Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Here's the hoop -- should I jump?

Look at this cute guy... he LOVES climbing in our tree.
Christmas isn't really Christmas without a kitten... life is good.

How's life? How's your Christmas preparations coming? You may think I am just one of those annoyingly perky people during Christmas... I love it! All of it. My friend, Stephanie, did a great blog post about that today and well, I'll just say DITTO to what she said. (and Steph, for the record, I might send out New Year's Cards again, the budget is *tight*)

Our family is also doing something really special this year... more on that later.

Okay, so in my last post, I told you that I sent my children's story to two publishers... (now three) well, I got a positive response from one of them just five days later.... WHAT?!?!?!?!

Yeah, I was pretty excited and I know they are a reputable company because a friend of mine has recently published with them; however, they require a $2,000 retainer FEE. :( Yes, I just heard screeching brakes, did you? Anyway, the retainer fee is fully refundable upon the sale of 1000 copies of my book. Blargh! I knew it wouldn't be that easy the first time out of the gates, but man, that email got me excited! From what I've heard, that is fairly common for unknown authors wanting to publish their first book.

I firmly believe that if I'm supposed to publish this book something better will come along. I wish I was Anne Shirley and there was a local "Rollings Reliable Baking Powder" Company that needed a boost. I bet I could win that!

Anyway, I love Christmas and for the moment, we are all basically healthy... which is kinda freaking me out.

I love my kids. We made some cardboard box cars this week just for fun.
And it was.
Beck slept in his last night.

Zoe and I went to a USU women's basketball game with her class. SO fun!
Here she is with "Big Blue", the USU mascot!
Zoe said he stunk like cologne... just keep thinking that way, sweetie.

Kaia's still awake (it's 10:15) and she's crying. Zeke is up there with her and I should go help. He is such a great guy... which kinda freaks me out too.

This should probably be another post, but I want to do a "Word of the Year" thing like my good friend, Tawnya. She is most groovy, by the way. I think it's a great idea and a way for me to really make some changes in my life all through the year. Not a big list of "resolutions", I've never been one for that really, but something simple. Something I can think about and implement everyday.

Once I decided to do this, the word I wanted came to mind almost instantly:

dis.ci.pline (noun)

1. training to act in accordance with rules; drill: military discipline.
2. activity, exercise, or a regimen that develops or improves a skill; training: A daily stint at the typewriter is excellent discipline for a writer.
3. punishment inflicted by way of correction and training.
4. the rigor or training effect of experience, adversity, etc.: the harsh discipline of poverty.
5. behavior in accord with rules of conduct; behavior and order maintained by training and control: good discipline in an army.

This is what I jotted down on my phone:

I'll expand more on that list as I figure out exactly what I was thinking when I wrote it.
For the most part, I want to focus on our money and get out of debt. This year is the year!
I feel like the planets are aligning...

Monday, December 12, 2011

We've done it again!

Last week we were sitting around the table eating lunch and drawing names for family gifts. Gabe got my name and asked me what I wanted. I said, "You know what I really want? Another kitten!!" The kids all screamed YESSS! in agreement. Well, Zeke says I started a mutiny that just 5 hours later, resulted in this:
I'm just a *tiny bit* impulsive I think.

He kinda reminds me of Yoda...

However, we can't totally settle on a name.
First, he was going to be Hiccup.... I still like that one, but I was voted down.
Then, he became Skeeter (from "Bedtime Stories" because he was for FREEEEEE! We thought Skeeter was a better name for a cat than Ferrari.)
Now, we call him Percy. My older three kids say he's Perseus, as in Percy Jackson. Beck thinks he's Percy from Thomas the tank engine.
I'm not sure... Zeke and I really like the name Thor.
We've also considered Taco and Zucchini... I'm not joking.

Needless to say, we are having SO much fun with him right now. He's a sweetie and Caspian and Nora don't seem to mind too much... other than the 23 hours a day he's trying to bite their tails. He's had a few good whacks to the head... ahhh, I love it!

Someday when I get around to it, I'll tell you the whole story...

P.S. In other news, I sent my story to two publishers last week! Cross your fingers!!! If I get brave enough, I'll post a bit of it for you...

Friday, December 2, 2011

Prince Caspian's Adventure

Hi everyone, it's already December! How are things? Are you getting excited for Christmas? I am. We put up our tree on Monday and our cats are loving their favorite napping spot. Beck is so excited this year -- I love watching my kids enjoy all of the decorations and lights.

We spent a crazy Thanksgiving weekend at my parents. It was fun though. I got to see almost ALL of my family. I really enjoyed seeing my brothers and nieces and nephews.

The toilet in my parent's only bathroom starting leaking the day before everyone came. By Friday, it was obvious they needed it fixed. Zeke took it apart and found water had been leaking under the floor for quite some time. Long story short: Zeke ended up replacing the entire floor, including all of the sub-floor. We were going to go to Colorado and visit his parents as well, but we ended up staying at my parents house, while Zeke worked on the floor night and day. It made for a very interesting weekend WITHOUT A TOILET. Ha! Oh well.

Anyway, I was looking though my goals for 2011 and I still haven't done everything I want to do. (The ballroom dance lessons were on a Wednesday and Gabe's scouts changed to Wednesdays this year -- so that is still something we are going to do as well.)

I've been talking with my family about finishing my book and I got a lot of good feedback from them over Thanksgiving and well, I'm just about finished with my first draft! It's a children's book -- and it's taken me awhile to decide what direction I want to take it. I think I just needed to start. I've had notes on my phone since May.

I'm going to be busy with that and I hope to submit it to a publisher by January. :) I have a really good feeling about it. Gabe is going to do some artwork for it and we'll go from there. After all, if you don't write it down (literally) it's just a wish!

Here is the star of my book:
I'll keep you posted on my progress and maybe give you a sneak peek in a week or two --
I could use some feedback. Also, I'm thinking about using a pen name? Thoughts on that?
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