Red Head

The only thing holding me back from going red is the upkeep.

I was reminded of this recently when exchanging blog comments with Meghan from Sweat Daily(dot)com. Meghan is a blonde gone red, a runner and a hair stylist, who was kind enough to give me the low down on making the change.

Here was her advice:

“RED is the most high maintenance of all the colors. The reason why is because the red color molecule is soooo large that it has a difficult time getting into the hair shaft. And because of this, it fades very easily. Fading is thought to be a negative aspect, but it can actually be quite positive. Because the hair fades, you have opportunity to try whatever color you desire, and can easily switch it up. For example, you can start out with a more vibrant red that may fade to a ginger or strawberry color.”

Yesterday, as I cruised the Interwebz while re-watching every episode of Girls (and the Boardwalk Empire finale thrown in .. ..cause yes), and I came across an image of two of the most perfect redheads on Earth.

It’s enough to make me reconsider the color.

I’ve written before about my love for Christina Hendricks, but Vivienne Westwood (for the non-fashiony-fans) is a legend; a visionary and icon in the industry. My respect for this woman runs deep.

This photo …

I’m calling my hair girl tomorrow.

M.

Ever dyed your hair a radically different color? Did it stick or did you go back au natural?

Incredible redheads Vivienne Westwood and Christina Hendricks, photographed by Greg Williams.

Original Image Source.

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For the Love of Haiku – A Poetry Game

I am stealing and copying in abundance this weekend; additional imitation and flattery.

All About Lemon has started a blogging game called, “For the Love of Haiku.” Using the Japanese poetic form (17 moraes; syllables of  5, 7, and 5), poets add meaning to Ms. Lemon’s art collages that are updated and changed weekly.

Once you link up, you’re added to the list of haiku contributors. At the end of the month, votes are calculated to find the winner with the most likes.

Blogging good fun!

Here is my contribution …

Princesses beware

Bored extraterrestrials

Roll like bullet trains

————————

Wear your bunny ears

Smile wide as the train rolls by

Rats can’t dim your shine

M.

Too deep? Think you might give it a try? Not a blogger? Leave your contribution in my comments!

My Life in Numbers

Anne Woodman from Writing by the Numbers always starts off her posts with a nod to the numerals that bear importance to her life and her work. I can never write anything number related without first thinking of Anne.

This morning I received an email update from Christine at Love, Life, Surf, who had followed another blogger’s lead (Grteta from GFunctified) and created a list of numbers, which organized some of her life’s data.

It’s fun to play with numbers, and in honor of my blogging buddies, I thought I’d give it a go.

If my daughters were a part of this discussion they would accuse me of being a copy-cat, and in that they’d be correct.

Imitation, though, is the sincerest form of flattery.

1971 was the year I was born.

13 is my favorite number.

7 is a pretty good number too, especially when a slash is drawn through the center.

3 is how many times a year I get my hair cut.

1 is the number of marathons I’ve completed.

2  marathons will be run before I die.

1 piece of jewelry is enough (I feel like a peacock when I accessorize more).

04043 is Kennebunk’s zip code.

155 is my perfect weight.

14 is how old I was when my dad died.

7 is (at last count) my number of siblings.

39 is how old I was when my birth sister found me.

55 feels awfully fast on the freeway.

2  boyfriends were serious husband contenders, had the timing been better.

63 degrees is the perfect temperature at any time of year.

3 is the number of times I do dishes everyday.

0 is how much I love doing dishes.

1985 was the year I first kissed a boy (for real).

36 plus DD is a number that needs to be contained.

206 posts have been published on this blog.

8 is the number of hours I get to sleep at night.

12 hours of sleep would be better.

5 is the age of my twins, who are responsible for not allowing me more sleep.

2 dead yoga mats are kept in my living room for use with exercise videos where sneakers are needed (don’t all dead yoga mats go the sneaker route?).

5 products must to be used on my face in the morning to make me look alive.

780 lovely people follow me on Twitter.

4 last names would follow Martha if I decided to use them all (Osmundson Feldman Merrill Wills).

1 more baby in my home would make me really happy.

1 little dog will have to do.

M.

What is your favorite number? How much do you love dishes? What do you do with dead yoga mats?

Kitchen Art Print, Kitchen Wall Decor Digital Print, BLUE Typography Kitchen Quote Wall Art, Quote & Digital Illustration for Kitchen
Kitchen Art Print by Susana Parada. $19.00 on Etsy at Parada Creations.

Technology Fail

Apparently WordPress is being fussy, posting a terribly boring beginning of a poem I’d written (ages ago) without my consent.

If you received the erroneous email, please disregard.

I’m now off to delete every other ancient draft (out of pure fear that it could happen again), while wallowing in the embarrassment that anyone believed I thought the content in the piece entitled, “Lemonade,” was good enough to publish.

The horror!

M.

Has this ever happened to you? Could it have published from my phone? I haven’t even visited the WordPress App today!

Since we’re discussing lemonade, how about this yummy-looking concoction? Pink Lemonade Maragritas from Barefott Contessa.

A Blogging Thingy Called UMV

For the third time in as many days I’ve been led to opportunities that require me to disclose my blog statistics, including my unique monthly visitors; the number of times one person clicks on your site, as opposed to overall clicks (if the same person came back 10 times, your UMV would be 1, not 10).

WordPress.com (my publishing platform) is great in so many ways. Primarily it’s easy, and I do have access to my statistics, only not to the UMV. In addition (and much to my dismay), WordPress.com doesn’t allow the use of Google Analytics, which is what everyone off of WordPress.com uses (it seems) to gather such information and more.

Folks in the business and marketing worlds want information like UMV (as well as other numbers like Twitter followers, Pinterest followers, etc.) to help them decide if it’s worth their time to invest in you. The good news is that readership in this little blog is growing as I continue to snuggle into my niche (writing as a practice over a single focus like mom blogging or fitness blogging).

But moving to another platform (like WordPress.org, which would give me more creative freedom and financial opportunities) is daunting and can be expensive. Self hosting can be a security risk, which (let’s face it) would send me straight over the edge should I get hacked.

So many decision must be made everyday. This one’s got me in a muddle.

M.

My purpose was to use the blog as a writing outlet, but if I’m missing out on opportunities, wouldn’t it be wise to make the change? What would you do? If you are a WordPress(dot)com blogger, have you made the switch, or are you happy where you are?

Social Media Icons
While searching for an image to go with this post I came across Angie Makes on Etsy. Her artwork is amazing. I especially love her flower clip art, which looks a lot like my Twitter background (but prettier). It’s yet another example of how I could have more freedom with self-hosting … To be able to have more creative freedom in imaging across the site.

The Taylor Swift Defense

Songstress Taylor Swift has made an enviable career by writing and singing her truths. While some of her songs (like Hey Stephen from the Fearless album) speak of sweet love, Taylor’s lyrics often touch on the other side of boy/girl relationships; the stuff that some might find embarrassing.

She’s gotten a lot of flack for speaking the truth. Grown men have said they love her, but wouldn’t date her, because of the risk they run in having a song created about them that might document a failed relationship. “Chickens,” I say.

Though my format is different, like Taylor, I write about my feelings and experiences. Nothing is off-limits. Is anything safe?

It shouldn’t come as a surprise, then, that I am currently writing about my divorce and all of the traumatic, embarrassing, and disappointing parts of the transition.

The other day I was advised not to tell the world that I have my kids in play therapy (to help them adjust to the upcoming changes). But what is wrong with telling this truth? My kids are benefitting, and as a parent I am doing what is responsible for their well-being. Should I not disclose the things that led my husband and me to separate? Should I not share experiences that might help someone else (going through a similar life-trial)?

The argument that it’s private doesn’t hold weight. What is private? Isn’t sharing, caring? Don’t others benefit from shared experiences? It’s not slander unless it’s said with malicious intent. Is secrecy, then, an attempt to hide a bruised ego?

I’m willing to disclose my own bruised ego.

Here’s this gem:

Yesterday I failed another CloudCrowd test, after three mind-numbing hours of writing, editing and proof reading. I even had back-up this time to ensure that I’d pass; mom was a room away to double-check my work.

It looked good, I thought, but I failed.

When I had settled down enough (after receiving my rejection email; F-word F-word F-word), I went back to look at the critique.

1. I made one subject/verb agreement after the thing had been written and during my last minutes before posting. I knew I shouldn’t have changed act to acts (the subject). I didn’t even think about the verb. Bad, bad writer girl!

2. I was accused of not comparing and contrasting the subject matter, which was the main objective to the second written piece. The fact that the subject was “Religion in the United States,” and that I compared the freedom from religion in our country to countries who do not allow such freedoms, seemed to go unnoticed.

3. My mom and I had major discussions about whether our freedom was “from” or “of” religion. Ultimately, I chose to say “from” since our government doesn’t require us to practice a national religion, nor are we ruled under a government that preaches a particular choice. We are free from being told what we should believe.

4. The last time I tested, I wrote far more than the 200 words that were required. I felt that this set me up to be judged on more errors (resulting in fail number one). Yesterday, I decided to keep it closer to the word limit, but with a topic like U.S. Religion, this was hard. Still, I thought I did a good job, though apparently I was wrong.

My frustration with CloudCrowd has me questioning whether or not I should hang up the editing piece of this budding writing career.

At the same time, I wonder if I should try again with a different company whose reviewers are a little more open-minded to written interpretation, especially on the written exams?

The truth is not always pretty, but there is power in its function. I believe in this wholeheartedly.

M.

Are you a secret keeper who believes that things should be private or do you speak the truth despite the consequence of embarrassment?

Well Hello There, Tumblr!

I have recently discovered Tumblr.

Yes, I am late to the party, but finally, I’ve arrived!

If you haven’t yet ventured over to Tumblrland, here is what you’re missing:

1. Imagery, images, imagination.

2. Youngins with clever thoughts and the inclination to express.

3. Pretty templates; much prettier than Pinterest. Less categorization than Pinterest too.

4. Another avenue to expand your reach. We’re not calling it a brand anymore, are we?

Grow with Stacy posted a great piece about how refusing to add photos to your blog can kill your traffic. In it, she covered a lot of information in regard to imagery that I didn’t know (i.e. how to use Flickr to your advantage), and she’s right; humans are visual and images are important.

Since Mommyland (writings, musings, opinions) leads my parade of social media, I will continue to use imagery to create added interest, much in the way that Stacy describes.

Adding Tumblr to my list of social media stopping points (after Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Reader) gives me one more destination on the daily Interwebz calendar of events. The benefit, it appears, is in its ability to open up the window to my soul from a purely visual perspective (there are poems, etc., but the words are far more image rich than the typical blog post).

If you like the idea of a younger audience (be warned, you will come across many a pouting teenage girl – “I vant to be a star”), and love the idea of a visual stream of consciousness approach, log on to Tumblr and follow me.

Hope to see you there …

M.