Random Acts of Kindness

29 10 2007

When I was a senior in high school, I had to take psychology to finish up some “credit requirements”. It’s the easiest class to take and I really didn’t expect to learn anything more than I already knew. But I did.

Every Friday we had to perform Random Acts of Kindness over the weekend. We had to do at least 3 and write about it to be turned in Monday. At first, I would totally forget about it and just put something down in the class before my psych class. I would make something up and scribble it down and turn it in and always get full points. Then one weekend I just decided to think about something I could do for someone else that would be considered a Random Act of Kindness. And you know what? It felt good.

I started out doing little things, like opening doors for people, or letting other cars get the “good spot” I was waiting for at the mall. These little things that were so simple made me feel pretty darn good about myself.

I was reminded of this exercise when Rura and I rented Evan Almighty last week. If you haven’t seen this, go rent it. It got really awful reviews but it was actually really good. At the end of the story, God basically teaches Evan about Acts of Random Kindness, or ARK. Get it? He has to build the Ark and in the process learns about treating people right and committing Acts of Random Kindness. Ooooh. Its a feel good story, perfect for the whole family.

Moving on… that got me thinking. There is so much ugliness and negativity in the world, why cant we just get back to basics? So I thought I would bring it to the blogosphere. Its amazing how much positive energy comes from bloggers. Imagine if we were all commiting Random Acts of Kindness? And then writing about it?

I figure with NaBloPoMo coming up, we could all use at least ONE day a week where our post practically writes itself. So I call Sundays for this little project.

I need your help though.

Should we go with ARK Sundays or RAOK Sundays?

Anyone want to volunteer to make a button and banner for this?

Does anyone think they would actually participate? Please let me know if I am wasting my time here. All I ask is that you write about your Random Acts of Kindness every Sunday. Link back to the page I’ll make so that your readers will maybe want to do it too. Commit one, three, ten, a hundred for all I care. Then write about it on Sunday. All I am trying to do is spread a little love around here. And isnt that what the world needs now?

So who’s with me?

Southern California

26 10 2007

As anyone who reads knows, I live in Southern California. As anyone with a TV knows, Southern California is currently going through another fire season. The air is thick with smoke and it sits heavily on top of us. I’ve been fighting off a sore throat since Monday night and it was only today that I actually connected it with the fact that I literally live in a punchbowl, and the smoke from the surrounding fires is acting as the punch.

This picture was taken on Monday the 22nd on my way home from work. The smoke was coming from the fire that was burning in San Bernardino near the University, and also from the fires in Arrowhead.
This is what was left of the hillsides near the University.

That picture was taken on Wednesday the 24th, no less than 15 miles from where SBJ goes to school and now lives. His school was evacuated Monday afternoon as a safety precaution. He just thought it was cool to ride the bus. The great thing about his school is that they are the first to leave the area in the event of a fire. His town got lucky this year, as portions of the surrounding areas burned starting Sunday, and very luckily being controlled and put out by Tuesday. He got extra lucky though because his school closed for the week, starting his vacation early. He is off track the whole month of November and today was supposed to be his last day.

Monday was the last time that we could see these mountains clearly.

Now they are completely hidden behind smoke.

The wind was so severe that fire spread within minutes. Huge trucks tipped. Trailers were literally ripped apart. Trees broken and scattered across the highways.

Now the wind is gone and the smoke has settled. Schools are still closed. People of all ages are having trouble breathing. Sports are cancelled and are being rescheduled. No soccer for SBJ tomorrow. Football stadiums, usually filled to capacity on a Friday night sit empty. When I wake up in the morning, I cant tell if its early morning fog, or smoke that blocks the sun. When it doesnt burn off by 11, I know its still smoke.

So we wait. We wait for the fearless men and women who are out there, day and night, to finish their jobs. Those fires will go out. The wind will pick up again and blow all this smoke out to the ocean. We’ll remember how it feels to breathe deeply again. And we will rebuild. If there is anything that California can do, its help each other move forward. We wont sit on our asses and feel sorry for one another. We will get out our brooms, our tools, and we will be back on our feet.

Its amazing how life continues on while our little part of the state is being ravaged by fire. I still go to work. Rura still does what he has to do. Today he had to take part in the hardest job of all. The words are hard for me even to type because I dont feel like I can do them any justice. Rialto, California lost one of its finest last week. He was doing his job and he didn’t come home to his wife and two kids. He was only 29 years old. He was working with his SWAT team, right along side the very post Rura will someday work for. Right along side one of Rura’s mentor’s. We aren’t married and he isnt a paid employee for that station, but it feels as if we have lost family. It became reality. Going with Rura to get his post’s mourning bands, which block their sheilds, was reality. Having him sleeping next to me and only knowing that today was “so sad” for him. It’s reality. It’s the life we choose. And days like today will not be our last.

Rest in Peace Officer Carrera. You will forever be one of Rialto’s finest, and will forever be in the hearts of every officer before, and after you.

And hang in there So Cal. We’ll breathe deeply together when the smoke clears.

Sorry if you came here for more…

25 10 2007

I’m going totally random today. Thats right! A meme, Search Terms! Hurray!, and some linky love is all I got for you people.

If you did come here for more, what the hell were you even thinking?

My only excuse is that the posts I have planned include pictures and that means I have to do that at home. I am going to steal a page out of Heather’s book and start using Google’s Picasa Web version so that way I can just upload the pics there while I am home and then use them in posts while I am at work. Productive no?

Either way, here goes….

Search Terms! Hurray!

BEEN CAUGHT MASTURBATING BY GRANDMA – (Yea it came in all caps) What I wonder is WHY you would google this. I mean, its done, you got busted. What else is there to find out? My advise, lock your door next time!

sexy tv -My TV IS sexy… and you want yours to be too? Sorry, sexy TV’s choose you, you dont choose them.

will you mail a letter for me – What the fuck is so hard about that? Kids these days dont know what postage is?

show me your open legs under the table – Did I really write about this? Or something along these lines?? I dont remember doing that, but given the content of this blog, it wouldn’t suprise me.

ooh she emailed me back on hotmail – Really?? SCORE DUDE!

I miss my abusive boyfriend – Sooooooooo many things wrong here.

The sun fucker is still visiting me (hi!!!!!) and because of this post, I get a lot of people jacking off. Jack off cousins, how to jack off real good, jack off tips… you get the idea.

Moving on….

One of my favorite Air Supply fans did this meme on her blog, and I decided to slack off too and do it. I gotta list seven things about myself. I’m not that good at writing about myself so bare with me.

1. When I get nervous, I grab some of my hair and I smell it. The only reason I say this is because I just caught myself doing it. I’m nervous because I committed myself to this 7 thing shit and I am having writers block about it.

2. I’m a girly girl. But I’ll be the first to laugh at things that are HIGHLY inappropriate. I am NOT very ladylike or sweet once you really get to know me. In fact, I’m kind of a bitch. But I have an easy sense of humor and I love to laugh.

3. Keeping up with the theme of number 2, I am blunt. But I am a big chicken shit unless you really piss me off. I say things I really shouldn’t and dont think about it until the damage is done. I’m opinionated and bossy and sometimes just MEAN, but you really have to piss me off to get me to that whole MEAN point. There have been times that I say stuff just to hurt other people. Doesn’t that make you want to be my friend?? The only time I do that is when I am backed in a corner and am really worked up. I promise I wont attack you on site. Unless you do something stupid and in that case, you probably deserve it.

4. I really love my stuff. I love my car, I love my ipod, I love my blog, I love my clothes and jewelry, and I love all my products like makeup and shit. I’m superficial like that.

Gee I’m painting myself in a great light here huh?? LMAO

5. I like to have fun. Camping, baseball games, movies, theater, exploring, taking walks, swimming. All that kind of crap. I love to do it. I love to travel and enjoy my surroundings.

6. I see beauty in really simple things. Remember that movie, American Beauty? Where that guy thinks that plastic bag blowing around in the wind is the most beautiful thing he has ever seen? Yea thats me. Not so much with trash, but millions of leaves on one tree, the way the light hits the mountains at a certain time in the day, the rain falling… all THAT kind of stuff effects me big time. I’m starting to rub off on Rura because he has taken to glancing at something and just stating “Wow, thats beautiful”. We rock at being random like that.

7. (Ha! Finally! You didnt defeat me meme!) Despite 2, 3,and 4, I really am a good person. I have a lot of love in me. I am very giving and I believe in second chances. I take a lot of risks with my heart because I truely hope that it will pay off. There have been times that it has, and times that it hasnt. But thats life. We take chances. We learn from our mistakes, and sometimes we come out on top. I’m really not as selfish as I seem because I work hard for what I have. But if you need the shirt off my back, then just ask and you shall receive. No Amy, I wont take my shirt off just so you can see my boobies. But if you need something and I have it, its yours.

Phew I am not sad that is over with.

On to the linky love!

Since I am a mommy to one very boyish little boy, I always have to drool over girl stuff. If you pay attention, not only do I have a new layout, I have a new banner over there to the right. Its for an awesome blogger’s business The Decorated Duckling. She makes tutu’s people!!! I took ballet when I was a little girl but I dont remember having a tutu. If I had a little girl, I would buy her one in every color. Because little girls should have tutu’s. Thats what I always say. I am going to buy one for PP because she is the closest thing to an actual daughter that I have right now. So if you have daughters, neices, granddaughters or just a special little girl in your life that SHOULD own a tutu, go see TKW. She’ll even work with you on color and design. Because she is awesome like that. Yup. Oh and if you aren’t reading her, you should be. Everyone else does. Because she rocks.

Another thing to add to the “What the hell did I get myself into” catagory is The Great Sock Exchange 2007. Do you like socks? Why yes I do. What about free socks? Did you say free? Hell yes! Ok then. Participate! All I have to do is buy one pair of socks and send them to one person. Go here to read about it. Go ahead, I’ll wait. Ok you back? Good… now who’s with me? I need 6 people. All it will cost you is a pair of socks and some postage. And really, how much can socks really weigh? Please someone get out on this limb with me. Please? Pretty please? I will exchange blog love and comments for doing this with me… I know some of you out there LOVE the comments. And I’m usually witty when I comment. So joinnnnnnn me!!!!!

Thats it. I’m spent. Go forth and buy tutu’s and get free socks. Or do the meme. Whatever!

Auntie Miss

23 10 2007

This weekend I got to perform my auntie duties. I am still recovering which is why I haven’t posted. Of course, I got myself into this by offering to take my good friend S’s kids to a Halloween party that my family was having. She couldn’t come because she is 11 months pregnant and I really didn’t want her laboring all over our party. I don’t think she would have liked that either.

So on Saturday, after SBJ’s soccer game* I drove halfway out to where they live and we did the kid exchange. Except we didn’t swap kids. She got my sanity and I got her two kids. The first one, PP (which stands for Pirate Princess, her costume of choice) is two months older than SBJ. They are betrothed and have been since birth. When I was pregnant, and S was pregnant, we became friends. Our kids have been best friends since they were born, forced to get along. They spent their first Halloween together, moms pushing them in their strollers. SBJ as Dumbo and PP as a little ladybug. They couldn’t walk and sucked pacifiers the whole time but I know they had a blast.

Her second, LN (or Lil’ Ninja) is going to be 4 and is a little bundle of interestingness. I’ve always said he resembles Beavis, except with huge blue eyes like his momma. And his nostrils are fine. He gets the forehead from his daddy. He has the cutest little voice and is always saying things that crack me up.

So I’m having to do all of this exchanging and preparing for the party on my own, since Rura was participating in a Police Simulation with his post. He told me that I was just practicing for when I start popping out all his babies. *snort*

I was really suprised with myself because I only forgot TWO things that I needed to bring to the party which is amazingly low for me. I managed to get all three kids into their costumes, get mine on (sans Britney Spears wig) and gather up all our stuff in less than an hour. It was then that I could go and pick up Rura and we could all get on to the party. We had to make a quick stop at Big Lots and while I was in there, IN COSTUME, he went ahead and transformed himself to Lil’ John. I was rockin the poodle skirt with a black wig. Yea no matching costumes for us. We have one more party this weekend with HIS family and I might actually go as Britney Spears. Once you see me in the wig, you will so agree that I look like her. I just need some cowboy boots, a Starbucks cup, and some cigerettes to complete the outfit. Oh, and I cant wear underwear which Rura might appreciate. Everyone else, not so much.

In the end, the kiddies ended up staying overnight and two poopie pullups, candy for breakfast, two trips to McDonalds, 3 bags of candy, 1 popped balloon, lots of “Auntie I’m thirsty, I’m not eating that, thats yucky, Batman is a GOOD GUY, and I farted, who farted, YOU farted, GROSS”, and tons and tons of trucks and car toys later, it was time to return those little darlings to their parents.

And I already miss the little boogers.

brit lil john
I told you so.

*SBJ scored a goal in his game!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I almost cried. He has been struggling this season and he scored!! It was an awesome goal and I’m such a good mother, I didn’t have my camera. Oh and no one but me and the ex were there to see it. But my baby scored!!!!!!!


18 10 2007

I was going to name this post “up this ass” because I wrote a nice long post about something I am truely interested in and wordpress ate it. Ate it up. Gave it to me straight up the ass with no lube.

Then I thought it would be a good idea instead of a real post, to just put up some pictures. Because people do that all the time and get away with it and I thought, why not me? Then I thought that since some of those pictures might be of SBJ, a post titled “up the ass” would be so not appropriate. Now I just thought that I never really AM appropriate so what the fuck do I care? And then I just thought that I should just stop thinking and post some damn pictures already and why am I still fucking typing?

Ok. On to the pictures. From Disneyland.

Bwahaha we are making the same face.

All the orange and white is mini pumkins. The magic of Disney people.

Waiting for his favorite ride. (It’s the haunted mansion decorated for Halloween for you non-Disneyland addicts)

Thats my daddy back there, looking up. And looking pasty.

I totally heart Disneyland during the Holidays.

Holy crap I have so many more pics…. time to start getting selective.


I absolutely love all the small details that can be found around the park.

I was yelling at him to make him move out of my shot and he was laughing at me and this is what I got. I love that kid. The shot he “ruined” can be seen here. The rest of my pics from that day are there too.

We LOVE Cars. These two ride around the park during the day.

Not at Disneyland. When I dropped off Rura at his house this morning, I noticed this lavender rose in the flower bed next to his driveway.

That purple flower wound its way UP the rose bush. If you go to flickr and look at the large size, you can see it.

Well thats it. This short picture post took me two hours.



On bullies and nausea

17 10 2007

I stumbled upon a blog today where the writer is describing what her child goes through in school. She is dealing with a bully. In kindergarten. Her daughter is getting spit on and pushed around. The school wont really act on it and she encourages her daughter to push him back. She didn’t say this, but I’m sure she isn’t encouraging her kid to spit back because hello! Eww. Bodily fluids in any form when not welcome is soooo uncool. Especially for a child.

For SBJ, he hasn’t yet encountered a bully. I don’t think it has anything to do with the school he goes to. I really don’t know why. The closest we have come to this is another kid that was in his kindergarten class and now also in 1st grade with him repeatedly gets in trouble, and manages to bring other kids down with them. This child is a girl. When he told me that, I was shocked. And I really shouldn’t have been because girls can be just as mean as boys when they want to be, if not meaner. I know that when I was growing up, I was a bit of a bully, but really only to my boy cousins. They were scared of me (probably still are hee!) because I didn’t let anyone push me around. Too bad I didn’t keep that mentality up as I got older.

This girl in SBJ’s class is ALWAYS involved when he comes home from school in trouble. Every. Single. Time. I seriously forbid him to play with or around this little girl and he knows this. But he always ends up in the frey and has already come home with one referral. I haven’t heard of her charming antics lately which is why I have not pressed the issue with his teacher as of yet. But really, as parents, what choice to we have when dealing with a bully? Especially if the school doesn’t step up?

I agree with Ash when she says that she is fighting fire with fire, not matter what the consequences her daughter faces. Because really, in the long run, that may attract the attention of the school that this other child is a problem and because of their lack of attention to the problem, other well behaved kids are being forced to act out. And I say good for her! This may not be the perfect way to do things, but to me, teaching your child to stand up to a bully is important. It’s unfortunate, but necessary.

SBJ has been taught that if someone is pushing you around and no one is willing to help, you go ahead and push back. He distinctly knows the difference between defending yourself and just being a jerk. A bully my kid is not. But if provoked, he will defend himself fully. I don’t see a problem with this one bit.

I know that schools cannot justify singling out one child as a bully without including some sort of protocol for all the kids. But its situations like this, that are starting as young as kindergarten (!!) that cause more extreme situations of kids fighting back. Honestly, I don’t know what the answer to this is on either side of this spectrum. But it is something that should be dealt with. Just don’t ask me how.

On an unrelated topic, after yesterday’s post, I feel extremely good. I know I made the right choices when I wrote about what was going on. Rura did read it, and his first reaction was that he was very glad to finally be right. Yea right. Totally NOT the point there buddy. Of course he was kidding and we actually had a nice little brief chat about it and in turn, I gots me some lovin. Not that a post like that is what it took for me to get me some, but I got me some either way. And it was good. And you didn’t really need to know that. And I have been starting way to many sentences with “And” lately.

But today? I feel sick. I keep fighting back waves of nausea and I don’t know where they are coming from. Yuck. I hope it passes quickly.

Call it an epiphany if you will

16 10 2007

My head and my heart have been a big jumbley mess for the past few days. I’ve been feeling so down and out and to be honest, I am really ashamed of myself. I have always prided myself on being up, on being cheery, even in the face of all the things that have gone wrong in my life. The reason for this is that I realized something a long time ago: Being happy is much better than being sad. And its up to ME to make myself happy. So I should just do that.

But at a time when I was at my lowest and really struggling with making myself happy, I met someone. (That’s him, up there, next to my name at the top) Someone who changed my life. He took that burden from my shoulders. He made me happy and I didn’t have to work so hard at it.

But that’s young love and infatuation. And you know what? It wears off. Shocking I know. I have not had to work so hard at being happy for almost two years. I’m not saying that Rura has dropped the ball in anyway. It’s just that people change. They grow. We have gotten to a place in our relationship where we are not as co-dependent on each other. At least, he isn’t.

And you know what? I don’t like it. I have been struggling with the thought that he just doesn’t need me as much as I think I need him. This has created so many feelings inside of me of being inadequate, of not being good enough, of not being exactly what he needs to make it through each day. And I myself have made him those things that I need to get through the day. I stare at my phone and will it to ring. It doesn’t. I struggle with picking it up to call him because lets face it – if he doesn’t need me enough to call me, why should I force him to talk to me when he really doesn’t want to? I turn thoughts over and over in my head thinking that I must be doing something wrong, or being a person I don’t want to be, enough so in fact that he doesn’t want me.

Then it hit me. Today, out of the blue. In the midst of all these crazy thoughts. On a day when I couldn’t make it an hour or so without allowing tears to slip down my cheeks.

None of that is true. He loves me. He wants to spend his life with me. But guess what? I am not his life. And that’s OK. I am a part of his life. I am part of the moments that he remembers and smiles about. The problem I have had the most is accepting that I am not his whole life. Because when we first met, I was. When we first started seeing each other, I was. Now, he has real responsibilities. A real job. A real career that he wants to pursue.  He’s made these choices for his life. And the reality is that he has discussed all these choices with me before pursuing them because it is OUR life together that these things will effect. He respects me that much. So its time I start respecting that too.

I haven’t been. Respecting him that is. He tries so hard to put up with me and he does a fabulous job. But why should he have to “put up” with anything I do? Why can’t I accept him for who he is and what he chooses to do? I’m selfish. But I want to change. I want to be better. I want to be the person that he cares for and doesn’t put up with.

This weekend he was out of town. He was doing what he had to do to get to his chosen career path. He wants to be in law enforcement. Preparing for that means weekends away competing in the Central Coast Law Enforcement Explorer Competition. It means being able to come home proud of your accomplishments. And accomplish he did. First place in the individual agility event. Beating out 55 or so other groups of people all competing for the same thing. He did that. He was #1. He helped put his post on the map. That is the second award he has received working with his post. And that makes me so fucking proud, I don’t even know what to say. That makes me so fucking ashamed for being angry that he didn’t call me ONE night that he was up there. Why? Because him and his post were patting themselves on the back for a job well done. They earned it. And I’m THAT girlfriend that freaks about a phone call.

It’s things like this that I have been doing lately that make me ashamed to be THAT kind of person. So I’m going to stop, put myself in check and support him. Which is exactly what I should have been doing without negativity. Without making him feel guilty.

So honey,
I’m sorry. For acting like an asshole. For not being what I should have been for a while now. You have to go on a ride along? Go. I’ll be here when you are done. I’ll see you when I can. I’ll love you when I don’t. I’ll love you until it’s all said and done. And even beyond that. You cant get rid of me that easily! I’m trying my hardest. And I’ll try even harder for you.
Your SC
P.S. Thank you for this and this. You have no idea how happy both those things makes me. You are the bestest.

Not feelin’ it

15 10 2007

I dont feel much like posting today.

The weekend SUCKED. Disneyland was fun. Except the part where I realized I was fat. That was not so fun. But we can talk about that later.

As for the whole “Rura’s out of town” fiasco, lets just say this: My boyfriend deserves a fucking gold medal for putting up with me.

I should either be committed or become an alcoholic. Then I can just blame myself on a disease, rather than the fact that I am an insecure asshole.

Dear Self,

Grow a freakin pair and suck it up already!!


I’ll post about Disneyland with some pretty pictures some time this week? Hang in there… I’ll be back to normal hopefully tomorrow.

Jessie says J*ck Off

12 10 2007

We all know that Halloween is right around the corner. How can we forget, what with Target and Walmart reminding us for the last month and a half? I already posted about costume choices and lucky for all of us, I dont have to post about pumpkins.

Jessie is already doing that for us.

Did I mention that I have bought two pumpkins already? Yea. I bought two “medium” sized pumpkins from Target about 2 weeks ago. (Yes, I said from Target) I also bought some of those spider web thingies and one of those giant spiders that you fill with leaves and perch up on top of your house. So far, the spider and the webs are still in their bags and those pumpkins? They haven’t left the kitchen counter.

So what to do with them? If I put them outside, I know they will get smashed. If I carve them, they will definetely rot. So I guess we will just wait it out. I think they are too small to carve anyways. We’ll be buying bigger ones to carve and when we do, I’ll be following the Official J*ck Off Campaign.

jack off

The J*ck Off Campaign teaches us all how to perfectly preserve pumpkins this Halloween Season. Wont you join me? I almost forgot to mention that if you click that sweet badge, you can see all kinds of kinky tips on preserving your pumpkins. Ok, they aren’t kinky. But they are really good. So just go there.

Oh and? I never mentioned that Rura is out of town this weekend. Yea. He left yesterday and doesn’t come back until Sunday. Ha… ha. I’m FINE! Its only been 19 hours, 24 minutes, and 37 seconds since he left. Heh…….. Does someone have co-dependency issues? I’ll be a heap of jittery mess come Sunday. If this trip wasnt career related, I would have had a bigger problem. But its training. For his future. Which equals into my future. So I’ll just drink heavily until he comes home. That or take SBJ to Disneyland. Ooohh I get to take pictures of stuff!! All better now!

If I could…

11 10 2007

I hate the dentist. Did I ever mention that? Its no secret that I have exceptionally bad teeth. The amount of dental work I need and cant afford could possibly add up to a nice down payment on a car. It’s something that my dad passed on to me. Well its probably too early to tell, but I may have passed it on to SBJ.

He had to go to the dentist twice this week. He goes back on the 24th. Over the weekend, he was complaining about his tooth bothering him. One of his front molars broke a few weeks back. So the ex took him to the dentist on Tuesday. The diagnoses was not pretty. Cavities galore. He needs a root canal. He needs to have that broken tooth extracted. Call me a bad mom if you will, but this was his first visit to the dentist.

Today he had the tooth extracted. The ex took him again. The report is that he did well for the second time even though they had trouble numbing his mouth. I talked to him for a second and he sounded sad. The ex said he was in pain at the end and that the dentist predicted that he will be in pain later. No soccer practice for him today. I get to take him for this 3rd appointent and I am NOT looking forward to that. I cant handle shots or blood draws, how am I going to do this? I hate seeing my baby in pain.

All this brings me to my purpose for writing. If I had a super power, it would be to take away other people’s pain. With just one hug, I could zap all the pain in SBJ’s mouth and he could get back to playing with his cars. With just one squeeze, I can eliminate the chronic pain that Rura has in his shoulders. Imagine how wonderful it would be to see someone suffering, and just make it go away?

To me, that tops mind reading, being a human sheild, teleporting (with others too), (or both), talking to animalsknowing and understand all languages, knowing where everything is at all times, or even nothing at all! As useful as ALL these superpowers would be, right now, I just want to take away my babies pain.

I’m actually jealous I didnt think of some of those! How helpful would they be to us moms?

Can you tell this was a fantastic writing challenge, given by a fantastic writer? Thanks Moo’s Moo! If you are interested in joining in these challenges, you can do so here, or here.