Day 13: The Wind Blows

30 Day Writing Challenge

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I’m moving east.

But the wind blows west.

I trudge forward but the wind won’t rest.

What do you call a sailboat that can’t sail?

It floats at sea. Nothing to be done as it travels west. Aimlessly past the world.

I am this sailboat.

I float.

The wind blows west.

And I float.

Day 11: Error 567—When life interrupts your plans…

30 Day Writing Challenge

Here’s the thing— sometimes we have these HUGE plans for ourselves and then BOMB, life happens and ruins it all for us. For example, I’m currently doing this 30 day writing challenge, but yesterday there just wasn’t enough hours in the day. I woke up at 5am to walk my dogs and get ready for a 6:15am pilates class. Then I had a doctor’s appointment at 8am. I went to work and got home around 5:30pm, walked my dogs, ate dinner and then headed to my social kickball league at 6:45pm. Came home around 9:30pm and walked my dogs again before passing out. It. Was. A. LONG. Day.

But here is the other thing—we can’t give up. Almost every goal I’ve ever set for myself has been accomplished imperfectly. That’s to say that it’s HARD work and there will be set backs—period. If it were easy, it wouldn’t be called “a goal” because we’d just do it. A goal is something that you’d like to accomplish, that you can envision yourself accomplishing, and that you know you need to work for to accomplish.

Don’t let set backs hold you back. Push through the negative thoughts that you aren’t good enough or that you won’t succeed. That’s just your fear of failure screaming at you from the back of the room. So I didn’t post yesterday for my #30daywritingchallenge, but I’ll post twice today. I’ll keep going even if I stumble. I’ll keep writing even if no one ever reads it and it turns out to be trash. It’s more important to finish a goal you’ve set for yourself than to have countless goals. And it’s more important than ever in this era of social media “likes” and other external validations, to validate yourself and be proud of yourself for your accomplishments. That’s why I keep writing.

Day 10: Life Lesson #3—How to save money like an impulse shopper…

30 Day Writing Challenge

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The million dollar question: Why am I always broke?

The first step is admitting you have a problem, right? I, Cat Marte, admit I am an impulse shopper. Thankfully it doesn’t happen often, but when it does happen, it’s like BOOM there goes all my progress.

There is hope still! Having read several blogs and other sites on how to save money, in addition to my own creative solutions, I’ve come up with a list of tips and tricks to save yourself from yourself.

Hide your money.

Yes. Hide it. FROM. YOURSELF. I do this by storing money in several different places. For example, I have 3 separate bank accounts; one is for spending; one is for paying bills; and the third is for hiding money. The way it works is simple; the bills account is where my direct deposit comes in. From there I pay my bills or leave enough money for autopay bills, then I transfer over my “spending” allowance to my spending account.

But here is the trick: the third account is NOT connected to the spending and bills accounts. This is a checking or savings account in another bank, totally isolated from the other accounts. To deposit money into this account, I go to the ATM and take out the money from my bills account (where my check gets deposited), and then drive to other bank and deposit the money into the third account.

Now for the tip: DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT walk around with the debit card associated with that account. In fact, shred it if possible. The whole point is that the money is in a place where it is not easily accessible. Next time you are at Target and you realize you really need new sheets (but do you actually?), they will just have to wait because there is no possibility of instant gratification. All the money you have left is in your third account, which you can’t access without physically leaving Target to go to the bank, stand in line for the bank teller, and withdrawal the funds. See why this method is so effective?

Cash OUT.

This method is similar to hiding your money but less steps and less driving. Sometimes what I do is withdraw all my money except my bills money. Then I divide it into sections (think Dave Ramsey), store the rest somewhere in my room and only carry with me what I need.

Trick: Don’t carry around your weekly budget—that’s just setting yourself up for spending it all in a day. Just carry with you your budget for that day! Sometimes I carry around no money, because I know there is no reason to spend money that day. Just think about this, if you are use to going to Starbucks and getting a $5 Chai latte every morning and then spending $20 on sushi for lunch that’s $25 a day. But if you have no money on you, besides the $15 you budgeted, then you will have no other choice but to find an alternative to your pricy habits and therefore save yourself $10!

Also, if you are going to use this method, make sure ALL of your disposable money is cashed out of your account, that way you can’t spend it by mistake.

Tip: If you use this method religiously, you will likely have some money left over (like in the Starbucks and sushi example), because you’ll have spend less than what you usually spend. Make sure to use that money productively, like throwing it into a saving account or better yet, into an investment account! Which brings me to my next method….

INVEST!!

Yes of course you should be contributing to your 401K or 503B or IRA or whatever investment method you have for retirement. This is super important—start young. But not what I am referring to here. What I am referring to is a concept called “Paying yourself first.” Any decent book or advice material about how to increase wealth talks about this concept. What it means is that, before you pay your bills or do anything with your money, you should be paying yourself, i.e taking out a portion of your paycheck to build your wealth.

Trick: I highly, highly recommend an investment app (aka robo-advisors) like ACORNS or SoFi, etc. I personally use ACORNS because I like the really easy, hassle free aspect of it. I also really like that you need just $5 to start and I love the concept of their “Around Ups” method. This makes saving absolutely forgettable, and when I do remember that it’s happening, I open up my ACORNS app and am pleasantly surprised by the amount I’ve saved.

Tip: ACORNS is really like a savings account plus, if you ask me. It’s investing for dummies who have trouble saving and have no idea how to invest. So it’s perfect for me! But if you are interested in more advanced robo-advisors, and also know more about stocks and investing, then nerdwallet did a great comparison on the best robo-advisors of 2019.

Bottom Line

I’ve tried all three of these methods with success, but let’s just be real, sometimes I fall off the wagon. I’ve tried several other methods of saving money and some have worked and some have bombed, and some have gotten me into more debt (hard sigh!). I think the key is to just keep trying. Take it paycheck to paycheck (all puns intended!) and see what works and what doesn’t.

Day 9: En Español

30 Day Writing Challenge

Estoy escribiendo una novela corta de mi experiencia personal tratando de enfrentando la muerte de mi padre. Cuando termine la novela, quisiera traducirla a español. Primero porque seria bonito darle esa escritura a mi mama, y segundo porque la experiencia fue con mi familia latina, así que, siento que seria mas autentica a historia en español.

Esta entrada de blog es el primer paso. Siento que cuando me expreso en español es totalmente diferente a cuando hable ingles. Es como que hay dos Caterin— Caterina y Catherine. Caterina es sabrosa, chistosa y llena de vida y alegría, mientras Catherine es sarcástica, educada y un poco cínica. Caterina se crío con padres bien Católicos, quienes le enseñaron ser una mujer echa y derecha. Catherine, al contrario, fue a la universidad a prender como viva la alta sociedad. Catherine aprendió pronto que lo que le enseñaron a Caterina de el hogar y como ser una mujer buena no tiene nada en absoluto de ver con lo que el “Americano” defina ser mujer.

En retrospectiva, las enseñanzas de mi doble vida es fundamental a mi ser. Quien seria si no por esas dos mujeres en mi? Como habría mirado el mundo si no por la dualidad de mi vida? Quizás fue una fuente de confusión en mi pasado, pero ahora lo veo como una verdadera bendición.

Day 8: Tangled Part 1

30 Day Writing Challenge

Coral is a mess. She slowly opens her eyes as she tries to massage the circulation back into her right hand. She feels her watch uncomfortably poking her wrist but she doesn’t takes it off—in fact, she never takes it off because anything she doesn’t have strapped to her she loses. Except her dogs—the dogs she walks that is. Those are her money makers and she desperately needs them. Today is Wednesday so it’s Skipper. Skipper is the sweetest pup you could ever ask for, except for the fact he’s all the way across town…Coral sighs at the thought. She rolls over the clothes scattered on her bed and stumbles to her feet. Looking into the mirror hanging from her closet door, she sighs again. Her wild blonde hair is all over the place, just like her life.

This week is not as bad as last week when she had a mental breakdown and quit nursing school. Who wants to be a nurse anyways? She only did it because she’d failed out of art school and thought she needed to take her life “seriously” again. Still looking in the mirror, she combs through her golden locks as she says aloud to herself, “This is the day. Today will be the day.” The day for what, you ask? The day one of her blogs will go viral. The day she is finally recognized for the brilliant, amazing, witty, talented writer she is. Or maybe just the day she makes enough for rent, either will do.

Apart from dog walking, Lyft driving and delivering Uber eats, Coral is a writer. She’s been “freelance” writing since high school— anything from website content for mom and pop stores, to editing, to ghost writing manuscripts and cookbooks. But one day. One day she will be a New York Times best seller. Not at this moment though, now she’s running out of the door while throwing on the closest pair of jeans and shirt she can find. Skipper’s owners have motion sensors on the doors and she CAN NOT be late.


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As she walks Skipper she daydreams of what life would be like if she only had to focus on writing…wow, wouldn’t that be nice. She can see the look on her face when she opens up that first offer email;

Dear Ms. Coral Macintosh,

Thank you for your submission. We are happy to inform you, your novel has been accepted by Plize Publishing.

Sincerely,

Your Future

In full daydream mode, she trips on the curb of the sidewalk and lunges full face into the concrete slab. Before she can fully open her eyes she realizes Skipper has gotten loose. OMG, she thinks! In a panic she gets up and looks frantically in all directions.

“SKIPPER!”

“SKIPPER!”

Coral is screaming “OMG, OMG, OMG,” over and over again until someone finally stops and asks her what’s the matter? It was a short, unassuming man about her father’s age. Coral can barely get the word’s out but she manages to tell the man what had happened. He’s eyes widened the size of walnuts and he begins to talk very quickly, “Okay you go up third street and I’ll go up Monte and we will meet in the park on Q St, I bet he ran to the park, does he like parks?!” Coral pulled herself together long enough to nod her head. The short man gave her a firm nod and walked briskly towards Monte Street.

Coral was beside herself with grief, she thought of all the worst things that could happen if she did not find Skipper. Could they sue her for losing their dog? Could she get thrown in jail? She was beginning to feel dizzy as she approached the park. She found a bench and sat down to catch her breath. After a second she got up and started screaming at the top of her lungs, “SKIPPER! SKIPPER! COME HERE BOY!” It was all she could do to not fall on her knees and cry hysterically.


After what seems like hours, she bumps into the short man again. By the look on his face, he’d had no luck finding the dog either. Coral turns a bright red and starts sobbing uncontrollably into the short man’s shoulder. “What am I going to do?” she wales. “There, there child, we will find….” He stops and listens. “Shushhhh, child, shushhh, do you hear that?” Coral calms her crying and listens. They hear rumbling coming from the bushes behind the short man. He turns around and sees the bushes shaking. They cautiously walk toward the bushes, for fear of a fox or other wild animal. Once they reach the edge, Coral slowly moves her head towards the rumbling and peers into the bushes.

“OMG, OMG, it’s him! Skipper! Oh thank God!” She’s beside herself with joy, all until she sees the real problem. Skipper is all tangled up in his leash. He can barely move in the impromtu chokehold he’s in. Coral looks back at the short man with an exhausted expression, “Oh for God’s sake, how am I suppose to get him out of that.” The short man smiled, “Not to worry, my child. I have this.” He pulls out a pocket knife to show Coral. She seem unconvinced but nods her head towards the bushes anyway. It’s this or what? She thinks to herself.

In a matter of seconds the man is able to get Skipper lose. “Well, I have 2 dogs myself, I can let you borrow a leash until you go and get another one. Coral looks at Skipper and looks at the short man, What else is there to do? She offers him a weak smile and nods her head. Soon after, Coral, Skipper and the short man start walking down Q St towards his apartment….

To be Continued

Day 7: Life Lesson #47- Don’t be bitter.

30 Day Writing Challenge

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The other day I was talking to a friend and I was telling her a story about an ex-boyfriend of mine. The story was that I was a needy little pest who was constantly complaining that he wasn’t paying enough attention to me. My friend was surprised that I’d called myself out and said it was big of me to admit that. To some extent she is right, but it’s more than that. The reason why I can openly talk about my short comings is because I’m not bitter. That relationship happened and it didn’t work out — I guess I could be bitter and say it was a complete waste of time, but what purpose would that serve me? Say I was in love with that guy, or he had done something terrible to me, should I be bitter and blame everything on him? No, and here is why….

Every action has a reaction by which you get to decide the outcome. For example, sometimes I think to myself, wow I should have done this or that instead of what I ended up doing….but then I think about the alternative. Well, had I done this or that instead of what I actually did, then I might not be where I am today and most importantly, I wouldn’t know what I know now. If I’d stayed with that boyfriend, if he’d continued to feed into my neediness, would I have come to the conclusion that there was something I was doing wrong? Probably not.

The point here is that everything happens for a reason. It sounds cliche but the thing is, you have to believe it for it to be true! If you believe everything happens for a reason then you will slowly but surely start to let go of your resentment, doubt, and bitterness towards the world. Maybe you didn’t get that job, and yes the interview was a prick, but you ended up getting a better job or you realized that wasn’t really what you wanted to do anyways. The key is not to blame everyone else for your misfortunes. Don’t blame yourself either. Life is full of unfortunate events and if we go around trying to find someone or something to blame, we will always hold bitterness in our hearts.

Instead of playing the blame game, consider reflecting on the experience as a learning opportunity. As long as you can look at your failures, shortcoming, missed opportunities and regrets as learning experiences, then you will be able to leverage those experiences to be a better you. Even if what you learned is as simple as, “I wasn’t what they were looking for at that company,” at least now you can move onward and forward. And the best part is that you will be able to release the bad juju that came with it.

Day 6: I am Broken

30 Day Writing Challenge

As I feel of your touch, I get a deep tingling feeling in the pits of my stomach.

It’s a childish thing, like two kids giggling on the playground.

Sometimes I imagine what it might be like if you stuck around, then I frown because guys like you don’t stick around.

Guys like you. Why do I date guys like you? I’m broken and one day you will see it.

Broken like the giggles in my stomach when I feel your touch.

Day 5: Our Burning World.

30 Day Writing Challenge

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In light of the environment march happening today and throughout the weekend, I’ve decided to reflect on our burning planet. What I really don’t understand about the likes of Fox News and other outlets is that they like to toot the conservative horn and say they are God loving Christians, blah blah blah, but then they blindly follow an administration that literally could not care less about “God’s shepherds” or anything resembling human sympathy. I think it’s comical that many thought his “businessman mentality” was going to somehow “save America.” How did no one consider that his “businessman mentality” would serve to help his buddies in big business get more tax breaks and deregulation?

And that’s the point I want to touch on: deregulation. Since coming into office, the Trump Administration has put into effect 13 environmental deregulatory measures, the latest being a deregulation of solid waste material dumped in our rivers and other water sources. I know a lot fo people are thinking, so what? Well the “so what” is that, that regulation was put into place to prevent coal industries and other toxic waste from entering our drinking water supply. To put this into persecutive, whenever I travel to the Dominican Republic or other “developing country,” there are little signs on the counter of the bathroom sink that say DO NOT DRINK. That’s what this deregulation is doing to us, turning us into a third world country.

Moving right along, let’s talk about the fires in California. It’s true that California has had numerous forest fires throughout the years. It is also true that the 2017 California fires were the largest and most destructive fires to date. Full stop…Remember Trump’s response to the fires? How could we not. He received several scathing replies not only from public figures, but the very firefighters risking their lives to put out the fires and save others. Should I even mention the fact that those parks are federally managed? No, let’s move on.

The big bad woof: climate change. Is it happening? Is it real? Is it a fact? America seems to be the only place on earth debating this. Let’s say for laughs and giggles that global warming is in fact happening….Hypothetically speaking, it would effect the lives of Trump supports and other disenfranchised people the most. You’re name is Adam, you work in a meat butchering factory in Oklahoma, you have your wife, 4 kids and your in laws to feed. Oklahoma is experiencing the hottest summer to date and all the power goes out in your town for a week. You don’t get paid for that week because the factory is closed, your mother in law can’t make it up and down the stairs because of heat exhaustion, your wife is nagging about the scarcity in the fridge. You have a problem there buddy. This is just one example, there are countless.

If we want to sit here and debate whether global warming is real then fine, but can we not debate the right to feel safe and secure? Strict environmental regulations are meant to protect the Adams, the Californians, the West Virginians, and the rest of us from harmful chemicals and practices that pollute not just our environments but also our lives. It’s not a matter of whether climate change is happening (because that’s a fact), it’s about safe practices that are for the greater good of our society as a whole…not just big business.

Day 4: Metamorphosis

30 Day Writing Challenge

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Like clockwork Diana walks into chem class everyday 3 minutes before the bell rings. She sits in her usual spot in the third row with her friend Beth. When there’s a group assignment, though, Beth turns around and pairs up with her boyfriend Joe…this leaves Diana looking around the room for an open partner. She spots Chanel sitting in the furthest row to the back and starts to walk over. Chanel nods at her and nudges the seat towards Diana, who smiles shyly as she sits down. Sometimes the chemical beakers aren’t quite in the middle of the table and Diana has to lean towards Chanel to pour in the ingredients. Sometimes it seems she blushes faintly when her shoulder casually brushes up against Chanel, it’s hard to tell.

I wouldn’t say Diana and Chanel are “friends.” They play soccer together and are sometimes at the same parties, but Diana has her set of friends and Chanel has hers. They do seem to make good lab partners though, I will say that much. After chem class they drift away into their respective friend groups, where Diana finds her best friend Diego for lunch. They always go to Taco Bombs for lunch, I’m not sure if it’s Diana or Diego who has the taco obsession. Diana and Diego have a special bond, an unspoken language that is easier observed than pronounced.

They’ve been notably hanging out less ever since Diego started dating Charlie…not sure when they started dating but it was a no brainer after Charlie was outted by his ex-boyfriend when he saw him with Diego one day. I guess we all sort of knew already. It’s like we all knew Sarah and Jessie were dating even though they told the whole soccer team they weren’t lesbians and they both had boyfriends outside of school. None of us really cared but I get it…Sarah is kind of “bigger” and Jessie is this petit, cute little thing, so people start to automatically pigeonhole them into butch and femme stereotypes. Eww, why has society decided that gay men are fabulous and lesbians are manly, men hating, penis envying, cheap, turds?

When Diana walks into the locker room she makes sure not to make eye contact with anyone. She is pretty quiet in there and gets dressed with her head down. She could be shy….or she doesn’t want to get caught staring. There is nothing worse than unsolicited labels in high school. Honestly, even solicited ones can ruin you. I know Diana isn’t shy, but what is she then?

The next day, we all learn the time and place of the spring formal. It’s a big deal at our school, not to mention a huge competition on who gets asked first. If you aren’t asked to formal within the first week, your officially a nobody, unless you were already a nobody, then it doesn’t matter. Diana is expected to get asked to formal within hours of the announcement, she used to go with Diego every year but now that he’s taken, the guys are just itching to ask her. By third period, I’d heard she already turned down two unfortunate souls.

Now it’s 4th period, chem class. Right on time she walks in 3 minutes before the bell. Beth is sitting in her usual seat but the one next to her is taken. Joe. Diana turns a crimson red color, as if her freckles were burning little holes into her face. She looks up and scans the room. She sees Chanel in her usual seat and starts walking towards her. Chanel nudges the seat next to her and Diana smiles with her head down, talking a seat.

It feels like time might be accelerating or not moving at all, I can’t tell. It’s senior year, there is not that much to lose at this point, so I go for it….

“Hey, Diana, uhm, so….formal right? (Awkward chuckle) You going? I mean, I’m sure you’re going. What if we went together? Uhm, as friends.”

I didn’t think it was possible but she turned a deeper shade of red, I must have offended her. All those years she avoided having to reject people and now she has no other option.

“Oh, uhm, as friends?” I stare in her general direction, careful not to make eye contact as I nod my head slowly.

“Uhm, well…uhm, Chanel, the thing is…” Here it comes. “The thing is, I was going to see if you wanted to go to the dance, not as friends. I mean, like, a date. I mean do you want to date me, I mean go on a date with me, to the dance, with me. You know what I mean, right?”

Taco BOMBSHELL. Diana—goddess of my existence—wants to go to the dance, the LAST dance of her high school experience with me. Not. As. Friends. And poof, just like that, my whole life makes sense.

Day 3: Siobelkis the Magnificent

30 Day Writing Challenge

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Chiqui couldn’t stop fidgeting in bed. She was not asleep but she kept her eyes closed until she heard her dad walk up and walk to the bathroom. As soon as she heard the door close, she launched herself out of bed and sprint to her parent’s room where her mom was just waking up.

Jumping on the bed with all her little might, Chiqui screamed at the top of her lungs, “Mami, mami, mami! It’s time for school! Mami, wake up!”

Mom smiled at Chiqui’s excitement. “Ya esta bien, estoy despierta, okay Chiqui, vamos al baño” Okay, I’m awake, okay Chiqui, to the bathroom. Chiquirushed back down the hall to get her towel and ran past her dad getting out of the bathroom. Without looking up she shrieked, “Papi, it’s MONDAY! Can’t talk now, getting ready for school!” Dad laughed as he put both his hands up, “Okay Little One, don’t hurt yourself now!”

Mom walked out of the bedroom and down the hall to the bathroom to help Chiqui in the tub. Clean and shiny, Chiqui quickly ran into her room to put on her brand new uniform, new shoes and, best of all, her new backpack. She’s been to school before but that was pre-school, now that she’s a big girl, she gets to go to Kindergarten. The best part is that some of her friends will be there too! They will get to do cool, big girl things, like learn to read and write their names! Chiqui is most excited about writing her name because she knows the alphabet, and she knows her name, but she doesn’t know how to spell! Kindergarten will teach her how to spell, and she will be able to spell her name on the playground with chalk like the bigger girls do. She can’t wait!


Mom, Dad and Chiqui arrive to her classroom and she looks around. Wow, it doesn’t look like her pre-school classroom. This classroom has tables and chairs, and a chalkboard and rug and shelves that have lots of books. Chiqui smiles at the books, one day she will be able to read just like Mami and Papi. Her teacher sees them and walks over, “Good morning, I’m Ms. Brown, how are you?”

Mom introduces the family to Ms. Brown, “Good morning Ms. Brown, my name is Helena, and this is my husband Jose Manuel. This here is Little One, Siobelkis.” Chiqui looks up at Ms. Brown and adds, “Or you can call me Chiqui! Chiqui is short for Chiquita! It means Little One is Spanish!” Ms. Brown has a warm and welcoming smile as she greets Chiqui, “Chiqui sounds lovely, I’ll call you that if it’s okay with you.” Chiqui is pleased because she’s always loved her nickname, Mami says it is unique just like her.

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Now Ms. Brown points to a seat at one of the tables where Chiqui should sit. Chiqui runs to the table and takes her seat, she looks up at her parents and waves goodbye. Mom and Dad each send her a flying kiss and leave the classroom. Chiqui is a big girl now and she knows Mami and Papi will be back after school to pick her up. Right now though, she can’t wait to get started!

More and more children start to arrive until every seat in the classroom is full. Chiqui looks around and waves excitedly at her friends; there’s Sarah and Amy, Julie, Davie, and his twin brother Drew. There are some other children that she’s seen at the playground but hasn’t played with before. Maybe she will make new friends now that she’s a big girl. Ms. Brown grabs a stack of papers from her desk and hands one out to each child. As she passes them out, she let’s the class know that their first assignment is to write their names. Chiqui jumps in her seat and claps her hands together. This is it!

When all the children have a piece of paper, Ms. Brown says, “Okay children, time to get to work, I want everyone to share the crayons in the center of the table and start drawing a picture of themselves. I will be going around and helping everyone write their names at the top of their picture. Then we will hang our pictures up so that everyone learns each other’s names.” All the children reached out to grab the crayons and Chiqui got to work on her self-portrait. She’d practiced drawing herself many times before with Mami. She new her skin color was tan, like a caramel and her hair was curly like her Papi’s.

Chiqui was pretty happy with her drawing by the time Ms. Brown came to her side. “Okay Chiqui, time to write your name. Do you know your letters?” Yay! Chiqui knew all her letters, she happily nodded her head with enthusiasm. “Very good,” said Ms. Brown. “Do you know the letters in your name?” Oh! This puzzled Chiqui, she knew her letters and she knew her name, but what letters were in her name? With a pout she relied, “No Ms. Brown, will you teach me?” Ms. Brown’s warm smile was encouraging, “Of course I will.” Then she took her pencil from the pocket in her jacket and touched Chiqui’s paper. Ms. Brown’s smile began to fade. Her pencil left Chiqui’s paper and she walked away towards her desk.

Chiqui looked at her paper and there was no letters on it. She looked up at Ms. Brown who was frowning at a book in front of her. Oh no, thought Chiqui. Is there something wrong with her name? Does her name not have letters? She didn’t understand. She looks around and found her friend Amy tracing over the letters of her name. She turned and saw Drew tracing the letters of his name. Everywhere she looked, the children where tracing the letters in their names. This made Chiqui really sad because her name was broken and their were no letters to trace. She could not help herself and started crying. Ms. Brown heard her crying and looked up from her book. Then she grabbed a piece of paper and wrote something quickly on it and walked back to Chiqui’s table.

“What is wrong Little One? What made you upset?,” asked Ms. Brown. Chiqui began sniffling and said between sobs, “My name is broken, it has no letters!” Ms. Brown grabbed a nearby chair and sat next to her, “Oh my dearest Chiqui, your name isn’t broken, it does have letters, see here, I wrote it down on this piece of paper.” Chiqui stopped crying long enough to look at the paper. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. Chiqui counted 9 letters. She looked up at Ms. Brown, “ Where did you get that?” Ms. Brown smiled again, “Oh it was in my attendance book, it is a book where everyone’s name is written. I was not sure how to spell your name so I went to my attendance book and copied it onto this piece of paper.”

Chiqui was puzzled, “I don’t get it, Ms. Brown, why did you know how to spell everyone else’s name but not mine? My name must be broken!” Ms. Brown put her hand on Chiqui’s shoulder and said, “Oh Little One, something magnificent has happen. I’ve learned something new. I knew how to spell everyone else’s names because I have seen their names before and I’d memorized how to spell them, but I’d never seen your name before. This is why I had to look it up and now that I’ve done that, I’ve learned how to spell a new name. Isn’t that wonderful?”

Chiqui shakes her head, “But Ms. Brown, it isn’t a new name! I’ve had it all my life, it’s 5 years old!” Ms. Brown laughs and replies, “You are right, it is not a new name, but it is new to me. And the magnificent part of meeting new people is that sometimes they teach you something that is not new to them but it is new to you. We are all different from each other, and sometimes we find things that make us similar, but it is the spread of knowledge that connects us all. Now that you have taught me something new, you and I are connected, isn’t that magnificent?”

Chiqui didn’t know what magnificent meant, but it sounded like something she wanted to be! “Ms. Brown,” she began, “If you learned something from me and it was magnificent, does that mean I am magnificent too?” Ms. Brown slowly shock her head up and down, “Yes indeed. You are Siobelkis, the Little One, Chiqui, the Magnificent.”

Day 2: Where’s my Happy Ending?

30 Day Writing Challenge

Photo by ActionVance on Unsplash

There are those who are passionate about something and those who aimlessly float through life. From the subset who have a passion, there are those who are actively and continuously pursuing that passion; those who are half ass pursuing it; and those who gave up. Now, from the subset who are actively and continuously pursuing their passions, only a handful succeed. Guess what though? Only that subset who actually tries can ever have any hopes of succeeding.

That’s the basis of this challenge. Because there will never be a “right time,” because there is no hope in “one day.” If you want something bad enough, you must act! You must stop making excuses and start moving. I’m moving towards my goal of becoming a better writer and towards the goal of living as a writer. There’s no better time than now, and I am not going to waste it.

What’s your goal? What’s your excuse for not pursing it? Take a minute to think about where you see yourself in the next year, 3 years, 5 years…..realistically, do you like where you’re headed? If not then change it, there’s always time; you’re always living until you’re not. You are always learning until you’re not living. Don’t procrastinate, the time is now.

Intro: 30 Day Writing Challenge

Photo by Shelby Miller on Unsplash

There are those who are passionate about something and those who aimlessly float through life. From the subset who have a passion, there are those who are actively and continuously pursuing that passion; those who are half ass pursuing it; and those who gave up. Now, from the subset who are actively and continuously pursuing their passions, only a handful succeed. Guess what though? Only that subset who actually tries can ever have any hopes of succeeding.

That’s the basis of this challenge. Because there will never be a “right time,” because there is no hope in “one day.” If you want something bad enough, you must act! You must stop making excuses and start moving. I’m moving towards my goal of becoming a better writer and towards the goal of living as a writer. There’s no better time than now, and I am not going to waste it.

What’s your goal? What’s your excuse for not pursing it? Take a minute to think about where you see yourself in the next year, 3 years, 5 years…..realistically, do you like where you’re headed? If not then change it, there’s always time; you’re always living until you’re not. You are always learning until you’re not living. Don’t procrastinate, the time is now.