Monday, November 24, 2014

Quitter

NaNoWriMo is getting down to the wire and I've decided to call it quits. I hit the wall just shy of 30K. But I feel like I have a good reason for quitting. In the past, it was always life that got in the way. Work, kids, life in general.

This year, though, it's the story. Which I guess is just me? Either way, I am a pantser, as I've said before. But I usually have a general idea of where the story *should* go. This year, the story kind of took on a mind of its own. It focused too much on what should have been a minor point and not enough on the main point. That was the romance, in case you were wondering. I'm just not happy with what was happening. So I'm quitting. Which isn't the answer! Usually! But in this case, I felt like it was. 

My heart just wasn't in it like it should have been. I was keeping up because I had time, which was great. The words were flowing. Then all of the sudden, they weren't. Because it wasn't working anymore. The story headed a different direction. There's no one to blame but me and I take full responsibility. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

NaNoWriMo Status Report

Okay, so we're on day 11 of NaNoWriMo. It's going well so far. I've admitted before how I "cheat" and justify it because I hand write. I mean, how else are you expected to keep up when you are essentially doing it twice? I actually started on one idea and then came up with another one that I liked better. I consulted Twitter about whether to abandon the first idea for the second and someone suggested writing both. Seriously?! Are you mad?!

For the record, I'm working on the second idea. It's about a girl who meets a farm boy (shocker) and has to deal with their blossoming relationship stuff going on at home with her parents. Like any first draft, it's kind of crap so far. There are redeeming moments, though (first kiss for the win!!). But so far, it's been going pretty well.

However, when I get to around this point (17K, if you're keeping track), I start to lose momentum. One thing I will do is quit. Obviously. It's the easy out. But I will usually only quit if life is really getting in the way and I absolutely cannot force out any more crap words on the page.

Another method I use is to skip around. I panic and think there is absolutely no way I will ever finish at the rate I'm going. This is how I used to write most of my stuff. I'd have a bunch of random scenes and I'd have to find a way to tie them all together. That's probably why I never finished anything before. I've gotten better at tying it all together, but I don't like to write that way anymore. It's hard.

But I've got 17,504 words and I'm not sure where to go next. It's the honest death of a pantser. Am I still considered a pantser if I have a general idea of where I'm going? I write out the general plot (they meet and fall in love, HEA) and maybe some stops along the way. I like to have names figured out, but I started idea #1 using -girl- as my placeholder for her name. She became Zoe later on. I kept that name for idea #2 also.

Anyway, so here I am 833 words behind for the day. What am I doing writing a blog post?!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

On Being a Farmer's Wife

Hello and welcome. I met my day 2 word count for NaNoWriMo, so I'm taking time out to post this entry that I actually started a couple weeks ago. It's been wallowing around in my brain for quite some time. Now I'm taking the time to get it out and 2 potential posts turned into one. So bear with me.

One day recently, The Farmer asked me to run for parts. No big deal. I even got to venture on over to the next county. It only takes 30-45 minutes, so it's not a HUGE drive. It's a nice little venture, actually. I get to pass things like this barn. 



After I acquired the parts, I got to stop at this nifty little grocery store called Dorothy's Market. It's fairly new (or in a new building, I guess. It's actually been around a while), redesigned and all that. I had only been there a couple times in it's previous incarnation. Now it's like a fancy, upscale kind of store. But the stuff they sell is from a company called Dot Foods that is headquartered there. They distribute food, basically. So the stuff in the store might be damaged or almost expired. But it's all kinds of awesome. 



I mean, look at this can of nacho cheese that I got. Noble Roman's? Yes, please! I ate there once when I was in Indianapolis a few years, but it stuck with me. And since I have a thing for nachos, it was perfect. Coincidentally, they also had packs of nacho chips (like you'd find at the gas station) 4 for $1. Bonus.

So the point of this is that I like to run for parts because it gives me an excuse to go somewhere.


Not different scenery really, but kinda.

This is actually from the town where I grew up. It says "Birthplace of Dr. William S Gray, Author of Dick and Jane reading primers." Cool, huh? I can honestly say I didn't know this fact until within the last five or so years maybe? Like...when they put up the sign. How sad is that?!



See? Nacho heaven!!



Hopefully you've stuck with me this long to get to an actual point. As I stated above, I combined two posts into one because they sort of go together.

Once upon a time, a very long time ago, when I was kinda young and naive, I guess, I wrote a short essay purely for my own amusement. Basically, I pointed out all the things that make one a Farmer's Wife, as opposed to someone who is just married to a farmer. I wrote it in response to this annoying girl I knew, who also happened to be married to a farmer. But she was a city girl at heart and didn't seem to appreciate what she had (an aside...her farmer wasn't really that great and they are actually divorced now, but it doesn't really change the basis for what I'm about to write).

So recently, I've been struggling with my identity as a farmer's wife. I thought when I first lost my job that I might be called upon more to help out with farm things. I really haven't, though. And aside from helping to move equipment or picking up parts, I haven't done much of anything. Which is kind of sad. Because I had ALL THE TIME to help. I also had a baby to care for, but people do that all the time! Take the kid in the tractor and whatnot. I didn't have that opportunity.

But there are the REAL farmers' wives out there (like a reality show waiting to happen!!) who drive the grain carts and do the chores and bale the hay, etc. So how can I call myself a farmer's wife when compared to them? Had I turned into someone who was just married to a farmer?

No. And here's why.

Because I worked outside the home for almost 11 years. I supported our farm that way. I made the money that paid the bills and I carried the health insurance (which we have really been missing lately!! That shizz is expensive!) and I took care of the kids when I wasn't at work. I still helped move equipment when I could. I still picked up parts when I was in town.

Just because I'm not employed any more, doesn't mean I'm not still helping out. And it doesn't really mean I have to help out any more than I did before (even though I wanted to). Aside from the extra paycheck and the insurance, I can still do the same things I was doing before. I'm a full-time Mom now (though I still don't refer to myself as a SAHM...that's my issue). I have time to do other things I enjoy (like NaNoWriMo, for example).

So I guess my point is that being married to a farmer still doesn't make you a farmer's wife unless you chose to be one. And you can do that in any way you chose. It doesn't mean you have to be out there helping all the time. You could be raising kids and cooking meals AND helping. Or working outside the home to bring in the money. Or any combination of things. Being a farmer's wife isn't the same thing for everybody. And that's okay.


Monday, October 20, 2014

Bring It

Well, it's that time of year again. When I make my official declaration of my intention to participate in NaNoWriMo. Hopefully I'll have a better chance of finishing this year! No excuses!


Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Pics and Random Stuff

I didn't get the job. It's cool, though.  Look at all the cool crochet stuff I've been able to crank out! Slippers, arm warmers, dishcloths, coffee cozies, hats, headbands! All the things! I've also completed a couple scarfs. If I could finish a blanket, I'd be doing really well.

Recently, I've become a little obsessed with making my own tortilla chips. Because usually I buy a bag and I'm the only one who eats them and they get stale before the bag is empty. Now I just buy corn tortillas and make a few at a time. Super easy and quite tasty.


We got out the fire pit the other night. I'm not a very good fire builder, but I managed to get a small one lit. It was super windy that night, though. And we didn't burn anything down!



This is our pasture pumpkin. It grew, apparently, from all the old pumpkins we threw over the fence last year. There were a ton of vines, but we only got the one pumpkin. The calves have since trampled all of it, so the chances of finding another one are slim.

Friday, September 26, 2014

I Did It...and I Survived

I post a lot about fear. Because I have a lot of it. This week can serve as a little reminder that maybe I finally just need to let it all go.

The job search...ugh. For all the jobs I've ever had, I knew somebody. I had a connection that helped me get my foot in the door. Super beneficial, even if it was just a crappy, part-time summer job. This time, it was The Farmer's uncle. There was an opening at the company he works for. So I applied. And then I realized I went to high school with a girl in the HR department. Bonus. I went through a pre-screen phone interview with her. Apparently I didn't make a total ass out of myself because they called to schedule an actual interview earlier this week.

It's terrifying, really. I mean, I worked for 11 years at my last job. That's pretty unheard of anymore. So I'd been out of the game. I didn't know what to wear. I didn't know what to say. I couldn't eat breakfast that morning. Which was really bad because the interview went through the lunch hour. They told me it would take 3 hours. Holy what?! And I would have to meet with 3 people. ::DEAD::

But I went. And I did it. And it was fine. Generally speaking. I SURVIVED. I didn't choke. I struggled with some of the questions...because it was the kind where they ask you to give a specific example for a situation and how you handled it and what was the outcome. Not the old school stuff, like tell me your strengths and what are your qualifications. Because who needs that?! 

I haven't heard back yet, so I don't know what will happen. Either way, I'm content. Because you know what else I did this week? I started querying again. Yep. I started to query RURAL ROUTE. Because it's done and it's revised and it's just been sitting on my computer. So...why not? Just let go of that fear and just do it.

(and just an update on my last post...in case you're dying to know...I've really been able to cut back on my spending. Except for some awesome yarn I ordered from the UK. Because people always need blankets and such. Again, if no job works out, I'll start selling the things I crochet!)

Friday, September 12, 2014

A Couple Truths and a Random Question

I'll lead with the question because it has absolutely nothing to do with anything. If you ran into a Facebook friend in real life and they pretty much looked the other way, would you unfriend them? I ask because it happened to me. I am usually the one who would avoid eye contact or whatever, but I was all ready to say hello and she looked away. The Farmer said maybe she didn't recognize me. Which I would've considered if my profile picture weren't an actual picture of me (a selfie with my mom, actually) that I posted a couple weeks ago. But whatever, you know? I'm kind of over the whole using Facebook to connect with people I used to know thing. Now I use it for recipes and crochet patterns and book recs and funny comics. No wonder Facebook wants to charge businesses to promote their posts.

Anyway...on to the real stuff...

First, I have a birthday coming up in a couple months. It's not a big one or anything. Just a birthday. Which is pretty much every birthday. But with my current jobless situation, I'm wondering if I'm having a mid-life crisis. At what age does that happen? Do women normally have one? Is it something that should come along with menopause? Because I'm pretty sure I'm nowhere near that yet. Because you think of 50-60 year old men buying flashy cars and getting young girlfriends. Mine is more related to my life choices. And the dreams behind them, I suppose.

So obviously, the dream is still to be a writer. But that's hard. Duh. I'm getting ready to query another book. There's still all the doubt and fear associated with it, but I'm going to do it.

And what if it still doesn't happen?

Well, I applied for another job today. There have been a couple others. I didn't even get interviews. This shit is hard, yo. If you go back to the beginning, I believe I said something along the lines of how easy I thought it would be. Well, that was delusional crap. Because it is HARD. I still believe I'd be better off without a degree and a lot of experience. 

So if I can't get published and I can't get a real job, then what? Do I give up and start calling myself a stay at home mom? Do I try to pick up a gimmick and sell my blogging abilities? Yeah, that will never happen.

You know what I really want to do now? I want to junk for a living. I want to go around buying up antique treasures and reselling them. I've discovered a whole community of folks who do this on Instagram. It's kind of amazing. I can't imagine actually making a living out of it, though. Which is why I want to lease some store space and open a shop. How cool would that be? Only I don't know a lot about running a business and I'm not in the business of being a people person. So I don't see that working out too well for me.

In the meantime, my mom and I are going to take part in a flea market in a couple weeks to unload some of our treasures. Hopefully someone will love these things as much as I do and want to pay me an insane amount of money for them so I can convince The Farmer that I'm not crazy.

And that leads in to the final truth...maybe I've talked about it before. For as little as I blog, you'd think I could recall what I've posted. Anyway, they always say that the first step is admitting you have a problem, right? Well, you'd think someone who is unemployed would have a better handle on spending habits. But I don't. I can reign myself in and keep it in check for a while. Then something will happen and I'll lose my shit again. 

My parents never had a lot of money. I never wore the name brand stuff growing up. But I see now that my parents weren't great savers, I guess. My brother isn't good with money, either. The Farmer knew this when he married me and yet he always seems surprised to find out I've bought something. 

Don't get me wrong. I don't buy $500 shoes and designer bags. I don't like to spend over $30 on any one article of clothing. 

But I probably have 10 pairs of Old Navy flip flops and at least 10 of their tanks. In my defense, a lot of those were purchased during my second pregnancy...seven years ago. So my stuff lasts. But it's like it's never enough, you know? Maybe part of it is buying stuff I don't need. But I feel like I can always justify it. Especially when I was working. It was my money. I could spend it however I wanted. As long as we could pay the bills, it was okay. We can still pay the bills, but my habits haven't changed much. I didn't really need 3 different versions of The Simpsons limited edition Moleskine notebook. Yet I have that many. They might be collectors items someday! Because it's The Simpsons! 

See how I did that? I justified it. Which is really quite crap. So, I didn't spend any money today. And I probably won't until we need groceries again. I'm even trying to be more responsible on the food front. I took inventory of the pantry and I'm trying to be better about using up what's there instead of stuffing it full. I have a house full of picky eaters, though, so this is proving to be a challenge. But I'm determined. 

So, there you have it, readers (all five of you). My truths. My shame. Maybe now that I've admitted it, I'll be able to fix it. Use my internet to watch Netflix like a normal person, instead of online shopping. (I did manage to cut $50 off the phone/internet bill, so that's a small victory worth mentioning)

Monday, August 11, 2014

Here I Am


This place has always held a little bit of magic for me. Something about the creaking of the docks and the water. At night, it's so peaceful.

I used to come here when I was younger. My aunt and uncle brought my cousin and I to babysit our 2 younger cousins (who, by the way, are both over drinking age now...so I am officially old). One of the first longer stories I ever wrote was based down here. So it's always held a special place in my heart.

When my brother and his wife got married, we did a bachelorette weekend here. When The Farmer's sister got married, I suggested a weekend down here. Fun was had by all. That was several years ago. But here I am again. I'm not sure it's as magical as I remember. Maybe it's because I'm traveling with my kids this time and that's never easy. Though, in all fairness, they did really well on the car ride down. Maybe next time I should take a vacation by myself. How cool would that be? I could sit on the deck and write and then crochet. And then get some sun.

Most people come here for the water and the boating. I come for the nostalgia.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Where I Am

PSA - I apologize in advance for this downer of a post...

The summer will be over soon. It's really hard to believe. But it doesn't last forever, right? It wouldn't be as magical if it did. Not that my summer was magical or anything. I think it's been fun, though, and that's what matters. As long as my kids feel the same.

So here's what I've been up to...not a lot, really. Keeping the kids occupied and not fighting. I've been writing more than I have in a long time. Not every day but almost. I tried to do Camp NaNoWriMo, but I didn't win. I stand by my practice of handwriting a first draft, but it slows me down. So far this story isn't the greatest thing I've ever written, but it's not the worst either.

In the last week or so, I've decided to reopen and revamp my Etsy store. My mom and dad tore down their old barn and I saved a few things. Unfortunately most of those things are too big to ship (reasonably) and my dream right now is to take part in one of those big vintage sales.

The problem with all this is that these dreams are my own. And they are just dreams. Dreams don't pay the bills. I'm married to a non-dreamer, someone firmly rooted in reality. So it's hard. Especially with all the motivational "don't give up on your dreams!" BS that is everywhere.

So I'm taking my job search a little more seriously now. I applied for something in my field. That's a funny joke when you're an Ag major. I haven't heard anything yet, which is a little disheartening. It's also a bit of a relief because I'm TERRIFIED of having to go on a job interview. I will not wear the right clothes. And I will say all the wrong things. Nobody seems to understand that, even though I'm trying, it won't be good enough. Because even my best never seems good enough.


Saturday, July 12, 2014

Non-Writing Creativity

A long time ago (probably close to two years, but I can't be sure), my aunt came out to my house to teach me how to sew. I have 2 sewing machines in my house and I had barely touched either one. Since that day she was here, I probably only used them a handful of times.

Somewhere along the way (probably on Pinterest), I saw a quilt made from old t-shirts. I always thought it was a neat idea. I'm kind of a t-shirt addict. I'm not necessarily sentimental about them, but I had quite a few I didn't wear anymore but didn't want to part with.

So I did some searching (on Pinterest) and came across a fairly simple tutorial. If I remember, I'll come back and link to it. I decided I could totally do it. Or at least try it. I honestly didn't think I would be successful. But here you go...

That is what 25 shirts sewn together for a blanket looks like. Cool, right? I did it! I freaking did it! It definitely wasn't easy. After the first two shirts, I was ready to give up. But I didn't. And I'm glad I didn't.

But I wanted somewhere to record the reason why I chose these particular shirts because some do have sentimental value. No one has asked me yet, but here you go.

1. Jimmy Eat World - you can only see part of the green corner in this picture. They are my favoritest band ever.

2. I Heart Jake Ryan - favoritest movie ever

3. NaNoWriMo - that shirt is from 2004...I think the first year I participated. All the 3rd column shirts are my NaNo shirts (not all of them either)

4. Another Sixteen Candles shirt

5. YA Saves - I got tired of having to explain what it meant whenever I wore it. Look it up on Twitter.

6. Can't really see this one either, but it's my WIU Ag shirt. My regular WIU shirt didn't work because the logo was too big. Also, this is the only shirt where I used the back design instead of the front.

7. Cookie Monster - I wore the hell out of this shirt. I wore it in Vegas when we got married. I didn't get married in it, but I think I was wearing it the day we got our license.

8. Another NaNo shirt

9. Lake of the Ozarks - I'm not a boat or water person, but I love going to the lake. I only get to go every few years, if I'm lucky.

10. TMNT - nothing special about this one other than the fact that this is how they are supposed to look. I've seen the previews for the new movie and...NO. Just no.

11. Care Bears - I still have the bears I had as a kid and I scoured flea markets and antique malls, and probably eBay, to acquire the rest.

12. Keep It Rural - my mom gave me this one.

13. Another NaNo shirt

14. Another Care Bear shirt. I didn't mean to put them in the same row.

15. Bazinga - I used to like Big Bang Theory more than I do now. My most favorite scene ever is when Leonard tries to get Sheldon out of the ball pit.

16. Say Anything - my second favorite movie and second favorite movie boyfriend. Lloyd Dobler...swoon.

17. Oscar the Grouch - because I can be grouchy :-)

18. NaNo - I think that one is 2009

19. Chuck - am I the only one who remembers that show? I loved it. I heard Zachary Levi got married recently and a little part of me died.

20. It says "Writer's Block: When the voices in your head stop talking to you"

21. Transformers - not sure why I bought this, but I don't think I ever even wore it.

22. Def Leppard - another one of the greatest bands of all time. I found this shirt at a garage sale a long time ago and wore the hell out of it.

23. NaNo again

24. This is the back of the Def Leppard shirt. This is the only shirt where I used the front and back.

25. Another Jake Ryan shirt...because who wouldn't want that shirt on a blanket?!

So there you have it. Now all I have to do is figure out the backside of the blanket and how to put it all together. I might be wishing I had paid someone to do it by the time I'm done.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Picture Post and Writing Stuff

Do you remember a few posts ago when I talked about maps? Keep that in mind while I venture off course for just a moment.

Every once in a while, I like to go back through my old writing. This time, I did it to get inspired. Either with a new idea or the motivation to revamp an old idea. Then I decided to start a list of my writing. My categories were: idea or started, some progress, substantial progress, and completed. About 90% of my old writing is fanfiction. And even if you combined a lot of it, it's still not novel length. But you have to start somewhere, right? 

(I didn't track the fanfiction, in case you were wondering)

In the process of all this, I found this binder.



This is the TAKE A LITTLE RIDE master plan binder. There's a printed map of each state in a sheet protector. In with the map is the official state road map and any helpful information I may have found for the story.


Honest to God, I forgot I made the binder. How in the hell does a person forget something like that?! Okay, see that top map? It's dated 2009. Which would've been when the idea struck. That means TALR was my NaNoWriMo idea in either '09 or '10. I'd have to look it up to be sure. It reached it's final completed stage in '12, maybe. That's ridonkulous. 


If you've read TALR, you might recognize this gem that made it into the story. And totally made me want to visit Indiana for real.

So you can understand a little better about what a writer puts into the actual writing process. Sometimes it's more than just pen to paper.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Critique

Just when I thought all hope was lost, I realized MAYBE IT'S NOT.

Today, it rained most of the day. So we couldn't go outside and do fun things (i.e. distractions). So I pulled out my completed manuscript that I've been trying to revise. And I worked on it. Then I read some blog posts about critiquing and finding a critique partner. Because that's what I need. I need someone to hold me accountable, someone to help me set goals and then stick to them.

Then I resorted to googling "how to find a critique partner" and something called Ladies Who Critique popped up. I looked around a bit and thought "what have I got to lose?" So I signed up and replied to a forum post. I've already made a couple possible connections. So we'll see what happens.

This time I think I know a little more about what to do and how to do it. The one other time I tried the CP thing, I was just jumping into the unknown. It seemed to work out okay; but as writers, we were in different places. And her book comes out this summer, I believe. While mine doesn't. 

I'm still afraid that I don't want it bad enough. Then I think I do. I know I do. To see my name on the cover of a book? Seriously. I don't even know if I could handle it. So I can do this. I can do it and I will. This is the dream and I refuse to give up.

On Being Popular

A guy I went to high school with posted this article on Facebook. First, let me say for the record that I was not popular. Neither was the guy that posted it. I imagine the people involved with writing the article weren't popular, either. But isn't there a saying...or an internet meme...about nerds ruling the earth?

I don't know. I wrote about it a bit in TAKE A LITTLE RIDE. The character doesn't want to believe that high school was as good as it gets. If that was the top if your game, I feel sorry for you. I've always believed that if you go to college, all that popularity you worked so hard for is out the window anyway. Because none of it matters anymore. 

But I was a pretty naive person back then. I only realize it now. Maybe I still am, a little bit. I'm sure there were a lot of people doing things that I couldn't even have imagined back then. Maybe that hurts my writing a little bit. Or maybe that's why adults are better YA writers. We know ALL THE THINGS now that we didn't back then and we can educate our younger selves. Or help someone that age navigate it a little better. YA now is different than it used to be too, I think. Maybe because I didn't care about it back then. I didn't want to read about people my age. I read things that were over my head. Maybe that's why I like YA so much now. I feel like I missed some things and I want to recapture the magic. Not that I want to go back to high school. I'd rather...do anything else. I couldn't come up with a good way to finish that. But you get the point.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Compromise

Okay, so here's the deal. I never meant for this to be a parenting blog. Or a life blog. It's supposed to be about writing. But technically, blogging is writing. Right? So as long as I'm blogging about SOMETHING, doesn't that count as writing?

I am still trying to work on fiction when I can, just for the record. I haven't completed abandoned my dream. My priorities have slightly shifted for the time being. Sometimes life just gets in the way and you have to adjust your dreams.

So what I've been doing lately is a lot of soul-searching and reading about how to be a better parent. I mean, obviously I'm making the effort by planning an ENTIRE summer of fun, right? But that's the only part of it. The whole thing stresses me out, honestly. I'm not one of those super moms who can easily guide 3 kids thru the grocery store with no problems. I think part of the problem is that we've NEVER done it before and we don't know how to handle it. Not just me, but the kids too. Not that I'm blaming them. Another scenario...we don't eat out at restaurants very often. Like ever. My husband is cheap and will almost always refuse to eat out. So we've just never done it much. So when we do get to do a fast food place, it's almost always more of a headache than it is worth. And an actual sit-down restaurant? Forget it. Granted, it has gotten easier as they've gotten older...but it's still an outing I'd rather skip.

All of this is new to us. And it requires an adjustment period. So maybe this week, we'll just sit around and relax and let life happen and take it easy. If the oldest wants to play on the iPad all day, I'll let him. If the middle wants to paint, I'll help her paint. The youngest...well...as long as she naps at some point, we'll all be happy.

It doesn't always have to be about planning and doing and keeping up and keeping busy and doing and going. Just slow down and let life happen. Let the experiences happen. Don't try to control everything. No matter what. It just makes you miserable. And if you are miserable, chances are everyone around you is to.

DISCLAIMER: I wrote this post to encourage myself to become a better parent. I can do it. I know I can. One week of summer vacay doesn't define my parenting. The last 8 years are a better testament to the fact that I can do better. Now is the time to take charge and make the change and be the parent I want to be.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Summer Fun!

So today ends the first week of summer vacay. And guess what? We survived. Barely. But we did it.

I decided already that we are better off taking a more relaxed approach to the whole thing. I read a blog called The Abundant Mama Project. They posted this list,quite possibly the best summer activity list I found in all my research. It's an easy list that requires minimal effort but still makes a lot of good memories. Granted, we've already done a few of the cliche activities for the summer, like mini golf and a picnic in the park. And we'll probably do a few more, but the Abundant Mama list, I hope, is the one we'll always go back to.

Besides all the activities, the other thing I read up on was how to be prepared for them. Because you might make a snap decision to stop at a park. Or a trip to Grandma's might turn into an afternoon of playing in the sprinkler. So now we're ready for those things.


(Please excuse my shadow. Also, the very best feature of my ancient Equinox? That adjustable shelf. I store my reusable shopping bags on the bottom and the groceries or stroller or whatever else goes on top.)

So, after much research, here's what stays in the car all summer...
-blanket
-paper towels
-sunscreen
-bug spray
-first aid kit
-tissues
-ziploc bags
-diapers and swim diapers
-extra clothes, socks, underwear, swimsuits
-bottles of water
-sippy cup
-baby and big kid snacks (crackers, fruit snacks, non-melty stuff)
-extra formula for baby
-hand sanitizer
-lip balm
-reusable bag
-wipes (baby, flushable and Clorox)
-tweezers, nail clippers and file

I combined several different lists I found on Pinterest into one big summer preparedness kit. I'm one of those people who always over-packs and over-prepares, so I don't really see us using all of these things. But it's nice to know it's all there, just in case.

And now that I'm looking at those original lists, there are a few things I forgot. Like hair elastics, clips and safety pins (from http://aunnajames.blogspot.com). Other sources:
http://pinkpolkadotcreations.com
http://cutest-little-things.blogspot.com
http://snailpacetransformations.com

You can find all the links on my Summer Fun Pinterest board

Monday, June 2, 2014

Summer...Fun?

Today was the first day of summer vacation for the 2 older kids. My first day home with all 3 of them, knowing it's not a weekend and I won't get a "break" in a few days. It's a little different for me. I'll be honest. It's going to be a struggle.

Here's the flat out truth. Some women will tell you they don't ever want to have kids. Hey, that's cool. I'm not judging. I have 3 and sometimes I wonder what I was thinking. But I'll be the first to admit (and I probably already have) that I'm not stay-at-home-mom material. I worked for 10+ years. I still feel like I should be working. I'm just not used to being with my kids 24/7. Some people thrive as SAHMs. Me...I struggle. I don't even consider myself a SAHM. You know how Facebook always wants you to update your information? Right now, I think mine says something like "not employed at this time" or something generic like that. I don't want to be classified as "unemployed"...even though I am, and probably will be for a while. And I don't feel like I want to be a SAHM. Not that it's a bad thing. I just don't feel like it fits me...even though that's what I'm doing. I don't know. Maybe I need to change my thinking.

Maybe if I change my thinking, things will be easier. Maybe I should just embrace it. If today was an indication of how the whole summer will be, it's going to be rough and something has to give. Maybe now I'm ready to go work at Pizza Hut.

Don't get me wrong. We had a few good moments today. I took them all to Wal-Mart this morning. Gah. That was a mistake. I will let the pantry go bare before I will take them all to the store again. I couldn't even get the list completed. Got the basics, a few special things to keep them quiet, and then we got out of there. Probably forgetting some of the important things.

I think part of the problem is that the older 2 are...just that, older. We went on a short creek walk this afternoon. I had to use the Moby for the baby and it was totally awkward and uncomfortable. So it's not really fair to the older 2. But it's not fair to baby either because she didn't have a good nap today. I could've used a good nap today.

But I tried...I tried so hard to be prepared for this. I looked at all the "summer fun activity" lists on Pinterest. I made up some rules and came up with some daily plans and contracts to try and insure good behavior. We didn't make it 1 day. I tried to set up limits on screen time. Psh. That didn't even make it thru the morning. Oh well. It's supposed to be about making memories, right? I guess if those memories are about spending all your waking moments on the iPad, then that's your choice...if only I could just get him to sit outside while he does it...

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Enough Already

So I thought I posted this already. Turns out, it was only a draft. And because I know you are dying to know what I think, here you go.

Frozen.

You know, the insanely popular Disney movie?

Well, being unemployed has given me plenty of time to watch it. Repeatedly. Having children causes that. Just plain enjoying the movie myself is also partly to blame. So sue me. But at this point, we're talking MAJOR burnout. Like whoa. So I made this list of observations/questions/things kids don't care about but adults see in kids movies.

WARNING: SPOILERS! As if you haven't seen it! Psh!


If the beginning takes place in the middle of the night, why are the king and queen fully dressed?

Can you imagine the reclusive weirdo Elsa would've become if her parents hadn't died?

Am I wrong to assume that Kristoff saw the whole exchange between the king and the troll? Wouldn't he know about Elsa's power? And wouldn't he know the troll can't fix Anna's heart later on?

Anna is obviously the favorite. The way they hug her and look at her when they are getting ready to leave. The parents don't even try to hug Elsa before they leave. Though, based on the previous scene, she might still not want people to touch her.

Why does Hans have a horse when everyone else came in on foot?

Why would Hans charge Elsa with treason and not murder? 

How does Olaf start the fire so easily? Wouldn't the wood still be wet?

If there's a violent, raging snowstorm, why are all those foreign dignitary guys standing outside (when it stops suddenly)?

IMDB mentions that Hans isn't wearing a sheath for his sword, but you hear the noise of him removing it. Couldn't it be under his coat?

Did Elsa know they were standing above a sunken ship? Or were they just really lucky when she started to melt everything?

What happened to the horse Hans rode in on?

And did Hans come into town with his evil plot? Or did he hatch it after he met Anna?

Even though all the people seem happy, don't they also seem terrified of Elsa? Like at any moment, she could freeze everything again?

So, what do you think? Am I crazy?

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Going Granola Part 2

I may be highly suggestible, but I'm also fickle.  The no poo thing really isn't working for me and I'm ready to chuck it.  Which really kind of sucks because I was hoping it would work out.

Here are my problems.  First, I switched from the baking soda paste method to the BS rinse method. I don't think it made any difference. My hair felt dry and gross. I should probably try to tweak the formula a little bit, but I'm not sure I have the patience. I've also read that hard water can affect the results. And since we have hard water...it might make the transition a little harder. PS I made the rinse with distilled water, just to be safe. I don't know why that would matter, since I still used the hard water in the shower. But whatever.

I will mention that I think the ACV rinse seemed to work well. I first used straight ACV, because I didn't read my notes. I thought, as a conditioner, it was pretty good. If you can get past the smell. When I used the diluted version, it didn't work as well with tangles (I have super thick hair), so I was disappointed. But again, it depends on how well you can stomach the smell.

So...I'm probably just going to give up without really giving it a good try. That's how I roll sometimes. Sorry.  But I am moving on to a new venture...and I'm super late to the party with this one...essential oils. They've been around for...what? Forever? And they are the new fad. So up on the bandwagon I go. I have used some already for cleaning purposes. But I didn't realize they could be so much more. So I'm excited to start learning more about what they can do and trying them out.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Going Granola

I'm pretty suggestible sometimes. So when I read about something called "no poo," I was intrigued. I read up on it. I considered it for a while. I decided that it sounded like something I could try. Then I let it go. Instead, I switched to a natural shampoo and conditioner. If what I read about shampoo is true, it's actually some really nasty stuff. Not at all good for your hair, like they want you to believe. 

So when the last of my natural (and crazy expensive) shampoo ran out, I decided now was the time to go no poo. It also happened to be May 1. Easy for me to remember. So I used a clarifying shampoo, as recommended. I did nothing for 2 days. That morning I used a dry shampoo made of corn starch and cocoa. My hair really didn't seem too bad. 

When it came time to wash my hair, I used the baking soda paste method. I thought it sounded easier, but I felt like I wasn't using enough. I kind of guessed about how long to leave it on. Then I used the apple cider vinegar rinse. That stuff smells something awful. Worse than white vinegar, which I didn't know was possible. So the first experiment wasn't very pleasant.

The results were mixed. I wasn't really impressed with the way my hair felt. Plus I thought my scalp was itchy. That was Monday. Tuesday I did nothing. Today I used a natural shampoo and conditioner again. My hair felt normal again. I think the next time I wash, I won't use the paste method. I want to stick with this for a while, just to see what happens.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Birthdays

I am in the midst of planning and preparing for a first birthday party. First let me just say that this should not be happening. I have a hard time believing that #3 was born almost a year ago. I remember it so well. 3 of my co-workers were gone all week and I went home Friday having contractions. I went to some garage sales on Saturday and for some reason, I went to Wal-Mart Saturday night. I never, ever, ever go to Wal-Mart on a Saturday night. But that must've been what it took because I woke up early Sunday morning with contractions and pain and...well, you can figure out the rest. Plus, I'm sure I blogged about it.

There are some aspects of my life where I can be really hyper-organized. Like this birthday party, for example. I already ordered the cupcakes. I picked out the theme, ordered the supplies, and I already have the invitations ready to be mailed. I have a notebook with multiple lists - guests, party favors for the kids, food, what I need to buy, ideas for decorations, etc. I must be wearing off on my kids because last night they started their own lists of games to play.

Honestly, though, I don't know if this does more harm than good. Sometimes I have a bad habit of over-planning, over-thinking, overdoing it in general and all that does is stress me out. Like, I might think I have enough food, but at the last minute, I'll decide to make some random dish just because. One year for #1, I made those cupcakes that are supposed to look like hamburgers, with the cupcake as the bun and a brownie as the hamburger (I'd link to it, but I'm sure all that will do is get me distracted on Pinterest...but I'm pretty sure it was Bakerella). There was really no reason for me to even attempt to do something like that. Other than to be creative, I guess? Some years I've made cakes or cupcakes. Some years I've bought them. Some years I try to plan fun, elaborate games. Other times, I just expect the swingset to be enough. 

I can't stop myself from over-trying. And then I'm seriously disappointed when no one notices or seems to care. So why do I continue to do this to myself? Because I know I'm not THAT mom. The one that does everything right. The one that doesn't get stressed out. The one that decides to invite 10 more people at the last minute because that would be fun. No. I'm the freaked out, stressed out, worn out basketcase. 

This year will be better, though. I don't have a job this year, so I have ALL THE TIME to do ALL THE THINGS. Everything inside and outside will be spotless. Well, it would be if all these other people didn't live in this house. Because they don't care about the condition nearly as much as I do. Why is that? That's right, because I over-everything. They can all take it easy and enjoy the ride while I do all the work. But that's the mom's job, right?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Maps

When I first started TAKE A LITTLE RIDE, it was a completely different story. I don't think I would even recognize the first draft anymore. When I was still in the prewriting phase (do writers even do that anymore?), I had a very vague idea of what I wanted from the story and where I wanted it to go.

At some point, I got online and requested information from the tourist bureaus of all 48 states. I can't remember if that was actually for the story or if the story was born from that. I think I may have been planning some family vacation that I knew would never happen.

So I accumulated all that information and ended up using a fraction of it. I always wanted someone to tell me if they were able to tell which places I had visited and which places I googled. I kept all the information for a long time, actually. 

The reason I thought of it was because I have developed a crafty preference for maps lately. I have a huge stack of old road maps that I picked up at the antique malls. They are cheap too. Bonus. So I recently decided I wanted a map wall. I knew The Farmer would never go for it, though. But there's a small space of wall on the side of the closet in our bedroom. You can't even see it unless you are in the bed. I decided that was going to be my map wall. 

Today I dug out my vintage maps and started planning. And then cutting. And then taping a few pieces to the wall to see how it was going to look. I've got a good start.

During this process, I remembered all the information I had gotten for TAKE A LITTLE RIDE. Almost every single state sent a map with their tourist information. And I'm almost positive I got rid of all of it. There's a possibility I saved them...somewhere. I did a quick check in a few spots. But our storage areas have become even more chaotic than they were before due to baby 3 and moving bedrooms upstairs. 

Back then (like it was 20 years ago instead of probably 5), though, I wouldn't have given a thought to saving maps for crafty purposes. It just goes to show how our interests and ideas can change in a short time. Now I'm actually considering requesting all the information again, just for the maps! And maybe I'll actually get to plan a vacation this time too.

Monday, April 21, 2014

This Whole Parenting Thing

These days it seems like every other blog is about parenting. And not just parenting, but "bad" parenting...which is actually just kind of average or normal parenting. I guess those blogs exist to let people know that they are not alone. It's good, I guess. But it's also kind of annoying because there is still so much written about how to do everything THE RIGHT WAY. 

But what is the right way anymore?

I was about six months behind on my magazine reading and I finally sat down one day last week and started to flip through the pile. A lot of them were Parents magazine, I think. Or one of those rags that still encourages you to do everything right. I could barely get through the whole thing. I wanted to vomit. I don't remember exactly why, but the whole thing, every article, every picture, every "funny" story just irritated the crap out of me. Maybe it's because I've been a parent for 8 and a half years now and they are still writing the same articles ten different ways. I don't know that any of it has ever helped me.

Right now, there are 2 kids trying to fall asleep with electronics nearby, if not still in their hands. And neither one of them is in their bed. The baby is trying to fall asleep in my lap as I type this one handed on the iPad. I dropped a few f-bombs today. I yelled at them for not picking up their room. I yelled again for not taking the sheets off the bed after I asked at least 4 times.

I'm obviously not a model parent. I'm a good example of what not to do, I guess. At least I don't drink. Yet...

Thursday, April 3, 2014

For Real This Time

People do it every day.  

I've talked about it.

I've dreamt about it.

I've got all the time in the world now.  So why don't I just do it?

Fear, people.  Fear is what holds me back. Which is a really lame ass excuse.

But I'm going to do it.  I'm going to get this writing thing going. For real this time.

There are a lot of crap books out there.  I don't think mine is crap. So why shouldn't it be out there? Why should I hold back? Just let it out into the world and let it be.  Whatever happens happens. Right? Give me a second and I'll come up with a few more cliches. 

For real, though. I created my "author page" on Facebook today.  It's actually more of a page for the blog, but they are tied together.  And if the author thing doesn't work, I'll still have the blog to fall back on.  Maybe I'll actually post things related to being a farmer's wife. There's a niche for that, you know. Based on the number of people on Instagram I follow with "farm" or "farm wife" or some other variation of it in their username, there aren't plenty of farm blogs out there. I don't know why I chose farmerswife3404 as my online presence. But it stuck. And it's actually kind of nice to have the blog title that I do. Because as long as I'm writing SOMETHING, it fits.  Right?

Anyway, so I set up the Facebook page. And TAKE A LITTLE RIDE is still active on SwoonReads. If you would like to read it, you can do so <a href="http://www.swoonreads.com/m/take-a-little-ride-cai-perrys-big-adventure>HERE</a>.  I would appreciate any feedback anyone has.  Because they base their choices for publication on ratings and comments.  Which is kind of a sucky deal if you can't get a lot of either one and you have a really great novel. It would probably help if I read other people's manuscripts too. 

That's just another thing that I plan to start doing.  Writing is first, obviously.  Reading is next.  Because you can't be a writer if you aren't a reader too.  That's just common sense.

Monday, March 17, 2014

3 weeks Later

Okay, so it's been almost three weeks that I have been unemployed. It's been...different. I don't know how to explain it. Maybe it still hasn't sunk in yet. You'd think by now, I would have it all figured out, but I don't.

I have these grand plans and ideas. I'm not sure how to follow thru with everything, though. I need to structure my days more and discipline myself in such a way that I accomplish more in a day. Easier said than done, right?

Late last year, I got on the notion of becoming one of those super organized people. Now, my life and the events in it aren't too complicated to keep track of. But I wanted better visibility of it, I guess. I loved the idea of the home management binder. I started with the budgeting part because, at the time, I was considering quitting the job. Also, a lot of the binders I looked at were geared toward SAHMs, with daily cleaning schdules and daily tasks and whatnot. While it applies more to me now, I still can't get fully on board with it. But I do better when someone says "Today, this is what you have to do." As opposed to writing a to do list and glancing at it every time I walk thru the kitchen. Probably on my way to NOT doing the things on the list.

Now I've got it in my head that I want to work on my creative side. I want to focus on things that will allow me to express myself. Writing, obviously. But other things too. I was in town today for a dentist appointment, so I stopped at Hobby Lobby. I picked up a small sketchbook and I took a long look at calligraphy pens. I can't draw to save my life and I haven't done any calligraphy in years. But why not pick it back up? Why not learn how to draw? 

Last night, I pulled out an empty notebook and started a birding journal. I got out Grandma's big book of birds and marked the pages of the birds I've been watching all winter. I wrote down their names and included the birds I've seen in the past and ideas for what to do to attract more birds.

Obviously, I have a wide range of hobbies and things that interest me. How do I turn all this into a feasible career? Also, how in the hell do I plan to accomplish all this with a 9 month old in tow? And in a couple months, the other 2 will be out of school and home all the time. How in the world do I deal with that? I've never thought of myself as the SAHM type. My kids drive me nuts sometimes. I need to get out of the house every now and then. How do I make that all work?
 
And what in the world was I thinking when I started researching homeschooling? Because if I can't handle being at home on weekends with the kids, how in the world can I teach them? Is it wrong that one of my strongest motivators for even considering it was because my kids get on the bus at 6:30 in the morning? I don't know how they learn anything at all, honestly. I'm so tired by the middle of the morning, I'm ready for a nap. How do they function? So could we do it at home? Maybe this summer could be a trial run. We could do field trips to the park and nature walks. They could get in on the bird watching! 

So, I have all the plans. Now how do I go about putting it all into motion?


Friday, February 28, 2014

Because...Why Not?

Okay, so this is day 3 of being unemployed.  I went ahead and signed up for unemployment right away. Because...why not?  I don't know how it is in other states, but in Illinois, they actually have a job search website. They set you up with log in information and encourage you to upload a resume and all that as soon as your unemployment application is done.  Which is really helpful because you have to prove that you're looking for work while your drawing unemployment.

So...my question to people of the US is this...why are you saying there are no jobs?  I realize it's probably a little different in the "big city" or in different states or areas or whatever.  But around here, there are jobs.

I think people are too picky. I mean, if you need a job...like, really need a job, then what is so wrong with taking a job outside of your comfort zone?  I applied for a bakery job at Panera.  Because...why not? I'm considering applying for a part-time seasonal job at Lowe's. It's in the garden area, so I would get to be outside and around plants and flowers all day.  What's so wrong with that?  If I got desperate, I would consider applying for a job at Pizza Hut.  Because...why not?

So what if I have a college degree?  I have a bachelors degree in agriculture.  For the last almost eleven years, I worked in the credit department of a company that manufactures broadcast equipment.  Absolutely nothing to do with agriculture (the Lowe's job would be close...horticulture is an off-shoot of ag).

Maybe I'm disillusioned by the whole job market/search.  I know I am, actually. I think it will be easy.  I know it won't be, though. Because supposedly, there are a hundred other people gunning for the same job.  But maybe not.  Am I wrong in thinking that people are hyper-focused on getting a job in the area they know?  Or what their degree is in?  I realize that's kind of the whole point of going to college and getting the degree in the first place.  But if the job market is THAT BAD, what's wrong with settling?  How do you know deep down that you really, really want to do something in that field anyway?

Again, maybe it's just me.  I settled.  My dream job is to be an author.  Granted, the last novel I finished is a a contemporary YA set on a farm, I don't think that counts.  So why didn't I major in English?  Because it didn't seem plausible at the time.  Back then, I didn't think writing was a lucrative career.  Publishing is a different ballgame now, though.  Anybody can publish, thanks to e-books and self-publishing.  So why don't I do that?  Because I'm a big dreamer.  I want the lit agent and the BIG BOOK DEAL. The whole shebang. Go big or go home kind of stuff.

So why would I settle for a measly part-time job at a fast food joint?  Because why not?  How do you know that wouldn't be the most satisfying thing you've ever done?  So what if you've got the fancy degree in marketing or some crap?  If you need a job that badly, why not take what's available?

Am I thinking about this the wrong way?  Do I have some kind of warped view of the world?  Probably.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Top 10 Reasons Why Everything Will Be Okay

Last Friday on Instagram, I posted this picture with the caption "It's not going to be so bad being unemployed."

Granted, she is not this chipper and smiley all the time, but I am definitely not going to mind spending the extra time with her.

It's easy for me to make this into a positive. Luckily I am in a situation where unemployment isn't the end of life as we know it. Things will be harder, I'm not denying that. But I feel like I will have so many more opportunities now. Opportunities for the fun things I like to do that I feel like I've been missing out on for a long time.

So here it is. My top ten reasons why everything is going to be okay...

1. This is my TBR pile...and not even all of it. Somewhere in there are books I have actually read, but this is the sad state of my life lately.

2. This is where I like to do some crafty type stuff. It will no longer be neglected and lonely.

3. This is what my #crochetmoodblanket2014 looks like so far. Not all the squares are joined yet, but hopefully someday soon they will be.

4. I'm embarrassed to even post this, but hopefully this will not be the norm going forward!

5. The same is true for the state of my kitchen sink. Luckily today I already did the dishes before I started this post.
(Yes, I did them and then ate lunch, hence the lonely bowl)

6. I can dress like this every day. I probably won't, but it's nice to have the option. I'm finally going to be able to wear all the t-shirts I've been collecting for years. And I can free up some space in the closet by putting away my work clothes.

7. Most important, these are some of the recent writing type projects I have started. I will finish ALL OF THEM!

8. And these are just some of the notebooks in my collection, just waiting to be filled.

9. I recently bought this puzzle. I will put it together and hang it on the wall.

10. I will finally get around to putting all of these pictures into albums.

The more I thought about this list, the more I realized how crazy I am. It's not very realistic to think I will survive this with my sanity. I'm not the stay-at-home mom type. Working is something I have to do. So we'll see what happens. I'm sure I'll have more time to blog now, so you will get to read all about the adventure!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

It Happened

So remember my last post? About wanting to quit my job? Turns out, I didn't have to. Here's how it went down, in case you're wondering how corporate America does it nowadays.

The day began like any other. Then the rumors started to fly. "So and so from this department got let go. I heard 20 people are going today." So on and so forth. Then somehow it gets confirmed and we sit on pins and needles, wondering who is next. We keep an eye on HR, watching for signs of someone else on their way out.

By 3 o'clock, we think it's done and we start to relax. Then the woman who has been your boss for the past however many years but got replaced by some heartless corporate shill comes out of her office and asks to see four of us. There are five in our department, in case you're keeping track.

Former boss practically breaks down then. But she has to compose herself long enough to dial up a couple of the other new heartless corporate tools. And as that woman obviously reads from a script, we realize what is happening. Thank you for all you've done. We appreciate your years of service. Blah blah blah. Your jobs are going to Mexico.

Wait. What? 

We had to hear that last part twice before it hit us.

The best part? This wasn't a clean out your cube and get out kind of thing. No, we have to come in for another few days and then we'll be done. 

How do you even process that? What's the protocol there? According to new boss who is a thousand miles away, I have to train other people on how to do my job. Oh, and I also have to collect the rest of the money I was forecasted to collect this week.

WTF?

What incentive do I have to do that? Besides going out on a high note to prove I was worthwhile? Sorry, but it's not worth it to me. Maybe that's just me being negative and petty. I don't care. I spent a lot of the day cleaning out my cube. I answered the phone and took care of a couple things that needed to be dealt with right away. I spent an hour on the phone with a couple new people training them. But I already knew I was losing that part of my job before yesterday.

I'm not sure yet what tomorrow will bring. I have crocheting to do. Novels to start writing. Ebooks to be reading. All sorts of possibilities.

So yeah, it does suck. But I know I'll be better off in the long run. 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Thinking...

I don't think I'm lazy.

I got my first job right before I turned 16. I worked all through college. I worked some miscellaneous jobs until I found something permanent. 

That was almost 11 years ago.

Granted, that's not really deserving of any special recognition. My employer didn't think so, either, because I didn't even get an acknowledgement when I hit 10 years. At 5, I got a ring, so I felt pretty jipped.

Anyway, so now that I've worked this long, do I deserve a break? Especially if I'm miserable?

Before I go any further, I would like to acknowledge the fact that I do realize how many people are unemployed and would probably kill for my job. Even if it's crappy. Too bad unemployed people. The company just hired 3 new people in another office that have already set their sights on doing my job better than me.

My dream job is to write full time. I will write ALL THE BOOKS I've always wanted to write. I don't have an agent or anything (yet), so the dumbest thing I could do at this point is to quit just to write.

But do you have any idea how much money I would save on daycare?! And gas?! I wouldn't run to the grocery store every other lunch hour and binge but things I don't really need. And my house! Don't get me started on how clean my house would be.

Alas, I am still a farmer's wife. So we're in debt up to our ears because ground ain't cheap. And there's no special health insurance provided for the self-employed. Is there?! 

Despite all this, I want to quit. I want to give up the money and the benefits. I want to enjoy my kids instead of being too tired. I want to cook elaborate meals and vacuum every day. I want to be a room mother and pick my kids up from school...sometimes. The elementary school is 20 minutes away. The middle school (next year! Gasp!) is even further. I don't even care. I want to go to the park and not have to worry about going out on snow days. 

Am I asking for the moon? Probably...

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

A New Project

So...here's my latest project. It's a stack of granny squares that I have crocheted that will eventually become a blanket. It's #crochetmoodblanket2014 if you'd like to play along.

The object is to crochet a square every day that reflects your mood. I haven't really done that. I just pick whatever color I fancy at the moment.



This is kind of like NaNoWriMo, though. It's supposed to go for the whole year! So that's 365 squares. I didn't even learn how to make them until this month. And they aren't very pretty. But I'll stick with it as long as I can. I get frustrated when I don't finish things. It seems to happen a lot, especially with creative projects. I don't always have time or whatever. Blah blah blah.

Excuses. That's something I'm good at..,

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Just a Speck

You hear stories every once in a while about people getting in trouble, or even being fired, because of things they have posted online. Whether it be about their job or a personal thing, it came back and bit them in the ass.

I guess I'm thinking about it now because I've been a little more free with my thoughts about my job lately. I actually posted the words "I hate my job" online (there! I did it again!), but at this point I don't even care. 

You have to wonder, though. The internet is so VAST. This blog is so minuscule. Would anyone find it? Would it even matter? I've tried to keep my writing life separate from my real life because I just didn't want everyone knowing about it. I don't even like that more people I know IRL are looking at my Instagram feed. The internet, aside from Facebook, has always been my place to interact with people I don't know. People who have the same interests as me. To me, that is what the internet is all about. Or at least it should be.

People I know and interact with on a daily basis don't know the real me. They don't share the same interests as me. Or maybe they do, but it's not worth the effort to find out. I have to see the same people every day at work. Do I want to hang out with them after hours? Not really. But I don't have a lot of close friends. Or even random friends. The beauty of being an introvert, I guess. Which is another benefit of the internet. I can be whoever and say whatever I want. I don't have to worry about people thinking I'm weird. Because I know people think I'm weird. Just because I have different interests.

So whatever. Let them think what they want, you know? It's not going to change me.

(As usual, this wasn't where I was going when I started this post :-) but there's where it went...)

Monday, January 20, 2014

Sleepy Hollow

Okay, so I'm a terribly big baby when it comes to anything remotely scary. But Sleepy Hollow looked like a really, really good show and I wanted to watch it. Unfortunately, due to parenting responsibilities, life in general, and how easy it is for me to freak myself out, I only watched a handful of episodes. 

Despite that, I was determined to watch the finale tonight. I missed the last fifteen minutes, but whatever. Somehow I doubt that the online recaps grasped the full a awesomeness of it all.

Here are some of my random thoughts. I went back to Twitter today. Various reasons why I haven't been there in a while, and various reasons why I went back today. But I enjoy the fandom behind Sleepy Hollow. I like reading all the interest in why or why not Abbie and Ichabod should be together. It's fun.

Here's why I think they shouldn't hook up. First of all, he's still too devoted to Katrina. Though I'm not sure why. But it's only the first season. You can't make something like that happen that quickly. Especially given the time that Crane comes from. Divorce wasn't a thing back then. True love was.

I think shows are more enjoyable when you ship and ship two characters so hard and it takes them a while to make it happen. Because the show is built around that almost but not quite dynamic, it loses a lot of the magic when IT finally happens. Case in point, for me anyway, Brennan and Booth. I invested a lot of time into watching all those seasons of Bones. I got so frustrated when it was always almost and then not quite. But then it happened and it was wonderful. And then it just wasn't, but part of that was the whole Palant storyline. I hated that. And I think the phrase is stupid, but Bones totally jumped the shark when they delivered the baby in the barn. That's about the time they lost me. And yet, I keep watching.

A lot of the shows I watch are like that. Shawn and Juliet (Psych). Chuck and Sarah. Will they or won't they? It makes for great tv. 

But there is something completely satisfying when it does happen. 

So what are your thoughts? Make it happen? Or draw it out? This applies to books too! Though with books, it seems like they get accused of "insta-love" more than tv.