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Showing posts from October, 2010

My NaNoWriMo Warmup: Prenatal Yoga

It's that time of year again! My local NaNoWriMo group is having their annual Halloween costume kickoff party tomorrow, and then there will be biweekly write-ins throughout the month at a couple of cafes in town.

I'm not exactly participating in NaNoWriMo this year, but I do plan on attending the write-ins, just for fun, and to give myself special time to work on a couple of creative writing projects I have already started.

And I just started taking prenatal yoga classes at a local studio!

You might be asking, what do these two things have to do with each other? In my mind, they're totally connected. Yoga practice has a number of effects that will help me through NaNoWriMo.

First of all, cankle prevention. I've been practicing yoga throughout my pregnancy with home DVDs. Taking a class in-person is more fun, but the DVDs have been nice to have around. And I notice a huge difference when I skip a workout or two--my legs and ankles start to swell, and I feel more achy …

Do Tampons Take Your Virginity? Kindle Edition Live

This is finally happening!

Click above to find a link to purchase the e-book on Amazon for a mere 99 cents. This is a saucy, gritty, messy memoir of a Portuguese Catholic girl with one crazy family. Much of the horror and hilarity resonates with anyone born and raised Catholic, in any culture. Author Marie Simas is a technical writer by day, who was "discovered" when she posted bits of her memories on Smashwords and was offered a publishing contract by Deviant Troll Press.

Remember, kids: Sometimes, "If you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all" doesn't get you anywhere.

Writers' Butt Blogfest

OK, that's not really what it's called. It's a Writing Space Blogfest for the lazy writer! Just pop yourself into the linky tool and post a picture of your writing space on November 1. If you're participating in NaNoWriMo, this will get your lazy rear in gear to tidy up your workspace before you park it there for the next month.

And, you get to stalk around and look inside other people's houses. I love doing that. Thanks to Summer for hosting the blog hop.

DON'T FORGET to click that link that says "Get the code here..." and post this linky tool on your own blog or website. We must go forth like zombies and pass on the infectious fun.

Falling in Love with Autumn

My neighborhood is bursting into color right about now. My head is full of snot, my yard is littered with yellow leaves and fat green walnuts, and my roses are barely clinging to life, but still, I love this season! It is the most vivid, saturated, ambivalent, and dramatic time of year, so as a writer and painter, I revel in it like a kid in a heap of sluggy leaves.

Here is a recap of my favorite autumn posts:

The Gracious Reaper: musings, poetry, and photos
Coming Out Day: thoughts on a holiday that is being celebrated all month long in 2010
Coming Out Day: October 11: one day after the magical 10/10/10 this year

Men Belong in the Kitchen: on the menu already this year: homemade pizza by the Baked Chef and Mr. G, with 3/4 whole wheat hand-tossed crust, spicy tomato sauce from scratch, and fresh mozzarella cheese; one topped with spinach and feta and the other with ham and leeks; baked in a fire oven stoked by two wood-chopping menfolks; PREGOSAURUS LIKE!

How to Celebrate Day of the Dead:…

Body Language: Does your wardrobe say "maternity?"

I had an interesting conversation with my mom the other day. Every time she sees me during this pregnancy, she says something like, "Well, look at you! When I was young, you would never see a pregnant woman wearing something that form fitting."

My mom also tends to mistake non-pregnant women and girls in empire waist tops for being pregnant. I think this has to do with how fashion narratives and signals have changed since the time she and her own mother were bearing children.

Back in the '50s and '60s, when Grandma and her sisters and friends were having their babies, the average American woman of childbearing age had a nipped little waist, as exemplified in the period fashion of the show Mad Men.

I have a hunch that women in the workplace might have taken great care to emphasize their waistlines, not just because it was the fashion of the time and because it made their figures look great, but because it showed with no uncertainty that they were not with child. This …

Living Begins in the Shell

Nux Gallica is now about 24 gestational weeks old as the third trimester begins.

She can hear, move her hands and mouth with intention, taste, smell, and even see light and dark. Her gray matter is all in place, and she can learn to respond to or ignore certain noises or other sensations. She can recognize individual people's voices, especially her parents', and her ears are being trained to differentiate between the sounds of her parents' native language and others, like Tia Esperanzita's Spanish.

These milestones have been known by doctors and scientists for some time, but it surprises me how shocking it still is for many people to hear reports that experiences within the womb have profound effects on a person's entire lifespan.

Why should it be surprising? Gardeners know that the way a vegetable seed is germinated helps determine how it will grow. How could this principle not hold true for the gestation of a highly complex mammal?

Culturally, many of us harbor …

Third Quarter Review

More than 3/4 of this year is over already! One nice thing about posting my New Years' Resolutions online is that I have no excuse for forgetting them. I posted a set of ridiculously ambitious goals that have already been amended at my First and Second Quarter Reviews, and now I will report on how those are going. At the Second Quarter Review, my unresolved resolutions were:
1. Complete and edit Parts I and II of the first draftof Sleeping Beauty and the Beast of Vepreskastel. Revise the manuscript with the help of local writers' groups and beta readers.
Status: Indefinitely postponed; replaced with smaller goal. Sometimes completing some of our goals faster than expected poses an obstacle for others. The early completion of goal #4 (see below) has changed my priorities for the year and also given me such a generous dose of progesterone that my brain is incapable of focusing on a large project such as a novel. I decided that it would be better to put this one off until next ye…