birds in a barrel's mission is to release creative nonfiction into the wild.

40 Days & 40 Writes is its first project.

No Way I Can Do Without It

I can't function without coffee in the morning. I know caffeine is a drug. I know I am addicted. I get a headache if I don't have one. I can't form words before my first cup. The kids know not to speak to me because: a) I'm grumpy, irritable and b) I'm incoherent, groggy. They will have to repeat themselves multiple times for me to understand them.

I seriously shouldn't make any big decisions or communicate in any way that could potentially insult someone and/or create a huge misunderstanding. Oddly enough, I'm okay with reading uncaffeinated.

I try to read the newspaper (paper version) each morning, but I get up so early that sometimes the paper isn't even there yet! That means either I've become a super early riser (how did I become THAT person?!), or that our president has done something ludicrous just before deadline and the paper was late to the printer.

There have been times when I've gone without the coffee During both of my pregnancies for instance and when I've been super sick. Even the smell revolted me when I was pregnant. So I went with tea, which turned my teeth grey.

I don't recall how I was lured back to the bean. Probably after a sleepless night with a colicky baby...I used to not do well without sleep. Now I'm used to it. There were even times that I would call in sick to work if I got less than six hours of rest. Ha! I remember being thankful to get two consecutive hours when the kids were little. So, thank goodness for coffee!

I remember how I got addicted. I was a junior in college and somehow ended up with an 8 a.m. Spanish class that met four days a week! There was no way I was going to make it through without coffee and a doughnut each morning.

I used to need a cup in the afternoon, but now I make do with unsweetened hot green or black tea. I suppose that's some kind of progress.

In my morning coffee, I take some kind of milk -- dairy, soy, almond, whatever is available, except for powdered non-dairy creamer--and maple syrup. My cousin has a maple juice enterprise, so now I'm addicted to "tree juice" in the morning. Thanks, cuz!

When it's cold out, the mug has a dual purpose as it also warms my hand.

From Night to Fey

"Truth Is Always Essential"