Mon. Dec. 5, 2016: Resting the Foot & Writing the Play

Monday, December 5, 2016
Waxing Moon

I had to rest my foot most of the weekend. I paid for the vanity of four-inch heels on Thursday night. But it was worth it.

I’m binge-reading Vicky Delany’s Constable Molly Smith books and really like them. So well written! They’re set in British Columbia, and I like the sense of place I get from them, as much as I enjoy the characters.

Playing with ideas, seeing what works and doesn’t. Finishing the play about the 14th Century pirate, and trying to find a better title.

Reading PISTOLS AND PETTICOATS, a research book that I decided I needed to own, and therefore ordered, I got an idea for a pilot script/series that I will then adapt to books. I wrote the first thirteen pages, and like it a lot. If I can keep the novels nice and lean, but inspired by a lot of the real detail, I think I’ll have something worthwhile.

Did some work on the TAPESTRY revisions. It needs a big re-envisioning, not just tweaking, before it’s ready to go out. I hope I can get it done by mid-January.

The focus right now, however, needs to be on the two plays that need to go out, and on the short story that’s due at the end of the month. I have another invitation to submit to an anthology, but that’s not due for a few months. It’s up my alley, so I’m percolating ideas.

I should be decorating, but I don’t feel like it. I ‘m lacking holiday spirit this year. But it may well be the last holiday in this house, so I want to make the most of it. I’m just so weary, and I have so little hope for the future in this country.

The weather is lousy today. I want to focus on writing and decorating.

Tomorrow is my shift at Spectacle of Trees, representing the Marine Life Center. So I’ll write in the morning, and spend the afternoon there. Saturday is the big drawing, Sunday is the clean-up, Monday the ticket count.

Somewhere in all of this, I need to write holiday cards and do my baking!

Somehow, it will all get done. Although I’d rather stay in bed until about 2020. Although I doubt we’ll have a country left by then.

On a positive, the Dakota Access Pipeline has been successfully blocked through Native lands, at least for the moment. I hope this isn’t a ploy to get everyone to clear out and then they start up again. At least there’s one victory to give us hope.

Back to the page. Tomorrow morning, I have to run errands before my shift at Spectacle starts, and I have to write. Wednesday morning, the first play has to go out.

Tonight is St. Nicholas night — put out your shoe!



Published in: on December 5, 2016 at 10:03 am  Comments Off on Mon. Dec. 5, 2016: Resting the Foot & Writing the Play  
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Mon. Oct. 3, 2016: Preparing for Planning

Monday, October 03, 2016
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Rainy and warm

We’ve gotten some much-needed rain in the past few days. Of course, that means I have a lot of yard work ahead of me in order to put the yard to bed for the winter!

I’ve done a lot of writing the past week. The revisions on CHOLERIC are coming along well, although more slowly than I would like. But that’s okay; it’s not on contract, so I can do it well instead of just doing it fast. I like what’s happening with it. By taking it out of the realm of “cozy”, which is where it started, I have a much more interesting, complex, and relevant piece. I figure it will need at least one or two more passes, once I finish this draft, before it’s ready to submit.

I’m behind on the plays, and need to get back on track with those.

I’m also playing with a few ideas, that are inspired by things I’ve read, conversations I’ve had lately, and I want to explore them to see if they’re worth a big project. So far, they all are; I will have to pick and choose and figure out how to work them into the schedule. So I’m giving myself quotas for each thing I need to get done, and spreading out my time.

It’s so interesting, because a couple of these projects were inspired by nostalgic musings, but I’m exploring how things have changed for people in that realm.

Heard from someone with whom I worked at The Other Place, which was a surprise. It’s someone I liked, so I was glad to hear from her, but I thought it was interesting that, all this time later, I hear from someone.

No one I’ve run into from that time has addressed the elephant in the room. Everyone’s acted like nothing ever happened. Eye-rollingly unhealthy.

But, ultimately, it doesn’t matter. I don’t have time to fret. I can acknowledge how ridiculous everything is, but my energy is better spent elsewhere. Like on my work.

All of this is material.

I’m figuring out a series of promotions to launch, for the Jain Lazarus books, for the Digital Delights, and for the Topic Workbooks. I’ll let everyone know when I figure out what it is I’m doing!

Cooking, decorating for Samhain, laundry, writing. A good, busy week. I’ve signed the lease on the house for another year, so the home front is at least stable until next fall.

After the holidays, I will start making the decisions about where I go for my next adventure.


Published in: on October 3, 2016 at 8:48 am  Comments Off on Mon. Oct. 3, 2016: Preparing for Planning  
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Wed. Oct. 14, 2015: Decorating and Cleaning and Writing

Wednesday, October 14, 2015
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

Busy weekend! I was exhausted by the time I got off work on Saturday, and chilled out. I scored a terrific chair on a curb alert that is almost a Captain’s Chair – it needs some TLC, but will be gorgeous when it’s done.

Sunday was about running around and doing errands. Picked up some stuff at K-mart, went to Home Goods and found new covers for the daybeds in the back bedroom. They look gorgeous! Got some stuff at Christmas Tree shops – my mom found some adorable bowls she fell in love with, so we got them!

More decorating done. I did a couple of coats of stain on the new chair Sunday and Monday. From being a rather non-descript brown, I’ve stained it with “ebony” — it’s not black, but it’s a lovely, very dark brown. It’ll be gorgeous when it’s done.

I worked on prototypes of ornaments for the Marine Life Center Tree. I liked what I came up with – hopefully my colleagues will, too!

I also had one of those lightning bolts of an idea and took some notes. A contemporary piece, and could be a lot of fun, if I can pull it off. Tempting to use that as my Nano piece and DO Nano instead of writing along WITH Nano. But I’m seriously worried about overextending myself, especially when TIE-CUTTER is chugging along so well, and I still have to f inish the historical play.

The landlord came over on Monday and we did some heavy-duty pruning. The Tree Frogs will come by soon and take down the big broken limb of the maple that’s too high for us to reach.

My mom and I did a quick once-over all the photos and documents from my late uncle. Fascinating stuff, and there will be a lot to research.

Got in some good writing on Saturday and Sunday. I chose to take Monday off from writing, although I percolated plenty. Tuesday, it was all about vacuuming and washing floors and cleaning the carpets in preparation for the inspection.

It was pouring down with rain, and he got caught in the weather, so he was late, but once he got here, it was quick and smooth. I even made it to the Spectacle of Trees meeting on time. It was a good, busy meeting.

Home, got a chicken into the oven, relaxed on the deck for a bit. There aren’t that many days we can still sit out!

Watching the final season of SIX FEET UNDER. It’s so interesting to see how the series grew.

Up early to bake spice cupcakes for tomorrow’s program. Had a good writing morning. It will be a long day at work today, but that’s okay.



Published in: on October 14, 2015 at 9:31 am  Comments Off on Wed. Oct. 14, 2015: Decorating and Cleaning and Writing  
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Fri. Dec. 12, 2014: Preparing for the Weekend

Friday, December 12, 2014
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Yesterday was a solid work day, although I wasn’t feeling well. Managed to land some good people for our upcoming programs. I was up at 5 AM, making deviled eggs, but that’s fine.

Raced home when the library closed, picked up the eggs, platter, and gift for the grab bag, and headed over the bridge to Buzzards Bay. Very little traffic, and the weather cleared up, so I made good time.

Fun seeing everyone and catching up. The food was great. The eggs were gone in about three minutes – it was like the locusts descended! 😉 But in a good way. The gift-giving was “Yankee Swap Style” – something I’d never done before. I wound up with an adorable ceramic turtle tea light, and the gift I contributed also found a good home.

Went home, watched more of DOWNTON ABBEY – I have to say, Season 4 is a disappointment so far.

Tumbled into bed, absolutely exhausted. Had weird dreams – not anxiety dreams, just odd. Overslept by a half hour, but got everything done this morning, including a trip to the post office and a swing by Stop N Shop to get more cups for the library.

I’ll have another busy day here, and then I can GO HOME. I’m exhausted, and fighting something – I suspect it’s a cold, so I’ll dose myself all weekend with my herbal concoctions and get as much rest as possible. I’ve got student work to finish up, my own work to do, and cards to write. Decorating to finish. Baking to begin.

I’m simplifying the baking this year. I just can’t make six different things. I’ll make two, and balance them nicely, present them well, and, hopefully, everyone will be happy.

I do rather feel run over by a bus, so sleeping in for a couple of days, or taking the time to nap in the afternoons is probably all I need to get back on track. Next week will be flat out all week, as will most of the days leading up to Christmas itself. I AM looking forward to the Solstice – got a nice celebration planned.

Have a lovely weekend, all, and I’ll check back next week!


Published in: on December 12, 2014 at 9:51 am  Comments Off on Fri. Dec. 12, 2014: Preparing for the Weekend  
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Fri. Nov. 30, 2012: Rich Writing & Trip Prep


Friday, November 30, 2012
Waning Moon
Sunny and cold

Worked flat out yesterday. One press release was approved,and out it went The second press release was tweaked and I had to wait for photos, but those arrived last night and it will go out this morning. That will clear off the desk before I leave.

Polishing the Flash 7 Workshop that starts a week from today. The exercises are REALLY fun — I may well write along with the class, even if I don’t post the pieces. There’s still time to sign up here — it’ll be a great class, writing, revising, and submitting 7 flash fiction pieces in 10 days, and they’ll all be out the door before the holiday insanity starts! 😉

I started working on the Smashwords formatting — I think, once I get the hang of it, it will be pretty smooth, but the first one is always the hardest. I doubt I can get them up before I go to NY.

Caught up on my World History class. Next week is the last week of lectures, but we have until the end of the month to finish our final paper and wrap up.

Good writing sessions yesterday morning and this morning. There’s a richness in these characters’ lives that I enjoy writing, and something I find missing from a lot of the books I’ve read lately. Unfortunately, about the last dozen or so books I’ve read (from the library) have been awful. Very disappointing. I’m trying to pick the books for the trip carefully, so that I’m not disappointed.

Managed to get a few decorations up on the tree this morning, but it’s slow going. However, I am packed for my trip (except for the books). I need to finish Costume Imp’s birthday present today, and get a few other things done, and I’m good to go.


Published in: on November 30, 2012 at 9:33 am  Comments Off on Fri. Nov. 30, 2012: Rich Writing & Trip Prep  
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Monday, Nov. 26, 2012: Back in the Writing Swing

The pumpkin I grew — so happy that it came up, even if it’s small!

Monday, November 26, 2012
Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Mercury goes direct this evening (thank goodness)
Cloudy and cold

First of all, check out my 200-word flash fiction piece “Love in a Wok” over on Daily Love. Drop a comment, so I know you were there!

Busy week. Wednesday morning, we were on the road by 6 AM. Even with traffic around Boston, we hit Maine a little after 9. Stores were barely open. We made a few stops; bought very little. Part of it was the budget, but there was really very little we couldn’t live without. My favorite thrift shops were a disappointment — Mercury was retrograde, there should have been all kinds of wonderful buys. Tante Tchotke abandoned me this time around! 😉

Had lunch at the Stone Dog in Windham, which is very good, and got settled in to the house. My great uncle will be 96 on Christmas Day. He’s doing pretty well for himself.

I brought the dinner for those doing the set-up, and we had a pasta with sausage-pancetta-cream sauce and some lovely Portuguese bread. Visited, read a bit, had an early night.

Up early the next day. Wrote nine pages (longhand, since I didn’t take the computer) — this piece is coming along nicely. The first four pages were challenging, hard to focus, but then I got into the rhythm of it. Made some notes on a few other things.

The dinner itself was fun — 53 people in the hall. Lots of laughter and catching up, and, as always, the four-foot potato masher and plenty of dishes! This time, we were among the last to leave. Good food, good company, no drama. We’ve been attending this gathering now for 38 years.

Tired in the evening, but read a bit. The books I’d taken with me were all a disappointment — not well-written at all.

Up early on Friday, and back on the road by 6. The fog was intense. It’s so interesting to me how different Maine fog is from Cape Cod fog. Maine fog is somehow more ominous, as though the fog itself has substance. Cape Cod fog is more ethereal, as though it reveals spirits, rather than BEING spirits.

At the last minute, we took a detour to Salem. I hadn’t been there in several years. Because we made such great time — nothing was damn open. You’d think on Black Friday, the stores would open a little earlier, even the small businesses. Nope. So we hung around until 11, when things started to come to life. The architecture is gorgeous there. I hope to take Costume Imp up in the spring.

We got home a little after 1, thoroughly exhausted. Unpacked. The cats had figured out how to pry open the basement door, took their toys downstairs, and that’s where I think they spent most of their time. Got some writing done.

Up very early on Saturday, delighted to be home again. Started getting down the Yule-tide decorations. Spent 4 1/2 hours ironing seasonal fabric, and got the tree in the stand. This year, I managed to get the hardware to work so the tree is steady. Not that it has anything to do with the directions, but it works. That, and three loads of laundry took up the entire day.

Yesterday, I wrote. Pretty much all day. I tweaked the Fearless Ink website — it needs a complete overhaul, but it looks a bit better. I got started on my new brochure, but I’m having graphics issues, getting the graphic sized properly to fit the space. I revised a novella, which will be released later this week, and started tweaking some short stories, which will also release shortly. I worked with my tarot students, caught up on my Greek/Roman Mythology class, took the quiz, and wrote a paper for that class on justice. Ties in with the Harpy trilogy nicely.

Up early again today, and lots to do — have to get back to the decorating — everything’s a mess. Have to get the novella released, run errands, deal with admin crap. Too much to do and not enough hours in the day! But I’m feeling cheerful, even if I don’t feel fully prepared to deal with the season.


Reminder: Flash 7 Workshop from Dec. 7-16 — write, revise, submit 7 Flash Fiction pieces in 10 days! Details here!

Mon. Dec. 19: Time Flies When You’re Decorating

Monday, December 19, 2011
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and cold

We had a lovely dusting of snow yesterday. Things look lovely. But it’s cold.

Friday was busy. Finally got things to the dump — two trips, one for garbage and recycling, one for bags of leaves. Still have a couple of bags in the garage, but, for the most part — done. Still have some leaves to tidy up in the meadow, but can’t do it if they’re under snow.

Working on the domestic cards. Plan to get them out today.

The job I pitched for on Tuesday asked for more info by Wednesday, and I worked it up and sent it on Friday. Either they hire me, or they don’t. I’d love to add them to my roster as a regular gig, but I can’t tie myself in knots about it. They have a specific tone — either I managed to mimic it, or I didn’t. But the quick response was good for my morale!

The yoga party on Friday was fun. The yoga part was hard, much more challenging than I’m used to, but I’m glad I did it.

Saturday was about running errands and getting the rest of the house decorated. I didn’t even turn on the computer, and it was nice to be away from it for a day.

Yesterday was about newspapers, catching up with students, writing cards, and going to a neighbor’s party, which was fun. Tonight, I have a meeting on a possible theatre collaboration.

Violet is a little under the weather today. I’m hoping she just feels the need for a day off, too. I’m keeping an eye on her; hopefully, she’ll be fine and we won’t have to take a trip to the vet later this week.

I’m finally back on track with Book 2 of the trilogy. I’ve written and discarded about 6K over the past few days, but today’s words can stay (in this draft, anyway).


Today’s word count: 1789
Total word count: 14,162

Published in: on December 19, 2011 at 9:45 am  Comments (5)  
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Thurs. Dec. 8: Spiky Rain

Thursday, December 8, 2011
Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Cloudy, windy, rainy, and cold

Meant to get so much done yesterday. Wrote and worked with my students, and the next thing I knew, it was nearly 3 PM. I think I went out to run one errand, somewhere or other, but that was it. The weather was vile. We didn’t get the predicted snow, but the rain was cold and spiky.

Didn’t get the baking done, but got ribbons up around the door frames (and now we want them around the windows), and some more decorations up.

Worked on the book, then did another pass on “Catch Your Breath”, the contemporary short story I did for class, which I’ll get out on submission in early January, along with everyone else. It’s in pretty decent shape, and I really like it. I think it’s one of the strongest pieces I’ve written lately — funny, hits home, uses irony.

Also wrote about 1200 words of another short story, “Nine-Tenths” — using the same eavesdropped parking lot inspiration that set off “Catch Your Breath”. It’s in a very different voice, a very different premise, and keeps surprising me, in a good way. And I want to get back to “Professional Mourner” soon — I don’t want to lose its atmosphere.

I’m off to yoga now. When I get back, there will be errands and then baking. Also have to wrap some packages that need to be mailed tomorrow. The weekend will be busy, but I’m determined to get out the overseas cards.


Today’s word count (Book 2): 1065
Total word count (Book 2): 7,092

Published in: on December 8, 2011 at 7:03 am  Comments (5)  
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Friday, October 7, 2011

Friday, October 7, 2011
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Worked a lot with my students yesterday. Got dates, etc. sorted for the in-person class I’m teaching in January and into February a couple of towns over. Got an extension over the holiday weekend for the assignment for Confidential Job #1.

Took off two hours in the afternoon to put up the Samhain decorations — made a big difference to the space and my morale. That was my “Artist Date” for the week. As part of the year-long intensive, everyone is required to do something fun just because they want to at least once a week. Decorating the house was mine. It looks really cute! I still want to do some more outside.

This morning’s session on the book was tough. 200 words into it, Violet knocked a full cup of coffee onto my current files, my datebook, the floor, the lovely carpet. I had to stop everything to clean it up, and it was hard to drop back down into the world of the book.

I am saddened by Steve Jobs’s death. His devices make it possible for me to write full time and actually pay my bills. I am grateful to him for building systems that aren’t rigged to fail the day after the warranty runs out.

I’ve got errands to do today, as well as dealing with my classes, so it will be another busy day. But I adore autumn — I love these crisp days and the turning colors and the sense of the wheel turning.


Today’s word count: 1841
Total word count: 15,827

Published in: on October 7, 2011 at 8:04 am  Comments (3)  
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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Cloudy and cool

Hop on over to A BIBLIO PARADISE and read a great interview with author Pauline Baird Jones. Her newest release is a steampunk, and I’m excited to read it. Pauline and I “met” when she was the moderator for a chat I did over on Long & Short Romance to promote ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT.

Busy day yesterday. I was working on the computer in the morning longer than I intended, and was late getting out to do the errands. Got most of them done, including getting yet another stack of books out of the local library, this one including two cookbooks by Ina Garten that have some really great recipes in them. I look forward to trying them out. I love test driving cookbooks from the library. And the October issues of both FOOD AND WINE and BON APPETIT have some great recipes in them.

I also got out a book that’s supposed to give you ideas for a clean, harmonious, restful space. All it did was stress me out. I can’t live in something that sparse and full of angles and cold. I like color and texture and warmth. I use a lot of cool colors like blues and greens — water colors, but mix them with warmer tones, and change colors seasonally to compliment or contrast what’s going on outside. I find even warm colors and textures can be restful, if situated properly. Living in white? White walls, white floors, white furnishings, white accessories? No. Not only would I feel like i was a lab rat, it’s not practical with pets, and it’s a color I find stressful, not restful.

Couldn’t find cornish hen at the grocery store. The Autumn Equinox is on Friday, and I always make a cornish hen for the meal. I’ll have to try some of the other stores.

Had a lot of trouble with my eyes in the afternoon and evening, and had to limit computer time. This means I’m behind with my students, but that’s the way it is. I couldn’t focus my eyes enough to read what was on the screen.

Percolated on the book, but didn’t do much physical work on the outline. Came up with a few backstory possibilities and tossed ‘em. They make it all a little too pat, and move away from what makes the story unique and what ties it into classical mythology.

I’ve got to get a press release out for the National Marine Life Center (it’s written, it just need to be distributed), go to Sandwich to the library (figures, I come home with one of the books I ordered only to find the note that they put aside another one). All good, though, I’ll take any excuse to go to Sandwich. Unfortunately, I forgot to take the lawn clippings to the dump — gotta take care of that today, before there’s a great big mess in the garage. A freelance job scheduled in two weeks cancelled — I have to come up with something to make up the financial difference pretty darn quickly. Will be sending out queries for some quick turn-around projects.

Now, to spend some time with my students before heading out. I’d like to beat the rain.


Published in: on September 20, 2011 at 7:38 am  Comments (6)  
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Friday, December 3, 2010

Tree with lights. Our walls look yellow in the photo; they are actually taupe.

Friday, December 3, 2010
Day before Dark Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Cloudy and cold

Finished the blog post and got it out yesterday; the administrator and I agreed to postpone the live chat we were both surprised to find on my calendar for next week, which works better all the way around.

Most of the day was spent decorating. It was more stressful than usual. Part of it is that I haven’t found everything yet, and I like to find everything, spread it all out, and let it gravitate towards where it needs to be. Because this is a new space, nothing really knows where it needs/wants to be yet, so there’s a lot of shifting and re-shifting. Not that everything has to be the same every year, but it still feels off-kilter. Spent time on the tree, but it still isn’t finished. The tables are done, though, and look nice. I wish I had all the boxes unpacked in the kitchen and in my office — it’s still a bit at sixes and sevens, and doesn’t make it look all that great. Also, because this is a bigger space, and a lot of our ornaments are for a smaller space, the proportions are out of whack, and things need to be mixed with big and small so it all works. Unfortunately, it feels like pressure instead of enjoyment this year, because I feel I’m really far behind, and, even working hours and hours over several days, it doesn’t seem to get done. Sort of how I feel about the unpacking. At the same time, I have to juggle work and the yard — which in the storm, refilled with leaves again, so I’m back to square one. I’m going to let them dry out for a day or two before I tackle them again. I don’t want to deal with them when they’re wet.

Had to go out to get ornament hangers and a few other things. Went to Michael’s for ribbon and bows — but the shelves are pretty bare of holiday stuff already, and nothing is on sale. Went to Jo-Ann’s, where I found ribbon for the packages, but not the other ribbon I wanted. I have bins and bins of ribbon, of course, but none of them are quite right.

Redecorated the wreath on the front door. For the third time. I still need a gold bow. I think I want to put up a big garland around the door, so I have to measure to make sure we get enough. I also want to get two small trees in pots for the front stoop, but I don’t want to pay a zillion dollars, and yet, I can’t get something so small it will look silly.

Finished Kate Carlisle’s THE LIES THAT BIND, which I enjoyed, and started the first book of a new series by EJ Copperman entitled NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEED. I’m enjoying it thoroughly, and it’s anti-developer, which makes me happy, having spent far too much time dealing with Evil Developers in the past few years.

I’m enjoying the workshop thoroughly and will miss it when it’s over. Of course, I need to start writing the lectures for the Stephanie Plum workshop in January, and polish the lessons for ONE STORY, MANY VOICES, that will run the rest of January. If you’re interested in participating in either one, the information is here and here. The Plum workshop doesn’t have a class limit, but the other workshop does.

Got to pay some bills today, run some errands (including grocery shopping), teach, and keep going with the decorating. I’m hoping that Sunday will be the big push to write the cards. I want to get them out the door. I’m making new return address labels for them, with the new address. That will take time. And, this year, I decided I’m doing a Christmas Letter to go inside the card, instead of handwriting all the information. I’ve got the same thing to tell everyone — the move — and it makes sense. I’ll still handwrite all the envelopes, the greetings, and the signatures, but, this year, for the people already in my life — printed letter. I already have acquired quite the list of new people in the area who get cards, and those will need to be done individually. There are two packages I want to get out, too, one overseas and one for Hanukkah, so I’m not totally behind the beat on it. The post office here is teeny weeny, but very busy and about ten times more efficient than the one in Rye, which was small, but inefficient, kept odd hours, and the workers made it very clear that they were doing you a favor by waiting on you. Here, they are actually friendly and helpful and know most of the customers by name.

Excellent writing session this morning. I’m blank-paging this particular piece, and it’s a lot of fun. No idea where it’s going, but I’m enjoying the journey. It’s nice to be in a regular writing groove again.

Still haven’t heard from my editor about the revisions for ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT. The deadline is January 1 — I hope she doesn’t think she can hand me a list of “fix this” on December 23. Time to have a little chat with the publisher.

Also working on the article that’s due in a couple of weeks.

I’ll figure out the routine. Eventually.


Violet checks to make sure we haven’t left any ornaments in the boxes

Published in: on December 3, 2010 at 8:19 am  Comments (9)  
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Sunday, December 20, 2009

Adding in some real greenery

Sunday, December 20, 2009
Waxing Moon
Mars Retrograde

It didn’t even start snowing until 7 PM last night, but I’d say we received about a foot of it. It looks gorgeous, and supposedly it’s powdery, so it shouldn’t ‘be too bad to shovel out the car this afternoon. Oh, to have a garage someday!

Yesterday I worked on tidying stuff up and doing some more decorating, etc. Losing that week right after Thanksgiving due to the furniture swap really got me behind. There are islands of organization, but still far too much upheaval. The table’s finally done, and that looks lovely.

I ran out to mail some last few cards and went to CVS to pick up some pens (my pens seem to have vanished), and, of course, bought a bunch of extra cute stuff for the stockings. I love finding things for the Christmas morning stockings. It’s such fun!

Got some writing done. Confidential Job #1 sent me the next assignment, which they want by the 29th, so I have to get going on that, too. But it was a pretty quiet day. The “friend” still hasn’t called and I just can’t let it bother me too much. Clear message, that’s all I have to say. I don’t let people treat me like that. If you need to change plans, let me know. If you flake out, call as soon as you realize it and fix it. Don’t just ignore it.

I had a program on about dogs last night and Elsa got all excited. (Elsa loves dogs). She kept swatting at me, and rubbing against the screen and purring. I said, “No, Elsa, you can’t have a mastiff. When we get a house, you can have a DACHSHUND of your very own Not a MASTIFF!”

She does love dachshunds, but she really liked those mastiffs.

The eggnog cheesecake is amazing. Definitely a keeper recipe (thank you, MARTHA STEWART). I made maple-walnut muffins this morning (they also have oats and dates in them). They are awesome, too, although chopping dates at 7 AM on a Sunday morning does not rate high on my list of favorite tasks. They don’t use any sugar – the maple syrup and the heavy cream keep them sweet. That recipe is from the SILVER PALATE GOOD TIMES Cookbook, another of my favorites, and perfect for a snowy winter morning.

I’m staying in today, decorating, writing, and working on a few other things. Around 2 or so, weather-permitting, I’ll go dig out the car. It’s just started snowing again, so going out now would be a waste of time!

Have a great Sunday!


Monday, December 14, 2009

Iris likes to be under the blankets

Monday, December 14, 2009
Waning Moon
Cloudy and mild

I have a post up at Sole Struck Fashions (up yesterday, actually), about quick gift ideas.

My eye hurt like crazy yesterday, but it seems better today. I just kept using drops, and chamomile tea bags on it. The vision’s no worse than usual — it’s just the movement that hurts.

They know me at Michael’s, because I’ve been in there every day for the past week! Sigh! Of course they didn’t have the garland I wanted, but they did have one left of a really lovely one — green with silver and blue accents — it works perfecatly over the ktichen, and I have my cat ornaments hanging from it — it’s the “cat garland”. It took two hours to do the other garland — I realized, once I was done, that I should probably do all the fastening BEFORE I put it up, instead of standing on a chair! What I usually do is fasten the blank garland and then decide where I want to place the elements I add.

Anyway, they both look really good. The coffee table’s done with the centerpiece and a slew of nutcrackers, another surface has most of my Santas (although there are Santas and angels and elves and snowmen peering at one from every shelf and surface in the house — it’s sort of like being back in Prague, with all the statues on the buildings staring down at you). The faux mantel is done. The tree is 2/3 done — I have one more box of ornaments to hang. The ribbons are up around the doorways — I put red ribbons on either side of the doorways, with pine cones or ornaments at the top, and that’s where I hang the cards. I have some ornaments that need to go to Ornament Hospital, which I will set up probably tomorrow. The Advent Table’s not yet finished (and there’s only one more Advent left!), and the kitchen table (the only table where we can eat) isn’t done, because I still need it for baking and Ornament Hospital. It’s the only working surface other than the living room floor that I have.

The little live tree looks cute — I have most of the Solstice ornaments on it, and it will be the centerpiece for the Solstice Ceremony next Monday. I’ve been trying to name the tree something meaningful and the tree keeps going, “Uh, no, that’s not my name”, but I don’t yet know what the name IS yet.

All six hours of TIN MAN ran, followed by all four hours of ALICE yesterday. I watched favorite bits of both in between the decorating (I never just have the TV on as background — it drives me nuts. I’d stop and watch and bit, then go back to decorating, then go back and watch a bit, and so on). SyFy’s going to have to cut some serious residual checks for yesterday! 😉

I’ve been having really odd, busy dreams the past week. Last night’s may turn out into the good foundation for a story. Here’s hoping.

The weather was dreadful yesterday. Although we didn’t get snow, the temperature fluctuated enough so there were patches of ice with rain on top of them. And lots of fog. I had to pick up my mom at night (she can’t drive at night anymore). With all the accidents on the highways (there was a 50-car pileup in CT), I took backroads. Very little traffic, and easier to see.

I’ve got butter softening in the kitchen. I’m back into baking mode today. I need to frost the cookies that need it and take inventory, and bake some more. I can’t store the cookie platters once they’re made — I have to prepare them, load them, and deliver them in one fell swoop — so I’ve got to make sure I have enough of everything. I may test some new recipes on family for the New Year.

I also have to sit down with the recipes, copy them out and put them in the protective sleeves, and make notes on what did and didn’t work, so I have a jump on future years.

I retrieved my coats from the cleaners. They look fabulous. I just have to put new buttons on them, and I’m all set.

Good writing session this morning, thank goodness, and now it’s off to baking. I’ll do another push on the cards tonight, once the baking is sorted.


Published in: on December 14, 2009 at 8:46 am  Comments (8)  
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