Two-Bit Musings.

Shh.

Just Another Day in Paradise, Yo.

. . .

Hi. How are you, Dear Reader? How do you feel today: body, mind, and soul?

Pause. Think. Answer honestly.

Me? I’m doing just fine, thanks.

I’m currently sitting on our RV love seat, clicking past the miles somewhere between Ohio and Indiana. Sweet Baby Snap is sleeping; Toddler Snap is hopefully about to do the same up in his car seat.

I’m sipping iced coffee, laughingly shrugging at the insane diesel prices, and singing songs from Father John Misty’s latest album in my head.

I feel good.

. . .

I just turned 35.

Seems kinda weird, like that’s much too old and much too young, all at the same time. Sometimes I feel like I’ve lived a thousand lives; I also feel like I’ve just been born.

And when I close my eyes and quiet my mind, I think about this life. I think about how much I value the simple idea of respect.

I want to show respect in everything I do.

Toward other human beings, animals, and Mother Earth herself.

I want to respect other people’s time. I want to respect their turn to speak.

I want to respect the public goods we all need, like clean water and food. Health. Education. The arts and humanities.

I want it to be known that I respect you because not everything is about me.

. . .

(shrugs)

That’s it for now.

. . .

SnapDragon is a writer and artist currently residing on Planet Earth.

Two-Bit Musings.

A Welcome Breeze.

This & That from Yours Truly.

. . .

Hi! And greetings from my parked car.

I’ve got the AC chilling on low, Toddler Snap snoozing in his car seat, and a pumpkin iced latte within reach. Each sip reminds me of pleasant fall mornings in my classroom. Singing along with Regina Spektor as I readied myself for a day of chaotic happiness.

I smile.

. . .

1. All I can hear is the steady hum of my FJ Cruiser. I watch my fellow suburbanites scurry across the parking lot, to who knows where. A storm is brewing, and the gently trembling leaves on the pre-planned shrubbery soothes me somehow.

2. My eyebrows need to be plucked. It’s funny how I used to do this every day in college. Now the need only strikes about once a month. Funny how our bodies change.

3. I’ve always been a thinker. I suppose it’s hard to be a writer and artist and not think about things until your stomach literally hurts. And I’ve been privileged with the gift of time. Even at my busiest, I’m never worried about where my next meal will come from or if I’m physically safe to leave my house. This allows my mind to reflect, to grow. It allows me to wonder what kind of wife I am. What kind of friend, daughter, and sister. I think about these things, then I think some more. Who am I?

4. I’m pregnant. Yep. The Littlest Snap is scheduled to be here in late February. Here’s to an uneventful, full-term delivery. #ptsd

5. I saw a picture of a pot-bellied pig today that made me ridiculously happy. It was so big and chubby that it almost looked like a cartoon. I wanted to give it a hug, and name it something like Stanley or Walter or George.

Wishing you well, Dear Reader. Take time for joy today.

. . .

SnapDragon is a writer and reader of delicious paperbacks.

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Two-Bit Musings.

The Good Earth.

RV Adventure: Stops 6 & 7.

. . .

Custer State Park, South Dakota

The Badlands, South Dakota

. . .

Hello, Dear Reader!

Let us rejoice in the fact that it’s a new day: a new day to savor all that is this journey we call life.

‘Cuz the earth spins on.

Time & Terra, 2021.
The Badlands, SD.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved.

After visiting with The Fam for a week or so, we packed up The Sweet-Baby Berkshire and began the long journey home.

But rather than heading straight east, we first traveled north.

With the AC working overtime, we drove straight through Wyoming. It really was scenic, I tell you. When we first crossed over from Colorado, there were buffalo grazing in the fields, as if on cue. They looked stunning, even from a distance.

And South Dakota greeted us with what felt like record high temperatures. We set up camp for a quick overnight at Custer State Park, and after Toddler Snap explored the playground for a bit, we called it an early night and settled in for an episode of The Terror. (Because, yes. It’s my new favorite thing in life. So good.)

Then the next morning was a fairly quick jaunt to Mount Rushmore!

Untitled, 2021.
Keystone, SD.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved.

(shrugs)

It was neat.

We of course took the obligatory selfie photos. And I bought a postcard of the workers who constructed the massive sculpture.

Because #workersoftheworldunite

Then it was off to the town of Wall, South Dakota. We visited the iconic Wall Drug Store, and ate a simple but tasty lunch in their café. It was pretty crowded, so we kept our distance as much as possible, then hit the highway for The Badlands.

And, wow. What a scene, man.

The Edge of The World, 2021.
The Badlands, SD.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved.

This is literally where we camped.

Ball of Magic, 2021.
The Badlands, SD.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved.

Not bad, huh?

Anyway, we’ve been on the road (well, away from home) for two and a half weeks now.

We’re missing the kitties—and all of the little niceties that make our house a haven—but we’re truly having a grand old time.

I mean, how lucky are we that we have this RV? (How lucky are we that we can afford diesel for this beast!)

Because time is so very precious, Dear Reader.

And I aim to spend it on what matters.

Family. Friends. Travel.

Art: Photos, paintings, and jewelry. Music! Cinema! And of course, fiction!

Real, delicious food.

Real people. Real stories.

Real life, yo.

There is still so much to do and see.

(she smiles)

. . .

Stay tuned for more SnapDragon adventures from the road!

. . .

SnapDragon is a writer, artist, and colorful sneaker enthusiast.

Follow Snippets of SnapDragon for all kinds of craziness.

Two-Bit Musings.

Here and There.

RV Adventure: Stops 4 & 5!

. . .

North Central Kansas

Just South of Denver, Colorado

. . .

Hello, Dear Friends.

And greetings from one of my favorite states: Beautiful Colorado!

So Much Sun, 2021.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved.

We’ve been here for about four days, after a brief but lovely visit in Kansas.

Our family lives in both of these locales, and we’re all currently reunited here in our RVs.

Baby Snap—I really should change his nickname to Toddler Snap—is loving every minute of it.

The Great Outdoors! New houses to explore! Playgrounds! Dirt!

But most of all, it’s such a treat (for all of us) to be around family.

To just completely and totally chill out.

To roast weenies on the campfire (while I eat avocado and cucumber sushi) and share stories from visits past.

To catch up. To listen.

To remember all we have in common.

Because all we have is now. And I aim to enjoy it.

More soon!

. . .

SnapDragon is a writer who loves all kinds of birds.

Follow Snippets of SnapDragon for Two-Bit Musings and more.

Two-Bit Musings.

Splishing & Splashing.

RV Adventure: Stops 2 & 3!

. . .

Kickapoo State Recreation Are. Oakwood, Illinois

Brookfield South City Park. Brookfield, Missouri

. . .

Hi!

I hope you are well, Dear Reader.

As I write this, we’re crossing into Kansas, my husband’s home state! We’ll be staying here for a few days, and Baby Snap will get to enjoy some family time with Grandma, Auntie, and Cousin!

Anyway, Stops 2 & 3 were quick, yet nice.

. . .

Well. . . Stop #2 in Kickapoo was nice, but unbearably hot. We managed to visit the playground for a bit, but then it was back into the AC. (And that sucker was working overtime, let me tell you!) So sadly, we didn’t get to enjoy much of the grounds.

. . .

Stop #3 in Missouri was much cooler! In fact, it was my favorite spot thus far. The park had a small row of maybe ten spots for RVs, on a first-come-first-served basis. We had hookups for electricity and water, and it only cost $20 a day (and we paid via The Honor System, which made me feel happy in my young heart.)

Also, about a three minute walk from our RV was a community pool!

(claps in excitement)

Chlorine Heaven, 2021.
Missouri.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved, yo.

Baby Snap was on Cloud 9, yo! And so was I.

I love pools. I love water.

I love the smell of sunscreen, and the occasional smart of a lifeguard whistle. I love buying ice cream and soft pretzels with cheese from the concession stand, all for a couple of wrinkled dollar bills.

Classic. Summer.

And seeing Baby Snap splash about—and sort of swim for the first time—was truly a precious moment for our family.

Oh, and he devoured an entire ice cream sandwich! Respect.

. . .

Stay tuned for more, Dear Reader!

Wishing you all of the happy summer vibes.

. . .

SnapDragon is a writer and artist who loves the simple things in life.

Follow Snippets of SnapDragon for her take on pretty much everything.

Two-Bit Musings.

The Old Highway’s A-Callin’.

Snap & Company are RVing it up, yo.

. . .

Hot Pinks, 2021.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved.

Dear Reader!

It’s been a spell, hasn’t it? Sorry about that. These summer days keep slipping past, in a parade of flower-pruning, 70s Sesame Street reruns, and the never-ending sink full of dishes.

Why so many dishes? It’s truly baffling.

ANYWAY.

The SnapDragon Family is officially on the open road!

We’re taking the Sweet-Baby Berkshire from Morgantown, PA all the way to Denver, Colorado! (With plenty of fun along the way, of course.)

I’ll try my best to give updates, and to do so in a relatively fun and timely fashion.

But, let’s be serious. Sometimes my best intentions to post turn into my head hitting the pillow, and me snoring within seconds.

Stay tuned!

. . .

SnapDragon is a writer, artist, and fairly good video game player on Sega Genesis.

Follow Snippets of SnapDragon for a little of this and that.

Two-Bit Musings.

Re-Snap: Just Go.

. . .

A Re-Issue from The SnapDragon Archives: Originally Posted in March of 2019

. . .

Little Old Me telling Little Old You to see the world.

Coffee at Picasso National Museum, 2018.
Paris.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved.

I experienced my first airplane ride at the age of 24.

There’s no extraordinary reason for the delay, really. I grew up in a working-class household, and it was simply more economical to drive a family of five to the Jersey shore each summer. And I loved it. Still do, in fact. Wildwood and Cape May will always have a tender, salt-water-taffy-scented place deep in my heart.

So once I was out of college, working full-time as a teacher and for the first time in my life had a little bit of money, I accompanied my boyfriend (who is now The Sweet Husband) to visit his family in beautiful Colorado.

It changed me.

In the almost seven years since that first mile-high adventure, I’ve visited 12 European countries and 14 additional US states.

I’m extremely lucky.

The Husband loves to travel, more than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s also handy that he loves to plan all of the logistics and is a bonafide carrier-pigeon with his keen sense of direction.

I love it. And I love him for so many reasons. One of the most valuable things he has taught me is that there’s an enormous world out there, waiting to be seen.

You just gotta go.

And aside from my time teaching, traveling abroad has been the most influential experience of my life.

Arriving in Helsinki, feeling so very far from home, felt like a bucket of cold water to the face. You are here. This is not just a place on the map. These people are living their lives.

On Isle St. Louis, we awoke to the aroma of freshly-baked croissants. I walked next door and in pathetic, broken French ordered four. Sitting in our tiny Airbnb kitchen, we spread buttery-soft cheese on those pastries and savored every. goddamn. bite.

We sailed across The Baltic Sea, gazing out at the expansive array of blue.

We hopped on train after train. The Netherlands. Switzerland. Italy.

Together, 2019.
Paris.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X’s Sweet Friend.
All rights reserved.

Each and every place I’ve been tells a story. There’s an ethereal feeling, like I’m in a dream or watching myself live my own life.

And when I come home, it feels different somehow. I’m different.

Traveling reminds me, in a comforting way, that our time on this planet is so very brief.

So how will I spend it?

I could stress about the cost of it all. I could park myself on the couch and worry about everything that could go wrong. I could vow to go “when the time is right” and 40 years from now wonder what might have been.

Or I could just go.

Because life is for the living, Dear Reader.

So go take a bite. Take a sip. Because it could all be over in an instant.

. . .

SnapDragon is a writer, artist, and die-hard Paul McCartney fan.

Follow Snippets of SnapDragon for all kinds of fun.

Two-Bit Musings.

Unpeeled.

Hi.

. . .

Hello there, Dear Reader. Whoever and wherever you are, love.

How magical it is that we’re meeting here in cyberspace. Complete strangers, living our little lives.

Perhaps we’re a continent or two apart. Or maybe we’re neighbors unbeknownst.

Yet we’re in each other’s homes, in each other’s lives.

Here. Now.

And maybe by the time your eyes skim these uploaded words, your blue light glasses trying their damndest to let you read just one more post, chapter, or page, I’ll have curled up beneath the comforter and drifted to a much-needed dreamless sleep.

And yet our words stay up. Alert. Dedicated.

Alive.

. . .

Who:

SnapDragon X. Writer of fictions, writer of poetry. Lazy painter of cartoonish women in the nude. Homemaker just barely keeping her head above the dishwater. Out-of-the-traditional-classroom educator. Atheist. CD-lover. Former makeup-wearer.

What:

Experiencing feelings of preoccupation; dysphoria; anger; bloat. Also: bliss; synesthesia; rebirth; gratitude.

Where:

(she writes down her precise mailing address in neat, all-capital letters)

When:

All of the todays.

Why:

Doesn’t want to be someone who blindly goes through life, unquestioningly eating the fodder before her. Wants to consume the arts with abandon but also create with purpose. Wants her house, her clothes, her tastes to be unapologetic reflections of her chipped-teacup kind of soul.

How:

Sixty seconds. Sixty minutes. Bit by bit by bit by bit by bit by bit by bit by bit by bit.

. . .

SnapDragon is a weirdo artist who self-identifies as a curvy-petite badass.

Follow Snippets of SnapDragon for musings from her outspoken, RV-traveling, book-and-TV-obsessed life.

Two-Bit Musings.

On The Road: Part 2.

Pics, pics, and more pics!

. . .

Foreword

So, in case you missed Part 1, we had rain, rain, and more rain for the first several days of our Family Fun RV Trip. But Part 2 finally gave us some delicious sunshine! And here are pics to prove it, yo.

. . .

Scenic Stop #4: Henderson Beach State Park in Destin, Florida

You know that first real day of spring, when the breeze seems to have fully thawed, and the sun seems to be waving hello? Well, that’s what our stay at Henderson felt like. After the sullen, rainy stretch of days–and a comedy of errors at the laundry facility–being able to walk without an umbrella truly was a treat.

Now, it was still pretty cold, mind you; we were bundled up and enjoyed a bonfire each night. But when we realized the rain had stopped, and we could be outside again, we felt like Forrest Gump looking into the clear, merciful sky above. Just beautiful.

Scenic Stop # 5: Grayton Beach State Park in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida

Ahh. Another sunny stop.

And while our walks here had me a bit nervous–Beware of Alligators and such–it was again a sensation for the SnapDragon Family to behold. I pretty much wanted to live in the ocean. #mermaiddreams

Scenic Stop # 6: St. Andrews State Park in Panama City Beach, Florida

And as if this weren’t enough, Dear Reader, St. Andrews was the grand prize. We got truly warm (60-ish plus!) weather. Baby Snap walked on the beach. And we totally fell in love with our e-bikes, yo.

Oh! And the wildlife! Blue Heron, Pelicans, turtles, and deer! (Oh my!)

Have I mentioned I love my life?

. . .

Part 3, comin’ soon!

. . .

SnapDragon is a writer, artist, mother, and friend to pretty much everybody.

Follow Snippets of SnapDragon for her Two-Bit Musings and more.

Two-Bit Musings.

On The Road: Part 1.

Take a peek at Snap’s latest RV Adventure!

. . .

Cozy Cockpit, 2021.
Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved, yo.

. . .

Well hey there!

Thanks for stopping by, and taking a moment to live vicariously through the words of a stranger named SnapDragon. (I mean, that’s why we read anything, am I right?)

Anyway, The Sweet Husband, Baby Snap, and I are on a two-week road trip, spanning from our little nest in southeastern Pennsylvania, all the way to the Gulf Coast, and back.

We’re fairly new to the RV scene, and learning the tricks of the trade as we go.

(It’s a journey, after all!)

So let’s hop to it, shall we?

. . .

Foreword

Okay. So, I should probably start by saying this first leg of the trip was a bit of a bummer, because it was soaked in rain. Like, not the kind of lazy sprinkle where you squint your eyes against a frigid, nuisance mist. I’m talking monsoon-style, buckets of rain followed us for almost six days straight. Which, of course, was super cozy when we were tucked in for the night, the constant drumming on our rooftop rocking us to sleep. But as for enjoying the sights? Well, we tried our best, yo.

. . .

Scenic Stop #1: Edisto Beach State Park in Edisto Island, South Carolina

Sadly, I don’t even have a photo from our one-night stay here. As I said, there was wicked rain. We did, however, manage to take our new electric bikes out for a brief spin, during the half-hour or so of dry weather.

(I felt the need to mention this spot, since it’s a State Park. I have a deep respect for all things publicly-owned.)

Scenic Stop #2: Lake Wateree State Park in Winnsboro, South Carolina

Look Out, 2021. Winnsboro, SC. Original Photo by SnapDragon X. All rights reserved, yo.

All right! (claps)

Check out this dreary, yet lovely scene I managed to snag. It was nice to look out at the water, even for a few minutes.

And we did see a crane-like bird moseying about! Everyone knows how excited I get about animals.

Call Me Bertha, 2021. Winnsboro, SC. Original Photo by SnapDragon X. All rights reserved, yo.

And that was the end of our stay in Wateree, yo.

Scenic Stop #3: Skidaway Island State Park in Savannah, Georgia

In Dreams, 2021. Savannah, GA. Original Photo by SnapDragon X. All rights reserved, yo.

Ahh. So here we got a little bit of a break in the weather.

On a search for the park office, I found myself on a very long walk. Trees such as these were all around. The damp air was quiet, and I smiled as I thought of an idea for a short story.

. . .

See? I told you this first part of the trip was perhaps a little less than blog-worthy.

But that doesn’t mean we aren’t having fun!

#family #coziness #preciousmoments #gettingoutofthehouseduringapandemic

And Part 2 promises to bring more to the table.

Stay tuned!

. . .

SnapDragon is a teacher, writer, painter, wife, and mother.

Follow Snippets of SnapDragon for her Two-Bit Musings and more.