Weight Gain and Self Shaming Go Hand in Hand

Sweat stained the woman’s gray tank top. I watched her reflection in the gym mirror as she carefully executed one bicep curl after another. I glared before turning away. “Ugh,” I sneered in disgust, the words floating inside an ugly cartoon thought bubble. “How did you get to look like that?” As our coach gently… Continue reading Weight Gain and Self Shaming Go Hand in Hand

How Much Do You Love Your State Flower?

Texans are passionate about their state. We brag (a lot), threaten to secede (again), and throw around our considerable collective weight (when beneficial). Texas is so big you can drive all day and not cross its borders. The state includes many distinctly different geographic regions: deserts, mountains, giant canyons, fertile valleys, piney woods, coastal areas.… Continue reading How Much Do You Love Your State Flower?

And the Social Media Week Austin Oscars Go To….

It’s award season, people! The Oscars inspired me to single out some of the outstanding performers from Social Media Week Austin, three days packed full of (you guessed it) social media tips, tricks, and triumph. Rather than do an exhaustive–and exhausting–SMWATX recap, I’ve carefully chosen winners in a few key categories. Best Presenter Hands down,… Continue reading And the Social Media Week Austin Oscars Go To….

What Happens When You Say ‘Yes’ to Travel

“Be careful what you wish for.” Over a year ago, I set myself up for yes. In particular, saying yes to travel. Being a freelancer, I have ultimate schedule flexibility; having an empty nest (sans our ancient cat), my spouse and I have great freedom. With these things in mind, Hubby took a new job that… Continue reading What Happens When You Say ‘Yes’ to Travel

Replacing My Early Morning Run with Cooking

Up-down-up-down; the red onion made a wet woosh, leaving a smear of fuchsia against the mandolin’s sharp blade. The repetitive motion induced the kind of meditative trance I’d experience listening to my footfalls on a pre-sunrise run. Up-down-up-down. Checking the Right Box Sometimes, I’m awake early. The I-can’t-sleep-and-this-is-still-technically-nighttime kind of early. What is there to do in the… Continue reading Replacing My Early Morning Run with Cooking

You Should Be Proud to Be a Writer

The company dinner. You put on some nice party clothes and head off for an evening of small talk, catered food, and obligatory I-don’t-know-what-else-to-do-with-myself-so-I’ll-have-another drinks. As the spouse, I’m often the recipient of small smiles and quick topic changes after the “what do you do?” question. “Freelancer writer and editor” seems to be a conversation… Continue reading You Should Be Proud to Be a Writer

Pushing Boundaries By Publishing

I went out for happy hour with some good girlfriends. Sweet Julie always asks, “What are you writing these days?” and so I talked a bit about the essay in progress  (“Can I Be Absolved of Gentrification?” that went up on Medium.com later in the evening). What I didn’t discuss: my halting fear about publishing it.… Continue reading Pushing Boundaries By Publishing

Fried Turkey Bones Give Winter Soup A Tasty Base

I’m a cold weather lover. So when this morning’s temperature dropped from a muggy 75+ degrees (it’s December, dammit!) to a steely 55 degrees in a the space of an hour, the day looked fabulous. Windows open! The possibility of jeans without sweat! Dare I hope–a jacket? SWEET. Naturally, I wanted something hot to eat.… Continue reading Fried Turkey Bones Give Winter Soup A Tasty Base

Feeding My Soul with a Trail

There isn’t much fall in Central Texas, but the flame leaf sumac smoldered bronze, rust, and gold against the green of Ashe junipers and wayward ligustrum. That November morning wasn’t even cold. More like muggy with a faint patina of mist. There hadn’t been any real rain but as we’d stopped to assess the fork… Continue reading Feeding My Soul with a Trail