Day 21 – U is for Uliginous

Uliginous

 
(adj) slimy; oozy; swampy; growing in swampy places

 

 
Today’s word is a gross descriptor, but I simply couldn’t ignore the vividness of it. I don’t personally have a lot of experience with swamps, which is probably why this word called out to me. It was something new and different and fun to imagine. I’ve been on a fictional rampage with my thoughts lately and I’m sure I will thoroughly enjoy throwing my characters into a uliginous location sometime soon!

How about you? Do you have some swamp experience? Any memorable swamps that you’ve been too? Let me know in the comments!

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Also, Happy Monday! For some reason my Monday posts just seem to be getting shorter and shorter lately; sorry about that! I’ve been doing a lot of fiction writing and its been kind of hard to tear myself away from it. But we’re on the last week of this crazy challenge and I will not stop now! Yay for willpower! Or feeling obligated to finish public challenges! Woot!

Day 20 – T is for Torpor

Torpor

(noun) a state of physical or mental inactivity; lethargy.

 

 
So last night I decided to stay up late.

Well, “decided” is kind of the wrong word: my husband offered me coffee at five in the afternoon and I mistakenly drank it before realizing that I couldn’t remember the last time I had had a caffeinated beverage. Next thing I knew, it was a quarter to four in the morning and I was still bright-eyed and bushy-tailed…

Which brings us to the word “torpor.” Man, do I have a lot of torpor right now. Buckets of it. Probably wheelbarrows full of the stuff. *yawn*

But despite my huge amount of torpor, I’m still here writing away, so yay for overwhelming willpower and chocolate chip cookie dough rewards! (Yes, I do reward myself with food like a common animal, don’t worry about it.)

I also picked torpor because its in one of my “Currently Playing/Obsessed With” games right now, Ark: Survival Evolved. If you’re not familiar with it, you play as a survivor on a mysterious island that is home to DINOSAURS! And not just your basic ones like the T-rex or the Triceratops, but all sorts of prehistoric animals! My favorites are the Argentavis, which is a really big vulture/eagle that you can ride on like a boss, and the Spinosaurus (sorry T-rex, you’re just too cliche for my hipster tastes). In the game, the word “torpor” is a measurement of your consciousness, and if your torpor gets too high (like, say, due to some giant scorpion stings to the face or getting headbutted by a Pachycephalasaurus), than you are down and out for the count. Nothing is worse than getting knocked out and watching your unconsious body get swarmed by vicious carnivores…*sigh* ‘Tis the life of a dinosaur survivor.

I expect that with it being the weekend, you might be feeling a bit of torpor too! Share your *yawn* experiences in the comments and I will dutifully reply as soon as I take a little nap…

Day 19 – S is for Stelliferous

Stelliferous

 
(adj) having or abounding with stars.

 

What a gorgeous adjective! I was lucky enough to find this word early this month and forget all about it until I found it in my notes for today. Ah, the joys of not being able to remember anything…

I never tire of looking up at the night sky. I have good memories of going stargazing, whether it was to see a particular bright and shiny planet or a meteor shower. Heck, I remember watching Halley’s Comet streak across the sky all those years ago. Some of my more magical memories involved the stars: Driving across the snow-covered New Mexican deserts at four in the morning and seeing shooting stars above me. Running out of the house in my pajamas to watch the International Space Station do a fly-by. Camping out illegally at a church/school’s property to watch the Perseids. I will admit that here in the middle-of-nowhere Arizona, the stars look especially good. Hard for light pollution to get in the way when nobody lives here!

Do you have any stargazing memories to share? Any good times spent under the night sky? Let me know in the comments!

Day 18 – R is for Raconteur

Raconteur

 
(noun) a person skilled in telling anecdotes

 

This one applies to many of you fellow bloggers out there! The blogs I follow are usually written by the best of raconteurs. Those people that can take something as simple as getting breakfast in the morning and turn it into a dramatic problem-solving, life-lesson moment…you know who you are. And I am absurdly jealous of you.

I believe there can be inspiration in nearly every moment in my life. The simplest of acts can be twisted into a metaphor, or perhaps reveal a beauty of the world. For example, I live in the “Hummingbird Capital of the United States” and thus, I bought myself a hummingbird feeder as soon as I had a porch to put it on. Every single day I am given the gift of watching a ridiculously tiny bird come to my back window for a miniscule sip of water, and then flit away into the unknown. I have gone outside in the evenings and sat with one of them (a regular named Gwendolyn), me on the bench and her on the branch a few feet away. I have seen hummingbird fights, which look as cartoon-y as they sound. It’s been, frankly, magical. But when I think about it, I’m really just watching a thirsty bird get a drink and then poop all over my porch several times a day. The “magic” is in how I view them and how I choose to tell their story.

Surely you know some raconteurs in your own life? I can think of a couple of work buddies who could spin a great tale. Or perhaps a family member? (Old dads are usually the best for this in my experience) Let me know your thoughts on it!

Day 17 – Q is for Qualtagh

Qualtagh

(noun – Manx English) The first person one encounters, either after leaving one’s home or (sometimes) outside one’s home, especially on New Year’s Day.

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Spoiler Alert: This is a trash post and you should probably not read it because its extremely ramble-y and I’m really tired and I’m only posting because dang I’ve made it this far already and I can’t quit now.

Apologies in advance.

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Ah. Well. Here we are. The letter “Q,” is it? Let’s see what we got here…

Look…I’m going to be frank with you…I woke up this morning at 5:30 AM, sat down at my computer and wrote fiction for an hour. Then I took a short break to get my husband off to work. When I got back to the computer, I thought, “wow, I’m being really productive today, I should work on my blog post now so that I don’t put it off until too late.” So I promptly looked up “q” words and found this beauty and had a million lovely and interesting thoughts about it…And then my daughter woke up.

The rest of my day consisted of being a preschool teacher for a classroom of one. I did puzzles, played Candy Land, stopped tantrums caused by the result of playing Candy Land, went out for a bike ride, did some school lessons, gave out good behavior stickers, wondered where the good behavior went by lunchtime, made lunch, gave child cake so that I could finish my own lunch, and eventually got the little darlin’ into bed for a nap. Then I took a nap myself and eventually found myself back to the computer, a whole day having passed between the start of this post and the finish of it.

All the lovely thoughts I had about this word have been absorbed into the day. I briefly remember something about making a challenge to note the first person you saw outside. I suppose I just thought it was a cool idea…*shrugs* Sorry guys. Eight hours with a four-year-old and now I’ve got nothing. I can tell you all the pups in Paw Patrol though. That counts for something, right?

Maybe you have some thoughts on it? Let me know in the comments. Or just let me know how your day went. It’s cool.

Day 16 – P is for Prodigious

Prodigious

(adj) remarkably or impressively great in extent, size, or degree.

 
I just had to pick this one, I just had to…if you’ve ever watched the show Digimon, you should already be smiling and nodding along right about now.

Being a child of the nineties, most of my weekends were spent watching silly, brightly-animated cartoons. And Digimon was one such brightly-animated mess of monsters and children and oh-god-the-puns. So many puns. My husband and I started re-watching Season One a few years back for nostalgia’s sake and the show is just dripping with awful puns that make you shake your head and groan every single time. It’s amazing. But despite it’s groan-inducing dialogue, the Digimon themselves were just the best. If I wasn’t such a die-hard Pokemon fan, Digimon would be top on my list.

The word “prodigious” was used extensively by one of the characters, an adorkable nerd named Izzy. He said it all the time. Seeing this word again instantly brought back all my lovely reminisces of the series and my childhood. *happy contented nostalgia-filled sigh*

Thing is, when I was actually watching this show as a kid, I didn’t even know what that word meant. Now that I’m sitting here staring at the definition, it makes a lot of sense. Yeah, those Digimon were pretty prodigious…I just thought he was saying it because it had the word “digi” in it!

I’ll have to add this one to my personal lexicon so that I can be an adorkable nerd too! How ‘bout you? Do you have any other quirky exclamations you like to use? Or if you’d like to reminisce about Digimon in the comments, reminisce away!

Day 15 – O is for Octothorp

Octothorp

(noun) another term for the pound sign (#).

Ah, the octothorp. Who knew that the pound sign had such a weird name? And yes, I come from a childhood where that particular symbol was only known as a pound sign and was only used on telephones that were connected to the house and couldn’t be carried in your pocket. Why do I suddenly feel so old?

Nowadays, that symbol is indisputably called the hashtag, thanks to Twitter and other forms of social media. I will admit that I am a little late to the whole Twitter thang, having only joined in the last year, but its not so bad. The indie author scene is straight up ballin’ yo. (That’s what the kids say these days, right? Right?)

And I will say that the term “hashtags”, and the very idea of them has grown on me. Yes, they can be funny and stupid, but they can also be oh-so-useful. Now if only I can get #octothorp trending today…

 

 

Oh, and Happy Monday everyone! Well, as happy as Mondays can be anyway. We’re getting closer to the end of this crazy-cray challenge and I’m itching to post on something other than vocabulary words! I think I already have my full month’s worth of posts for May already, just from the back-up of ideas through April. So stick with me, we’re gonna make it through this and everything will be just peachy! Or apple-y, if you don’t like peaches! Banana-y? Whatever fruit floats your boat!

Much love and fruits!

 

Day 14 – N is for Nostomania

Nostomania
(noun) an irresistible compulsion to return home; intense homesickness.

 

What do you call home?

Is it your house?

Your house can be a good home. Maybe its the only house you’ve ever lived in. Maybe you have a lifetime of memories there and your own bedroom and all your stuff and family and it just feels right.

Is it a town? Or a region?

Maybe you’ve moved around a bit in the same area. You know that town well though. You’ve seen businesses come and go. A lot of your friends are still around. You recognize your teachers in the supermarket. Everything is nice and comfortable.

Is it a safe place?

Maybe what you call “home” isn’t a place you spend all your time, but a place you escape to when you need a break from the world. Maybe its a grandparent’s house, or a cabin in the woods. Just somewhere where you can be yourself and not worry about anything else. Where you can relax and just exist for awhile.

When I moved across the country two years ago, I never thought I would feel homesick. Having spent my childhood moving from town to town, I never really felt like I had a proper “home.” The houses I lived in were just borrowed temporarily, places that I would never see again once I left them. I thought that maybe I was immune to homesickness. Sure, I felt nostalgic about some such places, but not homesick.

Later in my life, I actually began to stick around a place for longer than a few years. Once I began dating my future hubs, I stuck around his hometown for, shoot, a decade maybe? And that was enough time to make it feel like home. When we moved, I was suddenly aware of what a new place feels like when you’re an adult. Everything is already so established. Everyone has their own lives already. It’s hard to find your place. And for the first time, I actually felt… homesick.

I wouldn’t say that I felt nostomania however. Although I do miss the Midwest, the desire to experience new places still takes precedence. My husband has considered jobs all over the country, and even a couple outside of the United States and I have been okay with most of them. If I truly felt nostomania, we probably wouldn’t have moved in the first place, much less stayed away for two years.

I’m curious about your home though…have you ever experienced intense homesickness? Let me know in the comments.

Day 13 – M is for Matutinal

Matutinal

 
(adj)
1. Relating to or occurring in the morning; early.
2. pertaining to or occurring in the morning; early in the day

 

I’m so familiar with the word “nocturnal” meaning night-time, and yet I never even bothered to think that the opposite word might exist. Actually, that’s not true, because I know the word for daytime is “diurnal”…well, dang, I suppose that kind of wrecks this intro. Oops.

I picked this word because it pertains to my writing schedule. Yes, I am a morning writer. I do most of my best writing in the mornings. Sometimes I’m even up before the sun. “But that’s ridiculous!” you might say, as you stay up ‘til all ungodly hours of the night. “Not when you have a four-year-old.” I reply, shedding a tear for my lost night-owl ways.

Nowadays, getting to bed at 11pm is considered “late.” Don’t worry, I secretly hate it too. But the thing about children is that they don’t believe in sleep. Not at all. Sleep is an evil thing. My daughter will do everything in her power to never sleep again. She will stall for time, she will obsessively drink water, she will talk to herself in bed for hours…And I’m just sitting there thinking ‘one day, child, one day…naps will be the best thing ever. THE BEST THING EVER.’ The real kicker is that she never sleeps in, no sir. Every day, every single day, she is up by 8:30am. Which means that every day, I am up by 8:30am *loudest mommiest sigh of all time*

So thus, my morning writing habits. I quickly realized that if I were to ever get any writing done again, it had to happen while my precious babe was fast asleep. Limiting myself to early morning and naptimes. Evenings were out because my husband is only home in the evening and we need time to netflix and chill – oh wait, I’m getting a report that “netflix and chill” no longer means falling asleep drooling on the couch while netflix plays in a constant loop of random shows all night. Nevermind.

So what is your ideal time of day? Night Owl, Morning Lark, or, I don’t know, Day Eagle? Yes, let’s go with Day Eagle. Let me know in the comments!

Day 12 – L is for Lexicon

Lexicon

(noun) the vocabulary of a person, language, or branch of knowledge

 

I am especially pleased to include this word in my monthly “word-a-day” challenge because it is so deliciously relevant. If you’ve been following me this month, or are hastily catching up right now (see my A to Z Challenge 2016 category; I’ll wait!), then you and I have been actively expanding our own lexicons together. Isn’t blogging magical?

I first heard this word, oh, I have no idea where. Let’s be honest, it was probably in some vocab test in English class that I hastily memorized and promptly forgot as soon as the test was over. But thanks to a Jason Mraz song that uses the phrase “double-sided lexicon,” I came into contact with this word some years later and it stuck.

 

I like to picture my mental lexicon as a grungy ol’ scrapbook that I’ve had for ages and that I just stick words in all willy-nilly. Some of them are glued to pages on fancy, typed note cards all in a row. Some are tucked in like bookmarks, and occasionally fall out of the book entirely. Some are scribbled on post-it notes in handwriting so poor that even I can barely read it. Yikes, this is sounding more and more like my real-life desk…

In short, I love my lexicon and am always looking to fill it up! Feel free to tell me about your mental lexicon in the comments. Is it messy or orderly? Do you have an index of favorites? Or do you just plain make-up words when you need them?