Sandy DeLisle's Blog

Posts Tagged ‘writing

OK, I must admit I like alliteration, which is why my post’s title this week sounds so snake-like.  I am the first to admit that alliteration can be overused and sometimes seems stilted (sorry, it’s an addiction), but honestly, all three of the S-words in my title are on my mind as of late.

Sitcoms– When I was at a Halloween party a few months ago, dressed as a fairy princess, by the way, I learned that a friend’s husband had a dream to create a sitcom based on his life. When he found out that I write he asked me if I might be interested in putting together a script for his sitcom idea. Having just lost my day job, I thought, “Why not?” After all, the premise for the show was funny and unique and I’m not one to let practical things, like the fact that I have no idea how to write a sitcom script, get in the way. Instead, I borrowed The Screenwriter’s Bible by David Trottier from my local library and proceeded to write a script for a new sitcom that can best be described as a cross between Taxi and The King of Queens. If you have read my previous post about Livin’ in La-La-Land, you will understand why I still hold out hope that this series will be on the air someday, even though in The Screenwriter’s Bible, the author says you are more likely to part the Red Sea than you are to break into sitcom writing without any experience. This dismal prediction, however, does not take into account my magical pixie dust, which, when cast into the eyes of the TV executives, will make them put Driven in their new fall lineup. Now, I just need to meet some TV executives…

Sanibel – Sanibel Island, Florida, my second S, is my home-away-from-home. And, if we weren’t so embedded in Northern Illinois, it would be our family’s permanent home.  I love the sand beaches strewn with seashells, the delightful dolphins dancing in the waves and the overall laid back vibe of the island (seventy-five percent of the island is nature preserve). My father-in-law owns a condo there and every year since he has owned it, our entire family has spent at least one week, usually in August when no one else wants to be in Southern Florida, enjoying the island. Not once since he bought the condo ten years ago has the condo been available over our kids’ winter break.  But this year, for some reason, it did not rent the week before Christmas! I am taking advantage of this fortuitous occasion and taking all three boys to our favorite get-away during peak season on the island. I feel very lucky that we get to take this trip and am wondering if this next guy had anything to do with it…

Santa– Whether you celebrate Christmas or not, there is something magical in the air around this time of year (perhaps it’s my residual pixie dust). But seriously, people seem to want to be better and they are often a bit more reflective on what is important in their lives.  The Big Guy (I will let you interpret that reference as you see fit) works in mysterious ways.  Although two out of  three of my kids have stopped believing in Santa, they still enjoy the specialness of this time of year (slower pace, more family time).  And, of course they don’t mind the presents Santa’s helpers leave behind either.

As 2011 comes to a close, I will be reflecting on all of these Ss from the comfort of my beach towel and hoping you have a happy holiday season…


I always get nostalgic as the cold weather sets in and I prepare to flip the calendar to November, the month of being thankful. I love that we have a holiday the entire purpose of which is to reflect on our blessings. Too often, I think we focus on what we do not have. I have been as guilty of this as the next person, wishing I had more space in my house for my three boys who are growing quicker than the rumors about Ashton and Demi. Instead of focusing on the lack of space, perhaps I can look at this situation with a different eye. Maybe I should concentrate on how wonderful it is that they are growing so big. After all, at least two of the three play competitive sports, and from what I can tell, size does matter when you are trying to tackle an opponent on the football field. Also, if our house was too big, I might not run into them (literally) as we are passing in the hall.

Years ago, I started keeping a gratitude journal, which is a notebook where you record all the things for which you are thankful. At first, I was good about recording at least five things I was grateful for each day. Then, after a few months, I got lazy and the entries not only got less frequent, but I only listed one or two things in each entry. Even though I slacked off in my personal journal, I still tried to keep the concept alive by creating a gratitude blackboard in our kitchen. Yes, I know the former teacher in me will always keep coming out in odd ways. Anyway, at the top of the blackboard I wrote, “I am thankful for:” Next, I put numbers with blank spaces next to them and waited for the blanks to get filled in. Most of the time I am the one filling the empty space with things like, “Dustin not tearing his ACL, Aaron’s twelfth birthday, and Grayson getting an A +” But once in a while I get a pleasant surprise like when one of the boys wrote, “Getting our new puppy, Jazz” or, after I was traveling for a few day and my husband wrote, “MAMA BEING HOME!!!”

There’s something about committing your gratitude to writing that makes it more real and official. Plus, then you have the opportunity to look back over your previous items and be thankful all over again. Gratitude is the gift that keeps giving. The more grateful you are, the more you will find you have to be grateful for. So, I encourage each of you to start being thankful now, even before Thanksgiving gets here. To encourage you to commit what you are thankful for to writing, I would be most thankful if you posted your blessings as a comment to this blog.

Now, I am going to go grocery shopping in order to keep those growing boys fed. I look forward to reading your comments!

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