Podcast sprint 02/14/2020

I’m going to start keeping my writing sprints for The Christian Indie Writers’ here. Join in if you’d like! Take a stab at the prompt then post to TCIW’s social media accounts.

REMINDER – the rules state NO EDITING before sharing, so this is likely rather rough. Here Goes:


Marlene spun her half-empty mug in the puddle it had created on the bar and huffed a strand of bangs out of her left eye. She was frustrated – not because of the lack of available coasters in her hometowns lame-o excuse for a bar – or even a beverage napkin, for heaven’s sake – and not because the blind date her Mother had set her up on handn’t worked out.

No, she was frustrated with herself for expecting any other outcome.

 After all, she was pushing thirty. Everyone knew the quality men were all snatched up by age 25. So why should it surprise her that the Man her mother was certain would make all of her dreams come true was a 37 year old model train enthusiast with a gigantic stamp collection and a case of chronic halitosis?

If only life were more like the movies, she mused. 

Where is my knight in shining armor, come to whisk me away from this town, this life? 

“This seat taken?” The voice was as smooth as the black and tan she was nursing, like the sound of summer thunder rolling through her bones. She did not have to turn around to know she would feel an instant attraction to the owner of that voice. 

“It is now, I suppose,” she said, and to delay the gratification of meeting the owner of that voice, she focused on her purse, fishing around inside  though she’d misplaced something important. When she came up for air she brandished a tube of “love that red” and a pocket mirror. Her Mother would have scolded her for reapplying at the counter, and that was exactly why Marlene did so as often as she could.
Of course, the pocket mirror expanded her peripheral vision to the degree that she could surreptitiously get a gander of the man who had brought her back to life with three little words.

But before she could see him, she saw her – turns out the Marlboro Man wasn’t drinking alone.

She wore cowgirl boots and a frilly skirt, complete with a rhinestone belt and a too-tight for wearing outside the house babydoll t-shirt.

Marlene rolled her eyes, snapped the compact closed, and tossed her mirror and lipstick back into her bag. 

“What should I order?” This voice also went directly to Marlene’s bones.

Podcast Sprint 02/07/2020

I’m going to start keeping my writing sprints for The Christian Indie Writers’ Show here. Join in if you’d like! Take a stab at the prompt then post to TCIP’s social media accounts:

RULES – fifteen minutes to write on given prompt. We do not edit these before sharing, so be kind. (I may have changed some of my words to “headings” to help with ease of reading, but I made no grammatical or structural changes to the work.)

THIS WEEK’S PROMPT – (as pictured, lol): “Write a love note to your cleaning lady.”

Have Fun. (That’s an order)

Dear Riley,

It’s funny how it happens…you have a baby, and it is all helpless and sweet. You have to do everything for her. After a few weeks of this, it is just the way things are – you co-exist with an essentially helpless person. 

How pitiful you were, screaming in frustration that you could not make your arm go where you wanted it to go, that you could not get up to follow Daddy and I when we put you in your crib at night, that you could not just do everything yourself

Funny how I did not recognize your frustration for what it was then. It is likely I mistook it for gas.

So, life goes on…

You are the capable parent and the baby your constant, ever-needy companion.

Then, one day, you are wearing that same baby in a forward facing carrier and she grabs a steak knife from the dish dry rack, and you think, “woah! This kid can do stuff!”.

At least that’s how it happened for me…

You showed me that day you had mastered something that had challenged you from the moment of your birth. You showed me a level of persistence I never recognized in myself.

At the same time you validated my own struggles, as I too was once a frustrated infant learning how to maneuver through this great big world.

We are born with universal challenges, as well as the universal desire to overcome these challenges. Sometimes we learn these things out of order. Some lead fulfilling and miraculous lives without conquering any of them. Still, as a general rule, we are born helpless, and we struggle to complete:

1 – learn to control your arms
2- learn to walk
3- learn to talk
4- step into your role in our family

And here is where I want to sit, for a moment, if we could.

I know you have done more than your share of the housework over the years (there is, after all, a reason I affectionately call you, “CinderRiley”), and I wanted to take a moment to say how very much you are appreciated.

Now, you and I both know that what you do around here is not to be limited to the role of “cleaning lady.”

Let me state for the record: I never intended to co-parent with one of my children, and I certainly hope that is not what you feel your role in our home is. 

But I do hope that over your years of contributing to the running of our home and to the development of your siblings, your life has been greatly enriched. I will promise you that if you continue as you have been, your future relationships with your siblings will bring you much satisfaction and fulfillment. 

Your siblings are a gift, and I so adore watching you cherish one another.

Thank you for making this project of “Our Family” so full of wonder and joy.

Love you,