Pineapple Orange Jello Cake

I knew I wasn’t going to have time before my birthday to do the big cool ballet cake I want to do so I just didn’t think about doing anything this year. I kind of decided last minute that I wanted something and dug around in my cabinets to see what I could come up with, which wasn’t much as I really needed to get to the store. I saw my box of orange Jello and decided that was perfect, but I didn’t have a cake mix. I had pretty much everything else, but not that. The recipe I was modifying used a box mix and I wasn’t sure what would happen if I tried to do the whole thing from scratch, so I begged Hubby to make a quick run to get my mix.

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Crazy Teen Dating Drama Pt. 2 & Laziness

I am supposed to be working on my last big round of edits. I’ve managed to get the first half done and was just starting on the second half on Friday when I got a rather distressing text from BG saying that she needs to talk to me about something really important, that she is probably going to be in trouble and I’m most likely going to get a call from the school. This from the girl that is obsessiveness about following rules and doing the right thing. Both her and MC are straight A students and just NEVER get into any trouble. The most I’ve had to do is yell at them for pestering each other. To say I was stunned is a massive understatement.

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*Sigh* Again, Muse?!

Between working on my edits and dealing with both myself and MC being sick, the last several days have been… fun. The whole not feeling great thing had me taking meds that wouldn’t let me sleep. As is so typical for me, my brain simply would NOT shut up in that situation. So, sitting there at 3 or 4 am wanting desperately to sleep, my crazy Muse pops her head up and points out that BG’s point costume this year (a romantic length for the first time ever instead of a stiff, flat tutu design) would make a stunning cake.

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Back to Crazy

As has been the pattern since I started my book project, everything is hitting all at once again. I got my final round of edits back from my editor the night before a family outing to celebrate MC’s birthday (not on the actual day). I still have the actual day to work on, which means making a batch of Death By Chocolate, again, along with fixing a massive pile of chicken fried chicken with mashed potatoes and gravy. That pretty much wipes out any time I’d have to work on edits that day. I also have  MC’s appointment to get stitches out and his post-surgery check up later in the week along with a couple of other appointments.

So, I’m over the moon excited about getting my edits back, but beyond frustrated that I’m going to have very little time to actually sit down and work on them this week. I WILL make time to work on them though because this pushes me really close to being ready to work on the cover design and being done. I’m so close!

I’m trying really hard to stay focused on those things and not the fact that this is birthday #17 for MC. When the hell did that happen?! Or the fact that I’ll be adding another year to my age only a week later. But hey! Great birthday present, though!

 

 

2018 Book Totals & A Look Back

I didn’t set any reading goals for 2018. Not really. If anything, I wanted to cut back on the amount of books I read because I wanted to make sure I did other things besides just read. Based on my total numbers for the year, I think I did just that.

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Sugar Cookies

My baking for this year finished up on a batch of Sugar Cookies, which I rarely ever attempt because I have just never gotten them right. Either the cookie is wrong because I’ve rolled them too thin or over baked them, or the icing turns out like crap. This year, I wanted to play and decided to try again. I think I did them right this time.

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Today’s Procrastination Project

Yes. I am STILL procrastinating on my edits. The BS with Amazon did not help with that, though I did get my account back last night (finally). So, instead of working on what I SHOULD be working on, I played.

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Don’t Wanna!

I apparently can’t get my head into my book today even though I KNOW I should be finishing up on my edits. Instead, I’m finding way too many distractions in music. Apparently I’m grooving instead of writing today. These are just a few in the current rotation.

 

 

Santa “Nutcracker” Project

That crazy kick in the butt from my creative muse? It was another nutcracker project. My amazingly wonderful cousin collects santas. I had considered buying her one this year, but could never find one that I really liked. After decorating this year and pulling out my giant nutcrackers I made last year I got to thinking… “If I can do massive, why not do a smaller one?”

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Book Editing – Revisions Part 1.5

I just finished up the final edits from my editor for this round. I still have another full read through I need to do to make sure all my changes work and that I didn’t break anything. I’m still feeling a little iffy at the moment because this ended up being such a choppy, broken up process with some rather big time gaps between when I was able to sit down and work that I’m not sure it all works like I think it should. At one point, I started second guessing the way I was writing certain things (more of a stylistic thing than anything), even going so far as to change how I was doing it, only to realize I was being stupid and had to go back and fix it.

There were so many parts moved around, added and removed that I’m worried I missed something and broke something in the timeline (a huge peeve of mine is to have those kinds of things messed up even if it is a tiny little element). That is one of my biggest reasons for the additional read through, but I’m worried that I’ve looked at this so much that I’ll still miss something. It is a little frustrating because I was so incredibly conscious of this as I was writing originally, I KNOW I didn’t miss anything. Now, I’m just not sure. Hopefully my read through will make me feel better about it.

Hubby is on standby ready to do yet another read for me. Can I just say how crazy awesome he is that he is willing to do this for me even though he kinda hates to read? I’m even more grateful because he is most likely going to be the only one putting eyes on this besides me before it goes back to my editor this time since my other beta reader is in no position to be able to read again with her still unable to return to her home after the fires. It makes me nervous, but I have to work with what I have.

Once I do finish and Hubby has added his dime to the mix, it goes back for another round, so I’ve still got lots of work ahead, but I’m almost over this bump.

Craft Project Sneak Peak

I finished that craft project my crazy muse demanded I work on. I’m only giving a sneak peak because it is a gift and I don’t want to spoil the surprise. Pictures of the finished project will come after the gift has been received. That said, I’m really pleased with how this turned out as, because as usual, I’ve never done this before. Kinda. I had really hoped that once I got this out of my system I’d be ready to get back to edits, but… now I feel like I spent the last two days doing hard labor, which I really didn’t. I think I’m going to just take today and the weekend to veg and get back to it on Monday.

Furry Chair Thief & Revisions Update

The kids are FINALLY back to school today after an extended Thanksgiving break thanks to a couple of snow days. Yay, right? Nope. They still get out early because that is what was already scheduled. Don’t get me wrong. I love having my kids home. It was especially nice because Hubby worked from home as well. The problem is that Hubby worked from home as well.

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Repost: Giant Nutcrackers How To

I figured now would be a perfect time to repost this in case anyone is feeling ambitious this season!

Oodles of hours, multiple trips to both the hardware store and the craft store later and my life size giant nutcrackers are done! Continue reading “Repost: Giant Nutcrackers How To”

Shameless Self Promotion

Stating the obvious, I take a lot of photos. They aren’t always perfect or awesome. Some aren’t even very good, but there is something I liked enough about it to share. I have a very large majority of my hard drive (and an external one to boot) dedicated to storing all those photos. I’ve even gotten around to printing a few to frame and hang on the walls. But, other than posting here, they just sit on those hard drives. So, in an effort to do something with them, or at least the better of them, I’ve created a Pixels/Fine Art America store where anyone can purchase prints (framed, unframed, and other formats and sizes) and a wide variety of other products printed with those photos.

Black & White Peony Phone Case
Black & White Peony Phone Case

 

Two of my favorites besides the prints have got to be the phone cases (iPhone & Galaxy) and the spiral notebooks.

Pink Tipped Carnation Notebook
Pink Tipped Carnation Notebook

As much as I really hate the whole “Hey! Buy my stuff and give me money” aspect of this, I like the idea that if someone genuinely wanted to get a print of one of my images, they can do that or they can have fun with some of the weird but kinda cool other stuff they have available. It gives me something to DO with all those photos collecting electronic dust and a chance to share them outside of just this blog.

Needed a different gift idea for the holidays? Here you go! Oh, and you’re awesome. Want to just look, then move along? That’s okay too, you’re probably still awesome. This is just one more way for me to have a creative outlet and maybe inspire me to do more.

A lot of the photos I’ve posted here are now up in the store. If there is something you would like to see that isn’t there, just give me a shout and I’ll see about getting it loaded. Not all images are on all products, they just did not work or look good so I didn’t offer them.

Oh! And if you do have a look around and like what you see, feel free to share the link with anyone would would appreciate it. But don’t spam. Spammers suck!

/self-promo;off-to-get-coffee

Hanging In There

My maple is hanging in there, still full of leaves and color, with the core still being pretty green. I’m expecting that to change rapidly over the next few days with the crazy cold heading our way. One of the things I love about this tree is the range of colors we get from it throughout the season. Bright, vivid reds, deeper burgundies, oranges, all set against the darker looking branches and the central green (at least for a chunk of the time until we hit complete color). Maples are one of my top favorites for that very reason.

I didn’t get a chance to work on my revisions yesterday, but I spent close to 9 hours working on Monday and only got through the first two chapters. I’m not even completely certain I’m done with those. It isn’t flowing like it did when I sat down the first time to write. Or even when I did my first round of my own edits before sending it off. I’m still hoping that changes some when I get a little deeper into it, but I’m not expecting it to be easy. I still have a lot of work ahead of me, but I’m slowly chipping away at it. Progress, that is what’s important.

Book Editing – Revisions Part 1

I had a nearly three hour call with my editor last week. It was majorly productive, but it left me at a point where I have a LOT of work ahead of me. I’m grateful because I know that this process will make this better when it is all said and done, but… it is still a lot. It’s a little ridiculous how not prepared for that I was. I KNOW on every level that this isn’t an easy process just from what I’ve read about it from authors I read, but it still came as a surprise just how much work I have left to do.

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Aftermath

Today is insane. I had a nearly 3 hour call with my editor (notes on that to come). Now I have to deal with the aftermath of having a haunted garage for Halloween and still wanting to put the cars in after it is all over (and that is only a small portion of what I still have to pack up). Having spent 2 days going in and out, then up and down on a ladder, my body is trying to revolt, but I still have to get everything packed up. So… I’m off to get busy. Then crash.

We’ve Got Pumpkins!

Normally, I’m so far ahead of the game that I already have the idea for both my pumpkin and my costume by the beginning of October at the very latest. This year I had neither and was even very seriously considering skipping the garage set up and not dressing up at all. I was just too stressed and overwhelmed and every bit of my creative energy seemed to be focused on the book and edits with nothing left for Halloween.

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Book Editing – Round One

I am almost always an emotional person first. My initial reactions to things come from an emotional point rather than a logical one. I am also very logical, but that isn’t usually the basis for my reactions unless whatever situation is in play isn’t an emotional one for me. So, having my initial reaction to the first round of feedback I got from my editor be very emotional should have been expected. It still kinda wasn’t and, for a little bit, I felt a wave of not so great things.

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