Follow the words, y'all


Sometimes I like to look up the search terms that lead people to Aspiring Mama. Usually this happens after a random conversation I have with a real person like The Husband or my kid or the one neighbor who’s house I can see from the end of my drive (as opposed to the pretend people that live inside of my iPhone).

Today’s foray into RandomSearchTermLandia was spurred on by Monday’s blog post showcasing my girl and her daddy in their kilts and The Husband muttering something about his legs being all over the internet again. When I called him Kilt Daddy and told him to show me his Irish, he totally thought he was getting lucky later and, sadly, I had to tell him that was gonna have to wait for me to finish writing for the day. It took him a minute before he was all Who is this Kilt Daddy?

Reason # 9,487 I usually write nonfiction

So I showed him. Since publishing the original post two years ago, that very term has been one of the most popular internet searches leading readers directly to Aspiring Mama. Other winners include

*Advice Columns of Satire

* Funny Stories About Maine

* Pictures of Finger Monkeys

* Do Cats Blink

* Multiple Women Naked Bodies

* How Much is a Baby Finger Monkey?



* Broken Legs or Sprain Ankles of Famous Persons


Just remember, y’all, while Google may be telling you the truth when it shows you The Husband’s sexy legs when you ask it for the Kilt Daddy, Google is a damned liar about the finger monkey expert thing. That, my friends, was one blog post from way back when that was the first thing ever pinned by a reader and how I learned Pinterest had been invented.

Oh, and that one about the broken ankle? In my defense, there was a lot of meat on that sandwich.




So I'm sitting here trying to remember the original witty caption intended for this photo, but my Adderall wore off hours ago. So um....moving on.


Oh, I remember now. The BFF's sister, CJ Redwine, and her book birthday. While I don't normally talk YA books on Aspiring Mama (mainly because it took me until Harry Potter got to Redbox status to read the series) but I'm making an exception here on behalf of the BFF. Also? I couldn't figure out how I ended up with a hard copy on my door via Amazon on Defiance's launch day. Then I remembered C.J. Redwine's sister (that would be the BFF) made me pre-order a copy. You're welcome, ADHD.

The nook book I bought myself at midnight to celebrate C.J. Redwine's book launch. Mainly because I'm BFFs with her sister.

Buttercup thinks the Bookmobile is the coolest thing since The Fresh Beat Band. I share her enthusiasm for mobile libraries, not having to spend money at the book store, and getting to keep the books we checked out for the next 8 weeks. The Being Awesome thing is probably what inspired the following....


I, Pauline Campos, Official BFF of the sister of CJ Redwine, author of Defiance and rocker of your literary world, donated the copy I forgot I ordered. Boys and girls? I expect a wait list to be forming for this one. You're welcome.


And C.J. Redwine's sister just handed me this, y'all. Don't hate. Just buy the book and thank me later.




See these earrings?

And these?


Pretty snazzy, aren’t they? Betcha wanna know how you could possibly get your hands on a pair of these little babies, don’t ya?


Well…I’m not going to tell you. Turns out I suck at getting other people to pony up for a worthy cause like The Julian Project, even when offering Pretty Things to encourage participation, so I’m just gonna go with what works this time. CJ Redwine’s sister, a.k.a. HC Palmquist, happens to rock the socks off of earrings like these. In fact, she’s the only one who donated for the last pair, and she basically offered me a pie to just hand these over to her. (She makes really good pie.) I was about to say yes and then we both came to our senses because there is the Julian Project and all so we  decided to proceed and pretend like I have influence over all of you by admitting I don’t have influence over any of you.

Clever, right?

CJ Redwine happens to think it’s genius. Also? She totally let me pimp out her were-llama famousness for the sake of maybe helping me donate more than what I can talk Buttercup into giving me from her piggy bank. Which? Makes CJ even more awesome than I had previously assumed based on how much I like her sister’s pie.

And I really like her sister’s pie.

But that’s neither here nor there because no one wants to donate $5 to be in the running for one pair of these earrings or $10 for a chance at both pairs except for CJ Redwine’s sister, right?


So here’s the deal, CJ Redwine’s sister: click here and do that donation thing then come back to this post and leave me a comment letting me know if you are trying to win one or both sets of earrings. Tweet this. Facebook it. Blog about it. None of it’s gonna get you extra entries because I’m revising a manuscript right now and don’t have the time to keep track of all that craziness but tweet, Facebook, and blog about this if you can spare a moment and it makes you feel good inside. Don’t get all anxious and stuff since you’re probably the only one entering, anyway, so this is as good as in the bag, right?


The reverse psychology worked, yes?

Let the craziness begin.


Fine print: Earrings were graciously created and provided by the very talented mother of Born to be a Dragon author Eisley Jacobs for the sole purpose of raising funds for The Julian Project.

More fine print: CJ Redwine rocks.

Even more fine print: And so does her sister.

Donations and comments will be accepted through Friday, November 11, at midnight, EST. The winner(s), presumably CJ Redwine’s sister, will be announced the following day here on the blog.


I think I have blogger’s block. Normally, I’ve got about a million ideas swimming through my head with roughly 95% of them earmarked for Blog Posts I Would Have Time to Write if I Hired a Nanny and by the time I sit down at night to get the ideas on the screen, I have to decide which idea gets to be born into words and off I am on my merry way.

Lately, however, I’ve been struggling. Maybe it’s lack of motivation. Maybe it’s stress. Or maybe I most likely need to borrow some of HC Palmquist’s Ambien or Robin O’Bryant’s pet Leroy and see where those avenues take me for inspiration. I had originally been thinking of buying a huge metal chicken named Beyonce to be my muse, but looks like that’s already been done. So instead I’ve been finding myself staring at an empty square on my screen waiting to hold my words while Add New Post kinda just stand there, mocking me.

A new post about what? Maybe it’s just me, but I sometimes wonder if I need to filter my moods when deciding what to post. When it comes to blog hits, funny works. Introspective? Not so much. But that leads me to question why I am blogging anymore if my only desire is to see an upward trend in readership because if ‘m not writing for myself first than who am I writing for?

I’m not going to take some bullshit high-road and tell you that I’ve reached nirvana and no longer care what you or anyone else thinks and will be happy to just share my words on a public forum that no one other than myself makes time to read. I’m not going to tell you that being authentic is more important than being popular, mainly because, even through I agree with the sentiment, the blatant overuse of the word when it comes to blogging makes me want to pull my hair out. And I’m certainly not going to tell you that while your writing needs to be for you before it’s for anyone else, you had better damned well be thinking about your audience and your numbers and your popularity and your ability to network with other writers/bloggers/social media innovators to get your name out there for the sake of that Godforsaken platform because we’re happy your authentic blog that you write for religiously and maintain just for you because the mere act of sharing your words even if no one else is reading them is cathartic in and of itself but really? Who told you all that shit didn’t matter?

It’s all very chicken and egg-like. It doesn’t matter if our dream is to connect with others in the same place in life (shout out to all the Mommy Bloggers and a big WHAT UP to the Writer Mama’s out there!), or if we are trying to keep our heads above water in an ever-rising sea of expectations regarding what we need to have accomplished to be deemed worthy of a book deal (Bump-its come to mind), or if we just want to prove to ourselves that after wrangling the kids all day and looking for that nerve you are pretty sure you just had, we can still string together a sentence for other adults that don’t include the words “potty, nigh’ night, or Dammit, how many times do I have to tell you not to flash strangers your Hello Kitty panties to strangers in the middle of Target?” A dream is a dream is a dream. It’s just up to us to sift through the bullshit on the way, kick any and all irrelevant emotional baggage to the curb (being careful to store away the relevant emotional baggage for later use in the appropriate essays, articles, books, and or blog posts), and decide each and every time we sit down to send our words out into the universe what drew us to do so.

For me? This blog is my personal space which I publicly share. Sometimes I’m snarky, funny, offensive. Others I am introspective, reflective, and revealing. You might not like or appreciate the snark or maybe introspective isn’t your thing. And that’s okay. I’m not writing for you. I’m writing for me. And if something I say just happens to connect with someone who just happened to stop by on a particular day, that will be enough for me. I wore a mood ring as a child to let the world know without speaking the color of the thoughts I carried within my head. Now, there’s an app for that.

So which came first, y’all?

The chicken or the egg? The inspiration to share or the inspiration to influence?


I once tweaked my neck sneezing. This is important to note because two days ago I sprained my ankle.

While standing in front of this…


I can’t get into further detail because there aren’t any. I limped my way through packing The Husband’s work cooler, getting his dinner done before he woke up for work, and getting Buttercup into bed. I woke up yesterday morning not being able to walk, kissed The Husband goodnight as he climbed into bed to prepare for another midnight shift, and dropped Buttercup off at a friend’s house. That’s when HC Palmquist called to give me the same speech I gave her about being a jackass for driving myself to the ER and told me to stop by her place so she could play taxi.

Frankly, I think she was just looking for some cheap entertainment.


check-in Nurse: And what are we seeing you for today?

Me: I either broke or sprained my ankle.

Nurse: When?

Me: Last night.

Nurse: Last night? Um, okay. Have you taken anything for the pain or swelling?

Me: *Blinking* Shit. I  didn’t even realize that was an option. This is why I’d never be invited to appear on Celebrity Rehab.

HC Palmquist: Um, I think you actually have to be a celebrity for that to happen.

Me: Or shot someone in the head and had my name all over the tabloids. –yes, I’m talking about you, Amy Fisher.

HC Palmquist: *shrugs shoulders* Same difference.

Nurse: *Obviously ignoring the exchange* How did you injure yourself.

Me: I was standing in front of my refrigerator.

Nurse: *waiting.*

Me: That’s it. I was standing in front of my refrigerator.

HC Palmquist: Hysterical laughter.

Or this one:

Nurse Practitioner: What did you do to yourself, dear?

Me: No idea. But I can’t put weight on my foot.

NP: This happened when?

Me: Last night.

NP: last night?

Me: Why does everyone act like I should have come in right after I made the sandwich?

HC : *snickering* Because that is what a normal person would have done.

NP: (to HC) Thank you. (to me) Made the sandwich?

ME: That’s how it happened. I was standing in front of the refrigerator.

NP: And?

ME: That’s it. I. Was. Standing. In. Front. Of. The. Refrigerator. I grabbed what I needed to make my husband a sandwich and suddenly felt like comparing the pain in my ankle now shooting up my leg to an unmedicated childbirth.

NP: So, it never occurred to you to take an aspiring for the swelling?

ME: It’s swollen?


NP: Really?

HC: Hysterical laughter.


NP: Well, it isn’t broken. But you did really hurt yourself. You can see significant swelling on the X-ray.

Me: Thank God.

NP: It is sprained. You aren’t off the hook. I’m sending you home with an ankle brace and crutches. No weight on that injured ankle for three days.

Me: That count started yesterday, right?

NP: It might have if you had come in when you almost broke your ankle making a sandwich.

HC: hysterical laughter.

It wasn’t until after I sent HC home with a few tokens of appreciation for playing nursemaid all day that I realized I got had. I’m the one who should have been charging admission.

The line forms here, people. You’re welcome.


The problem with posting on a schedule is that life happens off schedule. Today’s focus was supposed to be on Leah Segedie and today’s awesome two-year-anniversary celebration for her ground-breaking Mamavation social media health initiative, but then all the crap before the asterix happened. And because it wouldn’t be funny on Wednesday, I figured I’d do do double duty and talk about both today.

If you are new to the blog, let me explain. Every Monday I try to post a personal health related update sharing my current experience with the Sistahs of the Mamavation community. The literal ups and downs…no harsh judgement allowed. Just support and open arms for those giving their all to trying to better themselves for their health and their families.

I also serve as an editor for Leah’s Bookieboo blog and post weekly. So yes, there is a fair amount of time invested, but only because I believe firmly that Leah has created a fantastic community and love being a part of it. I also love that i can call many of the moms friends and inspirations. Shelley, Kimberly, Kia, Stephanie, and Sue…thank you for being part of this group of Awesome created by Leah.

Happy birthday, Mamavation. Can’t wait to see what the next year brings you.

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