope you’ll join me for what I hope will be the second half (100 won’t be a bad age to live to) of this crazy life of mine.

Uncategorized

More Followers Monday #1 – Join Up!

I said I was going to start this two weeks ago and missed both the last Mondays.  Sad, but true.  But, here I am posting just before Monday ends.  But, the linkup will be open all week and I hope that some of you will join up this first week.  I’m sure it will be pretty small, but if we all visit and follow the blogs that Linkup and if you share about this linkup on your blog, we can build up our followers slowly but surely!

I think it would be great if you could link to a page that lets the readers know how you would like them to follow you (if you have a preference).  So, link to your Instagram if you’re building your following there or to your Facebook if you need followers there, etc.  Blogs are always welcome, but feel free to link up to other areas if that is where you need More Followers!  In case you missed my original post back a couple of weeks ago, here it is and the linky is at the bottom!

I’ve decided to start a “more” themed post on Mondays in 2017 – More Follower Mondays at More at Forty!  My hope is that we can help each other by generating more followers for our blogs and social media.  I am doing it as a Linkup so we can actually see a blog post that you’d like to drive traffic to, but you can also link to a social media account if that is where you need followers.  I’m new to this Linkup thing so be patient with me, but I think I have it figured out.  My plan is to make the first linkup available on Monday, January 2 and to have one each Monday.  Some Mondays, I may add a theme, but to start, we’re just going with an open-ended invitation to linkup and get more followers!

more-followers-mondays

Uncategorized

More Follower Mondays

I’ve decided to start a “more” themed post on Mondays in 2017 – More Follower Mondays at More at Forty!  My hope is that we can help each other by generating more followers for our blogs and social media.  I am doing it as a Linkup so we can actually see a blog post that you’d like to drive traffic to, but you can also link to a social media account if that is where you need followers.  I’m new to this Linkup thing so be patient with me, but I think I have it figured out.  My plan is to make the first linkup available on Monday, January 2 and to have one each Monday.  Some Mondays, I may add a theme, but to start, we’re just going with an open-ended invitation to linkup and get more followers!

more-followers-mondays

Life Updates

Inspired…and Fired Up…

I read a post earlier today over at Recipe in a Bottle that has inspired me to come back to this blog.  I keep starting things and not following through on them.  I don’t want this blog to be another one of those things.  So, I’m back.  I’m still in my forties and still wanting more.  I am also still failing on a daily basis.  But, I can still work towards it.

I’ve accomplished some good things this year.  I’ve taken on some new projects that I am really enjoying.  A course redesign that not only brought in some extra income but has also renewed my enthusiasm for teaching.  I took on the troop leader role for my DD’s brownie troop and have been exhausted by it, but in a good way (usually).  I have realized a few things that I want for myself and am willing to work towards.  I’m still a financial disaster for the most part, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel, with credit scores improving, an inheritance that should be finally dealt with in the next six months or so and a pretty significant raise as well as the prospects of selling our place without taking a huge hit (we will lose a lot, but will not be cash short in the sale).  Overall, things are looking up, if not immediately, at least in the near(ish) future.  My hopes are to pay off most of our debt and be able to live within our means from here on out.  There is no reason we should not be able to do it.  It is just a matter of getting our footing before trying to climb up.  At least that is what I think.

I have also realized that I am not doing nearly enough of what I WANT to be doing in life.  So, I’m really trying to figure out how to make that happen.  I’ve realized a few things about myself in the past few months.  Coming as a surprise to me, I think I am an introvert.  It seems strange because I do speech and debate and I like to talk to people.  But, I’m also exhausted by it.  Teaching is one of my favorite things to do, but it also is exhausting because it requires a lot of dealing with people.  But, I love what I do, I just need to realize that I need the quiet time alone as well.  I am never going to be one who really loves to go out with a bunch of people all the time.  I like watching TV and reading. And that is okay.  I spend time with people for much of my life because of what I do professionally, so I don’t necessarily need it personally.  I mean, I have a small group of friends that I get together with every once in a while and that is good for me.  I have realized that.

I have also come to the conclusion that I need to clear house.  This is not a new realization. I have known for some time and I’ve been gradually clearing things out here and there, but I want to get more serious about it.  I feel like there are constant piles piling up…everywhere.  And even though I’ve unloaded a bunch of stuff, I feel like there is so much more stuff to go.  I want my house to be pretty, but simple.  I want to own the things I use on a regular basis and that is it.

So, there you go.  2016 is coming to a close.  I’m ready to continue the changes I’ve made and I’m ready to keep writing on this blog.  I hope you’ll all be good with that!  Thanks to anyone who is still reading after all my silent weeks…

 

Uncategorized

Why Write?

I’ve asked that a few times.  That question is the reason my blog goes to the bottom of my list every time I get busy.  I don’t typically have a great reason for it.  I love the community that blogging creates.  I love that I see people “like” and comment on my posts over and over again and I feel like I’m reaching someone.  But, even minus that, I like to write.  I like the thought process.  I enjoy the result.  And this morning, I found this Medium article and it explained and justified and encouraged.

Although I would like to think that I will become one of those “famous” bloggers whose work is read by tons of people and whose faces you see all over the web and even on TV, I don’t write for that reason.  I write because I feel a desire to write.  I feel a desire to connect…with others, but more so with myself.

Lately, my biggest struggle is figuring out WHAT to write about.  And much of that has been driven by my feeling of a need to “brand” my work.  To have a purpose and a focus.  But, when I read this in the article, it made so much more sense:

“Elizabeth Gilbert discusses the concept of ‘creative entitlement’ in her brilliant book, Big Magic. In short, your own reasons to create are reason enough. Do whatever brings you to life. Follow your own fascinations. Create whatever causes you to feel alive. The rest will take care of itself.”

Yes…that.  Follow my fascinations (and they are many and often disconnected).  Do what brings me life.  Create what causes ME to feel alive.  It is like validation for my lack of focus and my love of random prompt memes.

And although my readership has increased quite a bit over the past year or so (thanks to those still following despite my irregular posts and especially thanks to those who take the time to click like or, even better, leave a comment), that isn’t what really matters in the end:

“Retweets, favourites and shares are arbitrary and the wrong reasons to create. This is your work, not an overly-filtered selfie. You should be doing it because you love it. When you look back on your writing in 5, 10, 15 years’ time, you won’t be obsessing over page views, you’ll just be glad you did it. Trust me.”

So, for all of you out there like me, wondering why you’re writing or for whom or letting your writing go to the bottom of the priority list because it isn’t “productive” work, remember that you can be writing for YOU and make it a priority because it is something you love.

Happy Sunday everyone!

 

Uncategorized

Oops…I did it again…

brittney spears

It only took six days and I missed my goal of 31 days of blogging.  Sigh… I did it again…

But, I’m not going to let that discourage me from sticking with the remainder of the month of March!  We’ll just have to move on.  So, here I am moving on…

And yes, I did just get that song stuck in your head.  Sorry, not sorry.