So You Went Into Business With People You Really Don’t Know???….Or: Partner’s Episode I

A little background. Years ago I read a book that threw three women together on a quest to end a god’s stupidity. Over the course of the three books the women brought each of their own unique strengths together and founded a business. Strangers trusting the universe and their own gut instincts to go forward.

I’ve always been envious of that ability to trust and in my own passive way welcomed it into my life. (I don’t do things passively but in this case I didn’t say hey Universe I want this, I was in the corner meekly going isn’t that cool.)

Then my mother started going crazy, fast forward 18 months to getting the diagnosis of Frontotemporal Dementia and to say I was stressed would be a little bit of an under statement.

I had been doing yoga by video for a few years after school with a fellow teacher, but it wasn’t a match for all that we were going through. I have a friend who owns a Martial Arts Studio and I asked him to help me learn to meditate. For hours one day he set aside his time and put me through several meditations. I found one that resonated with me. Then I started carving out time once a week to go to a Yoga studio an hour away from home. Fast forward 8 months, by this time my mother died from a massive heart attack not the dementia or the brain aneurysm that they had found in her head.

I was not in great shape mentally. So I signed up for Yoga Teacher Training! What a great idea. You should be rolling around on the floor laughing right now. Teacher training isn’t just about learning the pose’s but also about getting to know yourself inside and out. That can be rough. But I and my fellow trainers made it through. Then our mentor brought an opportunity to open a branch of her studio not to far away. Great location and so on and so on.

Out of the peeps who wanted to go in, four of us were left standing and in the 6 weeks from hearing of the idea to opening the doors, we had a studio up and running. It was a lot of work, and we didn’t really know each other.

Half of the group felt like they weren’t pulling their weight even though I knew they would when their time came. I’m great at build out and big ideas and teaching, but the marketing and social media and the details of business are REALLY hard for me. So I was confident things would balance out. But we had to work to understand each other’s feelings.

Over these past 7 months we’ve had to learn how to communicate with each other. How to step back from a request so we can talk amongst ourselves and have a united front. That’s been hard at times. Five fingers forming a fist make more of an impact than five fingers trying to make a dent.

We’ve had to talk about healthy conflict, a term I disdain for some reason. We’ve had to cry because we feel we were mis-represented in anothers’ mind. We’ve had to look at something from another point of view. We’ve had to trust that we all come from a place of positive intent. Most importantly we’ve had to forgive ourselves and each other as we learn and grow through this process of getting to know each other.

These women have come to mean the world to me. Even though we aren’t on a quest to right a god’s idiodicy, I am forever grateful for you three ladies, Abby, Jessi, Nicole, and this magical journey of yoga and self growth that we are on.

Partners

 

 

So Many Things #MFRWauthor

This week on the #MFRW blog challenge the question is “What would I do if I couldn’t be a writer?”

wheat

Well, I have a varied background and have enjoyed doing many things over the years. I grew up on a farm, and I really enjoy getting to drive combines, grain buggies, and wheat trucks. Working the ground not so much. Being a farmer has its perks, and I could certainly do it, but it wasn’t the right fit. Now I’m married to a farmer and get to help him with my favorite parts of farming, the harvesting.

maths

I went to college just as my parents did, most of my extended family really and of course my husband has a degree in Agriculture Economics. I started out as an Engineer like my dad but after a couple of years killing myself to make the Dean’s honor roll (which I did by the way, honor roll not dying), I realized I liked math better. I’ve been a math educator for 13 years now. Obviously I like/love it or I’d be out by now. 🙂

Wine

I opened and operated my own micro winery for six years, where I did everything from grow the grapes, fermenting the wine, hand bottle and label every single bottle of wine that went through the winery, plus selling and marketing. I recently closed down the tasting room as it took a lot of time and energy away from my family.

Yoga

But I only closed down the tasting room so I could open up a yoga studio but this time with partners who can do the things I’m not the best at, like marketing. Or peeps who like doing accounting and keeping track of the details. I like big pictures and I can not lie.

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Then there is the One Room Schoolhouse that my husband and I bought, moved, renovated, and now use as an AirBnB and for weddings! Schoolhouse on Airbnb

So what would I do if I wasn’t a writer, so many things….

My book: Olivia

Hop hop hop on over to the next blog …

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The voices in my Head… #MFRWauthor

52 week blog challenge.

You may think I ‘m crazy for saying there are voices in my head and I actually talk to them, …. a lot. But you see, I have a secret. I also write down the things those voices say.

Sometimes those voices act a lot like me. Sometimes they do exactly the opposite thing that I would do.

I like my voices. And this year they have been kinder than usual. They talk among themselves more and leave me alone to lurk and record their musings, conversations, and intimate details of their lives. They let me walk with them to see beautiful places. Feel with them when they love and loose.

They’ve seen me through good times, through the bad times, and they put on a play every night to help me fall asleep.

So to answer the question of “How much of myself is in my writing?” All and none at all.

Hop on through to the next blog and see what the next author has to say!

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Re-purpose, Reuse, Recycle

I like my phrase better than the original. 😛

What am I re-purposing, reusing, and recycling you ask? Today it was concrete fence posts.

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Originally they were torn out of a fence row and deposited in a ditch on some of our property. It was an attempt to catch the dirt that wanted to wash out of this area. It didn’t really work this time. But because it didn’t go like we wanted I get to do something different. Like make them into a fence. Novel idea right?

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Why am I doing this? Well a few years ago my husband and I bought, moved, and fully renovated a one room schoolhouse. We now use it to run an AirBnB and event center outside of our little hometown. Since the Schoolhouse sits on a bluff, that means there has to be a drop off in elevation. Otherwise it would be a Schoolhouse on the Prairie, while scenic, not as pretty as being up above the surrounding area. In this sharp drop off, only weeds grow. This is where I’ve had a need for a couple of terraces to make the elevation change easier to manage. I am finally getting that.

We plan to string woven wire along the posts and allow this fencing to collect dirt and debris naturally allowing it to build up over time and fill in this area. It will take awhile but trying to get large equipment in this area isn’t safe. Partly because of the grade of the land and also, this is sugar sand and shifts so easily. Patience is key…and maybe some Pampas grass.

Want to stay at the Schoolhouse check out our profile on AirBnb. Scenic One Room Schoolhouse

Want to read a story that uses the area around the Schoolhouse? Check out my Debut Novel: Olivia.

Brother, Broken Arm, and Branding

Okay no branding, but welding in this earliest memory.

So this is how it went. I grew up in the Eighties. So I was left alone quite a bit. Maybe they were outside, or maybe my parents were up the hill and through the woods at the corral. Either way I was little, I know how little but I’ll save you from judging. 😉

My middle brother and I were at the house playing on this spring horse, think a rocking horse but on springs. We were probably fighting over who got to be on. I was on the horse, at this instant, and my brother stopped it by pushing it sideways. I fell onto the end of my bed, my right arm under me. Guess what broke?

Yep, my wittle arm. So I ran up the hill and through the woods to get to my parents who were building our corral. My dad was welding and my mom was painting it red. My brother ran the whole way behind me calling out, “don’t to tell mom”. I knew enough to stop and avert my eyes from the welding arc at least, even if I had the bad sense to tell mom about the broken arm.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I have a pretty varied past, it comes in handy when writing.

Interested in hearing more first memories? Follow the blog challenge link below and pick another blog at the bottom of the post. Happy reading!

And of course if you haven’t checked out Olivia, my debut novel, head on over to Amazon and get a sample. I promise it won’t disappoint.

Teaching…

I teach. Someday’s I teach Mathematics at a little K-8 school. I teach their 7th and 8th grade students math, in a block scheduling system, where the days I’m there they get math, and on the days I’m not there they get Language Arts.

This is my 13th year to teach and my 5th at this school. At the school before this one I taught 7th grade through Calculus, no really I did, I loved it. One year I prepped four classes consisting of 7th math, Algebra I, Geometry and PreCalculus/Calculus. (PreCalc/Calc as with that class I could take them further into Calculus once I saw what they were capable of already. Instead of just sticking to Pre-Calculus.)

On other days I teach Yoga. I have my 200 hour certification and even opened a Yoga studio with some great chicks in the summer of 2017. It’s interesting and different to teach people who pay me to teach them. My job is to make sure they move and sweat and maybe get out of their own head for a minute.

Something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately is education courses. The reason being is my niece is wanting to go into education. Her mother and I (both educators) are trying to talk her out of it. My reason is I want her to get a science degree, something that will always be in demand and then to do alternate certification and teach. The problem being she wants to do elementary education. hmmm…. fine. I’ve said over the last few years that I learned more about leading while pursing my MBA than I did in any of my education classes. (That translates to the classroom so much.) But my sisters insistence that elementary ed classes are different got me thinking, which education classes were really a waste of my time and which were beneficial. They couldn’t all be nonsense.

Which lead me to reviewing all of the classes I took in the college of education. The classes I learned the most in were my teaching for secondary math or classes that dealt with my subject and the teaching of it. The classes that mixed elementary ed and secondary, worthless (there were a lot of these).

My new advice to my niece, get a degree in science and minor in education. Take those elementary ed classes that teach you how to teach a child to read, write, and do math. But don’t major in it, because the rest is not worth it. Having a degree in science will make you stand out against all of the other teacher resume’s. And while a elementary education degree would give you flexibility to be home with your kids in the summer. A science degree means you can get a teaching job at just about anytime you want it.

At least with alternate certification there is an option to do something else, if A) you need to be paid more, B) want to be respected more, or C) you just find out its not the best fit for you.

#MFRWauthor Favorite thing I’ve written…

…Would have to be Maeve. It’s the second book in my Harris Legacy series. I have just finished up the first edits and will be dropping it on Amazon this spring. It’s happy and light hearted. It’s an easy read and just leaves you feeling warm and fuzzy.

It was written at a very emotionally hard time in my life. I had just lost my mother unexpectedly, and I hadn’t written or edited anything in the 3 months since her death. I needed to get away, so my husband and I spent a few days driving to and around Colorado. We didn’t speak much, I just spent time in my head. He spent time worrying about me. When I got back I was able to write Maeve in 7 weeks, of my spare time (and not so spare time, lol).

It was just what I needed at that hard time, not what I was feeling.

If you gave my favorite thing a try, maybe you should check out the other authors on the challenge. Click on the blog challenge and find another favorite story.

Blog Posts

If you’re going to write and publish it yourself, you apparently need to be good at self promotion. Crap. Why oh why didn’t I try to to get published the old fashioned way? Oh yea, that’s right. I allowed my fear of rejection, to rule me.

I know better, I really do. Usually I push through and try something despite the fear. *dramatic pause then bland voice ensues* “I’ve had mixed results.”

This time there was this other option. (self-publishing) I thought I’ll try that option and if it doesn’t work out, oh well. I’ll give traditional a go after all.

Sadly that isn’t possible in the publishing world. I’ve done some research over the past year and if you’ve ever published a story, even if it was self-published, than traditional publishers apparently won’t touch it. *Sad face*

Where does that leave me? I’m glad you asked it leaves me signing up for blog spots on other author’s blog, so that maybe someone will read my excerpt, like it, buy it, read it, and if I’m super lucky, write an awesome review of it.

Here is to 2018, writing blogs and books

If you haven’t read my book Olivia yet, then head on over to Amazon and get your copy now. Read it, Love it, Write a great review of it!

You can also follow my Instagram page: jen_base

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