Tag Archives: adventure

Putting it Out There


This year for me is all about taking risks. Being fearless.


More like being brave. Because you can’t be brave if you don’t feel fear, right? Anyway, hear me out and then I welcome your honest response(s).

I’m scared shitless. Seriously. I’ve actually been ridiculously paralyzed and it’s not going to hold me back anymore. This is me. Being brave. Putting it out there.

If you know me or not, know this … I am not good with vulnerability. Just the word makes me shudder and freaks the shit out of me. Makes me feel weak .. open to injury and insult … and any other ugly thing out there that could sting or heaven forbid, destroy me emotionally.  Which, sometimes, I fear it may .. especially in my weaker moments. But “never let them see you cry”, right?  Sadly, I have not responded well in the past (tears, or anger, or both) when it hasn’t played out as lovely and hopeful as it did in my head and you can only imagine the wake of destruction it’s created.

However, I’m happy to report that as I’ve matured over the years, my response to vulnerability has also matured. I’ve learned a lot and I don’t think I would have been ready to do this several, or even a few years ago.  So here it goes.

As some of my closer friends, and maybe a few family members know, I’ve been writing a book.  For a very long time now. At least 6 years, if not longer.  You know what’s even crazier?  It’s been pretty much done for at least 3 out of the 6.  But I’ve been sitting on it. And as hard as it is to admit, it’s mostly out of my fear of vulnerability.  Not even fear of rejection bothers me. I’ve never been one who has been too concerned with how others feel or think about me.  But for some reason this work of love, and hate, and tears, and joy has rendered me debilitated.

But I am debilitated no longer.  So look out world, here I come.

Today I am sharing the book cover prototypes.  There are four.  Tell me which one speaks to you and why. I’d also like to hear what the title says to you or you think the book is about. Don’t worry. You don’t hold all the power. Or any really. I probably won’t change the title or even go with the most popular cover choice. This is simply part of my process of making it real. Of making myself accountable to my internal universe that manages to dictate my epic failures and my greatest achievements. And making myself vulnerable .. for the greater good … my greater good.

Book Cover Proto 1

book cover proto 3

Book Cover Proto 2

book cover proto 4

I have a friend who is on a mission called “100 Letters of Rejection” for 2015.  I’m following her lead.  I also did some tiny research on famous authors who were rejected countless times and yet they persevered.  And today we couldn’t imagine a world in which these works of art didn’t exist.  I’m not doing this to be famous, to be on the national bestseller list or win a Pulitzer prize. I’m doing it because it’s inside me, literally begging to get out. So whatever it becomes, I’m good with.  As long as I put it out there with no fear of vulnerability or debilitation.

THANK YOU for hearing me out.  THANK YOU for your participation in my process.  THANK YOU for your uncensored honesty.  THANK YOU for going on this journey with me.  It’s gonna be AWESOME.

~ S

p.s. watch for the Preface of my new book, which I had refused to write and wasn’t going to include, but I’m glad I changed my mind .. posting soon.

Brad Pitt and Road Trips


road trip

I keep calling it an adventure.

My mother continues to refer to it as a dangerous mission.

Okay mom .. I get it .. I do ..

After all, the definition of adventure  “is an exciting or unusual experience; it may also be a bold, usually risky undertaking, with an uncertain outcome”.

{ EXACTLY!  That’s why we are going!!  geesh }

But let’s get some perspective ..

It’s not like we’re traveling into the Himalayans on the backs of llamas to rescue a dying tribe …

and the outcome is definitely not uncertain.

We have gladly accepted the task ( please, and thank you, Mel )  of driving my dear friend’s vehicle out to their new homestead/ranch in Montana.

From Iowa.

Through the mountains.

In the dead of winter.

wait!  … what? 

Bold? perhaps.

Risky? potentially.

Exciting?  Hell yes!

iowa city to bozeman

I am completely ecstatic at the mere idea of this road trip.

Ever since I saw Legends of the Fall with the mouth-watering, self-tortured Tristan (played so eloquently by Brad Pitt below), I have dreamed of seeing Montana,

(and Brad Pitt .. but that’s a completely separate adventure).

brad pitt legends of the fall


However, I fear the planning is making my travel mate/lover slightly annoyed …

which I can’t begin to understand why??

Who wouldn’t want to talk about all the wondrous things we will see & snap pictures of along the way, the strange yet awesome people we will meet at rest stops and roadside cafes ( such a romantic ), the multitude of stories we can share, the perfect play lists to keep us pumped and awake, the tasty, not-so-healthy road trip snacks and beverages we should pack, the outerwear we need to include, the emergency kit we better not forget, the best route to take and how in the hell will we not drive each other stark raving mad stuck in a car for twenty plus hours one-way together?

Let’s talk about that!

Every day until next Thursday.

That’s how excited I am.

Poor lover.



But let’s not feel too sorry for him yet. I’m sure there will be some kind of bonus in it for him …  along the way …

{ wink wink  … blush }





Be there soon, Mel!

Melody's yard in Bozeman Montana

Stay tuned for updates.


Moving is Such Sweet Sorrow


This home, in the heart of Iowa Amish country, has been a sanctuary for my family for nearly 5 years.

It has seen us through a divorce and helped us find our independence and identify our family values.

This home has witnessed many tears, loud voices, wrestling matches, breathtaking hugs, family gatherings, late night smore-making bonfires, livestock mishaps, accidental pumpkin patches, and hardy laughter.

This home has witnessed love lost, love found and love withstanding.

This home is one we will never forget.

But now it’s time to start a new chapter.

In this home.

Let the adventure begin!