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The Crock-Pot Writing Method

The Crock-Pot Writing Method

You can choose to set on a path of writing, but you become a writer by doing it daily–even when it’s hard, even when it’s crap, even when nobody is listening.

My friend Jess wrote that the other day. Jess, who sent me a message via the contact form on my blog almost four years ago and said, “I’m 21 years old and I am an English Literature Major at New Mexico State University, and I want so badly to write. I really just don’t know where to start.”

Fast forward four years and Jess is one of those super … Continue reading

Climb Every Mountain (Barefoot)

Climb Every Mountain (Barefoot)

In the spirit of knowing instead of wondering, I climbed some cliffs barefoot on my birthday.

Which makes it sound so much more adventurous than it actually was… I’m just not really sure what to call this particular rock formation, and few things sound quite as lackluster as, “I climbed a small rock formation barefoot on my birthday.”

So, cliffs it is.

We came up to them from a wooden walkway that led up to a waterfall. (I’m realizing as I’m writing this that my outdoor enthusiast vernacular really leaves something to be desired. Thus, the “wooden walkway” that … Continue reading

Freedom hair, the dentist, and turning 31

Freedom hair, the dentist, and turning 31

I chopped a bunch of my hair off last Saturday.

I had been thinking about it for a little bit. Maybe a week or two. And when I remembered that there’s a Paul Mitchell School near my parents house where you can get your hair cut by a student for $12, I was pretty much sold on the whole deal.

There was a point fairly early on in the process when I recalled the now infamous red hair decision and the 24-hour food coloring regimen that followed and felt a rising panic that maybe I was doing the same thing … Continue reading

Adventures in dangerous tennis

Adventures in dangerous tennis

It’s no secret that I’m not really wired for complex athletic endeavors. “Complex” meaning anything other than walking and sometimes running. However, I may have arrived at a new low over the weekend.

My roommate Jenny and I decided to play racquetball on Sunday. Jenny is probably the most athletically skilled person I know in real life. She’s one of those people who has an inherent understanding of hand-eye-body coordination. Surprising to no one, I’m not one of those people. What I have is an inherent understanding that I do not have hand-eye-body coordination, which explains my perpetual all-enthusiasm-no-skill … Continue reading

The future might not be terrible!

The future might not be terrible!

I have all the qualities of an optimist and none of the follow-through.

I love being optimistic about the present. I’m habitually and absurdly content with whatever my present circumstances are. I can find microscopic amounts of good and potential good in almost anything that is actually happening.

But my optimism about the future leaves something to be desired, namely optimism. To me, the future is a foggy abyss I want nothing to do with. The future is an uncertain time steeped in high amounts of potential catastrophe and the certain demise of everyone and everything I love. So, basically, … Continue reading

Chicken, Three Ways (including “The Soup”)

Chicken, Three Ways (including “The Soup”)

Let’s talk about a kitchen victory like no other: using one thing for multiple purposes.

This is not a new revelation. The New York Times is not going to call me to discuss my groundbreaking use of poultry. This is, however, the first time I’ve:

  1. Bought a whole chicken and roasted it for dinner
  2. Roasted the carcass* to make chicken stock
  3. Used the stock to make soup

I felt like a pioneer. I never watched Little House on the Prairie, but it seemed like Laura Ingalls Wilder would have been proud.

It all started with a real chicken from a … Continue reading

On small changes

On small changes

We’ve been on a bit of a Fixer Upper kick around here. I was watching the show one day, which intrigued one of my roommates, who then watched more episodes and read The Magnolia Story and went on a pilgrimage to Waco (and/or she was already going there and the Silos just happen to be there too… basically the same thing.) My other roommate is Chip Gaines. So home improvement vibes have abounded as of late.

We’ve been talking about painting the living room for a long time, but starting to paint is kind of like starting to work out. … Continue reading

573 words on the Nice Black Shoes

573 words on the Nice Black Shoes

I’ve learned a thing or two in my 30 years of life, and one of those things is this: comfort > style.

I’m not exactly rolling into work in my pajamas or anything, but let’s just say I’ve embraced a flexible definition of the word “pants.” So yesterday morning, when I was deciding what to wear and I wanted to go with the Nice Black Shoe option, I came to a crossroads.

I like the Nice Black Shoes from Target, but the Nice Black Shoes don’t like me. By mid-day I’m always cursing my choice of footwear, … Continue reading