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2017 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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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Still working...

...on my room. I didn't do TOO much last night, but I did something. Which is better than letting it come to a standstill again.

I painted the door molding, one coat. It's still a bit streaky so I'll have to take care with the second and possibly third coats.

I touched up the wall right underneath the chair rail molding where I inadvertently kept brushing against it with my white paint brush while I was painting the molding. I'll check it tonight and see if I've completely covered all those white spots.

Tidied up the paint job on the molding around the white wall. See the wall isn't an original wall. We built it to create an office many years ago before we moved into official office space and gave that room to our older daughter. And we used paneling rather than sheet rock which would have needed taping and bedding. So that means there's a strip of molding all the way around the wall to hide the seams. (It was cheaper and easier at the time and money was much tighter.)

I didn't give a third coat to my accoutrements--the peg rack and the shelf brackets. Just didn't feel like it.

Tonight--more DAP around those aforementioned seams,a second coat on the door molding and possibly a third coat on the shelf brackets. I may also stop at The Home Depot to buy pretty white outlets, outlet covers and a solid plate cover for a spot where there used to be a switch.

After all of that...it should be time to work on the floor. That's the part I'm excited about.

I have some lovely flower pictures from a calendar that I'm going to frame and hang. I'm going to get some pretty white shelves and a pretty white desk and chair. I'll need some cushions for my two wicker chairs. And I have a lovely green bookcase that will be moved in there once the floor is done.
Monday, June 27, 2011

Progress... (update)

As planned, the molding in my spare room received its second coat as did the wall and the door.

WOOT!

I also DAPped along the top of the chair-rail molding and around the window. Ooohh...it looks so nice. :)

Next up on the agenda: install the door knob and paint the molding around the door and DAP it as well.

I also found a desk and a chair today--though I have to order it online.

And I'm going to buy another faux wicker chair so I have a pair.

Getting active...

My son, not me.

For his efforts of unpacking/stocking the fireworks we can't sell this year and for which he will not get his usual payment as if we were open and able to sell, we bought Sonshine a skateboard.

He was up and out of the house at 6:45 this morning to skateboard with his buddies. YAY!

As for me, I finally got the last wall in my spare bedroom, which we have decided to turn into a computer room/study, painted. One coat, but it looks so much better. My plan is to add the second coat tonight, as well as work on a second coat to all the trim. I also started painting the wooden four-peg rack I bought and the wooden shelf brackets.

Once the wall and molding are done, it'll be time to work on the floor. I've decided just to paint a rug. I'm going to leave about nine inches of the current flooring showing around the edges and paint the middle like a square rug. It'll be white with a colored stripe about 4-5 inches in. Or I was thinking of splattering the colored paint for an abstract pattern, but I'm not real sure about that yet.

I'm excited because I'm almost at the end of this project--the urgency has hit again now that Sonshine's home. See when his friends spend the night they are all over the living room, and when I get up early on Saturday & Sunday mornings, I have no place to sit and drink tea and read or write. Plus hubby wants home office space. He may get it, but it's going to be on my terms and look a bit girly. :)
Thursday, June 23, 2011

Make It or Break It

A combination review/rant of ABC Family's teen drama Make It or Break It...

I have a love/hate relationship with this show. There's no doubt it's compelling. I've blown through thirty-seven of forty episodes in less than a week. The main male lead, head coach Sasha Belov, played by Neil Jackson, is very lovely to look at. :)


(not the best picture...)

The show revolves around the lives and drama of a quartet of elite gymnasts, living and training in Boulder, Colorado.

The second season also poses as a public service announcement for eating disorders, having one of the girls become anorexic. After a quick Google search for something else, I discovered Candace Cameron Bure (of the 80s sitcom Full House) suffered with Bulemia as a young woman, so it was probably a story line close to her heart.

Anyway, every time I yell at the screen, usually something along the lines of, "Why can't something good happen to so-and-so just once??!!" I remember from my own learning curve in writing that readers or viewers don't want to watch nothing but fluff and rainbows.

But my rant comes from the fact that one of the girls, no matter how conniving and ugly she is, no matter what she does or says or who she hurts, she hasn't once really gotten her comeuppance in public. Everyone else plays nice with each other but they constantly have drama to deal with, whether of their own making or not. Oh sure, she has rare moments of contrition, but they are usually short-lived. And then not ten minutes later she's back to her old tricks. GAH! It's really making me mad. I understand where her motivation comes from, I do, but when is she going to learn the lesson she SO badly needs to learn?



There are a few other frustrating aspects of the show, and I realize some of them are on purpose.

I was going to call it enjoyable, but that has such an up/positive connotation and I do like the show and I do enjoy it, but the show itself is a drama. Is it GOOD? I don't know. Maybe my standards are too high. Do I recommend it? Um, not for young teens necessarily even though it's on the ABC Family channel.

Or maybe I'm just mad at it for not allowing Sasha to find happiness with Summer (Candace's character). They had a sweet little romance going on until recently. And I'm all about the happily-ever-afters after all. :)
Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Getting Serious

Again. :)

My critique group is up to five members now. We enlisted two new recruits this weekend. One gal is e-published and not new to writing, the other is the newbie. Both are lovely and fun women.

Now that we've got these two new writers, there can be no more lackadaisical behavior by the rest of us. It's back to the grindstone, back to writing. Or at least back to editing/revising for me. I have a handful of stories that are almost done. My goal is to get these suckers complete. Some are short stories, some are full-length novels, though on the lighter end of the word count requirements. We'll see how it goes.

My college plans will have to wait until the spring semester of 2012. Not because I'm not flip flopping, but after really thinking about what I've got going on this fall--mostly band/band booster related stuff for Sonshine, there's just no good time for me to attend class and complete homework. Plus with being unable to sell fireworks, that means DD's fall tuition will be out of pocket. And she's more important than me at the moment.

The weather has eased slightly with temps only in the low to mid-nineties today and probably for the rest of the week.

Speaking of selling fireworks...the Venus VFD finally called hubby back. They are doing the pop & shoot as long as no order is issued in their county banning the sale/use of fireworks there. Also, they moved, so there'll be a new location. As a side note, it's possible, though unlikely we actually could sell fireworks. Apparently the original order issued by the McLennan County judge had to be ratified by the governor within 48 hours for it to remain in effect. Well, that didn't happen and the judge had to issue a new order. The wording on this one however might just have a loophole. It says no sales in unincorporated areas of the county. And while the store is indeed in an unincorporated town, the old fireworks stand is not. The city of Leroy is incorporated!! Unfortunately, there's no longer electricity or phone service there and it would take a lot of time and effort to get everything in place to be able to sell from the stand. And the money we might make would barely cover the expenses hubby has incurred already this season and that doesn't include the cost of the inventory we bought. I'd much rather cut our losses and do a show. I miss doing shows.
Monday, June 20, 2011

It's HOT

There's not a whole lot to report. It's too hot to do anything 'round here, but let's see...

I have a clothesline now. Again. Finally. I love to smell my sheets with the scent of outdoors and fabric softener in them. Plus with as much as the A/C is running these days, less use of electricity is always a good thing.

Speaking of A/C and the heat, it's been over 100* for many days in a row. Ugh! Though I do drive home with windows down. After sitting in A/C all day I actually do get cold so I get to thaw out. Plus it's only a ten-minute commute.

Um, started watching a new TV show. It's nothing to write home about, but it's entertaining so with the men gone...

I--we--have added a new writer to our critique group. She's a newer member of my writing chapter and she's a lot of fun. So now we are four! And we also need to get back on track with bi-monthly critique sessions. Which means I need to write or edit one of my many WIPs. Ugh...but another chapter-mate made in interesting comment about self-publishing which piqued my interest and got me to thinking about my YA that's still languishing, almost complete, on my hard drive.

I've decided (again) to check into going back to school and getting a two-year English degree. Nothing major, but I've come to the conclusion over the past two years that I prefer editing to writing. And a basic degree would be beneficial. So I'm going to have DD take me to the counselors office at the community college and see what it's going to take.

No word on the fireworks show yet. Hubby has been trying to get in touch with the Venus VFD, but no one has called him back yet. I went to their website and sent an e-mail.

Thunderstorms are in our forecast for Tuesday and Wednesday and that should break our heat wave. After that our temps should drop down to the low-to-mid nineties. Whew! And down at the store yesterday, it was supposed to be 106*!!! Yikes.

Well, that's my ramble for the day. Back to work--I'm feeling productive, so I'm hoping to complete my to-do list for today.

KEEP COOL!!
Friday, June 17, 2011

WHY?

Why are we here in Texas (among other places) experiencing a drought and the upper mid-west anywhere along the Missouri River has been flooded??

Farms, homes, business, wildlife destroyed...

Most of my family, who lives in an Omaha suburb, is fine. Although, my step-mother says that if the water wasn't being "controlled" (HA HA HA HA HA) they'd be wet too. They live only three miles due west of the river. (See the red X.) Luckily the area is somewhat hilly, so they are above normal river levels.


If we can build the Alaska Pipeline, surely we could have put some sort of system in place to pipe all this water to places the need it, like Arizona or Texas?? I mean we had to have known this was coming, right?

Are we just that stupid or complacent or lazy? We must be.

I am feeling decidedly helpless.

What can I do? What difference can I make? It all seems so very hopeless.
Thursday, June 16, 2011

BUMMED

We can't sell fireworks this season. The head honcho in McLennan County, where our store is located has just issued the order for the ban of sales and use of fireworks.

We understand--we really do, because it's been so dry here in Texas, especially south of us.

But couldn't he have done it yesterday or the day before--the supposed deadline for these announcements?? So that all those people that count on that deadline to place their order or pickup their product didn't proceed.

Ordering's not a big deal, because you can cancel it; but once you've take receipt of your inventory, you're (obviously) obligated to pay for it. We had a suspicion and cut our order way back so that we could pay it out of pocket, if we had to. Which we now have to do. Grr...

Looking on the bright side, I suggested we find somewhere to shoot our own show. Hubby hasn't shot a show in quite a few years, which he misses. And was the reason we started selling in the first place--to get wholesale prices. (The man was spending $4K to $6K a year.) (Yeah.)

Hubby's still taking his vacation though. He'll go to the store, stock the shelves, stripe the parking lot, etc. Just at a slower pace. I'll still get my vacation too. :)
Monday, June 13, 2011

Happy Birthday to ME!

Yesterday was my birthday--I enjoyed a nice quiet day, including a nice good long chat with my momma, a meal I didn't have to cook, and a replay of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. The men are still gone, but will be home no later than Wednesday. Of course, they'll be back out the door by Saturday at the latest. DD left for children's camp this morning, so it's just me and the four-legged girls until the men get home.

My one and only birthday gift so far is a 320GB portable hard drive. I've been wanting one for a while to hold all my music, movies, and TV shows. I have too much to keep on my laptop. I found a good one (Seagate) at Wally World for $49. A pretty good deal.

Actually, another lovely gift was my nomination for a Sweet Award by my sweet friend Regina, who chose to nominate me (among others) because "Jen FitzGerald who reminds me of the little treasures buried in each day." Isn't that a lovely thing to say. Thanks again, Regina. :)

As mentioned in a previous post, when the men leave, I clean and complete projects. And when I'm not doing that, I'm reading, writing, or watching fun things on TV/DVD/Netflix/or iTunes.

I'm about halfway through the cleaning, but haven't started completing the projects, though I have what I need to get started. Tonight, I'll be getting started--painting the trim in the former spare bedroom, now computer room. My other project is to work on Sonshine's room. At least to clean it and then buy & paint the molding. The men can put up the molding when they get home.

And I can do laundry without having to babysit the washer. The pipes were getting clogged with gunk, so I had to stop the machine several times during the drain cycles. But it finally reached critical mass and for just under $100, I have unchaperoned laundry once again.

Well...that's it for now. :)
Monday, June 6, 2011

Dragging...

I worked Cowboys Stadium yesterday on behalf of the band. It was Gold Cup Soccer which meant lots and lots of Spanish speaking fans. Luckily one of my fellow cashiers spoke Spanish.

And those folks are crazy about their soccer. Not even Cowboys fans have rivaled the revelry.

At some point during half time of the first game or immediately after, there was a group right outside or stand chanting and beating on drums. Oi! You know for a few minutes it was fun, but after fifteen I was ready to scream. Plus, I couldn't hear my customers hardly at all. I had to practically read lips. And add to that the aforementioned language barrier...well... I was also in training for being "stand manager". Basically handling the setup/shutdown of the stand and taking care of the money. If I do it for ten games, Sonshine's band trip next spring is paid in full. An approximately $300 value at this point. Is it worth it? It only comes out to about $2.50 an hour, but I'd work that many games anyway, so...

The jury's still out. :|

I'm dragging because I didn't get home until after eleven and my poor body's aching as I was on my feet and on the go for ten straight hours. (Yep, it's a tough gig. Only stupid dedicated parents need apply.)

How was your weekend?
Wednesday, June 1, 2011

I Don't Even Know!

I feel like I have the attention span of a flea. I flit from one thing to the next, never able to--despite my best intentions--to stick with anything.

I'm going to do this, I'm going to that. PAH!

I'm going to walk every day, I'm going to fill a yard bag every day, I'm going to do a load of laundry every day. Hmm... Not that I planned to accomplish all three things every day. Just one.

And have I? Well, after a band parent meeting, I did do a load of laundry last night, so that's good.

Writing has been relegated to the early mornings now. That's okay, though, it's usually the best time. Everyone else is asleep and the house is quiet. (Well, except for the dogs.)

I'm feeling a bit restless and bored of late.

Though, I'm not sweating it, the writing is mostly at a trickle. I've been reading and watching a bit of TV. Now with this band booster thing, I'll be busy--there's a lot to get a handle on and fix.

And when the men are out of my hair, there will be house projects to finish.

So--nothing exciting here except a place to record my random thoughts. :)

Well, back to work.

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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