Friday, July 21, 2017

Celebrate the Small Things with Reptiles


This weekly blog hop is sponsored by the amazing Lexa Cain, and co-hosted by L.G. Keltner from Writing Off the Edge and myself. 

What exactly are we celebrating?

Every week, wonderful things happen, tiny things, which make us smile. But as time grabs us up, we forget all about these moments as if they never existed at all. This is the chanc
e for us to reflect back on those and remember that there are tons of things worth celebrating.

This week, I'm celebrating. . .

1) Reptiles... maybe? There's two different angles on this one:

A) Reptile Show at the Library! During the Summer Reading Program at our local library, a special program is offered to the kids every Wednesday. This last week was reptile day. Dean Sheldon came in and let the kids view a small part of his private collection of reptiles and creepy, crawly things. Who is Dean Sheldon? He's the Guinness World Record holder for sticking the largest venomous scorpion in his mouth. (Don't ask me why anyone would want to do this, but I guess he does.) Anywho, he did a great job with the kids, showing them everything from snakes to scorpions (obviously) to alligators to dragon lizards. The kids were able to pet and hold most animals, which they loved.

Now, to the other reptile moment I experienced this week. I'm celebrating. . .

B) A venomous snakes which, by some miraculous feat, didn't bite me. Yes, you can read that sentence again because my heart still skips several beats at the thought.  I was weeding in the garden when three inches off of my hand (and I mean literally no more than that) an overly friendly Copperhead suddenly slid past. He was a big guy- at least 2 feet long. What did I do? Carefully and very, very slowly (with no sudden movements whatsoever) drew back as he continued to slither straight into the rock wall right below my knees and in between the cracks.

Needless to say, my husband came to the rescue a few moments later and the snake is no more.  I always feel bad when we kill something, but we couldn't let him live there, since it's near the kids' pool and the house and my garden....*takes a deep breath* I think you get the picture. But if it makes the poor snake feel any better, I will never forget him. Promise.


2) My son is done with Boot Camp, and he finished with 299 out of 300 points! (I know this has to do with the physical tests they have to pass, but I really don't know much more than that) Unfortunately, he's not heading home yet. He now as Infantry training for a few weeks, but that shouldn't be quite as tough as Boot Camp was.



And to round things up, here are the pictures I promised last week. 
Our hay.
This year, we hauled in around 1900 bales, and I was dead at the end. Not only tired, but there were a few joints and muscles that were reminding me that I might slowly be getting a bit old for such things. Honestly, I'm beginning to wonder if I ever want to cut hay again.

The stack is around 15 feet high. So I'm going to have tons of fun knocking those top bales down. Seriously. You'll see me climbing up there for kicks every now and then. I mean, it's a haystack! Yay!

This is our trusty baler, a tough guy from the 1960's. He's slow but hasn't failed us yet.

These silly guys refused to help me bring in the hay! Instead, they think they have to cool off under the faucet
Can't depend on those chickens.
*rolls eyes*



What about you? What put a smile on your face this last week? Find a new show to bing watch on Netflix? Find yourself with an extra hour of free time on your hands? Finish up a nasty section on your writing?

What are you celebrating this week?


Friday, July 14, 2017

Celebrate The Small Things

This weekly blog hop is sponsored by the amazing Lexa Cain, and co-hosted by L.G. Keltner from Writing Off the Edge and myself. 

What exactly are we celebrating?

Every week, wonderful things happen, tiny things, which make us smile. But as time grabs us up, we forget all about these moments as if they never existed at all. This is the chanc
e for us to reflect back on those and remember that there are tons of things worth celebrating.

This week, I'm celebrating. . .

Busy, busy, busy. . .that's why I'm late this week. But here it goes!

1) Spending time with my brother and his family during their visit. We only get to see them once a year, so this is always a real treat.

2) Hay is done! We have So. Much. Hay. I think we hauled in around 2000 bales, and I am so glad it's all in the barn. I'll put up pictures next time. But. . .wow. I need to rest for at least a week. 

3) A day in the city! We drove to the city yesterday, went shopping, ate ice cream, picked up a few supplies, ate more ice cream. . . gosh, I love ice cream. It was a nice change of pace and a cooling break.

There was more to celebrate this week....I know it....but I can't think of it at the moment. That's what too much sun, heat and humidity does when working in those fields. As if my memory wasn't bad enough as it was. Lol!


So, what are you celebrating this week?
Eat ice cream?
Find a nice, cool shade tree?
See a beautiful star?
Run into someone you haven't seen in a long time?

What are you celebrating this week?





Friday, July 7, 2017

Celebrate the Small Things



This weekly blog hop is sponsored by the amazing Lexa Cain, and co-hosted by L.G. Keltner from Writing Off the Edge and myself. 

What exactly are we celebrating?

Every week, wonderful things happen, tiny things, which make us smile. But as time grabs us up, we forget all about these moments as if they never existed at all. This is the chanc
e for us to reflect back on those and remember that there are tons of things worth celebrating.

This week, I'm celebrating. . .

1) House-cleaning over on my review blog. Well, sort of. I've already reached my Goodreads goal of reviewing 100 books this year, most of which I present over on Bookworm for Kids. I've always felt sad that after a review is posted, it gets lost in the shuffle. So I've added three new tabs (Picture Books, Middle Grade, Teens and YA) where the covers of the books reviewed are plastered up along with links to the review. Now, if I ever have tons of time and get my son to help me set up an awesome review site, maybe someday I'll have everything categorized, searchable and who knows what else. But this is my first attempt to keep them readily available for all those readers out there.

2) A Happy July 4th...with too much yummy food! Way too much.

3) A visit from my brother and his family. They came in yesterday and will be staying a few days. (*uhhh* Which means I might be a bit late answering everyone's comments and visiting all of you.)

4) Blackberries! The season is here! I'm thinking of drying some for blackberry tea, freezing others, and maybe making a blackberry pie.

5) Zucchinis! I'm harvesting quite a few of these right now. My mom always claimed that a healthy zucchini plant could feed the world.


So what about you? What put a smile on your face this last week? Enjoy IWSG? Have a strawberry shake? Dip your toes into a fountain to cool off? Take a lovely walk somewhere?

What are you celebrating this week?



Wednesday, July 5, 2017

IWSG

It's time for another meeting of THE INSECURE WRITER'S SUPPORT GROUP . . .Better known as IWSG because otherwise, it is a mouthful.

For those who don't know (And you don't???), this is an awesome group of writers, started by the just as awesome Alex J. Cavanaugh, with the purpose to support, help, assist, offer advice, offer a shoulder, cheer on, and about anything else you can think of along these lines. Writing is a roller coaster ride, and writers need all the support they can get.

If you want to join in, head over to the main site and sign up.

Special thanks goes to the amazing co-hosts:  Tamara Narayan, Pat Hatt, Patricia Lynne, Juneta Key, and Doreen McGettigan


This month's question (because my writing brain seems to be on Summer break) is:

What is one valuable lesson you've learned since you started writing?

This one is easy because I've stepped into the same dumb hole time and time again.
It is. . .

Check. Double check. Triple check. And then check once again...or maybe twice before hitting that send button.

I can't say how often I've sent off a query or an email or a MS to an agent or publishing company, and overlooked some really stupid mistakes. I think I've managed to do every mishap possible over the years. Wrong agent's name, Mr. instead of Ms., didn't notice half a sentence was deleted, sent the wrong ms to the wrong person,...the list goes on and on and on. And all of these could have been avoided simply by standing up, getting a refill on my tea, and then sitting down and reading the whole thing through once again before sending it off.


What about you? What have you learned through this process called writing?




Friday, June 30, 2017

Celebrate the Small Things


This weekly blog hop is sponsored by the amazing Lexa Cain, and co-hosted by L.G. Keltner from Writing Off the Edge and myself. 

What exactly are we celebrating?

Every week, wonderful things happen, tiny things, which make us smile. But as time grabs us up, we forget all about these moments as if they never existed at all. This is the chanc
e for us to reflect back on those and remember that there are tons of things worth celebrating.

This week, I'm celebrating. . .

1) Help of friends and family! We've started hay season, which means lots 'o work. I'm so thankful for the extra hands to help me pick up those bales of hay.

2) Fire wood! With the warm temperatures this might seem a little odd thing to celebrate at the moment. BUT I just found out how much money I saved this last year on heating thanks to my wood burning stoves. It was well worth it...so much that I did a little happy dance.

3) Words from my oldest! We haven't heard from him for a couple of weeks and were thrilled to get a quick call this last week. Only 2 weeks of basic training (boot camp) left and he'll be off to his regular training. He's been complaining about the lack of food they get (small portions being scarfed down fast). As a treat and prize for winning a competition, my son's sergeants took them to a museum and a restaurant afterwards. (Okay, before I go on, it's important to know that my son is a 6ft 3 in bean pole. Super, super skinny). He was so thrilled to eat again that he ate: an order of chicken wings, salad, 3 cheeseburger menus, 2 pieces of cheesecake (and he doesn't even like cake), hot chocolate to wash it down, ice cream and then grabbed a bag of candy on the way out. Of course, he was super sick that night and next morning, but he said it was well worth it.
I guess the other guys wondered where he was putting all the food too.

That wraps up this week!

What about you? What put a smile on your face?
Get a super friendly greeting from a dog or cat?
See a shooting star?
Discover a new dessert?

What are you celebrating this week?






Thursday, June 22, 2017

Celebrate the Small Things


This weekly blog hop is sponsored by the amazing Lexa Cain, and co-hosted by L.G. Keltner from Writing Off the Edge and myself. 

What exactly are we celebrating?

Every week, wonderful things happen, tiny things, which make us smile. But as time grabs us up, we forget all about these moments as if they never existed at all. This is the chance for us to reflect back on those and remember that there are tons of things worth celebrating.

This week, I'm celebrating. . .

1) My youngest son's birthday! He had quite the day of activities planned, which kept us on our toes, but it was tons of fun.

2) A day or two of cool temperatures between the hot ones! It's beginning to get hot and muggy, so any cooler day is always a treat. Next week there should be a couple too.

What about you? What put a smile on your face this past week?

Discover some change in the bottom of your sock drawer? Pet a sweet kitty? Did you finally complete something you've been wanting to do for a long time?

What are you celebrating this week?







Friday, June 16, 2017

Celebrate the Small Things


This weekly blog hop is sponsored by the amazing Lexa Cain, and co-hosted by L.G. Keltner from Writing Off the Edge and myself. 

What exactly are we celebrating?

Every week, wonderful things happen, tiny things, which make us smile. But as time grabs us up, we forget all about these moments as if they never existed at all. This is the chance for us to reflect back on those and remember that there are tons of things worth celebrating.

This week, I'm celebrating. . .

1) My stone wall plus veggie garden is up and thriving! I can't believe how well it's doing because...*cough* *cough*.... Let's just say that gardening and I have experienced our share of battles. But this garden is going so nicely that I'm planning on adding a second level behind it. Now, listen to the groans of my children, since they have to help me pick up the rocks from the creek and load them onto the trailer.



The wall goes up to the upper end of my thigh and currently has 2 zucchinis, radishes, spinach, lettuce and 12 tomato plants. There are two layers of rock to make sure it doesn't collapse on me, and the whole thing is filled with our homemade, fertilized soil (made from my lovely girls below.)


The light colored stones are what I added. Gosh, those corner stones are heavy! As in, they were shoved...never carried. Lol! I think they weigh more than me! The other, darker wall was already there.




And here are a few of my girls. The little black guy in the middle was born this last week. Now, we're complete with 7 cows, 7 calves and one super sweet bull. Yep, fertilizer production for layer number two is going well.


2) Plum wine! My husband has always enjoyed making wine, a hobby I'm glad he's found (and  trust me, he's experimented with every type you can think of over the years). Since we moved to the US, he hasn't gotten around to it. But this last Fall, we had so many wild plums that he decided to give it a go. The result? 25 liters of the most delicious, light wine...perfect for these hot, humid temperatures (and with only 9,5% *hiccup*)

3) My very own 'book' came out this week, A Glowworm! This is a Ubook (for those of you who haven't heard me squealing the past few weeks). What is that? It's a new form of book, being currently patented by the Black and White Publishing Company. The book plays out, sentence by sentence, on a video, while music, which has been composed specifically for the book, plays in the background to help create the right atmosphere. The music was composed and performed by Nathan Moran. I was lucky enough to also have my done in narrated form, so that it makes a lovely audio book as well. Thanks, Melanie Schulz! She had a little bit of a challenge since there are several terms in German, but she did a beautiful job.

It has a more 'artsy' feel to it and is lovely to listen to...especially with a glass of plum wine (if I may say so myself.)



This is about 1 hour and 10 minutes long and covers a lesser known event in history, which drastically changed the lives of hundreds of young women between the ages of 17 and 25 in the years following WWII in Germany.

Of course, I appreciate all shout-outs, shares and such...don't we all?

And that wraps it up for this week!

What about you? What put a smile on your face this past week? Hit those hot temperatures yet? Pop some fresh berries into your mouth? Find a new shampoo?

What are you celebrating?