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2016 Goals

  • write to my grandmother every six weeks or so
  • call my moms every month or so
  • cook/eat better
  • clean out and organize my writng/craft room
  • re-institute the cleaning plan
  • publish six books by September 2017
  • reach 120 to 125 pounds
  • walk the dog three times a week

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Thursday, August 28, 2008

This and that...

Well, I've had a lot of things rattling around in my brain these past few days. Some of it deep and personal, like trying to decide what my future holds. Some of it fluff, like trying to decide what to actually blog about next. So...

1) I sent my newly licensed drive off on her own last night for her longest drive by herself (22 miles one way). She wanted to go to church, I didn't want to take her. Not because I didn't want to go to church, but because there was nothing going on for anyone but junior and senior highers and I'd have had to kill time since it's too long of a trip to drop off, come home, pick up, come home. And I wanted to be at home.

My first instinct was to say "NO, you can't go that far by yourself." Of course, she's 18, not an immature 16-year-old. After a pow wow with hubby, we agreed she could drive herself and her younger brother to church - as long as she took the back roads. Despite her age, she has no experience driving the freeways during rush hour. So they made it there and back just fine.

I've never been a clingy parent. Especially with that child. She's always been independent. And, until now, she's only gone into controlled and safe new situations (kindergarten, middle school, high school, etc.). But now I have to release her out onto the wild highways and byways of DFW? What - are you crazy??? Okay, I did it. And it was nice for both of us. It may take a few more uneventful trips for me to relax, though...

2) I've got a new TV show obsession: Robin Hood. It's a British series produced by BBC. It is available through Netflix and my favorite iTunes. Yes, I'm buying them one by one. It's a retelling of the old favorite but with a contemporary feel. Jonas Armstrong as Robin Hood, is a cutie, and Lucy Griffiths plays a fiesty Marian. As I was doing a bit of surfing on the Net for info about this show, I came across some spoilers and they don't bode well for RH or M. So don't spend the money just yet, check it out via Netflix first. Or stay tuned. I'll be willing to let you know what happens, if you're interested.

3) Am I writer, or am I not? I enjoy writing. I feel have the skills to write. I understand the formulas, the rules, the do's and dont's. I have a difficult time coming up with conflict, although that can be overcome. But life is busy, and there are things that vie for my time, and all must be prioritized. That means that writing usually falls by the wayside as I run out of day before I run out of things to accomplish. I have concluded that this is not the season for (much) writing. I will keep my finger in the pie as it were. Continue to learn the craft, jot down my story ideas, write when time allows, but serious writing will have to wait until it is the right time.

4) Our office move is almost upon us. The excitement of the thought of office space has been overcome by the thought of moving the office. We have four business days left until we move. We will close down the office for a day and half to pack and move. A new normal will be upon me, rethinking the regimentation of the day, what time do I need to get up, get the kids to school, then get to the office? My dogs will be home alone now, without a dog door. Does this mean I have to come home for lunch to let them out? Maybe for a week or two, until they're used to being home alone. I know this must seem dumb, but we've always worked from home since we've had them. It'll be an adjustment for all involved. There's tons more whirling through my brain, but I won't bore you with any more.

I guess that's enough rambling for now. Hope you have a great day...
Monday, August 25, 2008

Back to school...

I have just gotten back from dropping off the second of my two school-age children. My son says he was ready to go back. Not that I doubt he was, even if he didn't admit it, but his reasons were comical: "There's nothing to do around here but play X-Box, watch TV, or play on the computer." And it's not as if there weren't chores to do and real toys to play with.

My daughter, on the other hand, would deny to her dying breath, if asked, that she was looking forward to going back to school. But I think she, too, is tired of the monotony of summer days. She'll be back to daily socializing while carrying a decent load of classes, including an SAT prep class and two AP classes. Now she needs to decide where she wants to go to college and start applying for those scholarships.

I've been looking forward to school being back in session, too. My TV won't be on from 9am to 11pm and my food won't disappear quite so quickly.

On top of that, our business, which is currently residing in our somewhat finished garage, will be getting a new home as well. My electric bill will drop by more than half. At least I'm hoping. Anything I save from having new windows installed will just be gravy.

Our new office space has 3300 sq. feet of warehouse space; I can hardly wait to go clean out from under beds and out of closets and put all that stuff in the warehouse. My home will look positively roomy! The garage will be turned into a TV/family/craft room, and my living room will become just that: a living room. Oh happy days.

I'm even thinking of paring down my work schedule from five days a week to four, taking Wednesdays off to be a housewife and writer. Keep your fingers crossed for me that I can pull that off within the next month or so.

So... if you had a room to do with whatever you wanted, what would you do?
Friday, August 22, 2008

WOO HOO!

One of my kids is finally a licensed driver!!

My younger daughter and I left the house this morning at 5am to get in line at the DPS (that's 2.5 hours before the place even opened) in order to get one of the limited daily slots for the road test. There were already about 7 or 8 people already there!

She got a 10am slot, but it took until 10:39 until she finally took off. The test itself only lasted a short 10 minutes. Then it was back inside, in the line, to get the temporary license. She should have her honest-to-goodness drivers license in 3 to 4 weeks.

One down, two to go...
Thursday, August 21, 2008

Finally...

I have finally read the Bible in a year. My first time to get completely through the Good Book.

I started last year at the beginning of July and after a short hiatus I have finally caught up.

Yay!
Monday, August 18, 2008

I'm just not feeling very inspired...

...to do much of anything.

I'm not writing, I'm not reading, I'm not even working (well, not very hard or very consistently). I'm watching TV shows, namely Army Wives and Babylon 5. (I know, I know, an odd combination...) I'm waiting for the 10th Anniversary Edition of Sports Night to be released. I've pre-purchased my copy. I've got a new computer game I'd much rather be playing (Zoo Tycoon 2: Zoo Keepers Edition). I've got an old computer game that used to work but now won't...

I've got laundry to do, Driver's Ed to finish, kitchen walls to paint, cabinets to stain, Fireworks Sales Tax to calculate and mail in...

And all I want to do is play Zoo Tycoon.

I have been reading a manuscript for someone. I'm pretty disappointed. I realize we're all human, but sometimes I gotta scratch my head and wonder. So I'm reading this thing and the author talks about a woman baring children, someone lighting the tender for the fire, and the hero's crop of barely... Not only that, but in a specific scene, the hero is decidedly unheroic, cowering in the face of the heroine's father. Um, nope. And to add insult to injury, the hero is supposed to be Robin Hood.

Well, enough of this. On the bright side, it's raining here in my neck of the woods. So,
technically, it's not really bright...


Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Greatest Olympian Ever...

Michael Phelps captured gold medal number five of the 2008 Olympics last night/today. Adding those five (so far) to his six from the 2004 Olympics now makes him the greatest Olympian ever. At 23 years old. And he's broken the standing record in every race in which he's competed.

My family has spent the evenings watching these games. I choose to because this is history, not just for the US, and for the individuals of every nation that competes, but for the world. The outbreak of war in Eastern Europe is yet another sign of the times. (My regular readers (all three of them) will know what time that is.) The older I get the more attention I pay to the world around me, sometimes wishing I had started paying attention sooner.

One of the special reports I heard was how Peter Uberroth almost single-handedly saved the Olympics as we now know it. He was the organizer for the 1984 Olympics, and was subsequently named Man of the Year that year for his success. I remember those Olympics. I lived in L.A. at the time, so we were inundated with anything and everything Olympics. That was the year of Mary Lou. The men's gymnastic team also won gold that year, including Tim Daggett, whose voice you hear calling the gymnastics events this year. I think I still have newspaper clippings!

What's your favorite Olympic moment?
Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Have I mentioned...

how much I love iTunes? Even despite its shortcomings.

First, let me say, you don't have to have an iPod of any shape, size, or color, to use iTunes as your default music/video player. Just download and use...

I can play music, I can load music from CD, I can buy music, I can buy & watch TV shows (if they've been licensed, of course), and I can find all kinds of free pod casts on just about any topic imaginable. I can also purchase audio books (although I actually use Audible.com).

What a world we live in!
Monday, August 4, 2008

We're having a heat wave...

Temps were somewhere around 105 yesterday here in the east Fort Worth area - at least that's what my car's built in thermometer read. They're supposed to be just as hot, if not hotter, again today. Yikes. If we reach 107, as predicted, it'll break a record. But the record temps waited this long to show up, which tells me they will be short lived in duration. The first summer we spent in Texas (2000) was brutal. There were over 100 days of over 100 degree heat that summer. What a welcome!

Onto other more pleasant news, we are finally moving our business out of our garage and into real live office space. We found pretty close to perfect space only four miles from our home, which includes enough space to grow from our six-man team to the twelve-man team we are working towards. It also includes a huge attached warehouse space.

And I'm talking huge, not just height-wise. There is enough space in the warehouse area to hold the following vehicles: our boat, our pop-up trailer, our flat-bed trailer, our large enclosed trailer, our non-running Durango, all *three* company cars, our large pick-up truck, and all four employees' personal vehicles (if we wanted to), with room to spare. Not to mention all ladders, equipment, and tools belonging to the business. Plus we have ample parking in front for walk-in business and actual employee parking.

Finally! I'm very excited to have my home back.

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Jen FitzGerald
Thanks for stopping by one of my little corners of the world wide web. So, a little about me...My husband and I have been married for twenty years and we have three adult children although our youngest is still in high school. We've lived in Texas for fifteen years and for the rest of the story, click here.
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Jen's Glossary of Terms

  • DH = my husband
  • my Brown Eyed Girl = my oldest daughter
  • DD = my Darling Daughter (the younger one)
  • Sonshine or Marching Band Boy = my son
  • NT = the North Texas chapter of RWA
  • RWA = Romance Writers of America