Wednesday

1. My kids have this holiday tradition of catching every bug that blows through town from November to December!  My son has the nerve to get sick three days before Christmas!  So I ask you, am I a bad mother to let him watch TV all day?  He is running through our collection of Christmas DVDs.  An hour ago it was Rudolph, now I hear the Heat Miser singing his little fiery jingle.  Those of you with kids, do you let them watch TV all day when they’re sick?  Just curious.

2. In honor of my current WIP, I’ve decided to post pictures of every cookie I bake.  These  
were baked the other day, and I baked a different batch of cookies after that, but those are gone.  Darn, they were pretty too.

Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays!

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Monday

1. My baby brother is an officer in the Navy, serving in Afghanistan for a year. He let us know about the coffee bar on base and how you can order cups of coffee for the troops.  Cup of Joe for a Joe You can donate any amount, starting at $2.00, plus you can personalize a note to the soldiers. I just donated 5 cups and it was really easy. Pass on the link!

 

2. Christmas movies have lured me away from my nightly writing and online stuff. Just watched It’s A Wonderful Life  last night and plan to watch the Family Man tonight. These are two of my favorites and I think it’s because I love all things angel and both have angels in them. Christmas Vacation is a hilarious family favorite and I know I shouldn’t let my kids watch it because of all the cussing but, oh well, I do. What is your favorite Christmas movie?

 

3. Speaking of Christmas, I’m almost sick of it. Sick of the commercialism and the stores and I’m almost ready to take my tree down and we still have 5 days to go! I swore I wasn’t going to do it this year–put up my decorations too early. I’m done with all shopping and wrapping, but still need to head to the store because we’ll be out of soap and TP and stuff by Tuesday. I want my Target back to normal, I’m burnt out and craving springtime.

 

4. New Year’s resolutions are around the corner and I’m afraid to peek at mine from last year. They say posting them publicly will make them happen, but I think the only thing it will accomplish is making me cringe. Feels like that forgotten container in your fridge, the one lurking behind the yogurt, next to that half-bag of frozen salad. Yikes, who wants to see that?

Have a happy week!

Friday Stuff

1. Thank you to all the Veterans, even though I am a day late.  Yesterday my daughter and I met the sweetest old man at the post office.  He was a vet, as indicated by his cap, and I thanked him while I teared up at the thought of mine and  s brother, off to Afghanistan for a year :(.
Anyway, the man told me he served in WW1 and WW2 and I later realized for that to be possible he had to have been around 106 years old.  Funny, when my daughter asked how old the man was, I had guessed around 70.

2. My kids already have their Christmas wish lists finished, thanks to Target, Wal-Mart, and Toys R Us catalogs.  I remember when I was little, waiting and waiting for the Sears catalog to come out.  Pages and pages of a toy-lovers dream.  One of my favorite toys was the Barbie Dream Townhouse, and now it’s back!  Looks like the only thing that changed are the colors.  The elevator in mine was yellow and the interior was decorated by all those brown hues from the seventies.  Ahh, memories.  My daughter is asking for the Barbie house this year, but holy cow, so expensive! Product Image

3. I’m so happy to see the holiday cups at Starbucks!  Two months of Christmas is really bad, but I love it!

4. The first draft of my WIP is almost done!  I am aiming to finish by Thanksgiving when the holidays really take over.  I only stopped writing today because my wrists and hands hurt.

5. Happy weekend to all, I am off to snuggle on the couch with a book and probably my fifth cup of hot chocolate in two days:)

Writing, Life, and Your Day Job

1. Raise your hand if you recently woke up, struggling to push the September calendar off your face? Summer just snuck off and left me with lunches to pack, and kids to haul around to ballet, tap, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, soccer practice, and healthy dinners to plan and make and try to eat between all those activities I signed my kids up for. I look at it and I’m tired already. Plus I’ll be 40 this month. Oh yeah, and I am back at work.

 As a teacher, I had two glorious months off for summer.  Did I write daily?  Did I finish my WIP?  Nope.  I committed to spending more time with my babies, and wrote a little at night.  I wasted a lot of my late evenings fighting my addiction to popcorn with parmesan on it, and movies On Demand.  But all summer I longed for my normal, comfy writing time–the two hour window from when I get home from work and the kids get home from school. But I look at the week ahead and wonder when the heck I’ll get back to my characters. Sorry for griping, I mean I do love my job, and I am the only one to blame for my kids having evening activities. How do you manage writing, life, and your day job? I’m curious to see where it fits into your schedule.

 2. Speaking of lunches, don’t you hate packing them for work or school? I rarely let my kids buy school lunch because it gets expensive and they serve too much processed food. On TV the other night, the news had a story about a business in Seattle that makes and delivers healthy lunches to school for your child. Fantazimo What a cool idea! I also found out I went to high school with the couple. They started this because of their son having Celiac disease.

 3. The teacher store I shop at is also an Indie bookstore. While I was there the other day, a new book caught my eye. And really, how could it not?  Fat Vampire by Adam Rex. I’ve heard about this book and I love the cover, but I don’t think I’ll look at the Icees I get my kids every time we go to Target quite the same way ever again!

4. Speaking of Target, off I go.  We’re out of school lunch snacks and toothpaste, and 3 things from my son’s school supply list I forgot to buy.

Currently reading

 

 

A List Blog and Our New Dog

1. I’ve decided my favorite blogs to read are list blogs where the blog writer numbers everything.  I love to read blogs and I tend to skip really long blogs because I’m using time I should be spending writing.  I know you all know how I feel.  You look up at the clock and think, holy cow, now I’ve wasted all my writing time and it’s time to make dinner!  With that said, I will write my blogs this way from now on.  Or until next week when I’ve forgotten that I was going to write my blogs this way.

2. It’s been difficult to get anything done because of this.  Our new puppy, a chihuahua named Pepper.  So fun and adorable, until she poops on the floor.  She’s getting better, but we’ve run through a whole container of Lysol wipes.  I don’t love being reminded of the days when I potty-trained my kids.

3. I’m 27,000 words into my WIP, which I’m so excited about, and which distracts me from the query blues on my other story.

4. So all summer I’ve hardly written, because I’ve been hanging out with my kids and watching too many movies, and eating too much ice cream.  So in the past week I’ve really been on a roll with the WIP and the bummer is that now it’s time to go back to the classroom and get ready for the job I’m actually paid for.  My kids on the other hand, can’t wait for school.  They’re sick of summer, sick of the pool, sick of entertaining the dog, etc.

5. The thing that I look forward to at this time of year is when Target, the best store on earth, moves all of their back-to-school stuff out and moves all the Halloween stuff in!  I’m guessing I have about a two-week wait to see that.  I’ve already decided I’m putting up Halloween lights inside around my writing nook, and leaving them up until it’s time to put up Christmas lights.  I think I’m inspired artistically by decorative lights.  I’ll post a picture when I get them.  How about you?  What are you looking forward to now that summer is ending?

Currently reading

Everything but Writing

This is what I’m doing.

Baking, cleaning, sweating, playing in the kiddie pool, sifting bugs out of the kiddie pool, sweeping grass off my kitchen floor 10 times a day, yelling at kids, locking the door so kids can’t come in so I can read or get online, spraying sunscreen on kids, feeding kids, and eating too many Fudgesicles.

Everything but writing. Unless you count fixing my query letter. I’m ripping my hair out over it and it really hurts because my scalp is sunburned.

Okay enough whining.

Aren’t these cute cupcakes? My daughter and I made them for my son’s birthday party. The theme is ‘almost campout’ so we’ll have kids from 5-9pm. We found the idea online and used chocolate rocks, Tootsie Roll fire logs, orange jelly candy as fire, and the pretzel and mini marshmallow make a great roasting stick.

Happy weekend, everyone!

Currently reading

Lazy Sunday Blog

Haven’t been on LJ for awhile because I found yet another way to change my story, which means the ‘new’ WIP is waiting again.  Not sure if it is such a good idea to keep changing it or not, but I think I am making it better.  Who knows.  Or I am just addicted to revising, which I think I may be.

Just finished Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher. This one needs to linger in my memory for awhile before I can read any other stories.

So, because I can’t go without reading, I’m reading a self-help. I’ll let you know if I have an epiphany on why I eat when I am not hungry.

This has been the most unproductive, lazy weekend in my recent memory.  I didn’t even turn on the computer yesterday.  My daughter is sick, so while hubby and son went to a family party yesterday, we laid on the couch all day and watched movies.

First we watched

Then we watched

And last, we watched

She ate chicken soup and saltines and Sprite while I hid chocolate from her, ate the chocolate, and the saltines, and the Sprite.  Sort of forgot about the book I’m currently reading.  Oh well, tomorrow is Monday, I’ll remember it tomorrow!

Lazy Sunday Blog

Haven’t been on LJ for awhile because I found yet another way to change my story, which means the ‘new’ WIP is waiting again.  Not sure if it is such a good idea to keep changing it or not, but I think I am making it better.  Who knows.  Or I am just addicted to revising, which I think I may be.

Just finished Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher. This one needs to linger in my memory for awhile before I can read any other stories.

So, because I can’t go without reading, I’m reading a self-help. I’ll let you know if I have an epiphany on why I eat when I am not hungry.

This has been the most unproductive, lazy weekend in my recent memory.  I didn’t even turn on the computer yesterday.  My daughter is sick, so while hubby and son went to a family party yesterday, we laid on the couch all day and watched movies.

First we watched

Then we watched

And last, we watched

She ate chicken soup and saltines and Sprite while I hid chocolate from her, ate the chocolate, and the saltines, and the Sprite.  Sort of forgot about the book I’m currently reading.  Oh well, tomorrow is Monday, I’ll remember it tomorrow!

SCBWI Washington!

Back from SCBWI Washington!  So fun, so inspiring, and it went so fast!  This was the first SCBWI conference for my sister   and myself.  We were overwhelmed and in awe!  We had a blast, as it was a mommy weekend and we relished in only having to take care of ourselves for a change!

I have just some random photos here.  The coolest picture is the link at the bottom from a Twitter post by Egmont USA editor Elizabeth Law @egmontgal.  She is hilarious and my sister and I loved that she had a poster of R Patt in her office!  In her picture we ended up sitting at the cool table with agents, editors, and published authors, like our supercool guide  .

I loved hearing the writing journey of everyone I met–unpublished, published, agented, unagented–everything.  A highlight for me was definitely the inspirational keynote by the genuinely kind and wonderful Jay Asher www.thirteenreasonswhy.com/.  The book store ran out of his book so they are mailing me one.  Jay was kind enough to sign bookplates for those of us without the book.  I bought many other books–don’t tell my DH–and met many other authors who were just as kind and humble as Jay.

I am super sleepy right now so this post is just a mini-scrapbook of my experience at the conference.  From left to right the pictures are: me and my sister, cards from some of the writers I met (I sooo enjoyed meeting everyone and please say ‘hi’ if you came to check out my blog!  I’ll be checking all of yours tomorrow!), my supercool bookplate signed by Jay Asher (I couldn’t get the picture to rotate), my name tag (because I am a dork and I save stuff like this), me again, with  and my sis  .  I am really ticked I don’t have anymore pictures!  I took a lot but now I realize that I did–it was just with other people’s cameras!

Me and my sisCards from writers I met

bookplate signed by Jay Ashermy nametag

Anyway, we had a blast and I can’t wait for SCBWI next year!

Don’t forget to check out this awesome picture.  I am the idiot on the end who turned to tell Tara something at the last minute.  Oops.

The cool picture:
http://twitpic.com/1eq7fo