July Blogging Challenge: Day 12

Day 12 – Describe a great day (real or imagined)

One of the best days of my life was back in 2007 when I found out that I had received a financial aid package that was going to be enough to quit my job and focus on my education full-time. Up until that point, I had been attending the local community college and working, which was challenging to say the least, especially since I was also a single mom for most of that time. I would not have made it without my mother, who my daughter and I were living with at the time and who always did anything she could to help me.

My mother came with me to attend the orientation/open house for UNC-Greensboro, the university I would be transferring to, and it made me cry. I knew that I would never be able to take advantage of most of the offerings there because I was still going to have to work almost full-time to afford anything and probably have to carry a full course load as well in order to finish my degree or to qualify for even the slightest bit of financial aid. It was as if I was looking through a window at these golden opportunities and wasn’t able to reach them.

A few days later, I received my answer back from FAFSA. Turns out being a poor, single mom with perfect grades (I graduated both schools with a 4.0 GPA) makes the financial aid people give you money. It wasn’t a fortune by any means, but it was enough to not only afford full tuition, but to be able to quit my full-time job at the law firm and focus solely on my education. It was as if that window had suddenly become a door that was open wide, welcoming me inside. The possibilities suddenly seemed endless.

I did end up getting a part-time job at the university library to supplement my finances (best job EVER!!!), but since it was part of the university system, they were completely understanding and flexible with my schedule.

I consider those years spent at UNCG to be the best years of my life. I felt free for the first time in a long time. I felt like I had a chance to build the life I wanted (which totally didn’t happen, but it was a nice feeling in the moment). And it all started that one day with a FAFSA letter.


WWW Wednesday for July 11, 2018


WWW Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words. Three questions, three answers. Let’s go!

What are you currently reading?

Currently reading Blood Games by Chloe Neill, book 10 in the Chicagoland Vampires series. I swear I am going to finish this series, and after this, I will only have three books left!

Also technically still reading Anger is a Gift by Mark Oshiro, although I’ve come to a standstill with it. Not because it isn’t good, but because it is too much like real events. Right now, I need escapism. Once I finish the Chloe Neill books, I will go back to it in earnest.

What did you recently finish reading?

Finished Wild Things by Chloe Neill. My answers will be fairly repetitive until this book series is finished, but hey, at least I’ll be able to cross something off my list!

What do you think you’ll read next?

The next three Chicagoland books are Dark Debt, Midnight Markedand Blade Bound. Once I finish those, then I will most likely start back over on Anger is a Gift so I can write up a review.

Leave your WWW in comments!

July Blogging Challenge: Day 11

Day 11 – Three favorite scents

  • Bath & Body Works Aromatherapy Stress Relief – I don’t care what form it comes in. Candles. Lotion. Body spray. The combination of spearmint and eucalyptus is so soothing to me. When I have a really bad day, I just hide my face in it and it makes me feel just a bit better. The tension literally melts away, especially from my shoulders for some reason. I hold a lot of tension there.
  • New York City – This one might sound weird. NYC is one of my favorite places in the world, with it’s theater and literature and culture. If you want to learn about anything, you can find it in New York. The city just has a smell. It’s a combination of wet concrete and garbage and a mixture of food scents wafting from various restaurants along the street. Whenever I smell it, I know that I am in my home away from home.
  • Coconut scented sunblock mixed with chlorine – Nothing says summer and childhood like the combination of these two scents. How many days did I spend at my aunt and uncle’s house swimming in their pool? How many days did I spend at friend’s houses swimming? So many! That scent brings back lots of happy, fun memories and always promises a fun time.

July Blogging Challenge: Day 10

Day 10 – Ten years ago today . . .

Ten years ago, I was doing the same thing I am doing today: remembering my dad on his birthday. He passed away back in 2001. This year, he would have been 72 years old.

Ten years ago, I was planning for a wedding that would be coming up in October. We were just starting house shopping, if I recall.

Ten years ago, I was still a student at UNC-Greensboro. Those were some of the best years of my life. You never forget the place where you finally found yourself.

Ten years ago, I had a three year old little girl, not a thirteen year old teenager. I remember thinking that raising her was so hard. Little did I know those were the simple years.

Ten years ago, I had more optimism for the future than I do now.

Ten years ago, I felt like anything was possible, that the world was wide open for me.

I miss how I felt ten years ago.

July Blogging Challenge: Day 9

Day 9 – Never have I ever . . .

I have never gotten a tattoo.

I have never seen any of the Twilight movies.

I have never been to California, Canada, or Mexico.

I have never eaten sushi.

I have never fired a gun.

I have never smoked a cigarette (or anything else for that matter).

This is a somewhat random post, but in a way, it has to be. When one is approaching 40 years of age, your list of things that you have never done starts to get smaller.


July Blogging Challenge: Day 8

Day 8 – What’s on your mind?

Oh, this is a dangerous topic, y’all. My mind is a swirling vortex of nothing but chaos at the moment. Currently, if I am going to be honest, I am very stressed. I have a big project at work that I need to get done in the next two weeks before I go on vacation, not to mention preparing everything for vacation itself. On top of all this, I am having some health issues at the moment, which of course makes everything a bit more complicated.

Staying optimistic is a bit of a challenge these days. I’m trying, believe me, but it’s hard.

July Blogging Challenge: Day 7

Day 7 – How do I like my pasta

The real question is – how do I NOT like my pasta!

Pasta is one of the foods of the gods. It is delicious, ever adaptable, and is perfect for any occasion.

Need to be fancy? Get a good Alfredo with some fettuccini and add some fresh herbs.

A casual family meal? Pour on some marinara over spaghetti and add some meatballs.

Feeling down? Whip up some macaroni and cheese and have yourself a pity party.

It’s a main course. It’s a side dish. It’s anything you want it to be!

Personally, my favorite of those three examples would be the macaroni and cheese. Adding cheese to anything almost always makes it better.