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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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Friday, February 27, 2015

TGIF


Of course, we all love the weekend, but I have succumbed to the nasty cold/flu bug that has been going around. I'm on my third day, but am planning to rest all weekend. I have stocked up on the honey/lemon/ginger concoction, facial tissue, and have enough water to keep me in water and hot tea.


DH has been battling it for close to two weeks now and has made me promise to take time off work if I'm feeling that awful. He didn't when he should have and now he's paying for it. I have duly promised.


I've also downloaded enough reading material to stock a small library.

Let the healing begin!

Stay warm and healthy and have a super weekend.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

*WHEW*


The big rush is over--the contest I'm co-coordinating has closed and panels have been sent out to judges. Score sheets are already being returned. A bit more to go, but the big push is done.

Sonshine has arrived at his duty station and is once again in limbo. Goodness--how much of his enlistment is going to be spent waiting? He was supposed to attend an indoctrination class (that sounds very negative, doesn't it?), but there was no room for him. He has to wait for the next one and he hasn't been told when that is. Meanwhile, he has to eat on his own dime until he gets through the class. What kind of crap is that??

If you're not from our neck of the woods, we had a taste, weather-wise, of what a lot of other parts of the country are experiencing. I've stopped complaining because, here in Texas, we never get the extreme winter weather like the Midwest and Northeast generally do. But every once in a while, we do get extreme for us.

Which this time around was a severe ice storm. It was expected to be so bad, our district closed school for two days the night before. That rarely happens. They usually employ the wait-and-see approach.



Hope you're safe and warm!


Monday, February 23, 2015

Boogity, boogity, boogity



Joey Logano wins his first ever race at the Daytona 500. Image courtesy NASCAR.com.


I'm a huge fan of NASCAR. It's been a while since I've followed it, but with Sonshine gone, there's a real lack of sports around the house. Although previous sports was of the virtual variety--Hockey and Soccer via an Xbox game.
Image courtesy Wikipedia.

While I do relish the silence, I also miss the sports, faux though it was. So I need to find a way to watch sports live on the Internet.

Some events are going to be readily available, others not so much. Hockey has a pay service, but NASCAR has been a bit more elusive. If you know of something please let me know!

Hope you all had a lovely weekend. Stay safe and warm today.




Friday, February 20, 2015

Small Miracles


On February 18th, my newest nephew made his debut. Unfortunately, he did so six weeks before he should have. However, aside from some breathing issues, he's actually doing fine. He weighed in at just over four pounds.



With all the marvels of modern medicine, there are still a few things that can't be done--creating synthesized amniotic fluid apparently being one of those things. It was safer for Baby Colton outside the womb than it was inside as the amount of amniotic fluid had dropped to dangerous levels.

But, as I said, he's doing as well as he possibly could be, all things considered. He was taken off the breathing machine last night, and he gets to go home when he reaches five pounds.

If you're the praying sort, please pray for my sister, brother-in-law, nephew Austyn (Colton's big brother), and most especially Colton.


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

All That Jazz




Last night, Sonshine and I attended the first concert of the East Fort Worth Community Jazz Band.

The band was founded and conducted by Sonshine's high school band director and I was pleased as punch that he just happened to be in town for it. Sonshine's girlfriend joined us for an enjoyable evening.

Sonshine and Kathy Bernal, Director of the East Fort Worth Community Jazz Band.


 Groovin' Hard performed by East Fort Worth Community Jazz Band

Monday, February 16, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day


Hope you had a lovely day...

DH treated me to flowers and burgers on the grill as well as doing the shopping for it and cleaning up afterwards. We also watched one of my favorite movies--Star Trek Into Darkness. Over all, a very pleasant day.
Friday, February 13, 2015

When does one's status change?


As mentioned on Wednesday, Sonshine is home for a visit. It'll be his last for quite some time as he'll finally be out in the fleet doing the things he's trained to do.

But even though he's a legal adult and has been gone and in the Navy, a rite of passage, as it were, to full "adult-hood" if ever there was one, our relationship still feels mostly the same.


He's home and I'm admonishing him to pick up the bathroom, to clean up the mess he made in the living room, and to behave when he goes out.

Will that be different in nine months or year? When does he stop being the teenager he was/is and become the man whom I no longer feel the need to mother?

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Sonshine is home...







That is all!
Monday, February 9, 2015

Monday, Monday...


Hope you had a lovely weekend. I got a yard work sub-goal done finally. The two large branches have finally been cut up into firewood. Most of the rest of the back yard was mown. I did a lot of reading, a little crafting, and watched some TV too. I also spent a lovely few hours with two dear friends. This morning's blog post didn't get spared a thought, so as a result so you all you get is this.

Have a good Monday...
 


Friday, February 6, 2015

Audio Books


Are you a fan of the audiobook? I really enjoy listening them, but I've learned I can only listen to certain genres. Or should I say I can't listen to anything that has suspenseful action/adventure type moments--the kind where, if you're reading, you're going to read faster because the action calls for it. The narrators tend to read at the same pace--I suppose so general listeners can easily keep up with the tale. But it was very hard for me to enjoy the story because I wanted to "listen" faster.

So I choose women's fiction instead. Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Danielle Steele are favorites. I also like to listen to the Harry Potter books too, although I've only gotten through three of them I think.

I think last year we talked about free books, and I might have mentioned LibriVox--free audiobooks.

Most of you know I have a thing for Sherlock at the moment, the BBC TV series. I thought reading the source material would be a good thing. Since the original Adventures of Sherlock Holmes are in the public domain, audio versions of the books are available from LibriVox.

So I downloaded them. I started listening to them a while back but stopped. I understand that it's not easy to read for hours on end to create an audio recording, but the narrator couldn't keep his accents straight and it irritated me, so I quit listening. But the hankering to hear the original texts got me again, so, ignoring the idiosyncrasies, I'm listening once more. I'm three adventures in. On the other hand, I might have to go in search of an authentic audiobook with a British narrator because Sherlock Holmes with an American accent just doesn't quite do it for me.


But Benedict Cumberbatch, who has a lovely deep voice and plays the titular character in the BBC's Sherlock, has narrated a series of four Sherlock Holmes adventures written by John Taylor (among other things). He does a fab job with altering his voice for various characters and is able to maintain various accents as well. They're available on YouTube if you're so inclined.

Are you an audiobook listener?


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Wintery Wednesday Woes




According to the legend, we're supposed to have six more weeks of winter. Phil apparently saw his shadow on Monday.

Obviously I don't rely on a rodent to predict the weather, although he certainly can't be any more or less reliable than the evening news...

Six more weeks of winter here in Texas is relative. At least I don't live in Boston or Buffalo or Madison or anywhere else they've gotten piled on.

But I'm not fond of the chill and the nip and the frost, so I'm certainly hoping that Phil is wrong this year.


Monday, February 2, 2015

Epistolary Writing


I really haven't the imagination for it, and if the author doesn't have the right combination of imagination and skill, the content could be dry or boring or just plain awful.

Back in late November or early December, I subscribed to a fic written by a skilled author. The fic is written in epistolary format and in mostly real time (the advantage of the Internet and other things) and has consistently used that tactic to brilliant advantage.

The story follows two people as they develop a friendship first via an online dating site, then via email and online chat. The kicker is, these two know each other although only one party is aware of that fact. We readers are in the know of course. We know bad things are gonna happen when the secret's out. And we can hardly wait to see it play out in Technicolor.

The author has used lack of posting (for close to two weeks once) or posting late as if she were one of the characters and the lack of response was due to whatever reason people use to miss participating including work projects, family issues, illness, etc.

This author now has hundreds of people following her story, subscribed to updates, and sqeeing or commiserating on various social media forums with each twist and turn of the tale.

Saturday was supposed to be the big, in-person meet. I, like probably every follower of this story, waited on tenterhooks all day for notification of the next chapter. We knew when the meet was supposed to happen (real time, remember), but when the hour came and went and there was nothing, many spent the day as best they could refreshing browsers, re-opening email, hoping against hope for an update that we eventually realized would come later rather than sooner. When it did come, all twenty-two words of it, the resulting reaction was like a tidal wave.

I had received an email from a fellow follower of the story at around the same time I received notification of the update (while I was sleeping). Her reaction was anger and disappointment. So much so that she unsubscribed from further notifications. Her comments gave me an impression of what had happened. However, the text itself left a lot to the imagination. My friend chose to assume the worst. I chose to assume a less violent, though no less emotionally-charged scenario. I fully expect the passage of days, at least, before the next update, while the one character deals with his emotions enough to reach out and make contact.

Only time will ultimately reveal what really happened, and the eventual resolution of the story and the relationship will be well worth the angst and the wait.

No real point to this, I guess, other than to say I'm completely invested in this story and these characters and in no small part to how the author played her hand.

To those of you writers in the group--use every tool in your writers toolbox to tell the story. This type of scenario is not limited to the fic world. There are mediums, Watt Pad for one, where you can write/post self-contained serialized stories or in conjunction with regular books in a series or box set.

Signing off until Wednesday and hoping I'll have an update before we talk again.



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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