Friday, February 29, 2008

Friday Fun

At least I'm telling myself it will be fun! On the agenda today...the frame. What else? I will also be brainstorming the trilogy. We're still trying to come up with an idea editorial likes. At least we're closer and things are not so, well, sexy now.

Hubby's been gone this week (second week this month) and I'm going to be so happy to pick him up at the airport tonight. I miss him mucho!

I sliced my finger last night with the razor blade I was using to get paint off the grooves around each of the kids' pictures. It bled, but no blood got on the frame. Huge sigh of relief. But it still hurts.

Okay, better get back to it. Is your Friday going to be fun?

Thursday, February 28, 2008

It's Back

I wish it was Angus who had returned, but unfortunately it's the frame. (Cue ominous music here.) I need to get it finished. What's left to do?

1) Touching up 5 pictures
2) Painting inside frame edges alternating black and white rectangles
3) Putting on wood conditioner (front and back)
4) Sanding (front and back)
5) Cleaning all the sawdust off (front and back)
6) Staining (front and back)

I hope to be done tomorrow so I can hand off the frame to the dad who built it so he can put on the varnish. We still need to have the mirror installed and the hardware to hang it. Due date is the morning of the 15th. The auction is that night.

My goal is to have all of the things above done by Friday. Tomorrow. Big gulp!

Wish me luck!

Do you have any projects you're working on right now? When do you want them done?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

A Not So Good Day...

Ever have one of those days you wish you could have just skipped. My Tuesday was like that. It's after midnight and I still can't sleep. My brain is still spinning. This is a bit of a whiney post so please feel free to come back tomorrow when I'm in a better mood.

I suppose in the grand scheme of things it wasn't that bad a day. No one died, got sick or injured. There was no blood, no natural disaster or no bad weather. All the homework got done and we made it to Irish dance class and back safely.

But it still wasn't a day I hope to repeat anytime soon.

A tough decision I had to make for a group I'm currently in charge of did not go over well with a dear friend of mine. At least she's still my friend. She no longer considers me one of hers.

In the middle of trying to fix that, I received an email from my editor. Our trilogy idea, the one we worked so hard on, was deemed too sexy for the Romance line. Okay, stop laughing. I know my books could never be called too sexy, but that's what she said. We were asked to come up with three new trilogy ideas by Thursday (3 o'clock London time to be exact.)

It wasn't the rejection that bothered me. Rejections are part of a writer's life. If you can't handle them, find a new job. It was more of a oh-no-how-are-we-going-to-do-this-with-the-time-differences-when-I-already-have-too-much-going-on-today. Of course, we managed via email and chat and came up with new ideas that we'll each work on today to send in on Thursday so at least that part of the day wasn't so bad.

But to tip the scales the other direction... I never got a shower. My lunch was a cup of Easy Mac & Cheese. I ate way too many Oreos for dessert. And I got zero pages read on my Rita book.

But today has to be a better day. At least that's what I'm hoping! How was your day yesterday?

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

For your reading pleasure...

The Wedding Planners is the six book continuity six Harlequin Romance authors put together. The miniseries debuts in April 2008 with Shirley Jump's Sweetheart Lost and Found. To kick off the continuity, Shirley wrote an online read at called Hold the Date. The first chapter is here. A new chapter will be posted each week. Enjoy!

Monday, February 25, 2008

A Weekend on Mount Hood

On Friday, I handed off the frame to the mom who's going to be painting the top. Total relief to have it out of my hands for a few days. Then we drove to Government Camp, Oregon which is a small town/village on Mount Hood. I'd made these reservations back in November, not realizing all that would be going on in our lives right now. But it was great to get away from home for a couple of nights. And skiing during the day was just what I needed.

We stayed at the Huckleberry Inn. It was very reasonably priced so I didn't know what to expect. The room was just the right size for us, set-up for skiers, clean and we could walk to everything except skiing. A great place to stay.

We skied Saturday and Sunday at Timberline. Rose went to ski school the two days. I have nothing, but good things to say about the Timberline Ski School. They are awesome! The progression Rose has made is awesome. A week ago Sunday, she spent the day skiing between hubby's legs. On Monday, she attended a full-day lesson and spent her time on the magic carpet, which is like a moving walkway to get you up a tiny hill so you can ski down. On Saturday, she took another full day lesson and skied on the Bruno lift which is Timberline's bunny hill. Yesterday was her third full day lesson and she skied all over the mountain. I almost cried when I saw her with her class. I couldn't believe how much she'd improved from last Sunday. Her instructor told me she can ski anywhere on the mountain! But she skis in a power wedge which means this coming weekend she'll have to work on her turns. After seeing how much Rose improved, the other two kids now want to take a lesson, too!

On Sunday, my knee was bothering me a little so I stopped skiing after lunch. So did Mackenna. We changed clothes and sat in the lobby of Timberline Lodge and read. It was very nice! We got home just in time to unpack the car then head to church, for me to teach my class. Afterwards I watched the Oscars (though hadn't seen any of the movies.) I got a little misty-eyed when they showed Heath Ledger in the montage of people who had died. Later that night, I finished another Rita book. Only three to go!

Today will be somewhat relaxing. I only have my class to teach after lunch. Speech was cancelled so I won't have to pick the kids up from school and head to Portland. There is a special Irish dance practice for Mackenna (St. Patrick's day is just around the corner) but I'm hoping to sweet talk hubby into taking that. I need to work on my new story and read another Rita book!

Is your Monday looking to be relaxing or manic?

Sunday, February 24, 2008

And this week's contest winner is...

Skiing has been great. I can't wait to hit the slopes again today so I thought I'd better post this week's free book winner before we left.

Here are your random numbers:

Timestamp: 2008-02-24 14:52:19 UTC

This week's free book winner is Brandy. She won with a comment on the post, Waiting. Brady, please pick a book from the list here and email me your selection with your snail address. You can find my email via the contact link on my website. And even if you've won a book in the past please include your mailing address. That makes things easier for me. Thanks!

Last week's winner Dru chose Got the Look by James Grippando. Hope you enjoy the book, Dru.

Tonight is Oscar night. I love award shows, but I have to teach so will miss some of it. Are you planning to watch the Academy Awards? I didn't see many movies this past year so most are just names to me. Is there a specific movie you're rooting for.

Time to wake everyone up and get ready. Have a great day!

Friday, February 22, 2008

More about the Frame...

The frame was my life yesterday except for that brief trip to the rock gym. I worked on woodburning the top and touching up the kids' pictures until on one o'clock this morning. I made a mistake on on the "P" so am off to Home Depot to see if I can fix it. Then I'll swing by Michaels and then head back to the class to finish up the painting. Or at least try to. I have five more squares that need to be finished by the kids.

This picture shows what I'd traced on burned onto the sides of the frame. Each drawing was done by a fourth grader.

Here's the other side of the frame. I put words under each picture, too. Some examples: Peace, Dance, Celebrate, Love, Sports, Play, Read.

This shows our theme for the frame: Everyday Keep The Faith. It goes along with the school being Catholic, but is also from the High School Muscial 2 song, Everyday. I woodburned the top last night. This picture was taken when I was halfway through the process. The right side had been burned, but the left side hadn't. I made a mistake with the tail on the "P" so am hoping to find a way to fix that today.

Okay, gotta get to Home Depot. Have a great Friday. Any weekend plans?

Thursday, February 21, 2008

A Mountain Rescue Thanks

If you've read this blog for awhile, you know the story of the three missing climbers on Mount Hood in December of 2006, Jerry Cooke, Brian Hall and Kelly James, inspired my upcoming December 2008 release, Rescued by the Magic of Christmas. Writing that book and the research I had to do was how I got interested in climbing myself. Anyway, I found this in my google alerts. A very nice way to say thank you to the organizations that helped in the search and rescue operation!

I'm back from climbing at the rock gym this morning. I've been brainstorming my new book and will continue to do so as I wood burn the top design of the frame. I'll be back in the classroom tomorrow for more painting. I really want this thing done!

Thanks for letting me know what you're waiting for. Glad I'm not the only one.

Did you catch the lunar eclipse last night? Hubby is really into astronomy. The kidlets didn't want to come inside they were having such a good time.

Okay, better get to it! Have a great day.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


Still no word on our trilogy idea. I've been taking advantage of the time to read RITA books and work on the frame, but I have been thinking about my story, too. Today I'm going to start writing even without approval. I just don't think I can wait with such a tight deadline.

Here's a picture of the fourth grade class auction project I'm doing with Mackenna's class. This was taken right before I started tracing the kids' pictures.

The painting on the frame is going well. In the two and a half hours I was at the class yesterday, four children finished their pictures and two got started. I'm heading back there for another two hours today. I hope I can speed them up a little. At this rate, it'll take two to three more days of me being there and I just don't have that kind of time right now. Especially when I need to do a little touch up on each picture afterwards.

I'm also waiting on the top design to be given to me. I emailed the mom doing it that I wanted the picture today so I can trace and burn it tonight. Fingers crossed it's at the school for me. Fortunately she's an artist and will do the painting herself. She's very talented so I know it will look fantastic!

Are you waiting for anything today?

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


I climbed this morning and have to head to the school later so I figured I'd do a quick update on my To Do list. Here it is:

1. 4th Grade Art Project (due early March)
a. Burn inner work around three sides
b. Burn 17 16 14 pictures drawn by kids
c. Trace top design (waiting to be given this)
d. Burn top design
e. Paint inner work
f. Have 17 kids 16 kids 12 kids paint their pictures
g. Paint top design
h. Stain (may paint it now)
i. Varnish
j. Have mirror installed
h. Have hardware to hang frame installed

2. Finish AAs (due a week from Tuesday)

3. Embroider two panels for 2nd Grade Art Project (due a week from Monday)

4. Read 8 6 5 Rita 4 3 books (scores due March 8)

5. Write Princess Nobody proposal (no deadline, but should have been sent in January) new manuscript (due May 1)

6. Download pictures

7. Finish Disneyland Trip Report (for here and Disney forum)

8. Mail free book winner (Nathalie) her book. Brandy, too! I did buy new padded envelopes so no more delay! And all the other contest winners and stuff. Need to add go to Post Office and mail all those padded envelopes!

9. Make a new headpiece for Mackenna's solo dress

Okay, so some progress. What about you?

Monday, February 18, 2008

And the winner is...

By the time I emailed our trilogy idea (many pages worth of stuff) it was very late so after a day of skiing, then woodburning, then writing, I choose to go to bed instead.

So here we go.

Here are your random numbers:

Timestamp: 2008-02-18 15:20:25 UTC

This week's free book winner is Dru. She won with a comment on the post, Back From Seattle. Dru, please pick a book from the list here and email me your selection with your snail address. You can find my email via the contact link on my website. Thanks!

Last week's winner, Brandy, choose Bite Me If You Can by Lynsay Sands. (I have more than one copy to give away which is why it's still on the book list.) Two weeks ago winner, Dena, chose Swept Away by Toni Blake. Oh, and our Valentine's Day winner, Catslady chose In Deep Waters... from my backlist.

I was supposed to spend today skiing. It's going to be another gorgeous clear blue sky day. Hubby and the two younger ones are on their way to Timberline right now. But I'm staying home. Mackenna's knee had been hurting her after Crossfit Kids on Friday and it was really hurting her after skiing yesterday. It is swollen so now she's off her feet icing it every 20 minutes and using crutches until it no longer hurts when she puts weight on it. The hubby tweaked his knee yesterday, too. He was even wearing a brace. I had him do the same rest, ice, elevation and ibuprofen. I hope he's okay to ski today.

Once we get our trilogy idea approved I'll go into a few more details, but until we hear back from the editors, I don't want to say anything other than it's about three heroines who live in three different countries: UK, Australia and the US. Each of us authors if from one of those countries!

Have a good day!

Sunday, February 17, 2008


Whatever I caught Thursday night was not fun. I spent two days in bed sprinkled with short wood burning sessions on Friday and Saturday. I was feeling better today so we went skiing. Talk about an awesome day! Blue skies and lovely snow! Of course, I should have been writing.

I actually sold something the week before last without even submitting anything! I was asked to participate in a trilogy with two other authors, one I met in Dallas, the other who I met last night via Yahoo chat. I assumed we'd be receiving a bible with what Editorial wanted us to write. Wrong! I found out last night (I hadn't been checking email) that we get to come up with the trilogy ourselves. And guess what? All three manuscripts are due May 1. Gulp!

Anyway, we came up with something and due to the time change I need to put it all together so we can email it off tonight. Once I do that I'll announce the contest winner if it's not too late. Otherwise, it'll be first thing in the morning.

Hope you had a great day!

Friday, February 15, 2008

More Prizes!

My hubby just brought in the mail. My wonderful editor, Joanne Carr, sent me a whole bunch of "Happy Valentine's Day Save $1.00 on any Harlequin or Silhouette book" coupons. So...

If you commented yesterday, email me your snail address and I'll send coupons your way. They expire on March 31, 2008 and are only valid at participating retail stores in the U.S.

If you didn't want comment, but would like coupons, maybe we can figure something out. An SASE, perhaps?

A Valentine's Day Contest

Surprise! I decided to hold a special contest yesterday and pick a winner from the comments left on Valentine's Day. The following people commented:

1. Nathalie
2. Dru
3. Tori
4. Brandy
5. Bethre
6. Marianne
7. Catslady
8. Limecello

And the winner is...

Here are your random numbers:

Timestamp: 2008-02-15 16:44:00 UTC

Catslady! Your prize is one of my books from my backlist (it's on my website) and something chocolate! The only book not available is If The Ring Fits... Please email me your choice and your snail address.

Have a great Friday!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Be My Valentine

I know many people hate Valentine's Day. For many years (think those dating and single years), I dreaded February 14th. Oh, there were some good ones in there. I remember one guy I dated, a management consultant who traveled all the time so wasn't in town on the 14th, gave me the cutest card that is still one of my favorite Valentines to this day. I was an aspiring writer then and the wording inside was about being a "romantic novelist." But there were some bad ones, really bad ones, February 14ths straight from a horror movie rather than a romantic comedy. But even then I never gave up on Valentine's Day.

I couldn't.

Let's face it. I'm a romantic at heart. Always have been. Always will be. I believe in true love and happily ever afters. I'm a romance writer for goodness sake! How can I not love a day that celebrates love? And not just well the heart pounding, take your breath away romantic love. Sure, there's that, but the day is also a time to celebrate the love of family and friends. At least that's how I look at it.

Valentine's Day is a big deal around here. Well, for four of us, anyway. I don't think hubby gets into it much, but he's a good sport about the rest of us. The kidlets made goodie bags for each of their classmates and took great care with their choice of Valentine cards. In case you're interested, this year's choices were High School Musical and Disney Princesses.

Tonight hubby and I be going out to dinner for a much deserved date night. We decided to just do cards this year. Though I'm kind of hoping a box of chocolates will show up somehow! The kids will each be getting a card from us and a Mickey and Minnie heart lollipop I bought at Disneyland.

Do you have any special plans for Valentine's Day?

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Mark Your Calendars!

August 15, 2008.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

I cannot wait!

From The Associated Press:

NEW YORK - "Star Wars: The Clone Wars," an animated film, will open Aug. 15 in theaters throughout North America, followed by the debut of a television series this fall.

Lucasfilm Ltd., Warner Bros. Pictures and Turner Broadcasting System Inc. made the announcement Tuesday.

A television series of the same name will debut on Cartoon Network in the fall and later air on TNT.

Same old same going on here today. What about you?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


I started writing this morning's blog post and noticed red on my keyboard. One of my burnt (and cut) fingers was bleeding. I sliced it open with the tip of my wood burning pen yesterday. It's pretty nasty looking and has been bothering me. Time for some antibiotic ointment and a Band-Aid!

Since I'm bleeding, I'll make it short. I'm making progress on the To Do list. Here's the updated version:

1. 4th Grade Art Project (due early March)
a. Burn inner work around three sides
b. Burn 17 16 14 pictures drawn by kids
c. Trace top design (waiting to be given this)
d. Burn top design
e. Paint inner work
f. Have 17 kids paint their pictures
g. Paint top design
h. Stain
i. Varnish
j. Have mirror installed
h. Have hardware to hang frame installed

2. Finish AAs (due a week from Tuesday)

3. Embroider two panels for 2nd Grade Art Project (due a week from Monday)

4. Read 8 6 5 Rita books (scores due March 8)

5. Write Princess Nobody proposal (no deadline, but should have been sent in January)

6. Download pictures

7. Finish Disneyland Trip Report (for here and Disney forum)

8. Mail free book winner (Nathalie) her book. Brandy, too! I did buy new padded envelopes so no more delay!

9. Make a new headpiece for Mackenna's solo dress

Still lots to do, but progress. I'm going to climb today. I need to do something physical. Other than that I will be wood burning and trying to sneak in a few chapters of the current Rita book I'm reading.

How is your To Do list coming along?

Monday, February 11, 2008

Catching my breath

It's Monday. It's manic. I just stopped at home for a few minutes to let oldest change into her dance clothes. She is on a special troupe that will perform for St. Patrick's Day. Of course that means extra practices.

On Saturday, the headband was a big hit. Lots of comments on it. No one knew I had made it myself. One mom said she wanted me to make one for her daughter when she got her first solo dress.

Mackenna looked gorgeous in the dress. It really sparkles on stage. I almost cried when she had everything on for the first time. Simply beautiful.

I already turned in the Nativity tree skirt panels and didn't take a picture of them. Another mom is sewing them. Luckily I only had to do two of them (eight total). This morning I realized I'd forgotten Joseph's hands. Oops. Took a break from wood burning to finish that up.

I've started work on the frame. Already I've burned two of my fingers. Ouch. They hurt, but I can't let pain deter me. I must get it done. The sooner the better so the kids can paint it.

Okay, that's all the time I have for now. Hope your day is going well and is calmer than mine!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

A new winner!

Time to choose this week's free book winner from all those who posted a comment on the blog. Here are your random numbers:

Timestamp: 2008-02-11 05:25:29 UTC

This week's free book winner is Brandy. She won with a comment on the post, Another Winner. Brandy, please pick a book from the list here and email me your selection with your snail address. You can find my email via the contact link on my website. Thanks!

I never heard from last week's winner, Dena. If you see this, Dena, please follow the instructions above and let me know what book you would like.

I finished the tree skirt embroidery. I'm back to practicing the wood burning. I have to have that done this week. Cross your fingers for me and say a prayer. I'm going to need all the help I can get!

Sweet dreams!

Back from Seattle

We just got home from a weekend trip to Seattle. Two of the kidlets competed in the Emerald City Feis at the Seattle Center. Both did great, placing in every one of their dances. It doesn't get much better than that.

I'm almost finished with my panels for the 2nd grade Nativity Tree Skirt class auction project. I'm going to try to get that finished now before I have to teach my class. I post the winner of the free book later tonight!

Hope you're having a nice Sunday!

Saturday, February 09, 2008

What Type of Weather Are You?

Busy day ahead so I decided to put a quiz up for my post today. I thought weather seemed like a good choice. We've had nothing but rain. It feels as if it will never stop raining. Life in the Pacific Northwest, but I gotta admit rain sure beats those blistering summers when I lived in Tempe Arizona!

Hope you have a great day whatever the weather may be where you are!

You Are Lightning

Beautiful yet dangerous
People will stop and watch you when you appear
Even though you're capable of random violence

You are best known for: your power

Your dominant state: performing

Friday, February 08, 2008

Wood burning

I'm still working on the mirror frame project for my daughter's fourth grade class, and I wanted to give a shout out to Nedra and her wonderful Sawdust Connection. If you're interested in wood burning, she is the one to talk to. Very helpful, especially with a newbie who knows absolutely nothing. She has awesome products. There is a yahoo groups you can sign up for at her site, too.

Four hours

Tonight I spent four hours on something so I could check it off my To Do list. It wasn't reading or writing. It wasn't woodburning or embroidery either. Instead of doing any of those things which also need to be done, I made my oldest a new headband to go with her Irish dance solo dress. Four hours turning a 97 cent headband from Walmart (which our school dressmaker, Alison Thrasher, graciously gave me for free to save me a trip to the store) into something to go with a $750 dress! This proves, once again, that I am truly insane. And totally addicted to crafting.

Want to know how many times I undid what I'd done? Three

How many times I could have been done, but decided to do a little more? Two

How many times did I wonder how much Alison would have charged to make one for me? Four

How many hot pink rhinestones I decided to add once I was "finished?" Twenty-seven

Okay, 27 may have been overkill, but she's nine and likes pink. Many girls wear tiaras so I figure her headband needs to sparkle. The real reason I glued all of those on is I bought the wrong color Swavorski crystal beads so only could use six orange ones. She wanted orange and pink ones. It's hard to tell the difference between the various pinks!

I'd post a picture of it, but I'm too tired. (I took this picture and added it this morning. Blogger won't let me upload the others.) Right now, all I can think about is her liking it. I really want her to love it, but I'll settle for like. Who am I kidding? Even indifference will be acceptable. (She loves it!)

I also hope it looks good on her. I tried the headband on, but it's not really my thing or colors. I wasn't quite sure what I was doing though as I made it so I'm a little worried. I've never made one of these before and I was making it up as I went along. If it doesn't look good, I'm in trouble. I really don't have another four hours to spend making a second one. I really didn't have the four hours to use on the first one. Let's face it, there's so much else I could get done in that amount of time.

If someone gave you four extra hours, how would you spend them?

Have a fantastic Friday!

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Cover Stuff

I received a preliminary cover from my June 09 release. It's a .pdf, not a .jpg, so I don't think I can post it on blogger. Anyway, it's a lovely cover and I'm thrilled with it. The hero and heroine are in front of a lodge style fireplace. He's down on his knee. She's standing there looking at him. Very pretty and romantic scene. There's only one problem...

It's not my book.

Okay, the cover says SOS Marry Me! and my name is there, too, but the characters are not Kane and Serena. Characters often don't look like who I imagined, I'm used to that, but these two are so far off it's hard to believe. They don't match the descriptions at all.

The guy on the cover does not look like a bad boy at all (thank goodness they changed the title from Stranded with the Bad Boy.) He looks more like someone's perfect boyfriend. He's got a neatly trimmed, corporate haircut and it's a really dark, too. In case you forgot or are new here, this picture is who inspired Kane.

The woman is very pretty. She's even wearing a pink dress that's eerily similar to the one I wore to the Harlequin party in Dallas in July. But she has thick, curly hair that falls down her back, not some hip Sienna Miller type short 'do that doesn't touch her collar. Guess she forgot to tell me she got hair extensions along the way!

I really shouldn't complain. This one makes up for the really bad covers I had. I do like it. But I'd really like to be a fly on the wall in one of those art department cover meetings someday and see how things are decided.

What is your favorite book cover? It doesn't have to be a romance book.

Hope you're having a good day!

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Naptime with Angus

Yesterday Angus and Rose decided to take an impromtu nap together. Normally Rose sleeps upstairs, but she fell asleep on the couch in the great room. It was very sweet watching the two together. Even though Angus woke up before her, he stayed with her while she slept. It's almost as if they've formed their own pack! Even my one who isn't that keen on animals is warming up to our wonder guard dog. He wanted to hold the leash when we went on a walk today. How can you not love that adorable doggy!

On a somewhat somber note, I found that Angus will be moving to London. Though I'll miss not to be able to dog sit him and get my puppy fix, I'm sad (putting it mildly) that his owner, my dear friend Tiffany, will be moving across the pond. It's not permanent move so I've been concentrating on that part of it. Plus this will be a wonderful experience for her. She loves traveling so this will be a great opportunity for her to introduce Europe to her son. I just have to think of all the positives for her and not my aching heart.

After much consideration, I decided to give up ice cream and time wasters for Lent. We'll see how I do. I did okay this morning, but I was out and about, Mass, walk with Angus, Adoration, Climbing, walk with Angus. That's why this post is so late. No time this morning trying to get us all out on time!

How has your day been so far?

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Mardi Gras

After all the kids had cleared out of class yesterday, and I was cleaning up, one of the mom's walked in with a large gift bag in her hand. She said it was a Lenten gift from all the moms. I was so surprised and touched!

Inside the bag were wonderful goodies, including books, one called A is for Altar is a something I've been wanting to buy and the other is was Bible Stories for 40 days that will be perfect for our closing circle time at both the Atriums where I teach! There were also Lent countdown calendars for Easter. One with stickers and the other similar to an Advent calendar with little doors. I can't wait to get them up.

Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday. That means King's Cake today. Yum! I love cake.

The kidlets asked what I was giving up for the forty days starting tomorrow on Ash Wednesday. I haven't decided yet, but need to figure that out today. One said I should give up my computer because that would be a real sacrifice. I told her I couldn't do my job without my computer so that wasn't possible. Her replay, "oh."

I'm hoping the kids give up arguing and fighting with each other. That would be so much better than candy or sweets, don't you think?

What do you think I should give up for the next forty days?

Enjoy Mardi Gras!

Monday, February 04, 2008

Another winner!

I took yesterday off from blogging. I worked on my To Do list instead. I read one of my RITA books (a new-to-me author) and read through my AAs. Now I just have to go back through the AAs, answer all the questions I wrote to myself and review the changes I made. I like to give things a day to sit and go back over my copy of the manuscript before I finalize edits. I also watched the Super Bowl with hubby. He's from New York and was so excited that the Giants won. All of us were on our feet and screaming during the fourth quarter!

Here are your random numbers:

Timestamp: 2008-02-04 15:39:09 UTC

This week's free book winner is Dena. She won with a comment on the post, Paging Dr. Ross. Dena, please pick a book from the list here and email me your selection with your snail address. You can find my email via the contact link on my website. Thanks!

Last week's winner, Nathalie, chose And Then He Kissed Me by Laura Lee Guhrke.

The kids have a two hour late start due to icy roads. That means no school for Rose. She only attended one day last week and now this. I have yet to have a kidlet-free day since we returned from Disneyland.

Hope you have a good Monday

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Burn baby burn

Progress. I checked off more items from my mental To Do list. Still no time to write one! Which means I'll forget something so here's a quick version (without all the little steps to accomplish an item) since this blog seems to be the only writing I'm doing right now!

1.  4th Grade Art Project (due early March)
2.  Finish AAs  (due a week from Tuesday)
3.  Embroider two panels for 2nd Grade Art Project  (due a week from Monday)
4.  Read 8 Rita books (scores due end of month)
5.  Write Princess Nobody proposal (no deadline, but should have been sent in January)
6.  Download pictures
7.  Finish Disneyland Trip Report (for here and Disney forum)
8.  Mail free book winner (Nathalie) her book
9.  Make a new headpiece for Mackenna's solo dress

Last night, I finished the tracing on three sides of the frame. This includes one inch rectangles along the inside that will alternate black and white. I'd forgotten about those so had to reposition five of the pictures after I'd spent an hour aligning them.  That hurt.  But not as much as my back. When I was done, I could barely stand up straight. That's what I get for hunching over so long. A rounded back is not a good idea!

I'm climbing this morning, then after that I will concentrate on wood burning. I still don't fee confident enough to start on the frame so I'll be working on my practice pieces again. I need to put in some serious time today and up my skill level significantly. I also need to try a couple different primers (a friend from my old school suggested using black or white) to see which will work best with the acrylic paint and fourth grade kids!

Once I feel better with the wood burning, I'll dive into Rescued by the Magic of Christmas. Reading the first four chapters has been kinda of magical for me. I've found a couple of things I want changed, but I'm so happy with the book. Huge sigh of relief on my part.

It's always hard when you finish a manuscript. At least it is for me because I'm usually banging my head against the deadline. That means I've been living and breathing the book and by that point I can't even see the words any more. I'll get an "okay, this is good" feeling before I send it off and hope I'm not being delusional, but it's not until the AAs arrive that I know for sure. Of course, if I'm still being delusional, all bets are off.

Anyone care to share their To Do list?

Friday, February 01, 2008

Sleeping in

Last night was a rough one for Finn. He kept coughing and his nose kept running. Though his fever broke! At 4:30 am, I turned on the shower and we sat in the steamed up bathroom for a while. Needless to say, when morning rolled around I was not ready to get up. Hubby got the youngest ready for school. He also fed the other two who were staying home.

He told me he was leaving for work at 8:30. I was planning to get up, but must have fallen asleep for another hour. When I came down, the two kidlets were watching Sprout/PBS on demand. I also noticed the timer on the stove on. Thinking I might have another burnt bread episode on my hands, I asked about that. Mackenna told me she didn't know when I was going to wake up and didn't want to forget her medicine. My babies are growing up!

Before I went to bed, I could have checked several items off my To Do list had I had time to write it. I managed to trace 7 of the 17 pictures onto the frame. I read through 2 more chapters on my AAs. I also practiced some more with the wood burner.

This weekend will be all about taking care of the kids, getting things done and catching up though I managed to schedule in an hour to climb! What will you be doing?