The Today Voice
If this is the first you have heard about The Today Voice writing project, click here to read the back story and I how I got involved.
Here are my 52 posts, along with the corresponding weekly prompts in chronological order (July 2012 – June 2013):
Week One ~ If your life were a television show what kind of show would it be? Who are the characters?
I thought this was such an interesting question. Initially it wasn’t easy for me to imagine a TV show about my life, but once I got going it was a fun, and even therapeutic, prompt for me to write about.
Week Two ~ Describe a typical day in your life. What do you dread the most? What do you look forward to?
I wrote my first draft of this post fairly quickly, but then struggled to get try to make it more concise. In the end I gave up and decided that it was okay for it to be on the long-winded end of the spectrum, as I truly want to give readers a sense of a typical day in my life.
Week Three ~ Describe your best friend. How would your best friend describe you?
I feel blessed and lucky to have had many dear, genuine and close friends throughout my life. I chose to write about my husband Bob this week, since he has been my best friend since not long after I met him almost 16 years ago. Describing Bob in the first part of my post came relatively easy to me. However writing how I thought he would describe me I found to be a lot more difficult.
Week Four ~ Do you have a vice? Write about it here.
It has been a busy week here and for many reasons, including my participation in NaBloPoMo, I have felt a bit burnt out on blogging. So getting myself psyched up to write about this prompt was challenging. I didn’t have a particular vice that jumped out at me right away. So in the end, though there are probably a few other, more serious, bad habits I could have chosen to explore, I went with relatively light-hearted one.
Week Five ~ Write about the five moments that changed your life.
I loved this prompt! However, I found myself writing my post the night before I left for BlogHer`12 and thus felt rushed as I worked on it. I am pleased with how it turned out and what I shared, but I had a different vision for my post when I initially read the prompt. I wanted to pick five seemingly insignificant moments, at face value, that ended up dramatically changing the trajectory of my life. I thought that would be really interesting, kind of like the premise in the movie Sliding Doors. Though in the end, I wasn’t able to come up with those kinds of moments and defaulted to more obvious life changing ones to reflect on.
Week Six ~ Write about your most embarrassing moment
So many of The Today Voice prompts sound so easy to muse on when I first read them, but then when the time comes for me to write, I struggle a bit. As Tuesday’s Voice shared in the intro to his post this week, I had trouble coming up with my “most embarrassing moment.” I am not sure why, but I don’t recall having very many of them. It may be because when they happen they aren’t that big of a deal and thus I just don’t remember them or I could also be in some state of denial where I block out the memories of those events in my life.
Either way, I could only think of one at first, which was pretty boring. So then I brainstormed with my mom and came up with what I chose to write about this week. Though it isn’t the most entertaining embarrassing moment, I appreciate that it speaks to what happens when I try to impress people, instead of just being myself.
Week Seven ~ How did you choose the career you are currently in?
I enjoyed writing about this week’s prompt. Making the decision to be a Stay at Home Mom (SAHM) is one that I have never regretted. Though my job is not always easy, I believe it is worth it to be the primary caregiver in my children’s lives.
I neglected to mention in my post over at The Today Voice that Bob and I were very intentional in planning and preparing for me to be a SAHM. We bought our first house (a small tw0-bedroom Georgian style home) based only on Bob’s salary, so we knew that we could afford the mortgage payment without my income.
Also about a year before Sean was born we started saving my paychecks instead of including them in our budget and spending. We did this both to give ourselves a cushion after I stopped working in the professional world and so we could practice living on just one income. This really helped us with the financial transition and to grow into our new life a family of three and eventually four, with our angel Molly in Heaven.
Week Eight ~ What was the biggest mistake you think you ever made and how did it change your life?
I knew exactly what I would write about the moment I first read this question. Overall my blogging experience over the past five years has been very positive. But there have definitely been some growing pains and my answer to this question talks about one of them. It is also a cautionary tale for newer bloggers and those who are considering inviting more people in your personal lives to read your blogs. I am not discouraging you from “coming out” about your blogs, if your loved ones don’t already know about them. Rather, I am simply encouraging you to consider some key things before you extend those invitations.
Week Nine ~ What story does your family always tell about you?
As I shared in the intro to my post today, this is a timely writing prompt, as lately whenever my kids and I are with my parents our eight-year-old son Sean will ask them to please tell him stories from when I was a kid. There are only so many that they can recall and so after a while the same ones get repeated. Sean doesn’t mind though, as I think he gets a kick out of hearing them over and over again. I know I felt the same way when I was younger hearing tales of when my parents were kids and still do.
Week Ten ~ If you were really in trouble, who would you go to for advice?
This was an interesting prompt, as I when I first read it I had a hard time imagining “being really in trouble.” But when I thought about who I have gone to for advice throughout my life, especially during difficult and uncertain times, the question became easier for me to answer.
Where were you when the world stopped turning, that September day?
We were originally going to write about a different topic this week, but when I realized that our eleventh week of writing The Today Voice would be falling the week of the eleventh anniversary of September 11, 2001, I contacted our editor, Peter Combs to suggest we veer from our plan and each write about our memories from and related to 9/11. He consulted with the other authors and everyone agreed.
I have shared my account of my experience on 9/11/01 here on my blog before, but appreciate the chance to revisit and share it again as my contribution to The Today Voice this week.
Week Twelve ~ What is the first memory you have?
This is a timely post as this weekend we are celebrating my mother’s 70th birthday and thus I have been reflecting on my childhood and life as her daughter and friend. As I shared in my post, my earliest memories take place in a house that my family lived in until right after I turned four. I only have a handful of memories from living there, but I know they are my first ones, because of where they happened.
Week Thirteen ~ How old were you when you had your first kiss?
Week Fourteen ~ When do you think it is OK to keep a secret and why?
Week Fifteen ~ Write about anything
Week Sixteen ~ Write about your favorite childhood memory.
Week Seventeen ~ Write about your least favorite childhood memory.
Week Eighteen ~ If your life had a soundtrack what five songs would be on it and why?
As I shared in my response to this prompt, ever since I first read through the weekly writing prompts for The Today Voice in July I have been waiting for this one. It was my favorite at first glance, as I love music, as well as Top Five and Ten Lists. Back then I thought about my answer and jotted down which songs would be on my soundtrack. I have written many posts over the years on my blog that include some of my favorites songs/song lyrics. Recently I listed them on this page alphabetically with hyperlinks. Interestingly, I have written individual blog entries highlighting all of the five songs I chose for my “life soundtrack” except for one.
Week Nineteen ~ Write about one thing you’d like to do before you die.
As I shared in my post last week, ever since I first read through the weekly writing prompts for The Today Voice in July I had been waiting for that one — it was my favorite at first glance. Well, our editor must have been on a role when he was coming up with the prompts, as this week’s topic was a close second. I knew right away what I wanted to write about when I read it and looked forward to getting the chance to share about one of the experiences at the top of my bucket list which I hope to have someday.
Week Twenty ~ If you were going to write a book, what would it be about?
Week Twenty-one ~ What are you most thankful for?
Week Twenty-two ~ Why do you write?
Week Twenty-three ~ Write about anything
I chose to share my first sestina poem, that I wrote earlier this year.
Week Twenty-four ~ If you could witness any event, past, present or future, what would it be?
This is such an awesome and overwhelming question. I could easily come up with a different answer each week and explore that every Thursday for a year or more. I considered so many possibilities and in the end came up with two events, one past and one future that I would most like to witness, though it was so hard to narrow it down.
Week Twenty-five ~ What’s the best/worst gift you’ve ever given/received?
Ironically I wrote about this recently here on my blog, as part of my monthly Time Warp Tuesday writing exercise and blog hop. Since the holiday season is an especially busy time of year, I adapted that post, along with highlights from a previous one in which I talked about some of the best gifts I’ve ever received.
Week Twenty-six ~ What does the holiday season look like for you and your family?
In which I share about how my family and I celebrate the holiday season and why this time of year is bittersweet for us.
Week Twenty-seven ~ What’s one thing you’ve learned this year?
In which I share about what I learned in 2012.
Week Twenty-eight ~ Write about your new year’s resolutions.
A post about my New Year’s resolutions for 2013 and how I did with the ones I made for 2012, including a video of yours truly!
Week Twenty-nine ~ Write about five people that have most affected your life.
In which I share about six people (I cheated) who have most affected my life.
Week Thirty ~ What is your favorite book and why?
A post about one of my favorite books and what I learned from reading it.
Week Thirty-one ~ Write about anything.
In which revisit a post that I wrote/shared on my blog about a year ago regarding “What God Wants.” I would love to know what you think.
Week Thirty-two ~ If you could know the answer to any question, besides “What is the meaning of life?”, what would it be?
Week Thirty-three ~ What’s the hardest thing you’ve ever done?
Week Thirty-four ~ At what age did you become an adult?
Week Thirty-five ~ Who was the first person who died in your life and how did you feel?
Week Thirty-six ~ List five things about your hometown that you wouldn’t trade for the world
Week Thirty-seven ~ What’s the first thing you bought with your own money?
Week Thirty-eight ~ When was the last time you were nervous?
Week Thirty-nine ~ How did you learn what it meant to be a man/woman?
Week Forty ~ At your deepest level, what do you most want to know in your lifetime?
Week Forty-one ~ List the five people you’d like to meet and why
Week Forty-two ~ Have you ever had something happen to you that you thought was bad but it turned out to be for the best?
Week Forty-three ~ What did you do growing up that got you into trouble?
Week Forty-five ~ Write about anything.
In which I revisit a post that I wrote/shared on my blog about in November 2011, “On Having Enemies.”
Week Forty-six ~ Write about an insecurity you have or once had
Week Forty-seven ~ Write about your favorite house
Week Forty-eight ~ How have you handled, or how do you plan to handle the aging of your parents?
Week Forty-nine ~ Write about a time when a relationship ended.
Week Fifty ~ What are Your Top Five Favorite Today Voice Prompts/Posts from the past year?
I actually chose to share my Top Twelve, as I had trouble narrowing it down to just five.
Week Fifty-one ~ Write about anything
In which I revisit a post that I first wrote/shared almost 4 years ago about about how “we carry on” after experiencing loss.
Week Fifty-two ~ Describe your experience as a Today Voice contributor
It felt surreal and bittersweet to write this, my last, post for The Today Voice.