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Archive for May, 2015

Photo Friday: Been Awhile

It’s been quite awhile since I’ve done a photo post. I’m thinking of making it a monthly post as I cycle through my Friday themes(fiction, fire, fitness, & photo).

Dandelion season again

Dandelion season again

They picked too many to even fit in the cup. And there’s still no end in sight.


flying her kite

flying her kite

Ended up having to move to the back yard, away from trees and power lines. She was finally getting the hang of it, though.


Yes, another firetruck shirt

Yes, another firetruck shirt

Actually just took this one this morning. He does love his fire trucks.

ducks on my walk

ducks on my walk

Saw these as I was starting on a walk the other day. And snapped the picture. Don’t usually have walking buddies.

riding bikes at Presque Isle

riding bikes at Presque Isle

getting ready to go back on the trail after a lunch break

getting ready to go back on the trail after a lunch break

Riding bikes was interesting. There’s a paved path, but you have to keep to the right while on it. Trying to get two kids who have really only ever ridden up and down our driveway is not easy. Apparently neither is “Your feet are not brakes.” And “look where you’re going, not at your tire.” But, they had fun. The boy fell three times, twice going off the path into the trees.” The last because he was trying to catch up to his sister and grandma and was going too fast. Flipped his bike right over. Skinned his knees and had a mark on his forehead from his helmet, but he only cried a minute or so and got back on the bike.

he "had" to have his "John Deere farmer" hat on while he rode his (Farmall) tractor.

he “had” to have his “John Deere farmer” hat on while he rode his (International Harvester) tractor.

He got this tractor for his first birthday and still one of his favorite summer toys. He definitely takes after his daddy. The chain doesn’t stay on, so the pedals don’t work, but he still likes to drive it around.

Writing Wednesday: Frustrated

If my computer will cooperate for more than five seconds at a time, I just might get this blog post written. And since my frustration is currently at my maximum level, this will probably be a quick post. Only so much constantly freezing up I can take. First, my WiPPet Snippet. Today I have 7 paragraphs from shortly after last week’s snippet. Megan is letting Callum take Kaelin out unsupervised for the first time(that had been one of her rules at first, that he didn’t see her if Meg wasn’t around), and he’s picking her up from Megan’s parents’.

“Callum. Come in. Kaelin’s barely stopped talking about getting to go with you tonight.” He couldn’t help it. The corners of his mouth pulled into a big smile at that. “I’m glad she’s excited, and I hope she won’t be disappointed.” Adam Luzat clapped him on the shoulder. “Honestly, Callum, I don’t think anything you could do would disappoint that girl. The way she talks about you…” He shook his head, a wide grin on his face. “It’s the way Megan used to talk about me, the way she used to look at me.” That had the smile fading, and some of the light went out of his eyes. “I did disappoint her, though. We put too much on her too young. She always carried too much responsibility. I think you were her one rebellion.” “She wasn’t a teenager when we met,” Callum reminded him. “It’s kind of hard for a grown woman to rebel against her parents. Making your own decisions isn’t a rebellion.” “I know. And look what we got out of it. A beautiful little girl who makes all our lives brighter.” Callum could certainly agree with that. She brought a new light into his life, and he couldn’t help but smile when she brought that light with her down the hallway, running toward him with one shoe untied. Thankfully she didn’t trip over it before he had her in his arms. She smelled just as sunny as she looked. I missed you. It’s what he wanted to say, even though he’d just seen her that morning. Instead, he knelt in front of her and tied her shoe then looked into her face. “You ready to go?” She nodded fast. “I’ve been waiting and waiting for you to get here, Daddy. All day.”

Not sure how many more scenes I’ll be sharing from this. Will probably depend on what I start writing next(or I may start sharing from Nolan’s story soon. We’ll see). I’ve been making good progress on my goals this week(a little less so today as I’ve been fighting with my computer, but still got my writing in).

  • Flames of Restoration: add 12500 words(or 55,000 words) – I’ve added 7603 so far today. Sitting at just over 50000. On track with this.
  • Stained Blood: add 5000 words(or total of 45000 words) – have added 3239 to this. Sitting at a little over 43300 words. On track. I may even have the first draft finished before the end of the week. Certainly sometime next week. Only have probably a few more scenes to write. It’s definitely short, but I may add more during revisions.
  • Flames of Renewal: Finish 2nd round revisions I’m through 10/25 chapters. Haven’t gotten to today’s yet.
  • Kurztown 2.5: Brainstorm – have started this. Then, I wasted too much time yesterday reading through Law of Choice & Scars and All because I couldn’t remember if I’d given Patrick a specific eye color. Not that I could find, but I got to read about Brian and Doren again, so there’s that 😉
  • Into the Sun: add 1000 words – weekend project
  • Just Add Moonlight: Revise – weekend project
  • Story a Day – keeping up with this. I’ve been writing these first thing in the morning.
    • 5/4 – A Hero’s Grief
    • 5/5 – Kurztown – This is the first fiction piece for the challenge that doesn’t involve the Flames characters. Does give a hint of the novella I’m plotting right now, though.
    • 5/6 – Collapse
  • Read: Dearest Clementine(Lex Martin), Rumplestiltskin’s Daughter(Breeana Puttroff), The Dividing Line(Victoria H Smith), Love, Chocolate, and Beer(Violet Duke), and Unafraid(Melody Grace) – enjoyed Dearest Clementine. About 60% through Rumplestiltskin’s Daughter. It’s interesting.
  • Knit: Schooner Hat – Finish – decided to set this aside for right now
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket – Start – started the first one of these. I’m planning on making two and hoping to have them done by 5/17 when we’ll be heading to my hometown for my niece’s birthday party. Since my cousin and best friend have both had babies recently I want to give these to them, which is why I’m moving it up.

It’s taken me almost two hours to get this typed up because of how slow/non-responsive my computer has been. Thinking of shutting down for the rest of the day and just reading.

Monday Mentions: April’s Collection

As I mentioned back in March, I took a break from my Monday Mentions posts for the month of April. Maybe not much of a break, considering I was posting more often, just on a more concentrated theme. But, I still managed to collect some links while I was away from this. I won’t be offering much commentary as there are quite a few of them.

Ava Jae wrote about Differentiating between POVs

Top 10 Mistakes Authors Make When Writing Legal Scenes by Rick Acker

Counting Words by Chuck Wendig. Warning for language if that bothers you.

Summer Anthology – may be a little late in sharing this as the submission deadline is in 11 days, but if you can write fast, you might be able to get it in there.

And Ava Jae talks about how There Isn’t One Way to Be a Girl. This one really struck me as I’ve never been really feminine, and yes, there were times, maybe still are, when I feel like I lack something because of it. But, I’m starting to accept(finally, at 30!) that I am just the way I am. And there’s not necessarily anything wrong with that.

From Kelley Harvey: a post on Dead-weight words. Oh, yay, more to add to my editing list. 😉

And not so much a writing post, but this one from Kristen Lamb was good. On Parent & Mom-Shaming.

Sunday Summary:

I had been doing pretty good with at least staying caught up on my writing goals until Friday. I’m not sure what happened that day, the words just weren’t coming. I think I needed to take a break from it all. So, I read most of the afternoon and evening. I got up Saturday morning, and the words flowed a lot better. I got almost completely caught up on goals then. Even with spending most of the day outside.

Today we’re going up to Presque Isle to ride bikes with the kids. Then, we’re meeting my husband’s family for dinner to celebrate his brother’s birthday(which was Thursday). Today also would have been his dad’s 62nd birthday. So, I probably won’t be getting much done after I finish this post.

  • Flames of Restoration: Add 15000 words( ~42500 words total) – 14972 which put total at 42525. I’m not sure what was blocking me on this on Friday, but I think I’m past it.
  • Stained Blood: Add 5000 words(~40000 words total) – 4978, which put total just over 40000. I was planning 60k for this one, but not sure it will make it past 50k(which could always change in revisions).
  • Flames of Renewal: Second read through – finished this Friday, and compiled all my notes in Scrivener Saturday.
  • Jace’s Story(Hunter Family, Book 1): Outline – Finished this Saturday. Kind of excited to start writing. Once I finish Flames of Restoration.
  • Into the Sun: Add at least 250 words – I added almost 800, mostly written on my phone while outside yesterday. Considering I had no idea where this was going when I started it, I’m liking it’s direction. It may turn into more than a short story though.
  • Just Add Moonlight: Finish – Added 652 words to it this morning and finished the rough draft. I’m actually going to have to cut words here. It has to be under 1000 words before I submit it, and I’m 183 over. I’ll be working on that next weekend.
  • Blog: W-Z posts – got all these done, and the challenge is over. I really had fun with it. Will probably plan on doing it again next year. Until then, returning to my regular blogging schedule.
  • Crochet: Hooded Cowl – finished this yesterday, too. I messed up a little on the hood, but I think it still turned out all right.IMG_0553

Also, don’t think I mentioned it on here, I’m doing the Story a Day challenge again. Last time I attempted was back in 2012, and I got a few story sparks from it. This time, I’m mostly doing back story pieces on characters, mostly from the Flames series. And I’m trying to follow the daily prompts. We’ll see how I do. These are what I have for now:

And now, since April is over, it’s time to evaluate how I did. Blue means achieved, red means not.


  • Stained Blood – 1st draft

So, I technically didn’t meet this goal. Because I changed my goal partway into the month. But, I did write 72,322 words between two projects, which is more than I had planned for that first draft. And that doesn’t include the 1385 I wrote on short stories during the month.


  • Stained by Ashes – send to CP
  • Flames of Renewal – 1st round revisions


  • By the Gun – finish outline
  • Flames spin-off: Outline – technically didn’t finish this in April, but it was close.


  • A-Z Challenge
  • Keep up with WiPPet/RoW80 posts
  • Row80 sponsor duties
  • Keep up with blog comments


  • Read/listen: 21 fiction books(includes short stories/novellas) – listened to 4, read 21.
  • Read: How Do Private Eyes Do That?(Colleen Collins)


  • Knit: Simple Cable Scarf
  • Crochet: Hooded Cowl – again, technically I finished this in May, but I’m still counting it.

Overall, I’d say I did pretty good for April. So, my goals for May:


  • Stained Blood – finish 1st draft
  • Flames of Restoration – finish 1st draft
  • Jace’s Story – write 30,000 words
  • Story a Day Challenge
  • Into the Sun – add 4k or finish


  • Flames of Renewal – 2nd round revisions
  • Law of Choice – 1st read through
  • Just Add Moonlight – revise & submit
  • Any WiPs I get back from CP/Betas – revise for next stage


  • Kurztown 2.5 – Outline
  • Stained #4 – start brainstorming(though Jacob hasn’t been talking to me, so may shelve this one)


  • Listen/Read: 19 books


  • Knit: Schooner Hat
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket

And to meet those, my goals for this week:

  • Flames of Restoration: add 12500 words(or 55,000 words)
  • Stained Blood: add 500 words(or total of 45000 words)
  • Flames of Renewal: Finish 2nd round revisions
  • Kurztown 2.5: Brainstorm
  • Into the Sun: add 1000 words
  • Just Add Moonlight: Revise
  • Read: Dearest Clementine(Lex Martin), Rumpelstiltskin’s Daughter(Breeana Puttroff), The Dividing Line(Victoria H Smith), Love, Chocolate, and Beer(Violet Duke), and Unafraid(Melody Grace)
  • Knit: Schooner Hat – Finish
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket – Start


Fitness Friday: Back to It

Yes, I’ve been gone for a while. Well, not really gone, but while I was doing the A-Z challenge, I didn’t worry about any of my other Friday posts. And, unfortunately, this seems to correlate to me not watching my eating or exercising as well. Weighed myself for the first time in over a month yesterday: up 5 pounds since the middle of March. Definitely not the way I wanted to go.

For the last couple of weeks, since the weather has turned nicer, I’ve been getting out for walks when it hasn’t been raining. And over the last week, I’ve been getting back to the couch to 5k program. I used to love to run when I was in high school. The problem is that my knees and hips did not appreciate it. I’m only 30, but sometimes I feel like my knees are twice as old. But, I still enjoy the feeling of running. Every other time I’ve attempted this program, I haven’t gotten past week 2. Going to try my hardest to finish it this time. And I have about 4.5 weeks until the kids get out of school for the summer. Once that happens I don’t know what I’ll do for workouts.

I’ve also tried to get back into tracking my meals. Not always easy when I make things from scratch. Or for me to remember to do it at all. But, I’m working on it.I do not want the weight to keep creeping up. So, I really need to get serious about it.

Last weigh-in: 172.8

Today’s weigh-in: 177.2

Total loss/gain: +4.4 pounds(boo!)

I still probably won’t be checking in weekly, but I need to hold myself to at least monthly.


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