All posts filed under: Blogging

A Return to Home Sweet Abbey

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Blogging / Mostly Musings / Neighbors

It’s been more than a year since I posted on this blog. Maybe you thought I had decided to close it down. I wouldn’t blame you. There were times when I thought that’s what was happening too. It seemed like I had run out of ideas and of inspiration. I would sit down at the computer and try to write, but my topic wouldn’t work out. There were even more times when my mind was […]

A Slice of Vacation Life

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Blogging / Just for Fun / Nature

Today’s assignment is to recreate the events of a single day. This one will be easy, since I will draw on memories of my recent stay with my friend, Sue, in her rental condo in Orange Beach, AL   I wake up when I wake up, without an alarm or obligation. I know without getting out of bed whether Sue is up before me. The first thing she does each morning is open the glass […]

Mapping My Family Home

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Blogging / Mostly Musings

  Today’s assignment is to write a post based on a map. I am doing that, but you will have to read for a while before we get to the maps.   It was, I don’t know, maybe 2013 or -14, a late afternoon, when my phone rang.  I didn’t recognize the number that came up, but I knew the 319 area code.  It is for eastern Iowa, where I was born and raised. A family […]

Tweet, Tweet

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Blogging

Today’s assignment calls for me to “mine my own material.” This means that I search my writing in places other than this blog for ideas. So, for example, I might use something I’ve written on other social media sites or in journals or, really, anywhere. I’ve ruled out Facebook posts because too many of you reading this blog are FB friends, which means you would be reading re-runs. I’ve also ruled out the journals that […]

School Shooting, Number Gazillion

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Blogging

I. April 20, 1999:  It was a Tuesday, the end of a normal school day. I packed up the papers I was taking home to grade and locked my classroom. That year, due to a student enrollment that had outgrown our building, I was teaching in a mobile classroom on the front lawn of Woodstock High School. It was a short walk across the street to the parking lot and my car. I started the […]

A Road Not Taken

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Blogging / Mostly Musings

Today my assignment is to take two published posts on a common theme, combine them, and make them into something new. The posts—For Sale: My Abbey and My Abbey, Still My Sweet Home—tell the story of my unsuccessful attempt to move to a different home in the Maples.     March 2016. When I moved into my Abbey in October 2010, I told everyone, including myself, there would be no more moves. It was my […]

A Post about “The Post”

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Blogging

Today, again, I am combining two assignments into one post. In the first, I am to write about a place where I have spent time observing my surroundings. In the second, I am to critique a piece of artwork.   On Friday I had the pleasure of seeing The Post at the Woodstock Theatre—Classic Cinemas. I arrived early for the 11:25 a.m. show so that I could watch, listen, and soak up my surroundings for this assignment. It […]

A Letter to the Past

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Blogging

Today’s assignment is to write a post in the form of a letter. I am writing to my maternal grandmother, Hilda Hagen Hahn (1892–1957). My Dear Nana, You chose to end your life in 1957. I was 10, old enough to understand some of it, but not as much as I do now. Craig was 7 and has only vague memories. Though it was 60 years ago, I remember our phone ringing early in the […]

Oprah Speaks Her Truth

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Blogging

Today’s blogging assignment asks me to respond to a tweet. Since I am pretty much a Twitter addict, this will be both fun and a challenge. I have “favorited” 252 tweets over the past few years. How could I choose only one? I ended up not using any of them but going with a timely one posted last night. “Speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have.” @Oprah’s inspiring #GoldenGlobes message to the […]

Brushing Up My Shakespeare

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Blogging

Note to my readers: I’m finding that creating a post worthy of publishing every day is more time-consuming that I expected. So I am going to spread out the assignments and take some days off. Today I’m going to take another liberty and combine yesterday’s topic, which was to write about a photo, with today’s, which is to write about a quote.   You are looking at an original copy of the First Folio of […]

Andrea’s Choices

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Blogging

To my readers: Today’s assignment is to pick one word from a list of six and to write a post inspired by the word. I selected the word choice, but I’m not going to apply it to myself. Today I’m writing about Andrea Jackson, the main character in my new novel. Note: There will be NO spoilers in this post.   Andrea’s choices in Teaching Mysteries 201: The Strike Andrea, a high school English teacher in […]

The View from 70

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Blogging

   To my readers: I’m continuing my blogging class with today’s assignment of writing a list. Things I like about being 70 At 70, when I meet someone new, I no longer get suspicious glances when I tell them I’m retired. That was not always the case when I retired at 55. If I uttered the R-word 15 years ago, faces looked at me with a combination of surprise, envy, and resentment of my good […]

Why I Write

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Blogging

To my readers: I am beginning the new year by taking a class on blogging. For the next three weeks, I will be writing responses to daily assignments. This WordPress icon will identify posts that are part of my coursework. Today’s topic: Why I write.   I write because I like the challenge of pulling an intangible thought from my brain and recording it in tangible form, whether on paper or a screen. I write […]

My New Novel

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Blogging

Maybe 7 is a lucky number after all. It was 7 years ago that I moved into my new Abbey, which eventually led me to begin this blog. It was also 7 years ago that I began the first draft of a new novel that I expected to be quick and easy to write. After all, it is a sequel. I already had developed most of the main characters, the setting, the genre (cozy mystery). […]

I’m Still Here

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Blogging

Shadow has been feeling lonely lately. Or, I should say, she had been feeling ignored until she took matters into her own paws. If I were going to spend hours upon hours on the computer, she would camp out here, where it is so convenient for me to pet her and talk to her that I do just that. My cat has a good point. I have been… obsessed is a little too strong a […]

Words That Jangle in Your Head

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Blogging / Mostly Musings

Where do you get the ideas you write about? Readers sometimes ask me this question. More often, though, I ask it of myself. Where did that idea even come from? And where can I find more of them? It’s a good question because it doesn’t have a simple, clear cut answer. Sometimes, my topic comes from a reader’s suggestion. Other times, I stumble into a situation and  realize it would be fun to write about. […]

For Sale: My Abbey

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Blogging / Moving

When I moved into my Abbey in October 2010, I told everyone, including myself, there would be no more moves. It was my dream home. I planned to stay until I died or was carried out. And I meant it. I meant it so much, I would have staked my life on it. When I created this blog three years ago, it was so simple coming up with the name Home Sweet Abbey. Since then […]

Thank You, Readers

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Blogging

I try to convince myself that I do not care much about statistics when it comes to evaluating this blog. I’m writing for my own enjoyment, I tell myself, to convey my excitement in living where I do, to connect with others, to exercise some creativity. All of this is definitely true. But… WordPress, the company behind my blog, is so very expert at sharing statistics with its users. With one click, I can find […]

Happy New Year 2016

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Blogging / Holidays / Mostly Musings

  My motto/goal/inspirational saying for the new year is: If not now… then when?   2015 did a good job of reminding me how short and fragile life can be. I’m fortunate because I did not learn the lesson through personal experience. But I did share it through the hardships of some people who are very dear to me. As we enter the new year, I’m feeling the vulnerability of being in my upper 60s. […]

11-22-63

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Blogging / Mostly Musings

Today I am pleased to welcome my first-ever guest blogger to Home Sweet Abbey. Joe Accardi, a friend, neighbor, and fellow writer, shares memories of the music that has shaped his life on Life Out of Tunes. This morning, both Joe and I commented on the same Facebook post about the anniversary of the Kennedy assassination. Seeing that, I realized we each had something to say about that fateful day. He agreed. Here is Joe’s […]