Today’s assignment: edit your title and tagline


“LollyWrites” I thought it was catchy and kind of cute. My family thought otherwise. My supportive husband and my (mostly) supportive children said, “Why Lolly?” My oldest said, “Who is Lolly?”  Lolly is a nickname for Laurel, but it is not one of my nicknames.

As it turns out I’m not nuts about “LollyWrites’ either. So the assignment to edit my title and tagline is extremely appropriate for me.

The problem began when I couldn’t come up with something that “reflects me.” Yes, I read my post, “Why Am I Here” and nothing came to mind. I tried listing adjectives that describe my personality and again nothing. Puns weren’t helpful and I couldn’t come up with a clever way to use my name. Finally, I decided I was making it more difficult than necessary. Not unusual. So, I have put it on the back burner to simmer.

How did you decide on your title, your tagline?



The Daily Post


Who Am I and Why Am I Here?  Blogging 101 or Philosophy 101

Well, in this case, it is Blogging 101 and I’m trying to figure it all out.

Why are you blogging publically, rather than personal journal?

I started my blog several years ago and because of some major calamities in my life I never got it off the ground. My original goal was to write more and to challenge myself in a different medium. I have since realized the blogosphere’s potential for feedback and connections with other bloggers.

What topics do you think you’ll write about?

That is a tough question. I could write about tons of topics. If I could publish all the posts I’ve written in my head, I think it would be impressive. My confidence in my content being interesting is not as impressive. I want to experiment in topics, create a hodgepodge, and write about things in my life that trigger a comment, a post, an idea, or a thought.

Who would you love to connect with via your blog?

That is an easy question. I want to connect with beginner bloggers like me, with seasoned bloggers, with other aspiring writers, and with anyone interested enough to follow or comment on my blog. God bless them all!!

If you blog successfully throughout the next year, what would you have hoped to accomplished?

If I do successfully blog throughout the next year, I hope to create a blog that is a conversation.   Laurel


Hurricane Norbert Sends Rain My Way



Hurricane Norbert sent us a glorious down pour today. These pictures were taken from my courtyard.


I went for a walk between rains and it felt like I was in a spa. I love the rain, but the humidity can be hard to handle. Pant, pant.
I pulled all the window shades up and watched the storm. It made me want to cook. So, for dinner I am making salmon cakes with arugula salad. Recipe courtesy of Sounds yummy. I will do a recipe review on the site.
What about you? When it storms, what do you like to do? Read, write, cook, or maybe you like to snuggle up and listen. I like to do all of those, but today I cook.



The Good Stepmother


Dear Stepmother of my son,

This Mother’s Day I thought of you and how you have been there through the years for my son. He was six years old when you came into his life and became his stepmother. I admit it was a scary experience for me and now that he is grown and shares his early memories, I know it was a scary experience for him as well. But you won him over and I was not far behind.

You handled yourself with grace and dignity, respecting and valuing me as his mother. When he was small, and as he grew, you gave of yourself and gave him the wonderful gifts of a brother and a sister.

He is grown now with small children of his own and you are still there to support him and be another grandma to his boys.

Our lives have been enriched by your kindness, your generosity, and the respect you show to others.

Thank you for being the kind of person we all should aspire to be. Open, giving, loving, and humble. Thank you for being the good stepmom.


Please leave a comment and share inspiring stories of stepmoms or alternative caregivers you have experienced in your life. It’s good to hear positive stories.  Laurel

How Do You Write A Blog?


Hello All,

Here I am again. I haven’t given up and I don’t want to start over. Well, I actually did think about making a clean break and starting a new blog. Then I realized I didn’t have a different theme for a blog, so I will stick with this blog. I read a lot of blogs and some blogs share tips on the do’s and don’ts of a successful blog. I have so many ideas in my head about what to do or not do that I’m like a circuit breaker ready to blow. I’m trying to sort through the do’s and apply two or three that may help me move forward on this blog.

Number 1

Just write. Seems easy enough, make a schedule and write.

Number 2

Write like you talk. On one hand this sounds easy, but on the other hand writing like I talk might not always be clear. So, number two feeds right into number three.

Number 3

Keep it short and simple (KISS). I want my message to be readable and understandable. I need to edit and edit guarding against being long-winded.

I need to write often, write like I talk, and keep it short and simple. It will be a piece of cake, right? Okay, not all that easy, but these are three smart principles to practice.

What can you share that you use in your blog writing? What works for you?


Weekly Writing Challenge: Fifty/ The Daily Post


Today I am posting a weekly writing challenge from The Daily Post. It is a fifty word challenge where you write exactly fifty words, no more no less. It is a fun exercise. You may want to try it. See my fifty words below. I’d love to hear your comments about this DP challenge. Laurel

I walked out on the porch, stood, and closed my eyes. The night air was warm and I waited before I opened my eyes and looked up at the dark sky. It was the same as the previous night, two full moons shined down on me. “Where is this place?”



What Do You Miss About Being Five Years Old


“What do you miss most about being five years old?” I heard this question from Rainn Wilson, one of the stars from the hit CBS show The Office. It may seem like a silly question, but on deeper reflection, it may reveal some intense feelings.

There are many things I miss about being five years old and many things I’ve forgotten. What came to mind first was I miss playing with my brother. We had so many adventures together. We used mud, water, and our imaginations to create fairy villages, archeological digs, and even traps for imagined villains. We organized neighborhood kids and performed plays and my brother (the director) always gave the princess part to someone else. (I forgive you Robert.) We had a Red Rider wagon and a teepee that played many major roles in our fantasy worlds. It was a lot of fun and remembering it makes me think how much that playtime developed us as people. It opened our minds, it made us bold, and it made us believe in ourselves. Now who doesn’t need that in their life today?  

What do you miss most about being five years old? Think about it and if you can please share it with me. I love all comments and ideas. Thank you for reading.                                                                                                                                                          Laurel

For those of you interested in hearing more of Rainn Wilson’s questions check him out at It addresses Life’s Big Questions.

Simple Pleasures


I’ve decided that I’m going to keep a running list of simple pleasures. It’s kind of a hybrid of a bucket list and what I’m thankful for list.

In my last post, I shared that I was having some health issues. Well, eight days ago, I had extensive surgery on my neck and throat, not fun, but pretty amazing what modern medicine can do and I would like to give some credit to the miracle body machine we don’t always appreciate. My sister likes to say, “Our body spends twenty-four hours a day healing itself.” and she is right. After seven days, they took out the stitches and a drain. Yesterday, I could shower and wash my hair. I took a full on glorious shower. Then I went and had my hair washed and styled. I felt pretty.

It is the little luxuries that we take for granted. But, yesterday I fully appreciated those two little things.

What would you put on a “Simple Pleasures” list? I love reading your comments. Just click on the black comment box to make a comment. Thank you for reading my blog.  Laurel

Just Stay


Hello All, I’d like to say I just finished writing the final page of a novel, or I just completed a short story, or maybe even published an article, but I can’t say any of those. I have been reading, researching, and even writing in starts and stops, but writing nonetheless for brief times with large spans of time in between.

When I started this blog, I didn’t have a defined plan for its content. I wanted to connect with other bloggers as well as people who aspired to publish their writing. The first post was in April of 2012. Starting a blog was all part of a plan to hone my writing skills. I had been writing a young adult fantasy novel (I still am).

I never really did get this blog off the ground and I want to try again. I may find I will need to change the name of the blog to Laurel’s Rambles. 😀 Laughing.

Health issues since November of 2011 have caused me lost time, frustration, and stress. It is difficult for me to see myself as ill.  I’ve never smoked, I rarely drink, I eat right, and I like to exercise. Weird, Huh? Anyway, I’m having a tough time accepting this illness stuff. It came to me in the shower today, “I’m a healthy person trapped inside an ill body.” That being said I am going to try to post on this blog more often

Has anyone read The Light Between Oceans, by M.L.Stedman? It was a good read and an amazing first novel.  I googled M.L. Stedman and read an interesting interview at The Age Entertainment. I’d like to share some of what Stedman shared in the interview.

“When I start to write I let a picture or sentence or voice come to me.  …For me, the trick is to stay, just stay. It can be tempting to say, ‘Oh, there’s nothing there, but in my experience, if you wait without expectation or demand, there’s always something there that will eventually let itself be seen.”

This has a lot to say to me. If I “stay, just stay”, I will see my story unfold. It may change course, it may twist and turn, and it may even surprise me, but it will be written. I wonder how often we give up too soon, me included.

What do you think about M.L. Stedman’s process of writing? What is your experience? What do you do when you begin to write?

Let me hear from you. I appreciate all your individual ideas and feedback.

 Laurel  😀

Friday Already!


It’s Friday and I did work on a post for the blog, but I didn’t finish it. Time is not something that I have learned to use efficiently. Albert Einstein said, “The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.”

He was wrong, because everything does happen at once. If someone invites us to dinner, inevitably, one of my kids has a band performance, it’s a family member’s birthday, and we have a chance to get free tickets to see “War Horse.” Yes, everything does happen at once for me.

Anyway, here is the condensed version… My sixteen-year-old son is suffering typical, teenage angst as he learns that friendship is not always smooth. What makes a good friend? What will be important in the end? …loyalty, integrity, support, status, wealth, or pretense? It coincides with what my daughter is reading in Great Expectations. The story takes you full circle and Pip learns what is important in friendship. It seems that we struggle with the same lessons as our ancestors and their ancestors before them. Maybe, that is one good reason to read the classics. Just a thought.

What are your thoughts? I would like to hear what you value in a friend.