lmeighmy: Found Photo. I Do NOT hold the copyright and am only using it for entertainment purposes. (Typewriter)
I've been struggling for the past two weeks over what I wanted to write here. I'm resistant to the thought of going back to a "This is what I did today" format, so I'm trying to find interesting things to share on my blog. My friend, Patti, told me to write about my passion. Right now, that's writing--but not just my own, and I'll talk about that in a minute. Right now, I just want to say that things have changed a lot for me. I don't have as much free time as I did a year ago, but in many ways, that's a very good thing. It's forcing me to grow as a writer, to learn how to better manage my time, to learn discipline, to make time for what matters (even when it seems frivolous) rather than just doing whatever strikes my fancy in the moment. While that may be well and good for some people, it's very undisciplined, and one cannot be successful letting the winds take them every which way.

In an effort to earn some extra money while having fun with something I enjoy, I've become a part of a new Web site for writers. It's called Your Story Starters, and we're trying to gear it toward writers suffering from what many refer to as "writer's block," as well as teachers looking for material for their students. We offer prompts--story starters--that will get people thinking and, of course, writing. We've seen many sites on the Internet, many books, offering prompts. Most of them are very basic, or they're just plain weird or funny or--definitely not what we're offering. We try to give some tips and questions to get the writer or student thinking, to get them excited about the piece. We're not getting these prompts from other sources. We're putting a lot of time and effort into them because we want to offer the best product out there. We want to go above and beyond what everyone else is doing. We want to put out a product we can take pride in, something that people will recommend to others.

As a result of this, I'm learning a bit about social networking. I've had a Twitter account for a long time, as well as a Facebook account and a Google+ account, but I haven't used them as much as I could have. Mainly, they just seemed very overwhelming for someone who didn't really have anything to say most of the time. Now that I have something to talk about, I find I'm actually looking for things to Tweet or update about. And I'm finding I really love our hashtags (#yss and #yourstorystarters), even if we've only just begun using them. We're not making any money with this yet, but it's only a matter of time, right? The most important thing right now is that we're having fun, but we're also treating this as a real business, because that's what it is. It's work, and hard work at that, even if it is fun work. I'm glad to be a part of this, and I plan to do my part in making it the success I believe it can be.

In other news, Nanowrimo is coming up. I have no idea what I'll write. I haven't worked out any storylines. But I think I'd like to write some kind of fantasy. I have a D&D-style story I was working on, but I want to change it to fit my own fantasy world. The character names will all remain the same, but I'll have to tweak certain details. Should be interesting. I think for this year's Nanowrimo, I'll concentrate on the character's backstories. I should have plenty of information to come up with a novella length document. :)

I also have another story in the works. I'm working on the outline. It's slowgoing, and it's not for publication. It's for the roleplay. It's an interesting concept, and there's a lot to consider in this story. I want it to be complex, but interesting. Most of all, I need the characters to be real. Shouldn't be a problem. The hardest part is plotting, which is always the case, and I've got lots to go on in that regard. I'm still really loving my character, Dakota, too!

And now for the personal stuff. Eric and Chelsey have moved back up to Joplin. I won't go into detail, but Eric's already got a job, and he's also working on their new house with Chelsey's dad. It's a ton of work. Chelsey's been really busy, too. And Josiah's started pre-school. From what I've heard, he really loves it. :)

Jeff's still working at the greenhouse, and I still can't help wondering when they'll "go out of business" again or something, but I'm trying to stay positive and learn contentment where I am. Most of the time, it's relatively easy, but there are times when it's not. Just need to keep from letting those times bog me down. Easier said than done. 'Nuf said?

My mom's here. She's been here for more than two months. It's been a good visit. I feel kind of guilty spending so much time back in the studio working on this or that, but we get time to socialize in the evenings, too. And I imagine she loves the peace and quiet as much as I do.

We're hoping to go up to Joplin before my mom goes back. When the kids moved back up there, we went with them. Jeff drove the truck, and I kept him company. This was when Isaac came through, but it wasn't really that bad. It was kind of nice, actually. And as always, it was great to see Jeff's dad and step-mom. We want to go up there again within the next six weeks. We need to sit down and discuss when would be a good time. We'll also need to head to the airport at some point, when my mom has to fly back home.

Oh! One other thing on the subject of writing--sort of. I actually won a book! I follow The Plot Whisperer, Martha Alderson, on Twitter and Facebook. I also subscribe to her email, since I tend to miss a lot of tweets and status updates. In one of the most recent e-mails, I saw that she was doing a mini tour on the Internet, and I could possibly win her new book, The Plot Whisperer Workbook: Step-By-Step Exercises To Help You Create Compelling Stories. All I had to do was comment on an entry to be eligible. I didn't expect to win anything, but I wanted to comment and let my support for The Plot Whisperer be known. I figured I'd buy the workbook after a little while, so winning wasn't really all that important to me. But I won! I actually won! :D So far, I really love it. It asks a lot of really great questions about the plot, the characters, etc. I plan to use this for my Nanowrimo book of backstories, too. It should help make my characters and their world ever more complex and realistic, as well as the main story, when I get around to creating it. :)


lmeighmy: (Animated Harvest & Raven)
Jeff's finally back to five days a week. He'd been working 6-day weeks for about 2-3 months. Now that he's off that extra day, it gives us time to do some other stuff if we want to, although we haven't yet. He spent this past Friday mowing the lawn. Fun day off! :P But it freed him up to shop on Saturday. The AC in our car smells weird when we turn it on, so we have to drive around with the windows down and the AC off. Because of this, we did our shopping early on Saturday morning. We came home, Jeff did some more mowing, then took a shower, then we went out to get some new sneakers. We both needed them. I got a pair of Ryka Devotion trainers. I love them! :D We also went to PetCo. My Betta died, so we got a new one. Black Jack (his body was very dark red and looked almost black, but his fins and tail were blood red with one streak of blue) was a Crown Tail Betta. The new one is a veil tail. He's teal and blue with a little red. I also got a cory cat to replace the one that died a while back. I got a few for the main aquarium, too--including two new Dwarf African Frogs! :D I've missed having them. They're soooo cute! :)

Anyway, that's been about the most exciting day lately. :P

We've continued going over to the kids' apartment on Tuesday nights. Last week, we had Chocolate Chip Kahlua (I used Kamora instead of Kahlua, though) cake to celebrate both of their birthdays, which are exactly one week apart. I also got a few things for Chelsey. Eric had wanted some protein shake mixes for his birthday, and we'd given those to him the week before. He was really excited about them, too. :) And we also played Apples to Apples. That's a very fun word game.

Health and fitness stuff under here... )

I've been working on backstories for the characters in a new story I plan to write. Right now, I'm working on their backstories so I can get to know them. These stories show where they're coming from, and it will help me determine where the main story will go. I'm really excited about it. It's an alternate universe story, but the alternate universe, at the beginning, is only slightly different from ours. Something will happen that will change things dramatically. I can't wait to explore all my ideas--ones I have now and ones I'll get later on. Writing is an adventure! :D

And that's about it. Now I've got to go grab my lunch and start roleplaying! :)

lmeighmy: Found Photo. I Do NOT hold the copyright and am only using it for entertainment purposes. (Default)

I've been doing a bit of writing lately. I've got three stories going right now--sort of. I've got one in progress that goes along with the roleplay, and it's going well. It involves Dakota McCabe, from my Lucky Raven stories.

I'm also planning a fanfiction mashup story that also involves Dakota. I don't write a lot of fanfiction, but I've been watching Highlander lately, and I wondered what would happen if Dakota, an ex-Marine and former journalist, came across Duncan MacLeod--either saw him fight, win and have a quickening, or saw him die and come back to life. With his sense of curiosity, there's sure to be some kind of adventure in there.

And the third is in the character journaling stages. I've been writing character journals for Damian and Casandro, two of my Immortal Watchdogs characters. They're brothers from Crete. I have a good grasp of what Damian's story is--or at least his purpose. I've been stumped on Casandro's purpose for a while now, but I think it's finally coming together. This is what I love about character journaling. You can learn a lot about the character, but you can also learn some things about their backstory and their current and future stories. Awesome! :D

My mini is doing well. She's not as fast as she could be, since she's got a single core processor, but she's great for writing. She's my main word processor, but I've done a little writing on the biggie, too. The biggie is having some problems. That's nothing new, since he's about three or four years old now. We plan to take him to a computer repair shop at some point. If he can't be fixed, we may just get another mini laptop.

Jeff and I went down to Moka Joe's on Tuesday. We took both the mini and the biggie. Jeff used the biggie to check out some companies on Angie's List, and he loved it! I wrote a character journal entry on the mini and talked to Maria. I also got a free decaf Americano. It was a good night. :)

The pupplet and the kitty are both doing well, and we've only lost one fish recently. It was one of the neons, and it wasn't totally unexpected.

Jeff started laying carpet in our third bedroom. He also repainted the walls. He had to move everything out, of course, and he put our empty 20-gallon aquarium into the master bedroom. I want to set it up for fire-bellied toads, but I need to find out more about keeping them. And I'm not sure what to do about the crickets. If I can buy some in town instead of going eleven miles to PetCo, that would make it easier. I don't want to raise them myself, but that's a possibility, too.

My mom went back home last weekend. She had a good trip, but she was kind of annoyed with security for making her take off her coat and shoes, and I guess they had a hard time getting her off the plane at the other end. But now she's home, and all is well! :)

And my battery is starting to get low, but the nearest outlet is too loose to hold the power supply's plug in place, so I'd better wrap this up for now. I hope you're all doing great!


lmeighmy: Found Photo. I Do NOT hold the copyright and am only using it for entertainment purposes. (Frog Tea)
The past eleven days have been good. The weather has been nice. No storms to cause us to run for the storm shelters, but it's been very hot and muggy.

My birthday came and went, and so did Josiah's. I took pictures at Josiah's party. Here are some: )
Josiah loves Dora the Explorer, and my mom got him a couple of Dora books, one of which had a music player included. He loved it!

And for my birthday, I got a Kindle from Jeff and my mom. My mom also got me a new slow cooker and an espresso machine. Eric and Chelsey got me a red dish drainer to match my other red kitchen things (I've been wanting this for a long time, so I'm really happy with it!) and some lilac candle tarts...and something else that's coming in the mail.

Speaking of the mail, I'd ordered a cook book for Chelsey, and it arrived in the mail yesterday...just in time for me to wrap it and take it over to the party! :D

We also went to the Farmer's Market yesterday morning. I bought some huge green onions and another small bottle of Goatie Girls Bug Be Gone lotion. My mom bought some snow peas, which I'll add to one of this week's meals, and a small loaf of Parker Pond Farms' Pumpkin Bread. The three of us (Jeff, my mom, and I) shared the bread over some drinks at Sweet Bay while I downloaded more of my Kindle library. :)

And after Josiah's party, we went grocery shopping. We spent a bit too much, but the important thing is that we put some weight on Jeff without buying the cheap, unhealthy crap you find everywhere. I've been fixing most meals in the slow cookers, and they're mostly healthy. I admit to using some cream of chicken in some of them. Next time, I'll get the fat-free kind so it's better for my mom.

Anyway, since I've been using the slow cookers a lot more, we've been having a lot more fruit and vegetables.

Speaking of...I need to write up an article, complete with photos, of the fruit salad I make, as well as the ensalata caprese, for Milli over at Fear of Writing. I'll try to post a link here once it's up.

Jeff's doing a lot better. He's still got some recovery left to go, but he's progressing well and is back at work. I just hope he doesn't overtax himself. Today's temp is hovering at 100°, and I'd hate for him to get sick!

He's also mostly done readying the hallway and part of the front entrance for painting. He just has to remove some wallpaper scraps, touch up with the primer, and then we can paint it. We bought the paint yesterday. :)

I haven't been doing much writing lately, but I've been working on a knit cardigan for myself. It's my first sweater, so it's a learning experience. I've had to scrap it three times (at least), and I have to undo about three rows and redo them. I hope I don't have to keep doing this. It's becoming a nuisance! :/

I plan to get back to my writing tomorrow.

Have a good one!

lmeighmy: Found Photo. I Do NOT hold the copyright and am only using it for entertainment purposes. (Frog Tea)
Jeff's minor surgery is tomorrow, and I still have to get things ready for that, but I wanted to post about this past weekend.

What wouldn't be all that special to most people, I found exciting. I haven't been to very many farmer's markets, so I had a great time going to the one in Fort Smith. There weren't very many vendors out. I learned that some had gone home because the high winds kept blowing their canopies over. But I got to talk to a woman from one of the farms I discovered on Facebook, and she told me a bit about home grown eggs, which was pretty cool. We also talked about green tomatoes, and she told me who to talk to (another vendor) about them. We bought some home made doggy treats and some chocolate chip cookies from her. They were yummy, and Nikita loves the treats. :)

We also stopped at the table of another vendor I wanted to check out, where I bought two different kinds of lotion. One is a combination of lilac and lavender, and the other is made with citronella, catnip, black pepper, etc. It sounds weird, but it smells great! It's called Bug Be Gone, and I plan to get more soon.

We also got Eric a couple of gifts for his birthday: a jack for their car, and a gift card to the hair salon inside Walmart. He loved both gifts, so we're happy. :)

And we went into town to check out the closing sale at a candle shop I love but rarely bought from (because of their high prices). I bought two lilac jar candles and a six-pack of little tarts in a scent called Romance.

And today, I've spent a lot of time treating the house for fleas, doing laundry, and catching up online. We bought some flea spray for carpets and upholstery, and I started with our room and my studio. I got everything up off the floor that I could, then I sprayed the carpet real good. I closed off the rooms and took Nikita out to the dining room (actually, she was already there--when she saw me start spraying, she made a beeline for the front of the house). I fixed breakfast, did dishes, and got dinner started in the slow cooker.

After I was done, I opened windows in the bedroom and studio, then vacuumed them. I did the same for the hallway, living room, dining room, and kitchen, being careful to cover things up. While the floors were drying, I brought Nikita back to the studio.

Then after I vacuumed those rooms, I took Chloe out of "her" room, moved her food and water and all out to the kitchen, then treated that room and the guest room. I vacuumed again after a while, opening several windows to air everything out.

And I'm still doing laundry...

It's been a long day, but I'm glad I got so much accomplished! :)

Oh, and Jeff instructed me on how to wash Nikita, as he's been the one doing it. We have a special attachment in our shower, and he showed me how to use it. He was amazed at how well she did for me. No scratching or trying to get away from me or anything like that. She did great! :D And she got to have three of her new treats for being such a good girl all day. :) After her fur dried, I put some generic Frontline on her. I treated Chloe earlier, so they're both up to date on that.

I just hope we can knock these things down. They're driving me crazy! O_O

I think I hear Jeff in the shower, so I'd better get off here so we can relax for a little bit before bedtime.


February 2016

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