Blame It On The Rain

We’ve been experiencing drought conditions here in California and I was delighted to hear the news of not one, but two winter storms heading our way.  For three days, water poured from the sky in light drizzle and heavy downpours.  In between the rain, there were moments of bright, blue skies and thick fog that hung low, hugging the mountains.  It was perfect weather to stay in under a blanket with a good book and a fireplace roaring.

What is it about the rain that is so inspiring?

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Join The Fight

Cancer

Cancer.

It’s a scary word, made even more frightening when coming from the lips of your doctor.  But the diagnosis is only the beginning.  What follows are overwhelming statistics, painful surgeries, poisonous treatments, and a life changed forever.  A person can do everything right in their life and a tumor shows up on a scan, forcing them to confront a terrifying new world of IVs and head scarves.

It’s rare to find someone who hasn’t lost someone from cancer.  My grandmother bravely fought and conquered colon cancer, only to have it return ten years later, ultimately claiming her life.  My healthy uncle succumbed to squamous cell carcinoma within a year of his diagnosis.    Just two years ago, I attended my grandfather’s funeral on the same day as William and Kate’s royal wedding.  I’ve lost two co-workers to various cancers in the five years since I’ve been at my job.  After a while, it all makes you feel powerless.

But you’re not.  There’s a lot that you can do to help.

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Inspirational Princesses And Bloggers

Fifteen years ago today, my family gathered around the television for a breaking news story: Diana, Princess of Wales had been in a car accident in Paris.  I was 12 and not at all interested in the Royal Family, but we were glued to the news channel.  My mom stayed up well into the night watching the coverage and when the announcement was made that the princess had died, she took it especially hard because she was only one year older than Diana and I was one year younger than Prince Harry.

Diana, Princess of Wales
July 1, 1961 – August 31, 1997

The world mourned the death of the People’s Princess.  Thousands gathered outside Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace to pay their respects by leaving photos, bouquets, and fallen tears along the gates.  At the time, I didn’t get why everyone was so upset.  Yes, a young mother had died in a horrific way, but it’s not like any of these people actually knew her.

I understand now.

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Finding Inspiration And Choosing A Winner

A few weeks ago, I received one of the nicest emails from my blogging soul mate Stephanie with a completely unexpected request: she asked me to guest post on Simply Stephanie for her Inspiration Week.

I was completely touched that someone would put their blog in my hands and allow me to share more than a comment’s worth of space on their site.  This being my first year blogging, I had never really thought about what it would be like to guest post.  With blogs being so incredibly personal, how could anyone give someone else the reins and write for them?  How do you essentially substitute for a fellow blogger while staying true to both their blog and your style?

I was surprised to learn just how easy it was.  The trick is: be yourself.  With little more than some basic pointers, I set out to complete my first guest post and even got it in days before it was due (college professors from my undergraduate years are dumbfounded).

And today is the day!  Check out my guest blog here and don’t forget to browse through the other Inspiration Week posts by Laura of Not So Skinny Genes, Melissa from the Existential Detective, and Amber from Arbitrary Ambrosia.  It’s been an absolute pleasure to share the blogging stage with these awesome ladies and thank you Stephanie for the honor!

I also have another bit of news for you all.  I have a winner to announce of the Blog-Warming Giveaway, Take 2.

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In Vulnerability, There Is Hope

Inspired by the ever-intuitive Rian over at Truth and Cake, I have been encouraged to jump off the proverbial bloggers’ bridge and be 100% vulnerable by sharing something deeply personal.  But before I do that, allow me to gather the courage share why I’m baring my heart and soul like this.

Rian’s post really made me think about what I want to achieve on Defining Wonderland.  It’s hard to just put a blog into a box and be completely sure of the messages you want your readers to take away from your posts.  I want my Wonderlings to be amused, inspired, encouraged, and comforted by the stories I share and the questions I pose.  Now, I doubt all of that will be accomplished in each and every post, but I hope to at least keep folks coming back for more.  I accept that some posts may be good, some may be great, and plenty others will probably bore you to tears, but that is the risk every writer must take.  It’s a rather solo endeavor, this blog-keeping, but I don’t feel as though I’m alone with all of you out there commenting and posting on your own blogs.  It’s encouraging and keeps me going when my creativity and motivation take a nosedive.

Ok, I think I’ve stalled long enough.  The truth is…

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