Tag Archives: writing

Running, is once again, one of my goals in the new year. Perhaps there's a metaphor here?

Running is, once again, one of my goals in the new year. Perhaps there’s a metaphor here?

New Year’s has always been one of my favorite holidays. I like reflecting on the past year and looking forward to what’s ahead. I enjoy making New Year’s Resolutions but I rarely end up keeping them for the entire year.  Last year I set two goals for 2013:

1) Read through the entire Bible in a year

2) Run a 10K

Did I accomplish either of these goals? Alas, no, I lost interest in both. But — I did stay on track with the Bible reading for about 6 months. I realized I wasn’t getting much out of it because the reading schedule was too intensive. To read through the entire Bible in a year you need to read three or four chapters per day. Lately I’ve been trying to read one chapter a day and that is working well, so I plan to continue that.

As far as running goes, I have been running off and on throughout the year. I’ve noticed I feel much better when I run regularly. For about the last month, I’ve been running twice a week, but I’d like to increase that to three times a week.

So what was 2013 all about for me, if not completing my resolutions?

1) A Mommy Year

2013 (and 2012, 2014, 2015, etc.) was mostly about caring for my sweet little one. It’s been amazing to see all the changes she’s gone through in the past year as she’s changed from Baby Bear to Toddler Bear. In 2013 she learned to walk, clap, sign, talk, dance, run, and climb. From her first word (Mama) to her first sentence (“Read the book!”), it’s been a joy to watch her language development.

2) Becoming a Writer

In 2013 I’ve made the transition from being an aspiring writer to being a writer. Although it’s been years since I graduated from college with my BA in journalism, this is the first time I’ll be putting “writer” as my occupation on my tax return. And that feels pretty great, even if it doesn’t pay much – yet. I’ve completed two freelance editing projects and have published a collection of parenting articles on sites like eHow, GlobalPost Parenting and ModernMom.

3) Moving

This fall marked a move that has been very beneficial for me. We’re now in the same town as my parents, and have an apartment that boasts a dishwasher and is (mostly) mold-free. Hip hip hurray!

Goals for 2014:

Goal-setting is important to me, as it makes me feel like I’m purposefully moving forward in my life. Explicitly stating my goals helps put them into a clearer focus and greatly increases my likelihood of accomplishing them. I’d encourage you to also have goals for the year, even if some of them seem unrealistic right now. Dare to dream. Here are mine:

1) Write and self-publish my young adult novel.

I just completed an excellent online course on writing young adult fiction. I’ve wanted to write a YA novel for some time, but never knew how to structure it. Now that I’ve taken this course, it seems an achievable (though challenging) goal.

2) Buy a house.

I’ve already completely Step 1 towards this goal — just bought a book about becoming a first-time homeowner. Yay!

3) Run 3 miles in 30 minutes.

Currently I can run 2.5 miles in 30 minutes, but I think if I increase my running to three days a week it will be fairly easy to reach this goal.

4) Make new friends but keep the old.

Focusing on relationships is always important to me. I’m shy, so it is a challenge for me to make friends, but necessary since we don’t know many people in our new town. And I want to continue investing heavily in my old relationships — particularly with my husband and the little one.

Let’s celebrate my 100th follower! Hurray!

I have reached the magical number of 100 followers on WordPress. Depending on your perspective this may sound like a lot of followers, or maybe like not very many. When I first started blogging a few years ago, 100 followers seemed an inconceivable success. Then again, If I were a newspaper, 100 readers would be a pretty awful circulation.

The truth is about 70 of my followers are spammers who are interested in getting me involved in some sort of WordPress pyramid scheme. (Well, it’s always nice to be invited.) Another 25 followers are people who have followed everyone on WordPress in an attempt to get them to follow their blogs, and then perhaps 5 or so of my readers are genuinely interested in my blog.

But to those 5 or so of you who do actually read Mother Bear — thank you. Even if you’re only reading because we’re married and I told you that you had to read this, it’s nice to write for an audience. Otherwise I might as well just write in my paper journal. So thank you for taking the time to read this when you could be reading countless other blogs, magazines, tweets, or memoirs. (Have you read Debra Gwartney’s heart-wrenching Live Through This: A Mother’s Memoir of Runaway Daughters and Reclaimed Love? Or Tobias Wolff’s This Boy’s Life? If not, please, stop reading this and go get a copy from your local library or independent bookstore. I promise, we can finish our conversation later). I hope that at times you have found my posts informative, entertaining or perhaps inspiring.

What is a writer without a reader anyway? I write to bear witness to my life, and to share that witness with you. You, dear reader, are a vital part of this contract.

“Looker, gazer, skimmer, skipper,
thumb-licking page turner, peruser,
you getting your print-fix for the day
…that is me rushing to the window…
me standing by a map of the world
wondering where you are–
alone on a bench in a train station
or falling asleep, the book sliding to the floor.” – Billy Collins (“Reader”)