Wednesday, February 6, 2019

IWSG: Wednesday, February 6, 2019 ~ Other Creative Outlets

It's the first Wednesday of the month,
the day that members of the
Insecure Writer's Support Group
share their writing struggles
and writing successes
and offer their encouragement
and support to fellow writers.

To visit the IWSG website, click here.

To become a member of the IWSG, click here.

Our wonderful co-hosts who are volunteering today,
along with IWSG founder Alex Cavanaugh are:
Raimey Gallant,  Natalie Aguirre,  CV Grehan and Michelle Wallace.  

I hope you have a chance to visit today's hosts and thank them for co-hosting.
I'm sure they would appreciate a visit and an encouraging comment.


Every month the IWSG poses a question
that members can answer with advice, insight,
a personal experience, or a story in their IWSG posts.

Or, the question can inspire members
if they aren't sure what to write about on IWSG Day.

Remember the question is optional.
This month's featured question is:

Besides writing what other creative outlets do you have?

Thanks goodness this month's IWSG question is straightforward,
because I am preoccupied with trying to pack
for a six night trip to Las Vegas, and I am most unhappy.

I've mentioned previously that my husband Terry is a budget traveler.
That's why I often flying on IWSG Day,
because the cheapest tickets are available on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

But really, Terry has gone too far this time!
We're flying on Spirit Airlines, and I get to take a daypack
Not even a daypack and a purse ~ just a daypack ~ period.
I'm going to look like the Michelin Tyre Man heading down the jetway
because I'll be so layered up with clothes. 

He's happily sitting on the couch by the fire playing Words with Friends,
while I'm sitting here contemplating how I'm going to cram
everything I need into a daypack, including my computer and a power strip.
That is when I'm not contemplating strangling him and his budget tickets.

Optimism in Action 
Aurora, Colorado, USA
February 5, 2019
© M. Louise (MacBeath) Barbour/Fundy Blue
All Rights Reserved

It's been thirty-seven years since we met at a bus stop,
and he still doesn't grasp that I can't just toss
an extra pair of panties and a toothbrush into a briefcase
and jet off for six nights of celebrating in Vegas (or anywhere else) ... .

That was the beginning of my post which I started yesterday.
I planned to finish it today by highlighting my creative packing skills.

In the name of marital harmony,
I was going along with the cheap ticket
and tackled the Project Daypack bright and early.

Project Daypack 
Aurora, Colorado, USA
February 5, 2019
© M. Louise (MacBeath) Barbour/Fundy Blue
All Rights Reserved

And due to those creative packing skills,
I got everything inside that daypack,
right down to my father-in-law's St. Christopher's Medal
which he always carried in his wallet.
He died several years before I met Terry,
and I carry it with me always to feel a connection with him.
An odd choice for an agnostic Northern Baptist,
but it makes me happy.

And now to share my creative packing secrets!


This little fantasy did not end as I had hoped.
In fact, you might guess better than I did about how my evening would go.

After a long day of other responsibilities,
I was finally stuffing the daypack on top of the stove,
so I could watch the President's State of the Union Address
on my kitchen television.  Things were not going well.

The Ever-Patient Terry came by, hefted the daypack, and said,
"This is going to be too heavy, honey.
Let me take your computer and put it in my briefcase."

He wrestled the computer out and an assortment of belongings followed,
bursting out of the straightjacket confines of the daypack
and spilling off the stove onto the floor.

I lost it.
"There's no room for my books,
the ones I'm giving my brother and Sue.
I can't even take one for me.
I can't take the things I need.
I can't just throw an extra pair of panties and a toothbrush into a briefcase 
and fly off to Vegas for six nights!"

I burst into tears and started yanking everything else out,
tossing things on the stove and counter.
The President disappeared behind a heap of clothes and toiletries.

Most unsettling to Terry, I stomped over to the pantry
and grabbed a bottle of coconut rum,
stomped to the fridge and grabbed a half gallon of orange juice,
poured myself a good one, and took a big swig.
It was not my finest hour.
I had come undone.

As I sobbed, stomped, strew, and swigged, 
Terry contacted Spirit and paid for a carry-on bag,
an extra fee almost the cost of my ticket to Vegas.
Then he grabbed me and gave me a big hug, a tricky undertaking,
because I most definitely did not want to hug him.
"I get it," he said.  "I finally get it."

Such is life thirty-seven years into a relationship.
Shortly we were laughing and sharing some chocolate.

My carry-on bag is packed,
and he's taking the daypack instead of his briefcase.
I missed most of the President's speech,
but I can catch the highlights tomorrow morning.

Oh yes ~ other creative outlets.
I play with photography.

I'd share some favorites, but I'll have to save them for another day.
27,337 steps, a real estate appraisal, many errands, a meltdown, 
and a way-too-big coconut rum and orange, packing and repacking
have left me done in.

Happy writing in February.

Female Red-Winged Black Bird
Along Piney Creek 
Aurora, Colorado, USA
November 22, 2018
© M. Louise (MacBeath) Barbour/Fundy Blue
All Rights Reserved


  1. Still learning after 37 years, keeps the mind a going, even if a little rum is involved lol Sometimes doesn't pay to be cheap. But then I'm with him as far as traveling, chuck a few things in a bag and away I go. Don't even have to worry about undies haha hopefully you got there safe and sound with no lost luggage.

  2. I enevy you, I 've been to Las Vegas twice and had a wonderful time. Hope you do too........enjoy.


  3. Sometimes it takes that long for it to sink in. My wife would also be a mess about trying to cram everything in one small pack.
    Enjoy Las Vegas!

  4. LOL! One of my critique partners can pack for a 3-week trip in backpack - she must shrink things (or buy everything when she gets there!). Me, I am a expert packer and use the biggest suitcase allowed by airline regs and ship everything else home. My packing skill - the grocery cart. It's a Tetris of creative space use that no bag boy has ever recreated. Enjoy your trip and mail those gift home!

  5. There's no way I could go six nights anywhere without a checked bag either! Hopefully you won't have to face this issue in the future. Enjoy Las Vegas!

  6. Oh my God - I would've had a meltdown, too. I went to Louisiana for three days with a purse and carry-on, and wow was it a challenge to cram it all in there. (And yes, that included a bulky laptop and a dozen books for me to sell - thank goodness they all sold.)

  7. Wow, its cool that you two met a bus stop. I would have had a meltdown if I had to pack everything in a small suitcase for 6 days of travel.

  8. And I was going suggest shipping what you need to the hotel and having the package waiting for you when you arrived. Or if you wanted to be annoying go shopping for your easily purchased supplies (shampoo, toothpaste, etc) once you got there. Leaving it all behind when you left would hurt though.

    Your solution has a much happier ending. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

  9. You can do this! I can tell my the determined way you clutch that backpack. And I'd say you do more than play with photography. I loved the picture you posted.

  10. Creative packing - that's a good one, very original. We all should have it. LOL.

  11. I'm not creative with packing. I do try to go as light as possible.

  12. And this is exactly why I've always been in charge of ordering tickets and making travel arrangements. There really is such a thing as penny-wise and pound-foolish, in this case, the pound being your sanity. So glad he finally gets it!! :-) Hope you have a great time and get some wonderful pics.

  13. We had a lot of arguing over using 2 suitcases for 4 of us to use on a 10 day European vacation. I was NOT happy about that at all, so I feel your frustration there. Thankfully, hubby booked us apartments with washers in them, so we could go light on the clothes packing. I didn't get to take all of the shoes I wanted, but sometimes you have to compromise. I'm glad your husband made it right for you. That could have set the tone for the whole trip if you had to leave behind needed things.

  14. Men! And then they go and take all the anger out of your sails by doing the thing they should've done from the start -- like it wasn't a big deal. Sigh. I hope you enjoyed your trip :-)

    Ronel visiting for Feb's IWSG Day Being an Insecure Writer -- And Happy About It

  15. Enjoy Las Vegas!! There is no way, I could go away for 6 nights, using that little pack!!! No way! LOL! I don't blame you! I would have had a vodka! LOL! Big Hugs!

  16. While reading this beautiful love story with all its ups and downs I keep smiling dear Louise but when I reached on "hug" part i laughed aloud.

    Hubby is getting familiar with my madness and he knows it happens when I read your post :)

    How can one be upset on trip to fun place like Vegas
    How sweet to keep things close that belong to your late father in law

    I am always stunned with your energy and excitement dear Louise!

    You will definitely enjoy the president speech later :)

    I am so happy that you hugged Terry back and things got beautiful again!

    You are looking like a gorgeous angle in pic above!

    1. Thank you for your wonderful comment, Baili! I can laugh now, but I certainly wasn't that night. Hugs to you!


Thank you for your comments! I appreciate them very much.