happiness Tag

A Teacher’s Joy

  I ran into a former student of mine tonight. He was a sweet little boy in my 5th grade classroom back in 2011. The mental image I have is of him sitting in the corner desk at the front of the room, bending over his notebook and scribbling away. Today he was being recognized by the school district for his artistic abilities--he made a sculpture of a lizard out of tree bark in the style...

My Second Love

The past couple of weeks have been extremely whirlwindy with so many writing projects, so much research, so many revisions in addition to my regular to-do list, but the moment I hit that submit button on my last assignment of the semester I felt a wave of relief wash over me, man. Yesterday evening I watched a whopping three entire television episodes with my daughter, and today I decided to pull out my old pencils...

Lines and Relief

I stumbled upon a new art medium last week and have been happily experimenting in it during my very limited free time.   It's called metal embossing and it combines everything I love about pen-and-ink drawing: bold lines, high contrast, intricate patterns, angles and curves, but it ends up looking so dramatic and stately! If you want to learn more about it, watch this video from Elitia Hart. I have ordered some actual metal sheets and official metal embossing tools,...

Lost and Found in San Antonio

I had the privilege of attending the 5th annual San Antonio Book Festival this past weekend and enjoyed myself even more than I had intended to. The Festival itself was incredible: very well-organized with a wide range of exhibitors, speakers, activities, and delicious food. I walked away with four new books, a handy red tote, two free pins, some spicy chicken street tacos in my tummy, and a beautiful turquoise-and-onyx bracelet from Pulquerios on my wrist. :o)   I started off...

Happy Reaping

Tonight I submitted my first of two Final Projects of the semester. Four personal essays that are far better than any writing I have ever produced. No fewer than seven drafts each. Hours and hours of painstaking revisions and every word, every comma, every dot of every i is exactly where I want it, exactly where it needs to be.   Since the semester began I have written several papers and also a handful of submittable pieces,...

Of Paper, Lines, and Machines

A couple of days ago, I stopped by a local bookstore called Deep Vellum Books. I'd heard of it and been curious about it but had never made the time to visit. I'm so glad I finally did. The very first book I laid my eyes on, sitting right there in the window like a fresh apple strudel, was Witness, written by Robert Rient and translated from Polish by a friend of mine named Frank Garrett (who...

Cranberry Salsa

I discovered this dish at a Christmas party years ago and fell madly in love. The weirdest thing about it is that it has as its base three ingredients I very strongly dislike on their own: fresh cranberries, green onions, and jalapeño peppers. Somehow, combining these with three ingredients I really, really love (sugar, cilantro, and cream cheese) makes all the difference in the world. I guess during this particular season of binary opposition and political debate,...

How Donald Trump Inspired Me

I've been thinking quite a bit lately about my purpose in life. I know that it is to write. I've known that for a long time, actually. My problem is that I don't yet really know what it is I'm supposed to write. Today I got a little closer.   This afternoon, I met with my creative-pal-slash-writing-buddy-slash-muse, Shayne. We each went to separate corners of her house to work in silence, and I decided to freewrite by...

School Doodles

This past Monday was my first day of school! I had been looking forward to it ever since I received my acceptance letter back in the spring, and during these last couple of weeks I was starting to get butterflies, even though the courses I'm taking are all online. On Monday afternoon, though, when I logged in to the virtual classroom and discovered our first "lectures" and assignments, I felt downright giddy. I love school!   Can I afford to take...