April 12, 2013

Something New

I've been blogging since 2006, and since that time, I've maintained a small presence here at www.charitysingleton.blogspot.com. It was a good run; I published 592 posts there about everything from garbage in my front yard to cancer updates when I was actively receiving treatment. I exposed some of my deepest struggles with singleness in that space, as well as the news of my recent marriage. My siblings, parents, and nieces and nephews were all starring characters at various times, as was my house and my two dogs, Precious and Tilly.

I've had a good run at blogging.

And I'm not done yet. It's just that I have a new name and my writing career has taken some new turns in the last year or two, and when I added all that up, now seemed like the perfect time to transition to a new website and a new blog.

So, I'd like to welcome you over to www.charitysingletoncraig.com. I designed it myself, so it's very simple. The front page is more like a welcome mat now; you'll find the blog by walking down the hall, third door on the left.

It's a new place, but it's the same me. And I hope you'll visit often.

Photo by grongar, used with permission under the Creative Commons License.

March 25, 2013

Night Watches

It feels like the middle of the night, but it can’t be more than an hour or so since we went to bed. I hear my oldest step-son’s Adventures in Odyssey CD still playing. But I also hear crying or moaning; I’m not sure which. And I can’t get my husband awake.

I get up to find my youngest step-son has slept walk into his brother’s room. I shepherd him back to bed and he crawls in and back to sleep without a word. He won’t remember this in the morning.

I head back to bed, tempted to look at my phone for the time. How long was I asleep? How long til I need to get up for work? But instead, I crawl back into bed myself, without even a glance, and pray that I go back to sleep.

I gave up nighttime iPhone checks for Lent.


Today I am writing over at the High Calling (published on 3/21/2013 - I'm a bit late). Follow the link above and join me there! 

Photo by comedy_nose, used with permission via Flickr under the Creative Commons License.

March 13, 2013

Leaving Books

The bookshelves my dad made for me sit nearly empty on each side of the front window in the home I now share with my new husband and stepsons.

At times over the past few years, those shelves have been nearly full, crammed with hard- and soft-back volumes of novels and commentaries and memoirs and spiritual non-fiction. There have been years, I’ll admit it, when my book budget definitely exceeded my clothing budget, and possibly rivaled what I spent on food. To encounter a book is to love it—that’s often been my guiding principle.

So every time I walked through a book store or passed a book table at a conference or lecture, if there was cash in my wallet or a credit card reader near the entrance, I left with a bound copy.

When I met my husband a few months back, his love of reading was part of the attraction. We had read many of the same books—just last month we practically raced each other to the end of Glynn Young’s A Light Shining, and we now are able to recommend works to each other. Since he has a Nook and I have a Kindle, we recently discovered that we could each download the other app onto our iPhones and easily share those books too.

I didn’t understand, then, why when it came time to plan my move from his house to mine that I knew I had to get rid of most of my books.


Today I am writing over at TweetSpeakPoetry.com. Join me there?

Photo by SebastianDooris,used with permission under the Creative Commons License.

February 27, 2013

Steinbeck's California: A Literary Journey

When I left Indiana for a week in Northern California, I had determined to spend some time in San Francisco visiting the hang-outs of the beat poets, Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg, among others. I’d walk along Russell Street, hoping the loose culture of the beatniks that still oozes out of North Beach in its bars and cafes and museums would inspire me.

After our first trip into San Francisco left my husband and me on a wild goose chase of narrow, hilly streets and U-Turns around Treasure Island, though, I wasn’t sure I could handle a repeat trip by myself back to the city from our hotel in Newark. The thought of driving alone through graffiti-clad Oakland was reason enough for pause. Not to mention, I’ve never even read the Beats. I’ve just never had the stomach.

But Northern California’s literary reputation doesn’t live and die with Kerouac. In fact, when I think of the Bay area, I also think of dark, fertile fields, wine-stained vineyards, and heavily muscled men pulling nets from the sea. In other words, when I think of Northern California, I think of John Steinbeck. And if there’s any area to haunt on a trip there, it’s the Salinas Valley and the Monterey Peninsula.

So, in Steinbeck-style, I let the “tour masters, schedules, reservations, brass-bound and inevitable, dash themselves to wreckage on the personality of the trip,” and let The Trip take me south instead of north, into the fields instead of the city, toward a California I already knew though I had never been there.


Today I am writing over at TweetSpeak Poetry, celebrating John Steinbeck's birthday. Join me there?

February 25, 2013

The Cellular Level

Today, I finished work around noon, laced up my sneakers and threw on my husband’s fleece pullover, and walked right out the door, down the driveway, and onto the street. For miles.

Well, two miles.

But it’s two more miles than I walked yesterday, or the day before, or the last two and a half weeks, actually. Since I had surgery in early February, the most walking I have done has been through the hospital hallways for a follow-up appointment and up and down the aisles at Costco on a recent shopping trip.

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