Speaking Louder Than Words is the creative outlet and self-care side of my court reporting practice, a wired wilderness where I seek balance between work and play.  As one seeking wholeness, this blending of passion and purpose is an inextricable part of my life's work. I appreciate that you're here! Feel free to pour a cup of tea or brew a fresh latte and take a look around.

Playing With Words

I've always loved word games, and it's likely you do,
too, so here is a little nudge towards playtime in the
form of some scrambled words to unravel. Enjoy!

Thoughtful Thursday -- A Photo an Hour

Photos from yesterday's workday, shown left to right, top to bottom.
(This post contains affiliate links, which you can learn more about here.)

• Between 9:00 and 10:00, I applied my morning mask -- I mean makeup -- while drinking a maple latte and listening to music. 

• Somewhere betwixt 10:00 and 11:00, after breakfast, I stared out the window, watching for hummingbirds and contemplating my purpose on this planet. 

• During the hour of 11:00 to 12:00, I wrote in my journal, first hopeful, and then despair joined the pity party toward the end. #realtalk 

• 12:00 to 1:00, I did administrative tasks like categorizing business trips on MileIQ, my mileage tracker app. Thank goodness for technology which makes self-employed life easier. You can get 20% off a year's subscription using my referral link.

• Between 1:00 and 2:00 I continued editing the depo of an orthopedic surgeon. Holy terminology, Batman!

• Somewhere during the 2:00 to 3:00 time period, I took a break and enjoyed a couple cups of loose leaf black tea. Serenity in a mug, I tell ya.

• Just before 4:00, I printed the rough draft of the aforementioned transcript and breathed a deep sigh of relief.

• After 5:00 I took a selfie that didn't even show the steno machine that I was practicing on and completely washed my skin out. Photo not included for everyone's benefit. (You're welcome.)

• At 6-something, my husband and I walked our dogs, who drenched the sidewalk during their water break.

• Sometime after 7:00, we ate a dinner of pulled beef sliders and the mini cheese plate I made, complete with black raspberries from the garden.

• By a bit after 8:00 and well into the night, I alternated between storyboarding, writing, and considering abandoning this post altogether.


Truth: I am thankful for the freedom in making my daily schedule and appreciate getting to skip most of the drama that is often present in large workplaces, though sometimes I just create my own drama instead. The fact that no two days are the same as an independent contractor is one of the things I love about this job.

Looking at the above set of photos, I could see that it was a lot different from last week's carefully curated photo-an-hour post taken with my Canon Rebel T3. The Instax Mini instant photo films above present a somewhat dark and a little lonely view of my day, though it accurately reflected my mood and was perhaps a chicken-or-the-egg type of question as to what caused what. 

A big takeaway from this exercise, though, is that I crave connection with other freelancers and want to continue to build and nurture those relationships in a way that still allows me to get stuff done. 
It was apparent that the more light there was, the more detail was visible, which is a good metaphor for looking at life. Also, how I frame my experiences matters, like the white border around each picture does, so I try to do so in a positive light and one that creates meaning or learning.


Thanks for reading, as this type of honest storytelling is sometimes necessary. If this post resonated with you, feel free to comment or send an email to the address listed on the about page.

Wordless Wednesday -- A Photo an Hour










Questions & answers written in black & white
are edited on screen and proofread from paper.
A red pen marks punctuation and spellings to right.
Corrections in yellow highlighter while updating later.

Words have weight, 
some light, some heavy.
This is not my personal fate.
Can't carry them indefinitely.

So fire up the shredder.
As it hungrily devours, 
I feel a bit better.

 A fabric pouf arrives from Jodhpur, India,
known as the Blue City in the desert,
lovingly selected and brought stateside
by kindred spirit Kim of Sutra Global Imports.

Handcrafted from fabric scraps by women half the world away,
stuffed to the top with tiny fragments of transcripts,
together we turn trash into treasure.  

Transformation can be messy work,
though the beauty that can come of it
is well worth the effort.
Just ask the butterfly.

This message (and ottoman) are office dog approved.