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Feb 14, 2014 - My Story, Uncategorized    2 Comments

Valentine’s Day

It comes every year. But I’m never quite prepared.

Valentine’s Day is rough for me and I’m not sure why. It’s just one day. I know I’m surrounded by love. But  it is not in the way I most want. I have family and friends who send me cards and gifts and think of me on this day, knowing it is a tough one for me. But I want a husband, a boy to find me delightful and think I’m rad. And I don’t have that.

So I get mopey.

My prescription for myself is to get out of my head, stay busy, have plans, and be thankful for all the love expressed on Valentine’s Day — and so many other days. I have a rad family and amazing friends who send me messages like this:

single ladies, carissa


My other prescription is to determine to make someone else’s day. In the past I’ve offered to babysit so that a couple can go out together. I’ve sent oodles of cards to people who likely are in the same boat as me, single, mopey and disgruntled. I even buy the old school Valentine’s that I passed out in Kindergarten and give them to all my coworkers. Nothing helps me get out of my own head better than focusing on another person.

If Valentine’s Day is a tough one for you, know that you’re not alone. Make some plans for yourself,  look for the love that is given, even if from an unlikely source, and determine to make someone else’s day. You’ll have a better day. I promise.

Jan 18, 2014 - Uncategorized    No Comments

Rotary Phones and The Proto-Internet


We seem to have a reaction to it. We either love it, think it is making the world a better and more connected place, and saving lives in the meantime.

Or we hate it, feel it creeping into our lives, time and schedules, and spreading more negative news than hopeful news.


It makes everything move faster. We expect more, and expect it now. But not so long ago, all of the technological and speedy advances which I am using at this very moment to post this were unheard of!

Watch with an eye of wonder and nostalgia!


Don’t miss the tidbits of truth throughout the hilarity of this piece.

1. Only a few thousand people owned home computers in the Bay area.

2. The gentleman interviewed is identified only as “Owns Home Computer” further showing us how rare that identifier actually was.

3. The engineers doing this were not looking to revolutionize anything, or even make money, they were doing it to see if they could.

That got me thinking. Our actions have consequences. And oftentimes it is not the actions, decisions, or interactions which seem important at the time which make the biggest differences. These early computer geeks didn’t set out to change the world and provide an information super highway, that I have already used to look up directions, phone numbers, pay bills, connect with friends, and share my thoughts with the world. (And that was just what I did this morning!) They just wanted to see if it could be done.

What can you do with a little drive, interest, time and money that could change the world?

And the next time you bemoan your “connection speed” remember that it used to take two hours, via rotary phone, to get the newspaper!

Nov 21, 2013 - My Story, Uncategorized    3 Comments

Happy Blog-o-Versary

I began I Think on Paper one year ago today.

One year of writing.

185 posts.



Happy Blog-o-Versary, IThinkOnPaper!


I’d been contemplating starting a blog and letting some of my crazy free for years. I love writing and feedback and, one year later, it holds true that I process life best by writing. Thanks for being my virtual sounding board. Thank you for comments and feedback and suggestions on posts. Thank you for reading and not being afraid of my crazy.

Thank you for being a part of this journey.

Happy Blog-o-versary, everyone!

What would you like to read about in this next year?


Nov 13, 2013 - My Story, travel, Uncategorized    1 Comment

Leaving on a Jet Plane…

Here is a compilation of the New England Autumn beauty I got to experience during my recent trip to Rhode Island and Massachusetts!



Here I am enjoying cable TV and room service. Oh,simple joys.


Paddling my way?


Yes, that is a carved pumpkin!


John Hancock’s punny family crest (complete with roosters and a hand!) He designed it himself and apparently had a sense of humor.


Our tour guide for the Freedom Trail who informed us that Paul Revere shows up nearly everywhere in Boston’s history, much like a colonial Kevin Bacon.



We waited in line several hundred people long and fought our way to the counter to enjoy a delightful and totally-worth-the-hassle cannoli at Mike’s Pastry.



The Head of the Charles Regatta… how quintessentially Bostonian!


They were filming something just across from Cheers and Boston Commons. We watched for some time and all they did was walk back and forth in the “rain.” Not sure I’ll pay to see this flick.


Churches full of hymns and history stir my soul.



Autumn leaves create the most beautiful fire I’ve ever seen.

Nov 12, 2013 - Uncategorized    No Comments

Mary Poppins 2.0

I met my costume counterpart this weekend.

Mary Poppins 2.0 was delightful and charming and thoroughly in character. My costume was courtesy of GoodWill and not nearly as fancy. I couldn’t do the accent or sing the songs, but I still felt like I had something in common with this Mary, and I was as excited to meet her as most girls are for Cinderella.
mary poppins disney

Wishing you a supercalifragilisticexpialidocious kind of day!

(Fun factoid- supercalifragilisticexpialidocious IS in spell check. I originally spelled it wrong and was thoroughly reprimanded by a chevroned red underline until corrected!)


Oct 31, 2013 - Uncategorized    No Comments

Reformation Day

Today is Halloween. Everyone knows that.

But it is also another holiday.

On this date in 1517, Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses onto a door in Wittenberg confronting the sale of indulgences, questioning the pope, and launching the world into a new religious era.

In short, it was kind of a big deal.

As a seminary graduate, my theological nerdiness shows on days like today. I typically celebrate by reading a little history. Thinking about what the world must have been like 5oo years ago. And inserting my likeness into cardboard cutouts of famous theologians.

The results of our “photo shoot” are recorded here for your viewing and giggling pleasure, illustrating the many faces of reformed theologians.

First we have,

IMG_0836Suspicious, pensive Luther.



“Joy of the Lord” Calvin



Similar, but also more elusive, “I know something that you don’t” Calvin.



“My first work is a seven volume set” intimidatingly intelligent and verbose Calvin.

And finally…

IMG_0842“I ate toooo much” Luther.


Happy Reformation Day!


Oct 29, 2013 - Health, Uncategorized    3 Comments

Restorative Niches

These two words have revolutionized my world.

They come from a delightful book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain.


I am an introvert. I need downtime. I am often drained by large groups, small talk, and over stimulation. I am energized by small groups, deep talking, and time alone. Sometimes I have control over my schedule, but often I don’t. I do not want to be angry when I feel drained of energy. I want to combat such feelings through the use of restorative niches.

Cain understands feelings of anxiety leading up to large group activities and fatigue that can follow. Her solution is to find small slivers of time and space to recharge — which she calls restorative niches. This can be just about anything. Eating lunch alone. Walking outside. Listening to your favorite song. Even hiding from others in a bathroom stall (yes, this really happened!)

I’m experiencing a restorative niche right now. I’m sitting in a corner of Washington Dulles Airport, people watching, and writing this post. Travel can be stressful and the early mornings and uncertainty of schedules can leave me drained. My second leg of this flight was delayed, but instead of stressing, I’m reveling in this carved out block of time which I can claim, be purposeful in its use, and let it restore my soul.

Cain was careful (and accurate) to say that we all have some introvertedness and some extrovertedness in us. No one is solely one or the other. So, I ask you, friend — introvert or extrovert– what is your favorite restorative niche? What is the most surprising restorative niche you’ve ever experienced?

Oct 26, 2013 - Humor, Uncategorized    1 Comment

Girl Scout vs. MacGyver

My inner Girl Scout fights with my inner MacGyver every time I travel.

Here’s what I mean: I book a flight, pull out luggage, check the weather, make lists, and lay out piles of “necessities” for the trip. Of course I need two pairs of shoes, bug spray, shower shoes, Band-Aids, and two dozen pairs of underpants — you never know what might happen, especially with my track record of wardrobe malfunctions! My inner Girl Scout is delighted with these piles of clothes and supplies and decides that all must make the trip with me.

I mentally measure my luggage and woefully compare it to my pile of stuff.

Then starts the pruning process.

I try to silence my inner “Always be prepared” Girl Scout and accentuate my inner “The more you plan ahead the more things can go wrong” MacGyver.

My inner MacGyver begins asking, “Kelly, do you really need a bathing suit for Boston, in October? Maybe it can go.” Layers! I don’t need a short sleeved AND a long-sleeved shirt for each day. Throw in a black cardigan and call it a win. Two dozen pairs of underpants is whittled down to just one dozen (This is one area where I whole-heartedly endorse overpacking!)

I would estimate that for any given trip, I re-pack and same luggage seven times, pruning and item or two with each reiteration until my true necessities fit into my carry-on luggage, fully zipped, without necessitating a vacuum seal for closure.

Packing tetris

I want this packing process to extend into other portions of my life. I don’t need nearly as many things as I think I do. I can do without so many pieces of clothing and items of technology and still have a wonderfully fulfilled life. And, as much of a planner as I am, I want to be okay with changes of plans and roll with the punches so much more than I do.

My continual packing dramedy is an object lesson for me. I will continue to accentuate my “work with what you’ve got” MacGyver voice and silence my “Prepare for all catastrophes” Girl Scout Voice.

How about you? Do you have more Girl Scout or MacGyver in you?

Oct 10, 2013 - Uncategorized    1 Comment

Sly Spam

I am so popular.

I get literally oodles of comments every day with this blog. But wait, maybe I’m not so popular because 90% of them are spam. I have software which filters out the real comments from the spam-ulous comments and I have to approve the legitimate comments (hence the occasional delay!)


Most of the spam comments are absolute gook filled with nonsense words or jumbled letters. But some of them are crafty. They try to be personal while not really referencing anything in particular. I wonder how many hapless bloggers are duped by comments like this:

Wow, marvelous blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your website is great, as well as the content!

Often complimentary comments come from email addresses like

Something tells me that is not a legitimate commenter. But it is sly. No doubt hours of programming have gone into writing code to troll the internet commenting wildly on anything and everything. No doubt time and talent been devoted to this endeavor.

But why?

Why is this what someone has chosen to devote time and energy to? What larger purpose does sly spam have? We each have a finite amount of time, energy, money, and space in our lives and what we devote our resources to matters. How often do I use my limited resources to create “spam” leaving a trail of annoyances, chasing after the wind, or “ploughing the ocean” as my friend says.  I want to devote my resources to something that will outlast me.  Where are you spending your time, energy, and talents? And risking sounding like Dr. Phil, “How’s that working out for you?”




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