• Fictography #17: If Rocky Can Do It…

    /FICTOGRAPHY/ def. — The intersection of photography (submitted by readers) and fiction (written by me!). You’ll have to forgive my absence last week. I attended a conference from Thursday through Sunday and didn’t have the chance to write my weekly creative FICTOGRAPHY post. I’m back now, and this week, I’m using a photograph my husband took in Philadelphia, PA. Since it’s my husband’s photo and he’s an exercise-aholic, in addition to partaking in several triathlons, I had him in mind when I wrote this (not that it’s about him necessarily). Lots of folks are fitness buffs, challenging themselves in triathlons, races, half-marathons, tough mudders, and marathons. I am not one…

  • In The Words of Maya Angelou, “Don’t Bring Negative To My Door.”

    I’ve always been a cheerleader. In 7th grade I made the squad, and then again in high school I made it, and I cheered throughout my years in school. When I was done there, I cheered with the band at Towson University for the Tigers, and then did it again for the Orioles as a front office employee. Now, as a grown, middle-aged woman who works as an educator, I cheer for my students. Cheerleaders want others to do well for themselves. We have hope inside of us, and wish the best for others. You may be wondering what’s charged me up tonight. It’s a long story, and one I’d…

  • Fictography #16 – Little French Market

        /FICTOGRAPHY/ def. — The intersection of photography (submitted by readers) and fiction (written by me!). Truthfully, this week I’m on a little bit of a hiatus. On campus, we are down to the last two weeks, and I’ve been inundated with work and grading and attending events, not to mention that it’s Easter weekend. Therefore, I had little time for creativity this week, so for this week’s Fictography, I pulled one out of the archives and dusted it off. I actually took this photograph myself. This cute little coffee shop is situated in Historic Ellicott City, and I used to frequent it all the time when I lived…

  • She’s A Doll

    This doll, that has never been named and probably deserves one, is from my childhood. I feel as if she’s always been around. I could never let go of her. My grandmother, whom I called “Nanny,” won her for me playing a game on the boardwalk in Seaside Heights, New Jersey. She’s pink and totally sentimental to me. Nanny has been gone for years, but the memory of her lives on in not only the doll, but the Christmas decorations, the jewelry (I’m wearing her ring now), and the countless other “items” and gifts she bestowed to me, both materialistic and non-materialistic. When I was growing up and we lived…

  • The Results Of Our Fairy Garden

    * * * * * * As I mentioned in an earlier blog post this week, my daughter and I planned to start our Fairy Garden on Saturday. We did it. After a visit to a local store called All Things Country and purchasing our starter pieces for the garden, we raced home to get started. We couldn’t be happier with the results, and it was so gratifying to hear her say this was one of her most favorite things we have done together. We both look forward to watching it grow, and after our renovation is complete, who knows. It may make its way closer to our house; right…

  • Fictography #15—Finding Paul

      /FICTOGRAPHY/ def. — The intersection of photography (submitted by readers) and fiction (written by me!). This week I’m featuring a shot from my friend, Jenny Bumgarner. Jenny and I have been friends for…we counted…over twenty years. We met when we worked at the Orioles way back when, and have remained close friends ever since. From attending Opening Days together, to sharing our Hippodrome Broadway Across America season tickets, to getting together with friends when we can, our friendship has remained strong and true. When I needed a cover shot for my novel, “Beneath the Mimosa Tree,” Jenny came armed with camera as we trespassed on a piece of property…

  • 10 Memorable Baseball Quotes

    Baseball’s back, the weather is getting brighter here in Baltimore, and I’m coming in from third to home with the writing of my baseball-themed novel. In baseball as in life, quotes can be inspirational, funny, or just tell it like it is. Quotes are a big part of my novel; each chapter’s lead quote ties into something that’s going on in the story, and I’ve had a lot of fun constructing them and their meanings. Here are some quotes from notable players, coaches, managers, and folks who love the game. I can’t call it my all-time favorite list, but it certainly includes some great ones. * * * If a…

  • Building a Fairy Garden With My Daughter

    Several months ago, my daughter and I stopped into a nearby store. I was on the hunt for something in particular that I could not find. However, on that jaunt, we found something magical that spoke to the two of us: fairy garden items. We had not been in search of such items, but the mere fact that we happened upon them meant something to us both. We tend to enjoy stories of fantasy involving fairies, witches, wizards, and pirates (such as gorgeous Captain Hook in “Once Upon A Time.”) We love the mystical idea of fairies, just as some believe they have angels watching over them. When we saw…

  • 5 Suggestions for Spring Cleaning (and why it’s liberating)….

    My friends Jenny and Ron, along with their children, Shelby and Stella, saw me in all my glory this afternoon when they stopped by unexpectedly. My husband and son were on the golf course, my daughter was at a friend’s house, and I had the dubious honor of executing some spring cleaning. I can get in quite a state when I’m in this zone. In one week, our house is going to be a construction zone. We are renovating the exterior—the front, the back, the roof, the siding, the sidewalks, and adding a screened-in porch. We are overhauling this sucker, and I can’t wait to see it all come together.…

  • Reflections & Reasons for Writing

    My first recollection of reading and enjoying reading came in the form of Dr. Seuss and the book entitled “Go, Dog. Go!” I loved all the colorful dogs, the male and female dogs who were interspersed talking about hats, and the idea of a big party in a tree. I’m a big fan of parties and socializing, and I think the idea of being a party planner was instilled in me from reading the pages of that book. (Therefore it is no surprise that this year, my friends Jen, Kelly, and I are the social directors for our neighborhood pool and all its events.) During my early years growing up,…

  • Fictography (Lucky) #13 — Michelle’s Adventure

    /FICTOGRAPHY/ def. — The intersection of photography (submitted by readers) and fiction (written by me!). This week’s selected photograph comes from a current student of mine Nick Mamakos. Nick is a Business Communication major who hails from New York. He agreed to share some photographs with me as he’s taken photography at Stevenson, and I thought this photo was lovely. Nick also happens to be a good writer, and I’ll be looking to see what he does down the road after May graduation. I wouldn’t be surprised if it had something to do with writing… This week’s piece of flash fiction is 504 words. * * * * * *…

  • My Least Favorite Question: “What Are We Having For Dinner?”

    It goes without saying that in most homes—most, not all—it’s the woman who does the cooking. (I realize there are exceptions to this rule because I know women who are lucky enough to have their husbands cook dinner, so ignore this if you’re one of those…) Therefore, it’s typically the woman’s job to “create” the dinner. Because of that, we get to hear the question that goes on repeat for all 365 days of the year: “What are We Having For Dinner?” I don’t know! Do I look like a recipe book? That being said, what if I don’t feel like being “creative” about dinner. I’ve been creative all day,…