ROW80 Round 4 2013 – Weaving Sunlight and Shadow

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Does your life ever reflect the weather? It’s been a time of storms and sunny days here, full of autumn’s transitional energy.

I’ve been happily building blog queues, hometending, and enjoying time with my family. Fall tends to bring me renewed energy and ideas for how to arrange our spaces for the coming months, when we will be mostly indoors, and need space for board games, art, science, and other pursuits – as well as places to be together and alone…

Elijah James; July 13-25, 2003. Always within me.

And, I sat in bed and cried for Elijah.

That surprised me. Ten years can build callouses over even the most shattered places.

The tears led to ideas, and images, and memories as rich with emotion as though they were fresh…

I will be writing, and breaking my grief wide open…because I have to, to weave these shadowed places into the light…

But, for now, I want just to remember….

Vividly hued maple leaves, October 2012.

What do you need to write about, this week?

Session 1 Progress Menu (and what’s next!) :


Focused on:

Queuing posts.

Offering a sustainable schedule of features.

Post 4 non-ROW80 posts weekly: two at shanjeniah; one each at other blogs – October 15. Target attained!

All posted or scheduled.

Coffee and Conversation: ROW80, Again!

Wordless Wednesday: Springtime Memories

WIPpet Wednesday: Pause and Preparation

Maintain this level throughout round. On target.

For next week: Saturday, Wednesday, Thursday posts queued.
Complete/Queue Monday post.

Five posts queued for Regular Features: November 1. On target.

  • Coffee and Conversation: Queued -0; Development – 4; Ideas – 4.

  • Wordless Wednesday: Queued -3; Development 2; Ideas – 1. * I will be sharing NaNo excerpts through November, so I can’t queue them ahead.

  • WIPpet Wednesday: Queued -4; Development – 4; Ideas – 4.

  • Saturday’s Share: Queued -2; Development – 1; Ideas – 3.

Three posts queued for each Biweekly Feature: – November 1. On target.

  • Sunday Sampler: Queued -1; Development – 1; Ideas – 0.

  • Thursday’s Treat: Queued -1; Development – 3; Ideas – 4.

Strive for high-concept posts for shanjeniah Regular Features. Target attained!

Sharing memories of their brother, whom Jeremiah met, but Annalise never did, being born a year later.


Focused on:

  • Tidying and beautifying my physical, virtual, and interior spaces.

Ponder career development. Brainstorm, discuss, freewrite, percolate. On target.

  • Puttered around LinkedIn. Ideas coalescing.

  • Ponder while writing mission statement (s).

Research writers’ organizations choose 3 for further exploration October 31. On target.

  • Pondering; fiddling with ideas.

Continue the “greatroom” living room refit. On target.

  • Cleaned; kids moved coffee table.

  • Next up? Games shelves!

Clear out email inboxOctober 10. Target attained!

  • Sorted,deleted, emptied. Ah, what a lovely feeling!

  • Keep email inbox clear. Sort, file, and delete twice weekly.

  • Sort/empty spam folder.

Feeling reflective….immersed in light and shadows.


Focused on:

  • Relationships.

  • Exercise and Movement.

  • Passions.

Make time and sweetness for Jim, in ways that are meaningful to us both, and those important to him. Target attained!

  • Yes. Television, coffee and conversation in bed, romance, planning, and something new -between room cell phone flirting.

Do the same for the children, individually and together. Target attained!

  • Time chatting with both kids, said yes.

  • Lise -“Kindle time” on the big bed, stormy-day snuggles.

  • Took Jeremiah to the Y; guidance with treadmill, walked track together.

Make time for connecting with friends. On target.

  • Online.

Immerse myself in writing, living, and being with my family, striving for presence. Target attained!.

Regularly evaluate; adjust as needed. Target attained!

  • Family time, blogging.

  • Monday was stormy.I was tired and headachy. Tuesday was bright and pleasant; trip to the Y and grocery store.

  • More in-person friend time – it’s been a while.

Practice movement daily, for at least a few minutes. On target.

  • Monday – minimal: stairstepping, hometending.

  • Tuesday – workout, walking, dancing.

  • More intention. Move periodically during long nighttime writing sessions.

Work out at least once a week. Target attained!

  • One machine each – arms, legs, and abs. Increased weights and repetitions.

  • Several laps (a little under half a mile) walking on the track.

  • About .7 mile (15 minutes) treadmill.

  • I worked up a good sweat. Heart rate – endurance training.

  • Work out on Thursday,.

Get outside for at least a few minutes each day. Pending.

  • Monday: No. I forgot!

  • Tuesday: Out and about.

  • Weed; walk; play outside.

Allow time and space to indulge my passions. Target attained!

  • Daring things just for me.

Complete beta reading by October 20. On target.

  • Complete through Chapter 12; Scene 4; page 105/243.

Read, comment, and share others’ posts and links. Target attained!

Tend sponsor duties promptly. Target attained!

Find other ways to help. On target.

  • I have offered to supply a guest post. Waiting to hear back.

Connect. On target.

  • Online, a little. It’s been a blog-centric session.

Cheer on other ROWers!

Weaving sunlight and shadows….a breath at a time.


  1. Sounds like you’ve been building and receding with the force of the storms that drive this season for so many, Shan. And though it’s from my stories, not your own, I cannot help but see the comparison with your experiences and someone born Vestimorn…. And though I do tend to put my characters through a virtual wringer, I can see how strong they are, and how they succeed so well, just as you do.

    • Sys,

      Maybe I am a Vestimorn, in spirit. And I’m not sure that either of us writes stories that aren’t tangled in each other, somehow…a lifetime of knowing and connection can have that effect!

      As far as putting your characters through the wringer – well, that’s kinda your job! Mine tend to find their own wringers, and sometimes invite me to share them with others…sometimes they succeed, and are strong. Other times, they fail, and they aren’t very strong at all, in the moment. Sometimes their strength is in just surviving, until they can find a way to thrive.

      As for me – I don’t tend to think so much in terms of success as just in living in relative harmony with myself and others. I don’t doubt my strength often anymore…life has certainly offered me a few intense tests for that, as you know…

      And, by the way, I don’t doubt YOUR strength either! =)

      May you find delight in the season (a given!), and in your goals. Hopefully, you’re reading this after a soaring Mount Greylock hike. =)

      Thought you might like to know that I am typing this to you from our new “art desk” – someone else’s castoff. It’s a very pretty shade of green that you are going to love!

      • A green art desk… and I have the blue one that someone cast-off…. Somehow it feels apropos.

        We had a wonderful hike yesterday, and a great woods walk today down at the Greenville Town Park. Enjoying the season is definitely a given, but thank you for the wishes of delight too. May the joys of sheltering world fill you as well. Hopefully we’ll be able to get out for a Tuesday workout one of these days. Or maybe even a different day… I don’t mind having the younger people’s company with us. Maybe we could do a pool day?

        • It is pretty cool. It’s got a hutch shelf with a bulletin board, and it’s wide enough to stash art supplies and still have plenty of space to work. I’ve got it set up in the family room, which I was ready to reset, anyway. I like it because it’s a little out of the main flow of action, but not tucked in a corner, so it’s good for in the middle of the day. =)

          I am happy to meet you tomorrow, around 3, at the Y. Jim’s off, so I can have the Subaru. I’d like to grab a bite, later, and I want to get shades for my NEUC lamps.

          I’ll be going either way – and the kids and I have been going most Thurdays. Lise does PrimeTime. Miah’s allowed to be independent in the Y now, and to use the cardio room, if I am right beside him. Often, we take a short swim, after.

          It’d be great to see you, either day. =)

          • Three pm won’t work for us today. I could come back later and meet you alone, but that would be well after 5pm. (I’ll keep checking the wi-fi here and there, so let me know if that works for you.

            As for the rest… Thursdays sound wonderful, and Marcus and I would both like to meet with you next Thursday especially (since we’ll bth be up that way for a dentist appt. This Thursday I could come and meet you all on my Marcus has other plans with his friend John.

            I absolutely must see this new desk. It sounds like it’s exactly what you need at the moment. 😀 Happy for you!

          • Sys,

            I’ll be there a little later than I thought. Miah’s new Skylanders game (ordered in June for his birthday gift, and just released, then hung iup at Amazon while we untangled a way to pay for it without the card..) came this morning,and Jim stayed home later than planned chatting with him and watching him play. Could be I’m there later, or not.

            Since Thursdays are kind of special time for the kids and I, let’s save that for a kids-together thing. Also, I’d better mention that we always have the goal of getting home in time for The Big Bang Theory at 8! =D

          • Wrote a big reply and WordPress ate it…. 😦

            Hate trying to reply to posts on my laptop, something about operating system differences and such… I can’t just use the normal dashboard.

            Anyway, no visit tonight, I think. Sounds like time limits are all screwy and I need to be home earlyish tonight. And next Thursday for a kids together night sounds grand too…

            Much love. Enjoy your workout. I’ll go play with M at the playground for an hour or so–it’ll have to do…. 😉

    • Lauralynn,

      No, it never will go away. Elijah is as much a part of me as his siblings are. He’s made me a far kinder, more intentional person than I was before he was born.

      Several years before Elijah, in 1995, I was with my fiance when he died from cystic fibrosis. That, too, was a shattering experience. I couldn’t know at the time that Tim’s death was preparing me for Elijah’s…

      The only way I know to handle the memories and emotions of great loss is to be honest and let the feelings be. I need to have space in my life to deal with these immutable and deep losses. I’ve come to measure the quality of relationships by whether I can express my feelings in it, and have them treated openly.

      Thank you for your kindness. There are times that I handle the memories better than others. With October being Infant Loss Awareness Month, the memories are bubbling to the surface more often, and more intensely.

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