Monday, December 31, 2007

Last Post of 2007

I gotta say I hope 2008 is way better than 2007.
That's not to say 2007 didn't have its highlights and good things, but for the most part we spent the year battling Murphy and his stupid laws. We did mark milestones in our children's lives, which are good, but sad at the same time. They're growing up and while I look forward to what the future holds for them, I miss their baby faces.
I don't make resolutions, only writing related goals. And I haven't gotten that far yet. I am thinking about it. I know January will be spent getting organized, taking care of a few projects that need different things, and figuring things out.
I do have to say even though the past few weeks have been a blast, and a blur, I'm ready to get back to normal life around here. The kids go back to school Wednesday, but I'm sure it'll take us until next week to catch and rest up. First we have to do the new year thing, which is at my sisters and will include much obnoxiousness and hilarity.
My wish is that dreams come true this year. For me and for you.
(remember, it's usually not worth it in the harsh, loud light of the morning after) (ha ha) (no, seriously.) :)

Saturday, December 29, 2007


This is the kind of stuff that happens in my house.
We haven't been home for more than a few minutes at a time since the day after Christmas, and yet, the kids still find time to do things like that. This one was engineered by K2 - pine needles on the dusty end table.
The pre-new year party was a blast. Lots of hilarity, hugging, and game playing. My cousin and her fiance fit right in with the family, and raised the level of nonsense another notch in the best way possible. We're home with an extra for showers before meeting for dinner. (We have less than two hours until we have to leave and only 2 out of 7 showers have been taken. Think we'll make it? Ha! Oh and the hot water heater isn't keeping up anymore, which stinks because it's only 2 years old.) Then tomorrow is more running around as its our last day with them. Then the real new year. I'm tired.
I'm not going to post what I'm looking forward to in 2008 yet. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe Monday. Depending.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Year in Review

Not much happened in January. According to my January blog posts, it was cold and kind of boring around here.
That's when the "great bedroom rearrange of 2007" started. We went to the cabin with my sister and brother-in-law and peed in an unheated outhouse. We had some snow, but that's about it for the month.
The bedroom rearrange finally came to an end. Yay. The My Space paged shared by me and Vicky B. launched. K1 ended up with stitches, a head xray, and lots of brush burns.
The blogging of the alphabet. A surprise birthday party for me.
Tattoo's. My uncle visiting from California. Camping. Pirates. Finally the beginning of warm weather. K1 turning 18. Writing retreat.
The 18th birthday party. The death of K2's rat, Spanky (she's bugging for another one now). A too-busy summer beginning. Lot's of randomness.
More too-busy summer. Harry Potter. Random pictures. Extended camping bliss.
Blog-iversary. The start of school. Excessive heat. Nightmares. Lots of random.
"Talk like a pirate day". Lots of random, including pictures. A contest.
Halloween. CPRW promo event. Lots of Murphy's Law content. Parades. Gross pictures.
Thanksgiving. Roller Skating. The end of yet another play. More random posts and pictures.
"The Shape of Love" announcement. Whoot!! CPRW holiday party. Holiday stress. Snow. Ice storms. Holiday wishes. My cousins visit. New drivers.
Seems to me I post more random information than I do anything else. And, of course, I don't tell you guys everything...a girls got to have some mystery to her, right? Through all the above mentions, there was consistently talk of Supernatural (which I miss terribly and can't wait to see next week's new episode).
And the writing: I've written approximately 288,000 words so far this year. That's the anthology story, 3 complete projects, the beginning of a fourth, and a lot of editing.
Tomorrow we'll talk about what I'm looking forward to in 2008.
Until then, we're having a pre-new year's eve celebration this evening and I have much to do to prepare for it. The trip to the airport went well. We did get lost leaving the airport, but in the end it worked out because I ended up back on the right highway without having to go through the mess of switching routes to get there.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Watch Out!

There's a new driver on the road!!
K2 passed her permit test.
Seriously, I have no worries about her driving. I just don't want to be the one doing the initial instruction, though I will probably let her drive to my mom's tomorrow since it's a short trip on wide roads. After K1, I'm not sure I'm cut out to teach anyone to drive and he seemed to know exactly what he was doing from the first time he got behind the wheel. (K2 is the same way.) It's me and I freely admit that. B's a much better teacher. After all, he taught me, my sisters, and K1. He's got the patience and the laid back disposition for not freaking out while someone I nurtured inside my body, held when they cried, and kissed boo-boo's for maneuvers a mass of steel and glass towards other masses of steel and glass. And no, I'm handling this next step in my children's lives just fine. Why do you ask?
Tomorrow's busy so I doubt I'll get a chance to post on here. I'm leaving with my mom, sister, and niece in the morning to make the drive to the airport to pick up my cousin. From there, we'll hang out at the folks until who knows when.
That's all for now.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!
I hope you and yours had a happy, peaceful day (even if you don't celebrate).
Here at the homestead, we had a happy and semi-peaceful day. The morning started off a little earlier than B and I would have liked. We did get a little nap time in, but B has a cold so he could have used the entire day to sleep. Family started showing up early evening for K4's birthday shindig and by the time we ate, 18 people were somehow crammed into my house.
The house is a mess, but we're only missing one small toy that I'm certain will show up in K4's bedroom. She had a blast on her birthday and loved the scavenger hunt for her new bicycle (except for the clue that read: Go to the place where we flush down the poo. There you will find clue number 2). Anyway. It was a good day and I'm totally exhausted.
Hope your exhaustion is a happy one as well.
And just in case Santa's already watching for next year...

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Eve

Wow. That is one bad picture of our tree. I didn't realize how dark it was until it came up on here. The lighting is awful. I'll take one tonight with the rest of the lights out and see if I can get it up here tomorrow.
Anyway. We're ready here. Finally. Spent the morning running around like a crazy woman. Even went on a super quick grocery store run, which was horrible. It took me longer to fight traffic, find a place to park, and then walk into the grocery store from the middle of nowhere than it did to actually pick up the very few items I needed. When I came out and got in my truck, I was parked in by two idiots who must believe Suburbans have hovercraft capabilities. It was a lot of crap to deal with for trash bags and horseradish.
The food is done. Birthday cakes are cooling to be shaped into an "8". Crab dip is made and tomorrow's spaghetti sauce is simmering. I'm even mostly dressed - just need to change out of my piggy slippers and put a better face on.
I hope your evening is a nice one. We'll be hanging with the family at my folks house, sans B's mom who is sick in bed with what will probably turn out to be bronchitis, and sans Jo who has to work tonight and is currently napping on my couch.
Santa is watching you!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Christmas Eve Eve

More wicked weather here. The wind is making me fear for my Internet connection once again. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.
The past few days have been a whirlwind. I have several subjects I'd like to blog about, but they'll have to wait until the new year. The permit exam has been postponed to Wednesday, so the total day off I thought I'd have isn't going to happen now. Thursday, my mom, sister, and I will be driving to Baltimore to pick up my cousin. She's in from California and we can't wait to see her. The last time we saw her, she was 8 or so. That was 14 years ago. We communicate via email and already know we're going to get along very well, so anticipation is high. The days between Christmas and New Year's are going to be packed full of family obligations and good times.
Tomorrow is the remainder of the cleaning I should have gotten done last week, but didn't. I'm down to very little to do though, which is good. Birthday cake and Christmas eve food making, possibly a dreaded run to the grocery store, and then Christmas eve at my parents house with the family. K4 has chosen spaghetti for her birthday dinner, and I'd like to get the sauce going sometime tomorrow as well so I have less to do on the big day.
Today was full with a fun brunch, then a visit to B's dad. B's sister took K4 shopping for her Christmas outfit - a tradition they both look forward to - and we brought our teenage niece and nephew here to hang out with the kids. It was insane with much laughter and goofiness. They had a blast. We don't often see them, which is a shame since we all get along so well, but their schedule is very similar to ours and they live about an hour away.
That is all the rambling I have for now. Well, not really, but it's enough don't you think?

Friday, December 21, 2007

I'm Back!

The phone company got to us first thing this morning, which was excellent. I didn't have to wait all day, and still finished the odds & ends on the list for today. Our cable was hooked up last night. The cable guys scared the heck out of me, or maybe I scared them because I thought the squirrels were digging in the trash can again, so I went out the back door hollering for the squirrels to get out of the trash. Oops. In my defense, it was late and I didn't expect them to be in the back yard. The cable is still laying in the yard, which is fine. They hooked us back up last night, but it was too dark to try to run the cable. They stopped by this afternoon and asked if I minded that they not get it strung back up until after they've finished getting everyone back in service. Of course I didn't. The cable's not bothering me at all. I've got my email back. That's all that matters to me!
Let's see...
We're ready around here. I think. I hope. The shopping's done, including the grocery run. All the gifts are wrapped and stowed away - well, except for the birthday wrapping. I'll get to that when I find the birthday paper I bought and stuck away somewhere. I don't think I ever mentioned that we got our tree up and decorated on Sunday. I might get time to post a picture on here sometime over the weekend. I have another funny picture to post as well, but I'll get to that eventually.
K2's glasses are in. We're going back for the permit in the morning.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

No Internet

That tree in the last photo took out my phone, Internet, and cable...
We're (still) waiting for them to be restored.
Now you know where I've been, and where I'll continue to be until everything is fixed.
Remember when I said how much not having Internet annoys me? Yeah.
Soon. I hope.

Monday, December 17, 2007

My Backyard...

This is only a portion of the mess that is my backyard.
We did get some more winter weather - not exactly what they were calling for, (or what I was hoping for) but things got a little messy yesterday. Obviously.
The branch in the photo took out my cable, and has my phone line stretched to the limit. Surprisingly, our phones and Internet still work. For now. To the left of this, a different branch took out a section of fence, and the yard is littered with sticks of all sizes. After it was done icing, the wind kicked up, shooting the ice from the tress like missiles. We're under a "wind advisory" until this afternoon. Most of our town is without power. Luckily, we're on a different power grid so we kept our lights, but the high school and elementary school have none. The kids are off today because of that.
Kind of obvious as to what B and I will be doing when he gets home from work.
And, I have to say how far behind I am. There's still shopping to do (including birthday shopping for K4), all the wrapping, and a few more social events to prepare food for and attend. But I'm pretty much home all day today, which both pleases and stresses me out. I'll probably get some bonus writing done.
Our tree is up and decorated. Pictures of that sometime this week.
Oh, and K2 and her permit test? She didn't make it past the eye exam. What a terrible morning. We went from there to get her an eye exam and glasses. Hopefully, her glasses will be in before Saturday so she can try again.
That's all for now...

Friday, December 14, 2007

Friday! Finally...

I didn't think we were ever going to get here.
Make sure you click on the You Tube video below. Well, unless you're not a fan of Supernatural and I don't want to know that.
As you can see from the word meter, I did make a little bit of progress yesterday. The kids kept themselves busy with the camcorder, making movies that included ketchup on my kitchen floor, dolls without arms, and lots of laughing. Don't ask - it's better that way. Though I have to say their films were amusing.
We realized sometime this afternoon that we didn't have anything on the calendar for tonight, so we're hanging at home and relaxing. Imagine that. Tomorrow is a different story, however, the day will start with us getting the tree, and end when we're forced to head home when the supposed snow starts sometime tomorrow night. Yeah, we're due for some more winter weather.We'll see. B is convinced we're only getting rain again. As for me, I'd love a good storm.
K2 is going for her permit test tomorrow.
Now you know...

12 Day of Winchester Christmas


Thursday, December 13, 2007


We're getting some winter weather here.
Looks like just rain to me but, everything is cancelled. I do see ice on my truck, and K2 insists the rain is "chunky", but whatever. We're stuck at home, and my previous plans for the day are done for. I am loving the new alert system our school district put in place. You can customize how you're alerted for pretty much any situation the school might need to contact you. Though after getting two phone calls that said school was cancelled, I think I need to go back in and tweak my preferences. Anyway, the system is pretty darned cool.
My poor doggy won't be getting her trim today. Our groomer lives in the next county and even though it's a short drive, it's a short drive up the mountain. And I won't be getting any Christmas shopping done today. But I might get some writing done, which is unexpected and awesome.
I've been really hard on myself for not having the time to write lately. We're booked back to back with enough obligations that really make me wish for that cloning machine. (and it's not going to end until after New Year's.) Anyway. It's always been my plan to take the weeks surrounding the holidays off.
I don't know why I have such a hard time doing it though. I'm in a good spot to take a little vacation - the anthology work is nearly done (waiting on cover art), I have other stuff out there, and I've met the yearly goal I set for my writer's group. I've written over 280k words so far this year, which is a pretty good number.
I want to be writing. And, after all, I should be able to do everything and do it well too. Right? Ha! Don't answer that. I'm well aware I have some kind of superwoman syndrome. Anyone who knows me well knows that.
I will be writing today. I'm not foolish enough to let the chance pass by. Maybe this crappy weather day is a gift?
That's all.

Monday, December 10, 2007

More Gnomes...

He's so little and cute.
I think this one is going to stay on my desk. B says he's carrying a jar of pickles, and even though I'm pretty sure that's a plant, I'm calling it pickles now, too. In the other hand, he's got a bucket of water. I figure that's so it can be dumped on me when I totally lose it. Ha!
Now if I could only get my gargoyle fixed. I need some glue and I keep forgetting to grab some when I go to the store. With my luck, I'll glue my fingers to the darned thing, but as long as I can get him fixed I'd be okay with that.
Elementary Holiday concert this evening. K3 is singing and playing his trumpet. I'm looking forward to hearing him.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

A Little Shopping

I know I told you about our traditional shopping night last year. You know, the shopping trip where most of the women in my extended family head out together for presents and hilarity?
Well, last night was that night.
I have to say, it was one of the best shopping nights we've had in a while. We were missing a few of the ladies, and we were a little lamer time-wise than last year, but by the time I got home my face hurt from all the laughing. Dinner was excellent, as was the company. And the silliness. Besides ordering something for one of the K's Thursday evening, this was my first attempt at Christmas shopping. I did okay - better than expected, but I still have a long way to go. Shopping night is more of a social event, though bags are loaded into my Suburban at an alarming rate.
K1 wanted to come along. We told him we have a strict "no dangly parts" rule about shopping night. I think he was offended by our rule, though he did call me around midnight to see how it was going.
Hopefully the few camera-phone pictures taken during the insanity will be downloaded and transferred soon so I can share them. Just think cranberry wreaths and wet floor signs.
That is all for now...

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Snow Delay Giggles...

So we ended up with a 2-hour delay. Not too bad, especially considering I got to sleep in a little. (and that was very lovely) The younger two got themselves up and dressed, so we were without the usual drudgery of getting them out of bed and moving. A good thing. And the delay doesn't effect my plans for today, which is awesome.
Except everyone has the giggles and the dog is barking because of their excitement. There's a strong chance the blueberry muffins that are supposed to be for breakfast will soon be used as flying objects. (or there was - I have taken care of that one)
Still no decorating done here. We're talking about it, but that's as far as we get considering the weight of our schedule. Maybe this weekend. Maybe. The calendar's pretty darn full already.
That's all for now. It's time to take the crowd to school and relocate my hearing and sanity!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007


We actually have some white stuff!
I love the snow. Especially when I'm home and have no place to go.
K2 called me in between schools to announce it was coming down. I had no idea. The roads aren't too bad. Or they weren't when I was out before school ended for the day. Who knows what it will be like later. The snow is still falling. I think there's maybe 2" out there right now. We have plans for dinner that don't require us traveling too far. Not that the weather would stop us.
The kids are insisting school will be closed tomorrow, or at least a delay. I have no comment on that, except that I hope not. I have all day plans tomorrow and them being home will prevent them, which would make me very, very sad.
Not much else to report at the moment.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Thoughts on Tuesday

You would think with all the stuff going on around here that I would have more to talk about.
Well, I don't have much at all to say.
Since Saturday I've been to two holiday parties. (I really think calories consumed while talking and laughing with friends shouldn't count. I believe I've mentioned that before.) By Saturday evening, I will have attended an additional four events with lovely food. Not all are holiday related, but the food is extremely similar. I should probably stop eating in between these gatherings so I'll still be able to fit into my jeans. Ha!
I saw the weirdest thing today. And no camera. Dang it. I'll try to explain, but be warned the translation will be lost. Probably. Okay. First off, it's very windy here. Cutting, cold wind. I don't know if it has any bearing on what I'm going to tell you. Anyway. I was driving on one of the main roads near here and off to the left there are homes with decent sized front yards and no fences to separate. In one of those yards, just one, there were hundreds of birds. The space was probably 15x30' and I kid you not, there wasn't more than six inches between the smallish black birds. (I don't know what kind) Just in that one yard. It was bizarre. (and I know you're shaking your head going...whatever...I don't get it.)
Snow is forecast for tomorrow. Yeah. Okay. I don't think the weathermen understand that after Sunday's disappointment, none of us are listening anymore. When the forecast says 100% chance of ice and nothing happens...Whatever. Though the kids are supercharged. No. Really. They're laughing and carrying on to an annoying level, but I don't have to heart to shut down their fun. Yet. Soon I'll have to or go crazy...
That's all...

Sunday, December 02, 2007

No Weather!

Dang it!
A little bit of rain - some chunky - but no big winter storm like the weatherman originally predicted. I have to admit, I'm bummed, though that'll get me smacked by a lot of people. I was really looking forward to hunkering down and watching everything ice over.
The decorating didn't happen. I'm not really sure why, but most likely due to a lack of motivation and a few things that cropped up unexpectedly. We'll get there.
I had a brilliant idea for a post during the night last night. I'm not sure what happened to it, but apparently it got lost somewhere in my brain.
That's all I have for right now.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Author Trio

There you have it!
The three authors responsible for the upcoming anthology, "The Shape of Love" coming soon from Draumr Publishing.
Vicky Burkholder is on your left, Misty Simon in the middle, and yours truly on the end. Yes, I know I'm not sporting a smile as big as the others. Actually, my expression is more of a smirk. No, I can't tell you why.
Today was our writer's group Holiday party. We always have a good time - talking, eating, laughing, eating, more laughing, more eating. You get the picture. Though today there were near-tears as we said a temporary goodbye to a long term member and great guy. It's a hard farewell, though his reasons are honorable and understandable, but we hold every hope that someday he'll come back to us. Still, it was a fantastic time.
Winter weather is in our forecast. The parking lot of the grocery store was insane. We've talked about this before. As usual, I looked like just about every other "winter weather shopper" as I did my regular grocery shopping yesterday. No, I'm not buying bread, milk, and toilet paper because I'm afraid we'll be snowed in for weeks. We needed it - those things are on the weekly list. It was far worse when the kids were younger and this household went through a gallon of milk a day. Buying four gallons of milk was not uncommon for me on a regular shopping day - you can imagine the looks I got when snow was in the forecast.
Tonight we are planning on doing some holiday decorating. We'll see. And if we do, I'll post pictures tomorrow.
Continue enjoying the weekend! always...