Anita

Anita

Anita Ojeda juggles writing with teaching high school English and history. When she's not lurking in odd places looking for rare birds, you can find her camping with her kids, adventuring with her husband or mountain biking with her students.

What I Crave During the Holidays

In Need of a Miracle The moment I see her, I crave peace and quiet. In fact, the moment she pulled into the driveway I felt as if I’d stuck my heart in a nettle bush. I feel God working on my heart, constraining me to hold my temper in check. At the same time, bitterness pricks and prods. For three decades she has annoyed me, irritated me, rubbed me the wrong way, tried to manipulate me, and worn me…

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Silent Night Shadows Will be a Hit on any Gift List

Silent Night Shadows I confess that during my youth I spent an inordinate amount of time reading Harlequin Romance Novels. By the time I reached the tender age of 16, I had read enough of them to think that I, too, could write a decent Harlequin. The manuscript, typed on onionskin paper with my grandma’s old electric typewriter, lies in the bottom of a box somewhere in my basement. Harlequin has come a long way since the days of wilting…

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The Long Journey Home Starts in Homer

Between now and January, I’ll be writing about my solo journey from Alaska to Arizona.  If you want to catch the first part of the trip, you can go to the landing page for my #write31days series, 31 Days of Living in Beauty. The first stop on my solo journey is Homer, AK. The Journey Continues and the Lessons Never Cease Pedro flew home on July 11 from Anchorage—leaving me with Beauty and the Beast and three weeks to make it…

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How to Enjoy an Imperfect Thanksgiving Meal

“Go ahead and tell our faculty family they can each invite a guest,” I texted Pedro. “We have enough food for lots of kids to enjoy.” Yes, we had a lot of food, but. My class schedule this year doesn’t leave me much time to prepare a Thanksgiving dinner. I pushed the niggling thought to the back of my head as I shoved another pie plate of dinner rolls in around the slowly roasting turkey. The pale, not-roasting-fast-enough turkey. I…

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How to Carve a Turkey With Grace

Two Turkeys He strutted into my fifth-period English class late and noticed I stood firmly in the spot across from his girlfriend. He grabbed a chair and swung it over a classmate’s head and plopped it in the narrow space between where I stood and his former seatmate. I bent down and whispered, “Remember. You don’t sit here any more.” “Yes I do,” he said. “I can sit wherever I want to.” “Actually, you can’t,” I said. “You’ve been distracting…

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Abortion: A Call to Thinkers on the Eve of the Election

Politicians and Promises Another election day looms and the populace polarizes on an issue that gets trotted out each election cycle since 1973: abortion. Claims of ‘Baby killer,’ ‘anti-women,’ ‘pro-choice,’ and ‘anti-abortion’ get flung across the Internet with rising hysteria on either side. Both Democrats and Republicans feel that their candidate will have the moral fortitude to lead our country to either overturn Roe v. Wade or to keep it firmly in place. We fool ourselves. We forget that politicians…

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How Does True Love Wait? Let Me Count the Ways

After our visit to the zoo, we drove out to Beluga point to wait for the tide to come in. I hoped to see a Beluga, but ended up seeing birds and Dall sheep instead. I also took one of my favorite photos of Pedro from the entire trip. They say that true love waits. While this held true before our marriage, I have discovered that waiting holds a different, yet equally important part in a relationship after the wedding.…

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What Happens to the Cygnets of an Injured Swan?

Cygnets in Unexpected Places Throughout our entire trip to Alaska, I had wanted to get good photos of Trumpeter Swan cygnets. We saw some from a distance on our Nabesna Road adventure, and I took better photos of Tundra Swan cygnets on a canoeing adventure. But I really wanted closer-up photos (I know better than to approach wildlife with young). In the early 1900s, swan populations dwindled due to hunting, and many people believed that the species had become extinct.…

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Your Point of Focus Determines the Quality of Your Experience

Our Last Days Together in Alaska After our Denali adventure, we stayed at Red Eagle Lodge for a quiet weekend before bidding Sarah goodbye. I would see her one last time before driving home, but Pedro had to catch a plane in Anchorage. For the third time during our trip, we stayed at a campground—this time near the airport. Pedro had a stand-by ticket for late at night, so we thought camping nearby would make things easier. After sleeping in…

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To Eat Near the Foot of Denali

Shuttle vs. Tour We set up camp and turned in early after our visit to the sled dogs of Denali National Park. After all, we had to pack lunches to eat on the shuttle bus, break camp, and leave for the park by 5:30 the next morning. I hoped that the weather would cooperate, although others had warned me that one does not always see Denali. When we boarded the bus, our driver told us that any time we thought…

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