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Jaws XXIV - Dude, paddle faster!  This does not look like a stress-free tropical vacation! by Blurry Lenses.

No man needs a vacation so much as the person who has just had one.  ~Elbert Hubbard

Well said, Elbert.  Not sure who Elbert Hubbard is/was but he nailed it with that one.  I tried to stay up on emails and pay attention to kids’ sports schedule changes and school parties/activities while I was on vacation.  However, when looking out at the ocean and seeing whales breech or listening to the waves crash in the background didn’t help the focus factor. 

Bills need to be paid (didn’t I just do that before I left? WTH?) and kids’ sports schedules are out of control.  The clutter of mail and random articles (you know, grocery receipt, chapstick, kid’s flashlight, one lonely battery, etc.) that seem to grow from my countertop need to be put away. Sprinkle in a few birthday parties and book club planning! ARGHHHH!  Calgon, take me away!

The good and bad of it is that all I want to do is get back to my writing.  The good is that I am glad that I feel the pull to write (I was a little nervous on vacation that I could blow it off so easily).  I hardly wrote on vacation.  I figured a six-hour connection from Phoenix to Hawaii would give ample time.  Between self-berating for leaving the video camera case under the seat on the last plane to getting sucked into watching the worst movie ever (the roller derby one with Drew Barrymore), before we knew it, time to land!

The bad is that  the other” junk” needs to be dealt with first.  Reading Snail mail/emails,  paying bills, cleaning up the clutter, grocery shopping, etc. are the things that I HAVE to do.  Writing is what I WANT to do.   

I lugged my laptop hoping to sneak in some blogging and continue on my WIP.  I brought along my favorite writing book to inspire me (The Fire in Fiction by Donald Maass).   The pull of the ocean and beach chair were just too strong.  So now I sit at my computer, trying to get back into the swing of things.  The only problem is that while on my relaxing vacation, my characters and some of the plot lines changed on me.  It creates a whole new problem because now do I go back and rewrite the scenes completely or do I just finish the first draft as is and make the changes with the 2nd draft?  Again, ARRGGHHHH!

While I am thinking about all of this the guilt of not doing what I should  be doing is grinding on me.   My kids are watching.  Not literally starting at me.  But they see what I do and  they will mimic.  If I blow off the important stuff to do the stuff I want, how is that any better than my kids wanting to play outside when their rooms aren’t clean yet?  Then my husband will have more ammo when I complain about the kids not doing their chores!  Being a role model stinks sometimes! 

I have done a little bit of my writing this morning while 10 yr old (home with sinus infection) and preschooler watch a movie.  Hopefully, they have been distracted.  Now on to my other items on to-do list.  Yucko.  But I have to be a role model because it is my job.  The cruddy part of the job, but my job nonetheless. (I am pumping myself up here.  You know like an athlete in a pre-game warmup.)  Get out there girl!  You can do it! (Okay, enough, I get it.)

Any other stressed out writer mamas out there?  Do you write before the kids get up?  Do you write during the day and ignore household duties until later?   I would love to hear from you!

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My view 80% of vacation

Laptop packed? Check.

Fully charged battery? Check.

Cameras charged and ready? Check.

Writing journals, notecards, and Donald Maass book packed? Check.

End of vacation writing progress?  NONE!!!!

Has anyone else ever done this? Gone on vacation intending to get in touch with your creative side?   Thought the beautiful landscape would inspire you? 

I pictured that beautiful Hawaii and its beautiful beaches with endless peace and quiet would equate to an eruption of creative juices.  (Pun intended) Not so much.  I thought of writing just a little but then the beach chair must have some sort of brain activity suction somewhere.  Literally my butt hit the chair and my writing motivation wriggled itself in the soft warm sand right along with my toes. 

I do have somewhat of an excuse.  My children and parents were with me on the first leg of the vacation so many of you mothers  know exactly what that can do for the probability of high brain function .  We can only register so much.  Did I put the 30 SPF in the backpack?   Are the pool toys in my backpack or his?  Where is the lip balm?  Oh, wait.  Let me pack a few hundred more snacks so the kids won’t bug me for another six hours about being hungry nor will I have to take them to the pool side restaurant that thinks their hot dogs must be laced with gold by the prices that want to extort. 

I had no room for the “me” stuff.  However, I absolutely loved the time with my parents and the kids.  My kids had never been to the ocean before so their enthrallment with the beach and snorkeling and all things Hawaii made my heart full.   It was like that first time when your kids saw fireworks and I am not talking the pathetic highway stand fireworks.  The ones you pack a picnic basket full of dinner, blankets, chairs, bug repellent, and plenty of cold beverages while you claim the perfect spot for the big show. 

They were so excited that my ten-year old was doing cartwheels down the beach.  My seven-year old ran through the surf as if he was auditioning for Baywatch-The Next Generation.  My four-year old dug in the sand with crappy little plastic toys and found umpteen lava rocks and coral as if each one was truly a treasure.  Those moments will stick with me forever.  We snorkeled, took a catamaran day trip to Lana’i, saw whales and spinner dolphins, shopped, ate, exercised, met new people, hiked a waterfall, oh yeah, and laid on my backside 80% of the time.   Even though I lugged my stupid laptop across 4 time zones for nothing, I think I will have some pretty wonderful memories that can lend some ideas for a story down the road. 

And for those of you that live in Hawaii….I hate you.  I mean that in the nicest way possible. 

Does anyone have any great places they visited and were inspired to write?  Any other writer mamas out there that intended to write but had the same problems I had?  Please feel free to share!!

Mahalo and Aloha,

Hallieieilu (my name in Hawaiian) (I am kidding)

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