TO DO: Spa Day Reward

I kinda suck at the whole “take care of yourself” thing. I don’t take care of my skin, my hair, my nails. I’ve told you before about my haircuts and how terrible I am with that. In my entire life, even through a six-week modeling course, I have never once plucked a single hair on my body. It’s all just kinda foreign to me.

But lately, I’ve been desperately craving a spa day.

I want to lounge in a seat while someone expertly paints my toenails. I want to get my eyebrows shaped and have a nice refreshing facial. I want to get my hair did and done. In a perfect world, I’d get a relaxing massage too!

And I have begun putting the gears in motion.

I told The Boyfriend that I will make all the doctors, dentists, optometrist appointments if and only if, he makes me a spa day appointment. It’s a task that I need to get done but for some reason cannot make myself do it. Firstly, I am deathly afraid of dentists. The idea of any of us having to go see a dentist, scares the crap out of me. The rest, I’m not sure why it seems like such a chore for me, but it’s been on my to-do list for years and I just keep making excuses.

Maybe if I have a reward to look forward to at the end of it (other than knowing we’re all somewhat healthy), it won’t be so hard for me to do it!

The Boyfriend liked the idea a lot. He liked it mainly for the idea of me treating myself to something. He always gets a kick out of treating me like a princess, although never thinks to do it himself – I think mainly because he’s afraid I’ll reject it.

So now, he has to:

  • Find a spa
  • Book me a…
    • Mani/Pedi
    • Eyebrow Threading (because I’ve always wanted to try it! Especially over waxing)
    • Facial
    • Haircut

And then I have to:

  • Find out how each of the kids are covered under their Dad’s healthcare – the older three with Alfie and Carter with The Boyfriend
  • Call our doctor who we haven’t seen in about four years
  • Find a dentist for the whole family and book first appointments
  • Find an optomotrist for the whole family and book appointments

Geez, just writing that out makes my palms sweaty. So much work but it’s gotta get done and at least I’ll get a spa day out of the deal 😉

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TO DO: #WritingChallenges for #EroticWriters

As the creator of The Erotic Writers Group, I’m often coming up with challenges and prompts for our group’s #DailyChallenge over on Challenge Central, where you can get #WritingChallenges for #EroticWriters every single day.

Since I’m coming up with them, I think it’s only appropriate that I participate every once and awhile. How can I expect others to, if I don’t?

Over time, I have participated in a few of the challenges. My first one was a 250 word #WordcountWednesday submission. Most recently, I submitted a sex song called Deeper Into Me for #SaturdaySerenade. Every once and awhile, I will submit some stuff and add it on My Writing & Erotica blog.

However, I’m sorely behind. We have just come back after quite a long hiatus and in the 3 weeks we’ve been doing the challenges, I’ve only submitted 2 or 3 pieces. Simply not good enough. So, I figured I’d create a list of all the challenges that I want to do and then challenge myself to start checking them off my list. Chances are, I’ll get none in by the submission deadline, although hooray for me if I do.

#SumItUpSundays

#SumItUpSundays

#SumItUpSundays

#MondaysMuse

#MondaysMuse

#MondaysMuse

#WordcountWednesday

#WordcountWednesday

#WordcountWednesday

#ThursdayThoughts

#ThursdayThoughts

#ThursdayThoughts

#FetishFridays

#FetishFridays

#FetishFridays

#SaturdaySerenade

#SaturdaySerenade

#SaturdaySerenade

#WritingPrompts to Use

Back in early summer of 2014, we used to add #WritingPrompts for #EroticWriters every week, five at a time. Starting this new year, we’ve been adding one a day. I decided to start collecting all the ones that I’m really interested in writing about.

I plan to continually update this list as new challenges and prompts come out and as I make submissions. It’s part of my #EroticWriters Resolutions to get going on this, so fingers crossed and all. I’ll update on Twitter when I make any changes to this list, so be sure to follow me there.

And if you’d like to learn more about these challenges, please don’t hesitate to check out Challenge Central. It’s easy to participate and you can get all the information you need there. Hope to see you there!

TO DO: #EroticWriters & #EroticReaders Resolutions 2015

Recently on The Erotic Writers Group blog, a couple of posts were published about setting resolutions as an erotic writer and an erotic reader and there was also a challenge for #EroticWriters resolutions. Today, I thought I’d take a minute to reflect on some of my writing goals for 2015.

#EroticReaders Resolutions

  1. Read 25 Books in 2015

    I’m participating in Goodreads’ yearly reading challenge. Last year, I think I put 50 books at first and then after starting my massive Sherlock Holmes, abandoned the challenge. This year, I’ve selected a more manageable number and have also started adding eBooks that I read (because I forgot you could do this on Goodreads).

  2. Write Reviews

    I’m not sure exactly how I want to go about doing this. I find that I’m often more critical of my review of things than I am of my own fictional or non-fictional writing. I struggle with giving criticisms of any kind as well, so that makes it difficult too. I mainly would really like to start publishing reviews on my Goodreads account and then venture elsewhere.

  3. Read Some Classic Erotica

    This is just kind of an ongoing role. I’ve been reading approximately one piece of classic erotica every year for the past few. Sadopaedia by Anonymous is my absolute favorite and I’ve read it about 30 times. Every couple of months I go back to it and flip through the pages. I am working on a list of book’s that I’d like to read in this genre including The Story of O and The Whippingham Papers (I’ll add it when it’s done).

  4. Join a Book Club

    Whether it’s finally getting down to making the book club I’ve always desired to make or just joining one of the many thousands of book clubs on Goodreads, I really want to try this out at some point this year. I figure that I won’t even consider it at the moment because I’m too busy elsewhere, but maybe in the summer or during back-to-school I’ll dedicate myself to it.

  5. Read More Poetry

    I tend to stick to non-fiction a lot when I’m choosing what to read. And I don’t spend nearly enough time seeking out new and interesting things to read. I’ve always wanted to spend some time reading poetry. I’ve purchased a variety of different books of poetry and save it to read all over the place, but I never really hunker down and do it. Poetry takes up a lot more mental capacity for me than other forms of reading, so I rarely dedicate myself to it. I’d like to change that.

  6. Actually Read Erotica

    Yes, I read publications from 100 years ago, but I rarely ever explore modern day erotica. Often times, I don’t know what I want to read, so I don’t know where I want to look, and I just don’t spend much time on it. But I run a community for #EroticWriters and #EroticReaders, it’s only right that I take a few moments to actually read what they’re doing!

#EroticWriters Resolutions

  1. Regularly Post to my Writers Blog

    I made my first post to my writing blog back in July 2014 and really enjoyed participating in The Erotic Writers Group #WritingChallenges for #EroticWriters. Ideally, I would be posting once a day or maybe even twice a day, one submission post and then one unrelated post. Currently, I’m nowhere near that! The goal for now is to at least post twice a week.

  2.  Complete a First Draft of The Brighton Tales

    This goal is taking me so much longer than it should. To be honest, I haven’t even looked at it since the last post I did about wanting to complete this story. At the very least, if I do nothing else on this list but this, I want to complete the first draft of The Brighton Tales. Mark my words!

  3. Participate in #WritingChallenges for #EroticWriters

    I’d like to participate in every single one of them, but I know how hard I find that, especially when I’m the creator of the challenges. Sometimes it just won’t work. So I’d like to commit to doing at least one writing prompt every session and it would be fantastic if I could do every single #ThursdayThoughts and one other challenge throughout the week.

That’s all I can think of for the moment, although I’m sure that I’ll come up with more as the days go on. What are some of your resolutions this year? Be sure to stay tuned to see my progress 😉

TO WRITE: Something Non-Erotic and Fictional

I do write non-erotic fiction, I’m almost absolutely sure of it! For many years now my main focus has been erotic fiction and erotic non-fiction and any other writing is in the form of articles or resource pieces.

Prior to erotica, I stuck mostly to poetry – that I would then add to music and make a song out of. It’s been a really long time since I last wrote a song and I’m pretty sure my last masterpiece was an on-the-spot piece consisting of two chords and words that rhymed with “tree”, thus making this song “The Tree”. Could I tell you anything about the song now? Nope!

What I’d really like to experiment with is sci-fi/fantasy writing, but I’ve often found that I struggle intensly with it. Especially being that I’m not a huge fan of reading it and so far the only fantasy/sci-fi type books that I’ve gotten into (thanks to The Boyfriend) is R.A. Salvatore’s Legend of Drizzt series (seriously love this character!).

I’d also really like to try my hand at some literary humor. I tend to not even try to be funny in writing. Sarcastic sometimes or maybe darkly witty, but rarely ever outright funny. The smiles on people’s faces during reading any of my pieces would probably be more devious than one of sincere and genuine humor.

I’m kind of not sure where to start with this one. If it doesn’t involve sex or intimacy, I’m kind of lost on what to do with characters and plots. I don’t get ideas in my head about non-erotic things or non-educational things very often, so it’s kind of like fishing in the dark and seeing what I come out with.

The Boyfriend has been working on two stories, very sporadically, that I would eventually like to contribute to. I feel like I could tell the story so much more differently than him, but inspired by his original storyline, that it could be a very interesting thing to do. However, he would totally have to finish one of them for me to do that with 😉

TO MAKE: Household Management System

Some people think that having a binder dedicated to the running of the household is a useful tool to have. I would normally agree, except that in my house, if it’s paper (or walls), it gets drawn on. And while these 4, 6, 8 and 9-year-old beautiful abstract flowers are nice to have, it makes keeping organized impossible!

So, we bought a white board thinking this would solve the problem. That white board is still sitting in my closet and we’ve lived here for three years with the goal of putting it up… In two different ways we’ve tried filing cabinets. I have a rolling drawer one, which is now completely broken and I have a little desktop one that just kinda gets shoved full of papers and then forgotten about.

This is one of those situations that really has me stuck on my goal of creating routine. To create a routine, I need to have a household management system in place. To get a household management system in place, I need some type of routine. It’s a total catch-22/vicious cirlce type of situation. Where do you start? What was first – the chicken or the egg?!?!?

In a Perfect World…

If we lived in a perfect world – well first of all, I would have a job, the kids would be homeschooled and have after-school activities to go to, there’d be a vehicle and a driver’s license, we’d live somewhere else in the world, etc. However, we’ll just use today’s world as an example of how a home management system might work or how I’d like it to work…

First, there’d be a station at the most commonly used door. I’ve seen many variations on this space, but mostly, I’d want:

  • A garbage can for junk mail
  • A mat for shoes to be placed on
  • Hooks for coats and backpacks
  • A table with a bowl for keys and change
  • A mirror
  • A place to put important mail and school stuff that has to be looked at every single day and organized!!

Then, we’d need to figure out some way to keep track of all the things we have to keep track of. Like when certain “days” are at school, when bills are due, when birthdays are and when we should start planning for them… I’ve attempted a variety of different mediums for date tracking (online calendars, wall/fridge calendars, apps, etc.) and none have ever stuck.

Really, I just need to pick a method and then become consistent with it. Do you notice the common theme here? Consistency – I need to be become more consistent in EVERYTHING!!!

I hope to spend the next month really trying to figure out how to make a routine and home management system that will work for us, so that when school starts (especially being that all 4 will be in school and then I’ll be able to think about going back to work soon), we have something in place that will help us keep track of everything. Because I do not need another repeat of the disaster that was last year or the years prior…

Does anyone out there feel like they have an organized life, a consistent routine? Do you think it’s easy to maintain or do you sometimes struggle too?

TO DO: Paperwork, Phone Calls and Errands

So, for years, there has been a slew of things piling up to conspire against me – okay, really they’re not actually conspiring. It’s just things that I have put off over the years that I should and really want to absolutely get done.

For example, I still don’t have my driver’s license, even though I’ve had my learner’s license. And I only have one birth certificate for one of my kids… So, let’s go through the list of all the paperwork, phone calls and errands that I really should get done…

  1. Get My Driver’s License

    I obviously just told you about this, but seriously… I think it’s ridiculous that I’m almost 28 and will have to start back at the beginning of the graduated licensing system, when I would’ve just had to have taken that road test when I was 16 to have my full driver’s license now.

    What holds me back from getting it? Fear mostly. Fear because I haven’t taken a test in a really long time, fear because it’s been a long time since I really drove… Who knows for sure.

  2. Get a Library Card

    I used to have a library card, I think. And I’m pretty sure I owe money on it, I think. It’s hard to remember because it was when we first moved here, I think and we’ve moved a lot since then. I need to at least pick up the phone and find out one way or another.

    I really want a library card though. I want to be able to read more than just what I have on my bookshelf (which is currently almost all stuff that I’ve read or have no interest in reading), plus our library hosts a ton of really awesome events and I could just see me going to them if I had a reason other than the event to go to the library.

  3. Make Doctor’s Appointments

    This is kind of a multi-step to-do, which is exactly why it hasn’t been done and keeps getting pushed so far to the backburner. First, we need to get our medical situation sorted out. Since The Boyfriend and I are now claiming common-law, all of that stuff has changed and neither of us has really taken the time to find out how exactly…

    Then, we haven’t been to see our family doctor since Carter was first born. Does that still mean that we can go see him? I’m not sure… But anyways, have you ever tried to book an appointment that includes a PAP smear for 5 people at a time (now 6)…? It’s epic work! That also involves me knowing exactly when The Boyfriend has off and generally I tend to rely on his reminders the night before.

    Finally, we need the whole work up. We all need to get just regular ole physicals, then we all need to see an eye doctor (especially The Boyfriend who is virtually blind without glasses) and finally, we all need to go to the dentist. That’s basically 15 different things to worry about right there!! That doesn’t include the paperwork, potential costs, nothing…

    It’s very daunting!!!

  4. Get Birth Certificates

    This one needs to be done by the time the kids go back to school, so it’s probably the only one that I’m pressuring to get done like yesterday. We’ve got Carter’s birth certificate, which I have to find a safer place for and now we need to work on getting the three older kids theirs.

    This one just mostly involves taking the long walk or bus ride to the place and putting in the purchase. Plus, it’s going to cost a pretty penny…

  5. Start a Savings Account

    Now that The Boyfriend has gotten his promotion and we’re getting more into the swing of how our monthly income is now going to work, it would really be nice to start some sort of savings system.

    This one is mostly about researching our options and then choosing what’s going to work best for us and then experimenting until we get it right. But it would be nice to have a plan going into the whole experience of saving money.

That’s all I can think of at the moment, although I’m sure that I’m forgetting at least three other things, which I’m sure will come to me. All of this would be so much easier if I just had a routine

Well stay tuned for updates about this particular goal and maybe in the next year or two, I’ll be driving and reading at the library 😉

TO DO: Create and Follow a Routine

One of the greatest problems I’ve faced over my lifetime is sticking to any type of routine. For the most part, I’ve managed okay with the lack of routine, although there are times when I seriously question how okay I’m actually managing.

It’s long been a goal of mine to create a manageable routine and follow it enough that I feel the effects of it, as I’ve been told magical stories about circadian rhythms and been instructed on the benefits of habit.

I often hit a variety of stumbling blocks, which stand in the way of ever sticking to routines. First off is the kids. Kids are very unpredictable and you have to have some flexibility when working with routines. I also have four of them, plus a man that often acts a little bit like a kid, so there are five people to consider when making routines.

Then there’s the fact that I’m a stay-at-home mom. The only reason I have to get up in the morning is to get the kids off to school. I am also a procrastinator and a perfectionist, one of the most horrible mix of qualities I’ve ever encountered.

Finally, when I envision my ideal routine, it includes steady waking and sleeping hours. However, that doesn’t always work out since The Boyfriend often works varying hours and we go to sleep together. It also gets in the way because I sometimes suffer from insomnia, although not nearly as bad now as it used to be.

In a Perfect World…

If we lived in a perfect world my routine would consist of an early morning wake up and workout. During the morning hours, I would clean my house from top to bottom including a load of laundry every single day. During the afternoon, I would focus on all my online work, spending no more than 4 hours on it.

Once the kids returned home from school, I’d love to spend more time with them. At the moment, this time feels rushed and uncontrolled. We hurry to make and eat dinner, we sometimes forget to check for homework and by the time the kids go to bed, stress levels are through the roof for everyone.

I’d like for this time to have dedicated space for homework, then making dinner together as a family and eating it as such, and a nighttime routine that helps the kids relax and unwind as well as prepare for the day ahead.

Finally, I’d like to have a bedtime routine for myself. Ideally it would include at least an hour of reading, time enough for snuggling and a regular falling asleep time.

Over time, you’ll see updates on this post as I attempt to reach my goal, so stay tuned!