Sunday, December 8th, 2013
This morning I slept ridiculously late and then we headed out to try to find a snow hill. I figured we’d drive east until we hit more snow, but I was vetoed and we instead veered off the highway to a place that had too little snow to go down more than a few times. Ah well, next time. Anybody (Hey Joyce!) know where there’s a good snow sledding hill in the general vicinity of Salem/Portland/Eugene? I’m willing to drive an hour or two. I just want to be able to let the kids sled when we get there.
The dogs had a blast. They apparently have missed the snow. I finally clipped their toenails, for which they were most ungrateful. They called me names and whimpered. Without me even touching them.
I then came home and continued to put things away in my office on the shelves. All my books are put away. Well, there are a few that need a home upstairs, but they are crochet books. So I think I can say all done. Course now I have to put away a bunch of other supplies. They will never fit. So now I have to do some more serious sorting and then giving away. I found more empty binders. So it looks like I’ll be doing some getting rid of stuff this week. All in the name of making room for a tree, and oh, yeah, trying to get the house in order like we actually live here. You know, when I’m not working.
Saturday, December 7th, 2013
We did some touch up painting on my office today and installed the shelves. Had to cut out some molding here and there to make it work, but the shelves are installed. Turns out one of the shelves is not such a good fit, so I’ll have to take it back. I started getting into boxes to put away books and realized that many of those boxes are full of stuff that is office related, but it’s not going to fit. I am going to have to dig deep and get rid of things. Hopefully this week I’ll be able to get it all cleared out by next weekend to get the Christmas tree. I was really hoping to be further along in the unpacking. Like done. But it looks like it’s going to be quite awhile yet. Darnit. But hopefully this week will see a lot of progress. I also hope all my research books will fit. I’m just not sure.
I may also find out if I’m having a problem with my printer. We moved it, and when we did, it dumped ink out, but on the opposite side of the printer from where the cartridge loads. I hope that doesn’t mean the printer has gone to hell. I guess I’ll find out.
I still have to touch up other paint. Unfortunately, the tape we used pulled up paint and I’m going to have to sand and repaint that. After the new year. OMG. It’s almost 2014.
Friday, December 6th, 2013
It got scary icy today. I took the kids to school and all was fine, but then snow began to fall. No big deal. I’m from Montana. Easy to deal with. Only the snow melted and put down a layer of ice before it started to stick. Still not an issue (or so I thought) because all the cars have four wheel drive. But then I began to see people sliding down the hills on either side of our house. Through the stopsign, up onto sidewalks. One guy ended up on one of those electrical boxes with all four wheels off the ground.
I ventured out just shortly before noon. My husband’s employer is changing insurance companies and I was supposed to be at the meeting to ask any questions. It’s all of a mile away with several large hills in between. I backed out of the driveway and didn’t hit the gas. Just rolled down the hill. And I couldn’t stop. I tapped the brakes because I kept starting to slide. I should have put it in a lower gear (driving an automatic), but didn’t think about it. I kept control, but I noticed that there were people on the sidewalks, a lot of them, and a lot of cars parked along the roadway. I kind of slid through the stop sign at the bottom of the hill, luckily I didn’t have a problem with oncoming traffic.
Next up, big freaking hill. Going up was no problem. I got over into the bike lane to take advantage of the snow–that does give some traction. Going down hill, I kept control and only started to slide twice. I did stop at the light and was able to go through without issue. I went to Burger King to pick up lunch for the man. Oh, yeah, I’d promised him lunch. Got in all right, but nearly slid into a corvette coming out of drivethrough. I steered into it and stopped. Then I went to the man’s work.
By the time I left, they’d put gravel down on the roads (but only halfway up the hill we live on–incidentally there are two schools uphill and that road is a regular one for kids to walk on and parents to drive on). I got home just fine, but again, passed a lot of cars who got stuck going up the hill (no four-wheel drive), and the tow truck removing that one stranded car that was hanging up on its chassis. The tow truck had chains on and it had a hard time getting traction to go up hill even without pulling a car.
It’s not going to warm up much in the next couple of days, so I anticipate not going anywhere much. Hope I don’t need anything at the store.
Thursday, December 5th, 2013
I wrote that title, making progress, like I actually am. But it’s snail’s progress. The office will be ready for furniture and shelves by Saturday. It would have gone faster if I didn’t want two colors. Tonight we’ll touch up and finish the trim painting. I say we, but if I want to trim paint, I’ll have to battle the two kids.
I’d really like to get a second home on the coast. Maybe like a mobile home. I’d want it to be on the west side of 101 and within walking distance to the beach. Maybe rent it out part of the year or something. I wonder if that’s a feasible thing. Which is to say, I wonder if I could rent it out enough to cover the mortgage, taxes, and insurance.
Incidentally, it’s very difficult to type when trapped between two corgis on the couch. One is on the arm of the couch and sliding over so that I have to lean, and the other is on the other side nosing me about petting him. Both are releasing hair like dandelions. Clearly I need to brush them and still need to trim toenails.
I’m only making slow progress on my revision. Not because it’s hard, but because I’ve not been sleeping well, and frankly, I’m not in my office. Apparently I have less discipline while sitting on the couch. It isn’t that it’s making me watch TV, but just that I’m not focusing on the work very well.
I had a really good review of Bitter Night yesterday. It’s really nice to see people are still reading it. Think of my books at Christmas time when you’re thinking about gifts. Or any other time you’re thinking about gifts.
Wednesday, December 4th, 2013
Yesterday I went to Costco and on the way out, I got to see a guy (at least 30, but I think in his 40s) pull up his underwear (gray), but not his pants (sliding down his thighs). Why oh why?
Three/fourths of my office is painted. The light walls. I need to fix a bit of trim, but today we do the dark wall. I say we, but I think it will be them. Basically, I did the primering of the entire room, but turns out I stink on ice at rolling paint. I slide the roller more than roll, leaving little lines of paints, and an uneven coat. The man tells me I probably press to hard. I’m much better at trim. When it came time to paint the room, the man did the rolling and the kids forcibly took over the trim painting. As in, demanded and actually whined (one of them), so what could I do? I had to let them. I’m
planning hoping they will be up for it again tonight.
I did some Christmas shopping. I need to wrap before little googley children (not so little) get their eyes on them. I really need to actually start looking for things for those I have to send stuff to.
The dog barfed this morning. Actually on the hardwood (he was inches from the carpet, so I was surprised).
Went to the chiro and I’m feeling lots better.
I need to get out and walk the dogs and also trim their toenails, but I feel guilty about the nail trimming since they hate it so much and the one already is having a barfy day. Both are snuggled up next to me and both want to be on my lap, which is being hogged by the interloper, aka, my laptop.
I still love turkey sandwiches. The rest of my family would like me to get a much smaller turkey in the future. There will be ham for Christmas.
I should now go back to work. And dog petting.
Sunday, December 1st, 2013
It doesn’t have to blow very hard outside to sound like quite a storm in this house. I like it. It’s whistling and moaning outside.
Been eating turkey leftovers and walking the dogs and getting ready to (finally) paint my office. Tomorrow I’ll start. I’m contemplating decorating for Christmas. I’m looking forward to putting stuff out here. Especially since it won’t be so cold outside while doing it. Whoohoo!
Did a signing at Reader’s Guide in Salem on Saturday with Devon Monk. Was a lot of fun and we got to meet a number of readers and I got to chat with some delightful people.
We watched Red2. Liked the first one better, but this was still very fun. Also watched RIPD. Campy and cheesy, but also fun. Did you know Garth Nix has written a fantasy regency romance? It’s called Newt’s Emerald. Haven’t read it yet, but I will this week. I love regency romances, and it’s Garth! Nix!
Also, a friend from grad school wrote this really awesome story called Honeydew. Go read it. You won’t regret it. It’s really excellent.
Did you have a good Thanksgiving? And if you don’t do Thanksgiving, did you have a good weekend?
Wednesday, November 27th, 2013
I have to many things to be thankful for and I hope that I remember to be thankful for all the wonders of this life throughout the year. I am grateful for family, for love, for joy, for ongoing good health, for adventure, for challenges, for words, for stories, for friends, for dreams, for life.
May you have as much joy in your life as I have in mine and may your Thanksgiving day be wonderful, however you spend it.
Wednesday, November 27th, 2013
I forgot to mention that I finished Trace of Magic a couple days ago. Go me! I talk about ending it over at Magical Words today. Specifically about ending creep. I’m pretty happy with the book so far, but only because it’s done and I haven’t reread it to find out what needs to be revised. I’m in that lovely state of denial.
My friend Christy Keyes has suffered some significant brain injuries this last year and she and her husband are struggling. If you can donate to her cause or spread the word or both, please do. I set up a gofundme site for her today. It’s here.
Have you ever noticed that family can drive you to a level of anger that no one else seems to be able to do? My son is a teenager and he’s behaving as such. Perfectly normal, but apparently I need to adjust better. And maybe go sit in the jacuzzi tub for awhile.
I did go to the chiropractor today. I feel better, but I’ll have to probably go back again. As long as I get better soon, I’ll be happy.
I’m tired of Black Friday commercials. I won’t be shopping on Black Friday, either. Unless I run out chocolate, which is highly unlikely. I just made a batch of rolls with mashed potatoes in them. I didn’t mash the potatoes very well. Hope they turn out. Also didn’t use unsalted butter, and didn’t adjust the salt levels in the bread. It’s my first go round with this recipe. The dough was nice an elastic when I set it to rise the first time. Here’s hoping it all turns out. I plan to make cinnamon rolls later. I ground the wheat myself, so it makes for tastiness.
On Small Business Saturday, Devon Monk and I will be signing and possibly reading at Reader’s Guide Books in Salem, Oregon, from 11-1. So if anybody can make it, please do!
And a little snippet, with names redacted:
“I hurt you,” he said tonelessly.
“You didn’t mean to,” I said carefully. I couldn’t get a read on how he was feeling or what he was thinking.
“I could have killed you. I wanted to kill you.”
“You didn’t know it was me.”
He shook his head and looked down, anger and fear rippling across his tight expression. “I did.”
I could only stare. My stomach turned inside out. [redacted] made a growling noise and started forward. I thrust out my hand to stop him. “Why?” I could barely push the word out. I felt strangled.
“I wanted to be dead.”
“You thought I’d kill you?” I squeaked, incredulous.
“You should have killed me. I asked you to.”
Friday, November 22nd, 2013
I finished a chapter today (the one I thought was the last chapter in this book) and promptly started the next last chapter. This ending is one that I’m discovering as I go. I’m feeling my way and it’s frustrating on the one hand because I don’t know where I’m going, and exciting on the other because when I know it’s going in the right direction, I can feel it. It’s a lot like walking through a maze with a blindfold on. I’m searching for the way by touch. I know when when I’m going in the right direction, even if I don’t know where I’m going to end up. I also know when I’m going in a wrong direction, almost immediately. It is frustrating that I don’t know what the ending is. I suppose I’ll know I’ve hit it when I get there. In this chapter. I’m sure of it. I think.
Went to listen to John (JA) Pitts read tonight. He’s awesome. Funny and sharp. You’ve got to read his books if you haven’t. Here’s a pic:
Thursday, November 21st, 2013
I’m just going to have to give in to going to the bone-cracker. Luckily, I met a massage therapist at Orycon who works locally in a chiro office. Now I just have to make the appointment. I keep getting headaches and a hip ache and a neck ache. So pretty sure the back needs adjusting.
I am getting writing done. But I still don’t know what the ending is. Yeah. I’m right on top of it. As in, within 2 or 3 thousand words of the ending (pretty sure). Surely some revelation is at hand? (oops, Yeats just crept in). But surely some ending must be at handing? What rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches toward Diamond City to be born? Oh dear. I really need to be drinking. Possibly writing. Possibly I could just crib totally from Yeats and no one would notice. Right? Hmmm. A thought.
Costco is carrying this kettle corn drizzled with dark chocolate. In my house this is known as Mom Crack. It is good stuff. I ran out of it, but was told today that going to Costco just to buy it was irresponsible. So I didn’t. Because I was going to be responsible. I know, who’d have thunk?
Been listening to Wicked Girls by Seanan McGuire. Love the album, love the song.
From the song:
Dorothy, Alice and Wendy and Jane,
Susan and Lucy, we're calling your names,
All the Lost Girls who came out of the rain
And chose to go back on the shelf.
Tinker Bell says, and I find I agree
You have to break rules if you want to break free.
So do as you like -- we're determined to be
Wicked girls saving ourselves.
I get to talk about Worldbuilding on Romantic Times Book Reviews Website.