Gratitude and Endings : November 18, 2015

Last night, I was talking with my eleven-year-old, and realized that Thanksgiving, or at least the locally relevant American version, is just over a week away.

Yup, next Thursday is the last one in the month, which means the penultimate month of the year is already drawing to a rapid close.

Perhaps coincidentally, when midnight struck (that’s my ‘official’ self-appointed deadline for ROW80 progress), I was poised just past the entrance of the penultimate scene of my WIP novel, Sea Changes (KIC#3), feeling my way into a death scene.

And another ending, today: On Monday, we were visited by the CPS caseworker, who wanted to inform us, in person, that our case was being closed, with the determination that the claims made by the anonymous (but known to us) family member were unfounded.

While I would prefer a healthier and more open family-of-origin dynamic, there is a certain degree of quiet vindication in having been so closely examined on three separate occasions, and, each time, having the same determination made. I didn’t need the government to tell me that our life is working for us, but, given the tendency of this person to make reports based on supposition, exaggeration, personal biases, and outright falsehoods, all presented as facts, it’s not a bad thing to have ongoing documentation of our fitness as parents, and as a family.

And all of these are things I’m grateful for, as the month and the year draw to a close.

What are you most thankful for, today?

Color-coding key:

  • Goal attained = blue with overstrike.

  • Goal in progress = green.

  • Goal-in-waiting = red.

  • Goal set aside = red with overstrike.


  • NaNoWriMo: Complete draft of Sea Changes (Kifo Island Chronicles #3). This near-future fantasy will be about 60,000 words, total. Official end of 11/17 count: 62,177/~ 60,000; it’s looking like a 65K novel. 22/24 scenes completed; resolution scenes in progress.


  • The IDIC Romance: Choose one freewriting for each letter to develop into an A-Z post; make episode list for rewatching, and take notes as needed. Hey, #itswritingresearch! 1/31 stories chosen. 21/26 letters completed; 1 /2 V completed. I’ll take this on once Sea Changes is complete (likely later today) and before delving back into FDWR.

Blogging/Social Media:

  • Publish all regular features posts; scheduling ahead where possible. Still not doing Coffee and Conversation or Mindful Monday; but, once I finish drafting Sea Changes, I will resume them.

  • Catch up all blog comments and visits. I’ve slipped back a little, between weekend activity and a lot of writing. Same story; once the novel is drafted…

  • ROW80: Keep visits and updates current. I failed to make the rounds for Sunday’s update; will do that tonight whether I finish the draft or not.

  • Maintain email inbox below 333 messages. Current total: 594 messages. Planning a session tonight or tomorrow.


  • Homeschool Administration: Complete all pending paperwork. Draft IHIPs and attend to district’s Peer Review issue. You guessed it; this will be a focus for tomorrow.
  • Get computer repaired!
  • Continue decluttering/beautification projects; in home and/or yard, five days weekly. Continue making improvements to our home and our quality of life. 3/5 family room; living room; study; yardtending.


  • Continue planning/ attending outings and events as desired. Another write-in for me; both kids more nocturnal than I currently am, and content to stay home and sleep during the daytime hours.

  • NNWM local group: Attend write-ins regularly, and check in on the Facebook and Twitter groups as inspired. Read and critique both projects I’ve been hanging onto. Doing a bit better overall; hoping to get to one of these critiques in the next couple of weeks.
  • Complete the two beta reads I’ve had waaay too long. Beta #2 complete through Chapter Four (p15/121).

  • My beloveds: One on one time with each, doing something of value to us both, each week. Walking. Chatting. Couples’ time.
  • Complete 7 pending book reviews.


  • Write in Abundance,Intentions, and #onegoodcup journals seven times each week. Meditate seven times weekly, including one eating meditation. Explore one new meditative practice. 3/7 for journaling and meditation. Exploring object meditation – seeking to become the object.

  • T’ai chi practice: at home three times; class once or twice a week. Continue reading The Tai Chi Directory. Planning to begin with one class next Tuesday, now that the family issue is resolved.

  • Make time for physical activity five days a week; use phone app to track three time a week. 3/5; 1/3 with phone.

Leaps of Faith:

  • Poetry Chapbooks: Basic research and discussion ; simmering.

  • Website/Business blog: Brainstorming.

  • Fantasy convention:

  • Fan fiction stuff

  • Self-publishing: Considering something….stay tuned. Reading Write. Publish. Repeat.

These goals are a part of Kait Nolan’s  ROW80 Writing Challenge.

Find more ROWers right here!


    • I didn’t used to be nearly so organized as I am, and I’m not nearly as organized now as I’d like to be in the not-so-distant future. It’s a growth process for me; the better I know myself, my circumstances, and how I function best within them, the more organized I get.

      For instance, because we’re unschoolers, there’s a great deal more spontaneity and unpredictability to things than there might be if my kids were in school. Things can also get messy…

      Taking that into account, I always have a variety of goals that pretty much cover every important area in my life. They range from simple to complex, short to long term, so that there’s always something that fits the time, energy, and focus of the moment, and so that I can go with the flow of my life.

      I’ve enjoyed all of these episodes numerous times. =) I’m more a fan of Season Two, where Spock really comes into his own (I’m all about the Vulcans!), but it’s also cool to see him becoming as Leonard figured out how to slip into his skin…

  1. You have a lot of blue and green this week! Congratulations! And also, congratulations on once more passing muster with CPS. I hope your anonymous (but known to you) reporter will learn their lesson.

    • I’m now finished with the draft, so I hope to have a lot more blue and green, and a lot less red, by Sunday. Some things have definitely taken a backseat through the first two thirds of the month.

      The CPS calls seem to happen when this particular person is feeling a need to control – me, or something in their own life. We absolutely know who it is, because there was only one person here in the days leading up to the call. Even if there had been others, being a writer predisposes me to noticing where people’s eyes go, what leading comments they make, the voice in the report…

      It does seem to be a lifelong habit with this person to make attempts, on occasion, to win my trust, and then do something of this nature.

      Whether or not the individual decides that thrice is enough, I’ve learned something. There will be no further effort on my part to connect with this person. While I’d prefer civil relations, that doesn’t seem like something that can translate to welcoming this person into our home.

      On the plus side, the social worker is a very sweet, kind person, and is the same one they sent the last time a report was made, so she knew something of us going in.

      We may not be able to count on this person choosing to live and let live, but we can at least not give them any added ammunition.

      In the meantime, we’re happy to have our time and our home all to ourselves again! =)

      Definitely something to be thankful for!

  2. I’m so very thankful for my family and friends!

    Speaking of family. I can’t believe someone keeps “reporting” you. This is crazy. Anyone can see, even your friends online, that your life is working. It’s peaceful and happy. Why do people want to stir up trouble? *sigh*

    • My upbringing didn’t come with a lot of tools for peaceful conflict resolution; manipulation was much more commonly practiced. It also didnt’ include acceptance of those who were different; judging others was a known path to feeling better about oneself.

      My family and I don’t exactly live the mainstream life that was touted as best, in my FOI.

      That seems to be taken variously as extremist, an act of war, an insult, or laziness.

      The concept that it might simply be the way we choose to live, because we’re happy and thriving this way, doesn’t seem to enter into it.

      As for this individual, this report follows a lifelong pattern that tends to have more to do with the reporter’s personal life and biases than with our family’s actual reality.

      I think, in some cases, stirring up trouble for someone else can be a way to avoid looking at what could be better in one’s own life. It takes a lot less work to report someone than it does to formulate and execute changes in ourselves,. after all.

      But I used the situation as a catalyst to make our lives even better, and we were graced with a very personable case worker who was also here the last time we were reported, so she had first hand knowledge of how the children have grown, and how our home has been improved.

      Peaceful and happy show in person, too. My kids – my kids just blow me away with how they are with adults. Gosh, I love them! ❤

      SO our lives are even better, now. If the aim of the reporter was truly altruistic, that should delight them, right? =)

  3. I’m most thankful for my family, and my health. Those two things are infinitely precious to me. 🙂

    Nice work, as usual. So glad the visit resulted in a good result. (Sorry, brain fried. Can’t think of a better way to phrase it).

Take a chance! Type something in this box, and see what happens! =D

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.