Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Just call me Gumby

So I gave myself a little goal in getting my MS done in a timely fashion. Somewhere in the beginning of October I said, "I'm going to finish my novel by New Year's"! 

Yeah, that's NOT going to happen...unless I manage to hijack Santa's sleigh and fly myself to some remote island sans elves. You know, because there's always THAT option.

No, it doesn't look like my ambitious little deadline will be met (since I'm still a good 20,000 words from where I'd like to be). But you know what one of my New Year's resolutions actually is? 

BEING MORE FLEXIBLE!

So let's see, where does that leave me?

Finished novel? nope (and 99% sure that I won't finish by New Year's)
Packed for vacation? nope
Christmas shopping done? nope

Am I okay with all of that? 

YEP.

I will be out of blog mode until sometime after the holidays due to limited internet access. So in case I don't talk to you until then, I hope you all have a beautiful Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Christmas Jitters

And no, it's not from one too many Gingerbread Lattes from Starubucks.

I hope that you all can forgive me for being so slack in my postings as of late. Writer Wednesday didn't happen because I didn't feel like I had anything worth writing about - in my MS or here on the blog. I've had a really hard time just peeling myself away from staring mindlessly at the walls! I don't know what has happened to my mind as of late. 

It could be the anticipation of Christmas - all of the lists of who to buy for, when to buy it, and how many extra "in case I forget someone" gifts I should buy. Then there's the laundry and the packing for the trip home for the holidays that is inching ever closer to my realm of consciousness. Pair that with the overwhelming guilt I sometimes feel that we make this holiday so darn commercialized and forget the real REASON behind Christmas - but that doesn't stop me from buying! Oh, no! 

WARNING! WARNING! THIS BRAIN IS ABOUT TO SELF DESTRUCT! 

Is it just me? Have you felt this way too? 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not pulling a Bah, Humbug on all of you. It's just a little overwhelming to me at the moment. I'm sure the Christmas spirit will find me (and it usually finds me when I'm on my knees in prayer). I hope it stays with those of you that have it, and that it finds those of you who don't! 

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Dear Santa

Hi, Santa. 

It's me, Beth. 

I know you're really busy with all the "who's been naughty and who's been nice" business (and for the record I've been REALLY, REALLY NICE). I just wanted to drop you a little note to say, "What's up?" and give you my Christmas list this year. I know, I'm a little old (In fact, you might remember that my birthday is Christmas Eve. No? Oh, then I guess it was just those people who enjoyed giving me my birthday/Christmas present all rolled into one every year. My mistake.). Anyway, I thought I'd give it a go, since the boys were doing theirs. 

So, here goes:

- Earplugs, because that's what every parent of preschoolers needs when forced to drive a total of 24 hours in the car with said preschoolers to visit family for the holidays.
- Another set of earplugs, you know, in case I lose the first set or decide to share with the hubby (highly unlikely though).
- New knives, since my old ones are getting kind of dull, and I'm thinking I might need to gouge my eyes out in hopes that I won't have to see how much weight I've gained over the holidays from eating my mother's irresistible cooking.
- An easy bake oven, because I don't like my grown-up oven...it's not easy, and I think it might hate me.
- An endless supply of new sponges, because mine just get really gross really fast, and I can't ever seem to find one that doesn't smell.
- For Tyler to potty train himself. I know this is a long shot, but I figured I'd ask anyway.
- Some new underwear, since my dog seems to really enjoy chewing up EVERY PAIR I OWN.
- A new dog
- A pony (because I've never gotten one, even though I've asked for one EVERY SINGLE YEAR, SANTA.)

Well, I think that's it. Thanks, Santa.

Love,
Beth 

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

It's getting a little TENSE in here

No, I'm not really talking tense in the high-strung, freaked out way. 

I'm talking about tense, as in past, present, future, etc. 

My novel is written in the present tense, but I find myself slipping into past tense every once in a while - and I'm not sure why! And my internal editor gets all "Hey, crazy lady, you're doing it again. Now go back and change all of that past tense crap you just wrote." And my disciplined I-will-finish-this-novel-if-it's-the-last-thing-I-do writer self gets puffed up and is all, "Hey, internal editor...SUCK IT!"

Does this happen to you? When you catch it, do you fix it? Or do you trudge on and fix it during the revision process? I already know what some of you (I'm looking at you, Katie Ganshert! ;p) would do, but feel free to chime in anyway!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Lessons I learned this Thanksgiving

I thought I'd make this a holiday tradition, since Lessons I Learned This Halloween was such a hit. So without further ado, I give you...

Lessons I Learned This Thanksgiving

1. You CAN get a hangover from Turkey. However, the remedy is definitely NOT more turkey.
2. I don't care what the doctors say, the tryptophan in turkey will get you EVERY TIME. In my case, it knocks me out for three days.
3. It doesn't matter that they have about 1,000 options of Thanksgiving Day yumminess to choose from, my children will STILL ask for Peanut Butter and Jelly.
4. I will NEVER be able to make a Thanksgiving dinner as good as my Mom's. I'm not even going to try. My family will be lucky if I can make them turkey sandwiches without something going wrong.
5. Don't wait until the last minute to try and make Pumpkin Stuff. Why? Because there will be a NATIONAL FREAKING SHORTAGE of canned pumpkin.
6. By all means, watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. However, under NO CIRCUMSTANCES should you try and imitate the Radio City Rockettes. Just trust me on this one.
7. Next year I'm buying handcuffs so that I can keep all of my family here. It's just not the same without them around...sniff.

I truly hope all of you had a lovely Thanksgiving. You have my blessing to put up your Christmas decorations now! :P

Friday, November 20, 2009

We Interrupt Your Regularly Scheduled Broadcast

Apparently, I have an alter ego.

I've decided her name is Lizzy, because that sounds like a good thirteen year old name, doesn't it? Also, my full name is Elizabeth, so it's not too far of a stretch. Lizzy has decided that she has ohmygoshohmygoshohmygosh A LOT to tell you all. So, I'm going to let her take it from here.

What's up people?! So, I just had to pop in here and let you all know that I totally saw New Moon last night (the midnight showing - booyah!). IT IS AMAZING. Like, more amazing than Twilight - and that was PRETTY DANG AMAZING. You all totally need to go out and see it...TWICE! 

Taylor Lautner got all kinds of ripped up to play Jacob in this one, and he does not disappoint AT ALL. Too bad he's all hung up on Taylor Swift (love you Tay Tay!) :( Plus, there's like, totally more Edward than I thought there'd be - can somebody say BONUS! The Volturri are totally creepy, natch, and the wolves are incredible. Chris Weitz is a genius...he deserves an Oscar, or at least a Moonman. I'm already counting down the days until Eclipse comes out, and in case you're wondering, it's 222! TTYL! xoxo Lizzy

Well, that was interesting, wasn't it? Before I go, I have a few people to thank for gifting me some truly special blog awards:

Thank you, Jessie, for the One Lovely Blog Award!

Thank you, Jennifer, for the Honest Scrap Award!

Thank you, Roni, for the Best Blog Award!

If I didn't have my family arriving this evening and an entire house to clean before they arrive then I would be handing out some awards myself, but that will have to wait for another post. 

Posting next week will be light, as I will be taking some time to enjoy my family here for Thanksgiving!

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

DO IT

I'm sitting in the library to do my writing this morning because Starbucks was WAY crowded. Don't you just hate when that happens? It seems that there are always ways to get distracted with our writing, whether it be people (I'm looking at you Loud Talker Guy), places (Megan Rebekah did a great post on change of scenery today), or things (remember the laundry?).

The thing is...THE THING IS: How bad do I want this? How bad to I want to finish this novel? How badly do I want to be a GREAT writer? Do I want it bad enough that I'll drive the extra ten minutes to the library so that I can have peace and quiet? Will I maybe NOT watch that certain show (or in my case, SHOWS) this week so that I can get in some extra writing time? The proof is in the pudding, folks. And if the pudding box is in the pantry, well...then MAKE SOME PUDDING. (Okay, I know I got carried away with it...I was going for motivational and I think it just got ridiculous.)

How bad do you want it? What are you doing to GET IT?

 And to reiterate my point, go watch this clip from Starsky and Hutch. Not only will the "Do It" get stuck in your head, it is fraught with writing analogies (he talks about adding depth and backstory to your characters AND voice. It's a win win! Plus, it'll make you laugh - and let's face it...that's what I'm here for!).

Monday, November 16, 2009

Christmas Lights? Really?
















People, it's not even Thanksgiving yet! Are we just going to skip the "thankful" holiday altogether this year?! For me, it's kind of like wearing white shoes before Easter - you just don't do it!

I don't know why I kid myself EVERY YEAR thinking that I won't have to explain to my children until AFTER Thanksgiving that Santa will be coming soon. Now, we're just barely past Halloween and they're already asking, "When is Santa coming?" Actually, my oldest asks that, and my youngest just screams, "SANTA!!!" at the top of his lungs. BECAUSE THAT'S WHAT TWO YEAR OLD'S DO.

Seriously, people are already putting up Christmas lights in our neighborhood, and I'm all HOLD THE PHONE PEOPLE...NOT EVEN DECEMBER YET! I'm actually one of those people who really enjoys decorating (when the time is right, of course). It's the TAKING IT ALL DOWN part that gives me ulcers. I literally cringe when I think about de-ornamenting the Christmas tree.

What about you? Are you irritated by early Christmas decorations? The sound of Christmas music playing in stores even though Thanksgiving Day hasn't even passed? Or are you ONE OF THEM? Fess up, I promise I won't yell at you - I might, however, send my two year old to your house so YOU can explain why Santa won't be here for another MONTH AND A HALF! :)

*Photo courtesy of Google Images

Friday, November 13, 2009

How to Lose Your Sanity in Ten Minutes or Less

Try to wrangle three children under five into a semi-decent picture pose. Trust me, it's buckets of fun. 

My brother, sister-in-law, and nephew are here visiting from Florida. They leave tomorrow to go home, and I am none too pleased about it. I'm thinking about letting my youngest play with their keys, because he NEVER loses things. 

Today, we took all three boys to the Georgia Aquarium. I don't know who was more upset that the beluga whale attraction was under construction, me or my kids (just kidding, IT WAS ME - they're my favorite). The boys had a great time, and we (the parents) were appropriately worn out. 

I hope everyone has a lovely weekend! I promise oodles of fun next week, and I'll have a few award thank-you's to say as well.




Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Buckle in...this might get bumpy

So I'm going to attempt something I've never done before. Mommy Monday and Writer Wednesday ALL IN ONE DAY. Can you handle it? I hope you've got your big girl panties on (or big boy briefs for that lone male reader out there a.k.a my husband. Ahem.)!

Mommy Monday was, well, busy. I had just come off of a LOVELY weekend with some even more lovely ladies (thank you JODI!!!). My husband was all alone with the children the whole weekend, so the house was...well, it was a little bit of a disaster area when I got home. I was able to get the majority of it cleaned up while the boys were in preschool, and also get a little bit of writing done. However, I was NOT able to get my Mommy Monday post up, so this will have to suffice. Mommy was BUSY.

As for Writer Wednesday? Well, this writer is trying to get herself ORGANIZED. I gotta tell ya, it's not looking so good. I have been trying to save bits and pieces of advice (from other writers/publishers/agents blogs) in file folders for future reference. I've got them labeled according to type of advice, ex. first draft, editing, critique groups, grammar, publishing, etc. However, at the moment I have a stack of mish mashed papers staring at me, just begging for a home. Quite frankly, I don't have the energy to find them a home right now. All I want to find is my bed and go to sleep.

What do you do to stay organized with your writing, whether it be research for your book or research on writing in general?

Friday, November 6, 2009

Mommy Needs a Time Out

I'm gearing up for a little Mommy's Weekend Away with a few girlfriends, and I am so excited. I am SO looking forward to doing NOTHING, feeding NOONE but myself, and wiping NOONE'S BUTT BUT MY OWN. Too much information? DEAL WITH IT.

I'm eager for a break from the craziness that's been my house the last couple of weeks - a knee surgery recovering hubby*, two cantankerous kiddos whose only words lately have been "Mommyyyyyyy" and "That's MIIIIIINE", and a dog whose only goal in life is to pee on every square inch of available flooring in our house.

The weather is GORGEOUS this weekend and we're staying at a cabin on a lake in Tennessee FOR FREE. Can't beat that. I'm also taking along my notebook to use some of the quiet time to do some novel plotting...woohoo! 

The only problem I can foresee with this whole scenario is that they're going to have to pull me kicking and screaming to leave on Sunday. Oh wait, NOT MY PROBLEM! :)

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone. I hope it's restful and full of great things!

*And a special thanks to my hubby for venturing to take the children on his own, so that I don't completely lose my sanity. I LOVE YOU!


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Just Another Reason I Love Blogging

There has been a lot of talk around the blogosphere and elsewhere about building your platform as an author and how blogging can be beneficial in doing just that. While that is one of the many reasons why I blog, another is that I have learned SO MUCH from reading other writer's blogs. On that note, I have a story to tell you from my day today, and I hope that you gain something by reading it. That is the beauty of the blog. Someone shares, another person learns and grows.

I sat in Starbucks this morning, (thankfully without loud cellphone talking guy) typing furiously away on my novel, piecing together a scene between my main character and her current love interest, when a tidal wave of negative thinking hit me square between the eyes. 

This is crap. I have no plot, my characters are flat, and I've wasted nearly 30,000 words to tell part of a story that absolutely no one will want to read. Yep, this whole thing is a giant, steaming pile of C-R-A-P.

I have no idea where it came from (actually it might stem from the fact that I'm not feeling well, am overtired, and just generally grumpy lately - which in and of itself is enough to bring this big baby to tears), but it nearly brought me to tears. This is the first time I've faced this overwhelming sense of self-doubt, and I'm thinking, no, I'm pretty sure, that this won't be the last time this happens to me.

So what did I do? I stopped writing for a little while to get out of my own head, and I started perusing the blogosphere in search of something, ANYTHING to take my mind off of my general suckiness (if that's even a word...and if it isn't, it SHOULD be). 

In my searching, I came across this post by Natalie Whipple over at Fact and Fiction (Natalie also happens to be represented by the agent/blogging hero that is Nathan Bransford). It pretty much said exactly what I needed to hear in that moment to allow me to keep writing, whether it was crap or not. It's not about my talent, it's about my skill.

All of us struggle at one point or another in this writing journey, but having a community of other writers just a keystroke away makes it just that much more bearable. So thanks, to all of you agents/editors/publishers/fellow writers, for putting your experiences down for the rest of us to read.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Lessons I learned this Halloween
















1. You CAN get a hangover from candy. The remedy? MORE CANDY.
2. Your child COULD be allergic to his costume. But since you paid $40 for it, you WILL give him Benadryl and tell him to buck up.
3. Carving three pumpkins = insanity.
4. Use old Christmas lights to light your pumpkin instead of an actual candle if you're going to be leaving your house on Halloween. That way, your house doesn't burn down and everyone can still enjoy the stenciled-on ghost face that your husband painstakingly carved out of your enormous pumpkin. Everyone wins.
5. Buy a smaller pumpkin next year.
6. Trick or treating in the cold and rain is still fun for kids. For adults...not so much.
7. Make sure you're invited to a friend's house where this recipe is being served. Trust me.
8. Make sure that friend is a great photographer, because you might get just about the cutest picture you've ever seen of your kid in a costume.















And now a word about the Fall Back time change: When you think it's a good idea to stay over at your friend's house and keep your kids up later so that they'll "sleep in" the next morning instead of waking up an hour earlier? IT'S NOT.
That is all.
You're welcome.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Pumpkin Stuff




















Happy (almost) Halloween!!

My sweet friend, Jodi, shared this AMAZING recipe, and I thought that all of you beautiful people deserved to have it, too. Speaking of amazing things, Jodi is an incredibly talented photographer and graphic designer, so you should also hop on over to Leapfrog Creations and check out her site. Thanks, Jodi, for the delicious recipe!

Pumpkin Stuff

1 15 oz. of canned pumpkin
1 can of evaporated milk
1 cup of sugar, regular white
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
3 Eggs (slightly beaten)

Mix all of that in a bowl, pour in a greased 9 X 13 pan

On top of that spread the following 3 ingredients below: Do not make the cake as directed, just crumble the whole cake mix, just powder stuff, on top of the pumpkin mixture. You can add the pecans if you want. I didn't and it was still awesome. But I am sure it would be great with them, because they would be on the top and they would get all toasted up YUM!! Yes, I said just the powder stuff, just trust me, it will work. On top of the cake mix and nuts, as evenly as you can, pour on the 2 sticks of butter. If there are some areas that are still powdery, it works out, so don't worry. 

1 Yellow Butter Cake Mix
1 cup chopped Pecans (optional)
2 sticks of butter, melted

Bake in a 350 oven for 50 - 60 minutes

Frosting: Make while the pumpkin stuff is baking

1 8 oz. block of cream cheese (softened)
1 cup powdered sugar
2 cups of Cool Whip (thawed)

Mix these 3 ingredients together. I got out the electric mixer to make it smooth, but the recipe didn't call for that. After the Pumpkin Stuff has cooled, smear the frosting all over. Quite delicious still warm, but I think even better cold, the next day. Store in the fridge, if there is anything left.

*Photo courtesy of Google Images

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Wherein I Grovel and Get Irritated

Since I told my husband that I was going to dedicate my book to Bono, I suppose that I should at the very least dedicate this Writer Wednesday post to him. 

Honey, this one's for you. (And, I already know what YOU would do in the following situation, which is one of the reasons why I love you and married you and had your babies.)

As I sat (kid-free thanks to the wonderful husband I have who works very hard so that my kiddos can go to preschool 3 days a week and give mommy some free time to write - hence the dedication of this post and POSSIBLY my future novel if Bono does something to annoy me, which I doubt) in one of those big cushy chairs at Starbucks this morning, typing  furiously away on the first draft of my book, all of a sudden this dude sits down in the other cushy chair across from me and starts talking RATHER LOUDLY on his cell phone. 

I realize that I am in a public place, and that people are certainly entitled to talk, laugh, make noise, what have you. In times such as these, I usually just pull out my headphones and turn on the music. However, I already had the headphones on and I could STILL hear this guy talking. But that's just it, he wasn't just talking. I believe he was delivering a full on monologue, with hand gestures to boot. 

Not one to be confrontational, I just gave him a few light "Seriously, dude?" glances, hoping he would take the hint and either a) leave or b) move to where I couldn't hear him. No such luck. He continued on with his VERY IMPORTANT, VERY LOUD conversation for another ten minutes. I looked around, to find someone else who might be sharing the same "Really? This guy is serious?" sentiments and possibly somewhere else to sit, but no one else seemed to notice, and the only available seats were outside in the cold. So there I sat in my plush chair, irritated that this person had not only caused me to stop writing, but forget what I had been writing about altogether. 

Has this ever happened to you? What would you do in a situation like this? Would you have asked the person to move? To speak more quietly? Would you have moved yourself outside, exposed to the elements just for the sake of silence? 

On an unrelated note: I finally joined a critique group! I'm VERY excited (and nervous) about it. Hi Jessie, Lois, and Patti!

Monday, October 26, 2009

This mommy is tired. It's been a long day, preceded by a couple of long weeks. This weekend went by faster than me through a bag of Funyuns (and now I want a bag of Funyuns). We were elbow deep in pumpkin carvings, fall festivals, and t-ball, all of which were very fun and also very exhausting.


So here I sit, staring at this computer screen, and what I really want to do is turn it off and go to bed. Why don't I? Well, for one thing, I want to stick to this posting schedule, because nobody likes a lazy blogger. Second, I know that the minute I close my eyes, SOMEBODY will need SOMETHING, and I will have to pry myself out of this cozy bed. There is nothing worse than JUST falling asleep and then being awakened suddenly, except for maybe that sound when someone scrapes their fork on their plate (raise your hand if you just got the willies, because I sure did.). 


On a precious note, the boys and I were sitting in the car this morning waiting for the carpool line at their preschool to start moving, and my oldest says to me, "Mommy, I love you this much," and he holds his arms open wide. "I love you that much, too," I said in return. Not to be outdone, my youngest says, "No, Cody...DIS MUCH," and he holds his little arms out. So sweet.

 


Friday, October 23, 2009

Love It/Hate It

It's Fun Friday, so I thought I'd share another episode of Love It/Hate It!

Love It:
- That Blogger finally decided to cooperate so that I could post (albeit late) today.
- That it's Friday!
- That the hubby's knee is healing and he's getting better every day.
- That the leaves are changing and providing a gorgeous view out my back window.
- That my kids' number one choice for music in the car is this King's of Leon song.
- That I'm thisclose to getting into my bathtub for a nice long soak!

Hate It:
- That my throat kind of hurts and I could be getting sick...AGAIN.
- That my fairy Godmother-in-Law has to leave on Sunday :(
- That my son's t-ball game is at 9:00 in the morning on a Saturday...groan.

Enjoy the weekend!!!


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Desperately Seeking...Something!








While in the (painstaking, frustrating, and in the same breath GLORIOUS) process of writing my novel, I would like to find some writing jobs that might actually, oh, I don't know...PAY ME SOMETHING :) I've tried looking for freelance work on sites like Craigslist, but that seems to have gotten me nowhere fast.

I've thought about copywriting, writing for magazines that interest me, and entering some short story contests. (On that note, my bloggy friend Megan Rebekah did a blog about short stories today, which I found very helpful...maybe you will too.)

My question to you, dear writer readers, is: Do you write for fun, for money, or both? Those of you who write for money - can you share where/how you find those writing jobs? If any of you out there have any ideas on copywriting, magazine writing, or short stories, feel free to share your insights. 

*Hubby update: Getting stronger every day, and is back to work tomorrow (yikes!). Again, thank you for your prayers and well wishes!

Monday, October 19, 2009

My Fairy Godmother-In-Law

Since it is Mommy Monday, this post is dedicated to the woman who birthed the wonderful - albeit half-crippled - man that is my husband. 

As you all probably know by now, Mike had (his fifth) knee surgery this past Wednesday, and it was a rough couple of days post-op. That is all I'm really at liberty to say at this point, since I'm from the old school where, "If you can't say something nice, then you shouldn't say it at all".

So, this is me. Not. Saying. Anything.

What I AM at liberty to say, is that my mother-in-law is nothing short of an ANGEL. This woman has singlehandedly organized every cabinet and closet in my house, washed every dirty dish (BY HAND mind you - even though there is a perfectly good dishwasher mere inches from the sink), and has successfully slain the beast that is my laundry. She even managed to find all of its evil beast spawn (that may or may not have been lurking in my garage) and kill it, too. 

I truly don't know what I would've done without her help this last week, she is a trooper!

For those of you who offered prayers and encouraging words, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. He is doing MUCH better yesterday and today, and for that I am truly grateful to God. He still has quite a road ahead of him as far as recovery, but I think this surgery finally did the trick, and he'll be good as new in no time. 


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I really haven't fallen off the face of the earth...really.

This past weekend was my 10 year high school reunion in Florida (yep, that's me giving you a hint at my age...gasp!). I had a wonderful time catching up with old friends and having a MUCH NEEDED visit with my family.

So, I'm back now, and today my husband had his 1,2,3,4...5th! knee surgery. I'm going to start buying birthday cakes for these occasions, because I think that would make it just a little bit more bearable, don't you?

So, what does all this have to do with writing? Nothing. Wait, no, that's not true. It has EVERYTHING to do with writing. Because remember that whole Story of the Five Balls? Well, I've had to put it into practice this week. Writing is one of those balls that will bounce, and my family is one that can break. 

All that to say, posting will be light until I can get my man back to good health! I hope you'll stick around and not forget about lil' ol' me!!! And if you do, well you can safely assume I'll cyber stalk you until you come back! ;P

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I Heart Bono...and James Patterson

I'm still buzzing from last night's U2 concert. A-MAZING.

I might've at one point said to my husband, "Forget what I said about me dedicating my first book to you and the kids. I'm dedicating it to BONO." That man's voice makes me want to cry. If I could pinpoint what my perfect idea of heaven would be like, it would be Bono singing. ALL. THE. TIME. Have I mentioned I love Bono? BONOBONOBONO!

Ok, I'm done now.

Bono. Sorry.

I know I have a useful post SOMEWHERE in my brain...I just can't seem to locate it.

Ah, yes. I remember now.

I just finished reading James Patterson's Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas. Great book. This book has very special meaning to me for a particular reason, but I'm going to wait until I get my novel published to tell THAT special story. :)

It seems I've read post after post lately about finding the right balance in our lives as writers. This next little excerpt pertains not only to writers, but to everyone I think.  I'll let Patterson tell it, because he's PATTERSON for goodness' sake. 

It's the story of the five balls.

Imagine life is a game in which you are juggling five balls. The balls are called work, family, health, friends, and integrity. And you're keeping all of them in the air. But one day you finally come to understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. The other four balls -- family, health, friends, integrity -- are made of glass. If you drop one of these, it will be irrevocably scuffed, nicked, perhaps even shattered. And once you truly understand the lesson of the five balls, you will have the beginnings of balance in your life.

I'm not sure where Patterson got this idea, but man, is it a good one or what? It struck me as so incredibly true! 

What about you? Can you relate to this lesson?

Sunday, October 4, 2009

I think I at least deserve a t-shirt

I survived the weekend!!! And I owe much of that success to my sweet husband who allowed me to stay in bed and rest ALL DAY on Saturday to nurse a sinus headache SO BAD that I thought my eyes were going to jump out of their sockets.

Although, after lounging around most of the weekend trying to get better, I ignored something VERY. VERY. IMPORTANT.
THE BEAST. 
Here's a bird's eye view for you.
   

















And here's a measurement.
























That's right...18 inches. That's a foot and a half of laundry! And it's probably about four feet wide. Ugh.

I have to say, that's even AFTER that sweet of husband of mine did this.



















I like to imagine that the lost socks in my dryer evolve into shirts, shorts, and underwear. That's the only logical explanation for the excess of laundry. That, or the fact that I LOATHE laundry...yep, maybe that's a better reason.

So, if you need me, I'll just be drowning somewhere in that mound of clothes.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Not So Fun Friday

I woke up this morning with a terrible sore throat, so I dragged myself to the doctor's office with my oldest (and sickest) child in tow. She informed me (after a rather nasty throat swab) that I do not have strep throat (hooray!) but that I do have a massive sinus infection (oh, crap). 

The pharmacist at Publix was all, "You again?" and I was all, "Yeah, me again. NOW GIVE ME MY DRUGS AND NO ONE GETS HURT." 

So right now I'm just praying that my youngest son will not catch what his big brother and Mommy have, because I don't think I can handle it at this point. 

I won't leave you on such a sour note...after all, my goal with this blog is to make you laugh. So I hope you do when you watch this clip that my friend Allyson sent me this morning. I've seen it before, but it never fails to make me laugh out loud. 

Have a lovely weekend - and may you all stay healthy!!! 

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Test Me Thursdays

I know what you're thinking. "She's already bucked her Mon-Wed-Fri schedule." One, you're right, and two, I will reiterate that this is MY blog, and I'll write if I want to (and possibly cry if I want to as well). ;)

Today's happenings were just too good (and by "good" I don't mean awesome, I mean too terrifying and juicy) not to share. 

My four year old, Cody, had a bit of a cough yesterday, but was otherwise a fully functioning preschooler. The cough proceeded to worsen throughout the day yesterday and into the night, and I believe my husband and I clocked a total of four hours of sleep due to the ungodly sounds coming from his bedroom as he tried to sleep between coughing fits. He eventually ended up in our bed on my side (I slept in our guest room downstairs) and proceeded to wet it, too. Awesome.

 This morning, I took Cody to the doctor and found out that he has the beginnings of pneumonia (YIPPPEEEE). The doctor was confident we caught it early enough to avoid any major drama. I breathed a sigh of relief that we caught it early, and that it's not the dreaded swine flu. With a prescription for an antibiotic and a breathing treatment in hand, we walked out of the office and got into the car. 

We drove to the pharmacy at our nearby grocery store to get our prescriptions, me asking specifically for them to add bubble gum flavoring to the antibiotic, because -- like most children -- my son "dislikes" taking medicine. We killed twenty minutes by getting a cookie in the bakery and saying hello to the live lobsters in the tank of the seafood section. We played "I Spy" until I wanted to gouge my little eyes out. The pharmacist took pity on me and filled my order in about 15 minutes instead of 20.

We got home and I managed to get both boys changed out of their doctor's office visit clothes (which I was convinced were full of swine flu germs) and into some fresh ones. I then pull out the new medications to give Cody his first doses. I open the antibiotic and suck some into the dispenser to give it to him. He immediately resists and runs away. I leave the bottle open on the table and chase after him. I think you know where this is going.

After very little coaxing, Cody takes his medicine and I proudly walk myself back into the kitchen, patting myself on the back for my medicine administering expertise. I hear Tyler, my two year old, say, "Mmmm, Mommy. Deeewishus." (That's "delicious" in toddler speak) "What's delicious, honey?" I ask, turning around to look at my son. Only then do I notice the pink around the lips and the HALF EMPTY BOTTLE OF ANTIBIOTIC in his chubby hands.

Panic. Shrieking. Running around like a crazy person trying to find the phone. 

I call my doctor's office immediately, thinking I've poisoned my child. They say it should be no big deal but to call poison control anyway. I do, and the woman at poison control tells me he should be just fine, but that he might have an upset tummy from it. I have orders to keep him fed and hydrated. 

Crisis averted.

So if you're wondering why I'm not posting for months on end after this post, it's because The Department of Children and Families has reported me and I've been taken off to jail. Don't worry, I'll get the hubby to post my mugshot...I know you'd want to see that.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

My Brain Just Spontaneously Combusted

And now a word about reading agent/author/publisher/editor/et cetera, et cetera, et cetera (said in the voice of the King of Siam in The King and I) blogs:

Don't do it until you've finished your manuscript. 

Okay, maybe that's a stretch. How about this:

Make sure you spend more time WRITING than you do READING. Fair enough?

This is a lesson I've had to teach myself recently, because if there's anything I like to do...it's get WAY MORE INFORMATION THAN I NEED. Have you seen those Bing commercials? Yep, that'd be me. 

Sure, some of it is really useful. However, some blogs send me into a black hole of information that I have a VERY difficult time extracting myself from (sort of like the bag of chips I found myself eating yesterday afternoon - ahem). I have even found myself reading YOUR lovely blogs for hours on end, because so many of you are so incredibly talented!

Point is, if you're spending more time researching how to get published or how to find an agent than you are writing your actual manuscript...it's time to exorciiiise the demons (a la Poltergeist).

Have you been guilty of this? Please, make me feel better...LOL

Monday, September 28, 2009

And now a post about time management

So...

In an effort to keep my sanity, I've been thinking really hard about how I can be more consistent in my blog posting schedule, still be able to read all of my favorite blogs, and also FINISH MY NOVEL. This is what I've come up with:

I will (to the best of my ability) be posting on my blog on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. This schedule just works for me because those are the days my boys are in preschool and I have a little extra free time!

-Mondays will be "Mommy Mondays" where I focus on one of the many facets of motherhood and parenting (hopefully I will come up with something better to talk about than poop, although I do know there are a few of you who LOOOOVE when I talk about poop! LOL)

- Wednesdays will be "Writer Wednesdays" where I discuss whatever aspect of writing is inspiring me at the moment (or causing me to bang my head against the wall - because let's be honest, that happens to me A LOT). 

- Fridays will be "Fun Fridays" where I talk about whatever I feel like. Like if I want to show you items I've managed to burn in the oven THAT WEEK, for instance.

If I decide to throw a blog in on a Tuesday or Thursday because I feel like it, THEN I WILL. It's my blog - and I'll write if I want to. How's that for an explanation? ;)

I hope you'll like the new format and that you'll keep reading. Thank you to all my followers and commenters - you make me feel very special. 


Friday, September 25, 2009

Fix You

A few months ago, the hubby and I had the pleasure of seeing Coldplay in concert, and let me tell you, it was PHENOMENAL. If you like their music, it is well worth the money to see them live if you get the chance.

If you like their music and you can't make it to a concert, then I have a little treat for you. My very favorite song of theirs is "Fix You". I get tears in my eyes every time I hear it. The hubby surprised me by making this video for me...a little taste of the concert set to that song. Hope you enjoy it :)

video




*If you watch closely, around the 3:39 mark, Chris Martin knocks his microphone right off of its stand. Kinda funny.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Just When You Thought It Was A Good Idea...

...to put your doughnuts in the oven, so the kids wouldn't see them and incessantly WHIIIINE for one. I think you all know how this one ends (and if you don't...read here).



















IT'S NOT!

Oven: 2     Beth: 0

I know, I cried too. Wait, you weren't crying over the DEVASTATING LOSS of burning doughnuts? Oh. Yeah, I didn't either. 

Now some of you might think, "Well they're only a little melted...you could probably still eat them." Believe me, I tried. Notice the gaping hole on the bottom left where there is only a charred remnant? Yep, that was where I tried to salvage one last precious Boston Creme doughnut to no avail. They were just too burned on the bottom. If you look closely you can see the oven rack outline on the bottom of the box. Impressive, no?

Don't worry, I'll be here all week.



Tuesday, September 22, 2009

OH SWEET SUNSHINE!

The sun has graced us with its presence today...FINALLY! 

I was literally cursing our reproductive choices in not having more children, because I really thought we'd be needing some more strapping young males (or freakishly tall females like myself!) to build ourselves an ark. The rain in Georgia has been HORRIBLE! I'm sure you've seen us on the news. No? Well, here you go.

With the days of rain came the inevitable cabin-fever crazies! My children have been horrific - which makes for a very exhausted Mommy and Daddy. But stories like this make me thankful to have those children, horrific or not.

I inadvertently took it out my blog...didn't post at all while it rained. Maybe God really DOES like my blog, since now we have sunshine??? No, really, the rain hasn't made me go mental, I'm just REALLY excited about the sunshine. 

Moving on.

Blog I did not. But write I did! I made some really good progress with my novel. The rain and clouds provided just the right mood to let me write a really difficult scene. 

Does your environment affect your writing? Do you have a special place where you write? For my non-writing friends, does the weather affect your mood?


Friday, September 18, 2009

Ye Be Warned


It's National Talk Like A Pirate Day...didn't you get the memo?
























We be plunderin' the snack pantry lookin' fer booty!

























Drop yer weapon ye scallywag!


Happy Friday!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

How to Ruin a Perfectly Good Dinner

I was on Facebook earlier, updating my status and sharing my frustration about a woman who had SCREAMED at her (I assume) daughter at Chick-fil-A (in my book the second happiest place on earth - Disney World being THE happiest), sending the little girl into hysterics. 

The little girl couldn't have been older than 3, so the Overprotective Defender of the Defenseless part of my brain kicked into high gear. I wasn't thinking about where this insane woman was coming from; whether she had gotten fired that day, hadn't received child support from her estranged husband, or whether she was bullied as a child. 

I pretty much just wanted to punch her in the face. My most Christian response? Of course not. I'm sure the look on my face spoke volumes, because the woman quickly took her sobbing daughter and left. 

In hindsight, I know I shouldn't have judged. We've all been there - where we've lost our patience with our spouse, kids, co-worker...whomever. I just couldn't believe it. I still can't believe it. Maybe it's the weather. We're on Day 3 of rain here in Georgia. It let up for a little while this evening, hence the trip to Chick-fil-A. 


SO...here's the part where I attempt to change the subject because I'm not proud of myself for my knee jerk reaction to this woman. Although, when I tell you what I'm about to tell you, I'm not so sure it's going to make me look that much better. 

I'm pretty much going to admit to being a 15 year old trapped in a 28 year old's body. 

I'm watching Vampire Diaries* tonight. 

I saw the season premiere last week, and given my Twilight obsession (yep, that's me flying my freak flag proudly), I'm tuning in again this week. They are VERY similar...hmmm.


*I'm going to make myself feel better and say that it's "research", since maybe someday I'll attempt to write a young adult novel. :)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I Got Nothin'

It was a very rainy, very looong day in this house. 

My brain is fried. 

I'm kicking back, watching some TV with the hubby, when this E-Trade commercial comes on. I laughed so hard I almost peed myself. Nothing funnier to me than a talking baby. My friend Wendy Miller over at All in a Day's Thought did a post not too long ago about commercials, so Wendy, this one's for you!

Enjoy...I'm going to BED!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Oh, Dear Jane

I'm no English major (and boy, do I WISH I was), but in my opinion, no one does it like Jane Austen. 

The reason I'm thinking of her, is because I'm watching Pride and Prejudice (Keira Knightly version) on TV for the 1000th time. No, it doesn't compare to the book (or the version with Colin Firth, for that matter), but I can't NOT watch this movie, whichever version is on TV at any given time. (My mother-in-law knows EXACTLY what I'm talking about...Hi Mom!)

I also have to say that nothing makes me think my writing sucks more than reading Jane Austen (or any of the classics). It makes me want to throw my computer against the wall, since I have the vague notion that I will NEVER be as good as Austen, Hemingway, Steinbeck, London, or Wharton. (Okay, okay, I can hear all of you saying it, "YOU ARE AS GOOD AS YOU STRIVE TO BE!" Consider it noted!) 

On a lighter note, my son played AWESOME in his t-ball game tonight, and he looks super cute in his uniform. At least if I never become a world-renowned novelist, I can proudly proclaim that I BIRTHED THIS ADORABLE CHILD. 


























**Rest In Peace, Patrick Swayze. Dirty Dancing is still one of my all-time favorite movies.

Friday, September 11, 2009

In Memory...

I'm reusing a post I wrote last year on 9/11. My thoughts and prayers are with all the families who lost a loved one that day, and to all the people who give their lives daily to keep us safe.

Where were you?

9/11....

I always remember 9/11 with sadness, and I'm still in shock that this happened to our country. For me, it's a bit surreal because I wasn't actually IN the U.S. when it happened. I was in London on a study abroad semester in my junior year of college. I still remember like it was yesterday.

I had just left the Museum of London after a really nice morning just walking around and learning about the the fascinating new city I was now living in. I remember sitting quietly in the courtyard of the museum just enjoying my surroundings and not having a care in the world. I was alone, and I wasn't afraid at all. 

I left the museum after picking up a few presents for people back home and started walking toward the tube. Looking back, it seems like people were in a little more of a tizzy than normal for the streets of London, but I didn't seem to notice at the time. I got on the tube (or subway if you will) and began my short ride back to our flat. I remember looking across the seat from myself at a man reading the paper, and I remember seeing the twin towers on the front page. It looked like they were on fire, but I dismissed it as one of those Enquirer "end of the world" scenarios that trashy magazines use to scare people.

As I exited the stairs leading out of the tube I was stopped by an older woman in casual business clothes. She asked, "Are you American?". I was taught to answer this question hesitantly because people in foreign countries (even England) don't always take kindly to Americans. She looked fairly harmless, so I said, "Yes, I am." She quickly asked me if I knew about what had happened in the States and I said that I didn't. I quickly found the nearest newspaper stand (which is never far away on London streets) and read it for myself...two hijacked planes had flown into the World Trade Centers.

I learned later that there were two other planes, one that crashed into the Pentagon and one that crashed into a field because the passengers fought back.

There is no place like home when tragedy strikes, but I was so thankful to  be in the UK if I could not be in the U.S. when 9/11 happened. It felt, and still feels like a piece of home to me.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Love It/Hate It

Love It:

- This Prius commercial...it makes me smile.
- My new haircolor - it's finally a normal color like this, which is nice, since I'm used to walking around looking like this.
- This song by One Republic. I CANNOT stop listening to it.

Hate It:
- That the second toe on my right foot decided it didn't need a toenail today. Ouch.
- That my dishwasher makes that low "mooing" sound JUST like my breast pump used to...only LOUDER.
- It's Fantasy Football season...no further explanation needed (can I get an amen ladies?).

What are you loving or hating?

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Bittersweet Symphony

So.

You know that girl who was just SO excited to have her kids in pre-school because of ALL the free time she was going to be having?

Yeah, I don't know where she went.

I'm thinking it's only a momentary lapse in excitement, but I have to admit, today was rough. As much as I ADORED being able to sit at Starbucks and write my little heart out...I REALLY missed my babies. Yep, these babies right here. 





















These babies that aren't babies anymore. Did I say babies? Babies, babies, babies. I think I need another baby. (Do you hear that groan? That'd be my husband. It's okay honey, it's only for
 today...maybe.) 

Speaking of the hubby, he was able to take a few hours off of work to see his boys off to school...such a great Daddy! 
























Cody was already prepared and excited for his first day since he went last year. He was up before the sun this morning, ready and eager. 























Tyler had a great first day, and his teachers are absolute ANGELS. (Anyone who willingly subjects themselves to 10 or more toddlers for three hours at a time is an angel in my book.) 

This is the best shot I could get of him and his new teacher, Miss Kim, because he was WAY too interested in playing with toys, and not the LEAST bit interested in posing for Mommy...again.
























Just like when Cody started his first day, I was more torn up about our separation than he was. I promptly got in the car after dropping them off, saw the two empty carseats behind me, and had myself a little cry.

After my little cryout, I had a moment of sheer panic, like, WHAT THE HECK DO I DO NOW?

That's when I remembered...WHATEVER I WANT! :) 

I got A LOT of writing done at Starbucks. It's amazing what you can do when there's no one distracting you. And the barista even offered to refresh my Chai tea for me! (It's the little things, right?)

*As I'm writing this, my son is in the bathroom screaming for me to come wipe him. Back to reality. Why does my reality always involve poop? Maybe I can continue my Ode to Time Alone some other time when I'm...you know...alone.

Friday, September 4, 2009

So, How Was Your Day?

Me? Oh, I stepped in poop.

If you've been reading this blog the last couple of days, then you'd know that a lot of really cool things have been happening in my life, and I'm grateful. Truly, truly, grateful! 

So, it's only befitting that I should step in my dog's poop in the backyard while my kids were enjoying their blow up pool. Not everything can be Wi-Fi and preschool and glorious writing; sometimes it's just poop.

I hope this isn't an omen. I don't like those.

Everbody enjoy the weekend. Our family has NO PLANS, and I'm REALLY excited about that.


Thursday, September 3, 2009

A Bouquet of Freshly Sharpened Pencils

I love that line from You've Got Mail!

It was open house night at my boys' preschool tonight, and let me tell you...I am SO excited for them to start! This will be Tyler's (my youngest) first preschool experience, and I really thought I'd have some anxiety about it, since my previous experience with Cody was FULL of it. Honestly, I think this time will be a breeze (fingers crossed, legs crossed, eyes crossed, FULL BODY CROSSED).

If you'd have asked me 2 months ago whether I was excited or not, my answer probably would've been MUCH different, seeing as how Tyler wouldn't let me leave him TO USE THE BATHROOM, let alone go anywhere else without him. But he's a changed Mann now (Get it? Last name is Mann? Anyone? No? Okay, moving on). The clingy moments are few and far between, and yes, I do miss it from time to time (I'm not made of stone people!), but for the most part it has been a-mazing (mostly the using the bathroom by myself - that is MAGICAL!).

Starting next week, I will have 12, count 'em 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12 hours a week ALL TO MYSELF. Like me with my new best friend Wi-Fi...THE POSSIBILITIES ARE ENDLESS PEOPLE!!!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

I Can Feel It, Coming in the Air Tonight...

...oh Lo-ord. 

Okay, so my Dad LOVED Phil Collins, sue me (or sue-sue-suedio me!).

SO...I was outside tonight, and there was an actual briskness to the air, and, brace yourself, I had to get a SWEATER! 

AND!!! My husband just commented to me that his feet are cold (we're in bed). This means we might need to break out THE DUVET!!! WOO HOO!!!

I just love, love, LOVE fall. 

It's all my favorite colors: reds, oranges, yellows, browns. It's all my favorite scents: pumpkin pie, cinnamon, apples, and cloves.

I'm also extraordinarily giddy, because I got A LOT of writing done today, and I think I've finally hit my stride with this novel! I've come up with and stuck to a schedule that is really working for me, and I love it! 

Things I'm looking forward to in September: Cody and Tyler starting back to preschool, my 10 year high school reunion, and my Mom's birthday!

What are you looking forward to? Does your mood affect your writing? Do you "feel it" some days, and not others? Or are you more mechanical and business-like about it?

Monday, August 31, 2009

Happiness Is...

WI-FI!!!!

It's true...I have Wi-Fi now. I feel like the kid in the candy shop; there are ENDLESS possibilities.

The hubby and I were joking last night about the price of getting Wi-Fi, and I said, "So what if the kids can only eat crackers for breakfast, lunch, and dinner...I CAN BLOG WHILE I'M ON THE TOILET!!!". Too much information? Sorry. And in case you're worried, no, I'm not blogging while on the toilet (but I can't say I never will), and my kids just had peanut butter and jelly for lunch (they just had the crackers for breakfast...heehee).

The other thing I love about this, is that I don't have to interrupt my working husband to Google something I'm trying to research while writing. I do most of my writing on a laptop, that until yesterday, did not have Internet. This is how our conversation would go:

Me (peeking through the door to my husband's office): Babe? Can I Google something?
Him (pulling the headphones off of his head): Huh?
Me: Can I Google something?
Him: Babe, I'm really under a time crunch here.
Me: Babe, please, it'll just take a sec.
Him: Alright, I have to use the bathroom anyway.
Me: Awesome.

No more potty break Googling here, folks. I have WI-FI!

I have found one fatal flaw, however, with my new wireless capabilities. And that flaw is THIS SITE that Lynette over at Chatterbox Chit Chat introduced to me. This is like crack for jigsaw puzzle addicts. I can't stop playing...I barely pulled myself away from it to write this blog. MUST. DO. PUZZLES. I wonder if they have sites for Sudoku or crossword puzzles, because my Dad would be all over that. Hmmm.

So a BIG shoutout to my awesome hubby, for making all my wireless dreams come true. I love you!

What are some of your favorite websites?



Wednesday, August 26, 2009

I'd like you to meet the Newest Italian Members of My Family










































Bigotti and Patrutti (at least I imagine that's how you'd spell it).

These are the new names my sons have been using instead of their own for a few days now. I never realized when I named my children that they would actually prefer to be named after THE MAFIA!

I will call to Tyler (my youngest) and Cody (my oldest) will say, "No, Mommy. That's not Tyler, that's Bigotti." And when I say to Cody, "Cody, go pick up your sippy cup," Tyler will answer me and say, "No, Patrutti (which really comes out like Puhtwuuti)."

They've also decided that Bigotti and Patrutti also make great invisible friends. They like to play the "Blame it on the Invisible Italian" game. It goes something like this.

Me: "Where are my keys?"
Cody: "I think Bigotti took them. Or maybe it was Patrutti."
Me: "Oh, well in that case, you tell those gangsters TO FIND MY KEYS OR NO ICE CREAM FOR DESSERT."

Mommy can play gangster, too!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Just When You Thought It Was A Good Idea...

...to put your dirty dishes in the oven because your company was going to be arriving in about 30 seconds...

























...IT'S NOT.

And just in case you're wondering, that's a spaghetti strainer, child's bowl (melted under the strainer), and two sippy cups.

My poor husband decided to make an oven-baked pizza the other night, and when he opened the perfectly preheated oven to put his pizza in, he found the above. I had forgotten to take the aformentioned dirty dishes OUT of the oven and put them IN the dishwasher. Guess I won't make that mistake again...or will I???

My friend, Katie, calls these moments of forgetfulness "momnesia", and I wholeheartedly agree. Some of my finer "momnesia" moments include:

- buckling my child into the carseat and driving to the park, not realizing the car seat was never fastened in with the car seatbelt.

- pouring Coke into my son's sippy cup, instead of the apple juice right next to it (imagine HIS delight!)

- pulling out of my driveway with a very large drink on top of my car (we all know how that one ends)

- putting my son into a pull-up diaper thinking it was a swimmy diaper, and watching it grow and swell, wondering all the while why on EARTH it would be doing that?


What are your momnesia moments???

*Update: I actually just found this article through an email, and thought I'd share it since it pertains so nicely to this conversation.

Friday, August 21, 2009

You're SO Not Going to Believe This

So I'm sitting down to blog at this very moment, and what do I hear outside. Thunder! Here I go again! Thank you to all your ladies for your comments from today's earlier post. You all are amazing. And Diane, since my time is limited (because I'm pretty sure I'm going to have a panicked husband in here any minute!)...THANK YOU for the award! I will post on it as soon as I can!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Blame It on the Rain...

Can't you just hear Milli Vanilli??? 

Yesterday afternoon, I was really making progress on my novel. I had hit a creative artery and the words were flowing heavily...and then my kids woke up from their nap! Argh!

I had every intention of blogging and doing some work on my MS last night after the kids were asleep, but nature had other plans for me. I sat down at the computer at about 10:30pm, and almost that second, a huge bolt of lightning crashed outside. Now, in most homes, this is not such a big deal. In OUR home however, BIG, BIG, DEAL. 

My hubby does most of his video editing on the computer that has our Internet connection (we have plans to get wireless, just to make our lives easier, but have not done it yet). Mere seconds after the first crash of lightning, Mike comes running into the office begging me to shut down the computer so nothing happens to it. OK, OK, I grumble. Children are still asleep at this point (thank God for sound machines), so I decide to grab my laptop with 80% battery life and try to write a little. HA HA...didn't happen.

Second crashing lightning bolt and following thunder awakens our youngest child (guess the sound machine just wasn't loud enough!). Now, this part actually broke my heart, because when I went in to get him he was literally shaking he was so "scawed" by the storm. I brought him into our bedroom and he proceeded to shake until the storm was over (roughly 45 minutes). He finally went back to sleep, and I decided that I should too. 

All that to say, no blog yesterday, and no MS pages finished. Here's hoping the kids nap today, so I can get some more writing done.

Are you able to pick right back up where you left off when you're writing is interrupted? 

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Totally Moved

I don't know why (actually I do, it's probably PMS!), but I have been SO emotionally moved (sometimes to tears!) today. For instance:

- Sitting in bean bag chairs watching a movie with my son (Cody) this afternoon, and he grabs my face and says, "Mommy, you're pretty." (And here come the tears AGAIN!)

- Loading dishes into my dishwasher and seeing 4 beautiful (actually, one of them looked a little messed up, like maybe he was molting - do hummingbirds molt? Note to self: Google molting hummingbirds) hummingbirds at my bird feeder! Those of you bird watchers out there know how special this is! 

- Driving along in the car this evening (by myself - which is totally glorious and moving in its own right!) listening to the radio and this song comes on. LOOOOVE this song.

- Reading on Facebook statuses that my friends' kids are starting kindergarten and realizing that my oldest (Cody again) will be in the same spot next year!

- Seeing my husband's state championship baseball ring, and feeling so proud of him for being so incredibly talented and using those talents to both glorify God and impact the lives of young men.

While I'm off to find some chocolate (and maybe a potato chip or two...hello PMS!), tell me, what's moving you lately?

Monday, August 17, 2009

ZZZZZ's

I slept most of the day today. I don't know what my deal was, but I COULD NOT pry myself out of bed. 

I mean, I did get out of bed...when I absolutely HAD to. My sweet husband had the day off and took the boys to the gym this morning so I could get some extra sleep (collective "awww"). Then we had some lunch with my father-in-law who is visiting from Florida. 

After lunch, we came home and I took a LOOONG nap with the boys. It was one of those naps where you fall asleep so deep you wake up not knowing what time it is, or even what DAY it is! I dragged myself out of bed again to get dressed and get to my women's bible study (we are still studying this book, and I just have to tell you again how fantastic it is!).

Needless to say, I can't fall asleep tonight. It's 11:43pm and I'm still awake, which should definitely make for an interesting tomorrow. 

What do you do when you can't sleep?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Can't Wait!

























For this movie! I love (love love love!) Rachel McAdams, and I think she will be fantastic in this film. I also, coincidentally, love Eric Bana - something about that Aussie accent! ;)

To see the trailer click here!

How do you feel about books made into movies? Have you ever seen a movie that lived up to the book...or was better?


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Voila! Insta-post!

I was doing a little bit of computer housekeeping this morning and found this post that I never published. Seeing as how I'm trying to make more time to write my novel, this comes in VERY handy! I'm off to write...happy reading!


When the going gets tough...the tough ask for help!


So many of us mothers feel like we have to go it alone in the world, so that we can keep up the image of Supermom. I can't even tell you how many times I've been in a rut, but my pride stands in the way of asking for help. A million questions run through my mind. What if that other mom thinks I'm weak? What if they say "no"? What if they're too busy already? 


Why do we do it to ourselves?


Three years ago, my husband and I decided that we wanted to move out of South Florida. We knew we wanted to have a few more kids - we only had one at the time - and we knew that we would be more comfortable in a bit bigger house. Unfortunately, the housing prices in Florida were at an all-time high, so the bigger house was out of the question for us, at least in Florida. We looked elsewhere, and fell in love with North Georgia. We were so grateful when he found a wonderful job, we were able to build our own home, and we found a church that we loved. We packed up and made the move without another thought. 


What we didn't take into careful consideration, was the fact that we were moving away from our ENTIRE family, his and mine. Call us crazy, but we didn't think it would be that bad. I'm sure you've heard the phrase, "You don't realize what you've got, 'till it's gone"? Well, we didn't realize what we had being surrounded by family - until we weren't!


I got pregnant with our second son shortly after we moved. While chasing around my toddler and getting bigger by the day, I realized how tired I was, and it finally dawned on me that we were alone. No one to call for a quick break from parenting. No one to call for a date night out. No one to call when all three of us got sick with the flu and had to take turns taking each other to the hospital. 


No. One. 


What had we done?


I struggled with asking people I barely knew for help. I'm one of those people who doesn't want to be a burden; I'll find a way to do everything myself. However, I learned very quickly that I either had to swallow my pride, or risk having a mental breakdown! 


Pride swallowed, I began to ask. I enlisted kind neighbors, other moms I had met at church, and I searched endlessly for a responsible babysitter. Finally, I had help. Maybe not as awesome as having family nearby, but pretty awesome all the same.


I've done the pride thing with God, too. It's hard to take off the cape and admit I can't do it all. No, Lord, I don't need your help, I can do this by myself. And we all know how that turns out, right? I've learned - the hard way -  to go to God FIRST, every time I have a problem that needs fixing, instead of trying to fix it myself. 


1 Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Matthew 7:7 Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.


Do you have trouble asking for help, from God or anyone else? What is holding you back?