Lessons Learned: Exercising the Senses

My husband and I camped last weekend in our Class B RV. Most times when we camp, Mike and I keep busy by checking out the different attractions around the area. We explore towns, shop, visit wineries or breweries, and hike or bike different parks or trail ways. I love all of our camping experiences, but one thing I have to remember is to take time to write.

Camping is a great time to write. Sunday morning at the KOA in Rochester, I sat at the picnic table with my pen and tablet in hand. I had the sun beating on my back—which felt great since the air was slightly chilled—and I took time out to enjoy where we camped. I tuned in to the wind rustling the leaves, and the birds chirping to one another as if catching up on gossip. Their wings fluttered as they flew from tree to tree. I also heard truck and trailer doors slam shut, the zipper on a tent zip as the flap opened or closed, and the ping of a steel rod cut the air as the wind blew it against a trailer hitch. All were vivid sounds for my ears to tune in and hear.

My other senses were used as well. For smell, the fragrant Lilac bushes and other flowers filled the air with a sweet scent, the pine from the picnic table came out as it baked in the sun, and on occasion a faint whiff of sewer smell tainted the other smells. For sight, I watched the shadows play against the grass when the trees moved in the breeze, and how the seeds from those trees floated down to the ground. Other campers were packing up, having to head back home after the short weekend—weekends are always too short.

In the time that I sat at the picnic table, I wrote this blog on paper and came up with a story idea for a young adult series. Not everything I wrote went into this blog today and I may not write the story idea for some time, but I had the time to write whatever my senses wanted my hand to write. For me, it was a great exercise to use my senses. Next trip, I’ll set time aside to do the same thing.

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Lessons Learned: 2014 Brain Scramble

The first morning of 2014, I was in somewhat of a brain scramble. Mike and I stood in the kitchen drinking our coffee. I had two cups before I could even move, and I didn’t even drink the night before! Instead my goals had overcome me.

Since the beginning of December, I thought about and worked on my goals for 2014. I always get excited about goal setting because I’m a forward thinker (which is also a downfall because I have to remind myself to live for the day). I believe that the New Year brings a fresh look on life and a chance to revitalize what you want to accomplish. Three of my personal goals for the New Year include:

Goal 1: Respecting my body. I know that my body is changing, and I’m not as flexible as I used to be. Not that I’m succumbing to it, but I need to readjust my thinking. Instead of military-style exercises, I need to go for gentler exercises that help balance and strengthen my body. Besides exercising, I need to eat less. Again that age thing. Now is a good time to stay healthy inside and out.

Goal 2: Stop worrying so much. I worry about family and life. I want the best for my children and it’s hard to see them struggle. I want my parents to be comfortable. It’s hard to see them when their bodies and minds start to fail them. I dream up scenarios that make me worry even more, and I have to stop that habit. I believe everyone has their destiny marked. Things happen for a reason. Instead of worrying, I need to enjoy each day and feel blessed to know those who are in my life. I also have to remember that when I was younger and just starting out, I had to struggle and find my own way. By doing so, I became stronger.

Goal 3: Write. I love to write but my time lately has been spent on promoting and other duties related to writing. This winter will be a good time to write the next story, especially when the weather is minus 30 degrees Fahrenheit (like this morning).

And now I’ll circle back to the first sentence in my blog. After deciding on my goals for the New Year (like the ones above), I woke up on January 1, 2014, wanting to run full speed ahead to accomplish my goals. Only my goals weren’t like tasks to accomplish in a day. So that morning I stayed in a brain scramble as my mind spun wanting to do everything at once. My body finally said, “Relax, it’s a holiday.”

January 2, the day after the New Year, I began my goals for 2014.