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humor, self-help, Writing Stuff

NOT The NaNo!

Photo Oct 22, 11 18 28 AM
Get fit for winning, NaNoWriMo!

NOT THE NANO! Can you feel it? Are you excited?

It’s not here yet; but it’s on it’s way! woohoo!

Which means, we’ve got more things to think about, dear writers and friends, than just NaNoWriMo this year… The getting prepared for it, kind of things, to think about!

I’m going to put into today’s post a few references to help get you ready; but, we’re going to focus on Pre-Preptober planning this week.

This sounds like more work. Aren’t you a pantser?

(a pantser is a writer who doesn’t plan)

Okay, yes, you got me there. But, I’ve realized more now that a little planning, even if you’re a pantser goes a very long way. And really, I plan pretty much everything. Even if it I appear spontaneous… I likely planned it. *wink

*slaps forehead

NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month. It occurs during the month of November annually and is a writing challenge of writing 50,000 words in 30 days! If you have wanted to write a book or have wanted to challenge yourself to writing a book in 30 days or less, this may be just the jump start you are looking for! It’s free to participate and you will be connected to authors from all over the world!

So, since preptober is the “getting ready” prep time all NaNoWriMo participants take to start getting our shit together, let’s pre-plan, our prepping for planning… And, I’m definitely making up that there’s a Pre-Preptober, so don’t worry, it’s not like it’s a real thing.

I do that sometimes! ha!

Take a look at October’s Bullet Journal setup. It’s super easy, and fast to setup. And no, it’s not twelves pages of journal; it’s literally, two. An eerie, halloween vibe calendar next month that has your one menu to the right for bullet-style monthly to-dos.

It’s the healthy habits we need to integrate into our daily writing routine. Like hot dogs? No.

Coffee? No.

Well… actually, coffee is fine. I’m definitely problems, all day, if there’s no coffee.

So, I get that one.

Not only for NaNoWriMo but for our daily writing routine outside of writing 50k in 30 days! So, I came up with some easy suggestions below with the writer in mind. We sit so long, typing away, we forget that moving our bodies is a necessity!

Ever find yourself annoyed by the fact that you’re cramping up, your back hurts, your mind is wandering or you just feel blah inside? You want to keep writing but things just feel off? Well, this week, I offer you some simple tips to help get you re-energized, motivated and re-focused! In this week’s video, we cover our physical, mental and spiritual health that can become affected while writing our novels in sedentary.

This is true for all of us now who sit at our laptops and even on our phone to get everything done that we need! We’ve streamlined our tasks so well that we now can do more.

ugh! and yay!

Now, get me that Hot Dog Coffee!

three quick fixes for the underdog rita slanina blog recording your song for free
How To, music, self-help

Recording Studios: Quick-Fix for the Underdog

You put a song together, and now you need a recording studio.

Or do you?

As luck would have it, in under ten minutes,

I’ve got a quick fix for the underdog songwriter.

No budget? No equipment? No problem!

The idea is you need:

music software

cost of equipment

and the age-old question is… “NOW, what do I do with all this stuff I just bought?”

Music & Lyrics: a songwriter’s journal

200-page journal including lined sheets for both tabs and musical notation. An album and song title sheet with detailing fillables for music genre, mood, and tempo. Available on Amazon, or if you prefer signed editions head to the SHOP!

Let’s face it.

THAT’S OVERWHELMING!

And likely, make you not want to start recording your own songs at all.

FAST FORWARD

Three years later, you have spent thousands of dollars you couldn’t afford to spend in the first place, and its all collecting dust with half of the crap, half-in their boxes.

Oh, boo! It’s definitely too late to try to return them…

What a nightmare! No wonder people give up before they quit. You love music, you would love to get it out there; but, it’s been made into this well kept, secret that no artist is supposed to know about how to go about getting it done on the cheap.

Here’s where my

“How To Music Video Series” comes in.

The second installment takes you through an easy to follow 3-step process to put those lyrics and music tracks into a song. If you haven’t gotten your lyrics or music ready to go yet & need a starting point, check out last week’s video on how to do that.

So, without further ado… This week’s lesson: How To Record A Song (yourself) FOR FREE!

OMGosh, so easy, right!

Now, that you’ve gotten studio quick fixes,

do you think you can do this on your own?

I sure believe in you!

Happy recording, underdogs!

an ode serenades & marinades blog rita slanina
How To, humor, music, Writing Stuff

Ode To Serenades & Marinades

an ode serenades & marinades blog rita slanina how to write a song songwriters beginner

An ode to serenades & marinades!

Is it just me or does anyone else feel it’s long overdue that we need some Fall-themed Holiday Songs? The ode to serenades & marinades of Fall, we’ll call it!

No. No? No.

Darn it. No one jumping onto that bandwagon, eh?

NO.

FINE. *rolls eyes

But, with so much to do!

music & lyrics a songwriters journal rita slanina shop now perfect for the songwriter album and song title brainstorming pages
Music & Lyrics: a songwriter’s journal

skipping happily into my office, with lyrics to write, and my loving book projects to wrap up, and my favorite time of here with NaNoWriMo’s impending arrival, it’s only fitting to – Nope. Don’t do it. Oh, the ode to the serenades of Editing, reading and staying the course of all my line item marinades. *insert piano playing plus a warble here

*she did it. Focus, girl.

My joy of fall

truly just wouldn’t begin without the exciting news of writing my next album. So, no pressure, but I have the goal of getting it done before Preptober. Don’t you got books to write, bish!

Now, who knows if that’ll be possible, but I believe in tackling a little each day and eventually it’ll get there. Once a groove is playing along, it’ll happen. I’m rapid fire-like that. *wink The first couple of tracks always seem to be the hardest. Although, channeling all that emotion is pretty rough too.

Wish there was a way to do it sans THAT roller coaster! Sadly, there isn’t.

Did you just pun. Ah, yes. Yes, I did.

I digress.

In all essences of productivity, and in all honesty though, must confess that I was a bit distracted this last week. I was not sleeping well. There were incessant, racing thoughts. Lest not forget, the half-heartedly act of convincing yourself – okay, geesh, MYself – that it’ll all be fine

is a fairly tall order.

(Reminds me of a song I wrote a few years back.)

A ghostly shell of yourself walking around, daydreaming of… you know, things past, present and future. *sigh* And anyway… You know how it goes.

Just to notate how writing songs can sometimes keep these pains lingering. I mean, I guess it can be therapuetic; although reliving trauma over and over probably isn’t healing. *is that numbness?

Which, in one part fairness, and bits of reflection confetti… are GREAT WRITING CONDITIONS.

Maybe when I get to the end of this bucket of chicken staring back at me, it’ll change. *hand over the marinade! This needs more flavor!

*slaps forehead Put down the wings. You better get writing, girl!

So get to it, lady… get out of the weeds!

You had to know I was taking this somewhere!

The next three weeks, I am publishing a songwriting music series on how to get a song from idea to sold! We’re going to call it:

drumroll, please….

THE HOW TO MUSIC VIDEO SERIES

We’re going to chunk this series down into three installments.

  1. How to write a song
  2. How to record a song
  3. How to publish a song

Since it is all things serenades & marinades of my favorite time of year, fall, and I just happen to have some A and B Roll in the vault from literally two years ago and it’s staring at me, asking me “why, oh Lovely Rita, haven’t you shown me to the world?” (I hope you added a southern drawl -channeling your inner Gone With The Wind character – when you read that! Because, I sure as heck did!

an ode serenades & marinades blog rita slanina how to write a song songwriters beginner

*You raised your hand to your head too… didn’t you.

Why, yes, kind stranger, I surely did!

*stop it

Okay, fine.

So, here we go! For the next three weeks, I am going to cover just that. *Terrible accents?

Ha. Ha. Noooooo…

I am going to show you an easy, and simple way to getting your song idea out of your head and into the marketplace. If you’ve ever wanted write a song – regardless, if you play an instrument or not – I got you! This week we start with the 3 simple way to writing that song and boy, oh boy, it will be easy!

Now, get ready!

Grab your notebooks!

Snatch up those pencils!

Go write a song!

* Please visit our affiliates & sponsored links to help support our blog. You are not required to purchase. Thank you!

**If you enjoy our content, visit the SHOP

4-hot-tips grab a blender i've got lemons rita slanina starting over create fresh start in life
Exercise, healthy and beauty, How To, humor, new years resolutions, relationships, self-help

Grab A Blender… I’ve got lemons!

Okay ya’ll! Grab your blenders… because I’ve lemons!

Er… Wrong Blenders, Love Bug

You know the saying, “When life hands you lemons… Add a spritzer!”

Okay, so no, that’s NOT how it goes… but if you stumble upon some champagne, let’s have a party! *wink

So, I was trying to figure out how to write this post. Starting over suddenly, without warning because you HAD no other options totally stinks. But, I have mulled over the details just way too much. And as much as I want to “spill the beans” on my traumatic event which got me here, I’m not even really over it enough to do so.

Ergo, in pure “Rita” fashion… I decided, to keep it light and funny. As you all know… it’s what I always do! Suppress that ish! And work through the hard shit!

Man up!

Head up!

Chin up!

Shoulders back!

Smile!

Because sometimes, life hands you lemons. So… you are forced to figure out how to create a fresh start in life. Again. You don’t see it coming. Or maybe you did. It’s like you’re watching a nightmare unfold before your eyes. And this time, it’s not Halloween. And you’re not watching a horror film. You’re living it. Or you suddenly you just needed a change. The world has gotten so freaking weird and now Florida sounds like a wonderful place to just touch ground.

So you got the lemons crapped all over you. No biggie. Make the damn lemonade!

Just kidding. I don’t know why I chose to curse!

But, not really. C’est la vie! 

I had finally found peace and solace in the mountains. Finding joy in the mundane was my motto for that chapter of my life and it was fabulous. 

I wish I could’ve kept that life forever. Enjoy the rest of my days following a simple; but amazing plan in retirement with the love of my life. But… as luck would have it, I got freakin’ screwed. Sure, I dodged some lemons for a while. But eventually, the whole tree just dumped on me. Alas, mon ami…. no boohooing. At least, not yet!

But it’s time to highlight why picking myself up off the floor – after imprinting myself on it for a while – is good news for you! *It doesn’t sound exactly like good news.

Right. Well, stick with me.

So…Why, is it good news, you ask? 

Because… eventually, I was able to at least get up off the floor. You know, after the numbness subsided, and the bedsores healed. Just kidding about the bedsores. But, not the numbness. Granted, tears were just NOT stopping but hey… you take what you can get in this game called Life CAN Suck. 

So, how do you push forward?

*Oh no.

Yup!

*No…

YUPPERS!

*Not the lists.

Yes! Yes! YES! I’ve got LISTS! Wahoo!!

If you prefer the more watching me work the list; as opposed to reading it check out this week’s video below.

Just a simple note: I DO NOT have it all figured out. But, I believe we never have it ALL FIGURED OUT. (I think I wrote a song with the same title – Ha! – add it to your playlists!)

– that which I swear by –

In the essense of humor, I do believe grabbing a blender when you have lemons is the best analogy to make smiles & hopefully inspire those who are also having entire life adjustments. Regardless, of your current situation, however dire or bleak, give these 4 Hot Tips a try. You never know what could happen!

You might invent a new margaRITA! *wink

See what I did there…

Yes, we all saw it. *slaps forehead

plan with me rita slanina september bujo bullet journal
healthy and beauty, humor, self-help, Writing Stuff

THE BUJO IS BACK | PLAN WITH ME FOR SEPTEMBER

September is near And the deer are a’frolics. The bujo’s are back in rotation a’rockin. If I cannot wait one more day. I’ll truly throw my calendar away!

Well… it’s been a minute since I threw down some poetry verses. But, slam dunk, I say!

I’d say, not.

Of course you’d say that. You’re just not as imaginative as me. Now, let me get back to this… well, whatever I thought I was doing – Oh! yes. The Blog.

If you haven’t yet done a bullet journal, you are MISSING OUT. It is seriously one of the most satisfying – takes me back to being a little girl – things I do for myself, each and every month.

Not each AND, every month..

Right. I skipped summer. Well, there was that gardening fun I was getting into and some personal distractions that took me away from them but those are neither here nor there. Oh wait! I did do a gardening journal! Is that close?

Hmmm… maybe?

Anyway, let’s just hop right into it. This week, I’ve got two announcements! First, plan with me for this September. This week’s video was an Easy Bullet Journal Setup.

Nothing crazy. I’m still using my pre-printed calendar from the big box retailer from over a year ago and I plan on using it until its done.

So, consider this video a simple version, a learning version for the faint of heart! new bujo fan

  • Second announcement!
  • I have partnered with a health & wellness brand and added the title of Health Coach to my resume under my entrepreneurial umbrella!
  • And I’m also the founder of WELLFITwithRITA. We’ve started new video channels just for this as to not to have competing interests.
  • On WELLFITwithRITA you’re going to find information, tips and talks on mindfulness, nutrition, health/fitness, and overall well being. I may even – throw in a little yoga class here and there.
  • Anyway, stop over to the new channel & subscribe where a welcome video is waiting just for you to smash the like & leave a comment to say hello!
newbie beginnings gardening spring summer series rita slanina blog
humor

Newbie Beginnings in Gardening | Spring & Summer Series

daydreaming about vineyards

This year, I took on newbie beginnings in gardening. For the last installment of the Spring Summer Series of 2021 and as I look forward to the shady trees and changing fall leaves. I took beginning gardening. Ooooo, how about a sequel…

You know NOTHING about gardening.

That’s right, I sure as heck DO NOT know much about gardening AT ALL. However, the things I learned as a “know-nothing” gardener for the Spring and Summer Series will be valuable one for years to come!

Newbie beginnings in gardening is a journey and boy! is it labor-intensive! But, I will say, I have never enjoyed doing a hobby more than I did taking on this challenge. In fact, when I get settled into my new place, I am going to pick it up again! Maybe start a vineyard!

*slaps forehead* A vineyard…

I totally want a vineyard.

You and your ambitions.

I Know! Isn’t it amazing to have so much life to live!

Knock it off already.

Um… Nope! Couldn’t do it. And believe me… I have tried!

To be able to watch things grow from seeds to seedlings, to then small plants, and then towering buschels of zuchinni is immeasurable to my joy. If you have yet to start a gardening adventure out of fear, don’t. Don’t waste another minute. The rewards of harvesting your own food is so amazing.

Sure, there were learning curves. A lot of plants didn’t make it. I had a freaking critter problem I never fully exterminated. And, I sure as heck didn’t have the support system – like a paid grounds keeper – I would’ve liked either. But, all that being said, I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

First things first… if you are afraid to start, or are overwhelmed with what and how to start let me give you a small to-do list. You know I love my lists!

“Mary, Mary, quite contrary… How does your garden grow?”

I mean, it literally is that simple.

Still not convinced? Enjoy the audio version of this post at Rita’s Dump: https://anchor.fm/ritaslanina/episodes/202-GARDEN-GOOSE-e164904

I challenge any of you to take up gardening, even if it’s on a balcony, or one potted plant on your windowsill. Start with anything small and see how you do.

And while your at it, take a look around at my newly published titles and scoop them up over at Amazon. Don’t forget to leave a positive review!

You’re only missing a green thumb if you neglect, or over-love your plants. And believe me, I am guilty of over-loving my plants… and I still grew stuff!

bikini declutter project blog rita slanina try on haul spring and summer series
fashion, How To, humor, self-help

The Bikini Declutter Project

The next installment of the Spring & Summer Series of 2021 is HERE. The BIKINI DECLUTTER PROJECT. And, I’m giving an overhaul to my bikinis and one piece swimwear! Now, I’m not sure how well this is going to go; but, I’m going to give it the ‘ol college try!

*this should prove entertaining.. and you didn’t go to college.

Au Contrere, ma frere! (Did I french that right? haha)

Eh, No.

And hey! Actually, I did, thank you very much. Just more of the community variety. *shrugs

So, over the past year, well let’s face it, since the whole world went on a pause, I felt it was time to give my wardrobe some sauce. Or rather, pull some out of it! Ha!

And what better way than to start all that monkari joy sparking, with swimwear!

*You’re still saying it wrong… It’s KonMari.

Yeah, yeah. Ya’ll know what I mean! Don’t steal my joy! *so punny!

One of my goals is to upgrade the armoire. And that includes revamping to a better version of my poolside glamour. As we all know, I’ve been on hiatus for far too long, I’m back posting videos to my regularly scheduled YT Tuesdays! (And blog/pod Wednesdays!) And I’ve already begun with the third installment of the Spring and Summer Series of 2021 with THE BIKINI DECLUTTER PROJECT (and try-on haul)!

I had to kick this one out of my vault because I’ve been on a mission to really give my clothes (and in this case, bikinis!) an overhaul! Join me! What’s your wardrobe look like these days? How’s your swimwear game?

But first, the rules:

The bikini declutter project got me shuffling through my work piles too – and as I’m checking off lists and to do’s that have been stacking up – I released some new books! Are you a journal nut? Do you like planning your vacays with travel planners/bullet journals? Then, give my Amazon Author page a looksie! Oh, and don’t forget to buy some copies todayto add to your collection!

shop the take me away journal series for summer rita slanina
humor

Satisfying (REALISTIC) Shed Declutter | Spring Summer Series

Spring is here–

errrr… stop right there. It’s behind us.

Right. Right. Ahem…

SUMMER – is here, birds are chirping–errrr… stop again. Aren’t the birds chirping?

haha, yeah. Just wanted to see if you’d stop.

*Insert sarcastic laugh here Ha. Ha.

Are you done?

Maybe *wink

Ugh, okay.

Satisfying. BUT REALISTIC! Shed. Declutter. Whatever. Finally got that out… I see those second (and snarky) thoughts are back without fail. Just like this blog! Badum hiss! Well, glad to see those jerky sidebars back without a vengence! *curtsy

So, let’s get this party started then. Where were we? Oh, that’s right SUMMER!

Welcome back guys and gals, to the Spring and Summer Series of 2021! Birds are chirping, the butterflies are fluttering, and the monsoons are here! And so is that damn humidity. Ugh. But, I’m still on that decluttering, renovations, up cycling thing here!

After watching sooo many different minimalism and un-junking vids, I decided to attack my shed and boy was it a doosy! Stop the dramatics. Okay, full disclosure, it took a weekend…

And actually, you’re right. Not that bad at all. It was all pretty fun. Yet, it was surely a weekend warrior sort of undertaking. I bet you’re wondering how one would even start such a project? It can be overwhelming! Daunting! Excruciating! Tedious! Fun!

But, also, oh so fulfilling.

Whoa. Stop. Fun?

Fun… for a Type A personality? Maybe?

*slaps forehead *rolls eyes

Okay. Fine.

I get that not everyone will dive into a satisfying, and realistic shed decluttering venture to task themselves like I would. But, if that’s the case, then I must ask… why are these so binge-worthy? Is it the voyeur in us? Do we like to see other peoples, er, junk? I don’t know.

Did I mention that I’d be reorganizing?

I don’t care.

driving the inspiration home with hot mess house reference

We know you don’t care.

Or that I’d also be up cycling furniture?

*sticks tongue out

A series I’ve been over the moon about is Hot Mess House. Has anyone else seen this? I think it’s on HGTV. Only two seasons but I just love watching people toss their junk out and then renovate storage solutions! I totally enjoy it!

Also, check out Minimal Mom, and ClutterBug on YouTube. Well… no pressure. Only if you’re into those kinds of things.

And, I have a sneaking suspicion you are, if you’re still reading.

So, let's waste no more time! Check out my latest post on the most satisfying and realistic shed declutter of your life! Oh geez. *wink And don't forget to subscribe to the newsletter and my social media to keep up on all the lastest posts! 

Also, check out my recently published journals and planners! 200 lined pages to whisk you away to your imagination's desires! Write down your to-do's, your travel plans, or maybe your deepest, inner thoughts on decluttering sheds! Available now! https://amzn.to/3zzX4PQ

And, without further ado, the Spring & Summer Series of 2021!

https://rumble.com/vkc945-spring-summer-series-satisfying-realistic-shed-declutter.html

Does watching tidying up videos feel as delightful to you as they do me? Let me know in the comments if this got you sweeping out your junk.

Stay tuned for next week’s video in the summer series! Happy Summering!

fashion, humor

VIBES JUST IN TIME SPRING & SUMMER

The SouthWest United States.

Here…. it has quickly jumped into summer. Nary a moment to enjoy that frenzied energy level of Spring.

Although, I felt I made good on my springtime vibes this year. Never one to “love” spring, I did discover a new adoration for it. I know… who knew?!

In the past, I have found spring to be manic. Cold one day, Steamy hot the next. Do I wear sandals? Or boots. You can’t quite put away your winter clothes but you definitely cannot bring out those flops. (I loathe flops.)

And, yet I’ve managed to accumulate more than I’d bargain for…

Anyway, how did I find a sweet spot for spring, you wonder? Or don’t. Or probably do since you’re still here waiting for me to get to it. Drumroll, please…. *badum hiss*

Dresses! Gardening! Decluttering.. oh my!

See what I did there *wink

Ta dah!

I’m feeling your eyes rolling. But, stick with me. I’ve begun a gardening journey that I was surprisingly good at and did it in the most comfy and casual dresses I’d ever come across. Dresses. YES. While gardening. ABSOLUTELY! It’s a little cottage-core mixed with a smidgen of organic ranching. Small potatoes though.

Pun intended. OMGosh. *slaps forehead

Oh and also, quite a literal interpretation too!

So, sneak a peek at my spring to summer style. Videos below! Challenging myself to try out new styles that I wouldn’t normally wear and applying these styles to a newfound, labour of love, in the garden were really quite fun! Alright, alright… I’ll check out the video. Geesh.

Thanks! =P

All affordable and all surprisingly from Shein. Or maybe not so surprisingly. As you may have noticed over the last year, I have been madly in love with the Shein App. If you use it on your desktop, truly, you will find even more heartbeats – to illustrate another savvy reason to love Shein – by utilizing Rakuten on your search bar. Try my referral code: http://shein.top/c6nidfz

Did somebody say rebates?

There’s almost always more money to save. For example, by adding fun to any wardrobe style without breaking the bank! Wait, how can you save money while shopping. Never you mind, you overthinker. Focus! Oh… and Capsule wardrobe people included *wink

https://rumble.com/viodyb-the-spring-summer-shein-dress-haul.html

What fun! Comment and let me know how you’ve spent your spring and now summer. Have you tried on some new summer staples for your wardrobe? How about your flippie floppie game? Actually.. don’t tell me more about that. Pick up any hobbies? Inquiring minds want to know!

Stay tuned for my next video series on gardening… so much to share there! Being a beginner gardener has its plucks! =P

Puns. I literally can’t stop.

As you can see we’ve begun uploading to Rumble and GabTv. Currently, we are learning about these new platforms, so please be patient with the channels organization, upload speeds and congruence to the posting schedule. As we embark on that learning curve territory! Ha!