Playing around…

I was tired of the old theme and decided to change it up a bit. I hope you like it!

Also haven’t been writing much, either. We’ve had a death in the family, illnesses, and accidents, including one involving me and our now-totaled truck. (I miss it!) The new SUV is okay; it’ll hold the whole family for a trip north when necessary. My plan is to try Camp NaNoWriMo again to get me writing anything. On alternating days, I’m working out at the hospital system’s health club which helps with my attitude. Maybe working with Camp will help me with my authorial attitude. We’ll see.

Resolutions–at last

I’ve taken my own sweet time trying to figure out some New Year’s resolutions for myself this year. I’ve a bad habit, as many people have, of making resolutions and promptly breaking them. But I think I have a couple this year that I can stick with.

One, is to try and get back with FlyLady. When I was working with her system, my house stayed cleaner and my life felt better organized. I’d like that feeling again.

Two, to try and stay on top of the checkbook. I’ve fallen down on that a little so far, but I can catch up fairly easily, I think. I really need to know how much money we have in the bank and where it’s all going.

Three, try and write something every day. This is where using FlyLady can be to my advantage. She advocates doing things in baby steps, using a timer and doing housework 15 minutes at a time. If I can write for 15 minutes a day, using a timer like I often did during NaNo, I might be able to get more done.

Four, respond to reviews. Starting this year, I’m going to respond to every review I get. Like today, I got a review for Serendipity, which I’ve started posting at Lunaescence Archives. Surprised the heck out of me, but I responded as quickly as I could. I’ve responded, too, to a couple of recent reviews for my little Incredibles ficlet. It feels good to respond to those who have taken the time to review, and I think it makes me look less… stuck up. (There, I said it.)

Those are the top four resolutions. I might just open up my little sticky note app on my computer and put those down where I can see them. (Along those lines, does anyone know of a Magic 8-Ball app for XP? I have one for Vista on my laptop and like it a lot.) 

Enough for now, I guess. Better get a move on and maybe get some sleep.

A quiet little milestone

The Girl got her beginner’s permit today. She needed it by tomorrow for Driver’s Ed, so when she got home from school, we boogied on up to the Dept. of Motor Vehicles so she could take the "Knowledge Test". I’d already printed out the necessary forms and had filled in (with typing where possible) the information. Before we left, we double-checked all the identification she had to bring with her: Social Security card, birth certificate, and proof of residency (in this case, her school ID card).

She had 22 minutes to take the test; she did it in 16. Missed 5 questions, which was good enough to pass. So now she has another picture ID (which looks pretty good) in her wallet. It’s good for a year.

And, oddly enough, everybody at the DMV pronounced her name properly. The lady at the counter that we dealt with did mention she had to be careful to get the "unusual spellings" right, but that was all. (Her name was Ianthe.)

In other spheres, the RP is going great guns for a change. People are excited about it again, and we’ve even got a new player. We zipped through five days or so of game in the corresponding amount of real time, and are now working on the long-awaited Halloween party. Rain has done some art for various people (including a wonderful scene of my character dancing with her SO!) and I think is working on more. She also put up a really heartwrenching series of posts with her character visiting his mother’s grave. Wonderful stuff!

The White Winds is calling me, and I worked on Overtures a little as well. Need to keep it up and get these stories finished!

Lots to catch up on

School’s back in session as of Tuesday. Boy #1 enters high school and the Girl begins her senior year.
 
The Girl passed both her AP exams.
 
I have a new laptop.
 
We had a lovely week in Michigan with Hubby’s family. All of it, from all corners of the globe.
 
And I’ve changed my permissions on this space due to a two-week long email imbroglio with an old acquaintance. I won’t describe it in detail, suffice it to say that I was asked to edit something from my online journals that took place over two and a half years ago, mainly so this old acquaintance could feel better about herself. I have more information on my live journal, but you have to be a personal friend to access it. And that’s all I’ll say here.

One down, one to go…

Yesterday was the Girl’s appointment to take the SAT. This meant getting up early, taking Hubby to work early then on to the technical college, dropping her off for the big event. She had the cell phone, which I rather regretted later. Went home, napped, and restarted the day around 11ish. She called just before 1 for pick up.

On the way back home, I filled the gas tank about halfway. Though I’d used cash, the pump wanted to charge me the credit price per gallon. I called for help and the people inside switched it back. But I was glad I insisted on the proper price; by the time I picked up the Girl, gas prices had risen 8 cents across the board – so the credit card price was now the cash price! Whew!

I regretted the Girl having the cell phone when Hubby was so late coming home. He found he needed help during the day and had no way to call in at the appropriate time. So he got little help, and was back to the station far too late. He was mad at himself for it, and his supervisor wasn’t too happy either. It’s made me think that we should invest in a second cell phone.

The niece’s graduation was nice, though there were quite a few people who disrupted it with loud calls – and promptly got up to leave before they were thrown out. One guy used an air horn, which was expressly verboten. I hope he got charged with disturbing an event or something. I got to meet the SIL’s mother and sister that day, and her step-sister and the step-sister’s daughter. Nice folks! The mom was very impressed with my kids, especially the Girl. The party on Friday was nice; I sat outside with them in the shade (they’re all smokers, so my bro set up a table with comfy chairs and umbrella on his back deck for them). It wasn’t too uncomfortable; the worst humidity was over though it was still very hot. The five-cup salad went over really well, too!

Report cards came in yesterday. Boy #1 is the only one who got straight As. Boy #2 had one B, the Girl had two As, one C and the rest Bs. I’m okay with it, for the most part, though Boy #2’s B bothers me a bit because he could have had an A if he’d passed in his work on time during the first quarter!

Today, I slept in until 11ish, and I’ve spent a good part of the day avoiding the empty file I opened to write in. I know what I want to write, I think, once I figure out how to set the stage. But it’s just the actual writing… I can’t seem to get started. All I want to do is read!

“May you live in interesting times…”

I guess I’m living in them.

It’s been an interesting past few days. We got the notice over the weekend that Boy #1 has been invited to go to the Arts Awakening weekend again. It’ll be over his dad’s birthday, but that’s okay. We’ll celebrate at some other point. The weekend camp is sponsored by the YMCA for the public schools, is by invitation only, and this is the second year that he’s been tapped for the honor. He’s already said he doesn’t want to go up into the high ropes like last year – and I hope he doesn’t get sick like last year either.

Last night we had an interesting visitor. I had taken Lacey out for a constitutional and heard a scrabbling on the bark of one of the pecan trees between our yard and the neighbors’. The scrabbling turned out to be something climbing said tree. At first, I thought it was Tika, with her tail all puffed out, but once I got the back yard spotlights on, I could see it was a raccoon! It got up into the first split of the pecan tree’s branches, 15+ feet up, and stayed there as long as Lacey was outside. So, I tied her out and went looking for the camera. The Girl was still awake, so we grabbed a flashlight and the digital camera and headed out to take pictures. At one point, we disturbed the neighbors, who came out and asked what was going on. He was rather impressed that Lacey had treed a ‘coon!

The new dishwasher is very good! It really cleans the dishes well, and has a disposal portion, too. It seems to take longer than the old one did, but it dries the dishes and everything gets really clean. It even works with the solid detergent tabs that I’d bought before the old one went completely.

We finally got Hubby a much-needed cell phone. He doesn’t like it, but admits it makes his life on the road a lot easier. We’ve also used some of the tax refund to buy the rest of the fencing – not including gates. It came this past Thursday, and I’m looking forward to Hubby being able to get it all up.

I was featured on the FanLib carousel today – with my drabble "Green", excerpted from Mosaic. I’d entered it into a drabble contest, but hadn’t won. This is a better reward, I think. I’m working hard on finishing one or more WIPs; new chapters up for The White Winds and Resolutions: Redux, with a second TWW chapter halfway done. The RP has picked up tremendously over the past couple of weeks and it looks like we may have another player – this time from Australia. We’ll have to really shuffle things around for her to make it to brainstorming sessions!

More later!

Happy New Year!

Well, it’s 2008 and I have new art from my daughter!
 
She made magnets for some of our relatives, including me! The magnet she did for me is of Alan, dressed in his IR:TNP uniform, with his pygmy alligator sleeping (and drooling) on his head. Check it out, it’s in the art folder with her other art.
 
My only resolution for this year: finish my WIPs.

Why God created women.

Woke up this morning to a nice, chilly day, one that actually felt like autumn. I took my time getting showered, dressed, eating breakfast, doing some chores, then finally took the puppy out of her crate for walkies. I had to wear my fleece hoodie as the temperature wasn’t out of the 40s – according to the thermometer at the bac of the house.

The first thing I noticed outside besides the chill was the empty driveway. Hubby had taken the van. It was okay with me; I really didn’t have anywhere urgent or important to go, so I just nodded and made note of the fact.

Fast forward to this afternoon.

The day was getting later, and I was wondering if Hubby would get home in time to put up the storm windows. He’d taken the air conditioners out of their spots yesterday, leaving behind just the interior windows between us and the weather. It was past time for his workday to end; he wasn’t home yet, and for some reason, I felt that the routine he’d established would assert itself. At one point, a car slowed in front of our house, and I said aloud to the kids, "I hope that’s not Daddy, having gotten a ride home. He’s got the car!"

Around six o’clock, I got a phone call while online. The caller ID identified it as from the U.S. Government. It was Hubby.

I took the call, and he told me he was done, and that no one was there to give him a ride home…

I think he must have been pretty surprised when I burst into laughter, and even more shocked when I reminded him that HE HAD THE CAR!

This is why God created woman. Man couldn’t make it on his own.

Doing some clean up…

Nice new features for the lists! I’ve weeded out some stuff and rearranged things. I’m dropping FicWad as one of my archives as the latest software/database upgrade made a mess of my formatting and I just do not have the time to go back and fix it all. Removing the stories will take some time as the system there seems to take forever. I can’t just cancel my entire account at once.
 
We’ve got a new member in the family: a puppy named Lacey. Her relationship with the cats is still rather rocky. Tika and Callie hiss and run away. Cotton swats and hisses, but she also puts up with her more. Lacey loves to wrestle with Inky, who has definitely different ideas on the matter! She’ll end up being bigger than the cats, but not a huge dog. She’s very pretty; all tan and white with a couple of brown splotches, especially on her nose.
 
The new site has had it’s ups and down. We had to load a new (and much better) forum. And we’ve put our first chapter up there: Chapter 11. Rain has created some sprites for all the characters; they are sooo cute!
 
I’ve been wrestling with a summer cold for the past two weeks. Lost my voice completely once, and almost lost it again another time. I’ve had ringing and echoes in my ear, which finally cleared up, and a nasty sore throat with coughing. The puppy hasn’t helped; I get night time puppy patrol for the most part. Things are getting better, but slowly.
 
School starts Monday… and we’re not prepared. We’ll survive, I’m sure, but we can’t get most supplies until Friday.

Lots of weird life stuff going on.

First of all, I’ve had absolutely no impetus to write, with the possible exception of writing to the RP. None, zip, nada. I know I need to update my fics, but sitting down to do it has been next to impossible. I’m not sure what to do to get back into the swing of things, but I’d better do so, and soon.

While my writing impetus is gone, my creative impulses have been flowing in other directions, it seems. I’ve been helping Rain to build a new RP site. There have been too many odd things going on at MSN Groups, and the more I learn about HTML and want to use it, the more I come up against MSN’s restrictions on it. We’ll be discussing the move this weekend at the brainstorming session. There’s still a lot to be done, though.

I’ve also been bopping back and forth, writing responses to various articles about the fandom, and participating on the FanLib boards. That’s one of the things I like about FanLib; it’s a gathering place for many different fandoms, and a few new people have been made aware of Thunderbirds. We’ve been in the top 10 fandoms for the past few weeks, which has been fun. And the competition has made fanfiction.net sit up and take notice; they’ve been adding new features to compete with this brash new upstart. My one complaint about those features is this: if ff.net thought that pictures and images were so "useless", then why did they offer them as part of the paid subscriber package when they had one?? I think that’s rather hypocritical on their part!

The Girl has posted her fanart (as in the TB pictures) to Elfwood, and they’ve been published. If you have a chance, go by and leave a comment; she’d love to hear from you. The link is in my favorite sites.

Hubby has been off for nearly two weeks now; I love vacation and I’ll be sad when it’s over. My folks were down for a week. My mom’s deterioration, especially the mental side, was pretty obvious. We had a more or less relaxing time, though. They visited friends and came to see us for meals. It was nice. Dad’s afraid that this will be the last time they can visit like this. Mom’s all set to come down for the Niece’s graduation next year. (The Niece being my local one; all others are in lowercase).

I’m sure there’s more to say, but I need to finish the laundry. Three hampers empty and counting!! Woot! Once Hubby comes back, then we can turn the mattress and I can change the sheets… wonder if he went to the library after Home Depot….