Writing for Bloggers, next Monday!

October 30, 2014 § Leave a comment

Hadley Barrows

There are a few seats left in the Writing for Bloggers class I’m teaching through Minneapolis Community Education next week. I just developed this class (Monday will be my first time teaching it) and I love how it turned out. It’s short. It’s sweet. And I’m especially excited about the “find your writing voice” exercise. It’s perfect for hobby and business bloggers alike.

We are going to have a lot of fun. You should sign up.

Class Details: November 3 from 7 to 9 p.m. Register here.

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Write a Novel: October Update

October 24, 2014 § Leave a comment

Wait! Which way’s up? I am having a hard time believing it’s almost the end of October. I’m having an even a harder time believing that after all the writing and reading I’ve been doing, I actually behind on my writing goals this month. I am not guilt-ridden about it so I’m not going to worry about it.

My 8-houses overview is SO MUCH FUN. I still love this part of writing a novel the most, most, most. Maybe more than I did last month. I still have some work to do on my October goal but I just get happy when I think about sitting down to do it. Just need to find the minutes…

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My October Micro Story is tied to finishing chapter 6 in my “learn to write” book and I have only read sections of this chapter so far. Therefore the answer is: I have not written the story. It’s on my list to read the chapter next week and maybe I’ll just read November’s assignment while I’m at it too. November, I’ll be back on track but as of now, no change from last month.

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Man I am struggling with this last story. I hate everything I write so I’m back to where I was in August. I am still not sure what to do about it, but I have a few ideas I will try to tackle in November. I keep telling myself I just need ONE GOOD SESSION. That’s all that’s between me and done. I keep trying but every session is, well, not it. Can’t force it anymore than I can force Eldyn to do, well, anything. Sigh.

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Fall Weekend 2015

October 20, 2014 § Leave a comment

We did all kinds of fun fall things this weekend. Here are a few photos from yesterday.


Eldyn: 2 Years + 10 Months

October 14, 2014 § 1 Comment


BFF: Just in time for planning his first-ever kid party, Eldyn has started picking out “favorite” friends at daycare. It should come as no surprise to hear that his favorite is never the same person twice. He has so far listed every kid in his class (and each teacher) at least once. It’s bittersweet because forever, his best friend at daycare used to be “Hiram.” But really, striking out on his own can only be a good thing.

Headaches: I love it when kids can tell you what’s wrong with them and Eldyn’s to this point. Sort of. At least he knows about headaches. When he had an ear infection, he said he had a headache in his ear. When I asked him to put his coat on, he told me I gave him a headache in his tummy.

I Dress Myself: Going, going, almost gone are the days of efficiently finding something cute for Eldyn to wear and getting him ready in five minutes or less. He’s increasingly interested in doing this himself. I must admit, the pride he takes in his appearance and accomplishment makes it worth it although I am now officially losing the battle against all-sportswear-all-the-time.

1 Year + 10 Months

10 Months


He Said/He Said: The Difference Between Boys and Girls

October 13, 2014 § Leave a comment

There’s a whole new level of side-conversation starting to happen between Hiram and Eldyn now. They discuss, disagree, make plans.

Here’s a conversation I heard over the weekend:

Eldyn: I’m a sister.

Hiram: Did you know that sisters are girls?

Eldyn: Um-hmmm.

Hiram: You want to be a girl?

Eldyn: Um-hmmm.

Hiram: Are you sure? Girls can’t use urinals.

Canoe Song

October 9, 2014 § 1 Comment

It’s been a little while since I posted a video of the boys singing. Can’t have that!

Grandma Barrows – here’s a taste of what is to come if you can make it to church with us this weekend. Although they won’t be singing Okey Dokey Brothers on Sunday.

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Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

October 7, 2014 § Leave a comment

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The bad thing about reading 4-6 books at one time is that you feel like you aren’t making progress for a very long time. The good thing about reading 4-6 books at the same time is that when you start to finish them, you finish a whole bunch of books all in a span of a week or two. Bam, bam, bam. Bam, bam, bam! That is why I am writing yet another review, this time on Haruki Murakami’s book Kafka on the Shore.

I know I’ve said this before but Haruki Murakami is my go-to author when I need my brain to get more creative. Or said in another way, when I need my brain to take a chill pill. Luckily for me, Murakami has what seems like an endless repertoire of books so I am never without something to read when I need it.

With each passing book, I’m less surprised although less surprised is still pretty surprised. He uses some of the same tactics over and over — things like characters in solitude, strange sex scenes, weird violence and not-human characters that are creepy yet pivotal to the plot. But, somehow this doesn’t bug me. Even though it happens over and over. It’s what I sign up for, I guess.

<pause for awkward introspection>

The things that set this book apart from his others were 1) A protagonist who I cared a little less about than usual and 2) The use of a very accessible and engaging opening scene. Man, I wanted to know more. And man, I was frustrated to realize that given the author, I probably never would. (TBD if my predication came true, no spoilers here!)

A note on raunchy – Although I love his books, I have a hard time recommending them to my friends. There are scenes in each of his books that stick with you and then pop into your head when you think about recommending it to your mom.  But, I know the scenes are just part of the deal. They sneak up on you and then you’re reading them and then you’re not. I wouldn’t want them to not be there. But then again, that would make it a lot easier to fully endorse. So read it. But only because you want to. Not because I told you to.

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