#AtoZChallenge | E is for Evening and the Creativity it Brings.

While I don’t have a favorite Mr. Darcy as no matter who plays the role, in the end, Jane Austen’s story will bring me around to the same conclusion as Elizabeth Bennet. I too love Mr. Darcy. I’ve watched every version or homage made, from Pride and Prejudice and Zombies to the classic BBC version with Colin Firth. The latter I watch at least a few times every year, but I’ve learned never to start watching it after 9 pm.

The mini-series is 327 minutes, or just over five and a half hours. And even though it may be my twentieth viewing, once I start watching I don’t stop until it’s done. While I’m sure the allure of Mr. Darcy has a great deal to do with it, in reality the reason I’ll stay up way too late is that I’m a night owl and when fully engaged, whether with a classic like Pride and Prejudice or more typically on a craft project, I just don’t want to stop. All of my senses come awake.

For my One Little Word® project, each month we’re given a prompt and activities around our word. They are usually a combination of writing prompts along with artistic, or creative components.

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#AtoZChallenge | D is for Dogs from the first hello to the last goodbye.

Sitting cross legged on the living room floor as puppies with sporadic control over their limbs climbed all over us, jostling one another for high ground so they could lick our faces, is a treasured memory.

The parents of this rambunctious lot were both black labs with loads of energy, which in hindsight should have been a deterrent. The litter was a Neapolitan mix of three chocolate, three black and three yellow labs. We knew we wanted a smaller dog and as soon as we walked in my daughter, who was only six at the time, found a perfect little chocolate female pup. She probably would have been wonderful, but instead one of the larger yellow labs stole my heart and in a decision I occasionally regretted, I overruled her choice.

Moose, as the owners called him, was friendly, outgoing, and full of personality. During feeding time, he would lay down, covering as much food as possible, as it scattered across the floor while his brothers and sisters raced to the bowls. Then he would simply stand and eat the food he had captured. Turns out that was all for show. Once we got him home, we learned that he was the only lab on the planet who actually was not motivated by food. For the first two years of his life, we could actually see his ribs.

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#AtoZChallenge | C is for Craft Beer and five sours that bring a smile to my puckered lips.

Watching a video the first time a baby tries a lemon always makes me smile. That  immediate, reflexive pucker and confused expression not quite sure if they like this new mysterious taste or not.  For me, there’s no confusion. I love lemons and anything sour. I’ll still pucker up on occasion if the flavor is extremely sour but it’s one of my favorites.

While my go to movie candy is milk duds, sour patch kids is a close second. I can finish off the whole bag during the opening credits of the movie. I’m not proud of that fact. It’s why I only buy them occasionally.

So, it’s no surprise that my favorite craft beer is sour. Fortunately, there is an abundance of amazing options available in Maine for sour loving girls like me.

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#AtoZChallenge | B is for Blogging and getting personal for my grand return.

Somehow my short break from blogging turned into a year and a half long hiatus, with a few occasional feeble posts to make me feel like I was somehow still engaged. I kept up a little better with my social media accounts and still spent a lot of time thinking about my blog but just didn’t get around to posting that much.

Maybe that’s the natural ebb and flow of a hobby blog. I don’t know. This is my first blog. I can’t feign that life was too busy. My empty nest meant I did have excess time to devote to my blog, but I found other things to fill the time instead. There were a few major life events during my break including the loss of my mother and a change of jobs. The first certainly a large stressor, the latter more of a minor transitional period.

In the end, I don’t think it was any specific incident just a temporary loss of interest.

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#AtoZChallenge | A is for antiquing and finding joy in the hunt.

I renovated my home office last year. I’m sure OSHA would have been horrified with the previous layout as nothing about it was ergonomically correct.  I was using a high, narrow sideboard painted a beautiful sage green. Through the years the wood had worn down in a few visible locations and was mottled with stains that no amount of effort could remove in others. The doors on either side were always ajar. They could only be closed with extreme effort and precise jiggling. I sometimes attempted to close them but not often.

We had pushed it against one wall which sadly removed any possible view of the lake but it was the only place it fit. We used it as a desk even though it was definitely the wrong height for the keyboard. It was awkward. The rest of the room was a jumble of mismatched, run-down furniture and an overly extensive collection of craft supplies, some more useful than others, and all of it bringing me dangerously close to hoarder territory.

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