Friday, May 24, 2019

Hot Fun in the Summertime

My annual writers retreat to Lake Conroe is coming up soon. This'll be third year this group of us (minus one, sadly) has done this.

The lake house belongs to one woman's sister and brother-in-law, and this woman graciously allows us (her writer friends) to spend her allotted visit there with her rather than taking her family. We are all of us grateful for the opportunity to get away from home and spend this time together not just writing, but strengthening and deepening our bond as women and friends.

The chance to write without life's general distractions is also much welcomed by us all.

The whole trip is a blessing.

But that's not really where all of this was meant to go. As I mentioned we go to Lake Conroe. The house itself, it right on the lake. Each afternoon, we don our swim gear and trek out for a couple hours of floating and chatting.

It's the swim gear I'm here to talk about. Finding a swimsuit that fits well and is flattering is a chore. One I hate and one I've not bothered much with because until three years ago, I didn't need one. The original one I bought was ill-fitting because I'd lost weight and the halter top was uncomfortable.

This year, I'm bound and determined to get something that fits and is comfortable and is cute. Another friend had a suit that was made specifically for mature women--with modest cut or *non* bikini cut leg openings. But do you know how hard those are to find?? Yeesh.

I spent some time the other day Google-searching and finally found some sites with bathing suits that appealed to me and had those modest-cut leg holes. Think (and search) Esther Williams style swimsuits.

I really like this one, but I realized the lack of straps wouldn't work well for the size of my bust.

(Image from

I'm leaning toward this one. It has straps and will hide what'll be left of my tummy, and of course the leg holes are also modest-cut. Also, it's green. Not Victory Green, exactly, but close and I love green in general.

(Image from

I'll let you what I end up with after a bit more searching and research...or I'll share a photo from my trip. :0)

Have a wonderful weekend.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

We're going to revisit hockey just for a moment...

"Darn," you're thinking, right? Y'all finally got a break from my hockey obsession and here we are again.

I just want to express my disappointment in the San Jose Sharks--who I'm sure are way more disappointed in themselves than I truly am--but I digress.

The Sharks were supposed to win the third round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and send the St. Louis Blues home laden with disappointment. The Blues, you remember, won over my Dallas Stars in the second round of said playoffs and sent my boys home laden with that disappointment.

Instead, the Blues are moving on to the Stanley Cup Finals, playing the Boston Bruins. I hate the Bruins and I hate the Blues this year, so I don't know who'd I'd prefer to win. Not that it matters since it's not the Stars, the Golden Knights, or the Penguins.

 Now back to whatever I was originally going to ramble on about... Um... No, seriously, blog topics are a crap shoot. Did I think of something and forget because I didn't make a note somewhere? Did something happen in the world that I have an opinion on? Is there anything exciting going on in my life that rates coverage? No, no, and no.

Let me roll the metaphorical dice and see what occurs to me...

Okay, so...

I used to think life was busy with kids and that once they'd all grown up and moved away, life would be less busy, but that's not the case. It's not a bad thing, but anyone who has reached a certain age (it's different for everyone, I think) knows that time starts to pass faster. I do think you have to be at least 50 years old, though, yeah?

One of our speakers at writers group this past weekend talked about business plans. Now, several years ago, I put one together. It wasn't nearly as detailed as this person's but it served its purpose at the time.

Something she said struck a chord and is something I'd heard or considered before, but didn't really put into practice. Fast forward to two and a half months ago when an opportunity to participate in an anthology was passed along to me. I wanted to do it, but with all the hockey going on, could I pull it off?

I had to consider the deadlines, the scope of the project, if I could even come up with characters and a plot line, and how many days I'd be out of commission to write in the early morning because of a late night of hockey. I spent a weekend on characters and plot before I joined. If I didn't have that, there was no point. Then I figured up how many days were available to me and how many of them would be writing days. After that, I calculated how many words a day I had to write.

One of the woman's points when drawing up the business plan was how many books a year do you plan to write and or publish. You've obviously got to factor in your real life (day job, children, travel, etc) as well as how fast a writer are you.

It was a concept I'd considered previously but didn't do much with it, but I probably won't have the two books I wanted to publish out in the world this year. I will have the anthology I just mentioned and possibly another little volume of very short "coffee reads"--they're short enough to read while consuming a single cup of coffee--but not the two longer books I have despite both of them being half written.

The fact that they're both half-written and I can't seem to get them done maybe speaks to other issues. I'm trying to sort those...

Anyway. I need to try the approach of deciding on how many books to publish, how long they're going to be, plot and plan them, set deadlines maybe, sort daily word counts, and then--as Nike says--JUST DO IT.

Yeah, some of that ain't so easy. The plotting gets me every time.

Anyway, back to work. Have a great rest of your week.

Monday, May 20, 2019

I'm not sure how to feel...

Back in May 2005, the TV show series finale ended with a coin flip. The two main protagonists had finally declared their love for one another but had each been offered a promotion--to opposite end of the globe of course.

The coin toss would determine who would accept their promotion and who would pass so they could live happily ever after together.

A spinoff (NCIS: LA) of a spinoff (NCIS) that JAG launched way back in 2003 just aired their season finale featuring two special guest stars : David James Elliott and Catherine Bell reprising their roles as Harm and Mac fourteen years later.

The fans' question--who won the coin toss--was finally answered.

Unfortunately, the group of ladies I was with--my JAG ladies for the annual JAG meet--were not happy. Some were terribly disappointed, some were just plain angry.

If this episode's writer--who just so happened to be the biggest proponent of that Harm & Mac relationship back in the day and a writer on JAG who tended to write shippery episodes--couldn't give the fans what they wanted, then why bother bursting everyone's fantasies of how the coin flip ended. The winner of the coin flip didn't really matter.

What mattered was that Harm and Mac would be together and that they'd work out the logistics to make things work.

I'm not angry, but I am disappointed.

On the other hand, the current situation leaves the two characters in a position to find their way back to one another. There are rumblings and rumors (which may be just that by hopeful fans) that some sort of new show with our beloved hero and heroine is in the offing. We shall see.

As was JAG Meet weekend when a group of women who came together solely on the love of a TV show are still friends 20 years and long after the show has ended. I haven't been a part of the group for all 20 years, but I was on the fringes when that first group gathered at a local restaurant to meet. This year is the 20th anniversary. Amazing.

Here we are this year, with a handful of missing faces:

Now on a slightly different topic... It was this photo, nine years ago, that really spurred me hard into weight-loss/getting healthy mode:

See that big orange blob on the left? Yeah, that's me. I didn't want to look like that anymore, so in January of 2012 I finally knuckled down and made the commitment to do something about it.

In October of 2017, I reached my target weight--losing 63-ish pounds to get there. I knew it was going to be a long haul with various milestones and adjustments along the way.

While I do have to get back on the wagon of exercising and eating right again to lose the ten pounds I've gained over the last several months, I'm very pleased with myself for maintaining the weight loss over all and making the lifestyle changes necessary.

There are or shall I say *there will be* new physical-health related changes coming. But life is in flux and I have to figure out what the best path forward is going to be and what change I want to work on first.

As always, seeing these women was a wonderful time and a lovely weekend.

Hope you had a great weekend.

Friday, May 17, 2019

Fisher Price Little People

Remember these guys??

 (from Facebook)

I probably had most of these at some point in my young childhood along with the Fisher Price Little People House and furniture.

(images from Ebay)

 I have happy memories of me playing with these. I think I even have a picture somewhere.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Better late than never...

For today's post, I mean.

I've spent a good bit of the day trying to buy a plane ticket for my son to come home for a visit and to help at the fireworks store for a few days...

I checked flights the other day and thought prices were doable. I'd heard a few years ago that the ideal time frame to buy a plane ticket is something like 51 days. I've passed that by. But today, while searching for "best time of day" to buy a plane ticket, I saw it's two to three weeks and on a Sunday.

I checked this morning, mid-afternoon, and then again an hour later (as I'd botched the second attempt) and found the prices growing steadily higher each time I searched. Mid to late afternoon isn't an ideal time to buy flights it appears. I guess I'll be online Sunday morning (five weeks out), checking prices and hoping that they're lower than I've seen so far. Depending on what the fares are, I may just buy the ticket and be done with it. Keep your fingers crossed for me...

Hope your week is going well.